Monday, March 31, 2008

Recovery...is a four letter word!

Congrats to Casper Andreas and our cast for being the number one film at Chelsea Clearview Cinemas over the weekend! Thanks for all those who came out in support--we beat Horton Hears a Who!! A Four Letter Word is being held over for a second week.

Here's some after-party photos I nabbed at my friend Zeren's blog. I love Zeren!

This outfit from the film's poster will never die. Since receiving the gold glitter "L", it has never been washed. I can see myself at 60 years old, still parading this top around town. Scary future vision.





















Wearing that indefatigable top: Cooldan

Bottom, the usual suspects: Scott, Anita, Bam Bam

Saturday, March 29, 2008

A Four Letter Word New York Premiere!

The New York Times says: With its breezy shots of male genitalia and characters nicknamed Long John and Tripod, A Four Letter Word is a surprisingly endearing romantic comedy that explores gay relationships with low-budget verve. Read the full NYT review here.

We opened lastnight and the entire cast, minus one, was there. Before the screening we were interviewed by Barry Z, who has his own television show. Somehow Barry Z managed to ask me variations of the same question at least fifteen times. (I needed that cocktail)














I love the poster behind. Mainly, I appreciate being a coming attraction.

Anita Private showed up in her new duds (Below). "If you're not sparkling, what are you doing?"














Below are some of the girls from the cross-dressers' screening. The blonde is Lady Clover Honey (she puts the "Lady" in her name so as not to be confused with the artificial sweetener). Clover appears in the film, as does Madeleine (far right). Madeleine claims to be the reincanation of a woman who thought she was the reincarnation of Cleopatra. I love that.














An excellent after-party at HK Lounge was sponsored by V2 vodka. At one point, Anita Private was heard exclaiming: "Did I die and go to heaven? Free vodka just keeps appearing!"

Anita had a harrowing end to her night when her taxi cab pulled over and the driver threw her on the ground, called her a fag, and demanded all her money.

"Then you'll have to kill me," answered Anita, "Do you have a gun?" The taxi driver then rummaged into her coat pockets until she hit him with her handbag and ran off into the night. Anita claims the attack was discrimination. "It was because of the way I was dressed!" she tells me. Hey, at least she got a free taxi ride.

My night ended (as usual) at the pizzeria. While devouring a cheese slice, I came face to face with a plaque of that cloying christian tale "Footprints in the sand"--where a believer asks god why there is only one set of footprints in the sand of their walk together? God answers, "My child, I was carrying you." In a pizzeria?

After the spiritual terrorism of my youth, I felt it my drunken duty to rid pizza places of religious propaganda. My child, I carried it off!

And woke up next to it.














To my credit (and not because I fear gnashing teeth) I just walked over and returned it. "I stole this lastnight," I told the pizza man and he says surprised, "That's the second time!"

Footprints are a hot item.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Fantasy Facilitator Miss Vera to meet Anita Private Tonight at 10:15!

I was mentioning to my friend Mike that we haven't seen his alter-ego Anita Private in quite some time. Imagine my shock, then, at a recent party. The door opens and who walks in but a vodka swigging, minty-green vision of Anita Private en flor. Glory hallelujah!

She found her new seafoam frock in the bargain bin at a local thrift shop and couldn't resist. You would think putting on a dress makes Anita more feminine, but she gets aggressive. When Cooldan drunkenly passed out on the bed, Anita sexually assaulted him...in her dress and heels.



That ought to teach him to pass out at parties!


















I am proud to announce Anita is making another rare public appearance tonight at the 10:15 screening of A Four Letter Word at Chelsea Clearview Cinemas --where dreams come true!

On a side note, Anita (as a man) makes his film debut in AFLW (as the "giveaway" at the sidewalk sale outside the club). Also appearing in the film are several notable drag darlings, and a drag bridal shower to boot. The 10:15 screening is dedicated to them and their admirers (everyone is welcome), and is being sponsored by Cross-Dressers International and "Miss Vera's Finishing School for Boys who want to be Girls."

Miss Vera's is the world's first and only cross-dressing Academy! On her site, Miss Vera has courses to turn you into a Sudden Beauty, a Miracle Miss, or even a Dining Debutante. Her application form (or "Cross-Dressing Herstory") features questions like "How long have you been Cross Dressing?" And "Have you ever used the services of a fantasy facilitator to guide you through this process?" I cannot wait for 10:15 tonight!

Although Anita Private doesn't have the funds to become a "Sudden Beauty," she has bought a new frock, and will be found at home among the hens at the cinemas. God forbid she pounces.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

It's Promo Time!

A Four Letter Word opens tomorrow at Chelsea Clearview Cinemas!

This is a film by, for, and about the gay community. I hope if you're in NYC that you'll take the time this weekend to come out and support it! Advance tickets can be purchased online here.

