How DrHGuy First Connected With Leonard Cohen: 3. Anjani Writes Dear DrHGuy Letter

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Update (2017): Introduction

This is the third in a set of 1HeckOfAGuy1 entries that I am reposting in response to questions about how l first became involved with Leonard Cohen

 

 

The content below was originally published Aug 17, 2006.

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Hey, That’s Not A Bad Way To Say Goodbye
Anjani WritesTo DrHGuy

Dearest HGuy,

Being that you’ve already heard my voice AND seen me in my knickers* whereas images of you on your site are curiously (coyly? purposely? blessedly?) absent, I am at a slight disadvantage in imagining your participation in the admittedly remote possibility of a night of wild debauchery with Tina and Tanita.

In any case, although I am unable to return your fervent declarations of adoration, may I take this moment to express my appreciation for your stalwart efforts to mine the innermost chambers of your psyche for the entire world to peruse? Please consider setting these couth illuminations into a book that I feel sure would make for pleasurable bathtime reading.

And now, a word from the poet:
Note from LC: When you next write heckofaguy, please thank him for his strenuous efforts on my behalf.

And if you would offline, care to send me your snail mail address, the poet would like to send you his latest literary offering Book Of Longing, just to show there are no hard feelings over your reckless communiqué.

As Ever,
AT

*I refer to page 4 of the Blue Alert cd booklet.

From DrHGuy To Anjani

Anjanikins,

Well, there is a photo of me located at Walkernastics: DrHGuy’s Walker Dismount Demo, although it doesn’t feature me in your knickers, as intriguing as that thought may be. I fear that visualizing me will not do much in stimulating your orgiastic visions.

And, as it turns out, I’m familiar with page 4 of the Blue Alert booklet, although my viewing has always focused almost exclusively on your implied domestic skills. [Note To Readers: No, I’m not going to scan page 4 into the blog. That kind of thing is a private matter between Anjani and me – and the thousands of folks who own the CD. Buy your own darn copy.]

I’ve been to splitsville2 enough times to recognize a “Dear John/Dearest HGuy” letter, however gently and graciously written,3 when I see one. This is, however, the first such goodbye missive I’ve received that included a consolation prize4 (“Thanks for playing, and you’ll receive the home version of our game.”), which is a classy touch. The gift of The Book Of Longing is much appreciated. I’d reciprocate in kind, but I suppose the collection of erotic limericks I’ve composed while in the throes of dating, Terse Verse: Perverse & Worse, is inappropriate at this point.
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  1. 1HeckOfAGuy.com was a predecessor of Cohencentric []
  2. I had assumed that no one has ever used “splitsville” outside an Archie & Jughead comic book, but Google gets 400,000 hits for the word. Go figure. []
  3. It could be so much worse. There’s a country-western song with the instructive title, “Get Your Tongue Out Of My Mouth, Because I’m Kissing You Goodbye” []
  4. I don’t think that residual tic over my left eye I’ve had since the ex-barrel racer and I broke up counts as a consolation prize []

How DrHGuy First Connected With Leonard Cohen: 2. Anjani Sends DrHGuy Pandoracious Response

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Update (2017): Introduction

This is the second in a set of 1HeckOfAGuy1 entries that I am reposting in response to some newly minted fans asking how l first came to meet Leonard Cohen:

 

 

The content below was originally published Aug 16, 2006.

Anjani Writes Again

Flaunting her perspicacity, a reader, Mrs. Linklater, presciently posed this rhetorical question after perusing my post, Anjani – A Muse Amused?, which was itself written in response to the appearance of a comment by Anjani to a still earlier post I wrote lauding her album, Blue Alert:

Why does this all make me think of Pandora’s Box, as it were?

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I’ll leave it to you, gentle reader, to supply your own rhetorical interpretation of and answer to Mrs. L’s query, but it does appear that the story isn’t over.

DrHGuy Promoted To Rascally Scamp

The latest episode in this mini-series has arrived in the form of this comment from Anjani appended to Anjani: A Muse Amused?

Dear HGuy,

I write regarding a number of points:

1. As a fellow proponent of proper syntax and spelling, kindly correct the typo in that comment from “my” to “me”

2. The Contact and Subscribe tabs at the top of the page don’t lead anywhere but home.

3. You rascally scamp! Never would I consider a fourway with Tina and Joan Jett…however, Tina and Tanita remain an intriguing possibility.

Yours Truly,
AT

Comment by anjani — August 12, 2006 @ 6:08 pm

To Recap: Anjani and DrHGuy

Anjani:
Anjani Thomas is an altogether impressive singer-songwriter, whose album, Blue Alert, has garnered critical acclaim and a growing audience. It has also become my personal soundtrack since I belatedly discovered it three weeks ago. The songs from Blue Alert, suffused with Anjani’s smoky voice, are simultaneously a seduction into and a requiem for love that the singer unflinchingly and, indeed, passionately advocates all the while acknowledging that love is, in the end, not only insufficient to rescue us from the human condition but is also itself a source of pain.

And, it must be said, or, at any rate, I’m certainly going to say it, Anjani is easy on the eyes.

DrHGuy
My primary occupation these days, on the other hand, is dashing off posts on the decantation of ketchup, recipes for chocolate infused vodka, hacks for opening combination locks, the styles of bloggers in Ohio and Australia, the Gay Games Rowing Matches in Crystal Lake, and, on occasion, my admiration for and fantasies about gorgeous women who sing tremendous songs.

