23 December, 2004

Emi, myself, and Kei at Hard Rock, Dec. 22, 2004. Posted by Hello

21 December, 2004

Call Me Reactionary...

It's started. Well, it actually started during the first Dubya campaign, but it's reached the point where it's become obvious. It's now official: Everything bad may be placed at the feet of the homosexuals.
A few of you may have been following the Target boycott by Christian fanatics. To those of you who are unimformed, Target has a policy of allowing no solicitacion in front of their stores. They had been ignoring this and allowing the Salvation Army to collect during December. They recently decided to apply their policy evenhandedly and exclude the S.A. with other charitys. Now the religious fanatics have decided where the blame for this lies: The Homosexuals.
Don't tell me that you didn't suspect it. The Homosexual Lobby apparently controls all of the cultural and economic resources (now that Jew-hating is out of fashion). Or course they're "Taking Back Target" (Read: Tar-DJAY). After completing their domination of the major fashion collections, can't you see Issac Mizrahi demanding (with a foot-stomp, no less) that Target be removed from competition with his couture.
"It's wrong to kick them out," said Tim Wildmon of the American Family Association in a quote published in the Washington Post. "It wouldn't surprise me if homosexual groups are behind this." (Click on this post's title for the full story.)
Now, my friend Jack is going to disagree with this, but Jack's not Jewish. His experience with the Shoah is limited to an American education. I didn't live through the shoah, but I've studied it. It's a horrible legacy, and not just the camps. Just as terrifying is the betrayal of the Jews as scapegoats by the entire society. The Right now feels comfortable placing the blame for anything with homosexuals.
"That can't happen here," seems to be the general response. This is America. Oh, excuse me. I thought that the Salem Witch Trials were in America.

I'm sorry.

I was under the impression that the Japanese-Americans Internment Camps were in America.

I'm sorry.

Until now, I believed that McCarthy terrorized in THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA!

I'm not sorry.

NOW is the time for those who stand for freedom to speak out. I leave you with a poem:

First they came for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up, because I wasn’t a Communist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up, because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn’t speak up, because I was a Protestant.
Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak up for me.
--Rev. Martin Niemoller, 1945

14 December, 2004

Dubya's Legacy

500,000 young people attempt suicide yearly with 30% of those by gay youth (that's 10% of the population committing 30% of the attempts).
My friend Jack, a gay man who voted for Dubya, points out that "this has nothing to do with gwbush. bush in office or out of office -- doesn't make a difference towards gay youth committing suicide. " I beg to differ. Anti-minority violence always goes up under conservative administrations which use coded language against minorities. These administrations give tacit approval to the group violence perpetuated on minorities by their dehumanizing talk.
There is evidence that the government can make a difference. In Massachusetts, we have a Govenor's commission on GLBT Youth. That name is actually funny, because our ridiculous current Govenor won't fund it. Anyway, in just under 10 years of having the Commission, the teen suicide rate has dropped dramatically. All that the commission does is ensure that in every school, there is a group or individual that kids can come an speak to anonymously. Of course, by publicizing the fact that the commission exists, the school system antagonizes the Bush doctrine, so he could never support it. The fact that it might lessen 30% of his nations suicides doesn't matter.
My friend David and I. Notice the VIP passes around our necks! We're important. David especially....he raised over $1000! Posted by Hello
Santa was so cute that, for the first time, I wished that I was a Christian, so that I could sit in his lap and tell him what I wanted! Posted by Hello

'Twas the Seventh Night of Chanukah

I've returned to Boston from NY and the AIDS Dance-A-Thon. Maybe it's the holiday, the fact that I was able to see lots of the folks in NY who made up my NY "family," or the fact that it's the greatest city in the world. Either way, I'm disappointed that I don't live there. Of course, my heart will be there, and if I don't move to Europe, I'll probably be back there in a few years.
"Move Against AIDS" was a success. We raised a lot of money and had fun doing it. Those of you who would like to are encouraged to dance with us next year. I'll be forming a group of people from outside NY who'll be going to the city to help make life better for those less fortunate.
I hope that the lights shine on you all this day.

09 December, 2004

Happy Second Day of Chanukah!  Posted by Hello

Move Against AIDS

Tomorrow, I leave for NY for the Move Against AIDS Dance-A-Thon. I've raised almost $300 already. Anyone else able to give, click on the title above. On that page, click sponsor a participant. Bobby G is the first name, Pierce is the last. Then, give what you can. You'll be saving lives.

08 December, 2004


David Moschel, a friend, uses the following story as a "signature" at the end of his emails. It truly touched my heart. Do what you can to remember this in your everyday moments, and let's make the world a better place. Tikkun Olam in Hebrew is Repair the World. Make it so.

