Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I'm on Fire

Went to a show at the Dakota last night.

It was a variety show of sorts. The first act was a musician who was good. Then this guy came on:

And he had a really cool shirt (on the left) but it's hard to see as we were FAR away and I couldn't use the flash. On my old camera it would look like a bat at midnight so this is better.
Then this lady and her fella from Nashville came on and played a great version of Bruce Springsteen's "I'm on Fire". Loved it, been singing it all day.

There was some mediocre poetry about Parkdale and then this guy and his girlfriend came out. She couldn't sing, like she was tone deaf. It was a large group of people, surely one of them would notice this, but they didn't seem to. She started caterwauling and I plugged my ears. Her boyfriend started shouting "We fuck the night" repeatedly, and saying things like "No, seriously guys, we love you. We fuck the night!" and it was death. They said they were going to play a cover song and asked who liked Bruce Springsteen. Then they anounced they were going to cover "Kill" by Napalm Death. "1-2-3-4, Shreekkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk" and I was out of there.

Let's hope tonight's NYE show is better.

"Tell me now baby is he good to you
Can he do to you the things that I do
I can take you higher
I'm on fire"

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

2008

A year in review.
In January I started volunteering for the Gay and Lesbian Archives which has changed my life. There's a sentiment that when you give your time, you get back so much more and never was that truer.

I found gay monopoly, launching nearly as many games as conversations.

I became vegan at the start of March and it wasn't something I was sure I could sustain. How the heck has it been 9 months already? One of the easiest and best choices of my life.

I went to Ottawa for work. Found out it's a speed bump. Desire to explore the rest of Canada lessens.

Blue Jays and the season pass that keeps on giving.

A home opener with my father that sparked a year of forgiveness, understanding, and a relationship that will last the rest of my life.
A lifelong dream fulfilled in a visit to Auschwitz.

A visit to my now favourite city in the world, Berlin.

Gay pride.

A bus trip from Hell. Running out of money and 20 hours on a bus. Would I do it again? Sure.
Fenway Park in Boston, my favourite baseball stadium.

America's capital and a lesson in poverty and a police state.

Archives hottie and the awakening of a sex drive.

A trip to Paris that had many questioning and ended up being fantastic.

I will never forget the red light district in Amsterdam as long as I live. And I will never go back.

A charity dinner for the Archives and a new awakening of self. A new me, who can laugh at parties and mingle and flirt and smile and be self-confident. Probably the best night of the year.

A new super camera, the possibilities are now endless. Baseball players, in focus!

A boyfriend. Someone I can't discuss here but who's presence is nonetheless felt here. An opening of my heart, and a joy long since forgotten. Poetry, laughter, understanding.
Turning 30.
Yoga. A new calling, a positive release, and a foundation for looking and feeling better.

It's exciting looking at all this cool stuff that happened. If I could take myself back a year and see all this coming up, I would run ahead, not walk, and jump in with both feet.

Good, bad, good

24 Jan Depart Toronto 07:30 Arrive Philadelphia 09:08 (economy class)

24 Jan Depart Philadelphia 12:15 Arrive Miami 15:05 (business class)

01 Feb Depart Miami 14:05 Arrive Philadelphia 16:52 (business class)

01 Feb Depart Philadelphia 19:50 Arrive Toronto 21:22 (business class)

BAD: Depart at 7:30 am????

GOOD: Free

BAD: Layover. Last time they lost my luggage. Me on a ship for 7 days with no luggage = Titanic.

GOOD: First class! I may never get that again!

My hostel: http://www.hostelmiamibeach.com/

My cruise: http://www.atlantisevents.com/cruises_2009_caribbean.aspx

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Footprints

Thank you for writing footprints in my comments section.

"One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord."

- A dream, because this can't happen in reality.
- If the lord is an omnipresent being, how can he walk along a beach?

Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky. In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand.

- If scenes are flashing in the sky, why are you looking down at the sand? I don't understand how there can be things on the sand corresponding to events in the sky. Is this like fireworks? 4th of July? Please explain.

