Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Rockin in the New Year

Our dear Muscato queries “are you ready for the New Year?” to which everyone seems to answer “Hell yeah.” Including me, but I also have to remember that 2008, around chez peenee anyway, was much better than ‘07 (no medical emergencies and a new B-52 album. Yay) so I’m more willing to give the old ‘08 a hearty handshake farewell rather than a kick in the ass out the door.

And also, around this time of year, I always grow suspicious that They have actually skipped some recent years. 1995 for instance. I sort of recall 1994 and 1996 but nothing in between. Can you prove we really had a 1995? I think not. 1977 too.

Monday, December 29, 2008

samtsirhc


Life, you know, is a time a machine, but the thing is, it only goes in one direction. Certainly, if it were possible to go backwards, I'd go back to this morning when I was unloading the dishwasher and not cut my goddam knuckle, which has resulted in my typing being even more erratic than usual.Anyway, time is very much on my mind this morning since I have plenty of it, here in the world's quietest office and while I've been reading everyone's blogs from the past few days while I was out of town and away from the internets. It's so interesting catching up, but since I read the blogs from the top down, things go backwards, sort of like Amy Winehouse's rehab efforts. Since I have now reached December 25 in my perusals, let me wish you all the warmest of season greetings and as a Christmas present, please accept these random Australian underwear models. Bon Noel!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Down South

On Christmas day, we drove down to Los Angeles, cause there's nothing else to do and a seven hour road trip sounded like just the thing.  The trip down was easy, no one was on the road.   Also, our friend John had given us a GPS navigator which turned out to be most amusing since it seemed to be mildly retarded and constantly announced that it was "recalculating" just when I needed to know what direction to turn.

We went up to the Observatory in Griffith Park.  I'd never been there before but had always heard what beautiful deco design it was.  Quite true.

It was also was freezing and blustery.  Not what you think of in southern California.

We also hung out in the groovy Los Feliz neighborhood and had lunch at a lovely French bistro.



And then relocated to Riverside to spend the night at the uber-charming Mission Inn.  When were there a year ago, it was quietly deserted. the perfect little nook with the most amazing quirks making up its architecture.  This time it was crammed full of Orange County rednecks come to  gawk at the lights.  The decorations answered the question "What if Santa had a full colonic and exploded his bowels in a burst of Xmas lights?"
Like this.


Not quite the charming experience we were hoping for.
Then we, along with what appeared to be most of the Bay Area population drove back this evening.  I'm tired, but I'm glad we went, it was most amusing.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

We All Need It

Miss Janey posted a comment admiring the fish on a bike below and then finished off the reference by asking “Now I suppose Mr. P will try to convince us that, yes, a woman needs a man….” To which I can only reply with a worth-a-thousand- words photo I swiped from Shirley over at The Lisp.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Proof that I Spend Too Much Time in Blogland

Jason, from over at Night is Half Gone, comments in another blog that he would love to see a fish on a bicycle. He thought it would be “adorable.” I’m always happy to oblige in the adorable department.

Friday, December 19, 2008

6 Pack Tag


I always make a lot of grumbling noise about being tagged by my fellow bloggites, but I’m really just making that up because that’s what everybody does when they’re tagged.   In reality, being faced with another chance to expound on myself is irresistible because what could be more interesting than me?  So let me just say a big thanks to   Miss Janey for her latest tag.  Here’s the rundown:

1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them. 
5. Let each person know they've been tagged and leave a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

So is this one of them satanic, mark o’ the beast thingies?  If so, I say right on, cause I am sick of all this crappy christmas stuff.

I hereby tag CafĂ© Muscato, Are You There Blog, TJB, Mean Dirty Pirate, Michael guy, aka Troublespot and tigeryogiji.  I can't link on our IMac, just look over at the list on the side.

 

Random things:

Like some bad David Sedaris ripoff, I made some spending money in Santa’s Village, not turning tricks as some stupid elf, but as Santa himself.  Not once, but twice, in 1974 and 1975.  At the time I was 6’3” and weighed about 170.  I was built more along the lines of a candy cane than Father Christmas, but I shoved two pillows under the costume and lived to tell the story.
 
I played tuba for seven years and never learned how to read music.  The whole thing was like some code I just couldn’t break. I would just listen to the rest of the bass section until I figured out what the line was supposed to sound like and then play be ear.
 
