- American Dream Serialization (Early Chapters)
- Introduction to Jim Chaffee's Studies in Mathematical Pornography by Maurice Stoker
- Introduction to Jim Chaffee's Studies in Mathematical Pornography by Tom Bradley
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: American Dream Title Page by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 1 by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 2 by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 3 by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 4 by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 5 by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 6 by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 7 by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 8 by Jim Chaffee
- Studies in Mathematical Pornography: Chapter 9 by Jim Chaffee
- Modern Tragedy, or Parodies of Ourselves by Robert Castle
- Totally Enchanté, Dahling by Thor Garcia
- Hastini by Rudy Ravindra
- The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 5 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
- Unexpected Pastures by Kim Farleigh
- Nonviolence by Jim Courter
- The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 4 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
- The Poet Laureate of Greenville by Al Po
- The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part VI by Thor Garcia
- The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 3 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
- The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part V by Thor Garcia
- The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part IV by Thor Garcia
- The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 2 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
- The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part I by Thor Garcia
- The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part II by Thor Garcia
- The Apocalypse of St. Cleo, Part III by Thor Garcia
- The Satyricon of Petronius Arbiter Volume 1 Translation by W. C. Firebaugh
- DADDY KNOWS WORST: Clown Cowers as Father Flounders! by Thor Garcia
- RESURRECTON: Excerpt from Breakfast at Midnight by Louis Armand
- Review of The Volcker Virus (Donald Strauss) by Kane X Faucher: Excerpt from the forthcoming Infinite Grey by Kane X Faucher
- Little Red Light by Suvi Mahonen and Luke Waldrip
- TEXECUTION: Klown Konfab as Killer Kroaked! by Thor Garcia
- Miranda's Poop by Jimmy Grist
- Paul Fabulan by Kane X Faucher: Excerpt from the forthcoming Infinite Grey by Kane X Faucher
- Operation Scumbag by Thor Garcia
- Take-Out Dick by Holly Day
- Patience by Ward Webb
- The Moon Hides Behind a Cloud by Barrie Darke
- The Golden Limo of Slipback City by Ken Valenti
- Chapter from The Infinite Atrocity by Kane X. Faucher
- Support the Troops By Giving Them Posthumous Boners by Tom Bradley
- When Good Pistols Do Bad Things by Kurt Mueller
- Corporate Strategies by Bruce Douglas Reeves
- The Dead Sea by Kim Farleigh
- The Perfect Knot by Ernest Alanki
- Girlish by Bob Bartholomew
- The Little Ganges by Joshua Willey
- The Invisible World: René Magritte by Nick Bertelson
- Honk for Jesus by Mitchell Waldman
- Red's Dead by Eli Richardson
- The Memphis Showdown by Gabriel Ricard
- Someday Man by John Grochalski
- I Was a Teenage Rent-a-Frankenstein by Tom Bradley
- Only Love Can Break Your Heart by Fred Bubbers
- Believe in These Men by Adam Greenfield
- The Magnus Effect by Robert Edward Sullivan
- Performance Piece by Jim Chaffee
- Injustice for All by D. E. Fredd
- The Polysyllogistic Curse by Gary J. Shipley
- How It's Done by Anjoli Roy
- Ghost Dance by Connor Caddigan
- Two in a Van by Pavlo Kravchenko
- Uncreated Creatures by Connor Caddigan
- Invisible by Anjoli Roy
- One of Us by Sonia Ramos Rossi
- Storyteller by Alan McCormick
- Idolatry by Robert Smith
- P H I L E M A T O P H I L I A by Traci Chee
- They Do! by Al Po
- Full TEX Archive
Studies in Mathematical Pornography: American Dream - 7
By Jim Chaffee
Absolute Neighborhood Retract
I made my way across Esplanade to Fauborg Marigny to see Bob. I'd met him through Red; they'd been friends since boyhood growing up in the northern Midwest. He stayed in the upper floor of a rambling old wooden structure on Frenchman's a block beyond Snug Harbor the other side of Washington Park. Snug Harbor was a restaurant and bar with an after hours jazz scene. Not so ritzy as Rosy's, it offered local groups as had Lu and Charlie's across Rampart Street. Snug Harbor had that bright, open airiness of decent restaurants without a need to hide the cockroaches; Lu and Charlie's clientele had reveled in a dark jazz club atmosphere, dominated by a gaudy Bruce Brice hanging near the bar. No such place any longer existed for jazz.
Climbing the long open stairway on the outside of the building to Bob's place always taxed my leg, the wooden stairs slick in rain and the railing not something that inspired trust. I called from the vacant lot next door to be sure a climb wasn't in vain. He popped his head out the window, black hair tied back in a pony tail, dense full beard sleek like animal fur carefully combed. Today he wore a scarf on his head and appeared as Blackbeard at the gunwales hailing me aboard.
Up close, his soft brown eyes peered out like a creature hiding in the woods.
