The Timeline of the Absurd

April 3rd 2017 at Phoenix AZ

Greg Scaggs – Director, McDowell Clinic

This sir – is the mere gist of the tale I will be presenting – it is stunning. You may share this draft of my complaint with anyone you wish – you have my permission – for I aim to get to the bottom of this. This is a monstrous tale – and it must be resolved – soon. I would prefer administratively rather than judicially – but I will pursue this until I am satisfied. (No one shared it – no one gave a damn – hahaha – it’s all a goddamn joke — I guess” —

The Time Line of Events

My name is James Hlavac and I recently moved to – and now live at – and plan on living at till I die many years hence, as Providence decrees shall happen – at 5001 North 11th Avenue, #E204, Phoenix Arizona 85013. I go by the name Jim, or Hlavac, as most of my friends and even family call me. Even my father calls me “hlavac.” Everyone in the system insists on calling me “James” no matter how many times I say call me “Jim.” That is merely the first annoyance in this confounded system in which I am embroiled and embedded.

This is two interwoven tales, like a helix. The first is me – what I do and have done – my actual life. The second is what the system has done, while creating this imaginary me that bears no resemblance to the real me.

I am a 58 year old HIV+ gay man who was diagnosed with AIDS in 2001 because my T-cell count was 174, and the Federal definition of AIDS starts at 200 or less. So, I thought I would die soon. And I did not. I did not get sick at all. In fact, I barely catch colds. In February 2016 it was noted that my T-cell count was 184 – back to the AIDS designation. This was caused by stress – which I had in abundance in November and December 2015 and January 2016.

I lived through the entire plague, from the epicenter in Greenwich Village NYC in 1980 when it had no name to today. I buried a 100 friends and acquaintances. I wondered for the last 35 years when it would be my turn. It never came, instead I had an exciting and accomplished life. It involved living in more than a dozen cities, almost never more than a year at a time, before I moved to the next, or back to one I had already lived in, since 1985. In each city I did one or more sensational projects. I created trade shows, radio shows, websites, marketing plans, business plans, music directories; I helped create the Louisiana Alligator Farmers Association – and so much more. I played piano publicly in a dozen or more cities. It would fill volumes to explain it all. Now I’ve decided to retire and settle down. I thought Arizona would be a good place to do that, for I had spent a lot of time here between 2002 and 2009, when I was helping run the Phoenix International Youth Hostel at 1026 North 9th Street during the busy winter months. But I was an AIDS activist since the beginning – I was bar buddies with Larry Kramer and at the table when “ACT UP!” was conceived. I was at the table when the logo “Silence = Death” was created. I have led protests – I was involved. And then I stepped aside. Now, I find myself involved again.

I’ve never done drugs, (Well, coke in the late 1980s in the Club Scene in Manhattan when gay men all thought all was lost – but not since March 9th 1990) – I’m not an alcoholic. I’ve never had any legal problems civil or criminal. I’ve never been arrested or sued. I’ve never sued anyone. I’ve never physically attacked anyone, (well, Michael Henderson and Allan Rolli in 9th Grade for calling me “sissy,” “queer” and “faggot” one last time – then I was the “bashing fag” and high school was pleasant.) I have lived a life of peace. I’ve never thought of harming myself or others. I have never self-mutilated – I have no tattoos and just one pierced ear from 10th grade in 1973, (the right ear, the gay ear,) and I haven’t used it in more than 40 years. I’ve never been homeless, abused, harmed – but had utter peace and progress. I led a life of rather amazing accomplishment. A quick search of Amazon, Youtube and any search engine will bring an outpouring of my accomplishment, and there’s so much more. Really, an amazingly productive life. It did not cease at the Arizona border in 2012. I still am productive, and creative, and intellectual, and well, pretty much the same as I’ve always been. I pay my rent, I pay my bills; I have never been evicted, and I have never had my lights turned off. I have friends and family on 4 continents in 4 languages that I speak fairly well. I do projects, I do things. And I clean my bathroom every Saturday morning while the opera is on as I’ve done for decades. And so much more – endlessly more.

And yet, it turns out, bizarrely, everyone in the HIV and social services system in Arizona seems to think I led and perhaps still lead, a life of dissolution and mental instability and a hopelessness that requires their attention and intrusion into my life. Indeed, they have declared me “severely mentally ill” and “special needs” – to such a point that they won’t even explain to me what they mean by these designations, because, as they tell me “you wouldn’t understand.” They have labeled me with a slew of disorders – bipolar, manic depressive, depressed alone, mania alone, anxiety, panic, delusion, paranoia and agoraphobia and who knows what else. And now they claim they will serve my needs, whatever they imagine them to be – regardless of what I say about it. I told them all it was like Franz Kafka’s “The Trial” – 3/4’s of the people mentioned here never heard of the writer or the book. The book is about K. – that’s all he’s known as. Who comes up against obstinate “authorities” who charge him with a crime, but won’t tell him what he’s done. And the romp is on. Quite fascinating, eerie even, the parallels between K. and I. And the “authorities” are the people mentioned here. All of whom should be ordered by this court to read the book – so they might comprehend their folly.

The terms “severely mentally ill” and “special needs” seem to have a very broad definition – but comes down to the inability to function in life and get things done, a lack of relationships and endless failings. And I never had such an inability. I run my life, I get things done – and I have a charming time doing it. In fact, the only obstacle to running my life I really ever have encountered in my life are the people in the system mentioned here. It’s like I crossed the Arizona border and became a completely different person. The idea is ludicrous.

In July 2012 I moved to Tuscon – and stayed at the Roadrunner Hostel where I always stay when I’m in that city – and within 5 days had an apartment at 373 N Wilmot Road. I moved my bank account from Louisiana to the National Bank of Arizona, where I still have a checking account and my Social Security check is deposited the 3rd of each month. And I got a library card from the Tucson Public Library across the street from my new home, and I took out some 200 books on dozens of subjects over a one year period. That’s what I do – I go to a city and within days set up a life. And I set up medical care. I am very good at it.

As soon as I got the apartment I went to SAAF (Southern Arizona Aids Foundation, at 375 South Euclid Avenue) – and had an “intake” with a young man. I gave him every piece of paper and evidence he required – lease, social security award letter, ID etc., etc. I signed every form he asked me to. I provided an answer to every question. I told him that I needed three things – 1) the HIV drugs 2) dentistry 3) a male counselor to discuss surviving AIDS. Our meeting was 40 minutes of form filling and signing. I never saw or talked to him again.

I asked for nothing else – not one other thing. For I needed no other help. I simply do things and get them done quickly. I do not dawdle along fretting. I act, and I accomplish.

I was already off the drugs for 4 months because of bureaucratic screw ups in Baton Rouge – it took them in Tucson another 4 months before I got the drugs.

SAAF sent me to Michael Castaneda at COPE – 101 S Stone Avenue – to be my male counselor. Within 15 minutes I figured out he was talking about drug rehab – and I asked him why he was talking about that. He said SAAF told him I was a meth head. I was sort of shocked. I’ve never done it – I don’t know anything about it. I don’t even know what it looks like. SAAF simply imagined an alternative me. Where they got the notion from I have no idea.

So we switched to reality – and I asked if I could continue to see him because I liked him. So we just ignored the fact that he was a drug rehab counselor and I was not a recovering drug addict. For all I know this designation as a meth head is still on my record. I saw him nearly every Tuesday for about 8 months, until his program funding ended. We became buddies. I still talk to him every 6 months or so.

SAAF assigned me a case manager – a woman named Pat Desson – she was the manager of the case managers – she was the top and the best I was told.

.

She needed a statement from the previous agency in Baton Rouge that I was HIV positive before she could connect me with medical care in Tuscon. So I told her to get it from HAART in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where last I lived, for nearly 3 years, tending a WWII Veteran in his home in his last years – and then I waited. A month later I finally had to tell her to call the director of HAART, Tim Young, and get the piece of paper she needed. She had no clue how to get the paper out of HAART – she merely faxed over a request – blindly – not to any specific person – -just a “to whom it may concern” fax with no one in particular awaiting it. With no answer for a month – she did nothing. She never called them. I told her to call Tim Young and she told me “Oh, he’s the director, we don’t want to bother him with this.” I was like, here’s his personal number, he’s a friend of mine, give him the call. She hesitated – then called. 20 minutes later we had the paper she needed.

She said I was eligible for food stamps, though I hadn’t asked for them. I had never received them before. She was going to help me get them she said. She had no earthly clue how to use the online food stamp application – she couldn’t even call it up online. She sat there flummoxed in confusion.

I asked her where a DMV was to get the AZ ID they and I needed – she had no clue where one was. She lived in Tuscon for decades – and claimed to be the person I needed to talk to for assistance – and yet she had no clue where the DMV was – amazing. Didn’t know how to look it up online either. She was at least able to provide a $12 check to cover the cost, though I hadn’t asked for that either. So I went and got one the next day. It was $9 – I kept the three bucks.

2 or 3 weeks after I first met her, and with not a single discussion with me about my life, she presented me with a “Life Plan” – that’s what she called it. It was a carefully written up document explaining what she was going to do to get my life together – for she thought it broken, apparently. She was going to get me off the streets into a group home, she said – I already had an apartment that I furnished with table, chair, pots, pans, dishes, utensils, towels, bedding, internet access – the stuff one needs. I went out and bought it within days of moving into the place on North Wilmot. After all, I had arrived in the city with just my laptop and small suitcase. She simply did not grasp that I had an apartment. She presented this to me as a done deal – and I was flummoxed. She imagined some scenario out of whole cloth. Where she got this notion that I was hopeless I have no idea.

Within a month of arriving in Tuscon I began painting paintings – and sought an art exhibit. Six months later I had an art exhibit at Brooklyn Pizza on the arts district’s 4th Avenue. I had a painting for sale with the Tuscon Arts Brigade, and another one with something called “BICAS” (they create, repair, sell bicycles.) I had paintings at a ‘wine and paint’ place – I do not recall the name of it.

Within a month I found a piano to play at the Arizona Cancer Clinic on North Campbell Avenue, to which I went 2 or 3 times a week for the year I lived in Tucson – for a few hours to play the piano in their lobby to the enjoyment of all who heard. On youtube are examples of my playing. No one in this system seems to even believe I can play piano – they imply, though have not stated, I am delusional about my amazing ability to play.

After SAAF got the piece of paper they needed from HAART – I was transferred to Robert Gadsden at the 6OPC University Medical Center at 1501 North Campbell Avenue – the HIV/AIDS clinic in the city. Who couldn’t see me for another month in his busy schedule. Another month without the drugs – now going into the sixth month. My constant plea to just give me a bottle of the stuff simply dismissed as unimportant – there were papers that needed to be filed with who knows who. And Pat Desson, SAAF and Robert Gadsden didn’t seem to know who at all.

I met with Gadsden at his office at the University Medical Center. First, he tells me it’s at the corner of Speedway and Campbell – it is not – it’s more than ½ mile way up Campbell. When you don’t know how to explain where your office is there’s a problem.

He tells me I was not eligible for AHCCCS – even though my sole source of income is my Social Security Disability. But in order to get to the right insurance program – and I already have Medicare, which he dismissed as unimportant – I had to fill out an 8 page application for AHCCCS so I could get denied first – before we go to the next insurance step. And so I signed half a dozen of more forms and permissions and whatever he put under my hands. Then he tells me to go home and wait. Come back in a month or so. Still – no drugs.

A week later I get my approval for AHCCCS – I call up Gadsden to tell him. He’s surprised, utterly. So he sets an appointment for me at UMC at 1501 North Campbell Road and I go – and I get there – and they tell me there’s no such appointment – indeed – there was no such doctor at this location. The appointment desk all but told me I was imagining things. They said that my appointment was really a few days later some 30 miles and a 2 ½ hour bus ride from my house – rather than the 5 miles and ½ hour bus ride that the North Campbell location was. More amazingly – there was a UMC Infectious Disease Clinic at 501 (or something) North Wilmot – almost literally next door to where I was living.

At this point I just railed at Gadsden – I was furious. Months of trying to get the life saving drugs – months in Tucson – and utter sloth and incompetence and bizarre behavior by the people at SAAF and now at UMC.

I railed at Pat Desson – I went to her office from the nonexistent appointment to declare my unhappiness. She dismissed my concerns with a tralala who cares attitude. Told me to come back another day, and well that’s the way it is. Stunning disregard for the lack of pills which everyone I was meeting in the system asked “Are you taking your pills?” – “No, I can’t get them,” I told them. They laughed. Literally even.

So they set another appointment for a month later. I say “emergency,” they dawdled along. Finally I get blood work and then I see a doctor. Oh, they are so thrilled, a Patty McCracken was just giddy that my T-cells were 250 (a major measure of health for HIV) – and they were 500 just 6 months previously – but the lack of drugs made them fall. This lack of drugs and the refusal by anyone to hurry along, or get anything right, imperiled my health.

So, I get a prescription – where do I get it filled? It’s always a specialty pharmacy. They don’t know. I’ve been assigned an insurance company – United Health Care – perhaps they can tell me. They could not. I was assigned Humana too – they also could not tell me where to get the prescriptions filled.

I write to the ombudsman of the hospital to complain about all this. She couldn’t figure it out nor render any assistance, but gave weak apologies.

I get calls from case managers, agents and others I don’t know – every 3 or 4 days – people I don’t know, never met, have no idea who they are – calling me out of the blue – and each telling me something completely different and often opposite to what someone else had said – and each of whom I talked to only once before the next one called me. Never did I speak to the same person twice. No one could figure out how to get the drugs to a guy with Medicare, Medicaid, Ryan White and ADAP (The latter two the primary all-coverage HIV programs.) They were all clueless as to what insurance I had.

I got a call from a Walgreens – If I paid a copay of $700 and they would be glad to give me the drugs.

I got a call from Walmart – they said I had a copay of $2,500 and they would be glad to give me the drugs.

I got a call from Albertsons – they don’t have the drugs – go somewhere else.
Who submitted the prescription to any of these places I don’t know. No one was telling me anything but that they don’t know and go talk to someone else elsewhere. Maybe three dozen people paraded through my life.

Finally the stress of this incessant nonsense and the worry about the lack of pills gave me such body pains, chest pains, aches – that I went to the emergency room at St. Joseph’s hospital across the street from where I lived. They thought I was having a heart attack perhaps. They kept me overnight for observation. I hadn’t been overnight in a hospital since I was 8 years old for a tonsillectomy. They also would not give me the drugs everyone insisted I should be taking.

I finally get an appointment at 735 North Wilmot to see a Primary Care Provider through United Health Care, which they insisted I see – but not before trying to send me to a place dozens of miles from my house which I just refused to go to. He wrote me a prescription for the Atripla that I had been taking – just on my request. He wasn’t an HIV doctor – but United said I had to go to him. Right up the block, I went. Nice guy. Reasonable, knowledgeable, but not really about HIV, which is a specialty. Meanwhile, there was a fungus growing on my body, dropping T-cells will do that – he prescribed a cream to stop it.

There’s a flurry of phone calls and letters between 6OPC at UMC, SAAF, United – and the ombudsman at UMC – and no one could figure it out. Months go by and I’m still without the drugs which everyone keeps asking me if I’m taking – and I can’t get them. When I point out they won’t give them to me they shrugged their shoulders and sent me to the next person.
Meanwhile, I’m seeing Michael Castaneda and explaining this. He intervenes, he knows someone in the system. Finally I get the drugs at UMC pharmacy. How simple that could have been from the beginning, how absurd it was.

Then SAAF decides they have enough of my complaining about their sloth and stupidity – virtually every single thing they told me was wrong. They were wrong about what I was eligible for, where to go, what to do – which forms to file and where – and they were astonishingly arrogant to write me up a “life plan” as a diktat of what they insisted I do with myself – so they banned me from their premises. They were going to deny me the services they never provided – while they imagined me a meth head living on the streets – it was simply flummoxing.

Castaneda hooks me up more formally with COPE – his overseeing agency for his program. I go to this COPE office for an intake. I meet once with some case manager who has me fill out forms and ½ hour later I never saw or heard from her again. Castaneda suggested I take a pill, I didn’t think I needed one, but well, I followed his advice, because I’m having these feelings, this melancholy about the loss of so many buddies while I still lived healthy, maybe the pill will help. So they put me in a bare room with a TV – and I look around and I’m like ‘Huh?’ – and the TV springs to life! Scared the hell out of me. I do not own a TV and haven’t for 40 years. I hate TV – now I find I’m talking to one! A woman tells me she’s in Phoenix really, and she’s my psychiatrist and she has all my charts and information – and then asks, within 2 minutes of the start of this charade – “So, you want a pill?” Just like that – I was rather surprised. I thought I should have to explain my feelings first, I certainly wanted to – but nope, she knew all about me, she said. From where she could have learned a thing about me I have no idea – except whatever SAAF may have said. I declined the pill and within 10 minutes I was gone.
I kept asking for a male counselor to deal with surviving AIDS – and Castaneda, while nice, is just a drug rehab counselor with no experience or training with what I am dealing with – so they send me to a man named Dale Hawkins. He’s actually in his office. I go prepared to have a discussion with him about my feelings, my emotions. Within 3 minutes he’s got his prescription pad out telling me I need to take Risperadone. He’s a pill pusher. Nothing but a drug dealer to me. So I’m cajoled into taking this pill. It’s .5 mg – and he labels me “bipolar.”

COPE has me see this other man, to do some assessment. Question after question about problems in life – drugs, booze, sex, homelessness, criminal activity, violent thoughts, wetting the bed – 100% wholly irrelevant to my life. And not a question about me – nor any room on the computer form to put in a word of what I said. There were 100 questions or so – and he diligently stared into the computer, barely glancing at me, so that he could enter all this data into his computer. Castaneda sat in for this session. To what purpose it was I had no idea, but bureaucrats, eh, you have to go with the flow. I met him one other time, by chance in the lobby, and he drove me home and came up to see my art. Nice guy, from Africa, we discussed his home country of Nigeria – he was very impressed with my knowledge of the place. No room for that on the form.

In fact, I only went to the COPE offices 4 times, maybe 5 … once for my first case manager and the TV psychiatrist, once with Dale live, once with Dale on a TV from Indiana while he was having lunch, and shoving food into his face while in between bites he pushed pills – and once to see the question man. That was my sole experience with them. I never spoke to them at all. They never called me up. I never called them. I didn’t need them, and I didn’t know what they did. I simply had no dealing with them beyond these four short visits of barely 15 minutes with four of them, and the hour with the question man.

Finally it seems to settle down. I get the drugs – each month – with Castaneda having to make phone calls to different people because each month seemed to be different. Different insurance providers, different prescriptions, different co-pays – it was just different every month – I didn’t fit any parameter or form or slot or peg hole they had. They were all confused about it.

I continued my life – I published my third book, “The Pink Sheep of the Ninth Circle” – my view of the “gay thing” as I call it. I’m published on several major right wing political websites with my views on gay marriage. I’m defended by a notorious anti-gay commentator on a rabid anti-gay website for my views promoting gay men (That’s how rational I am.) I’m playing the piano to the delight of hundreds of people at a major medical clinic. I’m making friends at the gay bar and with my neighbors. I go to my niece’s wedding in Pennsylvania. I have an art exhibit, I’m painting, I’m writing music, I’m working on more book ideas – I’m leading the normal creative life I’ve always lead. Amazingly, through a post to my blog I wind up reconnecting with long lost relatives in Australia. And I’m paying for it all myself and managing my meager money well.

Finally a year goes by – I’ve done a lot – and the medical situation finally seems stable.

Meanwhile, they’re doing months of air conditioning work at my apartment – though the hottest months of the summer my door has to be open so they can run tubes through the house and out the door – they give me a portable air conditioner to blast (thankfully electric was included in the rent.) But I have a lease, and I can’t afford to move.

I sign a new lease – and they carpet clean as a thank you – everything cleared out of the way – there was not a bedbug to be found. A week later the bedbugs surfaced by the hundreds – literally – one day not one, the next hundreds – they came out of the woodwork. Sure, 4 or 5 apartments surrounding me were all vacated and being refurbished and there I was – the last piece of flesh around. I discover that the complex had been cited repeatedly by the city and county for bedbugs. I was up for 7 days – couldn’t sleep – I was fighting off the bugs – they were attacking me as I stood still. The complex tells me not to worry – in 10 days they’ll take care of it. Don’t worry if they crawl on you and bite, I’m told – “they are not disease vectors” I’m told. They tell me I have to pay them 100s of dollars first- and besides, they’re going to be evicting me anyway.

