This is not my day (or week)!

[BRINDLEKIN TALES – Book 4: Chapter 7]

Subject: I saw Deek tonight, for just a few minutes.
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 1, 2021 11:44 PM

Around 10:30 PM he called across the street, so I snapped out of my late-evening relax mode and marched on downstairs and out the door. As usual, the doggies were overjoyed to see me…and, as usual, Deek frowned at that. He dropped by to have me recharge his 20-pound speaker, a smartphone and a small battery backup. Nothing about having the pups over.

Instead of the usual shopping cart, this time he had a flatbed dolly. While rummaging through his pile of today’s possessions, the pups eagerly stuck their noses in, hoping to sniff out something good. Which annoyed him, so he yelled at Lucky, “Back off!” It’s all I could do to keep myself from kicking the shit out of him, but I bit my tongue.

As I crouched down to pet Lucky, he vigorously nibbled up and down my sleeve like a barber’s electric razor, very efficient, you could almost hear the buzzing sound: his sweet way of saying “I love you so much I could eat you up!” Flaco clambered onto my lap the moment I sat down on the sidewalk. So I held her close for a couple of minutes, waiting to see if Deek had anything more to say. He remained silent, so I finally asked, “Is that all?”

He replied “Yeah.” Then I set Flaco gently back on the ground, picked up the speaker and cord, pocketed the phone and battery, wished them all a good night, and departed. Sometimes I think he’s a wicked man, and there’s nothing I can do about it. I rarely see him happy with the doggies; mostly he acts put out by their company. And to deny me the great joy of having them visit me any more, seems to bestow upon him, immensely sadistic pleasure.

Well, I have yet to hear back from Moe, which probably means I won’t hear back from him at all. I like to think that the revelation of the building manager’s insipid behavior towards me, and that video of my confrontation with Adisa and company at the front gate, threw him for a loop. We’ll see. Next time our paths cross, I’ll give him a friendly hello. That should tick him off no end.

– Zeke K-Holmes

Point Cabrillo Lighthouse, Mendocino County.

Subject: Incredible search-and-rescue story by your partner, Erwyn!
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 1, 2021 11:44 PM

I just listened to it over again, this time via podcast. I love how he drifted in and out to past memories and tied them in to his present dilemma. His favorite, new glasses which temple broke, so you wired a new piece on (but it’s not as convenient to wear, now)…mention of his son (that he’s twice the man he could ever be)…your climb up Yosemite’s Half Dome with him (I think it was Half Dome, but I don’t want to bother to find that part again)…description of the surroundings and how it was devastated by last year’s fire storm)…the slaughter of the native people in that area, during the early settler years…etc. And I learned that “Afghanistan” is properly pronounced without the G. At the end, Marshall made an apology for something he said that he later realized might have been taken as rude:

“I went by to see you and Wattson the other day, and I feel like when I was standing in your driveway, talking, I said like three or four things that I wish I could call back, because I thought they were funny, and I think they might have been taken the wrong way.”

Erwyn’s response was hilarious: “Oh, we’ve talked about nothing else, except what a shit head you are.”

Anyway, that was some story Erwyn told…captivating all the way. I really felt the Mendocino spirit through it all. Did you hear it, or were you busy tending to other chores? In case you haven’t, it begins at 27 minutes (you’ll hear the phone ring), and ends at 89 minutes:

And, for some unknown reason, he read my description comparing my spy glasses with the spy pen. Lifted from my MCN post about a video I made, showing how the pen works in the field. He chose THAT irrelevant piece, In spite of the fact I have composed SO MANY excellent tales over recent months, they would be an ASSET to his show. And I was ready to resume call-ins, all gung-ho for a second round on Memo of the Weird. Yet, to my surprise and disappointment, he suddenly dropped me like a hot yam, and never explained why. So many astounding recordings to add to my Youtube channel…all missed.

Anyway, THAT starts at 21:47 and runs just a tad over 2 minutes.

– Zeke K-Holmes

Re: Incredible search-and-rescue story by Erwyn!
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 2, 2021 12:27 PM

> Wild, huh? And he’s eighty-fucking-two. I heard the whole thing while he was on the phone with Marshall. Who had taken me completely by surprise that day, knocking on the door in the afternoon. One thing I’ve seriously enjoyed about the pandemic is how it cut drop-in visitors (my pet peeve) to just about zero.

With all the hatefulness among so many here in San Franshitsco, drop-in visits and even phone calls are usually with a hostile intent. So whenever there’s that VERY rare knock on my door, or that EQUALLY rare voicemail, I always shudder in reaction.

> But there he was, after more than a year. He was wearing a mask and standing way back; I told him we’re outside, and vaxxed, so no need for the mask. When he took it off, I saw that his beard has twice as much gray in it than the last time I saw him. Erwyn told him about being lost in the woods for a night, and Marshall told him to call it in if he wanted to.

You see, I call your partner “Erwyn” for my tales. I like it, because it’s almost identical to “Arwyn,” my own hero. His telling of that recent camp-out and exploration in the wild, by invite of Mr. Sneiderman and son was extraordinary. I felt personally involved, it was that absorbing.

> I honestly can’t remember what it was he said that he might have thought was taken the wrong way. He’s mysterious. I wish he was still having you on his show; I was very sorry and disappointed about how all of that turned out. People all around me behave strangely. I hope I don’t.

I hope you don’t either, but if you ever do, I’ll probably drown my angst in a second cup of coffee. BTW, there is another missive to you coming up, regarding this morning’s visit with Deek…MOST horrific, and has really put my living here in danger (the bastard). You’ll receive it shortly.