I took a hit from his perpetual joint and asked about coke. I bought the small amount of coke I kept on hand from him, but it wasn't a drug I cared about one way or the other. He brought out a bit of his latest and we tooted, a lift starting at my eyes and running up along the top of my head for a brief instant. For me that always seemed the extent of it.
"I'm going to a party uptown tomorrow," I said, "and need a bit to flash. I think I can get some buyers if the price is right." He always had fair prices with a smaller margin than most and he didn't step on the stuff. Not a greedy guy. A hippy in the sense of freedom, not political and not revolutionary, but with that spirit. He also kept a shotgun and carried a handgun sometimes; Marigny could be dangerous. It didn't have the foot traffic of the central Quarter where I lived.
"I can spot you a little," he said. "Just got a fresh shipment."
"That'd work. I'm too fucking broke right now to buy shit. Had to go into credit card debt to get to my mother's deathbed in Arizona last week."
"Jeez, I'm sorry. I didn't hear about it."
"I told Red, but tried to keep it quiet. Seems everyone at Tulane knows more about my fucking life than I do."
He blew a lungful of smoke. "You like this stuff?" referring to the coke. "It isn't stepped on too much at all. I think it's pretty pure."
"I'm not much of a judge, but I feel it okay."
He tooted another couple lines and offered me the glass. I felt it up in my head this time, clear and bright, and said it seemed okay.
I stopped in the office to thank Joelle. She sat head down studying some scrawl of symbols I assumed she'd been assigned to type.
"I got some new pot in last week. Columbian, dark and lots of buds."
"That what we're smoking?"
"Yea. Whattaya think?"
"It's good. Sweet, too, not musty like some of the shit that comes in."
"I get a good buzz."
He offered me a bottle of Jack Daniels and we drank a bit, sat in silence, then I accepted a small baggie of the coke and a few joints and made my way back down the stairs. It had gotten dark out and I walked quickly to Washington Park where I crossed the street at Dauphine to the business side, then turned off Frenchman at Royal and doubled back along Kerlerec to Pauger Street which became Bourbon once across Esplanade. I felt safer on Bourbon than anywhere else in town.
Dropping the drugs off at my place, I hit the street again for Cosimos, a small bar at the corner of Dauphine and Governor Nicholls that catered to straight locals. The place was always so empty I wondered how they stayed in business.
I landed here when I wanted to be away from the academics and math types and rest of the bubble dwellers. The clientele were people who lived in the quarter and worked real jobs and didn't chase their own gender, at least not while there. Mostly drunks. One beautiful woman who worked as an engineer at the local television station got plastered there almost every night. She lived conveniently across the street and the bartender on duty would get her home, often after she'd passed out, locking her door with a key she'd given them. She never remembered anyone or anything, but guys always hit on her and she could be very friendly, making out with complete strangers. From what I saw, none of them made it inside her apartment.
The bartender had driven tanks out of An Hoa. First time I'd come in he'd watched me for a while, then asked where I'd served. We hit it off, former Marines who'd been there. Never talked about it, neither of us. He didn't ask me shit and I didn't volunteer shit, but from the start we'd bonded.
"Hey," he said when I sat at the bar. "Been awhile."
"I been out of town."
"Yea, travel for the man."
"Sure." He poured me a whiskey from the bar well and a glass of ice water.
"So how is work?" he asked.
"Same old shit." I'd told him I worked for a company downtown doing some accounting stuff. "This is our slow time of year."
"Interesting. It picks up here a bit around Christmas, with a lot more drunks. Then after New Year's it dies down."
"Don't see our girl tonight."
"She hasn't been in yet. In fact, been showing up less than usual. I think she might have a boyfriend."
I finished my whiskey and he poured another. A cab stopped outside the bar and a tall, lanky, dark-haired character dashed inside. He stuck his face in front of each of the handful of us sitting at the bar, then hit the couple tables too, asking each in turn, "Do you know who I am?" I'd never seen him before and said I had no idea who he was.
He looked at the bartender, then said "I can't believe it. No one here knows who I am," and dashed back out to the waiting cab.
"Jesus," I said, "what the hell was that about?"
The bartender laughed. "Doesn't anyone here know who that is?"
No one answered.
"That," he said, "was Pete Maravich. I recognized him, but didn't want to admit it to him."
A guy sitting down the bar said, "Is that who that was?"
"Who the hell is Pete Maravich?" I asked.
The same guy laughed and said, "Basketball player. Call him Pistol Pete."
"New Orleans has a basketball team?" I asked.
He laughed again and said, "Not for long."
"That's likely why," my friend behind the bar said. "People like you not even knowing we have a team. Evidently the city has a lot more of your type than the other."
"You mean fans, right. I have never given a shit about sports, but this city is not rife with followers of the dribbling art?"
He poured me another drink. "On me," he said.
I stumbled out sometime later. He never charged me for more than half of what I drank and tonight he'd put it all on the house. When I got back I smoked a joint and fell asleep, aware that next week I needed to get serious about putting together something for my advisor. I needed to move in some direction on a thesis topic or he would find one for me.
© Jim Chaffee 2011