An Irregular Column
By Mykel Board
In fighting can be fun dept: "Some will call it in-fighting, "writes Bob Black in his new book Anarchy after Leftism. And in-fighting it is. The entire book is an attack on another book. That one by Murray Bookchin, whos "Post-Scarcity Anarchism" inspired me during my college days.
Bob Black is one of those assholes who are usually right. A man close to my own persuasion, whos "The Abolition of Work" continues to inspire me.
Black's attack on Bookchin splits the anarchists like Camille Paglia's attack on Andrea Dworkin split the feminists. Like feminism, the old style is conservative, totalitarian, and dogmatic. The new style is... well... fun.
In both cases, I'd say change the names already. Feminism should be equalism. And anarchism? They tried situationism but got so bogged down in their own philosophy (if you call yourself one you're not) that it self-destructed. How about funism?
Anyway, Black's analysis is cutting and interesting. He weakens his case, though, with too many personal attacks on Bookchin. The worst are repeated references to his old age. Loose dentures are not a very useful form of political criticism. Then again, old age is a problem Bookchin hopes Black will never suffer from.
Still for such gems as "As for 'decadence,' that is an eminently bourgeois swearword for people perceived to be having more fun than you are," Anarchy After Leftism is certainly worth a read. ($7.95 Columbia Alternative Library, POB 1446, Columbia, MO 65205-1446).
If that looks like an endnote, it was. But I decided to make it the header because this column is about: being old.
Younger than Timmy Y, Jeff Bale or Larry L, my prostate still pangs with approaching late middle age. I've defended getting old before-- it's certainly better than the alternative, but for some folks not much.
Scene one: I'm picking up Mom and Dad from the house in Hicksville. They're moving to the old age home in New Jersey. Their house for 40 years is empty. It's the only house I've ever known. The new owners, Armenian, with two kids, sweep out the last of the Board dirt. Mom and Dad stand on the front porch.
Marsha Shikowitz is over from across the street. Her mascara runs a bit as her brown wig tilts slightly over her left ear. A wisp of gray peaks from beneath. She and Mom hug.
"Don't forget us," Mom whispers in her ear.
Dad, his weight leaned forward on his half-walker, gazes off, scanning the identical houses as if looking for permission to leave. I turn away, pretending to tie my shoelaces as I feel the tears well up in my eyes. Using one sleeve, I wipe them away, along with the sad snot dripping from my nose.
"I ahh... need to use the bathroom." I say, hoping my voice isn't too shaky. Instead of turning left at the top of the stairs, I go straight ahead. Right into my room, no longer my room. I look at the bookcases, the place where my bed used to be, the closet where I used to hide porno and commie literature. Iput my hand against the wall, then my lips. Whispering good-bye, I again wipe my eyes and nose and go back down the stairs.
Then it's off to Teaneck. To the two-room apartment I'll never call home. They probably won't either.
Inside, a Filipino attendant piddles along with a woman stooped over a wheeled walker. The attendant, about 30, walks with a smile and a light step. The old woman, in her eighties, looks up as we enter, carrying our boxes. Her eyes work to focus. Slowly, she lifts one hand from the walker. Her face expressionless, she waves. It's a slow mechanical wave, like the wipers on a car driving through mist.
"Hello," I say.
"This is Mrs. Goldfarb," says the attendant.
"Hello, Mrs. Goldfarb," says my mother.
The woman continues to wave. Back... and... forth. Back...and... forth. Still expressionless.
"Time to go now Mrs. Goldfarb," says the attendant, gently moving the woman's waving hand back to the walker. Haltingly, they shuffle off to a room down the hall.
Mom stares at them as they walk ahead.
"Well," she says, "I guess this is it."
I've been a vocal (scribal?) opponent of "family values" ever since I pissed on my mother when she was changing my diaper. Family values are destructive. They perpetuate bigotry, narrow-mindedness and hatred. Like sickle cell anemia, these qualities pass from one generation to the next.
In a recent heated discussion on the punk list, we talked about home schooling.
I'm usually not big on laws, but if there should be one, it should be against home schooling. What more evil way to allow parents to own and completely control their kids? What more insurance that the hate and prejudice of one generation will infect the next? What surer way of limiting the input of people who don't act, think, and feel exactly like Mom and Dad? If it weren't for public schools, I'd be working on Wall Street. How many Klansfolk spread their ideas, unchallenged to their kids.
Still, despite my abhorrence of these "family values," we still have families. How we deal with them, in this culture especially, is WRONG.
