Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Kat Von D

A lot of my colleagues know that I hate going to author events - even my own authors' events. But when I got a message in my inbox at work asking whether or not I would like to go to a Kat Von D book signing, I had to reply (to myself), "Why, yes, yes I would."

You may know Kat Von D from her tattoo show, where she basically tortures people on camera, with a cheerfulness that I have to say sort of turns me on. Or, you may know her as the on-again, off-again (currently, on-again) girlfriend of Motley Crue's Nikki Sixx (though she was until last week dating Jesse James, while "off-again" with Sixx. You may know her from the video ads for celebrity designated drivers from taxicabs in New York City. (Hers, naturally, is Nikki Sixx, ha ha. And now, I have mentioned the name "Nikki Sixx" four times in a blog posting, which I never would have predicted when I first came up with the idea for this blog).

My colleague Teresa is Kat's publicist, and I am very jealous of Teresa for this fact. Teresa, perhaps sensing that there might be trouble between us at the Kat Von D event, directed me to the wrong Barnes & Noble. Like a fool, I blithely made my way down to the Barnes & Noble on 5th Avenue and 18th Street. (On the way, I ran into someone I had blogged about a few months ago, and he told me he liked my blog posting about him - but I remember that it wasn't a very nice blog post, and now I know that our mutual friend Ada engaged in some email tomfoolery there. How else would he have found my blog? But that's fame - walking in the street and having someone compliment you on your blog. I'm going to live forever). But the author event wasn't at that Barnes & Noble! It was at the Barnes & Noble on 5th Avenue and 46th Street. By the time I made it over there, I was sweaty from rushing. Teresa, apparently wanting to keep me off-balance, practically pushed me into Kat to have her sign a book for me! Ack! I was all sweaty, cutting a line to meet a celebrity I have a little platonic crush on! I had an attack of shyness, and I couldn't even talk to her - especially since I remembered that I had forgotten to pack a change of underwear when I went to the gym before work, and was going "commando," as it were. I was literally naked and shy in front of the coolest lady on the block. It was over so fast. I wanted to show her my cat tattoo, and have her hug me, and tell me that I was cool, and that everything was going to be okay. I'll get you, Teresa.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Alternative earth - day 2!

Day two with my magical outfit!

After work I went out for a bit, and an English fellow sat next to me and started talking about his travels to New York. I asked him what he was doing here, and he said he was dancing in "Swan Lake!" I said, "hey! I saw you dance yesterday at City Center!" It turns out he was one of the wood nymphs! And also he was a male swan! We had a very lovely conversation after that, and we took lots of pictures (here's one). I told him that I was 37, and he replied, "oh!" sounded a little bit shocked to meet someone from my generation. I assured him that I was still clinging to life somehow, albeit barely. Then I had to rush off to meet Chris. I showed Chris the picture, and he said that my dancer is wearing awedding ring. Mwah, mwah! It's not a wedding ring. The dancer (Simon) was sort of flirty, and told me he wasn't seeing anyone, and he described his hotel for me, touting the lovely view. I knew that, if I wasn't feeling so lazy, I could have enjoyed the view myself, but I'm pretty old! I can't wrestle around with a ballet dancer! I might break my hip.

I decided when I got home not to wear the magical outfit for a third day, because of odor issues. And also because, if you tempt fate too many times, God may just smite you, in your fancy outfit.

Alternative earth - day 1!

I had a particularly good day today. I was wearing Alternative Earth, Jil Sander, Levi's, and New Balance. Nadia took me to see Matthew Bourne's "Swan Lake" at the City Center, and then I took her to B.R. Guest's new burger establishment, Bill's Burgers, in Rockefeller Center. Once, when I was a temp at MTV, I lunched daily at B.R. Guest's Ruby Foo's, reading my paper at the bar. One day, after, like, my 15th day in a row eating lunch there, the manager of Ruby Foo's and his assistant manager came over to me and presented me with a gift copy of Zagat's. Like, "get out. There are other restaurants in Manhattan, you dolt." I wonder how long it will take before I get a gift Zagat from Bill's Burgers? I've already eaten there about five times in less than two months.

After Nadia went home, I went to the gym and then went to G, where I ran into the gym god that I like. Deciding to go immediately on the offensive, I punched the gym god on his massive arm, and then chatted him up a bit. When he was leaving, I went to give him my card, but he indicated that he was seeing someone, but that I was definitely "tempting." Tempting! I love it! Thank you, outfit.

Afterwards, on the corner of 22nd and 8th, a black fellow chatted me up. A black fellow! I never get chatted up by my bruthas, for some reason. And they are very, very hard, I find, to get into bed. But this one was a bit horny, and when I told him my name was Gregory, he said, "Gregory, I want to have sex with you." I declined his offer to go with him to the Gym Bar, but gave him my card. Then I rushed home and took off my magical outfit, laying it aside neatly. I decided to try an experiment and wear the exact same thing the next day, to see if more crazy encounters would ensue. Thus ...

Monday, October 18, 2010

A "date" with John - at Fall for Dance!

Do you ever invite people you like to go out with you, in the evening? Even though you aren't sure if such an outing is technically a date or not? I do! It's fun! Knowing whether or not you're on a date is overrated, in my book.

