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Monday, September 28, 2020


Random Harvest

A Dispatch From Reuters

Busby Baloys. What an unusual name that matched the person attached. We met at Berendo Jr. High School. He was an odd black kid, wore a Jheri curl or wet perm, was tiny and thin, a teller of outlandish tales. He lived on 24th Street near Vermont not far from Fertile La Toyah Jackson. We bonded over a shared love of Elton John, Queen, The New York Dolls, Glam Rock, Circus and Cream Magazine. Very few other kids in our school knew about these rock publications. Busby and another even stranger kid named James Nolan stood out in our school. James always wore platform shoes with white gym socks, high water pants and a corduroy jacket. James and Busby floated in and out of my hanging with Paul Lee and Fertile after I basically stole them from their former best friends. Paul had known Luis Alfaro since they had attended 10th Street Elementary School in Pico Union. Years later Luis became a MacArthur Grant winning performance artist and playwright.

Herman Candejas,  Alberto "Abbie" Morales, Michael Matsunaga bullied and ridiculed Fertile every day of 8th grade until i rescued him. Fertile stayed loyal to them as friends because of their shared histories from the elementary school they had attended together that fed into Berendo Middle School. 

James Nolan lived near LaFayette Park with his white grandmother. He was mixed Caucasian and Latino if I do remember correctly. He had wavy dark brown hair and a peach fuzz moustache. James was bright and somewhat good looking with a dorky white boy type of personality. We lost contact with each other as we went to different high schools but later during the post punk scene of the early1980s whenever i was being interviewed on radio with the Afro Sisters he would always call the station to talk to me so he kept up with my post Junior High career. The last time i heard from him was about 2011 when i was in LA doing the performance piece Dejecta for MOCA and I was being interviewed on Stella’s Stray Pop the long running late nite radio program on KXLU out of Loyola Marymount College. James called in to talk to me and for some reason I was annoyed by this and wasn’t featuring chatting with someone from so far back in my distant past. I regret brushing him off. For some reason i suspected he was a recluse or shut-in of some kind, so I should have been more sensitive to his need for connection of some kind.  He also had writtem letters to the editor at the LA Weekly after some of my articles that appeared in that publication over the many decades i wrote for them.

Later in the 1990s during my time hosting and DJaning at Club Sucker at the Garage in Silverlake i reconnected somewhat with Busby Baloys. He was using a different moniker at the time I think he called himself Christian Hornsby and was speaking in an affected British accent saying he was related to the family that owns the luxury automotive brand Jaguar. Throughout the 90s Busby was hanging with a lot of the Silver Lake 40 gay crowd. One guy in particular a goofball of a sweet dude named Chris Ganzer who had a punk band called Ganzer that played at Club Sucker. Chris Ganzer worked in the film industry and confided in me that he sometimes hired Busby aka: Christian to work on film related projects as a production assistant and that he was a very industrious worker. He also didn’t question him about his little white lies about his so called family connections to wealth and priveledge. He would give him rides home, but Busby would always have him drop him off on a street corner in Downtown LA. One time he surreptitiously followed him to see exactly where he lived and it seemed he was living at a run down Single Room Occupancy Hotel. Since the climate in Los Angeles since the new century is not one conducive to roughing it or living hand-to-mouth like it was in the 80s and 90s. I wonder if Busby Baloys or James Nolan are even alive now.