"At the Seattle Special Olympics, nine contestants, all physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the 100-yard dash. At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash, but with a relish to run the race to the finish and win. All, that is, except one little boy who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a couple of times, and began to cry. The other eight heard the boy cry. They slowed down and looked back. Then they all turned around and went back! Every one of them!! One girl with Down's syndrome bent down and kissed him and said, "This will make it better." Then all nine linked arms and walked together to the finish line. Everyone in the stadium stood, the cheering went on for several minutes. People who were there are still telling the story... Why? Because deep down we know this one thing: What matters in this life is more than winning for ourselves is helping others win, even if it means slowing down and changing our course." --Unknown Author--

07 December, 2004

The Festival of Lights

Get thee to the link above: (Click on the title to this entry). There's a hilarious re-write (and you KNOW that I love rewrites) of an outcast song detailing all you want to know for Chanukah. Keep the candles burning!

06 December, 2004

Keiko (on the left) came into Hard Rock for her birthday tonight. I waited on the group and we all had a great time. No, I am not drunk, but you get a bit of a look at my black eye. Posted by Hello
This is me enjoying myself at a bar in Edinburgh. Posted by Hello

29 November, 2004

My Once and Forever Hero

I would have seen Kinsey anyway. Laura Liney is in it. I adore her work, the respect which she gives it, and the way that she goes about it. So, I would have seen the film anyway. But it's about Alfred C. Kinsey.
When I was young and wondering what my "difference" said about me and my place in the world, I read a lot of intriguing things, such as the fact that, incomprehensible as it seemed at the time, out of about ten other guys, there was one like me, or that ninety percent of males report having a homosexual encounter at least once in their lives. Every positive thing that I read about us was printed because of Alfred C. Kinsey. I knew his name from when I was twelve...probably earlier.
I wanted to love this film. Of course, my natural reaction would make it fall short of my expectations. It didn't. I do love this film.
If you like love stories, you'll find one there. If you like character studies, you'll find one there. If you like creative cinematography, look no further. If you like one man taking on the establishment, it's there. Crackerjack direction with a light touch, naturally. If you like perfect characters lacking the complexities that make us human....you're out of luck.
This film truly chronicles one of the huge stories of this nation. This is not only true for homosexuals. There is one other subgroup of the American populace who owe Dr. Kinsey a debt of thanks. While still marginalized, this group has improved their position with help from Kinsey. I speak of women.
Whether you're a woman, a homosexual, a lover of great film, or the average American, I ask you to push your cinema manager to show Kinsey.

My Purple Eye Shadow

Running for the T Friday morning, I was shocked, or rather, concussed by the failure of a turnstile to function as it's first syllable obviously requires. The resulting collision created a beautiful vision of stars which, alas, I could not enjoy thanks to the ringing in my ears. I adjusted to it before it stopped...about two hours later.
Throughout the day, I could see my cheekbone swelling. Rick, my manager, gave me bi-hourly reports of how black my eye was becoming. When I have my roll developed, you'll see that it's not black....it's a vivid purple. That's actually the color which I intend to paint my room. A vivid purple, the color of royalty in the nations of my lineage; the color of the priesthood for my priestly people. Why then, is purple singled out as the color most disliked by adults for their bedrooms?
Well, once-loved, the kings and priests have fallen into disgrace. The problem is that we who are royal or priests cannot renounce our heritage. Being the constant proponent of rebirth, we challenge those of purple nature to recreate a purple world uniting all that ever was great of royalty and the priesthood with all that they can be.

I'm starting with my left eye.

The Gay Marriage Debate

You know, things have quieted down in Mass. There has been no fire from the skies. Civilization hasn't crumbled. Straigt marriages haven't sufferred. Hence, the objectors to gay marriage have faded.

What's the problem with a separation of Church and State anyway? Or is being "one among equals the problem?" I honestly think that's what it is. I once heard a redneck being interviewed on television tell a reporter that if Gay marriage is allowed that would be like saying that "Their relationship is as good as (mah) marriage." Duuh! That's exactly what it means. Those fighting Gay marriage are simply fighting to retain the imaginary superiority that they believe that they have.

17 November, 2004

Me and the Star of the wedding: Ms. Lilian Ross! I had the cutest date there. Posted by Hello
The Wedding Party... Posted by Hello
The Bridal Party outside the Rock Hall of Fame Posted by Hello

That Uppity Jew

No, the title doesn't refer to me. It's John Stewart. The man truly makes me realize what makes America great, and, strangely enough, he celebrates what drives Dubya crazy. If he weren't married, I'd try to convert him, if ya know what I mean!

