Archives for category: Auto Biography

 

1.

Before I hit the doctor’s office I stepped into Regen Projects on Santa Monica Boulevard.

Owned by Shaun Regen this is by far the most interesting gallery in LA and consistently shows challenging and stimulating work.

Regen Projects is currently showing work by German artist John Bock.

Born 1965, Gribbohm, Germany

Lives and works in Berlin.

The show reminded me (inevitably) of fellow German Martin Kippenberger.

Kippenberger is one of my favorite artists.  His work has been inexcusably and crudely plundered by the YBA (Young British Artists).

Bock influences  include: Paul McCarthy, Otto Muehl, Paul Thek and Maurizio Cattelan.

John Bock is a performance artist and sculptor whose three-dimensional works often serve as props for his performances.

Bock creates entire universes using a wildly eclectic range of materials, described in multiple languages, and presented with an antic energy that is equal parts mad scientist and Buster Keaton.

A dizzying mix of pseudo-scientific, aesthetic, social, and political commentary,  Bock’s works defy logic.

This view of the world has various precedents, notably in the post World War II Theatre of the Absurd, a movement whose goal was to shock audiences into facing up to life “in its ultimate, stark reality.”

Bock believes the pre-conscious associations inherent in words are unavoidable and that only through experience and empathy can we penetrate what he terms the “heavy numb dumb world” of daily life.

Bock’s lectures seduce and confound, simultaneously proving perhaps, the inexplicability of the interrelationship of man and his universe.

2.

When I let God take the reigns of the humble buggy I drive down the promised path of happy destiny I am sure of one thing: things are going to turn out just the way they are meant to.  Good and bad.

When I angrily push him out-of-the-way and drive myself I am sure of nothing.

I used to think that if I let God take control of my life, my life might be ever so slightly boring but that simply isn’t the case.  God and I can still go on a wild ride, we can still have excitement and ambition.   We just do it the right way.

I get to have all that life has on offer without paying the terrible price I seem to pay when I wilfully drive the buggy myself.

I used to think (convinced myself) that doing the right thing meant that I had to live a pious life.

This simply isn’t true.  God doesn’t want me kneeling at his feet all day praying that his will be done.  He knows that I believe in his will being done, but what I have come to understand of late is that his will needn’t be dull.

Everyday things get better in my head.  Everyday without the grip of obsession, compulsion and the like I am calmer, more centered, more and more in my own skin.

Getting back to work and in touch with my God-given desire to create (and a means to do so) I feel more like the man I was meant to be rather than the man I have been lately.

Yesterday I went back to the doctor, had more scans and lo and behold there are yet more problems to deal with.  The difference between this time and the last is that I now have a skill set to deal immediately and healthily with these problems rather than the last time when I associated the problem with him.

It is remarkable to me that for nearly a year I let somebody else rule my head and my heart.  By so doing I allowed the deep shadow cast by another to blot out the sunlight of the spirit.

When I talk about God I don’t mean a christian…organised religious God.  I mean a God of my understanding, a higher power to whom I must defer at all times if I am going to live a healthy life.

Still sparkling!  Last day in Whitstable.

Have no plans for tonight and happily so.

My friend Blair drove 30 miles from Wingham to take me to breakfast.  We hadn’t seen each other for 20 years and pretty much picked up from where we left off.  It was really wonderful to see him.  He’s still married to his wife and has three kids.  After breakfast we went shopping for his boy’s 18th birthday.

Blair reads my blog and told me to stop moaning so much.  It was funny and heart warming..he said, “I know that’s not you..”  Which is true..I have not been myself for some considerable time.

Honestly, I think that the Sex Rehab programme/experience really went to my head.

I changed in many ways after I left the show..some good…some bad.  The limited fame and attention, the intoxicating buzz I had every day whilst being filmed…and then the crazed fan who I thought might love me.

With the all clear comes the ALL CLEAR!!

Blair and I wandered up the High Street.  I must have chatted with 20 people of varying ages.  Each of them asked what I was up to and if I was happy…some of them read this..so they knew LOADS.  One of my favorite Dengate boys (rugby player) and his sweet infant stopped me outside Budgens and  warmly greeted me.

I always feel so honoured to have these people in my life.

Something really has shifted.

I got caught up in something peculiarly Hollywood.  I got caught up in the inconsequential periphery of the industry and the unhealthy effects and lost my way.  Now I have to put that all to rest and own up to some glorious mistaken identity.

We watched a bad TV documentary about Michael Jackson last night and the various fixers and characters around him..of course I know the real players in that story and none of them were in the show.  The guys who make the real money, make the real decisions.  It was fascinating to see how the documentary maker had the wool pulled over his eyes..yet, it’s true that the bigger the family you belong to in LA the more likely you are to get on.  SAA, AA..Scientology etc. each a legitimate family for the waifs and strays washed up on the west coast.

My legitimate family is here in Whitstable.  They can and do absorb the greater part of my ego.   I am sitting with Georgina at the B&B trying to repair her tumble drier.  Does that seem absurd?  That this makes me happy?

I missed my nephews birthday party because I was sick with this flu.

New Years Resolution Number One:  Don’t write blog until I have completed a stiff walk up a steep hill.

I bought two new hats:

 

Congratulations to Tanya Sarne and Wendy Dagworthy..my new OBE friends.

Happy New Year Everyone!

There have indeed been months of worry and a pervading sense of doom.   Liberated from all of this…I feel invincible.

Emotionally, physically and spiritually life has been particularly nasty.

Now, unencumbered with either fear of imminent death, financial insecurity due to exceptional sales of art and my recommitment to a more sober life (without internet obsessions) I will fight what ever I need to fight to make my life comfortable and fair.

I will step out of the shadows and into the light.

I promise you all that the next man I let into my bedroom will be treated like a whore.  The next man I let into my heart will be treated like the king I expect him to be.

No more half measures.  No more wasted tears.  No more.

I will never again let a liar and a thief rampage through my life expecting him to value what he is given.   I would rather be alone than suffer another fool.  Diminishing returns are not my thang.

Monkey man on my back.   A crazed fan who thought he knew me from seeing me on the TV and was appalled by who I actually am.  Even how old I am.  Oh, God…thank you for delivering me from him.  There are occasions when no amount of forgiveness will do.

As for going back home to LA?  I sent a picture of my cock and sack to my worst enemies and told them to expect me home soon.    I let them know that they might have been wishing for a different outcome but their prayers failed.

That includes you…my Westchester readers.  Go fuck yourselves.

The first thing that needs to happen?   The house comes off the market.

The second thing that happens?   I make my next movie.  Try stopping me.

The third thing that happens?  I move back to NYC .

If I ever see his ugly mug again?  I will chase him up the street like the cheap crook he is.  God didn’t give me a second chance to get weak..he gave me a second chance to make my dreams come true.

I do not need a man to make me whole.  I am whole.  I am strong.  I do not need to love a man to make me feel complete, nor do I feel lonely when I am alone.

I have never needed anyone but quite by chance I have you…the people who read this and make me feel better, connected…thank you…again…thank you.  The people who only met me on the TV, the people who know me for real…the people who opened their houses and their hearts during this most terrible few months.

I left school when I was 16.  I did everything I could to survive-including not sleeping with every man who promised me a dream.   My greatest adventures are still to come.

Did you like the picture of me and the Picasso?  I thought that sitting below a $35, 000, 000 picture would give you a clue to where I can sit when I put my mind to it.

Laying in my bed with this fever..seems like a bad time to start cleaning house but that’s what I find myself doing.

As the New Year approaches we all attempt to make changes in our lives, commit or recommit to breaking old habits and focus on what we know is good for us.

Looking back at this eventful year…wasn’t it just?  Of course I think about you-know-who but how I think about him must change.

Already I am wondering why a man I knew for so little time and spent even less real-time became so bloody important to me.

That’s a question I need answering with the help of a therapist.

I can dress it up as a huge romance..or I can tell it as it is…two addicts clinging onto one another for safety.   So few words to describe something that has bugged me all year.

My abandonment issues, separation angsiety…all makes sense.

Jake lingers in my nutty mind because in March I will be carrying the can for the both of us in court.

As irritable as I am about the court date..March 25th (I will be really pissed as the date approaches) I am in the sort of mood where if I were a King I would be pardoning all manner of prisoners.   The prisoner I am pardoning today..is me.  I deleted my Manhunt account, my Adam 4 Adam account and lastly..my Gaydar account.    I must say..it’s a tremendous relief.

All I have to recommit to is my porn problem…which is not as bad as it was but still figures in my fantasy life.

The great thing about AA or SAA or any 12 step programme is that we can always start again.  You know as well as I do how topsy-turvy everything has been these past few months..how thrown off course I have been.

Wandering up the High Street today, a light rain on my face, even though I am really sick..I felt happy.  Incredibly at ease with everything.

I am not in competition with anyone.  Not for a better time, not for a bigger house, not for more money or a better job.  I have quite enough of everything.  I always have.

You know, I am going to tell you something:  I have been praying hard for Jake to be okay.  Praying for his career, his love life, for adventure and peace of mind.

Would I want to be him?  No.  Would I have wanted his life thus far?  No.  Instead of hating him I have been getting some perspective.  Sure, I wasted a great deal of time on that young man, and it feels like not much has been learned..but I am sure that as time passes I will think differently about that.

I can see that not many people anywhere, how ever rich they are..are very happy.  On the face of it Jake had everything a young man could possibly want but just pick at the surface and there’s nothing there.   Happiness is so elusive for so many.  The folks I know here in Whitstable are especially grumpy.   They drink too much, they feel trapped, they are ignorant of so much…yet they live in harmony.

I sometimes wonder if it would have been better for Jake to stay in the closet..if you want to call it that.   They were happy together.  They were soul mates.  He just wanted a bit of cock on occasions…or did he?  For as much as he dismissed what he wanted from me as a ‘bit of fun’, I know for sure that he wants to be loved.

I never really understood what it was about his Father or Mother that made him lie to them.  Were they hideously judgemental?  Homophobic?  Unlikely as his dad is a psychiatrist.  Most probably they are as entitled as he is.  What happened to little Jake?  Precious Jake?

I chatted with someone Jake knew at University last week.  I asked if it was a particularly macho anti-gay university…as Jake had described it.  My friend laughed out loud..he said that it was like going to the Castro in San Francisco.   Ithaca is a private upstate liberal arts college.

He must have lied to me all the time.

He must have been really unhappy.  I hope he gets happier.

Hanging with Tom the other day…he’s happy…his wife and kid seem happy too.  That’s something to aspire to.  I have always wanted the mince-pie, brocade and topiary sort of comfort he has and then I look around and see that I already have it.

As you may have noticed…the blog didn’t go private because there doesn’t seem to be a way on WordPress for me to do that.  Oh well.

BTW, it’s that time of year again where I get to vote for who will win this years BAFTA for best film, director, etc.   I realized, as I was voting for the best male actor, that I knew every one of them personally and had slept with two of them.

Strange but true.

It’s quite a chore this nasty flu bug.   I couldn’t sleep a wink all night…my skin felt as if it were being burned from my flesh, my eye balls bursting out of my skull, sweat pouring from brow and pits.

Then, at dawn, the temperature abated and I was left floating in a semi daze on my damp bed.  The Little Dog looking closely at my face as if I wasn’t anyone he knew.

My hosts and I all fell at the same fence so spent today in our rooms.  I made my way out of the house to buy thick pea and bacon soup from Dave’s Deli on Harbour Street.   The dog crapped outside The Oyster Co.   I broke all my rules and bought some linctus for my throat and cough.

Ed called…rather miserable that I couldn’t meet him in town.  Charlie called to discuss our trip to Sundance.   Can’t wait.  Gabe emailed to rearrange my trip to Florence.

Wondered what I would do for NYE as this flu will take a few days to shift.   No Florence until the 3rd January.    I have never had a dud NYE in sobriety..really hope this isn’t the first.   Can you imagine it?   A raging fever watching Susan Boyle on YouTube.  Happy New Year!

Got to sleep now…got to sleep.

I was informed you were dangerous and to only speak to you when chaperoned.

AMANDA ELIASCH

You know who coined the phrase Mad, Bad etc?  Lady Caroline Lamb of course… about Byron!  Although my fun friend the sadly departed Matilda, Duchess of Argyll thought the same of her predecessor, the even more glorious Margaret, Duchess of Argyll whose husband found Polaroids of her sucking a huge cock… naked but for a string of pearls.  Frankly I would rather have been Margaret than Matilda.

Margaret said, “If you have to be a Duchess you may as well be the Duchess of Argyll.” I loved my Duchess adventures in Edinburgh and The Highlands playing back gammon and drinking whiskey, even though she hated paying her gambling debts.

Tell me how brilliant that is?  Amanda warned off me?  Most people are in no uncertain terms.  It certainly separates the chaf from the corn.  (The Chav from the Thorn). The people who remain in my life are up for the adventure of knowing me.   My new friend Ed, for instance, who I am spending tomorrow evening with…  what a sweetheart.  Of course there’s a long list of oafs who cannot bear the heat in the kitchen…  more fool them.

When I left Joe he told the friends who remained my friends they were ‘spineless’.  I am PERFECTLY sure that I would do EXACTLY the same. I am excited by my own life all over again.  What adventure will I have next?

Amanda and Tim are once again breaking up…  but the truth of the matter is that Amanda… poor old bird… can’t bear to be separated from Tim.  I know THAT feeling.  I hate to be separated from the man I love.  I want to punish the fuck out of him… so now she’s upon FB slagging him off like an old fish wife.

I was never so lonely as the moment I left him.

Tim’s being very discreet but really!!  These two star crossed lovers must decide what they want to do!  I can’t be the sacrificial lamb every time they fetch out their AK 47‘s.

Amanda’s beef?  Tim bought her a voucher for a ‘Garden Center‘ turns out that the ‘voucher’ is for her to buy something from the glorious Chelsea Physic Gardens a stone’s throw from her Cheyne Walk home.   Now, I would love that as a gift.  I don’t really care if Tim berates me behind my back.  It’s his prerogative but the simple fact is… I don’t care!   He’s in excellent company.

What’s been going on in FREEZING COLD Whitstable?  Had breakfast at Windy Corner Stores.   Wandered home along the  beach.  In the very short time it took me to get home something of a miracle  happened…I began to inhabit my own skin once again.  Every time I pray for something it is swiftly delivered.  The only problem is… I don’t pray enough… because I’m frightened that the magic won’t work!

Typical Boxing Day… cold meats, TV, pickles, a trip to the pub.

Whitstable, my darling home town grounded me.  Everything is going to be OK.  This is where I have lived and I will die.  The people who know me..know me.   I am so happy here..even though it is not my current home there is always, and will always be room for me.

PS You’ll need more than a chaperone to keep safe around me.

Boxing Day 2010

There is something unbelievably comforting about being admitted to a hospital.

I walk through the door and hand my will and my life over to you.  You, in this instance, is Dr Eddy… a wonderful surgeon.

I said, as he was checking my testes, “Well. at least I get my balls played with…”  which, of course, he must hear a million times a year from anxious men willing a joke out of a miserable situation.

Tested testes, blood tests, more scans…I hand my will and my life over to you Kent and Canterbury Hospital.

This wouldn’t be the first time.  After our car accident, when I was a kid, I stayed in the very same hospital for 5 weeks with major head injuries.   It must have been very traumatic for my Mother to have seen me smashed to pieces at the edge of the road..after having lost the big dog like that..what must it have been like to see your own child covered in blood?

Being in hospital is like returning to the womb…like taking heroin.

Georgina drove me to Canterbury and on the way home we  stopped in Tankerton where we had a wonderful lunch at JoJo‘s.  Croque Monsieur.

Georgina waited for me in one of the long hospital corridors and a man in a wheel chair asked her to help him take a pee.  She declined his offer.

Yesterday I drove to Calais and dropped the car at the ferry terminal saving me $500 in fees.  I sat on the boat and marveled at how ugly and badly dressed everyone was.  On the way there I ate a sandwich and on the way back I ate fish and chips.

On the train home I met a really beautiful twenty year old blonde boy who took one look at my pink shoes and..well, he knew what the story was/is.  Anyway, bright as a button, cheeky chappy decorator who I may see later on in the year when he gets back from Australia.   I love men like him.

Somebody else, spotting my pink shoes, called me a homo.  I began to think vengeful thoughts..then I met the blonde man and things took a turn for the better.

Joe and I would go get dinner (usually steak) and very drunk in the Ear Bar on Spring Street.

Originally called the Bear bar..renamed when the B fell off.  One of the oldest existing taverns in the United States and one of the few existing examples of Federal architecture in New York.

I have wanted to get very drunk these past few nights.  I have wanted to blot out everything in my fucking pea brain with a huge amount of wine and beer.

Marc bought a bottle of Montepulciano to drink with the pheasant.  It smelt divine.

Woke up feeling so sad.

I am in Whitstable until Thursday then I have to get up and make a move.  Must go stately home hopping.   Must see the insides of huge and beautiful homes smelling of nutmeg and fir.  Must sit by roaring fires.  Must flay myself socially once again.

I am so disappointed.  So sad.  even though I know he isn’t sometimes I think I can hear him calling out to me in the night and I wake up and I think I can’t ignore him..he might need me.

Everything is just fine in Los Angeles CA.  Ashley called yesterday after her jaunt with Christina Aguilera’s husband in Miami.   I can’t wait to see her, speak with her properly about everything.

Up and down on this fucking roller coaster.  Up and down.

Carol cooked rabbit stew last night and I lit a huge fire.  Too huge.  I love lighting fires.  Do you remember the particularly scary fire I lit at Caroline Conran’s haunted house Bettiscombe Manor in Dorset?  That amazingly beautiful house known as the house of the screaming scull.

There is a skull in the attic that must never leave the house..ever.

I was so scared by the ghosts at night I crawled into another guests bed with him in it.

Anyway, I built such a huge fire at Bettiscombe I  nearly burned the place down.  That could have been a very embarrassing weekend.  They all went for a walk and I dragged logs from the stable into the great hall and set them alight.  Bad move.

Lunch with Charlie at the Ivy Club.  Beautiful man sitting with his parents admired my new hair cut.  Gave me his number.  Wait for the wound to heal before we go down that route.

Bumped into Michael White.  Has he has a stroke?

Charlie really likes the film.  Everybody seems to.

We discussed Obama, he thought that I was being too tough on him.  Really?

Now we need to make the bloody film.

Dog took a huge dump in Greek Street.  No bags.  I ran away.  Bad dog owner.  Lingers on my conscience.

Really enjoying being here.  Love the snow.  Saw my friend Jess for breakfast.  Had my hair shaved and beard trimmed in Soho.  Same guy who cut it this summer.

I love listening to BBC Radio 4 whilst driving.  The languid newsmen and women, the snippy new conservative politicians as eager as hungry rodents.   They want to change everything.  ‘Fix’ everything from higher education fees to alcohol consumption.