Check out the trailer (conveniently located on the right side bar of this very blog!), and read some excerpts from recent press below. Click on the publication link to read the full reviews.

For the past year, I've been answering questions about my character, Luke. They ask the same questions in South Africa, Sydney, and Dayton, Ohio. So I was caught off guard when Mark Peikert of New York's HX magazine asked me something new and different. Was I channeling any Hollywood diva with Luke? I got a bit carried away in my response:
"Beyond Bette Davis' defiance, there's another screen icon that Archer pays homage to -- Rita Haworth, in GILDA. "He's not as high-class as Rita Hayworth," Archer says, "But he's a fun-loving floozy, a witty tease---and if you try to tame him, he's gonna run off to Montevideo and become a stripper."

Luke as Rita Haworth? He wishes! Read the full HX piece here.

One reviewer that really got what we were trying to say with this film was Kyle Buchanan in his review entitled "Relax, it's Just Sex." Read it in full in this month's Advocate.

Better at remembering body parts than faces, Luke (Jesse Archer) spends every New York minute on the prowl until he has a transformative encounter with a mysterious hunk named Stephen (Charlie David). Something about this sex was different, Luke insists: “I think we even looked each other in the eyes.” A drama queen who speaks exclusively in bons mots, Luke can deflect any oncoming relationship with a well-placed quip.

Straight romantic comedies tend to save their kiss for the final reel, but the modern gay rom-com is a different breed. In these films the leads have moved well beyond kissing by act 2, and “I love you” is an obstacle, not a goal. Love isn’t just a four-letter word, it’s a test -- and one that many gay men, including Luke, keep putting off. After all, why should they work at a relationship when casual encounters come so easily?


Here's a still from the film -- I'm having a fight with Charlie David. Love...is a four letter word!







From AXN magazine in Australia:

For Jesse Archer, portraying Luke, a promiscuous, unapologetic, in-your-face, ‘gay cliché’ in the film A Four Letter Word, was never going to be a problem. In fact, he wouldn’t have it any other way. “I felt it’s high time that we have a ‘gay cliché’ that discovers it’s okay to be just that,” Jesse tells AXN. “You don’t need to change yourself; just be yourself. All that, and you don’t have to die at the end. Imagine!”

“I wanted to follow the story of a slut and sort of humanise him a little bit,” Jesse says. “Make him more than just a punchline. Some people don’t get much more than that in a character like Luke, but for me it’s interesting to scratch a little beneath the surface, to read between the lines. We all have a truth to tell.”

And that's the gospel of Luke! If you are coming this weekend, I'll be at screenings on Friday (7:45 and 10:15), Saturday (7:45), and Sunday (5:15). I'll also be attending after parties each night. Friday at HK Lounge, Saturday at X/ES bar (featured in the film), and Sunday at Vlada.

Keep your ticket stub from any screening over the weekend and get a free V2 vodka drink at any of these parties. See you there!



Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Triceratops Seeks Tricerabottoms

Paleontologists in Mexico have uncovered a new new dinosaur species that attracted mates using 3 giant horns and a large "neck frill." In addition (let me take a deep breathe) the new dinosaur was endowed with the largest head of any animal that ever walked the earth.

Not that size matters -- the animal is extinct, but still. I'm not sure which turns me on most: is it the largest head, the three giant horns, or the neck frill?

Do I have to choose? This dinosaur could probably explain my attraction to well-hung drag queens.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The BlackOut of 2003

One of the best times ever in New York City was in a blackout. Not my blackout, but a city-wide blackout back in the summer of 2003. Cell phones didn't work, and all you had were the people and places closest to you. Besides the days after September 11, it was the only time the city felt like a real community.

There were bonfires in Thompkins Square park, and everyone was outside. Amanda Lepore walked into the Cock that night on Avenue A wearing nothing but white pumps. That's it! I ran around the city with my friends, ending up at the Slide. The Slide (now extinct) was a bar on the Bowery, and all the interior was based on the original gay bar of 1890.

Daniel Nardicio of Dlist.com was there promoting the place with a "Gay Ride!" like a Hay Ride, but not. A pickup outside had bales of hay in it, and about fifteen of us from the bar piled in. Burlesque Queen *Bob* had a megaphone, and we drove around the block as she blared "Gay Ride! All aboard the Gay Ride!" until the police pulled us over. We quickly abandoned *Bob* and the gay ride, and raced back to the Slide.

During the blackout, there were no lights, only candles. Music leaked from a battery operated ghettoblaster. There was no electricity for the ice so the bartenders gave the drinks away for free. It was so incredibly hot that August and, without air conditioning, everyone just started peeling off their clothes and getting naked.

You see, the best time ever!


On the bar.


















Me and Naridicio

















Hot and Bothered
















Anyone else remember the blackout?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Number-Crunching Trudy

Who can forget the bedridden Bag Balm Betty?

