Hi. I mean...check it out. I've got a lot of nice deals here for you. (He pulls out a necklace.) Fourteen carat. The best. A great token of love and admiration. And at a price that you can afford. about...(reaching into the bag and pulling out...) If you're in the mood...A Rolex! Yes, indeed, a guaranteed Rollie. And I can certainly get into real trouble with this price--but I need the money, taking a trip you see--fifty bucks. No questions asked, allright? (stage whisper) They fell off a truck. Chance of a lifetime; but if you're not so inclined, and would prefer some what cheaper luxury...(pulls out a scarf) How about a one hundred percent Cashmere scarf! Five bucks. Here's the label. (rubbing it against his face.) Mmmm, this is pretty, this is the real thing. This is... (staring at the audience, dropping his persona...) I know that I'm not fooling you. But you can't really blame me for trying.

You see, I'm trying to finance this trip. And I'll try just about anything that'll bring me a few bucks; because, quite frankly, without this trip, I'm, well...better not get too explicit, so early on. I mean. well...(He begins to pace, then stops.) I wasn't always as... as you see me now. Not long ago I aristocrat of sorts, an American aristocrat. I don't mean, super, super, but by my standards...doing pretty well. Cake and eating it whole. Except I never realized, this aristocrat, in his wildest dreams or fantasies, he was gorging himself on the eve of the French Revolution. You see, it was love, love, that came along and did me in. Love in all its merciless revolutionary force; the damnedest kind of love you could imagine. (looking around the audience.) I can't get her out of my head, not for a second. I keep looking around, expecting to see her, that she'll pop up and buy a scarf from me, but, you know..she's gone, dead, finished! And I killed her. It was an accident, sort of, in a way, but...(pause)

Everything was perfect until then, my job in the city, my house in the suburbs, and my wife Danielle in the kitchen and the bedroom. We were married just two and a half years, and she was still looking up to me: hero worship. Is there anything wrong with that, I ask you? Not in its proper place, I answer, the home; not in its proper institution, marriage. Everything as it should; until those damn Amazons... I mean, I didn't have any idea of who they were or what they were up to; but my antennae were out and I was getting some pretty strange vibes, let me tell you. They moved into the house directly behind us. At first glance, three attractive young career woman sharing a home together. Not so unusual these days. But I remember watching the van unload, lots of free weights and some Nautilus equipment, lots of archery equipment, three motorcycles. What the hell was going on, Charlie's Angels or something? Alright, alright, so they're jocks, the outdoorsy type, like to keep in shape.

Nothing so wrong with that. I mean, I'm a racket ball nut myself. So being your classic friendly neighbor, I decided to drive the Welcome Wagon up the driveway, say hi, and offer any masculine talents that might be called for at this stage of the moving game. So walking up the front steps, my hand poised above the knocker, when suddenly the door opens and I'm face to face with...Dia. Unprepared for the power of her close-up presence, I take a step backwards. Dia, the obvious leader of the group, gray-green eyes firing flashes at me, raven hair hanging down past her shoulders, dressed in some form of Karate garment and glistening from her workout, her mouth can barely conceal her contempt as she smiles: what can I do for you...sir? And my head is stammering: it's me who wants to do it to you, with you, for you--God knows what I was thinking or what was coming out of my mouth. All I know is at that point the ground was rubber. I was totally experiencing hate at first sight.

Her complete sense of her absolute superiority to me at that moment had unmanned me, untethered me, and if I was a bird, it probably would have unfeathered me. How dare she, how dare she, I kept muttering to myself as I walked home. How dare the bitch. This is not the way the game is played. This is not acceptable practice. This is not Marquis of Queensberry rules not to mention N.F.L. But would I let on, let anybody know what I felt? No sir. That's not the way my game is played. So every time I saw her, any of them, for that matter, big hellos, big smiles, how's it going, girls? But with Eisenhower, it was different, to Eisenhower I revealed the unvarnished truth: how much I hated the three of them and Dia in particular. Eisenhower, you see, was my Great Dane, a three-year-old black and white male, full of piss and vinegar and always ready for a head on collision. A real bruiser! On his hind legs he was taller than me. And he just hated their guts. From the moment they walked into the neighborhood his neck hairs were bristling.

