Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Pick Up Truck Guy took less than 2 months to become a typical Washington Pol. Surprise Surprise

Friday, March 26, 2010

Mia's Workshop at Shag

A few years ago I experienced a kind of revelation about myself, or at the very least, a moment of self discovery that had been buried beneath the surface my entire life but for whatever reason.

I came to realize that my feelings and thoughts about love and sexuality and relationships were a lot more broad than I knew. That I'd always been this way but hadn't given myself permission to open up.

Caveat, for some of you may find this might be TMI. I'm going to do my best to reveal enough to be clear and not enough to scare anyone off.

I like some kink in my's not a deal breaker necessarily, but I strongly prefer it...and there are certain things involving rope and a willing subject that really work for me.

I also more and more believe in open relationships. This, you likely already know about me from previous blog entries but there it is nonetheless.

I believe that the greatest threat to love/marriage/relationships is rigid rules that have more to do with societal expectations and standards than they do with the human drives for love, companionship and sex. I've even half heartedly defended jerks like Mark Sanford on this blog...(However, John Edwards is indefensible. He's an ass of the first order and I am embarrassed beyond belief that I wanted him to win the Democratic Primaries over Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. But that's another story.) I believe that if we had more realistic understandings of the human heart, human desire  we would be able to love eachother more honestly, with more compassion and more understanding and more maturity.

A few years ago I started attending a monthly meeting of polyamorists in New York, but not long into that I started working nights and so my involvement in the community faded.

One of the blessings of my recent unemployment is that my time has freed up and I've been able to attend some events that have enabled me to reacquaint myself with the "alternative" communities that interest me. I've also been lucky enough to win a LOT of freebies lately which I take a sign that I'm on the right track on a personal level.

One of the things I won was a free ticket to attend Mia Martina's workshop on open relationships at Shag, a new sex positive shop in the trendy section of Brooklyn known as Williamsburg. (Some of you might remember my walk over the Williamsburg Bridge last year into a part of this area and Greenpoint.)

I've been listening to Mia's podcast almost since the very beginning. I think at her third entry. It's been about 2 years or so I think. To me, it's an incredibly brave podcast. I think anyone that writes about their sexual exploits and adventures and mixes it with the bittersweet experiences of love and relationships are among the bravest people that can be. When I got onto Twitter I started following her there too.

A few weeks ago I actually got the opportunity to meet Mia at In The Flesh  and was thrilled to discover that she is as sexy as her voice suggests as well as very sweet. She bought me a drink and we had a great talk. I've seen her twice since at other events and even got to meet her boyfriend once, who also strikes me as a rather excellent human being.  So when I lucked out and managed to win a free pass to her workshop last night I was thrilled.

Shag is a terrific little shop. It's not like other sex shops you think of...if you don't look carefully as you pass by you would think it was just a nice little shop of hand crafted art and chachkes. A closer look or a glance at the wall where large graphic pictures of anime sex fantasies will clue you in rather suddenly though. I met Sam, one of the owners, a very nice and sexy woman herself and she led me downstairs where the workshop had already started (thank you VERY much G train for sucking even more than I had planned on).

Mia gave us handouts with brilliant recommendations on reading, podcasts and thoughts. She spoke about the nature of the communication one needs in open relationships and she defined the different types (with help from Tristan Taormino's book). She also handed out a sheet of questions regarding our own feelings and beliefs about relationships, emotions surrounding those beliefs. It was fun to see Mia read off some of the answers and discuss them.

There were a few other folks I know from Twitter there. And one I didn't realize until this morning. This made it even more fun.

I won't go into too much detail on the workshop should go to Mia for that and if you're in NYC you should attend her workshops which I am sure will be happening more frequently. Suffice it to say that it was great to meet others who are interested and to share experiences and notes and knowledge.

Mia's in open relationships of one kind or another for some time and she had great tips gleaned from her successes and misses and very funny stories about her own sexual/relationship journey.

If you're in New York, go to really is marvelous and unique...and if you have an opportunity to hear Mia read her material DO SO. Subscribe to her podcast or listen to it from her website...But start from the beginning because there's an arc to it.

Below are books that are part of Mia's recommended reading. I concur. If you are at all curious about open relationships, whether casually or more personally, these are great books to read.

