MASSIVE PEOPLE (1): GianCarlo DiTrapano

Tuesdays at HTMLgiant shall now entail the feature MASSIVE PEOPLE, in which good people who are doing important shit for independent literature will be featured for a handful of q’s and some sexy photos, etc. Editors, publishers, writers, anything with a good mouth.

I would be hard pressed to find someone better to kick this bitch off with than GianCarlo DiTrapano, who in addition to be the editor of one of the best literary journals around NEW YORK TYRANT, which will soon be launching its press leg with books by Michael Kimball, Brian Evenson, Eugene Marten, and more, is also a hell of a writer (recently published in Opium.print and No Colony, etc.) and fun to listen to talk.

Let’s kick it.

1. What happens to you most days?

The same as what happens to most.  I eat and work and have drinks and then lay back down to do it again.  It’s getting colder in New York so I will be spending less time outside.

What does not happen to you most days?

I sit back and relax as my bank account wildly increases and then I beat my dog to celebrate.

2. You were in my dream the other night, no kidding, I don’t know why, it was a small apartment, you were in one door yelling at someone on the other side of the room at another door, me and another guy were watching, the man you were yelling at took out a gun and shot you in the face. What does this mean? Why?

I know what it means.  I have the same one.  You and a friend drive from Atlanta to New York City for a party.  I spot you guys downtown and say hello.  The three of us go to a bar and get drunk, really drunk, and a phonecall is placed using your friend’s phone.  The rest of the night is delivered by a smiling Latino boy with silver sunglasses on top of his head. We return to my apartment in Hell’s Kitchen to finish things.  We get back there, and do indeed finish them, but in a hurry, as if “finishing” were the objective.  We call for more. A different guy shows up this time (no silver sunglasses) and I don’t recognize him.  There seems to be some bad blood.  You can tell by the tone we use.  So, the rest of the night is passed to me but it’s light.  Sometimes I raise my voice when I’m displeased. I am standing in the kitchen doorway as the delivery guy stands just inside my front door. I tell him, with a raised voice, how much this pains me.  I ask him what is going on and why he insists on being such a jig.  A gun is produced, I get shot in the face. My hands come up over my mouth, blood pours from between my fingers.  You and your friend are sitting on the floor, backs against the wall and you can’t stop staring. All four of your eyes are huge and you’re just staring at me.  It looks like you aren’t even breathing. I stumble back into the kitchen and land on the floor. From the linoleum, I see him turn the gun on you and your friend. Your friend’s skin miraculously turns black the moment the gun is pointed at him. You, Blake, turn pink and start glowing and you look like you’re getting younger.  Both of you get it real good though; three times each in the stomach. Then you roll over onto your sides and hold your guts in.  It’s an awful scene. The bullet I took went out through my cheek, so, even though there’s a lot of blood, I live.  But you two don’t though.  You could’ve, but you don’t though.  Your lives are allowed to end because I am too bothered with my face.  I am so worried about it that I must keep continuing the rest of the night to deal with it while both of you wiggle on the floor holding your stomachs and bleeding to death. In my defense, I do keep saying over and over, “I’m really sorry about all of this, Blake.  I’m so so sorry. Tell your friend I’m sorry. Why’s he black now? Tell him I’m sorry. New York is usually a pretty good time.” And then I mumble something indecipherable.  I don’t look at you when I say it because I am busy with what is laid out on the desk in front of me. Crushing and chopping.  It is turning pink and balling up from the falling blood of my mouth. I get the feeling in the dream that you and your friend think I’m being rude.  Does your dream run like this?

Now, if dreams do anything else besides foretell the future, I think they allow themselves to be opened for interpretation. This particular dream can be interpreted like this: Giancarlo DiTrapano can be a very selfish person and may seem like not such a good friend when he is in the pocket. He lacks what he’s always craved: elan. But it also signifies a deep tie between us, Blake.  Watching someone get shot in the face in your dreams is textbook Freudian for a future bond.  If I had been naked, the dream would mean you were planning on shooting me yourself.  But, you know, if that’d happened, I’d never have invited you two back to my place and probably would have walked the other way once I spotted you guys downtown.

3. Tell me a literary rumor. Make it up if you have to.

I think I know what you’re getting at.  Hmmm…let me see. This one time, to get a story for the Tyrant, I sent “a young Italian girl with pretty feet” over to a writer’s house at his request. It was a trade, and we received in turn a story by the writer.  The story was worth it. The story is good. And it created this other story.  A whole new story that didn’t exist before.  The story about getting the story.  That was the last good thing I’ve written and I didn’t even have to pick up a pen.

4. What books are you reading now? What books do you want to read?

What I read daily, without question, are the titles stacked in my bathroom.

“Waste” by Eugene Marten (Already read this, but I just like picking it up and digging in at any point)

a book of poems by Piero Pasolini (This was a gift.  Roman Poems.  Kind of sucks.)

a book titled “Disarming the Narcissist,” (This was mailed to me by a printer as an example of their work and I don’t have many books like this so it’s different and fun to learn what a narcissist I am.)

“The Origins of Solitude” by Garth Buckner

“Essay on Man” by Alexander Pope. (Jaw-dropping)

I want to read Under The Volcano and the recently released Camus diaries.

Gian's son learning to smoke
Gian's son learning to smoke

5. What are you writing now? What do you want to write?

I am working on a piece about David Lynch for this collection that is coming out soon that should be great.  I’m actually having trouble with it and am hoping the editor won’t get angered by me failing completely. But I don’t really write that much.  I have in the past, wrote a little here or there, but not so much.  I don’t even consider myself a writer most of the time.  I’d like to do it more, but when I’m not really feeling it I end up hating the whole damn world and everyone in it and especially hate myself for acting like such a fraud.