Friday, October 29, 2010

Let's see.. what have I been up to? Oh, that's right. Not a whole fucking lot, thanks to the Culinary school keeping our loan check and us not having any fucking money. Seriously, if y'all here about a huge fire in Montpeculiar, assume I finally went up to the financial aid office myself.

I did get to the park with A and dogs this week, which was fun. I also made a bunch of appointments, for a haircut that I desperately need, a car repair that's even more necessary, the vet, etc. We were promised this check would be here ABSOLUTELYNOLATERTHAN today. Liars. Assholes. Bastards.

Oops- sorry. there I go getting distracted by rage again.

So yeah. Not a lot to report. My folks are in Florida for the season, I am supremely happy for them, and I hope to visit them after the first of the year. My job is fine, there are some politics there that are so stupid it's almost hilarious, but that's another story for another day. Right now I have to go refrigerate the mead I brought home today. There will be bread and cheese for dinner, and dog wrestling and bad TV for therapy. Have a lovely weekend, y'all.

Friday, October 22, 2010

I am having trouble with blogger today. For some reason, there is no longer an option to sign in with an account that isn't Google. When I first got gmail, I tried to change my primary blogger address to my gmail account, and it wouldn't allow me to. Now, when I try to log in, it doesn't give me an option to sign in using anything BUT a Google account. I was only able to get here by signing in to post a comment on Z's blog (thanks, Z!), and I am uncertain as to how long that will be an option. Is anybody else having a problem?
I guess I may or may not be able to read your answers if you comment, so do e-mail me if you can. Thanks.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The b.h. and I spent all day yesterday at a big wine show in Stowe. It basically involved a beautiful drive, a two hour seminar with a hilarious and engaging Spanish importer who peppered his talk with expletives and blunt opinions (while he was walking us through a tasting of 25 delicious wines), and a walk-around tasting of a couple hundred wines. Also, there were snacks in the form of cheese and bread and olives and nuts and the like. It was fantastic.
Today I have another show just like it, this time in Essex, and unfortunately no one to accompany me. Ah well.
It has gotten brutally cold suddenly, and I wasn't entirely prepared. I did manage to get out all of the winter clothes from storage, but I'll have to hurry up with the plastic for our windows and the heavier curtains. Twenty six degrees last night. Ugh. The good news is that the dogs have been a lot more snuggly as a result.
I have been cooking a lot more these days, since the b.h. has been in class at night and I have had to fend for myself. I have perfected the roasted cauliflower recipe, made a batch of fig and cardamom ice cream (thanks to Z for the recipe), and tried my hand at baked apples, which were delicious. Have to practice different kinds of salads so I don't get bored with lettuce. Next up: lasagna. Wish me luck.
Other than that, I haven't been doing anything very exciting. Trying to get the dogs out to Hubbard park every day, and we seem to have figured out when and where to go to meet with other people and dogs. Kilgore is a social butterfly, and he loves running around with other dogs. Wyatt, on the other hand, tends to skirt around the edges or just bolt for the car. Mostly I'm with Wyatt.
Been reading Talk Talk by T.C. Boyle, still plodding through A Month of Sundays, not because I don't enjoy it but because the language is pretty thick and I have to have all of my wits about me (which doesn't happen often) in order to read it. On audiobook I've been listening to Good Omens, and I have a book of short stories by a Canadian author whose name I can't quite recall for the spare moments I have during a break at work or while I am waiting in the dentist's office.
Speaking of the dentist, I will be heading back there tomorrow to get my fancy new gold pirate caps. Fortunately the teeth are pretty far back, so I don't have to seek a career in rap just yet. For the past two weeks I have been living with a temporary wax cap fitted over both teeth. This is so that the dentist can send away the mold to get the caps made. The wax has been driving me insane. I popped it off within the first couple days, and have since been removing it every night to soak it in alcohol while I carefully brush the extremely sensitive teeth underneath. I have never looked so forward to a dentist's appointment as I am to the one tomorrow. The wax cap is going to be a lovely shade of purply black from the back to back wine tastings. I wonder what my Mormon dentist will think?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I have a friend who has recently decided to explore cross dressing. This is something that he has obviously been thinking about for a long, long time, and I am excited that he is finally going for it. I am also (selfishly) thrilled to have another person to shop with, because most of the people that I care anything about up here are very busy and on a very different schedule from mine. A is my only other shopping buddy and I don't want that to be the only thing we do together, and I hate to make the b.h. go shopping unless he absolutely needs something, because although he politely waits for me wherever we go, he clearly does not enjoy himself and I don't want waste our very limited time together like that.
Also, my new shopping buddy is inclined, like me, to troll thrift shops and goodwill and the like, spending no more than five or ten dollars on a given item, but piling a cart high and trying on ten or twenty things in a go. Today was our first journey together. We went to get makeup first. Not being very good at that sort of thing myself, I felt like my advice was rather useless, so I took him to the MAC store. His idea was that he would go in and pick a few items that he liked and take them home and try them out. My idea was that we would have a professional makeup artist show him how to do it.
"That's what the people at these stores do, I argued. That's what they're here for."
He was skeptical, sure that he wouldn't be comfortable and doubtful that a person working there would be either.
When we walked in, we were greeted by a man in a very lovely flowing pair of black pants with a huge belt buckle. He had a shaved head, and had shaved off his eyebrows and painted them on with a gorgeous, movie star flourish. He asked what he could help us with. My friend (I'll have to come up with a name here eventually, but I am being so careful not to out him that I can't even think of a good fake name so am going to go with X) answered immediately that he wanted to buy some makeup.
"Are we talking like, standard men's grooming, or-"

