Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Importance of Being Ernest

There are so many things to adore about this video, but I'll let you decide for yourself: I had no idea who Lana Del Rey was until I saw this video (and was prompted to look up several clips). I think that is a sign of a powerful YouTube clip--it inspired me to ACT. It also reminded me that we could all use an Ernest in our lives.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

I Found More Than Just Containers....

I want to design my own t-shirt. I wouldn't sell it and no one besides myself would want it because it would say:

I just got back from 
and all I got was this AMAZING NEW BEST FRIEND. 

And underneath would be a picture of me and Ellen, the sales associate who made me feel like a better person.

This is what happens when I try to sneak out briefly during work to get a set of drawers.

Ever since the blog stopped being a safe space, I've been unable to tell my personal truths in the cathartic way that this blog once offered. I can, however, talk about how I'm feeling, since that doesn't sully anyone's good name and feelings aren't facts. 
In short: I'm having a hard time. 

See, I'm not very good at "organizing," "making efficient use of my time," or "being a functioning member of society." Whenever I manage to get anything together it's usually because I've been guilted or shamed into behaving in a socially acceptable manner.* Which, of course, means that I'm having trouble living in close quarters with a man and two cats—all of whom I love—that remind me every day that I'm just taking up too much space. 

know that I need to get rid of the half-full Ikea bags full of clothing that I've hidden in the closet—I mean, it's because of them that I've worn the same 6 outfits for the last 3 weeks! And I can't complain about Jewboo's unpacked boxes when I'm using a stack of three of them as a desk for my laptop. As RuPaul used to say: If you can't love [living with yourself], how in the hell are you gonna love [living with your Jewboo]??? 

She also said, "Don't fuck it up," which I should also take to heart.

With that in mind, I started looking through shelving options on the Container Store's website. I was immediately overwhelmed (do you know there are containers for holding your double-A batteries???) and finally decided to just walk the 50 feet from my office to the actual store. 
Actually, what I said to myself was "THIS. ENDS. NOW." before I grabbed my credit card and keys (they won't know I've really left if my purse stays!)

[Yes, I like to think of myself as Bruce Willis in everything ever.]

When I got there, it was all too much. For a store that was all about containing, I felt it was overflowing with stuff that was just out of control! I was about to walk out when I spotted a smiley sales associate with a hip haircut and very subtle blue-grey eyeshadow.
"I need help!" I said, much like a lost child at a county fair. (I've found this is the best way to get a stranger's attention and immediate sympathy.)
"What are you looking for?" Smiley Lady said, much like a kindergarten teacher addressing someone who she knows has just peed his pants. 
"I need shelving because I just moved in with my boyfriend and my shit's a hot mess and if I don't get it together we're over, and I was on the website and saw this shelving unit that I want and I was at my desk and decided, 'THIS ENDS TONIGHT' but I can't find it."

Her name was Ellen. She was very patient and had no problem with TMI, which means we're meant to be BFF. 
Elllen got married last year and she and her husband have been living in a studio apartment—and they're making their love work!!
"How, Ellen? HOW?" I asked as we stood by the mesh Elfa drawers sold exclusively at The Container Store.
Ellen explained that she's pretty chill and just says exactly what she's thinking.
"Yeah," I said. "I don't see you as one to fly off the handle." I just got her, you know?

 Unfortunately the item I saw online actually looked like it was based on the novel PUSH  by Sapphire, and I was back to square one, but Ellen helped me figure it out before I had a Mariah Meltdown.

As I left without a drawer unit for my clothes, but with a jazzy clothes hamper, I felt hopeful. I'm ordering some drawers to pick up in store, which is both high-tech and less stressful. I'm probably going to pick them up on Saturday, which is the next day that Ellen's working.

Yes, she told me of her own volition. We're going to start going on coffee dates at Bed Bath & Beyond's cafe and I'll probably get her to "Like" my Facebook fan page. #BFFnotonNBC

*We all know that if I had my way I'd be the star of next season's new show "Biggest Hoarders Loser Intervention," where obese men and women are made to lose weight by kicking their drug addiction and cleaning their health-code-violating compounds.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Summertime and the Dressin' is Shitty....

