Monday June 30 2014

Night Ride View (June 30 2014) (2)[i]

☼ ○ ▬

While talking with friends I come to a realization about society. It's such an important and groundbreaking realization that I start teaching classes on it. I call it the Master Mind Theory. I explain to the class there are two types of people in this world, type A: the forgetful and clumsy ones, and type B: the intelligent and precise ones. Everyone is identified by the length of an invisible cloak. Type A persons wear cloaks that are too long and drag to the ground causing much stress in their lives. Type B persons wear cloaks that don't drag on the ground and there is no stress in their lives. It may seem like a strange epiphany to have, one that doesn't make much sense in waking life, but here in my dream world it's a very exciting and real epiphany.

▬ ○ ☼

Waking up around noon.

Honey Crunch n Oats with Vanilla Almond Milk.

General cleaning.


Taking my bike back to the Freewheelin Bike Shop. I just needed to get the arms that hold the front wheel filed down so the wheel can fit securely.

Scrambled Eggs. Sesame Bagel with Vegan Cream Cheese. Salsa Tortilla Chips with Avocado. Honey Green Tea.

At the Rec Center shooting around and working out. Ana's here too. I attempt to do some core exercises with her on the floor mats. She still has this thing where she doesn't like to be told what to do, or rather she prefers working out alone.

Back home. We hop on bikes and ride out to this secret spot I discovered a couple nights ago, an asphalt trail that connects from the bridge over the marsh by Laskin Road.

Night Ride View (June 30 2014) (1)

Even though I tweaked Kevin's bike to make her ride more comfortable she still doesn’t feel completely safe on a bike – she's just not experienced, evident in the careful way she mounts up on the bike and how slow she goes. And then of course the lack of sidewalks on Laskin and the busy night traffic doesn't help. I can tell she's disappointed that she can't amount up to my expectations. But I understand. I try my best to encourage and not be too pushy. After we get back home she breaks down in the kitchen, crying a little bit because she realizes how many things she can't have the courage to do around me. I hand her some tissue paper and tell her it's alright. "I love you just the way you are."

Making dinner for Ana, Ken, and myself: Lentils, Quinoa, and Mixed Vegetables with Herb Yeast Rolls.

It's Movie Monday. We finally bring closure to Lars Von Trier's Nymphomaniac and watch Vol. II. It's been a month or two since we saw Vol. I. As we sit through the deeply layered 2-hour film you can literally feel yourself being sexually desensitized. But really this movie could've been about any addiction other than sex (like food, sports, swimming, etc.) and it still would've had the same lesson and theme. Taken from a review I read online: "We learn that 'misunderstanding' is at the root of all of our problems in life. Nymphomaniac, both volumes, as uneven as they are, especially when taken together, is not so much a plea for understanding, as it is a brutal diagnosis."

Sleep 4 a.m.

[i] Images by me.

Sunday June 29 2014

Ana at Tapped Open Mic (June 29 2014) (2)[i]

Waking up around 11:15 a.m.

Honey Crunch n Oats with Vanilla Almond Milk.

All day shift at China Wok.

Red Grapes.

China Wok Dayze (June 29 2014)

It's a beautiful day out, not very humid, and with just the right amount of breeze to calm all your worries.

Veggie Chips with Avocado. Honey Green Tea. Banana.

While waiting to turn onto First Colonial Road a fellow baller from the Rec Center drives by and calls out my nickname, "MacBook!"

Bo-Berry Biscuit from Bojangles.

Janice stands over the hand sink fascinated by the bubbles she's creating with her hands.

Janice Making Bubbles (June 29 2014)

Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips.

Fried Shrimp with Broccoli, Onions, Carrots, and Rice in Garlic Sauce.

Earlier Ana texted me to inform that her period has stopped, "aunt flow is OUT!"

Me: "Finally!"

Her: "I'm a ripe fruit just for you."

Me: "Hehe what kind of fruit?"

Her: "mango!!!!!!"

Off work.

Ana's supposed to perform a few songs at Tapped's open mic night across the street. I head over for support and socializing. Kevin and his music buddies are on stage jamming out to Dave Matthews. Jes and Ana got their own table. I plop down in the chair next to Ana and point out all the people I come in contact with on a regular basis, "That guy singing right now I deliver Chinese food to. Our waiter I play basketball with at the Rec. And that guy over there played at a Show N Tell once. It's a small world. We're all connected."

We order Ginger Hard Ciders.

She gets that dreamy look in her eye and says to me, "I'm lucky to have you."

Ana at Tapped Open Mic (June 29 2014) (1)

Later, she gets up there with her big black electric guitar and sings a few songs, capturing the attention of the whole bar. Then I join in on a Johnny Cash song – Kevin follows along on violin – the other dudes keep the beat with the djembe drums.

Back at the house settling down in my room with Ana. Getting under the covers. Before I drift off to sleep she's persistently and gently caressing me. I'm pretty exhausted but there's nothing to stop the blood from flowing.

After she finishes I snicker to her, "I'm your bed toy."

[i] Images by me.