> Yep, it was Half Dome we climbed ( a while back now.) Scary as hell. You see it in the distance, and the people climbing it look like a line of ants. You get there to the base, after hiking uphill for hours and hours to get there, and discover that it’s monstrous, and way steeper than you expected. There are rickety metal poles set in the rock, probably back in the WPA era, chains slung between the poles for grabbing onto, and on the surface of the rock, affixed with bolts, horizontal wooden planks about six feet apart, a sort of flat ladder, for footing. You pull yourself up on those chains, going from one plank to the next. Gloves are a necessity. We had not brought our own. At the base of the rock is a big pile of assorted gloves; I think I wound up with an oven mitt and a gardening glove. It was one hairy climb, let me tell you. And only as fast as the slowest climbers. Coming down even scarier.

DON’T DO IT AGAIN…hope you’ve learned your lesson! I’ve never been one for risky adventures, as life is already risky enough just putzing around. One reason why I’m not into aggressive sports, though the inherent machismo is the main cause. Though I LOVE hiking through verdant fields, valleys and the overwhelming rush of seeing the night sky just THICK with stars no matter where you turn your head. I love camping out, “roughing it” and all that; but I haven’t done so in over 15 years. And in the last few years of it, I’d always wake up with a stuffy head and clogged nose. I guess because living so citified most of my life (after leaving my suburban childhood forever) my system finally lost its adaptation to the rural pollen. Though I DON’T suffer any allergies here in San Franshitsco. Hopefully, that will not change…otherwise perhaps I may eventually die from sneezing my way into the grave. And if I get buried out in the wilderness, I just may become “The Sneezing Ghost of Such-and-Such Valley.”

– Zeke K-Holmes

Subject: Deek just dropped by…he was horrible.
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 2, 2021 12:51 PM

And, dammit, good physician, I had the spy glasses on, but forgot to activate them, except towards the end of this fiasco. Anyway, he called up to the window, asked for more dog food, and a pair of sunglasses. Sunglasses? I can’t do that more than just this one time around…or it would become too much of an expense. So I opened a new 30-pound bag of kibble and filled two 1-gallon Ziploc freezer bags from that…put the bags in another bag, to which I also added five cans of wet food. While in the process of gathering everything together, he hollered up again: “Hey! Hey!” I ignored him, because I was already locking the door and had the full load with me, including that weighty, Bluetooth speaker.

Upon opening the gate, he was right there, so I told him why so restless, you know it takes me a few minutes to bag the dog food, I’m not gonna jump at your every command. At that same time, the pups had walked partly inside, eager to run up to my hovel. Upon which he yelled at them and YANKED them back out. I chastised:

“Don’t do that, Deek, that’s abusive.”

Well, he made all kinds of excuses in staccato, wouldn’t shut up, so I spoke over him, that I’m sick and tired of him always acting like a bitch when he comes by. That he should be a lot happier, with these wonderful dogs, and all the help I’m giving them.

Then he rattled on about how the dogs got sick last time they were over, the building is full of disease, blah-blah-blah. He started pushing his cart towards Castro street, said he’s gotta go somewhere, yes, I love you, thanks for everything you do, I couldn’t do it without you. But he spoke those words in boisterous sarcasm, so I further reprimanded as he lumbered down Market Street with doggies in tow:

[INTERRUPTION: just at the end of my composing the previous paragraph, I heard someone screaming in rage. Turned out to be Deek returning in my direction, who then parked himself right below Moe’s windows and continued his angry rant, so loud the whole block could hear. More on that in a minute.]

So I further reprimanded him, that the dogs are very sweet, they’re a gift from God, and should always be treated with kindness, not short-tempered bullshit…that he needs to grow up, count his blessings, and be a lot more cheerful…that he has so much going for him, yet is missing out on most of it…that he’s making up excuses to not have the pups visit me any more…that he needs an attitude adjustment, his hostility towards me is disgusting. Now, about his unexpected (and unwelcome) return:

Seems he had lost his phone only minutes after departing, and grew into a rage over it, hollered up at me “Do you have my phone?” to which I just looked down, shrugged my shoulders with hands palms-up. He then resumed wailing while parked at the corner by my building, rummaging through his pile of junk on the dolly cart. Then that homeless lady who screams FREQUENTLY showed up to watch Flaco & Lucky, while Deek retraced his steps to see if he could find that phone. And SHE started screeching at someone halfway down the block, who screamed back at her. Her name is Scampy, and you’ll see who she is on the video.

I’m infuriated that I didn’t get most of this recorded, bud DID capture about 4.5 minutes of the final part of this pointless drama that I call “Deek’s Latest Hissy Fit.” The timing of his creating further disturbance near Moe’s residence was INTENTIONAL, and I accused him of just that. He kept making excuses for his rotten behavior, which included stating he doesn’t care about what Moe thinks. I told him he probably got me in big trouble, and he’s STILL yelling, and needs to quiet down and get outta here.

He also said if I politely asked him to NOT yell or yank at the dogs, he would’ve complied. I told him, nonsense, you need to hear that without being coddled (well, something to that effect…you’ll see all this in the video). He never listens to me unLESS I yell, or at least, speak REAL firm-like. Deek blamed me for his flash of rage, because of my bold admonishments; I told him he’s an adult, but acting like a brat. “You triggered me!” he blasted back. And I countered: “Nope, you just trigger yourself. You need to stop being a hothead, no reason to be such a drama queen…besides, you found your phone, right?

