Horizontal Lives

True Tales of the Infamous Courtesan: Persephone N. Hades and her Horizontal Life underground. How she got there, her mis-adventures and her struggle to re-surface.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Why these are not Sad Stories: A Dialogue.

"I want to talk about it." I say.

"Why?" he asks.

"Because your reaction brings up two very important issues that are the essential undercurrent of the blog, and the stories I am trying to tell."

"I feel," he says, "the only people who can read about your encounters and not feel hurt in any way whatsoever are either completely detached from you emotionally or just catatonic...they're certainly not smitten with you."

"So you’re not going to read it anymore?"

"I did read some of your blog and I was affected by it. Knowing the subject matter thereof, I really didn't want to; I had to, with the same morbid curiosity that one has driving past an accident scene...you don't want to look, you have to. I found some of it to be "Editorial" in nature with lots of validity and some of it quite humorous. Like how you think of your period as a separate mischievous entity who comes to visit you once a month, (uninvited of course), only to wreak all kinds of havoc in your life, like some kind of little Gremlin."

"That’s funny, no?"

"But on the other hand, I found some of it quite upsetting like the scumbag agency prick who dangled a carrot in front of your nose with promises of big money only to achieve the exact opposite, take money from you and rub your face in it. That filled me with rage, if there's such a thing as Karma, he'll wind up with "two in the chest, one in the head".

"Well, I wrote in a blog what happened to him."

"Yes, but then there was the time you had to service "Ignatius J. Reilly with a bad attitude" in his own private hell hole. I'm sorry, but I found that to be sad and pathetic. OK, so you made a breakthrough with that psycho but was it really worth all the verbal abuse and the emotional roller-coaster ride (with no brakes) he put you on? Was the pocket change you earned for that visit really worth your dignity? If Karma ever get around to him, he'll just continue to live a long and miserable existence."

"I don’t feel that way. It wasn’t the ‘pocket change’ as you say. At that time, that was all I had. And at that time, I needed to stay in the good graces of Ellen. If you do this work as a job, you are not free to pick and choose and walk away when you don’t like it. But that lack-of-freedom is the very thing that forced me to open up, make the best, find love and humor where it didn’t seem to exist, say ‘yes’ to Life, even when I wanted to say ‘no’."

"Can you imagine how many miserable mother-fuckers there'd be if Judge Judy were to leave this world and come back as the spirit of Karma?"

"She does her part on a daily basis."

We both laugh.

"I understand what you’re saying." He says. "All emotion aside for a moment and please remember my 2¢ is based on what little of your work I've read. I feel your writing is very good but there's something holding you back, your true talent has not come through yet. I know you and we've spoken often enough for me to know you have a high level of intellect in person, but somehow that spark is not reflected in the work I've read thus far. Your writing barely scratches the surface of your intellect. Mind you, this opinion is based on reading all those books you gave me written by world-class authors. I feel you're on the same level with them intellectually, so if you can somehow get your thoughts on paper in a manner that reflects your level of intellect, you too will be a world-class author."

"I appreciate that. I’m just learning. Listen, if everyone who was ‘smart’ could write like Gabriel Garcia Marquez, wow. If everyone who felt anything could act like Meryl Streep…I was not blessed with natural writing talent. I am blessed with a few things. I am blessed with ability to act. I am blessed with a deep sense of sensuality."

"Oh yes baby you are, heh heh."

We smile at one another. I wink.

"I am blessed with an enormous empathetic heart. And I’m blessed with a strong sense of justice and a fearlessness in the face of emotion."

"So why does it bother you that I can’t read your blog?"

"It bothers me because, for one, you see it so different than what I mean it to say. True, there’s nothing wrong with seeing some of the men’s behavior as a bit unkind. Perhaps it was. I’m just writing it as it happened. But what you are not feeling is my spirit behind the words. Life is not black and white, good and bad, happy or sad. It is the gray areas. I think of Life, my life specifically, as a huge novel. There are the joyful chapters, the challenging chapters, the tragic chapters. But all in all, the Heroine is on a journey. Ultimately, the ‘book’ is a happy or sad one based upon the outlook of the main character. See what I mean?"

"Sort of. You mean something bad can happen but if Mary tosses her hat in the air at the end, it’s all okay?"

"Not really, but okay. Yes. I mean, you have goals in Life. We all have goals in Life—to buy a car, a house, whatever. But there are deeper goals. I want to die having achieved innocence again. I think it was Audrey Hepburn who said, "The innocence of a child is God-like to behold. But to witness adult innocence? That is so difficult to achieve and breath-taking to be in the presence of." Something like that. She’s right. It’s hard. Really hard. It takes work everyday, in every choice, in every moment. But to do so makes every moment in Life come alive with possibilities."

He is silent.

"That’s what I want ‘the book of my Life’ to be about when you read the last page and close the cover. And I think, it is because of all the stories, challenging, sad, funny, whatever that I journey through, that lead me to that place. Sometimes I succeed at it. Sometimes I fail—miserably. But what really bothers me about what you said is that you won’t read it cause to read it hurts you too much."

"I’m not allowed to feel that way?"

