Friday, January 28, 2005

Your Attention, Please

Reports of the inexplicable death of my Palm Zire have been greatly exaggerated. I think the poor little thing just didn't like the extreme cold. I'll keep it in my pants from now on. It's nice and warm there.

The New York Times ran a piece today about design blogs. They pointed me back to a site I stumbled over and meant to highlight for the Handy Homosexuals (like me). Check out Apartment Therapy. Permanently into My Links they go.

Picasa 2 is an update to the Picasa software (brought to you free by the fine folks at Google). I downloaded it and ran a scan on my old hard drive. It pulled off every image (some I didn't even know I had) as well as all the dirty porn videos I had lurking on my old system. I now know for certain that I have back up copies of all my old pictures. And best of all you can burn all the files right to a CD from Picasa. It's built in. It also has a killer feature that let's you make gift slideshow CD's. I'm going to get a new scanner and start archiving a ton of old and family photos to send to the inbred relations back in Buffalo. Download the software for yourself here.

Tweaking the look of my site. I'm going for something a little sleeker and more masculine. And if I ever decide to get a tattoo, after all these years, I finally found the one I would want.

Speaking of archiving data, The Ex has beaten me to the technological punch and bought himself a DVD recorder. He's hooked it to the VCR and has been busily converting all my porn tapes to DVD. I've regained a ton of closet space and thrown away an entire garbage bag stuffed with porn tapes. And he's still not done. I own a lot of porn.

Here's an example of what would have been lost from my high-class picture collection had I not recovered the data:

Thursday, January 27, 2005

I Say Fire This Bigoted, Silly Bitch

I was going to compose a much longer piece regarding our sad little New York City radio station (Hot 97), and their unbelievably stupid decision to air "The Tsunami Song". I vacillated a little mulling it over all day, as I am a long-time on the record advocate of the right to free speech. But I'm sorry, while I haven't changed my opinion, there has to be a time when the rest of the city, the rest of humanity, should be able to collectively rise up and shout "What you're doing is offensive and wrong! You need to stop! Now!" Ridiculing 200,00 human beings being wiped off the face of the earth in a single day calls for just such a reaction. What they did was ugly and indefensible. I urge you to bypass the on-air talent altogether. Send e-mail regarding your opinion directly to the station management. I also support contacting the companies advertising on this station, and urging them to pull their advertising dollars immediately. Nothing gets the attention of the powers that be like a punch to the wallet.

You can get a ton of info and hundreds of worldwide comments at

You can find a lot of contact info (plus a buttload of silly bullshit) for major sponsors here.

And I did, of course track down an mp3 download of the on-air discussion preceeding one (of a week-long series) of the airings of this patently disgusting piece of garbage.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

I Lost 3 Pounds

over the weekend. It wasn't intentional. My appetite is off. It's not that I don't get hungry. It just takes a while. Sunday I slept 'till 1 pm. I had closed the club the night before and because of the storm I decided to take the subway home instead of my customary taxi. A safer choice. Many of our cabdrivers are from countries where they have no snow (or waste disposal). Taking a cab during a snowstorm in NYC can be uneventful, or a frightening segment on Fear Factor. In any event, it explains why I was up at 4 am taking pictures on 18th st. (see below). Regardless of whether or not I have a couple of voddies, I'm up for at least an hour after that. So a 1 pm wake -up time isn't even slightly out of the norm. What is odd is that despite rising at 1 pm, it wasn't until 6 pm that I had "breakfast". I was noodling around on-line. I finished filing my taxes. I was searching for info regarding my now inexplicably dead Palm Zire. Next thing you know, I'm finally hungry and it's 5:30.

After a meal I popped into my gym for a hot shower and steam. OK, full disclosure. I had a HUGE zit on my face (at 40+ yrs of age!) and thought that the steam would make popping it less painful and bloody. Turns out I was absolutely right. You can barely see where it was now. Then I swung by the porno boothstore on 14th just to see what's what. It's close proximity to NYU makes it a delightful distraction at times. But not on this day. I split. Headed to the grocery store for some supplies.

Home around 9 (for Desperate Housewives, god, I am so gay!) then I went back on "The Internets" while cleaning up my bedroom, doing some on-line banking and paying off credit cards. Before you know it it's midnight and another meal is out of the question. Better I should go to bed hungry than eat and try to sleep on a full stomach. My vanity and fear of getting fat wins out over hunger every time.

