Tag Archives: weather

Top Ten Ways Two Gay Men Prepare for Irene.

Apparently we are in the path of what weather forecasters are calling the storm of the century. Now I realize that I’m a poster child for “skepticism” and I have been known to “pooh” these forecasts, but JUST in case, there are a few things Daryl and I need to do in preparation…

1. Check supplies of batteries. What the heck for? To put in a radio? We haven’t seen a “radio” since the seventies. (For the record, we have a DuraCell credit card)

2. Check for flashlight? Hrmpff. We’ll use our battery operated candles. It’s all about ambience.

3. Fill the bathtub with water. Um… we’ve done things in that tub that make us SURE to not use tub water for ANYthing.

4. Check bottled water. Do mixers count?

5. Get bread, eggs and milk. Oh wait… it’s NOT a snowstorm.

6. Check vodka supply. LOL. Like we’d forget that.

7. Check vodka supply, again.

8. Stay tuned to TV for up to the minute emergency coverage of the storm. Um… we have Comcast for cable and AT&T for our iphones. We’re screwed and will most likely watch a DVD of Mrs. Doubtfire.

9. Stay inside; drink plenty of fluids and rest. Wait… I think that’s if you’re sick.

10. Basically, Irene is considered an extreme blow job. Fortunately for us, we’ve got THAT one covered.

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just a taste.

Yesterday, as I was taking advantage of the outstanding weather while enjoying my 3 mile brisk walk in the park, I was trying to think of a concept to write about later in the day using “taste.” I wanted to use metaphors that included and fused the power of the senses to bring about my love for the “flavor of tasting the day.” I know that might sound odd, but I truly enjoy food. Actually, I enjoy meals. I love the process of creating culinary atmospheres that are filled with conversation, laughter, good wine and backed with some amazing music.

I never DID author a piece about tasting the day. Just as I sat down on the sofa to get started on producing something about how the sky was mixed with clouds like a wine based rue…

I felt the earth move.

Literally, I could see and feel the condo vibrating and undulating under me. It lasted a brief ten seconds or so, but it was a very unusual sensation. As I looked at the cat for some sort of visual on her take of the experience, I saw no reaction from her as she continued to swat at a honey bee on the porch. I initially thought that perhaps my blood sugar was out of whack, or maybe I was experiencing an unusual heart palpitation.

Then I watched as several Face Book statuses began rolling like the ground beneath me. “Did anyone feel that??” “Earthquake reported at 5.8, centered in VA!” “Cell phones are jammed!”

I was not crazy. This time.

Needless to say, the activity and the buzz from this rare East Coast occurrence put a slight damper on my writing project for the day.

So I compensated. I played chef.

Below are photos of what I now fondly refer to as my “Quake Concoctions.” Enjoy.

"Earth Topplers?" Home made olive oil and fresh garlic toastettes, topped with plum tomato, sweet corn from the cob, spicy shrimp, fresh chopped basil and shaved Parmesian.

 

"Richter Scale Skewers?" Fresh sun-dried tomato and basil chicken sausage, skewered with local squash, Vadelia onion and red peppers on a bed of brown rice and spicy Thai sauce.

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rain.

I wish it would rain…

For just today.

Bring clouds of cleansing clarity my way

Soft pellets pushing at the glass

Make certain paths uncertain

with translucent ambiguity.

I want it to rain…

To splash such stagnant sorrow

From my head

Flood tightness from my chest

To breathe the taste of thunder

And shake me ever free.

Please let it rain…

And thrust that sun away

To cloak her sizzling heat

With walls of wet

To hide her glaring stare

I wish it would completely rain…

And soak me in new days

Of gushing purer vibrant thoughts

Of flowing futures

And drenched out pasts

To puddle perfect peace.

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Stonewall.

my photo of "Stonewall"

Daryl and I were here in April of this year. It was a much more subdued visit than what transpired at this same location yesterday.

It was a chilly, rainy early afternoon as we searched the winding, uneven streets of New York’s west village for a little bar called the Stonewall Inn. Daryl and some wonderful lesbian friends of ours jumping the clogged drain puddles and dodging the vicious splashes of speeding taxicabs with umbrellas in hand as we came upon this tiny brick place in a city of tall, thick concrete. A glowing orange neon sign greeted us into the day.

It was much smaller than I expected. I remember the first time I saw the “Cheers” bar in Boston I was underwhelmed at its small size. I expected it to be larger than life itself… filled with those folks from the TV show singing songs while Sam and Diane argued flirtatiously in a corner. I was disappointed then, but not today.