He did…don’t know where he found it, but probably stashed within that pile of crap, maybe the bag of dog food I gave him. Which at this point, he seemed to have broken open one of the Ziplocs, because some kibble had spilled onto the sidewalk. He said that Scampy often steals his phones, and he was ready to beat her up.

He finally toned it down, as he gathered up all his “possessions” from the sidewalk, and in a minute or so, departed with doggies in tow…who remained cool as furry cucumbers all the while!

Upon returning hovel, I discovered my laptop was not connecting to the spy glasses after plugging them in! Just more frustration to the mix. I rebooted, and that took care of it. But I don’t know why the glasses recorded only 4.5 minutes, when there were at least 5 more minutes of good witness. Including an elderly woman (who appeared to be 80-82) sitting at a table outside the Super-Duper burger shop, said to me as I passed by: “You handled that very well!”

So I stopped to chat, telling her we’ve been friends for many years, but he IS difficult sometimes. That the pups should be better treated…in fact, they shouldn’t even be forced to live on the streets, and I have the perfect residence to house them. When I told her I’m writing true stories about all this and they’re online, she queried:

“Oh, what should I google to find them?”

So I said, “Brindlekin,” then paused a moment and added: “Wait just a minute, I’ll come right back down with my card.”

So I rushed on hovel, snatched up a card, and returned outside to present it to her. Upon departing, I told her “Thank you, Lisa, you just made my day!” (I had asked her name earlier, and introduced myself.)

So I presume that, since Deek has decided to fuck me over, I’ll get yet another email from Moe…or, more likely, he’ll complain directly to Kevin. Who will then mail me a letter of complaint, with a copy sent off to Ablahblah Realty. It is of course my assumption, that whatever whiny email he posts to me, is also bcc’d to the manager. What the hell is going on?

IT’S ALL SCRIPTED, AND THEY’RE IN ON THIS TOGETHER: Deek, the manager, and Moe (with Scampy as a featured extra in this scene). And probably having a good laugh over it, too. I’m waiting for this latest video to finish uploading, before posting this missive. It’s a 55-minute transfer, with a bit over 10 to go.

[13-minute pause, please be patient.]

Ah, here we go (check out the thumbnail):

Re: I saw Deek tonight, for just a few minutes.
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 2, 2021 2:02 PM

> He’s showing you what a “big man” he is. NOT.

All my criticism the past several weeks is getting to him. He’s either gonna grow up fast, or explode in self destruction.

> It’s just plain fucking cruel.

Yes, but so are some of the residents in my building, along with the fuckin’ MANAGER. I’m between a rock and a hard place. But get this, Wattson:

I’ll come out the winner WITH the dogs, and without Deek if need be. Doesn’t he realize he’s putting himself in the absolute position of total obeisance towards me? He’s setting his own trap on HIMSELF. As are Moe, Kevin, and Myrtle and son. Let us not ALSO forget Ablahblah Realty. Oh what fools these mortals be!

– Zeke K-Holmes

Re: Incredible search-and-rescue story by Erwyn!
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 2, 2021 2:20 PM

> Not a chance.

I find people who brag about their climbing (or skydiving or football or bungee jumping or running of the bulls or whatever “athletic” nonsense they’re into) intolerably boring.

> You got that right!

Life is full of adventures without the high risk, anyway…so what’s the point? So many new things to discover, participate in…even if you’re all by your lone some. As I am, for the most part.

> Have lost the urge; feel pressed for time all the time now.

You have so much rural beauty right where you live, so that’s a plus.

> Good old Such-and-Such Valley.

Yes, it’s never too far away, and you can always hang there at such-and-such a time! Indeed, I love to go there whenever I’m in such-and-such a mood. But that’s only when I don’t have such-and-such to do on my computer.

– Zeke K-Holmes (such-and-such private sleuth at your service)

Subject: You MIGHT have responded to the wrong missive.
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 2, 2021 2:39 PM

The one I sent just a short while ago is entitled “Deek just dropped by…he was horrible.” It includes a video of Deek’s outburst earlier today. Instead, you replied to a post I sent the day before, entitled: “I saw Deek tonight, for just a few minutes.” Though maybe you’re getting to it right now, and I’m just too restless, after his vile behavior. I can send it again if you’d like…or just be patient. It IS one of my more important pieces.

– Zeke

Re: You MIGHT have responded to the wrong missive.
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 2, 2021 3:46 PM

> No, I read the latest! “He was horrible.” Truly appalling. Just haven’t had a chance to respond yet. And will definitely watch the short video included.

Thank you! I just wanted to be sure you didn’t miss it, what with your busy schedule. As it’s one of those emails where your input and reflections would be of high value for me, in deciding how to best deal with the idiot on the streets, and the idiot on my floor. Also, something REALLY NICE also occurred in the mix…an angel appeared out of nowhere, so to speak, and spoke the kindest words! You’ll know EXACTLY who I mean, once you read that piece. And damn it, I thought the spy glasses caught it all, but once I returned hovel, nope. It stopped recording after 4.5 minutes, even though there was plenty of space on the SD card, and I have it set to record in 30-minute chunks. Though even as short as 5 minutes would’ve worked, too, as it creates a NEW file to continue (and another new one, and so on) until I shut if off myself, or it runs out of room or the battery dies. Would’ve made OUTSTANDING vérité! Once again, I trust that my Reptilian Allies have their own recording of the scene. One would think so because, after all, THEY WROTE THE SCRIPT.

What a furshlugginer time to be alive, Wattson. Get those lizards outta my bed! And head! The scales have NOT fallen from my eyes, but grown an extra pair! Are we having fun yet?

