Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Bwana Dick

On Sunday mornings I always have the house to myself which is when I try to do new writing. Overhauling and re-writing I can do anywhere, anytime. This morning is important to me, because it’s getting way too late for me to write a blog entry and things keep coming up, like say, my colonoscopy on Friday and now it’s getting to be game time and I haven’t suited up yet. In my case, living with a writer means not living with a writer since I do my stuff when I’m more or less alone. My family doesn't want anything to do with it, and that's probably for the best.

First - there must be good coffee, yes, no matter what else, even before inspiration you must have good coffee and what Hemingway called “A Clean Well Lighted Place.” I’ve been anticipating this morning so I made some small preparation for it the day before. A couple days ago I found a used milk steamer at the Salvation Army for two bucks and it chuffs out steam like an old locomotive. And then there’s the creaky old Krupps espresso maker I bought in Panama fifteen years ago when I got my first ever paycheck. I set out my yellow pad and a pencil on the table. There’s a message on the answering machine. I hit the play button. I want all distractions out of the way before I seduce the Muse.

“Awhl – LO mate. Naw, it’s Mick ‘ere. Naw listen, you lit'el swine. Keith sez you ‘aven’t returned ‘is calls. You tryin’ a' make us beg, luv? Cos we won’t you know. But look ‘ere, we’re ‘avin’ a party nex’ week. Its on St Moritz, 'idn't it. Kin you come? There’s these Brazilian’ girls, they’re just dy-y-y-y-in’ to meet you. I can't hold 'em off now, can I? No. So don’ le' us down. Now tell yo’ peepul to ca’ muh peepul, an’ just get on wih-it. Ta.”

Beep – “End of Message.”

These guys have been bugging me for a week. Mick wants to be my guest blogger, and he just won’t leave me alone. I promised Macca I’d give him a chance first, but since Jacko kicked the bucket McCartney’s gotten tied up in litigation trying to get the Beatles' catalog back. Mick and Keith got to wait their turn until I hear back from Paulie first. I try to get along with everybody but it’s a rough world out there.

Now espresso, the making of espresso coffee is an art and a craft. You must use whole beans. Not ground. Coffee goes stale as soon as its ground, and espresso in particular because of the high acid. You must use the Italian or Latin roasts over the French roasts when you can, and you must choose the beans that show oil present on the bean surface to expect the proper crema in the finished cup. First – we preheat the holder. I start by boiling some water in the microwave, there it is, and now the coffee holder and the one shot filter are immersed in the hot water to heat them while the old Krupp fires up.

I plug in the steamer and wait for the red watch light to go out on the side, there it goes, which tells you it’s ready. Now the beans go in the grinder hopper, a burr grinder mind you, not a low-rent blade grinder which grinds unevenly and can’t give you the genuine espresso grind. I give it a buzz with a number 3 setting. Below that it’s too fine, like Greek coffee, above it too course and then there’s no crema.

Brazilian girls?

Good, now I load the espresso into the holder, tamp it down tight with a twist. The twist tamper packs the grains and squeezes the air out. That will force the crema through the filter. Ronnie my huge old orange Tabby comes into the room and bites my leg to get some attention. I take out a little can of something called “Savory Salmon Feast” which looks like it might be interesting on a cracker with some brie. I load his dish. Now the coffee. Now the moment.

The doorbell rings.

Damn I’m losing time. I don’t even know what I’m going to write about. The human race is waiting breathlessly for what I will reveal.

I answer the door and there's that busty lemon tart who’s been lurking around the mailbox with binoculars for days. She’s wearing tight clingy suit slacks with a distinct butch tone around the cuffs and a low cut Vittorio Macchiato cashmere with a plunging neckline and a small turquoise pendant, calculated to draw attention to the fact that she’s definitely not wearing a bra. Either that or she’s trying to sneak a pair of bowling balls in under her clothes.

“Yes? Can I help you?”

She looks a little wounded but quickly recovers. “Don’t you remember, darling? Our interview?”

“Interview. . . interview. . .”

"You are C.Sanchez-Garcia. Don’t try to deny it. I’ve had you traced. I know exactly who you are. You are C. Sanchez-Garcia the greatest American erotica writer of the Twenty First century. How many Nobel prizes for literature have you won? Or do you even pay attention anymore?"

“I know you. You’re from Vogue.”

