Monday, September 30, 2019

I Should Be Laughing: Brothers

“How come you don’t play baseball, Harry?”

“I dunno. I guess I don’t like it much.”

Jimmy nodded to himself even though he didn’t understand how any boy could not like baseball. Throwing the ball high into the air, he forgot Harry for the moment and raced across the yard just as the ball came down; he caught it smoothly, the supple leather glove folded around the battered baseball like a second skin.

Harry sat on the porch, reading like he always did when he watched Jimmy after school. He would sit outside, reading, until Mother woke up and then he would disappear upstairs, lock his bedroom door and be alone. Free from the looks his mother gave him; far away from questions like ‘Why don’t you play ball?’

“They have a team at your school.” Jimmy was saying. He had no idea how annoying it was talking to someone who was reading. Jimmy thought books were dumb; why read when you could be outside playing ball or down at the beach throwing rocks at the seagulls. “My friend Danny’s brother is on it. Why dontcha play on that team?”

“I said I don’t know, Jimmy!” Harry snapped. “Why don’t you leave me alone until Mother gets up.”

“Danny’s brother says it’s cuz you’re a sissy.”

Harry’s face reddened, though he kept his eyes in his book.

“Are you Harry? Are you a sissy?”

“Shut your mouth Jimmy….”

“Or what?” He said snidely, knowing he’d struck a nerve; even at six-years-old, he could tell. His lower lip shot out in an artificial pout. “What’re you gonna do Harry? Slap me? Ooh, I’m so scared of the sissy.”

Harry slammed the book shut and dropped it off the porch. Trying so hard not to let Jimmy get the best of him, he ran his hands down his thighs, grabbing the thick denim of his jeans and bunching the fabric between his fingers. It was bad enough that school was torture, a dirty look or a shove when he least expected it, but now his own brother was calling him names. Sissy.  Why can’t I be like everyone else? Harry thought. Why can’t I play baseball or climb the rope in gym? Another torture. ‘What’s the matter, Seaton? Too hard for you, faggot?’ Why can’t everyone just leave me alone?

“Come on sissy,” Jimmy taunted. “Play ball, sissy.”

That was enough. Harry scooped up a handful of pebbles from alongside the porch and threw them at his little brother. His aim was off and the stones scattered all over the front yard, landing everywhere but near Jimmy. Perfect fag throw. He heard the kids from school in his head, although he tried convincing himself that he deliberately missed Jimmy, that he didn’t want to hurt his brother; but that wasn’t the truth. He wanted to hurt Jimmy; he wanted them all to hurt like he hurt. Every last one.

“Aw, man!” Jimmy laughed viciously and ran around the yard like a rabid dog, howling. “You even throw like a girl. Danny was right! You are a sissy! SISSY!”

Squirming, Harry wanted to tell Jimmy to fuck off. Shove it up your ass, you little fucker!  But Jimmy would tell Mother as soon as she awoke and Harry felt his skin burn from the slap she would give him for cursing. So, rather than call Jimmy names—which might make him feel better, for a moment—Harry grabbed his book and stood up; he raced through the front door, pushing it so hard it crashed into the oak coat tree. Even from the front yard, Jimmy heard Harry’s bedroom door slam; it was so loud it might have disturbed the neighbors, had there been any neighbors that far down Skeleton Road. Jimmy stayed outside, throwing the ball and shouting,

“Sissy. Sissy. Sissy. Sissy….”

At the window, the big one facing the sea, Harry pressed his forehead to the cool glass and listened to his brother’s hissing. He felt like a foreigner in that house.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

I Ain't One To Gossip But ...

JLo had that stripper movie that was supposed to earn her an Oscar nomination …

Hold for laughter.

… but the film really underperformed and so what’s the old girl to do now?

First, wear that cut-down-to-there-and-up-to-there Versace dress that earned her all sorts of notoriety twenty years ago again this year and then suddenly have an old interview “unearthed” where you go JLo on everyone’s ass …

The Movieline interview is from 1998 and people are “rediscovering” it as Lopez starts her campaign for an Oscar nod …

Hold for laugher.

… so here are some highlights:

When asked about Cameron Diaz, JLo said she’s “a lucky model who’s been given a lot of opportunities I just wish she would have done more with. She’s beautiful and has a great presence, though, and in My Best Friend’s Wedding, I thought, ‘When directed, she can be good.’”

