Friday, June 01, 2007

Crazy making

I was over checking out Mangina Monologues new site. I noticed in his header he had "musings from the toothless wonder". In context, it brought to mind something my father does that drives my mother crazy.

When we were kids, if my old man cut the cheese he would blame one of us kids or the dog. But, occasionally he would come out with, "Speak to me, oh toothless one!" This. Drives. My. Mother. Crazy! After 60 years of marriage, it still gets a rise out of her. She can't just ignore it. She has to say something.

This caused me to reflect on habits of friends and loved ones that continue to irk me after many years of exposure. One friend I have known for 30 years now and is in every other way a wonderful human being, but I can't sit across the table from him when he eats. He chews with his mouth open. For me, it's one of those train wreck issues. I don't want to watch, but I can't help myself. Unlike Doris, I do not say anything, but it really does irritate me on some deep level.

What sends you off? Do you know someone who in spite of consanguinity or deeply held friendship or marital status have that one habit that makes you want to throttle them?

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Caught with my pants down

My friend Mike is at it again. This time he took a movie of MY peony getting pollinated and then he posted it on YouTube. He really has to be stopped.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Community Gardening

While I was hanging out on Saturday afternoon in New York, I got the chance to meet Glennalicious, who introduced me to fellow Bostonian, Ready,Reset,Go. While we were chatting Glenn was asking me about my garden and RRG asked, "Which community garden?"

When I said I was in the Fenway Victory Gardens, RRG started laughing and enlightened Glenn as to the nature of this particular park. It is probably the premier cruising park in Boston. The amount of sexual activity that goes on in the bushes there makes the backroom of the Eagle look like a meeting of the DAR. Needless to say this creates it's own challenges for those of us who have more interest in the flora of the gardens other than the effects of massive quantities of semen on phragmites. (A less than scientific, anecdotal observation would be that it causes then to spread like kudzu.)I always feel as though spring has not really arrived until the used condoms begin to bloom in my own little patch of heaven.

Another harbinger of spring is the unknown denizen of the park that my friend and gardening neighbor, Mike, has designated, "The Mad Defecator". TMD comes in the night and deposits rather impressive loads in front of peoples gates, like some tooth fairy with a severe incontinence problem. In spite of the rather disgusting nature of this phenomena, we find ourselves, horrifyingly, impressed. Not merely by the volume, which I am at a loss for words to describe. Having grown up around farms, I can say that livestock probably leave smaller flops. What is really mind boggeling is the consistency. Mike and I compared notes, and I told him about one particularly fascinating deposit that arrived in front of my gate that looked as though TMD had managed to shit out an organ. We had thought that TMD had especially chosen aisle E as his designated poop drop, but speaking with another friend Rick, I have found that TMD makes the rounds in a democratic manner to all of the gardens. If it makes me feel a little less special, it is nice to know that TMD is willing to give his all to the entire gardening community in his al fresco crapping habits.

Another challenge is fence maintenance. Because as the Motels once sang, "the days are okay, but the nights were made for love." During the course of any given night, year round, some desperately horny 'mo will climb over the fence or kick in the gate of someones garden in order to get their mojo on. This has brought about some interesting ideas for dealing with the problem. Since we are gardening in a public park, we are not allowed to string up barbed wire, dig tiger traps, construct Rube Goldberg devices, or in any way produce any hazard that could endanger the general public. Except of course for roses.

I am not particularly fond of roses as a garden plant. They tend to the prima dona and are vulnerable to all sorts of pests. However I have been cultivating climbing roses on my fence, since they are natures barbed wire. So far my choices have hinged far more on the viciousness of the thorns than any actual consideration of aesthetics. At one point someone suggested a bourbon rose, that really was very pretty, and fragrant, and I was on the point of getting out the credit card, when the fateful words, "and the best part is, it has no thorns" were spoken. The 2 varieties that currently grace my fence could gut an elephant and I have just planted a 3rd that I have high hopes for. If they sold a plant that would assault intruders, I'd buy it.