As the weather stays warm, everyone's dressing for the season--and many are looking fierce. I mean, I work in Chelsea, so every block and a half I see a young model on her way to a go-see (yep, I know the lingo), but even the normals are bringin' their A-game.

Except for the men.

I've discovered that I have several prejudices against certain fashion choices that men make. In fact, they offend me with their grossness.
I would like to share them with you now.
As with my fears, I believe that as I say them, I release them.

Hipster mullet.


I came across this just yesterday while getting lunch with a gal pal. It was one of those hip restaurants where all of the waitstaff look like runaways from Oregon, and the guy asked us how many we'd be before reserving our table with a flame-patterned kerchief. So typical.


OF COURSE this guy would have a fish is a lava-lamp-shaped tank and a picture of the Golden Gate Bridge as his screensaver. No, buddy, I don't want to hear about that time you went to India with your parents for vacation!

This same character is usually found wearing another gguuhh--ross item: 
the short-sleeve button-down
I know, I know, this may polarize many of you, but this is my blog and my truth!

It doesn't matter how attractive you are, this screams LAME DAD!

Jaunty Caps (with unkempt hair)

No, you're not cool, you're not a 1940s jazz musician, and you don't have to get up early tomorrow and go to a life-drawing class. 

Winter Hats in Non-Winter Weather.    

Not even on Zefron.

This makes me want to vomit.
This makes me want to vomit--and not because it's Howie Mandel.  
FYI: it doesn't look good on non-white guys, either. 

While we're on the face, let's discuss WAXED MUSTACHES. 

Kill yourself.

The man below is basically the stuff of my nightmares.

Frosted Hair; 1990s-swing-music-revival-style T-Shirt; BLEACHED SOUL PATCH; sculpted facial hair AROUND the soul patch; TWO hoop earrings; AND A PINKY RING.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

On the Twelfth Day of Not Blogging, My True Love Gave to Me....A Blog Post!

Twelve days since my last blog post?! That's a fuckin' abomination.

How are you guys? I'm a bit weary, but that's nothing new. I've had a lot of potential posts in mind but never really thought they were worth following through--or, rather, I was up against deadlines for work and after cranking out articles with such titles as "WaterMedia Meaning," I didn't think I was fit to walk the earth, much less sully the blogsphere. Luckily, the magazine has gone to the printer and I've got some breathing room for a week or so. And you know what "breathing room" means: lunches with my main gays, doctor's appointments to check on my brain (remember that ish last year?), doing some creative writing, and engaging in bloggery. So here we are!

Here are some things I wanted to share last week, presented in "mini-post" form:


The 30 Rock role for which I auditioned was played by a WHITE WOMAN.

I can't even write more lest I end up writing a 30-page post.


Last weekend, I was lazing around the house and calling it organizing when I turned to Jewboo, who was washing dishes.
"Will you judge me if I take a nap now?"
He turned to me, with the confused look of a person being asked an interview question that's clearly a trick (you know, like, "What's your greatest weakness?"). "Um....are you asking my permission?"
"I don't know. Yes? Is that bad?"
As you can imagine, I'm having a tough time with cohabitation. Not because of anything Jewboo has or hasn't done--it's all in my head. You know how I like to dissect everything and try to figure out why so that I can, in turn, manipulate in hopes of achieving my dreams (usually fame and undying love)? Well, that's cute when it's pithy and can be closed in a Firefox tab. And it's acceptable when it happens once a week on the nights that I spend with my lover. But when it's a daily occurrence, it not only strains the relationship but it also taxes the mind. And I don't know how to stop. 

The innocuous question, "What do you want for dinner?" reaches my hammer, anvil, and stirrup sounding like, "Are you seriously going to just eat ice cream as a meal?" I then feel the need to over-explain my behavior and request unnecessary approval.

Guys, it turns out I'm a terrorist--relax, government Google spies--I'm a "process terrorist." I learned this phrase from an insightful older gay gentleman who has been with his live-in Latin lover for nearly two decades. While explaining my new domestic status, he said, "You know, when I first met [Juan] I thought he was a bit dim cause he was so drama free. Turns out that he just doesn't feel the need to analyze everything to death. You're destroying everything by trying to dissect it. You're making everyday life fearful. You've got to stop."
Lord knows I have no desire for 72 virgins,* so I really do need to get it together.

