Sunday, April 25, 2010

Story 14

I am about a year in,15 pounds lighter, another belt loop in, the long curls are now short, preened and neat. My shirts has jumped one size smaller. I now wear completely sleeveless cut-offs shirts at work, which is a HUGE leap for me. This is big step, coming from the boy who went through his teen years avoiding pools and any event that would make me have to take my over-sized shirts, i.e. hiking, water parks, hot summer days, physical activity, anything that could lead to that because I didn’t want everyone to see me shirtless and discuss my boy-teets. It is a no big deal for most guys, for me it’s a huge leap step.
So I go to Union Square with my cousin Nicole. It’s in the same fashion that we have shopped and hung out since we were little eleventeen-year olds by the food court. Then most of our purpose was to find Nicole cigarettes, stuff our fat little faces and avoid turning into mallrats whom we new both new and Nicole had made out with.

Now when we shop it’s different that we are more cynical, both of us wear less black, are probably slightly less morbid and don’t go shopping as a beard so our parents don’t see us smoking. Another thing we do while shopping is that we pick a store, window shop, start from the men’s section and then work our way down to her favorite makeup and fragrance. This will be where she would end up at the makeup counter and get her face done for free while never intending to buy anything. Only now do I realize the Jewish stereotype that we are keeping alive. She of course, then ends up purchasing one of the items and every time saying “I didn’t even want it, but the makeup girl made it look so damn good.” This happens time and time again in a most predictable fashion.

As we go up to one of the counters, Nicole is eyeing some hideous Cheetah bag that looks like a hooker had left it behind while running from her pimp. It’s one of those gifts with purchase. Nicole’s taste in fashion is pretty great even though I love to make fun of it. Nicole’s fashion is a hybrid of Anna Nicole Smith’s hair, may she rest in peace, Betsy Johnson’s randomness and a Sex in the City’s accessories all mixed together. As I am trying to pull Nicole away from the glass case with that ugly bag that looks like it must have been made to carry cocaine, a rather large Jewie looking man comes up to us. He is dark, round, tall and fuzzy like a tennis ball, with chest hair that pokes over his HUGE gold star of David which was covered in diamonds as it’s nestled in his large man-breast cleavage. It is so large that one’s eye can’t help but stare at his cleavage. Actually, he is behind both of us, trapping me by holding one of my shoulders. I want to yell for poor Nicole to leave me and save herself, but I am only too late. Both Nicole and I pause, looking at each other to see if either of us knows him. I then responded to the tab with an awkward grin and a “Hello.” He then introduced himself as Michel, from Israel. Michel explains how he has known me from his favorite bar and will love to treat us to whatever fragrance we like. My mouth dropped. I have never been recognized like that before. It’s like being a celebrity. He takes us to a VIP spot of the store where he then offers Nicole a large sample of her favorite perfume “Sunflowers”. Being the poor college students that we are, we jump at this freebie opportunity. In all honesty, college students or not, anything free we go crazy for.

As Michel begins to compliment Nicole on her lovely skirt they both begin to talk Jew. They talk about what synagogues they have gone to. They then shift to the different symbols, he has on his neck and she has tattooed on her busom.

I then start to daydream the way I do in every math class I have ever taken, which is why I got straight Cs in that subject. I start to think about how I have always wanted to be the famous people I read about in “Okay” magazine. I want to be in the middle of a crowd clubs, at all the hottest parties, with the hottest women, men and paparazzi just trying to get a glimpse. The public keeps trying to just figure me out. I will be bigger than anyone prior. My name could be on billboards. I won’t be able to stand inside of a Macy’s because I will get malled by people wanting take photos and get a peak. I will be working on my new album titled “Tender Yiddishy lovin,” after my latest blockbuster as a young pop-sensation. Because I would be so famous, I will be asked to speak for lobbyist groups on various things to the public and congress. BradJolina and I would have to work together even though we argue so much over little things and have a sound off on twitter for no reason. This is because as a famous person, my opinion matters, does in fact count and make a difference. I will be more than just a number on the U.S. census. I will have a charity in my name, which brings back art back to under privileged communities. People will be speculating about my sex life. “Is he gay or straight?” They will ask on the covers of the magazines at the check out counter. I will be linked from every Hollywood hussy to every hot leading man and keep them guessing. In my “E True Hollywood Story,” they will interview random teachers from my high school days who barely remember yesterday, but of course remember me. They will talk about how I stood out even as a child. They will interview other celebs about my crazy party boy habits. I will be known for making a mark at every event. Paris Hilton will be one of those interviewed, talking about how she thinks that I am out of control and crying for help, from Mica nos to Miami Beach. This, right before my production company makes me leave my hit television series to attend rehab for pain killers that I take from Robert Downy Jr. I will be the envy of all those who didn’t give me a second thought. Until now, I have spend my life in what has felt like an invisibility cloak, going unnoticed. Now I am the person everyone notices and wants to know. I will be empowered. It will be amazing. I will have a house in every major city then, move to London because I am simply too cool for the United States. In London, I will of course develop a quasi-Americano-British accent like Madonna. I will be the envy of so many. Then I too will matter.

My dreaming is quickly interrupted. Nicole is tapping my shoulder trying to secretly ask me to save her from having to keep talking to this Michel. It’s one of our nonverbal cues we have for one of us to save the other. We soon leave with bags of loot. Michel gave us mounds of various makeup and fragrance goodies. It’s almost like the bags that celebrities get at the Emmies.
That night, after that most interesting day of window-shopping complimented with a free gift bag, the I have a feeling that something bad is going to happen. When I get to work I am greeted by the doorman watching the bar’s entryway, who is walking a rather large gentleman out of the door. By walking out I mean that the doorman is hugging this larger guy, keeping his arms restrained and essentially pushing him through the door. This guy is sloshed to say the least. He slurs loud and keeps telling the door guy “honey, I love you, why you no love me? I give you gift?” The voice sounds familiar, but I am not sure from where. This moment is a disarray. As the doorman nudges him outside, the man falls straight onto his face. When he is picking himself up, I realized that it is good old Michel. I feel bad for the poor drunk who just hours earlier was so nice to me, but really can’t help him and am running late for my shift. I leave him there and ask the door guy to take care of the guy.