Saturday June 28 2014

Pool. Ian Francis.[i]

☼ ○ ▬

With my mom attempting to tune up a red beach cruiser bicycle of hers. We're supposed to meet a bunch of friends over in Bay Colony for a late night bike ride. The bike is proving difficult to fix. When I go to pump the tires with air I realize I can't find the PSI number on the tire. For some reason it's really important to me that I pump it with the correct tire pressure. I get a phone call from one of the friends and they've already started without us. The scene switches to a small living room that's been transformed into a pool of water – it's almost like a pond with vegetation growing along the edges but decorated with couches, loveseats, a coffee table, and a rug piece. With my mom and a mix of kids belonging to other people's families. There's also an understanding that we'll all be traveling in this pond/living room hybrid. For some reason I have my gig bag filled with instrument cables, adapters, cords, etc. Some of the stuff fell out into the water. I use a phone light to locate all the little adapter pieces one by one. In the process I come across a dead person's arm sticking out of the dirt under water. I'm not as disgusted as I should be. It's missing the hand and the nub gives me an uncomfortable stinging sensation whenever I touch it. I joke around and try to convince everyone that it's my arm.
▬ ○ ☼

Waking up at 11 a.m. with an old gospel song running in my head bleeding over from the dream, "Do Lord Remember Me".

Honey Crunch n Oats with Vanilla Almond Milk.

All day shift at China Wok.


Just another Saturday at the restaurant. Bagging the crunchy noodles and stocking up the sauces and drinks.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Honey Green Tea. Blueberries.

Driving – driving – driving.

Delivery after delivery.


Off work and back home.

Mongolian Chicken with Mixed Vegetables and Rice.

Watching Grand Piano (2013).

Sleep 3:30 a.m.

[i] Ian Francis.

Friday June 27 2014

Ana at Work (June 27 2014) (1)[i]

Waking up around 1 p.m.

Honey Crunch n Oats with Almond and Vanilla Almond Milk.

I noticed Ana left her toiletries bag in the hallway with all her make-up and face wash. I have to drive to a bike shop just past Rosemont so I figured I make a surprise visit to the O'Reilly Auto Parts shop where she works. I bring her a chocolate donut from Duck Donuts. She's very enthused to see me, which is obvious from her bright smiling face. She clocks out and we walk over to the Organic Food Depot. Sitting in a shaded spot under some trees enjoying the donuts together (I got a plain one for myself) – little flower petals float down on our heads.

Ana: "You and chocolate and donuts; that's all I need!"

Me: "No one's ever bought you donuts before?"

Ana: "No one has ever bought me donuts before!"

Getting a new wheel and tire at the bike shop off Rosemont.

Back home.

Scrambled Eggs. Everything Bagel with Vegan Cream Cheese. Veggie Chips. Blueberries. Honey Green Tea.

At The Escape lifting weights and running.


Attempting to install the new wheel on my bike and other accessories. Turns out the wheel doesn't fit very snug so I'll have to go back to the shop tomorrow.

Lentils with Mixed Greens and Naan Bread. Milk Chocolate.

Watching Enemy (2013).

I really wanted to go on a night ride so I resort to borrowing Josh's bike since he's on the road trip. I take the usual route at the oceanfront cruising along Atlantic Avenue past the attention-seeking youngsters on the block, then speeding on the boardwalk past couples everywhere holding hands and snuggling on the benches. I catch a picturesque moment of a homeless couple that fell asleep in each other's arms. I'm tempted to turn around and snap a picture but I don't. These beautiful lone night rides are very important to me. It's therapy.

Back home. Kevin brought home a bucket of crabs from China Wok for $20. Him and Darren are cracking away at the table over newspapers.

Crabbin (June 27 2014)

Sleep 3:30 a.m.

[i] Images by me.

Thursday June 26 2014

Couch Surfing Hang Out & Jam Session (June 26 2014) (1)[i]

Waking up at 1:12 p.m.

Honey Crunch n Oats with Almonds and Vanilla Almond Milk.

Vacuuming. Cleaning.


Ken spent the night. I take him with me to The Heritage to refill my honey jar and buy a couple drinks.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Barbecue Quinoa Chips. Banana. Pomegranate Red Tea.

At the Rec Center. Working out and basketball.

Back at the house. Fixing dinner. I make a bowl of veggies, black beans, and rice for Ana. And for myself: Salmon, Zucchini, and Rice. Ken's still here. Jes comes over bearing edible and drinkable gifts like Crispins (Ana and I enjoy a couple bottles), Golden Monkey Ales, and Brie. Two Couch surfers have arrived also, Irina and Natalia, one from Poland and the other from Ukraine. After looking around at all the pictures and art on the walls they say, "Your house has a soul!"

Me: "Yeah it has a lot of souls."

Couch Surfing Hang Out & Jam Session (June 26 2014) (3)

After Kevin gets home from China Wok we transfer our social energy into music. Kevin brings down the violin, Ken and I on guitars, and a melodica floats around. I sing a few of the usual songs I perform. Ken sings a few originals. Eventually, we're all just singing – oldies – Beatles – Cardigans – Sufjan Stevens – "Closing Time" by Semisonic. It's a grand ole time with good company.

Couch Surfing Hang Out & Jam Session (June 26 2014) (4)

Jes and Ken leave. While Kevin continues to entertain the couch surfers Ana and I resign upstairs in my room. She had a strange attitude on and off throughout the evening – it seems she gets a little insecure whenever new couch surfers are here. I don't know why. But it didn't deter her from having a good time and all that. It just concerns me. I question her behavior and we settle the doubts in her mind. I lie down resting my head on her chest as she wraps her arms around me, a position that doesn't often happen.

Sleep at a late hour.

