Things I've learned today ...
* "Cocked-up" is my new favorite expression
* I've been in lots of tube stations and found no garbage cans and no rats
* Would-be troublesome colleagues are much more accomodating in person than on the phone ... reach out and touch
* Henley is a lovely place to visit, but ....
* I love Boots (but I kinda already knew that)
November 24, 2003
I remember thinking last year that I wanted 2003 to be a year of more international travel for work. I don't think I told anybody at work that, but rather just "put it out into the universe."
As I head over to London this morning, I realize that this is the third time I've been there in the past six months and that I have to go back in a couple of weeks. That's kinda crazy. It'd be more fun if I had some time to myself while I was over there instead of things being "work work work," but still it's better than going to Peoria. And maybe Larry could come along.
Next year, I'll have to refine my visualizations.
November 23, 2003
I just noticed that bobzyeruncle rolled past 10,000 hits this week. I guess it must have been Friday. I know that there's people getting that much in a week, but for little ol' me ... it's a milestone. Or maybe a kilometerstone.
Sometimes I beat myself up about not following through or sticking with things. I suppose an argument against that criticism is this little blog. I've tossed something up here almost everyday since February when I started, and it seems that there's a few of you out there reading it.
November 22, 2003
Have you ever watched drag queens get ready? They take forever.
Right now, I'm watching the opposite ... Connie and June are becoming boys. It doesn't take nearly as long. And when they do an impromptu de-drag duet to "Enough Is Enough," well, it's gonna be a part of the show.
I just watched art be born.
The afterbirth is messy.
November 21, 2003
Compelling Journalism for $200
In this morning's
Us Magazine NY Times, Robin Finn fluffs profiles QEFTSG creator David Collins, calling him "compact, gay and comically extroverted." Is that just another way of saying flamboyant pocket 'mo?
"Just because you like shoes and hair doesn't mean you're gay, and just because you like football doesn't mean you're straight,'' he says. I guess that closes the books on stereotyping and we can all get back to our assimilated lives now.
Queer Eye for the Freak Guy
Even though I think the Fab Five is *this* close to overexposure, maybe they could do an emergency makeover on Michael Jackson.
The sky is clear and blue, my triglycerides have returned to a normal level, and I have met the impossibly charming, lovely and witty tofuju. It's Friday and I won't be in the office at all next week, as I have to go to London on Monday for some only mildly painful meetings, after which I'll head to Provincetown for a long, painless Thanksgiving weekend.
All should be well. And yet there's still this underlying feeling of stress. I'm calm enough and sleeping better (the decaffienation has helped with that), but I still feel like things still aren't quite right and that there's drama ahead.
It feels like the calm before the storm, when in reality there is no storm in sight.
November 20, 2003
Cop a Feel, Cop a Plea
So Michael's in custody and will be out on bail soon.
Do you think he'd actually go to jail? I just can't see him holding up in the pen, working in the laundry and being somebody's bitch. Maybe he and Martha can be cellmates.
If it starts leaning towards a strong case against him, maybe he'll plead insanity ... you'd have to be crazy to do that to your face, wouldn't you?
Coming in from dinner last night, L. says to me, "You know, I really never remember dreams, but last night I dreamt I was with the guy and I'd murdered him and was shoving him in the closet. And I thought to myself, this is the second person I've killed. I've got to stop this or they're going to catch me."
I asked him who the first person was.
"Oh, Bob, I don't remember their names."
"So when did you kill the first one?"
"Not sure. I think maybe in a dream about a month ago."
Hmm, I'm thinking maybe Larry should be the one getting off the caffeine.
November 19, 2003
This is my new favorite spam.
We find peoples in diffrent countries for work.
Our work consist of cash-outing money from Paypal, Western Union,
Money Gram, Money Orders, Bank Wires.
For our ONLINE EXCHANGER.
You get good incoming.
You need aproximetly some hours per day.
If you want details mail to us with SUBJECT: NEED WORK.
Grammar be damned. I've got approximately some hours. Sign me up.
