Silver Linings Gaybook

It’s like a playbook that digs other playbooks…

Don’t make it weird.

As I find myself on many a later Friday evening (thanks J.Dane for bitching out of our playdate), I am in the position where driving is problematic, my DVDs are worn out, and there’s nothing on the telly. Couple that with another 24 hour media cycle, new magazines, a computer designed during the second Bush administration, and the day-to-day insanity that is my life, and you get one hell of an update.

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That Seth Meyers is a stud. Admit it.

Anyone that read yesterday’s rant knows that I have wanted to punch this past week in the face. Like many past relationships, March of 2013 is one that has been abusive and petty, but ultimately one that has reminded me that I need to start sticking up for myself. And yet, as is par for the course, Thursday into Friday have provided me with so much more ridick-ammo that you better hold onto your bobby-socks. We’re talking family, work, and housing cray-cray.

And we’re just getting started.

I walked through another house, this time on the west side but just shy of the ghetto, and it is super-cute. Some updates, good neighborhood, close to the po-po office which I like, with some little projects to keep me busy. Of course, the owners are underwater and want 20K more than the property is worth. Long story short I am still trying to figure out how to move forward on that place, along with the condo in the Aves, while still looking around because my grip on reality in terms of my personal finances is beyond tenuous.

Update on my computer woes: I found out my hard drive might be salvageable (stop with the crude innuendo, we’re better than all that!). I tried to resolve certain matters over the phone, but after Auto-amoton-Antoine decided it wouldn’t let me speak with a human being, I trekked back to City Creek LDS Church to get the skinny on whether my poor laptop’s data may be saved. I wanted to be a shit because I hate automated systems like poison, so I was prepared to be a total d-nozzle to whatever “Genius” happened by.

Then the eye-candy arrived.

Apple knows what they’re doing. “Oh, you’re upset that your three thousand dollar computer shit the bed? Check out my abs while I casually bend closer to you with my insanely dapper smile and an ass that won’t quit.” To which I respond, “SPLOOSH.” Devin** went on to assure me that the hard drive was probably in decent shape and to go to Simply Mac tomorrow to sort it out.

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HARD DRIVE. So much double and triple entendre to engage in.

After I stopped drooling, I then happily set out to make my trek home, stopping at the Smith’s to grab some essentials (hello, Fresca). Imagine my surprise when yet another hottie made their presence known in the frozen/chilled food section. For the record, clueless cute dude whose biggest decision today was deciding which Ben and Jerry’s Frozen Greek Yogurt flavor to buy (we’ll call him Devin Two**), you can spend as many hours as you want assessing the situation at our local grocery story.

I’ve got time.

While disappointed to have to reschedule dranks with a certain drag princess, today’s turn of events made me feel slightly less awful. I finished my latest zombie trash book; I have offers out and a bunch of places lined up to walk through; my grandfather the cat pulled his fifth health rebound in as many weeks, proving once again that some people thrive on the threshold of death, if only to make every- and anyone around them slowly but surely lose their minds.

Oh, and did I mention that I received word today that Komen for the Cure accepted my grant proposal for breast cancer screening? Because they most certainly did. And this isn’t some “buy pink” media campaign, this is for (pardon the entendre) hand’s on screening and prevention efforts that will ultimately save lives.

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Let’s do this thing.

I won’t lie, I am bred from stock that constantly waits for the other shoe to drop. And as I type this gibberish out on a laptop whose temperature on my lap has rendered me infertile, I am cautiously optimistic that my grandfather will gain enough strength to be discharged home (where he can meet his maker on his own terms), that my laptop’s brains can be extracted from the hulking mass rendered useless by a dram of liquid, and that tomorrow my dear sweet toaster of a vehicle passes inspection the day before its registration expires.

Ta.

** = names were changed to protect the hopelessly innocent eye candy. Again, SPLOOSH.

Trials By Fire

It was the best of times, and it was the worst of times.