I called Castaneda to see what might be done. I call my new “case manager” at COPE who I had never spoken to to see what might be done. They say they’ll send someone over – so I wait. For days. They have the wrong address – they can’t find me. They finally get to my house and tell me I’m on my own. Tough luck buddy. They send someone to haul me to a rehab center – they imagine I’m on drugs because I don’t have bite marks. Once there I say “I need sleep” — they keep me up to question me about my condition. The next morning they send me home to the infested house. I stay up for more days. It’s the end of the month, I have no money – so I’m stuck.

Finally I collapse – a neighbor calls 911 – they take me to the hospital – they pull bedbugs off of me – but decide that since I have no bites – I’m imagining this all – and they put me in a psyche ward. To deal with my hallucinations, they seem to say. They simply would not believe there was a bedbug issue as the things were crawling on me in the emergency room. Apparently I am one of the rare people who do not get bite marks, what can I say?

They let me out the next day – and hand me back my phone and wallet – washed! My wallet was sodden. They washed my phone! Now I can’t call anyone. I get my check, the bank is across the street from the hospital, next to my apartment complex. They let me use their phone. I call my neighbors, who had just moved out too – and I rescue everything I can out of the apartment, which was mostly the 40 paintings I had done while there, and abandon the rest. We had time for one trip – and I put it into storage – with help from my neighbors. COPE told me to jump in a lake.

Wondering what to do – I arrange a temporary address, and head for Mexico – that’s what I had money to do. I ask for the pills before I go, which are denied to me because it’s 2 days short of when I’m supposed to get them. 2 months later I fly to my sister’s in Pennsylvania, I pass through Tucson – can I get the drugs? No – they won’t give them to me. I’m told to just stay in a homeless shelter until COPE or some other agency gets their act together and gets me into a group home. I tell them they are crazy. The holidays are upon us. I figure I’ll sort things out while enjoying some family time – and then move to Phoenix. I was rather tired of Tucson at this point. The UMC would not mail me a month or two of the drugs. Nor was anyone allowed to pick them up for me and mail them to me. So, back to no drugs. My T-cells were back up to about 320. Once in Pennsylvania I come to find out that COPE – on their own volition, without my knowledge even – calls up all my medical providers – insurance – AHCCCS, the UMC – everyone – and tells them I moved to Philadelphia (didn’t go near that city) – so everything gets canceled. And once again I’m without the drugs! – thanks COPE.

And somewhere along the line – either SAAF or COPE or both – put on my record that I was “Severely Mentally Ill” and “Special Needs.” Only I don’t realize this until I get to Phoenix. And still wasn’t sure what anyone was talking about until 2016 – when it began to become clearer to me. These people have created an alternative me that bears no resemblance to the real me.

So I spend 2 months in Scranton, Pennsylvania dealing with family and selling things I had on Ebay to raise money for the move to Phoenix. I’m off the drugs again for several months. In December of 2013 I call Judy Norton of MIHS (Maricopa Integrated Health System) and tell her I’m landing on January 4th, 2014 – I would like to get the drugs – and a male counselor to talk to about surviving AIDS. These are the only two things I ask her for. I seek no other help from any agency or entity to do anything. I take care of things as I always do.

We set an appointment for January 6th at the McDowell Clinic at 1101 North Central Avenue, Phoenix – I’m there. Ms. Norton cheerfully hands me a bag with about 100 condoms, with a wink wink, nudge nudge. It frankly insults me – the sex crazed homosexual of lore come to the fore. I didn’t say a word. I gave the condoms to the local gay center. I get an intake with Julie Langston – more pointless questions. I say again and again – I’m off the drugs for months. Don’t worry, I’m told, soon.

The first week I stay gratis at the Phoenix Youth Hostel, where I’m one of the family, and within 5 days of arriving in Phoenix I get an apartment at 4444 N 7th Avenue. I tell MIHS where the new place is. Two weeks later I get my stuff out of storage in Tucson, with the gracious help of a woman I had just met at the gay center (Lesbians with pickups, best movers ever) – I start acquiring furniture and pots and things for the house. I go about my life, I go the gay center daily to use their wifi. The gay center gives me some furniture as a welcoming gift.

Meanwhile, no one in the system can figure out what I’m covered by to get medical care. I’m sent to this and that agency – I can barely recall them all, a dozen at least. I have one or two phone calls with them and they sent me to the next agency. Or they came to my house and I signed some forms and I never heard from them again. A man from an agency called “Chicanos Por La Causa” comes to my house. The man tells me he’s going to take care of me. He’s going to get me into a group home where I might be tended. I tell him he’s out of his mind and throw him out of my house – in Spanish – I am quite conversant in the language. I have an apartment I paid for – I’m not moving into a group home. I don’t need anyone to tend me. He told me otherwise, and didn’t listen to a word I said.

AHCCCS has no clue about me – I’m simply gone from the system I was in several months previously. MIHS can’t get me to a doctor – SAAF, or COPE, or UMC, can’t pull themselves together to fax the much needed proof that I’m HIV+ – why not just give me another test? Can’t be done. A bureaucrat has to state it, your own blood is not proof enough.

Center for Eligibility can’t figure out what I’m covered by. So convoluted are meetings with agencies, at their offices, or my house, or on the phone that I do nothing but sign still more forms and I am sent on my way, never to see these people again. I’m assigned an insurance company – United Health Care again – they too are utterly clueless about what I might be covered by – and have no evidence that they were my insurance provider just months previously in Tucson. Phone calls, meetings, form signings – all to no avail.

I go back to a doctor Thanes, that I had seen years before – he takes me in. Does blood work. Then can’t figure out what insurance I’m covered by. Medicare, Medicaid, Ryan White, ADAP – it’s all a mystery to them. They refuse to give me a prescription. They charge me for the visit. I explain that I must have insurance. No, I’m told – I’m not eligible for any insurance of any kind.

I call a Crisis Hotline because I don’t know what else to do, I’m just flummoxed in rational rage – I ask to speak to a male counselor about all of this. They take me to a drunk tank on 99th Avenue – “Community Bridges” – they tell me I have to dry out for a few days before I can see anyone. I hadn’t had a drink in weeks. I get out right away.

Patrick Scullion of Empact comes and gets me on 99th Avenue, and we go visit this and that place, Food Stamps, DES – a food bank, and to get a government phone – none of which I needed or wanted – but when might I get the drugs? No one knows and Patrick does his best to get it done. Really, he was impressive with what he knew, was right about and got done.

It took a woman I met at the gay center, Nadine Wells, to take me to the AHCCCS head office to straighten out who is my primary and secondary providers. Even they were somewhat confused, but seemed to finally straighten it out.

Most of these agencies had addresses for me in Louisiana in their system, or the address of the Youth Hostel where I lived at in Phoenix 6 or more years previously. How they had any address on me at all I don’t know, I guess I’m in the system. No one seemed to have any knowledge or notice of my time in Tucson – it’s like it never happened. Agencies argued with me over my correct address – they were going to tell me where I lived. It was amazing.

Meanwhile, I became friends with a dozen people at the Phoenix One Voice gay pride center which was next door – I’m still friends with them all.

Southwest Center for AIDS at 1101 North Central says they’ll be my case managers – great. They assign me an earnest young woman, Katy Vacuravich – she has no clue as to how I might get any services, though what services I might need I don’t know. She has no idea what insurance I might be covered by. Can’t figure out any website she goes to. Has no idea where the Social Security office might be to get the most current award letter, because the one from late 2013 is no good anymore, perhaps just in case my check doubled or something. I get all the papers they request. It’s still not enough. Nadine Wells helps with this too, knowing just where to go, the Social Security office on Tatum Road. I get the letters and proofs I need.

Finally, they get me a male counselor – come to find out in a month that he’s not covered by my insurance at all. Now I have a bill I can’t pay – thankfully they just dismissed it. But I saw him just 4 or 5 times. They say they have another – no, it’s a woman, I decline to see her. Yet another woman comes to my house, to sign forms and assess my needs, she tells me, from some clinic on 7th Avenue at Osborn, I don’t remember the name – 3333 North 7th Avenue. They send me to someone else – they set the appointment on my birthday, without asking me – at the Townlee Clinic – I had to get a ride there – there is no way to reach it by bus. It took a woman named Erica at the One Voice to even find out about this appointment – people wanted to know my case manager – “I have no case manager” I said. They assign me a case manager and do an intake – and then tell me they have no idea who to send me to next because of my “special needs” and I didn’t understand what they were talking about. But there was no point in seeing them anymore, they didn’t have what I wanted – a male counselor to talk with about surviving AIDS. I never heard from them again.

I had to go to the Department of Health at 150 North 18th Avenue to meet with a Jimmy and Laura (I don’t know their last names,) who are in charge of the Ryan White/ADAP program. They too have no idea what I’m covered by or who is paying for it. We met for more than an hour as they investigated. They conclude perhaps I’m covered by the ADA (American with Disabilities Act;) they are not sure. Still, no drugs.

Four months I wait for a doctors visit – before I get a bottle of Atripla in my hand.

MIHS McDowell Clinic recommends I see Zhanna Schpitalnik, a psychiatrist – right away she wants to foist a pill on me. Another drug pusher in my mind. I say I really don’t need a drug – I need a male counselor about having survived AIDS – she dismisses my plea and writes a prescription for 1 milligram of Risperadone – doubling the dosage COPE pushed me on. It really seems to have no effect on anything except hampering my creativity.

By April I finally see a doctor – Brian Arey, and get prescriptions for HIV drugs that can actually be filled – Hallelujah! I go to the Avella drug store at 15th Avenue and Camelback (Since closed) to get the pills. Nope, never heard of me, I’m not in the system, go see someone else. I go ballistic. It’s absurd already. More phone calls and emails – including to my city council member seeking intervention – I was willing to try to talk to anyone to get the drugs I need – and which everyone kept asking “Are you taking your meds like a good little boy?” “No,” I answer, “you won’t give them to me.” They shrugged their shoulders and told me to talk to someone else.

On May 13th of 2014, after being picked up by a new and now dear friend at the clinic that couldn’t help me mentioned above, Townlee, she takes me to One Voice – and I’m given a surprise birthday party! I am the first and last and only person to ever get a birthday party thrown by the One Voice gay pride center. I am extremely popular. They hang my art on their lobby walls. Young people come to me with their issues and I advise them like an uncle. I’ve been doing that for decades. I wrote a cartoon book: “Old Gay Geezers Give Good Advice.”

I give up the counselor idea, it was pointless bringing it up to person after person who simply dismissed my request as piffle.

I finally get settled with the drugs, and food stamps. I don’t ask for anything else. I don’t go to any food banks, I did not ask for a phone, I did not ask for any assistance of any kind. I ran my life, as I always did, rationally, calmly, reasonably, with plenty of mirth and merriment and creativity along the way.

No agency came to me to see if I was OK. But everyone sure had more forms to sign. A blizzard of them. To what purpose I don’t know. I signed whatever they asked.

In August, into September, 2014 I painted a monumental 4×4 foot painting of 5,000 years of gay history for the new Phoenix Gay Pride Center at 801 North 2nd Avenue. After I delivered it on September 5th to much acclaim and wonder – I collapsed from exhaustion, I guess. I was taken by ambulance to the emergency room at St. Joseph’s Hospital at Thomas Road and 7th Avenue. Coming out of the emergency room I discovered a piano in the lobby. The next day I start to go there once or twice a week to play. For the next 2 years I play there regularly, weekly, every Tuesday and Thursday, and I’m beloved and have fans and people applaud and tell me it made their day. Eventually, in August of 2016 the hospital asks me to become their official lobby pianist – they give me a badge and everything. My job is playing piano for four to five hours a day, they give me lunch at the cafeteria.

From January 2014 to November 2015 I painted dozens of paintings while I look for a place to have an exhibit, composed hundreds of pieces of music, and I published the 12 books that were in the pipeline – I had been working on them for years. They were put up on Amazon Kindle.

Everything finally seemed to settle down, great. I was happy. I renewed my lease in January 2015. In November 2014 a cat strolled into my life. I get him neutered and all his shots, and within a few weeks he and I are going for nightly strolls with him on a leash – even to the Bunkhouse next door where we are popular fellows.

The two charming front office ladies at the complex I lived at took my rent, bought my art, and we got along great, they bought me ½ dozen donuts from time to time because I made them laugh. They left in August and September of 2015 for their personal reasons. The complex then hired this crazed woman who was a fellow tenant – one who had screamed at me in the public area of the complex several times over the previous two years and that I sought to avoid. I ran away from her. One day I go walk in to pay the rent – there she is – the manager. She takes my check while berating me in a shrill voice, almost yelling at me, about god knows what. I ran away. There’s no logic to this – perhaps I looked like an ex-husband – who knows? It’s nonsensical, she just hates me.

In November she slammed a notice to my door proclaiming that I am a loud and disruptive tenant. I go to ask her what she is talking about. She screams at me like a crazed banshee to get out of her office. A half hour later there are two cops at my door wondering what is the matter. “Beats me officers, I didn’t call you.” They hand me notices – half a dozen of them. Threats, insinuations, accusations, based on specific provisions of the law – of gang activity, noise, intimidation, drug dealing, disrupting other tenants. And they told me I walk my cat too close to her dogs, oh yes. It was stunning. Over the next 3 weeks, cops were repeatedly at my door at the behest of this woman. They kept telling me it was a civil matter – I said I’m being unlawfully harassed. In the second week of December the manager gave me another notice that they would not renew the lease on January 1st. I now have 3 weeks to get out. – OK, that sucks, but apparently it’s allowed by law. She sends a “crisis team” to my house – who knows what she claimed. Two guys from Empact come. I entertain them and sign their forms that all is OK. Then to top it off, she serves me with eviction papers on December 21st. I have to get a lawyer right away and solve this problem. Basically some strange woman I never knew tried to have me arrested, hauled off, and destroy my credit and rental history. It was monstrous.

I wind up moving to a dark studio apartment out on 43rd Avenue and West Glendale – so far from everything I do and need. It was the only place I could find in such a tizzy; I had 14 days over the Christmas and New Years holidays to find a place, pack up and move, while visiting lawyers at the HIV Law Project. Friends and family stepped in to help – no agency did a thing – nor did I ask them. The only thing I did was ask Patrick Scullion if he knew of any places and he sent me to a website where I found the Cinnabarr Apartments, to which I moved. I was extremely unhappy. Oh, miserable even. I didn’t want to live there. It was, actually, the farthest from a gay bar I had lived in since 1980.

In May 2016 I turned 58 years old. This melancholy descended on me. I was alive, and so many of my old friends were not. I was doing stuff, they were dead. Fortuitously, I thought, Mercy Maricopa – now my insurance company – calls me up in mid-June to inquire on routine matters, as they do once or twice a year – and I asked to speak to a male counselor about these emotions, this survivors guilt, this wistful ennui – I didn’t really understand it – so I sought a male counselor to speak to. Seemed reasonable to me. And then everything really got weird. All of sudden I’m told point blank I’m “severely mentally ill” and “special needs” Oh, it’s in their computer, they tell me. So they tell me they’ll send me to the very place I need. I was told I could no longer see Schpitalnik, who just giggled and said “Well, I can’t see you anymore, you’re SMI” and dismissed me.

I was told I was “SMI” – I didn’t quite understand what it meant. Another set of initials by bureaucrats, eh. So they assigned me to the Southwest Network. Fine, I’ll go talk to them.

First a woman comes to my house – for an “assessment” – what she is assessing I don’t know. She barely looked around my house, and mostly fumbled with her papers, some of which I had to sign, to get “services,” and asked me if I was going to harm anyone or myself. Well, no, I’m not. I never have, the idea is ludicrous. What “services” she doesn’t say. I say “So, a male counselor?” Oh yes, she says, next week – one in Scottsdale. I’m thinking, I need to travel 25 miles to see someone? Well, it’s their cab. So I go – and the cabby brings me to Seacrest Family Chiropractic office – and leaves me there, zooming away. They and I have no idea why I’m there. It takes Mr. Seacrest a half hour to convince AHCCCS that I’m there, that I’m on AHCCCS and that I’d like to get home without a 3 hour bus tour of the city. A cab finally comes, I go home. I call Mercy Maricopa – they are clueless as to why I needed to go there, or was taken there. They know nothing about it. They arrange another meeting.

This time I meet with a Melodie Harmon. Why I needed to meet with her, I don’t know – she could certainly not be the male counselor I sought. I’m told another “assessment.” I meet her at 16th Street and East Osborn. She has me sign forms electronically, I don’t even know what they are for. 4 or 5 signatures she required. I ask – “Where is the male counselor?” Oh, she’ll get me one, she says. She asks inane questions like can I remember a few numbers and letters. She dismisses as irrelevant any positive thing about my life, and being a long term survivor of AIDS with some melancholy about 100 dead friends. Then she tells me I’m to go to 3640 West Osborn to a clinic. OK, sure, why not? That’s where she tells me the male counselor I seek awaits.

I go to this clinic – and can’t find it. There is no 3640 address on West Osborn. I walk around for 40 minutes in July’s searing heat looking for the place. Not finding it, I go home just enraged – and my ability to find places is legendary with my friends and family, I assure you. I call them up (I do not carry a phone with me, never, not ever.) They simply cannot explain to me where they are. “In the industrial park right there.” Which industrial park? They can’t say, they don’t know.

So my newly appointed “Case manager” – now I have two – one with Care Directions – one with Southwest – a man named Relles Abeytia comes and picks me up – he’s 20 minutes late because he can’t find me or call me. His office had to call to tell me finally he’s at the front office of my complex – then I’m taken there. And it’s hidden behind everything and not visible to the street. It’s nearly ¼ mile north of Osborn! Stunning. I meet with a woman named Mary Kay Tharalson – I have no idea her qualifications – but for sure she is not a male counselor. She has me sign more forms, 3 or 4, also electronically. I don’t actually see the forms, or know what they are, but well, intakes, it’s signing forms. I sign them all. She can barely find what she’s looking for in her computer, or on her desk. I have to help her. She stares into the computer and tells me “Yeah, I’ll just give you prescriptions for the same drugs McDowell has you on.” Another pill pusher. All of 15 minutes with me, and she’s pushing pills. I ask “Where’s the male counselor?”

I’m told, “We’re going to assess your needs.” I’m puzzled. What needs are these people talking about? And where is the male counselor which I requested? They tell me to wait, they’ll fix it all up.

The following week I meet with Relles, and he goes through the same asinine question list that COPE went through several years ago. Absolutely none of this is relevant to my life. I’m a long term Gay Male AIDS survivor of great accomplishment – and they’re asking me about my criminal records and drug use and living on the streets. I talk accomplishment – they ask about troubles. I asked Relles repeatedly in that meeting – after every question even – it became a sing along joke after awhile – for the name and number of a male counselor so I can call and make an appointment. Oh no, he needs his ridiculous form filled out – so they can assess my needs, he tells me. Every thing I asked for and said dismissed as nothing – I am beginning to figure out that these people are talking about something completely different than I am. They are talking about some imaginary person – not me.

And that’s when I first start hearing more clearly about this “Severely Mentally Ill, Special Needs” designation. What does it mean? I ask – they won’t tell me – “You wouldn’t understand,” I’m told. And then I go home and don’t hear from them for weeks. Eventually they call, and insist I come see their nurse and their doctor because they are taking over my health care from McDowell Clinic. I told them, “You are doing no such thing.”

I write a letter to Tharalson and Relles laying out clearly what I want and why – a male counselor to discuss my emotions about surviving AIDS – and that they are “harming” me for not giving me the name and number of someone. I said there is no reason to meet with her – I don’t need any pills. And I will not and cannot talk to a woman about my emotions. She never responded in any way – he started pestering me.

Meanwhile I figure out that this Risperadone, now up to 2 milligrams, as Schpitalnik insisted – as these pill pushers insisted I be on, was giving me dangerous side affects. Friends and family started to tell me I did not seem myself. People grew concerned. I was no longer the bon vivant I had been all my life. I keep telling my friends – I do not feel right – something is very wrong – and I don’t know what. My friend Carl Bednarz, who I have known since 1980, and I had a Skype call – he said – oh no, stop that stuff immediately– it’s killing you. While on the call he looked up the side affects of this drug – and I was having nearly all of them. Come to find out, the stuff is toxic to me. These people poisoned me, frankly.

Then the Pulse shooting happened in Orlando. I became more – I don’t know – melancholy? Anxious? Whatever it was – it did not interfere with my life. I still created music endlessly, still went to play piano, still was writing, was still seeing friends, still going to the bar to seek new friends – I kept the same eating, sleeping, bathing, hygiene, friendship habits I always had – nothing changed. I was just looking for someone to talk to about emotions – and all these people were talking about me – talking at me, even – like I was mentally ill and couldn’t function in life. Nothing I said changed their view one iota.

And every time I spoke with Relles he could not and would not give me the name of a male mental health counselor. He told me that “Your team is working on your assessment.” Now I had a team, oh my. Never met a one of these people, and they are assessing my needs. Just stunning. Who knows what they imagined and created? Now that I have seen their 186 page report on me – it is just fabricated fantasy. I’ve never read anything like it. It’s like a novel was written about me – but well – it is not me at all – not in the least.

