Monday, February 28, 2005

Oscar weekend adventures

This was going to be it! The weekend I grabbed life by the horns and LIVED! And then wrapped it all up with a neat little Hollywood ending.

Friday night: Leave work on time. Hit the gym. Head home to shower and shave things. Be at Sidetrack by 11 pm. Have sex with 37 oily bodybuilders before sunup.

At least that’s how it was scripted to play out in my turgid porn fantasies. In reality, I ended up working until 10 pm, gorging myself on some extremely mediocre takeout from PF Chang’s (ginger chicken my ASS—it was more like ginger ale chicken) and waddling home to sit through three hours of CSI on my TiVo. Woo-hoo! Par-tay!

Saturday: This time it was going to happen—only with thirty-NINE oily bodybuilders. (I figured the fates owed me a couple extras for what had happened on Friday.) I spent the day running last-minute vacation errands (I got everything done except finding one of those inflatable neck pillows that make it easier to sleep on transatlantic flights). Then I got the brilliant idea that Now! In February! In Chicago! Three days before I take a 10-day vacation in Europe! would be a great time to start my marathon training, so I headed out in Shorts! In the freezing cold! and got in a good mile and a half before I realized I was being a Moron!

After I came to my senses got home and thawed, I met Keith at 6:00 to choreograph a song we’re teaching on Tuesday, Jim met us for dinner afterward, I gorged myself once again—this time with delicious, realistically flavored Italian food—and once again I found myself with just enough social ambition to waddle home to watch three hours of CSI on my TiVo.

CSI: Shameless addiction or all-too-convenient replacement for actual human contact? Next Oprah.

Sunday: I woke up well-rested. So at least there was THAT. Then I was off to a fabulous gay brunch with Jim and Jeff and Keith. Then a tour of Jim and Jeff’s house renovation, which is going to kick ass when it’s done. In 2007. Then a two-hour dance rehearsal. Then the fabulous gay pre-Oscar party at Sidetrack. I was one of the trained monkeys singers who added ambience during the event. And I wore a sparkly shirt, so if you missed the party, you missed your opportunity to point and laugh admire the shredded-tin-woodsman collection from the House of Jake.

Singing at a bar is a hard gig. Everyone there is, after all, in a bar—and people in bars aren’t usually inclined to shut up and listen. But there was a small group standing around watching me, and there was a camera blasting my face on every freakin’ screen in the place. And when you’re singing and you see your face everywhere you look, you tend to focus on gosh, my nose looks big and I really should work on my posture instead of I’m singing a song here, so I need to make sure I don’t fuck up the notes and/or the words. It’s kind of disconcerting.

Oh, whom am I kidding? I was singing a belty solo in a packed bar with a turbocharged sound system and my big-nosed face everywhere anybody could look. For three minutes, I was a superstar! And then Beyoncé showed up with THREE solos—one of them in French, even—and totally stole my thunder. I’m gonna have to cut her.

And then Matthew—dear, sweet, kinda drunk Matthew—tried to play matchmaker between me and two totally hot muscledudes (key words: arms, pecs, glutes) who happened to wander in front of us at the wrong time. (For them, at least.) Three hours later, though, they were still standing with me, watching the Oscars and doing those accidentally-bumping-into-me things that guys do when they flirt. Which was giving me a total boner.

In between Chris Rock’s painful attempts at cheap-joke insults humor (am I the only one who thinks he really needs to work on his timing?) and the endless parade of pneumatic Hollywood breasts, we managed to discover our shared marathon experiences—though they (the muscledudes, not the pneumatic breasts) totally trumped me by also doing full-out triathlons. Lots of them. And though I’ve done two triathlons, they (the triathlons, not the pneumatic breasts) were kinda embarrassing so I don’t bring them up much.

Anyway, we had a great time chatting and flirting and bumping and grinding all through the telecast. (Don’t you just love the word telecast? I sure do.) And by the time we parted company, we’d managed to spend the evening as perfect gentlemen.

Depending, of course, on your definition of “perfect gentlemen.”

Let’s just say the abovementioned fates still owe me a pile of oily bodybuilders. 37 of them.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Where are you watching the Oscars?

How about with a bar full of homos? The Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus is hosting our annual Oscar-watching party/fund-raiser this Sunday at Sidetrack (3349 N. Halsted), and YOU need to be there. Otherwise you’ll miss all this:

5:00 Forty bucks gets you VIP access to two hours of food, an open bar, raffles, live entertainment (including yours truly singing in a sparkly shirt) and squatters’ rights to the best seats for watching the telecast.

7:00 Doors open to the “general public,” which is a nice way of saying “people who don’t get the good seats for the Oscars or the chance to hear Jake sing in a sparkly shirt.”

7:30 The Oscars start. So do the bitchy comments about the starlets’ dresses and Joan Rivers’ face. And since the best bitchy comments come from the homos, you’ll have a substandard Oscar experience if you don’t watch with us.

You can order your VIP tickets in advance by clicking here, or you can just pay at the door on Sunday.

Remember: You can watch the Oscars with your friends … or you can watch the Oscars with your fabulous friends. See you there!

More links for your clicking pleasure:

1) The pictures are finally up from my cupid adventure. I didn’t see him there that night, but buried in all those pictures are a few shots of a guy I had a dismally boring date with this summer. Man, I have never had to work so hard to make conversation in my entire life. He seemed to be a nice enough guy, but the dude was so quiet and socially mousy that I was exhausted when we were finally done “talking.” It’s a damn shame a man so boring can be so friggin’ hot.

2) Time magazine didn’t print my letter. I’m not really surprised, though; it was a bit off-topic—and the letters Time did run focused more on broadly loving or loathing Evangelicals than on addressing specific issues. And since the letters were overwhelmingly in the loathing category, I’m not gonna lodge any formal complaints.

3) Remember: Oscars with the homos.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

CSI: Why I love you so much

Because if there’s a murder scene with 17 dismembered bodies and blood and guts dripping off the ceiling and running down the walls and knee-deep puddles of muck everywhere you look, Catherine will arrive to process the area in head-to-toe white cashmere.

Because your cases can turn on a flake of dry skin you find under a blowing leaf or on a single eyelash you find after sifting through thousands of pieces of debris vacuumed out of a shag carpet, but you still never wear those unflattering hairnets when you gather evidence.

Because you also never wear HazMat suits—unless they make you look sexy.

Because you will test the DNA of every drop of moisture you find at a murder scene UNLESS it will help you solve a case in under 48 minutes plus commercials.

