August 31, 2005


Anybody got a mop?

How many times during my New Orleans life did we tape up the windows, watch the Weather Channel, and wonder if this would be the one that would actually hit? We had some amazing storms, but they were never as big as predicted and the hurricane parties were always good fun.

I guess, as Zelda Rose used to sing at the Can Can Cabaret, Everything Must Change.

Calld my ex, Kevin, on Sunday to make sure he was being a good boy and was getting the hell out of town before Katrina and her waves rolled in. Good news was he and his mom had already left. Better news was he's now the wedding director of a big church down there. It makes me smile that Blanche De Bris has gone from sticking fingers up boys' butts during Oz's weekly Calendar Boy competition to planning French Quarter nuptials for straight people.

I spent four amazing years in New Orleans, and it's heartbreaking to see it all such a mess. Watched the NBC national news coverage of it last night on CNBC International -- places fresh in my memory are potentially destroyed. It's frustrating to not be able to pinpoint the damage ... what about my friends' houses? I see Kenner's underwater, but what about the Marigny and the Garden District? And if I'm having these questions (15 years later and and ocean away), what are the folks who are evacuated and don't know if they have homes to go home to? Not knowing is the worst ... especially when it's your own life and not a fond memory.

80% of the city is now underwater, and water was still rising last night. Of the hundreds of thousands of people who evacuated, many now have nothing real to come home to. Lives, and livelihoods, have literally been washed away.

Over the past couple months I've been dwelling a lot on the impermanence of things, contemplating the choices we make to find balance between control and surrender. This week nature, a force stronger than any of us, reminds us that as much as we think we might have some control ... well, things are just things and they’re easily destroyed.

There’s a lot of rebuilding to be done. Not just New Orleans, but the whole Gulf coast. Saw some shots of Biloxi last night ... the aquarium totally destroyed. I wonder if any of the critters have survived their unexpected return to the wild blue(ish) ocean?

And what about the animals at the Audubon Zoo? Rex and Zulu were probably going, "Grrrr, what the fuck?"

The "city that care forgot" certainly has more than her share of them now. Send help if you can.

August 30, 2005

Czeching In

I've spent some time with the ghost of Kafka and did not turn into a cockroach.

As a city, Prague is perhaps not quite as liveable as Barcelona, but I'll definitely be back. There's an energy that I can't quite yet describe ... almost haunted. The gothic towers and the sculptures on top of almost every building (not to mention the Charles Bridge) gave me the sense of being watched, or at least of being not alone, the whole time I was there. Not in a threatening way brave new world way, but in a connected, here's something to tap into and be creative way. There's a sense of art and community and vitality that seems to come out of a history of oppression.

Bottom line -- a beautiful city with friendly people, strong coffee and cheap beer.

Highlights included a 2-hour guided tour (not our tour company, but you get the idea) on a Segway and an hour of sensory deprivation in a floatation tank after a Thai massage.

Feeling a little post-holiday blah today. Need to tap into that "back-to-school" feeling. Maybe a new notebook or a some retro Pee-Chee folders. I wonder if there's a Mean Girls lunchbox? That would be so fetch.

August 25, 2005

Shoot the Messenger

I hate having to send e-mails to the whole world (or at least an extended global distribution) saying “oops, we were given incorrect information, and here's an updated report.” Even though I'm not the one who created and signed-off on the original mis-information, I'm the one who has to disseminate it, and I have this nagging sense of responsibility.

I hate even more when compliance makes me send a second follow-up, reminding people that a) an error was made, and b) they need to cover their butts and resend the corrected data if they've used it externally (which they're not supposed to do).

I hate MOST, that when I realize that after sending the compliance-driven message, I immediately see that I've mispelled “externally”.

D'oh. Spell check before sending.

Oh well, it’s not like anybody reads globally distributed e-mails.

This too shall pass. On a day trip to Dublin today, and off to Prague tomorrow morning for the bank holiday.

Things I'll be missing in the States this weekend:

1. My mom's birtdhay.

2. Ruth Dickey's wedding.

My thoughts are with you both!


August 23, 2005

Gay or and British?

Got this in the email today ...

