Archive for the 'my lover' Category


64 Things I’ve Learned in 64 Years (not by any means an exhaustive list)

  1. mud tastes better than you might imagine
  2. troubled times do build character
  3. i will never like math
  4. love finds you
  5. tall is good
  6. i am as graceful as a cantaloupe
  7. dancing makes you feel good
  8. never mix, never worry
  9. tell the truth, even when it’s inconvenient
  10. don’t argue with a fool (it’s harder to do than it sounds


  1. pet a dog every chance you get
  2. accept the fact that some people are cat people
  3. mustard yellow is not my color
  4. long walks are soul-cleansing
  5. talking to yourself is okay
  6. not everyone is your friend
  7. listen to your heart
  8. learn a foreign language
  9. work smart, not hard
  10. if you fall off your bike/horse/pedestal, get back up, brush yourself off and try again


  1. not everything in life is analogous to a sport
  2. read the newspaper; you’ll always be able to carry on a conversation with a stranger
  3. bald is good
  4. men, grow a mustache at least once in your life
  5. kiss friends and hug them
  6. be passionate about doing good
  7. give love unconditionally
  8. hold hands with your lover
  9. resist tyranny
  10. jump in mud puddles and dance in the rain


  1. no one wants to hear you complain
  2. listen carefully and more often
  3. come with a solution to a problem
  4. some people are jealous of you
  5. show off in moderation
  6. honor the dead
  7. honor the living
  8. sharing is caring
  9. do something for a loved one without being asked
  10. be solicitous to strangers, but not obsequious


  1. treat everyone with respect
  2. go to an art museum
  3. see a play
  4. better yet, act in a play
  5. learn how to debate
  6. ask for help
  7. give help when asked
  8. hold a baby
  9. i love new york (but i don’t want to live there)
  10. laugh at stupid jokes


  1. puns are fun
  2. pinch yourself
  3. believe in something
  4. act your age (joking! what does that even mean?)
  5. stretch your legs before getting out of bed
  6. don’t lick a mustard knife and take a sip of coffee
  7. take your lunch to work
  8. start a savings account and pay yourself monthly
  9. take care of yourself, someone may depend on you
  10. have a hobby


  1. love often and deeply
  2. snoring happens
  3. see the sun rise
  4. this was easier than i thought it was going to be

cafe flore907



as you do (adventures in eating and viewing)

it seems that anymore our “adventures” always involve eating and viewing. yesterday was no exception.

we headed up the freeway to the bluff park/museum district  in long beach (405 north to 7th, over to junipero and left to ocean blvd. and left again, down two blocks and left again, and right where we parked on 2nd in front of a stunning craftsman residence (we believe circa 1912 — 1914. some houses had ‘historical markers’ designated this house or that one a “_____” or a “______”. to have read them correctly, we would have had to trespass and in these days of concealed carry, the last thing you need is an armed resident greeting you with the barrel of a gun while you satisfy your need to know. but i digress.)

i think this house suits him, don't you?

i think this house suits him, don’t you?

after some oohing and aahing over the merits of living in a historic home, m. & i tottered over to the long beach museum’s outdoor cafe, claire’s, where we met up with his ex, a., who was ‘in town’ (which means agoura hills) from chicago visiting his sister; long beach being the halfway point between us. m. & i have been together for 34 years, so that should give you an idea of our relative ages…a bunch of old men.

oceanside at claire's.

oceanside at claire’s.

we had a lovely brunch at claire’s, even though we left the “br” out of our menu selections and settled to a person on the “unch” parts. turkey club on pumpernickel, tuna salad (grilled rare and sliced thin over baby greens), and claire’s cobb salad, with freshly grilled chicken breast, gorgonzola, avocado, bacon, baby field greens, hard-boiled egg, and mustard vinaigrette. finished with a flourish of banana bread pudding.


but to the ‘viewing’ — i can honestly say, m. & i don’t need a museum to be in ‘viewing’ mode. we are of a mind to find the beauty (and the ugly) of our surroundings and to frame each ‘view’ with commentary and perceptive understanding, citing references to other ‘views’ and admitting honestly that “i don’t believe i’ve ever seen anything quite like that.” our storehouse of references inexhaustible it seems, thank the god of mental facility. although admittedly, there’s sometimes a moment of silence as one of us waits for the other’s file retrieval system to kick into gear.


we were fascinated and captivated by the works of terry braunstein, who explored time, memory, and feminism in carefully constructed collages, installations, and photography.

collage by terry braunstein at the long beach museum of art.

