Monday, December 22, 2008

Fake It 'Til You Make It!

My depression is still dogging me, not as heavily as it was but rather in waves of sadness and nights of obsessive thinking; my joints still hurt; I still haven't done any laundry and am now wearing mismatched socks; I'm still tired all the time; my bank account keeps overdrawing itself no matter how I try to juggle things; I'm still fat and uncomfortable in my own skin.

But you know what? I DON'T CARE ANYMORE. I'm going to smile and laugh, anyway. I'm going to pretend I feel good, and I'm going to enjoy whatever I can enjoy. I'm going to decorate the Christmas tree, no matter how much I hate the filthy stinking thing. I am going to cook Christmas food no matter how much I resent having to do it. I am going to set a festive Christmas table no matter how much I want to pound the forks into the wall and toss the glasses down the chimney. I am going to exude Christmas cheer over all and sundry even if it kills me.

It's not really that hard. I let people know that I'm still feeling a little crazy, so they won't be surprised when the mask falls and I start screaming and trying to stab myself in the eye with a Bic pen; but I don't let the being down get me down; I don't let let negativity dwell.

And when all else fails, I look at beautiful boys. Beautiful boys always cheer me up.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sick and Tired

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome sucks. I doubt if what I'm dealing with would be characterized as CFS by a physician, but I am certainly experiencing some symptoms, and I'm sick and tired of them. Being tired all the time is just so bloody inconvenient.

I wanted to go to a Court show today, Mama P's Charitable Christmas, in fact I've been planning on it all week... I planned what I was going to wear, what I was going to perform, all that. But come the day, I was too damned tired, I had too much else to do around the house, and I just couldn't pull myself together enough to even go, much less dress and perform.

And so instead of sporting the rather fabulous gold outfit I've been longing to wear for some months, I lay here playing Blood Lust on FaceBook and reading. I got up to take a shower, at least to get dressed and maybe get some housework done, but showering and dressing made me so tired I was shaking, so I had to come back and lay down.

After my bout of depression last month, I have yet to fully recover what little strength I'm used to. I've been sick with nameless ailments twice, one a sort of flu and the other an obvious cold, each lasting a few days and making life difficult. I haven't missed any work, or at least I didn't until this Friday, and my productivity is OK, but maintaining my standards is very draining. So when the weekends come, I'm so done in that I spend the whole time laying around instead of doing the things around the house that need doing, both for Christmas and for just regular upkeep. Simply feeding myself is a challenge.

I'm not sleeping well these last few days, and that's taking the greatest toll. I have a hard time dropping off, I wake up a lot, and I have very vivid and sometimes disturbing dreams.

The thing is, I'm having to face the possibility that this is what life is going to be like... that this is something I'm going to have to learn to manage, rather than something that will go away if I could just eat the right things or get enough rest or even change my medications. What if this is just the beggining? What if CFS is about to becoe part of my life the way bipolar disorder has become part of my life?

It's kind of scary to consider. I don't want it, no thank you, not today.

But then, I don't get to choose, do I?

As always, I shall remind myself that it could be worse, that taken all in all I have a pretty OK life. But I still wish it was completely OK. Or maybe even fantastic.

Is "fantastic" really so much to ask?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Reason Regains Her Throne

I just came through a very dark time. I mean, I was angry that Prop 8 was on the ballot at all, I was angered by the outright lies of the Yes on 8 advertising, but I had no idea I could even be as angry as I was when it passed. The rage took up every corner of my heart and mind. The desire to punish and hurt was so strong I could barely function around it.

The thing is, I have no way of processing that kind of anger. All I know to how to do is hold it in so that I don't do anything while I'm angry which I'll later regret; I couldn't even talk about the topic, much less my feelings, without spewing hate and ugliness... I had no safe vent for the feelings, they were so horrible and destructive that to let them loose for a second would hurt somebody.

What I really needed was to be able to just curl up and hide, ride the feelings out, pray and meditate my way through the anger... unfortunately, I had to work. And at work, due to some sudden personnel changes, I've once again been spending most of my time in the Career Center with all the various customers coming and going... so many interruptions, so many sketchy personalities, so many little crises and concerns, and me doing my WASP best (which is not inconsiderable, if I do say so myself) to be pleasant and to smile and to pretend there was nothing wrong.

Which I suppose, for a normal person, would be exhausting... and it was exhausting... but I'm not a normal person: I'm a manic-depressive, so all of the above spun me into a depression so profound that suicide was my every other thought. It was probably the lowest ebb of depression I've ever experienced, even worse than before I was medicated. It was too terrible even to talk about, not to my best friend, not to my shrink, not even to you.

One of the elements making things even more miserable is that I firmly believe that Grandmother voted for Prop 8. Maybe she didn't, but I feel certain her "Christian" principles would have demanded it of her. Still, I haven't asked her, largely because I was afraid of what I might say or do if it turned into an argument... I could clearly visualize myself smacking the shit out of a ninety-year-old woman, and I couldn't let that happen. But the feeling of pain that this suspicion caused me made everything so much worse... I had to shield Grandmother from my anger, so I invented an illness so that she'd leave me alone. She thought I was coming down with a flu, and I let her believe that.

So after three workdays of this ghastliness, I finally got to Saturday... I got a lot of sleep, going to bed at six Friday evening and not getting up until ten the following morning. Then I went out with Caroline and bought some new clothes, which always makes me feel better. And then I spent the rest of the day on the couch watching inanities and taking catnaps.