Playing into this entire scenario is what's going on at work. They don't like you to eat. More specifically, they don't like you to eat when you're supposed to be working. For a restaurant/bar/nightclub in NYC this is odd. Most restaurant managers complain that work is making them put on weight. All that available food and you can basically eat at will. Not here. This weekend I was told to take the dinner roll with butter I was eating and take it "out to the floor". I was in the kitchen eating a roll, and I got attitude. A full dinner makes them have kittens. And I don't think it's a matter of them being cheap bastards. Rather, I think it's a matter of them providing me with substandard pay and expecting me to be "at work" whenever I'm at work. Apparently, I'm expected to eat on my own time. I've tried to let them know that I can't work from 4 in the afternoon until 2:30 or 3 in the morning without food. I've tried to express that besides being generally unhealthy, it's unhealthy for me. But if I take it even further I would have to disclose being HIV+. And while I have no proof that this would cause me to lose my job I got a feeling ...

I have been bringing extra food/snacks with me to work which helps a lot but the bottom line is that work is playing into my "food issues" and my food issues are playing into my work. The result is I'm not eating well, I'm not eating healthy, but I have to say, my abs look faaaaaaaabulous right now.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

The Shows Go On ...

The sun has returned but it's supposedly very windy and cold out. I'll find out firsthand shortly. Producers on Broadway report every single show will go on as scheduled, including matinees this afternoon. My camera doesn't seem to function too well in the extremely cold air, but I managed to get a few pix:

42nd and Broadway, NYC. 3:30 am

18th St/2nd Ave. NYC. 4 am

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Bring It.

A snowstorm picture from last year. I'll try and snap some fresh ones after work tonight or tomorrow.

Friday, January 21, 2005

Liza With A Z ...

Girl! The Duchess almost seriously over medicated. I was feeling tense all afternoon. Jump out of my skin tense. The Buspirone is for general anxiety. It keeps me who usually sees eight sides to a situation down to two or three. But sometimes I manage to "crazy up" right through that medication at which point I dose with half a Clonazepam. It usually does the trick. Not today. I had to rush to Callen-Lourde for some bloodwork (a little prick), and then in to work. I got through getting pricked OK but work had me tensing up so I chewed down the other half of the Clonazepam. It worked. It so worked. I found myself grabbing on to tables and door handles to keep from toppling over. It was basically an hour or so where I was alert one minute and hanging on to sound equipment the next. I was fucking high! Once the hour passed I was pretty OK though.

So wish me luck. I'm a little worried about the blood test. I lost some significant ground on my last test and my Doctor told me if my numbers got worse we would have to talk about medication. I had a bad winter and tested after coming down with the flu and then this time, when I have had a three week long winter cold. Besides that, I was informed by the health care person I spoke with on the phone that my doctor is leaving. Which means my 3rd doctor in three years that will have to get to know my case. Thankfully, I know my case and my case history. I keep records of every test. Today when I gave my blood I made sure that they were checking my testosterone (they were). There's no point in going on the therapy if they forget to check if it's working. I'm finally feeling fine though, so even if I get some more bad numbers I plan on asking for one more test before I agree to start medication. Maybe I'm being stubborn or maybe (as I believe) I know my body and I know how I feel. As proof, I'm planning on getting up an hour early and braving the returning winter cold to hit the gym for some desperately needed cardio and ab work.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

So ...

I didn't get the laundry done and I didn't clean my room.

I didn't make good on the bounced rent check and I haven't arranged for the new fridge to be delivered.

I didn't get to the gym nor did I take care of some much needed personal *ahem* shaving (TMI?).

I didn't leave the apartment. Not once.

I didn't have more than a single meal all day yesterday and today.

I did file my taxes on-line and am looking forward to agonizing about whether or not to pay off some credit debt or taking a nice vacation.

Since the last time we spoke I managed to frag my PC. I spent most of today restoring old programs and cleaning out files. I must have sensed something was going to happen. I've saved next to nothing important these last few months. So re-installing my OS and starting from scratch didn't cost me much except time.

I did get around to off-loading most of my picture files to a CD And I did figure out that my new system does burn data CD's. Curiously, it uses the DVD drive to do it.

I did manage to clean off the top of my desk. The bottom remains a mass of wires and newspaper clippings and instruction manuals.