“Britney Von Klockhammer.” She holds up her arms for an embrace and an air kiss. Its all so tedious, these people. When that doesn't get a rise, she leans on the doorway, looking petulant. I hold my ground and wait her out. She runs a forefinger up my T-shirt and glances down to see if it's having the desired effect. “From Vogue.”

“Come in, I guess.”

“Thank you.”

Hey - there's a camera crew behind her. That cramps my style with the ladies. “You don’t need those guys.”

“They’re union.”

“I’ll do your interview,” I say, running a forefinger up her cashmere and glancing at her nipple nubs to see if it makes the desired effect; it does. “But we must be alone together.”

“Oh, well then. As you wish.” She smiles wolfishly showing her back molars.

I close the door after her. She tackles me like a hawk nailing a bunny and wrestles me down to the carpet. In one tug she has the cashmere down and buries my face in the hot Himalayan valley of her bared chest. "Now! Here! Beast!" she yells in my ear. "You're mine - humptastic literary boner pony!! Ride me! Roman stud! Make me your love slave! Thrill me! Own me! Sit on my face! Make of me the secret love-whore of your next novel!”

Until she sees what her knee is resting in. “Ewww!”

It's an orange pool of undigested Science Diet and blades of grass from the back yard. Ronnie's doing.

“Yeah, that's just my cat Ronnie, that’s how he gets rid of hairballs. But let’s get back to that boner pony thing.”

“Real writers don’t have cats ralphing on their carpet.” She gets slowly to her feet with the dignity of an iceberg. I pass her a paper towel to wipe her pants off. "You won't see cats unloading hairballs on Updike's carpet. Charlatan!” She slugs me and tucks her breasts back in. "Real male authors don't even own cats - unless they're stuffed!"

“Well, that’s all right.” I say, “Listen, I need to get this blog thing out. Coffee?”

“ I suggest you clean up after your cat.” She slams the door on the word "cat".

Alone at last me, Ronnie and the blank yellow pad which has begun to lurk.

But back to the espresso, the secret stuff of life. The coffee pot is hot. The ready light is out. The interviewer is gone. All that's lacking is the inspiration. The revelation. The brilliance. The Muse. The Boner Pony. The Work as we true writers, we grimly serious writers differentially refer to it among ourselves. The Work. We serious writers are modest with the uninitiated, but amongst our sensitive kind we all know about - The Work. The Work is waiting. Yes. The Grimly Serious Work. Waiting. Okay. This is it. Here we go. Gonna work now. Gonna work on The Work now. Serious. Like any second now gonna work. So let's do it, okay. Okey-dokey. Working. This is it now for sure. I'm gonna do it now, see. Any second gonna do The Work.

But just one more thing.

I put a demitasse under the spout and turn the heavy black knob. At first nothing happens. Then a single black drip. Then a gloopy explosion that sends a jolt of lightning down the wall outlet. There's an explosion in the garage where the breaker panel is and a smell of roasting plastic. The wiring in the wall has caught fire.

“Come on Ronnie, got to go.”

We run outside and just after a half an hour the fire trucks pull up. Ronnie and I take a seat on the bumper of the pumper truck and watch them soak the last smoldering ashes of the walls as they fall in. St Moritz with Mick and Keith and those wild Brazilian Girls Who Are Dying To Meet Me is starting to look pretty good.

Next to me one of the firemen sips coffee from a Styrofoam cup. “Got any more of that?"

“Sure, kid.” He points a thumb at a big Coleman thermos next to a hose rack. I pour a cup and pick up a clipboard next to it. The Work. The Serious Writer can work anytime any where he finds himself. The True and Serious writer will not be stifled by circumstance. I begin to write my blog.

"What's that?" says the fireman, looking over my shoulder, probably on the alert for lawsuits.

"I'm a very famous writer." I said. "I'm blogging for my legions of nubile female fans."

"Anybody I heard of?"

"C. Sanchez-Garcia, my good man."

"Kinda stupid name is that?"

"Guess you don't read much."

“Now, if you was Nora Roberts. There's a writer."

"Roberts. She's so twentieth century."

"Holy shit!” yells the fireman.

“Now,” I say, “You take a look at your early Bukowski –“

"Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane!”

“Yeah, well. We live pretty near the airport.”

“It’s a flying saucer! It’s a whole shit load of flying saucers!”

I look up where he's pointing. The common man is always so freaked out by the small stuff. The sky is filling with alien spaceships. One lands on top of the smoking embers of my home. Sitting next to me, Ronnie watches for a moment and loses interest. He licks his chest. He's been around. He's seen worse.