Let’s imagine a world where the chronically inebriated are charged for all expenses incurred when arrested or injured due to drinking/drugging.

If these drunken liggers had to pay money for time spent unnecessarily in emergency rooms or police cells, pay for hospital staff or expensive police overtime you’d see an immediate shift away from the sort of hard-drinking, thuggish Friday/Saturday night behaviour this government and the rest of us wants stamping on hard asap.

Slags sliding around in stilettos in their own vomit.  Breaking their ankles.

PAY FOR IT!

Slags and Chavs.

The drive to London through heavy snow and the equally treacherous drive home totally exhausted me.  I probably shouldn’t be so eager to be this energetic.

The drive over snowy Black Heath was particularly beautiful.

Hey, I want you to know a few things about me:  I am charismatic, invincible, intelligent, creative, sophisticated, handsome, sensitive and the polar opposite of all the above.

It’s the night before the hospital visit when all through the house, not a creature was stirring not even a mouse.  Well, the little dog is stirring as I write this but everyone else has gone to bed.

I woke up really late this morning..I mean..at eleven am.  I popped over to George’s house where her son was having a cup of tea.  He’s a bit of a tricky character.

I have not drank one cup of coffee since I arrived here nor smoked one cigarette.

Decided to drive to my mother’s house for lunch.  She cooked chicken.

After lunch she cried for a good long time about my grandmother dying.  She is finding it very hard to process her mother’s death.  As I am doing some grieving of my own we both sat there and cried a bit.

If I hadn’t gone through what I had gone through recently I think I might have been less sympathetic.  The pain she is going through is hard to watch.

I hung around her house all afternoon and into the evening.  She and her boyfriend live in the most gorgeous 16th century house overlooking ancient forests and vast, snow-covered fields in the most southerly part of Kent.   There are quarry tiles in the kitchen and Elizabethan beams.

Finally held in my own hands the beautiful, ancient oak box Nana left me which was originally filled with beads but only a few now remained.

Driving home I nearly killed myself driving on the wrong side of the road. What an idiot.  Approaching a roundabout the wrong way.  I panicked.

English TV is really informative.  Tonight I learned that the only way a medlar can be eaten is after being bletted by heavy frost.  It’s true!  You’re welcome.

I also learned that the X factor is a hugely watched TV show in the UK and restaurants and bars are empty when the show airs.  It’s a kind of talent show for the truly talentless.   Aren’t they all?   Simon Cowell is not such an ogre here, more like a grumpy uncle.  He has fun being a super bitch in the USA.

My Mother sits making snide comments about all the contestants and I understand the genesis of my own pervasive dissatisfaction.

How am I feeling about tomorrow?  Kind of wide-eyed.  I have no idea what to expect.  Stoic.  British.

I am in Whitstable.  It is really cold.  The water-butt is frozen.  I slept under two comforters.

Carol woke me this morning with a fresh lemon and ginger infusion and a big plate of steaming porridge.  Ate another breakfast at Copeland House with Georgina.

It’s later on Saturday morning and I am laying under a blanket at George’s house.  Feel very beaten up.  I managed to wear myself down so badly that I now have bronchitis.

Terrible cough, phlegm, headache.  Best thing is: I am at home so everything seems very dealable with.  I am so glad that I don’t own anywhere here.  It’s so much nicer crashing at Carol’s or laying here on George’s sofa.

My head is too painful with real pain to concentrate on anything else.

Whitstable.  Last night.  Sitting with Georgina and her grand-daughter Poppy eating shepherd’s pie.  Do you remember Poppy?  Poppy!

Carol and Marc dragged me out to a small town on the other side of Canterbury to watch a ska band.  Even though I felt pretty bad it was nice to be included.

Feels safe here.  I arrived from Paris on Friday morning.  I rented a car, drove to Calais on the A1 toll road (20 euro).  Ferry to Dover (120 euros) then drove to Whitstable.  Dropped in at Wheeler’s, Dave’s and Carol’s place.

There is a cute gay boy running the new coffee shop.

Dumb man that I am…I decided to watch Brokeback Mountain again on the flight to Paris.  I could scarcely get through the first few moments without having to change channels and watch Friends reruns.

Went back to it and still cried buckets.

I left New York the night of the 25th.  I’m good at that…finding half empty flights to Paris when everyone else is settling into American public holidays.

Remember when we left for Paris on July 4th?  That seems like it happened decades ago.

Why did it take me so long to leave NYC and why didn’t I write about it?  Well, we didn’t go because the Little Dog wasn’t well and vomited all over the place so it wasn’t prudent to go anywhere.  Anyway, the vet advised me not to.

I was offered a very kind room in a very beautiful hotel to rest my weary body…for free.  They really looked after me.

I stayed on 10th St for a few nights.  During the day I would practice what it would be like to live in NYC again.

I sat with friends outside Mud, I hung out at the Derby and Joe’s Pub with Amelia.  I made many, many new ‘friends’ on line and met with them at obscure locations.

After a few days of being in the city I totally forgot about Jake unless, of course, I found myself on 1st Street or outside the Judd Foundation or on the roof at Soho House which is cleared away…just like the memories I have to clear away.

I no longer thought that any man who resembled him was him and instead marveled at how many men there were who might be him.  Cute, short, hairy men with winning smiles.  On occasions, as the days passed, I realized that I told too many people about him…that it was obvious to them that I was having difficulty letting him go.

When they asked if I was still in love with him it was difficult to say no without crossing my fingers.

The emotions are far more complex and seem to exist on a far deeper level than I ever planned which is why I took time away from my blog because it just riles me and I find myself posting things that I regret.

I had a number of dates with really extraordinary men but one in particular made my heart sing.  I ate dinner at Mary’s Fish Camp in the West Village and met some good gays.  A producer, a stockbroker, a TV anchor and a journalist..I found myself thinking: Jake would like these men.

He would get a kick out of these intelligent, ambitious men.

The anchor  (Don Lemon) was a cool black dude who said that in his opinion Obama was frightened of white people.  Which explains, he said, why Obama is such a loser.   The anchor’s bf of 3 years was 20 years younger.

I don’t know how I felt about that.

Aleksa P and I had supper in Chelsea.  She talked candidly about how much fun it is for her making Boardwalk Empire.  I told her that I get hundreds of people a week looking for references in my blog to her hairy armpits.  She showed me how shaved they were with a wry smile but lamented how she must start growing them again soon.

We talked about our absent dads and how this shapes our view of ourselves.  We talked about her gorgeously happy marriage.  We laughed a great deal.  She showed me the pictures of her in Vanity Fair and I felt as proud as any dad could ever be.

We talked about Jake.  She was sad for me.

Brokeback: I had forgotten that Ennis and Jack had that fight.  That their fight had more to do with their love and their frustration and how much they would miss each other.

Dressed as cowboys their fight seemed more romantic than ours on the King’s Road.

The last night in NYC I met a man who I could imagine being with.  Just like that.  I have no idea if it will turn out like I want it…but we connected.  I am excited to see him again.  One thing is for sure:  I ain’t writing about him. Not any time soon.

TSA pat-downs are really thorough.   At JFK the rather good-looking man who inadvertently (or maybe not) held my balls whilst looking for what ever they are looking for looked up at me and I said seductively, “My balls have been held by a lot worse.”

Plagued with appalling thoughts and feelings.  Has more to do with going home than anything else.

Fatigued.

Have to go to vet to get the Little Dog a certificate to travel and the tick and worm treatments that are mandatory for our trip to Europe.

Yesterday in terrible funk.   Had breakfast with Dan in East Village.  Lunch with Pierre in Chelsea.  Late tea with Amelia and Andres at Gitane then walked North to see Wendy Asher’s curated street art show back in Chelsea.   The gallery belongs to Robin William’s son.  The art was terrible.  The guests?  Rich women from the Hampton’s.

An LA show in NYC.  Perched precariously at the edge of some aesthetically inchoate oblivion.  Will sell out.  Doesn’t deserve to.

I wandered around the city in a daze.  Dreading bumping into Jake.  In every coffee shop there seemed to be short, bearded men who looked just like him diligently working at their laptops.  Every single time I saw someone who even vaguely resembled the poison dwarf I felt sick.  Is this what being in NYC is going to be like?

I have not felt like this since I was in Sydney 13 years ago after Jamie and I split up.  Foreboding.

I am perfectly sure he is delighted by my unending, nauseating apprehension.

It is like being gripped by the throat.

How did I deal with it last time?  I kept praying and praying to be relieved of the obsession.

When I think about this coherently I know that this has more to do with my fear of going home and what awaits me there.  Not only do I have to deal with my balls but I also have the tail end of the iPod situation to deal with.

Everything is such a MESS.   Remember how buoyant I felt before I met him?  I was sexually sober, looking for a book agent (or rather, they were looking for me) mind cleared of rancid thoughts….now look.  I think I need to go back into rehab.  This is almost WORSE than before.

One stupid Facebook message later and there he was, this dull barbarian invading my life.

I keep trying to persuade myself to take action.

Somebody asked yesterday how I could possibly fallen so hard for ‘somebody so patently unsophisticated’.  Exactly.  But as I have written a million times before…love has no logic.  Nor does hatred…so it seems.

What formerly delighted me now sickens me.

He would like you to believe that he is a seasoned world traveller, close to glamour, sophisticated and erudite.   I imagine that his new friends think he is all those things but when you hang out with kitchen salesmen upstate then you can be pretty much what you want to be.

If you look at his public Facebook pictures they are designed to deceive you into believing that he is one thing when he is most patently not.  The truth is that the picture of him by the Oscar is totally fraudulent (under his suit he is scarred by poison oak) and the pictures taken of him in Peru and the South of France were taken by people who loved him and over whom he ran roughshod.

Cheating and lying.

Wearing my hat,  taking my time when all he wanted was his new friends.   I took many pictures that month we were away but he didn’t take one of me.  Not one.

Rather pathetically he is seen in one picture stroking his cat in his old apartment with his gf.  The caption reads ‘the good old days’ or something equally, utterly bogus.   The good old days for him maybe…as he was living a totally double life literally risking the health and well-being of the woman he told he loved yet lied to every single fucking day.

Oh yeah, go on Jake be sophisticated and fabulous at other people’s expense.   Charm them with your lies and your cock.  But just remember that I am out there keeping an eye on you.

I gave you the chance of making this good but you declined my offer.

On August the 21st I offered you a kind goodbye and you spat such venom at me…after everything I did for you.  After every late night call.  After being there for you.

Every time I tried to break it off you came crawling back like the SNIVELLING prick that you are.  I showed you my most vulnerable underbelly and you stabbed me in the heart.   Nobody will treat me like that again and, if I have my way, you will never treat anyone like you have treated me and your ex gf.

You may be laughing in all those pictures designed to ensnare other men, you may have a host of sycophantic friends around you who believe that you are a good guy, a naive innocent…but sooner or later your machinations will get the better of you.  Just you wait and see.

Remarkably elegant going away party last night.  We sat around the fire.  Some people brought gifts.   The food was welcome after a long day schlepping around town erranding.  My word.  Erranding.

I started the day at therapy..of course.  AA.  Felt great after.  Had breakfast with my right-wing (almost fascist) Palisades friends who are just delighted that Obama, as they promised when he was elected, has shown no leadership skill whatsoever because, they say, he wants everyone to like him.

I know someone like that.

I am on the plane writing this..on my way East.

I drove up Sunset to Doheny and over to Robertson in near perfect driving conditions to the doctors to pick up all the scans and notes etc. which were neatly downloaded onto a DVD for me to take home to my doctor.   My LA doctor told me not to worry..well everyone does.  “Don’t worry…”  they say pityingly.

I called my Mother to tell her that I would be home.  I called Carol and she told me to stay with her in Whitstable.   I am beginning to relax about going home.

At noon I went to speak/lead at a huge men’s meeting on the West Side.   I talked my flawed recovery.  I felt very emotional sharing my journey with a room stuffed full of very straight men.

I am happy that I will be in Whitstable  even though the last time I was there I was with him.

I had to drop Willie off at Frank’s place in Hollywood.  Willie is such a baby so we love him very much and I am tearing up writing this..I miss him already.

Bad turbulence.  Scarily bad.  Christian Camargo is on the plane.  He played Henry Wooten in my Dorian Gray.  Good to see him.  You’ll know him from Dexter.

I keep seeing Alex O’laughlin the actor who I used to lend a helping hand when we lived in Sydney.  I’ll find some pictures of him.  He was gorgeous when he was 19.  Gorgeous.  JBC and I took him away with us to a tropical island.  Now look at him…all grown up and living in weho and making films with his shirt off opposite Jennifer Lopez.

This is more painful than I thought it would be.

Grandparents

Margaret, Nana, Mother

When I was a kid complete strangers would ask me why I had thick, black curly hair.   As both my brothers and my ‘father’ had red hair..I really had no clue.  I told them,  “I had red hair once but after the car our car accident..it turned black.”   I really didn’t know why I looked so different from everyone else in my family.  I just had to make up an answer.  It didn’t ever feel like a lie.  Nobody would tell me why I looked so different.  Not until after..not until the damage was done.

The days between me and the operation dwindle.

The rain has fallen steadily over Malibu these past weeks.  As unseasonal as it may be it comes as a great relief to those of us who live up here during what is normally described as Fire Season.   One can only hope that it remains damp rather than tinder dry.

An encouraging weekend of old and new friends.  New friends include a charming Pepperdine student who came for tea on Sunday evening and another internet date who was almost perfect…but not.   He was intelligent, handsome and age appropriate.  Our unusual date started at Intelligensia on Abbott Kinney, a trip to Home Depo to buy chlorine tablets and  lunch at Sauce.

I replaced the cap that I lost at Stronghold.

I have no idea if we will ever see each other again but he made the possibility of meeting someone appropriate in the future very real and that in itself was a great diversion from my crazy head.

At lunch we both discussed our recent relationship issues and rather amazingly he became quite emotional:  he had been the Jake half of his relationship.  Eager to hold onto someone who loved him but wanted to sleep with other men.

Why?

Today there is another house viewing and I must make a start on my script.

Saturday therapy went well.  Today I went to an early session in the Palisades.   I emerge from these groups feeling stronger and more complete.  All in all it has been a very gratifying weekend.  I am somehow not prone to the great fear.  Perhaps this has something to do with the full moon or maybe I am just not taking any notice of the demons.

The house is so beautiful today.  The spa is working.  Ashley pays her rent on time.  The work on the road to the PCH has resumed.   The dogs are well behaved.  Why go and ruin it with invasive surgery?

I am making a huge oxtail stew for our dinner.  The sort of recipe that takes two days to do properly.  Every day I must do something creative in some sort of way.

Life is serving up a great and perfect opportunity.  I can feel it.  After the heavy rain, the plants are convinced it is springtime.  New growth, budding cacti and the great orchid trees in the garden are suddenly covered in succulent pink flowers.

Barry from Whitstable is on his way here to stay en route to his new life in Australia.  It will be fun to have him here.

22 years old a bottle of whiskey by my side

EVERYTHING I JUDGE I WALK THOUGH.

With all this JB fury and indignation, these health issues swirling around my brain these past few months I seriously overlooked or ignored the way I have treated others in my very own distant past.

The way JB treated me perfectly mirrors the way I have treated others. This is life’s great symmetry!

My indignation has blinded me to my part in all of this.  You know, I am perfectly sure that there are men and women out there who are delighted that I have, at last, been taught a lesson in love.

To you all, to past loves, to those who tried..today I want to make my amends.

To AH who I cheated on.  To JBC who I used.  To CS the NYC photographer who I took advantage of.   TK in Amsterdam I have tried to find you to make my amends.  These people tried so hard to do good for me, reached out selflessly as I did for JB.   And,  just as I was fucked over by JB, I fucked them over each and every one.  Without care or consideration.

Four people who I can remember right now who could and should be outraged by my behaviour.

In each instance I paid the price that needed paying either with my heart or my wallet.  That they still haunt me is testament to my guilt…to something unresolved.

I will add more as and when I can remember them.  If there are any?

To be treated as I have treated others is of course all part of GOD’S BIG PLAN.

There is no excuse for bad behaviour.   Not when you are a grown up.

You may be wondering why JP is not on this list, well..we pretty equally destroyed each other and I long ago owned my part in that sordid affair.

There are many apologies that I need to make in many different ways.  Eventually I will get around to all of you..eventually.  Remembering, forcing myself to remember the way I have treated others has softened my heart even more toward JB.   We all make mistakes, we can all use and abuse.  We can all take advantage.

If I am going one day to die at peace, a smile on my face then I must make these amends.   It is essential.

This was the very last piece of the jigsaw puzzle that needed finding and with great relief it is now in place.  The picture is complete.  My part, my mistakes owned up to.

Of course I still want JB to pay me as I have paid others what was owed.   It is the right thing to do and he must learn the right thing as I have been taught by taking the wrong turn over and over.

Yesterday I went to therapy.  I talked about my anger.  After I did I felt so much better.  JA and I had lunch at SHLA.   After lunch I came home and messed about with the spa.   Sarah and Paul came for dinner and we watched Nina Hagen sing My Own Personal Jesus that Paul produced.  Remember this summer when she was here?  Her daughter is so beautiful..as is her mother.

The sun is shining and I am in a great mood.

Rambla Pacifico, the direct road to the sea has hit a snag and I have no idea if it will ever be finished.  The work continues but there is an easement problem that needs fixing.  Oh dear.

JB, can we just end this absurd fight?  Can you just send what is owed and leave me alone?  Please?  I have this picture of you.  Wearing my hat…now lost.  It is how I want to remember you.  My friend and lover.  Like a mouse set free in the garden.  You HAVE to do the right thing or this will never go away.  I am desperate to remember you fondly and though I can never, ever see you again I want for us to be at peace.  Is this possible?

Jake Bauman

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Woke up at 4am.  Bugger.  Spent a little time online then went back to bed.  Fell into deep sleep.

A knock at the door at 9am.  I had meeting with a writer from a popular TV show who had read my blog and wanted to meet to talk about her new TV show.  Kathy.

A charming and funny woman who is currently dating a very beautiful ‘A’ gay director friend of mine.   What a gorgeous couple!   The meeting was meant to last an hour but ended up lasting 3 hours.  Ashley joined us at the end.

Whilst we were talking I remembered one of the fabulous Whitstable gays I met as a child who totally shaped my idea of what it was to be gay.

Firstly, he taught me that being gay could be WONDERFUL.  That man, an antique dealer from Thanet, was called Christopher Stocking.  He drove into Whitstable weekly to search for antiques and that’s where he found me, sitting at the back of Zoe’s antique shop one cold winter’s afternoon playing with her kittens by the fire.

The shop used to be on Harbour Street opposite the harbour entrance which was rather sadly demolished in the 1970’s when all that grubby Georgian architecture seemed to bore town planners.  Thankfully, Whitstable was largely ignored by Canterbury Council so there was little to no ‘urban regeneration’.   No wholesale destruction of our old homes and shops.  Whitstable was left to decay.   Thank God.