Ah, who am I kidding. There’s not enough lipstick in the world for the pig that has been this week. I will try to find the humor in what has been my own private hell, a March Madness that would drive one literally insane. I will then have a vodka-Fresca and indulge in a trashy zombie paperback while dreaming of the world’s largest bowl of macaroni and cheese.

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Someday, my old friend. Someday.

We’ll skip the work stress; everyone has work stress, and mine is probably no more exciting than anyone else’s. I will say that if I ruled the world, no meetings would be held prior to 10am. Let’s move onto the roller coaster of real estate. As many know, I put in a bid on a condo in the Avenues that I really, really liked.

So did a shit ton of other people.

So I’m in second position, meaning that if that special someone who had their bid accepted gets hit by a bus, loses their job, or gets deported, I’m in the first slot to pull the rug out from under them. In the meantime, Kathy and I have been poring over listings, and pulling some of the diamonds out of some surrrriously rough places.

Those diamonds, however, are also on the radar of every other poor person in search of a place of their own, and within hours are snatched off of the MLS and into the pockets of people who clearly don’t work 40+ hours a week during the work week. So we trudge along, Kathy ever the optimist (I’m telling you, I heart this woman), driving from gayborhood to barrio, looking for a place that won’t bankrupt me. 

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Of course we’d pick the road associated with locusts. The gay plague references abound.

You can’t see it from where you’re sitting, but I am blogging right now on the “craptop”, the computer I bought when I first moved out here to UT during the Reagan administration. It’s slow, the bottom of it gets to the temperature of molten lava, and we frankly don’t have a good working history. This is because my good laptop absorbed water off of the kitchen counter and is now the world’s most expensive paperweight. 

Which is not covered under AppleCare. Just so you know.

The cream on the top of that stroke of luck is that I have a month’s worth of committee minutes trapped on the hard drive. Which I will need to recreate. There’s also a friend’s thesis, a bunch of recipes, and pictures of my nieces and nephews over the past three years. Oh, and a bunch of music and movies.

Basically, my entire life has been destroyed by three drops of dihydrous oxide.

So I can either fork over $800 to fix it, which 1) I don’t have and 2) would buy me a new computer, or I can live with what I have, a beat-to-shit six-year-old laptop that takes 5 hours to charge for 45 minutes of battery life.

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Thank goodness it comes in fuschia.

Tack onto that suck salad of a week the fact that my grandfather the cat has taken yet another turn for the worse (though, him being the trickster he is, I’m not ready to throw in the towel yet), the never-ending saga of the sleep Nazis, the need to have my car inspected and registered again, and the fact that not only is Community a rerun, but GLEE isn’t even ON tonight, and you get one sad panda. 

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That makes me a sadddd Panda.

On a lighter note, a conversation with a work buddy on the way home gave me some leads on potentially cheaper fixes to my computer, and some much needed pep talk points (thanks Kandyland) to make me feel slightly less terrible. Couple that with the insanely beautiful weather, and the impending weekend along with drinks with JDane, I have determined that I will make March of 2013 “that month” this year, meaning March can suck it. Bring it on April.

My Life as an Auction

I’d be mad at myself for being “that girl”, but I knew, I knew that after I made the offer on the condo that I would completely lose my mind. It was inevitable. I would sit next to my cell phone, anxiously awaiting a phone call letting me know that the place of my dreams was now mine (which equals an intensive mindshift that includes a reimagining of what constitutes a solid financial plan) or someone else’s (which equals a lot of regret and remorse, but also a small slip of relief as embarking on real estate is completely and utterly horrifying).

ImageWho even has a phone like this anymore? Calling 1987…

Long story short, I am still playing the waiting game. Now that we’re in a “multiple offer” situation, I am even more infused with cortisol and ethanol than I am typically. I won’t lie, this place is supreme. I can see myself in it for the next five to ten years. That said, if it falls through, there are all of these properties that are becoming available because it’s spring and sellers are itching to move up and out. And while the last time I almost bought a house I had flop sweat like you couldn’t believe, as I mentioned prior, in this game, I am not only cautiously optimistic, but excited at the thought that in the next few days I might actually be a homeowner.