12 November, 2004

Traveling Again

The tickets are booked. If you want to travel with, please do. If you want to email me while I'm gone, you probably should use my Gmail account. I wanted to do phoenixrave@gmail.com, but apparently someone else has discovered my name. I wonder what it means for them. I'll have to send an email. It's possible that I've found a match! Anyway, my gmail account is bobbywith@gmail.com Just imagine the @ is an A, and it shouldn't be to difficult to remember.

Without further ado:

Thursday, August 4, 2005 Leave Boston 19:55
After a brief layover in Paris (G-d, I miss smoking!), I arrive in Glasgow, Friday, August 5 at 12:40

That weekend is Interaction, the Scotish incarnation of The World Science Fiction Convention. You can check out their website by clicking on the title above. I'll be sharing my time between Edinburgh and Glasgow. After the convention, I'm in Scotland for that week, unless Ruaridh and Hillary want to venture elsewhere with me. I'm thinking about a visit to Dundee to see Marie and possibly checking out Aberdeen and Inverness. At some point
before August 12, I have to get to London.

Friday, August 12 Leave London 9:40
That's a direct flight, arriving in Tel Aviv 16:25

This begins two weeks in Israel. I can't wait!

Friday, August 26 Leave Tel Aviv 10:45
Another direct flight, arriving in Athens 13:05

It's playtime in the Mediterranean until August 31.

Wednesday, August 31 Leave Athens 6:40
There's a two hour layover in Milan (Wish there was time to shop!), and I arrive in Boston Wednesday, August 31 at 12:55

Let it snow!

A knock on the door drew me outside to find that...It's snowing! My first New England snow. It's a beautiful day! I guess that I won't be working on the computer all day. I'm going outside.

11 November, 2004

The Newest Themepark... Posted by Hello

@#%* the South!

Ok, I think it might be time to address the election. Anyone who's had contact with me in the last week knows that I've been very troubled. I'm hoping that I've calmed down enough to look at the results rationally.

As it became obvious that we (meaning the Blue States, The United States, and The World. If W wins, the whole world loses.) lost, my redneck heritage came out. Of course, the 750ml of bourbon in me didn't hurt. I apparently (from witness accounts, as I blessedly don't remember) read W and his supporters the riot act, predicted doom and gloom for this nation, and reiterated my decision to move to the UK. Later, on a visit home, my vitriol was still spewing. Upon learning that my uncle was a big W supporter, I said to his son that if W's minions want to declare war on us they should beware. At that moment, I wanted to destroy fundamentalist culture. In a way, I still do. I can, however, write about the Blackest Tuesday without totally resorting to my base nature.

How do I begin?

Why do I hate W? Is it because he is seriously trying to amend the constitution so that I can't get married? No. There are others that are also fighting that fight, and while I would not piss on them if they were on fire (If they weren't on fire, I'd have no problem doing it), I don't hate them. Do I hate W because he despicably smeared the reputation of a good man and great candidate for president in 2000 by having Bush supported spread lies about McCain? Rove was part of that. I don't believe that I hate him...although I wouldn't deliver a Pro-life lecture to his mother.

How about Bush's escalation of the pollution of America? Nah....too many other people doing that. His insistance, after 2 buildings in the city that I lived in came down, that the best thing that Americans could do was to shop? (What happened to volunteerism? Guess "Compassionate Conservatives" don't believe in that.) That was disapointing, but it couldn't create this level of hatred in me.

Do I hate W because of the war that he started? This war wasn't begun in furtherance of democracy or peace, but because Sadamm threatened W's dad and Iraq challenged Saudi oil dominance, but way too many Congressmen and citizens were ready to cast those first stones. I don't hate them all. I do wish that they'd listened to me. Hell, being one of the few people in the nation who not only were right, but vocal about it actually makes me feel good, in a smug sort of way. Why should that make me hate him?

How about the dead bodies? I'm not talking about only the American bodies. I mean EVERY BODY that doesn't breathe because of W's war. I know that many of you have no concern for the Iraqis. Well, I do, but even if we ignore them, thousands of American citizens will be dead for the "What-Are-We-Saying-Was-The-Reason-This-Week?" War. Their lives are gone at his insistence, but the other hawks pushed as hard.

The above reasons all contribue to my hatred of W, but the strongest cause of my hatred is exactly the reason that he won the election. He represents the closed-minded views of much of the country. He won because much of America would rather complain about the effect of the poor on property values than help those poor find a job and home. He won because "Christian Values" seemingly require that any society which Christians inhabit create a totalitarian climate where bedroom freedoms are controlled by the voters. Funny...maybe I would be a Christian if I knew how to read between the lines of the Christian Bible and see where Jesus said "Thou shall prevent those outside your faith of even the smallest sense of self-worth."