Let us return to the nursing home in Michigan where (no longer my neighbor) Dan works, and get to know another of its quirky cast of characters. Number-Crunching Trudy’s tale is either heartbreaking, heartwarming, or simply a very good reason not to become an accountant.

Trudy’s real name is Yvonne. Nobody is sure how Yvonne became Trudy, but Trudy (once Yvonne) used to be an accountant. It's the only reason they can figure she only speaks in numbers. Not random numbers, but ordered numbers, and mainly the same four numbers: “96, 97, 98, 99.” She has an innate fear of the number 100, so as soon as she gets to 99, Trudy stops. And then re-starts at 96.

Dan says she’s there (somewhere), alert (sometimes) but she has to bumble through several stuttering sessions of counting before you can see her. Trudy is one of Dan’s favorite patients, despite the fact she mostly just stares him down, scorching him with her eyes in an evil glare.

“How are you today, Trudy?” He asks.
“96, 97, 98, 99,” she speaks, eyes ablaze.

The same succession of numbers is repeated at least three times until Dan interrupts her with another question. “Trudy, do you want a hug?” And then Trudy will answer. “Why would you want to hug me?”

At mealtime, Trudy annoys her peers, mumbling “96, 97, 98, 99” as she eats. An elderly bossy bitch named Margaret says “Shut up!” but Trudy continues unphased “96, 97, 98, 99” until another old woman shouts “You’re a dummy!” which wakes her up. “No, I’m not!”

Trudy has the odd moment of clarity, but when Dan looks for her at night, to change her and put her to bed, he most often finds her wandering the halls or in other peoples rooms spreading the numerical gospel. She roams so much Dan says its to ensure her ghost will haunt the hell out of those halls once she’s gone.

If he does find her in her room, Number-Crunching Trudy is staring at the window, counting the blinds. He needs to put her to bed but she just continues staring, continues counting. Except for once, recently, when he put her to bed and Trudy asked him if he would kiss her goodnight.

Sadly, she can’t take care of herself. Dan constantly has to remind her to eat, or to take sips of her drink. He spends extra time with Trudy and recently, they spent an afternoon speaking the same language. It was an incredible achievement, her personal record. Together they counted from the number 60 all the way to 129. Where she left off, he picked up and vice-versa.

Dan gives her a little extra attention because Trudy has no known relatives. She has never even had a visitor, which might explain the obsession. With nobody but the numbers, it's always tax-season for Trudy.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Digital Diva

My co-star in A Four Letter Word is the devastatingly handsome JR Rolley. He was also in Slutty Summer, playing the role of Derek in both films. Derek is as close to the perfect man as you can get, and JR is pretty close to perfect. We've been doing some promotions together and this guy is absolutely genuine.

I never wanted to do it with a cartoon until I saw him animated. The futuristic creation is the work of this digital artist. Hot.



JR will be showing his range playing the bad guy in the upcoming series Christopher Street.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Over The Hill

March 21...it's the first day of spring. In stark contradiction, it is also Bam Bam's 40th birthday.

Happy Birthday Bam Bam!

He's being really fussy about turning forty.

"In gay years, I'm dead," he says morosely, and I try to comfort him with words. "Why are you worried about turning 40?" I say, "When you look 45?"

Such a fuddyduddy, Bam Bam's refused to allow any get togethers; no celebrations, no friends. It will be a quiet, reflective evening. Our alternative party plans include watching an episode of "Six Feet Under" and sharing a bottle of champagne together in the St. Marks cemetery.

Tomorrow, one hopes, it's back to living.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

AFLW goes under the pink carpet

A Four Letter Word is coming to Chelsea Clearview Cinemas in NYC next friday, March 28! Please come! You can buy tickets pre-sale online here.

Below
is a clip from last summer, when the film screened at Outfest. Featuring the fantastic duo of Lady Clover Honey (who appears in AFLW) and Tony Sawicki, "Under the Pink Carpet" features a newsy clip with footage from the film, and interviews with our cast and director.

Some highlights to watch out for:

My best friend, Cooldan, talking about the film: "The acting was amazing, everything was amazing." Thanks for that amazingly unbiased plug, Cooldan.

Casper Andreas giving the reason for so much full-frontal nudity in the film: "If you wanna earn the nickel, you gotta show the pickle"

Charlie David, on what it would take to see his penis: "I'll show full frontal for five seconds, at one million dollars a second. Let's talk about it."

Me, looking like I'm going to eat Tony, my interviewer: Note to (insufferable diva) self--look at your interviewer, not at the camera.

Margaret Echeverria, the redhead playing the fag hag, declaring: "I get to use my bosoms as an asset!!"

Incidentally, Margaret is the actress I want to play the fag hag in my next script.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Miss Mimi Grounded?