"No," said X.

"Or Halloween-"

"No," said X again, this time a little more quickly. "More like everyday use. Trans stuff."

"Okay, great. Why don't we sit you over here..."

That was pretty much the end of it. I let the girl who was there put a face on me, and actually learned a few things. X has a great time and looked lovely when all was said and done. He bought a whole round of stuff, which cost a lung, but will likely be a near-lifetime supply, so there you go.

After that we hit an overpriced vintage store where he got a great pair of cowboy boots, and then off to g00dwill where we hit the motherload. I got a new hat and a scarf and a sweater and a long sleeved shirt for eight bucks, and we found X a handful of skirts and tops that fit and were flattering.

After I dropped X at work, I picked up the boys and went to Hubbard park for an hour and a half. We hiked and played with other dogs and wore ourselves out.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Chicago trip, Part Something (I've lost count).

We went to brunch on Sunday at The Publican. T and his ladyfriend B met us, as did my friend W and his wife B. I also snagged an old friend whom I haven't seen since college, but who I have caught up with recently thanks to faceb00k. The food was fantastic and so was the company. After we went over to T and B's new place, where her mother was going to be meeting us with more of B's things that were being moved from her old hometown out of state.
During the tour, we found out that B's mom is under the impression that B has her own room in this apartment. A room in which she supposedly sleeps, alone, although her mom knows that she and T are in fact in a relationship. It was all very weird, especially because the second room is obviously an office and has no bed in it. I suppose if you have strong enough faith you can believe in anything, and since hers precludes the acceptance of her daughter as a full grown woman living with a man and sharing a bed without being married to him, maybe she can tell herself that her daughter sleeps in the living room on a futon in front of a picture window and take some kind of comfort. have no idea how, but there you go. The b.h. and I were not privy to this information before we agreed to go to their house, and so were planning on making a hasty exit. We were just about to announce our departure when the door buzzed. We stayed long enough to shake hands with B's mom and exchange about five minutes of pleasantries about the weather and her drive, and then she mentioned that B's TV was still in the car and it obviously shouldn't stay there in plain sight in the city, so we took the opportunity to duck out.
We ran up Milwaukee to check out our usual spots: Reckless Records, Myopic Books, and Buffalo Exchange. I discovered that The Brown Elephant was gone, and replaced by a vintage shop that had the same cool old crap at about five times the price, so that was disappointing. Then we grabbed some coffee and headed back to my parent's house. Sunday night we ate Mexican food from a little local place. I think we fed five of us for about forty bucks, which is a major part of the reason I love real Mexican food. Monday was lunch with the b.h.'s brother at Goose Island and another pizza for dinner, this time at my parent's house. Tuesday we went to the Chicago History Museum with my parents. It was recently renovated and is exceptionally well done, I think. I took lots of pictures but very few of them turned out. I learned quite a few things that I had not known about Chicago, none of which come to mind at the moment. Anyway, if you're ever in Chicago, do stop by. It's smaller and less crowded than the big museums, and easily doable in half a day, which is nice.
We went back out to Oak Park that evening, bought some delicious Goose Island Beer, and had Thai food delivered to my sister's house. That night we stayed up far too late talking, and then got up at the crack of dawn to get to the airport.
Again the whole experience was very smooth except for the actual flight, which was so bumpy that the pilot actually got on the intercom and apologized. I though the b.h. was going to lose his bagel and cream cheese, but he managed not to.
Back in Boston, we got lost (as per usual) trying to get out of town. We stopped in Manchester for Nepalese food at a place called Cafe MoMo. Everything was delicious and I might even say that it was the best meal of the whole trip.
All in all, a great trip and I have had a difficult time readjusting since we've been back.