Jake and I went to Whitstable…he loved it…that was a nice moment.

Anyway, Christopher Stocking found me in the back of the shop and realized IMMEDIATELY that I was a trainee homo and took me for a spin in his pink Jaguar.  I remember his sweet and unusual smell.  He asked a bunch of questions and I remember being so ashamed of where I came from that I think I lied every answer.

I really looked forward to Christopher’s weekly visits.  He taught me what was what without ever mentioning the word gay.

He’d say, “He’s gorgeous isn’t he?”

And I would get all red-faced and nod my head.

He was a perfect role model…consequently I never had any difficulty being a gay.

It all seemed perfectly natural.

A couple of years after we met Christopher told me that he wanted to tell me something.  Seriously.  We sat in the Tudor Tea Rooms, he held my hand and told me very gravely that if I was going to have a good life, any life..he stressed the word life..I would have to leave Whitstable.  That this small seaside town wasn’t going to be big enough for me.

He told me urgently,

“You have to get out of here and make something of yourself.”

I knew that he was right but I didn’t think it was possible, plausible…mine to have.

Heroes are never quite who you expect them to be.

A man and a boy holding hands in an English Tea Room talking about the future.  About the future. He was saving my life..and he knew it.   He knew that there was no one else in that place who could possibly tell me what I needed to know.

That my life could be assured if I left Whitstable.  That I would be valued, validated, loved.   Sadly, his dream and my dream for enduring happiness diverged as I grew older.

The disease of more.  Who could have foreseen that outcome?

For those of you who think bad thoughts..no..we never did anything inappropriate.  He was a very appropriate man.  I was 10 when I met him and 14 when he vanished.  If he had made a move would I have let him?  You betcha.

That afternoon in The Tudor Tea Room I saw my future reflected in his face and knew instinctively that it was essential for me to listen very carefully and remember every word he said.

Amongst the shop owners there were other gays.  There were the gay twins who ran the antique shop on the corner of Albert Street and Harbour Street which is now an elegant tapas bar.  Johnny and Jimmy.  Clones:  checked shirts, full moustaches and tight denim jeans.  They scared me a bit but they were kind to me.

Everyone was.

They guessed, they knew, they never made mention, they saw the bruises, they held out their hands just in case I needed to hold on.

The years passed.

For a few weeks I moved in with Michael the gay tax man.

Our local gay bar: The Guinea on Island Wall.  Florence, the very grand landlady, was always throwing people out for no good reason.  She had thick red lipstick on her lips and teeth…a crow black bouffant.

When the boys got too hot and bothered in the snug she snarled,  “Darlin’ you’re barred.”

The kissing boys would feign outrage, throw their scarves over their shoulders, theatrically deliver a particularly vicious bon mot from the threshold of the pub, slam the door and scamper out into the night..until tomorrow of course when they would sit in exactly the same spot nursing pints of thick, warm beer and kiss each other as Florence was serving out of sight.

I remember when you could be thrown out of a bar, a gay bar, for kissing another man.

So, this morning, Kathy and I talked about gay men and the community.  Our community that existed around the bar.  Every community has a bar.  THE BAR.

When the Guinea closed we headed to The New Inn, Margate.  I didn’t drive and God knows how I did it but I got there and back 30 miles every Saturday night.   Compelled by the need to meet other gay men.

I rarely went home with anyone.  They were all so pig ugly.  When the pub closed at 11.30 my very camp friend Mark and I went to a  ghastly Margate club which was always half empty..called Skids.  Ew.

The men there knew I was different from them.  Somehow.  They urged me, like Christopher had years before, to take my big ideas elsewhere.  In their own way they let me know how much more of a world there was than the one I had chanced upon in Margate.

We talked about being bullied and I told her that I was bullied at school and life was pretty miserable for a few years but I just knew that high school was not the sum of my life.   I knew that Christopher and men like him were out there somewhere.  That I could and would be like them.

I knew that my time at boarding school would eventually come to an end.  Anyway, as I mentioned before..bullied by day, blowing by night.  Usually the same boys.

All these bullied kids killing themselves.  I know it’s hard to be singled out to be gay by your peers, but you can’t be so sensitive.   Get tough!  Fight back.  Ask for help!  The sad fact is, when I was being bullied I rather enjoyed the attention.  I learned to fight back.  Ruthlessly.  I knew the people who bullied me were simply appalled by my difference.  It scared the shit out of them.  I learned that to be different you had to seek out your own kind.

I have searched and searched.

So…I went to Paris and New York and I ended up here.

Thank you Christopher Stocking..wherever you are.

I owe you my wonderful life…when I can remember that it is wonderful.  I owe you my Malibu view.  I owe you my aspirations.  Thank you Christopher, thank you the boys..thank you the girls..where ever you are…thank you for reading…thank you and good night.

As you all know Joan Sutherland died last week.  The great Opera Singer.

Occasionally I wonder why some gay men (including myself) love opera so much, and if they don’t love opera we love Streisand or Madonna.  For many gay men women sing their thoughts, express the drama and pain of their love.  I don’t know many gay men who choose male singers to express their feelings.

As I have said before, it makes me sad that I never heard a love song on the radio where a man sang about his love for another man.  George Michael came close.  Elton never wrote his own lyrics so sang Bernie’s heterosexual love songs.  Perhaps ‘Blue Eyes’ was the only song he ever sang that seemed to be about men loving men.

This is how, in so many ways, popular culture lets us down.  Our extraordinary love ignored.  Perhaps I am just old-fashioned and don’t listen to the radio anymore so miss out on The Scissor Sisters or who ever is playing OUR tune.  You’ll know.  Let me know.  Teach me.

Ryan, who I have actually enjoyed hearing from these past few days inspired me to think about the ‘closet’.  You know what that is don’t you?  I don’t need to explain what a closet is.  Do I?

OK…I will.

Figuratively, a closet is a place where one hides things; ‘having skeletons in the closet’  is a figure of speech for having particularly sensitive secrets.

Thus, closet as an adjective means secret—usually with a connotation of vice or shame, as in ‘a closet alcoholic’ or ‘a closet homosexual’.

To come out of the closet is to admit your secrets publicly, used almost exclusively in reference to homosexuality.

Was I ever in the closet?   I don’t think I ever was.  There was certainly some pre-pubescent awkwardness but that particular ‘coming out’ moment was stolen from me when I was 12 years old by my Mother who told our doctor that she thought I was gay and then regaled me with stories about the gay men she knew in London when she worked as a waitress at the Carlton Club.

I was PISSED OFF about her telling the doctor as part of me wanted it to remain a secret whilst I worked out what it all meant.   By the time I was 12 I already had sexual contact with men.  At boarding school.  Consensual sex with other boys.  My Mother wrote darkly to me in one of her daily letters, “Don’t do anything you can’t understand.”  Of course, I would spend the next 40 years doing quite the opposite.

Thankfully I was brought up in a secular, liberal seaside town where gay men lived open and rather exotic lives for all to see.

As I said to Ryan, not all closets are created equal.   The closet that Ryan alluded to is quite different from the one my darling little scum bag constructed for himself.  Ryan’s closet built in the deep south of shame and fear is quite familiar, it seems, to most gay men.

My experience of being gay is bloody different from nearly every gay man I meet.  Most have the obligatory ‘coming out’ tale and talk about it like debutantes.  I never had a ‘coming out’  I had a ‘let’s get on with it’.

I don’t want to dwell on scum bag today.  Needless to say his closet was quite unlike Ryan’s and should be called something different.  It should be called maybe a ‘walk in’ as it was roomy and comfortable and well constructed.

In the past when ever I have encouraged people to get honest about their sexual orientation I have suggested that when telling their parents/friends/loved ones the truth that they be as magnificent, as heroic as they possibly can!  Tell them the gay truth with a smile on their face and without fear.   “I have something WONDERFUL to tell you…”

With all this press about bullying and suicide it reminds me that whether we like it or not this resolutely Christian society may not condone these deaths but still colluded with them.  Iranians may hang their gays but we make it so uncomfortable for ours that gay men, steeped in shame, take their own lives.

OK, as for the rest of yesterday?  Friends popped by including all of my very cool neighbours.  The ones who are moving out of their foreclosed house.  Waiting for the bank to tell them to leave.  The problem is, nobody wants their house so once they go it will sit their at the end of the street falling slowly into disrepair.  Not great for the neighbourhood but familiar to all of us here in the USA.  I only have one derelict house on the block, many people have entire streets, house after house falling down around them.

This economic meltdown is so despicable.  It has so cruelly displaced so many people.  Like a terrible plague.  Makes me vomit how the government can do nothing for ordinary people whilst helping only the richest stay richer.

I am proud to tell you that at these times I enthusiastically embrace my European hybrid socialist values.

I have said for some time that I am willing to lose everything in this gamble.  I came here and I lost the bet.  That’s OK.  Better to have tried here than stayed in Whitstable in the warm and dry.  Better to take a risk than never risk at all.

God only knows, I know that most Americas disagree with what they think socialism is but that is only their contempt prior to investigation.  I wish they knew more about how the people can truly take their power back.  It worked in Europe.

It certainly has nothing to do with the tea party movement.

It’s kinda funny watching the GOP elite struggle with all these potty new Republican candidates.  Christine O the witch.  Now, she is FUNNY.  Almost worth electing to see how completely unprepared for power that woman is.  Just like her idol Sarah Palin, whose prime objective is to enact the word of the bible and blow up Iran.  Yet, even though I think the tea party movement is misguided it is still strangely invigorating.  I am slightly in awe of how these new Nazis have energised the nation.  Oh, did I call them Nazis?  Sorry.

Most of these ghastly tea party politicians are, of course, snake oil sales men.  Raising money from desperate people to pay their rent rather than fuel their campaigns, selling the people easy solutions for difficult problems.

America has to change but as former President’s have said..these changes may only truly come when the people are hungry and angry enough to get off their asses and into the street and say that enough is enough.

OK.  I actually wrote more of my film yesterday.  Fleshing it out.  It was good.  I like this film.  It has heart.

I am preparing to go back to London.  Preparing to get my ball dealt with.  I think the fear around that is unresolved.  John is holding the fought.  I have to deal with the spitting incident when I get there too.  Damn.

It is cold and gray here.  I light a roaring fire every night.  Ashley joins me for breakfast.  We tell our stories then she heads off to work.  I wait up for her like an anxious mother.

Woke up too late for therapy.  Haven’t been for days.  As my leg heals and I begin to face the onslaught I feel myself edge toward isolation once again.   A perfect prison.  This house is so beautiful..why leave?

Isolation: the great and enduring refuge of the addict/alcoholic.

I have a bunch of Billy Childish paintings that I am going to sell, apparently there is now a market for them.  I am limping through this economic disaster like so many people.  I have paintings for sale in two major auctions this winter.

I’ll get by.  Just like all the rest.

The economic situation will not kill me.  My balls may.

Jennifer popped by yesterday as I lay on the couch with my leg elevated wrapped alternately in ice and thick socks.   This morning it feels a whole heap better but I don’t want to test it by jogging down the hill now do I?

Everything in the valley is green once again after the heavy rain.  It takes no time at all for nature to change its clothes.  It’s going to take a few weeks to dry out over here in Malibu.  Now, now that it’s California Autumn.  My deck is still damp.  As Jen pointed out within one week we have had a 50 degree temperature slide.  This time last week it was 110 degrees.  I always think about the firemen when it rains heavily.  Just how happy they must be.  Perhaps we have escaped the fires once again this year..yet..as the rain falls the fuel grows around me for the next big fire.

Watching home buying/selling/renovating shows on TV.  Houses back East are OK.  The further West, the worse the interiors.  Until you get to LA: The Land That Taste Forgot.  I watch one show after another..unless the houses/people are too ghastly then I look at the food network.  Chefs battling with each other to win thousands of dollars.  Chefs as gladiators.

Funny.

I have no interest watching anything even vaguely dramatic.  I dip into TV drama occasionally but the acting is stilted.  The stories are dull.  The lighting, more often than not, too dark and moody.   Less light seems to equal serious to the average director/DP.

The dogs are totally bored.

Ashley and Aaron took Willie out yesterday but The Lil Dog refuses to leave my side.

They have stopped grading the Rambla Pacifico road repair.  There is some small legal issue that they need to solve.  It depresses me when I can’t see them working down there.  Rapunzel up here needs that fucking road finished.

I must admit that I spend more and more time looking at unsavoury, addictive web sites.  The less time I spend in therapy the more time I am at my computer screen..looking…wondering…thank GOD Ashley is downstairs.

Reading over this entry I am reminded that perhaps a more pious life might suit me better that a life devoted to intensity.  Piety, we tend to use the word pejoratively,  saying more about our Godless world than the idea behind the action.

Today I crave piety, humility, silence..

Tres Triste urged me to go into one on one therapy.  I will have nothing to do with that.  I am bloated on my experience of one on one therapy.

I am, however, recommitted to the rooms of AA.  I know that they understand because I am just like them.  One on one therapy obviously suits many people but I don’t trust doctors, I don’t trust therapists who profit from the misery of others.  I resent paying them.  That I become their blank cheque.  In fact, I resent paying all doctors because I come from a country where visiting a doctor is free.

AA is free.  For fun and for free.

The simple fact is: I chose to abandon the principles of AA during the last few months.  Not taking a drink is just a small part of what we do in those rooms.  The rest of the time we help and guide each other toward sanity.  During the past months I deliberately abandoned my principles and let my alcoholic head run the show.

Many people ask why I moved to LA.  It really had nothing to do with film making.  I came to LA to be closer to the rooms of AA where I found comfort, solace and peace.  I made friends and found an extended family of people who understood me, who were always willing to forgive…no matter what.   I felt as if I needed, as if I NEED a great deal of forgiveness.

After a few years I became disgruntled and disillusioned with AA and went to fewer and fewer meetings.  As I did so my mind became more and more confused.  If I do not do the work to keep me sane I very quickly unravel.

I believe in the power of AA.  It is a church. It is my church.  For all to see during these past months I threw away my sanity because I wanted to use..so I did.  I used HIM.  He is not even real.  He is a bag of coke, a bump of crystal, my works, my baggy, my bottle, my paraphernalia.   He is not real.  Do I miss him?  I miss him like a glass of Montepulciano.  Full bodied red wine that I secretly want to drink when that day comes…and it very well might.  Never take your sobriety for granted.

You think that I have been cruel but I needed him out of my life and sometimes keeping your dealers number is the way back to active addiction.  If I had not jettisoned him that day I KNOW what would have happened.  We would have remained friends, we would have hooked up, my head just could not take it.

I napalmed the poppy fields.

This morning I chatted with Tim about the past.  A place one tends to reinvent as one gets older. It is invigorating having him there at the other end of the phone/skype.  He is in Worcester waiting for his triple bypass.  We are both waiting to have our skin cut open and our insides messed with by experts.

We talked about the power of prayer.  Our spiritual lives.  I needn’t tell you how important a loving God is in ones life but even though I know that prayer really works I am loathed to pray just in case is doesn’t.

That even God might let me down.

There is no doubt what so ever that for the past few months I used another man as my drug.  Intensity, fixation, obsession etc. etc.  Remember when you spent your last cent on drugs? When the getting and using was your main focus?  Remember the risks you took?  I am a crazy addict.  Yet, it is somehow easier for us to understand a man who cannot say no to drugs than a man who cannot say no to his addiction to people.  It is a far more complex and ultimately destructive addiction.

I think you have all been my witness to that.

I crave a healthy relationship with people who ever they might be, lover, family member, friend, shop assistant, telephone banker etc.    I am powerless and my life becomes unmanageable.  I am powerless over people, places and things.  This powerlessness causes me such misery. Powerlessness, vulnerability, weakness of any kind cannot be tolerated and as you have seen…I will bring you down if you challenge who I am, get to the heart of me.

I don’t think I am so different from most of you?

Yet, I most definitely am.  I do not think like normal people.

The idea that somehow, someday I will control and enjoy my thinking is the obsession of every abnormal thinker.

That was a quote from Bill Wilson with the word drink switched out for think.

Wether you believe it or not the rooms of AA are filled with men and women just like me.  When we sit together sharing our similarities and not our differences then I become aware of the presence of God.

I have struggled with SAA.

There is a big difference between being an alcoholic and a sex/love addict.  Alcoholics share the experience of abstinence.  Sex addicts do not.  The differences between sex addicts, when we share our stories, are all too apparent.  The similarities..scant.  Where there are few similarities I find myself divorced from God.

As I have reported in earlier posts, as the years pass and ones last drunk become a distant memory I am forced to deal with other more pressing, more destructive addictions.

The consequences of my actions are all too apparent.  I have rampaged like a spoiled child through another mans life.  Regardless of his part in it..I have only myself to blame.  As I have said before, it is none of my business assigning blame or becoming an interventionist for others.

We all learn by our mistakes, by the lies we tell, by the havoc we wreak.

So, today’s prayer:  God, relieve me from the bondage of self.  Help me be kind.  Let me be present.  Let me tell the truth.

Bind me so my arms do not flail,  gag me so I cannot speak, shackle me so I cannot walk, lay me down in some quiet place so I do not think.

As I was stacking boxes for my move I found a whole heap of diaries from the 1980’s.   The first day to day diary I kept was in 1982 and that was primarily because life had become so exciting.

We open the first book on this day September 5th, 1982.  I am 22 years old.

I am in Greece, on the island of Spetses staying with Sir John and Lady Russell.   I am still, at this time, Lord Rendlesham and have flown from Paris to Athens with an older nobleman called Guy de la Bedoyere of whom I had tired.

It was Guy’s Turner that I had marveled in Paris a few days earlier and whose butler, much to my horror, had washed in a washing machine my new Crolla ties.

The magazine Harper’s Bazzar had published the pictures of my infamous birthday party thrown for me by Scott Crolla at the Almeida Theatre.  Word was just reaching me in Greece that people were not at all happy.  Not at all.

If you click on the diary pages you can read the original entries.

I am in love with a beautiful Swiss boy called Robert and it is he that I wave goodbye to at the beginning of the entry.

The following year September 1983 there is no diary entry until I am released from prison on the 18th November.

September 1984 I am in rehearsal for Pornography: a Spectacle at the ICA in London.   There are huge articles about us all in Time Out, The Face and a now defunct London mag called City Limits.  I am living in Balham with a girl called Victoria.  By day I am in a play about gay pornography and by night I sleep with what was effectively my girlfriend.   So was the complexity of my life.  “Every gesture must be full and complete.” says Neil.  Neil Bartlett, director of the show.   During these days he and I began to fall out.  Irrevocably as it turned out.  When we left each other in Toronto months later after our North American tour we would never speak again.

September 1985 I am writing whilst stuck in a tunnel under the alps on a train from Paris to Venice.  My and Ivan Cratwright’s great adventure to Venice.  Staying, en route with Fred Hughes in Paris.

The diary for 1986 was missing but now found.  I will transcribe the entry.  I am yet again in another heterosexual relationship with a woman called Louise.  Why?