Attitude urgently needs love-hungry gays to take part in our new feature Boy meets Gay. Basically four people compete for a date each month in the mag, with the chosen couple getting a top-notch night out plus meal for two and a bottle of Taittinger champagne each, and the other also getting a bottle of champers. Who knows, they might even find love...

If you know anyone who might be interested, contact andrew.fraser[AT]

Happy hunting.

Deeper and to the Left

The search for a decent rub in London has paid off. A. gave me one of the best massages* I've had in recent memory, and can add me to his list of repeat customers.

I kinda sorta feel only a little squidgy about having found him in the back of a local gay rag. But the price was right, he wasn't listed on the 'escorts' page, his hands were amazing, and (bonus) he's only a 5-minute walk from the office.

I still miss my guys at Avalon, but one has to make do in a new land. And if that means moving from full-service salons to work-at-home flats, well I guess I'll just have to adjust.

* As in professional services rendered, as opposed to lovingly exectued foreplay (both of which have their merits)

August 18, 2005

Does this Harness Make Me Look Thin?


This is, I'm certain, the only beauty contest I know of where the kitchen opens prior to the show.

August 17, 2005

Meet the Candidate

M2 will be hosting my pal Andy, the next mayor of New York, over the few days before he nips off to Edinburgh for the festival.

I believe an outing to Duckie is called for on Saturday night. Who wants to come play?

Hmmm ... an artist who's venturing into politics. Does that make him a politart?

August 16, 2005

Putting the Sub in Subliminal

This ad hangs in kiosk I walk by almost every day.


He could write me a story.

If Wishes Were Horses


Ah, Steve, so do we.

What's Your Story?

You’re sitting under a big tree in your favorite park. There’s a warm breeze blowing. The lithe, shirtless, glistening boys playing footie (or perhaps rugby, but probably not cricket) are far enough away that you can’t focus too intently on them … you just know they’re there and will be stopping by soon for a chat and the all-too-familiar request of “sorry mate, could you just help me work out the cramp in the back of my thigh?”

On the other side of the tree, your own personal storyteller is quietly minding his/her own business, waiting for you to give him 5 things to hear about.

What are the five story topics you’d like to hear?

(nb: I adapted this from something I read the other night in The Right to Write )

My five

1. the boy who forgot where he put his memory

2. a tortured unrequited love ends happily for both people (without the use of death, emotional blackmail, sexual politics, contrived cross-cultural star-crossed R&J allusions, or any Craig/Anthony references)

3. what happens after Geraldine Page teaches me to fly in the candlelit kingdom where flying is illegal?

4. why does the meadowlark have to die?

5. a magic amulet that quells the “this is all good, but I know I'm missing something” monster

bonus story request -- why does Until I Finish Find You have to be so friggin' long? Does Mr. Irving really wants to be a modern-day Dickens?

August 15, 2005


What would possess a bear (or anyone for that matter), on the downhill side of middle age, to take a piece of red-checkered gingham, cut it into a one-inch strip, and then tie it around his neck in some sort of mini-kerchief necklace thingie?

I looked at him amidst yesterday's throng of S.L.A.G.S., and thought, "are you high?"

Apparently he was. Tweaked at 4pm in the afternoon, what else would one do but pop another tablet of X. And then bump one-self into a k-hole. I'm all for playing like a big boy, but if you can't handle the heat, stay out of the pharmacy -- especially if your wearing a tablecloth cum dog collar.

He spent the entire Dame Edna Experience (which was hysterical as always, she's now off to Oz for a 3-week holiday) staring at the back of the house in a soft gaze, eyes slightly rolled up to his sweaty forehead. I'm sure whatever plane he was on was a lovely one.

At least he was with his friend/partner/daddy ... a slightly older leather queen with the same shaved head and clipped gray beard, a distended pot belly (shirtless, natch), and leather armbands on both (versatile or just confused?) biceps (or what possibly used to be biceps, back in the day). Daddy Bear was just as fucked up (couldn't speak to save his nipple ring), so he stared at his mobile, keying in text messages to his checked-neck playmate, and holding them up for him to see. As if he could read. Bless.

August 14, 2005

Well, For Starters, My Name's Not ...

American readers will be pleased and English readers may be jealous, but I am now caught up on the complete seasons of both Alias and Lost.

If you don't want spoilers, don't go to the jump.

