Jimenez died suddenly, and shocked the world activist community. His memorial took place in Los Angeles and was organized by his longtime partner Jeff Schuerholz.
I did not know Pete Jimenez, but of course I did. Jeff tells me that we met after a show of mine, and there is something extraordinarily familiar about those eyes. I am not inclined towards purple prose, so let me state factually that what I see from his photos is — great intuition, kindness, humor, humility, and a kind of “watch yourself, mister, or I will fuck you up REAL good,
and love every second of it. Cry for me, baby.”
Sorry to be so sentimental, but I like sistergirls like that.
I had a gay husband from the Faeries who was an activist, and every year I feel robbed. His name was Carl Valentino, and we lived in NYC. His death was a robbery. I am not going to be philosophical about a death that was catalyzed by hate, indifference, stupidity, denial, terror and rage. Dear me, did I forget the effects of the virus, too?
I hear him singing in every restaurant I enter, answering a managerial complaint with, “I am just showing you that I love your taste, even if I AM louder and more entertaining than YOUR singer.”
He was Arthur Brown singing fire. I am going to record it. Just for him. That and, of course, Aquarius, which he sang no matter WHAT the music was playing.
“Hi baby? How are you? Remember me? You DON’T? Oh my, I guess dementia really HAS set in,” he would say in 1990 to past trade sitting with a new acquaintance. He would return to my table, laughing.
Or, in one of those towel stores, catching a girlfriend looking at a fuchsia collection, “QUEER!” loudly. I would howl and bless him for being my friend.
I like this kind of faggot. Correct me if I’m wrong, but activists like this are the ones who, not being sanctimonious, are able to push issues in the face of resistance by infecting the enemy with a kind of charisma that embraces them like a little lake of piranha fish.
“Oh he was a bother at first, but then “poof!” He just disappeared! Wow!”
They are the brave ones who go singing into battle — the JOKER and the HEALER, who can read you like a book, so chingados cringe with uncertainty. “WHAT _IS_ THIS MARICON, I mean this is NOT a normal faggot, OR it is the MOST TOXIC JOTO WE HAVE EVER SEEN AND MAYBE HE WILL BITE US. Yo me voy. Olvidate, hombre.”
My husband Carl had a fishbowl with one fish only, a lone piranha. One day when he came home from teaching his elementary students covertly about the Epidemic, he decided to stroke the fish and it bit him. The next morning he found it dead and told me, “My god, my fish was a PWA for one night only. Piranha Fish with AIDS, and it happened so quickly. A need to know basis, sister. My only friend, what a pity,” he looked at me snidely.
Am I wrong that Pete had this quality?
A survivor for 20 years of a disease like AIDS which is a surround-attack virus must be a chingando, a true warrior. A warrior who is attacked by ten parasites at the same time, sucking on his flesh, head to toe. His brain. His heart. His lungs. His instestines. His bones. His liver. His bowels.
I don’t believe in God. THE LORD WON’T MIND was my favorite book, growing up, so we cool, me and the, um, Godhead.
But JOB without the truly pernicious brainfuck at the end of the chapter, might be a useful way of describing Pete’s suffering.
Oh sure, the young queers sneer, we got them protein inhibitors, I mean protease, um……whatever, we GOT ’em. It’s the old fags that die, so we cool.
Nope baby, not really. But the immune system at 40 and 50 is weaker than it was and bad things happen after years of poison.
Albeit after twenty years of taking the stuff, is it the blood-brain barrier that allows the brain to rot, the curious new lipid redistribution and high cholesterol that kill with heart attacks and strokes, and/or NHL hanging out waiting for a weak moment – but returning to the overall toxicity of the what Pete correctly called “NO COCKTAIL”, I too remember the cocktail for HEP C. It was so delicious that I woke up wanting to throw myself from my top floor on East 12 street. A suicide cocktail, the reason people preferred KS lesions to interferon. We all remember that time in the early 90’s.
The nightmare made flesh. The twilight zone.
I did not get the right therapy until the right nurse practitioner, the great Karen Weisz, gave it to me in 2002, with the help of David Pieribone and Doug Diettrich. This was NOT A COCKTAIL, tail of a horsecock pounding into my brain and my guts. On tour in Russia I thought I might actually die when he were detained at the border. I had to work, since the landlord was not giving me time out for blank checks.
Of course Pete went through this gruesome nauseating pain and worry. When the guts are bad, nothing is nice. When the brain AND the guts are bad, a loaded gun is a sure bet.