[i] Images by me.

Wednesday June 25 2014

Elliott's Racing Trophies (June 25 2014)[i]

Waking up at 12:07 p.m.

Bran Flakes and Granola with Vanilla Almond Milk.

Since my bike is in disrepair I borrow Kevin's bike and ride to the shop to pick up my car. Then, stopping by Elliott's house to chat. He's drinking a coffee drink with a bottle of Yuengling on the side and painting a new show flyer. Corona, his dog, chases a wasp around the room until Elliott zaps it with a bug zapper.

Elliott's Porch View (June 25 2014)



Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Hummus. Zesty Salsa Tortilla Chips. Black Forest Berry Honest Tea. Banana.

At the storage unit with intent on dismantling the sheet metal wall Josiah and the old owner put up years ago. The new owner wanted me to tear it down so the builders can come in on Friday to put up a new wall to separate the space. It takes some time. I sweat. Carpet dust and dirt collect on my body. There's still more work to do after the builders come but for now I'm done.

Back home.

Honey-Beer-Glazed Black Beans with Onions, Cruciferous Greens Blend, Zucchini, Carrots, and Rice.

Watching The Ice Storm (1997).

Catching up on writing.

Ken and Ana show up in my room. We all sit down on the floor to discuss Ken's movie project. Ana's taken on the role as organizer and uses a composition notebook to keep notes in.

It's after 1:30 a.m. Ana and I take a walk into the summer night – it's the perfect temperature – a lovely breeze blowing in our hair. We venture into the Friend's School and climb atop the playground by the soccer field. We like to role-play sometimes in situations like this.

Me: "Let's pretend we're both 16 and still virgins."

She smiles and plays along. Pretending that school is in session and we just snuck out onto the playground to talk and have our first kiss.

Me: "Do you think anyone knows we're here?"

At the top of the structure where there's an enclosed square compartment we continue...

Me: "I'll show you mine if you show me yours."

And right there in a place of innocence and adventure we make love. The fact that anybody could walk right by, or maybe even a security guard but not likely, only fuels the excitement.

Sleep at a late hour.

[i] Images by me.

Tuesday June 24 2014

Ian Francis[i]

Waking up around 12:30 p.m. Little do I know the first half of my day is going to be disruptive. I foresee this as soon as I check my phone. The shop that's working on my car informs me it won't be ready till tomorrow and it will cost more than expected. But fortunately I'm able to lower my costs by finding the parts through Napa Auto Parts.

Honey Crunch n Oats with Almonds and Vanilla Almond Milk.

And then the manager for the storage unit facility is calling to tell me about rebuilding the wall inside my unit. When Josiah left months ago they didn't bother building the wall but now they want to rent out the other side of my space. I don't have my car of course so I hop on my bike and ride over to the storage unit to let the owner see the situation and figure out a plan. He's giving me until Friday to dismantle the sheet metal wall so the other guys can come in to install the middle wall. I spend an hour organizing and moving things around – sweeping and throwing out some of the unnecessary things I've saved. All of a sudden I hear a big POP! sound from just outside the unit – it sounded like a gun just went off. Once I hop on my bike to leave I discover the front wheel tube popped. This is my only mode of transportation back home. I walk over to Performance Bicycle nearby and have them look at it. They give me a replacement tube. I start pumping it up with air. As soon as I reach 85 psi POP! The deafening sound goes directly into my right ear causing a momentary deafness. Two bigger girls happen to be standing near the counter.

"Wow! That was loud."

I feel sorry for them and our eardrums. The air pop was so powerful it caused a significant dent in the rim. We're all a little shocked. Turns out the rim was causing the problem the whole time. It's very old and rusty inside the lining and the air pressure pressing up against all that sharpness is trouble. It's just one problem after the other. One of the employees, a guy much younger than I, tends to my problem. He grabs a new rim but it turns out the rim doesn't match the tire even though it's technically the same size. I'm gonna have to special order it. Meanwhile, an hour has passed. It's almost 5 o'clock. Ana's been working a new job at an auto parts store out on Holland Road. I get her to pick me up. She's a lifesaver.

We share a quick lunch at the house: Scrambled Eggs, Naan Bread with Hummus, Watermelon, and Honey Green Tea.

Then, at the Rec Center. She works out while I play adult basketball. I'm decent tonight, getting at least three or four goals in every game.

On the ride back home I can see she's brooding about something. But of course she won't confess what the problem is. I tell her every time she answers my questions of "What's the problem?" with "Nothing" I'm gonna slap her butt. Back home. We knock on Kevin's door. He opens up wearing his infamous blue flannel bathrobe and with that silly grin.

Me: "What're doing, Kevin?"

Kevin: "I'm just watching House of Cards."

After Ana leaves she calls me to finally release her thoughts...

Me: "You don't think you're ideal for me?"

She has a tendency to see herself as inadequate in relationships, imagining other people that would be more adequate. But she has no reason to consider herself inadequate for me. I have no complaints. She's so encouraging, loving, fun, etc. She's more than adequate.

Me: "It sounds to me like a heart and brain battle. You have a problem with thinking for me."

Ana: "I just want what's best for you."


Me: "You gotta be where you are. You can't live in the future and you definitely can't live in the past."


Me: "Ana, do you love me?"

Ana: Yes!"

Me: "Alright then. There's that! You've gotta be fueled by love, not worry. Do you agree?"

