Wednesday, July 30, 2003

Just finished watching Boy meets Boy on Bravo. All I can say is......why? I guess the whole point of the show seems to be that you can't always tell gay guys from straight and I assume the reverse would be true. As in, I had no idea that air conditioner delivery man was going to fuck me. But please.... beyond that (dubious) contention (I can pass for straight but it takes enourmous concentration and I can't talk much), what's the point of all this? The "Leading Man" (ugh!) seems like a fuckin doormat I could eat him for lunch and spit out his teeth and nails and what's with his friend Darla or Wanda or whatever. Sorry hunny, if it looks like a fag hag and it talks like a fag hag you are in fact the hag to this fag. "Would you take this champale?" And don't even tell me for a single second that this Ken doll would take a second look at that greasy haired (someone, please wash him!) artist from Minnesota if the cameras weren't there to record it.

Stuck around for the latest episode of Queer Eye etc. YUM! That cowboy stud be cuuuuuuuute!

Book I'm reading now: Demons by John Shirley. It's good not great but I have to see how it ends.

What I'm studying now: Adobe GoLive 5.0 yes I know that 6.0 is out but this will be fine.

Current obsession: Craigslist barter section. My problem here is I'm not sure what I have, what it's worth or what I need.

Saturday, July 26, 2003

It's Africa hot...

Sister lamb didn't we cook up in the city today! After such an awful Friday I had made plans to meet up with a couple of The Hellcats for a day at the beach. Jones Beach, swimmin pools, movie stars.... out of the 3 of us Miss J--- was the only one closing so I tried to key off her. She assured me she would come home from work and just stay up and we could leave for the beach around 8 (a.m.!!!!) I thought that was excessive and told her so. Travel time to Jones is only about 1 1/2 hrs, who needs to be on the beach by 10?. We compromised that we would leave around 9 or 10. Meaning an 8am call time for moi, she of the Pokey Puppy School of getting ready. The events of the last few days have been weighing heavily on The Duchess, so without benefit of sleep inducing alcohol I slept fitfully and briefly. Which explains why I wasn't finished with my morning toilette until 11. And still, no word from The Hellcats. You know, every time I think I've managed to shake off the dust of all the bad ways I learned to think about myself, it's so ridiculously easy to fall right back in the old rote. "They probably decided they didn't want you to go after all." I says to myself. When the more likely and ultimately true truth is The Hellcats haven't got their fat asses out the bed yet. So I tamp down Mr. Bad Feeling into the black hole in my soul and phone em up and roust the mutherfuckin bitches!

Not so fast. Don't you hate when you spend all morning shaving your parts and waxing your legs (OK that part's just me). And you manage to caffeinate/shit/shower/shave and get all dressed and are ready to leave the house when all of the sudden it becomes apparent from somewhere deep in yer innards that you got a bonus round ready to hatch? Then you have to take everything back off and take care of the extra delivery and then re-run the shower so you don't start the day with that not so fresh feeling? Thank god for shower massage on a flex pipe you can just sort of hang your business over the side and get the job done.... What?

After many back and forth phone calls and what seemed like hours of waiting around (cause it was hours, funny that, huh?)
We meet up at Penn and grab the train to Babylon. It's 2pm. At the beach tromping through the sand like any self respecting bar employee by 3:30. Morning y'all! But it was gorgeous and Jones is a big honkin beach. The fags were fagulous and by the by, those Jersey queers like their speedo's no? I hadn't seen that many grapes since the last Farmer's Market. (Ain't she great folks? She'll be back after dinner. Try the lamb).

We stayed really late and the ocean breeze was quite refreshing (I really am The Duchess). I feel again as if I can cope somehow (just don't quite got the how as yet) It will all work out as it will and I have reminded myself to try and trust the universe and not try and play "cosmic pool" with everyone and everything.


My first blind item!

I probably shouldn't but I've been walking around with this one all day and if I don't get it out I'll burst! Which of my former employees has returned to the world of escorting after a 14 month break? Curiously, the 14 months she was in my employ. Imagine my surprise when I happened to swing by an escort site (strictly research you know) and there she was as big as day in all her...err.....glory? I think I'll keep this one to myself for a while as I love my little kitten and who hasn't sold their ass for milk money once or twice. (OK I guess that's just me too.) Besides, this is the kind of stuff you drop on your best girlfriends late at night, preferably drunk.

Oh, and I had a threesome Thursday afternoon before work.
well, didn't this day just suck

To the crackhead editor of The Blade who actually e mailed me this:

Thanks for the letter. It will run in the next issue. Can you tell me what
neighborhood or town you live (or work, for that matter) in? We use that
with the name of the person writing the letter.
Thanks!
STEVE WEINSTEIN
EDITOR
NEW YORK BLADE NEWSPAPER
333 Seventh Avenue
14h Floor
New York City 10001
212.268.2701 ext. 16
Cell: 917.957.1355
Fax: 212.268.2069


And then didn't publish it.

Thanks, shithead. I told all my friends/co-workers the letter was being published. They know I didn't lie but you made me feel like shit.

