On the way to the East Shore with M**, the waitress at work who's been turning up some very interesting rocks, we're going rockhounding together.

Waiting, in line at the Ferry, and who should saunter up but my good friend Batshit, grizzled, sunglasses, he pops his head through the window to inform us that it's his birthday...

"But you just had your birthday last week" I exclaim, and remind him of the pack of cigarettes and bottle of Fireball, and he smiles slyly, changes the conversation to his art in progress, he's been dropping off random pieces at the restaurant for me, and can he have a couple of cigarettes?...

His got his tales, anecdotes, the time he smuggled Mick Jagger into a Stones concert, tales about his designs for the Black Panthers, how the Cosa Nostra in Palermo funded DeVito's movie "Get Shorty", about how the Birdman of Alcatraz always made sure he had the best India Inks, how Marilyn really died of Graves's disease...

...and he's promised me a wonderful painting of Sophia Loren from when she posed naked for him when she was 38, it'll be dropped off soon, and it's keeping me on the hook...

His art, the latest batches, an page torn from "The Jumpstart Recipes", another frontpiece from an old book, Jane Austin, only he's colored over her and made it into something else, cryptic mirror-writing statements that have to be read in reverse, puzzles - maps, - Kokanee Creek Park - fantastically ornamented with instructions and directions, any piece of paper he finds he turns somehow into something he can give me and pass for art, rocks, wood, even, and there are more references to his personal mythology, "The Man from La Mancha" - he himself as Don Quixote, all of it combines as a personal map of his eccentricity, I say eccentric because I'm not entirely sure he's crazy...