I hid mine at Carl’s until he died before me. Bastard, how could he leave me?
How Pete could have survived, lovely eyes still glimmering in all these recent photos I now see…… hell if _I_ know. With a cane, but a constant need to communicate with and console friends and other activists … how? LIVING HELL, if I know right.
I had the right genotype, although who knows what will happen to those of us who have been “cured?”
But Pete, HE was not cured. He never WOULD be cured. He KNEW that, presumably, whilst fighting for it for everyone else.
He would be condigned to a life of taking the ongoing cortado of zyclone B, or chemo every day (!!!!!) with the promise that missed doses might amount to a “failure to communicate” with the virus when he resumed.
Not to mention the horror of the co-infections that most people with AIDS have, HCV and HBV, whose treatments are contraindicated for HIV treatment. What to do? I hear “kill the Heps first.” But there are doctors and/or sufferers of ALL THREE, as we know, who say and hear the opposite. Don’t worry, the serum aminase alone is very low, say the dumb of the dumb doctors, so we don’t have to worry yet. Oh sure, your fucking liver looks like swiss cheese, but the serum aminase is low, so the progress is slow. LIKE BLOODY FUCKING HELL it is. That crap was revealed to me in 1996 and I almost passed out. By 2000 I almost had cirrhosis and of course a buddy with cirrhosis died of a heart attack after repeated interferon treatments.
The human body is still just composed of what it was composed of hundreds of years ago. It has not become an uber-mass — just because we have more things to kill more things wrong with it. And with AIDS, it once had you singing in the aviary with THAT infection.
Postcards of parakeets floating between my friends Michael and Don in the late 80’s.
So I sing praises to Pete Jimenez. What I have read of him brings tears to my eyes because I know I would have loved him. While I am moved that Jeff said he liked my music, to hell with my music. I am not here for that. I am here to praise a fighter, who used every means necessary to survive, including, most importantly, giving his mind and body towards saving any and every person he could. I cry for the loss of a truly magnificent man.
May 25, 2012
“Is she a virgin? I want a virgin.”
“Of course. Just fuck her in the ass first.”
“What if she screams?”
“Just slap her. She needs to learn how to behave.
You need to educate her.
But it costs extra for a virgin. She is new
here from Soviet Republic. 17 years old.
“And the kolo. That will cost you extra.”
“Of course. And this is her first time.
I want her with no condom.”
“You what? That is very expensive.”
“I want to feel her. No condom.”
“It will cost you extra.”
“Okay let me write this down…here is your figure.”
“Stay here. Someone will come for you.
When you fuck her in her kolo, fuck her
hard. You have to show her what a real man likes.”
(“Koutamares. Of course she will bleed
and he will think she’s a virgin. Vlakos.“)
Lipon. Here it goes. Was she kidnapped by a car, was she offered a job as a fitting-model or a waitress in a five star hotel that “likes Russian girls oh YES!”? “But you must give me a letter from your father.” So come forged letters from the three best friends who are going to make it in Athens. “Beautiful girls, let me see your passports. I need to make sure you are not from Hungary. Greece is having trouble right now with Hungarians. Okay, thank you.”
The truck goes through the night and the ferry and the truck and when they wake up they are parked in front of a building with no sign except for a “no trespassing sign” in Greek. “Where we are?” “You are at the hotel, the kitchen entrance.”
They come into the building and see a dark room, and up the stairs there are more dark rooms, but now there are sounds of other girls. Men’s voices and girls’. And that is where Hell begins.
No papers. No exit.
Here we are again with the HIV stigma in Greece; I remember when boys coming to study art or theatre in Greece were sometimes subjected to HIV testing. If you were coming into Greece to play soccer, you were likely not a dirty pustis.
The question is: is Greece more homophobic than HIV-phobic, or more HIV-phobic than homophobic?
Were they clamping down on homos by testing them, or threatening them with testing, or were they clamping down on HIV by scaring homos?
Hard to tell.
Are they more afraid of immigrant whores and immigrant dopefiends or HIV itself? Hard to tell. I would say they could give a fuck about either. But election time is here and the hate is wild, so this is a good way to call off the accusers of the thousands of wrongs done to the citizens of Greece—the highest offense being the misappropriation (read ‘stealing’) of their money.
Come on, Never on Sunday was the most popular film of the day.
Greece and whores? Greece and the Spartan warriors.