“Oh dear, I am in The General Trading Company off Sloan Square – Louise by my side.  Firstly I did not expect the Bahamian bombshell to come back to Whitstable to see me.  I rather thought that she might have given me a miss.

Yesterday before Louise arrived my pinks from Kingstone (?) Cottage arrived, they came to me in a brown cardboard box wrapped in local newspaper.  I planted them carefully, laying a foundation of stones for good drainage and surrounded the root system with peat. Maria helped out the best she could but spent the best part of yesterday drawing on the beach.   The day before that too she had worked hard on minimalist drawings incorporating the seascape – noticeably the foreshore and the horizon, terribly witty references to dead fish – (?) a family with prawn.

Ivan (Cartwright), we collected him from Whitstable station – Korda (Marshall) and I, he was in such a good frame of mind .  He prattled on about being arrested for car thieving and told a remarkable story about having been picked up on Park Lane (London) dressed only in a full length pink, synthetic fur coat, cowboy boots and a micro polka dot bikini!  He was picked up by a vast black men in a Buick.

Korda was completely freaked out by Ivan and as soon as he had the opportunity – left.  However, Ivan enchanted both Rachel (Whiteread) and (?) with his wit and intelligence.  We left for the pub far too late.  Ivan was wearing a pair of black cotton stockings, a black tee-shirt and short black sweat pants all topped off with this platinum blond hair and that face which as you know contorts like nobodies business.

We all slept late and woke early, that’s why when big bertha arrived (Louise) I was knackered.  We took off for a long adventurous but utterly fruitless journey to a closed park.  We did go to Beech House (Hospital School in Chartham)  I remembered yet again the horror of being taken there when I was a child – I remember that it was in that place that my life changed direction and I began to fight, so it was rather apt that I went there – my life again on the edge of a potential nightmare.  India,  8th October 10.15 – 9 months.   It rings in my ears.

As we drove to London yesterday Louise and (?) wrote that evening’s narrative.  For she as an eye for the ironic.  Firstly we locked ourselves out of Louise’s car and house then we saw the corpse of a man freshly killed, his legs crossed at the ankles, in the road.  His clothing partially hidden under a green waterproof police modesty blanket.  All of us knew that ambulances take only the living to be mended as best they can.  Death has no care.  I wondered about his family.  The pulse stopped and the narrative ending for him.  We drove slowly.  Later the image of the corpse quietened me and made me listen.

Louise is my strength whom I do not deserve.  Late last night I felt truly happy and secure.  That’s enough isn’t it?  Enough for a man who rarely lives safely, who is destined to become a lonely old man with personality problems.”

September 1987 I am a patient in the Henderson Hospital in Sutton Surrey where I spent the majority of that year.   I had a breakdown after a particularly bad bout of Hep B.  The Jay who would be fetching me from hospital is, of course, Jay Jopling.

For some odd reason I did not keep a complete diary in 1988.   I am not fully well from my breakdown but have decided to go to New York to see Ana Corbero and Colin Cawdor.  Paul Benny the artist was also staying in the huge apartment.  An entire floor of a converted girls school just over the Williamsburg Bridge.

There is no entry for these dates in 1989.

1990, my thirtieth year.  Living in Chelsea with Phillipa having what looks like a rather glamorous time.

1991 Coppers Bottom has opened at Sadler’s Wells.  Karen, the lead actress is threatening to walk.  I am now living with Anthony H. in South London.

1992 Tim and I are laughing about Damien Hirst not winning the Turner Prize that he seemed so certain to win.  I rather cruelly called Jay and told him how sorry I was whilst sniggering with Tim.

Not long before I get sober.  Just another 5 years.

After 1992 I kept a journal less and less.  I began every year enthusiastically writing everyday like I do now in the blog but by July had lost interest or life was simply too overwhelming.

Anyway, that was fun?

You know what I’m doing?  I’m going out!  Started the evening feeling sorry myself.  Fuck that.

I sent an SOS to Amanda that I may or may not need.  But most of all, I am not going to be beaten by 5mm of something black on my balls.  It’s not a death sentence.  It’s black on the scan.  I wonder what color it is in real life?

I’m listening to very loud music.

Old fashioned shit.  I know.  But I’m allowed to.  I don’t have to answer to anybody.

I bought Jasper Conran‘s beautiful book Country.   Packed with so many beautiful images.  Try looking at THAT on a fucking kindle.

I cleaned the apartment.  I sorted my papers.  I totally forgot that I had to call the police station in London to deal with the iPod incident.  Never mind.  I would rather be in a cell than have this maggot growing inside me.  It’s all relative.  I read Michael’s brilliant script.  After I finish writing this I will take the little dog to see the cats on Cherokee so he can squeal like a pig with excitement.   Cat!  Cat!

I have to submit my HLN idea.  I received a lovely text message from an old lover in NYC who is eager to get together..balls or no balls.

Meeting Seb at SHLA at 11pm.  Fuck this sitting around shit.  I need solution!  have I LEARNED nothing from all those years sitting in church halls and masonic lodges reading the recipe of the 12 steps?

Take action my friends!  Get out of that shit relationship.  Don’t be bowed by illness!  Eat!  If you feel lonely get out onto the streets!   Don’t give in to the furies.  TAKE ACTION.

December 21st, 2009-August 12th, 2010

Jake has been in my life..for months…for most of it was an acting out dream come true.

Oh I WILLINGLY gave up my sexual sober time.

We talked almost every day.  Why trash those precious few months?  For the time being I will celebrate the time we spent together.  Although, sooner or later it will just feel…embarrassing.

In the long run it will mean far more to him than it will to me,  Try as he might he will never be able to unstitch me from his story.  I am, after all, the one who tore him out of the closet and in so doing rescued that poor girl from just one more day of deceit and lies.

I said to him on February 9th:

All I know is as the years pass this will weigh heavier on your mind and every time you look at J your girlfriend/wife/mother of your child you will know that there is a fundamental deceit.

If it is not me or the Hungarian it will be another man..and another and the outcome will always be the same.

One day you will meet a perfect man and then you will resent her, begin to hate her because it is not him…

I am the FUCKING HERO.  Beautifully written…don’t you think?

And for all you guys and gals who have been shat on..here is a shitty, campy song for you to remind yourself that we can all laugh at how stupid we have been:

There’s no easy way to say this but the cancer stuff is not turning out very well.   Irene will be pleased and so will Jake.  They can join the legions of others who wouldn’t mind watching me suffer..

I am going home.  There’s stuff here to sort out here.  Practical stuff.  It may take a few days.

Financially it couldn’t have happened at a worse time.

I heard the news this morning.

It’s odd how the news made my balls feel tender.  They began to talk to me.  Whine and complain.

You know who I wanted to tell first?  Well of course I did even though he wouldn’t have given a damn.

This is not great.

I wanted to post a few pictures. I want to remind myself that it has all been an incredible journey.

I wanted to include this one because I have a man’s legs wrapped around my shoulders. He is called Chris Boot. He was in South Africa with Tilda Swinton. Tilda came to the dinner thrown for me at Sundance when AKA played there. She came with Jamie Johnson.

Boom Boom Boom (The Sublime) 1982 Peter Doig

 You can see half of the Peter Doig painting I bought at his St Martin’s degree show.  It hung in my Furlong Road, Islington sittingroom until I was arrested.  At which point Doig decided to snatch it back and I never saw it again. It is probably worth in excess of $1, 000, 000 now.

Matt Rowe and Marie Palmer, we met at the Mercer Hotel in NYC with Mel C from the Spice Girls.  Matt had been one half of the duo who wrote all of their best tunes. New Years Eve 1999, Mercer Hotel with Calvin Klein, Tom Cruise, Nicole KidmanAlan Cummings and Fran Leibowitz. A cool very night.  Matt is still a great friend.

I’ve written loads about Jay Jopling in this blog. This is the night he met my sister Jessica.

Justin Lee-Aliston was my best gay friend in Whitstable. He was the sweetest boy. He killed himself a few months after he was gay bashed in Camberwell South London.  Here he is in happier times with my friend Tracy at the Island Wall, Whitstable house.

Celia Lyttleton, I can’t remember where we met but she is a doll and this picture was taken at a fancy dress party at the artist Glynn Boyd Hart’s house during the 1980’s.

Celia introduced me to the artist Ana Corbero at her Albermarle St gallery. She in turn introduced me to Colin Cawdor , the Thane of Cawdor-Macbeth. Duncan and Macbeth in NYC, in a sprawling apartment in Williamsburg. Long before anybody else was living there.

Our view.

Colin and Anna. Now, Colin lives in the North of Scotland in his castle, a castle he had to wrestle from his step-mother. Ana lives in Spain with her husband. I remember that he dressed Ana in Azzadine Alaia-and the moths ate clean through her fur coat.

I’ll post some more soon.

My friend Sebastian’s father was my father’s very best friend.  When Sebastian first met me he knew exactly who I was.

My father was his hero.  His description of Kuros almost perfectly matches how I have heard myself described.  He cut quite a dash, he was impeccably dressed and when he entered a room people took notice, he could also be very, very bad-tempered.

Not many people have very nice things to say about my father.  My mother, his business colleagues, some of my brothers and sisters and their mothers all of them seem a little too ready to condemn him yet, strangely, I am not.   Even though he wanted nothing to do with me and treated my Mother very badly I am still willing to forgive him.  It is touching that he had such a profoundly positive effect on Sebastian.

We are without doubt very similar in temperament but unlike when I die…when he died he died very, very rich.

He was without doubt a colourful/controversial figure.

Sebastian’s father owned a restaurant in London where my father met all of his wives.  I still don’t know a great deal about him but I know for sure that his second wife disappeared one night with her children never to see him again.  I know that his third wife had a terrible time with his temper and cavorting.  I know that he loved backgammon and opium.  I have been told, although these might be myths, that he was thrown out of a second floor window by the notorious gangster Kray twins causing him to have a life long limp?  That he wrapped a sports car around a lamp-post severely damaging his eye?  That he was implicated in a massive robbery but never formally charged?

He certainly owned a restaurant and an antique shop and his big break came when he met a profligate Saudi Prince who bought everything my father could lay his hands on and sold to the Prince at exorbitant prices.

Isn’t it odd that whilst he owned an antique shop in London (only feet away from where I would one day live with JBC)  I was trawling through the antique/junk shops in Whitstable and Canterbury.   That his restaurant was only a block away from where I would settle with Phil.  That we may very well have passed each other in the street and never known who one another was.

I met a man on the train to Shrewsbury I was convinced was my father.

He was not my father.

I felt as if I were not allowed to ask Sebastian questions about my father, as if the topic were still off-limits, disallowed, forbidden.  There is still a huge amount of shame surrounding his name.  As if even the barest mention of him a terrible catastrophe would somehow happen.

Yet, there is nothing more I need to know about him.  I know that I am his son, that we are cut from the same cloth and that it scares me to hear about him because in some way I am forced to accept my own flaws/defects/shortcomings.

That, my friends, is incredibly uncomfortable.

My father died in 1998 of pancreatic cancer.  I never met him although I feel as I have.  A protracted and messy financial battle ensued after his death.   There are all sorts of stories about who stole what from whom but my four younger siblings seemed to do OK.   He left at least 8 children behind, two ex-wives (did he ever bother getting a divorce from any of them?) and a widow.

It was a pleasure discussing him with Sebastian because Sebastian has fond memories and…I believe him.

1983, the year I met Sebastian

Is it possible to believe in God and still take drugs and drink?  Is it possible to believe in God and sleep with hookers?  Is any of this possible?  Obviously it is.

Sebastian will be buried on Thursday, July 1st 2010.   There’ll be a horse-drawn cortege from Meard Street to St James’s Piccadilly where the service will be held.   Stephen Fry will be speaking,  as are others.  Stephen very kindly offered to say a few words on my behalf.

Rachel Campbell-Johnstone wrote to me yesterday inviting me to the funeral, she said,  “We are mountaineers roped together heading for the summit of beauty.”   She warned us that the funeral will be filmed.

Remember, I was 23 when I met Sebastian.  That was 27 years ago.  He was still a teenager working for Jimmy Boyle in Edinburgh.   Our show, Pornography, a spectacle, invited by the Richard Demarco Gallery would play in Jimmy’s cold performance space where Sebastian and I met for the first time.

I would later work for the Demarco Gallery and meet Joseph Beuys, the greatest conceptual artist of our age.   There was a fascinating dialogue between Beuys and Boyle..then styled one of the most dangerous men in the United Kingdom.

The dialogue was initiated by Richard Demarco whilst Jimmy Boyle was serving a sentence of life imprisonment in Barlinnie Prison for murder.  Beuys went on hunger strike because of Jimmy Boyle’s removal from the Special Unit, Barlinnie to Edinburgh’s Saughton Prison where he was no longer able to continue making art.

Sebastian claimed in his book Dandy in the Underworld that he was sleeping with Jimmy and I have no reason to doubt him.  I would have too if I had had my chance.  There was something wildly attractive to me about ex cons and hard men and dangerous criminals.  Remember I had been in prison the year before I met Sebastian and developed a nasty habit for sex with brutal straight men.

If anybody was going to fuck me he was going to be a man who deserved me.    He was going to be a man who knew what he wanted and how to take it.

My cell mate Tommy Cowling, married with two children from Hoxton, East London was the most beautiful man who ever lived.  When the lights went out in our cell he said, “I’m asleep now, you can do what you want to me.”  For nine long months we did exactly that, everything we wanted when the lights were out.   He could make me cum by just rubbing his stubble over my soft face.

Perhaps this is another reason why I spurned the soppy men that I met in gay bars and gay clubs?  Perhaps this is why I would rather have my head buried in a squaddies (soldiers) groin, the smell of wet pussy on his cock than a nice boy from The Abbey.  Prison spoiled more than my reputation.   It proved, if any proof were needed, that straight men with furious urges, hard and hairy bodies and urgent desires were far more interesting than living in the half-light of shameful, gay London, Paris or New York.

This is all a matter of taste of course.  My desires cannot be compared to yours.

Yesterday something a little untoward happened.  At Anna’s birthday party she rolled me a fag and it had a few crumbs of weed in it.   I was as high as a kite for a good few hours.  Everything was totally wonderful.  I had that gorgeous feeling of euphoria and masterful abandon.  I hadn’t felt that feeling for nigh on 14 years.  I demanded to speak to Jake because I wanted to know how the experience of me being high would affect what I thought of him.

He was complaining that it was late and he wanted to go to sleep…he was blithering on about how people might think he was some sort of man whore if I compared his experience of being gay with men who died of AIDS in the 1980’s.   Obviously, I didn’t mean that.  I was trying to be nice.

Fuck it!  Go and be a man whore.  All of you!   Go and be whores.  It doesn’t matter to me.  I was sucking squaddie cock and getting fucked in the back of cars by East End builders.  LUSH.  I didn’t wait around to have a gay life.  I emerged from the womb searching for the most perfect penis to suckle on.

Anyway, as I did not deliberately get high I am not going to reset my sobriety time.  I still believe in God but I’m not going to be so fucking pious.

I will miss you Sebastian Horsley.

Whitstable, that’s where we grew up.  The High Street, a shingle beach, abandoned oyster beds, abandoned boat yards.

I knew I wanted to make something.  I never knew quite what.  Writing, knitting, print-making, drawing, theatre, acting, fashion.  Good… but never good enough.  Wanting to be included but unwilling to participate.  Confident to be part of what was going on but seldom sure.  Always there, never present.

Had I been allowed, as planned, to go to St Martin’s College of Art to study fashion I would have become a fashion designer.  I still have note books crammed with crude fashion drawings and swatches of hideous fabric made when I was 8 years old.  Each ‘season’ I would design a new collection and between ‘collections’ I would write and illustrate articles about the history of fashion.

An avid fashion commentator who had unwelcome, prepubescent opinions about everything.  My damning critique of Princess Anne’s ‘boring’ ivory duchess satin wedding dress in 1973 irritated my short-tempered, royalist Grandmother.  “Look at those ghastly sleeves…”

I was an industrious child.  At boarding school I excelled.

When I wasn’t busily designing imaginary runway collections I worked hard remaking my life, a life I could control. A life reimagined included: a 30 page illustrated story about a happy family of mice.  A precocious teenager at boarding school I spent months writing and rewriting rambling plays about unrequited love with other boys.

I saw my first proper play on a high school outing to Stoke on Trent.  Bertolt Brecht‘s, The Caucasian Chalk Circle with Bob Hoskins.  1975.  I was hooked.

Theatre!  I must make theatre.  The lights, the tension, the smell of the theatre.  The warmth and silence of the audience, laughter erupting around me, muffled crying from the red velvet stalls.

Oddly, I had absolutely no great passion for film or television.  Of course, I had seen many films but it wasn’t a world that piqued my interest.  I had a fondness for black and white Hollywood films from the 1940’s (particularly musicals) that I would either watch on the television on my own or walk up Whitstable High Street to the cavernous Oxford Cinema.

I was inspired.  Stealing an idea for my ‘new collection’, a sleeve or muff.  I watched the credits roll:  costume designer Edith Head… Funny Face.  Adrian, who designed the costumes for The Wizard of Oz.

I’m 12 years old.  I discover Marilyn Monroe without ever knowing she is already an established gay icon.  The following year I insist that my parents buy me Norman Mailer’s illustrated biography for Christmas.

Theatre and fashion people referenced film but nobody I knew would ever have thought about making one.

The years after I left Shotton Hall School in 1976, before I went to prison in 1983 were culturally the richest of my life.  I scraped into Medway College of Art and Design with one ‘O’ level.  I befriended punk rocker Billy Childish.  I learned how to etch and screen print and draw.  Punk was determining music fashion and graphics but scarcely impacted the institutionalized, established, sewn up world of British contemporary art.  Britain would have to wait until 1989 until Michael Clark, Tilda Swinton and Leigh Bowery performed in the Anthony d’Offay Gallery.

Whilst at Medway,  I saw a very ordinary man wearing a badly cut suit his tie askew commuting from London to Thanet holding a copy of The Sex Pistol‘s single God Save The Queen and nearly fainted in fear.  I was wearing a pair of my mother’s bottle green woolen tights.  I wonder what he must have thought about me?  He alighted at Rainham.

Unable to study fashion at St Martin’s College as my garrulous stepfather refused to let me.  I had to get a job. The job I was offered, selling clothes at Yves Saint Laurent on Bond Street, London became the beginning of what would turn out to be a great, although misguided, adventure.  An adventure that would shape the rest of my life.

I met Lady Clare Rendlesham and within a few months I was in Paris pretending to be her son.

Clare Rendlesham and others

Along with changing my identity,  in Paris I threw myself head long into the very accommodating worlds of fashion, performance art and theatre.

The land of sublime artifice.