I was already in a foul mood because I haven't heard from Neo in a couple of weeks. I sent a couple of emails they weren't anything with a hidden message just funny crap that I stumbled on and stuff I thought he would find interesting or amusing. The same thing I do for all my other on line friends. Did I get a response or a phone call or a you have too much time on your hands message? No. And if I'm not going to get any kind of friendship out of this relationship the control freak in me wants to at least be the one who ends it. I didn't even get a response after I reported my near dental disaster by text message on Wednesday. So I had pretty much decided that I wasn't going to hang around him tonight at the bar because what, I'm gonna stand around sharing all this personal stuff with someone who claims to care about me (AS A FRIEND- I know. Be quiet!) and then after the weekend's over leave me to twist? That's not the kind of friend I am or need. But I guess truth be told, (and this is what this whole blog is about, the truth) if he had called or he had responded I might have become all optimistic I guess that something might come of it and then I'd be right back where I said I didn't want to be. And it's all fucked up anyway now, he asked me eventually how I'd been and I told him I had joined that Gay outdoor Adventure group I found to which he hands me a big cup of "Wha?"
"You know, I e-mailed you the other day."
"Oh well I haven't checked it in a few days I've been so busy at the hospital and things."

-advance tape-

"So how's P---- Mom?"
"OK for now they performed surgery on her and she lived but she's not conscious yet."
"Is she gonna make it?"
"I'm not sure I haven't talked to P--- in a few days.

so is it your testimony sir, that you were both busy at the hospital with P--- and yet not with P---- the last few days. If it please the court, I submit that the true focus of that lame ass excuse should be "and things" meaning both "with the boyfriend" and "not with you".

And it sucks that I've sent him that message that I'm so bothered by this relationship that he has to make up excuses for why were not hanging instead of, I'm seeing someone now and spending time with him. And isn't that just an age old story? Where you're friends with somone till they meet a guy and then you're yesterday's news. I don't think I've ever experienced that before. At least I'll know when it does come up to try and tell the friend feeling scorned that he may want to admit he has feelings for "the friend" which is why he's feeling so left out. Because again, truth be told, if I wasn't refusing to expose myself to my friend's new relationship, Neo would have no problem including me in more of his life. I'm the one who just can't stand it. Ugh! I think I'm really ready to pull the trigger on this whole thing. Don't panic, no actual guns involved. I need to just end this failed friendship once and for all or try to talk it out with Neo. I know we could probably talk it through just fine but do I want to admit my feelings and what does it say about me at this stage of my life that I'm still going through this kind of high school turmoil? I sound like I'm 22.

Related but also not. I've had this feeling all day today like I'm in mourning. I was near tears two or three times today especially once at the gym when I glanced in the mirror. I knew instantly what it was. I'm morning the fucked up fuck up-ness (see above). I'm mourning the end of my youth. I don't see an old man looking back just yet. But I've aged, and you can really see it now. Or at least, I can. And for some reason, I was mourning being HIV+ today. It was really on my mind and bugging me and I don't know why. I feel fine. My Dr's visit last week was great. No change in Tcell count no change in viral load. No need for medication see ya in a couple months. My dentist visit, although slighly traumatic was OK too. I'm a crappy brusher and flosser. I'll do better. So why was being HIV+ bugging me so much? It just was?

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Every once in a while some fag pisses me off

So I tell him so. This article ran in The Blade. I read it and was instantly pissed. This isn't the first time I've read this kind of drivel and it's not the first time I've fired back.

My response:

July 22, 2003


An open letter to James Kirchik:


Dear James.
I think I can do this without calling you names. I doubt I will, but I think I can. So the “excessive, in-your-face sexuality and the unabashed display of sexual fetishes…” humiliated you, did it? You poor delicate thing you, how ever did you survive it? Well since this was your first parade let me tell you honey, this one was a lot more cheerful than the ones I went to in the 1980’s where I was so shell shocked by all the people still dying from AIDS that all I could do was stand at the parade route and cry. This “self- defeating spectacle” was exactly what it should have been, a celebration of all things Queer and everyone who is forced into a box marked “other” just because, someone somewhere (yes, usually a straight man) has decided that there’s something inherently wrong with an 80 year old transvestite. Yes we were celebrating “legalized private consensual sex” (translation for normal fags: get nekkid and shag that man, y’all) what it also meant was that if my boyfriend and I want to don scuba gear and smear tapioca pudding on each others facemask in the privacy of our own bedroom we can and there’s nothing you or the police can now do about it. So I was the guy that was wearing the T-shirt with the Supreme Court building on it that said “IT’S OK, THE SUPREME COURT SAYS YOU CAN *ahem* GRATIFY ME….umm….ORALLY. You know why? Brace yourself, James. A lot of gay people are hilarious. We think things are funny sometimes. You might too if all the humor wasn’t being drowned out by your *tsks* of disapproval.

And I’m sorry darling, I realize you’re just a newly minted queen, a lady in waiting if you will, but I can assure you that a few dozen too- hairy- for- me guys in leather chaps and four guys in Brazilian Carnivale get-ups does not a “carnival of perversion” make.

Thankfully, you are so far from the “average gay man living in America today” that your letter only touched off a wave of revulsion in me and not despair.

Oh, and I’m sure that drag queens all over Manhattan who have led the struggle FOR YEARS not only within the gay right’s movement but have been at the forefront of the fight to treat all those struggling with gender identity issues with basic respect will be so happy to know you find them mildly “amusing” when you’re drunk but you’re not willing to lift a single, white finger to help them or understand them as well. Kitten, you do know that drag queens led the Stonewall Riots back in 1969 that allowed you to be openly gay in college clutching at your strung of oh so tasteful pearls over the horror you were forced to endure last month don’t you? I mean, you do know that before the struggle for gay rights began that gay people in the 1950’s created a coded language just so they could speak openly without fear of getting arrested just FOR BEING GAY.