Sometimes there were two sets of footprints, other times there was one only.

- Ok, so at this point you are walking, right, so that's one set??? Was someone on this beach before? When I go to the beach there's tons of footprints in the sand. Which beach exactly is this?

This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life, when I was suffering from anguish, sorrow or defeat, I could see only one set of footprints

- This sentence is a run-on sentence and I felt the need to interject. What kind of jerk takes you for a walk and reminds you of scenes from your life of anguish, sorrow and defeat? Sounds like a blast to me.
- I have happier dreams.

, so I said to the Lord,“You promised me Lord,that if I followed you, you would walk with me always.

- I have another question. At what point did the "lord" promise you anything? He can't talk right? How can something that has no physical form and can't speak promise something?

But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life there has only been one set of footprints in the sand.

- I am still very unclear about this sand thing.

Why, when I needed you most, have you not been there for me?" The Lord replied, “The years when you have seen only one set of footprints, my child, is when I carried you.”

- Several questions. How can something that has no physical form carry you? Wouldn't it be a better analogy to the story to realize you carried yourself? Let's pretend god doesn't exist, basically then at these low points you carried yourself. You were talking out loud, helping yourself on. You were releasing the things you could not change. How is it more beneficial to the human psyche to attribute these things to something else then to yourself?

The lesson from this story seems to be what I've said all along. That life's difficult times have made you survive, made you stronger. And by building yourself up, you have become a whole person with the ability to walk on your own.

You are the love that you need.

Things I Hate

  1. Getting up in the morning
  2. Getting out of bed
  3. Going to work
That is all.

Religulous - there is no God

Yikes.

I saw this movie tonight, I couldn't stop watching. Ultimately it makes two fantastic points.

1) During an interview with an ex-gay man:

Crazy ex-gay: No one is born gay.

Bill Maher: Really? Have you seen Little Richard???

2) What other concepts from the bronze age do we still uphold?

When you ask people, from the deep south or from a hostel in Amsterdam, they all say they found God at their lowest point. It's easy to manipulate someone at their lowest point. Jesus doesn't find people who are happy and self-fulfilled. People find god when they're looking to fill a hole.

The problem with this is that people at this point are susceptible, they're looking for meaning. And since there is no god actually talking to anyone, these tenets come from other men. Not women you'll notice, men. And this is the essence of clubs. I am superior because I am in this club and you aren't. My club gives me purpose. Come join my club.

If people are so happy in Jesus, why can't they feel that and keep it to themselves? Because the hole in them is not filled, it's only filled when they remind themselves they're in the club. Because that's the essence of a club, it needs new members. And these people look for people at low points. Are you feeling like crap? I have the answers. I'm special because I'm going to get into heaven, you're not.

And we elevate people, because there is no god, we elevate people and listen to the views of the pope or our rabbi or our minister. Not god. We focus on the interpretations of god through these men. And our club is better. I'm getting into heaven. And this leads to 9/11 and it leads to the holocaust, and it will ultimately lead to the end of civilization as we know it.

It's ironic, that the thing so many people use as salvation is what could ultimately destroy humanity.

The earth was not created 5000 years ago. There never was a man named Jesus. And a civilization built on a model of us against them cannot survive.

I hope we as a people can wake up. It's so easy to look for outside answers, to look everywhere else but within. The truth is if you have a hole, only you can fill it. You are the love that you need. It's not an easy answer. It's not a book you can buy or a club you can join. But it's the truth.

Maybe we can build a religion around that.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Drip

Drip.

I move in my yoga class and as I hold a pose, the room is silent.

Drip.

And I can hear my sweat drop onto the floor.

Drip.

And I imagine the beads of sweat are my negativity, my confusion, my doubt.

Drip.

I have been called over-sensitive, hyper, impossible to please, and my answer is to listen and be still.

Drip.

And my stomach untangles its knots.