During the pret-a-porter I would run with my friends through the streets of Paris from show to show.  Although my time in Paris seems less, in retrospect, about theatre and more about fashion and art, I was introduced to Robert Wilson and members of his company, traveled to Holland to see Lucinda Childs in Dance with music by Phillip Glass and travelled more to see beautiful work by Pina Bausch.

Pina Bausch died this year.

I was one of the first people in Paris to wear a Walkman.  I think I may still own that original item.  Some rich friend of a rich friend left it at my place.  He had bought it from Tokyo where he’d been modeling and never asked for it back.  Suddenly I had my very own soundtrack.  My life scored by Super Tramp.  The optimistic opening bars of  Take The Long Way Home soaring over the controversial rebuilding of Les Halles that seems only recently to have settled into its surroundings.  Music altered my perception of where I was and how I experienced it.  Paris was never so beautiful.

 

Duncan 19

It was during this time in 1978, as a willowy teenager, I chanced upon Fred Hughes at John Jermyn’s Rue de Bellechasse home.  That beautifully, wonderfully decorated house… rococo monkeys fucking on the drawing-room walls painted by Harry Gromelion and acres of Fortuny silk.

Fred had been, the year I met him, diagnosed with MS and had become nihilistic and surly.

When Fred got sick, he had to go to the American Hospital, and I decorated his room. I went to visit him, and brought pictures he liked, from his house and flowers…”  Julian Schnabel

Fred, so reviled, cut a sad and lonely path through his own life ending up incapacitated and angry.  At the end, surrounded in his Lexington Avenue home by the most beautiful things, nothing could placate him.  His terrible Texan mother moved in to help, firing his loyal assistant.  We never saw him again.

When I met Fred he had slicked back black hair and tailored suits, he lived in an apartment on the Rue du Cherche-Midi and was, to a provincial teenager, incredibly glamorous… a true dandy.

“It was I who found Fred Hughes his Paris apartment on the Rue du Cherche-Midi, where Warhol would stay.”  Pierre Berger

He liked me because he thought I was a British aristocrat.  He was a terrible snob.  Later, when he knew the truth, he would laugh and mock the moment we met and feign outrage.  He only ever called me Anthony.

Fred took me to New York, bought me Vetiver and appropriate underwear, gave me drugs at Studio 54, lent me shirts that belonged to Farouk, the last King of Egypt.  He wrapped me up in linen sheets and laughed at my jokes.  Fred introduced me to Yves St-Laurent and his muse LouLou de la Falaise, Baron Eric De Rothschild, flame haired owner of Egoiste magazine Nicole Wisniak.  I sat entranced by these people.  Wearing clothes Fred had bought for me, a brand new name.  Sloughing off the past… a past for which I had no need.

Perhaps we understood each other because we had both abandoned our past for a far more thrilling present.  After his death he was described as ‘a consummate liar, social climber, and a bespoke SOB who grew to total ghoulishness because of his connection to Andy Warhol.’

Isn’t everyone a social climber of some kind… and why the hell not?  It’s galling to have Fred’s memory so maligned.  From what I saw he managed or rather… baby sat Andy Warhol, pulling him out of relative poverty, protecting him from the unworthiest.

Was that a lie?  I really don’t have a clue.  As a teenager I thought he was just swell.

It is so sad to see him like this, stricken with MS:

 

This photograph is amusing.  Tim Hunt, Princess Anne of Bavaria, Me and Alexis de Toqueville at Anne’s apartment in Paris.  Like so many beautiful young men from that time, Alexis would die of AIDS.  Hid family refused to acknowledge his life as a gay man and his death as a gay man.

Samia Saouma’s Gallery (another social hub as great galleries tend to be) I was introduced to the work of  The Baron de Meyer, Man Ray and Joseph Kosuth.  I followed the crowd and applauded the sparse and mannered work of Robert Wilson.  We saw I Was Sitting on My Patio This Guy Appeared I Thought I Was Hallucinating and Death Destruction and Detroit.

In Paris I learned about artists and their power and prestige.  Most of these men and women, invited to Europe during the late 70’s early 80’s, were American.  Flooding the world with new ideas; polemical and challenging.

What happened to the arts?   Even though British theatre seems to have maintained it’s edge, British art has become increasingly bland and decorative.  Says nothing of the war or the bloody peace.

Paris was just how Paris is meant to be: an education for a young man.

Before we leave Paris there was one sublime moment.  It was a moment.  We all need them.  Romantic.  I had been invited to the house of some elderly Duke.  On an orange velvet wall hung a huge sunset by Turner.  Surrounded by furniture, a light supper served in front of it.  This is how art should be enjoyed.  Domestically.

Turner

Returning to England I was given the telephone number of Erica Bolton by The Princess Anne of Bavaria.   I met Erica at The Riverside Studios in Hammersmith, West London, where she worked as a publicist.   My great love affair with the theatre began in earnest.

David Gothard Riverside Studios

Erica Bolton, in turn, introduced me to a community of successful writers and directors. Men and women who inspired me to make my own theatre, my own films, my own art.

I listened and learned.

Erica sneaks me into the theatre to see Kantor’s sold out show Wielopole, Wielopole. I sit in the Gods looking down at syphilitic soldiers marching, wax figures strapped to the living, a monochrome set with Kantor in the middle of it all tweaking his memories and watching sadly as the dead come back to life.

It was triumphant, breathtaking theatre and in sharp contrast to the very British, academic work of Peter Gill (Cherry Orchard) who I met that year (1978) and his then assistant David Levaux the now hugely respected Broadway director.

There were so many exciting people to hang out with at The Riverside like the precocious Hanif Kureishi fresh from his triumphant stint at The Royal Court.

Pioneering David Gothard, the artistic director, the genius at the very heart of the Riverside Studios.   Responsible for bringing Tadeusz Kantor, Miro, Shuji Tereyama and many others not only to Hammersmith but to the UK.  Night after night we sat in the canteen drinking beer and smoking cigarettes.  I loved every moment.

In 1979 I made my way to Paris to see Peter Brook’s Bouffes du Nord.  To Paris by boat and train to see Brook’s Conference of the Birds.  The raw brick walls and magnificent arches quite unlike any other performance space.  I can’t remember where I stayed that night.  I was in heaven.  I remember the Persian rugs on the floor, the chirping of the cast as they imitated different birds..a chorus… the dawn chorus.

I wanted to make theatre so badly.    When I finally got around to it I made just one good work The Host.  The other works (as it turned out) a preamble for my later film making and really not that good.

In 1981 I moved into a small flat in Furlong Road, Islington.  The home of director Michael Darlow.  The flat came with a job:  nanny to their wayward 13-year-old adopted son.  Wandering the streets I discovered the derelict Almeida Theatre where I would end up having my 22nd Birthday thrown by designer Scott Crolla.  Furniture Designer Tom Dixon was our doorman.  William Burroughs came.

‘Come Dressed at Duncan Roy’ the invitation demanded.

Here are Kadir Guirey and Tom Dixon in their band Funkapolitan…

The Almeida Theatre, bought and renovated (Bouffe de Nord style) by Lebanese born Pierre Audi.   I managed, by chance, to witness the birth of an institution.   Even when derelict, Pierre used the space as a theatre.  Amongst many, early notable Almeida productions I saw A Dybbuk For Two People with Bruce Myers and in 1982, at Saint James’s Church, Chillingworth Road at the Almeida International Festival of Contemporary Music, John Cage at 70.  Stunning.

Early 1983 I was arrested and imprisoned for running up a huge bill on my credit card.   I spent the next ten months starved of  theatre and art but found another altogether unexpected beauty.

I was 23.  Prison, as I have said before, was beautiful.

People like Erica bid their adieu and I would never really see them again.

1983, months after I left Wormwood Scrubbs Prison I answered an advertisement in Time Out Magazine. Neil Bartlett was looking for performers to open his show PORNOGRAPHY, a Spectacle at the Institute of Contemporary Arts.  It was a gruelling process, one I found particularly hard to get to grips with.  Acting, as you may know, requires the performer to be real and at this time in my life I really had no idea how to do that at all.

As with my appearance in the ‘A’ list thirty years later, people mocked my decision to be in a gay play about sex and sexuality.   Life is for the experience… isn’t it?  One grand adventure after another.

Theatre

Pornography: A Spectacle. 1983/84 Actor

  • Institute of Contemporary Arts, London, 6 city UK tour, Poor Alex Theatre, Toronto, Canada
  • Devised with Ivan Cartwright, Neil Bartlett and Robin Whitmore

Robin, Ivan and Duncan in ‘Pornography, a Spectacle’

“Pornography is quite wonderful, outrageous, intentionally shocking — but with real human beings stepping through the sensationalism at regular intervals to speak between the screams of cliché in normal conversational tones about who they are and how they really feel. The recurrent theme is one of intense pornographic description, which the actors suddenly stop, pause, and say, “of course that was merely a quotation,” or “but it really wasn’t like that.” Sky Gilbert

The Critic by Sheridan: 1984 Actor – Mr. Puff

  • Edinburgh Festival

The Host: 1987 Writer/Director

  • Institute of Contemporary Art London and National Review of Live Art Glasgow with Georgia Byng and Tatiana Strauss
  • October Gallery

Bad Baby: 1989 Writer/Director

  • The Penny Theatre, Canterbury, Kent, Hen and Chickens Theatre, Islington North London
  • Using a cast of local Kent performers this play examined issues of child abuse using Beatrix Campbell’s Unofficial Secrets as the basis of the text.

Marrianne Fearnside in Bad Baby

The Baron in the Trees: 1990 Writer/Director

  • Adapted from the Italo Calvino novel of the same name for The Penny Theatre, Canterbury, Kent

Copper’s Bottom: 1991 Writer/Director

  • Sadler’s Wells Theatre, starring Aiden Shaw

Call me Susan: 1993 Co-writer

  • Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh; Edinburgh Festival Fringe;
  • Call Me Susan explored issues surrounding prostitution across Europe. A dramatized discussion between two prostitutes interspersed with real-life recorded testimonies and pictures of prostitutes working in six European cities.

50 years ago this month my Mother, eight months pregnant, was scrubbing floors for nuns at a catholic ‘Mother and Baby’ home in the depths of rural Kent.    For 6 months, this teenage girl, had undergone an emotionally  disfiguring baptism of shame.

The young girls in this Catholic facility were persuaded that for their acts of fornication and subsequent pregnancies they should be punished before God and their unborn, bastard children maligned.

This penance would not edify my Mother.  She would not repent.  She had already glimpsed the burgeoning freedoms of post-war Britain.  She had met a rich, well-dressed, exotic, Persian boy who drove a sports car and had given herself to him.  She was aspirational, a teenage girl with an appetite for the modern world.   She wanted what he had, the freedom he had but he wanted less from her than she from him and after moments of unbridled passion she was pregnant and abandoned.  One can only imagine how dreadful she felt telling her Edwardian parents that she was carrying me, knowing that her life would never be the same again.

My grandmother, disgusted by her willful daughter’s precocious ambition, spoke to a priest who organized seven long months of incarceration at the Mother and Baby home where she would be forced to abandon her dreams in exchange for shame, resentment and fear.

My grandparents abandoned her to her fate.  During the 7 months she was sent away they did not visit her once.  After I was born they accepted her home begrudgingly.

Most of the girls would give up their babies.  Some of them willingly some, like my mother, unwillingly.

She could not breastfeed me.  I refused to suckle.   Perhaps I already knew that life was not worth living?  The nuns insisted and forced me onto her nipple.   My mother left me behind at the Mother and Baby home to be adopted but fate or circumstance or racism intervened.  I could not be adopted.  My skin was olive toned, my hair curly, my eyes jet black.  It was obvious to all the prospective parents who viewed me during the time I was offered up for adoption that I would not fit invisibly into any nice, white family.

By July the 8th 1960 the day of my birth the door had well and truly shut on the promises of the age.

Remember, during the first few months of the 1960’s my mother was unaware that this decade in the United Kingdom would be described variously as ‘swinging’, ‘progressive’ and ‘free’.

What of these nuns now?  These Brides of Christ?  Where was Jesus when all of this was going on?  Where was the love of God?

My Mother was neither free to keep me even though she begged to do so and the home I would eventually end up in, although loving, was certainly not progressive nor swinging.

My Grandmother, in a rare moment of charity, decided to go fetch me and I ended up, once again, with my teenage mother and her mother and her mother in a small, semi-detached house in a genteel seaside town.   Besides these three women I lived with my two aunts and my sickly grandfather.   Victorian Herne Bay was, was at that time, still enjoying the benefit of the second longest pier in England, a bandstand and the cavernous Kings Hall where polite tea dances were held.

mother

There are photographs of me ensconced in the bosom of this dysfunctional family.   I was the son my grandfather never let my grandmother have.  She doted on me, walked me through the streets come rain or shine.  Then, she let me go.

During the darkest days of my childhood I would try to get back to that house.  A house I knew and loved but when I got there it was never the house I remembered.  She sent me back again and again.

I lived there for two years until my mother married a local lad and we moved to Whitstable.   My Grandmother was thrilled to have her sullied daughter married.  It was, in fact, against all the odds.   She was ‘taken off my hands’ my Grandmother later told me.

50 years ago.  50 years. I have lied about my age for so long that I am in shock when I type those words.  The number has come too soon.  I am not prepared to be this old nor was I ever expecting it.  Shocking!  Why did I never expect to live?   On many occasions during my childhood I expected to die at the hands of my angry step-father.

When I finally escaped that man I sought out equally destructive situations.

I have been hankering after the long sleep since I was born.

As I sit at my desk in Los Angeles my greatest triumph, if at all my only triumph, has been to survive.  To avoid the catastrophic blow that I expected every day.    I may not have fulfilled my potential but I have certainly achieved more than I ever expected, more than I was told to expect.    In spite of my temper, my addictions, my desire to take up where my murderous step-father left off I am alive!

It is only recently that I tentatively acknowledged that life must be lived.

For as long as I can remember I have imagined and reimagined my death. For long as I have flown in aeroplanes I have reveled in turbulence.   As often as I have picked up strange, beautiful and dangerous men I have wished death come to me.

Shame has cast such a deep shadow over me that all I ever managed to do is struggle blindly down life’s treacherous path.  Stumbling into people along the way who could see.  Many of those people realizing that I was blind did not help without benefit to themselves. Many of those people, when I understood what monsters they were, were shocked when I ferociously bit their hand off up to the elbow.

Perhaps this is why I stayed close to my family home, a family that did not want me.  Even to this day I hanker after Whitstable.  There are still elderly parents of friends my age who remember the small boy who escaped his home whenever he could and seek refuge in theirs.

My Father 1960

During the next month I am going to write an abridged memoir.   We know the beginning and most of you know where I am right now.  So, as I make my way East through New York and Paris back to my old hometown of Whitstable I will let you know what I remember, what I care to remember from the last 50 years.

Today, the little dog is on my bed waiting to walk through the Californian sun to our local coffee shop.  There are people there who know me from the television.  People who might wave a tentative hello.   Tonight I may hear from the man I love and tell him so without shame or expectation.   It’s not much to ask is it?  To be loved, to love.  To be loved..to love?

Notes on a Scandal

Yesterday, in the hotel dining room, there were a sweet couple visiting Toronto for the weekend to get married. One was a very young, very tall, strapping jock and the other a much older, smaller, Jewish man who did the talking for the both of them. An odd couple. A pair I would never had pegged for a successful date let alone as lovers or as married but there you go, they were obviously very happy and excited by the prospect of their ‘big day’.

After an hour of intrusive questioning I determined they were getting married for all the ‘right’ reasons. They loved each other. They were committed to each other. They wanted to celebrate their union in the company of their friends and family. They were not concerned to have retirement/health/tax benefits. This is Canada so that is already part of the deal. In the USA the gays who bay for marriage seem to think only of what it means to them fiscally.

Why is it that US gay political figures have not advanced the rights of gay people in any meaningful way during the past 20 years where as we in the UK (with our deliciously out gay, joint toting cabinet ministers) and Canada, South Africa, Australia and across Europe gays have equal rights? The tactics used by American gays are obviously not working.

My gripe, ultimately, is with the gays and not the withholding ‘straight’ majority. The majority are just that: THE MAJORITY. Using the gay marriage stick to beat the straight donkey just makes the old mule stubborn and refuse to budge.

Gay activists must make many lawyers across the US very rich indeed. Demanding things from the entrenched. Making headway then having it all taken away. You can get married, you can’t get married. The wailing of the gays. Stop asking to get married because you are doing it for all the wrong reasons. AND you are pissing them off or worse delighting them every time they flick their tails and repeal your meagre reforms. I know that it may seem an odd question but given that you can’t and wont be able to any time soon in any way that equalizes your financial/inheritance situation. Why do you even want to get married? I want to know. The Toronto boys would have been perfectly happy with a get together on the beach with their family. All they wanted the world to know was that they were in love.

My concern for gays in the US is that they just want to be like ‘everyone else’ that they refuse to acknowledge their obvious difference and embrace and celebrate it. The middle class gays that determine the gay agenda are committed to the politics of invisibility. They want the right to get married not because they love each other GOD FORBID but because they want to be just like them (straights). Gays want to get married, have children, and live in elegant houses just like them. Sit on the school board just like them. The middle class gays with heterosexual aspirations want the trappings of the lives their parents had, the comfort and middle class normalcy and when they get it genuinely believe that the OTHERS might not realizes that there is any difference between them and us.

Huh?

There is a huge difference, no matter how much we hide in fear from their reproachful eyes. We are different. However much we love ‘straight acting‘ ‘100% masculine’ we will always be evident in the way we walk, talk, dress, play-it is time to acknowledge that we are the ‘other’. In accepting who we are we can then stop demanding from the majority that they respect us. Nurture us. Give us permission to be just like them.

I have no intention of being anything other than what I am, I will not pretend to be more like them so that they can tolerate me, or worse ignore me because I have made such a great job of pretending a life that they have prescribed.

I have made a choice to live in a ‘free’ society. I have made a choice to commit to the freedoms of the USA. Yet, from my meager bluff overlooking the sea I don’t think that many people in the US are free at all. How can you be free when you live in fear? When you weigh so much that your ass can scarcely fit into a car, when you cannot identify the flora and fauna around you?

As I tour the US and the world with Dorian I listen to the way gay artists make work-although most gay artists are only eager to talk about money-and I am fascinated by how little new drama for this huge audience is being made. Where as once we were thrilled to have our stories told, the language and locations of gay life revealed-now we are perfectly satisfied to see ourselves on Desperate Housewives. Yet, ironically, mainstream gay and lesbian product is being made but it is not allowed at gay and lesbian film festivals. Gay and lesbian film festivals are not allowed to show Notes on a Scandal or Transamerica because the distributors of these films don’t want to be ‘pigeon holed’ as if amazingly they cannot embrace both kinds of audience. As if showing these films to gay audiences will some how devalue their product? This is unbridled homophobia and we colluded with it. We have little or no respect for our own culture so whilst the distributors get away with willful homophobia then gay film makers are not going to show or make work for gay audiences because they understandably feel that their work will not be taken seriously by those who hold the purse strings.

