Yeah, well it's not East Coast snow but it's snow nonetheless. It's glorious. But being Texas the weather changes quickly. The saying down here is "If you don't like the weather in Texas, wait 10 minutes."
The snow on Christmas eve was just three inches deep but that was good enough for Italo, Marco, Madeleina, Sierra and Alexa to make a snowman 4' tall. With baby organic carrots for hair, volcanic rocks for eyes and mouth and a banana for his nose.
Today's snow might top that here in Joshua. It's nearly two inches now and the ceiling is still just a couple of hundred feet from the ground. I'm glad I'm not flying. I hate flying in ice and snow with zero visibility. Hell, on the road the visibility was just 50 feet or so; at 500 MPH that's a split second.
Still, I'm hoping and praying everybody's plane gets off and lands safely.
On the home front, all is good. Italo's gonna have dinner with me while Mom has Sarah, Marco, Madeleina and the babies. They've all got a bit of residue food poisining from NOT eating here on Christmas Eve, but what can I say? I invited them; they went to Chepa's sister's home for a pot luck, Peruvian style. I didn't go because Chepa's boyfriend was in town and I didn't want to get depressed or crimp his style. But somebody's pot luck was a little older than the date on the can and damned near the whole bunch got sick.
Not till after presents on Christmas morning, of course.
As for me, I'm pretty proud that in 18 years cooking in restaurants and in the three years I had my own joint in Peru and in all the meals I've ever cooked and served at home, in the jungle for guests, at parties, at catered events--we're talking one million meals give or take--and no one ever said they got sick on my food.
That is a cool thing to be able to say with honesty.
Not that everybody like them. That's a horse of a different color.
But they didn't get sick.
Anyway, I'm working my butt off and the last chapter of the book is nearly done. After that it's the Afterward and that's it.
Thank you guys for your faith in me. I really hope to hell it ain't misplaced.
BUY THE BOOK NOW!!! It won't be available till February. But think of all those friends you shorted at Christmas you cheap people. How many people should have gotten presents but didn't? My list is about 80 people. Yours is probably that long. So why not buy those 80 people MY BOOK???? Who cares if it's no good. At least it gets you off the hook and is a whole lot more personal than sending them a 25 buck gift card. OR, you can send them access to the audio version which my friend Lynn and I will record next week!!!!!! Think about it! All the people you don't like being forced to listen to my gravely voice for 8 hours! That's punishment! You already hate them, but you owe them a present. It's mid-winter, it's freezing outside, they have nothing else to do, so give them my audio book to paralyze them! Freak them out with tales of talking to spirits that just happen to be true!
Just go to pgorman.com and push the button that says "New book" or whatever on the top of the first page and send me money. I'll give you something you will never forget two months down the line! I'll sign it anyway you like! I'll blow smoke on it! I'll sopla with agua florida! You'll have your first Perfumed Book!
I'm trying to sell 1000 of these before I publish this and I'm not there by a long shot. So tell your friends. Better yet, FORCE your friends to buy it! It can't ruin their already ruined lives, but it might help make sense of the whole shebang!
Sorry if this all sounds pushy. I just had a moment. You've had moments, haven't you? No? Well, GET SOME MOMENTS and know what it feels to BE ALIVE!!!!
My book will not provide them. Still, it's a pretty good read. And when you're done you can sell the signed copies on Ebay for $8-$10 bucks, so you will only lose $15.
You've done worse. Admit it. Don't cower.
BUY THE BOOK!!!!!!
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Yeah, well it's not East Coast snow but it's snow nonetheless. It's glorious. But being Texas the weather changes quickly. The saying down here is "If you don't like the weather in Texas, wait 10 minutes."
Well, good morning everybody. That last blog piece has been at the front of the line long enough, don'cha think? But it was a good experiment. I pre-sold a couple of dozen books so far and have promises on a couple dozen more checks supposed to arrive shortly, and I've been pushed to jump into the final section, which I've done with complete fear of having to relive all that stuff again and again, plus the fear of utter failure if the book sucks.
