For those of you who may have been wondering where I've been for the past couple weeks, I was in a hospital room in Glendale California watching my father -- the now late crown Prince of the Imperial House of Nyguen - a man sometimes known at holidays when the whiskey ran a little too freely as "Hanoi Bao," die.

Death does have mercy. In his case it was mercy.

On Halloween he checked himself in, driving himself there from his doctor's office, for a 24/hr/day, 4 day course of chemotherapy... apparently in some inane attempt at saving his life. He made it through that. Then, because one should not give such a toxic treatment to an 82 year old man and because if it is given to anyone, it should be done in isolation (and it wasn't --Granny Hee would deliver her fresh dog soup daily and force poor father to drink some of the disgusting swill.

So, since about the 16th.... a week after he was supposed to check out, he pretty much went bonkers, told me the truth about the Kennedy Assassination when semi-lucid and largely spent his time in agony, deliriously doing crossword puzzles and sending "fruity messages" and mainly because he was drowning in his own mucus and/or wanted to go home.

Well, he is home know... as of 7:15 PST, about half an hour after I'd left after a four day vigil. After the early noon shivers when he became completely nonresponsive -- not even fighting when some yahoo stuck tubes down his nose to drain mucous from his chest -- I knew it was time. I said my prayers, my good-byes and departed.

The nurse said it was a peaceful death... that she was in the room. I choose to believe her, because for the past four nights I have awakened to the horrified look of terror on his face as he gasped for air through what his doctor described as a mouthful of marshmallows... and after all, reality is simply what we choose to believe.

So if Saturday Night you heard "The Emperor is Dead, Long Live the Emperor" you were probably in a shitty section of town trying to score some good "China White.

The House of Nyguen lives on, and shall do so in the spirit of old "Hanoi Dai" -- which means we'll still collect a penny on every Big Mac sold in Ho Chi Minh City.

I just hope when my time comes, and it will, I go swift and sweet in the arms of Morpheus, because he really was a good Dad... taught me how to play baseball and went to many games in which I never played.

He was a good father, and I loved him -- no, love him (we have that ancestor worship thing even thought we're Catholic.

RIP Hanoi Bao. I shall carry on and fight the good fight.

Peace out

Bao Dai of Hollywood