A Semi-Literate Boy Named Bobby

I was a project kid, pretty but hard to make.

Most of the men I let into my life started in pursuit but stayed as teachers.

I was bright and gave my full attention to any man who was willing to teach me about the world of art.

The music I knew was the music of my parents and the other kids in the projects.

From my Father I got Porter Wagoner, Buck Owens, and Skeeter Davis.

From my Mother I got Dinah Shore and Kitty Wells.

From the other kids in the projects I got Motown.

With the music of Motown I learned I could dance and for me dancing is still spiritual.

Everyone said I moved like a black kid, and it was true.

Black folks were my friends and neighbors.

As far as I was concerned I was a Black kid with pale skin.

I figured that Blackness was as much about class as it is about race.

My friend Paul knew I knew my ‘place’ in Charleston’s antiquated class system and that I wanted out.

Paul lived in the rich part of Charleston; the historic district near Battery Park.

He invited me to lunch one especially bright spring day.

He poured tea and showed me a decorative plate that was inlaid with hundreds of shimmering butterfly wings.

Paul liked exquisite objects.

We stepped onto the patio that overlooked his garden and I brought a branch of wisteria to my nose.

Paul said that he wanted me to hear a record.

He said he wanted my opinion.

Then he placed the Beethoven Violin Concerto in D Minor on the turntable.

I heard the needle drop, and then a timpani followed by woodwinds.

I listened as Beethoven told me a story.

I had never heard a story more complex and profound.

It was more beautiful than anything I had ever seen or touched.

And I never stopped listening….

Beethoven Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 61

by Yehudi Menuhin, violin Wilhelm Furtwangler, cond Philharmonia Orchestra of London Recorded: 1953

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Me and My Simboard

Art by Rob Goldstein
Me and My Simboard.

The first thing I bought when I joined SL was a simboard.

A simboard is like a skateboard that flies and it’s just as cool.

When I go into SL to simboard I totally go in which means that when I fly I feel like I’m flying

It’s what I do when I want to think.

I started doing tricks to music in 2010 and eventually I customized the board so I could do better tricks.

One of the reasons we keep a parcel in SL is so I can have a safe space to fly.

You need room to simboard.

Art by Rob Goldstein

I always wanted to make a video of one of my simboard sessions but none of them looked right.

To me, even the best avatars look like little trolls on video.

When we started learning to make slide shows I wondered if I could make a video slideshow that showed how simboarding feels to me so I started going in and taking still shots.

It took a few session but I finally got shots I liked.

My favorite mix for flying is the Essential Mix by Roger Sanchez but that’s too long for a video.

So I went with Someday We’ll Be Together by the Supremes.

It’s funny. I never listen to the Supremes when I Simboard.

I bet the song is Sara’s doing.

Anyway,  here’s my video. 🙂

Diana Ross & The Supremes
Someday We’ll Be Together
Community Audio

The View Inside

Art by Rob Goldstein
The View Inside


I believe
We can change anything.
I believe
We can rise above this.
I believe
There’s a reason for everything.
I believe
In my dream

Joe Satriani

17 St. Phillip Street –Part 18-

Art by Rob Goldstein
Annabelle Zelda Marshall

Annabelle Zelda Marshall was sipping an iced tea (sans ice) when the raid began.

She was confused and asked a sprinting drag queen what the shouting was about.

“It’s a raid!” he shrieked, as a policeman gathered him up and shoved him through the door.

Margaret sat quietly and watched the commotion.

Eventually a cop went to her table.

“Come with me, please.”

“Why?” asked Annabelle.

“This establishment is closed.”

Annabel slowly rose, using her cane to support her weight.

“I thought prohibition had been repealed,” she said, as she gave the cop her arm.

The cop took Annabel’s arm and examined her closely. He had never seen a fag who look so much like his grandmother.

Outside Paul was in a headlock and demanded to see his lawyer.

Annabel wondered what kind of crime Paul could commit.

She looked up at the cop who had her arm and said: “I thought I was going to see a play about Jesus. A friend did say it was blasphemous but I surely didn’t know that one could still be arrested for blasphemy!”

“What is your name, please?”

Annabel was proud to say her name: “Annabel Zelda Marshall!”

“No—,” said the officer. “Your real name.”

“That IS my real name!”

The officer again examined Annabel’s face; this is one convincing old drag queen, he thought to himself. “Step into the light for me.”

Annabel lost her patience: “My Pappy was one of the noble heroes in the great battle against Sherman in Atlanta. My Pappy almost died trying to save that honorable city but he didn’t die, no! He came back here to his home and his Pappy’s home and his Pappy before that and now I have to stand here because some Yankee transplant doesn’t know my name? Marshall. Marshall. M-A-R-S-H-A-L-L!”

The cop had heard the name: “As in Gunsmoke?” he asked.

Paul, who was face down in the street with his hands cuffed behind his back heard Annabel’s speech and shifted slightly: “That’s her real name!” he said.

That earned him a kick in the face.

“Cuff the old fag!” said the cop that kicked Paul.

“She’s a woman!” screamed Paul. He got another kick.

Annabel hiked the hem of her skirt: “Do ah have to lift mah skirts to avoid incarceration!” spat Annabel.

The cop’s eyes grew wide and then he laughed.

“What the Hell is a woman your age doing in a queer bar?”

Text and image Rob Goldstein (c)2016 all rights reserved