Sunday, however, brought a fresh hell: church. A room full of Christians, many of whom also probably voted for Prop 8, singing about their God of Love and Peace and Whatever, their hearts full of hypocrisy, their disgusting religion hurting more people than it could possibly help (at least those were my thoughts at the time).

After the sermon, I abandoned Grandmother in Bible class, telling her I had to step out for some fresh air and taking a brisk mile-or-so walk around the neighborhood. During that walk I boiled over all of my hatred for (inspired by anger toward) the so-called Christians who worked so hard to pass this discriminatory Constitutional amendment: thinking about all of the money raised by members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (some $25 million, all tolled), thinking about how many orphans that would have fed, how many homeless it would have housed, how many sick it would have comforted. What Would Jesus Do With $25 Million? I wanted to ask them.

My thoughts then turned to my relationship with Grandmother: could I forgive her, if indeed she did vote for Prop 8? And if not, what would I do? Would I give up my relationship with her, move out of the house, live in my car or go couch-surfing if I had to?

And the answer was: Yes. I could do that. But not while I'm angry. I will have to give some thought in the coming weeks about how and whether I can continue to live with a person who thinks that homosexuality is a sin... or, rather, someone who labors under the false delusion that homosexuality is more of a sin than other sins which she and others commit all the time. I just have to wait until all the anger is gone before I can talk to her about it.

Of course, by then, I will probably have lapsed back into inertia and complacency. Yes, I could leave Grandmother... but will I? It's such a lot of effort. Another topic for prayer and meditation, to be sure.

I guess what really boils down to is that I don't understand where these people get off... what is their beef with homosexuality, anyway? What difference does it make to them? Sure, OK, let's say for a moment that it's a sin, that God wants us to not indulge in homosexual behavior. Kind of an asshole-y God, if you ask me, but for the sake of argument, let's take the Bible at face value.

Even then, it's pretty minor: it's only mentioned three or four times (five or six if you stretch a point), it's not one of the Commandments, and Jesus Christ never said Word One about it (not that was recorded, anyway). Sure, those three or four mentions are pretty damning, but have you read them in context? Each one of those mentions is accompanied by admonitions against adultery, as well as a few other things. And Christ Himself said that to divorce and remarry is to commit adultery... and even my sainted Grandmother divorced her first husband and then remarried. A forty-seven year adulterous relationship? For shame!

Logically, I can understand: you focus on a sin that you yourself are not interested in committing, and then you imagine that this sin is much worse than any sin you might commit, in order to compare it to the sins you do commit and feel better about them... comparison to someone supposedly worse than you is the easiest way to feel better about yourself.

But how can people claim that God is working in their lives when these kinds of spiritual dichotomies and lazinesses and outright hypocrisies still live in their hearts? Where exactly do they get off pointing out the splinter in my eye while ignoring the planks in their own? How can their God allow them them to be so blind?

If that God is the real true God, I'm better off without him. Such a God would be a dick, plain and simple, and not worth worshiping.

But God is not a dick. God is the controlling principle of the universe, He is all that is good... I believe that with all my heart. My jury is still out on Jesus, but I can't believe in the Bible because the God of that Book is a dick.

A lot of people defend organized religion by pointing out all of the good it does. But I truly believe that the people who do perform good works in God's name would do so without a church or a book telling them to so do... just as the assholes of the world would still be assholes without a church or book to back up their evil. People are good or evil in their own right, in their own hearts; religion is just a structure on which to lay that good or evil... it would exist without the structure just as well.

But what organized religion can and does do is to poison the hearts of good people with misinformation, and it is for that reason that I think the good it does is outweighed by the evil it does.

See, my Grandmother doesn't want to think of me as sinful, she doesn't want me to go to Hell, she doesn't want me to be punished... but she was taught by the assholes who perverted her religion that I am sinful and will be punished in Hell... and she has to believe that in order to believe everything else they told her, all about Jesus and Heaven and eternal life. It all comes of-a-piece for her, her mind formed long ago around faith-based thinking; she can no more change that than learn to think in German. Her natural goodness continues to nurture me and the rest of the family, but the poisonous hate she ingested in youth prevents her from loving me as completely as she wants.

Well, anyway, the proposition passed, and everyone has moved on to the next steps... getting it overturned being the first logical step. In the meantime, a lot of people have taken other steps, protests in front of Temples and City Halls, petitions to revoke the tax-free status of churches and to illegalize divorce, for no other reason than to show Those People what idiots they're being. They seem rather futile gestures to me, but we all have to deal with our anger and disappointment in our own ways.

I don't know what I'm going to do. I'm just glad I'm not so angry anymore. I am still angry, but it's the containable anger that I've been carrying around with me through years and years of unfairness and discrimination, the anger at the first person who called me a faggot when I was seven, the anger at the last person who made fun of me because I'm effeminate, the anger that keeps me working toward a goal of justice and liberty.


In other news, here's my Halloween costume, as previously promised, though a couple of weeks late:

This is the version I wore to work, the version with the least number of accessories and encumbrances. I won the costume contest with it... though the victory would have been somewhat more satisfactory if I hadn't also been the person who organized the contest and purchased the prize.

By the way, that black beard is not painted on... I actually dyed it black, as well as my eyebrows and my hair. My hair didn't come out so well, it was very patchy in the back, but I just packed it with product and slicked it down; the whole effect was quite delightfully sinister. And I actually look pretty good with black hair, it complements my skin tone. Of course I tried dying it back to brown afterward, but it was a disaster and my hair is now a tricolor mess.

