Originally posted on November 11, 2008
Growing up in a Jewish home every meal was a delightful color, beige (or shades there of…pot roast and potatoes an occasional cooked carrot that had lost most of its orange color and had gone to a deep rust). I’ve written about it before but the honest to God truth is that the vegetables we had with our nightly home cooked dinners (when we weren’t going out to a restaurant) consisted of French cut green beans, creamed corn and on occasion the infamous LeSueur canned peas. My guy likes to say that I didn’t know about green vegetables until I met him. In honesty, it’s not far from the truth. And so it began with broccoli and now I’m even up to spinach salads but the question I have is that if spinach is so great for me, why does it get stuck in my teeth? – Don’t Get Me Started!
I mean, if something is good for me then I don’t understand how it could be so socially detrimental. And let me just say it doesn’t stop with the spinach. That’s right, eat broccoli and you’re a half an hour away from gas of such epic proportions that it’s bound to make any date or social event into a story about you trying to subtly find a way to stick your ass out a window in order to not embarrass yourself. (Let’s face it there’s really no subtle way to be at an event and stick your ass out a window.) Asparagus will betray you too.
So maybe my Jewish mother knew right after all? I don’t recall ever having bad gas after eating that T-bone steak my father grilled and the creamed corn. Health shmealth who needs it, more important to be popular, right?
The thing is that I adore spinach in any form now and I especially love me a spinach salad. The thing is that no matter when or how I eat one there’s always the dreaded piece or two between one or two of my teeth. And the completely insidious part about spinach is that it’s almost impossible to get it out of your teeth in one try. Do yourself a favor and go for the big gun by using dental floss and dig, dig, dig until you get it out of your teeth. If you’re at work take yourself to the restroom because there’s no subtle way to do this task. And don’t rely on the feel of your tongue to discover where all that spinach is taking root in your mouth, you need to get into that mirror, pull those lips back and really go tooth by tooth.
Now most of you don’t care about any of what you’ve just read as much as you’re dying to know if I’ve ever had an embarrassing spinach moment. Well yes, of course I have had exactly that my friends. It was at a cocktail party where I knew next to no one and I was pouring it on with all the overly gay excited energy that usually turns people off or makes you the true life of the party. How I bobbed and weaved among the party-goers with people saying things like, “Can we do lunch at some point? You’re just so funny.” Yes, I felt popular squared. After martinis and many appetizers (that were passed) I went to the restroom. My eyes were a little bleary but after looking through the medicine cabinet of the person who was throwing the party I looked into the mirror to ensure the hair was in perfect place only to find that the first appetizer I ate when the evening began (a spinach and cheese on a crostini). That’s right they thought I was funny all right. (Funny like Lucy Ricardo trying to get rid of the cheese on the train in Europe.) So use this as a cautionary tale and don’t you have to wonder if spinach is so great for me, why does it get stuck in my teeth? – Don’t Get Me Started!
What Part Of Me Doing A Thousand Different Things When I’m Listening To You Makes You Not Get That I’m Not Interested In What You Have To Say? – Don’t Get Me Started!
Originally posted on November 18, 2008
To me, I think it’s pretty obvious. While I’m the first to admit that I was born for the short attention span theatre of life this does not factor in when I’m talking to certain people. Whether it’s on the phone or in person, if I start to do stuff like fold my laundry, straighten things up, it’s not because I’m OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder – for the three of you who don’t know what that is) it’s because hello, you’re boring me! What part of me doing a thousand different things when I’m listening to you makes you not get that I’m not interested in what you have to say? – Don’t Get Me Started!
Let me assist you in how it starts for me. In the beginning I’m right there with you. I have a load of empathy which causes me to no longer be able to watch shows like Extreme Home Makeover. I literally have a fear of my tear ducts completely drying up if I watch these shows; in short (which I am) I become a complete blithering mess sobbing to the point that my nose starts running like a four year old on a playground. I have spent long nights staying up listening to a friend explain all the reasons the person they’re dating is a jerk only to be invited to dinner with them and the jerk the following evening. The person who was bitching is bright-eyed as a daisy full of love and there I sit with the daisy, the jerk and I look and feel like hell because I didn’t get any sleep and to top it off they didn’t even break-up so where I ask is my payment for listening to all this shit? Some would say that it comes with being a good friend. And I certainly do consider myself to be a good friend but when it comes to acquaintances or business people who are always trying to sell you something (even if it’s just to go along with their idea) I refuse to give these people the same attention as a true friend with a crisis on their hands (whether it be self-inflicted, imagined or the real deal).
You see, I seem to have one of “those” faces. You know, the kind that people feel as though they can share all of their intimate details with and it will not only make them feel better by getting it off their chest but I will also somehow wave my fairy wand (watch the comments kids) and make it all better at the same time. I get this from the woman at my dry cleaner to people I work with and as I’ve never prided myself on being a patient person, let me just say that if you can’t get it all out in under five minutes you deserve what’s coming your way. If I’m on the phone with you and you’re having a monologue instead of a dialogue then I will turn the television on as the first line of attack. I’m not so insensitive (or stupid) as to not have it on mute but you may hear me chuckle in an inopportune time because something funny just happened on television while you were telling me about you losing your job and your front tooth. From there I may actually begin to clean my house, feed the cats or in some cases, ever so gingerly begin to type a blog like this one about how I’m not paying attention to you.
