Transcript of 54th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Mr. Alex Rozzi, Wednesday, July 15, 1998 at 5:00 pm.

Mr. Rozzi: Hey, dude. I took your advice.
Dr. Balis: Hello, Alex. What advice?
Mr. Rozzi: Yeah, you know, about Ralph. Remember the thing you said about just being his friend and to treat him the way I normally do?
Dr. Balis: Yes, I remember. What happened?
Mr. Rozzi: Well, after I thought about what you said, I sat down with Ralph and we had a talk. I told him that I'm totally freaked over this...over what's happening to him. I told him I worry that he's in pain sometimes and that he has to take all these pills. He's already taking a lot of shit--like fifty-seven pills a day for the AIDS-related stuff and all--and now he takes these pain killers because he has a lot of pain in his back. He says it's behind where the growth is. Anyway, he takes these pain killers, and I think Edward isn't really helping in this. I hate his name, "Edward." He is such a sis and a major control queen. I am so lost here, dude. What were we talking about?
Dr. Balis: You were telling me about the talk you had with Ralph.
Mr. Rozzi: Oh yeah, that's right. So anyway, I told him that I am worried big-time about him. Shit! I even walked the other night--remember how I used to do that? All night, I walked and walked. It was so foggy, my clothes were real damp and all the trees and bushes had little diamond droplets clinging and sparkling in the darkness. I felt like I was in the middle of a snow dream or something. I walked from our house on upper Market down Market, working my way to where the new Pacific Bell ball park is being built. Have you been over there lately? It's so totally different and real nice now, not at all like it used to be. Then I walked around and back through the Financial District. And eventually, I got to the Golden Gate Bridge and just sort of hung out at the girders that Roly and I used hang at. The fog has been thicker lately than it has been in a long time. Uh, we were talking about Ralph. Sorry, it's just that...I don't know. It's like it's all so unreal, you know?
Dr. Balis: I understand. Please, go on.
Mr. Rozzi: So, I told Ralph that I feel helpless like I can't do anything for him even if I tried. I wouldn't know what to do or where to even begin, you know? So do you know what he said?
Dr. Balis: What did he say?
Mr. Rozzi: He said, "There isn't anything you can do." He told me that he has Edward to take care of things right now and he's okay with that. He said that he wants me to continue to do the things I do, as if nothing was wrong. And I was like, "How do I do that?" I mean this is too big, too in my face. But he said that all he wants me to do is continue to cook dinner like I do and, of all things, to do the dishes. I was almost waiting for him to make that crack about me doing them in my underwear--remember when he asked me that in the hospital that time? But he didn't go there. So all he wants is for me to just continue along with my life and try not to worry about him. But I don't know.
Dr. Balis: I know that sounds easier than it really is.
Mr. Rozzi: You're telling me? He and I were talking, and he really made me feel better. But then a couple of things happened. First, he got all serious--too serious--and I started to get all worried again. He said he needs to talk to me about something real important and he went over to close the bedroom door.
Dr. Balis: What was it?
Mr. Rozzi: Well, I never got to find out--he didn't get a chance to start because Edward burst in saying that Ralph needs to take his meds and get some rest. And he said something like, "Alex has a chore to do." And I was all like, "What chore? Hello?" What in the hell did that mean? So Edward shooed me out of the bedroom and gave Ralph his pills. And after Ralph got all settled, Edward came out with it. It was like a daytime soap opera or something, I couldn't believe my ears. Edward said that he knows what I am up to. He went, "You're not the first street urchin Ralph has taken in." I was like, "What?" Who in hell does he think he is? And then--and this is the real killer here--Edward said to me that it's time to pack up my things and get out, move on. That was the chore. So, Doctor, you can pick your chin up out of your lap now.
Dr. Balis: What did you do?
Mr. Rozzi: I didn't have to do anything! Ralph suddenly appeared out of the darkness, and his face was darker than the shadows on the wall. He said, "No, you're wrong, Edward! This is Alex's home--now and after I'm gone, Alex stays." And then he looked me square in the eye and said, "Don't go anywhere, Alex." I got chills all up and down my spine. Then he really went off. He started telling Edward, the little fucking sis, that he practically scared away the nurse that the doctor sent and how he didn't like that at all. And he was not pleased about the furniture being rearranged and told Edward to put everything back the way it was. Ralph said something like: "All this reminds me of when we were living together--how nice you can be when you want something." And then Ralph wondered what Edward was up to.
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Mr. Rozzi: I'll say! He stopped totally short of throwing Edward out. But Ralph did tell him to stop the controlling bullshit. You should have seen that little chi-chi queen, the poor dear. Her mouth was turned upside down, and the sad little "you caught me" puppy-dog eyes...he was speechless. It was the only time since I've known Edward that he wasn't jabbering on about something, and it was so good. Ralph has got to be the coolest man alive. I hate that he has to be sick, I just totally hate it. He never said it like that before: "my home." It was an unspoken thing between us until now. He never had to say it, because the way he treated me was all he needed to do to make me feel like it was my home, too. But it felt good to hear that right after Edward treated me like common trash, you know?