When gays devalue their own culture when deferring to the mainstream they become a lot dumber in the process. We have traded our rich culture for the mindless thump of our clubs and bars, spend our money on drugs and alcohol yet if prodded pretend that we are just like them, no difference at all. The similarities between Quentin Crisps 1940’s London and present day USA are startling. The attitude of gay men that by being different we ruin it for the rest is all too common.

I see men my age at bars in West Hollywood at the big cock contest, or men older and more powerful than me who will only sleep with straight guys. What have we become? I almost want to buy a wig and paint my nails, after all, drag in its purest form has always been an effective act of aggression.

3:04 AM

May 17, 2007 – Thursday

Isabella Blow

There is a large John Lautner house out on the PCH for sale,  it will cost who ever buys it 33 million dollars. At night it looks like it has been carved in amber.

I am in Toronto, here for the gay film festival. I am staying in a bed and breakfast that was once a very grand house. Dorian is the opening night film and I can’t get out of bed. I can’t move out of my room. I am ‘on line’ to various friends. Various websites. Looking, my eyes getting very tired.

Jay Jopling and Issie Blow

Death:

Isabella Blow killed herself. She drank weed killer, paraquat, and took 3 days to die. Her husband’s father did the same. Her grandfather committed suicide too. She was an occasional friend to me. When I made The Baron in The Trees she oversaw extra ordinary pictures of me for Vogue. The week before she died she visited with Philippa in Langton St with her sister Lavinia. The last time I saw Isabella she was at a party Lucy Ferry threw with Si Newhouse at Lucy’s home in Kensington. She was with some Argentinean man who looked like a second-rate gigolo. I don’t remember her for her hats. I remember going to Hilles to see her and Detmar and Amory with Philippa and my friend Justin from Whitstable who was a simple lad who also committed suicide a few years later after he was set upon by homophobes in Camberwell. Isabella took him under her wing, realizing that he was totally out of his depth and said,” You know what you need young man-a pork pie!” and dragged him in his car to the village and bought him a HUGE pork pie.

I have one very funny picture of Isabella and Jay Jopling in my photo album. He looks bemused and she looks like an alien in mourning. He looks young.

You know that she was Tim Willis’s girlfriend for years but left him for Detmar Blow. I called her the night before she was to marry Detmar to ask why she was marrying him and she said, “I’m not marrying a man, I’m marrying a house.” Which was true. I used that line in AKA.

KB wrote yesterday:

Me by Issie Blow for Tatler

Vogue Pics Styled by Issie Blow

‘Sorry, darling Duncan, missed all the excitement around Dorian – though I saw Mrs. Merton last week, who mentioned she’d seen you. Issie’s funeral yesterday. Amazing send-off with horse-drawn hearse (very beautiful – though I forgot to remind Detmar that she had wanted a glass coffin a la Snow White!) from Glos Cathedral. kept remembering their wedding there and was sad, but service was rather uplifting and Rupe Everett gave a very good address. Detmar did a good wake at Hilles afterwards and I saw lots of old friends.’

I met Issie when I was twenty-four. She was seeing Tim Willis in those days and they had just moved into Tim’s apartment in Notting Hill. Tim Willis married Joanna and then I became the God Father to their child. Issie could not have children. There was some shenanigans about Hilles and children and how Detmar’s mother wanted her daughter (can’t remember her name) who married Crusty Levinson (who was married to Philippa’s sister Francine) and their children to have the house. In aristocratic circles to lose out on the big house is a DISASTER. She indeed married the house but it was stolen from her.

Good-bye Isabella Delves Broughton nee Blow.

Since I last wrote my blog I have moved to Malibu and now sit high above the sea on a small bluff. Everybody visits so I am not alone. I am in Toronto unable to leave my room and I miss it terribly-my house. The very light traffic outside my hotel room woke me at 5am.

I moved from Whitstable finally-just as the peonies were about to bloom, ants on their sticky buds. I have not really stopped grieving my Whitstable loss but will do when my stuff gets to Malibu. In some ways I wish that the whole lot would sink in the Atlantic. But that might mean that people would get hurt which I don’t want.

Dinners during the past month included: Birthday dinner for and with John Dewis and Kevin West where I met the utterly adorable Elliot Hundley. Opening of Dan Flavin show at LACMA. New age baby shower on Mulholland with babies spirit guide who had been ‘communing with foetus’ and wanted us all to celebrate that the baby was looking forward to being born, to be made flesh. Derek Frost and Jeremy invited me to dinner in Pimlico when I traveled to London for premiere of Dorian. Dorian, up on the big screen in Leicester Square. How did it feel? Not great. I love the film but others were not so kind. People who get it-get it. The others are the others and perhaps they are right. Even so, this experience is more exciting than AKA, which was only great when it got to Outfest. Then that soured when the onslaught happened and I was unprepared for them, for when they love something and you don’t believe it.

Melanie threw a dinner for me with Mickey Wolfson and others came too. My new best friend Wendy A had lunch in Malibu with her and Barry Levinson and others.

Seeing a great deal of Joe who made moving effortless and wonderful. In fact he is making my life all that much nicer by being good to me.

I gave my brother Martin my Porsche, which seemed to delight him. I gave my fridge to Babs and Tony. I took down all the curtains and deconstructed the house. I said goodbye to every one of my plants. I felt like such a traitor for leaving them behind. Tim came by with Jo and Sibbley. He brought gypsy tart and we ate it at Babs house with hot tea.

When I returned from my final month is Whitstable Dom collected me from the airport and when I got back to the new place Joe was in the new kitchen cooking dinner. The new garden is a huge undertaking. Thankfully I have discovered a nursery that is closing down on the PCH and is selling everything very cheaply. Yesterday I bought an 8 foot cactus and planted it.

Bought Euphorbia and aloes and agaves.

I listen to the coyote at night howling and chattering and eating baby deer. I am eager to see a rattlesnake. I saw a mountain lion. A raccoon got into my car and ate skittles. A Blue Jay raided the humming-bird nest and stole all the baby humming birds. Trevor stopped by and heated the Jacuzzi and we lay in it with Eyal the Israeli boy who is dark and mysterious.

So much more has happened but I can’t remember or don’t want to remember. I had a great time in Miami and lay by the pool at the Raleigh with VD and CZ. I am as brown as a nut and looking forward to great wrinkles on my face.

10:10 AM

April 9, 2007 – Monday

Flint

Whitstable. April.

I walked from my house on Wavecrest to Janet Street-Porter’s house half a mile away toward Seasalter. She has attached an ugly wooden fence to the sea wall since the coastal defense agency raised the height of the beach.

I only saw two dogs. The beach is much brighter than it was. They spent last summer trucking tons of new stone onto the old beach filling the gaps between the new wooden groins. They used a whole forest of timber, I wondered if it came from a sustainable forest.

From the train the new beach looks beautiful but the new stones are mostly flint like a Deal or Dover beach rather than a Whitstable beach. The stones on a Whitstable beach are small, treacle and honey colored pebbles. These flint rocks are huge and difficult to walk on. This has caused much consternation to the dog walkers and weekend strollers. People collect the larger flint pieces and stack them up for others to see. The spring tide had obviously been very high as there was a ribbon of black, dry seaweed swept onto the new pale shore.

I walked back into town and bought a free range corn-fed chicken that I am going to cook for Cathy and Rufus. I stopped in at Wheelers and drained a cup of tea. Mark Stubbs the genius chef arrived, as I was half way through my cupper. I sat in the parlor at the back and finished my tea and flicked through the Whitstable Times. Mark Stubbs is the chef at Wheelers and I have known him and his delightful family since he was a teenager. I have seen him evolve into a fine chef. He understands how to take risks with flavor, he knows how to set something onto a plate and make it look delicious. He is a master because he cares.

Most of the shops on the High Street were closed, as it is bank holiday Monday. I had promised Cathy that I would make bread and butter pudding as per Arabella Boxer’s recipe. It requires that I use stale French bread. Thankfully Dave was in the deli and gave me a heap of stale brioche so I will use that instead. My God, what a change! When I first started making bread and butter pudding 15 years ago it was impossible to buy a vanilla pod on the High Street let alone stale brioche from a friend.

I felt sad in bed last night. I kept thinking about Danny. I am a long way away from my LA AA. I received e-mail from one of the morning gang, urging me to come home. It cheered me up tremendously.

I have no idea if I will be moving into my Malibu house when I get back as I have heard nothing from Kelly. I may just stick around in London. I have everything I need here.

The house next door has been renovated so mine looks spectacular. I got used to living next door to a derelict house. I am almost pleased that I am staying. The plot at the end of the garden has been cleared and looks like the building work is well underway. It is good to be grateful for the world around you. I try to and see the best in everything. However, when I get ill I tend to have a very bleak outlook. Jet lag, a cold and a long way from an AA meeting made me feel despondent.

I wish that I had my Premiere tonight I would feel like I could rise to the challenge.

After a few years in the USA with their can do attitude I am dumbfounded by the petty attitude of the British. The ones I know-but mostly I don’t. They say sneeringly, “Oh you art directed your own film.” As a sort of put down. Why should this be? Of course I want to art direct my film. I would shoot it and edit it too if I could. Last week, my head full of cold I was in no mood to defend my film. This week I am.

2:45 AM

April 8, 2007 – Sunday

Finally

Whitstable,Kent.
Wavecrest B&B

I am sitting on the balcony overlooking the pale gray/blue sea. I have been in England for a couple of weeks but have still not overcome my jet lag. Part of me seems absent without leave. I slept in a bed on the plane from LA. It was very odd. I decided to open the B&B for Easter. I hung the freshly painted sign and made the beds with new linen and made a trip to Somerfields to get bacon and eggs. This morning I cooked the eggs and bacon for my guests. They were a nice couple from Stratford; they worked for Carlsberg-good folk from the Midlands. She ate a bacon sandwich but he ate the full English and I was pleased as they left too much on their plates yesterday.

A bee is trapped in my bedroom and keeps bashing its face into the glass. The front of the house is gleaming white as after the guests paid me I took a mop bucket full of soapy water and a stepladder and washed the ship lap. I used a dishcloth on the boards but in fact I should have mopped the front of the house but this idea only just occurred to me.

Rather a lot happened since I last wrote my blog.

So, as I am back in Whitstable with no real plan to return to LA I shall start my walking and writing routine once again. There are no 7am AA meetings here. There are no mountains. I began smoking again three weeks ago. Have stopped this past three days.

The Oscars, lets start with them. They were very dull this year. I spent the few days before the big day and the day after with Todd Eborly the Vanity Fair photographer. Todd very kindly dragged me willingly from one obscure party to the next. We originally met at Eugenio’s house at some function although I may have met him with Samia at Art Basel in Miami. I think we met this time at the Robert Wilson after show party. Amazingly, ever since I had my run in with the ghastly Doug Christmas I bump into him everywhere and it was at the Ace Gallery that Robert had his show. I first met Robert Wilson in Paris when I was 19 years old. He didn’t remember me but we discussed Philippe Chemin and his girlfriend (now his wife) Robin who apparently are still together.

It was because of them that I (apparently) fell out with Samia all those years ago-a resentment that the old ferret had held onto for 25 years. After ten years a resentment has more to do with the person who bears it than the person it is about. Anyway, Robert asked me what I thought about his show and as I had not seen it I made some clever, nondescript remark that amused Todd. Met Darrel Hannah and a bunch of über gays. Doug Christmas and I looked at one another suspiciously across Eugenio’s huge drawing room-past the Twombley and the Warhol’s.

Two days later Ronnie Sassoon, Todd and I watched a huge Jeff Koons, green metal elephant craned high into the blue LA sky reflecting the palm trees and dropped into place in Eugenio’s newly landscaped garden whilst his maid fed us Mexican food and the curator of his collection danced like a demented pixie in the street in a black satin Balenciaga rain coat and fedora. It was bright but bitterly cold. Ronnie and I wrapped ourselves in cream cashmere blankets.

Eugenio has bought a bunch of bronze spiders that look like they are by Louise Bourgeois but in fact are just tat. When I asked Richard Squire at our lunch with Joe Townly and that sweet lesbian he hangs out with why Eugenio would buy such rubbish Richard replied that it was really none of my business as Eugenio was, “Richer than God.” Joe and I, to this day, laugh about his answer.

Soho House opened in LA for their usual Oscar fortnight in a huge house quite close to where Eugenio lives. Ate lunch there with Ronnie and Todd. Given much free stuff. The night before Oscar night snogged Sharon there again. Met Amy Berg who was nominated for an Oscar for her documentary about child abuse. Met Hillary the real producer of Children of Men who was furious that her picture had been ignored by the Hollywood establishment. She dashed furiously about Soho House followed by three assistants who trailed miserably in her wake.

The Diane von Furstenberg/Barry Diller party at their sprawling Bel Air estate was very pleasant. I met Paul Allen and Shirley MacLean. I ate lunch with David Hockney and discussed the camera obscura. Helen Mirren was adorable and I was happy to have had the chance to meet her. I flirted a great deal with a realtor called Chris from Malibu and have met him twice since then. Dennis Hopper and I reminisced about Romania. He had just seen Coppola’s new film-an art film. Dennis was deliciously confused. Rupert Murdoch, David Geffen and other powerful men as well as the prerequisite fashion crowd who were horrendous. Tamara Mellon and her fat, gay, best friend who is some how related to Joan Collins sat with her ex husband. Oswald Botang was there with his bunch. There were a few film stars and a cute waiter as well as some delicious boy from Sydney. Todd and I stayed till the end. I will prob never go to that party again so I was determined to squeeze every moment out of it. Paris and Stavros were also at Barry’s garden party dressed in almost middle-aged, sensible clothing, they looked like a perfectly normal young couple.

Paris Hilton Birthday with Todd Eborle

However, at Paris Hilton’s birthday party the following night at her ugly little house she transformed into PARIS! the celebrity with crop top and trashy hair. I am convinced that she has two homes, one for trashy Paris and one for chic Paris. Her birthday party was only worthwhile as one got to gaze longingly at Stavros who is not only incredibly beautiful but also the most charming man alive. Paris’s trashy house is full of portraits of her and terrible people but Todd, John Dewis and I had our pictures taken by a company who make 3d laminated fridge magnates. We spent more time in the valet parking than the party.

Spent the Oscar awards at Dede Gardener’s (runs Brad Pitts production company) and her husband’s beautiful house in Hollywood. As the ceremony unfolded there was much talk about Brad Gray and Brad Pitt and their involvement with Scorsese’s The Departed. All too convoluted to explain here. Their child is adorable and her house is packed with great stuff and marvelous art. Great vintage wallpaper in the bathroom-huge silver cranes dance against a pale blue landscape.

I spent time at Soho House and did not go to the Chateau Marmont.

Very sweetly Damien (Hirst) invited me to his show at Larry Gagosian’s and the party afterwards at the Bar Marmont. There was a very odd moment when I found myself with Damien and Arnold Schwarzenegger. I didn’t say much. We just kissed and that was it.

Spent a good amount of time with Maia, Damien’s wife. She was wearing a white pleated leather dress by Jil Sander.

I met my friend Justin the model at the after party and we headed over to Eugenio’s when we tired of Damien’s crowd.

Met Lynn Wyatt and a bunch of elderly, stick thin socialites at some gay rich boys Hollywood house. Dominick Dunne and others there. Fried chicken-apparently he cooked the food himself. Todd took wonderful photograph of Lynn Wyatt by portrait of Betsy Bloomingdale.

Ronnie commissioned Todd to take pictures of the Singleton House by Neutre, which she has restored. It was very beautiful but I am afraid not nearly as beautiful as her own house, which is so stunning, I cannot begin to describe it. It was so beautiful it made me cry. Actually, the Singleton House is ruined. I cannot beat around the bush and as much as I love Ronnie she has ruined that house with sunken bars and huge non descript rooms. There, I wrote it.

My film premiered in London to a bunch of sour faced gays and lesbians and five baby celebrities-the Geldof children and some band front man. This is exactly what happened to AKA. Sneered at by UK gays. If I had been a Mexican or Japanese they would have loved it but as I am home-grown I tolerated their pursed lips and arched eyebrows.

I couldn’t care less about them. Two days previous my good friend and occasional lover Danny Ross was killed on an LA freeway so all I could really think about was his sweet face. That night I erased his number from my Blackberry. I was numb. Stayed with Sharon Marshall in Brixton. The girly self-help book that she is writing with Tara PT strewn over the dining room table.

I have stayed numb ever since I heard about Danny. His death has made me angry and despondent. Nothing really matters.

Since I have been home my cousin Caroline came to visit me, her huge, sad Irish eyes and long fingers in my kitchen. She wanted me to remove any mention I made about her father in my blog but I refused. Nothing will make me censor the truth in these pages.

I bumped into my brother Martin; I walked The Kings Road with Joe. Phil and I could not sleep so we sat up into the night drinking tea and giggling.

I have lost a bunch of weight and last night a man I know from London drove here and stayed over. It was a fruitless exchange. My head was with Danny on the freeway, thinking about his body smashed to pieces on the cold hard road. I thought about his smile and delicate kisses. I could not stop thinking about how much I wished I had made time for him the day before I left LA but instead I was finishing a film for a bunch of piss elegant, precious gays who did not deserve my time.

I know that Dorian is flawed, like an unfinished work of art. It is art. I know it.

I know that my film is sort of broken to pieces but I love it. I know what I have to do to fix it but I can’t. It’s too late. I am angry about the death of my friend.

9:29 AM

February 2, 2007 – Friday

Kevin Zegers

I am back in LA. Feels like I am back at work/school/LA. Various pre-Oscar dramas unfolding, Hollywood intrigue playing itself out in front of me. I am not as invested as I was last year. Last year I was at the center of it all with Sharon to see how it worked. It was utterly exhausting. I will not be going to the parties this year. I may pop into the Soho House rented mansion. Anyhow, I am just not interested in the films they have in competition this year.

Went with Kevin Zegers to Hyde. He is a sweet thing. Interesting listening to his take on the making of Trans America. He is Canadian. Liked him a great deal. At the Golden Globes last year Brad Pitt said to him, ‘Trans America is your Thelma and Louise.’ Which is a pretty damned cool thing to hear. Kevin stole Trans America from David Gallagher. David lost TA and made DG instead.

Up on the Canyon this morning it was very cold. It has been really cold here. I like it. There were very few people there, fewer dogs. The guys that tend the path were using a very noisy machine, a ‘low blower’ they said, and that is what it does-very loudly. It blows dust all over the place. What about using a broom?

So, I thought about how lazy we all were and how much I hate the TV remote control and how it was the best and worst invention of the past fifty years. I thought about those ‘home entertainment’ rooms that folk have here and how many remote controls these people have lined up in front of them desperate to be entertained. Last week I invited a friend to my home and he was amazed that I don’t own a television set. American TV depresses me. It makes me miserable. The commercials are grueling, relentless and mind altering. The content is formulaic baby food. When I live in NYC I lay on the sofa when I can’t sleep and watch the Home Shopping Network because there are no commercials and the content is exactly what it is-selling. The Home Shopping Network is authentic, amusing, dramatic, reality TV at its very best. I love it. Occasionally I am tempted, like an alien from another planet, to pick up the phone and buy something. Austrian Art Glass or a cover all powder that gives a translucent glaze to any skin in any tone. I listen to the rehearsed testimonials and I am transported.