As promised, some pictures of my new dog nephews. The first one is Oswald. He owns my sister and brother-in-law. The second one is Bear. He owns my parents.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Last Friday I was working with Sven, and one of our co-workers came in wearing a costume. She is a very small, bleached blonde girl who generally goes for the tons of black eyeliner and a hot pink shirt look. But that day she came in full cowboy gear, plus a black wig, big black eyebrows, and a mustache that at first glance was passably realistic.
"Hey. So you're going tonight then?" asked Sven.

"Yeah. I have to work until like eight-thirty, so I won't have time to go home and change. Are you going?"

"Yeah. I'm meeting Dana at eight and we're going together."

So this was a first. A Drag Ball in Montpeculiar. And Sven, quiet, reserved Sven, was going. Hmm.

"Sven, what are you about a 34 waist?" I asked.

"Yeah. Why?"

"I'm pretty sure I have a skirt that will fit you if you want one."

"Really? Well, that's okay, I have a floral shirt and some overalls..."

So the rest of the day is busy and I forget the whole thing. Sven leaves at four, and then at five, I get a phone call:

"Do you have a top that would go with the skirt? What kind of look are we talking about? I don't have any tights, ether."

We discuss it a little further, and I tell him I have whatever he needs, plus makeup, which I will happily assist him with. He says he'll think about it and get back to me.
An hour later, the phone again:
"Would you want to GO to this thing? The ticket would be free. ANd would it be easier f I come to your house?"

I politely decline, because I am tired and looking forward to staying on the couch watching TV and drinking a beer or two. He finally hangs up when I agree to think about it.
So I pick him p after work and come to my house, where I plop him in the guest room and immediately raid my closet for anything remotely suitable. After a few changes and some hemming and hawing, he ends up in black tights, a denim mini skirt, and a long sleeved cowl neck sweater that looks like Sesame Street exploded all over it. (Translation: It's colorful and stripey). The crowning glory is a necklace that I have owned for over a year and still not found occasion to wear, featuring a four inch gold and white owl on a hideous fake gold chain. It was glorious. We moved over to his place for the makeup since he was waiting there for Dana. It took quite a bit longer to put makeup on him than the three minute job I usually do on myself on the rare occasion when I even bother with it, and by the time we were halfway through I was well into the spirit of the occasion, so I did myself up in a Nick Cave meets Dave Navarro style and went as his date.
It was so quiet when we got there that I hadn't realized that the show was already going. In Athens, drag is well attended, loud, crass, and very, very drunk. Here it takes place in a hotel ballroom with a tiny sound system and three guys who look like they escaped from the set of A Prairie Home Companion. They were in dresses, sure, but the songs and the jokes were safe enough for an old folks' home, and everyone (by "everyone" I mean "the thirty people who showed up on time") was sitting at tables sipping their drinks and golf-clapping after every joke. I looked at Sven, Sven looked at me, and we both headed straight for the bar.
It got better. A few people we worked with were there when we arrived. I was actually very tired, and I knew the b.h. would be calling for a ride when he was done with class, so I finished my first beer quickly and ordered a second round so I could get another drink for Sven, since he bought my ticket. The ladies were just in the middle of a very rousing number when my phone went off. I excused myself and ran to the back, and told the b.h. I'd be there shortly. When I got back to the table, the real trouble started pouring in the front door. I was a little bit sorry to leave just as the rowdy co-workers arrived, but at least I knew my date was in good hands. The local LGBT scene needs a lot of help here, but I'm glad they seem to be off to a good start and I was happy to be a part of it.