Ah, so what? I'm doing the best I can and I think that is the measuring stick. I'm going to take heat from some quarters; some people are going to say I made some of the stuff in the book up; others will say I used creative license. Fact is, it's straight from journals, then cleaned up, or from simple experience. Still, talking silently with spirits and then writing down the conversation will throw some people off.
Nuff on that except to say that the next several pieces I write on this will continue to have a "Buy NOW" not at the bottom of them.
Christmas? Kwanza? Holidays? All good for all of you, I hope. Here at the Gormans' it was good. Santa was a little short this year but still he managed to produce some fantastic stockings and good toys. Madeleina is so grown up but still likes odd things like Straw Glasses that allow you to drink through a 36-inch tube that doubles as a pair of glasses, freezing your face if you drink something cold. And Italo, well, that poor kid wound up with a can of paint among other things under the tree. He'd started doing his room and ran out. And now he realizes what happens if you say things like "I'm out of paint. I need another can," during Christmas shopping week. Winds up as a gift.
And the year is winding down.
And I'm writing before the coffee is done and don't have anything interesting to say, even though it's been an interesting week. For instance: We lost three of the chickens. But there's no blood, not a single feather, and as we had snow, there was not a single chicken footprint outside the coop if they'd managed to fly it.
Which leaves an owl or a good sized hawk just dipping down and plucking them into thin air. It's a horrible thought but still that would be cool if we had an owl around here.
Okay, I'm gonna get some coffee so I can begin to think clearly.
NOTE: Buy the book! Go to pgorman.com and on the front page of that site there's a think to hit that will take you to where you can. So DO IT! Yes, you all know the stories. Yes, some of them are 25 freaking years old. So WHAT?????
And for people who really want to suffer, my friend Lynn and I are going to read it into an audio file next week. HA! The Gorman CDs! The Gorman MP3s! Now I can bore you even while driving to work!!!!
Posted by Peter Gorman at 3:02 AM
Saturday, December 19, 2009
And now, with a completely selfish attitude, I'm going to tell you all that my book, Ayahuasca in My Blood: 25 Years of Medicine Dreaming, is being finished up and edited at the moment. I'm publishing it myself via Lulu because no big publishers have come to me and I just don't have the time to go to them.
I think the book is a great read. And if you've followed me for 25 years, you've already read a great deal--though by no means all--of the material, from the first time I went into the Peruvian Amazon and drank Ayahuasca through my marriage, its breakup, my healing, and finally my beginning to learn to heal others. It's running between 260-280 pages and will be a good sized paperback. It's been designed by Johan Fremin, a former guest of mine in the jungle who's become, like some of you, a good friend. He's done a fantastic job with it.
So here's the pitch: Go to pgorman.com, find the paypal button and send me $25 (that includes shipping), and when I have the copies in hand at the end of February--a perfect time for a great read--I'll get it out to you. Don't forget to write me at peterg9@yahoo with your address so that there are no mistakes. The site is being updated with a button just for the book, but that's not done quite yet, so just go to paypal and send the darned money. That way I'll have the money to print the darned thing. Get it? That's what this pre-publication sale is about! And I'll sign it if you like however you would like it signed. Hell, I'll even blow mapacho smoke on it for you.
So get to it and get me that money and I promise I'll get you a great read about that fantastic medicine, the jungle, and my 25 years of medicine dreaming.
If you prefer to send a check or money order, send it to
2133 W FM 917
Joshua, Texas 76058
Posted by Peter Gorman at 8:32 AM
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
So a person who reads about Ayahuasca and has some experience with it wanted to know how to fit it into his basic Christian beliefs. I believe his beliefs were of the good Christian spehere--credo--rather than of the politics. So this was my answer.