*What woman wants to spend the afterlife saying, "No, not there. Up. UP!, it's fine."?


I received the following text not once, not twice, but three times (the cray cray) from my cousin who writes hood tales:

[Title removed] the sexiest erotic thriller is now available 4 sale b4 mothers day. set in a web of lust lies love deception drama and abortion.

And here I was, wondering what on earth to get for the mother who has everything!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Workin' it Out!

Hey guys,

Sorry for the delay. As you can imagine, the last week has been a flurry of packing, schlepping,* and weariness--but there's been no shortage of blog material. Let me share some highlights--or, rather, lowlights--of the "Great Migration of 2012."

Last Thursday was the beginning of substantial preparation, and it involved a trip to Ikea with my mom.
No, not Jewboo. Why? Well, when it comes to interior design, meticulous planning, and troubleshooting my poor choices, mom's got Jewboo beat by a landslide. She watches HGTV 24/7 and seeing as I consider vajazzling a bold creative choice, I needed her expertise. Add to that the fact that 30 Rock is my design for living, and I just couldn't risk Ikea tearing Jewboo and I apart.

As we attempted to lug disparate pieces of birch veneer onto our trollies (which, of course, had to have sticky wheels that wouldn't respond to steering), my mother went from "Design on a Dime" to "Turn on You on a Dime." I went back to pick up and item and we were separated like two Mormon missionaries just days after arriving in a treacherous foreign land.^ Let's just say that by the time we got in the car, we weren't speaking...because that is what happened. Because I don't like toiling, sweating, or feeling dumb, I opted for Ikea's delivery and assembly service for the most complicated pieces: the bed frame, the office desk, and the tv stand. As Jewboo sat in Brooklyn, attempting to organize and pack 30 years worth of stuff, I sat in the new apartment waiting for deliveries to arrive. What took place on that day were interactions unlike any I could have ever dreamed of.

They all started with me profusely apologizing because I live on the top floor of a 5th-floor walkup. As burly, surly men hauled dining tables and chairs upstairs, I offered to help and was met with BPEs--"'Bitch, please' eyes." At around 5pm, Chris from Ikea arrived. He called to say that he couldn't find a parking spot and needed me to come down and hold the door while he emptied the truck.
"It's just you?!" I said with what may have been mistaken for disgust and disdain.
I was stressed out and worried--I had 11 different boxes totaling 200+ pounds and they'd just sent one guy. I'd warned them it was a walk-up. I'd hoped there'd at least be a spotter!

I offered to help and he looked at me like I had 3 heads before telling me to just "sit tight." He then proceeded to carry every single box up 5 flights of stairs.

I offered him water. I offered him food. I offered him a warm air mattress. He declined all of it.
"It's just a workout. That's all it is," he said through heavy breaths as he wiped sweat off his brow.

I was officially frightened. No one could be that righteous about heavy lifting unless he'd experienced worse. Every time he came in with a new piece, I stood up because I felt like an asshole for reclining when he was toiling. Once he was done, it was time to start assembling. Over the course of the five hours it took him to assemble items, we really got to know each other--and by that, I mean I got to know about him.

For the first half hour, he talked about the importance of exercise and supported his points with loose quotes from the Bible. "Do you believe in God?" he began. "You know God says by the sweat of your brow comes the strength of your body. That's truth."
I don't know why he needed to question my faith before saying that. I think we all know we need our 30 minutes a day because Michelle Obama says so.

Within the first 5 minutes, I knew he had to have been institutionalized in some way, because everything was really intense, like he wasn't used to having casual interactions with fellow humans and he got most of his information from a prison library. He didn't just make statements, he offered 10 different synonyms, stressing the least important parts of his conversation with such conviction he had to have been convicted.

I don't know if I'm explaining this well. Let me turn it over to Kevin Hart, who really captures the essence of such a man.