I found some great pictures I forgot I even had and maybe I'll save some time the next few days and post some of the cool shit I found but for today, here's a few shots I did for some hot and willing subjects. No faces, as I don't have permission. But I've been gratified that at least two of the people I did photo shoots with are using their pictures on-line to cruise for sex. I'm so proud. And yes, one of the pics is me. Enjoy.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

There Are Voices Coming From My TV, And It's NOT ON!

No, I'm not on meth. My little TV in my bedroom picks up radio transmissions from passing taxicabs. Frequently, when the set is off, the voices of arabic men spurt out into the silence. It used to scare me. At least .... that's what I believe is happening. I'll start to worry if I think they're telling me to kill.

I had the opportunity to make some changes in my links list. I de-listed some kids who've opted not to continue, although I hope some of them change their mind someday. Added a bunch I've been following daily or off and on:







Gotta jet. Spending the afternoon with my inbred Buffalo relations. Just kidding. What's true is I'm bringing my cousin's 13 year old daughter to Bloomingdale's for the first time. I could cry I'm so proud.

I feel a site re-design coming on I think.

Friday, January 14, 2005

Hot Man Weekend

I have a very busy weekend ahead of me. Work tonight and then turn around and open up tomorrow. Although I must confess, a restaurant/nightclub on a Saturday afternoon = movie magazines and window shopping on 42nd St. Then my favorite aunt and my cousin and her daughter come to town so it's dinner in Little Italy (I know) and other family/touristy goodness.

I am so very happy I got my old hard drive connected to my PC. As I've been cleaning it up and deleting files I've run across tons of things I would have been sorry to have lost. I was going to post some arty pictures I took, but let's face it. I'm a big fag. What's a celebration without hot naked mens? Enjoy (I repeat, these are not my photos, just hot men I've stumbled across.) But, speaking of my photography, The Hellcat is leaving town to visit friends and family in Cali. His flight takes off tomorrow. That gives me a whole week of daytime free without a "recovering" meth addict laying on my couch. So consider Tom's Photography Studio (apartment) open. If you've always wanted to be photographed semi and (hopefully) naked but never got 'round to it here's your chance. I will be free all week. Weekdays only I'm afraid. On weekends the meth addict on the couch is replaced by The Ex watching bits and pieces of four movies simultaneously.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Taking The Good With The Bad

As I wrote previously, my PC up and died a while back. I replaced it pretty quickly and cheaply with a much better model with a big honkin' hard drive (120GB). I know, of course, I would never need a drive that big I just wanted it. My new system was not without issues however. For a couple of months I had no sound. I finally managed to dope out the problem (no thanks to you scabby bastards, the SOS I put out leading to no help at all - I'm kidding. A couple of people answered they were just the wrong answers). As it turns out, my sound issues had to do with downloading the correct drivers for the included sound card and then going in and "telling" my computer, as well as all my media players (Windows, Quicktime, etc.) to use the new sound card. Problem solved. Two months later.

The second problem I had was that because my PC died and wasn't euthanized, I didn't get the opportunity to import whatever files and programs I wanted to save from my old hard drive. My intent was to install the old hard drive into my new system, use some of my old programs, and have 40GB of extra storage space that I would never, ever need to use. But I had a devil of a time getting my old drive out of the box. And then my new PC didn't have any pre-installed drive bays for me to use. As I was researching buying drive bays or bay rails from computer supply stores I found this way cool alternative. $65 dollars later I was skeptical but hopeful. The setup instructions couldn't have been easier, literally plug and play. My computer "saw" the "new" drive instantly. I was able to access all my old information and programs. EGAD! Except my pictures. Which was what this was all about. I had in fact backed up some of my pictures to disk. But not all. Actually a fraction of what I had. I searched all my files but was having no luck. That's when I happened across my Picasa software. I remembered that launching Picasa would search my hard drive and sure enough, the damn shit searched everything and found all my precious pix. All my naked boys and men. All my favorite cumshots captured as they happened. Even some black and white Coney Island pix I forgot I had but adore. I'll be spending the next few days backing up said precious pix and deleting all the duplicate information I'm carrying. Lesson learned.