But back to Halloween... later on, Caroline and I went out to the City to check out the revels there...

The wig and the jabot were added, which were too warm to wear to the office (hence the hair-dye), as was a full-length black cape with a rather fantastic stand-up collar which I did not get photographed. Ah, well. Caroline dressed as a 50s Showgirl:

We had a pretty good time, me ogling the other costumes (sneering at the store-bought as a good queen should) and Caroline meeting new people (cute boys and effusive girls) along the way, then hanging out at Cookie Dough's Halloween Show at the Octavia Lounge, but I had been at work all day and was incredibly tired by the time we went out, and then finding parking was even more of a nightmare than usual... we ended up parked on Geary and Divisadero, about two and a half miles from Castro. Ridiculous! But still somehow better than taking mass transit.

Anyway, a good-enough time was had.


In other other breaking news, I just came back to this post after watching Dancing With The Stars and am thrilled that my beloved Cody survived this week's elimination. This is the second week he's been in the bottom two, and though I think his improvements are stellar, I don't know what kind of a fan-base he has (outside of myself) so I couldn't be sure he'd be spared. I was so worried about him, and he looked plenty worried, too... I think he was preparing to go home. But in the end, it was Maurice Green who was voted off... I thought he had improved a lot, too, but he was still rather graceless, strangely heavy on his feet for a runner... and he isn't a big-eyed blond moppet... so I wasn't sad to see him go.

So YAY! I get to see more of Cody next week, and he's such a cutie!

And speaking of cuties...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I just can't handle it...

I'm so unbearably angry right now that I can't even think. I can't function.

I want to scream, slash, maim, burn, destroy. I want to curl up in a ball and cry. I want to hit somebody. I almost want to kill myself just to express my feelings.

I'm so furious and disappointed and hurt that I can't even enjoy the victory of Barack Obama... Prop 8's passage has ruined democracy for me.

For now, anyway. This, too, shall pass.

God, grant me strength, grant me patience, grant me understanding.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Dr. McDaddy!

My employer-paid medical benefits kicked in this month, so I made an appointment with the same GP I had when I was a Kaiser member before, just for a general checkup. Kaiser Permanente has made a few improvements to the way they make appointments, by the way, and I got an appointment two days later (last time I had to wait five weeks). Well, anyway, I got to the appointment on time, with a list of questions to ask (fatigue, gas, and arthritis), mentally prepared for all sorts of indignities like partial nudity and/or a prostate exam (which one would think I'd enjoy, but noooooooo).

So there I am sitting on the paper-lined bench, reading an ancient copy of Runner's World (the only magazines in the office), and in comes the doctor... and my jaw hit the floor! Now, I chose my doctor partly for his looks in the first place (I'm shallow like that), and I've met with him before, so I knew he was good-looking and had a sexy foreign accent; but he had heretofore always worn a white lab-coat and a tie and generally looked like a doctor. But this time he was wearing tight navy blue slacks and a charcoal-and-navy ringer-tee on his SERIOUSLY ROCKIN' BODY.

I don't know what he's been doing with himself during the twenty months since I last saw him, but he was effing hot. The man is in his mid-fifties, maybe even early-sixties, but the chiseled pecs, tiny waist, and bounce-a-quarter-off-it butt (not to mention the shiny gold hair, glowing bronzed skin, and glittering clear blue eyes) were what one might expect on a twenty-year-old. I was so dazzled and stunned that I quite forgot to ask about the fatigue and the gas (though he did refer me to an osteopath about the joint pain).

Something tells me that I'm going to get sick a lot in the near future. ;-)

Actually, I am healthier than I was when last I saw him... my blood-pressure has returned to normal (it was slightly high last time), my circulation is good, and though my triglycerides are still through the roof, my cholesterol is great. He wants me to lose some weight and get into a cardio exercise program at least three days a week to improve my muscle tone and get those nasty triglycerides under control (so it's back to the gym for me)... but for my age and weight, I'm in pretty good condition.

And I didn't have to take off my clothes, nor submit to a prostate exam (though I must say I was a trifle disappointed, seeing as how thoroughly I cleaned up for possible inspection).


In other news, I have become completely addicted to the TV show Dancing with the Stars. I've always been a casual fan of ballroom dancing, but I tend to not like these shows where people are critiqued and eliminated... they seem so mean (even my second-favorite show, Project Runway, gives me a qualm about that... I get so sad when Heidi says Auf Wiedersehen, especially if it was one of the contestants I like).

But one Monday evening the Grandmother and I were sitting at the table after dinner; I usually leave the table after Jeopardy!, or maybe Wheel of Fortune if there's a cute guy on, but this time I was working on the Sunday crossword and so stayed at the table later than usual.

And while I sat there trying to think of a five-letter word for "Tahitian currency," the season premiere of DWTS came on, and I got hooked immediately: I mean, I like Lance Bass (I don't know if I'm more interested in him because I now know he's gay, or if the coming-out process made him more interesting), and I adore Cloris Leachman, so they were reason enough to watch; but right there at the beginning they had Cody Linley dancing... those of you who don't have young people in your homes (or who have better things to do with their lives than watch Disney Channel even when there aren't children around) probably don't know this Hannah Montana cutie. I recognized him from the show, on which I thought he was kind of pretty but rather goofy with much-too-large features on a rather small face; but I have to tell you, that boy has gotten gorgeous in the months since his last HM appearance, since turning eighteen, since reaching his full and impressive height.