The irony in this whole event is that, a few minutes after he is carried out of our bar for being too drunk they try to put Michel in a cab. After about 10 -15 minutes, there is a new crowd in the bar and new drunks to be kicked out. Poor Michel is soon forgotten. He then proceeds to stumble half a block away into another bar which for some reason doesn’t seem to notice how sloshed the poor guy is, and gives him yet even more alcohol. I later find out that after chugging his shot and leaving that bar, some random unknown man comes up to Michel. This is all happening in front of the bar which is a block from mine. This is all right outside on a busy weekend night where the street is filled with people out. This man starts yelling at him for being what he calls a “damned faggot,” according to Michel, they proceed to beat the living day lights out of Michel’s face. Michel is hospitalized for 3 weeks after getting gay bashed right in front of that other gay bar. How can something like this happen in the middle of a crowded street, in San Francisco of all places and NOTHING is done? It takes 10 minutes for someone to call the police, even though there are several onlookers walking down the street. Yet, for some reason, none of the drunken fools remain for police questioning. There are no witnesses.

Friday, April 23, 2010

newer material in the early stages...

Sorry, the accoustics are messed in the video...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Story 13, The Heathers

The Heathers.

Working there provides a very interesting, yet I suppose what some would consider a unique dynamic. While the bar is a business and like many businesses all over the world in other patriarchal societies, this place too is also run by men. The thing is that working in a place made for, maintained and supported by gay men sometimes makes me feel like I’m in high school all over again. It’s like every cliché after school special, Mean Girls, and some random episodes of Parker Louis Can’t Loose all mixed together. I know I seem to say that a lot in these stories, but it’s true. High school was nothing in comparison to my experience at the Labyrinth.

In high school I had no life, little drama, really it was depressing. For most of it I was pretty A-sexual and was okay with it. I assumed that eventually life would just fall into place within 30 minutes and eventually I would join a cool click and have burgers at the Max with Kelly and Lisa by sophomore year. Who was I kidding? I really just wanted to hang with Zack, by hang, I wanted to be his best friend and eventually have that awkward moment where we made out in Mr. Belding’s office which would make him have to leave Kelly for me. Instead, I watched others around me have a lot of drama, sex and lives and I was just there. I was the observer. My high school life was metaphorically speaking like I was that fat guy that just sat at home watching reality TV for years while getting fat, eating twinkles and living vicariously through those I watched. The guy who never got off of his lazy ass and let the years go by and others experience everything.

There are the popular ones here at the Labyrinth, much like those you see in high school based TV shows. We will call them Heathers for the time being and novelty purposes. Instead the high school girls all named Heather, with their blond hair, big-tits and short skirts who are a dime a dozen and run the school and it’s a similar social hierarchy. Here, Heathers are men who have a specific mix of sass, sex appeal and often find their way to squish their fat asses into Diesel jeans 2 sizes smaller than they should just to keep up with the Joneses. Like the Heathers of high school, they too can make or break someone in my shoes who has to deal with them 4-5 nights a week.

Within the 5 years that I have spent there, I have always noticed a clear clique that has remained constant during my time, the Heathers. They are Phil’s favorites. They often do not embody the specific, stereotypical image one may imagine a bartender to portray or look like physically. While being very different form one another, the quality that they all share is that they bloom in many ways via working at the bar. There are people who have worked there often for some time, some longer than others. Others have put it like this, “Phil likes to take wilting, unlikely flower buds and give them a chance to grow, just to eventually toss them to the curb or kick them out of his house.” It’s like this group represent the closest thing he will ever have to children that he can control. Often they go from quiet, mousy wallflowers to unlikely bartenders, who are cocky, sometimes money/and or coke hungry individuals (if not for a long period of time, at least for a small period of time most, but not all try the ski slope). While in my time there, I have seen many different Heathers groups manifested, they all have the same elements in common. Every 6 months or so this group changes reformulates, a new king emerges while another is dethroned or banished from the place all together. The Heathers are the ones who get the core best shifts at the bar and this is when they get sucked into the nexus that many bartenders fall into, somewhere between dawn and dusk, where your world is the bar. I just want to get one thing straight though, getting sucked into this world often has nothing to do with a lack of education, means failure at the “real world,” in my opinion it’s about comfort for most of us. The majority of their shifts are Friday, Saturday and maybe Sunday. They end up making more money in cash per week than most blue-collar people like us can understand and more than most white-collar people make a week at the same time, where all the money goes, that is a whole separate topic. The Heathers are Phil’s favorite bartenders at the moment. When bartenders end up in this group they live in their own parallel bubble of reality. They/we live the lives of vampires, rarely seeing the light or life of day, but without stupid young teenage girl fantasizing about us. Often it is hard for the Heathers to maintain functioning, relationships lasting longer than the time it takes for someone to zip their pants. It’s hard to date one of them/us for this reason and hard for anyone to get past the trick title due to our incompatible/ horrendous schedule. I can attest to this personally, but that is a separate story, for another time. Since they work every time the world around them lives, they get stuck in the inner-workings of the bar. This becomes their air, water and life before they can realize it.