ImageYou know. Sans the kid. And the blonde.

As I gear up to turn in on a late Sunday evening, let me close with this. I have been searching for a place to call “home” in SLC for the last 3 months, and frankly, prior to that, my entire life. I sincerely hope that this foray into purchasing a place that is my permanent residence helps me find peace with my past of moving every 3-5 years. If I can find a place that I feel is my own, with a sense of permanence (however impermanent it ultimately becomes) I feel like this journey was not in vain. And as South would say to close, HOLLER.

As Lady Gaga Would Say, I’m Speechless

Because seriously. There are no words. When you decide (for a second time in as many months) to commit to not only a new place to live but to a thirty-year mortgage of said place, which is essentially making a deal with the devil, it can be a bit daunting. Which is like saying this goddamned Atkin’s Diet has been only slightly inconvenient for the last three months.

ImageI would drop kick a nun for some mac and cheese right now.

But I’ll stick to the subject, in a roundabout way. First, some context. After a relatively less grueling week at work (a mere 40 hours this early week in spring, laden with snowstorms), I was able to let my blue hair down at a great local bar with friends from work in support of a sister organization. We chatted, we drank. It was fab. I had a bit of a heart attack when my debit card wasn’t accepted (spoiler alert: Wells Fargo isn’t so good with math), but overall a good time.

Afterwards, I skipped over to Poor Yorrick to see another good friend’s art with one of my closest gays/gals and had a chance to reconnect and check in. Meggie created a piece for me that is, put simply, fantastic. I can’t wait to display it prominently either in my office at work or in my living room. And the show itself was great, though as congested as LA on a Friday afternoon commute. I pressed against more bodies in 30 minutes of hall sharing than I have since my Vassar Mug days, no joke.

ImageRemember my creeper perch?! It was awesome.

While Moya may not realize I committed him to coffee in the near future for some queer dishing, we can move on to me picking up G this morning before meeting Kathy at one of two listings I would walk through on Saturday. The first was a really cute single family house on the west side, in a bit of a transitional neighborhood (read: not too sketch but also not in Federal Heights, duh), good use of space, lots of bedrooms and with a distinctive curry smell. The current owners were on hand again to answer questions, but it was a cute cul-de-sac and the house was well cared for. It had/has potential. After conferring on the lawn, we set out in our caravan to the next and final destination.

We moved on to a condo in a building I’ve already looked in. One that has a great floor plan and is in my neighborhood and price range. In the first viewing on the first floor weeks ago I said, “this place would be great if it had a deck and a view. I’d buy it in a heartbeat.”

Cue heartbeat.

The place I walked through was on a higher floor. With a deck. And the place is awesome. A to the WESOME. The kitchen is a bit dated, and the full bath is a touch small. But the systems are in great shape, the flow is insane, and the views? I can stand at my windowsill and look east to the U, south to the point of the mountain, and west to the downtown skyline (granted, if and when the air quality is better than my FICO score). If I squint I can make out the Capitol building. How Hunger Games can you get?

30 minutes of ‘rental conversation via cellophone, I have made another offer. And this time, after making the offer, I didn’t immediately want to vomit. Progress, no?

ImageA little bit of anxiety is good for you, right?

So here I sit, a touch after 1am, wondering if my offer will be accepted, and if it is, how I’ll swing the mortgage payment and homo-wnership. I have a sneaking suspicion that whatever happens tonight, I will end up feeling the need to pop a sleep aid with a vodka-Fresca chaser. Expect a significant update in the next twelve hours, when I find out whether I’ll be swapping zip codes this April and moving up like George and Weezy.

ImageWh-ella movin’ on up!

 

The Comforts of Musical Massacres

Musicals. Horror Movies.

