Friday, December 29, 2006

Granada-it´s almost mythical

Granada-the word, the´s somewhere in the collective subconscious. It´s ancient, on a lake that leads to the carribbean, and it´s still here: in Nicaragua. It´s all about bananas here in this colonial town. There are horse carts with old fashioned wagon wheels trotting around town, and the buildings are bright gold, lime green, deep pink. Ceiling height starts at 20 feet.
You can see why ex-pats make homes here, in a tropical place with so much past. The place has been sacked by pirates, and the large lake it sits on contains ferocious freshwater bull sharks. There´s something about Granada, and the people who live here. They´re called Granadians. I wouldn´t mind calling myself a Granadian. It sounds like a cocktail.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Chased out of Town!

Greetings from Nicaragua!
Yesterday, Bam Bam and I climbed Conception Volcano, which at 1600 meters is no small feat. It was a beautiful day, so there was no cloud cover (a rarity). Our guide stopped halfway and claimed it was too windy. He said if we wanted to go all the way, we must pay him in full. We did, and made the ascent only to return and find him gone, the van gone. No lift back to town!

Volcan Concepcion: Its lava is not nearly as hot as latino blood.

There were six of us, all angry we paid him. We hitched a bus into town and marched into the cinderblock office where I shot off my mouth because he wasnt around, and wasnt forseeably coming. Luckily his mother was there...I tried being nice to her and explained we wanted half our money back because he only did half his job. She got a bit snarky and left, so I called her an "Estafadora" (a scoundrel-scammer) twice, real dramatic-like in front of a small crowd, and then all hell broke loose.

The sister came out of nowhere fuming like a tea kettle. She stomped and screamed that I was worse than a "puta"(a puta is a whore--is that supposed to hurt?) and how she wouldnt go to my country and insult my mother. I said if she came to my country I wouldnt abandon her on top of a volcano! I did this all in a very fluent fuck-you Spanish.

Lo and behold, our guide appears (Moral of the story: if you want a swindling latino to appear, insult his mother as best you can) all passionately latino with hot threats and all of that twerpy 5 foot tall small man bravado. "You cant insult my mother, there are laws in my country! We in Nicaragua are not stupid anymore!!" he yelled. Not stupid?--and you didnt just vote back in Ortega?? Eventually we got a quarter of our money back, but he pointed at me and promised he would have revenge for what I said about his mother, but "not in the way I think."

I began to envision mobs with machetes and torches and didnt sleep very well. Needless to say, we ran out of town early in the morning, with me promising to work on my temper in the future.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

All Better Now

Patched things up with Cooldan lastnight. He doesn't care so much for changing the world, and this leaves me aghast because I'm dead set on changing what I can, and right away! We're very different, and sometimes it takes a (best) friend to make you see that it's okay to be different. People, after all, should come before principles. Especially when they're as fun as Cooldan.

Now, back to where we left off. At least until Lebanese cousins come back to town.

Cooldan (with me) reposing in his natural habitat.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

OUT January

OUT magazine's January issue is, well, out. My column about Sondra/Sandy has gotten lots of response. Apparently people relate to this kicked-in-the-teeth feeling I got at her wedding. It's nice to know I'm not alone. I even heard from a lesbian who had a "Sandy" of her own, except she was in love with her! I also heard from a reader named Kelly who says my website is like "Lindsay Lohan with a vibrator, only more gay" Apparently that's a good thing.

Sandy and her husband at their reception. (I was busy drinking)

For those of you wondering--Sandy still wants to be friends. She's magnanimous, and yes, I've apologized.

Stay tuned for February's OUT column, a salacious entry from the twinkie files. As always, if you have column ideas or suggestions, I'm happy to hear them.

Platitudes at Starbucks

"Give me a double Venti non-fat Chai Latte" incites the gag reflex I've worked so hard to lose. Ordering overpriced foreign-inspired beverages makes people feel somehow worldly, like they do speak a little Italian. When I want to feel wordly, I travel the world.

I did, however, find myself in a Starbucks yesterday. "Medium Coffee, please," I ordered and they actually understood. Then I sat down at a table and looked up to see framed black and white photos: new york cityscapes. And then I noticed the cursive copy.

it reads:
"This city has so much to give us early in the morning when it opens its sleepy eyes and says, 'Get going, you. This is a beautiful new day'."