Relles and Southwest insisted I see their nurse, doctor, psychiatrist and more – and I said “no.” I did not need it, did not want it. I wanted one and only one thing – a male counselor to talk to about surviving AIDS – I brought it up at every contact point – phone, writing, in person. To no avail. I find in their report: “James says he wants to see a male counselor. It could be considered an option.” That is just stunning – an option? Really? To be decided by this guy who doesn’t know me? Amazing arrogance.

This went on from August to December. I filed a formal complaint with the Mercy Maricopa Grievance Committee – they call me up to tell me they’ll arrange a conference call with Southwest to resolve the rather simple matter of a male counselor. So we had the call the next week. I’m told to expect a call every day until I get what I wanted. I never heard from Southwest again for weeks. I ignore them.

I begin a series of emails with Ron Valdez, ombudsman with Mercy Maricopa – I write “Do you have the name and number of a male counselor covered by my insurance that I can call and make an appointment with?” There’s a flurry of emails – his filled with obfuscating gobbledygook and no name and number – mine more strident with each return – but nope – he would not and could not provide me with a name and number. He all but insisted I wouldn’t understand what they were all doing for me, and that I had to deal with Southwest because I was “severely mentally ill” with “special needs” I was just flummoxed. What were these people talking about?

On October 26th, 2016, while coming home from piano playing at St. Joseph’s I was in a bus crash and I broke my wrist. I was rushed to the emergency room at the Abrazo Campus Medical Center at Bethany Home and North 19th Avenue. The next day I went to an orthopedic surgeon – he told me I had to have surgery right away. I had surgery the next week. Friends came and helped. I called Noah Altman, my new case manager at Care Directions, if there was anyone who could come help me cook and clean a bit. No, he had no clue. Mercy Maricopa told me I was on my own. So I had friends come over and cut up meat and vegetables and open cans so I could put them in leftover containers so I could cook as best I could with one hand. For two, even three months, friends came and helped me – and not one agency lifted a finger.

On about the 1st or 2nd of December Relles called again finally – I asked him point blank – “Do you have the name and number of a male mental health counselor that is covered by my insurance so I can call and make an appointment.” He said “No, I do not.” I said, “So what is the point of talking to you?” He said he’s taking care of me. How could he be taking care of me? It’s nonsensical. He’s doing nothing.

Then more people from Southwest began to call me – to tell me I had to see them. They said they had no male counselors, but I was “special needs” – and they were going to take care of me. What “special needs” they imagined I don’t know. No one from any agency ever came to my house to see if the rent was paid, or the lights were on, or if I had food or clean clothes – no one did a thing. And I went about my life ignoring them as best I could – and telling them to go away. But they called, repeatedly, to tell me they had no answers and I should just wait, my team was working on my case – but come and do it at their office. All my life I did things, I did not wait. But they seemed to think that my refusal to meet with them was a sign of how very mentally ill they imagined me to be.
Then, one day, December 4th or 5th or so, Relles came to my house unannounced, to tell me again that he had no name and number for me. I was just then trying to cut a piece of steak for my cat (he’s spoiled, yes) – I asked him to help, since I was still in a cast and it was very difficult. He cut it – but he did not ask me about the cast. Not a shred of concern about the broken wrist of his “special needs” “client.” A stunning lack of humanity, frankly. Nor did he even look up around my house, but kept his gaze to the floor; very odd, I thought. I have 40 paintings on my walls – you can’t miss them – some are 3 and 4 even 5 feet across, they are bright, colorful – virtually every square foot of my walls is covered by art – everyone comments on them. Not a word from him on them, the wrist, my life – nothing. Just “No, I have no name yet.” I told him to get lost. I told him he was a pointless fool in my life, because he was. What was he doing in my life? I wanted to know. He’s taking care of me he says. Just wow.

Six months – and no one can come up with the name and number of a male counselor? Really? Oh, he’s assessing my needs, he says, and getting me the very right person I needed to see. But he needed me first to come into his office to sign yet more forms. I told him no, no more forms.

Then on Friday December 8th he came again – I said go away, I would not let him in my house. By this time I am fed up with this miserable excuse for a man. Then – later that day – he brought cops to my door in an obnoxious and vain attempt to compel me to sign some form called an “ISP” – I don’t know what that means. I told the cops to tell Relles to go to hell. I would sign no forms. It was like Old Czechoslovakia to me, my cousins told me stories of cops come to compel compliance. No, there cannot be cops at my door to compel me to sign some pointless irrelevant form

Then on Monday too – Relles and other people came back to my door several times to try to compel me to go with them, or come into my house – and to sign more forms – and I told them all to stay away – that they were pointless in my life. I told them – come back one more time and I was calling the cops. It was simply harassment. My facebook wall will amply show my commentary on this hounding, it was amazing.

And then during the day of Monday December 12th, they came again! Several times – just pestering me with nonsense. Sign forms, see our doctors! – bleating like children. And still without the name and number of a male counselor I could call. And then finally I called the police at about 5 in the afternoon to complain about this harassment. Only it turns out that Relles and Southwest had called the cops on me first! Cops come to my door and I think they are for me – and instead they tell me, no – I must go with them. They have an order to take me away. By who? I asked. It’s in the car, they said. And then I was so rudely hauled off in my pajamas by the cops to a psyche ward at Phoenix Memorial at 1201 South 7th Avenue. I was incensed. I still was healing from a broken wrist, awaiting a visit with my surgeon in two days about the healing and the cast still on my wrist. And I was having a pleasant evening chatting with friends and family on facebook, as I’ve done since 2010 or so – and I post nothing but charm, intelligence, erudition and more on a 1001 subjects – and a railing against heteroos (rhymes with Underoos, little boys underwear line) the likes of which you might never have seen and I make no bones about. I am, to coin a word “Heterophobic” – I despise the lot of you – have since Father Bennack when I was 15 years old, in a Catholic catechism class, went off on gay men – to the point I rushed him and said “You say that crap again and I’ll thrash you.” I do NOT tolerate any hetero nonsense, never. I am vociferous in my defense of gay men – and more vocal in my castigation of heterosexuals. I am the “radical militant homosexual” so many fretted about, I’m sure. Since I was 8 years old. I was never in the closet. I never said I was a homosexual to anyone – I said “My, isn’t he a cute guy?” – When I was 10. And AIDS is part of it – and I have emotions about it – which the system has simply spit on. They spit on me.

At Phoenix Memorial’s psyche ward they stuck me in the corner of concrete room and a squadron of women came in to stare at me. They didn’t ask me anything, they didn’t speak at all – -just stared – as I just berated the lot of them. How dare they do this? Perhaps mostly because I was demanding to be let out, that this was insanity to drag me here. Their leader shook her head in disdain, and with a sour face said, “you can’t talk to him.” She had never uttered another word, just stared at me. Her obnoxious arrogance just stunning. Then two large orderlies manhandled me like a sack of turnips, carried me into a more plainer concrete room, held me down on a bed while someone shot me up with some drug which caused pain in my rump for days. They left me in this room for a half hour and then talked to me like I was deranged. They didn’t listen to a word I said, while telling me I was “severely mentally ill” – and I was just pissed as hell. They then stuck me in an uncomfortable chair to sleep in and ignored me for the night. One orderly, during a bathroom trip said to me, “Man, you don’t belong here.”

The next morning, the 13th, I meet some Dr. Wolf who tells me “You don’t belong here” – “No kidding,” I said. I was out within 2 hours. On the discharge papers she put “Mania” for my “condition” – I guess “Righteous Indignation” wasn’t on her form. I was so angry – it was amazing. Not in 58 years was I ever hauled anywhere by police for any reason whatsoever. I had never even pulled over for a speeding ticket in my life. For gay rainbow stickers, yes – but speeding no. Amazing, yes?

The cops hauling me away would not show me by what authority they had to do this. I want to see this document. But somehow Southwest simply imagined a scenario, fabricated a story – and lied to the police. They lied, point blank. There is no way around the fact that this agency – Relles, Dorothy Williams, Tharalson – whoever signed off on this – lied – they imagined things – they fabricated a story out of nothing. Whatever they told the police was sheer unadulterated fabricated lies – or delusion, if you wish. Fantasy? Pick a word.

I had to take two buses and the light rail home, 2 hours it took – through the streets – in my pajamas! It was humiliating to say the least. I am always respectfully dressed. Along the way I went to the McDowell Clinic in a snit. To demand some kind of action. This was absurd.

I met with Greg Scaggs, director of McDowell – we called Southwest, spoke with Dorothy Williams – I said it clearly, in several ways – I do NOT want to talk to you people again – get out of my life – you people are crazed.

So they needed yet another form. They couldn’t fax it right over. No, I had to come back on December 14th – taking the hour trip from my house to McDowell – and an hour back home again, so I could check a box on a form, sign it, and fax it over to them. So I think I sign a form “voluntarily refusing services” and I’m done with these people. But no, it made no difference, they are not done with me yet.

At 2 PM on Friday December 16th a woman named Cory from Southwest Network called me – I never heard of her before – she was going to take care of me she said – I needed to come to their office so they can tend me – I told her I dismissed their network and goodbye and told her “Do not ever call me again.”

At 5 PM on Friday December 16th a woman from Southwest Network shows up at my door unannounced – and informs me cheerily she is my “peer counselor” – I was flummoxed. I showed her the paper that I dismissed them and told her to go away. Oh, she was a bit miffed, “I came to help you,” she says with a pout. I asked repeatedly for a male counselor since June – and they send a woman to my house to be my counselor – 3 days after I dismiss them from my life? It was just ludicrous.

Then, on Sunday evening at 6 PM December 18th, Dorothy Williams calls me! To find out how I am! – I told her I’m seeking a lawyer and a judge against her. I asked her “Do you understand this, you are not to call me anymore.” Then I dismissed her.

I then had a lawyer friend call Dorothy Williams and tell her to go away.

Even that wasn’t enough. I had subsequent conversations with Greg Scaggs – and now an Eric Moore of MIHS, apparently Judy Norton’s assistant or something, was involved. Now these two were trying to tell me I had to go back to Southwest to get their permission to see another clinic or another agency. They told me there was a meeting set for January 11th.

On Friday December 30th I saw Brian Arey NP my very nice HIV doctor and told him what had happened and about this “Severely Mentally Ill Special Needs” designation. He almost shouted “No Way!” I never saw him so animated. And I handed him a letter I wrote to share with everyone that stated emphatically I simply would never see or deal with Southwest again – that they were simply incompetent and even evil. Surely they broke any trust that a patient must have with his medical providers. They abused me. They lied to the police about me. They had me hauled out of my house to a psyche ward – a monstrous act. I told Eric Moore that they “harmed” me in the way that the various protocols about patient care mention. Frankly, these people have committed malpractice in one way or another.

Then about January 7th or so – a Laura from Southwest Network calls me to tell me that I have – that I simply have – they set it – she demanded I go to it – an appointment with them to see their nurse and doctor to get the care they think I need. She tells me it’s at 11 AM on January 11th. I was like, lady, you are out of your mind. I said “do not call me ever again.” Amazingly – she calls back an hour later to inform me that the appointment is really 1 PM on January 12th! I again tell her – “I will never set foot in your office again – do not call me again – stay away from me forever.”

Meanwhile, Greg Scaggs and Eric Moore are telling me they will go with me so I can get the care everyone seems to think I need. And I was simply amazed – what care do these people think I need? They won’t tell me – I wouldn’t understand they say. I shouldn’t worry – they will take care of me. Meanwhile, I’m running my life.

I had the paralegal from Lerner & Rowe with whom I’m talking about the wrist case – I have a claim against the city of Phoenix – call Dorothy Williams. She feigned this utter innocence. She said there were no police or courts involved. She denied everything, and stated my relationship with them was completely voluntary – at the same time her office is calling to simply demand I meet with them.

Meanwhile, in early January some agency I never heard of – the Bayless Agency – calls me up – and in a brief 4 minute call the lady tells me that they can’t help people like – because I’m “severely mentally ill and special needs” she says. Beats me who they are – or what they wanted, or how they heard my name or got my number or why they even called. It’s a complete mystery to me. But I can’t be having strange agencies call me to tell me point blank that I am basically “insane” and “incompetent.” It’s insane.

Then – I’m referred to Jewish Family Services – where I’m told there is a male counselor. I get there on January 6th for my 10 AM appointment. I sat seething in the lobby until 10:30 because Relles from Southwest Network got to meet with a woman named Lindsay Morgan for a half hour to explain all about me – and I come to find out – hand over what looks like a 100 page report on me (I was a printer for many years, I know what a 100 pages looks like.) How an agency I met 3 or 4 times could prepare a 100 page report on me I don’t know.

I speak with her for nearly one and a half hours. She asks me endless questions that are irrelevant to what I ask for – a male counselor. I just need his name and number to call and make an appointment – I make every other appointment I need to – to discuss me being a Gay Man who survived AIDS after burying 100 friends. That’s it. That’s my issue. She goes through a similar set of questions as the COPE guy and Relles did. Every question is about the “problems” in my life, my alleged inability to function, my alleged danger to myself or others, my alleged substance abuse, my alleged lack of friends and family, my alleged failings in life. Every mention of the astoundingly great life I led is dismissed as irrelevant – she is a cultural illiterate to top it off – she had no idea about anyone I mentioned, gay life in the 1980s – nothing – she knows nothing but her computer form. During this charade she leans over and asks me as if talking to a child – “Now I’m going to say three words, can you repeat them?” And then she says “Door, Chair, Tree” – those are the three words that are going to test my memory. It is an abomination. My memory? My memory is near photographic, always has been. So rude, insolent and obnoxious, I was just short of losing my temper, (it is legendary, I’m sure, by now with this nonsense.)

We continue – and at the end of this charade she leans over and tells me not only does she not have a male counselor for me to see – but because, she tells me, that I’m “severely mentally ill and special needs” – she’s going to refer me to a much better agency to handle my case. But first she’s going to assign a case manager to me, to help me with my needs. And I’m just flabbergasted. What could she be talking about? So I left, vowing to simply ignore these people.

On January 10th I get the phone call I was hoping for – I was on the waiting list for 6 months for the apartment I am in now. I did what was required, signed a lease by January 20th and moved in by January 30th. Friends all came and helped. It is my “life plan” to live here in Phoenix in the same adorable apartment in this fantastic location for the rest of my years, playing piano at St. Joseph’s as the official lobby pianist and work on my art and books about my fascinating life, until I get a nice obituary in the Arizona Republic.

And these agencies, these people, this designation, these reports, these fantasies and fabrications and labels – all of it – are a danger to my life, my plans, my aspirations, my liberty and more – my sanity and repose and peace. I cannot be having police come to my door at the behest of bureaucrats who imagine fantasies about me. These people are a peril to my life. Who knows who will show up again? Who knows who will lie to police and have me hauled off again? Who knows what policeman will think me a danger to himself and shoot first and ask questions later? Who knows what they will do while they continue to think that I’m insane and incompetent – and yet they know nothing of me but that I can sign their confounded forms? 101 forms with 4 dozen people, each of whom I met once.

A month later on February 3rd I get a phone from a Dijana at Jewish Family Services telling me she’s my case manager! I told her I’m suing her agency and to tell her boss, Lindsay, to expect a letter about it. I say goodbye.

Then on February 6th a man named Brian from JFCS calls to tell me he’s my new male counselor. And by this time I had solved the problem with the help of friends and family. For instance, one friend bought me two months of online counseling, I’ve been writing back and forth with Ken Fields of Betterhelp.com. But many friends and family called me, even facebook friends I only know online, one from Wales UK, even. And I figured it out – I was having a “midlife crisis” as it’s called, and as I joked “I can’t afford a sports car.” While it was building from about 2010 or so, and then the radical change between constant travel to what I thought would be settling down, and the entirety of what happened from August 2012 in Tucson and then from November 2015 when the cops began to show up at my door until I moved to this apartment on North 11th Avenue would try any man. And I sort of wrapped my mind around the fact that, well, I lived, what shall I do now? Mr. Fields simply gave me a profound proposition that altered the way I was looking at it. Done. Thanks.

So I tell Brian to forget it, and that since I was planning on suing his agency to remove this designation from my record, to just go away and leave me alone.

On Friday February 10th Lindsay Morgan calls me and in a most patronizing voice, as if she’s talking to an imbecile, she wonders if I’m OK. I’m told her I’m working up a lawsuit against her. That she and the system are nuts. I ask her does she understand this? She soft patters me like a mother to a hurt boy, “OK, OK,” and I hang up infuriated.

It’s all absurd. It is malicious. All these people have either created a fake me – or been complicit in this – and it is monstrous.

I send off a stern letter demanding records at the beginning of March. So far COPE and Southwest have complied. The others have not. What I read in these reports is simply incredible – it is just endless nonsense – I want to be a Hollywood movie star and move to Costa Rica? What on earth? And way too much more.

I get a letter from Lindsay Morgan, telling me all about how I can redress my grievance by going to her and asking if she thinks I’m crazy. Just brazen nonsense. She sends it to my old address. She calls me confused – and I give her my new address in the letter to which she is responding – and she sends it to the wrong place. The woman is a whacko. I call her – castigating her for screwing up the address – and demanding “Give me every word you wrote about me – now.”

On March 27th 2017 a woman from “Recovery Empowerment Network” calls me. I never heard of this agency in my life. She tells me she’s my “peer counselor” – and I am enraged. I ask for a male counselor for 4 years – and still these idiots in the system send women to me.
On Friday March 31st 2017 – a 6’3” 250 Lb linebacker bouncer sort of fellow shows up at my house – pounding on my door – not knocking, no – but pounding! – to demand entry – and possibly to go with him – I did not let him speak much. I said “You are insane, and get out of my life, and tell Lindsay to send the report.” I get the COPE report and go to show him what I meant – and there’s Lindsay – and in a sickening treacly voice like a mother to toddler says with a little snit of a smile and a royal wave “Hi James, we’re here to …” and that was it! – “Get out of my life,” I said – “And send me that report.” And slammed the door.

Now it is April 3rd – what more do these people think they are going to do? They must be stopped. This is insanity – I won’t stand for this attack and assault upon me. They are simply hounding me because they created a fantasy. It’s Twilight Zone already, seriously.

There is so much more to this story – and I suppose exhibits galore could be presented proving my case. 1,000 pages might be produced, the 980 articles I wrote on my blog “The Daily Mush” more than sufficient to prove my mental facility. 100 letters from friends and family could be produced. But I don’t want to waste the court’s time. Checking out the basics of what I say about me would take a few clicks on the internet. Listen to a few of my music videos. There are really only three “Jim Hlavac” on the internet – one of them is me – and I’m all over it. But a point by point refutation of every word they wrote – they wrote a fantasy the likes of which I have never encountered – would be hours and hours, and pages and pages – it is that bizarre.

What these people have written about me into their computers and paper files I explore in the following pages. How any of them could say that after form signing sessions of barely 20 minutes anyone is competent to say what I am is absurd. None of them have any competence – nor had time – to declare me this or that disorder. I should not have to prove I’m sane and rational. Let these people present any evidence they have that I’m not. And all they have is their incompetence, fantasies and tomfoolery – and 101 forms well signed by me. Still, they denied me the life saving drugs for months at a time and had no clue how to resolve it. And they are calling me insane and incompetent and a criminal.

And as for Zhanna Schpitalnik – who I spoke with a ½ dozen times for a ½ hour – she said I was fine. She was very impressed with my off the cuff drawing on Red Square in Moscow – oh, I can draw a picture of every major city in the world, yeesh. We talked more current events than my personal emotions. And that’s because I couldn’t open up to her. I’m a Gay male – I do not relate to women whatsoever. I have made this clear repeatedly – anyone from my aunts, uncles and sister, to my friends of 40 years will tell you that. 85% of my friends are gay men, 10% are straight men, and only 5% of them are women, nearly all aunts and cousins and my sister, and only since I got to Phoenix a handful of Lesbians. I simply will not, cannot, talk about personal matters and my emotions with a woman. And surviving AIDS as a gay man in America – from when it had no name in 1980, to it became GRID and then AIDS, as I buried so many buddies – is an emotional personal matter. And everyone simply refused my simple request for a male counselor about surviving AIDS while they went off on wild tangents of their delusions – to the point of coming at me with the police while poisoning me with drugs they pushed.

Still, they will not relent. From this phone number, 602-248-0368, some woman from “Recovery Empowerment Network” – an agency I never heard of – called on March 27th; 2017 at 1:30 in the afternoon – to tell me that she was my “peer counselor” to help me “in recovery.” I asked her “Recovery from what? Who gave you my number?” Well, Southwest Network did! – She said she was going to help me recover from my drug and booze addictions and life of dissolution and crime – and I just went ballistic. I was enraged. How dare this Southwest Network keep propagating their evil nonsense? I told her furiously “Do not ever call me again, take my number out of the system,” and hung up.

