Monday, August 16, 2010

V-neck tee

I love the singer Jeff Buckley, and, as an homage to him, I started wearing simple white v-neck tee-shirts years ago. Perhaps this is the same tee I began wearing years ago, as it is long past "white," to be frank, veering into yellowish-grey territory.

Once I saw Jeff Buckley during one of my blistering daily runs around NYC. He was standing outside of the Bottom Line, actually, and he watched me approach, giving me "the eye." I didn't think too much of this - I knew he was straight, but that he was an awful flirt. I ran past him without a backward glance, though inside I was all a-flutter. That will show you! I thought.

The next time I saw Jeff Buckley, he was on what I later learned was his first date with real-life disaster Courtney Love. They walked out of some theater, and the paparazzi yelled, "Courtney!" I yelled, "Jeff!" and he flinched, startled. I think he thought I was a photographer trying to get him to look into my camera. My friend Justin told me later that he was so freaked out by his date with Courtney Love, he immediately got on a plane to Europe. (Ah, to be able to get on a plane to Europe when freaked out ... )

The next time I saw Jeff Buckley, I was at a Dark Carnival show at Coney Island High. The singer, Niagara, had just pushed a girl (her opening act, in fact!) off the stage, saying "go, b**ch! You tell 'em b**ch! You've got the prettiest hair in town, but you got f**ked!" (The opening act had just hijacked Niagara's microphone, and revealed to the audience that she hadn't gotten paid for playing the opening set). I started laughing soooo uncontrollably. But the pushed girl later got even with me - she threw me and my friend Alia out of the Beauty Bar because my friend didn't have her ID. Was she making the sign of Satan while she did it? She should have been. And then she married one of the guys from H2O and moved out to New Jersey.

Anyway, Jeff Buckley was in the audience at the Dark Carnival show, and as I watched him watching what was among the most guitar-heavy shows I have ever witnessed, I could see the rock come down over him, and I predicted that his next record would be rockin'. Sure enough, it rocked. But he was gone by then.

When I read that Jeff Buckley had died while swimming in Memphis, I called up Alia in Los Angeles. She said that he was now singing in the "big riverboat in the sky." Do you see what she did there? She alluded to Memphis' rich musical riverboat history in her evil response. Even in her meanness, there was a sparkling sense of play and joy.

I still listen to "Vancouver" and "Morning Theft" at least once a week, and even now, the rock still comes down over me. Rock may break your heart, but it will never die.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

American Tourister

Often enough, my friends mock me for carrying around my own popcorn seasoning in my bag at all times. I carry it around in case I find myself at the movies, which is always a possibility at my advanced state of age and boringness. But my friends laugh at me because of it. So you can imagine that when, last week, I discovered that my popcorn seasoning had leaked inside of my bag, I couldn't tell anyone. "Well, now he's got his come-uppance with that blasted popcorn seasoning," they would say. Instead, I quietly laundered the bag and hung it up to dry.

While I was waiting for the bag to dry, I decided to debut my late mother's American Tourister bag. My mother used to use this bag on family vacations we took. This bag has sunned in Nassau and observed strange family dynamics in Aruba. I have had it for years now, but I was always too afraid to wear it, for fear that my friends would mock me for carrying around a lady's bag. You know these gays. But I decided to finally use the bag so that, when I was mocked, I could say "It's my dead mother's bag!" and run away crying - embarrassing both them and myself with my sense of humor, which is forever macabre. But sadly, no one mocked me. I even tried to bait a couple of friends - Daniel, Chris H. - by asking them their opinion of the bag; but they both merely said they liked it.

I did notice that, while I was using the bag, I got into a fight with a friend, which could very well mean that it is possessed by the spirit of my famously mean mother. Or it could mean that this Friday the 13th was too big to be contained by just one day, and spilled out over into Saturday. Oh, well. My regular bag should be dry by this afternoon, so my latest foray into mother-obsession, demon-baiting, and casual transvestitism will now come to an end.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Happier days

This is a picture of my two friends named Chris. The Chrises! How I love them. I decided to blog about them now, because whenever the gays love each other, they sleep with each other and ruin everything. Or they enter into a blood feud with each other over some ill-timed catty remark. So, this is a time capsule of sorts - I'll call it "Happier days" so that when I look back in the future, I can remember us how we were back then, and weep. But not from my eyes. (Aren't they yummy!?) I didn't bother to show their outfits, as they pretty much wear the same thing every day, poor dears - just like my friend Alia H. - just like Chrises all over the world, I'm sure. Dear Lord, please let their feelings toward me be as same-samey as their wardrobes, and I will be the happiest gay alive.