So yeah, now I have this huge horrible crush on Cody Linley, and though I enjoy watching Lance and Cloris and the other celebs hoofing it in front of the live audience (oh, and I guess a couple of the pros are fun, too), I only keep watching for Cody. I am deeply ashamed of myself.


So having developed crushes on someone old enough to be my father (if just barely) and another one young enough to be my son, I find myself feeling a trifle confused. Maybe I need to find someone hot of my own age to fantasize about, and I'll have The Three Ages of Man. Maybe I'll have to start watching Grey's Anatomy so as to drool over the incredibly sexy Patrick Dempsey, whom I know is only twenty-three months older than I... unfortunately, I tried watching Grey's Anatomy the other night, as it comes on right after my fave show Ugly Betty, but I just couldn't get into it. Medical shows tend to bore me. Maybe if they kept Patrick onscreen and shirtless at all times, I could stomach it?


So let's see... what else is new? Oh, yeah, my new office got redone last weekend, and it's gorgeous! New furniture, new paint, new layout... here's my desk BEFORE (this was right before the redecorating, my desk wasn't usually this bare):

And now (ta-daaaah), my desk AFTER:

Isn't she pretty? The walls are this incredibly soothing sage green on one side and an equally soothing creamy-beige called "Navajo White" on the other, and my desk is on the other side of the room so I can see out both windows at once. I also get a cross-breeze right over my desk, so I'm always nice and cool.

The Before picture was taken with my cell-phone, but the After pix were taken with my brand new camera (which I couldn't really afford but had to have anyway, a Samsung L100 in glittering bright red); after taking pictures of my new office space, I also took pictures of the building... this is a great view, and if you had it in full resolution (which I am not posting, both for privacy reasons [the pic is so clear you can read the license plate numbers] and for bandwidth reasons [the full-size pic is just over 2mg]) you could see one of my coworkers trying to break into her own car.


Well, I guess that's enough out of me for the time being. I'll definitely be back before the end of the month to show you my Halloween costume. In the meantime, here's a tricky little treat for you (by way of Vera's Big Gay Blog):

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Things Are Looking Up!

Wow, am I glad that's over! The depression, I mean... the rest of my life is still in pretty much the same place, but without the depression painting it black, it's all so much more manageable! Thanks for the well-wishes after the previous kvetch-fest, guys! It really does help to know that people are out there, caring.


So today is my and Caroline's 25th Anniversary. We've been friends for a quarter of a century! Ever since we started sharing a locker in sophomore year of high school. We've had some hiatuses (hiati?) in that time, some periods where we didn't see each other much, some relationships that took us a little bit away from each other; but we've never lost touch, and in the last few years we've become incredibly close. I am extremely grateful for Caroline every day.

To celebrate, we drove down to Carmel by the Sea yesterday for some very luxe window-shopping (they have a lot of estate jewelers in Carmel, as well as furriers, art galleries, and a rock-shop containing some really spectacular geodes that had Caroline salivating all over the place), enjoying the rather Druidic weather on the drive down the coast, stopping for snacks here and there. Then we had dinner at one of our favorite coastside restaurants, Sam's Chowder House in Half Moon Bay, where they have the absolute best clam chowder in the world. The rest of their food is great, too, of course, and the service is exceptional. They also had a live band playing (rock/jazz, a little too loud for my tastes, but very festive).

We took some pictures, particularly of the magnificent opera-length Swarovski crystal necklace Caroline made for me, but they haven't been developed yet... instead, here we are celebrating the anniversary two years ago, at the historic Webster House in Alameda (which serves a kick-ass high tea):


In other news, I have been attending some coronations in my effort to become more involved in the Court... two weekends ago I went to Sacramento's Grand Ducal Coronation, which was held in the really gorgeous back complex of Faces nightclub. I thought I looked pretty fierce, but nobody took a picture of me (and my camera is broken, I have to get a new one lest I lose more fabulous outfits to the mists of memory). I had a good time, though, chatting with Mama Portugal and Bill Bailey, SoHorny Beaver and Jimmy Alvarado, Ella Gant and Rich Ragnow. I didn't really know anybody else there, though (aside from the adorable Wesley, whose blog I recently added to my list), which is something I'm going to have to work on... I'm not much of a social butterfly, being ridiculously shy about talking to strangers.

Then the next weekend (last weekend) was San Francisco's Grand Ducal Coronation, which was held at the deliciously campy Swedish-American Hall on Market Street near the Castro. I went over with my good friends Angelique deVil and her partner Damon, who is my counterpart in this Reign as Crown Baron (did I mention that I am Crown Baroness? I think I did), and we had a great time getting ready together in their hotel room.

Of course, we ran late... we always do. But even after being shamefully behind schedule to start with, and then my having to park a zillion miles away (this was the night before Folsom Fair, you know, so the Castro was packed... I ended up parking at Market and Gough, over a mile away), we made it to the Hall just in time for our Walk! And I have to tell you, I looked fan-freaking-tastic!

This picture doesn't do the dress justice... it's full-length, with a sweeping trumpet hem and just a bit of a train, made of a material so blindingly sparkly that I felt like a disco-ball. You can't quite see my tiara, nor my rhinestone-studded shoes. I was The Personification of Bling, I tell you!

Oh, yeah, Angelique looked nice too ;-). I really do need to get a new camera so that I can get full-length pictures. Not much point in spending that much money on a full-length gown and not getting pictures of its full length.