Ana: "Yeah."

Lentil Soup with leftover Couscous, Baby Broccoli, Carrots, and Onions. Williamsburg White Ale.

Finishing Old Boy (2013).

Later on I call Ana back as requested via text. She sounds sleepy but manages to conclude some thoughts on the issue...

Ana: "I think the reason I keep saying I don't want to be in a relationship right now is because I'm dissatisfied with myself and I'm not how I'd like to be. You're right when you say there's nothing really wrong with our relationship. You treat me well. I think I pretend there's something wrong when there isn't. I act like I'm being abandoned but you don't treat me that way at all."

Cleaning and various tasks.

Sleep 3:30 a.m.

[i] Ian Francis.

Monday June 23 2014

Arcades by the Dumpster (June 23 2014)[i]

☼ ○ ▬

I make my way to the stage and snatch the microphone from a girl who is about to lead a praise and worship band. "Just give me one minute. I have a couple things to say. Is that alright?" I turn to the audience, which is a mix of teens and 20-somethings, and go on a rant about not being close-minded fundamentalists. I finish with this statement, "Do not be shocked. Be gruesome!" It made more sense in the realm of my dream.

▬ ○ ☼

Waking up at 11 a.m.

Honey Crunch n Oats with Almonds and Vanilla Almond Milk.

All day shift at China Wok.

The sun is shining bright and hard on my driver's arm. I'm forced to spray on sun block.

Peanut Butter Everything Bagel. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Honey Green Tea.

It's a slow Monday at the restaurant. Writing on the down time.

Enjoying a piece of Strawberry Peach Cheesecake that Ana brought me yesterday.

As I drive up and down the same roads I drive on every day I find myself daydreaming and daythinking. Desire swims around my mind like a gang of mermaids; softly and directly they sing to me various fantasies that strike emotional and sexual chords.

Back home.

Tofu with Broccoli, Onions, Carrots, and Rice in Garlic Sauce.

Watching the American rendition of Old Boy (2013).

Dropping off my car at the shop overnight. I brought my bike so I can take a long ride at the oceanfront. Along the boardwalk I peddle as fast as possible to the gritty indie-punk tunes of Parquet Courts. As I'm finishing up my 8-mile trek I cruise down Atlantic and turn on 31st Street. I see a couple leaned up against a silver car. From behind it appears they're just holding each other and making out. But the closer I get a different image emerges. I see an older pot-bellied man dry humping (or so it appeared dry) a lady doggy style. They both look up at me oblivious to their raunchy display and I just smile and pump my hands in the air in response. It doesn't really hit me until moments later what I just saw. Were they really just having sex?

Back home. Relaxing with a Black Forest Berry Honest Tea.

Sleep 4 a.m.

[i] Image by me.

Sunday June 22 2014

Difficult to Deal With  (Note from Ana) (June 22 2014)[i]

☼ ○ ▬

At Disneyland with Will Clark and Ana. We walk into an office to register for tickets. The clerk lays out brochures with images of animals, some of them with our faces superimposed. Elephants. Giraffes. Gorillas. After all of this we end up not buying the tickets and instead we are given bowls of cereal to eat. I slurp it up like I'm starving.

▬ ○ ☼

Waking up just before 11:30 a.m.

Honey Crunch n Oats with Almonds and Vanilla Almond Milk.

I've got a few extra minutes before I leave for work. Ana's slowly awakening but still curled up under the covers. I wrap my arms around her and say, "Good morning my little sunshine!" and kiss her on the cheek.

All day shift at China Wok.

Scrambled Eggs. Everything Bagel with Vegan Cream Cheese. Honey Green Tea.

It's another steady Sunday at the restaurant. Driving and driving and driving. Today I use music as my fuel, rather than talk radio or silence.

Ana visits for a little bit and rides around on a few deliveries. She gifts me with cheesecake and an Honest Tea, which I decide to save for tomorrow.

Off work and back home.

Vegetable Lo Mein.

Ana left me a note from this morning that says "I am difficult, but you deal with me well. You've helped me grow. Love your ☼ [sunshine]"

I see Josh, James, Riggs, and Anthony off on their annual road trip across America. Before they leave I offer everyone shots from a bottle of black currant spirits that the Latvians gifted the house with last night. Anthony has plans to stay on the west coast so I might not see him for a long time. Later on after they all leave the house is lonely and quiet. Darren and Devon are holed up in their room doing whatever they do. But it's still quiet. It kind of hits me as I continue to dwell on the depth and meaning in friendships. Even though I'm not always on the same chaotic and freeform page as Anthony is, I will always feel a kinship with him. I ruined a lot of opportunities to savor time with him, and for that matter any of my friends. I wonder why I'm not in that car with them right now. Why can't I just up and leave town for a couple weeks? Why can't I just forget about the blog and my roots here in Virginia Beach/Norfolk? Roots is the right word. I feel deeply rooted, so much so that I don't think it's even possible to uproot my tree.

Chores. Watermelon.

Sleep 3:30 a.m.

[i] Image by me.

Saturday June 21 2014

Boardwalk Foursquare Party (June 21 2014) (18)[i]

Waking up at 11 a.m.

Honey Crunch n Oats with Almonds and Vanilla Almond Milk.

All day shift at China Wok.

