the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

Month: August 2006 (Page 2 of 3)

Saving the Rainforest

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Last night, the witty Rebecca of Writing Blind, wrote this comment on my blog, in response to me saying that there was HBO at Sophia’s home:

What about Cinemax? They have all those softcore porn movies on at 2 AM. Or so I’ve heard.

Suddenly, I started worrying about my reputation. Do other bloggers think that I’m the type to sit and watch Cinemax all night rather than read the latest New Yorker? You must all think I’m a crazed sex maniac! A pervert! Drooling all over myself at just the mere sight of a woman’s cleavage!

I guess I can understand why you would think that. Even my own mother has told me to stop using words like c**k and p***y on my blog (I write it with *** NOT to protect your delicate disposition, but because I got blocked from some offices the last time I used those words. It’s all about the Blog).

The truth is, I’m not much into pornography. This may surprise you that, considering that I recently asked for photos of bare-breasted bloggers, but I never thought of that request as asking for pornography. I saw it more akin to borrowing some sugar from a neighbor (and so far, only Madeleine sent me anything of value — a photo of a dog!).

Sure, I’ve looked at naked women online and I read Melissa’s famous Smut of the Month, but most pornography is pretty dull. Yesterday, Donald Pittenger at 2 Blowhards wrote an interesting post asking why sexy women in magazines always “look so stupid.” I agree. I remember once finding some site named something like “Hot Naked Babes Wearing Glasses,” and finding it really hot They actually looked like someone I meet meet wandering Barnes and Noble. Call me crazy, but in my fantasy world, my imaginary lover and I actually talk about literature after sex. Or at least we go for some pizza.

I have to admit, that with Sophia away (THREE days now!), I’m getting frustrated. And it’s not really about the sex per se. After all, we are separated and most of the time, we’ve decided that it’s not a good idea to, well, you get the point.

Actually the big frustration is the actual IDEA of the sex, the availability of it, even when it’s not in the cards. I’m like one of those New Yorkers who is proud of having the Metropolitan Opera in his city, even if he only goes there once a year. But if he really really wanted to, he could. It’s comforting to know that if the urge suddenly hits him to see Verdi’s La Traviata, he can just hop on the 1 Train and go see it.

Are you getting this metaphor?

All of a sudden, I wanted to see La Traviata!

In need of some advice, I emailed the wise Charming but Single, who knows all about the ups and downs of “single” life. I asked her what she does when there are no available men around. She said that the perfect substitute is — chocolate ice cream. I’ve heard this mentioned before, but it never made much sense. So, I took my cholesterol pill and downed a pint of Ben and Jerry’s. Unfortunately, it didn’t make a dent in how I was feeling. Maybe the ice-cream solution is gender-specific.

I decided it was time to call in the big guns — online pornography. Despite popular belief, if you look carefully enough, you CAN find photos of naked women on the internet.

Who knew?

I found a few “adult sites,” that offered “thumbnail” samples, but to look at the good stuff, you had to pay money.

Lately, I’ve been reading my friend Modigli’s site and she’s been getting all political. She is very concerned about corporate responsibility, energy conservation, and community awareness. It made me think about paying for an adult site.

“If I pay my fifteen dollars to look at some women with big fake boobs, where exactly is my money going?” I asked myself. “What if the site owner is a right-wing Republican? Or worse, an anti-Semite? How do I know that he is paying his models proper wages? Or that his models are even legal residents?”

Here I was torn between two forceful needs: a belief in social justice and a yearning to see photos of a woman spread eagle on a couch.

Luckily, I found a way to combine my two main interests in life —

F**k for Forest.com (NSFW) (via Lynn and Diesirae)

This bizarre “erotic” site is run by a group of environmentalists who want to save the rainforest. They also love to f**k. So for fifteen dollars (which supposedly goes to the rainforest), you can get a password to see attractive people having sex outdoors in the forest. Or as one of the founders of the site puts it:

Welcome, nature lover. My name is Leona. I am one of the founders of FFF. We feel sexuality is beeing [sic?] treated like nature, with disrespect. We wanted to use love & sexuality to fight against this un-natural way of treating our planet. Inside the members area you will see real environmentalists showing you REAL idealism. All to celebrate life and save nature:) Please support our fight!

Of course, I’m no fool. How do I know that my fifteen dollars are really going to the rainforest? I’ve heard horror stories about some of these so-called “charities.”