Let us return to the shenanigans our favorite Air-Hostess, the divalicious Miss Mimi:

Since one of their planes flew into a tower in Manhattan's downtown, flight attendants for this particular airline have taken paycut after paycut, and have resorted to making up for that loss in other ways. As in, liberating the plane of some precious cargo. As in, spirits. Besides cheap travel, it's the only perk.

There's always a ringleader, and Crazy Dan tells me that party queen Miss Mimi was targeted in a recent raid. As she de-planed, Miss Mimi was "bag-checked" by airline security. In her possession, they found half of the galley. The following is a list of the inventory Miss Mimi was found carrying:

3 bottles of champagne
2 bottles white wine
1 bottle red wine
8 beers
2 glasses ("She doesn't drink out of plastic")
several assorted lemons and limes

Lemons and limes? Lemons and limes! The party was meant to be at Mimi's room that night and plus, "It was a long layover," Miss Mimi told Crazy Dan. "I needed to stock up!"

So what did Mimi tell the airline officials who found this treasure trove in her bags? How does a diva pull through under pressure? Miss Mimi spins a yarn.

"I was running after a passenger," she told security. "To to give it to him for being such a good customer." The authorities interrogated her. "All this? You were going to give all this to one passenger?"

"He had cancer," answered Mimi flatly.

Mimi has since been grounded and is weighing her options. "Is Johnny Cochran is available?" she asks Crazy Dan.

Crazy tells her not even Johnny Cochran can save her. "Nobody is going to believe you-- and cancer??" Miss Mimi dismisses him. "It's what I said," she waves a finger, "And I'm sticking to it."

Miss Mimi is currently under investigation.

Out April

April's issue of OUT magazine is here. It's the transsexual issue, and it is TRANSTASTIC. 2008 is the year of the trannie. They are everywhere! And I'm all for inclusion.

The articles in this issue are fascinating and insightful: Transfags? Vaginal reconstruction? Transexy?

Most of it left me feeling uneasy, a bit queasy, much like I imagine even open-minded people felt about gays way back when. Bravo to OUT for providing such a mind-expanding read. I feel more aware already. And yet somehow more confused.

One of my favorite performers, the amazing Candis Cayne, says in her interview:

"your sexuality and your gender are two totally different things and they don't correlate at all."

If this is true, and transsexuals are not the gender of the genitalia they were born with, then they are heterosexual. Right? Which makes me wonder why they're lumped in with the gays?

My column this month had nothing to do with transsexuals. It detailed a very uncomfortable situation I had at a public toilet. A total stranger started talking to me about football. At the urinal. It was the straightest thing ever.

Some people have said that I'm perpetuating stereotypes by insulting football because there are gays who like football. Maybe Out Magazine should dedicate an issue to them? Tranny fags and football fans. Now that's all-inclusive.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Beware Falling Cranes!

This weekend a construction crane fell from the top of a site in Midtown. It's just so incredibly ludicrous that this thing (20 stories big) came crashing down, smashing three buildings, killing four people, and ultimately landing on a four-story townhouse -- pulverizing it.

They think a lady died in there, smashed to smithereens. She couldn't have known what hit her. Maybe a half a seconds warning before all is over. I'm imagine her there typing away at her computer, instant messaging a lover. Boom, gone. She's dead.

At last they dig through the rubble and find only her laptop. The screen blinks with an instant message pop-up window, from her lover.

IM:

"Where are you???"

Next IM:

"You said you'd be here in 5 minutes!"

Next IM:

"What? Did a crane fall on your house or something?"

Celebrities in Oklahoma

My friend Scott just sent me this hysterical link: "If celebrities moved to Oklahoma."

If they did, they'd probably be so much happier. Just look how happy Pamela Anderson is (below) in Oklahoma.

To my reader in Elk City (Hi!), is this an unfair or accurate portrayal of Oklahomans?

To You, Readers

Another word about blog comments: your blog comments!

I read each and every one of your comments. I learn and laugh with you. Just wanted to say I really appreciate hearing from you, even anonymously!

Thanks for sharing.

xx

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Anonymity and Me

If you're feeling down in the dumps, you should go to Lady Bunny's blog. You should definitely not, I repeat do not google yourself.

Silly me, I googled myself. I found I'd appeared last year in a discussion forum on a site called Datalounge, which celebrates "10 Years of Gay Gossip, Politics and Pointless Bitchery"---10 years! That's a decade to be proud of.

I appeared in a thread, it was either gossip or pointless bitchery, probably both. The original post was: Have any of you done the deed with this very hot, very talented guy? And then it provided a link to my site.

Well, thank you mister original poster for thinking I'm hot and talented. Because you're the only one! He asked if anyone had "done the deed" with me. What followed was a trail of 40 responses which went oh-so much further than a simple yes or no.

You don't like me, you really don't like me!