That old animal sense was working. He knew who they were right from the start, I'm convinced. So immediately he launches a one man D-Day or Dog attack on their property: pissing on their shrubs, knocking over their garbage, digging up their bulbs, and trying desperately to chow down on their cat Minerva. (He begins petting the invisible dog). Right, Ike, good 'ol Ike. I wish the hell I had your instincts, fellow. You were having a time, and I enjoyed parading my "outrage" concerning your "bad" behavior. We were having fun. We...(stops, listening to invisible sounds). But then, things started to happen, strange things started to get to me. It was the chanting and the archery, you see. Suddenly this weird music started: drums, chanting, flute playing. There was something very unearthly about it, I had to admit. What was it, a new wave music ensemble, some strange cult? Mysterious sounds and words, like sailing vessels from some ancient and foreign shore would float across the early morning darkness and land on my pillow. I started calling the police almost immediately.

But they had a sixth sense operating, and the police couldn't get within a mile of the place before the sounds stopped. They were ruining my sleep, they were attacking my mind. (stops, thinks.) Then there was the archery, the incessant archery practice. There is this open field across the road from us: sometimes they would spend entire weekends there practicing, shooting at targets a football field or two away, and hitting them, sometimes even bull's eyes, as was the case with Dia, bull's eyes over and over again, effortlessly. (pausing) I should have got out then, right away, sold the house, beat it, but something... something unknown held me. I guess you're probably wondering how this turns out to be a love story? Well, don't worry, because it does; and as you will see, that makes it far worse, far worse indeed.

Then the weekends started happening. On weekends lots of people would show up for parties and barbecues. Nothing very much unusual about that; except all these people were female.

There was never a male of any sort or variety present at these functions. Women would arrive using every possible conveyance: women riding motorcycles, jeeps, sports cars, bicycles, women running or race walking with back packs strapped to them, some on roller blades and one or two even on scooters, Women of every race and ethnicity, but all sharing extraordinary physical grace and power coupled with often eye-grabbing looks. And sometimes there would be children, female children, of course, happy energetic little girls running about. And never a husband, or father, or brother, or boyfriend in sight. And believe me, I kept close watch, I kept notes. I kept tabs on these women and their customs. You can betyour ass on that.

Well I shouldn't say that men were never invited to that house, because there was certainly one function where men were more than a little in demand: those were the orgies. These were full-fledged orgies that were organized around a long holiday weekend like Memorial Day, The Fourth, Labor Day.

First the women would arrive (for a planning session, I guess) then the men, sometimes singly, often in groups of two and three. There must have been something about the prospect of an orgy that made these women more beautiful than ever. And the men that were invited were no sluts either; no cheap pick-ups, these guys, but obviously men of some real status and accomplishment. And then it would begin: drumming and music blasting, singing all night; drinks everywhere, bottles, glasses, beer, wine, champagne, vodka, scotch, tequila, everything you could imagine; not to mention what they were smoking inside pipes and cigarettes. Couples would drift off behind shrubs, into the woods and fields.

Ike and I would take long walks, patrols, I'd call them, surveying the enemy camp; spying, if you like. The things we saw, huh, Ike, right here in the hills of Connecticut. Unbelievable.

That spring I noticed some of the women who were "celebrants" at the Labor Day orgy--and they were pregnant, undeniably pregnant. I had to laugh: didn't these broads know anything about birth control? Come on. (pause) How dumb I was. How little I know. It took me some time before I found out this is how Amazon tribes perpetuate themselves, with the female children being kept by the community, and the male children being given up immediately for adoption. How jerky I was. I mean, I even thought it was kind of cute when I first saw little girls toddling around clutching their bows and arrows. Unbelievable.

Around that time my wife Danielle takes it in her head to start going over... "to visit with Dia and the girls." I could always tell when she had been visiting with... Dia and the girls. No trick to that, because a certain blankness or vagueness would appear in her eyes whenever I tried to shift the focus to myself, my needs or my career; subjects that up until then, that she couldn't get enough of.

And also, I began to notice a strange kind of self-possession, or even, self-passion that began to invade her personality. This most definitely had a disturbing effect upon me.