– Zeke K-Holmes

Re: Zach just dropped by…he was horrible.
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 2, 2021 7:11 PM

> He’s feeling guilty about something, and so takes the offensive. Literally and figuratively.

Oh, Deek has TONS of things to feel guilty about including, possibly, plans to make Flaco pregnant. Or maybe someone’s offered him big bucks for the dogs…which’ll be spent in two days. Well, no point conjecturing, it could be anything in his long litany of sins. But I’m confident that any and all of his devious schemes will backfire. Per my Bodhisattva Premise:

“You have the greatest obligation to relax in faith, and not let worry poison the day…realizing that all sincere prayers WILL be answered in their own time, not yours.”

> Fucking ASSHOLE.

To put it mildly.

> Nightmare.

But notice how Scampy’s very kind to the pups, and helping clean up after Deek. Last year when I was visiting Deek down the block around 10 PM, he was with several other vagrants, who had spread tarps and blankets to sit on, with Lucky & Flaco cozily resting on one end. But they were leashed to the shopping cart, which was by the curb, thus obstruction any passersby, who’d have to skirt around by walking on the street. I saw a small blanket atop the cart, so plopped it down by the curb, in order to have the doggies sleep over there, that there be a clear space on the sidewalk. When I went to summon the pooches over, Scampy picked up that blanket, and I at first thought she was gonna walk off with it.

So I said hey, that’s for the dogs, but she ignored me. The next thing I knew, she had set up a very clean and tidy, cushy area for them…much nicer than my simple toss of the blanket. I was most impressed, and said thank-you.

> God, that’s so great. I love it when that happens!!!

She was my angel of the moment, a sweet little old lady who watched it all unfold! And so thoughtful to actually ask me where she can read my tales! That really clinched it for me, as I said in an earlier email: bodhisattvas always plant clues into any crisis, if you are astute enough (or ready) to notice them…which may include a sweet word or two. I think of Lisa now, and thank her once again. Well, that was hours ago, and she may already be reading my Brindlekin Tales! BTW, when I pointed out that sentence: “True stories from the Castro…eat your heart out, Armistead!” she cracked up because SHE GOT IT. She knows who Armistead is, and his book “Tales of the City.” I couldn’t ask for a more perfect little oasis of illumination, amid this bleak nightmare!

> Strutting around with his shirt off (nice day in SF!)

Yes, a lovely day…which Deek set out to ruin for me, like the shitty twat drama queen he is. He’s 43 years old now, and still living out his teenage hustler fantasy of being the tough guy on the block. He looks ridiculous, flashing a bit of his butt crack like some adolescent punk. Where does he think he is: the Tenderloin? I think I’ll ask him that tomorrow, when he’s due to pick up his weekly allowance. Highly unlikely he’ll miss THAT!

> flinging abusive crap in every direction. My wish is that he will leave the doggies with you and disappear.

Other folks in the ‘hood are pretty much disgusted with him, so THAT may come to pass. My heart goes out to Flaco & Lucky. Yet I always keep in mind that, on Day 1 of my Brindlekin Adventures, she looked at me with kind joy from that little hole she dug, as if to say, “Don’t worry, Zeke, everything will turn out just fine!” Hmm…

…maybe Moe will have a word or two with him, and scare Deek shitless, and away for good. After, of course, handing the dogs over. Which he’ll then bring to me. Well, that’s just speculation, but, since this is obviously a script written by bodhisattvas, I consider that a possible outcome. Moe may be one, too. This morning’s scenario was all too tightly woven to be OTHER than a written composition. I suspect Arwyn to be the playwright.

Of course, if such be the case, Deek is also one of the actors and just playing his role to make me come out of all this as the hero of the show. All glory to the hypnotoad!

– Zeke K-Holmes

Subject: Pups are snoozin’ away on my bed!
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 3, 2021 9:19 PM

Deek showed up an hour ago to pick up his allowance. His demeanor was excellent, and he was clean and well dressed. There seemed to be a new calm about him; quite a contrast from yesterday. In fact, I’ve never seen him so collected before, in all the years I’ve known him! I crouched down to greet the pooches who were delighted to see me…no surprise there. As I was petting them, Deek chimed in:

“I guess they can stay with you for awhile.”

I replied: “Really? I’d love that, thanks.”

He said he might be back in a couple of hours, or he might show up tomorrow morning, instead. The usual routine. So he handed me the leashes, his smartphone and the 20-pound speaker, and off we bounded to my sanctuary. The dogs tugged like wild as we climbed the stairs, so a third of the way up, I let them go…tumbling and yipping with such joy you can’t imagine! Instead of dashing up and down the hallway, they eagerly parked themselves by my door. Soon as I opened it, they both hopped on the bedding and began fluffing it up and tucking themselves underneath. Ah, comfort! Of course, I gave them some ducky treats right off the bat. Then off to doggy slumberland they went (2 minutes):

I think my newer spy glasses are faulty, as it seems like recording mode frequently turns off after a few seconds. How frustrating! But that explains why I didn’t get more than 4.5 minutes yesterday, so missed that precious scene with the little old lady, Lisa. And also, missed today’s meetup with Deek. Had I not superglued the lenses, I could’ve pulled one out, and used it on the first pair of glasses, which work perfectly. Ironic or what? So I guess I’ll just have to resign myself to wearing the one with the missing lens, if I hope to continue to get more of those excellent videos!

Today, I completed the process of turning all my Brindlekin chapters into narrated versions. The sense of accomplishment is awesome…it felt so important to me, to get the audio out there, even if the voice is just digital. The procedure was tedious, but necessary. For example:

Back and forth exchanges in a single email (which was most of them) required me to break each section into a “you said/I said” pattern. Like so:

Wattson wrote:

Blah blah blah blah blah blah.