Since the Heathers mainly hangout with their coworkers who work these good shifts along side them, they rarely let new people into their world. This is for two reasons; a new person could compromise their good schedule by taking their spot, another reason to watch out for the marbles. Get in the way of a Heather and their ability to make money or keep their job and one should always assume that they could be knifed at any time (not really, but kinda). Often the ones they are weary of are new bartenders, who get promoted astonishingly quickly. We will call them “Floaters.” They may be younger, prettier and have nothing to offer the bar other than a new “fresh” look. These are Heathers in the making that think they are at the bar just for a hot second while “getting through school” or “paying off a few loans.” There are Floaters that come in and out of this group every now and again without a scratch or getting sucked into the Heathers’ world. A world with late-nights/early mornings, a possible coke binge now and again and some other delights. Often though, soon these saps too are also stuck in the inner workings of this place we know as the Labyrinth. The said new said person/child, Floater could also divulge the Heathers’ secrets to the rest of the bar and find ways to get them fired. These people either turn into lifers or miraculously get fired by Phil for no reason. These floaters threaten the Heathers whole way of life. Again, another reason to watch you’re back in these parts.

Working there, there will always those who wish to be a part of the Heathers. We all want a piece of the pie. Some of us want this more than others. James, being promoted only a few months back, barbacked like myself for years. Keeping this in mind, while he always claims to be there just to get by and pay off some bills, he always has had the key makings of a Heather. He would/will do anything it takes to become one of them, even if that means getting rid of one of them. It’s really not as viscous as it sounds since all of them would do the same to cute little James if they could get him out of their way. At the time, there were a few obstacles in James’ way of becoming the Heather king that he knows he can be. There is the current bar’s manager, a coked-out, condescending guy with the style of a one George Michael, and the sass of a one Charro, but with an ass the size of a baby watermelon. I mean this guy’s facial hair looks like is so manicured its ridiculous. His eyebrows are insanely plucked to divert ones attention from his natural uni-brow. He is one of those people that likes to bite on other people’s style. The guy that sees you wearing a jacket he likes and the next day he is wearing the same one, a replica or even your jacket if you don’t watch your stuff close enough. Not saying he is a thief, but wouldn’t be surprised if things happen to disappear around him. Greedy coke heads sometimes will do that kind of thing, but we digress. We will call him Julio for this story to protect anyone from getting offended. While Julio, is an asshole to work with, as king of the Heathers he also is one of the best bartenders there. He is good at the bartending part, but as a “manager” he is greedy as hell and if he doesn’t like you, he will make your shifts unpleasant and long. It is though understandable why he gets all the best shifts based on the bartending skill alone and he helped write the bar’s schedule where he could help keep his other Heathers close by for support. Gina is a floater who soon becomes friends with Julio, the other Heathers during Julio’s reign and in turn becomes one of them for a period of time. On many a occasion, I bump into the two wasted roaming the aisles of the Castro. This is something to remember for later.

While many of us aren’t keen to Julio’s ruling of the bar, we are still all family. Correction, we are all family if your family has a couple members who will turn on ya’all every now and again. We all are brothers and sister at this place. If you ran out of cash and need a few bucks to go get a coffee or a beer, any of your coworkers here will give you a few bucks. No questions asked. We all trust while at the same time stay skeptical of each other at the same time. It’s insane.

We all tease each other as siblings do, with the occasional back handed compliment, something along the lines of “your boyfriend is adorable, was he in Life Goes On? What was his name? Corkey?”
Or something as simple as “love the jeans, they really make it look like you have an ass.” To which one replies with a smart backhanded compliment or downright insult.

Like I have said in other stories, it is important to have a thick skin to handle this place. While it sounds like abuse, this often is harmless teasing, but it is more often how friendemmies talk. This is often how the Heathers treat James. He takes the trash they dish and sometimes gives it back, but it’s because we all know that he is Phil’s pet. He is the only one of us that gets notes on his timecard telling him of how he is doing such a great job. He also is the only one besides Gina who can request time off of any kind without repercussions or getting punished with months of shitty schedules. While this may not be completely true, it is how it looks to me at the time.

I come to work on a regular Friday night and am ready to bear it all, Julio, the Heathers, the bar and all its perks. As I glance at the bar schedule to see who I will be working with besides the Heathers, to see who the Floater of tonight’s shift is, I am shocked to see that Julio’s shifts are whited-out. Confused by this I double check to see if I am still scheduled/employed at the bar, which I am and go on with my daily duties. One by one everyone scheduled that day shuffles in. They all take a moment to check the schedule as I do. They all have that same look of confusion/relief to see Julio not scheduled to work this Friday night. Did I forget to mention who is scheduled to take Julio’s spot on the schedule? It’s James. Until now, he only worked the daytime, no big deal shifts. James’ attitude now drifts from bar employee-drifter to a lifer. The question is, is he now one of the Heathers? While another one bites the dust, we are used to this aspect of the bar, people disappearing and getting fired for no reason. We all go on with our nightly duties and the bar goes on as though Julio never worked there.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Sonoma County CA separates elderly gay couple and sells their home

Sonoma County CA separates elderly gay couple and sells their home

By: Kate Kendell, reposted from

This story is sad and proves that Gays should be aloud the same rights as everyone else!!!

Clay and his partner of 20 years, Harold, lived in California. Clay and Harold made diligent efforts to protect their legal rights, and had their legal paperwork in place--wills, powers of attorney, and medical directives, all naming each other. Harold was 88 years old and in frail medical condition, but still living at home with Clay, 77, who was in good health.

One evening, Harold fell down the front steps of their home and was taken to the hospital. Based on their medical directives alone, Clay should have been consulted in Harold's care from the first moment. Tragically, county and health care workers instead refused to allow Clay to see Harold in the hospital. The county then ultimately went one step further by isolating the couple from each other, placing the men in separate nursing homes.

