August 29, 2011
What did we talk about? Me, mostly. God knows I’m a diva.
When I don’t feel good, I have very vivid dreams. Not the kind of vivid dreams where I’m stretched out on a chaise lounge being pampered by Go-Go Boys (Hey Mason! Love you, Boo!) and having my every whim catered to. No, I’m not that lucky. Instead my dreams find me sitting around having conversations with dead boyfriends, dead relatives, and now apparently divine entities. I guess this means Patricia Arquette will be playing me in the television series adaptation of my life.
But I digress. After a particularly grueling day of feeling like I’d been snatched upside the head by my weave, I retuned to Serial Blonde HQ, turned off my Blackberry, covered the windows, crawled into bed and crashed. Hard.
Or so I thought.
What felt like only minutes later, my serenity was shattered by a knock on my door. I was prepared to lose my shit on whoever it was.
“Somebody better be dead!” I bellowed as I swung the door open.
“Not quite.” answered my visitor.
Standing at my door was a woman in her fifties with perfectly coiffed blonde hair (so jealous!) and a smart silver pantsuit that Hillary Clinton would kill for. Her outfit was accented by a pair of hot pink Louis Vuittons (fabulous shoes for the three straight men reading this). She was a vision.
“Look, I’m sorry for being so abrupt,” I began. “I had a shitty day and just want to curl up in bed and forget about it.”
“I know,” she answered, “And you weren’t being abrupt, you were being a total bitch. Now fix that hair of yours and come for a visit with me,” she continued. “I’m on a schedule.”
Having nothing better to do now that I was awake, I followed her.
As I stepped outside I was taken by how beautiful and bright it suddenly was. Rochester generally has four shades of grey, so this was definitely an improvement.
“Come sit and have a chat with me,” she said, motioning me to a bench that had miraculously appeared in the middle of my yard.
“Where in the hell did that come from?” I asked
“Hell is responsible for many things,” she answered, “but not my traveling necessities.”
“Well I don’t intend to stand while we talk. Coming down here from all the way up there takes the wind out of you,” she explained, pointing to the sky.
“Oh my God!”
“Oh good, I see a light bulb went on in your head. No need to be so formal though. You can call me Mary,” she said.
“Mary? Like Mary and Joseph Mary?
“No dear, I came first. I just know the Gays are very fond of calling everyone Mary. So much more dignified than that ‘hey, girl, hey” thing the kids are doing now.
And then it hit me.
“Oh my..err..Mary, am I dead?” I asked.
“No, I believe we already established that when you answered the door.”
“Oh, well that’s good,” I replied. “Does this mean I’m going too die soon?”
“Robert, everyone is going to die. Why not try asking me why I’m here instead of guessing.”
“Why are you here?”
“You’re very nosey, aren’t you?”
God, I mean, Mary, was very catty. I was impressed.
“Every now and again I like to check in with my soldiers and see, how do the kids say it? What’s up?”
“What? You don’t think that you’re on earth just to be blonde and fabulous do you? No, you, like many others, are down here for a reason. Every now and again I appear to touch base, check on everyone’s progress, and find out what is going on.”
“Well, work is okay, but I’m ready for a vacation. My Mom is driving me up the wall as per usual. Oh, and I really miss my best friend. He moved.”
“Seriously? You think I came all this way to listen to this?” she asked, incredulously.
Catty and direct.
“I’m not sure what else to say?”
“Okay, let’s try a different approach,” she continued. “You can ask me three questions. If they’re good questions I might just get a sense of where you are in the grand scheme of things.”
Jesus Christ. Talk about pressure.
“Really Robert? Right in front of me?”
“I’m sorry. I kind of have a filthy mouth.” (I should mention that God hears your internal monologue. It’s a bit unsettling, but you should know this in case you ever get the chance to meet with her.)
“Oh honey, I’m well aware of your filthy mouth,” she continued. “Every week I have to stop the angels from picking up the slang you use on that blog of yours” (I have fans all over the world, even above it!)
“Okay, three good questions. I can do this.”
“Yes, you can. Here are some tips,” she offered. “Keep them general, don’t ask something you know you’re not ready for the answer to and don’t be afraid to be selfish and ask about yourself.”
Gentle readers, usually the biggest decision I have to face in my life is which brand of hair product to use. This was some serious shit.
“Okay, what’s the meaning of life?” I asked,
“That’s not a question. That’s a discovery. You get a do-over. Try again.”
“Hmmm. This is hard.”
“Oh honey, losing someone you love at a young age is hard. Watching people come and go is hard. Finding out who you are in this life is hard. This should be the easiest thing you ever do.”
