My Robot Is Pregnant theme song!

tough guy poetry and manly stories of loneliness
all contents copyright Jon Rolston 2004, 2005, 2006

November 29, 2008

santa claus is coming to town

Corey’s house – the new haircut will make it easier to calm the parents down

My dad’s coming to visit next week. He and my Mom read the blog and they are worried about me. It’s like the Jim Jones Massacre anniversary that’s been in the news recently – Jimmy got his start here in SF thirty years ago before he split to Guyana. Anyway, my Pops, like a senator, is on a fact finding mission. It’s nice to have folks who care, so I appreciate the trouble he’s taking to make the trip West.

I know part of the thing is, they are Christians and I’m not. They worry about my soul, of all things. Not that they mention it much any more, but Mom let’s me know she’s praying for me. And I tell her I’m drinking for her.

Now I think I have the gout. My toes were killing me in New Orleans, and my diet consists of meat and alcohol – the very thing Wikipedia stools out as the culprit. Soon as I got back from The Big Easy I took a breather. Laid off the sauce and after a few days my feet were feeling better.

Maybe it’s a coincidence, maybe I don’t have health insurance. I definitely don’t have health insurance. SF has a few free clinics, so I’ll head to one this week and I guess they can test levels of uric acid in your blood. That’s what gout is. Uric acid crystallizes and builds in the joints of your toes. Painful stuff. I’m a hypochondriac (self diagnosed) so let’s hope it’s nothing as bad as that.

That being said, maybe I do need someone to check in on me. A warden or something. A den mother. I don’t know. A flight attendant even. Someone who can tell me to shut up and sit down. After two weeks of the dry spell up here on the wagon I’m starting to wonder if I might just find the Lord. I thought I did one other time back when I was drinking.

“Here He is!” I screamed. “Found ‘im! Up on top of the refrigerator this whole time!” Turns out I was looking for my keys but got confused. I started to lose faith in Jesus back during childhood wiffle ball games. I played them by myself by throwing the wiffle ball up and hitting it against the side of the house. The little white ball would bounce off the shingles of the gambrel roof and I’d drop the bat and try to catch the ball. Sometimes the wind took it out into the weeds by the brook.

I’d pray to God that I’d find my wiffle ball. Heartfelt earnest pleas that only a child out in the woods with no one to play with would cry out (but silently in a Puritanical New England composure). There were no promises or bartering with God, just a petition that He would help me find the ball. I needed to know that someone was going to help. And shortly I’d find the ball under a sumac sapling struggling up through the golden rod.

I don’t know how many times I lost the ball and sent up a prayer like a shallow infield pop-up. But it wasn’t too long, maybe a season, maybe not, before I realized I could just look for the ball and I’d find it just as easily without the prayer as with one. So I stopped praying. Then I outgrew playing wiffle ball with ghost runners. I guess I didn’t want to believe in ghosts either. It was probably the summer Nathan Slocum moved into the neighborhood and I finally had someone real to play with.

Not too long ago I read about the evolutionary trait of belief. It is something most of us have, the capacity to believe in something, because evolutionarily speaking, it helps us survive. So I can’t say I don’t have the capacity to believe. There is still something in me that wants to find the Lord. But unlike keys or a kitten, I’ll never put my hands on it and know the search is over.

not President, just Mr.

photo posted from my iPhone

This little girl was selling her paintings on the sidewalk in Hayes Valley for five bucks each. Just up on the next block so was a middle aged hipster. I figured I’d support the youth instead of middle age. The picture on the right says, “Mr. John McCain”. Kind of a happy reminder that he isn’t President, just Mr.

we’re all built different

photo posted from my iPhone
Here’s that wide load wheelchair at the hospital. It was like the website that allows me to post photos here directly from my phone took a break for the holiday and now it’s working again.

November 28, 2008

please don’t call this number

photo posted from my iPhone
Somehow my phone took a picture of the screen display during a phone call. Not sure how.

photo posted from my iPhone
This was the grocery store photoshoot. There is something I love about taking pictures of people taking pictures.

thanks a lot

I volunteered this morning at the foodbank. Was a little hungover, and kind of grouchy I suppose. They had me standing at a table putting mashed potato scoops into to-go tubs.

“Hey, I need a chair,” I told this chipper Christian in charge of the operation.

“Every chair is full out there in the dining room and there’s a line two blocks long to get in,” he said.

“Look, someone out there better get thankful I’m even here putting two full scoops of mashed potatos in a plastic box and get up off their ass and bring me their chair.”

I doubt I’m the first man to be kicked out of a soup kitchen, but I’m probably the first man from the other side of the line to be asked to leave. I can’t wait for Christmas.

November 26, 2008

polly magoo and sarah too

Sarah brought over a trilogy by director William Klein, produced in the 60′s. The first one was about fashion, derived from his experience as a photographer for Paris Vogue and other fashion rags.

What made you buy the Who Are You Polly Magoo disc?