Here is a sampling:

Looks like an insufferable diva.

by: Anonymous reply 9 11/16/07 @15:16

I've never met him, but know lots that have. Heard he's nice, not as interesting to talk to as you'd think after reading some of his stuff, is queeny as all get out.

by: Anonymous reply 11 11/16/07 @15:46

Tired, obnoxious, drugged out queen. Trust.

by: Anonymous reply 12 11/16/07 @15:47

Kind of a pathetic guy. Attractive face, but weak and tired looking. Just not sexy.

by: Anonymous reply 13 11/16/07 @16:00

Funny this should come up as I read his column in OUT about an hour ago.

Who is this vapid little cater waiter and why does he have a column? He has published a travel book and best I can figure he is a snippy little nineties holdover.

He is hot, if a little skinny, I like some of what he says, but his smug assholery is unwarranted given that his major accomplishment in life seems to be scoring a free place to sleep every summer in the Pines.

by: Anonymous reply 22 11/19/07 @11:56

IFHH.

by: Anonymous reply 25 11/19/07 @13:47

I've been reading his column and even checked out his website. He may be very nice in person but the character he plays on the internet and in his writing is anything but nice for anyone other than a bitchy circuit crowd.

by: R22 reply 27 11/19/07 @18:02

Jesse is one gross-self-absorbed-fag! She needs to get over herself.

by: Anonymous reply 29 11/27/07 @00:39

Don't kid yourselves; most of you dizzy DL queens would faint senselessly if Jesse Archer even looked at you.

by: Anonymous reply 31 12/04/07 @11:17

Yes, faint from the pretentiousness, self-regard, and aggressive self-promotion.

Good-looking narcissist #39,974,833.

NEXT!

by: Anonymous reply 32 12/04/07 @11:33

*****

Wow. Pointless bitchery really brings out the best in people! Thanks, reply 31, for trying to stick up for me. And "IFHH"? Is that: I fucking hate her ?? Hate me? None of em even know me. I share these postings because I want you to see what they have in common: they are all anonymous.

I wonder how many of these people would say these things to my face. I wonder how many of them would take the time to sit down and write those very same words in a letter, then put a stamp on it, and then post it to me. I wonder. Because I think that somewhere between the time they took out the pen and the time they took to post it, they'd reconsider what they were doing. Like, maybe it's not very constructive.

The ease of the digital age has not brought us any closer together. It's far too easy to just hide alone in a room. There you sit without having to actually interact. Without having to be held accountable for your actions, not even for your nasty free speech.

I'm all for pointless bitchery. Go for it-- criticize and eviscerate, but don't go slink back into the shadow of unaccountable anonymity. It's not fair to those of us who say what we feel and then dare to sign our names.

And now, this tired, drugged out insufferable diva is going to get over herself and visit Lady Bunny. At least she has a sense of humor. Trust.

Friday, March 14, 2008

You Can Read

I've got way too many books. I also like to switch them up depending on my mood. So I've got one here, one there; all read a bit, none finished. You can tell a lot about my brain by the way I read books.

Right now I'm juggling the following:

Puddn'Head Wilson, by Mark Twain.

If you thought there were a lack of original stories out there, read this. This was written during Mark Twain's "cynical" days, and he mocks the institution of slavery. He writes about a slave woman named Roxy. She's as white as I am, but she descended from blacks, so she's a slave. The thing is Roxy has a baby that is born around the same time as her masters baby. Both babies are white, so what does she do? She switches the babies, to give hers a better life.

After the switch, she watches her son grow up to be a rich, educated white man. But he (get this)...beats her! He beats her so severely she races off down the river. She ultimately comes back, and gives him one more chance to be nice to his "mammy" but he beats her again, so she tells him the truth: She's his mother and she'll tell everyone he's a "nigger" unless he gives her half his allowance. Hysterical.

Now they're friends, secretly. But her son is about to lose his inheritance because of massive gambling debts he's run up, so Roxy comes up with a solution. "I'm worth $800," she says. "You can sell me!" And he does.

****

7 Habits of Highly Effective People
, by Stephen Covey.

The habits are great. But I'm already on habit 6 and I'm still unemployed.

****

The God Delusion by Richard Hawkins

Only just begun this one, but it may be best summed up by the Emerson quote he put on chapter two: "The religion of one age is the literary entertainment of the next."

****

Manifest Your Destiny, by Wayne Dyer

A gift from my friend Paul. As with the habits, I need to stop reading and start manifesting.

****

The Post-Birthday World, by Lionel Shriver

A fascinating book. The protagonist, Irina McGovern, starts the book in a relationship of ten years. Then one night she cheats on her long-time boyfriend with their mutual friend Ramsey. Or does she cheat on him? The chapters then alternate. In one string, she did hook up with Ramsey, in the other she didn't. We see what happens to her life and relationships in two parallel stories.