Ignoring Clay's significant role in Harold's life, the county continued to treat Harold like he had no family and went to court seeking the power to make financial decisions on his behalf. Outrageously, the county represented to the judge that Clay was merely Harold's "roommate." The court denied their efforts, but did grant the county limited access to one of Harold's bank accounts to pay for his care.

What happened next is even more chilling.

Without authority, without determining the value of Clay and Harold's possessions accumulated over the course of their 20 years together or making any effort to determine which items belonged to whom, the county took everything Harold and Clay owned and auctioned off all of their belongings. Adding further insult to grave injury, the county removed Clay from his home and confined him to a nursing home against his will. The county workers then terminated Clay and Harold's lease and surrendered the home they had shared for many years to the landlord.

Three months after he was hospitalized, Harold died in the nursing home. Because of the county's actions, Clay missed the final months he should have had with his partner of 20 years. Compounding this tragedy, Clay has literally nothing left of the home he had shared with Harold or the life he was living up until the day that Harold fell, because he has been unable to recover any of his property. The only memento Clay has is a photo album that Harold painstakingly put together for Clay during the last three months of his life.

With the help of a dedicated and persistent court-appointed attorney, Anne Dennis of Santa Rosa, Clay was finally released from the nursing home. Ms. Dennis, along with Stephen O'Neill and Margaret Flynn of Tarkington, O'Neill, Barrack & Chong, now represent Clay in a lawsuit against the county, the auction company, and the nursing home, with technical assistance from NCLR. A trial date has been set for July 16, 2010 in the Superior Court for the County of Sonoma.

Read more about NCLR's Elder Law Project.

Are you disturbed by the story of how Clay Greene was treated by the County? Please post this, pass it on, do whatever you can to help raise the visibility of what happened to Clay.

Also, please write a letter to the local paper, the Press Democrat (owned by The New York Times) asking them to do some investigative reporting on the Greene v. County of Sonoma case. So far they have ignored the story.

Send a letter to the editor at Include the story and a link to this post.

Just to make you laugh

Posting this for no reason... it's just funny to watch. Thanks Dlisted!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Mike Huckabee

All I'm sayin' on this topic is this... Gay does not = pataphelia & obviously he has no gay friends, family or anything of that nature.

Said Huckabee: "The young college student hopefully will find a career other than journalism. I would ask that he release the unedited tape of our conversation. I believe that what people do as individuals in their private lives is their business, but I do not believe we should change the traditional definition of marriage. Not only did he attempt to sensationalize my well known and hardly unusual views of same-sex marriage, he also inaccurately reported my views on Michael Steele as GOP chairman - I offered my support and didn't 'Rip into Steele' as his article asserted. I had a candid and frank conversation with the group about health care, education, the economy and national security while the young journalism student, instead, chose to focus on the issue of same-sex marriage and grossly distort my views."

Huckabee has apparently no qualms with the statements he made advising gays who want to be parents that "children are not puppies."

In response, The Perspective released the tape of the Huckabee interview, saying, "Huckabee’s problem seems to lie more in the focus of the article, which is centered partially on LGBT issues. We feel that same-sex marriage, laws prohibiting gays and lesbians from adopting children, and ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ are legitimate policy concerns about which to question national political figures. Gov. Huckabee may disagree. But regardless, his words speak for themselves, and it is a shame that he is now so quickly embarrassed of them. Further, Huckabee’s claim that he defended RNC Chairman Michael Steele is simply not true. Have a listen. (Things are a bit out of order — in the interest of getting this out there, we had to improvise.) If you can tell what was “grossly distorted,” please let us know."

(taken from article)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Story 12

I have been at the bar for quite some time now. I have made it through many hurdles as of yet and lasted much longer than most of my coworker’s expectations. I have now lost about 20 pounds of blubber. My waist is smaller, the hair is short, the curls chemically relaxed which makes life tough. Now I know why you rarely see black women in pools. Getting your hair relaxed is expensive and means avoiding rain, pools, sweating and any kind of moisture at all costs, just to keep the hair from frizzing up. It’s hard to keep pretty. I’m also not hiding my eyes with glasses anymore, traded them for contact lenses which adds another 15 minutes to my prep time for leaving the house. I also have a subtle sun-kissed glow now. I have traded Southern California and it’s superficial stereotypes for San Francisco because it’s just better. This city by the bay is supposed to be full of individual thinkers and people ready to behold each other’s iniquities. From hippies to bears, bull dykes to buttoned-up financial district accountants, all types are represented here. They are loved for their unique and eclectic charm and not cast out for not joining the masses. This is at least the way I would like to see San Francisco. In my head I like to keep it as this place, an oasis so to speak even if that isn’t true. While SF has just as many superficial, lame people, it also can be a place for some of us where we can just be ourselves without having to completely conform to society the way we would in any other US city.

The truth is that San Francisco will always have a special place in my heart, as it has been home for so long. It has always been one of those places that I have felt most people could live in comfortably if they come here with an open mind. It’s a place to find one’s niche, leave, move back feel at home, and feel comfortable just being. It will never be one of those places I can come back to after moving away. Here, I can feel the need to keep most of my moving boxes, all packed up in the closets and ready for the next city. San Franciscans often though, myself included, seemed to often look at this city as the center of the universe. While they come and go from city, there is this bubble that we often choose to stay in and subscribe to. Going the bridge and tunnel route as far as even Oakland, which on BART (local transit system) is less than 20 minutes away, even that seems thousands miles away. San Franciscans treat Oakland like it’s really on the other side of the continent, like they need air miles to get there.