Because your gun vault has more atmosphere and trendy backlighting than most high-end dance clubs.

Because when your investigations take you to high-end dance clubs, they always look as trendy and appealing as a homecoming dance on Saved by the Bell.

Because you get to say “bled out.” I wish I got to say “bled out” as often as you do. But the opportunity never comes up in advertising. At least not very often.

Because the blood at your crime scenes looks as gruesome as a bowl of warm cherry Jell-O. But you wouldn't know that because you investigate all your crime scenes in creepy darkness. And the creepier your crime scenes, the more you pile on the artfully lit darkness.

Because one of your victims died of a subdural hematoma soon after being served a tray of Shirley Temples. And now I'm on a tireless crusade to get the world to call that delicious concoction of 7-Up and grenadine a "subdural hematoma." (It's a far more apt name for a bubbly red beverage, don't you think?)

Because if you have the slightest inkling that there might be a body buried in a thousand-acre landfill, you’ll find that body before the next commercial.

Because your corpses, even after days of rotting in the sun or bloating under water, always look like napping supermodels. Unless their gross disfigurements figure prominently in your plotlines—but even then you still manage to make them look pretty fuckable.

Because your CSI people are practically exploding with detailed, working knowledge of a staggering array of arcane disciplines from scuba diving to bus mechanics to GPS technology, but they still have to explain the most basic elements of forensic science (“pooling blood always follows gravity”) to each other week after week.

Because your make-believe technology is so advanced, you can produce museum-quality images from the reflections in the eyes of people who happen to have their pictures taken as they’re witnessing crimes.

Because every schmo you pull in off the street to interrogate knows full well that he or she has the right to walk out at a moment's notice—but doesn't do so until there's been a Dramatic Revelation or a Misleading Clue or it's time for a commercial, whichever comes first.

Because your Web site treats your characters as real people, with no listings of the actors’ names, forcing us to do some
creative Googling.

Because your head detective's name is Jim Brass. (Get it? He's a COP! And they call him BRASS!)

Because Catherine’s last name is Willows. And she used to be a stripper.

Because every time you show a closeup of Nick Stokes and his thick bull neck and his impossibly handsome mug, his eyes are clearly saying: Come freak me wild, Jake. You are the only man I will ever love. My body is your playground. I also make excellent blueberry muffins and I like to clean the kitchen.

Because every time you give your characters painful playful banter or disturbing little moments of plot intrigue (like when Grissom gives Sara cryptic compliments on her beauty) or force them to use the words “murder central” when they find a body in a hotel room near a staircase, your actors almost never look into the camera and mouth the words I took this job just to pay off my school loans.

Because you are the meth addiction in the circuit party of life. I'm hooked from the moment I see the sweeping overhead shots of Vegas that open every episode—and by the time Grissom utters his obligatory Painfully Clever Wry Observation three or four minutes later to signal that it's time to TiVo through the opening credits, your impossibly red blood and guts are entrenched deep within my more realistically colored blood and guts. And I wouldn't have it any other way.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Embarrassing moments: WHEW!

I thought the six previous posts would make for a fun little walk of shame through some moments from my youth that continue to haunt me for reasons both amusing and horrifying. But they seem to have been met with a roaring yawn by my readers—at least as far as the volume of comments suggests.

I am relieved, though, that my deepest, darkest source of embarrassment—the events in my Afro-American Literature class—generated little more than a “so what” from people. The realization has kept me perpetually upset with myself for 15 years, so it was nice to discover that perhaps I have been overanalyzing and overreacting all this time. (Me? Overreact? Alert the media!) In any case, it felt great to get this secret off my chest—and to learn that it was not the unspeakable shame I’ve been treating it as. Thanks for helping me discover that.

And I apologize for the weird construction in the last six posts. It thought writing them in the present tense would give the buildup more immediacy and the final embarrassing event more impact. But the stories kept needing backstories to establish the right context, and the whole experiment ended up being a mess of verb tenses. Sorry about that. I hope nobody got hurt.

IN OTHER NEWS, I had my exercise echocardiogram on Monday. And it was just like a picnic in the park—assuming the picnic is at the top of Mount Everest and you have exactly 21 minutes to get there. Best of all, once they get your heart levels up to the point where you taste blood in your throat and you are gasping for your very survival, they won’t let you breathe because they need your lungs to be as collapsed as possible so they can get a clear ultrasound image of your heart.

The cool part is that you get to see the images of your heart beating, and it’s both fascinating and profoundly moving. Seriously.

The coolest part, though, is when they tell you that there’s nothing wrong with your heart, and that the abnormality in your EKG—while not ideal—is well within the range of acceptable abnormalities, so don’t worry another moment about it and go forth and enjoy a full, healthy life.

At least that’s what they told me. :-)

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Embarrassing moment #1

Afro-American Literature (as it was called at the time) has, quite frankly, a killer reading list. In one semester we’ll be covering the major works of Amiri Baraka, Richard Wright, Toni Morrison, James Baldwin … and those are just the writers I’ve heard of. I’m a junior in college, I’ve just declared my English major, and I’m ready to sink my teeth into a world of great literature and heady discussions. Really!

It hasn’t occurred to me that I might be the only white person in the class. And when I walk in that first day, I am. Until two white girls walk in a couple minutes later. I’ve never been the racial minority before, and the experience makes the class and everything we read and discuss and learn all the more profound for me.

The professor is brilliant. He peppers his lectures with names and dates and fascinating contextual histories without ever using notes. He gets his students to participate with enthusiasm—even the ones who think they’re too cool and fight him every step of the way. His influence literally transforms the way I think and write, and I hear his voice in my writing to this day.

And the things he and his reading list teach me about the black experience in America! I find myself spellbound in incredulity as I begin to understand the ubiquity of black suffering in the name of white American “freedom” and “liberty.” I weep openly as I read the stories and absorb the sociopolitical implications of the literature in our curriculum. I vow then and there that I will always be color-blind in the way I treat people.

The class is truly a transforming milestone in the way I define myself and the way I relate to my surroundings. It blows open the doors of my relatively sheltered world and it energizes me as global citizen.

But it isn’t until a year later, when I run into the professor at a staging of Ntozake Shange’s “for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf” and he offers to drive me home, that for some reason I suddenly realize—to my absolute, gut-wrenching horror—that those two white girls and I had slowly, gradually drifted toward each other and had eventually spent the semester sitting—rudely, arrogantly, cluelessly—front and center in his classroom … while our black classmates had sat behind us. In the back of the learning bus.