I knew a lot more people at that event, since more of our own Court were there, and the San Francisco Courts overlap a good deal with San Francisco performance venues... so there were some familiar faces in the crowd, notably Pollo del Mar with whom I have a number of mutual friends. I also ran into Bill Jennings, late of Mermaniac fame, and though I didn't get a chance to sit and catch up with him, it was nice to see him and his partner there.

Also the same night was the Living Sober Fall Follies... by serendipitous luck, the venue for that event (the surprisingly elegant Everett Middle School on Church and 16th Streets) was only three blocks away from the Coronation event, so I was able to attend both. Again my timing was perfect... I was scheduled to be halfway through the second act, and I arrived exactly at 9PM, just before the second act started, giving me plenty of time to catch my breath, touch up my face, go potty, and schmooze a bit with old friends Ivy Drip, Cookie Dough, and Madasin Hatter; I also got to chat with Mary Regan, Liability, Sue Nami, and Barbra Jo Peterson.

After that, I went back to the Coronation, where I just missed the Final Walk performaces from Grand Duchess Big D and Grand Duke Oliver with a Twist; but I did get to sit and chat with Cindy Z and Tim Ava and some other Court folk, and watched the crowning of the new Grand Duke and Duchess, Carlos Medal and Landa Lakes. Then I schlepped back to my car (1.3 miles, according to MapQuest), then back to Angelique & Damon's hotel (where I got back into boyclothes and they changed into leathers for the exclusive Magnitude pre-Folsom event), then back home and finally to bed.

And if you think I wasn't in serious pain for several days after walking about four miles all tolled, in pumps that were slightly too big and a corset that was way too small, you got another think coming! I still have bruises on my waist, and the blisters on the balls of my feet are just now callused over. But it was totally worth it... I had such a great time, I'd happily do it again! (Though if I did it again, I'd bring a pair of walking shoes for sure!)


So anyway, those are the big highlights of my life lately. The rest of The Life continues to putter along... I'm still not finished with my filing project, there have been so many interruptions and the creation of new files is taking longer than I expected; but I will get there, and hopefully within the next week. My health insurance has been activated, so I can start making appointments... I need to see a GP about this fatigue issue, and I need to see an eye doctor about getting new glasses (and maybe some contact lenses), and I need to get on board with a psychiatrist so that my Prozac supply doesn't dry up. My money situation is still bothering me, but at least I made my very final car payment... Miss Jane is now ALL MINE and I have the pink-slip to prove it! That will make things a little easier in the coming months, not having the car-payment expense anymore.

And so life goes on, tralalala, and I'm enjoying it for the most part.

How's with you?

Friday, September 12, 2008

A Month of Mondays...


I just can't shake this damned cold... three weeks now, it's been plaguing me. I thought I was over it on Monday, I felt so much better after taking last Friday off and spending pretty much the entire weekend in bed; but every day this week I've come home just a little more tired, a little more sore, a little more achey, a little more stuffy than the day before. I'm beginning to wonder if there isn't something else wrong, like walking pneumonia or consumption or spavins or vapors or something. If only I had health insurance, I'd go find out... but that doesn't kick in 'til next month.

My depression continues to walk all over me with golf cleats. Largely because of the illness, I'm not sleeping well... and when I don't sleep well, I get depressed very easily. And when I'm depressed I just want to kill myself, I think everyone hates me, and I not only withdraw from society but become rather insensitive to other people's feelings (which in turn pisses people off, making me even more depressed). If it weren't for the Prozac, I'd be such a mess right now.

I can't get caught up on my filing at work. Just when I think I'm almost there, I get distracted by some minor catastrophe, and when I turn back there's another pile of filing! Argh! I keep telling my supervisor that I'll have it done by "this Friday," and then Friday comes and I'm nowhere near done. Of course, I'm near done now, but only because I've been focusing on this project to the detriment of all my other work... if and when I finally finish the damnable filing, I'll have a backlog of data entry waiting for me. Oy.

My hair is a mess and I can't afford to get it cut because I keep spending my money on eBay before I even get it. I got some fabulous stuff, I'm all ready for both Halloween and the next three Coronations, but my hair just has to wait and suffer. As does my oil-change, money I owe the Grandmother, lunches out, and everything else I might want to buy between now and the next paycheck on the 23rd.

Of course I'm still fat, because I'm too tired and sick to exercise. I am taking an antioxidant supplement (green tea concentrate), which is helping the puffiness in my face and hands, but my belly continues to disgust me daily. I wish I could embrace the fat, love the fat, encourage a fat-man identity... but I just can't. I'm a skinny little bitch on the inside, and this big fat oaf on the outside is smothering me!

I have a headache, a neckache, and sinusitis. My car is filthy, my room is filthy, my turtle is filthy, and God only knows what my digestive tract looks like.

But other than that, life is one big deep bowl of perfectly ripe cherries, pitted and stemless. Tralalala!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Never Ever Jam Today...

I did say I would write more about what's going on in my life, but... well, I guess I lied, didn't I. The previous précis is enough... the details aren't really that interesting or important.

So, I still have that cold I had last week. It's lingering rather tenaciously, no matter how much sleep I get or how much zinc I take or how much orange juice I drink, it just won't go away. But at least I don't have all that bad of symptoms... the same cold is making the rounds here at work (I've decided that the company picnic was Ground Zero, only those who were there have come down with it), and several people have had to take a couple of days off. I have wanted to stay in bed, but I always somehow manage to have the energy to get to work and stay there all day. Which I think says a lot about how much I'm loving my new job.