You see, Danielle was from the South, and she had been trained correctly, I mean, in the old fashioned way, in how to understand a man, I mean, in a truly creative and satisfying way. This was her religious, social and cultural heritage. So you can understand, I just hated to see all this good stuff being thrown out the window. So I told her what I thought, in no uncertain terms. (pausing)Before long we were sleeping in separate beds, and a month or so after that she tells me that she's decided... "to strike off on my own... go to New York. You know, I've got some connections and interests there." What fucking connections? What interests, Danielle, what possible interests and connections do you have there? (pause) So she looks me up and down and says: "since when do you own the world?"

So I smile, looking at her and say: go, go ahead. Don't let me stand in your way. Because in my heart I know: cut her off, sever her connection with my cash and credit cards, and how the hell long is she going to last? Ha. A week and a half, two maybe? Ha. I'm practically aglow with expectation. Every successful marriage needs a confrontation like this at least once. How the hell long is she really going to last? (long pause) It's been four and a half years since she walked out of that door. But how the hell could I have known that!?! There's no way I could have known that then. (pause) Things were happening around me... having no idea what they really were. What could I expect of myself? (pause) I didn't understand the rules.

Well, I had Eisenhower, and he had me, and the two of us were going to make the best of it. (patting the dog) Weren't we, fellow? Remember when you met that Huskie with the flirtatious blue eyes and I met that long legged legal secretary that was attached to her leash? What fun we had, what fun. Until, until... (patting him).

You've got to forgive me, General. I know it was my fault. But I didn't know what was going on. I didn't understand the rules. You see, they had this cat, Minerva, a queen bee if there ever was one. And the General really hated her. When she first came around Ike couldn't wait to release his forces and try to chow her ass down; but alas after almost every encounter it ended up he got the worst of it: scratches all over his nose and face from the famous "oak tree fight"; rips and lacerations all over his legs and body after the "rose bush incident"; his hind legs stuck in the storm drain after the long chase; and the most vile, evil, infamous act of them all: he was side swiped by a Camaro on the Country Road after she lured him out there, of course. I saw it all: she reached the side of the road, feinted, and turned back into the trees, but the General was going too fast, his brakes didn't hold, and he wound up almost under the wheels of that goddamn Camaro. Geez. Well, it was no go for General Eisenhower after that; he certainly wanted nothing whatever to do with that feline bitch. So one Saturday afternoon, she's stretched out on her favorite hillock meowing obscenities at him.

Of course, he's paying absolutely no attention, his mind presently dwelling on higher things. And who's to say you blame him? Not me, I'm sure. Until the devil of revenge got into me, and I began working him over.
I'm sick of you Eisenhower. I'm sick of the sight of you. You disgust me, you weakling. Your commission should be taken away from you.

You should be reduced to the rank of Private.

He starts to whimper.

Look at her, Queen of the Hill, Lady Astor, The Feline Bitch of the Manor--she's laughing at you, dummy. Can't you see that?

He turns away from me now, and begins staring intently at his paws.

A dog, a warrior? don't make me laugh: You're a pig mutt, a shit sniffer, a... Now he's mewling starting to lick my hand.

Get you saliva off of me: It disgusts me. Now I'm pacing around, kicking rocks. Look at her, she's a pussy, nothing but a damn little pussy. And you're gonna let her weird you out like that. You should be ground up and sold for horse food. You should...

Do I hear a growl? No, I hear something deeper, like the subway rumbling under you feet. The General is starting to come alive, his eyes, burning, intent-eyes! what eyes? They're fireballs bearing down on her! Slowly he gets to his feet.

Well, she watches his every move and enjoys it; now she stretches her white belly up and out, arrogantly into the sun, and yodels an obscenity in his direction.

And he's off. He goes. The big bozo! How I love his ass! He's finally going for her.

And then she does it, does what I always hoped she'd do--hubris caused her to commit a fatal mistake: She lingers for a second too long, one second more, so that she can hiss one or two more insults at him, like: you ass lick, you ball-less brainless wonder, you... And then realizing her mistake, she turns, sprinting for her favorite escape tree, but... It's too Late! Too goddamn late as those big wolf jaws slam down tight overhead! Yowwweeee! A couple of seconds later there's only a little fur and a few kitty paw nails left. And of course, my wild cheers, echoing under the Amazonian trees, (though, at that point, I had no idea of their true nature).