The professor died within a year after that ride in his car. I have never kept in touch with anyone—black or white—from that class. Fifteen years later, I still feel sick to my stomach when I think about it.

And I have nobody to apologize to.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Embarrassing moment #2

Your daddy’s going to prison!

I’m in a spacing rehearsal for a huge show. We’ve learned the show in our rehearsal hall using tape and folding chairs to indicate walls and set pieces, and now we’re in the theater for the first time making sure everything we’ve rehearsed really fits on the stage and the actual set.

A bunch of us are sitting in the half-dark theater waiting for the kids to finish having their number spaced, when we realize one of the kids on stage is the offspring of a local jewelry store owner who’s just been caught in an all-over-the-news fraud scandal. I forget exactly what he'd been doing, but it was something along the lines of selling fake diamonds as though they were real or replacing people’s real diamonds with fake ones when they brought in their jewelry to be cleaned, reset or appraised. And now everyone is talking about it.

The jewelry store owner and his brother are already objects of ridicule in the community because of the cheesy, puerile, insultingly stupid—and completely inescapable—TV and radio spots that they run everywhere. And there have always been rumors that their employees never know when their paychecks will bounce.

So the opportunity to make fun of them by whispering things like Your daddy’s going to prison! at one of their kids from halfway across a darkened theater—knowing full well the kid can’t hear us, of course—is too much to resist. And we do it for at least 10 minutes while the kids’ number is being spaced.

And when our number is called and we get up and head to the stage, we realize the jewelry brothers have been sitting behind us the whole time.

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Embarrassing moment #3

I’m on multi-state tour with the high-school choir at the church I grew up in, where for a whole week we travel to a new city, perform in a church there, spend the night with host families, get back on the bus, travel to a new city, lather, rinse, repeat.

We perform one night at the home church of some of my parents’ oldest friends. After our concert, these friends excitedly inform me that they’ve arranged for me to stay that night with some of their closest friends.

When I get to the host family’s house, it somehow comes up that their son and I had attended the same show-choir camp (yes, show-choir camp) when we were in junior high school. With a big grin on his face, the son asks me if I remember a group that performed “Sister Christian” at the camp talent show.

“I sure do!” I blurt out. “The group was so bad! Everyone around me laughed and booed the whole time they were singing—I mean trying to sing! Even the counselors made fun of them the whole rest of the week at camp.”

It was true. The group SUCKED. They sucked so bad that three years later I still cringed every time I heard “Sister Christian” on the radio.

You can just guess what the son says next to me—with thoroughly, painfully wounded pride—in front of his parents, no less: “That was my band. I was the drummer.”

And I still have 12 whole hours to spend with this kid while his family feeds me dinner, puts me up for the night, makes me breakfast and finally—finally—takes me back to my bus in the morning.

I still cringe every time I hear “Sister Christian.” Except for a different reason.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Embarrassing moment #4

I’m living in the Spanish Foreign Language House in college. The FLH is an entire wing of a dorm filled with American students looking for more opportunities to learn a chosen language by living with other students who want to practice speaking it. One of our weekly activities is a dinner in a private dining room in the dorm where we’re not allowed to utter a word of English. Occasionally, these dinners are attended by guest language professors or native speakers who help us with conversational skills, pronunciations, colloquialisms, etc.

The only night in my two years in the FLH that our dinner guests are honest-to-goodness royalty—the actual freakin’ king and queen of Copacabanastan (I forget the actual name of the South American empire they kinged and queened over)—I manage to let out a burp that’s loud enough to silence a room filled with about 50 people.

To top it off, I suddenly realize I don’t know how to say a simple “excuse me” en español. But I’ve learned that you can often make a real Spanish word by simply Spanishizing a related English word and you’ll be right more than half of the time. So I take a guess at something that I hope shows suitable remorse over my rude outburst, and I announce to the room: “Soy embarazado.”

It’s only after the entire room (and its attending royalty) stop laughing—and I mean laughing—at me does someone finally tell me that I’ve just explained my belch to the king and queen of Copacabanastan by telling them that I’m pregnant.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Embarrassing moment #5

I’m giving a presentation on writing to a bored junior-high language arts class. (I was writing a weekly grammar column for the local paper at the time, which somehow made me both an expert and a celebrity. Except to these kids.) Having made this presentation many times, I arrogantly leave my notes at home and work from memory, using only my overhead transparencies (remember those?) as my lesson plan. I get to a section in the presentation about easy spelling rules, and I suddenly realize I can’t remember if it’s siege or seige. And I get really flustered.

And then it pops out of my mouth. An expression I normally use only with people who get the irony. But for some reason my muddled brain finds it to be a perfectly appropriate thing to say to impressionable junior-high students: “Man, my dealer must have given me a bad batch of drugs today.”

The kids show their first signs of life. The elderly teacher looks as though I’ve just whipped out my dick and peed on her.

And I never regain control of the situation until the class ends, 20 sweaty-palmed minutes later.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Embarrassing moment #6

I’m walking to the bathroom at work. I turn down the hallway where the bathrooms are, and I encounter a female colleague coming toward me from the women’s bathroom.

And I suddenly realize that I’ve already started unzipping my fly.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

The stress test: Part one

The large telephone number at the top of your doctor's referral sheet—the one that you called and got a recorded message telling you that all testing is done on a first-come, first-served basis—is, in fact, NOT the number you should have called to schedule your stress test. Yes, you have to SCHEDULE your stress test, you weak-hearted victim of our patient mismanagement. And you can't come in for another week. And you missed a whole morning of work for nothing. Got your heart rate up? Good.

But there's more. We at the Stress Center (motto: We stress more than customer service) have created an exclusive partnership with Now for every miscommunication you get about scheduling your exercise echocardiogram, will throw in a complimentary new feature that will work on every blog but yours. This week's special: the exciting new pop-up comments option, which will send your readers to the Land of Broken URLs whenever they try to make a comment on any of your posts. And it's absolutely FREE!

We see that you also qualify for our Friends & Family Illness Plan: For every three heart conditions we find in your network, we'll give your dad a debilitating case of pneumonia. He'll also get some corollary illness that will force him to quit his 45-year smoking addiction cold-turkey. We're sorry to report that this last feature will quite possibly help him live a longer, healthier life with more time to enjoy his family—especially his grandchildren. We at the Stress Center regret this error.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

A Valentine's Day cliché

So I called my little sister on Valentine's Day just to say hello, and she told me she'd ended up in the hospital a few days earlier with chest pains and had ended up wearing a heart monitor for 24 hours. It turns out she has some mild arrhythmia that's nothing really to worry about, though it will need periodic monitoring throughout the rest of her life. Lucky her.