While I won’t presume to speak for average gay males (unlike you, Patty Proper) let me say that as a modern gay New Yorker with a decent job and a fabulous wardrobe it has been my experience that those on “the fringe” of gay life are often the most interesting, cutting edge, fresh, vibrant bunch of queers around and rather then shun them they should be thanked, celebrated and yes, absolutely, protected. You’re right James, there is a lot more to being gay than “simply sexual desire”. If you’re smart enough, it’s also about seeing the strength inherent in diversity. It’s also about acknowledging that we’re not all doctors and designers. We’re also drag queens and hustlers and record store workers and comic book artists and little people and drug addicts and TV stars on Bravo. We don’t “demand equality far more effectively” by seeking to become somehow more acceptable to you or society. We take our equality because we have a right to it regardless of how you feel about us.

Far from wanting to somehow convince you that your column wasn’t just moronic and disgusting to me, and, I hope many in the gay/lesbian/trans community, let me just conclude by suggesting that if you’re not willing to acknowledge and embrace the so-called fringe that comes part and parcel with gay life (like parsley, you may not eat it, but it’s on the plate) maybe you should no longer call yourself gay. Cause quite frankly Miss Girrrrrllll, if your idea of a good time is going out to see “young men dancing to Donna Summer (who??????) in their boxer briefs” (what????) then you’re not very good at this whole gay thing anyway.

And you’re certainly not good enough for us.
Sincerely,
Tom Tricoli
www.tommyrico.blogspot.com


It will supposedly run in the next issue. I feel better already.

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

Neo has a boyfriend....and a poltergeist.

And neither one of them are me. Actually, the boyfriend has been around for a bit. About 2 months I guess. I didn't want to say anything for fear of making it real. But it is. I have to deal with it. So I am. It has been an extremely difficult test of where I am in the evolution of my spirit. Do I mean all the crap I spout about taking things to a higher level spiritually? If so, than I should be happy that my friend, someone I claim to care for has met somebody that he cares for. And I am. I truly, truly am happy for him. But does my happiness for him negate the pain I feel that the person isn't me? Should it? My feelings don't always have to be cut and dried, black or white do they? Can't I have a grey area? And if I meant what I said about a relationship not working out (and let me tell you, the guy you're in love with fucking another guy will really put a damper on the possibility) then in a roundabout way this is a good thing, right? Tell that to my stomach ache. So now it becomes a question of do I want to maintain the friendship we've developed the last couple of years and somehow fold this new relationship in or do I just chuck the baby and the bathwater and move on? There is where I'm struggling. Neo sensed my distress at first and gave me a lot of room but slowly he's been mentioning the boyfriend and how they woke up together or went shopping (Now that frosts my butt, you can have sex with the guy and hold his hand but you SHOPPED WITH HIM?. You bastard!). And really that part has been OK. But I totally dislike actually seeing them together, seeing them walk away together, wishing it was me. And I did break that movie date with Neo last week and I'll tell you why. As he does often Neo was inviting other people to join us that night and I was in the room while he was talking to his friend David. Obviously the subject of who was going came up and the answer was "my manager" and "my boyfriend". I bet you think the boyfriend part got me. Not so. I'm his manager? Not his friend? Not T--?. Then what the fuck is the movie thing, do I seem like some lonely middle aged guy you have to invite along? Second, it was obvious that David said no so now I'm privy to the fact that I'm facing the prospect of going on a movie date with the man I'm in love with and his boyfriend. I'm enlightened and spiritually evolved I'm not fucking Sooperman. There was no way in hell. Draw me a warm bath and hand me that razor. So I don't know how this thing is going to shake out. Part of me says to just stay away but I miss him when we don't spend time together and we're actually almost forced to spend time together because of work and If I totally changed the work relationship it would be completely obvious what was causing it which in another roundabout way would be admitting how I feel. Besides I can in fact separate the personal from the work and I like our relationship at work and how much would that suck and how un-evolved would I be if I let this new relationship fuck that up? That would be a childish old me (like six personalities ago) thing to do. Who knows maybe they'll fall so madly in love that I'll just get sick of the whole thing. Problem ovah.

I know you're dying to ask. What's the boyfirend like? You want me to get all nasty and rip him to shreds don't you? You're not paying attention. I could try and tear him down as if that would somehow make me feel better or lift me up in my own mind but I don't need to. My sense of spirit is not built on denigrating someone else anymore. Besides, from what I can tell, and again I try not to look at them directly, the motherfucker seems pretty nice. He's extremely quiet. Seems very thoughtful and pretty passive. Are you ready for this? It made me feel a little bit better about the whole thing. Remember I said I learned quite a bit at the tea party that day but I wasn't sure what it all meant? The boyfriend is Neo's father. The last boyfriend was a version of Neo's father as well I just didn't know it cause I hadn't met him yet. I don't know if Neo is aware of it but he seems to be gravitating towards men like his Dad. I've done it myself in other relationships. I'm sort of doing it now. And it's one of the reasons why I don't think we could really work together anyway. I'm much more Neo's mother and he idolizes/rejects her at every chance he gets. I'm loud and bossy and decisive and aggressive and someone who takes charge quickly. He couldn't tell me what to do and I'm sure we'd fight like dogs. Still, it would have been nice to find that out. I try to remind myself about how far I've come. If Neo, or any man for that matter can't appreciate me for what I am, what I'm becoming, it's his loss.