As a room service waiter in New Orleans, I delivered a bottle of champagne to Ron Ely.  I was so horny for him as a young girlyboy. The opportunity to see him in person (I was hoping for the loincloth) thrilled me, but he wasn’t in the room, so not only did I not get to see him, I got stiffed on the tip.  Bastard.
 
I really can name all seven dwarves AND all seven deadly sins.  While I have never had the pleasure of meeting the dwarves, I am very well acquainted with each and every sin.
 
I hate Ingmar Bergman movies.  I find them as emotionally involving as opening the freezer door and staring inside for ninety minutes.
 
My brother had to explain to me that words to the Tubes’ song were “White punks on dope,” and not “White pumps are gauche,” as I had thought.  I believe my confusion says more about me than the Tubes vocal talents.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I Hate Irony


Of course, I should have known putting up a smug little post about how much I loathe snow and how glad I am to have escaped its clutches was simply setting myself up for a fall, a snowy, icy, skidding fall.

Our yuletide plans are to drive down to Los Angeles for a couple of days, leaving on Christmas day because there's nothing to do then anyway, so spending seven hours on the road is just a way to fill in the gap. Now comes word that the Grapevine, the part of Ineterstate 5 that crosses over the mountains outside of LA, closed yesterday because of snow and ice. It's open again, but I can recognize a cosmic smackdown in the wings. Oh dear. I would hate to spend Christmas night in that weird little gas station in Buttonwillow.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Showtime

I had a class from a local college coming in to our office this evening for a presentation by an organization we fund. The Dog et Pony show was scheduled to start at 6:00, coincidentally, the same time I was supposed to head home. I had a bad feeling when the speaker was late and then really late, so I waited around and sure enough, no show. I asked the teacher, who was getting increasingly freaked out, what the speaker was supposed to cover. She said it was going to be "How to Start a Business" something I could speak on in a coma. In fact, I might have done just that. For a cowardly moment, I considered slinking off into the night, I had already stayed late here last night and it's cold and rainy and I just wanted to go home, dammit. Instead, I said I'd be glad to cover for him, the lousy little no-nuts chicken rimmer. Hit it, boys!

An hour's presentation, with no notes, no preparation, no idea what the fuck I was saying. Am I a pro, or what? I am also a grubby pro who didn't shave this morning and wore an old sweatshirt. I look more like I should be asking for spare change than giving advice on entrepreneurship. This should teach me, but I'm sure it won't.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Freakgirl Kiva Team

Despite his tough-as-nails exterior, mrpeenee is actually quite sweet. He is fascinated with Kiva. Here's their blurb:

www.kiva.org
You can go to Kiva's website and lend to someone in the developing world who needs a loan for their business - like raising goats, selling vegetables at market or making bricks. Each loan has a picture of the entrepreneur, a description of their business and how they plan to use the loan so you know exactly how your money is being spent - and you get updates letting you know how the entrepreneur is going.

The best part is, when the entrepreneur pays back their loan you get your money back - and Kiva's loans are managed by microfinance institutions on the ground who have a lot of experience doing this, so you can trust that your money is being handled responsibly.



Part of the thrill, aside from the whole goat thing, is that I've joined the Freakgirl.com Kiva lending team:

www.kiva.org/community/viewTeam?team_id=2661

Go Team Freakgirl! You should join too, cause Freakgirl likes cupcakes.

My latest loan was to Miriama TalavaluMy job as part of a federal agency that helps entrepreneurs has exposed me to many small business people, but never one who had her photo shot whilst chilling on the floor. I was immediately charmed and am now Miriama's biggest fan. Join now and pony up, it's cheaper than a night out with stripper boys and probably better for you.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Winter Wonderland


It's christmas, more or less. Maybe you've noticed? A regular tip-off are the cloying illustrations on everything up to and including toilet paper ads of snowy landscapes. You know the drill, don't pretend you don't. Drifts of it, snowflakes, Victorian ice skaters, reindeer; an entire iconography of images that mean nothing to boy a like me, sensitive and attractive, but completely unexposed to the phenomenon of snow due to my Gulf Coast childhood and subsequent life in California. And let me be clear about this, I am not unhappy about missing out on it. Whenever I have been forced to deal with snow, on visits to Colorado or Tahoe, it has always confirmed my suspicion that it's vastly over-rated, like rain that won't take a hint and leave.