The whole challenge level has risen as well. In the advent of the crystal meth epidemic, we usually will find syringes in paths and our gardens. There have been nights when you could tell that some particularly good stuff was going around by the amount of vandalism. Hell may have no fury such as a woman scorned in love, but some tweeked out their mind queen, who ain't gettin' any is a force nine hurricane. The damage assessment on some mornings is enough to make you give it all up and find some other way to fill up your time in a way that you can find meaningful. However, collecting stamps doesn't have the same thrill. At least not for me. I am sure that philatelists enjoy the same thrill over their stamp collections as I do in my garden, it's just that stamp collecting and getting out in the healthy fresh air are not 2 things I would ordinarily put together.

Which brings us back to al fresco sex. I have no strong objections to people having it on in the great outdoors. While a Ganome would never in his life (oh crap, once you get that mud on your shoes it never comes off) dream of getting his sex on out in the shrubs, much less the dunes out on the cape, (thank god I am pretty nearly immune to poison ivy) a Ganome knows that other folks are gonna. That's fine. REALLY! I just want them to keep their dumb horny asses in the reeds and the hell out of my garden. I don't feel like I am asking too much. Now, if I can just find some of those man eating plants in the old B sci-fi movies I saw as a kid in the White Flower Farm catalog, I'll be all set.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Kitty Korpse

When the Ganome dragged his weary ass through the door Saturday night, after a day in NYC I was greeted by Alice. Not exactly greeted. She was at the door ready to tear me a new one. It's a good thing she can't talk.

"I was SOOOOOO LOOOOOOOONELY!!! I could have starved! Where have you been? I've wasted away from 15 lbs. to.... well, a little over 15 lbs, okay, but I've been really lonely! Did I mention I was lonely, and I was too upset to eat a thing. Well, of course I had to have a little something, ya' know to keep my strength up so I could starve to death. I was upset okay! It's not fat, I'm bloated from malnutrition!"

You get the idea. I don't know what it is about black cats, but I've never met one that didn't talk. And Alice can run her mouth in a way that makes my mother seem laconic. So I picked her up and walked her around like a fractious infant while she kept transforming back and forth between a hairy sack of liquid and a clawed limpet that wrapped herself around me sinking her claws into my shoulder down to the scapula. All the while either bitching or purring.

It doesn't get much better.

Anyone who says that cats are too aloof, are not as affectionate as dogs, have never met Alice. She is kind of like those nightmare dates, Pay attention to me, pay attention to me, no really, I love you, now pay attention to me. If you loved me you would throw the catnip mouse across the room so we could play fetch, and you'd get some kitty treats out, and the water needs to be changed, you call this a clean cat box, uh, I don't mean to criticize but my food bowl is empty, but really, I love you.

In the past any cat that has deigned to let me live with it has been happy to have me put food in one end, empty the results out of the litter box and alternate between sleep and destroying the furniture. Not this girl. She is a full time job.

I must say though, that after 17 years of bachelorhood, it is nice to have someone happy to see me when I get home. I just wish she'd learn how to do some housework. Ya know, even if she just did the dishes.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

News from Russia

After spending a very nice day yesterday in New York for the express purpose of hanging out with some fellow gay bloggers and sympathetic straight folks, it was a little disturbing to read this. As completely screwed up as I tend to feel our own country is, it is a comfort to know we have progressed past this, though I tend to think our leaders would not be averse to seeing gays kept in their place like this, if they thought they could get away with it.

As it is, we still have plenty of ground to make up, as friend Mike points out in this post. I realize we have come a long way from when I was coming up, and judges would throw out assault cases brought by gays who were gay bashed, because they were asking for it by looking gay, but there is still a long way to go.

Bloggy Bears Picnic

Yesterday at around noon Monkey and I crawled off the Greyhound at Port Authority and after a quick phone call to our guardian angel, hopped into a cab and headed uptown to the Metropolitan Museum. No, not this angel.