I hadn't planned on telling my family about my abnormal EKG last week until I got more information from my stress test, which will be happening first thing on Wednesday. I didn't want to worry them needlessly, especially because my mom can be the polar opposite of me in interpreting bad news. Where I refuse to get worried until I have something very specific to worry about—like my cold, dead heart sitting in my own bloody hands—my mom has been known to take a benign tidbit of information and blow it out to its absolute worst-possible-case proportions:

Me: Oops. I burned the toast a little.
My mom: I knew it! Cancer!

But the fact that my sister and I both ended up at the doctor's with measurable heart problems within a couple days of each other was too cosmic even for my usually level-headed self to process. So I spilled the beans about my sludge-pumping heart, and we reveled in the bizarre coincidence together. (She, too, knew better than to tell our mom about me, even though I never told her to keep it a secret. I know this to be a fact because Mom emailed me twice on Tuesday and never brought up my imminent—and no doubt painfully fatal—myocardial infarction. (HA! Infarction!))

But the Valentine heart clichés don't stop there—not by a long shot! One of the reasons Mom emailed me only twice on Tuesday was because she spent the day in the hospital with my ex and his mom and his boyfriend while my ex's dad had triple-bypass surgery. Because when my extended family gets heart problems, we make sure we do it with thoroughness and maximum drama. What's more, the poor guy was actually supposed to have a quadruple bypass, but the one artery with 100% blockage was for some reason inoperable. But—and this is the cool part—it was actually growing its own new passageway around the blockage. Which just goes to show you that the human body is totally friggin' cool.

Anyway, I'm not making this post to elicit pity or play the drama card. My sister's fine, I'm gonna be fine, and my ex's dad is recovering nicely, according to all reports.

But if you get offered one of our hearts next Valentine's Day, don't take it. I'm just sayin'.

Monday, February 14, 2005

My first Chicago funeral

When I joined the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus three years ago, I was more than a little overwhelmed by the 150+ faces that greeted me at my first rehearsal. It took a few weeks for all those faces and names to start registering as individual people in my muddled mind, and Larry was one of the first to emerge from the crowd. A chorus member for 15 years at the time, he was clearly one of the group’s spiritual leaders. And he was always surrounded by friends every time I talked to him.

I never got to know Larry very well—we never talked on the phone, and our email correspondence never went much beyond chorus business—but we had many, many delightful conversations at rehearsals and chorus parties. You could tell just by looking at him that his was a decent, loving soul, and I never once heard him utter an unkind word about anyone else or even voice a complaint about the cancer that was slowly robbing him of his ability to enjoy the life he lived so openly, enthusiastically and always with a sense of fun.

Given how limited our friendship had been, I was surprised that the news of his death hit me so hard last week. And I was even more surprised how his funeral affected me on Saturday night. Everywhere I looked there was something that set off my emotions: the tears, the chin quivering up practically into my mouth, the sobs catching in my throat before they burst forth in huge, embarrassing sounds.

Sure, I was sad that a friend had died. And perhaps also that I never made the effort to get to know him better. But I think what affected me the most was what his death—particularly at his funeral—showed me.

For instance, both the pastor and Larry’s partner of 16 years mentioned during the funeral how devoted Larry was to his many nieces and nephews. The first time one of them said it, I immediately noticed a little girl sitting across the aisle from me. She looked almost exactly like my 3-year-old niece: same age, same haircut, same chubby cheeks, same defiant independence whenever someone tried to hold her hand—she was even dressed in a cute little girly-girl sweater with fluffy stuff around the neck, just the way my sister likes to dress my niece. For all I know, this little girl was the daughter of Larry’s neighbor’s gardener, but to me she represented everything my unclehood means to me: a lifetime obligation to love and protect and entertain and support and nurture my niece and nephew. And—above all else—not to die and deprive them of everything our relationship provides today and promises in the future. Larry’s cancer took that away from his nieces and nephews—and, quite possibly, this little girl. But it also gave me a huge jolt of reality: I need to do everything I can to make sure I’m around for a long time—especially given last week’s revelations with my EKG. Everything could be taken away from any of us in an instant, and I don’t want to put my family through the grief and loss of my death until I’m good and old.

The pastor and many of the speakers at the service also mentioned how they’d never seen their church so full—on a Saturday night, no less. I looked around at the people who’d canceled their plans and put on their suits and dresses and sat elbow-to-elbow, gay and straight, black and white and brown and tan, old and young, family and friends … just to honor Larry. I looked at the chorus, which occupied a good fourth of the church and sang so beautifully for him. And I realized what an amazingly remarkable organization we are: how our mission—before music, before entertainment, before social fun—is really about family. Family that shows up en masse in the good times and in neatly pressed suits in the bad. And every time we opened our mouths to sing at the funeral, those goddamned sobs welled up again in my throat and prevented me from making any useful contribution to the service.

I was fine when we all sang out of the hymnal or chanted the liturgy, but when the chorus started in on the music that Larry had sung with us just six months earlier, I couldn’t get beyond the fact that he’d rehearsed his own funeral music with us—and the tears and the quivering and the snotty nose took over and I had to leave the singing to my more emotionally stable brethren. We sang three songs for Larry, and Rick, who knew Larry pretty well, raised the freakin’ ROOF on his solo in “Seasons of Love.” And even though I was able to hold myself together long enough to solo through all four verses of “How Great Thou Art” at my own grandmother’s funeral five years ago, I couldn’t even look Rick in the eye Saturday night to tell him what a beautiful job he did.

Funerals are never fun, but Larry, yours was an amazing experience for me. And though we’re both just specks on the timelines of each other’s lives, I can promise that you made an impression on mine that I’ll never forget. Rest in peace, buddy.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Tying up loose ends

After only two days and $702.71, I am the proud owner of a whole new set of brake pads, calipers, hoses, rotors, cylinders and fluids. And I feel like I'm driving a whole new (more reliable) car. At least when I try to stop it.

Note to the guy in front of me in line at the mechanic's: We get it. You're richer and more important than anyone else in the room. That's why you answered your cell phone TWICE without even a simple "excuse me" while the poor guy behind the counter was trying to address your stupid, penny-pinching objections to the expensive work you had done to your Lexus SUV. I hope you had a nice time meeting your callers at the Talbott at 7:30 that night as the rest of us were made late and irritated while you planned your social life. The guy behind the counter was a saint for putting up with your petulance, and you're just lucky nobody behind you was carrying a brick.

