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Thursday, April 07, 2011

Found a picture from 1983 of Alfredo Botello that was published along with an article I wrote for the old Los Angeles Reader.Seeing this pic brings back floods of memories. Alfie was only 15 and a student at the famed Loyola High School, a Jesuit prep school for rich Catholic boys from good LA families.Alfie was going to this fancy school on scholarship, and lived with his Austrian born single mother in a flat off of Beverly Blvd and Western Avenue adjacent to the wealthy enclave of Hancock Park. Alfie’s mother was long divorced from his Spanish father. Later after getting mugged outside of the Ralph's Supermarket on Third Street & LaBrea she moved to what she felt was the safer suburb of Glendale. Where she met and married Glendale's Chief of Police. When he retired they moved to Orange County.
I initially met Alfie when I was the features editor of the mod magazine Twist.He was 14, sweet as humble pie and a bit pear shaped, and I was a dorky, super skinny 18 year already ensconcsed in the post punk Hollywood scene and Alfie & I had a bit of what now people refer to as a bro-mance. It was all very innocent. I mentored him in the underground music and art scene.
By the time he was in college at UC Berkeley studying architecture he had lost his babyfat and turned into quite a hunk growing to 6'5 inches of sturdy, robust young manhood. As a teenager he was just cute, but as a young adult he was sizzling!
On one Christmas holiday when he was back in the Southland we made a short experimental film together called Dot where I played Dorothy Parker and he was Robert Benchley. I got drunk on camera channeling Mrs. Parker and my unrequited feelings for Alfie came blustering out in the way that alcohol sometimes fuels, and I think seeing my frustrated longing and desire frightened the poor lad. We never saw each other again.
After graduation he remained in the bay area, married a girl who I’ve been told looks like a white version of me, had children and just started leading a heteronormative life I gather. Over the years I would hear from some of his friends who would give me updates on him. I found out that he gave up architecture to become a screenwriter and even won some big award with a money prize attached to it through the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, and he also wrote the screenplay to one of the Fast and the Furious franchises. Since moving to Berlin five years ago I haven’t heard anything else about Alfie but after finding his photo and digging out some of his handwritten letters to me over the years it just dawned on me that he is now around 40 years old. Has he aged well? Is he still married? Does he ever think about me? I guess i still have deep feelings for him. One of the last things I remember him saying to me was that he didn’t know Vaginal Davis,but only remembers me as Kayle Hilliard, which was just another one of my many personas. I think he felt that the Kayle Hilliard male persona was more the real me then the diva Vaginal Davis, but there actually is no real me. I have been and always will be a construct.
One of my young Berlin Greek passive children--Little Alex of the Chocolate Grinder Film Kollective is having a screening of his films at Arsenal on Monday starting at 7pm its a long program below is the info

Zu Gast: Telémachos Alexiou

11. April 2011, 19h im Kino Arsenal

(please scroll down for english version)


Telémachos Alexiou versucht in seinen Filmen durch choreographierte Kamera- und Körperbewegungen Erlebnisse wiederherzustellen und Fragen zu privater, sexueller, sozialer, politischer und professioneller Identität aufzuwerfen. Das Arsenal präsentiert am 11.4. zwei Langfilme des jungen griechischen Regisseurs als Weltpremieren.

Wir freuen uns, Telémachos Alexiou am 11.4. als Gast im Arsenal begrüßen zu dürfen.


Mo 11.4., 19h, in Anwesenheit von Telémachos Alexiou
THE LOGIC OF THE CAT Telémachos Alexiou G/D 2009 griech. OmE 62’
Vorfilm: AN INTERVIEW WITH AN ARTIST Telémachos Alexiou D 2010 engl. OF 22’
Telémachos Alexious Debüt ist ein Film über Themos, seinen Liebeskummer, seinen dahintreibenden Alltag, seine Freunde, ihren politischen Aktivismus. Es ist auch ein Film über Athen und die sich anbahnenden Unruhen im Sommer 2008. Als Vorfilm zeigen wir die melancholische Fake-Doku AN INTERVIEW WITH AN ARTIST.