Jennifer Lopez, acting critic. But then she goes in after Paltrow, saying in that hushed JLo voice:
“Tell me what she’s been in? I swear to God, I don’t remember anything she was in. Some people get hot by association. I heard more about her and Brad Pitt than I ever heard about her work.”
Says the woman who dated Paltrow’s ex, Ben Affleck. Next up: Madonna:
“Do I think she’s a great performer? Yeah. Do I think she’s a great actress? No. Acting is what I do, so I’m harder on people when they say, ‘Oh, I can do that—I can act.’ I’m like, ‘Hey, don’t spit on my craft.’”
Acting is what I do? Don't spit on my craft?

Hold for laughterBut she goes on … she was “never a big fan” of Winona Ryder but thinks Claire Danes is a “good actress” and finally goes in on Salma Hayek:
“She’s a sexy bombshell and those are the kinds of roles she does. I do all kinds of different things. It makes me laugh when she says she got offered Selena, which was an outright lie. If that’s what she does to get herself publicity, then that’s her thing.”
Man, this Oscar campaign will be delicious with JLo’s own words coming back to haunt her.
JLo. Oscar.

Hold for laughter.
Well, it looks like the girl that Miley Cyrus jumped off of Liam Hemsworth to jump onto is out of the picture.

Sadly, just a few short weeks into their love affair, Cyrus and Kaitlynn Carter are finished, though sources say Miley is doing fine this time around, she is “looking forward to being single.”

Until the next relationship/publicity stunt is arranged in …five …four …three…two …
Dean McDermott, AKA Mister Tori Spelling, because, let’s face, that’s all he’s known for, recently came back from a 10-day Hawaiian vacation with his five kids and wife, and described it as “an orgy in your honor with your five kids.”

I don’t know how many orgies McDermott goes to but if they involve your kids someone should call CPS on this asshat because, in his own words, he shows that he is the worst parent ever:
“You have paradise right in front of you. You’re scuba diving and paddle-boarding, and they’re like, ‘Hey, Dad! Come and watch me do s**tty cannonballs in the pool.’… I’ve seen so many bad cannonballs. God bless them. They’re so excited about it, right? But for 21 years — my oldest is 21 — I’ve seen all this stuff.”
Yeah, so who cares if your kids are having fun.
I’ll start off by saying I don’t care for Beyoncé. Drum me out of the Gay Club, I don’t care. To me she is an ass-shaking, weave-snapping, self-promoting so-so singer. Sue.Me.

For a few years  now Beyoncé has been trying to trademark her daughter’s name and has been in litigation with Wendy Morales, who has used “Blue Ivy” as the name of her wedding planning business since 2009. In 2012, Beyoncé and Jay-Z filed for an application to trademark their daughter’s name a month after she was born but learned about Morale’s company and lawsuits began.

Beyoncé tried to circumvent the suit by adding “Carter” to the trademark application, but Morales had that one blocked too, and has also refused to give up the rights to Blue Ivy unless Beyoncé wants to buy it for $10 million.

Beyoncé doesn’t give up coins that easily and so now she has a new argument in her case as to why she’s the rightful owner of the trademark: She says the words ‘blue’ and ‘ivy’ are synonymous with her daughter because no one in their right mind would ever ask, “Blue Ivy…the Boston-based event-planning company, or the daughter of Beyoncé?” And Beyoncé, who sings about girl power but doesn’t live it also shades Morales’ company by saying it’s “regional” and “small” business, with only three offices, a handful of employees, and a small social media presence.

Morales snapped back that she believes Beyoncé has no intention to use the trademark for business reasons, but Beyoncé disagrees:
“Indeed, the circumstantial evidence, including Blue Ivy Carter’s fame, her interest in fashion and design, and her familial relationship with two of the most famous performers in the world all support BGK’s intent to use the BLUE IVY CARTER trademark in connection with building a brand consistent with Blue Ivy Carter’s interests and skills.”
She adds that “Blue Ivy Carter is a cultural icon who has been described as a “mini style star” and has been celebrated for her “fashion moments” overs the years. Her life and activities are followed extensively by the media and the public.”

Quick, someone grab Beyoncé’s ego, it’s getting blown awayby the wind machine.
While we’re talking former Destiny’s child singers, let’s talk about forgotten DC member, Michelle Williams. She is furious because people are confusing her with Oscar-nominated, Emmy-winning actress Michelle Williams and wants this nonsense to stop.

