Der Williams on Connecting in a Real And/Or Spiritually Satisfying Way

An interview with Der Williams, from The Write Stuff series over at SF Weekly:

Der Williams is a friend to all living creatures. He works as a private investigator. He’s published some poetry and criticism in a bunch of random magazines. He’s almost 26 which seems nuts to him. He likes avocados and sunshine. Here’s his site.

When people ask what do you do, you tell them… ?


What’s your biggest struggle — work or otherwise?

Connecting with people in a way that feels real and/or spiritually(?) satisfying.

If someone said I want to do what you do, what advice would you have for them?

To be a monkey act a monkey.

Do you consider yourself successful? Why?

Success is a dangerous bedfellow.

When you’re sad/grumpy/pissed off, what YouTube video makes you feel better?

Cam “lucious crow” Swirka’s live recording of Crow’s Blues — listen for my shout-out in verse 1:

Do you have a favorite ancestor? What is his/her story?

Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard (is said to have) ordered the first shot of the Civil war at Fort Sumter 4/12/1861 and I am (said to be) his descendant.

Who did you admire when you were 10 years old? What did you want to be?


Describe your week in the wilderness. It doesn’t have to be ideal.

Would you ever perform a striptease? Describe some of your moves. Feel free to set the mood.

I’d for sure stir-the-pot. Stirring-the-pot is when you twirl your legs around at the knees while keeping your torso still. Credit to James Decoursey Arterberry, officer, U.S. Navy.

How much money do you have in your checking account?

Money’s an abstraction. #hoardtangibleitems

What’s wrong with society today?

That it’s made up (almost) entirely of human beings.

Are you using any medications? If so, which ones?

Herbal, multivitamins, fish-oil.

What is your fondest memory?

I keep saying “fond” over and over in my head to try and jog some memory trail but can only think how the name Fonz is like the plural of “fond” which is unhelpful.

How many times do you fall in love each day?

Saturdays or Mondays?

What would you like to see happen in your lifetime?

The falling out of fashion of the sock. Fact: Socks = nuisance. You need too many of them,

they always get lost. Shoe technology will revolutionize in the next 10 – 20 years, socks will = passé. Quote me.

What is art? Is it necessary? Why?

It’s either necessary because of, or very closely related to, the answer to Question 2 (which was that the respondent’s biggest struggle was to connect w/peeps in a real/spiritually(?) satisfying way). In other words, art is necessary or good because it’s one way to connect with people in real/spiritual ways.

When you have sex, what are some of the things you like to do?

Respondent considers, but declines to say something along the lines of, “only one way to find out… ;-P”

What are you working on right now?

A yoga practice and a lyrical surreal book-length poem called Sherman’s March to the Sea.

What kind of work would you like to do?

A horror / detective / literary-comic novella.

If there were one thing about the Bay Area that you would change, what would it be?

Not enough penguins.

A night on the town: what does that mean to you?

See answer to the Q two Q’s down.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever seen?


What can you do with 50 words? 50 dollars?

Ask a muscular transexual prostitute for his/her business in rhyming verse; make love to transexual prostitute; pay him/her $50.

What are some of your favorite smells?

Garlic/onion sizzling in butter, coastal air, girlfriend’s nose breath.

If you got an all expenses paid life experience of your choice, what would it be?

See answer to the Q two Q’s up.

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