I have a shirt. It satirizes the Baptist re-education camps where they brainwash homosexuals. It says "B.A.S.H." on the front, "Baptists Are Saving Homosexuals." On the back, it says "God told me to hate you." The people that laugh at the shirt invariably know that I'm not spoofing Christianity. They realize, no matter their faith, that the funny bit is that Fundamentalists commit actions which agree with what the back of my shirt says.

Do all Christians feel this way? No. I take pride in the fact that many of you realized that my marriage doesn't threaten your's. Almost half of the voters rejected the voices of hate. I forgot that for the week after the election. GOP spin doctors describing W's "mandate" and declaring that the breadth of the nation supported Does that mean we're out of the woods? Nah.

Am I still depressed? A bit, but then again, I plan on leaving this country. I'll do my part to leave it a better place than I left it, but it's your baby. And hell, some of you put your baby in the hand of the devil. The redneck in me says reap what you sew: America, feel the scourge of a W presidency; Jack, if Congress passes an anti-marriage amendment, never know the comfort of marriage; Heathra, leave Cole with a nation with huge debts and fewer friends and allies.

I still hate W. I can't think of another human being that I've ever hated. It's not a burning hatred. Then I'd be expending energy. I think he's pathetic. Do I really want my friends to suffer? No. Will I feel sad if they do? Yes, but I'm far sadder for anyone in a Blue State, any "Blue" voter, and those too young to vote.

That brings me to the title of this piece. Click on the title above, and you'll follow a link to a hillarious instruction in exactly how f-ed up Red State voters are. It also has some truly amazing facts, like, for instance, the state with the lowest divorce rate in the nation is Massachusetts. Hmm....aren't we the ones with the gay marriage? Guess it's not having to detrimental an effect.

Ding Dong, the Witch is Dead

I'm done with the GRE! I got a 1440, so I'm not terribly disappointed. Yes, those of you whom I called right before I took the test know that it was actually over on October 27. After that, it was time to concentrate on my application for Emerson. Then, I received an email from Emerson informing me that "Unfortunately, the program director has decided not to review any more applications for spring 2005. Emerson prides itself on small class sizes and the program director felt that there currently is not enough room in the program to add more students."
So....I'm in limbo until Fall of 2005. LOL. You know what my reaction to that is: Time to Travel!! LOL. I'm contemplating Purim in San Fran and some kind of skiing jaunt....maybe to Aspen or France. I'm supposed to visit my friend David (whose books I highly recommend!) in LA sometime as well. In addition to all of that, I'm booking my tickets to Scotland, Israel, and Greece tonight. I'll post my trip dates when I know. You might not want to be on those flights after our Executive Branch reads my next post.
I've been examining Hebrew College, and I really like the school. One outcome of Emerson's postponement may be that I won't attend Emerson at all. It would be tremendously exciting to instead work on an M.A. in Jewish Early Childhood Education at Hebrew College. Proficiency in Hebrew is a must, and I'm already learning the language anyway. I'm looking into taking a Hebrew class in the spring. This would also be an ideal way to test if it's the right school for me.

22 September, 2004

My new friend Jack Frost and I at Noreascon IV-Worldcon 2002! Taken by John Dumas. Posted by Hello

Whoopi Goldberg Ticket Available!

OK. Once again, I am burned. A coworker asked me to get a ticket for her for Whoopi Goldberg this Friday at The Wang. She's backed out. I'm eating the ticket. Anyone know of anyone who may want to purchase the ticket?

14 September, 2004

My new "Business Card." I'm so proud! Posted by Hello

My Newest Baby

Well, today we're going to learn about my newest cool "gadget," which doesn't involve any new technology but will make my life easier and certainly. It's my new card. I hate to say "Business Card," since my reasons for getting it were mostly personal. Now, I can save lot's of time hunting for a pen to give or get contact information. Now, I just give them a card. Plus, you have to admit that it looks very cool.
You can get cards made for free at the site, but it's only an additional $5 or so to upload your own logo or photo. In addition, if you click on the title of this entry, there's a link which should save you some bucks. Give it a try!