Still, the holy season of jeebus's birth and Macy's last chance at making their quarterly numbers rolls around and suddenly the white stuff is everywhere. These ads and commercials are baffling to those of us lucky enough to live on the West Coast or along the magic of Interstate 10, snow-free, all of it. We see those pictures ("Look! Polar bears drinking coke! Oh boy!") and think "what the fuck is going on here? Where are the palm trees?" Is it just me who thinks a whole ad industry is devoted to making us feel deprived by being left out of something we don't even want?

People here will occasionally say how very much they miss snow. One assumes they were dropped on their heads at some point, possibly in the snow, but I'm too polite to ask.

And now word comes from Night is Half Gone of snow in New Orleans. New Orleans! I have been so betrayed.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Nothing Like a Dame


We hit the bright lights of theatrical San Francisco last night with our friends John and Dan by going to the see Dame Edna Live and Intimate In Her First Last Tour. We'd seen the old girl's last two shows when she blew through town; both were plenty, plenty funny, but the second one had seemed like enough of a retread (the word "stale" hung in the air) that we hadn't planned to go to this one, but John popped up with tickets and suddenly we were off for a night of audience bashing and the astonishingly klutzy hoofing she specializes in.

It's true there's an air of familiarity to these shows (perhaps "fond memories" would be a more accurate, or charitable, description,) but I also laughed until my face hurt, so I'm not complaining.

A huge part of the show are the gladiolas she tosses into the crowd throughout the show, and especially at the end. We were about eight rows back, safe from the interaction with audience that's such an amusing part of the act, so I never expected to snag a gladdie, much less have it literally fall into my lap, but it did. The queen in front of me started to turn around as if she was going to snatch it up, but I hissed at her and she settled right down.

Possums.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Reindeer Games

Stephen, over at Are You There Blog, It’s Me Stephen took this online quiz and, natch, came out as Dancer, a good time girl, all sweetness and whatever. I, on the other hand, am on my way to detention. What about you?


You Are Dasher



You're an independent minded reindeer who never plays by the rules.



Why You're Naughty: That little coup you tried to stage against Santa last year



Why You're Nice: You secretly give naughty children presents.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Krispy Krud


In the fine American tradition, our office is now awash in sugary junk food to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Saviour, Whatshisname. I tucked into 2 (two) Krispy Kremes that were not merely glazed or chocolate iced, but rather the breathtaking combo of glazed WITH chocolate icing. Only the finest for mrpeenee. Now ten minutes later I feel slightly stunned. What the hell do they put in those things? Uranium? And why doesn't my office have a nap room? Slave drivers.

Naughty, Not Nice

So Jason (or Jeisean as he sometimes known in the low-life cafes he frequents) from Night is Half Gone wins this season's Reindeer Game prize for having run across the first stripper-in-a-santy-hat, or at least the first one to admit it.

In looking for something to illustrate this time honored tradition, I ran across this
tarting up the place in a queer bar called New York, New York in Manchester, England. It scares me. I thought at first it was the color or the shininess, but now I realize it's the tout ensemble that willifies me. I look at the vaguely Victorian mantle mirror, the various equipment dangling about (are they games? Security apparatus? Who knows?) and the lovely peach colored walls and think "I'm glad I don't go to bars anymore."

Friday, December 5, 2008

Unsilent Night


My favorite part of Crixmus (aside from a big ass pile of presents and strippers wearing Santa Claus hats) is coming up. Unsilent Night 2008! Yay!

From their website:
Every year since 1992 I've presented UNSILENT NIGHT, an outdoor ambient music piece for an infinite number of boomboxes. It's like a Christmas caroling party except that we don't sing, but rather carry the music, each of us playing a separate track that is a "voice" in the piece. In effect, we become a city-block-long sound system!

Join us and bring a boombox, or anything that will blast a cassette, CD or Mp3. (Cassettes sound the coolest, but we realize cassette players are getting scarce now.) The more tracks we play, the bigger and more amazing the sound is. In recent years, UNSILENT NIGHTs in New York and San Francisco have attracted crowds of over a thousand people, with hundreds of boomboxes… it's spectacular. If you'd like to participate, please e-mail the contact listed for your city for instructions. If you'd like to participate but don't have a boombox or a music player with speakers, you can just show up and join the parade. Everyone is an important part of the procession. Help us make a BIG (and joyful) noise. This is always a free event and all ages are welcome.