“Well since you brought it up, why does everyone I love go away?”
“Everyone has their own path. Sometimes where you are. Sometimes where you’re not. No one is meant to share the same path. What’s important is the effect your path’s crossing has on each other. That is what you’re meant to carry with you.
What you learn from each other.”
“Okay, so I’m not exactly the world’s best example of a life well lived. And I’m hardly role model material...”
“On the contrary. I think you’re a good role model. You’ve made a lot of mistakes. A lot. Really, we’re talking triple digits. But you’ve always owned them and have never shied away from being up front about your flaws to guide others.”
“Thanks, I think.” Really? A lot? “Sometimes I wonder if my friends and family get that. If I’m such a good example, how come so many of them are, excuse the expression, so hell bent on making stupid choices when they know better?”
“Ahhh, let’s refer back to your first question. Everyone has a different path, remember? Because they are on their own paths, others don’t necessarily find or have the answers you or anyone else have.”
“Everybody learns at their own speed.”
“Precisely. Ready for your last question?”
“Can I have three more?” I asked.
“No,” she answered. “But because I’m merciful, we’ll strike that pitiful attempt at humor and continue”
“You don’t fuck around. Ooops! Sorry, it slipped.”
“It’s alright,” she laughed. “I was waiting for that. You wouldn’t be you without your colorful vocabulary. I gave you that for a reason.”
Sweet! God, err, Mary approves of my dirty mouth!
“I didn’t say I approved, I said I gave it to you.”
Oh snap! Internal monologue.
“My last question. Geez, there’s so much I want to know! This last one has to be important.”
“Stop over-thinking it. Ask the first thing that comes to your mind. One’s first thought is usually their most honest.”
“Okay, I’ve got it! Does my voice really matter in your grand scheme of things?”
“You don’t need to ask me for the answer to that. You’ll hear it in the voices of the people who love you whenever you talk with them.”
Shucks. I’m getting kind of weepy now.
“Well, Robert, this has been an interesting visit. I’m so pleased we had this opportunity to meet.”
“You’re going already?” I asked, crushed.
“Oh honey, I’m on a cross country tour and I need to make my next connection. Besides, I need to freshen and prepare to see my next soldier.”
“Of course my dear. Who do you think you got that from?”
“Yes. It is," she purred.
“I’m really happy I got to talk to you too Mary. I’ve had a week and this was really nice.”
“It was my pleasure. Oh, and Robert, I’ll give you one more answer. And it’s yes," she said, running her fingers through her luxurious blonde locks.
“Thank you. Uh, what was the question?”
“Good bye, honey. We’ll chat again.”
Then I woke up.
And I felt so much better. I did begin to cry though. But these were tears of joy. I knew what question she had answered before she departed. It made me realize that everything would always be okay.
Now that I've had my say, let's hear yours! Post a comment below or email me at email@example.com!
August 22, 2011
Here’s a rambling, but effective example...about my hair.
“Salon Eros, how may I help you?”
“Yes, this is Robby Morris and I’m calling to see if Amelia can fit me in this week for a touch up.”
“Let me check her schedule.” (Cue the Jeopardy theme music.)
“Mr. Morris, she’s booked solid. She has an opening on the 21st? Would you like to schedule an appointment for then?
Gasp! This was the 3rd. The 21st was 18 days away! A fortnight with sad, common person hair! Oh my God! I feel dizzy! Is it hot in here? And what’s that burning smell? Am I having a stroke?
“Mr. Morris? Would you like to schedule that appointment?”
“Um, is there, uh, any chance I could speak with her for a second?”
“She’s with a client right now. Would you like to schedule that appointment for the 21st?”
“Listen bitch, I’ve been with Amelia since you were doing your Barbie’s hair at your Mama’s kitchen table! Now you march your country ass over to her work station and tell her I AM ON THE LINE!” (What? I’m from the Midwest. I call everyone country. And bitch. And lots of other things.)
Okay, I didn’t really say that. I accepted the appointment despite it being nearly three weeks past my hair’s expiration date. Then I ended the call and threw myself down on the ground and wailed like a spoiled child being deprived ice cream.
Did I mention I was standing in line at the grocery store on my cell when this breakdown took place?
But I digress. Going after what you want is not for pussies. Take for instance my journey to become the blonde diva I was always meant to be.
My obsession with my hair and its color began right between my 5th and 6th birthdays. I was born a towhead. I had the most luxurious blonde hair ever seen on a little boy in all the world (okay, in all of Independence, Missouri). But then slowly it began to change. Within a season, my gorgeous blonde locks turned to the color of mouse poo. Dreadful.