Friday, March 12, 2010

My Anthem

I'm just a tad more than 2 weeks away from turning 48. This is why I'm going through this whole, what am I doing, where am I going ? phase. Unemployed now for over a month and doing interviews and trying to raise enough enthusiasm and salesmanship for jobs that just don't interest me enough for this much effort.

A lot of my life is a series of knockdowns and set backs. Still I am standing.

And that's why this song speaks to me so much. I've decided it's my Anthem.

Particularly these lyrics.

I'm at the borderline of my faith
I'm at the hinterland of my devotion
I'm at the frontline of this battle of mine
And I'm still alive


I am lost
But I don't doubt
So I rise
I've the will to survive

Watch, enjoy the percussion that makes me sway in my seat, makes me march, 
makes me remember it's never too late.
When that annoying fucking ad pops up in the bottom, just bring your mouse all the way to the right and click, it will go away.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

So...what AM I doing?

When I was 5 or 6 years old I started to get it into my head that I wanted to be an actor.

My mom and dad married in Tucson Arizona and a year later I was born and a year after that we moved to New York, so that dad could pursue a career as an actor. They'd sold the car and got us all on the train because my mom hated to fly (still does).

Dad's headshot from 1963

By the time I was 5 dad was working a lot as an actor on the side from being a social worker...but only as an extra in movies and commercials. Still to a little boy this seemed pretty exciting, especially as the bug began to bite me too.

At that point in my tiny life I had already run the gamut; policeman, fireman, secret agent, mayor but then the classic 'little boy wants to be just like dad' thing kicked in I started talking about being an actor. I started talking about it a lot. I even wrote a short essay in school and drew a picture of my dad in front of a camera, then added one of me in front of a camera.

But there was something more going on for was going beyond wanting to be like dad because I kept talking about it.

Right around the age of 6 my dad said to me that there was a movie coming on channel 13 that I should see if I really wanted to be an actor. He told me that it featured a man then widely considered the greatest actor in the world and in one of the most famous parts any actor can play. He was talking about Laurence Olivier's film of Hamlet.

For what seemed an eternity I waited for this movie...I asked my dad all kinds of questions and he helped me to understand it.

Lest you wonder what the hell a dad was doing encouraging a little boy to watch a film of a tragic and violent play, let me tell you, my father was great at prepping me. The ending was hard, almost everyone dies, this is what a tragedy is...etc.  Yeah, I think in this case, spoilers were acceptable, because it really did help.

Finally the movie was showing. I guess it was a Saturday night. A very special event. Possibly the first time it was on TV in New York since ABC had shown it in the 50s. Anyway. I was transfixed.

The film is as luscious as any black and white film can be. Filled with haunting atmosphere and had a ghost in it

I found this thrilling. THRILLING. Slow moving. The eyes invisible behind the helm. Only a pained motion of a bearded face.

And the language....Let's face 6 I had no idea what the fuck was being said...but it sounded incredible and I was "bound to hear".


But what really got me in the end of this movie was the duel between Hamlet and Laertes. I can find no pictures to really capture the thrilling choreography and tension...but this too grabbed me by my Batman t-shirt and held me transfixed.

I was on the edge of the couch. I was haunted by ghosts, funerals, drowning maidens and Shakespeare's language. In short, I was ruined.

I went to bed that night, fencing. Laying on my back and crossing swords in the air until I finally fell into a deep sleep.

I woke up the next day, knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt, that it was the actor's life for me....

to be continued...

Below are links through my Amazon Associates account to the DVD of this movie. You just can't appreciate the beauty of it here. You have to see it. It's well worth it and worthy of any movie lover's collection. I don't agree with the Freudian take of the movie, but it was the prevailing wisdom in 1948 and so is interesting in that context.

Then there is the Campbell Scott version, which for pure storytelling and stunning acting must be seen. Campbell is  a grossly under-appreciated actor. I had the privilege of being in class with him over 20 years ago under Geraldine Page. Fecking Brilliant.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

This city has lost its nads....

"Well there are certain sections of New York, Major, that I would advise you not to invade"
Rick Blaine to Major Strasser. Casablanca. 1942

Alright...Last week I bitched about how this city has utterly lost it's ability to handle snow and I complained to Mayor Mike Bloomberg that we are becoming something other than New York City....