On Friday March 31st 2017 some huge linebacker sized guy pounds – not knocking – pounding! – on my door demanding entry to my home and perhaps for me to go with him and he’s going to take care of me. He’s from JFCS he says. I tell him he’s out of his mind. I would not let him in – I would not go with him – I told him to get lost – and I also told him to tell Lindsay Morgan to send me a copy of my records. I showed him the COPE report through the screen door as a sample of what I am talking about. And there’s Lindsay Morgan, poking out from behind this man – talking to me like a child again – and I was just furious. I told her to send me the report – and get out of my life. And then I just slammed the door in their faces. I have not seen this agency’s files on me yet. Ms. Morgan seems to think I have to go back to talk to her – for another assessment or other nonsense. She is rude, obnoxious and ignorant. I will not speak with her. I had to spell words for her in our meeting – egad.

The Malignancy of SWN, Phoenix

Southwest Network Report

Southwest Network at 3640 W Osborn Road Phoenix Arizona sent to me a 142 page report of what they just essentially imagined about me. And for an agency I met with just 4 times – that is a lot of paper discussing me without knowing me. I numbered the pages by hand in the order I received them for ease of discussion.

From Page One:

“Ethnicity” – they put “Not Hispanic/Latino” – my ethnicity is Czech – all four grandparents are from there and I grew up in a bilingual household. I do not speak “Not Hispanic” I speak Czech. I do not have relatives living in “Not Hispania” – but in the Czech Republic. It is frankly rude and dismissive to declare my “ethnicity” for what it is “not” when it could have been written “Czech-American” or just “Czech” if ethnicity is still such a important concern – I thought American was good enough. I find this offensive – this term is offensive to me. And I pointed that out to Relles Abeytia – my “case manager” – who dismissed it as irrelevant – and I think it very relevant indeed. After all, Mr. Abeytia is Hispanic – but I do not call him “Not-Czech.”

I recognize very well the politics that swirl around the term, and I don’t really mean to contest it. But, well, it offends me – annoys me even. It is “Not a good start” to anything.

I am labeled “SMI” (Severely Mentally Ill) by COPE in Tucson – and that’s what Southwest saw in my records – so that was their first assumption. But I am not severely mentally ill by any definition of the term – it is monstrous, preposterous. But someone just declared me so – and now the system believes it – and that is why there is this complaint.

“Primary Residence” = “home with family (including licensed family foster provider) – I do not have any such person in my life, nor do I need one whatsoever – and I live alone.

I am labeled “F41.8 Other specified anxiety disorders” – I do not have any anxiety disorder – though I do have a grave problem with bureaucrats dismissing what I say as irrelevant and being slothful

I am labeled “F41.0 Panic Disorder (episodic paroxysmal anxiety) without agoraphobia” – I do not have any panic disorder – I do not panic at anything – I get aggravated, sure – but not panicked. And about the only time I get aggravated that is noticeable is dealing with bureaucrats – and particular Southwest Network. But since I only met with them 4 times for form signing sessions – it is impossible for them to simply declare this without imagining things

I am labeled “F12.20 Cannabis Dependence, uncomplicated” – this alleges a crime – and I simply do not have “cannabis dependence” – it is absurd.

I am labeled “F14.20 Cocaine dependence, uncomplicated” – this is a malicious statement of falsehood – I do not do cocaine. Though, it is true, that between 1985 and 1990 in the Gay club scene in New York City while gay men were dying around me and the nation more or less laughed and said “tough” – I did coke on Friday nights at some of the greatest discos in Manhattan -on the VIP list – because – as I contend in a book I wrote – we just didn’t care anymore – we were so despised that in Bowers V Hardwick 478 U.S. 186, the Supreme Court stated that gay men had no constitutional right to be gay – we were felons and that was OK. Let us say, Gay Men were not happy. I helped launched a protest in Manhattan on July 4th 1986 that went into Lower Manhattan while the 100th Anniversary of the Statue of Liberty was being celebrated – to express our severe displeasure at being denied the basic Liberty to Smooch. It was reported in the New York Post: “Queers invade lower Manhattan.”

But some cocaine use in the 1980s gay party scene in New York City during the Gay Dark Ages, 30 years ago – is NOT “cocaine dependence, uncomplicated” in 2017 and today in Phoenix, Arizona. And this accusation on my medical record could cause police action of undetermined kind against me.
Both these accusations of drug use are dangerous to my liberty and false.

They say “Z59.9 Problem related to housing and economic circumstances, unspecified” – and the only problem I had with the apartment I was living in when I was forced to deal with Southwest Network was because a crazed woman became manager at my previous abode at 4444 North 7th Avenue, Phoenix, in the very gay Melrose District – and called cops on me 9 times in 14 days alleging crimes, violence, intimidation and more – and sent crisis teams to my house, and served me with eviction paper 4 days before Christmas 2015 on a lease that was up a week later on January 1st 2016 which they already had said they would not renew. This crazed women, Lori Felix, simply hated me for no logical rational reason and tried to destroy my life in anyway she could. So I had to take the first apartment that came up – at 4141 W Glendale Avenue – so far from anything I did that I was simply – I don’t know – miffed, I guess. All my adult life I have lived within walking distance of a gay bar – I have always sought to live in gayborhoods (gay neighborhoods) – and now I was not. My social life was halted and my travel time to anything I did was increased from minutes to 1 hour. I solved the problem by signing a lease on January 20th 2017 at my current location, back in the Melrose District, and within sight out of my kitchen window of a gay bar. Southwest Network was not involved in any aspect of this. I asked for no help and they offered none.

From Page Two:
They restate the wrong diagnoses of the first page, and then add “He feels he has gotten worse in the last year” – I said no such thing. The only thing I said was that I had to get out of that apartment – and I did. And the only thing that was really making me “worse” – was the drug Southwest was pushing on me – they’re drug dealers and no less.

“James did not want anyone else involved in his treatment planning.” – because I did not need anyone involved in my life. I run my life, I do not need help from any agency whatsoever. I don’t need treatment. I don’t need any of what they offer – none of it. They continued “James is requesting counseling services, special a male mental health counselor” – and that is all I asked for – for one simple reason. I am indeed, a 58 year old gay man – who survived AIDS while burying a 100 friends. I was melancholy around my birthday, May 13th, 2016, and my insurance company had called for their semi-annual check up. So I made that simple request. And then the odyssey started which leads to this complaint. And in the next 8 months – no one – not anywhere – could or would provide me with this simple thing – the name and number of a male counselor, covered by my insurance, of any kind, so I could call them up and make an appointment to discuss this melancholy which had no affect on anything I did other than a wistfulness of some sort. But the system – all of them – two dozen people or more – simply refused to provide a name. They dismissed it as piffle. They knew what was best for me, they said. They simply dismissed my repeated requests as unimportant. And after a few months I thought, well, I guess it wasn’t going to happen.

The box on the page labeled “Info from Psychiatric Evaluation” is blank – because there was no such evaluation. Nor did I ask for one.

They claim I report using marijuana daily – I made no such statement ever. They are accusing me of criminal activity with no basis in fact

They claim “He also reports drinking alcohol just about every day and does not remember when he first started” – this is false – I made no such claim – nor could I ever. I do not drink every day. I go for weeks without a drink. And do I remember when I first had alcohol? Yes, as a kid, my father would give us a sip of wine or beer mixed with water when we were as young as 12 – we were immigrants, it was the old country way. And I remember clearly that on Saturday May 15th, 1976 two days after my 18th birthday, the legal drinking age in New York State at the time, that I walked into the Ninth Circle, the most wondrous gay bar to ever exist. I recount the story in my book on the Gay subject.

They claim “James reports he is easily frustrated and agitated about everything” – I said no such thing – for it simply isn’t true. I lead a life of charm, mirth and merriment, a joker, story teller and bon vivant that enjoys life. I was though – and clearly stated it – very frustrated and aggravated at these ridiculous questions from Mr. Abeytias and Mary Kay Tharalson of Southwest Network which I was forced to see – because none of it was relevant. I wanted to talk to a male counselor about surviving AIDS and burying a 100 friends in 10 years (can’t say it often enough, nope) – and they wanted to know if I was going to kill myself and other just absurd nonsense. “Do you wet the bed?” Egad. I asked “Why are you asking me this?” It was Mr. Abeytia who aggravated me, that’s all – and I told him so.

They claim “James reports that his zyprexa destroys his creativity” – and it does. I am an extremely creative man. My entire life has been creating things. The tales of what I created could fill volumes. For instance, I helped create the Cajun food industry. I create music – 100s, if not 1000s of pieces. I paint, I write – I do things. And these people were pushing pills on me I did not want to take because they imagined me SMI. Mary Kay Tharalson of Southwest Network – who I was told I just had to speak to to get to a male counselor about what I wanted to speak about – met with me for some 20 minutes of which 15 minutes were her bumbling around her computer to find the right forms for me to sign – and then she just writes a prescription for pills I do not need to take, nor want to take. On what basis could she make such a determination that I needed them? Her computer told her.

They write “James feels he is not sick but wants a male mental health counselor.” Well, I am not sick mentally by any definition I have read – but they insisted I was – and then denied me the counselor I requested about emotions. I brought up emotions – they insisted I was insane somehow. Not only did I never go back to this pointless woman Ms. Tharalson – but I wrote her a letter detailing why she was pointless. They simply told me they knew all about me – and I knew nothing.

Page Three:

They claim “He has osteoporosis but was unaware of when he was first diagnosed” – Absurd – it was in 2009 in Baton Rouge Louisiana at HAART’s medical office on North Boulevard by Dr. Mike Hymbaugh.

Page Four:
“Highest School Level Complete” – they wrote “Master’s Degree” – I do not have a Master’s, nor would I ever claim to have one. I have 2 BA’s (Well, 1 ½, a special 5 year program at New York University.) Where they got Master’s from I have no earthly clue.

“James was very vague when it comes to his family history” Laughable, I am my family historian– but why I should have to tell Mr. Abeytia that say, one grandfather came over on the SS Lapland in 1914 and the other on the SS Laconia in 1921? And I have the passenger lists and documents by the 100s to prove it – when my issue was surviving AIDS – I do not know. My family health history? Do they want to know that Uncle Willy died on the toilet? Or that Aunt Mary had dementia when she got to 85? Or that me and my grandmother have this genetic oddity that makes our internal organs lumpy and with holes. Some 4% of Northeastern Europeans have it.

“James does not have contact with any of his family” In fact, I am in constant contact through snail mail, email, phone calls, Facebook and Skype with 200+ members of my family on three continents in two languages – and visits to them wherever they are in the nation or Europe. From my cousin Alice Tapfield and her family in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia, across America from San Diego to Seattle to Boston to Boca Raton, Florida, to cousins from all four sides of my family in Prague, Mlada Boleslav, Frydek, Vlkos u Kyjov and Skoronice in the Czech Republic. Where Mr. Abeytia or anyone got this notion is beyond me. I am my family historian, custodian of 200+ hundred or more year old documents, 1000s of letters, photos, diaries, ephemera and more – it is rather astounding. I wrote a book with my father, who I call frequently – we get along just great. This is Mr. Abeytia’s fantasy, I guess – 100% false.

In my supporting documents are some letters from my family.

“He also says having a male counselor is very important to him” Abeytia could be bothered to even state the reason – for he simply dismissed my life as nothing. For eight months I asked for one – no counselor’s name or number was ever provided. The system would simply not give me one.

“James currently plays piano at St. Joseph’s on Sundays” Not true. I played there every Tuesday and Thursday for 2 to 3 hours for over 2 years, then they asked me to play more. So they made me an official volunteer with a badge and a shirt, and I played 5 days a week for 4 to 5 hours. Until I broke my wrist on October 26th 2016 in a bus wreck on the way home from piano playing – I am just getting back into it. On Sundays I actually play at Huger Mercy Living Center, an Alzheimers home, in their chapel, at North 24th Avenue and Orangewood Avenue.

“James did not have a religious preference” Not true. Like my family for 100s of years, we are Hussite Freethinkers, a 600 year old religion that is particular to the Czech lands. I guess since I was a “Not-Hispanic” person without a “Hispanic Catholicism” I had no religion. And I speak strongly everywhere and in public about my strongly held religious beliefs about gay men.
Page Five:

“James is at risk to relapse for marijuana mad alcohol (sic).” Not true, besides the basic fault in the grammar of the sentence. But apparently Mr. Abeytia believes I am an alcoholic – it is insulting to me.

“James reports continued used (sic) of marijuana and alcohol” Not true – I dismissed all such concerns as irrelevant. A 58 year old man is allowed to have some beer, wine and spirits for dinner and social settings. But this implies I am an alcoholic and that is ludicrous.

Page Six:
“James understands the grievance and appeals process” – indeed – so well, that I appealed my grievance, to wit “Where is the name and number of a male counselor covered by my insurance?” The official Grievance Committee of Mercy Maricopa mailed me a formal notification of my complaint – an then ignored it completely. A spate of emails with a Ron Valdez, ombudsman of Mercy Maricopa descended into a farce of him simply refusing to give me a name and him insisting I go back to Southwest Network which does not offer counseling and by that time had so aggravated me with their, what only can be called, insolence, that I vowed to never go near them again.

Pages 7, 8 and 9 are simply childlike statements by Mr. Abeytia or whoever else wrote them – misspellings, lousy grammar – and this bleating insistence about what I need to do. The arrogance of these people I never met in my life to be telling me what I need to do and how they will monitor it is stunning. No one ever had to tell me what I needed to do. Mr Abeytia writes that “James needs to work on his operas” and that fool probably never heard an opera in his life.

They note “I wrote a book” Wrong, I wrote 16. Not a person in this system yet will go look at Amazon.com and see the books I wrote. They all seem to insist it is irrelevant.

They wrote “He wrote 3 operas.” Wrong, I am working on 5 or 6, all on Gay Men themes, none completed.

Page 10:

“James needs be (sic) referred to PEP for 1 on 1 counseling for anxiety, panic and agoraphobia.” Laughable – I was just ever increasingly aggravated that these people would not give me the name and number of a male counselor covered by my insurance. They were insisting I see their nurses, their doctors, this Ms. Tharalson, and who knows who else? It was just stunning their total disregard to meet my simple request about a matter that was none of their concern. This Southwest Network was simply pointless and irrelevant and an utter waste of my time. And again, I do not have “anxiety” or “panic” I have “Let’s get things done, like the name of a counselor” and “do things right.” No, they would not provide one.

As for “agoraphobia” – that is simply one of the most ludicrously funny, knee slapping terms ever applied to me by these people I don’t know and met once, or by anyone in my life. How utterly absurd. I am a fine public speaker – I have given public lectures on a dozen subjects. I deliberately seek out pianos in public places to play and engage the crowds. I helped run the Phoenix International Youth Hostel at 1026 North 9th Street, here, for 6 years, which is a position working with the public. I am one of the most effervescent, gregarious, glad handing outgoing men this court might ever meet. I am the only person that the One Voice gay pride center on North 7th Avenue ever gave a birthday party to – that’s how popular and joyful I am. I’m sorry, but that is just miserable, to claim this. I have the ability to walk into a room of 100 people and take it over and regale it with tales and jokes. Agoraphobic? No, no, just the opposite.

“James is a poor historian …” Historian about what? I am the world’s foremost expert on the Czechs and Slovaks of Louisiana. You may purchase my book on the subject, “A Hidden Impact: the Czechs and Slovaks of Louisiana from the 1720s to today” with a foreword written by Martin Palous, Ambassador of the Czech Republic to the United States, on Amazon. This statement is so wrong as to defy rationality. My knowledge of history is encyclopedic. I could explain in Spanish (which I speak well) 5,000 years of “Is Hispanic” history for every Latino country from Spain to Tierra del Fuego – so that Mr. Abeytia knows who and who is not “Not Hispanic.”

Historian of what? AIDS? Gay Men? My family? My life? What did this man want to know? And how many days does he have to listen? I might go on about history in a 100 directions for hours and hours. It would astonish this man.

They also wrote “James went to summer camp when he was 1” – and that’s absurd. But I did go when I was 6. They wrote “he claims he came home speaking Czech.” They write it as a delusion. Well, I did because it was a Czech camp – Sokol Camp in East Haddam Connecticut was there for 100 years serving the Czech-Americans in the Northeast. I was sent there not on some whim, not to some strange place – not to some unknown – but because it was where my mother went, and my aunts and uncles, it’s where my grandmother met my grandfather in the late 1920s. My brothers went the following years. I went there every year for a decade. My family had been involved with the camp for generations. And all the adults spoke Czech -and being a kid, already having heard Czech at home – I picked up the language like a sponge.

Page 14:

“CM [case manager] will complete a home visit month to assess for safety” Mr. Abeytia never came to my house for six months. Until he brought police to my house in a vain attempt to compel me to sign more forms, which is unsafe (they have guns). I refused to sign the forms. But why this man thinks he has some claim on my life to “assess for safety” is simply Orwellian. It’s not rational.

He did come to my house about December 1st – unannounced. He was the only person to ever enter my house without noticing the art. He didn’t even look up from the floor. It was a terse and tense conversation. He said something about how he’s going to take care of me – and I said “do you have the name and number of a male counselor for me to talk to about surviving AIDS?” and he said “no.” So I said “What point are you? You are a fool – get out of my life.” He went back to his office and labeled me “paranoid.” It’s bizarre.

I asked him to help cut a piece of steak for my cat – it is noted in the record of his visit – because I had a broken wrist, wearing a cast. Mr. Abeytia – while telling me he was going to take care of me – simply did not ask about the wrist. He simply ignored an obvious injury – as he bleated he was going to assess me for safety.

Page 15:

“James has AIDS education.” – Yes I do – because I was there in 1980 when guys started dying around me in Greenwich Village and I tended those I knew in their dying days – and then it got a name: GRID – Gay Related Immune Deficiency” – and then it became AIDS in 1984. And I have been told countless times in my life by people like Mr. Abeytia “I hope you die of AIDS” – I have heard the malicious evil of heterosexuals. I helped launch ACT UP! An AIDS advocacy group headed by Larry Kramer. “Educated”? No, I lived it – which is why I wanted to speak to a male counselor. This statement simply aggravates me – it is rude, insolent, obnoxious even. Some goddamn hetero kid who wasn’t even born at the time – is going to attest That “James has AIDS education” for the record? This is just – just mind boggling. And yes, “goddamn hetero kid” – that’s exactly how I feel about this miserable man. And who knows what this Latino Catholic Heterosexual thinks about gay men? They all have opinions about us – and “strongly held religious beliefs” too.

“James wants to live within walking distance of a gay park.” Laughable – I don’t want a park, I want a bar. This statement is childish. I have always lived in gayhorhoods, within minutes of a gay bar. They are my social service center, they are my city hall. The position of a gay bar in our community is not like that of a straight bar in the city. It is far more than just a bar. A good book might be written to explore the subject, particularly with the way it was before the year 2000.

Page 16:
“My service plan has been reviewed with me by my behavioral health provider.” Most certainly not. Mr. Abeytia told me “your team is working on your assessment.” Apparently, people I never met were discussing me – and fabricating who knows what. The form isn’t signed. Perhaps that’s what he tried to compel me to sign, but by that time I was done. I said “Get this ludicrous man away from me.”

Page 17:
Yet another statement of “cocaine dependency.” Monstrous – in a “At Risk Crisis Plan” – At risk for what? Crisis for what? I was moving along with my life, waiting on a new apartment, writing music, playing piano, working on my book ideas – I was doing everything just as I always did. Some examples they put down – “legal issues” “residential staff” “weapons” “signs and symptoms of decompensation.” All of this is imagined fantasy. I have no legal issues, (well, except this case now.) I live in an apartment, there is no “staff” – I have never owned any weapons, the last time I shot a gun I was 14, in the boy scouts, at Oneonta Camp in upstate New York under the careful supervision of Mr. Walsh and other scout troop leaders. I’m living a productive life while trying to avoid these people who proved utterly incompetent in 8 months to provide the name and number of a male counselor – and malicious in their hounding me.

Page 18:
They claim “….needs help with his anxiety which he says is overwhelming …” I said no such thing. I have no anxiety – these people imagined it. Though I do have aggravation caused by Southwest Network and other bureaucrats – it’s absurd what I was put through. Did I express my displeasure heatedly? Eventually I did – eventually I was just cursing them out. So obstinate, so obnoxious, so uncaring, unfeeling, unwilling to listen to a word I said, so dismissive of everything I said – so wrong about so much too – that what else was there to do but curse them?