yesterday Neo and I had a talk after an awkward silence. He seemed upset about something and not speaking so I let him be. I think you do that sometimes for friends. You don't try to move them away from something upsetting just because it makes you uncomfortable. I noticed after a bit that he had taken out the tarot cards and was obviously reading himself. After a coulple of sighs I sort of took as my cue to ask "anything good?" nope lots of bad in the cards. I was gonna volunteer to a reading maybe throw in some of my good mojo to shuffle the decks for him when he related a story. According to Neo he was asleep recently, half awake I should say, and with L---- when he bacame aware of a presence in the room. He claimed the presence didn't feel threatening or angry more annoyed or disciplinarian like a cop or teacher. He said he got a look at the presence but wasn't clear on whether or not he was truly awake or not. I think his brain just constructed a face for him to process the information. Then he went further and decibed a series of sensory manifestations that he couldn't explain. They all involved the strong smell of cigarettes, like we used to get before the anti-smoking laws were passed, where you smelled it on your clothes, your hair, your skin, etc. Once he was in bed with L---- and Neo woke to the smell. Another time, also in bed with L----, and L-----kissed him good morning and then he (L----) commented on the smell. The third time Neo was alone in the car I believe going to his old boyfriend's place and the car filled up with cigarette smell. What did I think? Well first, I had opened up the empath tap as soon as I saw the tarot cards out. As soon as Neo started talking about a presence I started scanning him to see if I could sense anything. I couldn't. The funny thing is, I knew this day would come and I think maybe come up again and again. Neo will need my empathic/spiritual abilities on more than one occasion during out time together. I was thankful that I had done some work just recently to keep my abilities pure when it came to Neo and his boyfriend. I don't want to be tempted to use it to hurt anyone. So sensing no presence around him now I tried to connect with the presence through Neo to see if I could get an impression. It's hard because my empathic skills have me dealing with feelings and emotions so I can't always find words for them at first. I didn't feel anything threatening at all from my scan if anything I felt irritation and annoyance but nothing to be afraid of. Neo, or someone close to him, thought it might be his Grandfather trying to get his attention, but I wasn't so sure. I firmly felt that Neo wasn't connected to this presence really at all. How to explain that? I couldn't at first. But sometimes processing is a process and eventually, something clicked. Neo isn't attached to this presence because it belongs to L----. I swear, I'm not saying this in a bad way because I don't believe this is a bad spirit. I'm just saying that it belongs to L---- but Neo is the one it's affecting. Why? Because it can.

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

Ohhhh girrrrrrllllll

So much to impart where to start where to start? First I would like to celebrate the fact that without any real promotion from me over 300 peoples have visited my little blog. Andrew Sullivan who? But so far only one of you muthafuckas has taken a second to send me an e-mail of praise, enjoyment or yes, I even crave scorn at this point. (Hi Anne) I will answer you if you take the time so click on that time stamp at the bottom of the post and write me........bitches.

They's all kinda things afoot up at the bar. Lots and lots of back stabbing and in-fighting with a healthy dose of medical issues and even a death. Not one of our's thank the spirits. At least so far. All bars in Manhattan come with some drama built in. Gay bars come with a double dose. We have gone so over the top of even that lately that I just don't know. I'm not sure what's causing it. I'm not even sure if I may or may not have had a hand in it. But I sure as shit know I can stop it right quick. I have no interest in working in a place where the staff is so obviously seeking to sabotage each other instead of supporting each other. And I'm afraid that they are being encouraged tacitly by behavior they are seeing from their management. No, I don't mean me. Are conversations being remembered wrong? Are people being mis-read or situations getting out of hand because it's all being filtered through untold numbers of Dewars and soda? I know that my alcohol abuse eventually altered my personality. There's no reason to think it wouldn't happen to another. So my phone line be burnin up with disgruntled employees and confused managers and (I'm sure) maddeningly for them all I can see all sides of the argument. An unexpected bonus of Multiple Personality Disorder I've learned to exploit.

Ya know, ya take a picture of your own ass and put it in a frame and people just go crazy. T----, all she of the 22 yr old virgin (I said virgin) from Ohio was practically scandalized that I would put it up in a bar for people to see and I'm like "girl, it's an ass. What's the big deal? Dennis Franz showed his. Besides, it's ART. And it's just an ass." Danny (my ex) absolutely loved it an sent me an e-mail telling me so. I wrote him back that I guess yes, with the right lighting under the right conditions at the right time of day I still have a nice ass. That is what you call false ass-modesty. You decide.




So last night I'm home watching Cher on Bravo in preparation/anticipation of the debut of this new show Queer Eye For the Straight Guy. Before I move on let me say that I worship I adore I LOVE Cher with all my heart and soul. But hunny, Botox is for sippin you don't drink it straight from the bottle. Every time they did a close shot on her face her voice was coming out but the actual face DIDN'T MOVE! It was scary! If I could turn back time. Apparently, you can only halt it completely. Now on to the new show, I have to admit I really had my doubts about this idea. I read the casting call (and I swear, really debated weather or not to go to the audition, but alas I am more a Renaissance dick sucker I know a little about skin care and a little about dressing and a tad about culture and a smidge of home decor- she's well rounded like that) for this and at the time, it just felt like great, a bunch of nelly faggots making fools of themselves (and I guess by extension us) on national TV (OK Bravo)because they want to be "celebrities". I just didn't see how the concept would work. Well guess what, I was wrong wrong fuckin wrong. The show is good! I laughed out loud several times. The concept works I guess because they're not only helping some hopless het get his hair under control but they spend much of the show getting him ready for something. In the first episode a gallery showing in the second a much belated birthday party for the wife. They're like a pack of Fairy- God- Faggots come to get Cinder-fella ready for the ball. And besides, they spend much of the show doing my most favorite thing....shopping! (pigs) Shopping for food, for clothes, for furnishings it's shopping shopping mania! I'm so hooked! They wisely make generous use of before and after shots of the hapless het and his home (that house in the 2nd episode my god! And I thought a kitchen garbage full of empty Merlot bottles was bad!) so you can see how bad it was and how fagified it's become. The cast?