I'd heard that the last couple minutes was a "shut me up" moment, so I was looking for clues throughout the last couple episodes. Spy Mommy's little chat to Vaughan clued me in to some double-agent action, so no suprises when he decided to come clean to Syd.

But the crash ... brilliant! Classic JJ. I'm still laughing.

August 12, 2005

Munch Me


Only 3.5 days back in the office and I feel like I was never gone. Fucking hell, this place can wear you down.

This looks like a smarter alternative every day. Wonder if they need an apprentice?

Breathe in. Breathe out. Repeat.

August 11, 2005

Cosmetics Class

Hey you. You with the make-up bag on your lap, compact in one hand and sponge-brush in the other. Yeah, you … the glamour gal on the morning tube who thinks that every other person around you wants to learn the beauty secrets you picked up last Saturday afternoon at Selfridges’ Mac counter.

Here’s a make-up tip: Apply at home, not on the damn public transportation system. Is the lighting on the tube so much better (and, er, natural?) than the light over the mirror at home? Or did you, and I blush to think, not make it home last night?

Lately it seems I can’t go a day on the tube without your or one of your tacky sisters putting your face on. And 9 out of 10 times, it really doesn’t seem to help. Today’s model could have used better highlights and clothes that fit her (muffin tops, contrary to Kath’s advice, are not the look and the too-tight Capri pants should have been left on the rack at Asda) … but I guess the Central line doesn’t offer color correction or personal shopping. What’s next? A quick eyebrow wax? Flossing? Your boyfriend having a quick tube shave (um, maybe I should rephrase that … or not) with his cordless electric shaver?

I don’t know why you bug me so much. I’ll add it to my list of irrational pet peeves, blended right between Gywnneth and men who wear clam diggers.

As much as I try to ignore the shadow you cast over my otherwise hypoallergenic commute, I just can’t help watching, waiting for that schadenfreude second when the carriage jolts and your lipstick slides across your cheek, creating a cockatease gash across your powdered cheek.

And when the train does lurch and you end up with a mascara brush hanging out of your eye, don’t say you weren’t wand.

August 10, 2005

Briefly Missing NY

Sources tell me today is National Underwear Day back in the colonies, and scantily clad men are showing their wares around the Nekkid Cowboy's stomping grounds.

I guess that means tomorrow is national out-of-work underwear model's day?

Maybe I can lend a hand.

August 9, 2005

There's No Place Like ... where am i?


Not the most relaxing of vacations, and I think I may have to nip off to Betty Ford for some post-holiday detox, but my my my, what a good holiday.

I could regale you with stories of ...

* finding ourselves amidst a pre-Atlantis Cruise party on night #1 in Barcelona
* Peruvian tour guides who fancy graying Americans
* foam orgies parties
* beautiful men everywhere in Sitges
* sunrises on the beach
* the forced march home from the "beach" party
* amazing meals
* the demise of brass bands in England (and several other "where did that come from?" stories from my new best friend Dumbledore)
* decidedly non-British generous freepours of vodka (memo to pubs: ban the measured shot glass)
* Marco the bar manager/stripper/drug-dealer/purveyor-of-live-sex-shows-with-hot-Brazilian-artisteshookers ("I'm just a young businessman ... ")

... and so much more. Yes, I could regale you with all of the above, but instead, let me share this vison of loveliness before I dive back into the heap of work I've returned to.

We were walking along the beach one afternoon, admiring the locals and the tourists alike. Kids frolicking in the surf, young couples playing paddle ball, all kinds of flesh basking in the afternoon sun. I noticed one rather large women, sitting topless, cross-legged on the beach. Enormous breasts, sagging to her protruding belly, staring down to what I thought were her knees.

Hmm, I think to myself, good on her. I should go back to my towel, sit up straight and join her (spiritually at least) in some quality meditation.

Then I see her reach down to her inner thigh, just about at her bikini line, with a pair of tweezers and *pluck*. Right there on the beach in front of god (and many bronzed gods) and everyone.

I'm all for personal grooming, but for the love of Nair, some things are better left to the privacy of one's own baño.

:: :: ::

PS, the camera died about halfway through, so i don't know what kind of pictures I ended up with. Hopefully there'll be something visual to share.