The Stonewall Inn was barely open this early afternoon. “The gays” typically don’t begin bar hopping until much later in the early evening, so the bar was deserted, except for a short little fire plug bartender named typically, Joe. He welcomed us in immediately as if desperate for company on this miserable Saturday afternoon. Folding our dripping umbrellas and leaving them by the front door, I looked around. You could smell the age and the mustiness of this dark and dingy place. A thick painted tin ceiling and dark poster filled walls hugged us as small tables were tossed about a small elevated “stage” hardly protected by a single red velvet rope. Black and white photos of the now famous “Stonewall Riots” were haphazardly placed around on the deep paneled walls of this establishment. Framed newspaper and magazine clippings of history were draped behind the bar. Somehow the light of day made this bar look like me when I wake up in the morning. Raw and exposed. Pale and puffy. Vulnerable yet somehow as cozy as the thick fleece robe I throw on to ward off the early morning chill.

“What’ll it be?” Joe smiled, as we pulled our heavily shellacked bar stools across the old wooden floor making a wood on wood scraping echo that empty bars tend to make. We looked like a bunch of drowned rats as Joe hooked us up with clean-glassed beverages. He continued shuffling around the place acting as though he had to get ready for some large crowd, punctuated with a chuckle or two about a drag show here a few nights before.

My group of friends sat and listened to Joe’s ipod music playing loud enough over the bar’s worn speaker system to get a foot tapping from Janet Jackson’s “Control.” I continued walking around the bar’s interior, studying the photos on the walls of the Riots of 1969 trying to imagine a world where gays and lesbians had to hide so much of themselves, even in the progressiveness and toleration of New York City. To have to fear for your livelihood, your reputation and in some cases, your life must have been unimaginable to deal with on a daily basis.

Daryl and I attempted to play a game of pool on the Stonewalls well worn and uneven table, its dulled orange felt dusty with cigarette ashes and a cocktail straw. I smiled as I thought that gay men typically aren’t playing the game as a sport anyway, but as more of a way to connect to someone else if only for a moment… or possibly to start a conversation with a future life partner. The pool table eventually ate our cue ball, refused to spit it back out and our game was done. Joe didn’t have the key or the means to fix it.

We chatted and joked with each other and with Joe for another hour or so while finishing up a couple of rounds of cocktails. Daryl purchased two souvenir tee shirts for his sister and Mom, and we moved on. The rain had let up a bit as we headed out into the streets of the Village as the ghosts of men and women past smiled as we all left giggling hand in hand not realizing that in a few months there would be throngs here celebrating another milestone, another victory.

Thank you for your tiring fight, people of this tiny little place called Stonewall. Thank you for your beginning to bring the right of marriage to ALL people to the sidewalks and streets of this city… this state and eventually this country.

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rear window.

image courtesy IMDB

Daryl and I have lived at our current location for close to 5 years now. Our 2nd floor condo has a small tastefully decorated patio that overlooks several other areas of our condo-opolis. During the warm days of summer, I like to partake in the occasional cocktail whilst (hate pretentious writers that use that word, but I’ve always wanted to use it myself just because… I can) observing this condo-opolis community whilst tossing the obligatory three-finger wave to those neighbors that insist on communicating.

I remember, as a teen, being infatuated with the 1954 Hitchcock thriller, entitled Rear Window staring James Stewart and Grace Kelly (not to be confused with a favorite porn flick entitled “Back Door” starring Mitch Cock). I’ve always considered myself an “observer” of life’s situations and I believed to have a front row seat (albeit a WHEELchair and armed with high-power binoculars) like Mr. Stewart would be the perfect way to do just that!

That being said, I have recorded several “observations” from our 2nd story patio. We live in a rather diverse neighborhood, so please bear in mind that I am in no way perpetuating stereotypes, however I can only say what I saw… see what I saw… seesaw…

These observations are in no particular order:

Mexicans do all the landscaping.

Black men do all the trash pick up.

“The Gays” have the prettiest patios.

Lesbians have the sturdiest decks.

Italians have the smallest decks, but act like they’re huge.

Baptists play Gospel music the loudest (for some reason more so when the gays/lesbians are having friends over).

Thugs always have cars with tinted windows, the deepest bassed music blaring from the tiniest of speakers and usually three out of four shiny hubcaps.

Republicans always fly American flags.

Democrats usually have pretty flower or cute bunny flags.

Blue collar maintenance men have the filthiest mouths and the nicest asses.

Fat people don’t pick up their dog’s shit.