“who is she? dancing to kerouac” a collage by terry braunstein at the long beach museum of art.

we took the elevator up to the second floor in deference to m. and viewed a handful of examples from the museum’s permanent collection before we fell into the barbara strasen exhibit, “layer by layer”.

i have to say, it was a bit confusing at first. the work is complex and reminded me of the pattern & decoration movement of the late ’70s and early ’80s, so to sort through all of the dense imagery took some visual adjustment, but once you fell under her spell (not too trite, is that?) you could begin to understand and appreciate the journey she was taking you on. her use of lentricular lenses was particularly fascinating. i believe her commentary on the overload of images we are subjected to each and every day was precise and revelatory. we all enjoyed her work immensely.

possibly the most fab of all the homes we saw.

possibly the most fab of all the homes we saw.

the museum is small, so an hour later we were back out on the street and walking the avenues of bluff park. many of the homes had been fully renovated and brought back to (or maintained) their original glory, but there were a few that could’ve done with a coat of paint and a bit of tidying up–said the gay man. (i hate stereotypes, don’t you? but really, it is a marker, don’t you agree, that gay man like to prettify their surroundings? i’m sure there’s the exception to every rule…but none who would admit it.)

who wouldn't want to live in a neigborhood with a honor library?

who wouldn’t want to live in a neigborhood with a honor library?

we decided that even though it was suggested that everyone in the neighborhood helped maintain the ‘neighborhood book swap’, the reality was that the owners of the home this cart and sign sat in front of did all the heavy lifting. still and all, a sign of community such as this, is a blessed thing in our world today.

hollywood regency plopped into the middle of arts & crafts--perfection!

hollywood regency plopped into the middle of arts & crafts–perfection!

we plotzed when we saw this hollywood regency home cheek and jowl next to a queen anne on one side and a greene & greene on the other. <3!

and finally...

and finally…

i’ll leave you with our favorite of all of the homes we saw yesterday. if you look closely, you’ll see me waving to you from the second story window on the left.



let me explain


after reading the previous post i wouldn’t blame you for thinking i was wallowing in a pool of self-pity <oink oink> and in part, you would be correct.  (big assumption on my part: that you read the previous post, but i can have my fantasies.) remembering the past, digging into your memory, is often a torturous journey for yourself and of no interest to those who you may have drug along for the ride.

what happened: i was reading an advice column in the l.a. times this morning, ask debbie or some such thing (c’mon, i know you do too…) and you know how most of the time you wonder how people manage their lives on their own; aunt frieda smells, uncle buck is just out of prison, my kids won’t do their homework; enabler, dissembler, and many other words ending in ‘bler’, it’s more entertaining than enlightening. until this morning.


a mother wrote in to “debbie”  (debbie, yeah, right…you know i met ann landers once, aka eppie lederer, but another time…) complaining that she doesn’t feel like her children love her; they’re in their twenties and have new families and young children, working, and she complained that she never hears from them and that she has to initiate contact more often than they do. she did concede that it’s not that she feels unloved by them, but that she’s not having the relationship with them that she had expected.


debbie, kindly i felt, said, “i also remember a time when i was younger, living a world away and emotionally engaged elsewhere–and i regret that it wasn’t until i was entering middle-age when i felt my attachment to my family…intensify and deepen, and i started to give back. fortunately my mother was there when i (emotionally) returned.”

so there you have it. it’s not the past that i regret, it is the future that never happened that is the greater loss. of course, i have no way of knowing what it might have been; would my mother and i have grown closer?  would my friends and i have continued to share the same values? but i can say that i wish i’d had the opportunity to find out for myself. it’s not been easy since the ’80s when these losses occurred, just when i was gaining ground on some kind of maturity, all that support and love was lost. i did fall in love with a wonderful man and he’s been a constant source of joy, love, and support.

but it’s the web of family and friends, so gossamer-fine to begin with, that’s been shredded, wiped away in broad strokes, irritably and aggravating, as if i had walked through it; creepily following me as i try to wipe it from my face, that i can’t let go of. the what if. the had we only had more time. the god it’s so good to hear from you, how have you been?  the i love you. the me, too.


conversations with a/some ghost(s)

“have you felt them this week?” he asked this afternoon just before i left the house for a walk.

“no, not really,” i replied and closed the door behind me.


but they have been here, sitting quietly in the late light just before sunset; you’ll see them out of the corner of your eye and you hope (against hope) that they’ll speak to you, call your name, laugh with you, reach out to touch you (warmly, not the cold foggy finger they use to grasp a hold of your neck in the moonlight.)

i didn’t share that with him, not positive why i kept it to myself–obviously they’re reaching out–it’s been so personal and i can’t decide if i’ve conjured them in response to our recently dearly departed guest (the guest did not die, they just went home, but i couldn’t resist), i mean, that is a possibility, i try, though, to never question why they’re here, why they choose the when and why of their appearances.

it’s good that they’ve come to visit, there is a shred of comfort in their presence and there is concern too–on both our parts–that they’re here with a message and that they won’t be able to communicate it properly or that i won’t understand their language–they rarely speak distinctly and my ghost ‘hearing’ is often faulty, but just for the moments when i catch them looking at me from across the room, the sunlight outlining their auras (is that their form now?) i understand.


having a coke with you — a pause for a frank o’hara moment

having a coke with you


yucca in silhouette (when i get up in the morning)

you, awake.

DSC06096and eager to talk, what with your head start  on the morning, me not listening. something about my mother introducing you to someone else and when i ask what you just said, ‘oh, nothing’.


my interior landscape (and the beat goes on…)




Twitter Updates

Copyright notice

© Robert Patrick, and Cultivar, 2008-2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts, photographs and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Robert Patrick and Cultivar with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

%d bloggers like this: