Monday, July 30, 2007

I wonder.

What is my cat thinking when I sing to her, at the top of my lungs, while she watches intently?

Friday, July 27, 2007

"Fashion is not a luxury" redux

Information from commenters and a simple Google search reveal to me that the "Fashion is not a luxury" t-shirt discussed in the previous post is part of Sarah Jessica Parker's line for tabby ass Steve and Barry's, which is actually a good place to find cheap basics and I have admittedly shopped there. It is perhaps the only reason to visit the Manhattan Mall, outside of Daffy's.

Maybe I was a bit hard on ole SJP, given that the meaning behind her "Fashion is not a luxury, it's a right" is supposed to be "even minimum wage earners should be able to have nice things." But it's still a pretty stupid slogan, because a $20 coat is still a luxury for many people right here in the U.S. of A. For the most part, we in the United States live in a land of abundance and privilege. Even though that is the case, 99% of us could live the rest of our lives in relative comfort without ever purchasing another article of clothing. We all like nice, new things. We all like to be fashionable and current. It doesn't change the fact that "fashion" is not a "right". Furthermore, she's not exactly breaking new ground here. H&M and Old Navy come to mind as places to find "affordable" "fashion" as cute as SJP's if not as restricted to "under $20 per item" as hers is. (H&M by the way provides my work drag with a handy selection of solid colored polo tops for $10 a pop.) And I still contend that as stylish as you try to make it, a t-shirt with a stupid sentence printed across the front is not "fashion" anyway. So there.

Here is a good post on the subject of "Fashion is not a luxury" emphasizing the contrast between "fashion is for the rich" and "ethical consumption is for the rich".

Thursday, July 26, 2007

"Fashion is not a luxury"

The title of this post is taken from a t-shirt that I have seen around the City now no less that 14,000 times. I have yet to figure out which Delilahs, Strawberry, or 5-7-9 type store it comes from. Upon seeing it, however, it immediately sends me into a blood boiling rage. First and foremost, because it is perhaps the stupidest thing I have read in quite some time. And working for The World Church of Assimilation, I read a lot of stupid shit.

Aside from being stupid and ridiculously untrue, what gets my goat is the spirit in which it is worn. Every young woman I have seen wearing this shirt is dressed in the shirt (obviously), tight low cut jeans, and flip flops with their hair pulled into a pony tail. So, in essence these women are wearing a stupid shirt that is supposed to state their dedication and lust for fashion to all who pass by them, yet they are wearing a tabby t-shirt, ratty jeans, and flip flops. If fashion is not a luxury, then honey you are in dire need of some.

It's kind of like when you see someone in the high-end label sunglasses, hat, belt, t-shirt and necklace. That doesn't say you are committed to the brand. It just says you can only afford the accessories.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

"And I know myself too well, and the devil speaks to me, and he's got me pinned down now, telling me I'm so empty..."



Two things about my two favorite big tittied bitches of rock and roll.

First, hear the awesome new song "Car Crash" on Courtney Love's revamped (rehabbed?) website, and "Dirty Girls" on her MySpace page. I am so excited about her new CD I could spit.

Second, a quick story. When I was a young gay child I was figuring out who I was around the time of Truth or Dare, Madonna's documentary of the Blond Ambition Tour. I managed to get my dad to drive me all the way downtown to "Rainbow News & Cafe", because it was the only place in those days that sold The Advocate magazine. Of course, he didn't know that's why I wanted to go there. I went in quickly, bought every magazine with Madonna on the cover (which was every magazine short of Field and Stream at the time) and returned to the pickup truck. He wanted to see what I got, so I flashed a few at him, and no one was the wiser that it was the gay news magazine. Until about a year later when my mom found all my gay research under my dresser. But I digress.

It was a two part interview, so I had to make another trip later for the next issue. I was absolutely fascinated and obsessed with this interview. It sounds silly but getting those two issues of The Advocate were defining moments in my life.

By the way, I have it on good authority that Oliver, the "strait" dancer in the tour and in the film, is not nor was ever "strait," and the whole thing was staged. But that's not the point of all this. The point is that now The Advocate is running the infamous 1991 "X-rated" interview again online. She talks about gays, her dancers, her relationships, her art collection, Michael Jackson, Warren Beaty, the House of Xtravaganza, all kinds of shit, and note, at the very end, she recites the Anne Sexton poem "For John, Who Begs Me Not to Inquire Further" in its entirety, citing it as "the reason why I made my movie".

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Bear Grylls: Expert Cries Fraud

Speaking of dead soon, I always thought it was only a matter of time before Bear Grylls, star of "Man vs. Wild" on the Discovery Channel, winds up with a sting-ray tail through is heart. However, reports today indicate that he may not be as wild as the viewing public has been lead to believe, staying in luxury hotels and manipulating perceptions about how far he really goes on his "survivalist" missions.

I've never really seen an episode, but I post this because Kevondrala loves it.

She'll be dead soon.

Lohan nabbed for DUI, again.

This post is legitimate work, as I'm thinking through an important task. :)

I'm in love with 37 Signals products, use Tada List frequently, and am interested in Highrise for my job.

I have to find a database to keep track of all the people involved and the money that goes to them, and what's do when in terms of their/our agreements, payments, follow ups, etc. I just don't think Highrise is the right thing for us. The tag/case feature, from what I could tell, allows for putting individuals in multiple categories (i.e., geographic location, organization) but it does not look like it's at all capable of a friendly relationship with snail-mail-merge mass mailings, or pulling up groups of individuals and organizations based on specific pieces of data. Also I don't think there's an option to add fields (for example, "amount of grant", "date awarded", "date of evaluation received").

Such things would require a complicated data export to something like Excel or Access which would defeat the purpose of having the system to begin with, from my point of view, and learning new software secrets which I routinely avoid. It's also a little expensive.

It's hard to explain why but it's really difficult to find a database-contact-management-system that is right for this organization, other than Access. But my charge is to get something that's not Access. So oh well. Most of the stuff out there for non-profits is about raising money but I want one that is about giving money away.

Monday, July 23, 2007

More than meets the eye

Like many things from my childhood, Transformers is now a blockbuster summer movie and I want to see it so bad, even though in the 80's I was loyal to the underdog Go Bots, but that is another post for another time.

The thing that bothers me about this newfangled Transformers movie is that they don't look like the boxy Transformers of my childhood. They're all stylized and Megatron doesn't even turn into a gun, he turns into an aircraft which is a form of urination on the canon. But, I'm hoping my boyfriend Shia LeBouf will make up for all that.


How Megatron is supposed to look, versus this nonsense.


Here is a comparison of the 86 and 07 casts.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Credit in the Strait World

I am for the most part un-shockable and un-offendable. I laugh at jokes about gays. Hell, I tell jokes about gays. I'm not hypersensitive about pokes at the tribe. I actually liked The Bird Cage in which a gay couple is put into a heterosexual mold. They aren't the only kind, but there are couples like that. What bothers me is when people demonstrate their extreme lack of understanding of how it is. When a girlfriend of mine was talking about the "man" and the "woman" in gay male relationships without any hint of irony the frustration boiled to a point where I had to leave her presence. Similarly, the idea that "gay" is one thing and one thing only bothers me. Gay people are men and women of every stripe, culture, tradition, religion, racial/ethnic group, geographical location and time in history. To say that someone is "gay" doesn't sum anything up.

Also, media hysteria over things like gay gangs ignores the fact that gang violence is common and not something that a "pack of lesbians" started on Christopher Street.

All that's neither here nor there in regards to this: The premise of the movie Chuck and Larry is not only stupid, it is also kind of offensive. First and foremost, the idea that entering a "domestic partnership" is the resolution to making sure your kids get your firefighter's pension if you die is a huge, contrary-to-reality twist. The reality right now, in this age of the "gay marriage" debate in the United States, is that gay people are routinely denied access to things that a hetero-gendered partner would not be, from hospital decisions to pensions to basic rights of legal marriage. In fact, the real scam is marriages between out gay people and knowing hetero partners of the opposite sex.