Mo 11.4., 21h, in Anwesenheit von Telémachos Alexiou
VENUS IN THE GARDEN Telémachos Alexiou G/D 2011 griech. OmE 63’
Vorfilm: THE DREAM OF NORMA Telémachos Alexiou D 2010 9’
In VENUS IN THE GARDEN verlieren sich die beiden Stricher Nikos und Alain und ihre Zuhälterin Monica in einer verwickelten Beziehung. Ist es ein Rollenspiel, das aus der Langeweile eines Sommers hervorging, oder haben die drei Jean Genet gelesen? Im Vorprogramm läuft THE DREAM OF NORMA, der 2009 beim Forum Expanded der Berlinale zu sehen war, ein tänzerisches Duell zwischen der von Drag-Superstar Vaginal Davis verkörperten Norma und ihrem Schatten.

Telémachos Alexiou

April 11, in the presence of Telémachos Alexiou

As a world premiere, we present two full-length films by the young Greek director, Telémachos Alexiou. His debut, THE LOGIC OF THE CAT (G/GER 2009), is a film about Themos, his lovesickness, his everyday life that drags along, his friends, and their political activism. It is also a film about Athens and the imminent unrests in the summer of 2008. In VENUS IN THE GARDEN (G/GER 2011), the two hustlers, Nikos and Alain, and their procuress, Monica, are entangled in a complicated relationship. Is it a role play emerging from the boredom of a summer, or have the three read Jean Genet? Beforehand, two short films will be screened: THE DREAM OF NORMA (GER 2010), which was shown at the Berlinale's Forum Expanded, a dancing duel between Norma, played by drag superstar Vaginal Davis, and her shadow, and the melancholy fake documentation AN INTERVIEW WITH AN ARTIST (GER 2010).
Yes its true Vagimule Davis doll wasn't exactly hatched.
O I am so glad I don’t have the responsibilities of children and family the way my heteronormative relatives do. My poor niece isn’t even 30 years ago, but her oldest daughter is 15 and has already had an STD which means she is sexually active. The girl doesn’t get along with her stepfather so she is living now with a friend of the family. My niece will be a grandmother before she is 30, thats for sure.
My nephews son just turned 13 and has gone through quite a growth spurt where he magically shot to over 6 feet tall with huge muscles, a full beard, manly pectorals and washboard abs that he is obsessed with, and likes to show off. My sister told me that the boy can’t stop looking at himself in the mirror and the last time he was over at her apartment she kept saying to herself, "who is this male prostitute?" She can’t believe it’s the same child whose diapers she changed.
My poor sister is trying to be a good great auntie to the boy, but its hard for her a church lady who is 60 years old and still a virgin to relate to him and his hyperspaced young sexuality that is emerging at full tilt.
Now this kid wants to quit school and become a model or male stripper in Las Vegas. He has been suspended twice from school for inappropriate sexually tinged behavior and for modifying his school uniform. My sister tells me that no matter what the weather he parades around shirtless or in Daisy Duke jean cut offs commando style. The only shoes he wears are flipflops to show off his size 17 feet and he considers a tricep T or johnny string tank top the ideal dresswear shirt. At 12 he came out as openly bisexual, and has had affairs with both a male and female teacher at his middle school. He brags about sugar daddies and sugar mamas who buy him gifts like ipods, iphones and fancy trainers.
The last time I saw my great nephew he was just a pretty little mulatto baby with green eyes. His mother is a white trash girl from Washington State. When i met her i kind of liked her, she reminded me of the late white soul singer Teena Marie in that she was more fluent in black urban slang then any ghetto mamasan, but I also thought she was a bit of a know-it-all, and had my nephew completely whipped. She was my nephews second wife. His first wife use to beat HIM.
This white wife's hillbilly relatives immediately disowned her when she married my nephew. In fact this girl is such a hootchie that she has left my nephew and their kids numerous times hooking up with greasy black thugs she meets on the internet. I guess when you go black you really never go back.
She is addicted to internet chat lines and the men she constantly runs off with always tire of her and then she winds up coming back to my nephew with head caught between her tail, begging his forgiveness and promising she won't do it again. But she always does. She's left him almost a dozen times.
To take her side for a moment. My nephew isn't exactly a prize. He works hard,but isn't really able to provide consistently for his family because he also has children from a previous marriage. Those kids are almost grown with one son in college who is 19. My newphew is also very moody and straight laced like his grandfather, my sister's father not my father. So i can see why his white wife would want to run away from him. That and he has gained so much weight that he makes Luther Vandross at the height of his gains seem skinny.
The latest report I got is that their youngest child is always left at home to fend for himself and he is only six years old. My nephew works two jobs trying to support his family in the hardknock American economy,his wife, who doesn't work is always out and about. He puts up with the situation because, and I am quoting him, “I love her.” When will people learn that love is not enough.

