Much to my consternation, the annual New Year Good Intention was interrupted by a confluence of counter-productive occurrences. Stu Gimlet is back in town and Los Angeles is going to bend over for Beckham.

This New Year began like every other, with the annual ‘Ole Gung-Ho’, a period of purification and renewal. With a minimum of four weeks (or two) one can retire their bad habits and focus on the universe at large. Rehab, renewal, regeneration. Carpe Diem and Tallyho.
Day One: The sun shines brightly. I can see it through the haze of a dense fog.
Day Two: The birds in the trees sing a song to blue skies and sunny days. I feel as clean and fresh as a babbling brook.
Day Three: I drive to Las Vegas. For a convention. That night, I am invited to a lavish drinking dinner at the House of Blues’ Foundation Room with a crew of old cohorts of a very troublesome kind. Chief among them is rascal Stu Gimlet. It was really great to see him; I had not talked with the worldwide traveler in four months. He must have been glad to see me for, as I was wide-open saying “Hello”, he launched a pill into my mouth. Like lightening, he snapped a pill in half and tossed it in my mouth before we ever shook hands. Even worse, I was forced to swallow the tablet with several gallons of tequila.
Stu Gimlet’s eyes were as wide as silver dollars. I concluded that I would be going there as well. The evening began to expand. It did little for the ritual of purification and renewal.

This year the Annual Ole Gung-Ho was rather short-lived, but earnest. Its collapse was appropriate. There is a dark cloud looming over Los Angeles, one that distresses me greatly. The only escape is to bend some elbows. Every Angeleno is fully within their rights to drive to their nearest BevMo and load up the SUV. It is confirmed that David Beckham the international soccer star, his Posh Spice wife and the entire international tabloid press corps are moving to the City of The Angels.
There will be no escaping the British Beckhams and their circus. They are going to cause traffic jams and paparazzi fisticuffs. The press will headline every detail. Their pictures will be everywhere. They are the King and Queen of tabloid royalty. At least they try to dress well.
At 32, the glory days of this soccer star are on the wane. I heard she has her hawk eye on an Oscar. I can understand why they want to come to Los Angeles. We are the Mount Everest of pop culture. Together, the Beckhams are a formidable, well-financed team. Let’s hope they collect art.
Most troubling is their friendship with the Tom Cruises. Now we will all have to endure the bait, capture and salvation of the Beckhams.
We don’t need them. We have plenty of our own celebrities. Sure, the world is getting smaller but we don’t need to adopt every Malawi orphan or every superstar from every culture. Protectionism now! Where is La Migra when you need them?

It was with my best intention to seek a New Year of light and love on a higher plane. Instead, I found sputtering neon and pink bubblegum on asphalt. As an artist, I use all that is brought before me, both good and bad. Influences are like family. You can’t choose them; you can only love them.


GORDY GRUNDY is a Los Angeles based artist. His visual and literary works can be found at