Destiny’s Child Michelle Williams took to Instagram Live to ask everyone to stop tagging and fighting with her over the gender wage gap speech that World Famous Actress Michelle Williams gave after winning an Emmy last Sunday night.

To be fair, if you confuse Destiny’s Child Michelle Williams, who is a black woman, with World Famous Actress Michelle Williams, who is white, you’re a special kind of moron, but still Destiny’s Child Michelle Williams should be grateful anyone at all is even talking about her because, before this, she was known as the girl Beyoncé literally stepped over.
Former TV actor and hot drunk mess, Andy Dick, is in trouble again.

An arrest warrant has been issued for Dick—that sounds odd, doesn’t it—stemming from a 2018 incident in which Dick ALLEGEDLY groped an Uber driver … while he was driving … from the back seat … and groped the man’s crotch.

That’s some Dick, Andy.

This latest incident is not to be confused with the ALLEGED 2019 groping incident in a New Orleans club .... or the July 2018 incident in which he groped a woman on the street … or the time in 2017 when he was fired for ALLEGED sexual harassment for groping people’s genitals on the set of an independent film … or the time he was sued for rubbing his dick in some guy’s face.

This is new. Kind of. New story, same old Dick.

Friday, September 27, 2019

I Didn't Say It ...

Billy Porter, making history at the Emmys this week as the first out gay black man to win an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama for Pose, saying:

“The category is love y’all, love! I am so overwhelmed and I am so overjoyed that I have lived long enough to see this day. James Baldwin said ‘it took many years of vomiting up all the filth that I had been taught about myself and halfway believed, before I could walk around this earth like I had the right to be here.’ I have the right, you have the right, we all have the right. We as artists are the people that get to change the molecular structure of the hearts and minds of the people who live on this planet. Please don’t ever stop doing that, please don’t ever stop telling the truth.”

Word, Billy, word. And keep telling it.
_____, tossing a Sarah Palin-esque word salad about the White House “transcript” on how he used his office to persuade a foreign leader to investigate a political opponent:

“Just so you understand; it’s the single greatest witch hunt in American history, probably in history, but in American history. It’s a disgraceful thing. The letter was a great letter — meaning the letter revealing the call. That was done at the insistence of myself and other people that read it. It was a friendly letter. There was no pressure. The way you had built up that call, it was going to be the call from hell — it turned out to be a nothing call. Other than a lot of people said ‘I never knew you could be so nice.'”

God, we should impeach him for being a nonsensical tool who can’t string a single coherent sentence together.
Patricia Arquette, winning and Emmy for her performance in The Act, on her trans sister Alexis, who died in September 2016 of complications related to AIDS, speaking out against transgender persecution:

“In my heart I’m so sad. I lost my sister Alexis. Trans people are still being persecuted. …. I’m in mourning every day of my life Alexis and I will be the rest of my life for you, until we change the world until trans people are not persecuted. Give them jobs. They’re human beings, let’s give them jobs. Let’s get rid of this bias we have everywhere.”

Brava, Patricia, and we’ll remember your sister, too.
Corey Lewandowski, _____ Flying Monkey, on appearing before congress and acting like a lying jackass:

“I’m very, very seriously thinking about running for the United States Senate. After this week, no American citizen should have to go through what I had to go through, should never have to be disparaged or attacked the way that I was by these committee members because they didn’t like my politics. When you attack a _____ supporter, it’s okay. There are two different sets of rules. And the American people are tired of it. And I believe the people of New Hampshire, they want a fighter in the United States Senate. And I’d say this week was a clarification of that’s who I am.”

You say fighter while I say whiny little bitch who got butt-hurt before Congress.
Take a seat, traitor.
Frank Bruni, New York Times writer, on Lewandowski’s “performance”:

“Did that look of unalloyed contempt come naturally to Corey Lewandowski, or did he rehearse it? I picture him in front of a mirror as his “testimony” before the House Judiciary Committee approached, fine-tuning his sneer, perfecting his glare, testing different tilts of his head to see which conveyed maximal disgust with his inquisitors. He was hellbent on acing this performance. And ace it he did, if the goal was to distill the _____ ethos into a few ugly hours. A flamboyant defiance of authority? Check. An extravagant disdain for precedent and procedure? Check. Cockiness, a persecution complex and a proudly situational relationship with the truth? Check, check, check. Bashing the media and even taking a whack at Hillary Clinton, he was Donald _____ in absentia, Donald _____ in excelsis, showing his former boss and future patron how scornfully _____like he could be.”