Funny how when you finally see a doctor about something that's bothering you it seems to go away on its own. Since my EKG, I've gone from 10 sludge-pumping episodes a day to about one. But I'm still gonna go do the recommended stress test. Many thanks to my fabulous doctor readers who've offered opinions, advice and answers to my questions. You truly rock.

I won them last Saturday, I was told I'd get all the details emailed to me on Monday, and I haven't heard a thing. And it's been a whole week. And I'm not really sure whom to contact about it.

A TON of you have written with questions and concerns and even offers of money to help the little girl. You're all sweet and wonderful for caring so much, but I'm afraid I can't help you. The incident happened 10 years ago when my sister was first teaching, and after a few years of keeping the lines of communication open, she's completely lost track of the girl. My sister also caught a couple factual errors when she read my post: She wasn't sure exactly where the little girl got the dress (my murky memory somehow pinpointed Goodwill), and the dress wasn't red—it was more of a silvery blue. Not that it matters, but I just wanted to set the record straight.

I choreographed a couple numbers for a big fund-raiser on January 29, but I didn't get to see the show because I was on my spectular, avuncular Iowa vacation. If you didn't go either, here's some of what you missed:

Little Shop of Horrors never looked so fabulous.

Or so tragic. These girls are fierce performers, and I'm sure they stole the show.

Except they might have been upstaged by this sexually charged little number. Notice how the guys are all shirtless and touching each other in ways that would make John Ashcroft moist nervous. That was my idea. When you're the choreographer, you can make hot men fondle each other to throbbing techno beats. The power is intoxicating! INTOXICATING!

Here's the final, ab-tastic pose from that number. I can't remember the name of the song, but does it really matter?

I didn't choreograph this number, but I thought you'd like to see a picture of it anyway. For artistic reasons, of course.

One more shot. Remember, kids: Both hands on the keyboard!

Friday, February 11, 2005

Take! These broken wings!

So the Night of the Shirtless Cupids was less terrifying more fun than I’d expected. The crowd was lively, the venue was way-ass funky and fun, and nobody threw a drink in my face and shouted My eyes! My eyes! at the sight of me with my shirt off.

There were five cupids in all, and when we arrived at the bar we all shamefully confessed to joked about cramming in upper-body workouts all week and not eating anything all day to get ready for the event.

Three of the cupids in particular I’ve always thought of as pretty friggin’ built, and they were freaking out more than I was at the prospect of being designated beefcake in a room filled with rabid poodles fully clothed gay men. They were freaked out enough that they (well, we) did pushups and chair dips before they (well, we) donned our wings and headed out into the poodle palace patron-filled bar. HEY! Body-image issues are MY department, you sexy fuckers! Get up off the floor and find your own neuroses!

There will be tons of pictures on the BGCC Web site by sometime next week, but here’s one sneak peek graciously supplied by Rick:

Notice the wicked-cool tiles on the wall—the whole venue was like that. Notice the sheen of desperation baby oil on our bodies. (That was my gay-ass idea.) Notice the Dubya-at-a-press-conference look on my face. I think it’s the result of oxygen deprivation from holding in my gut for three hours straight.

And notice those huge freakin’ wings. They were responsible for many a spilled drink, toppled plant and poked-in-the-eye patron last night.

Speaking of poking the patrons, four of the five cupids reported being invited into one-on-one and/or group-sex situations last night. Not one of those four cupids was named Jake. Harumph.

But the night wasn’t all shunnery and spinsterhood for me. I did manage to make a connection and exchange phone numbers with someone there. And it was a GIRL! That’s right—if I can’t find a way to pick up easy, horny, sloppy-drunk men at an event called the Big Gay Cocktail Club, I can at least pick up women. So the old boy’s still got it, thankyouverymuch. Seriously, the woman I met last night was smart, funny, great to talk to and employed in an interesting new field with close ties to mine. We’re planning to have dinner soon. And I promise to be a perfect gentleman. Unless she brings a cute guy along.

Speaking of holding in my gut for three hours straight (sorry for this awkward transition—scroll up four paragraphs for the antecedent), I woke up this morning feeling as though I’d been repeatedly punched in the stomach by four muscular bodybuilders in oily thongs. It seems that the desperate fear of rabid poodle attacks that forced me to pinch my belly button and my spine together for three hours actually made for a pretty awesome isometric workout.

And if I have to wake up with a burning sensation after a night at a gay drinking event, I guess that’s the best kind of burn to have.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

I may regret this

But I let myself get talked into being a shirtless, bewinged cupid at tonight’s Valentine-themed Big Gay Cocktail Club.

And while I’ve always wanted to be shirtless beefcake at a big gay event—and I’m thrilled to be asked—I’m not sure I can smile and flirt and hold in my stomach for three hours without passing out. There’s still a bit of unsightly puffiness from the lipo, see, but all my jeans now hang low enough on my waist that you can see the still-very-red scars on my hip bones. And any of the guys tonight who see the scars and know what they are will be all look at HER and she’s too old to go around shirtless and didn’t she wear those shoes to the last Big Gay Cocktail Club?

Of course, anyone who knows what the scars are probably got that knowledge first-hand, so who are YOU to be all “look at HER” about me, you bony-finger-pointing, Filene’s-Basement-shopping Joan Riverses? Don' MAKE me have to CUTchoo.

Whew! Where was I? Oh yes: Manscaping. I shaved all the tummy and chest fur this week that I’d been letting grow since a month before the surgery. I thought it might look all sexy and luxurious when it was at full pelt, but it just looked anemic and laughable. And nobody loves a cupid that looks like a kitten with ringworm. I also got a full back waxing to remove the 50 random hairs that I couldn’t reach with a razor, but I was going to do that anyway. Because nobody loves a gay boy who looks like a macramé plant holder.

In any case, I’m all manscaped and out-of-a-bottle tanned and ready to face the music tonight. Literally! This month’s BGCC is promoting the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus’ new CD of love (and not-so-in-love) songs, I Will Be Loved Tonight. We’ll be singing some of the songs from the CD at the event and shamelessly trying to sell it—along with tickets to our spring show—to all the homos caught in our trap in attendance at tonight’s event.

Here’s what the CD looks like, in case you want to decorate your home in colors that will help you display it to its full aesthetic advantage when you buy your 50 copies:

If all goes according to plan tonight, we’ll sell a ton of CDs, people will have a great time, I won’t pass out and nobody will realize that Jake can’t grow a decent crop of body hair. Look at HER.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Why do most people go to the doctor?