So Many Handcuffs, So Little Time
What's up with all the criminal drama in the news this morning?
And then Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romey gets on Today and says "I agree with 3,000 years of recorded history. Marriage is an institution between a man and a woman ... and our constitution and laws should reflect that."
Well gee, if history says so, then it must be true. I haven't taken a logic class in a long time, but somehow I think there's a flaw in his argument.
He also said that if a "civil union" between gays affored all the rights that a straigt marriage did, then it might as well be called a marriage and he was against that. In effect, a union between two men or women could not ever be the same thing as a union between a straight couple.
November 18, 2003
The Pilgrims Would Be So Proud
We will be happy to rent out our condo in Provincetown for any upcoming gay marriages.
In fact, we may just create a Massachusetts Mo Marriage special rate.
What You Don't Know Can't Hurt You
L got home from Florida late last night, and we were catching up while getting ready for work this morning.
"Oh," I said, "We've now got the Paris video on the computer if you need to catch up on your water cooler conversation."
"You know, the video that everyone's been talking about, with Paris Hilton having sex."
And that pretty much sums up what's wonderful about my guy. He's the yin to my pop culture whore yang.
In other news, I got my flue shot this morning, so I'm all set to explore new chimneys next week while I'm in London.
November 17, 2003
Disengaged, Party of One
It's one of those days when I just want to go home, grab my passport and extra credit cards, take a cab to JFK, get on the first plane to somewhere warm and exotic and not come back for a very long time.
Would that be so wrong?
I seem to be having more of these days than not of late.
Blogrolling Log Jam
I see that many of us have allegedly taken a fancy to Laura and her blog at rockergirl.
The Blogrolling folks must be having a happy Monday.
Addendum: Kudos to Jason at blogrolling for cleaning up his hack mess in short order.
November 16, 2003
Scrubs, Rubs and Pubs
A run along the palm tree studded beach this morning. Laying out by a landscaped pool in sunny 80° weather. Sound rough, eh?
That was Larry's weekend ... he has a meeting in Palm Beach tomorrow, so he jumped a jet down to Lauderdale yesterday for a bit of R&R. We kinda hate him for that.
Well, what's good for the goose... . I took a mini-holiday myself today and booked a double session at the local spa. Larry got salt air, I got an exfoliating sea salt scrub. While he was letting the warm sea breeze soothe him, I let the warm hands of a masseur soothe me for 90 minutes. And, in a heaping helping of hedonism, I had a rub yesterday as well. Oink.
At Crash's suggestion, I met up with him and his rugger pals at the The Eagle yesterday afternoon. He is delightful, and I learned new drinking songs. My favorite being "Jesus can't play rugby because he wears illegal headgear."
I then headed over to Connie's bday bash at Elmo, which was a sublime
drunk fest riot. His brother and sisters came in from Wisconsin, and they're all beautiful. I'd mosey west and eat cheese with each of them in a heartbeat. Of course, a night out with that crew just wouldn't be complete without a nightcap or two at Baraccuda. Who am I to buck tradition?
So now it looks like a cozy night at home, just me, the psycho cats, a book and my smooth, satiny skin.
November 15, 2003
I've given up on the concept of immediate gratification.
I'm now seeking retroactive gratification.
That's healthy, right?
November 14, 2003
Adios to Juan Valdez?
Went to the trained professional today and told him of my woes (lack of focus, being bored yet agitated, tired but not really sleepy, easily aggravated, a little anxious about stupid shit, etc.) Also said I wasn't looking to go back into deep analytical therapy, I just wanted to get my groove back on so I could sit down and do the things I know I should be doing.
Told him I wasn’t just ready to jump back onto the anti-depressant train, although it was an option that I wan't diametrically opposed to.
So Bob, tell me about your sleep habits.
That's easy ... I don't feel like going to sleep and night and hate getting up in the morning. I go to bed, toss and turn, get up and read, write,
obsess about ponder all the things I should be doing, surf the net and/or watch tv and then fall asleep on the sofa. Wake up a few hours later, sometimes go to bed, sometimes turn off the tube and go back to sleep on the couch. Wake up too early, go back to sleep again and then don't ever want to get up.