Practice in front of the mirror!
Funny, cuz it’s probably true.
Michelle Williams, who won the Emmy for Best Lead Actress in a Limited Series for Fosse/Vernon, on race discrimination and equal pay for women in Hollywood:

“I see this as an acknowledgment of what is possible when a woman is trusted to discern her own needs, feels safe enough to voice them, and respected enough that they’ll be heard. When I asked for more dance classes, I heard, ‘Yes.’ More voice lessons? ‘Yes.’ A different wig, a pair of fake teeth not made out of rubber? ‘Yes.’ And all of these things, they require effort and they cost more money, but my bosses never presumed to know better than I did about what I needed in order to do my job and honor Gwen Verdon. And so I want to say thank you so much to FX and to Fox 21 Studios for supporting me completely and for paying me equally because they understood that when you put value into a person, it empowers that person to get in touch with their own inherent value and then where do they put that value? They put it into their work. And so the next time a woman — and especially a woman of color, because she stands to make 52 cents on the dollar compared to her white male counterpart — tells you what she needs in order to do her job, listen to her, believe her. Because one day, she might stand in front of you and say thank you for allowing her to succeed because of her workplace environment and not in spite of it."

If you recall, Michelle Williams was in the film All the Money in the World, and when the director reshot some scenes in the movie to replace Kevin Spacy with Christopher Plummer, Williams was paid scale—about $1,000—while Mark Wahlberg was paid millions.
And had she been a woman of color, it might have been even less.
Megan Fox, actress, on her six-year-old son, Noah’s fashion sense:

“Sometimes, he’ll dress himself and he likes to wear dresses, sometimes… And I send him to a really liberal, like, hippy school, but even there–here in California–he still has little boys going: ‘Boys don’t wear dresses’ or ‘Boys don’t wear pink.’ So we’re going through that now, where I’m trying to teach him to be confident no matter what anyone else says. He had stopped wearing dresses for a while–he just wore one two days ago to school, and he came home and I was like: ‘How was it? Did any of the friends at school have anything to say? And he was like: ‘Well, all the boys laughed when I came in… but I don’t care, I love dresses too much.’“

Good on him, and good on Mom.
Billy Porter, again, this time on rumors that he threw shade at RuPaul after RuPaul’s Drag Race won its Emmy:

“Let me make this clear right now in this room to everybody. Right now. There was never a side-eye coming from me. There’s never anything negative coming from me. You’re never going to get from it. Okay. It’s all love, all love, it’s all positivity. Don’t come to me with that.”

Billy doesn’t do fools.

Thursday, September 26, 2019


Carlos and I have an ongoing joke-battle about the kinds of TV shows we each watch. He likes a lot of what I call The Nerd Shows—How It’s Made, Monster Ship, Contact, etc.—while I like dramas and scary shows and what he calls Stupid Tv—like most, but not all, Real Housewives shows. Not that they aren’t all stupid, it’s that I don’t watch all Housewives franchises. New Jersey? Atlanta? Fuhgeddaboudit.

One show we agree on is Jeopardy, and this week, watching an episode, a question in the category ‘Ferdinand’ was this one:
“With a pick axe blow in 1859 Ferdinand de Lesseps began construction of this.”
And I quickly answered:
“The Suez Canal.”
And I was correct. So, I paused the show and said to Carlos:
“You know how I knew that? Well, on one of the Stupid TV shows I watch, way back about ten years ago, was The Real Housewives of New York, and Luann, the Countess de Lesseps was one of the housewives and told the story of how one of her husband’s grandfather built the Suez Canal!
“Not so Stupid TV now is it?”
Sometimes, rarely, but sometimes, Stupid TV is a better educational tool than Nerd TV.

Just sayin’.
I’ve had a crush on actor Tuc Watkins since he was on One Life to Life a hundred years ago, and I find actor Andrew Rannells brilliantly funny and talented.

And I love the fact that these two are a new couple, who’ve announced their Coupledom via social media.

I find them adorable. I find Tuc’s pecs adorable, too.
Speaking of adorable, Jacksonville Jaguars rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew has received a $1 million offer from adult cam website Cam Soda because Minshew is ALLEGEDLY known for doing his pre-game stretching in a jock strap or nude and Cam Soda would like to film it.