This movie is a recent example of what Sarah Schulman describes in her book Stagestruck: gay people are made secondary characters in their own stories and heterosexuals are portrayed as heroes who save them. (The same thing happens with black characters. More often than not it's a teacher that really sticks with it and straitens out all those wild ass black kids, who, in the end, become huge successes in only the arts and worship the teacher.) I haven't seen Chuck and Larry and don't plan to, but I would bet my big toe that the conclusion provides a "humorous" moral lesson about how we should be nice to gays! And people like Chuck and Larry can have open minds and kind hearts too! And Jessica Biel is sexy!

Yack.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Rosebud


North Carolina 018
Originally uploaded by butch stroll
The City of Winston-Salem website states: "Wachovia Center building on Second Street, completed in 1995, uses Moravian themes in the design, is likened to a giant rosebud ready to bloom, and is the tallest building in Winston-Salem."

I would stricke "giant rosebud ready to bloom" and replace with "giant penis pointing skyward."

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Nice, professional signage

The Winston Motel lures 'em in with this dazzling, modern sign.

A Tree Grows In Queens (Not About a Cat Climbing It)

My obsession with my family tree continues, and I've managed to get a ton of information out of my grandmother lately, not to mention my two second cousins who have joined me at Geni.com, which I have written before is the best thing to ever happen to the amateur genealogist. My goal is to identify a link to Germany before I go there in November, but apparently all the branches of my family have been here since friggin' Columbus.

However, I did discover that before coming to the United States, my grandmother's family was on the French side of the French/German border and immigrated to Pennsylvania with the original Moravians in 1750 and soon after to North Carolina where they changed the spelling of their name. So I am part German speaking Frog. Some of that research comes from someone else's research online, so who knows how accurate it is. I emailed the woman that runs the site but she has yet to respond. I looks good to me though, as she cites her sources and is amazingly thorough, noting questionable individuals and gaps in the records.

I wish that I had had the foresight to talk to the two great grandmothers I had the luck to know before they died, not to mention my grandfather who died in the 80's and my other grandmother who died in the 90's. My grandma told me that right before I was in Greensboro, there was a huge family reunion of my grandpa's people, which I of course knew nothing about and am sad to have missed. They wouldn't have known me from Adam though, but I still could have crashed the party, letting them know I am the CROOKED CHALICE OF THE FAMILY BLOOD! Just being dramatic now, but I'm seriously thinking about contacting some of my great uncles and aunts who are still alive, but it might freak them out. These are people I haven't seen in years and years, who are all now officially old as dirt, but I used to spend an insane amount of time with my great uncles in Virginia learning how to do things like raft and shoot guns. Surely they remember the fey one that inevitably got stuck in the middle of the river in nothing but an inner tube and a cloud of fear. My aim with a .22 rifle was, and remains, fabulous, however.

In other news I have all these pictures from North Carolina to add to my less wholesome seedy hotel project, but I just have to get around to labeling them and doing little write-ups.

Oh, and maybe you heard that part of New York blew up yesterday.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Too Much Information

My cat has grown increasingly insane, and being the diabolical little critter that she is, she waits until my head hits the pillow to SPRING TO FUCKING LIFE. Last night she started up with the sneezing, which I need to get checked out as the respiratory infections are a common occurrence with cats from shelters, and I lifted her up to remove her from the bed, she clawed the crap out of me so, as a paranoia ridden country boy my mind immediately turns to cat scratch fever. I have nearly washed the skin off my arm. Anyway, I have banished her from my office and the bedroom, and she is very unhappy about this.

I bought her this fancy new litter box with a cover and a swinging door, which she steadfastly refuses to use, so I went back to the other one.

Today at work, we had a meeting for most of the day, and right as we were getting ready to take a break, my colleague turns to me and says, "I think you have something in your eye." She reached delicately and pulled, strait out of the pink corner of my eye, A CAT HAIR.