I know. Not the most mashable of subjects. Unless you’re a fan of Repo! The Genetic Opera (hint, I am one of eight people in the world that even know what that is), you probably don’t see quarts of blood spilled in the same frame as choral refrains. You tend to keep separate 42nd Street and those that provide nightmares on Elm. You dreamed a dream. I get it.  Which, of course, means you just haven’t lived.

ImageYep, it’s a real thing. Check your local Blockbuster.

I recognize that this predilection is hard to come by. Would you like me to explain, Cousin-Vinnie-Style? I’ll bet. So here’s where I go. Musicals have a rhythm, a pattern, something that seems to work time after time, show after show. Like pop songs, there’s a formula:

The Intro (background on star-crossed lovers and/or feuding families) Verse (tension-building), Chorus (tension breaks), Bridge (action), and ultimately Ending (resolution).

And while this sounds completely batshit insane, so do horror movies. You have the Intro (something terrible happening to the antagonist), the Buildup (necessary slaughter of secondary characters), the Chorus (more slaughter), Bridge (giant secret is revealed) and Ending (good guys kill bad guys).

ImageWhat’s your favorite scary movie?

This formula, as it relates to ballerinas and serial killers, exists because it works. In watching Glee and fielding calls on my phone with the Scream movie phone ring tone, I can’t help but think of the two in tandem. Call me insane (and after this blog, I expect some phone calls and confused letters), but there’s something about patterns and predictability that we find comforting.

The formulas of reality television, romantic relationships, and bank transactions are appealing because we know what to expect. And that’s what I am getting at. As creatures of habit, we not only appreciate routines, we hope for them. They make our lives easier to navigate. So what is the point of this rambling blog post, you ask?

ImageDon’t you?

My point is, ruts are there intentionally. You may get stuck, but it might not be the worse thing in the world. We like predictability. In most cases, we crave it. So the next time you find yourself in a situation where you are considering Broadway and Halloween, don’t overthink it. Just let things go and recognize that it will all work out, and probably in a way you foresaw.

And as Ice Ice Baby would say, word to your mother.

Media: The Land of Make-Believe

Hello out there in TV Land.

Let me start by saying that there are so many things I could rant on tonight, given the most recent media coverage of some serious and divisive issues. There’s the Steubenville rape case and the subsequent controversial coverage by CNN. There’s the new Pope and all of the revelry associated with a new pontiff colliding with one that has since retired for the first time since Columbus sailed the ocean blue. And of course, who could forget Sarah Palin’s reintroduction to the fray today with her swipes not only at the President but at her own near and dear Republican Party.

ImageMaverick!

While I have some very, very intense and strong emotions about the coverage of rapists Steubenville, I will instead focus on the media’s coverage of the more mundane, the kitten videos and intense “news” of the hour, if not to pull some of the fuel from the national news fires then to the very least bring light and levity to what passes as legitimate news here in the Land of Zion.

I mean, one can only focus on the negative for so long before realizing that there has to be some humor in our day-to-day lives, if only to keep our internal engines going.

ImageMRI of Richard O’Brien (two points for anyone that gets the reference).

Here’s where I go. I have lived all over the eastern seaboard, and now in the center of the southwestern desert states of this old U S of A. I have dealt with car break-ins, campus security, the highway patrol. Members of a traveling off-Broadway cast of CATS. And throughout all of that nonsense and insanity, I have to say that the “breaking news” of SLC is undoubtedly my pace. It fits the bill.

When big news breaks like a sewage line backup in Sugar House or a bill on the floor in the Legislature involving how alcohol is poured takes center stage on the major news networks, I heave a sigh of relief. Other cities are reporting on serious crimes, rape and sexual violence, gunshot wounds, gang fights.

Alternatively, here on the mean streets of Salt Lake Sleazy a cat runs up a tree in the Avenues and all of a sudden KSL’s helicopter shows up overhead.

ImageLIVE with Regis and Kelly! (And I know, he’s retired, GOD!)