The flying saucer opens and a thin green man in a silver suit emerges, stalking towards me on matchstick legs. “We saw your fiery beacon from space earth man!”

“Well, it wasn’t really meant to be a beacon.” I say..

“You are C. Sanchez-Garcia, the world’s most virile erotica writer, fantasy object to women.” It was not a question.

“You got me, buddy.” I say, sipping my coffee. “What’s the deal? Book contract?”

“You must come with us.”

“You want to be a guest blogger? Take a number, bub.”

“Our planet is dying. We are abducting a few select superior males and a vastly large group of young women of prime breeding age to be part of our emergency program to re-populate our dying world.”

“No shit?”

He hands me a pair of photographs. I whistle, I can't help it.

“Wow! Her?? Are you kidding with that shit?"

“She is the leader of our breeding program. She asked for you by name. She refers to you by her pet name for your unusual genetic endowment - 'Bwana Dick'.”

“Jesus, I can't believe it's her. But I can see it, you know, it makes sense. She has that Spock thing going on when she wears a pant suit, Holy moly, if Rush Limbaugh gets a hold of this." I hand back the pictures. "When do I start?”

“The Swedish Bikini Team awaits you even now.”

“It’s tempting.” I look at the flying saucer perched in the smoldering ashes across the street. I look at my coffee. I look at my cat. “What do you think, Ronnie? You got anything better to do?”

He sniffs my hand. He meows.


  1. What a load of crap...sorry join the creative world.

  2. Already there, baby.

    Thanks for reading my stuff.


  3. Jeez, Garce,

    You must be online now. I was just about to delete that bozo's comment. But hell, you answered him the right way.


  4. Now a real comment -- this is a work of comic brilliance. "You're mine - humptastic literary boner pony!"

    You really *are* a genius.

    Not to mention obsessive about your espresso!

    Still laughing,

  5. Hi Lisabet!

    I learn a lot about myself from comments like Anonymous. What I have discovered is that I have almost arrived at that place I have been seeking. The land of "I Don't Give a Shit". My audience for the time being is limited to myself and my friends here. This forces me to examine my motives, since there's none of the fantasy in the story of Bwana Dick existing in the real world. Wealth, fame and beautiful lovers etc. So why do it? I just like doing it. It gives the act of writing a great purity of spirit I would lose if I were more successful. I don;t have readers yet, so if a piece pleases me, if it was fun or emotionally exciting to create, its enough. Anything after that is extra.

    Never the less - you keep me going. One sincere reader like you makes a huge difference. Thank you again for sticking with me. Always grateful to you. Always.


  6. well, dear, you made MY day. Hilarious post!
    And funny as it was, I found it surprisingly encouraging as I face my own creative endeavors today.
    Thank you and keep writing!

  7. Garce,

    Excellent post and a brilliant take on this week's topic.

    I just hope you'll back from satisfying the Swedish Bikini Team in time for next week's blog.



  8. I understand exactly where you are coming from. I have many of the same problems, only from the other side! You showed quite clearly what we creative types have to put up with in order to create. Thank you. Thank you!

  9. That was a fast-moving, channel-surfing event.

  10. First, I want that coffee recipe (it burned down the house? Must be good!). Second, from here on out I will always think of you as either Mr. Boner Pony or Bwana Dick. You have forever seared those names into my cerebral cortex, and now you're stuck with them!

    Bwahahahahaha! I loved every sentence of it, Garce! You are the ultimate creative funny man ;)

  11. Hi Jicky!

    Good to see you back. Always glad to encourage a fellow wanna-be.


  12. Hi Ashley!

    Well, those girls are wearing me out. I may end up grabbing it at the last minute again.


  13. Hi Karin!

    You're being pawed by studly interviewers from Vogue and debating whether to party with the Stones on St Moritz or let yourself be abducted by aliens for a lavish breeding program?

    Wow. Strangely I find myself unable to feel sorry about your situation. If only we all had those choices . . . That and the money too.


  14. Hi Helen!

    I like those phrases too. Wouldn't they make great computer passwords?


  15. Garce, creative hilarity, thanks for the longest chuckle and enlivening hump day.
    Keep it up Bwana Dick, you're doing great.

  16. Garce,

    Those phrases certainly seem like passwords to the secret vault of creativity in your brain! If I use them, do I get to pilfer through your ideas?

  17. Hi Paul!

    Thanks for checking back in and reading my stuff!


  18. Hi Helen!

    You have all my blessing.