I came home from the gym and had a fight with The Hellcat. Yesterday was my day off (my next one being Sunday). In addition to jerking off to online porn, I spent part of my afternoon cleaning the kitchen. Coffee was spilled inside the microwave as well as on top of the refrigerator. More coffee was spilled onto the dish rack. The dish rack I had cleaned two days ago. That's totally The Hellcat. He was sleeping on the couch "recovering" from a hangover. I had to endure a recounting of his drunken night and how he "almost used". Yeah, let's talk about you again. There's a new subject.

So you can imagine how pleased I was when I returned home to see that the kitchen basket that's usually up on the wall had been knocked off. And the dog piss next to the garbage can (from when The Hellcat left his dog alone overnight, and free to roam the apartment, even though we've all agreed he needs to be put into the bedroom where he's way more reluctant to shit or piss) was still there from last night. I inquired what happened and was told that the on-again off-again boyfriend had knocked it down and it would be fixed "tomorrow". That did it.

"It's always tomorrow with you. What else are you gonna do tomorrow?"

"Why are you being such a bitch?"

"How about you forget tomorrow and fix it today? How about you clean up the dog piss on the kitchen floor that's been there all day?"

The fight got much bigger and I basically told him I was sick of living in filth and I was sick of his empty promises to do (insert anything here) tomorrow.

I'm a bitch because I'm sick of spending what little free time I have cleaning up after a grown man with no job and no responsibilities who expects that everyone is going to walk around on eggshells because a fucking addict went out and got liquored up and caused havoc and now isn't feeling well? Fuck that shit. Your friend/boyfriend whatever came into my home and knocked something off the wall. Fix it. Right now. Have some respect for me and my things. I've given you a safe, comfortable place to live and even arranged to have it funded by the state. I don't expect gratitude just a modicum of consideration. I like my home to be clean and orderly. I'm not a nut about it, just try to play along. Asshole.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Day Off

Today. I have so much to tell you I may have to drop back in later today after I prioritize. For now, I caught a nasty cold. I hoped, because I came down with the flu at the beginning of the season that I might get away with not getting the cold that was circulating around the club. It appears, based on the evidence of the last couple of years that my compromised immune system is, well, compromised. It's been an exhausting and disgusting blend of coughing, sneezing and phlegm (Oh my!). But I've turned the corner and I'm on the mend. So much so that I'm heading for the gym and a (light) workout shortly.

Speaking of which, I'm having some body image problems. I'm probably going to regret this but here goes:

I workout pretty regularly, but you could never characterize me as a bodybuilder. That has never interested me. I've never been interested in getting bigger per se, it's always been about staying (heart) healthy and fit. In addition, as I've gotten older, it's been about trying to avoid gravity making me all saggy. But the other day my boss called me skinny. Skinny? Now I certainly don't think of myself as fat, but skinny? I don't like the sound of that at all, either. Then yesterday (while shirtless) I was told that I "look great". And further, that I'm "seeing a different view of myself". So it seemed to me, since I had some free time and I was still too ill to hit the gym, that I should take some photos and see what I looked like. And I'm still not sure. This is me yesterday. If anything I'm thinking average. Be gentle.

Sunday, January 09, 2005

2004 Wrap up

It finally occurred to me how I wanted to approach my 2004 year in review. I didn't want to do a top ten list of movies or plays I've seen. Ditto the best circuit parties (yawn). Plus, I didn't go to any circuit parties. I didn't want to get all Deepak Chopra and list all the universal truths I've come to learn. I didn't want to bore you with all the fabulous places I've been and all the fabulous people I've met. 'Cause I haven't and I didn't.

Instead, I decided to really expose myself and link back to my year end wrap up last year, complete with my resolutions, to see what I accomplished and how much I'm completely full of shit, or devoid of ambition. Also, unlike other people's year end posts, mine proudly appears over a week late.

So here goes: (read last years post)

I did not re-learn French. I did amass a collection of on-line French tutorials and begin rudimentary language refreshers.

I did not learn American sign language. I had an unpleasant experience with a distasteful human being that made that goal (while something I've always wanted to do) completely out of the question, at least for now.

I did not "finish" learning Photoshop. But it's a huge program capable of so much that I may never finish it. But I studied much more and I know a lot about manipulating digital images, photography and art than I did last year. I also learned a lot more about publishing web pages via Adobe GoLive. So I'm giving myself a qualified yes on this one.