This one! Fellow blogger RJ met us at the museum and treated us to a very nice lunch. It was the first time I have met RJ in person and all I can say is what a gentleman. After lunch, where various topics including the Met, the Christian Right, psychology, Edith Wharton and New York among others were discussed, Dan and I were ready to head over to meet the bloggers. RJ, who is kindness itself, offered his services as Sherpa guide, though he had not originally intended to go himself.

We managed to get slightly lost, due to rather vague directions and RJ a native of the city was a wonderful tour guide and told us about the history of the park as we wandered so it was no penance to meander our way around and it was a great opportunity to see some of the park, I don't think either Dan or I was upset by the fact that we wound up taking the overland route. Happily, we spotted Joe & Co. and RJ wound up staying and catching up with friends, which allowed us to enjoy his company some more, which we were quite pleased about.

Joe, whom we had never met was in fine form, holding forth on favorite movie lines, including quotes from an obscure B film from the 80's, "Liquid Sky" which I remember seeing at the old Orson Wells in Cambridge. We also got to hear a brief history of Delta Burke's early career as a beauty queen. (She went to the same high school as Joe.) and the effects of the wind on a rather heavy application of make up. At the same time, Joe was also able to keep up a running commentary on the disco that the skaters were getting their groove on to. We were also supplied with all known gossip about various skaters. I also found out that the reason that I was getting hits on my blog from Bigmusclebears was because of this post.which Joe had created a link to on his profile. Hey, if it works, it works.

Next the Farmboyz arrived, and as I promised I got a picture of them together for Lynette, since I didn't want her coming up here just to kick my ass. (I mean the woman packs heat) Father Tony took a terrific group shot that is up on his blog. I like it because I am in the back, you can barely see me and my paunch is cleverly hidden behind Joe's head.

However, being a Vermonter, I did not ask them all of the questions that Lynette had supplied. We New Englanders are a reserved lot, and we do not ask searching questions the first time we meet someone. Sadly this photo does not do the boyz justice. They are far better looking than you can tell from this snapshot.

I also got to meet Glennalicious who was a pleasure to talk with. Unfortunately I did not get a picture of him, or David from Someone in a Tree. Actually I didn't get a chance to meet David. I did however go over and say hi to Mark and was introduced to Tim.

The instigators of this weekend, Mark and Brian showed up fashionably late and I said hello to them. I didn't get a picture of them either. I know, I know. Why did I bother if I wasn't going to get lots of photos. It all got a little hazy after that. I was introduced to several other people, who I can remember facts about but for some reason my brain by then had grown a teflon coating. One fellow was from New Haven and is computer consultant and I had a very nice conversation with him. Another is a fellow blogger here in Boston, yet another was a hanger on, who I can tell you is from Methuen, went to Northwestern and now lives in the West Village. However if you asked me to give you their names, I will draw a complete blank. They say you never actually forget anything, however I would require hypnosis to bring back much of anything else.

Finally, it was time for the provincials to head back to Boston, so I got one last shot of Monkey with Joe.

I learned several valuable things on this trip. 1: I am too old to take flying trips that eat up about 10 hours of my day in travel time. Next time plan on staying over night. 2: People who do not really drink anymore should not suck down 20 ounces of white wine in the summer heat, even if they are drinking it out of a Sprite bottle. 3: The people who work in Port Authority are asshats and if you are not careful you will be sent up 2 levels to the wrong platform, only to be sent back down to the level you were on in the first place to the gate on the other side of the platform. You will also be about 2 minutes too late for your bus. (As luck would have it, they had overbooked so we were hustled onto a less crowded bus that traveled express to Boston.) 4: Bloggers are really nice people and so even those of us who are very socially awkward wind up feeling at our ease in a very short time. 4: After far too long a time not visiting, I really love New York. It has a vitality and energy far different from my little town.

As you can guess, I had a great time. I will be heading back down for another visit with RJ, so that he can give the tour of the Metropolitan that he had offered after lunch. Next time though, I'm coming down the night before and I'm getting a room.