The plot is predictable (if in one chapter she's the victim, the next chapter she's guaranteed to be the monster), but what makes this book incredible is the writer. She's got a wicked talent for truth. Take this passage, for example, when Irina reminisces about her relationship and the days (long since gone) when her lover would tear off her clothes in a fit of sexual passion:

Everyone understood: that's what you did at "the beginning," and she and Lawrence were in the middle. Or she had thought for ages that they were in the middle, though you couldn't read your own life like a book, measuring the remaining chapters with a rifle of your thumb. Nothing prevented turning an ordinary page on an ordinary evening and suddenly finding that you weren't in the middle but at the end.

****

Just like life, eh? At least her child doesn't grow up to beat her. What are you reading?

Thursday, March 13, 2008

The meaning of life?


Watched "Bringing Up Baby" --an old hollywood comedy from starring Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant in their prime. It's amazing how funny it still is, after all these years, those two racing around after a leopard. Kate Hepburn loses one of her heels so she's walking lopsided, "I was born on the side of a hill," she says, and I laugh. This is a comedy from 1938. In the whole big scheme of things, 1938 is not that long ago.

Which gets me thinking: Everyone involved in that picture is dead. Some died just a few years after filming. Others, like the late great Kate, died only a few years ago (although she wasn't really on this planet for years before that) but all, every last one of them, are undeniably dead.

Did they ever stop to ponder death in their prime? Did they really. seriously. ever think about it? Realizing we all must die is really a thought we prefer to ignore. When I think about it too much, I begin to understand why most people believe in an everlasting life in heaven because then you don't have to worry about ceasing to exist. Because when you cease to exist, there is nothing left. Poof! You vanish.

So what is legend? What does it matter to a dead Katharine Hepburn that she won four oscars or that AFI named her a top screen legend of all time? It only matters that she still makes people laugh. What does George Washington care if we still talk about his wooden dentures? It only matters I am free. Conversely, iron fisted rulers insist streets and countries and warships be named in their honor...but what good is legend for the dead? It means nothing.

And living? I wonder what's important. What truly matters? Anything? We're here, we race around in a comedy, we accumulate, we "accomplish" and we're gone. If once we're dead, we're just...gone, then the only real purpose in this life is to help other people through it.

It's the only thing I can figure that actually matters. How can I do that better? How can we do that better?

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Denim = Bad

I was flying on a stand-by ticket back to NYC, which allows me to fly business class. The only thing about stand-by is that you fly only if there's "space available" so the plane better not be full. You've also got to dress up because shabby-ass United Airlines needs all the class it can get.

So I dress up in a dress shirt and suit jacket, but the ticket agent sees my black pants are actually (gasp!) jeans. "You can't fly business in jeans," she says with the Australian accent that until now I thought adorable. "But look at my jacket!" I try to distract her.

"In Jeans, " she says, "You can only fly economy." Now, I always fly economy mind you. But...if you've ever flown across the pacific you know there is a big big difference between business and (cough) coach, so if you have a chance, you go balls out. I tell her that I've got a pair of "pants" in my carry-on. This is a lie. I'm actually running off to another (more style-minded) ticket clerk.

"Come back to me when you're changed," she says, "I'm holding your ticket here." Damn.

Luckily, the friend who dropped me off was still roaming the airport...and wearing khaki! I finally find him and bust out "I need.....your pants!" After a smooth switcheroo in the airport restroom, I looked much worse in the khaki, but it sure was worth it.

Back in NYC, jetlag is a very real thing. I look nothing like that chipper, evil-denim wearing, airbrushed-back-to-1987 person seen below on the A Four Letter Word poster now in Chelsea.

Casper Andreas has worked very hard to open A Four Letter Word in several cities, starting with NYC. We will open at the Chelsea Clearview Cinemas on 23rd street at 8th avenue on March 28th. I hope you will come see it!

The cast and director be attending a few screenings, and also hosting several film-related after-parties, my favorite being a sexual compulsives mixer (for sexual compulsives and their admirers)!

If you'd like more info on the theatrical opening and promotional events, send me an email and I'll be sure to spam you: jesse@jesseonthebrink.com

Monday, March 10, 2008

How not-to teach your wife a lesson

Went for a sunset picnic on Mrs. MacQuarrie's point, near Mrs. MacQuarie's chair (carved by convicts!) even though Mrs. MacQuarie died long before she would've had this view: My new friends, Lisa and Lee (a married couple), came to the point with a fantastic picnic.

They had just been lawn-bowling. You'd think lawn-bowling isn't performed by anyone under 65 in any place besides a Floridian town beginning with Palm...but alas, lawn bowling is huge here in Sydney. Mainly, I hear, because the younger people go and do it drunk.

Lisa (right) began drinking at Lawn-Bowling.

Lee (standing, left) watches Lisa (right) set up a fantastic spread: an array ricotta, wine, bread, bell peppers (capsicum), rocket (a type of lettuce), tomatoes, wine and tons of champagne!