Right. To read People magazine in the waiting room.

Which makes my visit this morning a grave disappointment. The only magazines to be found there were of the Car & Driver variety, so instead of People I just got cancer and heart disease.

WHICH IS A VAST OVERSIMPLIFICATION of what transpired today, but apparently there's a chance there's something wrong with me under both categories. But I'm not the type to get concerned about stuff like this until I know something for sure.

I went to the doctor this morning because there’s this mole on my thigh that in the last few months has doubled in size and become huge and bumpy and scaly in a Creature from the Black Lagoon kind of way AND I’ve also been having this weird sensation in my heart that feels like it’s working overtime to pump mounds of heavy sludge. I’ve had this sensation for as long as I can remember, but in a five-seconds-every-month kind of way. Since about December, though, it’s become a 10-times-a-day kind of thing. So I thought I’d have it checked out. And while I was in for a visit, I also thought I’d try to get a flu shot now that there’s this surprise surplus and we regular folks are finally allowed to become immunized.

(Do note the brilliant way I was able to squeeze THREE doctor visits in under ONE co-payment. I should get some kind of Nobel Prize for Skinflintery Economics for that.)

Anyway, the doctor took one look at my scabby mole, recoiled in horror at the way it tried to reach up and grab his pen, and gave me an immediate referral to a specialist. Which is going to give me TWO co-payments.

Then when I told him about the heart thing, he ordered an immediate EKG. (I’d never had an EKG, which is so easy and painless it’s practically over before it begins. Except the nurse couldn’t quite grasp the idea that every time she turned her head, her arm inadvertently yanked on the cords and some of the little sensors would get pulled off.) The EKG revealed an abnormal dip (where there should have been a mighty spike) in that cool wiggly line pattern that shows your heart is actually working, so my doctor ordered another referral—this time to get a stress test. (For those of you keeping score at home, that puts me back to three co-payments for three procedures. So much for my friggin’ Nobel Prize.)

I’d always thought a stress test involved having your heart monitored as you ran on a treadmill. Not so. Little-known fact: The actual stress test involves SCHEDULING APPOINTMENTS WITH SPECIALISTS AND COORDINATING REFERRALS WITH YOUR PHYSICIAN’S NETWORK AND YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY. You can do it without even leaving your chair—as long as you have a push-button phone and the awareness that you, as a thwarted Nobel Prize winner, are infinitely more intelligent than the navel-gazer who designed the referral rules and their accompanying labyrinthine phone menus (which have changed for your convenience, so listen carefully).

You want some more stress? The scabby-mole specialist is booked until MARCH 15. That’s long enough for the mole to grow big enough to swallow me whole in its crusty little mouth.

And just when you thought there couldn't be any more stress: The treadmill portion of my stress test is at a facility that operates on a first-come, first-serve basis. WHICH MEANS I CAN’T SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT. And of course the phone number for the facility doesn’t connect me to an actual human, so I can’t ask if I’ll need to bring gym clothes or if I can shower before returning to work or even roughly how much of my day I need to block out to have this done. HEY, YOU! HOSPITAL PEOPLE! WONDERING IF I’M EXPERIENCING STRESS? YOU BET YOUR SWEET BIPPY I’M EXPERIENCING STRESS—AND EVERY IRREGULAR HEARTBEAT HAS YOUR NAME ALL OVER IT!

I did get my flu shot, though. But at the rate I’m going, I’ll probably develop severe egg allergies and be dead by midnight.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

I just sent a letter to Time magazine

RE: “The 25 Most Influential Evangelicals in America”
February 7, 2005, pp. 34–45

Dear Editors,

Roberta Ahmanson, once linked to advocating the stoning of homosexuals, declares her Evangelical goal to be “improving the lives of human beings.” Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson credits “religious ideas” with achieving “social justice.”

This rhetoric sounds honorable coming from Time’s 25 influential Evangelicals, but it is cruelly meaningless when you consider the millions of families destroyed by divorce and adultery and spouse abuse—all of which are curiously ignored by Evangelicals who are too busy “improving” these families’ lives by attacking the make-believe threat of gay marriage. And where is the “social justice” in denying same-sex partners visitation rights in the hospital or using our relationships as kindling to fuel a bloody culture war?

If Evangelical leaders are as concerned about protecting marriage as your profiles repeatedly suggest, they would abandon their virulent anti-gay marriage crusade and instead focus their tireless energies on making adultery illegal. Adultery is, after all, explicitly banned in their beloved Ten Commandments—where homosexuality isn’t even mentioned. And it’s arguably the most destructive—and most preventable—threat to the institution of marriage. Until then, Evangelicals’ talk of improving lives and achieving social justice is nothing more than a smokescreen to hide their unconscionable campaign to vilify gay people and classify us as second-class citizens—either for the love of fund-raising money or, appallingly, just for sport.



Monday, February 07, 2005

Is it bad when this happens?

It feels like you've left your parking brake on every time you step on the gas, but since you never use your parking brake you know this is not possible. And you especially know it's not possible because when you look down you can plainly see that your parking brake is not engaged.

You drive your friend Eric and his friend Danny (who is visiting from Texas) to Franklin Street on Saturday so you can all poke around among the foo-foo art galleries, and the whole time you are driving there and back you are treated to various combinations of: that weird parking-brake thing, the smell of something burning, a high-pitched whine coming from somewhere deep within your car.

You call your mechanic—the best mechanic in the world who is as honest as the day is long and who can always make your car better for like five dollars—and he's moved his garage so far away from you it's literally not worth taking your car to him anymore.

You take your car to some other mechanic you found on the AAA site, and the whole time you're driving there on Lake Shore Drive this morning in rush-hour traffic (which neither rushes nor moves fast enough even to be called "traffic") your mind is filled with visions of the carnage you will cause when your brakes suddenly develop the opposite problem and they completely give out and you smash into bicyclists and pregnant pedestrians and joggers over and over and over again until you have killed the entire city.

Your new mechanic said he'd call you in an hour or so to tell you what's wrong with your car and it's been almost four hours and you're sure it's going to cost like five million dollars to get your car fixed and you'll be living in a box down by the river before the week is out.

But before you left your car there you stuck all your show-tune CDs in your backpack so those sticky-fingered gay mechanics wouldn't steal your favorite car music—especially your "Jake's Sing-A-Long Mix" CD that features "Ring Them Bells" AND "Maybe This Time" AND "The Lonely Goatherd" AND "Beauty Within" AND "Another Hundred People." (HA! You'll have to steal your faggy music from some OTHER guy with a shitty car, you show-tune-stealin' mechanics!)

