Sunday, May 20, 2007


Before moving from Long Beach to Seattle, we decided to go in search of one of our favorite authors, the late Charles Bukowski. We first drove from Long Beach over the Vincent Thomas Bridge into San Pedro to the house where Bukowski lived for more than a decade, and where many of the interviews from the documentary Bukowski:Born Into This were filmed. Upon locating the house it became apparent to Megan and I that before going any further we needed a vital ingredient, some booze.
We visited a nearby liquor store, it's weathered brick exterior reminiscent of Hank
himself...surely he had procured a bottle here once or twice. As we walked through the doorway and to the back of the store where the refrigerators were located, we were confronted with a most important question. WWBD? What would Bukowski drink? We decided on Heineken as he was often seen drinking them in interviews, so we grabbed a couple of tall bottles and headed back out.
Returning to the house we found it very mysterious, shrouded in tall trees and other shrubbery, with only a long driveway leading to a garage on one side. At the end of the driveway a couple of cars, and a gray cat were visible. Hearing voices coming from within the foliage, and no sign of a door to knock on, we decided not to intrude and to be satisfied with a picture of the driveway and what may have been Bukowski's cat. Next we drove to the nearby Green Hills Memorial Park in Rancho Palos Verde to visit Bukowski's grave. It took a few minutes for us to locate Bukowski's gravestone. We sat down and opened the two beers, one for us, and one for Hank. We set his beer in a plastic holder usually used for flowers, and drank ours. Cheers!