So I replied:

More blah blah blah blah blah blah.

Wattson wrote:

Yet more blah blah blah blah blah blah.

So I replied:

Yet even more blah blah blah blah blah blah.

And so on, as many times as required. There were other adjustments I made to the text, such as excluding most links, and rewriting foreign words and phrases into phonetic English, so the digital voice won’t mess up the pronunciation. For example: instead of “vérité,” I spelled it “ver-ih-tay.”

I also added a period to lines that did not end in any punctuation, such as a book title or my name at the end. Otherwise, the digital convertor would run right into the next line, as if it were all one sentence. IOW: the period can be used to slow it down a bit, as does the comma.

But I didn’t obsess over getting all words pronounced perfectly, as I’d go nuts trying to accomplish that! I’d say the narration came out pretty good…more than sufficient for those who are vision impaired, to enjoy my tales. And anyone else who chooses the audio route. Here’s how it sounds (using my latest chapter, as an example); just listen to a half minute or so, to see how well it came out).

It just occurred to me there are programs out there that can break up anyone’s voice from an audio recording, into syllables, and pretty much turn them into a digital reader. It would be relatively easy to do that with Marshall’s voice, as I can use one of his podcasts! That would be HILARIOUS if I could duplicate his voice to narrate my stories!

Well, I’m gonna relax this evening, with Lucky & Flaco’s beatific company!

– Zeke K-Holmes

Subject: Deek just came by to pick up the doggies.
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 4, 2021 10:37 AM

I fed them extra early, just in case he really DID show up around 8 AM, like he said yesterday evening. Normally I feed them breakfast around 10:30, after letting them snooze extra long, and taking them for a walk. To my surprise, he DID come by the gate around 8:30. This is a 40-second video of that scene, which I call “There’s Always Something.” With the following description:

Deek dropped by this morning, to pick up the pups who stayed with me overnight. Glad to see the “no drama” Deek before I have my first cup of java for the day. However, he could NOT just leave it alone, with a final, rude comment upon departing. It was in response to my statement that they ate well this morning. You probably can’t make out what he said on the video, but these are his words (approximately; I couldn’t make them out either, during replay): “Ate well? They look skinny. When they’re with me, they’re fat.” Which is not only untrue, but it defies logic, since even if I didn’t feed them anything at all, they wouldn’t look skinny within a day’s time. But what IS true is that, in Deek’s world, there’s ALWAYS something to gripe about, no matter how perfect the day.

This is all his desire to feel he’s in command of the ship, when it comes to the Brindlekin. So there will always be SOMEthing I do wrong, regarding their care. Nonetheless, he trusts me implicitly with them; thus it is vital that I not strip away his sense of control. So it’s a fine balance between criticism that he MUST hear, and not driving him away…for the sake of the mutts. I can handle it.

Though last night he put me in a slight rage, which I kept to myself. When he showed up to drop off the pups (around 8 PM), he was with someone else I’ve never seen before: a heavy-set black dude (wearing a mask, unlike him). Upon returning his freshly charged devices and his handing me the leashes, he called out as I walked off:

“Remember, they’re just staying with you overnight, enjoy their company, don’t try to steal them again!”

I chose to ignore this, and entered the gate without looking back. That was a setup, saying such a stupid thing in front of a stranger. His treating me like I’m an idiot, giving his guest a bad impression of me, and that Deek is king of the roost around these parts, with me among his many dimwitted minions whom he must keep in line. He’s done this before, and more than once. And right below Moe’s apartment, to boot. He knows what he’s doing, orchestrating things that way…as for one thing, I’m less likely to confront him immediately, what with the dogs and a stranger present, and my quasi-fascist neighbor within earshot.

And if I bring it up to him later on, he’ll either deny ever saying it, or accuse me of hanging onto the past! Talk about infuriating. He’s quite the manipulator, but I’ve warned him time and time again, it’s going to backfire some day, if he keeps it up…and he just may lose the dogs as a result. Plenty of his street friends have seen me with him and the canines, including trusting me with them from time to time. So they are far less likely now, to believe at least SOME of his lies about me. By thrusting me into his own homeless world against my will (because it’s really none of their business), he thinks it plays into his favor, control-wise. But it does not, since now they see how WELL I treat the pooches, and how difficult it can be at times, dealing with him. In sum:

His putting those sweet, furry angels in the middle of pointless drama is horrific. He knows I won’t reprimand him with the force necessary, in their presence. Compelling me to wait the next time he shows up, to address his latest mind-fuck (assuming none of his street friends is present, which sometimes they are, thus thwarting me). But then he’ll make all sorts of bratty excuses, and accuse me of lying. Or it’ll be such a quick visit, I won’t have a chance to reprimand him. None of his “friends” would ever dream of opposing him, seeing as he’s their cheap and instant source of crystal gratification. In fact, they’ll say whatever they think pleases him…which includes turning against me, if they deem that necessary to remain in his good graces. Anyway, good doctor:

Flaco favored sleeping in a box last night. The previous box I had discarded, in preparation for bedbug treatment. Shortly after they arrived hovel last night, I thought: maybe if I check the back porch, there’ll be a spare box to use. So I stepped out and noticed a small stack of U-Haul cardboard flats on their side, still resting on the wall beside dead-Todd’s room. They’ve been there since he passed on, in order to pack up his belongings, though greatly diminished in quantity at this point. Interesting how Todd’s ultimate demise has been a boon for yours truly in a number of ways.