WHORES AND FAGGOTS.
Visionary and educated whores were man’s best companion (female AND male).
And the Spartan warrior kidnapped a young boy when he was not given one by the family, in order to train the lover who would take an arrow for him. Lovers on the front lines was a very workable solution to fear. Let’s not rewrite history.
Let’s return again to the devastation of Greece and its people by the rich.
We can count upon second-class methods to raise government economy—burning down the property of the old to place more tourist hotels, targeting immigrants to distract attention from bigger issues—government stealing from its own people, as mentioned. Every third world country understands this about Greece.
Evey third world country has always understood this about Greece. After all, Greece is part of the third world; it is NOT a European country by ANY stretch of the imagination. It is the fault of the rich Greeks that they tried to play Greece off as a wealthy country during the Olympics. All those last-minute loans!
Who did they think they were kidding? Certainly not America nor the European Union, who have always treated Greece as a toilet and a brothel.
In any case, Greece is a child of Asia Minor, infinitely more fascinating than any European city. Greece is too ancient to be Europe; and the domestic and European Union “crack down” on the ancient tradition of prostitution, is the biggest front imaginable. Corinth, and its transvestite prostitute hotels?
I stayed in one in 1981, for Christ’s sake. And there certainly was no attempt to cover it up!
Oh, am I to understand that, although prostitution is legal in Greece this whole scandal has to do with brothels that have been unlicensed for years?
Let us not confuse the populace of Greece with the police, the government, or the supremely wealthy. Poor Greeks never wanted an Olympics; they knew they would have to move out of town during the Olympics, along with the putanes and the gataki, the first removed to Cyprus, and the second killed. (Funny how when women laugh the men say they sound like gatakis. Laughter must mean they are plotting against the men like our ancient sisters did when we were in charge.)
Who should know better than a Greek born in America?
Only the supremely wealthy are ever mentioned by most American Greeks; and the Greek Orthodox church prides itself on the fact that it will not need Greeks in the membership years from now.
The Greek genocide scholars, the scientists, Greek radical activists, the artists who are not painting oktopodi for the Onaissis foundation (which is the equivalent of a Greek tourist organization) are detested.
So now we have something so obvious that it should be embarrassing to rich Greek male citizenry, many of whom have a mistress and or a whore somewhere.
Big deal. Who cares?
Except when the man, not using condoms, brings home STDs to his wife
He should be punished for that.
The trick should be punished who, not wearing condoms, gets and passes on any one of an endless number of STDs, and points the finger at the prostitute with whom he did not wear a condom and says “She gave me HIV!” Oh sure, baby; you probably got the clap and gave it to your wife and now want to square it by pointing to the whore and giving her a life sentence for murder. You sure aren’t going to mention the man who said that if she said ‘no’ she would be beaten severely. You sure don’t care that she was probably raped and infected by a trafficker who brought her to Greece and is probably already an addict because an addict is easy to control. Your flaccid penis cannot get it up in a condom, so you PAY MORE not to use one. This is an international reason for the spreading of the disease.
So an immigrant whore with HIV?
Holy mackerel. Finally we can point our finger at someone TRULY GUILTY. A witch who is the scapegoat we need for the chaos Greece has become, a profiteer stealing from the jobless. Oh sure, what a myth. Nobody wants that job.
My god, KILL HER.
THE BITCH SHOULD BE PUNISHED for infecting a member of the POLIS.
Sure, buddy: who does the dirtiest work in ANY country?
It is ALWAYS the immigrants, just as it was the refugees from Smyrna in 1922, who could not speak Greek: TURKOSPOROI!!!!! Living in open sewers and teaching the Greeks new music that became forever known as rembetika.
He cleaned your toilets, having not one of his own, and then if he did anything you wanted to convict him for, you made him eat your shit, too, or else.
STOP GREECE STOP THE EYES OF THE WORLD ARE UPON YOU
YOU TRIED TO SAVE FACE BY DOING THE OLYMPICS AND YOU
CHEATED AND BORROWED AND STOLE MONEY TO SAVE FACE
AT THE LAST MINUTE AND NOW HAVE TO LIE AND STEAL TO
YOUR OWN PEOPLE, BETTER LEFT DEAD LIKE THE GATAKI.
Dead Cat on the Line, man.
Cats scream like laughing bitches.
Better watch out!
THE CATS ARE ON THEIR WAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!
by Diamanda Galás
May 13 2012 USA