Jean Perramon

Jean and I drove in his Mazeratti to Malibu and the mountains around there. As the sun began to set, low in the winter sky, the grassy hillocks at the base of the mountains were covered in silver grass that looked like fur. We had gone to look at a beautiful modernist house perched on 15 acres of land on the top of a huge mountain that is For Sale and we were tempted to pool our resources and buy it. The air was bitter. Remember it had been snowing in Malibu only two weeks previously.

Had lunch with Amanda Ross who invited me to Laurie Simmons event at The Billy Wilder Cinema at The Hammer. It was an ‘art’ film. Meryl Streep can sing! There was much applauding the work but I must be honest, I do not understand why Laurie Simmons feels that an obscure art film needs a conventional narrative. I don’t get it. Laurie’s film was shot by Ed Lachman who had introduced me to Brian Jackson the Dorian DP. She had worked with Mathew Weinstein who I had a brief affair with when he lived in London 20 years ago. He was so gorgeous then. I had dinner with Merle Ginsberg at Red Pearl Café after the film. Met Amanda’s rather handsome fiancé.

Had meeting with my agent at Urth Café flushed from his trip to Sundance.

Back at school, getting on with shit. Every moment of every day, in every situation in LA we work toward our filmmaking goal. Every relationship and situation unfolding in front of us like so many jewels, sifting out the paste from the diamonds.

10:09 AM

January 28, 2007 – Sunday

FIGHTING IS MY GENIUS

I seem to have fought all of my life with people, places and things yet I perceive myself as having a placid soul. For as long as I can remember it was inequity, in all its manifestations, that caused me to become furiously angry. As an infant I knew instinctively that the way my stepfather treated my mother was wrong and caused us all the loss of dignity. I fought hard against him even though his cruelty was more than any match for a small boy. I knew that the way my Uncle Norman beat his wife was wrong and caused her to lose her baby but nobody seemed to do anything about it. The desperate screams of women were familiar to me when I was a boy. My brothers may scoff at this description of our shared history but sometimes I think that they may have lived in a dream of our childhood where their father was some how absolved of his brutality simply because of their blood relationship with him. Because they were his children the beatings they received were not as unjust as mine?

Even though we had a tough time at home it is good to remember that only sixty years before I was born in Whitstable there were still child prostitutes in Victorian London that a man could buy and take to padded rooms in Wimpole Street and kill. We were, my brothers and I, lucky children of the post war, 1960’s modern world and all of the promises of the age were just revealing themselves to the men and women of my parents generation.

When I was born my shamed mother and I were hidden away from society yet only ten years later life in Britain had changed so radically that my ‘behavioral problems’ had been identified and I was taken to child psychiatrists, sent to hospitals etc. so that my maladjustment might be healed with group therapy and words. The massive head injuries that I received in a car accident when I was 5 would nowadays be factored into understanding my erratic behavior and vile temper but this was simply overlooked.

Like so many men I have tried, all my life, to make sense of myself. To have the luxury of sitting comfortably in my own skin. Ten years ago, after a life of therapy, hospitals, transactional analysis, cognitive therapy, prison encounter groups, sweat lodges, reike, traveling etc., after a life of talking it through and telling my fucking story over and over so that sooner or later the truth of my mad bad head would be magically revealed I ended up in a beautiful house in Kensington on my own snorting coke first thing in the morning knowing for sure that things were not meant to be like this.

By the time that morning came around I was unable to leave the house due to paranoid delusions and periodically black liquid flooded out of my nose at the most inappropriate moments, at dinner in Quo Vadis for instance. Ten years ago I self-medicated with hard drugs and alcohol and even used to attend sessions with my expensive psychiatrist high on coke.

I then began my sober journey.

It became apparent that the question I so badly needed answered by so many therapists I did not know how to frame. I knew that I was a mess, that my life was in ruins, that I was somehow responsible but the fundamental question remained. The question that I needed answered through out my adult life was this: How come I hated my stepfather so much yet became so much like him? How come I had scant regard for those around me when I was so plagued with the terrors of inequity? How come I thought nothing of screaming at those who were only trying to do their best? How come?

The answers are not always palatable, even to me.

The reality is that I do not live a good-hearted world of benevolent people eager to do the very best for one another or even themselves. The skills of hard heartedness that my stepfather taught me are skills I needed to embrace rather than heal with therapies.

Recently I have begun to thank my stepfather for making my skin thick enough to fight for what I believe in or take the hard knocks and learn how to box with precision. I do not tolerate being beaten by those who give me pains or lawyers who give you bad, self-serving advice or untrained, untested co-workers who expect an opportunity but give very little in return. Married women who want you to fuck them yet blame you when you do. Straight boys who put out but hate you for exploiting their desires.

I can thank my step-father for teaching me not to be led by the nose or having overwhelming capitalist fantasies. I don’t want a big house. I have never wanted a big house. All I have ever desired is one room with a perfect view. What else could I possibly want? What is ENOUGH for one man?

At Anthony’s house this week he asked me what he needed to do to make a low-budget film. ‘How did you do it?” If I have been asked once I have been asked a million times. How do you do it? As if there were a private door from a previously hidden corridor that they may not have noticed behind which the secret of making a low-budget feature film lay. Usually I am polite when I am asked this question and try to help who ever is asking delude themselves that they will make feature films. For part of the truth is this: If you are asking me this question it is unlikely that you will ever make a film. If you are looking for a softer, easier path then you will never make a film. The secret door does not exist.

The truth of how I continue, against the odds, to make films is: I am a GENIUS.

I am a GENIUS because: I get off my ass, I write the script, I raise money, persuade people to work and then I force the film into the world. I do not feel fear and when problems arise I deal with them creatively and in a way that benefits the final product. When the film is made I call my friends in the press and get them to write about it and then I sell it all by myself. That is how I do it and if I need to do it this way then so be it. I never answer questions about budget because it’s personal. When people ask me how big my budget is I tell them that it is 8 inches long and quite thick. Asking about a person’s budget is more personal than how big his cock is. Don’t ask. Nobody ever tells you the truth.

I am a GENIUS because I am making films and you are not. Do gallery owners get asked endlessly how to open a gallery or novelists asked endlessly how to write a novel? I have no idea. When I made theatre nobody ever asked me what they needed to know, what great secret I had that they needed to know to make theatre.

I am a GENIUS because when I make a film I can’t take no for an answer and for that I am truly grateful to my beastly step-father and Derek Jarman who gave me that piece of advice long before I even contemplated making films.

I am a GENIUS because even if I had to make a film using my mobile phone I would do it.

Remember the other great and terrible truth about film-making: Nobody wants to make your film.

Nobody.

Even if you are really, really famous and well-connected and a marvelous director nobody wants to make your film.

The only films worth making are the ones that you are passionate about.

So, I am a BAFTA nominated, award-winning GENIUS and so is everyone else who gets off their ass and makes a film.

I have only one person to thank for this: My step-father who taught me to never back down, to take it on the chin and ultimately not be afraid and keep on fighting. He taught me to think beyond what was expected of me and anticipate problems way ahead of anyone else. He taught me to ignore what people say about me, the lies they tell, whether it is Oscar or Joe or anyone else. Perhaps that is why I never really found it hard to forgive him and never forgave my simpering Mother.

I have wasted most of my life trying NOT to be like my stepfather David Roy when all along I needed to follow in his footsteps and embrace every single thing he ever beat into me as the living truth.

10:08 AM

January 24, 2007 – Wednesday

The Queen

I killed a mosquito this morning. I slapped it against the wall with a pair of yesterday’s underpants. It exploded all over the place with my fresh red blood, blood it had just sucked out of my foot. I am sitting in the Book Kitchen waiting for Zoë, Anita and Teddy so that I can order my poached eggs. Last night Zoë’s landlord’s Ross and Renata cooked us dinner and their highly entertaining children (Dom 6 and Nick 10) amused us with made up jokes and mayhem.

I spent the afternoon with Anthony S in his rather nice Woollarha house watching The Corporation, which is a very long documentary essay about the history, excesses and fight against capitalism. Susan Sarandon’s voice was very irritating. I was moved by the description of the Bolivian water riots. Decided to make some changes in life when I got back to UK-am already not leaving too much of a foot print but could be leaving less. Anthony’s gruff, rich, stepfather arrived in the middle of the film and Anthony turned it off as if we were watching pornography. We continued watching only after he had left the room. After the film we ate sweet things in Jones The Grocers then I drove home.

Two weeks ago I saw Steven Frear’s film The Queen. I didn’t really want to see it because I find anything to do with Diana very, very disturbing and, like Brokeback Mountain, did not want to risk bawling my eyes out. Anyway, I had to see it as I am a BAFTA voter and take my voting very seriously. The experience turned out not to be as painful as I thought. Helen Mirren was great but I really wouldn’t expect anything less. She is an English Character actress who has worked with really outstanding people-Peter Brook for instance. Pretending is what our actors do best. Pretending to be Tony Blair and The Queen shouldn’t be that hard with a voice coach and a good wig. In fact I thought that Mirren’s range within her role of The Queen was rather limited, she spent the entire film pulling one face, a perplexed look of gentle concern. Like she was gazing into the middle distance desperate for answers. Do people really think that HRH is like this? Do they think that HRH is a sweet, benign little old lady? Do they think that Cherie Blair provided fish fingers and comic relief to her husband and children and is capable of feeble thinking as written by Peter Morgan? Did he forget that she is one of the most highly regarded Barristers in the UK?

This my HRH The Queen evidence:

I saw her once at Smith’s Lawn shortly after I left prison and could see her suspenders quite clearly through her boucle skirt. I saw her on TV crying when Blair took away her yacht Brittania. She did not cry when the rest of her people were crying at the death of Diana.

Strangely, some years ago I was invited to a gruesome, Conservative Party Dinner and Dance held at the cavernous Kings Hall in Herne Bay. I sat next to the ex Mayor of Canterbury. I can’t remember his name but he was a kind, small old man of simple taste and brain. I asked him if he had ever met the Queen. To my amazement he told me this story about HRH The Queen.

In his Mayoral capacity he had to greet the Queen upon her arrival in Canterbury with the Lord Lieutenant of Kent and sit in the car with HRH and Prince Philip for the duration of an official engagement. It was a freezing cold, winters day and The Queen arrived by Royal train at Canterbury Station for some Christian event at the Cathedral she is, after all, the head of the Anglican Church-nothing between her and God. The train arrived late and one of the equerries or Ladies in Waiting sprinted over to the Mayor and his party giving him the heads up that HRH was in a filthy mood as she hates being late for anything. A few moments later a very grumpy HRH got off the train, leapt into her car refusing to stop to speak to wheel chair bound constituents who had been waiting in the cold and wet for hours. The Mayor begged her to stop for a moment to speak with her subjects. “Do we have to?” She moaned. At the Cathedral she met the Arch Bishop performed her function then the worthies retired with her to the Arch Bishop’s home. At this point the Mayor had to present HRH with a book as a present from the people of Canterbury. When he handed it to her she said, “Not another book!” Dismayed the Mayor, a very simple man, said, “It’s a very valuable book Ma’me.” The Queen looks at Prince Philip and says, “Oh valuable is it? That’s good, we’ll sell it when we lose all our money.” The Queen and Prince Philip then have a fit of laughter at their ‘joke’.

The mayor was neither impressed with the behaviour or attitude of The Queen or her notoriously rude husband.

I met Paul Keating (ex Prime Minister of Australia) this week. He has the most famous HRH story of them all. The back touching. The faux pas. International outrage. He was pottering around at his house. Paul Keating is definitely one of my heroes.

Katherine Phillips, my occasional friend, had lunch with HRH in Scotland but was thrown off the table for having a cold, “Has that girl got a cold?” HRH said. Now, I don’t know if this last story is true but worth retelling anyway.

So, I saw Frear’s movie The Queen and I thought that the Royals came off rather well. What really happened at Balmoral may very well have been a lot less calm and openly hostile to the memory of our Princess Diana. The Princess, which The Establishment worked so tirelessly for us to love in their gruesome soap opera was dead. When she died I will never forget how they wheeled out those old, bitter Queens to defend the Monarch, St John Steevas and that hump-backed monster historian who has the history show on TV and The Moral Maze. It all makes me feel sick. Yet, do I subscribe to The Establishment, The Corporation or The People?

When Diana was killed in the car accident and the flowers started piling up outside Kensington Palace Princess Alexandra sneered at them wondering if the poor had better things to do with their money than spend it on the memory of Diana.

Like The Corporation The Monarchy will go to any lengths to protect its power. So, The Princess is killed in a tragic accident. Within hours The Establishment seeks to disable our memory of her and refocus us on the good works and youth of The Two Young Princes Harry and William. It takes time but finally we embrace them once again. We do so eagerly, as we are told to do. But as hard as I want to forget I will never forget that morning when I woke up and, like so many people, believed that I lived in a country that had assassinated it’s ‘people’s princess’ regardless of whether it was true or not.

5:35 PM

Last Days

Book Café, Surrey Hills, Sydney

It is raining today. Hard. The streets are flooded. Rain drops loudly on the tin roofs. Nobody complains about the weather because of the drought. This morning, like every morning for the past week, I have ordered poached eggs and bacon.

I spent the early part of the morning at the dentist having a crown replaced that fell off in the 101 Cafe in LA 6 weeks ago. I did not feel the needle go in. My nose is still numb from the anesthetic and I am concerned that stuff is hanging out of it because that’s how it feels. I have to go back tomorrow to have the last of the mercury fillings removed and replaced with white porcelain. Finally getting rid of all those ugly, unnecessary fillings British National Health Service dentists made us suffer just for an extra tenner a pop. That’s what they were being paid by the government to fill our teeth. Taking perfectly fine teeth drilling them and filling them with mercury. I have been traumatized by British dentists just like so many 40 something men and women. Consequently, my poor gentle Australian dentist has to deal with me in his office sweating and squirming and swearing at him.

As the end of my Australian trip approaches I must tell you all that I have had a lovely, relaxing time. I left my hotel on Oxford Street and stayed with my friend Zoë Wane. Together we have traversed the city from one huge house to another. When we weren’t enjoying the many mansions of her rich friends we sat in the Cricketers Arms that Zoë’s brother runs where we sat with Vito who looks like Bart Simpson all grown up (see pics) and Jack who looks like Castro and her twin friends Teddy and Larry. Last week, Anita, Teddy’s girlfriend cooked a Malay feast at her home which was so delicious I thought that nothing I would ever eat again would ever compare to what she served at her table that night. Zoë and I ate at Fratelli in Potts Point with Zoë’s friend Ben Brady and endless coffee shops in all the Eastern Suburbs with various combinations of the above.

Last night Ben’s girlfriend Jasmine and her mother prepared Persian food and we sat and ate on their balcony discussing Lebanon and Iran and watching forked lightning dance over the sea.

I had dinner with my friend Vassilli Kalliman who took me to his brand new gallery and introduced me to the wonderful work of Sally Smart and David Griggs. We ate at Bird Cow Fish on Crown St., which was very satisfying. I saw Sophie Mears and Anthony Sissian and swam with them at Bondi they told me that they had been living three blocks from me in LA. I walked around Coogee bay with Kate Fisher and we sat fully clothed on the rocks being sprayed by huge waves. I ate pasta on the lawn of the Darling’s beautiful home in Bellvue Hill with their son Daniel and his gorgeous South African girlfriend.

My dear old friend Charles Wilson, the furniture designer, and I ate dinner at his house and whilst trying to assemble his very chic candelabra I spilt a huge mug of coffee over my white trousers. Ken Neal took me to one of many dinners I had at Fish Face on the Darlinghurst Road. I ate the sashimi on every occasion, had everything on the menu once and the fish curry twice.

I saw Jess Cook who prepared a lunch time avocado salad for me to eat in her loft. I saw Rose who took me to a one nighter at the Flinders Arms called Health Club. I tanned on various beaches and had occasional tangled phone calls with people in other countries. Saw Dreamgirls and hated it. Saw Babel and respected it. Saw Marie Antoinette and loathed it but remembered what it was like to shoot AKA in Versailles. I finished the first draft of my new Untitled LA Project and I wrote a gratitude list every day and sent it to my AA sponsor.

I slept alone and often wondered about someone I had left behind in NYC-you know who you are. I thought about Sharon and developed a nasty resentment against Samia who has not returned my e-mails despite the fact that at this time last year she was so obsessed with me that she flew uninvited to LA and behaved toward me like Glen Close in that bunny boiling film. As usual I got all the blame.

Unsatisfyingly bumped into Oscar H at Fiveways who was all snipes and false promises and Peter S at The Bayswater Brasserie who was frankly annoying although I enjoyed seeing his brother Charles and his charming uncle.

I will miss the friendship, the food, the beauty, the vista and most of all I will miss who I become when I am here. The man I allow myself to be. Calm, kind and full of hope. I will try to carry all of this good me back to LA and The Oscars and to Baja Mexico where I started blogging last year and where this year I am meeting Phil H to watch the whales migrate at the beginning of February. Thousands of them.

3:47 AM

January 10, 2007

Rap

Zoe Wane Sydney

The Book Kitchen, Surrey Hills, Poached eggs.

I have found a new walk to walk every morning. Bronte to Bondi along the coastal path. Up at 6.30 I wake poor Zoë and drag her out of bed, drive to Bronte and we walk. God damn, such beauty we pass in nature and human form. “You missed that one.” Zoë said this morning as some perfect being sprinted past us and out of sight. And such is the nature of my addictive personality I want to run back and catch a glimpse of what ever I had missed. We mostly both walk quietly, however, lost in our own thoughts. Gazing out to sea. It always looks so inviting even though there were warnings of bad currents at Bronte. The air is wet and piquant with sea spray that dries the moment it touches our faces. I love my morning walk, all my thoughts are collected there. I don’t have the same sort of meditative experience that I have on Runyon Canyon but quite frankly I am never so full of loathing and resentment here as I am in LA. Here I am calm and fearless. Perhaps my renewed vigor in AA has caused me to be less furious. Perhaps I just feel safer and why shouldn’t I? Anyhow, what ever it is, I am losing weight, being calm, tanned and start the day with a new kind of optimism. I passed three dogs on the path. This is not a dog culture. No tiny house bound, constipated dog children to negotiate, no screamers, no dust.

What will be will be.