What I am saying is, at the end of the day, I am sort of happy that SLC is a relatively uneventful town. We have a parade whose highlight is a given LDS ward’s float being made entirely of quilts. This makes state-wide news. If that makes Utah a boring state, so be it. I think I’m ok with living in a place where a pie-eating contest leads the 10 o’clock prime time news segment while other cities boast serious crimes, assault, and other sketch-type activities on Main Street U S Somewhere Else.

Smoky Rooms, Retail Therapy, and Digital TV

For some reason, I expect my weekends to be quiet. I’m a homebody when I have the chance, and I expected this Saturday to involve napping, vegging, and maybe some internet shopping.

Silly rabbit.

So let’s start from the beginning. The house hunting saga has continued, in all of its white trashy glory. Having regrouped after the Midvale Incident, MLS listings in hand and GB in tow, I set off and out westward, hoping that I’d once again find another diamond but this time in a quiet neighborhood.

ImageGirl, you know that’s cubic zirconia. Please.

The first of the two houses today was nice, in a cute neighborhood, in decent shape, with plenty of small projects to keep me busy. After a brief pro/con session on flat roofs, GB, Kathy and I caravan-ed over to the next house in West Valley. Kathy told me that it was tenant occupied, but that they knew we were coming.

And they did. And they could have cared less.

We were greeted by a little old lady who one can only assume had just put a cigarette out in someone’s neck (we’ll call her MeeMaw) before kicking one of the six dogs that made our acquaintance in the house. MeeMaw proceeded to give us a guided/coercive tour of what I can only describe as a cross between Hoarders, Honey Boo Boo, and COPS! The house was filthy, and there were a whole mess of people in it, none of whom were particularly delighted to see us.

ImageWe don’t take kindly to your type.

As MeeMaw showed us the back bedroom (which included a little older lady on oxygen), she proceeded to tell us that we couldn’t see the front room for some reason. I’m assuming a dead body or a meth lab. At first hesitant to show us the basement because her son wasn’t home and he “has a lot of expensive stuff down there,” MeeMaw then snuck us down through the smoky haze to what I assume is a second living room being used as a sex dungeon by a drug dealer. She then escorted us into the laundry room, which doubled as a reptile and live snake den.

I know. I was excited too.

After a brief showing of the “spacious” backyard (at this point MeeMaw had gotten herself into a more regal and educated state) with the next door chickens pecking at the gate, we thanked her profusely and made for the front door to get some fresher air.

Needless to say, the search continues.

To keep this post reasonable in length, between coupons and discounts, I was able to buy my niece her birthday present and some fun little things for my own edification at a 75% discount. Kohl’s is the shit, to be blunt. I also caught up with Vaughn about her life and times in California, and returned home to my hovel to slowly make it more presentable, should a stranger call. So the day wasn’t a total loss; in fact, it was rather decent all things considered.

I do have to take a moment to remark on the “ease” with which I was able to self-install a digital cable converter to my 1985 boob tube.

ImageBack in my day, we didn’t have remotes. We had children.

Comcast, as we all know, is one of many side projects of the devil Lucifer, designed to keep us humans plugged into reality television shows, home shopping networks, and televised sporting events in his bids of engaging us in eternal damnation. As it is a product of Satan, Comcast is run by a group of soulless deviants whose sole responsibility is “improving” the company’s capacity for feeding us garbage programming by making upgrades that take hours to figure out, or that you can pay exorbitant amounts of money to a cable guy that you burn 4 hours of your life waiting for that ultimately never shows up.

THANKS COMCAST!

Long story short, after an hour of jiggering cords, set top boxes, and the Apple Airport, I’ve got TV and interwebs again. All of which looks exactly the same. As I gear up for coffee with Moya and a few hours of work tomorrow, I figure another glance at the MLS with a glass or two of voddie-Frescas should do the trick before hitting up some more Community, Hulu-style.

Tatas!