What wakes you up?
Dunno, just wake up.
How much caffeine do you drink?
A few cups of coffee in the morning, a cup or two of coffee/tea in the afternoon (or Diet Cokes, I love me my Diet Coke) and usually a Diet Coke or two at home in the evening.
Are you kidding?
I'm going to offer some suggestions that you may not like. You say you want to feel better and stay off the medication for now ...
He seems to think I might get into a more regular sleep pattern, and in turn increase my energy/focus/happiness, if I cut out the caffeine. Years ago, he would have handed me a script for some Klonopin or Ritalin and talked about putting me back on something Zoloft-y. But instead, we're going to do a little experiment in decaffeination. Why did I tell him I wasn’t ready to take happy pills?
I live for Diet Coke. I love a good cup of coffee ... more than I ever loved cigarettes. My gut says I’d rather be medicated and caffeinated, but I’m always up for an experiment. We’ll just see.
No smokes. No cokes. Thank Whitney there's still crack.
Ta-Boo! Not Really That Scary
There was no schadenfreude at the Plymouth tonight. Rosie O'Donnell's much anticipated trainwreck stayed on track ... which is a good thing, because I would've hated to have to shake her hand at the opening night party and say, "I'd like to say it was a good show, but I don't want to get cancer."
I haven't looked at the reviews yet, so here's my unbiased opionion: all in all it's a decent show with a really good score and great performances -- especially Euan Morton as a dead shrinky-dink ringer for Boy George and Raúl Esparza as a slightly-over-the-top Philip Sallon.
There are seven main characters in the show, and they all get their chance to shine in at least one ballad. In fact, if there was just a little more attention paid to B.G. and a little less paid to Leigh Bowery, Rosie would've been within her rights to rename the show "The Ballad of Boy George." That said, they're all beautiful songs, and each performer is wonderful. It's a shame that Liz McCartney will be leaving the show so soon (like after the first performance); Big Sue is huge with child and is leaving the show this week.
Aside from the kick line in the first number which, in fairness, sent most of the audience reeling as quickly as my eyes were rolling, the show held its own. A kick line in a London disco? Please ... that's as ridiculous as Indians doing jazz hands in "Annie Get Your Gun."
My only big issue with it is that neither the music (except for the "performances" of Culture Club hists) nor most the choreography seemed to fit with the gist of the story (i.e., 80's excess and celebrity and the intertwining web of the characters' relationships). The OCR will be wonderful to listen to, and most of the songs will be covered in cabaret acts to come for years. But is that the music that people coming to see a show about London club kids will expect to hear?
My other problem with the show is that, despite the lovely songs and gorgeous singing (and amazing remakes of Bowery's costumes), I never really connected with the characters. I feel like I watched some great performances taking star turns with moving music -- but left with the feeling it was a better concert than a show. Perhaps they did need that new director. And a more compelling, less exposition-meets-campy-one-liners book might've helped.
I have a friend who is a producer, and for his sake I really hope it does really well. I just wonder if it's going to be able to find a long-term audience. It's not gritty like Rent. Tickets are a lot more expensive than Hedwig. I wonder if a scaled down more "dirty" version might not have been more appropriate. The music's better than Wicked, but will most of the theatre-going public be drawn to a retelling of Oz's witches or a collection of lovely pop ballads set in a culture of club kids?
The after party at the Roxy was a good time as well. I'd never seen it quite so sober or so well lit. It's a lot smaller than I remembered.
There were lots of Bowery-esque dancers/posers on the go-go boxes and plenty of eye candy for all. Lady Bunny had the biggest wig (again) and I swear that Cashetta has a tapeworm. Somebody buy that drag queen a cheeseburger. Or a staple remover.