Do I need to tell you I want to make babies with Kyan? Although I will be shortening that to Ky.... or maybe K. Child, she could gel me anytime mmmm-mmm I got that fresh clean haridresser smell come wafting right through my telebision. And do you believe he had to show a grown man how to shave? Classic moment: when he got the guy in the 2nd episode to admit to washing his face with Ivory Soap. Did you see my future ex-husband literally shudder? Too funny.
Carson of course will be getting most of the press. He obviously is more than willing to deliver some high camp and even though that was part of what I was afraid of at first but by the time you see the Sultan of Swish get Jai to climb up on the bed with "Butch" or offer to come in and wash that Long Island mess's netherparts hunny, trust, you love her.
The other cast members haven't really had their moments yet although when you see what the interior designer, Thom (please, I'm surprised she didn't add an extra T) does with that typical messy mismatched New York apartment I wanted to drop down and suck him off right there.
Wisely, after about a half hour of random acts of gayness we spend the rest of the show watching the Fab 5 watching their freshly scrubbed charge apply his newfound faggery in the real world. They can, and should go farther with this. I think because they just spent all that time with the poor guy they take it easy on him but really, I have this sneaking suspicion that our wine guy Ted has sheathed a sharp set of claws and I say let that kitten out, kitten.
I'm really not sure what Jai can add as far as culture goes. Once they hit The Big Cup what does he have left? Classic moment: again, on the bed with Butch and when the art patrons took away some of the flyers she had made she was thisclose to screeching. You big fag! (I mean that in the good way)
So all in all I absolutely loved the show and I will be watching future episodes. Next weeks guy looks like he'll be really hot after a haircut . My fears were totally unfounded, we come off looking pretty fabulous. Now I'm just afraid they're gonna give out all our gay little secrets and then we'll have to invent totally new ones to make us better than everyone else. Until the episode where the Happy Hetero lets Kyan shave his balls, I'm in for the ride.

Sunday, July 13, 2003

I had the nicest day yesterday

No joke, I really did. Woke up (right there off to a good start) a tad later than I planned but it was because I fell out on the couch again instead of my bedroom. My room gets a lot of morning sun so it tends to roust me.
I fucked around for a while on line checking some of my fave perv sites and reading other blogs. Other people are having way more sex than I am and it's starting to really annoy me. after a while I decided to do some photo editing. I had some pictures from Buffalo I had downloaded but not edited and I also had to find some black and white photos to bring in to work. The downstairs bar is missing three or four photos from the walls. I had replaced most of the photos down there about 8 months ago and apparently my taste is too good. People have stolen a few. I was going to Google a bunch of pics up and print them out when I remembered I have a bunch of cute pics already saved in a file labled, no joke, "cute pics". All mens in various stages of undress and whatnot. I ended up finding a few that I liked that were color but not a problem with Photoshop. A simple conversion and I printed em up. They turned out so well they pitched me headlong into a photo from the AIDSwalk that had been vexing me. I couldn't get it to print right and while I knew it needed to be a black and white photo I couldn't get the contrast right. I finally solved it. It's exactly what I saw in my head. Somehow, don't ask me, I decided to finish my photography afternoon with a self portrait. Mainly I wanted to test the timer feature on my camera. What ensued was a series of (yes, naked) photos of me on the couch out of frame, too light, too dark foot in the way, is that a pimple on my ass? etc. etc. Eventually, I got what I hoped might be a keeper and downloaded the whole lot to my PC. Again, Photoshop to un-color and crop, crop more and..........ART! Who knew? I love them so much that two out of the four (only one of me) I did for the bar are also going up in my kitchen. (I have a whole wall in there of B&W photos I like). I also printed the Buffalo shots and they came out fine but I'm starting to get a little crazy (obsessive/compulsive- what a shocker, huh?) about the photos if they don't come out just so. They just need a little tweaking.

With the photo project done for the day I decided to decide once and for all weather or not I was buying a bicycle. I've been shopping and considering for a couple of weeks now. I'm so frustrated trying to burn off the last of my drink yourself into a stupor and also by the way you're 40 and for good measure quit smoking fat. I considered (for a second) running but I don't ever run in real life so that's a skill I don't need. I thought biking might be fun and a good way to get to some places in Manhattan I haven't been. I was also interested in the theraputic aspect of it. People say all the time that they get to think and clear their heads on long rides. I need my heads cleared periodically. So I went back to Froogle and got the prices/makes/types of bikes I had seen at KMart.com and off I went. Found a few similar bikes at Toys R Us and priced them then headed down to Kmart on Astor Place (who knew I would grow to love that store when I thought it was so fucked up when they opened it?). They had crap. So......back to Toys Be At and then much hemming and hawing by me and this one or that and I manage to dope out if you buy one assembled you have to wait till "The assembly guy" gets around to it but I sense a vulnerability to the sales staff and I manage to wheedle a pre-assembled bike right off the rack and just like that I'm the proud owner of a brand new bicycle, with, by the way, a water bottle included saved $1.49 thank you very much. After a very wobbly start (who knows how long it's been since I rode one) I was off for home, a sandwich (All hail Blimpie's) and a trip to the actual bike store for a good lock.Grabbed a shower trolled a little on line for dick (no luck) and decided to ride, baby! Girl, 2/12 hours later I pulled my sore ass (not the good kind) back home after having been all ovah this town. It was fucking awsome! Up to speed absolutely flying through central park I actually laughed out loud. Along the west side up by 96th street and again in midtown was fucking beautiful at sunset.