Strange evening

What a strange evening I had on Friday! I went to see "Dinner for Schmucks" with Teresa. On the way to get cupcakes beforehand, we ran into Matthew, the fashionista from a few posts back. I called him "Andrew" by mistake - whoopsie! :)

After we saw the movie, I took the train towards my home, but decided to take it a few extra stops so that I could take a long walk home. On my way to my apartment, I ran into Aaron, who was looking scrumptious as ever. I was wearing the same shirt that he had told me once that he also possessed - we both got it at Uniqlo. I didn't mention this, although I weirdly felt awkward running into him wearing that shirt! I affectionately punched him in the shoulder - but I punched him really hard by accident. Ouch. Oh, well - he already thinks I'm crazy. Now he can add violent Gregory to his list of Gregorys.

I headed for the East Side, and I ran into a fellow who looked very familiar. He reminded me that I had spent the night with him seven years ago. Ah! I remember that night very well, actually! Here's why: I literally spent the last money I had then to take him out to lunch at a Tex Mex place on Park Avenue the next day. After that, I had no job, no money, and no prospects, and I survived only because my friends Fionna, Mary, and Vicki rose to the occasion to help me, which I'll never forget. (And plus, I got sober and stayed that way for years. You could say this fellow was my "rock bottom."). We exchanged cards, but I didn't hear from him seven years ago, and I certainly don't expect to hear from him now. Plus, as I was chatting with him, I noticed him discreetly passing a small baggie to a friend of his.

Continuing up Second Ave, I heard someone calling out "Gregory ... " I turned around, but I didn't recognize the couple who was calling out to me. They told me that they had just visited my ex Joshie in SF, and he had been showing them pictures of me in a photo album, and talking about me. How flattering! I told the couple to tell Joshie that I looked fabulous.

Nearing 13th Street, I took this picture of myself, so I could remember not to wear this obviously powerful outfit again in the future, unless I was prepared for wildness, for coincidence, for magic ... then I went home.

Sophia's last week

You know what I love to do? I love to sneak inside Sophia's cubicle at work and quietly sit down next to her and stare at her until she notices me and screams and screams. She hates that, and she has begged me not to do it, but she doesn't realize that as long as she screams, I'll do it again the next time. I have no behavioral filters.

I won't be able to scare her much longer - this is her last week here. I will miss her ways. Today, she gave me soothing advice about my inappropriate texts to Jason A., my bout over the weekend with erectile dysfunction, and my tardiness to work today. Who will sooth me when she is gone? I will all id when that happens.

In this picture, taken right before I scared her out of her wits, Sophia is wearing a dress from Urban Outfitters. I love Urban Outfitters! I used to sort of like this guy who worked there, many, many years ago, when I was 22 or so. He was flaky, but he kept my interest by repeatedly telling me to "come again" in a suggestive voice. That pattern - me being consistently intrigued by fellows who don't show up, as long as they every now and then show me a little interest - repeats in my life like a favorite outfit.

*Sigh* I truly am ashamed of myself today. Fortunately, whenever I am stuck in my own head and lost in my own self-centered shame, something truly horrible happens in the real world, and I realize yet again that I didn't know how good I had it.

Monday, August 2, 2010

French cuffs

I went downstairs for a cup o' joe with Sophia W., the heiress intern, and I asked her to take a picture of me. I'm wearing a delightfully textured shirt from the Co-op, along with some khaki pants from Theory and New Balance sneakers. I had no idea when I bought the shirt, at the Warehouse Sale, that it had French cuffs. I mock people for wearing shirts with French cuffs, but I didn't mean to buy one, so it can't be my fault! I didn't realize.

Years ago, when I was still working at Sotheby's, my boss Benjamin Doller tried to give me a pair of cufflinks as a gift. When I glanced at them, I saw that they were the kind that you could slip your own tiny picture into, to customize them. There was already a sample picture in it, of a self-satisfied little baby. "Oh, no!" I exclaimed. "I'm not walking around here with a picture of some little white baby on my wrist!" Benjamin seemed amused by my outburst, but I was fired shortly after that. Ah, Sotheby's - where everything is for sale, even your soul.

Because I didn't accept those cufflinks, I now can only wear this shirt with the sleeves rolled up. What do rolled-up sleeves mean to you? To me, they mean "This outfit is not beyond salvaging. There is still hope."