This is reminiscent of the pierced toe incident when Meow Kitty was around. (Meow Kitty, by the way, is doing fine. I saw her when I visited North Carolina and she is as sedated as ever, if not more so.)

So now I'm terrified of her hair shedding.

While I was in Greensboro, the mosquitoes were in full force, and one bit me on the back of my head. I was scratching it this morning and later at work noticed blood under my fingernails so I freaked out and then realized it must be from the back of my head. So I had someone look and pat it down with alcohol.

I got home today and Jackie had not done any damage around, and seemed pretty relaxed on this hot summer day, so I sat down with her to brush her and have a chat. I said, "Jacqueline, how is daddy ever going to find a man with such a dirty apartment between the two of us, your porcupine-like quills shooting into people's eyes and your crazy ass climbing all over the bed and its occupants, cat scratches all over my arms, and a bloody wound on the back of my head?" She laid her head in my lap and looked up at me with that unbalanced turn of the head as if to say, "Why would you need anyone but me?"

Also, Jackie is part monkey.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Now that it's raining more than ever...

There is so much I want to write about, things I want to share with the interweb, from my trip and subsequent experiences. However, my cat has decided that despite the fact--or perhaps because of the fact--that she was treated to the entire apartment by herself, she would in fact destroy it, leaving a trail of destruction (and Feline Pine brand cat litter) from the front door through all four rooms. I took today off work to deal with this, but after the endless Vacuum Bag Search of 2007 took me into the darkest corners of Queens, NY, and other endless errands are calling, I only have time for a small break to list the four songs--the only four songs--that are ever played on the radio in Greensboro, NC.

Rhianna -- Umbrella
Carrie Underwood -- Before He Cheats
Nelly Furtado -- *Undecipherable lyrics*
Sean Kingston -- Beautiful Girl

It is good to be back in the Big, Rotten Apple though.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Still in Greensboro

It's almost 2:00 AM, and I'm having a friend over to hang out a bit. I did take a 3 hour nap today, so I'm awake, that's for damn sure. These people are working a bitch to death. If I were still an admin assistant I'd at least be getting overtime, but oh well.

More to come, such as musical features, highlights of the week surrounded by Christian kids and their attendent adults, danger, excitement, and a hot tub that is full of water the color of pee. Holla.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Drag Wonder Woman

This is really pretty amazing. Perhaps the most amazing thing I have ever seen.

Tandi Iman Dupree, performing "I Need A Hero" in the talent segment of the Miss Black America Pageant:



Now that is what we call a "drag show". That wig glue is super strength and her entrance...good lord!

[via Joe My God]

Monday, July 09, 2007

It will be the next Wicked

Abigail Williams is the name of both an historical figure and a fictional character. She is the real girl upon which The Crucible is based, but in The Crucible her age is raised to make her unhistorical-entirely-fictional affair with John Proctor more realistic. At the end of the play Arthur Miller wrote a little post script about each of the characters. For Abigail, Miller wrote that she went to Boston and became a prostitute, but historically speaking, no one knows what happened to her after the Salem Witch Trials.

So my million dollar idea is to write the story of what happened to ole Abigail Williams after the Salem Witch Trials, in the spirit of Grendel by James Gardner and the novels of Gregory Maguire. In fact, I will write Chapter One soon. Very soon.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

This blog is a work of fiction if anybody's askin'.

I'm here in NC, and spent the last two days in Winston-Salem. After my cousin's wedding, I got up with Lito and we ran some errands before getting ready for a night on the town at the local gay bar, Odyssey. I happened to run into one of my first loves which was hysterical and sweet and fun and exciting. I might have a date later this week, we'll see.

After the club, Lito, being the only person I know who would get behind me on such a harebrained scheme let alone participate fully, helped me steal street signs. Yes, I have the life-fulfillment goals of a junior in high school. Anyway, we got the ones I wanted! One that I wanted forever downtown that is a funny word and another that I've wanted forever that is for the street named after my family. This involved strait-up lassoing the posts and pulling them down with the pick-up truck. At one point we had to outrun a little facility security guard which provided the true excitement of the evening.