Page 20:
“…. assist James in identifying barriers to attending appointments.” The only appointment I wanted was with a male counselor. And Southwest Network was the barrier – they refused to provide a name. Then then demanded I meet with them at this office inconvenient to my life. So idiotic are these people that Southwest has an office 1 mile from where I lived at Glendale and 41st Avenue – they have an office at 43rd Avenue and Bethany Home Road. I could walk there in 15 minutes. Instead to get to their Osborn location is 2 buses – and nearly an hour – because the bus heading south on 35th Avenue comes 4 or 5 minutes before the bus heading east on Glendale – so one just has to wait half hour for the next bus – and I am just not into waiting half hours on street corners so I can go visit pointless people.

Page 21:
“Social Isolation” – absolutely not – laughable nonsense. They accuse me of being an alcoholic for going to a gay bar every other week or so – and social isolation at the same time. Meanwhile, my friend Brown comes over every 4 or 5 days, bringing his wife and grand-kids. Other friends came over – especially after I broke my wrist. I talk to friends and family on the phone every other day or so – and I am on facebook having a fine time with people all over the world.

“Speech: rapid” – Yes, well, someone who is from New York City does speak rapidly – it is a common complaint and a joke in a New York Minute – I can’t help it if Mr. Abeytias couldn’t keep up – and has he any clue how fast Hispanics speak Spanish? I speak fast? Listen to a Mexican woman – and I have lived in Mexico.

Page 21:
Simply twisting everything I said into a pathology – they claim I said I’m “Totally panic stricken” – utter nonsense, I never said such a thing. I asked to speak to a male counselor about surviving AIDS and they twisted into I was freaking out and lashing out and rages and whatever else they imagined. Perhaps I spoke too fast for Mr. Abeytia – -who I met twice only nicely – and every other time to tell him to go away – to figure out what I was saying. Perhaps I spoke “Not Hispanic” and he couldn’t understand. The man did not understand one single literary, historical, musical or cultural references I made, he’s a simpleton. He seems to know nothing but how to stare into his computer and fabricate pathological nonsense. I sat at his desk as he asked question after question and stared into his computer – ignoring me really – “not now, I’m busy here,” he pretty much said when I stated something positive about my life – so he could get his negative fantasy assessment – to which he apparently had preconceived, based on the computer telling him I was “Severely Mentally Ill.”

Page 22:
“Strong family history of suicide.” No. My brother did – but I hadn’t talked to him for 40 years. There was no contact with him at all – so anything he did could have had zero affect on me whatsoever. My cousin Michael might have, that’s open to debate. And this out of 200 or more family members. That cannot be a “strong family history” at all. But certainly what someone else that I hadn’t talked to in 40 years does 1000s of miles from me could have no bearing on what I would do. Southwest Network simply imagined me a risk of suicide in 2016 because my brother who I had not spoken to in 40 years (nor did he speak to any family member for that long – I don’t know – he went off on his own and never came back – I have no idea what he did, where he was – nothing – he was a moody artist as a kid. I last saw him when I was 25 years old.) committed suicide in 2010 2,000 miles from me. It’s not rational to make any connection or causality. What, my uncle got divorced and thus I am risk for divorce too?

As “Strong family history” – there’s a strong family history of printing – I was a printer, my father was a printer, so was his father, and his father and his father before that – 5 or 6 generations of printers – a very strong family history indeed. And they all lived into their 80s – as I plan to do.

Page 23:

At this point in their report they noted that I would not see them anymore. There was no point. Not a thing Mr. Abeytia said was relevant to anything I sought. In fact – the man simply annoyed me – his existence began to annoy me – I wanted no further contact with him. I wanted a male counselor – not a Ms. Tharalson, not a nurse, not another doctor besides the one I had, not a support group – I did not need anyone assessing my life, or wondering if I had fresh food or handling affairs. I run my life, I had some melancholy over 100 friends lost – while heterosexuals like any Mr. Abeytia laughed.

Still, they insisted they were going to take over my medical care and I said “No you are not.” For the hallmark of good care is a trust of the patient towards a provider. And these people were absurd. Months of no name and number that I requested while “my team” worked on “my case.” What case? They imagined I was a case for them to handle. I wasn’t going to tolerate it. No one can compel me to deal with people I do not wish to deal with – especially people who will not, could not, did not, would not provide what I asked for.

Then came maybe 2 months of no contact. After months of absurd questions unrelated to anything I wished to talk about – and dismissing everything I did want to talk about. They imagined disorders, pathology, panic, anxiety, fear, rage, bipolar, mania, depression, anger, social disorders, agoraphobia – and worst of all – cocaine dependency – all of this – none of this was true. I simply had no time nor patience to deal with pointless people. I told them so too. Go away – leave me alone – you are pointless. You cannot and will not give me what I want. I have no reason to see you people. You are not going to monitor my life, nor tend me, nor handle what you believe to be my issues because your computer says I’m “severely mentally ill” and “special needs.” The very terms alone aggravated me. How could they believe this or say this based on form signing sessions?

And then they started to just demand I show up. I said “No, I do not need you in my life.”

Page 28:
“James really wants a male counselor,. CM let him know that that is an option.” And I sat there wondering – an option? It was a clear request – a demand even – repeated incessantly. They simply said “no.” How many months does it take to look up a name of someone covered by my insurance and give it to me so I could call and make an appointment about what I wanted to speak about – Not what Mr. Abeytia or Ms. Tharalson or Dorothy Williams or anyone at Southwest Network wanted to talk about? It should have taken 20 minutes, tops. Months? It was preposterous. And very aggravating.

This was all during June, July, August, September, October and November. Some 20 people strolled into my life to “take care of my case” and I was flummoxed. None – not a one – would satisfy my simple request.

And then in December 2016 they escalated it.

Mr. Abeytia came to my house unannounced on December 1st – I note that outrageous intrusion into my life above.

This crazed agency comes to my house on Thursday 8th of December … I tell them to go away .. they call three times in one day … I hung up on them after telling them “Do not call me again.”

They called again on the 9th … I tell them to leave me alone …they come back on the 9th .. I tell them to go away .. then they come back with police! To compel me to sign their infernal forms for their delight. I refused. I told the cops, no, no I will not – “Get that miserable skunk out of my face, I will not talk to him ever again in my life.”

I get the weekend off …

Monday 12th, they call and come again … repeatedly – hounding me, demanding I go with them to who knows where, demanding I comply with their measures, utter strangers demanding entry into my house. I told them repeatedly and ever more heatedly at every intrusion into my calm happy life to go away.

And then at about 6 or 7 in the evening I finally called the police on them complaining of harassment. Only – they called first – for they believed that my refusal to talk to pointless people was a sign of how very “severely mentally ill” they imagined me to be. And the police hauled me off – to a psyche ward. I was enraged. How dare they? They created a problem and acted on their fantasy.

I was taken to Phoenix Memorial Hospital at 1201 South 7th Avenue – in my pajamas. And there, I was set upon by a horde of women. They placed me in the corner of a room and 6 women formed a semi circle around me and just stared at me – and I lit into them. I called them miserable, arrogant and obnoxious – I even joked “next you’ll demand I smooch a woman.” I was in Righteous Indignation. I was incensed, as I had a right to be. Then two large orderlies picked me up like a sack of potatoes – dragged me to another room – and threw me roughly on a mat – and someone shot my rump up with some chemical – and then they left me in this concrete room for a half hour – before leading me to an uncomfortable chair – while talking to me like I was deranged. The idea of being rightly enraged at this outrageous treatment didn’t seem to occur to them at all.

In the morning I met with a Dr. Wolf – she said “you don’t belong here” – I said “no kidding.” So they let me out in two hours (took them that long for their paper work, egad) – and gave me a bus pass – and I had to go home from there – in my pajamas. It was humiliating. Dr. Wolf on her discharge paper put “mania” – apparently Righteous Indignation is not on her form.

On the way home I went to the McDowell Clinic – I was just mad as hell – and I wanted someone to do something. So, on Tuesday, December 13th in a call from Mr. Greg Scagg’s office (director of McDowell Clinic) – I told Dorothy Williams – do not come near me again – I refuse to speak with you – I want nothing to do with you – I stated it several ways. Mr. Scaggs had to calm me down from how heatedly I expressed my severe displeasure with these miserable people.

They required a from to release me – fine, fax it over. No, it could not be done that day. So I continued home – in my pajamas – embarrassed and humiliated. And the next day I had to waste 3 hours to go to McDowell to check a box on a form, sign it, and fax it back. So on the 14th I signed paperwork divorcing this agency from my life.

But nope – they called on the 16th … and I said to a woman named Cory – “Do NOT Call ME Again” I was clear, emphatic and pointed – and I was just infuriated at the obnoxious insolence of these miserable people.

Then – at 5 PM on the 16th – they send a woman to my door as my “peer counselor” – I was flummoxed. I lit into this broad and told her “GET AWAY FROM ME!” – she wanted to push to stay – I was simply “ARE YOU INSANE?” – finally she left after I started a tirade of invective and curse words at her. Her insistence on staying was stunning.

These people are insane – it is mind numbing. For 8 months I asked for a male counselor – and they send me a woman to my door unannounced 3 days after I signed their form stating I did not want to deal with them. Their refusal to listen, to do what they agreed to, is stunning.

Page 42 – date 12/9/2016

their report claims I said I would kill myself – that is just nonsense – a 100% fabricated lie – No – just no, never did I say that – apparently some agency called Shanti which had told me in a brief 10 minute conversation that they do not take my insurance – called up SWN and said I would kill myself. This is just monstrous – I have a “OK, well, that’s a bummers” call with someone – and they just create this claim? They lied – they committed fraud – malpractice – it is stunning.

Page 43 date 12/9/2016

their report claims I said I would kill myself – that is just nonsense – a 100% fabricated lie – No – just no, never did I say that

Yet, on nearly every page of this 142 page report they admit I asked for a male counselor – and yet – they would not provide one. Never. 100 times my wish, request, demand is mentioned – 101 times they told me “screw off, no” – so what point were they? What? None.

13 times it is noted, on page after page “James wants a male counselor.” At the 14th time Mr. Abeytia writes “It could be an option.” This is malicious disregard for what I asked for – and for the reasons I asked for it.

Page 47 – some how the Shanti Group is now involved – a group who told me ,my insurance is no good with them.

page 48—they report me “extremely angry with SWN” – sure they wouldn’t give me a name of a male counselor – and they are so dense and obtuse they can’t see it – they are blind

page 96

determined SMI 4/8/2013 – through CPSA – so I figured out that some bureaucrat in Tucson labeled me “severely mentally ill” – and actually it is 1/17/2013 when it was done – see COPE report.

They quote me as saying “I’ve been trying to get back in for services for awhile. There’s something wrong with me, I can’t function and everything freaks me out.”

Never – I could never have uttered this statement – this is a blatant 100% fabrication – at the time this was claimed I uttered it – I was functioning as I always have … writing, art, music, life, friends, family, public acts – in 2013 I was published on some of very conservative websites promoting the Good of Gay Guys – and was defended by anti-gay pundits – and well – this statement they claim I make is simply bizarre.

And then the rest of this – all of it – I have never seen such a fantasy created about me like this – this is just monstrous – malpractice, fraud, lies, fabrications and more – who knows what laws were broken in the writing of this.

As of 3/30/2017 – so far I have determined that I am declared a “coke, meth, booze and pot addict with mania, depression, manic-depression, bipolar, anxiety, panic, agoraphobia, paranoia disorders – with legal, weapons and gambling issues, who is moving to Philadelphia and Costa Rica and has delusions to become a Hollywood Movie Star — who is delusional about writing books, painting and playing the piano”

And — I am “frustrated” they note — and I’m like – look at this! “Frustrated” seems so light in retrospect — and all declared by people each of whom I met just once — to sign their forms

 

The Malignancy of COPE, Tucson

COPE Tucson Report

COPE is a social service organization headquartered at 82 South Stone Avenue, Tucson, Arizona. It was SAAF in that city which sent me to a Michael Castaneda at COPE at101 South Stone Avenue – he was supposedly the gay male counselor I sought to discuss my emotions about having survived AIDS and burying a 100 friends – instead he was a straight male drug rehab counselor. SAAF apparently imagined me a meth head I am told. COPE sent me a 186 page report, which I paginated for convenience of reference, and below are the highlights of this report. To contest every word of this monstrosity would take hundreds of pages in response – but it is a fantasy, they wrote a fantasy about me.

On January 1/17/2013 I met with a man named Toate Ganago – once – and never really saw him again

On July 19, 2013 I met with a Lisa Robinson about paperwork – and never met her again

I met a man named Dale Hawkins 2 times – once in person – -and once by video – after talking to me for all 5 minutes he said “take a pill” – and he insisted I take .5 mg of Risperidone – he wrote “for mood instability” – and I did not have any such thing – nor did I want to take this pill – but I was pressured into it. He stated I had Bipolar Disorder – and I spoke to him for 10 minutes – it’s impossible to declare me with such a disorder immediately upon meeting me.

Page C-26

on 10/23/2012 someone wrote “Generalized Anxiety Disorder”
on 10/24/2012 someone wrote “Bipolar Affective Disorder” and “Manic, moderate”
on 10/24/2012 someone wrote “Alcohol abuse, continuous drinking behavior”

None of this is true – none – and then repeated on 4/8/2013 and 11/20/2013 and 11/21/2013 – and there is no way people I met once to sign their forms could have concluded any of this.

I do not have “anxiety disorder” in any way, shape or form. What I have is “let’s get it done and the quicker the better” and I am met with sloth and incompetence by bureaucrats – it was stunning what people in they system didn’t know, couldn’t get done, didn’t do or did wrong and on and on – just stunning.

I do not have “bipolar” anything – I am not depressed whatsoever – I am relentlessly happy. Every work of art and music and writing I produce is happy, gleeful, bright, cheery and effervescent. Neither am I “manic” – I proceed along at a steady clip of productivity – perhaps these people in this system never encountered someone who gets things done. Probably because of the type of agency they are they do deal with unfortunate souls – and so they imagined me one too. But none of them spent a moment with me watching my creative output, or observing my life – I met with them to sign their forms.

Page C-28 is stated on the same dates as on C-26, in complete contradiction to the previous statements: “Alcohol: no use, 1-3 times a month” – and if a few drinks a month at a gay bar with my fellows is alcohol abuse – well – it just can’t be.

“Drug use – no use or never” – because I just don’t do drugs no did I ever – I explain cocaine in the late 1980s on another page. But basically – the only mind altering drugs I ever did – was the drug Risperdone which these people pushed on me. To my mind they were drug pushers.

10/08/2013 – a woman named Heidi Snavely is noted as having a follow up appointment slated with me – and I never met her until Sept 2nd 2013 – on pretty much the last day I was in Tucson – for maybe 12 minutes – and a month later she is desperate for my attention.

10/08/2013 – Kathleen Oldfather is stated that my follow up appointment with her was canceled – and I have no idea who she is and never met her to my knowledge – never spoke to her – and I was gone from the city for a month already.

Page C-30

On a form that is not filled in – with the name Toate Ganago printed on top – except for one check mark in a box – it says “program and provider assignment” a box is check marked “SMI” – why someone did this I have no idea. Perhaps Mr Ganago, acting on his strong Christian beliefs – which his cubicle had ample presence of – and his statements to me that I “should pray to our heavenly father” – and his African origins – for he was from Nigeria – concluded that gay men were SMI. And that’s what I conclude – this man was simply acting on his Christian Nigerian roots and culture and beliefs – and the history of gay men in that land is sad torture and abuse, and Christians are not exactly gay friendly either. So he simply checked off a box which led to this absurd nonsense – because he believes that gay men are certainly “severely mentally ill” – what else could we be to a man from such a culture and nation?

Page C-45

On 3/25/2013 supposedly I was at COPE’s Lakeside office from 10:40 AM to 10:50 AM for “Case Management” with Joanna Reis – I never met this woman ever – and she notes “Client Not Observed” and then states I said “I need to be calmed and not be moody” “I need to feel better” “I want to sleep better” – and I never said this – I don’t even talk like this. I had no sleep issues, I wasn’t moody, and I never spoke to her – at all.

Page C-46

on 3/26/2013 Joanna Reis again writes what I supposedly said – though she notes “Client not observed” – this woman insists on this page that I should be attending some group – what group I have no idea – and I do not do groups. I went to one luncheon with Michael Castaneda’s group of men he served – all of whom were indeed former drug addicts and alcoholics who took that route to getting HIV – and I am this erudite creative intellectual with a history of nothing but accomplishment who is an old gay man who got it the old fashioned way – gay sex – at the beginning – when it was “it” – way before it was “AIDS.”

Page C-47

on 3/27/2013 Joanna Reis claims I made the same statements the previous 2 pages – this time between 10:10 AM and 10:15 AM – and that a CL called me – no one called me from COPE – and I did not call them

Page C-48

4/08/2013 – it is stated I met with a Joanna Reis between 2:40 PM and 4:20 PM – I did not – unless this is the time I spent with Toate Ganago months previously – Supposedly they discussed SMI services with me – no one did – ever. It is written that it was explained to me what this was – “Severely Mentally Ill” – and that I “agreed to be SMI” – Never – I would not ever agree that I was “severely mentally ill” – the idea is preposterous. I fought the “gay men are mentally ill” charge all my life – I could not have ever agreed to such a thing.

On this very day I published to my blog “And on the 8th Day He Created Gay Men” – a glorification of the glory of gay guys – I could not extol our virtues and goodness in the morning and go trash myself in the afternoon – it’s ludicrous.

On 4/9/2013 I published to my blog a rational article on North Korea – that would pertain today.

On 4/10/2013 I was published on a major Right Wing Christian Conservative Tea Party website called “American Thinkier” extolling the virtues and glory of gay guys.

In life I was actually doing something – in this woman’s mind I was falling apart.

Page C-51

4/25/2013

A man named Scott Kim becomes my case manager – I met him once – to sign forms – I didn’t ask him for a thing.

Meanwhile Mr. Kim is writing that he met with this Joanna Reis – who I have no idea who she is – but she wrote “client has difficulty concentrating and focusing one one task/subject for extended periods of time” – which is absurd – perhaps I just do things too fast and various for this woman I never met to comprehend. The creative and intellectual output I did while in Tucson shows how I can concentrate and focus on things far beyond these people’s comprehension. Perhaps when I said I can create a piece of music in 15 minutes – I “can’t concentrate” because perhaps this person thinks one needs hours to write a piece of music. Well, listen to the music, come and watch me write a piece in 15 minutes – none of these people ever did.

On the other hand, I might have mentioned to someone that “I can’t concentrate because there is on going air conditioning work going on in my apartment” – and there was – for months tubes and compressors and workmen in and out – how could I work on what I wanted to work on? – so she reduced this complex reason to a simple “can’t concentrate.” Same with “function” – I said “it is difficult to function with the parade of workman in and out of my house all day” – and she reduced it to “can’t function” – it’s absurd to reduce a clear and obvious reason to a negative word.

She notes I was having financial problems with student loans – but how she new this I do not know – I did not go to COPE to figure it out – at most I asked Michael Castaneda if he had any ideas how to solve it, and he did not. In June of 2013 when I went to NY and Pennsylvania for my niece’s wedding I went to the New York University Bursars office and spoke with a woman named Tatiana – who had 12 pages that supposedly was my student loan records, when there should have been 2 bankers boxes at least – where my name was spelled 4 different ways, they had two different social security numbers – and they didn’t have the address I used for 4 years while attending NYU – and several wrong addresses – and a demand for $14,000 – on the nose. I have since resolved the issue administratively by using something called Nelnet – but in fact, I never had outstanding student loans – what I had was bureaucrats mangling my name. A book could be written of the times my (h)last name was mangled.

They note my complaint about misspelling my name, and dismiss it as some paranoia perhaps – I include here a cute document – from the day I was born, I wasn’t even “James” yet – they misspelled my name. The letters from Governor Ray and the White House have my name misspelled. As I always send to bureaucrats on the name thing – I include the passenger list of the ship my grandfather came over on – the SS Lapland – where they misspelled our name. The countless examples I could give would make a book. My friend Jerry Rosco, who I know for 40 years, and wrote a letter of support included here – spelled my name wrong – eh, it happens and I laugh it through as I seek to correct it – but no one can tell me it does not happen.

Page C-52

Scott Kim claims he called me and had a conversation with me between 10:29 AM and 11:11 AM – I have no recollection of this call – he states I said “More difficulty talking to people in public, because I have so many thoughts.” – I could never have said this – and at most I would say – “I don’t like talking to a lot of people because I find them dolts.”