X: Thanks for writing. You speak of Christian roots; I was a catholic alter boy for 6 years, rebuilding homes for the poor, bringing meals to the infirm and reading to the elderly every week. Ayahuasca fits in wonderfully to that tradition I think: God is God: God made some good shit. Ayahuasca is one of the good shit things God made to help Man get a glimpse of what God is capable of. And a tool to help man.
So no sweat there. I was listening to a tape of my teacher, Julio (now dead) today. It was riveting, despite, or because, of the vomiting, the jokes Julio made, the little children laughing in the background. Riveting. My eldest, who only drank once (full dose) with Julio, and subsequently with me a few times, could not stop listening. Julio changed the world when he sang and healed wonderfully with his ability to shift and balance energy.
Ayahuasca is very sacred in the right hands. It's a way to link communication with the spirit of man to the spirit of things we normally call inanimate: rocks, planets, space, as well as the animate, but normally unavailable world of animals, insects, rivers, trees, all flora and fauna and blood and deep secrets and love and fear and all the rest of the muck that makes up this universe. And the Christian God--and Hindu God and whatever God you believe in or just the plain old spirit that's huge, whatever you call that Spirit--made it all and so must love it all. So there is no conflict. Loving a child is loving God. Loving a tree is loving God. I'm sure you understand.
So I'll try to answer a couple of things for you, even though you didn't spell out what you want answered. So ask away and I will try my best to help. Know beforehand that I'm woefully inadequate to the task.
Posted by Peter Gorman at 6:54 PM
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
It's 7:50 PM on Tuesday, December 15. I'm elated. I've just come from the Christmas concert that Madeleina's 7th grade band put on. WOW!!!!!! There were 86 kids playing instruments and it was sweeping and grand and flawless and uplifting and joyeus and goddamned near the sound of angels. This group has been together for 5 months and sounded like they've been playing for 5 years. What an abundance of music they made! I sat in my seat laughing, applauding, simply in wonderment. That's my baby among them? I guess it was. But she wasn't my baby at all, not my baby who left this house wearing a pair of Chepa's black slacks and Chepa's 4 inch heel boots. My baby was one with the group, insignificant alone, irreplaceable in the whole.
There is a teacher I will find tomorrow to congratulate. She deserves accolades for pulling all those walking hormones together into a unified and fantastic group of one.
I was so envious watching her work. Good envious. Proud of her. Glad that Madeleina has run into someone like her.
There's steak and rice and spinach with garlic on the stove. There's my Madeleina at her computer. I'm here at mine. She has no idea how her music lifted my spirit tonight, despite me telling her. That's something she won't know till she has children of her own and they come out of the blue, roaring like lions, making everything perfect.
Posted by Peter Gorman at 5:50 PM
Friday, December 11, 2009
Okay, I have not done a cooking blog in months or more. So here is one on the last week of Dinner at My House, okay? If you are on a diet, are vegetarian, or are a pig, please don't read this. That's fair warning.
Just thinking back to last Saturday, as it's now Friday again, making it a week.. Here's what I made for dinner. Now remember, this was Chepa's week to have Madeleina, so I just made what I felt like, even though most days Chepa either brought all the kids over to eat or came early in the morning to raid the left-overs.
Saturday: Corned beef and cabbage with boiled potatoes.
Typical corned beef: Bought the square, rather than the point, because it has more meat. Then bought a point piece and tossed it in to add enough fat. Two heads of cabbage, small this time of year, were quartered and tossed in after the meat had been simmering 3 hours. Added not only the little package they give you but lots of pickling spices and lots of black peppercorns for flavor. Tossed in 10 skinned potatoes, cut in half, 30 minutes before serving.
The shit felt like cum on your chin and I ain't even gay. Great great cold night meal.