And I’d like to sign up for it.
The day the transcript of _____’s call to the Ukrainian president was released, the White House emailed talking points to allies of the president; talking points meant to show that he isn’t the biggest lying cheating traitor ever.

But, since this is the _____ White House, and shit hits the fan at a record pace, the email was also sent to many, many House Democrats who are set to start an impeachment inquiry.

Seriously? This White House is the hottest mess ever!
I didn’t do an Emmys recap because half the shows that are nominated or win I have never seen because we don’t do Netflix and Hulu and Amazon and whatever other streaming channels exist. And, also, the show as boooooooring, except for this …

Kim Kardastrophe and her sister Kendall Jenner were to present an award and instead, well, this happened: the Category was Reality TV Host and Kim started by saying:
"Our family knows first-hand how truly compelling television comes from real people, just being themselves."
And before Kendall could recite her lines, the audience … laughed.

Kardastrophes. Real TV. Bwahahahahaha. And boy did Kim look confused, while Kendall looked pissed.

I kept backing up the DVR and listening, and laughing, again and again.
Don’t hold your breath that this will turn out the way it’s written, but NBC has acquired a comedy about a gay father and son from writers Nick Lehmann and Matt Hubbard.

This new show, called Like Son, Like Father will center on Nick, an out and proud gay man, who finds himself in the unenviable position of being his newly out father’s gay mentor and roommate.

I won’t hold my breath that the show will run as written because NBC has a history of “straightening” gay characters, as they did a few years ago with Rise, a story inspired by high-school teacher Lou Volpe, who was closeted and eventually came out later in life. In the NBC show they made the character straight because, well, some bullshit reason about stories because, you know, we gays don’t have stories.

Just sayin’ NBC.
Alaska now joins Nevada, South Carolina and Kansas in cancelling the GOP presidential primary in 2020 because they don’t want to annoy, bother, make fun, show the world that some Republicans hate,_____.

So, if you’re a Republican in those states and you want to cast a vote for anyone one else, the GOP is taking your vote away.

How wonderful for you, eh?
Bruno Endler. He’s a Brazilian model with a face to die for … I mean look at that profile!

And Bruno can wear a suit, even a birthday suit, better than anyone else.

And he can rock the briefs. Thanks Bruno, I needed that.

Just sayin'.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Architecture Wednesday: House in Correas

This house, outside the metropolitan area of Petrópolis—which sounds like a place where Latino superheroes live—in Brazil is just the kind of place I’d need when I need to get away from it all and have that deserted island feel.

The house was designed by Rodrigo Simão Arquitetura  to be horizontal and sprawling rather than towering and tall. The intent here was to make it feel like a cozy escape, keeping everything low and nestled amongst the lush greenery in the surrounding area. And them rather than making one monstrous home, the designers created a series of outbuildings featuring separate suites for family and guests.

Inspired by Brazilian prairie houses of previous decades, it’s made of traditional stone walls, steel frames, and sits in a forested area flanked on all sides by lush gardens that provide each of the several patios a gorgeous view.

The master bedroom suite was designed for relaxation and meditation, with beautiful views when the doors are flung open; this part of the house includes a living and dining space, kitchen, home theater, and playroom—oh the games I might play…—at one end. The other bedroom suites are on the opposite side of the home, through a stunning indoor-outdoor verandah.

The dining room is perhaps the most stunning example of the intentional materiality chosen by designers, with glazed but naturally colored wood; outside is one of the verandahs, covered like a pavilion and fully equipped with its own barbecue and pizza oven.
Carlos would like a pizza oven; Carlos has never made a pizza.

The process of collecting the materials to build this house was a process, with the designers collecting local pieces of stone, reused wood, and even classic home pieces—like doors and windows—from demolitions in the area. This eccentric patchwork of materials creates a rustic chic aesthetic, as though the home is a mosaic of beautiful elements that have been pieced together over time.

Like, say, after a shipwreck? Is it wrong that I wanna play Blue Lagoon here, but with Carlos stepping in for Brooke Shields?

The home also features a fitness room under another pavilion, from which one can see a workshop and barn, the two beautiful pools with naturally running water, and even a river that has always naturally flowed through the land, passing by the gardens and adding a calming trickling sound to the whole outdoor space. And throughout the yard you’ll see the use of local stone to create paths and walkways moving in lovely patterns across and through the lush, green grass, occasionally leading to matching stone staircases that account for changes in terrain across softly sloping hills.

I so need this one.