On the FFF about page, they make mention that only $3 of the $15 is used for administrative purposes, and the rest goes “to nature.” I found this hard to believe, so I decided to investigate a little further.

Going undercover, I flew to Oslo on the red eye last night and went to the FFF offices. I presented myself as both an environmentalist and someone who enjoys f***ing in the forest (I fudged that I was “experienced” on my resume). As I undressed for the audition, I put my plan in action. I excused myself, saying I needed to use the restroom down the hall. Then using all the skills I’ve learned from years of watching MacGyver, Mission Impossible, and Alias, I broke into their main office vault and took a look at their files and financial records. I knew it! Hardly any money went to the rain forest! Here is the final breakdown:

Membership to F**k for Forest: $15
________________________________

Administrative $3

Condoms $1

Bug and Mosquito Spray for the Forest $.75

Scented Candles for Romance (and to keep the bugs away while f***ing) $1

Organic Chocolate and Non-Pesticide-Used Flowers (because even women environmentalists like when a guy does that) $1.50

Trader Joe’s wine $2.50

Amy’s Vegan Frozen Lunches $2

Barry White and Anya CDs for “mood music” $1.25

Videotape for Filming $.50

Videotape For Taping “Do You Think You Can Dance?” back at the office while filming the F***ing $.50

Post Sex Cigarettes $.75

“Thanks A Lot for the Sex in the Forest” Greeting Card $.25

A Year Ago on Citizen of the Month: Never Let them See You Sweat

Hail the Returning Hero

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Neilochka returning to Redondo Beach with all his worldly possessions.

I’ve played Texas Hold-em a few times now, and I’m surprisingly good at it.  I used to play a lot of cards with my grandmother so I feel comfortable with card games.  I also think I have a good instinct for when to bluff and when to go all in.

It’s a good instinct to have in real life as well.

Today was a good time to make a play.  I decided to move back to Redondo Beach (for now), which is a few miles south of Los Angeles proper, not far from LAX.

I never really liked the “bachelor pad” I’ve been living in since I separated from Sophia.  It’s a sublet with a dirty carpet, tiny kitchen, and unfriendly neighbors.  So, today I’m starting to move out — back to Sophia’s place. 

Don’t get too excited. 

I’m only staying here for the two months that she is gone.  We decided it is a waste of money to pay two rents (and besides, Sophia wants me to water her plants and tape “All My Children” for her).

For the future — let’s see what the cards have to say in a few weeks. 

But for now, as they like to say in my part of the town, surf’s up!

Now, here’s a gratuitous shot of women in bikinis who, if they wanted to, can easily beat the shit out of me.  (As if you really believe that I would sit out in the hot sun to watch a volleyball game on a crowded beach, even if they do include women in bikinis.  That’s why they invented TV).

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A Year Ago on Citizen of the Month:  Full of Emoticons

The Art Gallery

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With Sophia in New York, I figured rather than pouting, I’d put on some of my best clothes and go out on the town. I heard about this new exhibit, so I figured I’d go and check out the scene.

“Why not?” I asked myself. “I’m always hearing that you can meet classy chicks at an art gallery.”

So, I got into my car and drove to this gallery in downtown Tehran. I had heard a lot about this exhibit: it was sponsored by the Iranian newspaper Hamshahri and contained the best international entries of cartoons mocking the Holocaust. The exhibit was packed, as it was Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad himself who called for the cartoons as a response to last year’s caricature of Mohammad in a Danish newspaper.

It had been a long time since I’d been out alone, so I was a little nervous approaching any of the available woman. But as I enjoyed some of the complimentary cheese and tahini, I saw her, like a vision from the Arabian Nights. Her eyes were like sensuous burning coals. Well, actually, all I saw were her eyes, since she was wearing a burkah.

I introduced myself. You could hear the nervousness in my voice.

“Hi, I’m Neil,” I said.

“I’m Sarvenaz.”

“So, how do like the exhibit?”

“This exhibit is important as it will finally expose the Holocaust myth that the Zionist entity has foisted on the world.”

She obviously was very bright. But since I hate to get into politics on a “first date,” I decided to change the subject.

“The tahini here is excellent. Have you ever tried the tahini from Trader Joe’s?”