Drip.

And my mind goes blank.

Drip.

And I focus on my movements and being in the present and the stillness and everything else falls out of me.

Drip.

In a shower of release.

Drip.

I am free.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Hot Yoga

I was a little unsure of the hot yoga.
Would it be like this:

Well it turns out it was more like this:

I was a bit nervous walking in. You go in and the room is dark and everyone's laying on their mats and it's hot. Not stupid hot, but like 30 degrees. They said to bring 2 things, a towel and water, and I forgot the water.
It was a great class, more active than I thought. I thought it was like you get in a position and then hold that position but there were times with a lot of movement but overall it was low impact, you sweat a lot and feel re-energized. I want to go back.

There's a tradition at my work very few people know about. Every year we have a pot luck lunch. So what happens every year is I talk up some dish I can make to everyone and say how great it is. Then before the event, I spend hours cooking and in the last five minutes I add something and completely ruin it. What's fun is that every year I make something different and ruin it in a completely different way. So it keeps everyone guessing and adds to the holiday fun!

This year I made spaghetti and then at the last minute added far too much garlic. I've never ruined anything with too much garlic before so the tradition is kept alive!

If I ever get to sit down, I hope to watch this movie I just got:

Oh and I bought a new cordless phone. It has like 80 features and is a miracle of modern science and was only $15!
It keeps beeping and I can't get a dial tone but it looks good!

Monday, December 15, 2008

birthday

An eventful day. I didn't actually have time to return everyone's calls and emails who contacted me today which is cool. It's nice to feel special on your birthday. I must really make more of an effort to remember oh, ANYONE ELSE'S birthday. I'm a total boy that way. The fellow I'm dating? I don't remember the season he was born in, let alone the date. My longest friend of 12 years Chris? I'm going to guess April, maybe May. I know my father and my grandmother were born on the same day, but I don't know the day. I know my mom's birthday but she's on the run from the KGB. Everyone else is a blur.

So I went to work and got a few cards and things. My boss gave me a card:
Before I knew it the time came for my massage!

So I walk over to the clinic and have to fill in the forms. They said "Age:" and I had to write 30 for the first time. It turns out too that the guy I thought was Gabriel is actually a chiropractor and actual Gabriel is this VERY heterosexual guy from Romania. That sucked. He mentioned he used to be a gym teacher and I had visions of high school gym class during the whole massage. He kept saying "Why are you here?" and I couldn't really say "Because my insurance is paying me to get rubbed by a man" so I kept rambling on about phantom pains.

The massage itself was pretty good, how can a massage be bad? I took off ALL my clothes for the first time and that worked out well. These people are the art of covering, I swear there's classes on how to fold and unfold a sheet so nothing is exposed. I have an appointment to go back on Friday. It was ok and he was nice but just like a jock, former gym teacher, into sports massage. Not what I had pictured.

On the way back to work I noticed a Yoga studio and walked in. They have a special, for $20 you can take as many classes as you want in one week and figure out what you like so I'm going to do that. It seems like it would be great for exercise as I doubt I'll ever join a gym. Plus on Sunday they have a one hour meditation class that's FREE. I'm so there.

Dinner was amazing, great company with my most excellent friend Gerry who stepped in at the last minute and is great to talk to. Had pasta with spinach and sun-dried tomatoes and feta. It was amazing, and I consider feta to be less of an offense than cow's cheese. Plus I love it. Plus it was my birthday.

Now I'm trying to find a $25 gift to take to my family's Christmas party Saturday. Suggestions welcome. I'm looking up ideas on the net, will post some here:
  • Assortment of Batteries

  • Ovulation Test Strips (what is this?)

  • Hair Removal wax kit

  • A "movie night" pack, which could include a coupon from Blockbuster for a DVD rental and a package of microwave popcorn plus some Jujubees

  • Plastic storage containers from the kitchen filled with snack food or home baked treats

  • Big and Gaudy Lawn Ornament

  • BBQ gift set
Do people on planet earth actually want any of this stuff? I think my problem is that I'm thinking of gifts I would want. Is it possible I don't have standard taste?