Even at the age of 6, I understood the harsh reality of life. “This. Fucking. Sucks.” I whined to Mother shortly before she sat me in the corner with a bar of soap crammed sideways in my mouth.
And I put up with this tragedy of follicle proportions for the next 8 years. I know. Can you imagine?
For years, everywhere I turned, blondes taunted me. Okay not really, but it felt like it. Just Say Julie (Brown) had the song “Cause I’m a Blonde” that was used in the movie Earth Girls Are Easy (ridiculous film, but she’s a fucking goddess!). Madonna launched The Blond Ambition Tour 1990 (which coincidently, Miss Brown parodied in the cult special, Medusa: Dare To Be Truthful...did I mention she’s a fucking goddess?). I couldn’t even escape the blonde monster at school. In the 7th grade we were required to read S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders. It changed my life. If you haven’t read it, you’re kind of lame. It’s about a group of boys from the wrong side of the tracks dealing with being looked down upon by the rest of society. One specific scene had its anti-hero, Ponyboy Curtis, going on the run after a devastating event and having to disguise himself. Using a bottle of peroxide and a toothbrush, he becomes a blonde. Um, hello! I was a teenage gay boy needing to run away from my devastating, cow plop colored tresses! (Side note: A really awesome film adaptation by Francis Ford Coppola introduced me to my first teenage celebrity crush, Rob Lowe, but that’s another story...a much stickier story.)
Soon after, I was inspired and determined to fix nature’s mistake. I purchased my first box of do-it-yourself hair color. The brand was Nice & Easy. Okay, convincing the quarterback that fooling around with me was only gay if he kept his eyes open was nice and easy. This chemical nightmare in a box was not. Not only did I unintentionally redecorate my parent’s bathroom with multiple blotches of hair color, I didn’t quite understand that it is scientifically impossible to make crap colored hair the color of sunlight with stuff you buy off the shelf at the same place you buy your tampons. Nonetheless, I did manage to rid myself of my stool colored hair. Unfortunately, this upgrade was Woody Woodpecker Orange. Talk about flaming.
When I was sixteen (and at the height of my fearlessness and fabulousness), I walked into the salon where my best girlfriend went to get her hair did, approached her stylist, pointed to my head and asked, “Can you make this platinum blonde?”
“Seriously?” she asked.
“Like a motherfuckin’ heart attack.”
Six hours later, Serial Blonde 1.0 was born. And I have never looked back.
So what the hell does my obsession with being a blonde have to do with you wrangling your destiny?
Let me tell you. If I’ve learned anything in my 29 years (if I can be blonde I can sure as shit be 29) it’s that if you don’t like something about your self, change it. Right now. If you have a big ass, love it or lose it! If your insides are screaming fabulous but your outsides whimper homely and pathetic, march on down to your local house of beauty and get a mani/pedi, get your brows done (not too much boys, you still need to look fuckable and won’t be with Disney Princess eyebrows) or go for a new hair cut or color. Whatever you need to do to make you feel better about yourself, do it! Now! I’ll wait...
P.S. Shameless plug of the week: Before you start working on the brand new you, go to iTunes and buy Julie Brown’s Smell the Glamour. One more time incase you didn’t catch it earlier: she’s a fucking goddess!
Now that I've had my say, let's hear yours! Post a comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
August 15, 2011
“I sell dildos, lube and pornography.”
“Oh...how interesting. Your parents must be so proud.”
Now the aggressive diva in me wants to fire back: “Well, fuck you, you fucking narrow minded, uptight, prissy fuck,” but, as I get older, that response does very little to endear me to people or explain my case.
Instead, I shut them down with some good old-fashioned honesty: “Actually I find my work extremely interesting and satisfying. No, I’m not curing cancer, and it’s not rocket science, but by damn I do think what I do is important and I love it and make no apologies for it.”
Let’s face it; our country has a strange relationship with sex and sexuality. Entire generations were taught to never talk about it, instead having to suppress their curiosity or sneak around. Some religions teach us to be ashamed of it (while many who preach the gospel do God knows what with God knows whom), politicians use differences in sexuality to divide us (even though many of them are bigger whores than most of us), and sexually transmitted diseases have furthered the notion that sex is dangerous and wrong. Sex, and most things associated with it, continues to get a bad reputation and that’s a damn shame. Somebody has to stand up for sex.
Cue my entrance music.