As soon as I walk into the restaurant I see Ling yelling at Eileen over math problems. The kids have been learning multiplication lately. He harps on her so hard that she starts to cry. The only thing she's ever going to learn is whenever she does something wrong she gets yelled at. His life is designed around a sense of urgency. Make everything very fast! Go! Go! Go! And then you've got this child, his daughter, who needs time, more time than he thinks necessary, to learn. I feel like it's not my place to intervene. But I want to scold him for being too impatient and hostile on his daughter. Children need affirmation not constant criticism. Sometimes I entertain the idea of writing a book from her perspective. It could be called "My Hopeless Summers at China Wok". That poor girl. I do my best to tutor her on the down time.


Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Honey Green Tea.

It's pretty steady for deliveries all day.


About an hour before we close Anthony rolls into the restaurant carrying the house phone and with two couch surfers from Louisiana tagging along. There's big plans tonight.

Fried Shrimp with Broccoli, Carrots, Onions, and Rice in Garlic Sauce.

Off work and back home. More couch surfers arrive on the scene, three from Latvia. I corral as many people as I can to meet up with Elliott and his crew at the oceanfront. On the boardwalk near 16th Street a couple with guitars serenades and leads us all in song. Anthony takes on his well-earned role as jester of our court and riles everyone up running around like an energetic puppy.

Phil asks, "What's he on?"

I shake my head, "Nothing. Nothing but himself."

I brought the playground ball for foursquare games. Many passersby join in. We loiter around the benches as long as we can before the bike cops show up.

Boardwalk Foursquare Party (June 21 2014) (17)

Boardwalk Foursquare Party (June 21 2014) (5)

Boardwalk Foursquare Party (June 21 2014) (4)

Boardwalk Foursquare Party (June 21 2014) (15)

Back at the house. There's too much commotion and nonsense. Ana's finger gets caught in the bathroom door from somebody slamming it shut. I get angry about it cause she doesn't deserve any kind of pain. I bandage up the wound like a good boyfriend.

Sleep at some point real late.

[i] Images by me.

Friday June 20 2014

Dirk (Phil Gray) Couch Surfing (June 20 2014)[i]

☼ ○ ▬

Just arrived in my home city at an airport. There's some confusion on where the baggage claim is. I follow a couple that looks like they know where they're going. The guy leads me into a secret tunnel system behind the walls that can magically lead you directly into your bedrooms. We locate mine after some time. I was starting to get claustrophobic in here. Later, I'm offered tea in these miniature cups from an old lady. When I go to take the first sip I discover a jellyfish pulsating inside the tea.

▬ ○ ☼

Waking up around 11 a.m.

Found the best organic imitation of Honey Bunches of Oats from Trader Joe's: Honey Crunch n' Oats. Having a bowl of that with Vanilla Almond Milk.

All day shift at China Wok.

Papaya. Banana.

In all the years I have worked here at this restaurant I have never once seen my bosses turn on the air condition until today. I guess it's that hot.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Honey Green Tea.

As I'm walking out the door to leave on a delivery, my head facedown scanning the ground as I usually do when I'm walking, I discover a $50 bill. Somebody must've dropped it unknowingly. I've been fortunate enough to find $5 bills and even $20 bills but never a 50. It takes me a couple minutes to wrap my head around what I just found. Wow. What a find. I feel bad for the person that lost it. I didn't earn this money. I just happened to be in the right place at the right time.

Milk Chocolate Bar.

A customer dropped their egg drop soup. I guess they took the name of the soup literally.

Egg DROP Soup (June 20 2014)

Mongolian Chicken with Mixed Vegetables and Rice.

Tips are substantial – five dollars here – four dollars there. And then my last order of the night at Fairfield Inn, a $20 tip. It doesn't matter how much extra time I have to work tonight I should have nothing to complain about.

Off work shortly after 11 o'clock. Phil Gray and his wife, Cheongah, are in town for a few days. We organized late-night dinner at Rick's Café with them, Elliott, Rocky, Ana, and myself. After some thinking earlier I decide to use my $50 bill on everyone's meal. The check only comes out to about $32 and some change. I figured leaving the fifty is a way to pay it forward, so to speak.

Back at the house. Phil and Cheongah are gonna spend the night. I pull out a box that's been stored in my closet for three or four years now. In it are some of Phil's CD's and a harmonica. He seems happy to be reunited with the box. Later, Kevin wobbles in the front door barely holding a case of mixed beer. Phil and Cheongah pretend to be foreign couch surfers, Olga and Dirk, when introduced to Kevin. Even though Kevin has met Phil in the past we assumed he wouldn't remember anyway. It works.

It's been a long, long day. I spend an hour finishing laundry, brewing tea, prepping some fruit, and general cleaning. After 3 a.m. I finally sit down at the computer to reflect and write.

Sleep shortly after 4 a.m.

[i] Images by me.

Thursday June 19 2014

80 20 Burger Bar Show (June 19 2014) (1)[i]

☼ ○ ▬

Inside a big guesthouse. I'm staying there for the night with a couple of friends. A strange homeless-looking man intrudes through the side door but nobody seems alarmed. I start talking with the homeless man. He's not too much older than me. He's got a spunky punk style of dress. He sits too close for comfort and tries to touch me sexually. It gets to a point where there's too much hostility to handle. So I jet it out the door and try to runaway. I bounce up onto the roof and try to wait it out hiding inside a crevice. 

▬ ○ ☼

Waking up at 1:58 p.m. much later than I wanted it to be.