Another exciting aspect about Australia, is that you can drink not only at lawn-bowling, but in public parks as well. At the picnic, Lisa only got drunker. When the sun set on the gorgeous scene above, Lee drove Lisa home.

On the way, she was happily bouncing around in the car and leaning out the window and playing the drunken fool. Lee told her to stop, but like a wild maniacal child she kept on. Finally, he screeched the car to a halt. "You drive," he insisted. "I want you to see what it's like to drive in a car with a drunken buffoon!"

So Lisa drove, and Lee taught her a lesson. He acted up loud and obnoxious, playing every bit the drunken buffoon. He bounced around, screaming and laughing, and leaning out the window like a madman--just as Lisa drove past the police.

She spent the night in jail.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Detergent-Free Water Feature

My friend Lars, (from South Africa) happened to be in Sydney at the same time as me and we've been able to spend lots of time together.
It's always fun for me to see new places through the eyes of people with differing perspectives. Like for example when Lars and I came upon this water fountain in Sydney's Hyde Park.

"Look at this water feature!" gasps Lars, pulling out his camera. As an American, I assume he's taking a picture of that immodestly nude warrior straddling a hot hairy beast. But Lars isn't focusing on the scrotum sack of iron dangling in the breeze. He doesn't even notice the statue. As an African, he's staring at the water.

"Can you believe it?" he says, admiring the fountain. "Nobody is doing their laundry!"

Lars is gobsmacked. In Africa, he reckons this one public fountain would be capable of handling (at least) forty loads of wash at any given time.

"But just look at Australia," he adds with flourish. "Not a soap sud in sight!"

Lighten My Load

Australia's 50 cent coin. It may look little here.

In Australia, when I realize that what I'm paying for requires change of more than fifty cents, first I laugh a little because what's about to appear in my palm is pure comedy. It's actually as big as my palm, so after I have a little laugh, I frantically search my pockets and purse for correct change, anything not to receive another one of these rocks.

It may only worth 50 cents, but is so humongous and cumbersome that if you smelted it down it'd surely be worth a whole lot more than that. You could hang two of these things off the bar of a bench press and do dead lifts. And even though the cost of food here in Sydney is easily double the price of New York City (no kidding), I can't seem to relieve my overstretched, bulging wallet of these massive "coins."

I was out with a friend today who bought coffee and turned to ask me "Do you have fifty cents?"
I thankfully dig into my pocket. "How many can I give you?"

Friday, March 07, 2008

New Generation of Gayby

On Valentine's Day 2006, I blogged about Bam Bam ditching me for the sperm clinic. Before we'd met, he'd arranged with a pair of lesbians to be the "father" to their gayby via artificial insemination. It's not the most romantic thing in the world when your boyfriend leaves you on Valentine's day to go to drop his spoof off at the sperm bank for a pair of lesbians intent on breeding. But I let it go.

I figured he was shooting blanks. I'd figured it wouldn't happened. I figured wrong.

This past September, lovely lesbian Prue fell pregnant. The whole affair is bizarre to me--I mean, gays aren't meant to breed: it's what elevates us above the animals. Is Bam Bam now gonna be forced to care about things like global warming? If my boyfriend has a gayby, what does that make me? It makes me remember (aagch!) that I am 100% recyclable. Life goes on.

Bam came down this trip to Australia to drop the bomb to his unsuspecting parents. He's not one for too much disclosure, and his parents aren't ones for too much emotion, so it went swift and pain-free. But how was he going to explain all this to the rest of the family?

We're also down under for Bam's mother's 80th birthday party. Just like last year, it was held after the all-night Mardi Gras party, and just before the "recovery" parties. I went to her gathering on two hours of sleep. I literally have pictures from Cyndi Lauper's Mardi Gras performance at 8 am, and the next picture is of a tea cup and cake at noon.

Bam Bam's mother celebrated her 80th surrounded by fifty of her friends, kids and grandkids, and she gave a little speech. In my impaired state, I heard her finish up with a surprise twist. "I'm proud to announce," she said, "That I'm to be a grandmother again," Everyone looks around stumped like...who's the floozy? And then she finishes. "Bam Bam is having a baby with Prue."

"Who is Prue?" screams someone. Nobody knows Prue, not even Bam Bam's mother, but she just sits down without another word, quite satisfied that she stumped the whole lot on her 80th.

The entire crowd turns to me, like my real name is Prue and I'm some marvel of modern medicine. "Is he showing a baby bump?"

"Bam Bam," I say..."You've got some 'splaining to do!"

The gayby, Ava Grace, is due to drop May 17.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

He OWNS Sexy.

Back in NYC, my friend JMP has a dog he named "Sexy." Nobody exactly knows why he would name a dog Sexy, especially since it's a flat-faced runt-ish breed. Our best collective guess is that he chose the name because when friends call, JMP can tell them: "I'm out... walking sexy."

