You crushed my foot. You did it on purpose. I’m still pissed.

I’ve tried to be an adult about this, to see this from your vantage. You were born into spoils. You were scouted and placed on a pedestal at too early an age. Bought for a tidy sum, more than any insurance company would policy for a dying uncle. You have a hired hand for your penis.

You spend your days under the ass of a former Playboy model, roaming exquisitely manicured Kansas plains. You have nothing to do but listen to the hum of a hundred-degree sun. And be occasionally gently water-misted, by the perfect coffee pectorals of a classically handsome man in his forties.

(Who, every day, would melody the fables of his lost youth—to you or the grass or me. When he would loll along the sands of the gulf and wait for the rich Europeans to roll off their boats into his bed. Stringing together a self-reported legendary run. Only to retire far too soon, as alas, every athlete must leave the game. To follow a rich divorcee back onto her yacht. And end up housed in a tiny changing room in a stable of horses. One member of which is you.)

Most of your time is invested in a lazy shamble from shade to shade. Taking to maw only bioengineered golden grain. Jettisoning reverse geysers of urine at the earth and dumping ungodly loads wherever, whenever, too close to whomever you please.

I can see how you crushing my foot might not be such a big deal for you. I can see how you might not even remember. But I do. (Continued )

Pictured: John Blacksher, Leila Wylie and Ryan Starsailor float precariously over the Pacific Ocean at sundown.

It is eight a.m. and we’re rocketing up the coast of California. We have left the City of Angels, and are presently Oakland-bound.

The night before last, we took dear friend Leila out for a birthday dinner on Hermosa Beach. We stood on the pier as the sun sank into the ocean, and felt something. We’re not sure what.

Yesterday there was a trek through Venice Beach, where we witnessed an endless cavalcade of dopeheads and burnouts and freaks and weirdos and perverted circus acts. We were creeped out and depressed and deeply confused. It was worth experiencing, but a man can only take so much.

We met up with reader Alex, and found that he had come to understand perfectly this project of ours, and found too that he was gracious and generous. Thanks for the grub, brother. We want you to know that you’re as much a part of this thing as anyone.

There was work done on our film projects with the help of new friends Adam, Jeremy and Corey. These three scoundrels will shortly become an independent production group closely affiliated with VIII Nothing, whether they like it or not. We drank beers and played guitar on their balcony and made up songs about strangers walking down their street. When it came time to leave for the train station, firm handshakes were exchanged.

We arrived in L.A. without a single plan. Those we have to thank for making creative sparks fly during our visit were total strangers not four days ago.

Now we head north.

Pictured: Ryan Starsailor, Adam “Conspiracy Theory Kyle” Irish and John Blacksher doing their best to look moody and “band-like” in Hollywoodland.

Today we made friends and developed professional relationships. We drove down Sunset Boulevard. We zipped up the winding roads of Hollywood Hills. Everything was wonderful—but now we’re tired.

It has been an exhausting day of filming and sun burns and fake blood. See, we’re working on things, but we can’t say what they are just yet. All of this is connected, though.

Tomorrow is a very special young lady’s birthday—and there are talks of pools and hot tubs and Venice Beach. This business trip is shaping up to be a relatively painless endeavor. Thank God for that. Thank God for these people.

The sun has set, but here we are, smack dab in the middle of the universe, scheming and teeming with ideas. We can’t think of a better place to be.

Touchdown on the runway around eleven in the morning—stomachs full of black coffee and salted peanuts. We were half-asleep and half-alive. We felt like we’d been hit by a train. But the cool air and the sight of palm trees raised our spirits. Los Angeles is a hell of a place to walk around and breathe.

Yes, and in the evening there was an Irish pub and folk music. There were people drinking pint after pint of foamy brown beverages. We drank pear cider and brews laced with a hint of honey. A few video professionals showed up later on—once we’d lost our balance—and offered up their fine services. And just where would you like to go? they asked.

“To the Hollywood Hills,” we said, “where dreams are born, and where dreams go to die.”

Hell, we’ve got a few dreams. Let’s see what we can do about them while we’re here.

Rotten Trees

The murmuring leaves tickled the tree
with a curious need for wanting.
They billowed; she spit out
pretty, bitter jolts
of eighteen years of wanting
(or eighteen years of bleeding.
The voices of crying leaves
are hard to push in drowning).

But you cut down that tree,
and I buried those leaves.
And that wood –
It kept us both alive.
It kept me warm
and kept you sweating
beads and drips
of bitter wanting.

I feel aged, small and frail.
Your strange blue eyes spark
with a new, deceptive youth

It is time for me to hide:
Run, hide, lock your door,
cover your face, crouch to the floor
I am no match for your tongue or your strength.
I am no match for anyone.

Fear is creeping, thick and sharp
up my pale skin, slipping to my heart.
Behind my closet, in a secret room,
I hammer nails into a spindly square.

This blackness is deep and my lamp is cold,
but here in my haven your voice will never reach me.
Here your god will never find me. (Continued )