I did finish the bathroom renovation. A couple of minor details are still bothering me, but many people have come over and specifically exclaimed that they love the bathroom and I do too. Now if I could only get someone but me to scrub the toilets I'd die happy.

I did not re-do the kitchen. I replaced some damaged floor tiles. I installed a rolling cart as food storage and a portable bar. I got a stainless steel garbage can and a stainless steel sink installed. A new refrigerator should be delivered in the next couple of weeks. I'm pretty sold on the idea of putting down an actual ceramic tile floor. In process, more to come.

I did go out more. But I kept it to intimate dinners, movies with friends. I still get pretty panicky in a group situation. Although curiously, not when we're all naked. A work in progress.

I did see more theater. Four that I can think of off the top of my head. That's up from none. It's probably more than four but still, I saw Thoroughly Modern Millie, I saw 'night, Mother, I saw some piece of crap about aging prostitutes and another off-Broadway piece, Toxic Audio. I attended a WYSIWYG performance, my review of which caused an overly-sensitive blogger to take extreme exception.

I did not throw more parties. That was a work related post and I got fired. I'm percolating an idea about creating a fundraising concert for HIV/AIDS at my new job. Stay tuned.

I did find a new job on the books. My tax return from just the few months I've worked is well over $1,000. That should finance a delightful vacation. So far, technically I've taken a bit of a pay cut. So my resolution for 2005 is to try to increase my salary at my current job or move on quickly.

I had more sex this year. My sex life has taken a turn. Because of my HIV I many times settled for or prefer mutual sucking/ jo/ buttplay. Anything that results in a cumshot in a condom or on a chest or a smooth white ass. I almost made a misstep and posted that I had gone the entire year without getting buttfucked. Fortunately, the truth about that was in a post quite close to my New Year wrap up from last year. I did, in fact, get buttfucked. Albeit badly. I can at least say that I haven't been buttfucked a year back from today. So that's my New Year's resolution for 2005. I want to be royally screwed. I want to spend an afternoon or night on all fours, on my back, in front of a mirror, bent over a couch. I want to be dicked the fuck down, motherfucker. I want to get fucked, eat, shower and fucked again. I want to fall asleep and wake up as I'm getting fucked. I want to be tied up spread-eagle and get fucked by your fucking hot buddy while you take pictures.

Buttsex. I want it.

Friday, January 07, 2005

Feeling Better (Updated!)

My depression seems to be lifting. I managed to do all the laundry that had piled up since the last time I did it (before Christmas). I almost didn't have any choice. I was down to my last pair of gym socks. It was either do the laundry or get to The House of The Bulldyke Convict. But I'm broke ... again. How much do slightly out of shape 40-something hookers fetch these days? I'm kidding. No, seriously, how much? I also put away what meager Christmas decorations we put out this year. It took a grand total of three minutes. Our tree was a fiber optic desktop tree that The Ex bought. I loath it. Now I don't mind my share of blinky fiber optic crap in my household decor but I draw the line at a Christmas tree. It's simply wrong.

Not only did I do the laundry, I took great satisfaction in putting away my laundry. And I hung up my tux from New Year. When I begin to make order from chaos it's a good sign my brain chemistry is returning to "normal". I cleaned off the dining area table and put all the holiday pictures into protective plastic as I'm sure they will be passed around tomorrow at work. Speaking of work, I ironed two shirts in advance. A sure sign that, while maybe not looking forward to it, I'm at least mentally prepared to get back in there and mix it up with the retards in Times Square.

Finally, I did a bit of personal ... grooming. OK more than a bit but not a ton. I didn't shave so much as trim in most areas. I know some people disagree but I'm a firm believer that your body is just a general template for you to work off of. I'm totally in the "make better" camp. Shave, pluck, tan, crunch, run, color, yoga even lipo. Whatever it takes, baby, if it makes you happy and you think you look and feel better. And when your vanity kicks in you know the depression is fading. Depressed people don't shave back their pubic hair.

Meanwhile ...

Nelson Mandela's son dies from AIDS-related illness.

The gays caused the tsunami.

U.S. soldier claims "gay panic" made him kill. (With all due respect, am I the only one slightly turned on by the mental image of the 21 year-old National Guardsman and the 17 year-old Iraqi?

Speaking of which ...

