Wednesday, March 25, 2020

What Happens When You Write A Book on Valentino – Part 2

Well I will qualify that and say it is more about “What Happens When You Write A Book on Valentino Without The Censor's Approval”... because if I had written Affairs Valentino under the “guidelines” and line by line approval of that “team” of “experts”... the following might never have happened to me. Alas I did not and this took place.

In 2006, my friend Wayne went to Sri Lanka. He went there because he was then addicted to prescription drugs with morphine being the biggest problem. He was prescribed these medications because he was the victim of an horrific beating in Southern Illinois. He was there taking care of his mother and while jogging one day he was attacked and left for dead. He suffered a traumatic head injury from which he never truly recovered.

I knew Wayne for 40 years and at the time I lived in Los Angeles and we saw each other often. Of course I, and all of Wayne's loved ones, thought his decision to travel to an Ayurvedic treatment center in the jungles of Sri Lanka to be a terrible one. It was a do or die effort for him.

When he returned, he set to writing the story of what happened to him in Sri Lanka which without spoiling the story I will say surpassed anything he had experienced in his long life. It was a mind-boggling story. He asked me to help him write his book which he initially titled Scar (his nickname) and then changed to, Buddha's Tooth and Morphine. At some point while Wayne was writing (and he was a fabulously entertaining writer) he had a weekend affair with a young man who thought he was being written into the book (he was) and he deleted Wayne's entire manuscript.

All that was left of his book was what he sent me. Wayne was so distraught he had no interest in recovering the project and told me to do what I wanted with it. Instead we took to leaving our Skype cams on for days on end (between Italy and Wayne in California) and I wrote the end of his story by watching his life as he was then in a facility for the insane. I wrote the book and sent him a draft in 2012. He said he could never read it and a few days later he suffered a massive stroke and has been in a nursing home ever since.

I changed the names and locations in the book and we put it out. Now as I was then under such brutal cyber-bullying attack by David Bret and the “team”, I used a pen name of Lord Wilde in the hopes Bret et al would not find Wayne's book and it could be safe. But Bret did find it. Now bear in mind this book is a story of a gay man and the victim of a hate crime and his struggle to recover. And I add that Wayne did write Bret a letter once defending me and calling him out.

Upon finding that we published this little book..Bret then seized the new angle and wrote many spoofs, blogs and even a book about “Lord Wilde” and Wayne.. and of course all laden with shockingly homophobic jokes and plot lines; i.e. how Wayne went to Sri Lanka because he was a pedophile and worse. Of course Wayne never knew about this because by then he had lost his consciousness forever.

So apparently the assaults on me because I dared to say publicly I thought Valentino was not gay extended far beyond any books on Valentino. Did any one of that unholy, “team” voice a public protest about Bret's attacks on Wayne? Did they distance themselves from his disgusting homophobic posts and those “spoofs” mocking Wayne's tragic story? No, they did not. In this I hold them all complicit. 100%.

Bret et al have attacked anyone I support, anyone who supports me, all books we have published and their authors. It is a sweeping and comprehensive hate campaign and one they should all remedy today post haste. Without their complete and immediate statements deploring these actions, they are all guilty of hate crimes and certainly continue to add to the one inflicted on my friend Wayne... who I called Ethan in the book.

Buddha's Tooth and Morphine is a small book, but not a small story at all... it is a true story and one I feel is so important today. A day when kindness should be the absolute rule, when tolerance should be the order of everyone's day and when a book written to inspire others and a book which exposes actual homophobia and the problems of prescription drug addiction...should be rewarded and praised for its courage and contribution! 

Even today I Googled the book's title and found Bret's ungodly crap calling me the "Queen of Homophobia" and there it was... all of his shameful, spoof garbage about this book and Wayne. How is that possible? And yes I call out all of you who have stood by silently while this has happened. You know who you are. Fix this now.  How can you permit someone, namely David Bret, who claims to be a champion of the LGBT community, to continue to attack this work? 

Affairs Valentino? Buddha's Tooth and Morphine was sure one of them! I am very proud of this book. Very!