Sarvenaz started laughing. At first I thought she found me amusing, but then I realized she was laughing at one of the satirical cartoons hanging on the wall.

“I like this cartoon where American students are being dragging in chains to go to a “Holocaust” Museum and forced to learn the untruths about the so-called concentration camps.

“I get it.” I said as I nodded. “The Holocaust Museum is being presented like a concentration camp itself — and the students are the prisoners. A weird concept, but clever.”

“We received entries from all over the world. The truth is slowly getting out. Knock on wood and spit on the Israeli flag.”

Although Sarvenaz seemed a little neurotic, I guess I’m always falling for the “passionate” type. She was opinionated, but I like a woman who has a mind of her own. There was something very intriguing about Sarvenaz and I definitely wanted to know her better.

“So, which piece of art do you like the best?” I asked, trying to sound “bohemian.”

“I like the work that most tests the filthy pagan West’s commitment to freedom of speech,” she replied.

“You mean like this one of Hitler and Anne Frank in bed together, having just had sex?”

“Oh, the West and Anne Frank!” she protested. “The Holy Anne Frank. You can mock our Prophet, but if we caricature the holy Anne Frank, you Westerners consider it an outrage. You laughed at us when we went on rampages across the world after the Prophet was insulted. Now we’ll see the real outrage as Western hypocrites take to the street burning down mosques while waving their precious copies of Anne Frank.”

It was at this point that I decided to change the mood into something a little more romantic.

“Uh, so, have you had dinner yet?” I asked.

“I will not eat again until Israel is wiped off the face of the Earth!”

“Not even a little snack?”

But Sarvenaz was totally fixated on the art show.

“This next cartoon is excellent. I am sure it win a medal of honor.”

“Hmmm… I’m not sure I get it… ” I said, trying to weigh my words carefully, so as not to look like I didn’t understand art. “Why is the Statue of Liberty holding a book on the Holocaust in its left hand and giving a Nazi-style salute with the other. Is this supposed to be Dada?

“You’re obviously not familiar with the artist. He is brilliant in the way he expresses his vision so succinctly. Let’s see who’s rioting now after this cartoon is seen by the American public?!

I sighed, clearly uncomfortable with my knowledge of art history. Sarvenaz laughed at me, mocking my values.

“So, obviously your Western sensibilites are disturbed by the satiric nature of these Holocaust cartoons. You are nothing more than a worthless Zionist swine who manipulated the Danish media into mocking the Prophet’s name against their better judgement!”

“I’m sorry.” I said, apologetically. “I’m a little distracted today. Maybe I’m just feeling a little lonely. You see Sophia went to New York and I’m left by myself for the next seven weeks without my Sofotchka or a blog editor.”

For the first time, Sarvenaz’ eyes showed warmth and compassion. She turned away from the Holocaust revisionist cartoons and focused on me.

“Oh, look at you. That sad face. You look like a sad little puppy dog. Why do I suddenly feel so much compassion for you — you greedy dishonest Zionist-American fool?”

“You know, my car is right outside. And it is a Prius, so I don’t waste too much Middle Eastern oil. Would you like to come home with me tonight?”

“Do you have HBO?” she asked.

“Yes.”

For the first time in my life, I praised Time-Warner.

And so it was written, so it was done. We went back to my place. I got my mind off of Sophia. Sarvenaz watched a little HBO. This morning, as we made love for the third time, I wondered if our relationship could be a building block to the start of a lasting Middle Eastern peace plan.

A Year Ago on Citizen of the Month: A Wimpy Post About Friendship

Alone Again (Naturally)

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Song based on Alone Again (Naturally) by Gilbert O’Sullivan
(original mp3 here)

It was just a few hours ago,
That Sophia went off to her show,
Leaving me right here
Holding back a tear
And sitting here drowning in woe.

But my Penis said to me,
“Lonely? Neil, you’ll never be!
Cause around the clock
You can play with your c**k
Proving that you’re self-sufficient

Enough to be a man
Who doesn’t need a blogger’s pity
Cause all you really care about
Are photos of her titty!”

You may as well go home.
And do it on your own,
Alone again, naturally.”

A Year Ago on Citizen of the Month: Deconstructing Gwyneth Paltrow

Six Pieces of Luggage

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Sophia was so nervous,
As we took our daily walk.

“I need to pack for Tuesday,
Cause I’m flying to New York.”