“client reports not sleeping well and average 4 -5 hours a night” – yes, well, this is sleeping well to me. So if someone asks “How long do you sleep for?” – I answer honestly – “all my life I rarely get more than 6 hours sleep – 4 is enough, 5 is average” _ and that’s it – It’s not a problem to me – but apparently to Mr. Kim this is a sign of something. I am well aware that 8 hours is considered “normal” – but well, I never did – I can’t sleep 8 hours. But this is not “sleeping poorly” nor “lack of sleep” – it’s “normal” for me. I sleep very soundly, and deeply, in repose and rest. I have tales of people trying to wake me and they could not do it. Dr. Lambert notes it in his report of 9/3/2013. I hit the pillow, and in minutes I am out. One story, my brother Charlie was a sleep walker – and one night when he was 15 or so and me 16 or so – and us sharing a bedroom – he walked into our fish tank and broke it and cut his knees. My parents came and so did EMS – and I slept through it all. My mother told me about it – the EMS people questioned it. She joked “He always sleeps like that.” In fact, my mom told of how as a baby I slept through the night, and did not do the baby awake every few hours bit of lore. These people keep pushing a sleeping pill on me – and I refuse to take it.

Page C-54

on 6/27/2013 – Scott Kim claims I spoke with him between 2:12 and 2:28 PM – and that I called him to report, as Kim writes: “he recently returned from 3 months in New York.” – first, I would not call Mr. Kim to report my whereabouts – this man was irrelevant to my life and I had no need to call him for anything. Second – In early June I went to NYC and Pennsylvania for 5 days for my niece’s wedding. I did not go for 3 months – that’s just absurd. This man doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

Page C-60

Scott Kim signs on a paper dated 9/3/2013 that a woman named Heidi is my Case Manager – I never met this woman until 9/2/2013 when she came to my house to tell me I was on my own to solve my housing situation because of a bedbug infestation that was incredible. She spent 3/4s of her time on the phone with someone – ignoring me at my door – and did not enter my apartment and I never saw or heard from her again – except perhaps 2 or 3 emails “Can you get me the life saving drugs!” “No,” she replied – so why talk to her again?

I did say to her “it was like a Hollywood horror flick, the way the bedbugs came out of the sockets and from under the moldings” – and from this – this woman Heidi concluded I am “having delusions of being a Hollywood movie star.” This is idiocy – there is no way to put a gloss on this. When a perfectly apt cultural reference is made – and Hollywood horror flicks about infestations of bugs or vermin are legion – “Ben” “Arachnophobia” “Men in Black” (cockroaches) – “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” and more. But – she twisted it to I was delusional – it is stunning.

“he plans to move to Costa Rica” – this is a fantasy – never could have I said this – not even as a joke. While I suppose I would like to visit the place for its famed flora and fauna – the place really is not on my mind at all. But this is the claim by COPE and Heidi that I am delusional. She also claimed elsewhere in this report that I was moving to Philadelphia – to be a Hollywood movie star – this woman doesn’t know which direction I’m going for what – and it is sheer delusion on her part.

Pages C-1 through C-60 are about me while I was in Tucson – it mentions my sessions with Mike Castaneda – which COPE writes about their own contracted employee as “Caseineda” several times.

People I met once – Lisa Robinson some financial and insurance update expert – we did what we had to do, I signed her forms and never spoke to her again.

Some case manager when I first was told I had to deal with COPE – I don’t even remember her name – maybe it was this Joanna Reis, or Kathleen Oldfather – I met her once for some forms to sign and went on my way to never see or hear from her again.

Toate Ganago I met once for his questions – and once in the lobby I met him and he gave me a ride home – and came up to see my art.

Dale Hawkins I met twice – once in person, once by video

And I “met,” if it could be called that – some woman on a TV that I spent maybe 5 minutes with.

And that is the extent of my contact with this Agency – I did not call them – I did not ask for their help – I did not seek their services – I kept them at arms length.

They did not call me, they did not visit me.

And then – on 9/3/2013 I left Tucson with no intention of ever returning. And there was no way to contact them by phone because my phone was washed. Nor was I going to call them from Mexico where I went. I might have emailed them the same request I always make to all these bureaucrats – “Do You Have The Life Saving Drugs I Need?” – and the answer is usually “no, go talk to someone else.”

Page C-70

on 9/5/2013 a Katherine Derrick states she called me – maybe she did – but I was in Mazatlan by then, and my phone was washed anyway – I had no phone.

Pages C-71 through C-75 is people running around like chickens with their heads cut off working diligently to solve the problems they imagined I could not do myself – and I was not even in the city.

C-76
7/18/2013

a Diane Nonaka claims she met with me at my house – and mentions things that are true – I have art, I don’t like COPE and SAAF – I find both agencies obnoxious, frankly. I have no recollection of this woman. In fact, only Toate Ganago once for about 10 minutes, and Michael Castaneda, and the woman who got me a few items for the house – ever came to my house. And Heidi on 9/2/2013 when she did not enter my house.

Sometime several months earlier a woman from COPE did come to my home – helping deliver some furnishings they were able to get me for free. I did not ask them for anything – Michael Castaneda came to my house – saw what I had, and arranged the shopping spree. This woman was a charming lady, from NYC too. I made two trips with her to a second hand store and they let me pick and choose things – and I did – bake ware, pots, dishes, glassware, knick-knacks – 2 small book shelves – and a chair. That was probably back in January or February of 2013. I had thought her name was Cheryl or something – I do not remember women very well – ah, but every man I do.

Page C-78 –

On 1/14/2013 –
I met with Dale Hawkins – from 3:00 PM to 3:15 PM – and from this brief time this man concluded I was bipolar and possibly abusing alcohol and mania – and I contend that this is impossible to tell from such a short time. But Mr. Hawkins was very willing to push a pill on me – he was down right insistent I needed it. And I tried to say no – but even Michael Castaneda said “Try it” – they were drug pushers to me – for I wanted to talk to a gay male counselor about surviving AIDS – which is an emotional issue – not a mental issue. And the only people I ever argued with in Tucson are these bureaucrats who were just incompetent.

On the form it notes I denied all the negatives – like suicidal thoughts, or drugs, delusions – and it notes that I appeared normal in all other regards – -except my “judgment” and my “insight” are noted to be “fair” – and for a drug pusher to say that after 15 minutes of him cajoling me into taking the drugs he deems I should have – against my statement that I did not need a drug – is audacious. In fact – it notes on this page “Med complaint” – well – yes – I couldn’t get the drugs that kept me alive – as they pushed mind altering substances on me – which he also notes I didn’t want to take his pills.

“Only had 1 freak out in the past six weeks” – yes, I had one hissy fit dealing with abject idiots in a system that they required me to deal with which they didn’t know how to work. They wanted me on several pills – and the pharmacy tells me they’re ready – and I get there – and they tell me, ‘no, just one pill today, come back tomorrow for the other one, and the third will be OK’d in a week” and I was just “you got to be kidding.” They wanted me to spend hours of my time traveling to an fro their office – because they couldn’t get 3 pills together at once? Ridiculous – so I had a hissy fit.

And what is this “hissy fit” – well, I just get all irate and pretty much tell whomever that they are idiots – and after a minute or two of fury I just walk away – and vow never to speak to them again if I can help it. The moment is but 2 minutes – 3? And I just go “you idiot” and walk away – that’s the “freak out” – and then I go home and get back to my creative projects. But Mr. Hawkins didn’t want to talk to me about anything in detail, and we couldn’t have in 15 minutes anyway- Mr. Hawkins wanted to push his pills and get on with lunch.

Page C-79
1/14/2013 – for the 15 minutes Dale Hawkins spent talking to me, of which half was him pushing his pill on me – he declared me “Bipolar Affective Disorder, Manic, Moderate Degree”

I am not “Manic” – I am a New Yorker – and New York does not have the reputation of being a fast city in a New York Minute because it is not what it is. It is not my problem that a man from Indiana, now in Tucson – believes people from NYC are “Manic” – it’s absurd. He should speed up, not me slow down, Life is short and I have things to do.

Page C-80

4/8/2013 – 2:40 to 3:00

I “met” with Dale Hawkins – on a TV – him in Indiana – as he fed bites of food into his mouth – so half the conversation was him munching. I was furious, just mad as hell, this was absurd – as he pushed his pill and ignored what I tried to say.

“Medication review” – “I am very upset” it notes – yeah – they are pushing pills on me that I did not want to take – and the ones I wanted and needed were a difficulty to get every month.

“Patient is upset that he had to wait 15 minutes in the lobby” – -and I admit – I do not wait well – and I am fastidious about being on time – and I expect other people to meet scheduled times. And a hallmark of bureaucracy is having to wait – which is why I avoid them – which is why anyone claiming that I sought these people out is absurd. I did my best to stay away from COPE – and Dale Hawkins was just another pointless man in my life. Yet so sure of himself and my needs – that it’s my fault I don’t want to have his ministrations.

The rest of the 186 page report is just people I never heard of, never met, never spoke to, never communicated with in any way – having fine discussion about me – to refute this line by line would produce another 180 pages. Even after I left Tucson – there they are – running around like chickens with their heads cut off – all concerned about me.

In fact – there is more verbiage about their concern for me after I left the city than there is about me while I was there.

 

The Malignancy of SAAF, Tucson

Southern Arizona AIDS Foundation report

They are at 375 South Euclid Avenue, Tucson – they simply fabricated nonsense.

Particularly a woman named Pat Desson – what a moron – anyway …

There is no numbering system to their pages so I numbered them F-1 through F-53

On F-1 “Mailing Information” has my correct address and the question: “OK to send mail?” and it is stated “No” – and that’s not true. I had no problems with getting mail from SAAF at my house. I would have told them “mail me anything you wish.”

F-3: “Expense” – “tenant rent payment” – they put “$251.30” – I have no idea what this number is or where it comes from or why it is written – it is an imaginary number. My rent was $400 a month.

F-4 “developmental disability” they wrote “yes” – I have no idea what developmental disability they thought I could have – we did not discuss my childhood.

“Mental health issue” – they put “no” – because I don’t.

“has Aspergers 7/17/12 JMB” – no one knows this for sure – I have never been tested for it or discussed it with anyone. In 2002 at the HOP Clinic in New Orleans, Louisiana a Dr. Wetsman (I do not recall his first name, I met him twice) said on my first hour with him “I think you have Aspergers, but I cannot diagnosis you because I do not have the expertise, but I want you to go look it up and if you dismiss it as nothing, then you don’t have it, and if you read it all and it is clarifying, than you do have it. You are going to self-diagnosis, and I will agree to it” (The approximate discussion, not a word for word quote) I read about it for a week – and then went back to him and said it was “clarifying” and he said “you have it” and I never spoke to him again. Yet, not once have I ever been evaluated about it by anyone with any competence in the matter. “JMB” who I am assuming is Johnny Barker, doubtfully had anything but a cursory knowledge of it that perhaps he gleaned from the public press.

“Medicaid” they write “not eligible” – how they concluded this I have no idea, but my income meant I was eligible. Robert Gadsden of UMC had me fill out an 8 page application for it, for as he told me “you have to be denied first and you will be denied” and a week later I had an AHCCCS card in my hand, approved completely – and Mr. Gadsden was truly surprised.

Food stamps status: “not eligible” – my income would seem to indicate that I was eligible, and Ms. Desson wanted to sign me up for them – but did not know how to do that. But I did not ask for food stamps. I was told I was eligible – and not eligible. It was not SAAF nor COPE who finally figured out food stamps – but Michael Castaneda and the woman at 101 South Stone Avenue who brought me to a food bank in south Tucson somewhere, and to the office of a woman whose name I do not recall, who I met once – she was a charming Latina Abuelita type and we had a fine talk, half in Spanish – and it was that lady there in her office at the food bank who did the form online and got me $76 in food stamps.

F-5 – I did not ask, but they gave me some food boxes – on July 23rd and on August 7th – and I never went back to get any again. It was simply food I did not eat, and inconvenient to go get it.

F-6 – CD4 and viral load: 11/29/2011 was the last time it was taken, 9 months previously, hence my desire to get it done quickly – and the T-cells were 454, and my viral load was 20 (or undetectable really.) By the time SAAF and UMC got my blood work again and to a doctor my t-cell count was down to 254 (I do not have the records yet, but I remember it – because I was extremely concerned – “agitated” as they note I was from time to time. A Patty McCracken at the Petersen Clinic, 6OPC, thought it just delightful my count was 254 – she was giddy – and I was angry.

I told SAAF I was off the drugs for months – and to hurry getting me back on – and they couldn’t – they could not figure it out – causing my T-cell count to fall – and this is a major marker for HIV health status. I told them why – my last name and the common screw ups – Mr. Barker writes about it – with an air of disbelief. On the day of my birth, before I was even named, before I was Jim – the record for statistics and feeding spells my name wrong – in the hospital where my mother got her training and was working at when I was born. The 1978 White House and Governor’s letters spell my name wrong. In 1914 on the passenger list of the ship my grandpa came over on – they spelled the name wrong. These are just four official misspellings of my (h)last name – I joke about it – but I am very concerned. For one foul up – and I lose the drugs, health care, who knows what might happen if my name is misspelled? I have countless stories about what happens. I do not expect this to be dismissed as some obsession, or mental issue, or paranoia. It is real – and I can prove it beyond a shadow of a doubt. Not a year has gone by in my (h)life without it happening.

F-7 – a form dated 7/12/2012 – which is my first visit there – the form is unsigned, and nothing is filled in except my sister’s name and address for emergency contact – so obviously I thought I was in touch with my sister and she would do something if required.

F-11 a box is checked: “Accessing HIV specialty care; has HIV Medical coverage but not general medical; not following treatment protocol.” – yes, I was off the drugs – but not because I wasn’t following the treatment – it was because I could not get the drugs – the system simply would not give them to me. I do not fit their boxes. Their boxes puts the onus on me – I “was not following treatment protocols” implies that I wouldn’t take the drugs. And I begged for them – I pleaded – I said “hurry” – repeatedly – and they went like sloths, and did things wrong, and were confused and didn’t know what to do – it was they who denied me the drugs to take – it was not me having trouble “following treatment protocols.” On the other hand, I have “general medical” because I have Medicare – because I worked for 40 years.

It is noted “…client is anxious to get back on his meds as he has been off his meds for a few moths – client’s adherence level is also unknown at this time.” And that’s the thing – I stated clearly I was desperate to get back on the drugs and that the system was not providing them to me. My adherence is 100% – if I can get the meds – and it’s zero if I can’t – and they couldn’t get me the drugs. “Client has first appointment with UMC on August 10th, it is not known which doctor he will be seeing …” – they simply didn’t know if I even had a doctor to see at all – and in their own directions to me on how to follow along with their program – it is stated “client should know who his doctor is” – and they didn’t know who my doctor was – and have the audacity to put the onus on me, to blame me for lack of knowledge they could not and would not provide.

On the reverse of F-11 “Income” they checked off “can meet basic needs with subsidy or other resources, appropriate spending.” I did not ask for nor need any help from these people – who could have no idea of my spending and living habits. I have never sought subsidies from any program. I never asked for rent help, food help, energy help, transportation help – nothing – I asked for nothing because of 2 main reasons. 1) I did not need the help 2) I do not want to deal with bureaucracies. I find them all insufferable and do my utmost to stay away from them.

“Shelter” – they put “transitional, substandard, rent unaffordable” – and this is simply not true, but explaining to these people the way I travel and live was just irrelevant – it was none of their business really – I had no need nor desire to explain to people I just met how I lived for 40 years – the only thing they had to do was get me the drugs – and they could not.

“Food” – they checked the box “can meet basic food needs but requires occasional assistance.” It’s not true – I didn’t need, require, nor ask for any assistance with food, cooking or purchasing. I never even brought it up. They just simply assumed it – probably based on their mistake about “shelter.” They insisted I take their food box, and their hygiene stuff and I was gracious and said thank you and was “now what do I do with this stuff I don’t want and don’t need?” Both times I received these items were on days I met them on other matters – like trying to get the drugs. Twice I got their food boxes – and ignored it for the rest of my dealings with them.

“Transportation” – they checked off the box that said “no access to transportation, public or private, may have car that is inoperable.” This is just a fantasy, a falsehood. First, my friend Paul Miller had a car and we got together every week for lunch and stuff – and he drove me around looking for apartments in the first few days I was in town. Second, the Hostel is 4 blocks from the main Ronstadt Bus Terminal in downtown Tucson, with access to virtually every bus line in the city. And third, the apartment I got was on three bus lines – Wilmot, Broadway and 5th Avenue – all of which had a stop at the entrance to my apartment complex, on both sides of the street. I was able to get anywhere I wished. I paid for my own transit and did not ask anyone for any help. They gave me some bus passes, which I did not ask for, and again, graciously I said yes and went about my life trying to avoid these people.

More ironic – SAAF’s offices are not on a bus line – their offices are one half mile from the nearest bus stop – for an agency which is helping people usually at the poverty level – to not be on a bus line – and the nearest stop is one half mile away is just abominable. It is nonsensical. People with walkers, wheel chairs, canes, aches and pains, weakness from a debilitating disease – are made to walk one half mile from a bus stop to their office. The audacity of them saying I had no access to transportation is stunning.

“may have car that is inoperable,” is just a 100% fantasy. Where this comes from is their own minds – they are delusional, frankly. I hadn’t owned a car since 2003. For three years from 2009 to 2011 I drove a new Kia for the friend I was tending in Baton Rouge – it was his car.

“Mental Health” – they checked off the box “mild symptoms may be present but are transient, only moderate difficulty in functioning due to mental health problems.” I have no such difficulty – I have a problem with bureaucrats who can’t get things done and don’t know what they are doing. Ms. Desson was an idiot, pure and simple. I was made to talk to a woman who knew nothing – and she got to label me the difficult one because of her incompetency, coupled with her vaunted sense of importance. But more to the point, it had to be impossible from mere form signing sessions with intake people for them to conclude I had any difficulties of any kind. Then they state I have Aspergers, which no one knows if I do or don’t – and then they state “client is actually quite pleasant to speak with as long as patience is exercised” – yes, get things right, and get me the drugs – and they couldn’t and they didn’t – so I got impatient.

More amazing – but not in the record – is this woman wrote up a “life plan” for me – that’s what she called it – she handed it to me as a done deal. She was going to run my life, get it back together, for she thought it broken. She was going to get me into a halfway house, a group home, get me on the road to recovery, she said. She was going to do this and that – and I looked at this abominable document and was infuriated. This woman didn’t know me – I barely spoke with her. And she imagined things. Then told me what I was going to do by her lights. And I told her she was out of her mind. I ripped it up and threw it on her desk and walked out. I was mad as hell. This woman was a moron, plain and simple. The rest of her comments about me in their report is her exonerating herself and accusing me of all sorts of things. And I was fed up with her almost from day one.

She brings up that she called the “ED” of HAART in Baton Rouge. I’m assuming this is “Executive Director” – she did call him – at my insistence. But he’s not just the director of a major AIDS organization, for who I built their first website – he’s a personal friend of mine. I gave Ms. Desson his direct cellphone number. She was hesitant to call him. I said “go ahead, he’s my friend.” I wasn’t some “client” to him – I hung out with him at his home and in the bars.

F-12 question 14, “Life skills” a box is checked off: “can meet most but not all daily living needs without assistance” – this is absurd. I never had an issue with meeting my daily living needs. It is not stated what assistance they thought I needed. Not did anyone ever ask me what I might need. Nor did anyone from SAAF ever come to my house to see what I might need. Nor did any of them speak to me beyond being wrong about whatever they told me the previous time. This is just fantasy.

On the reverse of F-12, item 15 “Support System” – they checked the box “Lack of necessary support from family and friends, abuse (DV, child) is present or there is child neglect.”

This is just absurd. I was never abused as a child, or neglected – this is just sheer imagination on their part. Moreover – my entire extended family never had a negative word to me about being gay – and welcomed my boyfriends to family gatherings with “So, you’re Jimmy’s friend, want a cheeseburger?” I had a charming childhood. Though, we didn’t even discuss my childhood. As for “family support” – my father expressed mailed to me the extra money I needed for the deposit while I was still at the Roadrunner. I found out what money amount I needed, I called dad, who was awaiting the call, he got a Post Office money order, and expressed mailed it to me, and I got it the next day. My father and I act – we get things done. I was in constant touch with my family as I have always been. My sister knew where I was as she always does – she was transferring some money I had inherited from my mom, that she kept in investments, to my bank account so I could get things done. I had a phone, provided for by my sister, and I had internet access – I was in touch with my family and friends at every step of the way. These people simply created a falsehood.

item 16 “community involvement, self-determination” – they checked off “crisis situation, survival mode” – I was in no crisis – I wasn’t in any “survival mode” – I am very self-determined – and I was getting things done as I always did – in a sure but steady, calm, rational, reasonable, normal way. I wasn’t in the least bit worried, nor did I – I couldn’t have – expressed one shred of concern about what I was doing. Within days of arriving in Tucson I went to every gay bar in the city, all 5 of them – to find out which one I liked. At the Venture Inn I met guys like me – and one of them brought me in his vehicle to get the table and chair that I could not get home by myself.