Sunday: Lime Chicken. That's taking half large chicken breasts, then cutting them into two by slicing against grain (four pieces per whole breast), then flowering/egging/breading and sauteing/roasting them. Sounds complicated: isn't Bread the filets, making sure the flour has sufficient salt and good pepper and the breading has sufficient (about half) good parmesan cheese. Heat the saute pan to very hot, saute breaded chicken, remove after one side done and place in pyrex oven flat. Top chicken with parmesan and crack at least one good half-lime per chicken piece to make good good juice. Bake for 15 minutes or so at 350 till golden brown. Serve with rice and a vegetable strong enough to carry it's own weight.
Monday: Fajita over rice. Bought 3 pounds of fajita-seasoned skirt steak. Sliced it into 1/2 inch by 3 inch pieces. Marinated (though it was already marinated at the carneceria) in oil, soy, garlic, onion, salt, pepper and Peruvian spices. Substitute Goya Sazon with Garlic and Cilantro if you don't have fresh Peruvian spices.
Saute lots of garlic and diced onions, add meat, cook. In 15 minutes add 3 good sized or 7 Roma tomatoes (thin half-rounds, rather than diced), and one whole red onion (again, thin half-round slices),saute for five minues more. Add two finely sliced sweet red bell peppers and two greed bell peppers, Saute five more minutes. Add 8-12 ounces of chicken stock, preferably homemade, but you can use what you have, and then slow simmer for 30 minutes or so. Serve over rice with a good veg on the side. In our case I steamed broccoli and cauliflower till al diente, then saute'd the veggies in a bit of oil with garlic, then added 3 ounces of good cheddar and a short dollop of milk: fantastic creamy veggies to go with the main dish.
Tuesday: Roast Chicken: Just cut a whole chicken in half. Wash thoroughly. Place on a bed of cleaned celery and sliced red onion. On the underside wipe with freshly cut garlic soaked in olive oil, then sprinkle with sea salt and coarse black pepper. Turn over, do the same for topside. Bake for 52 minutes at 350, occasionally basting.
Cut potatoes in half, put in cold water, bring to boil and cook for 10 minutes. At same time cook organic baby carrots with potatoes. When that's done, put everything under cold water and when cold add potatoes and carrots to the chicken pan, making sure to baste with chicken fat. Potatoes and carrots should be cooking with chicken for the last 25-30 minutes.
Remove from heat. Cut chicken and serve with celery, onions, potatoes and carrots. Man, that's good.
Wednesday: I was alone and so opted for my big sandwich of the week. That meant buying a loaf of French bread, 1/3 pound of the rarest roast beef I can find in this place called Texas, where they have no idea what rare means (I want that Cow Mooing!) and 4 slices (.20 pound) of good pepperjack or horseradish cheese.
Cut 1/4 of the French bread, slice that open, remove excess breading from inside.
Put sufficient mayonaise or Miracle Whip onto bread and place in 350 degree oven for a few minutes, till warm.
Cover bread with paper thin roast beef, salt and peppered and return to oven.
While you're doing all this, cut a nice red pepper into quarters, eliminate seeds and white ffft, and saute in garlic and oil, along with three or four thin slices of sweet red onion. Eliminate black skin from pepper when done (eat separately as this is the best stuff in the world, even though it's tough).
Place cooked skinless red pepper and sweet onions on roast beef--both sides of French bread--and cover with pepperjack or horseradish cheese. If pepperjack, add a table spoon of good horse radish under the peppers.
Cook 10 minutes or until the cheese is starting to drip onto your oven floor.
Serve with cantaloupe or apple. Granny Smith, preferred.
Thursday: Shrimp, Mussels, Calamari....Yesterday was fantastic. I bought a pound of 21-25 shrimp (farm raised) and a pound of mussels, plus half-a-pound each of squid tubes and tentacles (there was no octopus or I would have bought that too).
I made a tartar sauce (mayo, diced sweet onions, sweet pickles, pepper, white vinegar and lime from fresh fresh limes), and then an easy red sauce: garlic and onions, diced, in olive oil, saute till done, then add a can of fire-bred diced tomatoes, a shot of white wine. Cook the mussels for 5 minutes in that, then take left over sauce, add more tomatoes and serve as sauce for calamari and shrimp.
