Of Thieves, Whores, Serial Killers and Dim Sum for Two

Having earned my BA in Enlgish Literature I never really had the chance to explore much lit beyond the great British writers. Just recently as I have plowed through my new-found interest in German cinema (Fassbinder in particular) — I have been side tracked into Jean Genet. Now, I’ve heard about Genet for as long as I can remember being aware of literature, but I had never really explored anything about him. I am currently making my way thru Genet’s autobiographical writings and the biography penned by Edmund White. Genet seems to write in a sort of stream of consciousness and it takes a few pages to fall into his pacing. I also can’t help but wonder how much is lost in translation from French to English.

Anyway, color me shocked! Now, I know queers have been around since the beginning of time — but I had no idea that someone was writing about gay carnal lust as far back as this. I mean, even if it was in France — much of what one reads by Genet is kinky and challenging even by today’s standards. …Which, admittedly, are getting more conservative by the minute. Anyway, I find his writing to be quite an eye-opener. I particularly find his fascination with crime, stink and mucus spitting as erotic really interesting. Now, I finally understand some of what Todd Hayes portrayed in his 1991 film, POISON. I also had no idea that he lived a life of crime! I mean this dude was a thief, a pseudo-accomplice to murder and a whore who seems to have legitimized it all by romancing it all as adventure. He was also an incredibly gifted writer. Amazing stuff.

Anyway, my recent reading sort of tied in with a recent DVD purchase I made of FRISK, a 1995 film by Todd Verow. The film, based upon a controversial novel, was well received by critics at the time of its release, but shunned by many in the gay community because it dared to depict the mental “development” of a gay serial killer. The film is very well done, but quite disturbing. I was worried that it would be going out of print so I secured a copy. Some of the ideas expressed in FRISK made me think of Genet. Not that Genet was serial killer, but there seems to be a connection there. …maybe it all boils down to Parker Posey (who is fantastic in FRISK)— By the way, Todd Verow has his own website and has made several other films since FRISK — a few of which are available for purchase. I put a link to his site to the left.

Well, let’s move on away from the scary ways of some gay men to the Dim Sum experience Karl and I shared this afternoon. The weather is so nice today — I was able to walk outside and ride the subway without falling into a flop sweat! Today we decided to divert from our usual Dim Sum of choice at China Pearl and we had Dim Sum at The Empire Garden on Washington Street in Chinatown. A very opulent structure, I can only assume it must have been a pre-WWII theatre. The place is really more like an ornate hall and seats over 1,000 comfortably. The service was great, the food was good, but there were not enough carts going around for the number of diners and the servings were not as hot as they should have been by the time they reached us. So, I think I will want to stick with China Pearl.

Did you know that I am the Boston Phantom Gourmet?!?!? Not really. I am just a phantom.

Tonight I plan to watch THE FORBIDDEN ZONE with commentary in hopes of understanding the origins of this masterpiece. I am also going to watch my exclusive DVD of David Lynch’s WILD AT HEART — which is available in Brazil, but no where else. Odd, is it not? I don’t care — one of my fave movies so that will be fun. I also intend to watch the Japanese horror film, SUICIDE CLUB, should be nice and scary. Tomorrow I plan on dragging my fat ass to Cambridge to check out MEAN CREEK which is playing at the Harvard Square Cinema.

Yes, I lead an exciting life. It is just non-stop. Hard to keep up!

September 5, 2004. Uncategorized.

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