I enjoy having the opportunity to support others when it comes to embracing a healthy, informed sense of their sexual selves. You often hear people jokingly refer to porn as educational material. It’s no joke. Sure, on the surface it’s hot guys (or girls) doing it, but adult films can also be an extremely useful, err, tool. They can be used to spice up your relationship (“Honey, we HAVE to try that!”), dispel myths (“Oh, THAT’S what that means!”) and can be used to have the safest sex of all (taking care of business yourself that is).
When it comes to sex and sexuality, my official stance is this: ignorance is not bliss. If we are not comfortable talking about it or understanding the role it has in our lives, then how the hell are we supposed to evolve as a society? Sex IS an important part of life. Without it, none of us would be here.
Some of the biggest hurdles we face on this planet are about sex and sexuality. The battle of the sexes? The march for equality? Really, boiled down to its basic parts, we’re talking about vaginas, penises, and what you do with them. We need to embrace that conversation. We need to do what Salt-N-Pepa encouraged us to do in the 90s: talk about sex. My career in this industry has erased my embarrassment and shame about doing just that. I honestly feel that when we lift that veil of awkwardness and shame from the topic, maybe just maybe, people will make safer, more informed choices when it comes to their bodies and how they use them.
Can I get an Amen?
(And for the record, my parents ARE proud of me, thank you very much. Now if only they would get over wanting me to go back to my natural hair color...)
P.S. I tip my tiara to others out there doing their part to get this dialog started, especially sex positive organizations like AIDS Care-Rochester, Everybody’s Good, and The Rochester Victory Alliance. These are my people and I LOVE them!
Now that I've had my say, let's hear yours! Post a comment below or email me at email@example.com!
August 07, 2011
Anyone who grew up in the 80s will tell you we had the best cartoons. We had Optimus Prime and Megatron fighting to the death in the original Transformers, the G.I. Joe team trying to save the world from the evil Cobra Commander and his terrorist organization C.O.B.R.A., and the glamour and glitter, fashion and fame of Jem and her band The Holograms. These were magical, marvelous times and I look back on them with great affection.
Speaking of which, if you were the parent of small boy in 1986 that would run around a corner, grab his earlobe and shriek “Showtime Synergy!” you should not be surprised he is a big homosexual today. Are you reading this, Mother?
An interesting phenomenon of the last few years is the practice of re-booting things. To re-boot, as defined by Urban Dictionary, is “...to start anew with fresh ideas in a way that is consistent with the principles of the original, but not unnecessarily constrained by what has taken place before”. It should come as no surprise then that most of my childhood cartoon favorites have been or are in the process of being remade.
I cry foul! For so many reasons.
Ever heard the statement, “best to leave well enough alone”? That’s how I feel about remaking things. Really, did we need a NEW Cobra Commander? I realize he was a bumbling asshole in the original version, but that was his charm. In the re-boot, he’s a sadistic killer void of any humor or personality. Do we need another version of Transformers? I realize that there have been a zillion different takes on this franchise since America’s first incarnation. Remember Transformers: Beast Wars? What the fuck was that? I’m not a fan of any of them. I’ll take my beloved Generation 1, please and thank you. And I keep hearing that Jem is going to be remade. I swear to God if I see one more internet rumor that she is going to be remodeled more in the style of Hannah Montana, I will make a scene! A really big, fucking scene!
More than just my stubborn refusal to accept change is the artist in me wishing other artists would come up with their own original stuff. Here’s a novel concept: how about we create new characters and new stories! Whenever I hear the words “re-imagine” or “re-boot” I go into a zombie like trance where I just want to eat somebody (I know where your mind just went, and shame on you!). You can gussy it up with all the trendy phrasing you want, but what you’re really saying is that you aren’t clever enough to shit an original idea.
I know! Instead of writing my column I’m going to devote my time to rewriting Gone With the Wind. I’ll keep enough of the source material to keep it familiar, but the rest has to go! Scarlett O’Hara is now an aging queen living in her tattered Beverly Hills mansion, Tara. Along comes celebrity blogger Rhett Butler who wants to write a story about her heyday as the belle of the ball. Insanity ensues and he ends up dying when she goes bats shit crazy, sets fire to Tara, and he slip and drowns in her pool. She goes on to inspire several books and one very troubled Broadway musical.
Um, Robby, I’m pretty sure you just ripped off Sunset Boulevard.
Whatever. Frankly, I don’t give a damn. I’m RE-IMAGINING! I’m just gonna whip it out reimagine all over the place! Better get a mop.
Okay, so maybe I’m being a little ridiculous about this, especially considering I’m talking about cartoons, or as my friend Aaron likes to call them “toy commercials”. But seriously, I feel like my favorite childhood memories are being tampered with. And it does not please me.