Shrimp and Calamari: Shed shrimp skin, cut calamari into 1/2 inch pieces, flour, then fry in good oil. Drain well so you won't get a heart attack.
Saute half the shrimp in garlic, onion and tomatoes with fresh parsley for Sarah, your pregnant daughter in law.
Let Chepa make a cilantro, oil, onion/garlic cheese sauce that will give you a hard on for a month, and then serve everything with fresh broccoli crowns and a melange of cauliflower, carrots, tomatoes and spaghetti squash in garlic and oil.
Friday: Tonight: Baked beans and franks. Italo might or might not return tonight, but he requested franks and beans. So here it is: Saute a whole head of minced garlic and a diced sweet red onion. Add 15 (1 1/2 pounds) Hebrew National Beef Franks (Remember that I'm an Irish kid but growing up in New York we had the most respect for Hebrew foods. Nobody can beat their franks/corned beef/Motzoas/Chicken soup/Pastrami/Shmaltz/a million other things) cut into 1/2 inch slices. Saute till light brown. Add 8 Roma or 2 large regular tomatoes, diced. Cook 10 minutes.
Add two 28 ounce cans of Bush's original beans and one 28 ounce can of Ranch Beans plus one 16 ounce can of chicken stock for liquid. Cook for an hour slowly. Near the end, add 3 or 4 ounces of good mustard and freshly cracked black pepper to taste and at the very end add a bunch of fresh cilantro, finely chopped. Serve over Basmati rice cooked in oil/garlic and then water.
Also, to aid digestion, serve fresh spinach parboiled in water and then saute'd in garlic and a bit of cider vinegar with black pepper.
That was this week's ServeEmUp stuff.
All of it's good, all reasonably priced, nothing difficult to make but every night is a different taste bud adventure. Next week, I'm making Lamb Vindaloo might do a nice cous cous if there's any left over lamb. And I'm thinking about a paella. We'll see.
We ain't the food channel, but we'll still get your mouth watering...
Posted by Peter Gorman at 5:08 PM
Wednesday, December 09, 2009
By now you all know I love my kids. I recognize them for their faults and good traits and think they have more of the latter than the former. And each have their own fantastic abilities: Italo has the genuine gift of a brilliant athlete and the take charge personality of a leader who leads by example, rather than force. Marco, when he wants to do something--as being pushed makes him as stubborn as a mule--has more stick-to-it-iveness than anyone I know.
And then there is Madeleina and her uncanny word sense. Just something that has amazed me several times. The first occurred while she was early in second grade. She'd had a friend, a boy, at whose house she played several times during first grade. He'd been here as well. But early on in second grade he stopped including her. In anything. He didn't eat lunch at her table in school, he wouldn't play with her at recess or after school; didn't invote her to his house and wouldn't even answer her calls to come here.
She said it didn't matter but I knew it broke her heart: she learned what abandoned meant.
Well, Madeleina has always gone outside when she's angry or sad and she just starts singing. Just makes up songs. I don't get to hear many, even now, but one day while she was thinking of this kid, I think, she was wandering around the front yard just singing her head off. And the lines that stuck me were:
"I don't know why you treat me like a disaster;
You treat me like I was a tornado,
You treat me like I was a car wreck,
I don't know why you treat me like a disaster."
I was nearly paralyzed by that. In all my life, in all my reading, in all my suffering my own being occasionally abandoned, I'd never heard, read or thought anything that explained that emotion so clearly, so succinctly, so perfectly. "I'm hurt; I feel empty without you" and so forth are miles away from what Madeleina had hit on: When people leave you they don't just leave, they get as far away as they can. Just like when a tornado is coming, or when there is a car wreck. We don't want anything at all--except from a voyeur's joy--to do with a disaster. We want to be as far away as possible.
And Madeleina, well, she just hit the nail on the freaking head with that one.