I watched the Charm School reunion tonight as I'm obsessed with Charm School. It is a hugely exploitative, patriarchal tool that does nobody any good but I can't resist watching that shit. For the record I LOVE the winner Saphyrie and runner-up Leiline. Anyway, the greatest line from the whole season of the show? "You're the whore of Charm School!"

Friday, July 06, 2007

Everybody's doing it.

Jazzy Little Spider

In her book May I Kiss You on the Lips, Miss Sandra?, and in varying versions that appear in her stage shows, Sandra Bernhard recounts the tale of the Jazzy Little Spider. He spirals down into your bed with you, does a little dance, bites your ass and then before you wake up he's out in the yard laughing about how you are now panicking about the nature of the bite on your skin, and you don't even know where he is.

As I am a sufferer of delusional parasitosis, panic disorder, and clear skin obsession, I understand this story fully and know exactly how the victim of the jazzy little spider feels. Luckily spiders, so long as they are not the size of dinner plates, don't freak me out as bad as some things do. In fact I recall telling S.D.A. once that "they eat the bad things!" to which he shrewdly replied, "They are the bad things!"

This apartment that I have lived in for a long time has always had something of a spider ... problem. It's not overran, per se, but we have seen a few too many over the years. They are usually little runts of spiders that try to scurry away, but I viciously kill them if I can catch them with the swift stomp of a shoe.

This morning as I was taking a shower, on the other side of my clear shower curtain, I saw a big spider just chillin. I thought at first he might have died in that spot because he wasn't moving, and a tap of the curtain produced no movement either, but eventually he spread out his eight stringy legs and showed himself to be quite alive, and quite fangy. This became an immediate territory dispute. I calmly dried off, got the vacuum cleaner, knocked him down on his silky string noose and sucked his ass up in there followed by some other dirt for good measure to make sure he was sucked to death and would not re-emerge.

Well since this morning I have killed another (albeit smaller) spider on the window screen. Perhaps it was seeking vengeance for its fallen friend.

______________________________

Tomorrow morning I'm leaving for Greensboro and will return on the 15th. So send me messages of hope cause I'm going to be working hard which I am never in favor of.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Cosmic Accidents

On the same day as the previous post, when I was returning to Astoria on the subway, the mystical forces of the universe conspired to intersect the life journeys of three crazy people at once.

It is true that crazy people are drawn to me. Usually not in a hostile way, but in that way that they want to communicate with me, knowing that it is only a matter of time, a straw on the back of a camel, so to speak, before I become one of them fully. But on the Fourth of July, they were drawn only near me and to each other.

There is one woman that I have seen a few times, and as crazy people often do, she looks perfectly normal but you know she has a bulb burned out in the attic the minute she starts yelling at people for illusory faults in their character and subway riding technique, all the while smiling broadly and laughing hysterically.

Her antics caused another crazy man, probably about six hundred years old and dressed in some kind of Dickens garb complete with a one-eye spectacle and top hat, to get up and move further down the train. As he moved past her, a little dog a woman was holding sensed the out of placeness of this man and LOST IT'S SHIT and started barking as the woman desperately tried to get it to stop. Insulted, the man admonished the woman and her "damn barking dog!" until he got off at the next stop.

Then comes your run of the mill subway beggar, a woman asking for whatever you might be able to spare, who passes by the crazy yelling woman, and sensing the challenge asks her "Miss, are you okay?" At which point the woman says she is damn near fine, thank you, and the fireworks begin to fly.

But the beggar woman loved the dog, who barked at her too.

This is the kind of thing that is going to get me beat up or shot one day

In general, I think of myself as a peaceful person, but there are certain things that send me into an fit of anger. At the top of the list is when I am a pedestrian, and a car honks at me. This usually results in UNCONTROLLABLE RAGE. On several occasions I have kicked cars -- usually livery cars or yellow cabs -- which most often results in my having to run from pissed off, crazy ass drivers who pull up on the curb and get out to settle the score. Once I was so enraged on the Upper West Side that after kicking the car hard enough to leave my Adidas imprinted in its rear in, I stood my ground as the cab driver got out and exchanged threats with me, complete with me telling his mother and daughter passengers to "mind [their] own fucking business". They clearly didn't see that I was justified in a little vehicular damage considering the son of a bitch almost ran me over when his light was still red. K-rock was with me and bore witness to all of this as it unfolded.