Dr. Balis: Sounds like Ralph really cares a great deal about you.
Mr. Rozzi: I know. It feels good, but scary, too.
Dr. Balis: Why scary?
Mr. Rozzi: Well, mainly it's because he may die on me, and that would be the story of my life, you know? Dammit! I just hate this! Uh, I'm's just...
Dr. Balis: There's no need to be sorry. You have good reasons to feel the way you do, Alex.
Mr. Rozzi: Oh, but I've got to tell you about what happened the next day. I think it was a full moon the following day. Anyway, I was in the kitchen, cooking and chopping some vegetables with my big knife, when chi-chi girl came frolicking in. Well, I just looked up at him unfazed as he lifted the lid off the pot on the stove--I wish the steam burned his pretty little face off or something. Well, he didn't say a word to me, as usual, but his eyes begun darting back and forth as I pulled a "Piper Laurie" on him.
Dr. Balis: A what?
Mr. Rozzi: A "Piper Laurie." You know it's like in the movie "Carrie?" The girl gets all freaked because she's afraid the boys are going to come sniffing around like dogs. So she's chopping the vegetables by slamming down the blade hard and fast with random chops, and the vegetables are flying all over the place. Well, that's what I did--just like in the movie, with carrots shooting out all over the kitchen. And you should have seen Edward scurry out of there as fast as he could in his nervous Nellie fashion. I guess it's a safe bet that he won't be messing with me anymore.
Dr. Balis: Because you were violently chopping vegetables? Were you trying to physically intimidate him?
Mr. Rozzi: I didn't hit him, although I wanted to before Ralph showed up the other night. Then another weird thing happened that very night, and it had nothing to do with Ralph or the sis.
Dr. Balis: What happened?
Mr. Rozzi: Well, I was painting in my studio, and like a blast of air, Tony rushed in. He was blabbering about Sharon--she got arrested or something. He was incoherent. I got him to slow down, and then he just froze up on me. I was trying to get him to tell me more, but he went, "Never mind." And he knows how much I hate it when he does that--when he starts to say something and then thinks about it, stops in the middle of a sentence, and says: "Never mind." It totally drives me wild! So he was doing his passive-aggressive thing, and I just went on painting while he sort of sat there all quiet. And then he pulled out a joint and lighted it. I haven't had an urge for it for some time, but that night, it looked real inviting...
Dr. Balis: And did you?
Mr. Rozzi: Of course I did, but I regretted it right away.
Dr. Balis: Why?
Mr. Rozzi: When Tony got up to leave, he reached out to hug me. And before I could even understand what was happening, he had his tongue in my mouth and he was all feeling me up and down, grabbing me and shit. And he s pretty damn strong, too--it was hard to get him to stop. But I pushed him away and told him that it was not cool to try to force himself on me that way.
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Mr. Rozzi: He said he always wanted to go there with me. But I was like, "No, dude. This isn't going to happen between us." I told him he better go. I could tell he was on something, something other than the pot. He just wasn't right. It completely spanked me, you know? I was sitting there wondering what I did to make him do that. Was it me or was it the drug-thing?
Dr. Balis: Alex...
Mr. Rozzi: I'm not mad at him or anything. I'm just totally perplexed by it.
Dr. Balis: I think you handled yourself well, especially given that there were drugs involved. I'm glad that it didn't end in violence like your last confrontation with Tony.
Mr. Rozzi: Well, I'll tell you, that whole thing totally sobered me up. My high was completely gone after that. When I told Cami about it, she said I must have done something to get him excited. I told her that I think it was something I created, unintentionally.
Dr. Balis: What?
Mr. Rozzi: Remember when I was thinking of ways to get rid of Sharon? One idea was for me to seduce Tony. But he came along and tried to seduce me! Talk about payback. Hey! Didn't we talk about this last time? We did. Oh well. Oh yeah, the other and final weird thing that happened in my life last week. Regina is in jail or juvie. I don't know which.
Dr. Balis: What happened?
Mr. Rozzi: Well, she went over to the museum where Cami works during the day. Cami volunteers as a tour guide or something. I guess Regina went in there and demanded to see Cami, but Cami wasn't even there that day. So when the guards told her she wasn't there, she whipped out a gun and started waving it around, acting the fool, totally blowing it. So they arrested her and took her away. Hopefully, they'll keep her locked up and toss out the key. Serves her right, the crazy bitch!
Dr. Balis: I'm glad she didn't hurt anyone. She sounds like a troubled young woman.
Mr. Rozzi: You're such a diplomat, dude--"a troubled young woman!" But you're right, she's lucky the gun didn't accidentally go off and shoot someone. I heard that it was loaded; she probably was, too. Ha! Ha! Serves her right.
Dr. Balis: Alex, we've run out of time
Mr. Rozzi: Already? Well, all right, dude. See you next week.
Dr. Balis: Okay. Goodbye, Alex.
Mr. Rozzi: No parting words of advice?
Dr. Balis: Take care of yourself, Alex.
Mr. Rozzi: Thanks a lot!
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