She did it again in a story she wrote last week. She'll be in trouble because she wrote it for school, and it's a hard boiled short story set in the 1950s about a gangster who is breaking up with his girl, a whore, who had sex with a couple of dozen
men while he was out of town for a week. The woman threatens to expose a secret of his, that he'd killed his best friend in a drunken barfight years ago, and the man then strangles her. Fortunately, while he left her for dead she actually survived, and then the man, reliving that bar fight and unable to live with remembering it, drives off a bridge to a watery death.
Not a perfect story but pretty damned good.
But what made it special was her use of language. From the man's point of view, she wrote that the woman was known as Ms. Elegant because even though she wore dresses so short they left nothing to the imagination, they always looked as though "they'd been cut from evening gowns with the bottoms of the gowns tossed away."
She--again, from the man's point of view--described the woman as having "breasts so large they should have had their own zip code."
And she described the woman's legs as "so long they looked like they could wrap themselves around you so fast they'd knock the breath right out of a man."
She may have gotten some of that stuff subliminally, but with several moves between 1995 and 2002 I got rid of all my Mickey Spillane's and other pot boilers, so she didn't read that stuff here. She might have gotten something from movies she's seen.
Still, those are amazing images for a 12 year old.
I am a wonderful writer, but I am also a jealous one. I've never come up with stuff like that, so perfect, so pictorial.
And I'm also very very proud of her.
Posted by Peter Gorman at 8:38 AM
Saturday, December 05, 2009
Madeleina and I were driving on a country road today. It's a beautiful road that I discovered yesterday when I was alone, and today, with Madeleina with me, I wanted her to see it. What was so beautiful was that it looked like nobody built that road using eminent domain. It looked instead like it was built around everyone's country properties. It is one of the curviest roads I've ever seen, with hairpin turns about every 200 feet.
It was late afternoon while we were driving along it, just before dusk, when the moment hit when everything is electric: that eerie minute or so when the world looks as if touching a single leaf hanging from a tree might just electrocute you.
"Yeah, dad," Madeleina said when I noted the moment, "It's like the world is being stabbed, pierced by the electricity, but at the same time the world is not suffering, the world is bleeding happily."
I nearly drove the car off the road at that; didn't, and added, "This is when the ghosts can come out. This is the moment when this world is not solid enough to keep them from coming in."
A moment later, after we'd taken the moment in as deeply as we could and were touched as much as we could deal with, Madeleina said: "What would you say if I told you I saw a ghost?"
"Because spirits are everywhere, and some people can see them, hear them, not quite touch them but darned close. And if you are one of those, what would I say? Okay, you saw a ghost. That's fine."
"Well, I didn't really see a ghost. But I want to. Are you sure I'm too young to drink ayahuasca?"
"Getting near time girl, but still a little early."
"Well, I didn't see a ghost this week, but three times, after you went to bed and I was trying to go to sleep, the radio came on."
"I know. I heard it once or maybe twice."
"Dad, the radio can't just turn on. Maybe once or twice, but three times?"
"It can't turn on once by itself. There's no connection. That's a ghost, baby. A spirit announcing presence."
"I know. But I thought you'd laugh at me if I said that."
"You're talking to a guy whose best friends are mostly spirits, baby. I don't laught at that stuff, but I didn't want to mention it until you did because I didn't want to scare you."
"I'm not scared, dad. I'm curious."
"Well, then let me tell you about last Sunday, when you were at Mom's. I went to bed about 9:30 or so. And then I woke up about 3 AM to take a pee..."
"Like always, dad..."
"Like always. But when I tried to go back to sleep my nose was too stuffed and the damned apnia started and I leapt from the couch and said the heck with hit and sat at the computer for a while."
"Like always, dad..."
"You are being a know-it-all, young lady. Let me tell my story..."
"Okay, tell your story. I'm corn. I'm all ears..."