    Me


    Sunday, December 14, 2008

    30

    One negative thing about having friends that are ALL older than you is you get no sympathy for hitting milestone birthdays. You can't ask people over forty to feel for you turning 30, it doesn't work. But I have compensations, it's easier to feel young when you're dating a man in his 40's.
    I went to a birthday brunch today, here I am grinning like an idiot and a GREAT picture of my friend Joe.

    There were others there who, for blog purposes, don't exist. I don't think I have yet reached the level of international fame but people seem shy about appearing on here, my blog for friends and family. People are weird about the internet. My boss for example will never use her credit card on the internet. Oh how rich I'd be if I adopted that philosophy!

    I won't be seeing my boyfriend tomorrow night and so I'll be spending a few hours today and tomorrow practicing not being bitter about that. But I will be seeing my new masseuse Gabriel for lunch. Should be delicious!

    Africa

    I am supposed to be getting over $4,000 when our new contract is approved at work before April 2009. That's of course if the members approve the contract.

    I found this vacation and think that's how I'd like to use the money. Stupid double occupancy.
    http://www.conxity.com/pages/flashitem3_081205.php




    Nike ad: If You Let Me Play (1995)

    In my opinion the best commercial ever played. I can't watch it and not cry.

    Movies that make me cry

    I've been reviewing movies that make me cry. And as I've been Googling lists, I sometimes come upon a movie that makes me suck in your breath and go "Ohhhh... yes." And here they are, in teary order.

    9. Titanic - Slowly freezing to death, Jack professes his love to Rose. She lets go of his hand, and he slips into the dark, unyielding sea.

    8. Schindler's List - So many points in this movie. The most moving is when Schindler realizes the gravity of wiping out an entire people and surrounded by the few remaining Jews, says "I could have done more."

    7. Field of Dreams - At the very end when Ray's dad comes out of the cornfield and they have a game of catch.

    6. Steel Magnolias - Surrounded by friends at her daughter's grave, Sally Field rages from hysterical anger to glacial calm. The tears don't stop until the audacious moment when Olympia Dukakis offers Shirley MacLaine to her as a punching bag.

    5. Jerry Maguire - When Tom Cruise, the master of living the life and playing it cool, has the first real moment of his life, and says to his wife "You complete me."

    4. Philadelphia - During Beckett's wake, Neil Young's mournful title track echoes in the background to home movies of the deceased as a little boy, walking with his mom on the beach and making funny faces.

    3. The Color Purple - When Whoopie Goldberg finally, after an entire lifetime, sees her children.

    2. Brokeback Mountain - His lifelong love dead, crestfallen Ennis clings for dear life to Jack's tattered old shirt

    1. Good Will Hunting - When Robin Williams says to Will "It's not your fault" and repeats it, until Will, finally letting down his defenses, believes it.

    I cried as I typed that last synopsis.

    The times I've cried most in my life were not from movies though.
    The second time I saw Rent, I knew what was coming and I cried straight through, from the third song in to the very end.

    The time I cried the most in my life was when I read "The Grapes of Wrath". The last two pages, still to this day when I read them, I cry and cry. When I first finished the book, I set it down and cried for about 3 hours. I felt the book had captured the essence of humanity. It changed my life.

    I can I just say to the person who picked "Armageddon" as the movie that made them cry the most, please don't reproduce.

    Saturday, December 13, 2008

    Pink Triangle

    Michlean L. Amir, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

    I visited your museum this summer.
    I was looking for Object Number IL94.6.1, a patch with pink triangle worn by Concentration Camp internee to indicate that prisoner was gay. Your USHMM database indicated the item was on display but when I spent 2 hours looking for it with several members of your staff it was determined it was not on display.