And, oh huzzah, the Fab 5 themselves were there. Well, at least four of them; I only saw three and a friend saw Ted. Apparently, it's all about hair these days. Carson had this new Ellen DeGeneres meets Meg Ryan blown-out shag (dude looks even more like a lady), Kyan (who didn't once yell about the press) is poofed up bigger than Farrah ever was, and Jai was wearing a long, stringy black wig and nasty-bad eye makeup. I thought he was the love-child of Cher and Xtina, but other rumorists said he was trying to look edgy because he wanted (and still does) the role of Marilyn in Taboo. I'm glad they're all enjoying their 15 minutes. Tick tock.
November 13, 2003
Adopt a Pet Peeve
If somebody asks you to email them something, just forward it and please stop using "as per your request" in your reply. It's a ridiculous, archaic phrase and it's starting to make me want an as-per-in.
If you feel you must add value by typing in your own words, I offer these simple, pleasant alternatives:
"As reqeusted ..."
"Here you go ..."
"Let me know if you need anything else ..."
"Here. Now leave me the fuck alone, I've got work to do."
Popular, It's Gonna Be Popular
I don't know that it'll send anybody over the rainbow, but Wicked is a really fun night out. It's big. It's splashy. It's funny. It'll run for long time to come. Some of the songs are catchy, some notsomuch. I will buy the CD when it comes out ... if only to play Popular over and over (probably until I'm sick of it) and work out some fun drag staging of "What is This Feeling?"
Ms. Chenowith was wonderful, as expected ... taking every Elle Woods turn she can as Glinda. Ms. Menzel takes control right off the broomstick with "The Wizard and I" and then two of them play off each other wonderfully right to the soggy end. And when you go, please report back and let me know if Glinda makes Elphie crack up every night during Popular, or if the girls just got carried away this evening. Those two really do have a great chemistry together.
There were a few moments when I went "huh?" -- e.g,. the big egghead show within a show in Oz,
Mr. Cellophane the Wizard (who can be stunt cast for years to come) tossing in a vaudevillian dance, and the Tin Man's forced balcony scene -- but all in all I was sucked right in and enjoyed the ride.
I'd liked to have seen it go a little more to the dark side (I haven't read the book, but understand it's a little twisted?). Then again, dark doesn't draw the crowds. *Sighs and remembers Sideshow*. Actually, the last number sort of reminded me of Daisy and Violet.
(pleeeeaassse don't cast Alice Ripley as the replacement Glinda)
Anyway, I digress. Bottom line for me is it's well worth seeing. They've packaged up a big-time, feel-good cinematic (hmm, I see Universal Pictures is one of the lead producers) show. Get yourself a ticket and go ... before someone
makes a movie of it and ruins it drops a house on you.
November 12, 2003
The Drowning Pool
I pulled this out of my Relax Deck this morning:
Goodness and Karma
Imagine that all your actions and comments are like drops of water falling into a pond. The ripples they make represent the signals that you send out to the people around you; as the waves hit the bank they turn and come back toward you. In this way, by sending out goodness, we can expect goodness to come back to us; this is the law of karma.
That's all well and good, but I still feel the urge to hold a few people below the surface of that rippling pond for about ten minutes.
I don't suppose that would be good karma.
But it might qualify for baptism ... and that's a good thing, right?
November 11, 2003
An Evening of Culture (Club)
Just got an invitation to Thursday's unveiling of
Trainwreck Taboo. Guess I shouldn't throw shade before the sun's officially risen, lest I be accused of getting in touch with my inner Michael Reidel.
I'm actually pretty psyched about it. I hear Raúl Esparza's great and I've never been to a Broadway opening. Bonus -- the invite includes a twirl around the opening night party at the Roxy, so I'll get to hobnob with some wannabe Culture Club kids and celebutantes. Haven't been there since Britney was a Mouseketeer.
Even more exciting is that I'm seeing Wicked tomorrow night.
My inbox today had spam from Testicle J. Starriest.
What, no Mike Hunt?
November 9, 2003
Stuck in the Middle with You
I had several little stories to write tonight ...
1. Larry calling me at the office earlier this evening (where I was diligently working, being the good lad that I am) and saying let's go out.
