Thursday, December 29, 2005

The Year In . . . Me

Wow, I've let the blog slide again, huh?

So 2005 is almost outta here. Let me take stock of the past year and see what I liked about it.

To begin at the beginning, I welcomed in the year in San Francisco, watching the fireworks from the plaza in front of the Ferry Building. It rained, which I hate, but otherwise it was a perfectly nice way to greet '05. And I slept well, that's for sure: when I arrived at the Savoy Hotel to check-in, I discovered I'd been upgraded from a double to a two-bedroom suite. Fabulous!

The very next weekend found me in Charleston, South Carolina. I'd been trying to get there for a number of years, but the airfares from L.A. are always so prohibitive. However, I recently earned enough mileage on Delta to nab a free domestic roundtrip, so to Charleston it was. As a history and architecture buff, I was in an ideal location, and even more ideally, I was able to hang out with my lovely and delightful friend Dan.

Ah, what's next? Oooh, yes. I experienced my first blizzard during my annual January trip to New York City with David. We'd splurged for a room at the Waldorf=Astoria, so when we learned our flights home on Sunday were cancelled, we happily extended our stay one night. I love New York City in the snow, particularly Central Park, which is truly breathtaking when covered in a white blanket of snow.

Not three weeks later, and I was back in NYC for the big finale viewing party for the sixth season of CBS's The Amazing Race, an event put on by fans of the show which attracts not only hundreds of fans, but the contestants themselves (and it's not even an official CBS event).

March arrived with the promise of my first journey to Egypt. I traveled via New York, spending a few days there before heading for Cairo -- on the afternoon another blizzard hit the city! Ah, I'll always remember those nine hours waiting at the gate. NOT. Anyway, this trip was my first-ever escorted tour, and I must say that Gate1Travel does a great job organizing their tours. A plus was that our group was small -- just 16 people. Ahmed was our awesome tour guide, and I made a few friends along the way.

My friend Davey came to L.A. to help his aunt move the same weekend I returned from Egypt. It was great seeing him, he's always a lot of fun to hang out with. Plus, he's cute!

I was in San Francisco again in April, to attend several performances of the Paul Taylor Dance Company, who spend two weeks in town each year during their national tour. And after years of watching the company perform both in L.A. and San Franicsco, I finally got the courage to stand at the stage door and ask for a couple of the dancer's autographs afterward. Squee!

The first Saturday in May took me out to Palm Springs for Will Clark's Bad Boys Pool Party fundraiser for Aid for AIDS. How I do love hobnobbing with the glitterati of adult film. Heh.

Another event of that sort took place at the end of May, in Chicago. The Grabbys is this cheesy awards show honoring gay adult film, held at a club near Lincoln Park. The one downside to the event? They allow smoking. In the theater itself. During the show. Yuck.

In June, I was in San Francisco again, this time for the Gay Pride Weekend.

I rarely travel over 4th of July weekend; I prefer to stay home and celebrate Independence Day by watching musicals, thea-tah queen that I am. The Music Man and 1776 get play on the DVD that afternoon.

Since I started the blog in August, y'all are aware of what all went down the rest of the year.

And so this New Year's will find me, once again, in San Francisco. Weather forecasts are bleak, pointing to not only rain but the possibility of thunderstorms. Blech! How east coast...

Friday, December 16, 2005


New York City, December 10, 2005

I seldom -- okay, I never -- wait outside the stage door after Broadway shows, but I'm a big fan of the talented Marc Kudisch (Bells Are Ringing, Thoroughly Modern Millie), so after seeing his indelible comic performance as Baron Bombast in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, I waited for him to emerge from the theatre and asked for an autograph and a photo.

Monday, December 12, 2005


"New York, New York/It's a wonderful town..."

My twentieth visit to New York was a beaut. A snowstorm delayed my arrival, but also dusted the city in a lovely blanket of snow. I left just around the time it was all turning a bit dirty and slushy.

My first order of business was hitting the fabulous special exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Over 100 drawings by Van Gogh and dozens of remarkable paintings by Fra Angelico. Because I just cannot seem to get the proper code working here to hyperlink, just cut and paste http://www.metmuseum.org and check out the special exhibitions section to see some of the terrific stuff I got to experience.

On Saturday, I was off the Frick Collection for its special exhibition of works by the Flemish master, Hans Memling. He was particularly adept at portraits. Prior to hitting the museum, though, I took a nice walk through Central Park and enjoyed the way the sunlight played on the snow. Lovely!

In the afternoon, after lunch at Candle Cafe, I went to see the matinee of "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" -- not a great show, but the performers (including Marc Kudish, who is totally yummy) were great -- followed by an evening show up at Lincoln Center: "The Light in the Piazza." Great show with a talented cast, beautiful score, divine sets.

I so enjoyed the Van Gogh and Fra Angelico exhibitions, I returned again Sunday morning to peruse a few of my favorite pieces more closely; I also visited the terrific handful of works by John Singer Sargent over in the American wing.

Monday, December 05, 2005


My new computer here at work includes a DVD-Rom, so to "christen" it, I brought in a copy of Robbie Williams's "Live at the Albert" from a few years back. I didn't watch the entire thing, of course, but, um, I took extended "peeps" at it in between data entry. I'm still tapping my foot at the swinging good time that is his cover of "Beyond the Sea."

Off-the-top-of-my-head list of favorite songs from the past twenty or so years:

"With or Without You," U2 (1987). Surely my friend Patrick has already rolled is eyes at this one, but he can just return them to their proper places in their sockets. This is one of those songs that's as exciting for me to listen to now as it was when I first heard it.

"Why," Annie Lennox (1992). Ah, her voice.

"One," U2 (1992). "You ask me to enter/But then you make me crawl". I always imagine this as a song sung by a child to a parent as the parent asks for their forgiveness for whatever sort of distance has been created between them.

Sunday, December 04, 2005


Christopher Street, Greenwich Village
September 6, 1995

Getting into a "New York mood" for my weekend trip to New York City this weekend, I rented a few of my favorite Woody Allen pictures: Annie Hall, Manhattan, and Hannah and Her Sisters.

Ten years ago this past summer, I spent a week with a friend in New Jersey. We took a day trip into the city one warm September afternoon; while on Christopher Street, I snapped this great shot of two drag queens.

Oh, and follow-up on my neighbor, Dave, across the hall in #26. He's straight. Sigh. Cool guy, though.