For one, the shared restroom is now almost always vacant for my use, instead of over half the time when I needed to poop, it was occupied. Todd was a chronic lingerer, when it came to potty time. I’d often lightly rap on the door to see if someone’s in there, and it was usually Todd, who’d always say, “Out in a moment.” But he never was, sometimes remaining on the throne for 15 minutes more, or longer. But I assure you, Wattson, his constipated nature extended way beyond his bowels for all the years he’s been here.

Another plus that came with his passing, is a mountain of excellent books and DVD movies dumped on the back porch for anyone to retrieve and enjoy! Not to mention he can no longer GOSSIP wicked things against me, to other residents. So, a new box for Flaco is only the latest benefit resulting from his most welcome “excommunication.” Hooray! But Demeter only knows who my NEXT neighbor will be. I wouldn’t put it past the manager to select someone who’d be yet another irritation in my life.

Nothing more from Moe; he’s opted to remain silent after my patient rebuttal. Who knows WHAT he’s scheming up at this point? His mother has been very ill now, for at least several months…perhaps she has died by this time. I like to think that my revelation of Kevin’s nasty attacks (and false accusations), along with my conflict with Myrtle and Adisa–and my consequent contacts with Ablahblah Realty over this–have inspired him to back off!

And not a word from my Philly friend, Chuck, since he emailed me that he thinks he caught the virus. That can’t be good, because if he was still hangin’ in there, he’d’ve communicated again, with me by now.

Well, it’s another lovely day, I am refreshed by Flaco & Lucky’s uplifting visit, and in command of everything, no matter WHAT crap is next hurled my way! Oh, the second pair of spy glasses is definitely not functioning right. I put them on record mode last night and this morning, yet nothing was saved to the SD card. So I thought maybe popping the card out and pushing it back in might do the trick. But the tiny chip sprung all the way out of the temple and onto the floor, so I had to jiggle it back into the slot. Unfortunately, instead it fell into a small opening right beside the slot, and is so deeply embedded that even a tweezers won’t help. Which is why I shot this morning’s video with the original, “cyclops” glasses. I was so elated to receive the second pair, but now this!

– Zeke K-Holmes

From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 4, 2021 7:18 PM

> Jesus fucking Christ.

Maybe they’re annoyed by my severe criticism of their crappy service, that I posted as a chapter in my Brindlekin Tales, titled “Chronic DOT net.” Or just my complaints posted on their customer forum. I’ve recently been watching movies on popular free sites that are totally legit: Popcorn, Crackle and Tubi. Possibly, it’s coming from there. But if so, the complaint would be wrong. Crackle sucks BTW, as they get you stuck in one commercial after another, instead of the actual movie. I’ve also been watching films from the Internet Archives, which are all public domain. Well, let’s see what they have to say. AFAIC, I’m ready to end my subscription with them…this is pathetic.

I’ll lose my phone line with that, but I can always get back on AT&T’s cheap landline service. I can resume using public wifi now, anyway. And maybe subscribe to’s dialup, like I used to do. Or just piggyback off the coffeehouse across the street, though their wifi is erratic from this distance. Maybe I’ll sign up again with the Mechanics Library.

– Zeke K-Holmes

P.S.: I just looked into canceling my service with them. $149 cancellation fee. Both Comcast and AT&T have a MUCH better deal for the low income, with higher transfer rates, both down AND up. The “up” is important for me, because of the videos. It’s five times faster than what chronic offers. BTW, complaints have been building up against them, it’s not just me. So much for their “home grown, loyal community” facade. For $10/month as a low income senior on Medicaid, Comcast would give me UNLIMITED data transfer.

From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 4, 2021 7:41 PM

> They still don’t tell you what “copyrighted” item they think you’re using.

I’m guessing it’s the SAME nebulous complaint just reposted to them. I replied, asking them “What the heck is going on this time? Who and what is this complaint coming from?”

– Zeke K-Holmes

Subject: This is not my day (or week)!
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 5, 2021 7:32 PM

Between my quasi-fascist neighbor, Deek’s continued insults and poor treatment of the pups,’s sloppy accusations, and my spy glasses failing…yet one more slap in the face just occurred to me, only an hour ago:

As I walked home from a little grocery shopping, I passed by Walgreen’s tiny pharmacy outlet a half block from me on Market Street. And a sign on it said: free COVID-19 vaccine for walk-ins. But that wasn’t quite enough of a slap in the face, for as I strolled just 15 feet further, some friendly lady in a Walgreen’s smock stepped up and asked would I like to get my free vaccine today. So I just told her no, thanks, I got my first shot a few days ago, so I have to wait on the second. But thank you for being out here to let people know.”

Now as for Chronic, here is what MAY be going on, as your IP address CAN be stolen, and used in your name. The article is brief, and clearly explained:

There is that certain Nazi character on the discussion list, who seems to easily obtain new gmail addresses under other names. Which is HARD to do, as you’re required to give them your smartphone number. Now, only a good hacker could manage that UNLESS he’s paying a service (say, from the Dark Net) to do that for him. And, he has been harassing me in a MAJOR way for months now, and I sure have got him triggered. So, he’s suspect numero uno.

At any rate, I’ve been thinking about cancelling my subscription with Chronic anyway, because it’s a big chunk of moolah, and their service isn’t very good. The webmail they provide is old software and full of bugs. And they claim that Google isn’t spying through that webmail, even though when I ran its spellcheck about three months ago, a window popped up to tell me that Google collects all your spellcheck usage. I think I told you about that. Their excuse was that it doesn’t (even though that program by DEFAULT, interfaces with Google), but the subroutine to warn you about this was not removed…and they’ll correct that shortly. More like: I caught them with their hands in the cookie jar! Respecting customer privacy, my ass! They brag about how un-Google they are; what a joke.