You know, Carol Channing was an amazing performer. I came across the above YouTube from Alice in Wonderland while looking for something else entirely, and the lyrics seemed to suit how I feel today (yes, I know... go ahead and pity me). I hadn't seen much of Miss Channing's performances, though... just her role in Thoroughly Modern Millie and a guest spot on The Muppet Show were about all I'd seen (aside, that is, from talk-show appearances on which she appeared to be unbearably daffy).

So I spent some time looking through things that had been posted to YouTube, and developed a deep admiration for her as a performer. This video, which came from The Dean Martin Show and features a song originally from the Broadway musical Mame, its lyrics altered for a newer setting, is absolutely amazing:

Well, it amazed me, anyway. The lead dancer was pretty hot, too.


I'm getting very excited about the upcoming elections. I ordinarily just make up my mind early on, usually before the conventions, and then ignore the whole thing until I vote in November. But after hearing Barack Obama speaking, I'm hooked. He's amazing! Galvanizing, even. Even the Grandmother, who hasn't voted Democrat since Carter (though she's still registered as a Democrat, she's been voting Republican for years... mostly due to her fear of taxation and distaste for other people's ideas about morality) was visibly impressed by the speech he made in Minnesota. And then we were watching the DNC...

No, wait... Grandmother was watching the DNC, but she was watching it on Fox News, which I wasn't about to let happen, so I changed the channel to C-Span and didn't tell her, so we both ended up watching the DNC without idiotic commentary from right-wing "pundits" and left-wing lunatics (that's Fox's MO, you know... the liberals on their shows are always kind of whiney or downright crazy, and they have a couple of right-wing crazies like Pat Buchanan come on so that they don't look too biased).

So anyway, back to what I was saying... I was watching the DNC when Joe Biden accepted the nomination for Vice President, and I was deeply impressed by his speech. I was also deeply impressed by his son's eyelashes, but that's neither here nor there. And I could tell that Grandmother was impressed, too... and then when Barack came out for an impromptu appearance and electrified the audience even further, I felt Grandmother reluctantly coming back over to the light side.

Then, a few days later, when I heard about McCain tapping Sarah Palin for his Vice President, I was ecstatic! Grandmother absolutely loathes female politicians... she thinks Nancy Pelosi is the Antichrist and has never had anything nice to say about Dianne Feinstein or Barbara Lee. She didn't even like Anne Richards, despite her deep-seated love of all Texans.

Unfortunately, they're all Democrats and this lady is a Republican as well as a wife and mother and all that jazz; further, Palin seems to be running a purely Pro-Life platform, and that will sway the Grandmother... she is horribly against abortion.

And yet, like most of the pro-lifers I've ever talked to, she's also pro-war. That never made any sense to me.


Okay, it's time to change the subject... I get rather antsy when I talk politics, so no more political speech from me (except this... some wag on NPR has taken to calling Mrs. Palin "Caribou Barbie"... that's funny!)

So what else is going on in the world? Not a hell of a lot, I guess. So let's have a little beefcake, shall we?

Sunday, August 24, 2008


Sorry about the prolonged silence, kids... between the new job (so fucking busy), my reemergence on the drag court scene (I am now the Crown Baroness to the XVIIth Realm and planning to run for Grand Duchess next year), a huge family event (the Grandmother turned 90 on August 2nd), some allergy issues (who the fuck invented sinuses, anyway), and the semiannual depression (much better with the meds, but still there), I've just been overwhelmed.

I'd tell you all about it, but I really haven't got the energy. Next time, I promise. In the meantime, here's a meme I got from my cousin's MySpace page:


You must be honest to take this survey!

Honestly, are you in love right now?
Not with a person... but I am deeply in love with my freshly manicured nails. I can't stop looking at them.

Honestly, what color is your underwear?
Sort of a grayish light blue.

Honestly, what's on your mind right now?
Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

Honestly, what are you doing right now?
This... I'm answering a meme on my blog.

Honestly, what did you do today?
I've been in bed feeling sick all day. I've done some reading, advised a fellow JUBber on how to do drag (at some length), fed Claudius, tried and failed to take a couple of naps, and moaned and groaned quite a bit.

Honestly, do you think you are attractive?
No, not really. I'm not repellent, or anything, but I'm not exactly beating the suitors away with a stick.

Honestly, have you done something bad today?
Not by my standards, but probably by the Pope's standards.

Honestly, do you watch Disney channel?
Sadly, yes. There are so many cute boys on those shows!

Honestly, are you jealous of someone right now?
I'm seldom ever jealous. Envious, sometimes, when a person has something that I want.

Honestly, what makes you happy most of the time?
Shopping. Sparkly things. Shopping for sparkly things. Food.

Honestly, do you bite your nails?
No, but I dig in my ears with paperclips, which is probably worse.

Honestly, what is your mood right now?
Profoundly yuck.

Honestly, who do you want to see at this very moment?
WHOM GODDAMNIT! I don't want to see anybody. I don't want anybody to see me. I want to crawl under the covers and never come out.

Honestly, do you have a deep dark secret?
Sort of. Some people know about a certain facet of my psyche, but I don't broadcast it as it would make me very unpopular.

Honestly, do you hate someone right now?
I try so hard to not hate people... but I do hate George W. Bush, Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, and the entire Religious Right sooooo badly.

Honestly, whoM/what do you want to hug right now?
Honestly? A live hand grenade.

Honestly, do your wrists hurt?
Everything hurts. But my wrists are comparatively unpained, when compared to my back, my head, and my knees. And, mysteriously, my right ring finger.