Sunday, February 06, 2005

The winning streak continues!

When I was in sixth grade, I won an Army calendar in a neighbor's front-yard carnival staged to raise money for the Jerry Lewis telethon. (I know. Please keep your jealousy to yourselves.)

But Fortune just couldn't stop smiling on me, because—hot on the heels of that free calendar—Eric and I attended the Equality Illinois Gala last night, and in between celebrating Illinois' recent addition of GLBT people to the populations protected by the Illinois Human Rights Act and honoring the politicians and activists who got the bill signed into law, there was a drawing for two free first-class round-trip tickets to anywhere in the US courtesy of our friends at Orbitz … AND I WON THEM! WOO-HOO!

(The winning doesn't stop there, though. I hate to sound all braggy, but there's a very good chance I'll be clearing space off my mantle* in the next month to make room for the Academy Award I'm all but guaranteed to win.)

*This is not really true, because I don't have a mantle.

But enough about me. Let's talk about last night's Gala, which was totally freakin' cool. It was in the biggest, most bad-ass ballroom at the Hilton, and I think I heard there were 1,300 people there, all in tuxes and bugle beads and related finery. (It was like prom, only with the men getting the manicures and the women wearing the rented tuxes*.) And at $250 a head, the event raised at least … um … well, I don't want to hog all the math fun, so I'll let you dig out your calculators.

*This is only kind of true. I didn't see any women in male drag, but I did see tons of men (including your intrepid protagonist) who were wearing actual, custom-tailored tuxes (and some bugle-beaded dresses) that clearly came straight from their very own closets. (I also saw some women who at first glance looked like smokin' hot men. But I'm not ready to talk about that right now.)

I'd never been to one of these foo-foo gala fund-raisers, and I had a blast. First of all, I've lived here long enough now that I know (or at least recognize) a lot of gay Chicagoans. And Eric and sexy little Brad, our table captain, knew everyone else. So I was never at a loss for friendly conversation.

Second of all, I was wearing a freakin' tux in a freakin' gorgeous ballroom with 1,300 (well-manicured) people who were all positively giddy with elation over our recent victory over homophobic hatred. (Oh, and there's also that winning-the-grand-prize-in-the-Orbitz-drawing thing.) How could the evening NOT have been a blast?

Well, there were two ways: The DJ played some strange music. And both desserts I tried at the foo-foo dessert bar all but made me gag. But if forgotten '80s pop and Crisco-and-sand pastries were my biggest worries last night, I don't have much to complain about now, do I?

Actually, I did have one more worry: As we sat there grinning and clapping and reveling in our victory over hatred, I realized there were just-as-motivated, just-as-willing-to-cough-up-the-dough crowds out there ready to congregate and raise money to achieve nothing better than the illogical, malicious, intentionally hurtful goal of more firmly classifying gay people as second-class citizens in the eyes of the law and our nation's many constitutions. When we have children dying in squalor and poverty, people with nowhere to live but the streets, half of our marriages falling apart, educational standards that make us the laughingstock of less-developed nations, a deficit higher than Dubya's blood-alcohol level when he was caught driving drunk, and preventable conditions like obesity and heart disease killing people and crippling our health-care system, I will never understand why people will work so hard and spend so much money to attack gay people on the streets and in the courts and in our very relationships for no other reason than to make hurtful, misguided attempts to "solve" a non-existent problem.

And as I sat there last night, applauding our accomplishments and tearing up over stories of our hard-won victories—and feeling profoundly humbled in the presence of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon, award recipients last night who founded the Daughters of Bilitis in 1972 and whose 50-year relationship has literally helped drive gay people's crusade for basic equality—I felt sick. And angry.

We have a long road ahead of us to educate people on the realities of homosexuality and to get them to stop working so hard to hate us. And after last night, anybody's attempts to treat me as anything but equal are only going to fuel me to fight back harder.

Friday, February 04, 2005

The Norwegian Incident

The crowning jewel in our family’s social calendar the summer of 1997 was The Visit From The Norwegians. The Norwegians consisted of two young couples, including the newly married young woman we had gotten to know through years of foreign exchanges with my little sister.

Our international guests were in the States for a month-long whirlwind tour, which culminated in a week’s visit at my folks’ house in Iowa. To prepare for their stay, we had cleaned the house from top to bottom, gutted and rebuilt the only bathroom with a shower, and planned a week of menus and excursions to ensure our guests would experience a thoroughly representative sampling of the culture, cuisine and leisure activities that are uniquely Midwestern.

But by the time the Norwegians got to us, they were tired and they just wanted to relax and visit.

And play Uno.

Now, Iowa is arguably one of the best-educated states in the country ... but the only languages other than English spoken there regularly are those of herbicide commercials and Presidential caucuses. So for my family to be playing Uno (which is a Spanish word meaning “one” or “1”) with a bunch of Norwegians was a treat of multiculturally epic proportions.

Anyway, there we were: sitting around my parents’ dining room table, Norwegianally saying ro for “red” and sex (HA! SEX!) for “six” and occasionally announcing ¡Uno! and feeling all polycultural as though we were enjoying microwaved burritos together at the Vendoland in the U.N.—when I noticed that it looked as though Bjorn, the quiet one of the Norwegian bunch, was cheating. Cheating!

Normally I maintain a policy of zero tolerance for Nordic card sharks, but this time I wisely decided not to call attention to Bjorn’s alleged transgressions and risk some international incident (not to mention a grave hosting contretemps). Instead I opted to behave as any noble Midwestern ambassador would: I started cheating myself. After all, it was only an innocent game of Uno ... and in the event Bjorn was indeed cheating, I wouldn’t want him to feel ostracized if he got caught. So I slyly played along in his little scam.

And I would have gotten away with it too, except I was cheating so well (and with such abandon) that I started winning. And then my sister started paying attention to the cards that I did and didn’t lay down. And then she called me on it—right in front of our Norwegian guests—risking sensitive international relations! The consummate spy, I played it cool, sending Bjorn all-but-imperceptible nods of camaraderie and mutual transgression. But he just sighed and yawned and scratched his taut little Norwegian tummy and reached for another beer, and I took the full rap for our scandal.

Call us Iowans what you want, but we’re good hosts. And while that summer we established ourselves as the world’s biggest per capita producer of multiple births and two-headed farm animals, we also maintained our spotless record of international diplomacy.