While the city was often considered diverse for American standards, it’s odd how there are so many areas still very segregated. The gay men often stick to the gayborhood (The Castro), Polk Street, Select South of Market bars and a few bars in the not so Tender Loin. The poor lesbians of the city have an even smaller pool of places to choose from. There is the Lexington, the SF equivalent to “Lesbose,” the bar on Southpark, where even the most feminine woman have bigger balls than Rocky, rhetorically speaking of course, although I may be wrong. Then they have events bi-monthly at various gay-man stomping grounds where ladies can meet and get their clam taken for a ride or at least slapped, or whatever it is that women do. There are very few places for ladies to really go out and be as there are for us gay boys. Maybe that’s why they are pidgin-held to potlucks and staying in more here than in many other “large” cities.

The Castro bubble is so small that it is one of those places where you will see the same face over and over, and over, and over and over. Like a broken record, or more so like day-zha-vu. The weeks start to blend together, the faces much the same, yet different, but only slightly. All of our unique qualities that I originally thought San Francisco allowed us to keep in tact are seemingly becoming one homogeneous blob. We all are clones of each other, although we hate to admit it. We are all more like lemmings, It’s like staring at sea of those crash dummies from those early 90s commercials, where we all look the same but subtly different. It is funny because I too, being the individual that I would like to consider myself, I find that I too am becoming a part of this blob. As my jeans tighten the time I spent at the gym increases. The years of hiding behind baggy shirts have been traded with form fitting deep-v-necks. It’s funny how I am now one of them. Have I lost myself or is this just a part of the growing process?

Today I worked this shift with James. I work most of my shifts with him in the daytime, when it’s slow. James is a newer bartender and tends to work slower shifts. This is also how we really have got to know each other. During the weekday afternoon lulls we listen to each other’s drama and bond over common trials and tribulations. Near the end of this shift, right before the happy hour switches over (where the nighttime staff takes over for us), there is this guy who came up to both of us. He comes up to James, who would be one of those guys I would label as an eternal twink. It’s one of those “kiss, kiss, hug, hug,” faggy sort of moments. He, I guess has been out of town for a near year. He tells James that he looks more handsome than ever. He then asks who I am, like it matters. James fills him in. His response is to try to pull me aside, in front of the now moderately populated bar and ask me my name even though he has already asked James. He then asks me if I remember him. I lie, as one may do in these type of moments, and say yes not to hurt his feelings, although now I wish I just told it the way it is. He then says he remembers how “chubby and awkward” I was when we had first met, but now I “finally look alright.” He smiles while saying this backhanded compliment as though I should be grateful. He goes on to say that with a few more pounds and cutting of the hair more I would look great, once I loose the water weight. It’s hard to understand if and how that could be interpreted as a compliment. Not knowing how to process the situation, I proceed to smile, nod politely, walk away and tell him to fuck off under my breath. By this point, Aaron a.k.a. “Yentle”, one of that night’s bartenders was right behind me stocking alcohol for his shift. He over hears this conversation and then tells me that I should relax and take a cookie out of his locker, cause he like any Jewish mother knows that cookies always sooth the heart. He then tells me that I am much cuter with some “cushion for the pushin.” The question is whether Aaron’s comments where compliments or not.
Aaron is not the only one who doesn’t seem to care what anyone thinks. His unique style could only be described as eclectic elegance married to punk rocker edge, with a Hedwig ambiguity. His tattoos all told a story. His androgyny was the most intriguing part about him. Unlike most gay men I know, the magical powers of those with abs of steel, waxed chests and foe-collegiate style do not in the least bit work for Aaron. His kryptonite is full of jelly and covered in a carpet of man fur and musk.

At this moment I realize that I will never be good enough. I will need to learn how to be okay being me, not the image people think I should fill. There must be some fine balance of me, and the persona I will create in order to survive. I needed to learn how to be confident with my looks, my body and if I ended up like the rest of the Castro lemmings, I am okay. As long as I keep true and intact to myself in the process, the rest doesn’t matter.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Still Fighting The Hot.....

Still Fighting The Hot.....

Posted using ShareThis Enjoyed this article on Dlisted about Jared Letto. He is still cute. No other reason, just sayin,'

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Story 11, just rambling...

As a small child I was very inquisitive. This was during the days before the bar. Before I would become self-conscious about my weight, looks or what people thought of me. It was before the days of the Kardashians, and the Jersey shore. I was just a boy. My mother would always tell me stories about how I, much like Mc Giver would always try to figure out things very quickly. In reality I was never really like him, I mean I never had the attention-span to build anything and it would be years before I had a mullet. My mother said that I always would create new ways climb out of my crib as an infant. I would keep calm while supervised, then during naps I would study the crib for new ways to escape. Often these missions would lead to success. I would find a way to move my soccer-sized head with legs over the edge of the crib or playpen and somehow end up making my way safely to the ground. As a child I looked much like Stewie from Family Guy, all head and a little body, a real characature type kid. The climbing out of the pen, during the age of innocence, was before I learned what fear was, before courage had to be earned. I just did what I felt like. This, partially, is the mentality that has remained with me through my adult life. Just as an adult I learned to drink and curse like a sailor. Point being as a child I worked with this mantra: do what you feel like, find out how things work and that’s it. When I was younger though, that concept was followed by, how can I get things to work and get people’s attention on me?

Once, around 2-years old, my mother awoke to me looking like I had just came out of an alien movie. This child-like creature, who resembled her baby boy was standing near her bed. As she wiped the sleep out of here eyes, she then realized that I was covered in what looked like blood. Her heart sank and she was ready to take charge, call an ambulence, lift a car from off of me if she had to, all within a hearts beat. It would be any mother’s nightmare to see their child covered in blood.