Honestly, are you in denial?
If I were, I'd deny it, wouldn't I?

Honestly, wouldn't you rather be having sex right now?
Sex? Like with another person? Ick. But maybe a little self-lovin' would help my headache. I'll have to give that a try when I'm done here.

Honestly, is it easier to talk online than in person?
I am a much better writer than I am a speaker. If it weren't for the internet, I'd be very lonely.

Honestly, does anyone like you?
I seriously doubt it. Well, I mean, everyone likes me... but I don't believe anyone "likes" likes me.

Honestly, is it going anywhere with them?
With whom? Who are "they"? If they don't exist, how can anything go anywhere?

Honestly, did you answer all these questions honestly?
Yes. Though I can't think why. Habit, I guess.

Monday, June 30, 2008

United by Pride, Bound for Equality

Such was the theme of the 2008 San Francisco Pride parade and festival, in which Caroline and I participated yesterday (much to the chagrin of our now-aching feet). We had a fantastic time hanging out, marching, and otherwise schmoozing with our friends in the Royal Grand Ducal Council of Alameda County, and then had almost as good a time wandering through the festival grounds.

Wanna see some pix?

There was one whole float full of Charos...

The Teatro Zinzanni Float, which was amazing...

My new husband (though he doesn't know it yet, and probably never will)...

Me in my festive best...

The Honorable Ron Dellums, Mayor of Oakland. My Grandmother can't stand him, so I made sure to get a picture with him (but it's on Caroline's camera, so the pic isn't available yet). The Grandmother and I had a little set-to about my participating in Pride, so I've been alternating between defiance and conciliation towards her all week.

General fabulousness was everywhere. So were dogs and babies. I rather prefer dogs, myself, but it was so cool seeing so many families with children about.

This is the contingent that marched (or rather vroomed) behind us in the parade... I was never very clear who exactly they were, aside from a lot of queers on motorcycles.

The Imperial and Grand Ducal Courts of San Francisco, and Mr. & Ms. Golden Gate, were in front of us in the parade.

Me again, in full-on parade waving mode...

I loved this sign...

The Barbie Support Group... very funny.

These guys were just fabulous...

And the blond on the right is my other new husband...

The Charos in action... note the one on the far left carrying a baby... the baby was fast asleep.

The quality of my new camera left something to be desired... you can't see how delectably hunky all the members of the Crunch gym contingent were...

There were a lot of churches represented in the parade. There has been a lot of Christian outreach to our community recently.

More hunks, this time on the Mamma Mia! float.

You might be wondering at the sparseness of the parade pictured above... the thing is, I had my hands full with the parasol and the waving, so I didn't take any pictures of the parade itself. So all of the pictures I took were in the staging area before the parade started and in the demobilizing area at the end of the parade. I wish I'd been able to carry my camera as well, as there were many fabulous sights along the parade route, but alas: of all words of tongue or pen, none are sadder than these - what might have been, etc. and so forth.

The dense crowds at the festival; mind you, this was before the parade was even over, imagine what a zoo it became later on! I had some difficulty with dealing with the crowd, but every time I started getting a little panicky, we lucked into an open space like this one, so I didn't have a breakdown.

When I pointed out to Caroline what her wrist was touching, she freaked out... fortunately she didn't notice it at the time...

One of the many dance areas in the festival...

And that's all for now. I took more pictures, of course, but these are the highlights.

It was a generally wonderful gay day, and we had a lovely time. But it was tiring! My feet still hurt, and my back hurts, and I somehow managed to get a slight sunburn on my face even though I was under that damned parasol the whole day... must have been from reflected light. I rather wished I'd been able to watch the concert (Cyndi Lauper headlined) or spend more time in the festival perusing booths, but one's age does tell on one in these events. Forty may be the new thirty, but my joints didn't get that memo.

In closing, here's a fun little slideshow I made (I'm still exploring MS Movie Maker, so it's rather amateurish) with one of my favorite songs.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Blast From the Past

A few weeks ago, I mentioned something about an upcoming drag performance while discussing this & that on JUB; one of my fellow JUBbers asked me if I had any of my past performances on video that I could share. Well, at the time I didn't... but after a certain amount of aggravation, I managed to get some.

I had this videotape that Cookie Dough made for me some years ago, which contained two performances of mine (as well as performances from the rest of the Galaxy Girls); after some initial mishaps, I located said video in my bookshelves, and took it down to the local copy-and-imaging store to have it converted to DVD. After the modest outlay of $18 for the conversion, I brought the DVD home and tried to copy my performances off of it.

Which, of course, I couldn't do, because that's not how DVDs work. So I had to find some kind of software to convert the DVD into Windows Media of some sort. More mishaps followed... I tried screen capture software first, none of the freebies of which worked; then I realized I needed DVD-AVI Conversion software... which also didn't work (for me, anyway) in freebie form. I finally found one, though (Plato), which I was able to operate and which I will certainly buy once I have money again.

Now that I had the videos in AVI format, I had to edit them with Windows Movie Maker, which came installed on my laptop. And of course, I didn't know how to operate Windows Movie Maker, so I had to pretty much teach myself a new software all alone.

However, I finally did it, added titles and credits, then uploaded those precious two performances to YouTube so I could share them with everyone!