Last month I wrote about cultures. About how, whenever another culture makes you feel uncomfortable, you have to assume your culture is wrong and find out why.
Example: I suggest to my married sister (two kids) that she visit my parents in the old age home. She replies, "Mykel, I can't! I just don't have time. I have a family, remember?"
"I have a family too," I remind her, "they live in New Jersey."
In Japan and Mongolia, two countries I've actually lived in, "family" is much different from here. In those countries, you're ALWAYS in a family. In Mongolia, your family lives with you or next to you. Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, everyone, just a big family that grows as the tents you live in become a bunch of tents.
In Japan, more urban than Mongolia, you start life in your parents' house. You live there until you get married. Then the new family finds a place of its own.
When your parents begin having difficulties, they move in with you. The generations mix. Your family grows, but doesn't change... until someone dies.
That's why homos get married in Japan. It's not that their closets are any bigger than ours, it's just that marriage is more than the legalized sex it is here. It's a way to extend the family to a different place; to keep it moving along a continuum. It's as natural as Americans getting our own apartment at 18.
But what Americans do to old people is not natural. I seethe effects every day. From the hunched and depressed looks on the old beggars on the street, to Hilda, the frail old woman who sits in the park and tells me, "Don't get old. It's better you should die first."
"It can be different" I tell her, leaning over and pressing my mouth against hers. The faint strands of her mustache tickle my nose as I push my tongue into her mouth. I taste the bits of cream, squeezed from the sides of her dentures. I run my tongue between those dentures and those gums, feeling them pop down with a slight fffft.
I taste her gums, as she responds, sticking her tongue back into my mouth, reaching up behind my head, pressing my face into hers.
Gently, I press against the loose skin under her forearm. Ihelp her stand. She rests her weight against her cane. A hollow metal one, with four rubber feet.
At home we lie naked. One against the other. I see her hand, blue veined with brown spots on the back. Tenderly, it holds my blue veined organ. Hard with anticipation, I thrill at doing something I've never done before.
Her teeth now rest on the night-table next to me. I suck on her bare mouth. My tongue rides the ridges bumps and holes. There is no sharpness, only the smooth glide of gums.
I let my tongue trail down her body. Her breasts, long and loose, flop on either side of her chest like a pair of police black jacks. I lift them, one at a time and nibble on the wrinkled nipples, sucking hard, trying to draw milk from these dry spigots.
Downward I go, using my chin to spread the wrinkled skin, making it momentarily smooth, glistening with my saliva. I reach the pubic patch, thin and grey, revealing the dry slit beneath, in a quiet dignity.
As I lick, I turn my body. I feel my hardness drawn into her toothless mouth. Her breath quickens as my tongue reaches the spot. I nibble. I taste and wonder how many years its been since someone else tasted this bud. How long this wine has been aging, waiting to be savored by the right connoisseur.
Her thin legs wrap around my face. I lick deeper, rising my hardness and again thrusting it into that eager mouth.... Stop! Stop!
As I write this fantasy, it becomes too much. Here I sit at the computer. Typing with one hand, savagely pumping myself with the other.
"Hilda! Hilda! Hilda!" I think, realizing that I've done it. I've created a reality where old people are not objects of disgust, but sexual beings. Real humans with more to give than old war stories.
"Hilda! Hilda! H-I-L-D-A!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Ah, time to get out the handkerchief and wipe up. Try it yourself some time. Maybe old won't always be followed by fart. Maybe you'll get hard-- or wet. Maybe if enough folks do, life won't be so bad after 70.
Oh yeah, I'm dedicating this column to Donny The Punk who wanted me to write about "ageism in the punk scene." I told him I would, but he died before I did.
In September, the police in Liaoyuan China arrested dissident Liu Gang. They charged him with failing to honor a previous court order. That order required him to report to the police every month to inform them of his latest thoughts.
- Strike while the irony is hot dept: Someone who doesn't label their cassettes sent me a one. It was a tape of a punk rock radio show on WCSB, Cleveland. For the ignorant, that's long been one of America's best stations.
On the show, the DJs complain about Resistance Records and how right wing, racist blah blah blah they are. The DJs don't like the "If you're not a REAL American, get out." attitude of the label.
That's only part of the show. The rest is complaining about non-Clevelanders invading the city and how they should get out and leave it to the REAL Clevelanders. Hmmmm...
CYBERsitter, a website censorship program, not only excludes "obscene" material, but information on homotude, lesbianism, bisexuality, human rights, and progressive political causes.