Umm… I read about while I was babysitting in a Nylon magazine I found in the bathroom.

What did the article say that caught your interest?

Mostly that it was directed by an American expat living in Paris, a fashion photographer. He gave up America, moved to Paris, disassociated himself from Americans and aligned himself with the European view of what it meant to be an American.

My favorite part was at the dinner table they talk about canned wine for Americans. What did you take away from this flick?

Know what I find interesting about that movie? I barely remember any of the actual fashion, except of course for the aluminum dresses at the beginning of the movie. It was like a reality show, they follow her around with cameras, but it was surrealistic. They mock the whole process of television – but 40 years ago.

Have you ever tried sewing?

I made a quilt.

Any clothes?

I made some jeans and a vest for a stuffed rabbit a couple months ago. A pair of pleated pants with tapered ankles and thin overall straps in 1987 for my Home Ec class. Put a zipper in and everything. Never wore them.

Why not?

We had to incorporate certain elements that were represented in the class but I didn’t pick a pattern that was fashionable at the time.

I’m intimidated by sewing clothes. Patterns scare me. I made the quilt on the fly – made it up as I go along. that I can handle.

Do you think men or women are more interested in fashion?

I think women are more interested in wearing fashion but more men are designers.

Do you watch project runway?

I’ve seen episodes at viewing parties at gay friends house. I’ve talked to more gay men that watch it then straight women.

But I always had pages torn out of fashion magazines from the 80′s like Linda Evangalista and Claudia Schiffer in my locker in high school*. I wanted to be a model. I did. I did.

What’s that fantasy?

I think as a teen girl going to school with all girls I think my body looked more like the bodies I saw in fashion magazines. The you-know boyish build… I was knock-kneed and skinny. All the girls were athletic and curvy and I didn’t look like any of them. It was more a way of feeling like I fit in somewhere, rather than wanting to do the job of modeling. And I think had I gone to a school where there actually were boys… I more needed to be approved by women around me because that’s all there were. As an adult I realized guys like any type of body, it doesn’t really matter. I was just trying to recognize myself in someone else.

In the movie, someone makes the comment that fashion used to be for the rich and know its for the teenagers. Did that make you think of anything?

Has it gone full circle, now-a-days all the young female pop stars, actresses have clothing lines. Hillary duff, the Olsen twins, Lauren Conrad….

It doesn’t seem to me that it ever went back to the rich.

It depends on what magazines you read. I was reading Bazaar today and there are still bags for 8000 dollars. Shoes for 7000. They’re made for a small group of rich society people. I look at those things and try to find the duplicates at Old Navy.

Thanks Sarah Bean!

*Villa Maria Academy for Girls in Erie, Pennslyvania

November 24, 2008

a hurtin’ unit

Two 14 hour days in a row Sean. There is no guarantee of quality around here. A picture is faster than a thousand words and when that doesn’t work I pass out with the lights on and sleep face down until the cell phone makes the marimba noise at five a.m. Then I look for my shoes and go out the door.

November 23, 2008

now I can’t upload photos from my phone. There was a good one of the double wide wheelchair I saw today. This photoshoot was at a real working hospital. We rented out the hallway in the maternity ward. The emergency room had a bunch of wheelchairs for really large people. Maybe tomorrow I’ll figure out why my account was suspended.

November 22, 2008

80′s revival

This could be a picture of my bedroom growing up. I mean same color walls, same Hulk poster, and I had a Nerf hoop over the bedroom door. I even rode a Huffy Desperado. The back of the photo says, “Randy E. playing nerf hoop at our house 1984.” Another picture from the album shows a Red Sox team photo on his wall that came every year in the Boston Globe which I had too. My only question is, what band is on that poster to his left?

November 21, 2008

talking music

Made a little post card the other nite. Supposed to be people talking about music overlooking Big Sur.

chimney hippies

Drove around downtown today. Saw a gal walking down her front steps, kinda hippied out, and I was transported back in time, me cruising down Oak Street up by the panhandle in my pick up circa 1966 with free love in the air. Most of the time you can tell who the tourists are around here: overweight folks in shorts or kids with bell bottoms and hemp bracelets. No one’s a hippy in SF. We got gutterpunks, hipsters and those new kids we havent settled a name on. New Vics? (A la Victorian). Steampunks? Chimney sweeps? You know, the guys with handle bar mustaches. And the girls draw them on with marker and wear a black lace dress. Dandies. Well, times change because we look for cute new outfits and all of a sudden a new movement is born. Like these construction guys I see. In the city they wear safety vests, hardhats and carry little igloo coolers with their lunch inside. Not like the pictures you see of old guys up on a steel beam in dungarees and collared shirt with a lunch pail. We keep changing. Makes looking at old photos fun.

November 19, 2008


I only found parts of this puzzle. Lot’s of variates I’ve never seen.

November 18, 2008


Leanora, my awesome couchsurfing host back in New Orleans, gave me this to remember her city by.

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