This first is one of my best performances ever, though the video quality isn't all that great (nor could one expect it to be... I mean, DVR to VHS to DVD to AVI to Movie Maker to YouTube? It's surprising you can see anything at all):

This second one is not what I consider one of my better performances; it was notable only because it was so wildly out of character for me... and the video is even worse:

So there you have it... Miss Me from six/seven years ago. Fifty or sixty pounds ago, too. It makes me want to perform again, though... I will be performing next month at the RGDC Ducal Ball, hopefully somebody will videotape me and give me a copy of it so I can share some more. In the meantime, I am going to upload some more of other people's performances from the videotape I do have; there were some great numbers on there.

In other news, the job is going fantastically... I just love being here. The work isn't terribly difficult, the people I work with are wonderfully nice, and the building, though slightly ramshackle in appearance and appointments, has such a great homey feeling about it. I pinch myself every day to make sure I'm not dreaming.

Well, speaking of dreams, I'd better go have one or two. G'night!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Yay Me!

Whatever you did, whichever deity you invoked, it worked:

I got the job! I got the job! I got the job!

I'm thrilled and relieved. I'm dazzled and delighted! I'm choking on my own spit!

The best part: the reason they delayed in offering me the job is because they were getting permission from the Board of Directors to offer me a higher starting salary than was listed! It's still not a lot, I am relying more on the feeling of accomplishment in the job than on the pay, but it's very satisfying to get a raise before you even start.

And I start on Wednesday, which gives me a couple of days to get my shit together, get my wardrobe squared away, and finish off all the little projects I've been meaning to do since I've been unemployed. It's going to be a busy few days.

And I couldn't be happier!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Bearded Lady

As previously promised, I present Little Me in "all my Grissom-y goodness":

I really like having a beard. I like the way it covers up my jowls and the sag in my chin, and I LOVE not having to shave except to trim around the edges once a week. I don't really like the big patches of gray, and even gave in to the temptation to buy a bottle of beard dye (Clairol Just For Men)...though I haven't used it. But in general I am happy being a bearded person. I will miss it when I have to shave it off next time I do drag (which is slated for July 19, RGDC Coronation).

In the meantime, I am still waiting to hear back about that job. I am pretty sure I'm going to get it, based on overheard conversations reported to me by my friend who works there and told me about the job and encouraged me to apply in the first place; but being pretty sure and knowing for certain are not quite the same thing. And that little space between being pretty sure and knowing for certain is driving me nuts!

In other news, I am currently recovering from a nice session of oral surgery. I've been suffering from a toothache for a few weeks, and so I went to my dentist and he took an X-ray and decided that what was hurting me could be best characterized as "gross decay" and the offending tooth would have to come out. And, by the way, the one next to it is loose so it should come out, before it falls out on its own or gets abscessed. He told me that I could have them out right then, with a local anasthetic, but I remember all too well what it feels like to get a tooth pulled and would like to have rather more than a little gas and some novocaine... so he referred me to an oral surgeon who would put me under completely for the procedure.

That was great, except for my lack of dental insurance... the two teeth cost me $1065, completely wiping out my savings. Oh, and the need to take Vicodin for a few days after the surgery, which made me rather goofy and gave me nightmares. Then there was the "take it easy until the stitches come out" part; which, though quite pleasant in and of itself, unfortunately was terribly habit-forming, and so I've had no energy to do anything for days.

But now I can eat ice-cream again! That makes it all so worthwhile.

Anyway, I'll be off now, and wish me luck on the job thing. Toodles!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

In Need of Well-Wishes

Not wishing-wells...

So I had a second interview today for a job I really want at a non-profit agency in Berkeley... and while I won't exactly say I bombed, I did come out of there feeling somewhat less than 100% confident in my interview. The first interview went like a breeze, but this one revealed some of my weaknesses, like my general inability to ask questions or develop long-term goals. But we laughed a lot, and on most of the questions they nodded knowingly as if I had said exactly the right thing.

But I'm feeling anxious, anyway. So please wish me luck; send your positive vibes my way; if you pray, say a little one for me. And if you happen to have an "in" with any supernatural powers, let them know that I am both worthy and deserving.


Saturday, May 17, 2008

For Your Viewing Pleasure

As I'm sure you know, I am addicted to YouTube. Almost every day I find something there (usually referred by my friends at JUB), and frequently I find myself laughing until the tears spurt from my eyes.

Here's a perfect example (NOT safe for work, nor for children, nor for anyone of a delicate sensibility):

Here's another, safer little video, which is not only terribly funny but features a very cute boy:

And now, DANCE TO IT!!!

I mentioned earlier my fondness for the British panel quiz show QI, which is hosted by one of my few real-life idols, Stephen Fry and perma-guested by the adorable Alan Davies. Here are three parts of one of my favorite episodes of the show, from the fourth season; pay special attention to Julian Clary recounting his meeting with HRH Elizabeth II (in the middle section).

If you'd like to catch up on the entire five seasons of the program, visit Nick Loizu's YouTube homepage.

Another British panel show caught my attention earlier, but it has fewer episodes: Never Mind the Buzzcocks. Actually, the show went on quite a bit longer, but I find I only enjoyed the last two seasons, in which the adorable Simon Amstell hosted. Again cut into three parts, enjoy my favorite episode (which features the delicious John Barrowman, who was in fact the name I was searching when I found this show).

So anyway, that's how I spend a lot of my time. I may be starting work sometime soon, I have a second interview for a particular nonprofit on Tuesday, and I have a really good feeling about the place...the first interview went really well, I think. I'll keep you updated as developments arise. I'll also post a picture of me in my beard, as soon as I get my camera working again...I found it, plugged it in, and nothing happened; I'll try replacing the batteries, that may make a difference.

In the meantime, have a gorgeous day!