Swimming to Manhattan
A personal journey to Spalding Gray’s Memorial Service in NYC
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
April 13th, 2004
by John Boland (aka ‘Ratz Garcia’)
Dedicated to Kathie, Melissa, Theo, Forrest … and Spalding
Day 2 – the circus comes to town
(suggested song to listen to… "Small Circle of Friends" by Phil Ochs)
Welcome to the Spalding Gray circus. Come on down… (brought to you in part by the courtesy of the kind billionaires at eBay!)
First example - had ordered a sealed copy of SAD(Sex and Death to Age 14) - $1 from some site like abebooks.com – suddenly they were ‘out of stock’ – the store was in L.A. – previously had hundreds of copies.
Second example – my editor in England (forever grateful for the words I once uttered – ‘have you ever heard of Spalding Gray’) – had ordered a signed copy of IV (Impossible Vacation) for about 15$. It came beautifully wrapped and unsigned. They claimed a ‘mistake’ in the ad. Signed copies of IV were all of a sudden going for 120 + on ebay. Weeks before, abebooks had hundreds of new copies for $1.
Third example – I did not know this. Spud had done an ad for Rockport shoes (I hope before they got bought out by some multi national sweat shop). The mag ad has him slouched in a comfortable chair with his Rockport clad feet up. The caption reads ‘ I’m comfortable with my madness’. It is signed ‘Spudz Gray’. The eBay bidding starts at $150. This is not the mag – just the ripped out page. Buy It Now!
I wrote to the seller “the Gray signature looks real but the Spudz is all wrong”. He didn’t write back. The internet can be so rude!
p.s. – if anyone knows what mag that ad was in, send me an email or put the info for sale on ebay…(I think it may have been the New Yorker - what issue?)