Men always spit.

Retired folks always have a bench or a chair just outside their front door, under a hand-made wreath.

The mailman has the best looking legs.

Little kids always stomp UP the hall stairs, run DOWN the hall stairs, and never fail to SLAM the front door.

The UPS guy is always hot.

Birds always dive at rogue cats.

Cats always ignore diving birds.

And finally, baby strollers are beginning to look like SUV’s as are the Mother’s pushing them.

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discarded umbrellas.

Daryl and I had the good fortune of coming out of the Palace Theatre on Times Square last Saturday evening, after enjoying the spectacular “Priscilla – Queen of the Desert,” during a monstrous thunderstorm. After the show, I had silently wondered why the theatre patrons had exited so slowly but thought it was possibly due to the collectors for the Broadway Cares for AIDS program in the lobby. As we rounded the corner down the mezzanine stairs, I understood why the sluggish exodus.

I looked outside and saw torrential rain and wind making Times Square look like an amusement park on steroids. Flashing animated billboards, honking horns, windswept water, lightning and thunder all creating an apocalyptic crescendo of near manic proportions as we began our sidewalk adventure to our destination – the Courtyard Marriott on 40th Street.

As Daryl and I dared to maneuver our way out onto the marquee covered sidewalk, we were immediately swallowed by a sea of umbrellas. A multi-colored calliope of movement as we would raise, then lower, then raise again our own umbrellas to weave our way through stuffed streets of foreign faces and thronged energy. We leapt over flooded intersections as streams of plastic bottles and soaked playbills danced feverishly around clogged street drains. Flashing walk and don’t walk characters told us what to do, as we continued to waft through this hoard of drenched humanity.

We turned off of Broadway and onto a less crowded 42nd Street as the wind fought with our own umbrellas turning them inside out then back again as sidewalk strangers ducked in and out of awning covered buildings. The cold wind sliced at our soaked bodies as we continued to dodge taxis, pedestrians and bold flashes from the sky.

I could not help but notice all of the discarded skeletal umbrellas that were tossed to the sidewalk in crumpled heaps as if they were thrown forcefully from the sky. Lonely handles reaching to us as if we could save them from their hapless fate as flashes of lightening from the echoing heavens highlighted their silver ribs in tortured twists of sizes and shapes. Canvassed covers buried in the splashes of water they were once made to protect.

We ran past Bryant Park as the dark statue of its namesake sat stoically on his seat as if mocking the storms fury. As we turned onto 40th Street, our destination came into view as our breaths grew more rapid and heavy. Sopping into the hotel lobby like two drenched rats, we sloshed and squeaked on the marble floor to the elevators.

Daryl pressed the “UP” button. We stepped in and took our ride to the sky.

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Eff this Weather!

I’m a little confused. Okay, I’m totally effing baffled!

I guess I’ve never really thought about it THAT much before, but WHY do some folks INSIST on NOT removing the snow from the top of their vehicles after a storm? Usually it’s not much of an issue in Chester County because, we usually just have to deal with the occasional snow “burst” or a full blown blizzard every five to ten years.

But for some reason, the winters from 2009 through 2011 seem to be FURTHER proof that Global Warming IS a fact and that the Ice Age Cometh OR as the college-educated, over-paid, under-knowledgeable, albeit pretty “Meteorologists” tell us, it’s just an EL NINA.

It’s not even the end of January this year and we seem to be breaking, or soon to be breaking, snowfall records for the year. Forecasts indicate that we are in for a very long, very snowy winter. That being said, we SHOULD have LOTS of practice at not only driving in it, but in cleaning it from our vehicles BEFORE we venture out into the street with the rest of the snow-freed public.

The other day, I’m driving down Route 202 south to work. Some “chick” in front of me loses an entire 7-inch thick IMPRESSION of her car (imagine an automobile ice sculpture) which flies like frickin’ Chitty Chitty Bang Bang right on top of my windshield! Luckily, the windshield held up and I didn’t need to swerve into another vehicle. Seriously?! Could she not THINK that the snow she NEGLECTED to remove would eventually hit someone? Sigh. I just don’t get it, but then she’s probably the type of person who drinks milk out of the container and leaves a swig of backwash for her roommate.

I have a sidebar theory about these types of folks. THEY are the ones most likely to survive an airplane fire or a sinking ship because they’re the ones who step over everyone else to get to the exits. Survivor syndrome be damned!

Try being less self-involved and do ME a favor? Clean off your ENTIRE car before the next snowstorm. From what I understand, it’s the LAW in Delaware.

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