UNSILENT NIGHT has spread around the world. In addition to New York, UNSILENT NIGHT is presented in cities such as Los Angeles; San Francisco; San Diego; Santa Barbara; Philadelphia; Atlanta; Cleveland; Tallahassee; Tucson; Houston; New Haven; Boulder; Baltimore; Charleston; Asheville, NC; Manassas, VA; Milledgeville, GA; Bowling Green, OH; Banff, Alberta; Vancouver, BC; White Horse, Yukon Territory; Hamburg and Berlin, Germany; Middlesbrough, England; Melbourne and Sydney, Australia.


We went a couple of years ago and I loved it. At a signal, everyone in the group starts their music device, but because all those people can't hit Go right on time, the music is coming out in hundreds of different moments. The music is all chimes and bells and chants,so the divergence is not cacophonous, but beautiful. Plus it echos off the buildings as the mob ambles along, startling passersby and neighbors. I love it.

If there's one in your town, go, definitely go. http://unsilentnight.com/

And if you see a stripper in a Santa hat, give him a twenty. I'm sure he deserves it.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

San Francisco Revelations

Out running errands, we stumbled on this garage door/art. I like it.

This evening we were killing time in the Castro and dropped into a small candy store we like. There, leering up at me through the glass of the case like a second rate rentboy, was a tray of CHOCOLATE COVERED TWINKIES. I was already stunned by the lurid display and then the owner (who wears her hair in incredibly inappropriate pigtails) announced that she had never had a Twinkie until they started making these because she had grown up in Canada. Is that possible? Aren't some forms of junk food just universal? I felt I had to buy one, like buying a ticket to a horror movie you know is going to repulse you, just to uphold the American Way of Crap.

In this funny old world where nothing is quite as it seems, it's such a pleasure to run across something that turns out to be every bit as disgusting as you thought it might be. Like a cross between a white-trash eclair and some exotic fecal matter, Chocolate Covered Twinkies managed to overwhelm even me, and I can choke down almost anything sweet. I present photographic proof with one bite taken out of it, moments before the whole thing was sent to a watery grave down the sewer. I had to hold my breath, fearing it might take out our brand new garbage disposal, but no, all praise Saint Dolly Madison.

Better Late

December 1, World AIDS Day, bloggers were requested to write about AIDS. And I was going to, a jaunty little piece about living with HIV in these hip now modern times, but I got sick that evening after I got home from work; I believe the AIDS meds I'm taking turned on me, the little bastards. It's things like that which make me so hate cheap irony.

I know I’m lucky, my T-cells are high, my viral load is undetectable, I have no symptoms, I can recite the names of all seven dwarves by memory (can you? I didn’t think so.) and I only have to take one pill a day, as opposed to some of my friends who choke down a couple of handsful every day. So on the very rare occasions when I can’t stray too far from my dear pal the toilet because of medicine reactions, I remember the friends who died and I concentrate on being lucky.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thumbs Up


Hold your right hand up in front of you, bent at the wrist, as if you were some drunk sorority girl attempting to dance to the Bangle’s great hit “Walk Like an Egyptian.” Elbow crooked, palm parallel with the floor, fingers pointed away from you. Got it? Now with your left hand, try to pull your right thumb back to touch the inside of your right wrist. Can you do it? No? Hah! Foolish mortal. Of course not, because you, unlike mrpeenee, lack the magic of double jointed thumbs. Don’t feel bad (well, ok, maybe you can feel a little bad) just think of me as a wee bit more evolved than the likes of you.

Of course, because of my inherent goodness, I will not use this great power for world domination; and besides, I have something to do this afternoon. But don’t push me, bitch.

Sometimes when R Man is being bad, I punish him by demonstrating this esoteric skill. “Ooh, ick, eek,” he squeals like a little girl “Stop that, that’s gross.” I laugh manically, and then we go back to arguing about decorating, or the cat, or mrpeene’s predilection for wearing knit caps in public because, you know, domestic bliss and all that.

In Which We're Calling It In

In the middle of an unnecessarily annoying and complicated day last week, my phone decided to commit suicide. I was Ubering along playing Ya...