I have nothing against artistic progress. I don’t even have anything against anyone born after 1990 (the people I think these remakes are targeted at), but is nothing sacred anymore? Apparently not. And I think that’s a damn shame. The world can have their new fangled Transformers, their gritty and humorless G.I. Joe, and their shameless Miley-cloned Jem. I will stick with the old friends I grew up with. And thanks to DVD, I can, praise Starlight Music.
DISCLAIMER: None of this applies to the new My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic series on The Hub. Though it is also a re-boot of a beloved eighties cartoon, I’m a devoted fan and viewer. You might find this hypocritical, but guess what? This is my column and I can say what I want. Now if you'll excuse me, Pinkie Pie and I have cupcakes to eat!
August 01, 2011
The A List: New York, for those of you who actually have lives and did not catch the show’s first season last year, claims to be a reality show about a group of gay friends living “glamorous” lives in New York City. What it really is, is a show about bitchy queens so overflowing with venom that they can barely contain themselves. It's apparently their job to be thin, rich and hot while doing nothing whatsoever redeeming.
Full disclosure: I am completely addicted to this show. I would say I’m ashamed to admit this, but I’m too busy checking out the pictures of cast member Reichen Lemkuhl’s cock that were “leaked” on the Internet and served as fodder for most of the premiere episode of the second season, which just began airing. Now that’s entertainment!
If I really cared about giving a critical review of this show, I might actually give you the names of the men who star in it. But since I don’t care and this is not a critical review, I won’t. I will however give you the names I have given them, which I feel sums up all you need to know about them and the show.
Of course I’ve already mentioned Reichen, who was introduced to the world as a cast member of another reality show, The Amazing Race, but is more well known for being the guy who used to ass fuck former boy-bander Lance Bass. While he is the best known of the group, he’s not necessarily the most engaging. He tries to come across as reflective and sincere, but as any fan of the reality genre will attest to, this isn’t what attracts viewers. Whenever he opens his mouth and starts his kumbaya-ing, I long for him to just put a sock in it and go back to showing off his beefy cock, which, at least judging by those “leaked” pictures, has more personality.
There's also Blonde Hairdresser guy who, despite being the funniest of the group, scares the hell out of me with his over-plucked, perpetually surprised eyebrows. We’re also treated to his gossipy assistant, Little Bitch Boy, some other dude who’s function is completely lost on me that I call Skinny Sour Puss Guy, and Reichen’s ex-boyfriend Looking For a Sugar Daddy Guy.
My favorite: Sexy as Hell/Shit Starter Guy, whose real name is Austin Armascost. He is, if I may be so bold, the sole reason to watch this train wreck they call a show. He’s an unapologetic scene-stealer and works the camera to his advantage, which may make him the smartest of the bunch. He will be remembered long after this show is gone. Think Omarosa from The Apprentice.
And speaking of fierce divas, the second season has brought the addition of a sassy female counterpart to the fellas. Her name is Nyasha and the boys are terrified of her. Ironically, she’s the butchest of the cast, even with her painted face, fabulous weave and acrylic nails. Work, Girl!
While most queer reviewers have called out the cast of The A List: New York for being a bad representation of the LGBT community, I’m not going to join them. I don’t look at any form of media to be my representation. It’s a TV show folks. For entertainment purposes only! I do however take issue with how they represent vain people. While I’m not thin, rich or hot, I am completely stuck on myself and think I’m the greatest thing since do-it-yourself boxed hair color. Everyday I tell myself I’m fabulous, and I don’t give a flying fuck if you think so or not. But, unlike these bitches, I don't have to tear others down to make myself look better (well, I suppose I am ripping these guys to shreds, but boo fucking hoo. I'm sure they are way too busy waxing their asses to read this...if any of them can actually read in the first place).
Even though it's completely ridiculous, I will continue watching The A List: New York. Mainly because, like watching zoo animals screw, I’m horrified by the image, yet I can't look away, but mostly because there’s nothing else on.
P.S. One cast member that I have absolutely nothing catty or critical to say about is celebrity photographer Mike Ruiz. The man can do no wrong in my eyes. He’s brilliant and creative. I’m chalking up his willingness to participate in this delusional televised fantasy as a clever marketing strategy. And I’m not just saying this because I want him to shoot my book jacket.
P.P.S. Full disclosure (again!): The truth is, I admire anyone who puts their shit out there in public, whether on camera or on paper (or in my case, on a computer screen). Even these vapid fame whores. Any man (or woman) who has the balls to live their life out and proud and support LGBT visibility is pretty awesome to me. Plus, I really don’t want them to D-List me. Apparently they’re powerful enough to do that.
Now that I've had my say, let's hear yours! Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!