And my looks are, if not a burden on the the eyes, an acquired taste.

DrHGuy & Anjani Up In A Tree – OK, Up Two Different Trees

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  1. 1HeckOfAGuy.com was a predecessor of Cohencentric []

How DrHGuy First Connected With Leonard Cohen: 1. Anjani – A Muse Amused?

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Update (2017): Introduction

Some newly minted fans have asked how l first came to meet Leonard Cohen. Now, multiple “Leonard & me” narratives have been published recently featuring folks who performed or collaborated with him, those who interviewed or photographed the Canadian singer-songwriter only to subsequently realize they had bonded into intimate associates, others who met him by sheer serendipity, and still others who came into Leonard’s sphere of grace because of family connections, geographical proximity, mutual sexual attraction, overlapping friendships, or shared involvement in music, Judaism, poetry, food, literature, Zen … My story is less intellectually/spiritually profound than, say, accounts of spending hours sipping coffee and smoking exotic tobaccos while debating Kabbalistic archetypes with Leonard, but it does have the merit of being unique.

It begins with my July 25, 2006 1HeckOfAGuy.com1 review of the Leonard Cohen – Anjani Thomas collaboration, Blue Alert. The next step is described in the Aug 8, 2006 followup entry I’ve reposted below:

Anjani Re DrHGuy: Jejune, Yet Not Without A Certain Charm

This Sunday past, the Heck Of A Guy Blog had an unexpected, but unquestionably welcome, visitor, who left, as a calling card, a comment on Music Recommendation That Will Make You Want To Kiss Me.

Go ahead, check it out at the bottom of that post; I know you’re curious about who it is. I’ll wait here, humming along with the Jeopardy tune that plays while each contestant scrawled his or her “Final Jeopardy” answer, in the form of a question.

Cool comment, eh?

And, take a look this screenshot of the Press page of the Blue Alert web site:

presskiss500OK, before I get the emails and comments informing me that, as that New Yorker cartoon has it, “on the internet, nobody knows you’re a dog,” I am all too aware that that the comment could have actually been written by a large, malodorous, unshaven, chain smoking publicist’s assistant of indeterminate gender paid scarcely more than a living wage to reinforce and influence impressionable bloggers who write positive reviews of Anjani’s music. But, you know what? I don’t think Anjani rolls that way.

In any case, I’m certainly choosing to believe otherwise.

In fact, I think if I had handled things differently, …

Where I Might Have Gone Wrong

After re-reading my review of Blue Alert, I recognize that it may have been well put yet off-putting and that, despite my enthusiasm for her music, I might have constructed a more seductive post.

I now realize, for example, that labeling one section, “Lenny & Anji,” could be considered, at least by the more staid sort, as a tad presumptuous – or even flippant. Further, I would admit that comparing my serendipitous discovery of the Blue Alert album to the blind date that led to the catastrophe known as my first marriage was not an altogether ideal association.

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  1. 1HeckOfAGuy.com was a predecessor of Cohencentric []

Photos: Leonard Cohen Presents Anjani – Paris 2007

anj3These shots from Leonard Cohen Presents Anjani at the New Morning Club in Paris on July 11, 2007 show Anjani Thomas (and Leonard Cohen) performing in support of the Blue Alert album. Photos by Chris Holmes. More photos, information, and video can be found at Photos & First-Person Account: Leonard Cohen and Anjani Thomas Appear In Paris 2007.

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Video: Leonard Cohen, Anjani, Ron Sexsmith, Barenaked Ladies – Toronto 2006

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Two years before the 2008 World Tour, Leonard Cohen spent the Saturday afternoon of May 13th, 2006 listening to – and occasionally singing along with – Anjani, Ron Sexsmith, and the Barenaked Ladies performing his songs. An earlier post about this event can be found at Videos & Photos: Leonard Cohen, Anjani, Ron Sexsmith, Barenaked Ladies At Indigo – Toronto 2006. Now, a new video has surfaced. While this imperfect video covers only a portion of So Long, Marianne and adds little to the previously published videos and photos of this show, I’m posting it in the belief that any documentation or reminder of this delightful event is worthwhile.

Leonard Cohen – Toronto 2006
Video by japewisteria

From the YouTube description:

We didn’t have iPhone’s or GoPro’s back then. I recorded this on a Canon portable camera, which I regrettably forgot I had on me till the mid-point of the song. Anjani, Ron Sexsmith, Stephen Page from Barenaked Ladies, and a very energetic guitar player on backup. This was a rare Toronto appearance that coincided with the launch of the Book of Longing, his last book of poetry in 2006. There was no signing. It was the last time I saw him in person, and the closest I ever came to him. So long, Mr. Cohen. You will be missed and cherished.

Credit Due Department: Thanks to Linda Sturgess, who alerted me to this video.

Animation Of Leonard Cohen Dancing With Anjani Soars In Popularity

anjanidceSurprisingly (at least to me), Leonard Cohen’s death triggered multiple postings of several of Cohencentric’s Leonard Cohen Animations. The gif of Leonard Cohen dancing with Anjani Thomas, from the official Leonard Cohen – “Because Of” Video, has been the most popular with hundreds of postings since the Nov 10 announcement.

View more animated gifs at Leonard Cohen Animations