If you’re talking to me in person and begin to go on too long I may do one of many things. If you’re my mother (who goes on and on and back around to telling the same thing over and over again like it’s on some strange looped recording) I may play the silent movie director and with my index finger pointed to the side and violently rotate it to make the “wrap it up” motion. Or I may point to a spot somewhere in the air and say, “Here’s you’re point” and then do my best mime searching in the dark for nothing and then say, “here’s me.” If it goes on way too long I’ll just say, “Sum it up.”
You may think that this is rude but in fact it’s not at all. I’m not saying I start this stuff the minute that you’re talking to me but if the story involves more than three people and is impossible to keep straight then rest assured I’m going to be wondering what I’m having for dinner and/or thinking about whether or not I should get a haircut or doing one or many of the things listed above.
The other side to this is that in life, in my job I have to be a multi-tasker so much like a Mom who manages to yell at a kid with her eyes while on the phone with her sister gushing over the new haircut she got, I can do many things at once. It reminds me of the song, “Woman” that Peggy Lee sang. “I can listen to a friend bitch and criticize her at the same time. I can watch the TV and make a drink with a twist of lime. I can squeeze into a pair of jeans that shouldn’t fit and look great. Shave, moisturize, deodorize, accessorize and show up fashionably late. Cause I’m a homo, H to the O-M-O!”
But when you go on and on and see me drifting please for God’s sake either change the subject or maybe just maybe take a long enough breath that I might be able to interject something into the supposed conversation we’re having. And make no mistake about it, if you don’t be ready because what part of me doing a thousand different things when I’m listening to you makes you not get that I’m not interested in what you have to say? – Don’t Get Me Started!
This post originally appeared on November 27, 2007
I’ve never been one of those gays who think that everyone I meet is gay or wants desperately to be gay. I’m one of those gays who gets that there are straight people in the world and (in case you’re wondering) it’s okay with me (that’s a joke, people). So I surprised myself when recently thumbing through one of my favorite catalogs, Red Envelope. I wasn’t surprised so much by what I saw but my reaction to it. I love this catalog because of the items but as an old professional department store gift wrap boy from way back, a lot has to do with the presentation of sending items that arrive in a red box with a red envelope that tells a story about the gift you’re giving. Love it! (If you don’t know about this catalog, visit them at www.redenvelope.com <now called Personal Creations, ugh> and fall in love) The thing is that as I was flipping through doing my own version of watching fireworks (I like to “ooh” and “ahh” out loud as I see things I like to make the catalog experience more interactive) I came across one ad with two women and then an ad with two men and a little girl and suddenly all I could think was that the marketing people for this catalog had found a very subtle way to let us gays know we were being represented. “Hmmm” I thought. Could it be that it has finally happened? Have I begun to see the world through gay colored glasses? – Don’t Get Me Started!
Once again I need to reiterate that I never really think of myself as someone who is looking for gay subtext in every movie or news article yet here I was (perhaps projecting because it’s a white guy and black guy on the one page like me and my partner – although we have no daughter unless you count our one female cat and come on, I’m not one of those people who run around talking about my cats like they’re my children. Well okay, not to other people, only to my mate when he’s out of town and I have to say, “You should see what your daughter got into today.” Okay, dammit, I’m a sicky sick animal lover like those I make fun of okay I admit it. Is that what you wanted to hear?) But the more I looked at these pages I was like, “Come on, if these people aren’t gay, they get my vote for the gayest non-gay people ever to appear in a catalog!”
There’s a practical side of me that knows that it probably was a gay marketing person in their own modest way trying to represent us gays and at the same time not offend. After all, these models are pictured on other pages with enough people to make you say, “Are they with the man or the woman?” or “Okay, that’s the father, that’s the mother…but is that the sister or the luvah?” And then there’s another part of me that knows many of you are wondering why the hell I’m spending so much time worrying about the relationships of the models in a catalog, right? I honestly don’t know but I guess it’s like wondering who the person is in the frame you bought at the store that has the stock photo in it. I had some friends years ago who decorated their home with frames that came with photos of people they found attractive and/or interesting. It was always a hoot when someone would ask them, “Who is that?” And they would answer, “I have no idea. He came with the frame and we came just looking at him so he’s a part of the family now. Or at least the den!”
I want to believe that deep down inside I’m open-minded and not one of those gays that cringe at straight people (or the thought of women and their private parts) and I know that I am but then how to explain the thought that the gays are taking over the pages of a catalog that doesn’t come with a rainbow anywhere in it, men’s underwear or a cock ring? I have no answers only questions.
Maybe there is a part of me that wishes my guy and I were the guys in this catalog, fawning over a child that is ours? We don’t have a life that was meant for children with all the travel we both do for work but as you grow older whether you’re a man or a woman there’s a biological clock ticking for some of us. So perhaps if I can’t have it in life I can at least see that it exists on the pages of one of my favorite catalogs. So whether or not they meant it that way, I just want to say, “Thank you, Red Envelope.” And as I get older and need glasses to see more and more anyway, I’ll resolve myself to the fact that it’s okay to see the world through my own gay colored glasses! – Don’t Get Me Started!