2. A trip to the Eagle's beer blast, where the DJ had obviously been watching VH1's I Love the 80s. A whole lot of bald, big bellied, bearded boys bopping to 80s pop, and yet I was the only one singing along to The Boss.
3. The acquaintance who was "only out" because his partner had to fly to Jordan for his father's funeral. His concern for his father-in-law was slightly outweighed by this simple question: "What do you think The Park will be like tonight and what's happening on Tuesday?" Love's a funny thing.
So many stories (not including the nine I had to walk up), but I've just spent the past hour in an elevator, stuck between floors of my apartment building. Yes, the police were called, as were the fire department and the elevator repair company. Chelsea is nothing without a little drama. It could've been more fun, but I forgot to hit the washroom before leaving the beer blast. It's really hard to pace and squeeze those Kegels in a 4x5 foot space.
P.S. Chi Chi LaRue would have cast the emergency personnel a whole lot better.
Now I need to get some rest before my 6 a.m. conference call.
All That You Touch
Mmm, Mmm Good
If one were to dine with any frequency at Chez B&L, one would be subject to a host of old-time questionable cuisine. It’s true … living on this island of multi-cultural phenomenal fare, we’re known to hole up in our little apartment and enjoy a box (or two) of Kraft Dinner and the occasional frankfurter sandwich.
So for lunch this afternoon, it wasn’t too surprising that I pulled a can of Campbell’s Soup out of the cupboard. Bean with Bacon (not my favorite, mind you … that would be Beef with Barley, which is hard to come by at the local market).
The label reads “Campbell’s Classics,” but the can is more newfangled than classic.
A pop top.
I’m not sure I like the idea of opening a can of soup the same way I open a can of cat food. I guess it makes it easier to travel with, but I don't think I'm ready to toss a can of soup into my briefcase and nuke up a bowl at the office. Plus, I’ve always been fond of my Good Grips can opener.
In an earlier life, I had a gig in brand management, on the packaging side of things, at P&G. It’s a *huge* deal to revamp packaging for consumer goods, and I can’t imagine that the new pop top is a more cost-effective way to make a can of soup.
Campbell's site says “consumer research told us that most consumers prefer the convenience of the Easy Open lid.” Was opening a can of soup really that hard?
Maybe it was only a matter of time. Andy Warhol made Campbell’s pop art. Is a pop top the natural progression?
November 8, 2003
Everything Must Change
Had a few server-related technical glitches to work out over the past few days, but between the good folks at Movable Type, the nice users lurking about MT and Dreamhost support forums and some trial and error on my part, seems like I'm back up and running. Is dataglob really a technical term? Shouldn't they tell you when they change your server?
But life does go on, even when you can't blog about it. Odd that.
Work was every bit as crappy as I'd anticipated (Alex, I'll take self-fulfilling prophecies for $300), but I seem to have lived through the ordeal.
Had a very relaxing massage Thursday night. Towards the end, I reached a minor epiphany (no, it wasn't that kind of massage nor was that a euphemism). I was really happy and content there for awhile ... beginning about 18 months ago. So happy in fact that I'd "graduated" therapy. So what was so different then vs. now?
Well, I had learned to let go of a lot and, for all intents and purposes had stopped worrying too much about a lot of the things that weren't directly in my control. I'm holding on to a lot again. And taking things way too seriously. Time to relearn how to let go.
The way things are looking, I don't think I'll be getting that new job I wanted. Which means at least 2-3 more months of a hurry-up-and-wait limbo. I think it might be time to start scouting for new trapezes. I really feel like I'm too old for this ... which I know isn't true, but I just so don't want to deal with it all. And I also don't want to keep doing what I'm doing.
Made an appointment with a "trained professional" I used to see. I think I've got a good set of "tools" from years on the couch and I really don't want to go back into therapy, but every online assessment I take (and I'm taking way too many of late) says I could be heading back to a place where a course of happy pills might do me some good. And I know that's a good load of pharmaceutical advertising, but I also know that I've been thinking about this for a couple months now and it's time to take some action.