After a second or two I whispered in Russian, the only language I knew at the time, “I am pretty.” By this point I had already learned that the world had a concept of beautiful, pretty and that I wanted to be that. It was at this point that she began to smell fumes like phameldahide. She then realized that the blood-goo was actually globs and of a dark red nail polish in my hand. This splatter pained all over the small infant-size body I once possessed. She immediately started a bath while she went for the nail polish remover before the nail polish stopped my skin from breathing. I got a fever as a result of this whole ordeal. All to be “pretty.” This would be just one of many missions during my childhood where I would aspire to be that one which one viewed as pretty or handsome. It’s funny how then the concept was so simple and not complicated by society and what the world around us tells us we are supposed to be like.

Friday, April 9, 2010


Lauri Kilmartin
Check her out! She is amazing

Thursday, April 8, 2010

another open mic

one of my newer sets, still a work in progress

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Story 10, Story Reposted and edited (first post)

Image taken compliments of

What it's like for me there.

(author's note, I suggest to start from the first story post and to work your way up to this one if this particular story doesn't make complete sense)

Now I am beginning to understand what they had meant in “Showgirls” when saying to “watch out for marbles.” I am now a part of that world. I am not a stripper, nor do I really have the dead eyes down. I am living the bartender lifestyle, my mother will be so proud. I don’t have to strip for my diner, but the competition here is just as bad, its the type where everyone is always someone out to steal your thunder. By steal, I say rip your thunder is more like it. Here, there is always someone ready to take your place. I am wearing newish jeans to work. They are slightly tighter then the pairs of jeans past. They also have the smallest waist of any jeans I have ever owned, so I am very happy for now, but am feeling the pressure to slim down. Within the first five minutes of work, one of the “regulars” has the nerve to mention to me that it looks as though I have gained a few pounds in the past few months, but they love my haircut. What the fuck does that mean? Essentially, they are saying that I look like a pig, but no one will notice cause my hair is great. Are the backhanded compliments also a part of the gay turf? I want to turn back to the fat fucker and ask him if, or actually when he has to pay people to have sex with him, cause he is the type that has to pay for sex. When they do actually bite the bullet, do they have issues finding his penis amongst all his fat? The truth is that I stay silent. I have only been working at the bar for a few months and really have little recollection of this customer who looks a lot like that fat molester looking guy who put together the backstreet boys. For some reason the fact that they have the nerve to come up to me and say something like that just makes me even more upset. In my mind this is may the moment I switch from innocent gay boy to someone who cuts a bitch. I already have issues with my weight, but to have a stranger come up to me and tell me this crap is ridiculous.

Everyone seems to be so damned tough in that bar and the public just adds to that impression. I just don’t get why. On top of everyone’s cut-throat attitude there, I have to deal with stranger’s/customers crap. They give me their unsolicited opinions on me personally, my body, my brain, cause I’m either too smart or too dumb, my eye color, my mannerisms being too gay or not being gay enough, who I date and everything in between. I get told a lot that at this point I am a “straight acting” guy. Why is it that gay men find the concept of this so enticing? I get the description and why they find a straight as more attractive and passing in gay culture, but who the fuck wants to date a straight man? I want a gay man that knows what they want and is confident in who they are. Besides, I want a man that has been around the blog and knows what they are doing in the sack as well.

They talk about me with both compliments and down right insults within an ears reach. It’s like I am not human and just the help and am not supposed to have feelings. Even though I try not to listen, it’s hard to be thick-skinned all the time. I also wonder how much of the shit they say is true, exaggerated or false. It’s hard to deal with and something I never really bargained for. Everyone at that bar seems to walk on eggshells out of fear of Phil. While working, and when out in public, these guys always act tougher than rocks, like gay rebels without causes. The interesting thing is that while working at a bar they may give off the appearance of being there party animals, the life of the party, but the truth is that most of it is a show. The “part” is a distraction from who my co-workers really are and the how normal they really are, if normal exists. Many of them have created this show to avoid their own problems, families, and their current life-shortcomings. I will admit that these people work just as hard as they play. Everyone takes their jobs very seriously, as a profession and not just a job the way much of the public may assume.

I have come in to this industry as a blind man in a city of lights, unsure of what this place has to offer me and what it will take from me, rhetorically speaking. What it will this probably take away from me next? I assume my youth and my soul, just an assumption… In-turn I am not sure what I will take away from my time here. I fear though ending up a life-long bartender, although I am in school and that’s not the goal, it never seems to be. The other issue is this, what’s wrong with being a lifetime bartender? It’s not like I’m committing to a life working drive-throughs. It’s nice to be the life of the party, but all the time? Do I always have to appear happy? If I have learned anything from the “star magazine,” I have learned that no one can be happy at all times, we all have bad days, just ask Lindsey Lohan. Regardless of the questions I have, it is a good profession for the right people. Some people seems to portray the bartender roll to me like that of a model, everyone has an expiration date “make your money while you can, you wont be the it boy forever.” Isn’t that true in all fields and pretty much everything we do in life though? Work it before the sand runs out?

Since working here, I do not like to admit the changes coming over me. I am transitioning into a person who I do not know, although I am familiar with him. I am now peppering my sentences with words that I swore I would never use, the other day I said that something was “fierce” and wanted to punch myself out. I am getting awkwardly more comfortable with being the “big-headed fag boy” bullies always knew I was. I am more comfortable with the world of the gay, the rainbow and all that is connected to this. I am learning how to flirt with men and play the song and dance with them. It’s hard because we are all raised to date and flirt with the opposite sex, but for homosexuality, kids my age have no real gay relationship role models. This is an important social aspect of growing into an adult gay man, and not in a dirty way.