We were going to Bronte yesterday to swim with Teddy and Anita but ended up at Nelson’s Park which is a harbor beach packed with Greek families swimming within the confines of the shark net. We swam beyond the net risking being eaten by great whites. Met Eugenie who used to go out with Oscar and had a brief flirtation with one of the Grimaldi boys and a bunch of Zoë’s very thin chums who were being perved over by men who sat like vultures at the periphery of the group. The girls are so thin most of them look like boys. No wonder thin women feel they need breast augmentation. I swam with Teddy and James in the warm water then we went for a precarious rock climb along the shore. I am not a sprightly as I once was and lagged behind these 22-year-old boys who scampered over the rocks like lizards. On the way back we discussed how a lobster sheds its shell. They did not believe that a lobster could shed its entire shell and sit soft and vulnerable on the ocean bed whilst it waited for its new exoskeleton to harden up. This odd knowledge comes from me hanging around the kitchen at Wheelers listening to Delia, who, by the way I miss terribly. When we all got home and verified the disputed lobster information on the Internet I won a $5 wager.

On the way to the beach a small, old woman was trapped in the drive of her huge Vaucluse home by a selfish person who had parked in front of her gate. We commiserated with her and wondered who could have possibly done such a thing. I told her it was probably the muslims which she agreed with without a seconds thought. It would seem that Muslims and global warming account for all most every bad thing that happens nowadays.

Anita cooked dinner for us all at her Mother’s house and then we drove to Hyde Park barracks to listen to Hip Hop, which was all part of the Sydney Festival. Ugly Duckling were the headliners and of course we found ourselves back stage with the politest most unthreatening rappers you ever did meet. I entertained them with my meeting Jay Zee in New York and The Game in LA stories which dumb found people who know about rap. Anyway, Zoë knew the guys who were on before Ugly Ducking who are the sweetest, blue-eyed, public school boys who rap about how nasty stale muesli is and his mum asking him to tidy his room. Very sweet. The white, middle class audience bobbed around half-heartedly. White rap is not as authoritative as black rap. You simply don’t feel that thump in the chest that you do when you hear black rapper men shouting at you. We went to the gaslight after the concert and bid farewell to James who flew to London this morning. I did not envy him flying back to London. Not one bit.

5:22 PM

January 7, 2007 – Sunday

Oscar Humphries

FRUIT BATS

It is cloudy again today but deliciously warm and humid.

Most of my days here in Sydney are spent doing what I came here to do: write. I write in the mornings. I get up at 6am. I spend a good hour messing around on the internet. Read mail, the news: BBC, Huffington Post, look at messages left for me on various web sites. I write my required AA lists then my private diary. I leave the room to write my film (75 pages so far) and this occasional blog at a deli on Victoria Street where I am in love with the boy who serves coffee (flat white). As we all know it is impossible to buy a bad coffee in Sydney. I get back to the hotel room and check the Dorian Gray web site stats. We are getting a huge volume of hits from France where David Gallagher is a TV star. I mean over 2000 hits a day, which is phenomenal for an unpublicized site.

On occasions I don’t write at all and just explore the streets of Sydney either on my own or with my friend Ben. On Sunday morning Ben, Jake (the artist) and I found a cafe in Erskinville and ate chicken salad, drank delicious coffee and I poured Demerara sugar straight from the bowl on the table into the palm of my hand and ate it like a child. We sat there for hours discussing Australian art whilst tropical rain fell torrentially onto the streets. A uniformed policeman and his female mate came into the cafe to escape the rain, he was so beautiful I asked him if he was a stripper.

I walk despite my poor burned hip which is horribly painful. I have bought books and food but little else. I am training myself to follow a pre-planned path and not get way laid by beauty. I have only seen one must have item: a modernist carved marble lamp in my friend Ken’s shop in Darlinghurst.

Cooked dinner last night at Zoë’s house. Huge frizze salad with boiled egg, lardons, walnuts and chopped freshly cooked asparagus. We bought some delicious salami and mozzarella and Turkish bread, which we all tore apart and devoured the moment we sat down. Baklava for pudding with guava juice. Ben, Zoë, Rose, Teddy, Larry, Jack, Jack’s girlfriend and another girl all no more than 22 years old. Very Sydney, so much fun.

Zoë is renting a beautiful basement in Surrey Hills and has invited me to move in tomorrow so I rented a car and am suddenly FREE! Whenever I get here I am trapped by old habits. I never really move from Sydney yet there I was washing my smalls in the hotel laundry waiting for the dryer to dry and I started looking at a map of Australia. I knew immediately that if I did not take advantage of this opportunity I never would. I am going to drive into the desert, the red heart of Australia. I have only ever explored New South Wales and parts of Victoria. I have been to Nyngen, Forbes (Charles Wilson’s beautiful country house), Melbourne, Tilba and Condoblin where I travelled with Georgina and Oscar Humphries who wrote very offensively about the Australian country tradition of the Batchelor and Spinsters ball. I took millions of pictures that ended up in a sunday magazine and an exhibition of Australian reportage.

Back in tedious LA things have been going a pace. Before I left Hollywood I realized that I had been the victim of a terrible fraud and so had to deal with it. The worst thing about knowing that things are ‘not right’ when you are naturally paranoid is sorting the fact from the fear based fiction. I had to write a difficult letter. The truth, and nothing but the truth. It took a week to write the bloody thing. That said, when it was done I felt a whole heap better. Lawyers in these circumstances are not your best friends. When I fought my ‘divorce’ in court I did it on my own and as honestly as any one can in the circumstances. The courtroom and the truth are not, one quickly realizes, synonymous. Even after I had written the letter my index finger hovered dangerously over the return key for a good few days. I just kept praying for guidance and asking God and my few trusted friends what they thought of what I was doing.

I hate having to fight fairly yet when I fight unfairly I end up loathing myself. In a world which seems rigged against most of us most of the time this primitive side of my nature becomes essential. The courage to change the things I can, it’s tough to be courageous. It’s hard to turn up in a city with nothing and make a film from scratch. It’s tough to do things in an unusual and challenging way. For all of producer Brad W’s defects of character he taught me to pick my battles wisely.

I pressed the button and off it went for only God to determine the outcome.

I have been thinking a great deal about Tracy Emin-what a great artist she has become. I saw a photograph of a sculpture that reminded me of the roller coaster at Dreamland in Margate and of course that is exactly what it was. A scaled down naive sculpture of the roller coaster at Dreamland. It was so wonderfully evocative. Tracy and I both come from Kent, villages that are not so far away from one another and we are about the same age. She was the girlfriend of Billy Childish who I was at art school with and very close friends with. It was because of Billy, I suppose, that I was suspicious of the authenticity of her work but let’s face it: if she was ever influenced by Billy Childish as he loudly claims she has well and truly flown his coop. When she makes work away from the mirror she excels. Building the Whitstable beach hut in the Saatchi gallery for instance was a stroke of genius. I loved her helter skelter tatlin tower at White Cube and now I love her roller coaster. I remember the experience of Dreamland so well. The coconut matting to slide down the helter skelter. The clockwork ticking of the roller coaster, the abrupt ending and the fearful screams. I loved it, as did she. Tracy has evolved into a bone fide arts star. One of the best of British.

I cannot tell you how much I love being sober, how much I love my sobriety and how I am loving writing the most thorough and grueling step one. Sometimes I feel so ‘here’ that it’s as if all my skin has been removed and I experience the world as a raw unborn thing.

Every night I watch the bats in the sky, huge fruit bats flying haphazardly in the twilight. Streams of them, black flapping chattering to each other all the way home.

7:56 PM

January 6, 2007 – Saturday

Sydney. lay on Bondi beach yesterday with Charles, Anthony and Sophie. Had dinner at Lotus with Cameron and Zoe. Decided to go to bed early. Burned my hip in the sun. I am happy. Not really worrying. Drifting aimlessly when I am not writing or walking or going to AA meetings. I am bored with my hotel so am going to move. I may hire a car tomorrow and drive down the coast. I will. I think that I will.

The script is coming along very nicely. It is better than I expected. Works well.

Decided definitively that I am going back to London to live as soon as I can.

When I walk the streets I am inspired, alive, able.

4:46 PM

December 28, 2006 – Thursday

Sydney

Sydney New South Wales Australia

I am back in the southern hemisphere, arriving on the chilliest day of the summer. It was a relief, however, not to step into sub tropical Sydney. A delicious wind cooled the usually sweltering mid summer city. I left my lap top in the taxi but it was returned to me. At night I noticed how hot the stone buildings were, that my skin was already mildly burned. I managed to deal with the jet lag in two days. This morning I woke at a very respectable 7am.

Since I arrived in Sydney I have eaten three times at the new Tropicana (chicken salad) now finally at home back in its original place on Victoria Street. I have eaten flourless orange cake at the new Dov also on Victoria Street and tasted their delicious, home-made, sticky nougat loaded with candied cherries and almonds. I saw Ursula and Kate who now part own Dov with Matt Onions. I walked the streets to see what else has changed. I walked so hard that my calves hurt. I joined the gym, and worked my chest and shoulders. I found NA meetings and AA meetings and caught a cab to Bondi Junction and met Ben and drank more juice at The Tropicana.

I visited the dentist and had my teeth cleaned. I made further appointments to have a small filling in a tooth on my upper jaw and replace a broken veneer.

I listened to the varied bird song and realized what I missed so much in LA but for all my bitching and complaining how LA had reconnected me with AA, a connection I hadn’t felt for years and years. I bought a phone and got myself a new phone number. I smelt the sweet lush blooms on the trees on the street and listened to the mewing of the birds that sound like crying babies. I looked out for familiar faces and found them. I looked at the bald black-headed egrets in Hyde Park; I gazed at the huge bronze sculpture of Queen Victoria. I was just too damned excited. I have not seen the huge fruit bats migrating from Centennial Park but I am sure that I will.

I walked to Kings Cross, Potts Point, Elizabeth Bay and Woolloomooloo. I began walking up Oxford Street to Paddington but decided to do that some other time. I realized that the lower gay part of Oxford Street was now filthy dirty and far too many toothless drug addicts asked for spare change. For every fit, beautiful Sydney boy/girl there was a scrawny homeless addict to remind one where one might have ended up or might yet.

Surprisingly Sydney does not feel as optimistic as it once did. It feels like an anxious place to be compared with the ebullience I felt here a few years ago. Apparently, according to friends, China is making some parts of Australia fabulously rich but not here. Buying minerals, feeding the great 21st Century Chinese expansion.

I have no expectations for New Years Eve. What ever happens, happens. May go to bed, may watch the fireworks.

I have written 21 pages of my new script and I am falling over myself to complete it. It flows out of me like a torrent. It always happens like this here in Sydney Australia, in the Southern Hemisphere. I find my voice. It was here at this table that I wrote Dorian, it is here that I am writing Untitled LA Project and already a new world exists on the page. What could be more exciting than that?

1:23 AM

December 19, 2006 – Tuesday

Deal or no Deal

I am still in bed with what has developed into a hideous chesty cough. I should never have gone to my AA meeting last night or had dinner at Ago even though I love risotto and had truffle shaved all over it.

As I lay in my large bed my mind drifted from this illness to the first time I remember being in hospital when I got my scull crushed in a car accident when I was 5 years old. The next time I ended up in hospital was when I was 13 years old for being a nuisance at school. I thought that I might spend some time this morning writing about that. I remember playing canasta with Edna, hiding the drugs they gave me in my ear so that I did not have to take them, St Augustins, Pandora with the flakey teeth and the morgue. I thought that I might write about my being hospitalized when I was 25 in Sutton at the Hendserson Hospital and describe Sarah who killed herself and the blood in her room and knitting during group therapy but I have decided that I am going to write about that some other time.

Instead, I am going to write about people who read this blog and try to use it against me. Who contact friends and organizations with disinformation, who try to derail my film and me. For it came to pass this morning that I was sent a whole heap of e-mails from people I had worked with who are dissatisfied with me, who are working tirelessly against me and my film.

The more damage these people cause, the less likely I am inclined to get the film out of the box and try to raise money to finish it. The less likely I am able to attract an investor. As you may know, if you have been diligently reading this blog, I am about to start making a movie in the UK. Some of you naughty minx seem to be under the misapprehension from you’re e-mails that you can do damage to me. If I lived in the scum you call you’re lives then no doubt you could indeed hurt me badly. But I do not.

Nothing you can do to me will ever stop me being creative or living a wonderful life. Nothing you can do to me can take away my sobriety, which is more important to me than any fucking film or any one of you.

I have passed these e-mails to my lawyer and any further attempts to scupper our film will be met with fierce counter measures. You are not the only ones who can make life very difficult. I urge you to consider this: You do not hurt me when you do these things you merely hurt the people who genuinely want to benefit from making art. the DP, the actors etc. By reducing the value of the film you merely stop yourselves from getting the money you are rightly owed under the agreement of your deferment deal. You do not and cannot hurt me. You merely hurt yourselves and the others that are owed money.

I urge you to work with me to deal with this problem as best we can.

11:09 PM

December 17, 2006 – Sunday

Dreams

Last night I dreamt that it snowed in Los Angeles. The snow glinting in the sun, melting fast, too fast to fetch my camera. The snow held on longer in the valleys in the deep shadow. It was an exciting dream.

I have been very ill in bed with my cold. I am too ill to leave the apartment, too ill to call anyone. Dom came over yesterday but I no longer trust him and eyed him suspiciously over the matzoh ball soup he very kindly delivered me. He is so crazed with love for Joe it is embarrassing and frankly, tragic. Joe is just as bad using poor Dom to fill his time before he does the decent thing and goes back home to England to do something sensible. Dom genuinely believes that he can be Joe’s boy friend.

By yesterday, full of phlegm, I had had just about enough of being here. I craved my little cottage and the brown Whitstable sea. I craved The Tudor Tea Rooms, Wheelers and The Whistle Stop. I craved Mother’s pride and Marmite. I craved poached eggs. I craved anything that wasn’t me here and now. It was apparent that nothing I could do was going to change any component part of what I am suffering.

Joe the mountain scientologist visited me and showed me his new bicycle helmet. Merritt swung by and set up the printer that had been sitting in it’s box since it was bought weeks ago. Devon brought more soup as did Aleksa’s mother Sabrina who made a wonderful, soothing concoction of limes, cayenne pepper and hot water.

Being ill here reminds me of this time last year when I ended up in Cedars (hospital) with that terrible leaking spine. The devastating head ache, unable to speak, to stand up. Then being saved by and staying with David and Hunter. Meeting Hilary. The way the doctor fixed it with that blood patch. I refused the anesthetic. Laying there begging that the pain be taken from me. I thought that I was going mad. I thought that I was having a nervous break down and all along spinal fluid was draining out of me. Just like George Clooney.

Phil left text messages. Cheered me up. She will never make it here-maybe in February for Mexico and the whales.

It was cold when I woke this morning; there was a bite in the air. I cannot stay in bed all day. I can’t do it. I have to do SOMETHING productive. Make lists. Write.

Apparently, if you threw a cat onto a 15th century funeral pyre the cat represented the devil. When I was a child I had a recurring nightmare that I had thrown a kitten into a fire.

9:07 AM

December 15, 2006 – Friday

December LA. I have just returned from NYC. Whilst I was there Will Self walked (for the press) from Kennedy Airport to his Downtown hotel. He is here in the USA to promote his new book. It will be just as bad as all of the recent others. I can just imagine him striding pompously along the LIE puffing on his pipe baffling the accompanying journalist from the NY Times with a whole lot of long words. He is truly the Gerard Manly-Hopkins of our age.

It is not perhaps the time to admit this but whenever he used to visit me in Whitstable I was always terrified that he would break something. He would change a shitty baby on a white bed or open oysters directly on wood causing great scratches in the wooden kitchen counters. One night I had Janet Street-Porter, Will Self, Deborah Orr and Jay Jopling around that tiny zinc dining table in my Whitstable kitchen. They are all HUGE people in stature and ego. Deborah used to be huge laterally which caused everybody I know to think that she was extraordinarily fecund. You just have to imagine Will Self and you start using words like fecund. Will is a sweet man but he uses his celebrity to ensnare then his verbosity to crush too many willing victims. What ever may or may not happen to Will and I, I am glad that we have been friends.

Time is the greatest distance between two people.

From a distance one quickly sees the people one has known for who they are and forgive them their defects of character. Janet is a cold fish, a snob to boot but her eccentricity is what makes me proud to be British. At dinner Deborah asked Janet why she had never had children. It was a question only Deborah could have ever asked Janet. Janet told us that one of her husbands had had a child who died. She said that she never wanted to suffer the pain she saw him endure. It was really very touching.

Deborah Orr. I never really trusted her or her incessant moaning. She is undoubtedly a genius, more so than her husband. Her intellect is a thing of great beauty. I would much prefer to hear her spout than her moribund husband. She endlessly reminds anyone who will listen that she comes from Govan, a very rough part of Glasgow. When Deborah and I met Lulu at Jay’s house one night I made Deborah tell Lulu where she came from and Lulu made a grand whooping noise and brushed her fingers against her nose to indicate how POSH it was. Lulu grew up in the Gorbals, which used to be a total shit hole.

Anyway, enough of the aptly named Self’s.

I walked the Canyon at 7am this morning. It was so pretty but my heart was heavy. I cannot imagine living here after I get back from Australia. I will do a few months of Dorian then it is time to get on and go back to Whitstable. I expect to be there by June. I listened to the same sort of conversations on my way up that I heard when I left, two frumpy women in badly fitting sweats complaining about some one who had wronged them. On the way down two executives were discussing powerful studio men. They were in awe.

I have done my stint, paid my dues to LA. I have stayed sober in LA. LA has been an interesting home for me but as I have said before it is like living in Whitstable, yet there in no allure. LA is a small town with small people. Self important, heartless and occasionally very, very cruel. The squabbles are no different or important from those I might hear in The Duke of Cumberland. The fights I witness in Hollywood are as vicious as any I have seen outside the kebab shop on Whitstable High Street.

Thankfully my shrewd investments may make this year my most profitable yet my ‘profit’ of course would scarcely pay for the mixers at one of Jay’s parties!

I am on the edge of something here in LA. On the edge of a continent or on the edge of my own life? I cannot continue this journey without a serious moment of reflection yet wherever I settle I am at the mercy of my own madness. My life has been all about shopping and fucking yet with none of the irony that this may suggest.

Somebody once asked me if I had ever been proud of anything in my life. I can honestly say that I am proud of every achievement I have ever made. Every play, film, dinner, room, article, sobriety, garden, blog. I am proud of all these things because I have had to do such terrible battle with myself to get anything done. The worst part of ME has always been my most terrible adversary. There is no one else to blame. I used to blame my stepfather but whatever seeds he sowed I have propagated. Every day I wonder who will get the best part of my day, that Duncan Roy or this Duncan Roy.

Finally, whilst in NY I contacted very old friends. A Whitstable friend and someone I had not spoken to for seven years. It was such a relief to call him. I was walking in what used to be the shadow of the twin towers. I suddenly remembered his telephone number and like a spell, a long forgotten spell I dialed the number and listened to his voice. It was wonderful.

Today I counted 27 dogs on Runyon Canyon.

9:20 AM