“Just grab something together .
It’s really no big deal.”

“Are you crazy?  I’m a woman!”
She turned upon her heel.

“I need a gown (for Broadway shows),
I need a coat (for August snows).
I need a bra (with the right cup),
I need a bra (that lifts me up).
I need cosmetics  (for sexy lips),
I need some hose (without the rips).
I need a dress (that’s girly and mod),
I need my laptop (and my iPod).
I need my shoes (my Kenneth Cole!)
I need my panties (the ones you haven’t stole!)
I need six bags to bring everything I ought.”
And I need YOU…

“Me?”

“…to drive to the airport!”

 

A Year Ago on Citizen of the MonthWhat’s the Matter with Kids Today?

His Fiddler on Her Roof

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Tevye is in the kitchen blogging.  Golde comes in, wearing her nightdress.

Golde:  “Tevye, enough with the blogging.  It’s time to go to bed.  You have work tomorrow.  You’re not a rich man.”

Tevye:  “I know, Golde… I know… let me just finish this post about Israel.”

Golde:  “Tevye, what is it with every post lately being about the Jews?  You used to write interesting posts, about other subjects… like sex.”

Tevye:  “Hold on… hold on… another anti-Semitic comment on my last post.  I need to answer this jerk before I go to bed…”

Golde:  (singing)  “Tevye, do you love me?”

Tevye:  “What?”

Golde:  “Do you love me?”

Tevye:  “What kind of question is that?
(singing)  For all these years, I’ve been with you
Ate with you, laughed with you
Slept with you, blogged with you
After all these years, why talk about love now?”

Golde:  “Tevye, do you love me?”

Tevye:  “Of course I do!”

Tevye stands facing Golde, and guides her slowly to the floor.  He moves under her long nightdress, his beard gently rubbing her inner thighs.  Tevye guides his mouth to Golde’s pussy.  Golde moans as Tevye flicks his tongue inside, tasting her juices. 

Golde:  “Oh, Tevye, you’re always so good at making me come!”

Tevye:   “Tradition!  Tradition!”

 

A Year Ago on Citizen of the MonthMy Entry to the Vanity Fair Essay Competition

Wolfgang Puck Hates My Family

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I never had a fantasy about moving to California.  But when I came to Los Angeles, it wasn’t as if I didn’t know anything about the place.  I knew the Chinese Theater.  I knew Burbank from the Tonight Show.  I knew the health food restaurant on Sunset Blvd. where Alvy Singer ate with Annie Hall.  I knew Gidget lived in Malibu, the Brady Bunch lived in the Valley, and the gang from “Three’s Company” lived in Santa Monica.  I knew the Beach Boys liked a girl named “Barbara Ann.”  I knew Ventura Highway.  I knew it never rained in Southern California.  And I knew if you stayed at the Hotel California, you could never leave.

Most of all, I knew celebrity super-chef, Wolfgang Puck.  

After all, I was travelling to Los Angeles to go to film school and become part of the film industry.  And that meant — one day eating at the famed Spago.   I knew in the future, I would walk into Spago with a wannabe model at my side and Wolfgang Puck would run out of the kitchen to greet me.  “Neilochka!” he would shout in his Austrian accent, “Please sit down at YOUR special table right next to Al Pacino!”

Wolfgang Puck represented Los Angeles to me.  He was an icon.  A Hero.  And there’s nothing sadder when you lose faith in a hero, whether it is OJ Simpson, Michael Jackson, or Mel Gibson.  While Wolfgang Puck never committed a heinous crime, he became guilty of something just as bad — overexposure.

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First he became a fixture on the “Today” show.   Then, he opened “Wolfgang Puck Cafes” in malls everywhere, so every Joe Schmoe could make believe he was eating lunch next to Al Pacino.  I can honestly say I ate my worst Italian meal ever in a Wolfgang Puck Cafe in Orange County.

Soon, Wolfgang Puck was invading my local supermarket with his “Wolfgang Puck” soups. 

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At first, I was excited about this soup development.  I’m a huge fan of canned soup.  It is easy to make and usually tastes pretty good.   I have been eating Campbell’s Soup since I was a child.  But as I matured, I started to feel ashamed to bring my Campbell’s Soups “Chicken and Stars” to the checkout girl.  What could be less sophisticated?  Who eats this soup after the fifth grade? 