This warning only appeared once so far, in the many times I’ve used their spellcheck…and, since most netizens don’t use webmail, it’s highly unlikely anyone would catch this faux pas. But I did, since I PREFER webmail, and use it all day long.

This is but one of several examples that have turned me sour on them. Like when you need a technician to come out, they usually schedule that two or three weeks in the future! Just like the big ISPs do. Now you tell me how their “community” oriented service is much more prompt with troubleshooting than the monopolies, if they usually make customers wait so long. Which is precisely WHY I chose them for my ISP. They made an exception in my case, because I threw a big hissy fit on their forum…which you already know.

I hesitate to pay for any other ISP, even if the deals are really good (for the low income thanks to gov’t mandate), via Comcast and AT&T, because they have a lousy track record, too, when it comes to customer privacy and service. I’ll probably be better off using public wifi, like I’d been doing for years, before signing up with Chronic.

For that same reason (lousy customer service) I also am wary about signing up for an “Obama phone,” because I’ve reviews on the companies that provide free or very cheap cell service for that program. Things like overcharges, hidden fees and lousy voicemail. Most of them limit to so many talk minutes a months, after which they’ll charge more. And some customer have complained on these consumers forums, that they’ve been overcharged for going over their minutes, though they have NOT. Or when you check to see how many minutes you have left for the month, it’ll show a lot less than you should have! I really don’t want to get caught up in this cell phone/Internet mess.

So that’s my day; I’ve had better. But I feel most morose over Flaco & Lucky’s ongoing, and unfortunate, situation. Deek is building up in his head more and more fake reasons to keep the dogs away from me. Well, you know the old saying: “No good deed goes unpunished.”

But I’ll stand firm, weather the storm out, knowing that this, too, shall pass.

– Zeke K-Holmes

Re: This is not my day (or week)!
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 4, 2021 8:11 PM

PLEASE NOTE I’M NOW USING MY GAY-BIBLE EMAIL. May as well delete my sonic address.

> When the time comes for the second shot, might you be able to go to this nearby place for it? Did you get Pfizer, or Moderna?

Walgreen’s does Pfizer, I got Moderna.

> I read about some guy who accidentally got one Pfizer and one Moderna. Wonder how that turned out!

He’d have to do it all over again, the RIGHT way.

> But how fucking infuriating, that this place was right there in your neighborhood and nobody told you about it!

I think they might have opened just today, spontaneously. Walgreens sucks on every level…this is typical. They got my personal data and I got NOTHING. And there is NO WAY to cancel your subscription with them!

> It occurred to me that it might be him, then I thought: nah, he’s not smart enough. But he’s a vindictive sonofabitch.

No, he’s not smart enough to be a hacker himself, but you can PAY for services to do that for you. There are some that get you a new gmail address whenever you want. And there are others that hack someone else’s info for you, for a fee of course. And let you fake someone else’s IP number. So you don’t have to be smart at all, just have some money. So he’s smart enough to get different gmails, so he’s also smart enough to pay for OTHER hacker services, too.

But I tick a lot of people off…just for saying I’m gay, let alone being activist about it. And I’m really out there in cyberspace.

> It IS a mess, and getting worse by the minute as everyone clamors for service. Could we have dreamt any of this when we were 1950s children?

No, I’m not insane…and you HAVE to be insane to dream up such a capitalist nightmare. Everything’s a convoluted ball of wires, impossible to untangle. Kafkaesque.

> I had a Deek-like person in my life years ago. Like you, I practically turned myself inside out trying to help him; what I got in return was disgusting insults and vicious lies. He’s dead now, and I’m glad.

At least two sweet little doggies’ lives weren’t on the line over him. That makes it a hundred times worse. I drove Deek out of my life for almost a year…but it was meeting Lucky that turned me around.

> It will.

Yes, of course. The bullshit should subside within a week or two. I saw Deek this evening, he’s being more reasonable. He’s making progress, but boy do I have to be strict sometimes, to get him to move ahead. Things WILL work out in my favor.

– Zeke K-Holmes

P.S.: I’m actually looking forward to going back to regular use of public wi-fi. I’m sorry I ever bit the ISP bullet! All these services stink. And I’m gonna keep my IP number hidden for now on. People can easily STALK you once they know that number…and it’s very easy to find out what it is, no hacking needed. That is a BIG flaw with Internet providers, who really SHOULD not do that.

Subject: More crap I forgot to mention…
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 4, 2021 8:23 PM

…just to add extra fecal frosting on the cake:

Yesterday, I contacted a local Verizon shop to find out about their $25/month cell service for people over 55 (no hidden fees or taxes, unlimited calls and texting, 5GB/mo. data, paid monthly). The woman who picked up the phone was OBVIOUSLY Chinese, and I could barely understand a word she spoke. Had no idea what I’m talking about, and the 55+ plan is $80/month for one person! If only I had saved the Verizon mailer, which was what made me aware of it in the first place. Or downloaded the Verizon page that featured it, but is no longer there.

So I told her Verizon has been offering this deal for months now, it’s plastered all over the media. I tried to find it on the web while speaking to her, but I didn’t come across ANYTHING! She suggested maybe I drop by her store in person. And with that, I hung up.