There are “gay” phrases that I will not use. It's not that i can't use them. I don’t use female words for men, unless I want to piss them off. For example, if some burly guy comes into the bar and asks me for a drink, but is a doosh-bag while ordering, I’ll call him Sally to get a rise out of him and piss him off. I do not have a lisp, but am getting more comfortable with my feminine side, although I don’t plan on entering the world of drag any time soon. I will not yet admit out loud my closeted love of old Mariah songs. Yes, I said Mariah Carey, she may at times look like a Rhino in heels, not saying she looks fat, but more so that she needs to stop wearing the same thing she’s worn since she was 19… Regardless, the woman can sing like no other and I’ll leave it at that.

I am getting used to the hassle and bustle of busing a club that is packed from night to night. I am one of the little lemmings who keep it clean and carry heavy boxes of beer through crowds of hundreds of people on a daily basis. I am oddly used to getting groped, ass-grabbed and having coworkers at times treat me like a simple machine. The messy drunks are like moving wallpaper there. There is a furry ignited in each and every one of them once the pop music plays, their inner 12-year old girl is let out and the man they are is forgotten while the music goes. For the entertainment value of this alone, I am more comfortable with the fact that I traded in the smell of coffee grounds-soaked work cloths for ones soaked in beer, cheap booze and man musk.

I now know that in a bar there is no such thing as an appropriate topic of conversation. There are no doors left closed. Most customers have no limits. Every queen seemed to feel it their personal duty to work your self-esteem down to a nub, to the best of their power just because they can. It’s like they are working hard to watch you crumble. If you break, these bitches win. If you don’t react to these cunts, then really you win. If you loose a few pounds, they would tell you. If they thought you looked attractive, they will sure as hell let you know. If you have a bad day and come off as a dick, they will tell you and make sure to cause a scene at your expense. If you are a barback accidentally take their melted, nearly empty, well cocktail, the storm will begin. Word to the wise, never get between a gay and their drinks, the consequences could create a monsoon.
The other thing I am now used to is the sort of initiation that one goes through when barbacking. It was almost like hazing but not in a weird frat sort of way that is illegal and homoerotic, one could only dream about that one. The homoerotic undertones are just an accepted part of the scenery and frankly, welcomed by most employees to a degree. If you do a good job as a barback, coworkers will much like the customers, do little holding back. If they think you suck, they would make sure you understand such. If they simply do not like you, you then are simply not a member of their exclusive club. It’s like trying to get a seat at the popular kid’s table in high school, you have to earn your respect and place. A thick skin is absolutely necessary to make it in that place. Otherwise, an unsuspecting new hire may as well quit before getting hired. Nothing is to be taken too personally or literally. While this sounds easy, it’s the hardest part of the game, but most crucial.

(to be continued)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Story 9. SIX MONTHS LATER, less funny, but true

It’s about 6 months now that I have been working there, about 5 months since I have enjoyed the peace of a weekend and the world of the living. My life is now all about school, going out and the bar. Actually, it’s less about school and more about everything else. My waist is about 2 inches smaller now. I have contact lenses now and am rarely seen in those clunky glasses buddy holly glasses that are windows into my past life. Life seems to be getting more confusing, while are the same time, it’s starting to make more sense. I now wear a size medium tee shirt at work, which I have cut the sleeves off of. For many this may be no big deal. For me this is a major step for me. I am the same guy who has always avoided showing off my body because I have never been at that comfort level. My hair now is also 4-inches shorter and well groomed. I fear that I will soon start looking like one of the guys from that lame “Queer Eye For the Straight Guy” show.

It’s three weeks before Thanksgiving and I want to go visit my mother who has just moved to the lovely state of Texas, a place I really know nothing about. I am from San Diego, which seems to be a very different place. All I do know is that Texas is a red state. For this reason alone, I have no interest in the place and I imagine my family to be of the only Jews who are calling that state home.

I write down my request in letter-form to the boss, which I am told to set in his mailbox because there really isn’t anyone to talk to about this. The odd thing is that I have been there 6 months already and have yet to really meet or see the owner Phil since I got this job. He is like Charlie from “Charlie’s Angels,” only to be known via telephone conversation, through other coworkers or through notes he mysteriously leaves on our time cards. In the note I nicely ask for Thanksgiving off and tell him that I will though be available for other holidays. Then, as I am writing my time off request, there is Aaron a few feet behind me staring at himself through a mirror we have perched above the time clock. He is putting on his usual Spackle routine of eye cream, powder and a sheer gloss. Aaron’s routine of getting ready for work is much like that of a show girl’s in the old movies, powder and a mirror with a lot of lights. He then glances over my shoulder to see what I am writing. I hate when people glance over my shoulder it makes me as uneasy as when you’re driving and notice a cop behind you, and even though your doing nothing wrong, you feel like you’re going to get busted for something. Aaron proceeds to fill me in and explains that“daddy” may not like me taking off on a major holiday. Aaron then explains how I could easily get fired for the request alone because I am inconveniencing him. Another possible outcome apparently is that he could simply make it hard for me later, with bad shifts or no shifts. The way he warns me, it comes off so unreal, as though my life is now destined to be under the thumb and of Phil who will guide my future’s fate. The way people describe Phil is almost as though he is the god father. The amount that my coworkers fear Phil’s wrath is immeasurable and hard to put into words. He has this power over many of us that I just can’t figure out.