I really felt a sense of relief just by making the call. This guy's more about psychopharmacology than dredging up and reliving old pain (which is what the last doctor was all about). Don't know that I'll fill any prescriptions just yet, but I feel better knowing that there's an option down the road.
In any case, I know it's just a passing shadow, much like tonight's eclipse.
On lighter notes, we saw Die Mommy Die! last night, which was a light-hearted dose of bad (in a good way), predictable camp. I think I like Charles better on stage, but it was a fun romp. Even more fun was running into Glenn and meeting his cute blog daddy. Also lined up tickets for Wicked for next week and I guess we'll do our part to get into the trainwreck before too long. Tried to get it at TKTS this afternoon, but it wasn't up.
Ended up taking a big walking tour from the South Street Seaport up to Soho. Y'all, if you haven't noticed, the city is packed with people, and they're already stopping in packs of 4 in the middle of the sidewalk to discuss how lost they are. It's going to be a really crowded, tedious Christmas season. And it's too cold already.
Maybe I do need those happy pills.
In the meantime, let's go watch the shadow pass over the moon. I want to see it turn all kinds of colors. And here I sit, without any microdot.
November 5, 2003
Holy Spam, Batman
I've been blessed with this message twice today in my office e-mail ...
From: FellowChristian [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Subject: Even Christians have financial problems.
God Grant Me the Serenity ...
I'm supposed to be able to let go of the things I can't control. That's the enlightened way, is it not?
I guess I really can't control the stupidity of others and their inability to think, plan or take any repsonsibility for how their actions might effect those around them.
But wait. Maybe I can control these people. I could shoot them, or better yet, have them shot. Perhaps just have them poisoned. I could light black candles. I could steal strands of their skanky, Super-Cut hair and make little voodoo dolls; which I could repeatedly jab with pins.
Hmm, maybe the thing I should be letting go of is the ill-conceived notion that it's better to use my powers for good.
November 4, 2003
Peter! Peter! I Can See My House from Here.
We drove up to Twin Peaks to check out the view. It was a gorgeous day, very clear and we could see forever. I'd download a picture, but I don't have the cable handy. Trust me, it was pretty.
"So where do you live down there?" I asked.
"See the big rainbow flag on Castro?"
"See the Safeway down the street?"
"See that red church to the left?"
"Okay, go over a couple blocks more to the left ..."
"You mean where that big fire is?"
"Oh. My. God. Yup, right about there. Honey, did you leave the oven on?"
We tossed 50¢ (real quarters, not that 2-bit hip hop hoodlum) into the telescope to get a closer inspection and make sure our friends had a place to sleep that night. Turns out the blaze was a couple blocks away, but it was a doozie. Lots of firemen on the surrounding roofs; smoke and sirens galore.
We took a few pictures, proceeded down to the Safeway, bought some graham crackers, marshmallows and Hershey Bars and had some lovely s'mores for desert.
And the Sun Shined on the Bay
Just listened to Katie (one of TONY's scariest people) talking to a doctor about memory loss. Apparently chronic stress can be a leading cause.
I'd love to write about our journey to San Francisco, but I don't seem to recall ...
Truth be told, it was a beautiful (if not a little brisk) weekend. We stayed at the Clift and meandered about the hilly city without much of an agenda, playing tourist here and there, hanging with all too hospitable friends and just chilling (literally and figurativley ... brrr) out. Didn't get to see as many people as we'd planned, but there will be a next time.
I'd never spent any real time there (aside from family visits when I was 7 or 8) and Larry hadn't been since 1984. It's really charming, as I'm sure all you seasoned travelers/residents can attest. I wonder though, if one lives there, how quickly it becomes a really small town and if it begins to close in on itself? I'd like to spend more time there to find out.
On the down side, I seem to have caught a nice cold ... a less-than-fitting gift for my 1-month anniversary of quitting the smokes. Damn air planes ... flying petri dishes is all they are.
So now it's back to the grindstone for what threatens to be a torturously busy week, which I'm planning on sailing through on double-doses of DayQuil® and Vitamin C. Between the stress and the cold medicine, I'm sure I won't remember a thing.