"Wise guy. Anyway, I was sitting at the computer playing Simpson's Gunshy and hoping I'd get tired again. And then I heard somebody walking to the kitchen and opening the ice box..."
"REFRIGERATOR, dad!!! How many times do I have to tell you??? There are no ice boxes and I don't believe you even had them when you were kids..."
"Okay, the fridge. But since I was alone I thought Italo must have come in while I slept, or Marco, so I said, 'Hello? Italo? Marco?'
"And then Italo said, "It's just me, dad."
"Alright. Have a good dream, buddy...Glad you're here."
And then, I told Madeleina, I was able to go back to sleep, happy that Italo had come home in the middle of the night.
"But then," I said, "I woke up again at about 5 AM and started the coffee and brushed my teeth and looked outside. And I didn't see Italo's car. Or Sarah's car. Or any other car other than my truck. So I went to Italo's room and opened the door. I couldn't feel him so I turned on the light: No Italo.
"So, baby, that was just a ghost."
"You weren't dreaming?"
"Not a chance. Totally awake, hoping I could get sleepy and go back to sleep."
"Not a chance. Totally normal. Not drunk, no pot, no nothing. Just a regular answer to my question, until I checked the front door in the morning and realized it was still locked from the inside and that nobody had come in after I went to bed. So just a ghost, girl. So when you tell me what would I think if you said you saw a ghost, what should I say? They're here all the time."
"But your's was nice. It made itself sound like Italo so that you wouldn't be afraid after you heard it walking in the kitchen and opening the fridge. That's a very nice ghost. It didn't want you afraid of it's presence."
"Girl, what are you? Like a thousand years old, or what? I could think this out for a year and never realize that you're absolutely right, that the ghost, once discovered, decided it didn't want to freak me out so disguised him/herself as Italo, knowing that if I thought Italo had come in in the middle of the night I'd be happy and able to sleep again.
"How the heck did you figure that one out?"
"I'm smart dad. And I'm you're daughter. And I had a dream explaining it to me. I didn't know what the dream meant until just now when you told me that story. Now I get it.
"So who the heck are these ghosts who are turning on the radio, pretending to be Italo and all that?"
"I have no idea. I guess we'll have to ask them."
"You got it, dad."
Posted by Peter Gorman at 4:20 PM
Thursday, December 03, 2009
Okay, I don't generally do this but what the heck. For those of you who want to hear what I actually sound like, here are links to two radio shows (one is a two-parter) I recently did. They're mostly on ayahuasca and there is probably repeat between the two shows.
I'm told they're interesting, but I have not heard them--yikes! I get enough of me--yet. And won't for some time, if ever.
The newest show was done by DJ Zart and is up on Radiohuasca.
Part One: https://www.yousendit.com/download/TzY1MFhxa0RqV0FLSkE9PQ
Part Two: https://www.yousendit.com/download/MVNkTXRRTXZRR2NLSkE9PQ
The blog for Radiohuasca, which has this ready to download if these links take too long, is: http://radiohuasca.blogspot.com/
The second interview was done by Rhonda at the Awakening Center
The interview is here: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/Awake/2009/08/02/Meet-Peter-Gorman-Journalist-Amazon-Explorer
I think it's also downloaded at theawakeningcenter.com
Okay, I hope they're worth the time. And if you do listen, thanks for listening.
Posted by Peter Gorman at 12:36 PM
Wednesday, December 02, 2009
I used to play handball, one wall, New York City handball, for two hours two or three times a week. Not when I was a kid, but when I was 40 years old. And 45. And 48. My partner was Earl the Pearl, and he beat me annually 3-2, or 600 to 385 or so. Earl is a New York City school teacher. He was one hell of a partner at handball. He had an insatiable appetite for it. So did I. I used to ride my bike to a playground on Cherokee Place, more or less 78th Street and the East River, to play, mostly by myself. I'd practice shots for an hour, then hit the ball to myself and not go home until I could make 100 shots in a row....not hard unless you are trying to outwit yourself. I'd get up to 25, make a killer shot, then have to start again. And again 42 shots later. My practices were often 3 hours.