A week later, on a Sunday night I had finish working happy hour and decide to then stay out for one drink. One thing about working in a bar is the second you are off the clock, everyone wants to get u loaded. Keeping this in mind, one drink soon turns to shot, after shot, random drink, after random drink. I was about an hour and a half into my night, I am happily trashed when I bumped into a group of my coworkers who are seemingly equally obliterated. Since they find me at our bar, we all decide that it’s Jagger Bomb time. Whoever thought up the idea of Jagger bombs, should be shot. It’s a almost as evil a concoction as a Long Island Iced Tea. It’s at this point when I know I’m going to be sick from this, but decide to keep going because I’m young and stupid. Soon we are off. This is where my night normally ends. Tonight this is where my night just begins. We hop from bar to bar. They all start to blend together and really after a while all the drinks taste the same. The one thing I can remember is that it’s like going out with celebrities. These guys get us the best drinks, set our group in the best locations and always tip like money was toilet paper. I have never seen money used so frivolously. I am someone raised by immigrants who actually came to the U.S. as refugees, spending money so casually like it’s nothing astonishes me.
By the end of the night/the beginning of the morning, our group has thinned out. We end up at someone’s house, I’m not exactly sure who’s, maybe Johnny’s. Whoever’s home it is, he has and entire bar set up in their kitchen. In my drunken stooper I can’t tell how and when we had left the bar and how we are now at someone’s at-home bar. This is the first time I have ever been smashed with these guys. It’s odd to be this fucked up with co-workers around. Is this standard? By this point I am so drunk that I can’t exactly remember how long I have been in this person’s apartment.

I find myself staring at this beautiful, blue tequila bottle and listening to some random dude chatting into my ear who’s name escapes me. Is I am staring at the bottle, I can see my horrid reflection in it. It’s at the point in the night when your own reflection begins to look scary. It’s like I am in a trance, “snap out of it girl, I got some frosted flakes!” He passes me this plate that looks like it’s covered with powdered sugar. I am not known for passing up stuff with powdered sugar. I am not really sure what’s going on so I take my finger to the plate of powder then wipe it on my tongue and gums. This isn’t the kind of sugar I am used to. I pass the plate on. Aaron then says, “look boys touch of the gums, like a pro.” My entire mouth is numb, the sensation is uncomfortable while euphoric at the same time. I feel like a mess inside, yet I for some reason can’t stop smiling. I watch as they pass around this magical hors d'oeuvres. They keep passing around a bowl, while James played bartender and puts on some pop music selections off of his ipod. I can’t tell how long I have been there, although I feel really chipper now. James keeps topping off my glass while calling me stud. As James fills my glass for the millionth time, Paulo in his Latino gay accent says, “I heard that princesss is taking Thankssssgiving off, ha, nice working with you babe.” He then gives me a hug and a playful peck on the cheek.

It’s morning now. I just woke up with the taste of last night in my cotton mouthed-face, on the couch of a living room that I can’t recall, alone in yesterday’s cloths. My shirt is on the ground for some reason and covered in the smell of puke. I think I’m in the apartment from the night before. There is that powdered sugar plate which is now empty on the coffee table in front of me, next to a bullet looking thing that kind of looks like one of those magnifying glasses used to look at jewels. I am hugging my favorite black hoodie like it’s a lover and have some strange cat, who has set up shop on my thigh. I have no recollection of how I came to be here shirtless, alone and on some strange couch. I left shirtless in my hoody with the taste of vomit and moth-balls in my mouth. On my way to the bus, being in San Francisco’s wonderful Lower Haight, I stop by Walgreens to get the usual hangover treatment of pepto, gatoraid and mints. While eclectic, I hear this isn’t always the best part of town. This particular part of the Lower Haight area happens to currently be peppered with cracked out homeless people and recovering hippies that took one too many doses. These people are the hippies who haven’t sold out, end up in corporate America or as Whole Foods junkies.

Once inside, the maze of aisles again, I am reminded of the night’s events with one burp. That burps makes me realize that I am, a still astonishingly drunk chemistry lab, ready to explode everywhere. Once I have the Wallgreens version of Gatorade, in hand, peptobizmuf, mints and random crap that I find near the register, I am ready to get going. As I get to the register the clerk looks me straight in the eyes. It’s as though she is looking into my soul. It’s freaking me out. She looked like she has seen a ghost. She mutters, the amount I owe and then says in a stern tone “Ya’ll best be safe out there. Take care of yourself.” I don’t get what she was talking about, pop open the drink in hand and ran to approaching bus right outside.
Once I walk into my apartment, my mother calls that instant. Being a good boy, I answer because I am like many gay men, a self-admitted momma’s boy. She asks me about the upcoming holiday plans and I then confirmed that I am coming. By the third step into the apartment I can feel a grumbling in my gut. I burp and tell my mom I have to go, hang up on her and run straight to the bathroom. I puke all over the bathtub because that is the first thing I see when entering the bathroom. I turn around the sink and begin to wash my face, brush the sins off and put a clean taste in my mouth. As I looked in the mirror, I realized how fucked up I look. My eyes are met with purplish-bags and my cheeks are pale and flushed at the same time. My skin has this off grayish hew. Within seconds of seeing this horrid vision that I am trying to wash away, I feel the grumble again and end up hugging the toilet bowl as though it’s a long lover and puking.

This morning, being is more brutal than any I have seen since the 9th grade. It’s like I’m fourteen years old all over again. I am more hungover than I was the first time I got drunk enough to puke all over the Denny’s bathroom. Like that faithful New Years eve, last night I drank every alcoholic type of beverage within site to show I could roll. Unlike that New Year’s I did not professing my love to my best friend who would later be my girlfriend and then become my best fag hag and smoke 10 cigarettes in 1 sitting because I could. So much has changed, yet so little. Like then, I am just a small fish in a big pond, learning to be me in just another coming of age story.

This Is Effed Up, Texas!

This Is Effed Up, Texas!

Texas makes no sense... You can't buy certain kinds of porn there, but you can make your children watch porn? Makes no sense...

open mic, still a work in progress


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