The far-right organization Focus on the Family, markets this atrocity. It's sold to parents, who presumably use it to make sure home schooling doesn't teach any bad stuff. The creeps also sell this abomination to public schools and libraries. It doesn't matter that the courts have found the banning of these sites unconstitutional. Who's gonna know, right?
Further information is at: http://www.peacefire.org/censorware/CYBERsitter/. You can find lots of related links and interesting stuff at Julie's website. She's the one who told me about this: http://drycas.club.cc.cmu.edu/~julie/.
- He's cracked dept. Psycho Mike sent me a record by THE SHIT. It's the story of Annapolis MD. How is it you ask? How the fuck do I know? It was an LP sent in a large bubble envelope, no cardboard, no other packing. I got it in three pieces! Makes you love CDs, doesn't it? Whoops, now I see it was sent to me by Ms. Kesha and not psycho Mike. Maybe it wasn't supposed to be played. Maybe it was art.
- G-d Bless America dept: While there's plenty wrong in the US, we can at least be thankful we don't live in Canada.
A revisionist website based in San Diego has some connections to the Canadian revisionist (already jailed for his writings) Ernest Zundel. Now he's being tried by a Canadian "Human Rights Commission." Rights? Yeah, right.
They claim that the site is not "a cultured exchange of ideas" but "anti-Semitic hate propaganda wrapped up in the flag of freedom of speech." Strange how people say that things they don't like to hear are "wrapped up in the flag of freedom of speech" while what they believe is "a cultured exchange of ideas." I mean, what is freedom of speech except agreeing with the government, right?
The site is www.ostara.org/zundel/ if you want to check it out for yourself.
- I mentioned the punk email list in the body of this column.You can subscribe to it. Just send an email message to: email@example.com with SUBSCRIBE in the subject line-- and as again as the only message.
- Long time coming dept: Finally: RIOT BOY magazine. (They shudda spelled it RIOT BYYYY). ($3 from Chris Leslie, POB 1697,New York NY 10009, firstname.lastname@example.org... AOL???) The news-clippings are hilarious, and the reports on "selected Gay Lives In Brief" make me wonder just how much of this is real... (A bartender in an Irish bar?) But it's a lot of fun in any case.
- Speaking of a long time coming dept: I wanna thank Matt W. from the punk list for his pleasant visit and mutual exploration of my video library.-->Religion can be fun dept: Would I plug a religious book catalogue? [There's not much you wouldn't plug, Mykel. --TY] Usually not, but I got a real good one from BADGER BOOKS ($1 134Mercer Street, Jersey city, New Jersey 07302 (201) 434-7113).It's as much a review zine as a catalog. The titles are not all PRO-religion. Some are even published by anarchist Autonomedia.
- The Unholy Bible, a book by Jacob Rabinowitz talks about sex and violence among the ancient Jews. There's a book called Scandal by Peter Lamborn Wilson (aka Hakim Bei) about paedophiliain Islam and plenty more.
It's the Loompanics of religious catalogues. Get it and learn a lot-- even if you don't buy anything.
- They don't give up dept: Seems like congress didn't get its fill when the court decided that internet censorship was unconstitutional. They're working on a new law more likely to pass gas with the black-robed guys. If you have a website or (to a lesser extent) email, you can strike preemptively with an electronic petition and a marker for your website. Info is at: http://www.firstamendment.org. Check it out.
- It's called Pachinko Hitler subtitled "Bad Dope for Thurston Moore." It's a Japanese cassette compilation filled with bandsI've never heard of. But it does have a cover by notorious Mike Diana. Liner notes come from mass murderer Henry Lee Lucas, sowhat else can you want?
It costs $11. It's from Japan, so you pay through the(hairless) nose! You can buy it from: BEAST 666, c/o Hitomi Arimoto, 2-112, Suwanomori-Higashi, Hamadera, Sakai-shi, Osaka592, JAPAN.
- Me? I, as usual, can be found at MykelB@ix.netcom.com. Also: SEND ME YOUR PRIVATE PORN! That homemade stuff I grew to love has disappeared from my PO Box. Even the solo video stuff where you just play with yourself moaning my name over and over. I only got ONE in the last 3 months! (Thanks Jason.) Did you forget theaddress or what? It's PO Box 137, Prince Street Station, New York, NY 10012--Mykel (mykelB@ix.netcom.com)
***I don't even consider myself bisexual. Frankly, I just think of myself as a"people person." --Michael Duane ****
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