wednesday was the day i often meet up with my friend Paul Brown (bigredpaul)
to do a massage exchange
we both enjoy long massages
so i work on him for about 3 hours
and he returns the favour to me
i'd had too many nights of not sleeping enough
so i let myself sleep in
and didn't get to his place til about three
and then another hour and a half passed before we got on the table
the massage was great though
and we headed off to dinner
nice Thai food
i introduced him to Som Tum (green papaya salad)
and then went to catch a bus up to Sutter and Leavenworth
however... i don't wait for busses
i walk along the route until they come
and this bus never came.
(as often happens to me in this town)
still, i eventually got to where it was happening
the Cantebury hotel
-- there was scheduled to be a National Anthropology gathering
but the Hotel strike in SF lead them to cancel it and re-locate to Atlanta
-- however factions stayed on in SF
and these, who i were meeting up with, were the Two Spirit Native Americans
my friend Clyde Hall was to be there
but when i got to the room, he wasn't there
his brother/sister Laney Thom told me he was in the smoking room
which quite surprised me
this hotel had a smoking lounge in it
(i thought that was illegal in california?)
there were a whole group of Red Indians who had been there for hours
drinking and smoking
laughing and telling stories
obviously happy to be all together again (old friends)
the rest of the patrons in the room faded out as the night waned on
the last non-indian couple started to get up to leave
saying, in heavy Glaswigean Scottish
"well, at least we can say we've met some real American Indians"
which sent the Injuns flying
they all gathered around and talked with them
Clyde went and fetched Laney and a bag of hand-crafts to sell to the tourists
i sat on the plush green leather settee
watching this scene
and had the feeling
that the injuns had a gentle sort of gypsy act going on
turning up the charm
and offering the goods
with a subtext i read as
"you people came here hundreds of years ago and you're still coming and we're going to get everything out of you we can--- til you're gone for good"
then another elder walks in
she's near 80
and has a tall beautiful blond girl with her
and the injuns turn on the blond
showing her moccasins with price tags well above $300
beautiful bead work
such luscious smells
of the brain-tanned buck-skin
smoked with a variety of woods to a rich brown
the blond girl kept putting the boots up to her face, nuzzling her nose into the leather grining out through her eyes talking of the smells of her childhood
he gave her a discount
and gave me a beautiful belt-bag he made himself.
buck-skin is so soft.. brain tanned... so soft...
there was an injun there who was teaching at IU in Bloomington!
Indian from Indiana!
i got some good stories, found out a bit more
i had the intuition that "Indiana" was named so because it was a Reservation
those were back in the Territory days
and there were no Reservations back then
i was "right"
Indiana was the Indian Territory.
even to this day, there is only one rez there, really, and it bleeds over from Michigan
there are three "homeless" tribes there.
He didn't have a place to stay that night
and another friend of theirs who lived over in Oakland was kinda drunk and it was late, so she was coming home with us as well
it appeared i was going home with us as well!
to stay were Clyde and Laney were, with their friends...
we stagged down Sutter street to go find the car
and i was talking to the Yurok (northern california tribe, by the oregon border) guy about those scottish women
he told me he always respected the Scotts
for some reason
he thought the Irish just folded to the english
(i didn't correct him on that)
but the scotts fought and never caved in (kinda)
still he said he always respected the scotts
and i told him about the lover i once had
cherokee, chikasaw and Scottish
"i bet he was a good man"
'yes, he was'
we found the parking garage
made quite a noise looking for the car inside it
but found it
crammed into their station wagon
seven of us winding through the city
drunk and excited
having to pee
my leg was going numb
and the house was full
but Clyde had other plans
so we went off and rented a hotel room
and made magic all night
which was wonderful
i was the undulations of the milkyway
he was a horse; i was a horse
i was a jaguar, he was an eagle
flying down onto me
in my dreams that night
so many things happened
i was out in the fields
in a forreset
living with my friend
he and i...
sleeping next to eachother
a Hawk landed next to his head
dark feathers with white highlights
bright red under the wings
he started pecking at my friend's head
i turned and picked him up by the claws
and held him
telling him not to do that
it was NOT OK with me
he pecked at my hand repeatedly
ripped my thumb open
but i wouldn't let him go until he understood
then i opened my hand and he flew
worried about my hand
but the thumb had already healed
into a purple scar
... i looked up at the sky...