Luckily, Wolfgang Puck came to the rescue.  His soup had fancy names and a photo of Wolfgang Puck smiling at you right on the label.  Although it was three times more expensive than Campbell’s soup, I could proudly display it in my shopping cart.  And who knows?… maybe women in the supermarket even thought that I was having Al Pacino over for dinner that night!  In a way, buying a Wolfgang Puck soup was like having the real Wolfgang Puck travelling to your home and catering your dinner, much like he caters the Governor’s Ball each year after the Oscar’s.

But then I tasted the soup.  Have you ever tasted a Wolfgang Puck soup?  It  tastes like piss!  It makes Progresso Soups seem like something served at the Four Seasons

Then, my relationship with Wolfgang Puck turned worse.  It turned dangerous.

On our last trip to New York, Sophia and I took the red eye.  When we arrived in Flushing, it was already morning and my mother was at work.  While Sophia unpacked, I started making us some scrambled eggs.  After a few minutes of frying the eggs,  I reached for the handle of the frying pan and — OUCH — almost burnt my skin off.

“Holy Shit! ” I screamed, as I spilled the eggs all over the oven top.

As I jumped around in pain, I noticed a memo stuck on the refrigerator.  It was from my mother.

“Neil:  Be careful.  Wear a cooking glove when using the new pots!”

Later on, I learned the whole story.  My mother had already burnt her hand three times after buying this new set of cookware.

“What kind of shitty cookware did you buy?” I asked.   “What pots have a metal handle that gets so burning hot when you use it?”

“Oh, no, these pots are very good.”  she answered.  (even though they were on sale!)  “They are Wolfgang Puck pots!”

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Wolfgang Puck!!  Now he is hawking cookware!  And some crap from China that he wouldn’t use in a million years!

After this painful incident Sophia, my mother, and I went to the Berkshires for a vacation.  I avoided telling Sophia about the Wolfgang Puck cookware, because I didn’t want to ruin her vacation.  She is a big fan of the Food Network and watches Iron Chef religiously.  I didn’t want her to know the truth about one of America’s most beloved chefs. 

We had a great time in the Berkshires.   Sophia and I got along terrifically.  On our return to New York, things even got romantic between us one night.  We cuddled all night in my childhood bedroom, satisfying my childhood dream of having a hot babe in my bed.

In the morning, I awoke feeling great.  My mother had gone to work.  I could hear Sophia in the kitchen.  I smiled.  Maybe she is making me a special breakfast in bed.  Suddenly, I remembered!  She didn’t know the true horror of Wolfgang Puck cookware.  I tossed the sheets aside, and, still naked, ran into the kitchen.

“Sophia, STOP!” I screamed.

But it was too late. 

“Holy SHIT!” I heard her yell in agony as my mother’s Wolfgang Puck frying pan came crashing to the floor.

Wolfgang Puck, enough!  Leave my family alone!

 

A Year Ago on Citizen of the MonthMy First Piece of Erotica!

 

Letter to Paris #2

Dear Tara,

As I sign of peace in a political world, I will not link to articles that insinuate that Islam is a religion of violence, because that is something I strongly detest when I see it written by conservatives.   How about you refrain from linking to articles that state that “the Jewish fundamentalist belief of being God’s chosen people has allowed Israel to believe it can do as it will?”

As I wrote in your comments:

“While I believe the Palestinian leadership and the Arab world bear much of the responsibility for the problems in the middle east — along with Israel — and I particularly blame Iran for arming Hezbollah to the teeth in this current conflict (they sent off a drone today that neared Tel Aviv), I would never say that Arab violence comes out of the religion of Islam.

So, I hope you will agree with me that the statement that the central Jewish concept of “the chosen people” means they can “do as they will” is completely horrendous, and a total misinterpretation of what it is about — moral duty, not superiority. The concept of the chosen people is completely bound to the idea of keeping the commandments that bring a people closer to God. For a journalist to use the “chosen people” line as an explanation for Israel’s entry into Lebanon smacks of the most abhorent anti-Semitism.

If Jews really believe that they were chosen as a ‘superior’ people who can do as they will, they would be the most stupid people that ever existed, especially after being driven from their homeland, forced to wander the world for centuries, made to live like second class citizens, tortured, and murdered by both Muslim and Christian. What luck to be so chosen!”

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