Hundreds of protesters in Egypt decry ‘homosexual American executioners’

CAIRO — Egyptian demonstrators, protesting the abuse of prisoners by U.S. troops at an Iraqi prison, blamed the incidents on “homosexual American executioners,” according to media reports. A Dec. 29 rally in Cairo followed other Middle East protests over photos that show abuse and torture of prisoners at Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison, news outlets reported. Many abuses were sexual, and photos showed that nude male prisoners were forced to pile on top of each other and were forced to simulate oral and anal sex with each other, according to media reports. Prisoners also alleged they were sodomized with broom handles and other objects while at Abu Ghraib and in U.S. custody, news agencies reported. The Kuwait Times reported that 300 Egyptian protesters rallied last week before a banner that read, “Bring to justice the homosexual American executioners, their agents the traitors, their followers the enemies.” The Times also said Mustafa Bakri, editor of the Al-Osboa weekly newspaper, told reporters, “Those gays forced our brothers in Iraq to practice homosexuality and filmed them. If we remain silent, we will be next.

For god's sake! If the U.S. military insists on sodomizing people with a broom handle, I will take one for the team and spare those poor Iraqis. Get me a horny soldier (male, please and Latin if you can manage) and some lube.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

Sorry About The Dearth Of Posts

In case you haven't figured it out, I've slipped into a bit of a depression. Not surprising, I suppose, considering the holidays have just gone by, we're in the thick of winter (a season I could skip entirely), and the weather this week calls for days and days of rain, clouds and more rain. This depression was hard for me to recognize at first because it snuck up on me over several weeks. Also, it's probably one of the first times I've experienced depression without anxiety. I sort of forgot that the medication I'm on doesn't treat the one or two depressive episodes I experience each year. Fortunately, I was able to reason out or realize that my reactions to things were innapropriate or overblown. But it doesn't feel like a serious depression. I guess some might even call it the winter blues. I'm not horribly sad, just not happy. I'm not paralyzed into inaction, I just don't get much accomplished. I'm not withdrawn, I'm just having trouble communicating.

I did manage to fix The Ex's computer problems. I knew it would just take an afternoon of focused thought about the problem. Of course even though I told him what I thought was the matter, he insisted on e-mailing me a message saying that the people at Dell Tech Support (guffaw) thought the problem was with my system and sending me a contact phone number and case ID #. That's typical. Despite the fact that I found and installed our VOIP phone system. Despite the fact that I installed and maintain our household wirless network. Despite the fact that he refuses to find or use anti-virus software on his system until I installed it today. He'll take the word of some fuckhead tech support dickwad in New Delhi over mine. Of course, having just shot my mouth off I will confess. I am currently re-printing a set of pictures I took from our staff Christmas party the other night. They were printing really badly. I had the paper loaded backwards. I would say I'm not too bright but pretty but let's face it, I ain't pretty. The re-printed pictures are coming out great. Can I say I'm a pretty good photographer for an amateur?

Returning to a variation on the theme of depression, today I attended a matinee with tickets that The Hellcat managed to secure. We almost didn't make it at all as my depression minefested as apathy and I didn't wake The Hellcat on time accidentally on purpose. But he woke at the last minute and I decided to take in the show. It was 'night, Mother. I didn't know anything about the play except that it had won a Pulitzer Prize (in 1983). Turns out it was a two-character piece starring Brenda Blethyn and Edie Falco. The daughter, played by Edie Falco, informs her mother that she intends to kill herself at the end of this very night. The ensuing 90 minutes consists of a back and forth confontation, negotiation and revelation between mother and daughter. There are secrets and lies told and exposed. There is anger and agony. While painful to watch the performances are riveting. Brenda Blethyn makes some minor choices I would have directed differently. Edie Falco is understated in a role that a lesser actress would have mistakenly over-done. Many in the audience were reduced to tears. I enjoyed it immensly but it made me tired not sad. But I agree, it's a brilliant work.

I feel as if I'm letting people down with my sporadic posting. I still haven't even finished my year end wrap-up. I thought it was work but now I see it was me being *blech*. I'll try to do better. Stick with me. Or stick it in me. You decide.