Changing my email from Chronic’s to Google’s on GoFundMe and Idrive (my backup service) appears impossible, so I contacted the support team for both companies in order to correct that…still waiting on their response. GFM is NOT user-friendly, making some basic changes or updates like pulling teeth. And when you go to their help pages, the instructions are incorrect, probably because out of date. And you have to go through several hoops before you can even GET to their contact page. Plus, if you DON’T go that route, sending them an email directly to “” will be rejected! But since no more money has been coming in for several months now, I’m thinking about shutting it down. I’ve been keeping a separate bank account open for this, which costs me $5 a month. No big deal, as far as THAT goes.

I’ll be using my gay-bible email again, for the MCN lists, as no one can mimic my name, as they could on Protonmail or even Gmail. Which latter is strange, because you need a specific cell number for each new user. Unfortunately, a certain someone is paying an underground service to allow him to do just that.

Remember how I backed up my extra writing of additional tales not in my trilogy, by forwarding the email (from Chronic’s service) in chunks to my gay-bible webmail? Well, I decided that, since I’ll soon no longer be a Chronic customer, I should do a second backup to Gmail. It was a tedious process and, unfortunately, they all bounced back, with Google claiming such a high volume of large messages, they have rejected them and blocked my IP number! Obviously, they didn’t bother to notice that I’m ueing the same IP to log in and use Gmail, as I am to transfer messages! But since that IP number is one of many from my VPN, it’s trivial, as I can easily switch to another server elsewhere in the world. But they did NOT block that IP number from my continuing to use Gmail in every other way. That, my dear Wattson, is a flaw! Because they SHOULD have realized that the same Gmail user is the one transferring a bunch of data from another webmail service!

So I finally resorted to downloading them all, to my hard drive…yet another painstaking chore; but glad I finally got around to it. For now, those older emails are also backed up to my external hard drive, as well as the cloud.

As for Chronic’s security: each of their modem/routers (or “gateways”) comes with two, built-in passwords (one for the system, and one for wifi) that CAN be discovered by a hacker, simply by downloading a list of these security keys for whatever model gateway (or stand-alone modem or router) they’re looking at. Chronic uses a company called “Pace,” whose modems and routers are cheaply built, with poor security features. And my building is very transient, with some AirBnB rentals thrown in the mix. So I have NO idea who most of my neighbors are. Which makes for an excellent reason to keep my VPN active at all times, just like I do for public wifi.

Plus, Chronic’s DSL maintenance and service is fragmented (which I learned the hard way), because DSL is now considered outmoded. Thus, they focus most of their attention on their fiber optic lines (or IOW, their high paying customers). Every time it rains more than a drizzle, my transfer rate slows down to a crawl.

If I go the AT&T route, I’ll still be getting DSL (not good), but with Comcast it’ll be cable (much better). Though as I’ve said before, I hesitate from putting my eggs in any ISP basket, after what Chronic has put me through. But I just may resume using an old-school landline provided by AT&T, if I can’t find the right cell service. Funny how our technology (thanks to corporate intrusion) has turned the simple, inexpensive process of getting a phone into a convoluted, costly mess!

I’m thinkin’ of asking Chronic support: “So, are you going to tell me when the Feds will come banging at my door, because I really want to look my best, and introduce them to these two lovely pups staying with me?”

May as well have fun with this!

– Zeke K-Holmes

Re: Deek just came by to pick up the doggies.
From: My Dear Wattson
To: Zeke Krahlin
Date: May 4, 2021 10:14 PM

> And not a word from my Philly friend, Chuck, since he emailed me that he thinks he caught the virus. That can’t be good, because if he was still hangin’ in there, he’d’ve communicated again, with me by now.


> Well, it’s another lovely day, I am refreshed by Flaco & Lucky’s uplifting visit, and in command of everything, no matter WHAT crap is next hurled my way! Oh, the second pair of spy glasses is definitely not functioning right. I put them on record mode last night and this morning, yet nothing was saved to the SD card. So I thought maybe popping the card out and pushing it back in might do the trick. But the tiny chip sprung all the way out of the temple and onto the floor, so I had to jiggle it back into the slot. Unfortunately, instead it fell into a small opening right beside the slot, and is so deeply embedded that even a tweezers won’t help. Which is why I shot this morning’s video with the original, “cyclops” glasses. I was so elated to receive the second pair, but now this!

You’ll prevail!!

Re: Deek just came by to pick up the doggies.
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 4, 2021 10:38 PM

> Uh-oh.

You can say that again.

> You’ll prevail!!

Of course I will. But now is screwing with me again. Looks like I’m gonna lose my Internet access. Thank god coffeehouses with their free wifi are opening up again!

– Zeke K-Holmes

Re: Pups are snoozin’ away on my bed!
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: May 5, 2021 2:03 PM

> So now it’s morning. Did he come back?? So cute to watch them luxuriate.

Yes, he came back…I just sent you the email about this.

> Oh, crap. Is there some way to cut a piece of clear plastic to fit the empty frame? You don’t wanna be attracting attention to those glasses.

Not really.

> HUGE amount of work. I really admire your energy.

Thank you. I was driven to get through it.

> When my old pal Roger Ebert (I knew him before he was famous!) lost his ability to speak when he had horrible disfiguring cancer surgery, he got a program for his computer that would speak as he typed. The designers of the program went and captured thousands of words from the zillions of recordings of Roger speaking (his TV show, etc.), rigged it so that his program spoke in his own voice, using words he’d uttered in the past.

That must’ve been very costly. There is nothing on the market yet, for such software, I have learned last night. There is a service called “Lyrebird,” but it’s not ready for the public, you can’t do much with it at this point.

– Zeke K-Holmes

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