Case in point: I took my new friend John to see "Fall for Dance" at the City Center, the annual, instantly-sold-out event that's been charming dance-loving New Yorkers for seven years now. I told my therapist earlier that day that, although I did not know whether it was a date or not, I would definitely know by the end of the night. That turned out to be true, and I knew sooner than I had anticipated. When I greeted John outside the City Center, he took me by the shoulders and immediately gave me a kiss - pointedly - on the cheek. "This is not a date," I immediately realized. Oh. The formality of his peck was not the only clue I had received, of course, over the last few weeks of our acquaintance, but being clueless about nonverbal communication is one of my many charms. We settled into our seats.

All throughout the performance, I got to work through - silently - my issues with space. As many people know, I have a strangely large "personal bubble," and don't really like casual touching as a rule. But the seats in the City Center were very close together, and John, as though trying to at least give me something for the tickets, engaged in some prolonged leaning-in and heavy rubbing of his shoulder against mine - practically frottage. Each time we touched, I held my breath and giggled on the inside. Hee hee!

One of the dancers from the Dresden Ballet had on a lime-green tutu with what looked like a small circular table attached, keeping her partner at arms length. "How I yearn to wear an outfit like that," I whispered dramatically to John. But not right at that second, of course. I wouldn't have wanted that outfit right then. For a middle-aged man at a dance performance in Manhattan's midtown, with the first tinge of fall in the air, sometimes a little rubbing is as good as it's going to get, and you sort of don't want anything to get in the way. Or, at least, so I've heard it said.

Juliana and Evan

I went to see Juliana Hatfield play a gig with Evan Dando a couple of weeks ago at the Mercury Lounge. I went out of respect for the completist in me, not because I thought they were going to change my life or anything. (Okay, William?!) Juliana has already changed my life, anyway, and now when I go to see her play, it's mostly because I'm a glutton for punishment, or maybe I'm just feeling nostalgic.

Juliana came out wearing a sheer grey blouse and some dirty old jeans, and Evan came out wearing, I swear, the exact same shirt he used to wear for publicity shots in the 90s. Juliana loves awkwardness, like I do, and several of the love songs she sang were meant, I believe, to leave the audience wondering if she was singing about Evan. I thought it was the height of awkwardness that she sang "Waiting for Heaven," with its plaintive chorus: "Heeeeaaaaaven ... where are youuuuuu?" Of course, just drop the "h" in "heaven," and there you go. But she topped herself in awkwardness later in the show, by playing a song literally called "Evan."

I remember the first time I saw Juliana play, in 1993, at Irving Plaza. She wore a pair of pastel chinos, and a pastel polo, and I thought it was funny that she was trying to embody the term "college rock" with her outfit. More than ten years later, she released a record titled "Juliana's Pony," and I went to see her play a gig where she wore a black silk blouse and a silver necklace with a pony on it. At that point in my life, I was about to play some shows myself, and I went out and bought myself a silver necklace with a bird on it, because I was writing a song called "Jesus loves me like a bird." I remember telling some craggy old Weezer-jack (a lumberjack who liked Weezer) this story, and he looked at me like, "you tool. You had to buy the accessory before you played the gig."

I love Juliana Hatfield, no matter how cold she has been to me when I've met her in person, no matter what people say, no matter the quality of her output. When you fall in love with a singer, it doesn't matter to you if it's cool or not, and there's nothing you can do about your love. It's matter-of-fact, like a birth defect that can't be operated upon. I left the Mercury Lounge that night with her new cd in my pocket, although I knew it would unlock no doors for me. It burns a hole, still, on my table at home.


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Moore and Sons

I went with Alyse to Googie's Lounge to see a gig by Moore & Sons. Chris from Moore & Sons agreed early in the summer to be my drummer (that's Chris in the white tank top). I went out to Brooklyn then to jam with him, and he turned every song of mine into a rock song, and I felt like I was in Big Star or something. It was one of the happiest moments of my life. We rocked. But right after that, I had one of my breakdowns, and have been recovering ever since. But I still go see Chris when he plays - he's awesome. I have a feeling that, pretty soon, I will no longer be "between inheritances," and then I will ask Chris to make a record with me. I hope he says yes. I will call our record "Sexual Tourism," and Chris and I (and a bassist, if I can find one) will go on tour opening up for a girl band. (Girls get me).

I love that Chris is always wearing a tank top. I wish I had the nerve to wear one, but I have a few weird hairs that grow out of my shoulders, and scars from a battle I don't remember fighting. One day, also when I am not "between inheritances," I will pay a doctor to sizzle my whole body with a laser, from head to toe, so that my scars and hairs disappear. Perhaps the doctor can also shine the laser into my brain, to alter my fucked-up personality, as well. I'll let you know if that happens.

I got a copy of Moore & Sons' new record, and have been listening to it ever since. I love "Junk to begin with" - I feel like it describes not only my life, but my times. Some of the songs are a little Grateful Dead-ish, which I usually don't like, but love in this case.

After the gig, Alyse and I went to American Apparel, where she bought a new outfit and changed into it at the store. She gave me a bag filled with the outfit she had been wearing, and I've been trying to catch up to her to return it ever since. Slow down, Alyse! Little red corvette, I want to return your old outfit.