Grabbed another shower and checked out my sore knee. It really hurts but it's not swollen so I think it's just a touch of arthritis and I refuse to let it stop me from riding. I'll be heading out for ibuprofen later today. Decided to finish the all about me day with some food and a movie so headed doen to the East Village. My intent was movie/popcorn maybe a movie dog, and then hit a trashy little sex club in the E Vill. Well when I got to the Loew's all that was up was Legally Blond2 (I'll wait for the book to come out, thanks) and Charlie's Angels2. I had plans to see this with Neo and we have tentative plans to see it on Tuesday, but now that I'm trying to avoid being with him and my intent is to not be available on Tuesday well, you see my dilemma. I opted to bag the whole movie idea and headed down to the pizza place on St. Mark's/1st. Great for people watching. Along the way I discovered the NY Milkshake Factory or sumpin like that and backtracked my way for a chocolate mint chip shake that was deeelicious (but gave me wicked brain freeze). Then I did in fact hit that trashy sex club where I stayed for about 40 mins. I didn't even try. I suppose I might have felt different if the place was full of models but really, it was so sad. I want to keep evolving to the point where I'm not going to need to be 65 and wandering around some sex booths looking to get my old dick sucked. I guess this is what I'm feeling: I'm in such a contented, spiritual place right now, and I know that a relationship with Neo ain't gonna happen, and if it's just about getting off, rather than do it in some dank little booth with some drunk guy I don't know and find only slightly attractive, I can seriously give myself a soul-screeching orgasm so why not just do that. It's not that I don't want to have sex, it's just that I want to be completely naked, in a bed (then maybe the kitchen), with someone I like. Is that so wrong?
It was a good day.

Thursday, July 10, 2003

If you get the chance, run out to the news stand tomorrow and open a copy of Men's Journal. Turn to page 74 and read the priceless article on Evan Marriott (the Joe Millionaire guy. Unless you were under a rock last year you already knew that. I didn't watch a single second of that heinousness and I still knew everything about it). It's an alternately sad and infuriating bit of work but stay with it. Towards the end of the article you get to the payoff. This guy isn't shallow and self centered like he comes off at first. HE'S AN IDIOT!!!! "Napolitan", indeed. He Heeeeeeeeeeee! I almost peed I laughed so hard!

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

Finally, as promised, pictures from Neo's tea party What took me so long? Go fuck yerself. No, seriously I wanted to publish a page with all the pictures on one page with thumbnails. Small detail: I didn't know how. It took about an hour or so of fuckin around with FrontPage afore I managed to dope (emphasis on dope) it out. Or so I thought. But instead I'll try and upload the file to the blog. Conspicuously absent from the page are pictures of me or pictures of Neo. I will post some recent pictures of me but I have this strange habit of stripping when ever I point a camera at myself. As for pics of Neo, I'm trying to get a handle on this whole problem so the less we see of her the better right now. Mmmmm-kay?
Abby.jpg loved her
cool.jpg not finished yet
cool2.jpg
cool3.jpg She got artistic
dabears.jpg
Dannyandfriend.jpg
doggy.jpg It posed for me!
Fairy.jpg I was obsessed with it
hello ladies.jpg
Image011.jpg The view from the yard
Michael.jpg you gold, girl!
Missspring.jpg ain't she purty?
that dress.jpg Neo and I picked the outfit

Saturday, July 05, 2003

Happy 4th of July

Another exciting day here in Western New York. I must say, the weather has been gor-fucking-geous these past few days. The locals have been complaining about the humidity but I think NYC is worse. Maybe it's all those big buildings all in close that really makes it feel extra muggy. Anyway, She Who Must Be Served went home to her father today and in her defense, after she left I heard all sorts of fresh stories about how he is one sandwich short of a picnic on many occasions so I guess I can cut her some slack regarding the whole under the bed/temper tantrum thing. She has a lot to deal with losing her Mom at 5yrs old and then being left with an unstable father. Every time I leave I pledge to myself to try and be around more for her it's just really hard what with me having a life and all. (It could happen). I grabbed a cat nap in the afternoon and then grabbed a hot shower and managed to do some personal grooming. I never used to be able to do stuff like that at my parent's house and in retrospect I'm sure I had a good reason I just can't think right now why. But today I am proud to tell you I shaved my balls and hole in Mom and Dad's shower. Da-Duh-Daaaaaaa!

Finally made it to the new casino in Niagara Falls tonight. They managed to slap that bad boy together not three months after they legalized gambling there which leads me to believe that the final plans had been tucked away in a drawer somewhere just waiting for approval. Nothing happens in this part of the state that fast. I have to say it's very nice. Lots and lots of slots, plenty of table games, a great buffet and I was told another decent restaurant and a high roller area I didn't get a chance to see. Lost a few hundred on the slots and then another hundred playing blackjack but it was so nice to be out of the suburban box and with some adults for a while. One observation: I think it's just a shame that casual clothes have now become acceptable in every social setting. I'm not saying that you need to go out to a casino in Niagara Falls on a sultry July 4th night in a tux and tails but my god, these people were in dirty, ill fitting T-shirts, bright red lycra short shorts, all manner of tank tops and stupid 4th of July hats. I just think that kind of clothing may be OK for a bar or the movie theater but a clean decent shirt for a guy and a nice pair of jeans and a cute blouse for a girl are the minimim you should wear someplace like a casino, or to the theater etc. I hope eventually people start to dress appropriately to their environment again but I'm not hopeful.

I sent out a couple of e-mails to friends and co-workers while I was gone. I didn't get one answer back. That is partly my fault. You can't fail to make the effort to cultivate close friendships with people and then complain when you succeed. I've had a chance to do a lot of thinking while I've been here (like there was anything to distract me). I have some plans when I get back. It's time to start searching for a new job. I'll get into that at a later time. But I have an overall sense that it's time to move on. I have almost finished healing my battered psyche. And while it goes without saying I haven't come close to being done growing emotionally and spiritually (I doubt I ever will- I hope not, in fact) I am starting to feel that where I work and the people I'm surrounded with are weighing me down and keeping me from progressing on. I want to test what I've learned and try my new confidence back out in the world.