"You’re allowed to feel any way you feel. I’m just saddened by it because you are my friend and if we can’t live and know each other’s lives honestly, then what do we have? It’s just like my parent’s who I love so so much. But we have no true friendship. When I die, I would not give them leave to give me a service. I would have someone else do that. They don’t even know me. They don’t want to know me. They want to know who they think I am. And I let them because I love them. But because of that ‘Ostrich’ mentality, they could not help me when I needed them. Something a parent or friend should be able to do."

"So you’re saying we won’t be close friends?"

"No. I love you. You love me. I’m saying it’s frustrating because it is a ‘root-canal’ for me, leading to deeper issues. And it’s those deeper issues that are at the base of my blog."

"The head-in-the-sand thing."

"Yes. Exactly. If we as people could face the honesty and humanness of each other—if men and women could face the honest needs of each other—god! Imagine. Being soul-mates would be possible. And I guarantee you, the sex for both women and men would be explosive."

"I’m in for that!"

"If governments faced the honest needs of it’s citizens instead of moralizing, imposing, brow-beating and jailing, imagine. God. I’m about to burst into John Lennon. ‘Imagine all the people, living…"

"Okay. Okay."

"Sorry. Bit of a soap-box moment there. But you know what I mean. It’s just frustrating. We can’t change the world. I know that. I can’t. But I’d like it if at the very least, the head-in-the-sand thing went away."

"There was one other thing. Other reason why it hurt to read it."


"Of course there was that which I read, about you with other guys, that diminished my feeling of being "special."

"Oh sweetheart."

"I know what you do. I know that. I just don’t like to hear about it."

"Well, I mean the stage doesn’t just go dark when you leave my apartment."

"I know."

"But you are special to me. What we do together, what we build together is special. Having sex with someone does not make them special. I used to think it did. It was what I was taught to think and the pain that resulted from believing that took years to undo. What is special is what is grown here. (I place one hand on my heart and one hand on his.) And here. (I put a hand on his head and on mine.) What we build together cannot be duplicated or replaced by anyone else. You need to have faith in that."

"So if it was so ‘special’ with Philip and that other Philip and all the Philips, why didn’t you guys stay together?"

"See there? That’s my point. It was special. It was true love. It just didn’t end ‘happily ever after.’ That doesn’t mean the ‘book’ was bad, just the ending wasn’t what we’d hoped it would be. They think it means it was bad, or that the love wasn’t true. That’s their mistake. Even though they don’t speak to me anymore doesn’t mean I don’t still love them. Relationships never die. They just change form. Sometimes the books are short and intense, sometimes long and boring. Who knows."

My palms are face up in his hands resting on his knees.

"Read my blog?"

He sighs.

"We’ll see."


At 3:47 PM, Blogger Ninja said...


What a nice day to post on your blog. I suspect your trip has been delayed especially since a state of emergency has been declared in many parts of NY. Either way, a good day to be writing and a good day to be READING!

I don't know of anyone else whose life is of such epic proportion given how young you are. You certainly started early. Your novel will be on the scale of War and Peace at the rate you're going.

Many books, like your blog will have their ups and downs. I have found friendships / relationships to certainly have its ups and downs. Yes, they change forms and when they are in a rough patch, time can often be a healer.

As you know, we can't please everyone even though we strive to. I know you will keep on writing. Be glad there is at least one sole who reads your blog religiously.

May the force be with you.... (-: :-)

At 7:09 PM, Blogger Hermes said...


Just saw the DVD: Catwoman (Halle Berry). Can't help it, I'm a guy.

Wounded Cop: Don't be stupid! You don't want to kill a cop!

Woman with gun: I'm a woman. I'm used to doing all sorts of things I don't want to do.
Catwoman: I love living in a world where I can be really good or really bad and have my freedom -- that is the ultimate power.

I think Catwoman lives underground ...

At 11:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you do this work as a job, you are not free to pick and choose and walk away when you don’t like it.... YOU ARE ALWAYS FREE TO CHOOSE and ALWAYS FREE TO PICK... just don't be so picky! Ultimately this is for you... not for anyone else... the fact that you have such a wonderful soul and heart does not make you a prisoner to your work nor is it mandatory to put salve on every heart... you do not have to endure pain to give love...

Your blogs are not black and white, nor are they grey.. they are multidimensional and take on a meaning of its own from the perspective of the reader... It is your hope that every reader sees and understands your perspective... Be thankful that any reader has an opinion or gains something from it...That is rare enough these days...

At 1:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Anon..
YOu are so right. I do and I did, but I didn't know that then. In fact, back then, during the time of the story he was referring to, I was out of choices--or so it seemed to me..these days, things are different..I've grown a bit..but as I write this blog, I can't seem to write it chronologically--as a result, who I amy be today is very different than who I was years ago--it is my fault for not making the growth on the journey clearer. You are also speaking true when you say 'to be grateful for readers--and readers with opinions'--I am. I love it because it re-defines for me the clarity in whcih I speak, and the others out there who have strong feelings perhaps different than mine on the opposite side of the fence. Either way--there is no loss because I learn something everytime someone posts a comment. Thanks for yours.


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