Bran Flakes and Berry Cobbler Granola with Vanilla Almond Milk.

Driving Riggs and I to Trader Joe's for groceries.

Scrambled Eggs. Everything Bagel with Vegan Cream Cheese. Honey Green Tea.

At the Rec Center getting my basketball on. I'm fortunate to be on a winning team tonight – power plays and fast breaks.

Banana. Lentil Curls.

In Norfolk at 80/20 Burger Bar, the same location where The Boot used to be. Jeremy Flax invited me to play a Musicplayer set for a show with his band, J. Flax & The Heart Attacks, and a band from Richmond called The Trillions. Both bands put on powerhouse performances. Everything was tuned to the key of Rock n Roll. Some of us twist and shake to the rhythm. According to friends and strangers my performance had a special shine to it. I felt comfortable on stage tonight – I got into a very personal musical zone. It's nice to see a lot of our friends all in one place. There's a lot of camaraderie and mingling. Enjoying a Mahi-mahi Sandwich with House Fries and a Vienna Lager.

80 20 Burger Bar Show (June 19 2014) (6)

80 20 Burger Bar Show (June 19 2014) (2)

80 20 Burger Bar Show (June 19 2014) (5)

80 20 Burger Bar Show (June 19 2014) (4)

Walking Ana outside to her car. I have to settle some concerns of hers cause I can see a little bit of jealousy in her face from earlier when a girl was complimenting me in the restaurant. It's not that serious of a concern cause I squash it with humor but also ask, "Do you trust me?" After she says yes then, "Alright! Then none of that should matter." She just needs reassurance. We all do. I add, "At the end of the night who am I walking out to their car? Huh? You!"

[Lip Kisses x3 and a few warm hugs]

I take her hand and kiss it a couple times. Then quote Gomez from Addams Family, "I would die for you! I would kill for you! Either way, what bliss!"

Ana texts me after I get home...

"i just want to say again how happy i am for you and how proud i am ! i really saw you come alive . a good performance is when you witness the performer(s) slowly blossom and come alive. i saw that in you. i saw your passion. i saw that you were putting in all of that hard work and heart into your music. i admire you. and i enjoyed our little moment outside my car. and after i left the parking lot..  my first thought was.. 'GOSH. I love him!' Δ_Δ"

Sleep 4 a.m.

[i] All images by me.

Wednesday June 18 2014

Ziggy Josie (Ladada Video Shoot) (June 18 2014)[i]

Waking up at 1 p.m.

Wheat Flakes and Berry Cobbler Granola with Vanilla Almond Milk.

As soon as I hop into the car to run errands goose bumps develop on my arms and legs but not from it being cold, but instead from the intense heat that has transformed the inside of my car into an oven. That's how hot it is – a high of 95 degrees. 


Scrambled Eggs. Everything Bagel with Vegan Cream Cheese. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Honey Green Tea.

At The Escape putting in a decent workout.


At Fawn Studios in Norfolk to help with some extra footage for Josiah's Ladada music video. Danny Rogers is filming. After a few full band shots we get creative and think up shots on the spot using the studio's unique factory environment.

Chandelier (Ladada Video Shoot) (June 18 2014)

Josiah (Ladada Video Shoot) (June 18 2014)

Then, I rush over to Ana's house. She wasn't able to finish cooking dinner before I arrived so I help with preparing the meal. My tummy was grumbling so hard. After about twenty minutes we finally sit down to fill our bellies with Tofu Teriyaki, Purple Cauliflower, Broccoli, Carrots, and Couscous. Afterwards we recline on the couch in the living room and just talk. She's got on her really short house shorts exposing those delicate thighs. I always joke about how I want to slice them up in filets and cook them. We sing a little bit together in preparation to do a song tomorrow at the show.

Rehearsing the set at the storage unit.

Sleep 4:30 a.m.

[i] Images by me.

Tuesday June 17 2014

Nurse Head. Source Unknown.[i]

Waking up shortly after 1 p.m.

Bran Flakes and Berry Cobbler Granola with Almond Milk.

Spending too much time shopping online for a screen protector and case for my iPhone 5s. It's simply exhausting figuring out the best choice after reading mixed reviews on everything.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Navel Orange. Honey Green Tea.

At the Rec Center for adult basketball. Just another Tuesday darting back and forth down the court shooting hoops.

Salmon, Baby Broccoli, Mushrooms, Carrots, Onions, and Couscous. Sparkling Grapefruit Izze.

Watching Twice Born (2012).

Practicing a set of songs at the storage unit for a show I'm playing Thursday.

At the house cutting some fruit in the kitchen while Darren and Josh shoot the shit about the future of racism.

Sleep 4:30 a.m.

[i] Source Unknown.

Monday June 16 2014


Waking up at 1:58 p.m. Mm. Way too late for my tastes.

Bran Flakes and Berry Cobbler Granola with Almond Milk.


Vacuuming downstairs and upstairs.

Scrambled Eggs. Everything Bagel with Vegan Cream Cheese. Honey Green Tea.

Practicing a little bit at the storage unit.


Street basketball with Anthony and Riggs. We pick up a lone baller on the court for a couple of 2-on-2 games.

Back at the house people are gathering for the movie. We're showing an Italian film called The Great Beauty (2013), a rather visual and artful piece about an aging writer searching for great beauty. Ana and I share a Cheese Pizza from Chicho's and a small bowl of Arugula.