Also, I really need to maintain my distance from Neo. This relationship as it stands is just not working for me and we're together so often that I spend way to much time being jealous and upset. Please, please undertstand he's not doing or saying anything wrong or leading me on this is my crush, my infatuation my desire to be pushed down on the bed and royally screwed. I just think it would be helpful to myself if I avoided a lot of personal contact with him until I can either resolve this issue, get myself back under control or take a new job trusting that we will drift apart as most bar/restaurant people do when one or both of them leave

Tomorrow I'll just be marking time until I can get on that plane back home. Hurrah! My TV! My bed! My porn! My job......errr oh well. Yes, back to work tomorrow night as well. My liver must look gorgeous after 4 days rest. I'll try to take it easy this weekend as well. A fresh round of blood tests on Tuesday. She loves a high TCell count.

Friday, July 04, 2003

Oh god, please help me

or
Captive in Buffalo: Day 3

Well my initial assessment was correct. my Dad is too weak and pliable to be the irascible racist I've come to know and dread. So in that, at least, this trip hasn't had me visibly wincing at the dinner time conversation. Apparently, both my parents have now developed that older persons habit of not being able to sleep at night except for short half hour bursts. I can relate, the same thing happened to me when I was weaning myself off the 3/4 of a bottle of vodka a night. The voices of the demons trying to possess my soul that were walking around my bedroom kept waking me. But the difference is that eventually my night time sleep returned. They have now acquired that old persons habit of falling asleep several times every afternoon. Like whenever one of them stops talking or moving it's lights out/shades drawn. You can have a conversation, watch ten minutes of One Life to Live and turn around to say something else and d'oh! see you in a half hour. Maybe I'll just accept it as normal when I get to be that age but I would truly prefer to sleep six or seven hours when it's dark out. We'll see.
Beyond that I am bored, bored, bored! As expected. I was hoping it would be different but my father's health prevents us from doing much as a group. It's not like he's deteriorating or anything he just needs time to heal. The doctors say six to eight weeks and it's only been two. Also, you need to factor in the wishes of She Who Must Be Served. Apparently, there has been a coup d'etat in my absence and the Child Queen has taken over. All plans by the adults must be filtered through the schedule and wishes of her Majesty and when she is displeased she calls her Daddy and packs her bags and then climbs under one of the beds until her foot soldiers (my mother and father) coax her out ever so preciously so they can "comfort" her. Oh my god. You know why I would never have tried that on them when I was eight? Because I knew even then no one would look for me. Not as in poor me, but as in, "get out from under the bed you dipshit". But there they were going please come out honey, please, come on baby, please. Please, indeed. And all because I dared to try to make plans with my own sister tonight to get the hell out of this little suburban box before I start to scrawl Amityville messages on the walls! We had just had two and a half days of quality time together and I thought I had earned a furlough from the warden but it seems that even a four or five hour separation before we all got together for breakfast tomorrow was enough to traumatize her under the bed. I tried to reason with her from there with her under the bed and me on top, but curiously, I found myself tapping into my own inner child and things were coming out of my mouth like "well, if this is how it's going to be that I have to spend every minute of my visit with you maybe I just won't come anymore" NO! Wrong way to phrase it I knew it when I said it try again. "You know, Caitlin if this is going to be such a big deal for you maybe I should be the one that leaves. I can just go home tonight. How would that be?" NICE WORK! Threaten an eight year old AND make her feel like she's to blame. I'd make a fabulous parent. I let the grandparents do their thing while I took a few moments to regroup. C'mon, Helen, you can figure out how to do this. What I needed was some common ground to meet on.........DING!

THE MALL.
Girl, you are toast now. Auntie Helen is taking you to her natural environment and while you show potential as an eight year old, what with your Barbie Castle the size of my childhood bedroom to your Barbie Gyno and Go one stop stirrup table. We on my turf now you little bitch and I will get the the upper hand. OK I didn't go that far but I did invite the little actress to walk with me to the mall and talk this out. Basically what I managed to get out of her was that because we had had a little tiff this afternoon while working in the yard and then I proceeded to make plans without her, she was feeling all rejected all of the sudden and didn't know how to take it. So I explained that you can't spend all your time with the same person without one or the other of you turning into an eight year old little pain in the ass (I'm talking about her) but that didn't mean I didn't love her. And I also tried to explain that sometimes I need to spend time with other people in my family that I love and don't get to see either and that doesn't mean I don't still love her either. I also explained that if we were alone and she had pulled that stupid under the bed temper tantrum that I would have left her there for as long as she was silly enough to stay under it. And I don't like to be threatened and I was going to see my sister today and she would just have to accept it. Message sent and received obviously because we had a great time at the mall we went to this new age candle, crystal, hemp purse, celtic necklace and essential oil store store. Her 1st stop I swear, I haven't said a word. Then to the toy store then the book store. She tried to steer a couple of purchases my way but I resisted lest she think they were guilt purchases of some sort. I finally gave in at the book store when she picked out a little under $10 pocket book from some Nickelodeon show. Last stop was the Disney store. Oddly, those are all the stores I would have hit had I been alone.