Now JMP has planned a big long trip to France, and he can't imagine not taking Sexy with him. Unfortunately, the airline has posed a problem. They only allow dogs, sexy or not, to be carried on the aircraft if they weigh 9 pounds or less. Sexy weighs 12 pounds, so JMP has put her on a strict starvation diet.

3 pounds may not seem like a lot to me or you, but to supermodels like Sexy, it's 1/4 of her mass. According to a friend, Sexy is not taking this well. She's pekid and unwell, tired and depressed, and only down to 11 pounds!

"What's JMP going to do?" I ask.
"Last I heard," says the friend. "He now runs sexy."

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Bathing Beauties of Sydney

Look what Bondi Beach coughed up!

Every so often you take that one excellent picture. Completely candid, unposed, and (besides the human growth hormone) it's natural beauty at its best. If only it were your own.

Click on this below and just try to find a flaw.

Is there anyone out there who still can't stand a speedo?

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Heading to a Sleazy Recovery

More pictures from Sydney's Mardi Gras: circuit party or circus? A combination of both, really.
My friend Lars from South Africa is here. Below, I share my gold sequins (if you're not sparkling....!) with him. On the dance floor, another queen had the nerve to ask if my flair was a wardrobe malfunction. Then of course he wanted to borrow it.

The real killer are the Mardi Gras "recovery" parties. Below is Toybox, held under the big top of Luna Park the day after Mardi Gras. I ran into a ton of friends from New York on the dance floor. The finale here is full of streamers, confetti, and a drag queen spinning from the rafters. See below and believe: Toybox is the best gay party in the world.

Yes, that is Maria Von Trapp they are watching in the Toybox chill-out room.
One of the great organizations that they have here in Sydney is ACON, dedicated to building the community's health and well-being. At Mardi Gras, they have "rangers" that walk around looking to make sure nobody has 'dropped' from an overdose, and taking care of those in danger. They don't judge, they don't condemn. They inform, and help.

In the USA you'll see signs like "Drug use will not be tolerated." Here, it's a bit like passing out condoms to the sexually active instead of professing abstinence-0nly. Get a glimpse of the ACON posters you see on the walls of the Mardi Gras parties.

I particularly love this one.

Never use GHB with alcohol. You will die!

A sleazy recovery just about sums it up.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Photos from Sydney Mardi Gras 2008

Last year in Sydney, a gay couple were brutally bashed on Oxford Street and left for dead. Their attackers stole one of their phones and called their mother to proudly announce "We killed your faggot son!"

They did not die. On Saturday the couple returned to Oxford street, holding hands to lead the 30th annual Mardi Gras parade. What a galvanizing beginning to a sold out, all-night celebration of solidarity in Sydney's fox studio showgrounds.

The biggest venue, the Royal Hall of Industries, shut down for capacity at 4am. Olivia Newton-John was about to perform, and I had a fleeting flash of clarity: a heaving clot of 30,000 sweaty shirtless men are feverishly clamoring for a glimpse of some campy 1970's star...and I'm one of them.

Then it begins.

A huge video screen plays vintage footage: a mass of dancers roller skate in unison, clapping in rhythm. Everyone knows the beat. Onstage, thirty dancers whirl around until, in shimmering red and silver sequins, Olivia pops out of nowhere: "A place...where nobody dared to go.."

XANADU (now we are here!)

Kylie Minogue was rumored to be a surprise performer, and she's so huge in Australia, they can't get her out of their heads ("a guy I know saw her shopping in Paddington just yesterday!") So after Olivia's performance, I kept telling all the queens around me "Wasn't Kylie magnificent? That girl is such a chameleon!"

But the actual surprise performer (the fagnet who always comes through) was CYNDI LAUPER. She came out of nowhere looking like a cross between Marie Antoinette and Little Bo-Peep to bring down the house...at 8 am!

She launched into a brand new song ("The Same old f&*ing story!") from her upcoming dance album "Bring you to the Brink" (Cyndionthebrink!) and although nobody had heard the song before, it was so catchy the mob of homos quickly began singing the chorus with Cyndi as she rocked it, reaching over the barracades and touching the crowd because that's just the kind of performer she is.

I always see Cyndi in NYC and LA doing the pride parades; she organizes and headlines the True Colors tour promoting GLBT equality; she has a lesbian sister. If Cyndi Lauper is continually there for us, how can we be there for Cyndi Lauper? Buy her album when it drops!

She finished with "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" doing signature moves like the one seen on the album cover of She's so unusual. Right at the end of the song, she takes a big pie from one of the back-up dancers, and smashes it right into her own face. "Happy Mardi Gras!" she screams, and then she can't find her way off the stage. Cream-pied!

I said it again, all the way home: That Kylie was magnificent! Such a chameleon!