Someone makes a joke at Kevin. "I'm infended," Kevin says without thinking.

"Infended? You mean offended?" somebody asks.

Kevin: "Offended. You guys knew what I meant."

Me: "It's not about what you mean. It's about what you say!"

Kevin's comeback: "Put it in your blog, Robert!"


Jessica announces after Kevin whistles at the boobies on the screen, "That's all you care about, Kevin. Playing the violin and women."

Kevin just smiles haughtily and says, "That's right."

"The most important thing I discovered a few days after turning 65 is that I can't waste any more time doing things I don't want to do."


"This is how it always ends. With death. But first there was life, hidden beneath the blah, blah, blah... It's all settled beneath the chitter chatter and the noise, silence and sentiment, emotion and fear. The haggard, inconstant flashes of beauty. And then the wretched squalor and miserable humanity. All buried under the cover of the embarrassment of being in the world, blah, blah, blah... Beyond there is what lies beyond. And I don't deal with what lies beyond. Therefore... let this novel begin. After all... it's just a trick. Yes, it's just a trick."

Upstairs, Ana and I lounge on the bed and talk. She looks up at a picture I have on the wall of a castle and asks what castle it is. This sparks up a history lesson on the Neuschwanstein castle and Ludwig II (The Swan King). I pull out a few books from the shelf and we skim through pictures and letters written back and forth between Wagner and Ludwig.

Sleep around 3:30 a.m.

[i] The Great Beauty.

Sunday June 15 2014

Martin Vlach.[i]

Waking up at 11:24 a.m.

Wheat Flakes and Berry Cobbler Granola with Vanilla Almond Milk.

All day shift at China Wok.


It's a slow dragging afternoon for deliveries here at the restaurant but that doesn't mean I'm just sitting on my ass. There's plenty of prep work to help with: snapping the snow peas, bagging the fried noodles, de-shelling and deveining box after box of shrimp. The whole family is gathered around the stainless steel counters prepping the shrimp, even the two little girls. I swear these girls are gonna grow up in no time and start their own Chinese restaurant. They practically know how to do everything already.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Honey Green Tea.

The tips today aren't so great. I'm walking away with 30% less than I made yesterday.

The phones stop ringing after 10 p.m. and for the last thirty minutes Ling stands in front of a map on the computer giving me a history lesson on the wars in China.

Off work and back home.

Tofu, Broccoli, Carrots, Onions, and Rice in Garlic Sauce.

Ana stops by. We get lost in conversation about a bunch of things. Mostly it's just me going on a rant about ambition and the problem of dreamers staying dreamers and never putting in plan of actions. She still notices some internal problems with herself and not being completely open with me. It's very hard for her – we don't know why. We attempt to analyze it.

Sleep 4 a.m.

[i] Martin Vlach.

Saturday June 14 2014

Cool VW Van on Old VA Beach Rd (June 14 2014)[i]

Waking up at 10:47 a.m.

Bran Flakes and Berry Cobbler Granola with Vanilla Almond Milk.

All day shift at China Wok.

It's terribly slow in the afternoon. I take care of prepping the bags. Eileen watches by the counter counting them one by one.

Me: "Bags. Bags. Bags. I'm the bag boy!"

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Kombucha Tea.

Eventually the orders pick up after 6 o'clock. Now I can finally get into the delivery driver zone behind the wheel – getting lost in heart warming stories from a Radiolab podcast.

Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips.

Dogs. Dogs. And more dogs. Every four in five customers own dogs. I see many a dog.

Ana visits for a bit at the last hour. She just bought lipstick and her lips are unusually red.

Me: "I don't think I've ever seen you wear lipstick before. Your lips are really red."

She looks good though. After she leaves here she attends a show at Belmont in Norfolk.

Off work and back home.

Mongolian Chicken. Sparkling Grapefruit Izze.

Tinkering with my new iPhone – transferring contacts, etc.

Sleep 4 a.m.

[i] Image by me.

Friday June 13 2014

Rainbow (June 13 2014)[i]

Waking up from a deep sleep at 10:45 a.m. Not feeling 100% - my right ankle is still sore from yesterday's rollover on the basketball court.

Drinking some hearty Carrot-Orange Juice and my usual bowl of cereal. Halfway through something doesn't sit right in my stomach and I'm forced to stop eating. I don't think I should mix that juice with cereal.

All day shift at China Wok.

Popping a few acetaminophen pills.

Egg Drop Soup.

On the down time the girls huddle up next to me at the table. Janice tries to describe a house she heard about that looks like a strawberry. I somehow convince them that there is such a phenomenon as strawberry ghosts, like little invisible flying ghosts that are supposed to be strawberries. They sit in front of me with wide eyes and ears listening as I describe a ghost sighting I experienced when I was a kid.

Grapefruit. Cinnamon Raisin Bagel with Vegan Cream Cheese. Honey Green Tea.

The day drags on until about 6 o'clock when the phones start to ring off the hook. Darren gets called in to help with the dinner shift. Rain drizzles from the sky in movements like a Beethoven piece.

Kombucha. Fiberful Peanut Butter Chocolate Granola Bar.

Dealing with the usual troubles of a delivery driver – difficulty locating an address that was written down incorrectly to begin with – customers not knowing where they live – not having change for a hundred dollar bill.

Back home finally shortly after 11 p.m.

Vegetable Lo Mein.