Anyway, that night, did we party, did we celebrate. Fuck all that drumming and chanting, we do them a hundred better with our howling and singing. Talk about primitive! We reach back into pre-history and locate some of our ancient male ancestors, don't we, General. And I reached back into my record collection and pull out some Oldies but Goldies and just blast them out the window and into the night...

To hell with Danielle, Dia and "the girls", I've got the General and I've got my music; and we got ourselves some "cat" today didn't we, General. Oh, boy. So then I hoist myself up on the sink, and reaching back deep into the cabinet pull out that bottle of Chivas Regal I keep stashed there for special occasions. Opening it, I pour myself a healthy tumbler, and then give a big dousing to the General's bowl of Yummy Bits. At first he wants nothing to do with it, but after a little urging he's yummed through a bowl and a half of Bits and is now taking his Chivas straight up from the bottom of the bowl. What a dog! What a best friend he's turned out to be!

Now the two of us are on the porch, our respective six legs splaying off in different directions as we howl and growl our defiant presence at the moon and sundry wandering stars. And eventually fall asleep in the hammock, his big drunken head slobbering dreams all over my chest. Triumphant man, content canine, And one dead cat.

The next afternoon he's gone. There's no sign of the General. I'm frantic. Lots of times he wanders off, but this time something's got me scared witless. I start giving the once over to all our favorite haunts, calling out his name, screaming, whistling, singing...Eisen...hower. Eisen...hower. Until I'm coming down this ravine, and notice behind some bushes...The General...stone dead...a hole through his heart. Whatever made that hole is not apparent, has been removed. But I know what it is. It's an arrow, it's an arrow! Those bitches have killed my dog!

That night I'm drunk again; but this time there is no joy in the Chivas, or howling at the moon, or rock and roll pounding the Connecticut hills. That night there is a wake for a fallen warrior and solemn vows of revenge. And revenge. And revenge.

I order thousands of dollars worth of equipment: high-powered binoculars, listening devices, a night viewing scope, and even a customized Austrian hunting rifle, just in case.

I'm ready to pounce, but there seems to be something missing, something I ought to know, some part of the puzzle not yet on top of the coffee table. It takes me over a week to finally find where Dia and her squad are currently practicing their archery. I have to hand it to them, it's a very secluded, very mysterious place; but I find a good viewing point about a quarter of a mile away in the crook of an old tree. I'm peering through my scope when I see something amazing: before they pick up their bows, before they start shooting, Dia and her friends each remove a breast. I swear to God, a left breast to be exact, except for the one who's left handed so for her it's the right one goes away. They only have one breast apiece. Do you understand? The other one has been surgically order to facilitate the shooting of arrows at one's foes. The bow string now fits snug and tight against the rib cage, unencumbered and unhindered by any burden of femininity. This is an ancient Amazonian practice.


I can't fucking believe it. These women are most definitely amazons. The legends are true. The warrior women have always been, and once more they have emerged, this time in Connecticut, within commuting distance of New York City. Their Queen is Dia. She has killed mydog, and I know for certain that I must soon do battle with her.

But this knowledge is not enough. Truth be known, I am as yet unprepared, having not yet reached the status of warrior. So she ambushes me, as easy as pie. It's a foggy wet morning on Old Swamp Road. I'm just coming back from shopping in the Village, when suddenly she's in front of me on her bike, scaring the shit out of me, causing me to lose control, and go off the side of the road, ending up in a three foot drainage ditch. I sit there dumbfounded, scared, furious, shaking, watching her black leather jacket and raven hair disappear into the fog.

It won't be as easy as I thought. I take my time. I observe. I carefully gather information. I note things down. I gird myself. And wait, wait for that precise moment when I will unleash...the dog inside myself. And that moment isn't too long a'comin.

One day I notice that there's this road that she favors; it's a service road that runs parallel to the thruway. And about halfway up that road, there's a little park tucked away in the trees, with a very accessible driveway, and a parking lot with a real nice view of the oncoming traffic. In other words, a perfect spot for an ambush.