Within 5 days I had an apartment and moved in. I didn’t have anyone help me do it.

Days after I arrived in Tucson I took on the Tucson Observer, the local gay newspaper, on my blog – and I told them I did it – because their economics was all wrong – and they published their rebuttal to me in their pages. Let us say I made a splash in the gay community from day one. I made friends with Hennessey and David who lived next door to me – and we saw each other near daily for the next 13 months – until they finally took me to the Tufesa bus station to get out of Tucson.

Plus I was seeing Paul Miller weekly – and I was sometimes meeting a guy named Howie who worked at the hostel – he was a fellow New Yorker – so we connected.

Item 18 – “risk behavior” – they checked off “engages, practices harm reduction behaviors consistently” – this is just insane, really – what harm did they think I needed to reduce? What behaviors did this intake specialist possibly think I was doing? I never brought up anything – I was “get me the drugs” – and then I ignored them. I was leading the life I always led.

Then they note “client states when he is sexually active, he practices hard reduction consistently.” – I never talked about my sex life – because I wasn’t having one. I haven’t had a sex life since the late 1990s. Michael Castaneda wondered about my sex life – “are you getting nookie?” he asked. “No,” I replied, “I have a fungus growing on me and I can’t get to a doctor to get the drugs I need.” Then we’d laugh, and I’d go for another week or month without the drugs.

F-13 – they checked off “moderate need” of something with a score of 2.5 to 3.749 – and then “HIV Specialty Care, Income, Housing, Mental Health, Substance Abuse” – they checked the box “Yes” – what needs they thought I had I have no idea – or what issues – but I didn’t have any issues or problems or needs – and I certainly wanted nothing from these people but the pills – and they couldn’t provide them. I had no income, housing, mental health or substance issues whatsoever. I had a “I can’t get the AIDS Drugs You All Insist I Should Be Taking” issue – which they ignored.

This form is not signed by anyone.

F-14 – done on 7/16/2012 – Johnny Barker did an intake and wrote up a description of me – and stated I have Aspergers which makes life difficult for me and – well, it doesn’t. What difficulties he thought I had I do not know, but they are imaginary. He points out what is true – the systems I get involved in constantly screw up my last name – it happens repeatedly throughout my life. I am very leery of it, and I have to constantly point out to people to make sure the name stays right.

And then it just decays. I said “hurry” and they took their sweet time and got so much wrong it was incredible. But all of it is written as if I am the culpable party – and they are diligent and innocent civil servants. Instead, they were incompetent fools imagining things about my life while being incapable of providing me the drugs. After a month or two of them I was simply “you idiots, get away from me.”

They also sent me to Michael Castaneda – who ran a drug rehab program. This is not mentioned in their report – there is no referral or why I might have been sent to such a person. In Mr. Castaneda’s office, in our first meeting, within 10 or 15 minutes I figured out he was talking about drug rehab and I asked him why he was. He told me SAAF told him I was a meth head. Somewhere there must be a referral – a form – a statement – of why I was sent to Mr. Castaneda.

It was Michael Castaneda who figured out the AIDS drugs finally – because he knew this woman Shannon. And he is the one who every month had to make a special call – because every month it was different. What I was covered by, what a copay might be, when I could get them all together – every month was different.

Neither SAAF nor UMC could do a thing.

Though – if there is one thing that is true – I did express my displeasure heatedly to these people – oh, I waited a long time with great patience and fortitude as they bumbled with idiocy. I went along with the flow until no reasonable man would put up with it. There comes a time when arrogance and incompetence must be forthrightly addressed. And I did. Not so oddly, I did so poetically – and it utterly confounded them. They note in their reports that they all had discussions about a poetic email I sent them expressing my displeasure. Such a danger to society and myself I supposedly am – I write poetically – and so obtuse and obnoxious and moronic are these people – they were confounded. A poem simply disrupted their existence. Amazing, yes? I include in my supporting documents one I sent to Michael, Shannon and Heidi – this too – this charming writing – simply flummoxed these people.

An index of posts here in 2012/13

I have maintained a blog called The Daily Mush since 2009 – the url is www.thedailymush.wordpress.com – at one time it was daily – by 2012 I cut down to once or twice a week. But throughout 2012 I posted in the same steady slow pace – from before I moved to Tuscon – to the end of the year. I got bored – and moved to other projects. It is linked to by many other websites and has followers — it is public 🙂

Daily Mush blogposts 2012
Done in Pennsylvania

santorum crazy 1/1/2012

Iran war 1/3/2012

cardinal george’s unacceptable apology 1/6/2012

gay man family history 1/16/2012

christie mush 1/25/2012

flying home 2/1/2012

Done at Baton Rouge Louisiana

SB ads 2/6/2012

pope 2/11/2012

putin polian iran autism 2/19/2012

gay perplexed 2/20/2012

greece collapse 2/21/2012

prop 8 and kids 2/22/2012

wilcutt redemption 2/23/2012

discarded 2/23/2012

taxes and income 2/24/2012

economy or marriage 2/28/2012

stockton North Korean 2/29/2012

left right gay 3/12/2012

gay genocide 3/14/2012

off to mexico 3/25/2012

Done at Mazatlan Mexico

mexican tea party 5/31/2012

matt barber letter 6/8/2012

free individual vs gov’t boxes 6/11/2012

Done at Tuscon Arizona

message to tea party 7/27/2012

USA bankruptcy looms 7/28/2012

chick-fil-a exodus 7/30/2012

intemperate language 8/1/2012

kristol on chicky 8/2/2012

free, hate, speech 8/4/2012

slate destruction 8/8/2012

observer email 8/11/2012

47,000 v 36 8/15/2012

observer response 8/17/2012

four quote tucson 8/18/2012

nicolosi endorsers 8/20/2012

bronson 8/23/2012

Venk 8/24/2012

hate crimes 8/27/2012

Kristol response 8/30/2012

spanish liberty answer 9/1/2012

wild on coffee 9/4/2012

pfaff 9/4/2012

the debate 10/4/2012

equal pay work 10/17/2012

pre fixer 10/18/2012

must vote 10/28/2012

on the gay gene 10/28/2012

the election 11/7/2012

tea party gay guy 11/8/2012

binary politics 11/10/2012

comparisons 11/14/2012

Soc. Sec. Plan 11/16/2012

gov’t help 11/17/2012

gay positive 11/26/2012

aids day 12/1/2012

christmas2012 12/25/2012

pope message 12/25/2012

Blog Posts at the Daily Mush in 2013

Done at Tucson

fiscal cliff 1/5/2013

mary comments 1/6/2013

krall comments 1/17/2013

health care Joel 1/18/2013

babbage article 1/22/2013

expert ruse 1/23/2013

free association 1/24/2013

jackson lament 1/24/2013

O’Donnell 1/26/2013

Times Gays Downfall 1/28/2013

mary pay 1/29/2013

gay thoughts 2/2/2013

empty lot conundrum 2/4/2013

we win 2/8/2013

state of the union 2/10/2013

NOM absurd 2/13/2013

lopez lunacy 2/16/2013

lost family 2/18/2013

banned plays 2/21/2013

new mid east 2/22/2013

flop aces comment 2/24/2013

arts and socialism 2/25/2013

koop 2/26/2013

transgender 2/28/2013

obama and the wolf 3/4/2013

blag brief 3/5/2013

blackwell 3/6/2013

bureaucracy 3/8/2013

twainage 3/16/2013

collins mush 3/17/2013

hound forever 3/19/2013

abortion gay babies 3/23/2013

incorrigible, first post 3/25/2013

gay missing 3/27/2013

schrodiner 3/30/2013

Gay Republic 4/1/2013 (3/31/2013)

8th day 4/8/2013

north korea 4/9/2013

masha gessen 4/22/2013

Allen West 4/26/2013

multifaceted 4/27/2013

so what 5/2/2013

4 subjects and a funeral 5/9/2013

the scandals 5/15/2013

death to gay 5/18/2013

vacation 5/30/2013

president mush 6/2/2103

am think final 6/14/2013

end of the end 6/23/2013

alito gay lynchpin 6/26/2013

father’s day 6/26/2013

snowden snow job blizzard 6/26/2013

Cardinal slander 6/27/2013

confusion 6/28/2013

20 million protest for liberty 6/29/2013

fourth of july 7/4/2013

obama westboro 7/11/2013

written in Tucson, published from Mexico

promoting homosexuality 8/27/2013 (9/10/2013 published)

Done at Scranton Pennsylvania

sevan rant 11/2/2013

defriending friend FB 11/16/2013

Pope Spectator Gay 11/19/2013

mendermen and me 12/20/2013

Duck soup 12/22/2013

It behooves those wishing to know about me to read everyone – and to match the dates of these posts to what dates you have in your records about what you think I said, met, did or whatever — 🙂

 

 

 

Three wild & crazy Czech brothers

Three Wild And Crazy Czechoslovak Brothers

There was a skit on Saturday Night Live by Steve Martin and Martin Short called “Two Wild and Crazy Czechoslovak Brothers.” – it is funny stuff. Well, I have joked for years – we three Hlavac brothers are “Three Wild and Crazy Czechoslovak Brothers” – for never could such entirely different, vastly different three brothers come from the same family. The differences would take a book to describe by tale after tale. This is just a short version. We are Bobby, Jimmy and Charlie – that’s us. We were lucky we were not named Ladislav, Bohumil and Vyechslav like the elders in the family wanted.

This picture is the last picture of us together – in late May or early June, 1978, Bobby back from basic training, Charlie about ready to go – and me with a one way ticket to San Francisco in my hands – we were never together long enough again for anyone to take a picture.

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My brother Robert (Bob, Bobby) who is just 9 months older than me.– did indeed commit suicide by shooting himself in the head in January 2010. However this has actually zero correlation to any “family history of suicide” and an “at risk factor” for me for a plethora of reasons.

Primarily – the last time I saw my two brothers was in 1984. One day in 1985 they simply disappeared, and I was living in Houston, Texas when they did it. I came home and found out they were gone. They went together. I have no idea why, nor does anyone in my family. My late mother didn’t know. My sister doesn’t know. My father doesn’t know. No one, they just went. One day they were there at a business doing collision work in Uniondale or Hempstead Long Island – I don’t even know – I never went to their place of business – and the next day the place, and their apartment, (And I never knew where it was – I never had their address even,) I’m told, was vacant and they were gone. My mom and I went to the police – there was no help to be had. They had the right to move away in their 20s – and they exercised it. Nor did they seem to ever talk to anyone in the family again – not my mother, father, sister, aunts, uncles, grandmother – no one – or maybe Aunt Pam, and I really don’t know that either. I think starting in the early 2000s or so – my mother would get an envelope with pictures of their projects – but no phone calls or anything. I’m not really sure, but perhaps in 2009 was the first time Charlie and Bobby spoke to our mother since 1985.

They apparently lived together for their entire lives – it turns out first in Palmdale California and then in Danville California and then in McMinnsport Oregon. They never married. There are rumors that my little brother left behind a trail of children – I do not know for sure – but no one ever said I was “at risk” for having a slew of bimbo girlfriends and unacknowledged kids, that’s for sure. And does my brother Charlie like some skanky women – the “gentleman’s club” sort. He did in high school – and from all indications he does now in Florida.

I did not know where they went – or what they did where they were. I simply had zero knowledge of them from 1985 – until I received word from my mother in 2010 that he shot himself. Had he called I would have tried to talk him out of it – but he did not call me – not ever in my life. The man simply never spoke to me more than 2 dozen or so words at a time since 1978. I have never had any meaningful conversation with either of them – they are complete ciphers to me in many ways.

Before Bobby joined the Air Force he basically for 2 or 3 years stayed in the basement and watched TV – and I haven’t watched TV since 1973 – and I had a job at a local Long Island supermarket for 2 years, while on Tuesdays and Saturdays I would go the Ninth Circle, a gay bar in Greenwich Village. He was a hermit – and I was a bon vivant about town.

In 1994 when my grandmother died I got their phone number from my Aunt Pam, through her ex-husband my Uncle Charlie – how she had it I do not know. So I called. And I told Bobby, as I called him, “Grandma died,” and he said “I don’t give a damn” and hung up. The call lasted oh, 2 minutes.

But more so – from 1978 until 1984 I saw them maybe a dozen times. I did not get along with my brothers. My little brother Charles (Charlie) is a year younger than me. We were born in 1957, 1958, and 1959. But throughout our childhood we simply were so different that we were not friends. We were not buddies. We were not ‘brothers’ in any loyal, supportive, or work together sense. Oh, sure, I suppose we were all cordial – from 1969 until 1976 we shared one big 24’x14′ bedroom, with our beds in a row dormitory style – but we were not friends. Frankly, and I joked about it for years – if I met these two in a bar I would walk away. They got along great with each other – but I was never included in any games – we just didn’t really do anything together. They went everywhere together. I went and did something else. Nor did we fight – there was no violence – arguing, eh, sure – but no fighting ever.

And so in a sense they were complete strangers to me. Nothing they did had a shred of influence on me.

In April 1978 Bobby willingly enlisted for 4 years in the United States Air Force – and served the duration. In 1980-1982 he was stationed at Mildenhall, Cambridge, England – and I lived in Manhattan going to NYU and working as a printer. I got a letter from him telling me I was living my life wrong somehow – it was a very weird letter.

In May 1978 Charlie was pushed into enlisting for 4 years in the United States Air Force – and served 2 years or so – and for some reason I do not know – got separated with an honorable discharge. He was pushed by a judge – and my mom, Aunt Marion, other family – for the young man was on the road to perdition. Seems he and a friend were caught in Harlem looking for African-American hookers for their birthdays – and they forgot about the shotgun in the backseat – and the cops inquired – and the case brought – and Bobby’s recruiter spoke up and said “We will take him if the court allows” — and so the judge ordered it I guess. I really don’t know the details – because I said I didn’t want to know. I was importuned to provide his bail and attorney money – I would not, though I had it. Aunt Marion did.

And in June 1978 – I bought a one way ticket to San Francisco – to “join” the vaunted “Homosexual Lifestyle.” There was commentary in the family that perhaps “Three sons in the air force, oh my” and I said “No, I cannot join the service – I am not going to hide for anyone.”

And that’s the thing – I was out gay – never in any closet – by the time I was what? 8, 10, 12? I was just it – I didn’t say “I’m a homosexual” I said “Oh my he’s just adorable!” And well, everyone in the family was fine with it – I guess. No one ever had a negative word in my family – not even my two brothers – it was just a was. Though the funniest story I have with Bobby is this: In 1977 he and his friend Eric Renneau took me to a real live 42nd Street peep show. They thought perhaps if I looked at a naked woman, I would turn straight. So we went – and they wouldn’t go in, while insisting I go into the ludicrous place. The lady at the front door approached us, “What’s up boys?” I explained the plan. She and I just laughed. She said, “Oh, come in for free, take a peek.” So I did – I was, beats me – it was utterly ridiculous. Then I offered to take them to my favorite gay bar – they declined. So I went, and regaled the fellows with the story. I’ve been telling it for decades.

Maybe my brothers didn’t like me either – seemed that way. However, we three are very talented – but very differently so.

Bobby was a brilliant artist – he really was. But also a moody, vindictive, nasty man. He was just nasty, there was no joy with him – but I am this happy go lucky jokester. But – I rescued his art, I still have many pieces of his. He would do a brilliant work – and then sometime later destroyed it. That guy destroyed so much – he was destructive. And I am not – I am the complete opposite – I am a preserver. He went to Pratt institute in Brooklyn for art – I went to NYU in Manhattan for words.

Charlie is a brilliant car person – anything to do with cars – he can do – it’s amazing his restorations of old vehicles. His ability with an airbrush is stunning. He can pull apart and reassemble an engine in a day. He jumped a car over a 30 foot wide canal in Freeport, Long Island, NY. He built a ¾ sized working model of a Harley Davidson motorcycle – out of wood. Even the pistons went up and down. And I have no mechanical ability at all. I can barely turn a screw.

Charlie more so, but Bobby too, have no fear of heights, or edges – they would go to the edge of every cliff they could find – and I would stay 10 feet back. They went deep out in the waves at the beach – I stayed in the shallows. They played with bugs – I read a book. They had perfect vision – I wore glasses since kindergarten. They can draw faces – I cannot. They love and own and shoot guns – I am gun shy and never go near them. They have muscular builds – the classic V-shaped torso and bulging pecs and arms – and I am a scrawny proverbial 98 lb weakling. They cannot utter a word in a foreign language – I can handle a half dozen with ease. They developed at 13, 14, the usual age – I had developed at 8, I was shaving by the time I was 12 – Bobby couldn’t even grow more than peach fuzz. I doubt either one ever read any books more than shoved to read a textbook in school – I read 200 books a year on average. They never read the newspaper – I started reading the NY Times when I was 15, and William F. Buckley’s “National Review” for that matter. They wanted to know nothing of our Czech heritage – I wanted to know everything. They both got their driver’s license when they were 16 and got cars to work on – and I didn’t get a driver’s license until I was 27 years old. They are tough – I am soft.

And so all the things that they were made of – is I suppose “a family history” — but have nothing to do with me – I am not “at risk” to be a car mechanic or brilliant moody artist or have a great body. And they didn’t seem to be “at risk” to be a gay guy.

In a sense – Bobby got emotion, Charlie got brawn, and I got brain. I got music and writing and language talents. I got intellect – they got hands on.

In high school – people would introduce us to each other: “Say, you guys have the same last name.” No one could believe we were brothers – we are that different. Every aspect of our personalities is different – there are no similarities. More amazing, I am dark haired, brown eyed and tall – Charlie is blond haired, green eyed and short. We don’t even resemble each other in any way. By brother Bobby has the ‘hlavac’ look – he looks most like my grandfather Methodej Hlavac – I got the ‘herel’ look – I look like Bohumil Herel, my mother’s grandfather. Charlie has the ‘javurek’ look – after my mother’s father. That’s how different we are.

After we all went our ways in 1978 I really had no regular contact with them. It was perhaps only at my mom’s house in Baldwin, Long Island that we encountered each other. I came out from Manhattan on a Saturday – and they were there – we just harrumphed at each other – and went back to our lives.

However – the only thing we all enjoyed was pinochle. My father taught us the game when we were 10 and 11 and so – and we all played regularly as kid – and it was fun filled nights at the dining room table playing the game for hours. And Risk and Monopoly too, but not like pinochle.

The first time I met Charlie since 1984 was at my Bobby’s memorial in 2010. We had three wonderful days together just talking about it all – our lives. And with my father and sister – the four of us played pinochle like in olden days. And we have zero in common except that we had the same parents. Then Charlie moved to Florida and I really have no contact with him. I doubt I ever will.

So to argue that these two brothers of mine – so vastly different fellows from me – with such vastly different lives – means I have any “at risk” anything for what they did is simply absurd. I suppose, if you want to go that route – they both are “at risk” for being gay men – and they are not.

But if some relationship is required for some influence upon another – than I would point to my 18 cousins – I was in regular contact with them all my life – and only 3 were divorced (2 after very short 2 year marriages, before they got into long term marriages, and one after 20 years) – but the rest of them have been happily married for 30, 40 years – with kids – and I suppose if I’m “at risk” from a “family history” – then being married with children is far more likely – than blowing my head off with a gun I am afraid to go near.

Our genes? Well, from the same pool – but we got such complete separate sets that there is no connection other than the same 8 great-grandparents.

And yet beyond the simple question “anyone in your family commit suicide?” – no one in the system wanted to know another word. If I started to explain – they simply dismissed it and went on to something else. Nothing else mattered about an event 2000 miles away from me by a man I never spoke to for nigh on 40 years and am so vastly different, even opposite, from.

But think about it – while my two brothers were in the Air Force as fine men and a plus to the nation – I was out in San Francisco – and then living in Greenwich Village – as a social pariah at war with the entirety of society. That’s how similar we are.

My Jimmy Carter & Dixie Lee Ray letters

In 1978 as a very precocious 20 year old I wrote to the President of the United States, Jimmy Carter – and I wrote to the Governor of Washington State, Dixie Lee Ray. I wrote to them on the issue of Gay Guys in America. And they responded. Here are the letters from them to me. Mr. Carter had his Assistant Midge Costanza answer me – Mrs Ray wrote me directly. I would think that I was one of very few 20 year old Gay Guys getting answers from such people at such a time on such a contentious issue. I have since discovered that my letters to them – which I did not keep a copy of — are actually in their archives in Atlanta and Olympia. They so graciously sent me PDF files of them – I have not figured out how to post them to this blog yet — but, well, go to the archives and ask for copies.