Walked home, and I installed new printer cartridges on mom's PC. The printer has been down for almost a year. All I did was uninstall/reinstall the software and when I confirmed that everything else was fine the only thing left to replace was the ink. I guess no one here knows that if you don't use the printer periodically the ink will dry up and not work anymore. All better now. Then dinner at a Greek diner cause her Majesty was hungry NOW! (sigh) It all wrapped up with a night of Must See TV. They were reruns but new to me thank the spirits. So here I am at 12:50am taking a look at my badly chewed up cuticles and contemplating how I somehow (Dad) got committed to being awake and dressed and ready to go out for breakfast at 9:45am (or as he put it, quarter to 10) with the child Queen and her consorts. Before anyone thinks I've forgotten my pledge to relax and enjoy being with my family while I can, I haven't. Which Is why I'll be dressed and ready to go out for breakfast tomorrow at 9:45am (I mean quarter to 10). But I want to come home. To my home.

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

We interrupt your normal blog for this special bulletin from Buffalo, NY.

Well, outside of Buffalo actually. In a little suburb called Tonawanda. Near the mighty Niagara River (and Falls). No, this is not the same as when someone says they're going upstate. Upstate is like by car or train maybe an hour, hour1/2 north and west. This is, well, almost Canada. Waaaaayyy accross New york around 490 miles I believe. I've come to visit the dysfunctionals. I had been meaning to come for a while but the weather back home had been so crappy that traveling from a cold rainy place to another cold rainy place seemed stupid. But I have been feeling such guilt over not seeing my neice that a trip home was in order. My Dad had just had a quadruple bypass (followed by a triple lutz into a sit spin), and was back home conval...., convales.... errr resting so it seemed prudent to get here while he was still weak. I kid the breeding pair what birfed me.
Honestly, I had managed to turn my visit into some pilgrimage/penance trip of obligation and was running around at work wringing my hands about what I was going to do for four days and where would we go and how would I keep busy. The morning of my trip I was walking to the bank to check my finances/pay some bills. Still the internal dialogue running: "Well, great. Now that he's still at home recuperating we won't be able to do anything really. A trip to my uncle's house on the lake is out. We'll be lucky to get out to dinner even. The new casino in Niagara Falls is probably a big fat no as well. He won't be able to walk around so soon. I really will be stuck in that god forsaken town with no car (I don't have a license) and no way of getting anywhere (we're close enough to the midwest that everyone here travels everywhere by car, even the mailbox a block away, so public transportation has never caught on) this is going to suck, suck, suck. I was excited to see my neice but what the hell was I going to say to "those people" for four and a half days?
Now you can call it the wisdom that comes with my advancing years, or 20+ years of work on a spiritual self that is finally starting to show some payoffs, or maybe it is another bonus of newfound wisdom that comes with being HIV positive. But as I was walking to the bank on a glorious summer day it suddenly hit me. And I says to myself I says: You know, Helen ( I don't always refer to myself as Helen when I talk to myself. Sometimes it's Nancy. Or simply Dutchess) chances are that unless I get hit by a falling piano (always a possibility) I fully expect to outlive my parents and possibly an increasingly stressed out brother. Losing my sister suddenly several years ago only served to hammer home that which I already knew. You don't move to NYC right smack dab in the middle of an AIDS epidemic without learning (assuming you're paying attention) that it could all be over in a snap. So why don't you quit all your whining and moaning and get your tired newly taught ass on that fucking plane and go enjoy your family for a few days while you still have them? And like that, she was feeling better. So yesterday afternoon I left the house around 2:45 pm and arrived in Tonawanda, NY by about 6:45. (PS does everyone know that for two bucks you can get on the crosstown L at 14th st and stay on trains and buses all the way to Kennedy? It takes a few tries to get there fastest but come on, two bucks! A true bargoon.) My mom has a moustache. How I'm gonna bring that up I have no idea. My niece met me at the airport as well and she did that quiet, nervous thing she tries every time but I just start talking like my last visit was last week and as soon as she sees that all is status quo we pick right up. I'll tell you sometime about my theory as to how we formed this special bond. I have thought about it. But for now I prefer to relax and enjoy it. My Dad looked pretty good as well. About what you'd expect when someone slices your entire leg open to harvest some artery and then cracks open your chest to get at your heart to install new pipes. I expect the same as those stupid mooks who thought they would go a few rounds in the hotel lobby with Tyson. Girl, I bet their Mommas felt those punches! So today I spent the day with Caitlin, I did get maddeningly bored around 3pm but we went for a walk around the block to confirm, yep every house pretty much looks the same. Had dinner with my brother and sis and their sig. o's. Typical Buffalo fare. Nothing over 11 dollars and a heaping mountain of whatever you order. You need to store fat for the winter.
In case you're wondering, cause I was for a while, no, I won't be disclosing my HIV status on this trip. I thought about it. And even though I think I've made my peace with the situation I wan't to walk around with it a little while longer. Just keep it in my own pocket for a while and make sure I know what my general feelings are before I talk to them. Besides there has been quite a bit of bad knews in the family lately with people dying and suicides and Dad's surgery. And before you think I'm being all noble and trying to not add to the family's burden right now consider this: I will at least cop to the fact in these pages that there is an aspect to my personality that feels that were I to disclose my HIV status now, I might not get the attention and reaction I want versus if I wait a year and transform myself into the brave little soldier that carried the burden alone. I'm not proudly telling you that somewhere inside me I'm capable of this kind of manipulation but clearly, it's there. Maybe I'll wait untill then to have the moustache talk......

So. Chances are I'll be posting every day for the next couple of days. They tend to settle in for the night around midnight. (10pm for Mom) I owe you a whole slew of pictures. From the tea party as well as from Gay Pride. But it will have to wait till I get back home. Until then It's all Buffalo, all text all the time.
Till tomorrow......