I begin calling in sick to work. Four days in a row. From morning to early evening, I find myself sitting in that parking lot. All systems on red alert. I rarely leave the car, except when I'm forced to dash into the bushes and pee. I feel weirdly self conscious. I think I'm being noticed. But I won't leave until she makes her appearance.

  On the fifth day I'm rewarded. It's about eleven in the morning, when I see her coming down the road, mounted on her silver bike. I start my engine and pull out of the parking lot. And suddenly, there I am, totally alive! Roaring towards her! Swinging back and forth across the white line! Sure, I know that it's a dangerous maneuver. But I'm a good driver, and I plan to leave her, at the last minute, of course, plenty of room to squeeze by. You see, I know just how well she can handle that damned machine of hers, so I don't expect any real danger. The truth is, I just want to scare the bejesus out of her; teach her a lesson. Show her who the real heroes are in this damned world: men!

My heart is pounding like a machine gun now! I'm screaming out: how do you like it now, Queen Dia, with me coming at you like this! Think of Eisenhower, what you did to him, you damned bitch!

She starts to panic. She knows it's me, her hated adversary coming at her, but somehow she seems puzzled, frightened, perhaps, not quite sure what to do. Switch lanes, turn around, slow down, go faster? What the fuck! Not so good under pressure, are you Queen Dia? Not such a great Amazon warrior after all, are you, miss?

I'm tickled pink now, laughing hysterically. I've had my revenge. Had myself a great day! So I start to ease up on the pedal, begin to pull back over onto my side of the road, when all of a sudden she makes a mistake. A big mistake! What she does, is try to get off the road and up onto the grass to escape me. But instead what happens, is that she runs into a greasy spill of oil, that sends her and her cycle spinning madly out of control, until it smashes into a small boulder on the side of the road, and then, I swear to God, she's launched, like a goddamned rocket through the air, finally coming down hard on a small hill in front of a very large tree! Thank God she didn't hit the tree, I'm thinking, as I turn my car around and head back towards her; but still and all, she likes to play rough, and hell, that can go two ways as she's found out.

I'm out of my car now, walking towards her, about three feet away, when all of a sudden she sits straight up, and ripping her helmet and visor off of her head, looks straight at me. Her eyes blazing, her lips moving, her face ashen white! I'm devastated! The earth seems to have fallen away from my feet! But I can't hear her words? What is she saying? I must hear what she is saying! I rush towards her now, but just as I'm about touch her, she suddenly falls back - - dead. I know it instantly: sheÕs dead! And I've killed her! I've killed her!

Now I'm kneeling next to her, gently touching her face with my hand. Because I love her! I suddenly know that I love her more than anyone or anything in the world!

Oh, Dia, my Amazon Queen, my adored Amazon Queen! Is it too late? No, no! I can't believe it is! I won't believe it! It's not too late for us!

And now I'm kissing and caressing her, and at the same time, I start removing her clothes.

And that's how they find me, madly entwined with the body of my beloved Amazon Princess.

People are horrified by my actions; what I am horrified by is my loss.

Time goes by, and after a while, those in charge seem to grow tired of me, and eventually decide to send me back to the real world.

"Real world," I have to laugh to myself. What could they be talking about? What could they mean? The only person who was ever totally real to me is now gone.

But after a while, something amazing happens. My depression begins to lift. It's the libraries, you see. I'm spending most of my days in the libraries now, pouring over old books and manuscripts, laboriously translating obscure languages. Looking for clues.

And then one day it seems clear to me that I've finally found what I've been looking for. It seems that Dia's Amazon family were once allies of Dionysus and inhabited an island, Hespera, to be exact, situated in a lake in Libya. And what is even more startling and to the point is: that there is good reason to believe that some of them are still there!

Yes, yes! And that is where I plan on going, as soon as possible, with your help, of course: a few purchases, or perhaps even a generous donation would be a godsend. Because, my dear friends, at this point in my life, I firmly believe that Dia's spirit, in the form of another Amazonian heroine, is waiting there for me. And that she, yes, might love me as much as I love her.