And The Norwegian Incident was no exception.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Jobs I would suck at

Ambulance driver. I tend to … um … get lost. A lot.

Antonin Scalia’s butt-boy. I would rather staple my lips to David Gest’s wife-beaten scrotum.

Artist. I can’t even draw crooked lines. Of course, that didn’t stop Jackson Pollock.

Baby-seal clubber.

Bartender. Everybody would get beer. Or Coke. Or water. Because that's all I know how to make.

Chemistry teacher. Little-known fact: I started college in pre-med. But after a semester of never even remotely wrapping my brain around orbitals and electrons and tables of the elephants, I realized 12 more years of feeling as stupid as Ann Coulter on Recite The Alphabet Day was not a great way to start a career. So I became a whore writer.

Danny Zuko in Grease. For me, this would be a harder acting job than playing that big black lady in the Milk of Magnesia commercials because 1) nobody’d ever believe me as a streetwise hoodlum and 2) Sandy would just giggle when I tried to pass myself off as a jock. Besides, I am the worst pop singer ever. Worse than Madonna.

Door-to-door salesman. I’m not a very fast thinker on my feet, so the first time you said you weren’t interested in my encyclopedia vacuums, I’d be all OK. ’Bye, I guess. Plus there’s that whole Jake’s-afraid-of-talking-to-strangers thing.

Goat-ball licker.

Interior decorator. Though I think the stuff I’ve done to my house looks pretty cool, each room took years of painful decision-making—usually just to pick paint colors.

Migrant lawn raker. Your lawn would be littered with leftover leaves. And I wouldn’t care.

Miss America. Maybe 15 years ago, but at 36 I’m simply too old.

Murder victim. It just wouldn't be a good match for my skill sets and my English degree. Besides, I bruise easily.

NFL commentator. 1) I wouldn’t be able to stop giggling every time someone said “wide receiver.” 2) I don’t know a down from a touchdown. 3) I don’t really care.

Porn star. Unless I could get it in my contract that nobody would watch me having sex. Ever.

Pregnant hooker.

President. 1) Toe-the-line partisan politics makes me want to hit people. 2) Christian fundamentalists who think they speak for the electorate make me want to hit people. 3) Only a chromosomal-deficient monkey would want this job.

Reality show contestant. I avoid drama at all costs, which would make me so boring I’d be voted off before the first commercial. Unless I got to smack that arrogant fucker Simon Cowell upside the head. Now there’s some drama I could get into. (Besides, my nose looks unnaturally toucan-like on TV.)

Spiritual leader. Unless it could be for a religion that worshipped Sondheim, CSI and peanut-butter sandwiches. On wheat.

Strong black woman.

Sycophant. The only sucking up I’m willing to do involves a straw and a chocolate malt.

Thong tester. Three words: copious butt hair.

Victorian princess.

White Sox fan. Designated hitters are for pussies. (Did you buy that? Did I sound butch?)

Wal-Mart greeter. “Welcome to Wal-Mart. Um … if you get back in your car and head to Target, you’ll find nicer stuff and you won’t have to stand in line next to rock-dwelling cretins to buy it. So go now—before they lock you in this place and make you mop the floor.”

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

How was your Tuesday?

Mine was fun!

I woke up with a cold that got progressively worse all day, to the point I barely remember stumbling incoherently into bed last night.

I’d thrown out my back a few days earlier, which made it difficult to put on my socks, stand up, sit down, walk, and/or dodge all the icy puddles of slush and snow at every Chicago intersection.

My ex’s dad had emergency heart problems—and, through a circuitous route of coincidences, my mom (who is distantly close (if that makes sense) to my ex’s family) ended up sitting with my ex’s mom for three or four hours while he was in the hospital.

Which isn’t exactly what my mom had been planning to do on her birthday. But it’s totally in her character.

Some asshole (see my unhinged revenge fantasy below) found my credit card number, made a fake ID with my name and address to go with it, and started racking up expensive charges all over the country.

So I spent three hours last night calling my credit card companies, my banks and all three credit bureaus to get new card numbers and to put fraud alerts on all my accounts. And when my new cards come in the mail, I get to go through all the fun of updating everything I have auto-billed to them.

Did I mention I have a horrible cold? And that my nose is so red and raw that I look like a Betty Ford poster child?


The credit card fiasco forced me to finally close a Discover account I hadn’t used in at least five years. But it took almost half an hour to close it because the women (they kept transferring me deeper into the Department of NO!) at Discover did not “want to lose [me] as a customer.” (I haven’t used your card in five years, ladies. At this point, I am no longer yours to “lose.”)

My back feels much better. So much so that I plan to do the leg workout I was scheduled to do today.

My cold gave me an excuse to plop down unproductively on the couch last night and watch another hour of implausible CSI adventures.

And I got to experience the one cool thing about being sick last night: chugging down NyQuil®, slathering myself with Vicks VapoRub and snuggling in for a long, restorative sleep.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Dear Asshole,

So you think you’re so smart stealing my credit card number, huh? Well, you’re anything BUT smart. In fact, your attempts at using my card so far have revealed you to be little more than a sister-fucking, sphincter-suckling retard. With bad hair.

Let me give you a little hint about fraud protection: It looks for out-of-character purchases. And it nips them in the bud with alarming efficiency.

For instance, you tried to use my card to buy airline tickets on a carrier I never use to shuttle you between two cities I’ve never been in. The charge was disputed before you even wiped the spoo off your face from giving your prison-bitch dad a celebratory blowjob. Then you tried to use my card to buy Super Bowl tickets. Super Bowl tickets. Do you have any idea what a red flag that is? My lifetime activity on the card number you stole has been nothing but business trips to a small circle of cities, tickets to big faggy musicals, automatic payments to gay-friendly mutual funds and designer shoes at alarmingly discounted prices. I realize that show-tune queens have been known to enjoy football (these people invariably describe themselves as “straight-acting”), but in the world of fraudulent charges, musicals are to the Super Bowl as abortions are to “Lord’s Gym” T-shirts. (Maybe that’s not the most accurate parallel, given the pathological hypocrisy of the thumper crowd—but I think “Lord’s Gym” T-shirts are pretty funny so I’m not gonna rewrite it.)

Anyway, your little party is over. I just changed all my card numbers, put fraud alerts on all my bank accounts, and contacted all three credit bureaus to tell them that you nursed until you were 15 and you cry when you pee.

So stop wasting your time trying to outsmart me. And stop wasting my time dealing with it. I’m too busy dreaming up ways to punch-fuck bowling balls up your ass before I really start laying into you when you get caught.


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