One interesting thing is that both made merry with my (h)last name – Ray writing “Havac” and Costanza writing “Heavac” — no matter – -it’s me — same address — I’m sure the State of Washington has that address in their files for my ID I had at that time. Hell, I still have it my own archives.

Of course – not once in the years since have I ever relented in saying “Gay Guys Are Good By God’s Good Grace” – NEVER! — I have said things to heterosexuals which would astound anyone. I am about to tell a slew of heterosexuals what they do not want to hear.

Anyway – here’s the two responses.

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Books I published from Arizona

I published 14 books since I got to Arizona. The one I did in Tucson was completely rewritten – the ones from Phoenix had long been in gestation and ready to go with only final things to be done, like covers, dedications and such, formatting, technical stuff.

From Tucson:

“The Pink Sheep of the Ninth Circle: Homosexuality, Homosexuals, Sissies, Queers, Faggots and Gay Men” – my iconoclastic at the nonsense heteros say and believe – and who and what gay men really are.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ENWA3PI

From Phoenix

On July 10, 2014, I published my big political novel “Stalin Giggled: a novel of political apocalypse as America moves forward” – oh, it’s a big one, 900 pages – but what a cast of characters over 20 years.
http://www.amazon.com/Stalin-Giggled-political-apocalypse-America-ebook/dp/B00LP1SVHW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1405913334&sr=8-1&keywords=stalin+giggled

From July to November I worked on the short stories. Then I published in quick succession five volumes of them, those I had written across the years – so I put them into related categories, fixed them, proof read them, did the cover art and so forth …

11/12/2014 The Garden of the Quick

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PKR1FWA

11/17/2014 The Big City

http://www.amazon.com/Big-City-short-stories-ebook/dp/B00PSOBUVQ/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1417198501&sr=8-2&keywords=Jim+Hlavac

11/21/2014 My Reason For Visiting

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00Q0NKGDW

11/27/2014 From a Guy’s Perspective

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00Q9NMTDI

12/9/2014 If TV Were True

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00QUASQ8M

On 1/5/2015 I publish “C-Note: 8 months in a New Orleans Dive Bar” – I have ample experience with drunks and ne’er do wells and sordid characters.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RW8XJ8I

1/30/2015 I publish “The Improbable Traveler: The journey of a 20 year old guy.” Basically it is the journal I kept when I was 20 years old and flew one way to San Francisco from New York City.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00T01OYW0

3/12/2015 “Far Across the Pond: an American, not so lost, on a journey to Europe” – the journal I kept when I was in England, France, Germany and the Czech lands.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00UMT1FXU

3/21/2015 “Thoughts as he turned 60: a novel memoir” – it’s a rambling existential work of more questions than answers. It’s not factual, but more factoid.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00V2I1YUY

4/3/2015 “It’s Confusing: One man’s guide to what is going on.” It is a 150 essays on the issues of our day in politics, economics, foreign affairs and social movements.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VO76C50

4/23/2015 “Re-imagining the Political Spectrum: Who’s on Whose Side?” – it’s my iconoclastic view of the way “right” and “left” are viewed.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00WNK5HSK

5/3/2015 “A Heritage Journey: a 3 month trip to the Czech Republic” – my journal of my time in the homeland my family is from – and the visits to the relatives I have there.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00X4ER42G

5/11/2015 “Our Gringo Of Mazatlan: Random Reality and Fantasy in Mexico” – the first 2/3rds are about what happened while I was there – the last 1/3 is a completely fictitious story – that only David Whitney and I can understand to the fullest – it’s about us – we have a grand and deep friendship.

http://www.amazon.com/Our-Gringo-Of-Mazatlan-Reality-ebook/dp/B00KALK1OE/

5/29/2015 “Such a Picnic Is My Life: 20 years of time” – my notes on the life I led in the 1980s and 1990s – it’s a very upbeat book – for the times were swell, and the adventures many – it doesn’t really mention AIDS at all.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YJP1ADI

Perhaps someone should read them one day 🙂

my music on Youtube

I have a youtube channel – with 75 videos — my music set to pictures — I write or play all this music. Weirdly — I cannot write what I play. Nor can I play what I write. Nor can I play any known piece of music. Can’t read a note. Never had a piano lesson – nor a music lesson. It’s a gift of God. I just create music – endlessly — it’s stunning. Anyway  — virtually everyone is impressed if not in love with my music

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqc5ICsE8TpM2ceYCZVhzXg

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What I did in Phoenix

What I did in Phoenix

I arrived in Phoenix on January 4th, 2014. I stayed at the Phoenix International Youth Hostel at 1026 North 9th Street – where I have always stayed since November 2002. I am, in a way, part of the family who owns it. Certainly I worked there more than any other person in their history. And I know intimate details of the family like few other people. On January 10th 2014 I signed a lease at the Paseo Verde (now Melrose) Apartments at 4444 North 7th Avenue – it was my first time to ever have an apartment in this city.

I arrived with my laptop computer and the same valise I arrived in Tucson with – and approximately $1,500. I had really wanted to settle down in one place for 5 or 10 years after a lifetime of travel – it was not to be – my story in Phoenix is now three parts – in three different apartments.

Within days I went and bought a table, chairs, bedding, pots, pans, dishes, silverware, and the things one needs to live in an apartment. The hostel gave me an air mattress to sleep on. A month or so later, two ladies gave me a spare bed they didn’t need. The gay center gave me two easy chairs, a bookcase, and more. I furnished an apartment quickly. It was a one bedroom apartment for $435 a month. I set up electricity with APS. It was bright and airy with an expansive view of the courtyard – and just as important, was pretty much next door to my favorite bar in the city – Pat O’s Bunkhouse. It is a bar for men my age – all of whom survived AIDS. Such bars are called “Wrinkle Rooms.”

I got a Phoenix Public Library card and started to take out the normal stream of books on 101 subjects – I read 3 books on average per week. I would not say I am an expert on any subject, but I can certainly write a 1,000 word essay within an hour on virtually any subject under the sun.

I discovered nearly immediately that the Phoenix One Voice gay pride center was literally next door – mostly because their big gay flag flew above the building on the other side of my courtyard – and that’s my view from my desk – the Rainbow flag. I started to go there daily to use their wifi, and began to meet people.  I am still friends with all of them, in life and on facebook. I also met in my complex, Thornton and Donnelle, and we remain close friends, their three sweet grandsons – none older than 7, all call me Uncle Jim – the boys pushed my cart at the supermarket when I had a broken wrist.

That first month a woman I met volunteered to help me get my stuff from Tucson, and we drove down and got it. I gave her two paintings as a thank you.

With the paintings I got from Tucson I had an art exhibit at One Voice right away. They put my art in the lobby, several mazes.

I continued writing music – a dozen or so pieces a week. I sought a piano but could not find one, and that disappointed me. All the pianos I knew from 2009, the last time I was in the city for any length of time, were gone.

I continued to socialize and hang out at the One Voice – I was a very popular fellow. In May 2014 I was the first, last and only person they ever gave a birthday party to – along with a computer table, a card table and chairs and several gift cards. A few months later there were financial issues at the center and I got involved in proposing solutions, even considered running for president of the board.

I wrote 64 articles for my blog, “The Daily Mush,” in 2014, and only 17 in 2015. I was just bored with it, I had been doing it since 2009. That was long enough, but the blog is still there – every few months I post something.

My friend of 40 years Carl shipped me what I had prepared to ship from New York – personal items, my mother’s Revereware she got when she got married in 1955, which I use to cook – and books – my things. It was all ready to go as soon as I got the new place.

I changed my address with all the right agencies and companies that I had to deal with. I sent postcards to all my relatives alerting them to my new abode.

In mid August 2014 a fine lassie brought me two huge sheets of plywood – 4 x 4 foot squares. The One Voice was closing and they were opening a new Pride Center at 801 North 2nd Avenue. I decided I would paint them a painting. So I painted a monumental painting of 5,000 years of gay history. Their opening gala was slated for September 5th – and I wanted my painting there for it. (See picture) And I got it done – and then a few days later I sort of collapsed – a physical exhaustion came over me – and on September 11th I was taken to St. Joseph’s emergency room at Thomas Road and North 7th Avenue. I was only there a few hours. My friends Debbie and Monica came to take me home. And on the way out I found the piano I had been seeking – right there in the lobby. I was back there the next day (Monica admonished me “What if you have a relapse!” and I laughed “The emergency room is right there.”) And that started my piano career at the hospital.

In mid September 2014, and just a week or so after the emergency room trip, Dannie Lane was moving back to Seattle – she wanted someone to travel with her – I jumped at the chance – and in a five day whirlwind trip I went to Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Francisco, Portland and Seattle – where I spent a day with my cousin Peggy, a very busy professional woman who cleared her schedule for me – and then flew back to Phoenix. It was with Peggy that I was living when I wrote to the president and governor back in 1978.

Meanwhile, as far back as January, I started to prepare the 13 books I had in the pipeline – things that I had never published because I was busy with other things. All I had to do was create cover art, proof read them, format them, dolly them up – create books.

From July to November I worked on the short stories. Then I published in quick succession five volumes of them, those I had written across the years – so I put them into related categories, fixed them, proof read them, did the cover art and so forth …

11/12/2014 The Garden of the Quick

11/17/2014 The Big City

11/21/2014 My Reason For Visiting

11/27/2014 From a Guy’s Perspective

12/9/2014 If TV Were True

2 days before Thanksgiving in November 2014 a scrawny tired scared hungry cat walked into my house through the open door and announced that he was moving in. He loved me from day one, and I love him – I named him Schroder, after the piano player character in the Peanuts Cartoon – the character that doesn’t like girls and is vocal about it. He’s a 10 lb orange tabby and he’s my buddy. The first week of December I took him to the vet up the block to get him checked. He required a herpes medicine, I gave it to him. They directed me to a discount neutering clinic – and there in December he had his surgery and got all his shots. I also bought a leash and harness, and within 3 or four days of him figuring it out – we began to walk all over – him with a harness and leash, me in control to make sure he does not get into trouble. We even went to the Bunkhouse, the bar a few buildings down 7th Avenue where we were popular fellows. (Walking a cat might be the most “insane” thing I do.) A cat charity I contacted for advice brought me food, liter, toys and information – and the lady bought one of my paintings right then and there.

In early December in the cat food aisle at Fry’s Supermarket at 7th Avenue and Camelback Road I meet a man named Jordan Dancer – a long time resident of the city and a keen intelligence. We had a great time – and he drove me home – and hung out for a few hours – and we became instant friends. I joined him in some men’s groups, and he invited me to join him at a Christmas party – where I played piano to the delight of all. He introduced me to Mike Desi – the three of us codgers have been getting together and spin our tales every 6 weeks or so ever since.

As usual in December 2014 I created my hand drawn Christmas Cards and mailed them to friends and relatives.

I painted some 50 paintings – in the hopes of finding an exhibit somewhere – and I painted more paintings for my house.

I renewed my lease in January 2015. They did not raise my rent.

My friend David I’ve known from 2006 in Mazatlan passed through every few months, stayed a night or two and continued on his way – he was going back and forth between Montana and Mazatlan – twice he had his three charming pre-teen daughters with him, who don’t speak a word of English, and call me “Tio Diego.” I did marriage counseling for him and his wife Abby – and I solved a legal issue by threatening an Amparo – a special Mexican legal option, which I learned about in a few hours.

On 1/5/2015 I publish “C-Note: 8 months in a New Orleans Dive Bar” – I have ample experience with drunks and ne’er do wells and sordid characters.

1/30/2015 I publish “The Improbable Traveler: The journey of a 20 year old guy.” Basically it is the journal I kept when I was 20 years old and flew one way to San Francisco from New York City.

3/12/2015 “Far Across the Pond: an American, not so lost, on a journey to Europe” – the journal I kept when I was in England, France, Germany and the Czech lands.

3/21/2015 “Thoughts as he turned 60: a novel memoir” – it’s a rambling existential work of more questions than answers. It’s not factual, but more factoid.

4/3/2015 “It’s Confusing: One man’s guide to what is going on.” It is a 150 essays on the issues of our day in politics, economics, foreign affairs and social movements.

4/23/2015 “Re-imagining the Political Spectrum: Who’s on Whose Side?” – it’s my iconoclastic view of the way “right” and “left” are viewed.

5/3/2015 “A Heritage Journey: a 3 month trip to the Czech Republic” – my journal of my time in the homeland my family is from – and the visits to the relatives I have there.

5/11/2015 “Our Gringo Of Mazatlan: Random Reality and Fantasy in Mexico” – the first 2/3rds are about what happened while I was there – the last 1/3 is a completely fictitious story – that only David Whitney and I can understand to the fullest – it’s about us – we have a grand and deep friendship.

5/29/2015 “Such a Picnic Is My Life: 20 years of time” – my notes on the life I led in the 1980s and 1990s – it’s a very upbeat book – for the times were swell, and the adventures many – it doesn’t really mention AIDS at all.

Then in June I ran out of stuff ready to publish and went to the task of working on some 20 other book ideas – some more well developed than others.

I’m not sure where the idea came from, or when it was clear, nor do I know if I can really do it – but I have conceived of several operas – all on gay historical themes – and I have done a lot of work in playing with musical ideas, the plots, librettos, order of the arias, duets, choruses.
Richard & Philip

Hadrian & Antonius

Jonathan & David

Oscar & Alfred

Meanwhile – from the time I got back from Seattle – I started to go on Tuesdays and Thursdays to play the piano for 2 to 3 hours at St. Joseph’s to the delight of all. I get a fan base, I chat and joke with everyone, people come especially to hear me, to regroup in their stressful jobs. People ask me “How long have you been playing?” I joke “2 weeks! I got an app!” – I charm people with jokes and music. People applaud. They buy me coffee, the Starbucks started to give me a coffee and chocolate croissant as a thank you for playing.

Now is a good time to explain, if I can, my music; ah, what is it? Well, it’s all mine. I cannot play a note of any known piece of music – I cannot play Happy Birthday nor Chopsticks. I never had a piano lesson in my life, nor really a music lesson beyond anything in grade school. I cannot hear a piece of music and play it – that is “play by ear.” Many can do that, I cannot. I cannot duplicate any known melody. But – I can play and I can write – and all of it is complex classical music that has been compared to Mozart, Debussy, Ravel, Dvorak, Chopin and more. Even more strange, I cannot write what I play, and I cannot play what I write. Nor can I explain what notes I hit – or why – I can’t explain this amazing talent – but it whooshes out of me endlessly and effortlessly. One day in 1998 I was at a party in Baton Rouge Louisiana, and the only place to sit was on a piano bench – and I just turned around and began to play. Everyone there said “I didn’t know you could play the piano.” “Neither did I,” I replied in shock. And what came out from that first moment was just as fine as what I play today. It’s a miracle of God – that is the only answer I have. I told a woman that I go into a sort of trance when I play piano – she writes “he has trances” – while forgetting the rest of the story.

All the while two absolutely charming young ladies worked at the front office of my apartment complex – Mayra and Michelle. I joked with them in Spanish – I make them laugh – they bought me half dozens of donuts from time to time, right to my door. They bought my art and tell me my music is gorgeous. It is simply a pleasure to deal with them at every moment. And then in August and September the two of them left for their personal reasons.

And that is when the complex hired Lori Felix – one of the most lunatic woman I ever encountered in my life. For reasons beyond fathoming this woman hated me with an evil sadistic passion. In fact, from as early as January 2014 when I first moved in – I was walking to my home – and this woman came screaming at me. About what I have no idea. It wasn’t even really rational. She was a fellow tenant – from the other side of the complex far from me – and for 2 years – every time I saw her I went the other way – for she would start to scream – scream! – at me from across the courtyard. So I avoided her.

Then the complex hired her to be the manager. I go to pay August’s rent – and there she is – and she starts to berate me and castigate me and trash me and yell at me – and I was simply stunned. Then she just escalated it. In November she slapped a notice on my door that I “cure” what she claimed was noise and disruption. I went to ask her what she was talking about. She screamed at me like a wild banshee to get out of her office – she accused me of intimidation and worse – I just said to her before leaving “You are insane.” A half hour later there were two police at the door – with a handful of more notices. She accused me of breaking so many lease provisions it was amazing, many involving violence, drugs, gang activity and worse. Then over the next several weeks – cops were at my door 8 or 9 more times – all at the behest of this woman. More notices came accusing me of this and that. I had to contact a lawyer. Included in this was a notice that they would not renew the lease in January as I would have loved to do in this so perfect abode. Well, I was informed by Community Legal Services that they had the right to do that. So I had to January 11th the notice said. On the advice of the lawyer I spoke to – I gave the office – well, tried to give it – a letter stating I would be moving out as they requested. This woman screamed at me and chased me back to my house yelling – and sent cops to my house again. So, I got to action and started to look for a place – as the Christmas and New Years holidays loomed to interrupt my need to find a place. She even sent a suicide crisis team to my house from Empact because she stated, apparently, that I was suicidal – which means she just lied about me.

On December 21st she served me with eviction papers. I had to move fast to get a lawyer, which I did through the HIV Law Project at 305 South 2nd Avenue, Phoenix AZ 85003. My attorney gets the eviction proceeding stopped so long as I’m out by January 4th. So I found just one place that had the things I needed – accept Schroder, I could afford, and was available immediately. I signed the lease on the 4th of January 2015 at The Cinnabarr Apartments and I was just mad as hell. My life was not only disrupted – but this crazed woman tried to get me arrested, hauled off to a psyche ward, and ruin my credit and rental history – for her sick sadism. I was told I had no cause for legal action against her.

So I wind up in this dark studio with a window facing a wall – the sun never shone into the place. I moved to Phoenix for light, and air, and sky – and now I was in a dark garret. Even worse – it was so far from everything I did that it severely impacted my social life – I couldn’t get to the bar – it was an hour or more away – and back. I think it is the farthest I ever lived from a gay bar in my life.

And so I entered the nadir of my life. I knew I had to wait the year for the lease to run – but I was determined to get out of there. From November 2015 through January 2017 was simply the lowest point of my life – eh, a midlife “crisis” perhaps – and as I joked – I could not afford a sports car.

And throughout this year – I continued reading books at least until May – and I kept playing piano. In fact, during this year in early August sometime the hospital asked me if I would play more – I said “give me a lunch voucher I’ll play 4 or 5 hours a day every day.” They said “yes.” And that’s what I did. I became an official volunteer with a shirt and a badge and did the screenings and protocols – whatever they wished. When I check into the volunteer computer it lists my job as “Lobby Pianist.” I traveled the hour or more each day there – and I played to the delight of all – for 4 and 5 hours – five days a week.

In August a woman who works at the hospital, Denise, asked if I could play at a chapel at an Alzheimers home on Sundays, I said yes I could, just give me lunch. And I started to play there too. The lunch they give me – I give to a homeless person on the way home from services.

This playing glorious upbeat happy vibrant cheerful music continued – as did writing it. That did not change. But I couldn’t paint – the house was too dark.

And then on October 26th on the way home from playing all day – the bus was in some wreck – and we all went flying – and when I got up – my wrist was broken. I saw it and felt it immediately – and I demanded an ambulance to take me to a hospital. There’s a case that lawyers are handling for me – I just want to make sure the medical bills are paid, really. But the only joy I had was wrecked – and you bet I was panic stricken – my joy, my music, my life – imperiled in a way I had never experienced.

Meanwhile, I had turned 58 on May 13th — I had a few people over – and then I just got melancholy – not depressed – not anything more than wistful, ennui, a vague sense of unease – I was alive and in this very weird situation – and so many of my old friends were dead – and I could have been one of them. And so I just wanted to talk to a male counselor about these emotions, these feelings – none of which altered anything in my way of doing things. I was still me – I was just – wondering about life and the way things turned out. I look at a picture of the AIDS Quilt  and I wonder about “what if?” And that’s where this odyssey really started to this hearing.

In June 2016 I got on the waiting list at a City of Phoenix Affordable Living 55+ community called Camelback Properties. In November 2016 I began to work with the Cinnabarr apartments for a graceful transition out of the place, for I was determined to move – the lease was up on December 31st 2016, and I went to month-to-month for January, and arranged February if need be. I had charmed the office there where I spoke mostly in Spanish to them, and they worked with me.

Fortunately, in bright beginnings, on January 10th 2017 Camelback Properties called me and told me I had 24 hours to get there and start the process – I was there in 2 or 3 hours. On January 20th 2017 I signed a lease at Camelback Properties at 11th Avenue and Camelback Road, next to Fry’s and a gay bar, Charlies, visible from my kitchen window – and I am a very happy camper, who just wants to live in this adorable apartment for the remainder of my years – as the piano player at St. Joseph’s – so that my obituary 10, 20, 30 years from now as Providence decrees will happen says “Long time volunteer pianist at St. Joseph’s passes away” – that is my life goal.

And these people, these agencies – are interfering and imperiling my life’s goal with their fantasies.

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