Someone got paid to write this vapid little pep talk? Who comes up with this sugary sweet confection? Hallmark has-beens? Grandma Moses? Yes, the gag reflex has officially returned.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Exclusive Lodging for Grandma Gloria

Recently, Grandma Gloria was evicted from her nursing home for insubordination. With the help of my mother (her daughter) she has found exclusive lodgings to rest (what's left of) her head. Thanks to the timely death of a stranger, Gloria has been admitted into an "Alzheimers Only" facility in Clackamas, Oregon!

Gloria (right) with her "Choir Teacher," this past summer.

Gloria has taken to the place like a duck to water. She is said to be playing hostess to the other confused residents and when my mother visits, Gloria introduces her as the "Choir Teacher". We're not sure why, as my mother doesn't sing outside of church.
Still, each time Gloria enquires, "Will you be singing tonight, Choir teacher?"
"Doesn't that bother you?" I ask my mom, who responds.
"I'm just glad she's stopped accusing me of having multiple husbands."

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

It's Called Acting

Will Smith's latest film, some holiday fluff, has landed the top spot over the weekend. Shame. I resent Will Smith, and it's not just the brazen arrogance "I OWN the July 4th weekend," he's quoted as saying after setting box office records for profitable stinkbombs like "Independence Day". I don't dislike him because he's "Black enough for the blacks, and white enough for the whites," as they say.

Stockard Channing gave a powerhouse performance,
undermined by a yellow Will Smith. He's soooo straight.

I resent Will Smith because he is a coward. In the 1993 film Six Degrees of Separation (an adaptation of the fabulous play by John Guare) he plays a gay hustler that pretends to be the son of Sidney Poitier and cons Donald Sutherland and Stockard Channing. Did I mention he plays a gay hustler? In one scene, Will Smith is required to kiss another (gasp!) man, played by Anthony Michael Hall. Their lips don't touch by a margin of about three feet. That's right, the camera cuts about 3 full feet from the kiss. Will Smith is so macho he not only refused to kiss another man for a role that required it, he refused to let the camera even pretend to come close. (Don't blame the director: Will Smith put this in his contract).

This had the desired effect. When I saw the film in 1993, girls screamed and clapped in the audience, "He didn't do it! Ha!" Will Smith invalidated the script, the integrity of the role (that he was paid millions to portray). He also invalidated the lives of every gay man who has ever seen the film. I still haven't recovered.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Impertinent Bums

I'm walking out of David's bagels and outside is this really fat black man in a wheelchair. "Got a dollar?" he asks.
"No, sir" I say back. I do not to add, "Sorry," because inevitably the homeless or the beggar or the crackhead will say, "You ain't sorry!" and truth be told, I'm not sorry. I've learned just a simple no is best.

However, it's "that time of year" again, and of course this fat man in a wheelchair is wearing a Santa hat, which must be covering up the halo. "You're mean." he says to me.

I look at him and think he's probably in that electronic wheelchair because he's too fat to walk. I also think it's my taxes that subsidize his government housing on Avenue D, near where I live. In fact, it was probably his kids that jumped me latenight last winter at my door. But because it's "holiday time," him and his Santa hat think they have the right to extort guilt. Suddenly if I don't fork over a dollar, I'm Ebenezer Scrooge.
"What do I owe you?" I ask him.
"You're mean," he repeats saint-like, "And you've got to live with that."

I'm mean? This reminds me of bible school, where you're taught to feel guilty for "original sin." If they win, you'll feel guilty all your life: enough to worship and tithe regularly, and to stop thinking for yourself. I want to flip the beggar off. Actually, what I want is to take his wheelchair and his martyrdom and push it into the East River. Instead I let out a shrill laugh, and then I cackle maniacally for all of 1st Avenue. "HO HO HO!"

Live with that.

Friday, December 15, 2006

On the W Train

I was on the subway after a modeling audition. As I held the pole of the W train downtown, I thought maybe I shouldn't have smiled and instead had a more serious, sexy pose when they snapped my photo. Then I thought about all the other boys in the room and my mind sifted them into categories: the ones I was cuter than, the equally cute ones, even the ones who could be considered cuter than me. Was I cute enough to get the gig? At that moment, the woman standing beside me looked up. Our eyes met and I visibly shuddered.