In other local dance news, there's this:

This was all the talk today when I got to work. FRONT PAGE NEWS in our local paper, in fact. I still can't believe it. Perhaps I do actually live in Mayberry.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

My parents are hilarious. They have been married for almost fifty years, and together a couple more than that, and they still seem to enjoy each other's company. They do, however, now that they are both retired and therefore home together all the time, get on each other's nerves a bit. They seem to manage it with great humor, though, and I am often reminded when I am home that the proverbial apple doesn't really fall far from the tree. Case in point: My dad makes some smart-ass remark while my mom is bent over looking for something in a cabinet. She responds by shaking her hips back and forth, which my dad translates for us:

"That's Lugan (See explanation here) for 'Kiss my ass.'"

"Yeah," my mom responds, laughing. "You know about Lugan foreplay, right? 'Fuck you. No, Fuck you!'"

On that subject, my mom has been researching our family tree. I still can't figure out how they got the spelling of her grandfather's name (it was something like Uzdacumwicz or something, but was changes at Ellis Island and then changed again with the next generation to the much more pronounceable Devens), but I would love to trace the family back to Lithuania and figure out what it really was there. Anyway, I won't bore you with the details, but I am pretty excited about it.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

A great story that I heard at the surprise party, from my Uncle Matt:

"Do you know that restaurant downtown called (Something Something- I forgot. It's very, very pricey and very well known.)? Been there forever?"
"Do you know that they have only ever fired one water in all their years?"
"No, I didn't know that."
"You know why he got fired?"
I shook my head.
"He came up to a table, and this woman had a baked potato under her chair. So he says 'Is that a potato?' And she says (Here he puts on his bitchy, stick -up-the-ass female voice) 'Yes. It's cold.' And he says 'Would you like me to get you another potato?' And she says (His voice is even bitchier now, and he is making a face like he's smelling shit) 'Yes. That one is cold.'
So the guy takes the potato, goes back to the kitchen, and has them give him a new, hot potato. And then he comes back out to the table and puts it under her chair. They fired him on the spot. And you know who she was?"

He sat back and nodded gravely at the next table. The woman is a friend of my parents. They have long since stopped going to dinner with this woman and her husband despite their fifty years of friendship because her behavior is always embarrassing. Other than that she seems a perfectly lovely woman, but I'm glad I never had to wait on her.

"I'll bet he made plenty of money from all the other waiters that night, though. And I'm willing to bet that woman eats a lot of extra seasonings in her meals that she is unaware of."

"God, let's hope so."

Saturday, October 02, 2010

The first thing we did after my sister picked us up was go and get a beer and a late lunch. I had a Bell's Two Hearted Ale, which is my favorite thing they have ever made, and a black bean burger. Delish. We also got to meet my first canine nephew, who is just as sweet as he is goofy looking. As my brother-in-law said, somebody was fucked up to make a dog like that, all bulging eyes and squished muzzle, but he is very, very adorable. He was rescued from a puppy mill, and his story is just too horrible and gross to repeat. Currently he lives like a king, so at least there's a happy ending. I will surely be posting pictures of him at some point.
That night we were visited by several of our best Chicago buddies. We ordered pizza from Giordano's, drank some more delicious beer, and spent time catching up.

On Saturday there was a party for my dad's 70th birthday and my sister's 45th. Since it wasn't until early evening, the b.h. and I spent the day walking around Oak Park, shopping and snacking and taking pictures. I bought a really cool necklace from a girl who was making them on the street. Bottle cap woth a picture of Edgar Allan Poe on a silver chain. I will try to remember to post a picture of that as well.
The party was lovely, and my dad was surpised at the party (as was intended) but doubly surprised to see the b.h. and me. It was really lovely, and short enough that none of the relatives managed to get drunk enough to piss anybody off. Good times were had all around.
We went back to the parents' house after to watch them open presents, and spent the night sleeping on the South Side.