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Well This Hasn't Happened In A While

And no, I'm not talking about getting buttfucked, although that hasn't happened in a while either. More on that subject in a future (read: next, I hope) post. I'm talking about staying up all night and getting home during the day. The new year is upon us, it's 10:30 am and I'm just settling in to bed. Well, bedroom at least. The bed feels about an hour away. I guesstimated I'd be home by 9 so I was only off by about an hour. I used to joke with people that while my drinking was legendary at times, it's not like I would have vodka on my Cheerios. Well I'm having the vodka now. And while no Cheerios are at hand I'm sure at least one of you is about to/has had some. In my defense, I skipped the champale toast at midnight, I indulged in a post closing 5:30 am cocktail just to take the edge off another stressful evening, then I didn't touch a drop until I was preparing to leave around 8:45 am. Admittedly it was in a bucket, but hey, I was crossing 42nd St as sober as a ... relatively... sober person.

Work was ... interesting. I wasn't due in until 10 pm. The last manager in for the night and by default, the closer. I knew from past experiences that getting in to Times Square at that time of night could prove challenging. I intended to leave about 15 minutes earlier than normal in case I ran into unexpected difficulties. That didn't happen. I didn't take into account last minute dressing difficulties. It's probably been two years since I wore my tuxedo.

There was one other thing significantly slowing me down. I could barely walk. The day before, The Hellcat, the on-again off-again boyfriend and I took a Cardio Bootcamp class that was basically 55 minutes of continuous push-ups, crunches, lunges and various strength training exercises. It was probably the hardest I've worked out in years. I knew immediately after class was over I'd be paying the price. My legs were literally wobbly on the stairs to the locker room. Sure enough, by that night I had already begun to stiffen up. By morning, getting out of bed was agony. I'm not exaggerating. Sitting down hurt. Standing up hurt worse. A staircase meant a symphony of pain. My normal 15 minute walk to the subway took quite a bit longer. Upon arriving at 42nd street the police were directing everyone to a single available exit. Getting there required ascending or descending three sets of stairs. I wanted to cry.

By the time I arrived at the club, the second of three scheduled shows was already loading in. I had no idea what tables were reserved and for who. I had no idea who was eating off of which menu. In short, I arrived and was immediately totally lost. It was obvious that no one had any time to bring me up to speed. So it took until about halfway through the show before I had managed to piece together what was going on from the available evidence. Mostly I tried to stay out of the way. It wasn't until we were transitioning from the second, fully seated show to the third, standing room only show that I became more actively involved. Unfortunately, the job that fell to me was supervising the staff as they emptied the room of every single table and chair. Basically, enough seating for 500 had to go. Now I am usually a very hands-on manager. I get in and run food, make drinks, bus tables, whatever it takes. Three weeks ago during a Christmas office party, one of the guests got seriously and suddenly fucked up on booze and god knows what else. Before I could stop it and get him out of there he proceeded to whip it out right there in the restaurant and pee across three tables. I cleaned it up. My life is quite glamorous, huh? At any rate, on this night, actually getting down and bending my legs to hoist up tables and chairs was quite simply not physically possible for me. Not even taking in to account I was wearing a full tuxedo. Other people were pitching in to help out including a couple of our security people and the Head Chef. Why he decided to uncharacteristically jump in is a mystery. As is why he decided to publicly berate me for not. Part of me wishes I had just exploded right then and there and told him what was going on and to fuck off. Part of me thinks I shouldn't give a rat's ass what some glorified fry cook thinks of me. Part of me is completely disappointed that a grown man would behave in such a juvenile fashion, even attempting to "tell on" me. It could have ruined my night had I not been actively focused on pacing myself for the anticipated extremely late night I was about to have and on my ongoing pain management. My second happiest moment of the night came around 5:30 am when I was finally called to the office to sit and start cashing everyone out. Even though I faced hours of counting money and resolving errors, there was no more standing and no more stairs.

My happiest moment came around 8 am. That's when the newest manager came by to call it a night (day) and go home. He wished me a happy New Year and turned towards the door. I noticed him pause, as if he was struggling, deciding whether or not to say something. In light of the last few days I've had, I was feeling a twinge of dread. Instead, he told me how happy he was to be working with me. He told me that I was a "good soul", and he was immediately impressed by what a "sharp guy" I was. He hoped that we could continue to work together and he was happy to have met me. I'm paraphrasing but it was all warm and heartfelt and spoke to all the things I try to achieve in my relationships. And as bad as a petty Head Chef and a GM who believes screeching like a Harpy is communicating can make you feel, a moment like that makes it possible to wake up the next evening and feel like you can at least try again. One more day.