And I rode my bike in those days: I rode my bike from 90th street to 17th street to the High Times' office daily. On weekends I'd take two spins around Central Park in Manhattan, each spin being about 6 1/2 miles, and then an additional mile to and from the park for a total of 14-15 miles.
And then I did sit-ups (about 800 daily) and pushups (about 200 daily), and then used light weights for 10-20 minutes daily.
And for maybe 7 years I threw a football to my friend Malcolm in Central Park three times a week for a couple of hours. He'd come to my house and we'd grab the ball and start tossing it and jog while we talked from 3rd Avenue across Lexington, across Park, Madison, and Fifth Avenue and enter the park at 90th, then toss the ball down to 82nd' street, warming up, and then we'd run routes for an hour or two. He'd toss to me; I'd toss to him.
Malcolm was 6'4" and could leap, so he always made me look good. I was small and slow but good with routes, so I made him look good. What a time we had. I was in freaking heaven.
So I love doing sports. I could do sports 10 hours a day and never feel sated.
I once told Malcolm, when we were both stars on the High Times Bong Hitters Championship softball team (me at shortstop; him in centerfield), that I could die happy doing sports all day. ON the day in question I'd ridden my bike 4 1/2 miles through New York City traffic to High Times, worked, met Earl the Pearl for handball at the courts on 14th street and 1st Ave for two hours, then biked to the ball field in Central Park at 90th just off 5th avenue and played two games of softball. The last two games were under the wonderful influence of a light dose of lsd, which mysteriously appeared at some of the Bonghitter games, and which made catching line drives hit by ringers very difficult at my shortstop position. But I remember telling Malcolm: "A day like this makes me the happiest I can ever be. Just moving, moving, playing, playing all day. And later, I'm gonna go home and play with Chepa and the kids. I'm so freaking alive!!!!"
And I was.
And here in Texas I have none of that. No roads to ride a bike on, no handball courts, or walls I can convert to handball courts, no one to toss a football to, no fastwalking, nothing physically familiar.
And it's been nearly 8 years now and I'm still at a loss. Yes, I do pushups. And I've done at least a million sit ups since I got here, but without a partner, without a game, it ain't the same.
And today it came home as I walked outside to look at the water pipe Italo and I laid--all 120-140 feet of it--and had to fill the trench up because it might freeze tonight and that could bust the new pipe.
What a freaking daunting task. What a thankless task. I was just out there with a 120 length of 2 foot high dirt that had become mud because of the rain and had to move the mud into the trench to cover the pipe.
I did it. And in a few minutes I'm going to take a few ibuprofin, maybe 4 with a codeine for a kick, to easy my back, but I'm gonna say that work sucked. No one was there with me, no one helped, no one will even ever notice it got done. That is not the same as throwing a football 65 yards--about my best--to Malcolm in front of 100 people in Central Park who all stand up and cheer. And it's not the same as Earl the Pearl and I beating two former New York City handball champs at their own game on their own court in doubles. And it's certainly not the same as playing shortstop for High Times and winning the New York City Journalism League softball title over The New Republic, Money, Fortune and a half-dozen other teams who couldn't believe us stoners could kick their butts, regardless of how many professional ringers they brought to the game.
So there I was, looking at that dirt today, that soaking wet, heavy clay, and thinking, God, maybe I'm getting old. Maybe I'm just a weak link now. Ah, shit...
And then I move that two-three tons of mud clay and filled that trench and said, "Fuck you, god. I ain't done yet."
And while I ain't as strong as I used to be, and while I've smoked way too many cigarettes to be good for me, I still felt good when that last lump of mud made it's way into the trench.
That was for Malcolm and Earl the Pearl and the Bonghitters and my bicycle and everybody else who ever made me learn to never quit, even when you want to.
Posted by Peter Gorman at 4:16 PM