Take, for instance, Chris's thoughts on his physical appearance:
"Am I bigger than I should be right now? Yes, at this moment, as we speak, presently, I am not at the weight I should be for my height. I am 204 and I should be at a buck-eighty, a buck-seventy-five. I should be approximately 30 pounds less than I am. It is just a fact that I am larger than I should be."

Um, okay. #uncomfortable #lifetimemomentoftruth

He also kept asking me if I was "following" him, as though he'd been used to talking to methadone addicts who were prone to nodding off.

Turned out that Chris wasn't an Ikea employee but actually worked for a company to whom Ikea outsources it's delivery and assembly. (Turns out Ikea's own people can't even put the shit together! You know that's F'd) Luckily, he had experience with all of the items I purchased, so it only took him FIVE HOURS to put everything together. 

WTF?! Who has that kind of time? Imagine if I'd tried to do any of that on my own, or if Jewboo and I had sat there struggling with the pictionary-esque directions? I would have started crying within 20 minutes and then stormed out to get a cupcake.

As he moves on to the second item, Chris tells me that I'm missing not one but two pieces needed for the bedframe to be ready for use: the midbeam and the slats. 
"But it said there were 3 parts to the item and I have 3 boxes!" I yelped helplessly.
"Yeah, but you have to get these two things separately," Chris said. "They must be purchased in addition to the 3 pieces. It's additional. They didn't even tell you, did they?"
No, they did not, Incarcerated Chris! (InCHRISerated?)

Ikea needs to stop bullshittin' and just change their logo:

Chris explained what I'd need to do once I purchased the pieces (which you know involved a lot of repetition) and told me it'd be fine. He then went back to discussing physical fitness, and explained why ping-pong "is the greatest form of exercise that God gave man."

Hear him out:

"What was the first form of exercise? Fighting. Think about it: you use your body, you build strength, you can do it anywhere. It's man's instinct. [at this point I start to text friends: If you don't hear from me in 30 minutes, send out the dogs.] I mean, I can fight. I used to fight and I'm telling you, I'd be sweating more than I am now. But we can't do that as our exercise. Why? Because we'd hurt our bodies. It's too much stress and risk on the human body. And it's illegal, too [he laughs awkwardly]. Yeah, you'll get in trouble. 

"Okay, what's next after fighting? Football. Again, too much physical injury. It's dangerous, no matter how much padding you wear. Then what? Baseball--please!" [I didn't say anything.] "Swimming is good for building flexibility, but there's no strength. Have you seen pro swimmers? They're weak. Ok, yeah, running, that's something, you're on to something." [Again, I didn't say anything.] "But runners are weak, too. They have endurance but they're all bones. Their bodies cannibalize themselves. It's all bone. 

"And then there's ping-pong. You ever get hit with a ping-pong? It doesn't feel like nothing. Whether you hit it 60 miles an hour, the most you'll get is a red mark. And you're in combat. You're against your fellow man, but you're never in physical contact. I'm on my side, you're on your side. Always. There's no touching. NONE. At most, I throw you the ball. It's a workout, for real. Believe me. For the record I am saying it's the best exercise. You can quote me. I lost 60 pounds playing ping-pong." 

What. on. earth.

It was the longest 5 hours of my life, made worse by the fact that I had no food to eat. Things started to get less intense once Chris asked if he could listen to music as he worked. "SWEET GOD PLEASE!" I thought as I said, "yeah, get in the zone."

He put the speaker at top volume on his iPhone and proceeded to blast 80s rock songs by Huey Lewis and the News, which only made him even more of an enigma.

If only I'd known that Chris would be the most steadfast of all the men who I'd meet over the next week. For the last 5 days our toilet hasn't worked, our shower dribbles like a public-school water fountain, and one of our dining chairs arrived broken and took 4 days to replace. When I called various men in charge, I discovered that the Ikea model had become universal. I was on my own Les Miz style, feeling very third world in my own (brand new) apartment! Jewboo and I have managed to make it through, however, and have actually grown closer (there's nothing like admitting to peeing in the shower to make a relationship stronger).

Here's to a first week of cohabitation unlike any other! At least I'm not Ashton Kutcher, am I right?!

*I'm so Jewish!
^I saw "Book of Mormon" on Broadway two weeks ago and it's changed my life.