Monday, April 04, 2011

Saturday got to hang out with film historian Marc Siegel on the first warm day of Spring giving him a bit of a tour of my Rote Insel neighborhood. We went by Marlene Deitrich’s modest flat at 65 Lebener Str which is just around the corner from my Cheese Endique Trifecta. My neighborhood is becoming a hot new destination for Berliners because of its central location and easygoing unpretensious vibe.
It’s a very mixed part of town with Germans and Auslanders.I appreciate the yummy Turkish and Arab youth who run around in the tightest white pants showing off well formed rear ends and dark swarthy masculinity.
Rote Insel has quite the history as a working class enclave, and the Insel was the socialist section of West Berlin. David Bowie, Lou Reed, Blixa Bargeld, Nick Cave and Iggy Pop lived here in the late 70s and early 80s. And in the distant past the Insel was home to actress/singer Hildegarde Kneff and Albert Einstein.
When I first moved here in 2006 I didn’t care for it that much as none of my friends lived close by, but not I have formulated my own identity with the neighborhood and I adore it.
We don’t have so many crusties living here. For those of you not privy to Berlin lingo crusties are the fashion challenged and every days a bad hair day alcoholics that you see around the city congregating in the public sphere drinking from early morn to late evening with their equally ragged pet pooches in tow. Some crusties mind their own business and just drink themselves into a mindless stupor bothering no one while others insist on a bit more aggressive tactic and yell at complete strangers on the street and are generally quite unpleasant and a bit of an eyesore. In my neighborhood on the Haupt Strasse or Main Street there is a woman I call la discreet drunk. She is perhaps decades younger then I am, but looks almost 60 years old. She is usually always in the same spot, every day of the week and hides her bottles of beer in her huge coat pockets and takes swigs only sporadically looking around delicately to see if anyone is watching. I guess she thinks she is fooling people, and that they can’t tell she lives in a perpetual state of inebriation. When I first moved into the neighborhood I saw her and was frightened as she looked like she was possessed by a demon and needed an exorcist.
Later on Saturday Marc Siegel and I were joined by Daniel Hendrickson, the Jewish Muslim and his lovesexy Italian beau Piero Belhomo where we had some snacks at a gay café owned by a salty dog Dutchman and his fugly short lover. Our waiter was a cute, friendly short queer. Something rare in Berlin gay establishments. Our server loved saying okdokey quite a bit. He was one of those type of gay men who in perhaps three years time will be a casualty of the gay world ravished from too much drugs, smoking and allnight sex partying.
Marc Siegel’s girlfriend the intermedia actress, director and independent curator Susanne Sachsse is in Poland filming a special project for the Israeli artist Yael Bertrana who will create the Polish Pavilion at the Venice Biennale this year. Susanne’s lovely 16 year old daughter Salome Gersh will also star in this very unique film.
Went to Arsenal Empress Stefanie Schulte Strathaus’ birthday party off the canal at Brachvogel Restaurant on Sunday which has a lovely biergarden and a super miniature golfcourse.
American miniature golf courses are far from tiny usually incorporating some kind of grandiose theme. The weather Sunday was perfect for a birthday celebration and I had a grand time sitting al fresco style with pretty academic Nicole Wolf, lovesexy Nanna Heidenreich, handsome Uli Ziemons, Jewish Muslim Daniel Hendrickson,film historian Marc Siegel, and musician & filmmaker Tim Blue. The other party revelers were: Dorothee Wenner (film curator, journalist and filmmaker) with her friend Hella, Anne Quirynen (video artist)Bettina Allamoda (artist and SSS neighbor who has lived in Kreuzberg since 1982)Roman Lach (SSS’s oldest childhood friend)Florian Wüst (curator, filmmaker, artist)his personable girlfriend Loreto Solis from Chile,Philip Scheffner,Hannah Hurtzig,(Black Market)Madhusree Dutta (Arsenal curator in residency from Bombay)
Miss Stefanie looked so sweet and fresh like she was celebrating her 15th birthday. Spring really becomes her, and I hope she gets to take some time off from her busy schedule as the hardest working woman in Germany if not Europe.