On the recent Fourth of July holiday, I found myself in Union Square with some friends after a delicious dim sum at the truly most butch stroll of all dim sums, HSF Restaurant in Chinatown. Full and enjoying a pleasant mid-week day off work, I was standing on the sidewalk. Another thing that makes my blood boil is when people stand in the middle of fucking everything oblivious to the fact that they are blocking other walkers, but I assure the reader that I was not guilty of this. I was out of the line of traffic, aware of my surroundings, and leaving room for all passers by while I politely smoked a cigarette.

And then here comes this bitch on a rampage of her own, carrying shopping bags and barreling towards me, off to the side and with a whole wide-open sidewalk for her find any other coordinates at which to cross the street. But she picked right were I was. I was not going to move out of principle.

She screamed "Excuse me!" as I stood planted like a tree, and she bumped into me, and then pushed me. Oh hell no. So I utilized my usually secret trip technique, and brazenly slapped one of my long ass legs out in front of her with the skill of a ballerina, hooked my foot up around her ankle, and pulled back in enough to time cause her to stumble forward, take two hops, and spin around a couple of times without rubbing her face across the concrete.

This bitch lost it. She was screeching at me and imploring other passers by (who were ignoring her like she was a crazy person -- which she was) to intervene in this assault.

I casually walked away with my friends.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

I'm a goddamn professional!

Someone apparently paid for my Flickr account to be upgraded to "pro", but I got no kind of notification on who did this for me? Was it someone from 'round these parts? If so please let me know who you are so I can thank you! Thank you!

It has to sparkle, it has to shine



On Saturday night I went with S.D.A. to a party in Forest Hills, whereupon he was locked in the bathroom for a bit. This became a cause for grave concern, and there was talk of “calling the fire department” and “kicking the door in,” but eventually a screwdriver was produced and the door knob was removed. People were taking pictures. S.D. emerged, and said “I felt like Baby Jessica in the well!” Indeed, the episode had all the makings of a Lifetime movie.

The whole thing made me need a drink (okay, I was in fact drinking the whole time) so I turned up the sangria and after a little chit chat and mingling, and strolling to the pizza parlor with plastic cup in hand, I took it to Jackson Heights where in my usual fog of bravado and recklessness I spoke broken, southern-drawl Spanish and left a trail of destruction. I met this guy who is maybe the cutest one I have ever seen. He came to me and we were instant friends although I have no idea what his name is despite the fact that he kept telling it to me and saying “like from Egypt”. It didn’t sound Egyptian to me.

Well as is usually the case when I find my one true love, he shortly thereafter introduced me to his boyfriend which makes me want to cry. It reminds me of this moment. The boyfriend in fact took my number and after threatening to kidnap the one with the Egyptian name I decided it would be best if I took my drunk ass home. So that’s what I did.

Lito was in town and before he went home to attend a funeral of one of his aunts, he swung by to pick up some of his remaining items and we tooled around town in a little beat up pick-up truck which was very fun.

My job is time consuming and increasingly difficult and I have no idea what the hell I’m doing. I have faked it up to this point…? I just know that I’m supposed to be doing something with my life, but this is not it. Of all the people in the world, much less in my family, to end up working for a Christian organization’s substance abuse program, it is very confusing how it turned out to be me.

Saturday I’m going to Greensboro and won’t be back for…a while.

Monday, July 02, 2007

I KNOW THAT'S RIGHT

Aries
July 2, 2007 -- Expect opposition today from people who disapprove of the uncomplicated way that you live. They may say you are behaving in an irresponsible manner but more likely they are secretly envious of your freedom and your refusal to follow social norms you do not agree with. Frankly, you don't give a damn.

www.sallybrompton.com