Doing chores – cleaning dishes – laundry – trimming mustache.

Sleep 3:30 am.

[i] Image by me.

Thursday June 12 2014

Sophie and Jupiter Photo Shoot (June 12 2014) (6)[i]

Ana wakes me up early at 10:30 a.m. It's a pouring rainstorm outside. Colonial Avenue turns into a lake and I'm convinced her small Yaris can transform into a boat.

Me: "You've got a couple of oars in the back right?"

At Handsome Biscuit enjoying some our favorite breakfast meals. I have the Shorty: Over-Easy Egg on a Sweet Potato Biscuit with a side of Lupo Hot Sauce and a Mango House Soda.

Before I drive back to Virginia Beach I browse Thrift Store USA off Little Creek – scoring a few pictures, one of them I remember seeing last time I was here with Ana. It's a landscape of three horses running freely across green-blue plains. It struck a chord with me when I first saw it and the fact that it hadn't sold yet is a sign that it is meant for me.

Back home. Catching up on things. My brand new iPhone 5s came in the mail. For a long time I was always an avid anti-iPhone guy. But every smart phone I've had has failed me in all sorts of ways. I was able to upgrade through Verizon for only $100. How can I pass that up? Spending time configuring the settings and learning a new digital animal.

I catch Jupiter and Sophie playing together in Darren and Devon's room.

Sophie and Jupiter Photo Shoot (June 12 2014) (7)

Sophie and Jupiter Photo Shoot (June 12 2014) (3)

Sophie and Jupiter Photo Shoot (June 12 2014) (2)

Bran Flakes and Maple Quinoa Granola with Vanilla Almond Milk. Honey Green Tea.

At the Rec Center for adult basketball. My game play is up and down. Disappointing myself with wild shots and then redeeming myself with powerful shots. The MacBook nickname still sticks with my teammates. Minor injury while playing occurs when I land on my opponent's foot causing my right ankle to roll over. It's not severe but for the next week I should take it easy.

Back home.

Chicken, Kale, Onions, Red Peppers, and Rice.

Watching Jerry and Tom (1998).

Messing around with the iPhone and shopping for cases.  

Chocolate Chip Almond Meal Cookies. Tea.

Sleep 3:30 a.m.

[i] All images by me.

Wednesday June 11 2014

Panty Drop (June 11 2014)[i]

Waking up at 1:25 p.m.

Bran Flakes and Cinnamon Raisin Granola with Vanilla Almond Milk.

Researching. Shopping for houses.

Scrambled Eggs. Cinnamon Raisin Bagel with Vegan Cream Cheese. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Honey Green Tea.

At the neighborhood gym working out. Then, shooting the basketball around at the Seatack Rec.


I drive out to Ana's house in Norfolk. She's in the middle of making a delicious dinner for us – I help finish the cooking. Tofu with Broccoli, Brussel Sprouts, Purple Cauliflower, and Rice in a Chili Garlic Peanut Sauce. There's jazz/crooner kind of music on the stereo. I can't get over this sexy black and white dress she's chosen to wear. You would think she's dressed to go out on the town. At any rate she looks exceptionally attractive tonight. After eating our meal we take a walk through the neighborhood to scope out this house for sale that Ana thought I'd be interested in. When we get back we open up her garage to inspect all the junk that her uncle has left lying around in hopes to find a place for the drum kit I gave her. I flip off the lights and bring her in close. This will be the setting for our sex tonight. A cushioned chair nearby helps to diversify our positions. A dull glow comes through the blinds of one window providing just enough light necessary to see our silhouettes enjoy the sexual healing. When all is finished I take a big breath and the strong scent of saw dust and fresh semen fills my nostrils.

Jokingly I say out loud, "Mm. I like the smell of saw dust and semen."

All of a sudden we hear a knock at the door – it's her mom. Putting on our clothes in a jiff and attempting to act like everything is normal when she opens the door.

Her mom: "What are you guys doing?"

"We're just figuring out a place to put the drums." My shirt is still half on and half off. "It's a little hot in here," I add.

Impeccable timing.

Go Home Tree Branch. You're Drunk (June 11 2014)

Back inside I pull out her little black acoustic guitar and we sing a little bit. I kind of get lost playing a few old melodies from back in the Musicplayer band days. She dozes off to the quiet drop D sounds.

Sleep 3:30 a.m.

[i] Images by me.

Tuesday June 10 2014

Quilty People by Liz.[i]

Waking up around 12:30 p.m.

Bran Flakes and Granola with Vanilla Almond Milk.

I sent out an official email to the property manager of Chanticleer explaining some of the on-going building problems in our house. The maintenance guy is here working on it. I do my own repairs and tweaking.

Tuna Salad Sandwich with Tomato and Arugula. Barbecue Quinoa Chips. Honey Green Tea.

At the Rec Center for adult basketball. It's a hazy non-stop evening of hustling and juggling, of rebounding and trash talking. I gain more and more respect every time I play. Meanwhile, Ana is making use of the fitness room. Afterwards, we shop at Kroger together.

Bach home alone.

Lentil Soup with Kale, Carrots, and Rice.

Watching some of Game 3 of the Spurs and Heat.

Watching 300: Rise of an Empire (2014).

Cinnamon Roll. Tea.

Lately there's been a bubble wrap war between Kevin and I. Until the last bubble is popped...

Sleep at 4 a.m.