That was nothing...

Now...apparently because Mikey has whined about not wanting Khalid Sheikh Mohamad here...he's all afraid of the security risks and police situation and cost, blah blah blah...that we have to set aside what is GREAT about this nation...and this city and .

So let me get this straight Mikey....

It was okay to move our cops from various neighborhoods in NYC to Central Park for a month to protect these ugly pieces of shit. These traffic cone orange shower curtains that you could NOT get away from ANYwhere in Central Park. By the way...crime rates rose in certain neighborhoods because of the cop "migration"  TO PROTECT SHOWER CURTAINS!!!!!
Christos pretentious "Gates"

And it was ok to pull all the cops and spend a gazillion dollars so that The Republican Convention THESE YAHOOS could live on their cruise ship and waddle into Madison Square Garden in the afternoon for their convention...shutting down businesses. (NYC lost money on this one).

 I know, Tom Delay is missing. On purpose. I hate that guy too much to allow his face on my blog

Oh yeah...then you created "Free Speech Zones" Where protesters had to stay in cages...Yeah...that was sooooo brave, Mikey. And nothing expensive about that. (By the way, thanks Democrats for deciding this was a good idea for your convention too. Can we go back to the First Amendment now?)

Thank you

But's time for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed to face the music.

This guy

Now, we are so afraid of KSM and his buddies, that Mikey is afraid to have him's too expensive. Too expensive for the man. Maybe Mikey can dip into that 85 million he spent to narrowly win re-election last year. Maybe he can come up with the dough from his buddies to cover the costs...The feds offered no...still to'm afraiiid.

Maybe we as New Yorkers can stand tall and proud and tell the world that KSM WILL stand in a civilian criminal court, because that's all he is...a little petty fucking thug criminal. Maybe we can stand tall and show the world that we stand for the rule of law and we even respect the rights of fucktwats that help engineer the murder of thousands. We stand for these things because we are Americans, we are New Yorkers. It is who we are.'s who we were. We are the city that can't walk to the subway in the snow. We are the city that never lets our children out of sight even as it is safer now for children than it has ever been. We are the city that was understandably brought to our knees on September 11, 2001, yet almost nine years later, we are demonstrating that we are still on our knees. We are still unable to stand.  

We are afraid of another attack. I've got news for you, my Mayor and my fellow New Yorkers. We may be attacked again, we may not be. Whether we try this schmuck here or not won't change that. We're New York. Ask London, Ask Paris, Ask Belfast, Ask Khabul, Ask Bagdhad. If you're a target, you're a target. New York is a target. 

So....Really? We're really going to let these shitheads think they won? Have they won? Really?

Granted, Rick Blaine (nor the writers of that great classic) could not have imagined the horror of jetliners flying into towers. He was talking about Nazis marching down Delancey Street. But he was still addressing the spirit of this city. He was still talking about our resilience and defiance. The way we say "Fuck you" when we think we're getting screwed or insulted.

See what a great middle finger the Empire State Building makes?

We sit now, on our knees, afraid of another attack because we were going to try this guy rightfully. We were gonna be New York but instead, we are being who they made us. The President and the Justice Dept. are now reconsidering the plan to try KSM here and to move it to a military court because they can't get the cooperation of the city. So, Military Court. Different rules. Rules we don't need because this guy is guilty by his own admission, (despite the water-boarding). It isn't as though he had a real chance of getting off. We are afraid of another attack. We are afraid of our own laws. We are afraid of our own Constitution.

Nope...we are not New York anymore. Not Rick Blaine's New York, at least. Certainly not mine.

Really Mikey? Really?

Friday, March 5, 2010

Right...I must write.

Heelllpp meeee....Heelllllp mmeeeeeeeee

This seems to be a repeating theme on this I'm not blogging.

I wrestle with ideas and thoughts and the "oh, who wants to read about your crap?" crap. And then the day is over and I haven't written a damned thing....this time around it's been ...well it's been a fucking long time.'s what I'm going to try and do. I'm just going to write...bullshit sometimes...maybe more often than not I'll actually say something of interest to more than my former cat. But I'm going to do it...every day. At some point I might hit my stride.

The thing that sucks the most about writing is that you have to write.

Ok..that sucked...but it's done. I'll be back tomorrow.