    I spoke to a woman in your library who said the item had been rotated out, that not all items were on display at all times. I found this strange as this is the only authenticated pink triangle on the planet, donated by Heinz Heger, author of the book "The Men with the Pink Triangles".
    Later I spoke to her again and she mentioned the item had been pulled from the collection due to questions about its authenticity. This I would think would be major international news, again with only one of these items remaining.

    So I am writing to obtain verification. Is the item now on display? Are there questions about its authenticity? Is it possible for me to have a scan of this item?

    Thank you, I appreciate your time,
    Adam Dunn

    My Pretend Boyfriend

    My pretend boyfriend seems to be a common phrase in the gay community. For example, Rosie O'Donnell's pretend boyfriend is Tom Cruise.

    My pretend boyfriend is John Caffrey from Toronto band Kids On TV. He is sex on legs.

    I received an ad in the mail for the upcoming play "The Needle Exchange" at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, which I won tickets for at the silent auction at the Archives dinner. Glancing at the ad, I remembered listening to Proud FM on Friday. They were discussing strange things found on the subway and one woman called in to say she had found a picture of a penis. The host mentioned how strange it would be if you recognized the penis and handed the photos back to the guy and everyone had a good laugh.

    So when I got the ad with the bum on it, I thought how funny it would be if I recognized the bum. And as I looked closer, I saw part of a tattoo on the guy's arm. A tattoo of a cassette tape. And I realized the bum belongs to John Caffrey!

    I went on the theatre's website and found 2 huge high quality shots and got 11x14" prints of them and a t-shirt made of the main image. So I plan on going to the show with these huge prints and the t-shirt and maybe getting an authograph or being exposed as a crazy stalker and dragged right out of the theatre. Either way, I'll be happy.

    Friday, December 12, 2008

    Day Without a Gay

    December 10th was "Day without a gay" in America.

    The idea was that all homosexuals were to call in to work gay. And if you were in the closet you could just call in sick. This movement was in support of gay marriage, and a direct reaction to the passing of Proposition 8 in California. The Associated Press reports that participation was 'spotty'.

    I didn't participate as I live in a country that supports gay marriage. But if you are American, particularly if you live in California, I don't understand how you could not participate. After all the shit the government has put gay people through in that country I'd be marching down the streets with torches and pitch forks. But that's just me.

    Coincidentally, on the same day the movie Milk was shut out of a best picture nomination at the Golden Globes. Sean Penn is the only person nominated from the movie, a recognition to the 'sacrifice' a straight actor has made in portraying a gay character, but not recognition to the movie itself.

    Last night a friend of mine from the Archives was telling me about how he found a dead body outside his apartment on the weekend. A 42 year old gay man had jumped from the 15th floor, hitting his head on a railing and decapitating himself in the process. This led to discussion of the three other gay people in his life who had committed suicide.

    Do heterosexuals commit suicide this often?

    "It's been too hard living
    but I'm afraid to die
    Cause I don't know what's up there beyond the sky
    It's been a long, a long time coming
    But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will"
    - Sam Cooke, "A Change Gonna Come"

    Sunday, December 7, 2008

    Al Green - Tired of Being Alone (live) 1973

    When you look up soul in the dictionary, it says Al Green.

    It's a dogs life

    There was one point in my life I thought of getting a dog. It would be nice to take them for a walk. After today, that idea is gone. Ciao. Adios. No more.
    Of course my cat could shut up too.

    There's an old Hollywood saying "Never work with kids or animals." Now I know why.
    Here's my dad's dog Poppy:

    And here's some action shots of the day:


    This fellow on the left was the only attractive guy all day.

    It wasn't that bad an experience but I can't imagine anyone wanting to do this.
    My job was just to hit print on the printer which was easy, but people would say things like
    "Can you lighten that up?"
    "Can you hurry up?"
    "Can I get that other shot we took?"
    So I would remind them that my job was to push the button and talk to someone else.

    Overall dogs require so much attention I don't know how anyone does it. There were loads of people who were fou-fou dog owners. Does a dog need a stroller?