Half of her face was mashed up, actually lower than the other side of her face, like she was born that way. A sticky goo leaked out of one malformed eye. She saw me shudder, saw the shock of her ugly face register on my symmetrical face. I wished I could give her a hug or a pat on the back and apologize for my reflex. Suddenly I no longer cared if I was cute enough to get the gig. I didn't want the modeling job at all.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Freak Show Fodder

Just in, from China:
The tallest man in the world was called in to retrieve large pieces of plastic imbedded deep within the stomachs of circus dolphins.

---See it to believe it!

Proof yet again:
It's the freaks who are changing our world for the better.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

A Four Letter Word (director and Cast)

Here's the fantastic cast of the upcoming gay romantic comedy A Four Letter Word.

Director/co-writer Casper Andreas is in the middle. I co-wrote and also play the lead slut, Luke, in red.

These (as yet un-retouched!) cast photos were taken by the inimitable HX photographer Wilsonmodels at the steamy studios of porn magnate Michael Lucas.

I was allowed to see a preliminary version of the film (still in editing stages) last week and it looks incredible! Despite the fact I'm all-too familiar with the script, it was hysterical. The "sexual compulsives meeting" scene was a highlight, as well as any scene with Zeke (Cory Grant) in the "Gayborhood", or anything involving snarky Trisha as a lesbian vamp in AA. Oh yeah wait--let's not forget the sex-scenes with Stephen (Charlie David)! Let's hear it for that hustler!

Next post on A Four Letter Word, I'll update the expected release (set for late spring 2007) and be sure to include the shirtless cast photo.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Holiday Season Again

In a busy new york city subway station, the only way to get where you're going is to not focus on anybody. If you actually notice strangers, take that split second to focus on a face, then slam! You've bumped into someone, or someone's bumped into you--and so much for your smooth exit.

Tourists do this, they take the time to gawk and gander, checking out the rushing bodies. But New Yorkers have learned to simply scan the heads, and blur everybody out to get a smooth, clean, sylish exit.

I'm wondering if this subway strategy translates to life in general. Do we reach our aims quicker if we blur everybody else out?

Thursday, December 07, 2006

If you see this man....tell him to come out of the closet!

Cooldan is not about to gamble on progress.

My best friend, the artist formerly known as COOLDan, has disappeared into a make-believe world of heterosexuality ever since his cousin arrived from Lebanon for a few weeks.

He promised his friends he would come out to her upon her arrival, but that didn't happen. Instead he has gone to extraordinary lengths to show her a "straight slice" of life. This includes hiding himself (and his cousin) from all of his friends. Are our gay lives (and his) unacceptable? Freakish? Illegitimate?

Saturday, December 02, 2006

You Must Remember This

Yesterday I did extra work on a film (thankless, unimportant work also known as "background" or "moving furniture, which is more like it) called "
Accidental Husband" in the meatpacking district of Manhattan. Boring. The magic of filmmaking is gone for me, has been gone for a long time. There's no glamour, just long days. There's no star quality anymore, I never get starstruck. Old Hollywood is dead.

(extras herding onto the set: moooo!)

This w
ould be another long day of waiting; drudgery, as usual, so I brought my manuscript (YOU CAN RUN) to finish editing. The downstairs holding area was crammed with extras: old women reapplying makeup, others chatting inanely on, as they do, about whether the lunch will be catered or "walk away" and gee, we hope to get a pay bump for the rain outside, even though we're inside.

I couldn't concentrate, had to get away, so I wandered with my manuscript, through a maze of camera playback equipment, cords and production assistants to find a couch at the other end of the basement. There sat an older woman, an actress, sides in her lap. "Mind if I sit here?" I said, holding my bags. "Sure, you can sit here." She had an accent, and by the time I sat down beside her, I couldn't speak.

The woman beside me was
Isabella Rosellini, daughter of legendary Ingrid Bergman, and she looks just like her mother. Old Hollywood is not dead. The dynasty lives on in Isabella Rosselini's classic face. Suddenly I couldn't read my manuscript, couldn't speak, couldn't eat the fat sandwich I had just made from craft services. I just sat, actually starstruck, staring forward, as Isabella calmly muttered, rehearsing her lines for the next scene.

I dared glance left and there she was, in the flesh. I was sitting beside Ilsa at Rick's Cafe, in Casablanca. And as time goes by, that's as good as Hollywood gets, for a person like me.