09 September, 2004

Addictions II

Our next addiction is one that I feel is truly ignored by our American Machine. Of course, that's because the American Machine runs on it. I'm writing about the high of shopping. I think that we've all felt that excitement of purchasing something wonderful and the desire to rush home to enjoy the purchase. The problem occurs when one can't stop buying things.
I tend to be a bit of a tightwad. What can I say? I'm a Jew. Not spending much is pretty easy for me. I've recognized that I gain much more enjoyment from saving up and using the money for a trip. Of course, this was discovered while I was living in Myrtle Beach, so I wasn't enjoying where I was living. A chance to leave was always a bonus.
This past weekend, I attended Noreascon 4, the 62nd World Science Fiction Convention. This was the first convention that I've attended in about 10 years. I'd forgotten how much I loved the experience. I'd also forgotten how easy it is to find things to spend money on when you're in your "home" environment.
I did control myself. I didn't really buy anything until the final day of the convention. I was, however, calculating where the items that I would be purchasing were as well as what I could afford to buy. I ended up purchasing 3 prints, some books, Killer Bunnies, a game that I played, seven CDs, and a songbook. I'm always looking for Filk (Science Fiction music), and now, just following my move, I was looking for ways to decorate my room. I truly love everything that I bought. That's the problem. LOL. I want more.
Next, I went on AllPosters.com. I was looking for a couple of things that I'd missed for the room. There I found 3 posters, two of which had a Science Fiction theme. They're in the mail now. Stop me before I shop again!
I know that I come by it naturally. Other members of my family have the shopping addiction. I believe that I've been able to resist it so long precisely because my tastes are so extreme that I rarely find things that interest me enough to lay down the cash. Well, I'm probably safe until the next con. That's in January. Of course, I still have to frame the 6 prints that I have. After that, there's Gaylaxicon in July. Then, there's next year's Worldcon in Scotland. I've already got a supporting membership in 2007's Worldcon in Japan and 2010's in Melbourne. I guess that I'm just going to be broke for the rest of my life.
Addictions III will be coming soon.

01 September, 2004


What do You need? Why? Is is truly a need, or just a craving? What positive and negative effects does this have on your life? These questions have been occupying my thoughts lately. I think their ramifications hold amazing importance for the average, or even the above average, person.
My most visible addiction has to be for nicotine. What can I say? I LOVE smoking. Perhaps my favorite quote regarding smoking was spoken by Jena Elfman in "Keeping the Faith." Someone had suggested that giving up their own temptation was similar to smoking and that "for a year, it was annoying, but after that, it was OK." Jena replied, "I quit smoking two years ago, and every time I see someone light up I want to French kiss them and suck the smoke out of their lungs." I have these feelings.
Since arriving in Boston three weeks ago, I've fallen into smoking again. In my defense, it's quite a bit less than my regular habit. I know, however, that a big change in life is a great time to quit smoking. I don't want to begin associating smoking with my new friends and environments. My excuse has been that I was living, during this time, with a smoker. Now, I'm living with non-smokers. This should help me with the smoking, but what about the other things that I need?
Despite the fact that I have, to some extent, embraced traveling alone and spending time with myself, I still need the company of my friends. To me, friends are like a drug. Some are like schwag, and give you little bang for your buck. When you can't spend any time with this kind of friend, you might feel a bit of a pang, but it's easily dismissed. Others are like Kind Bud, filling you with so much excitement that it will carry you over until you see them again. Of course you'd rather see them more often, so you think about them a lot, but you can ride the wave of your time with them for awhile.
This latter type of friend is exactly what my mates Kimberly, Rebekah, and Bryan are. They came in to Myrtle Beach from Alabama to ensure that I would have the best birthday ever. A delicious dinner started us off. We ate at Blue Water Bistro, and I highly recommend it. Try the fried green tomatoes with goat cheese! They met and welcomed my friend Susan, and it was truly a magical evening.
Meeting my family and niece, walking on the beach, and dinner at Divine Fish House (very good, but definitely Skip the Sushi) took up much of the rest of our weekend, but while these events were fun, they can't touch the fun of shopping for a "Topsy-tail," discovering that they make size 6XL T-shirts, racing at the "Slide Track," and, my personal favorite, Dance Dance Revolution Extreme. In fact, one addiction, my friends, lead me to another addiction, DDRX, more commonly, I was to find out, called DDR.
We had a blast shaking our booties on the game. Everyone did a great job, but I must say that my boy, Bryan, and I cut a serious rug. I have now made the resolution that, when I purchase a house, before I buy any other furniture, I will buy a DDR machine for one room. It's that much fun folks. Try it.
Check out the pics from our weekend while I prepare Addictions II for next time...

Don't they make you wish that I was straight? Posted by Hello
Bryan and Bobby G crack open their DDR records! We took that game to the cleaners! (Which was good, because after dancing that long at our age, we needed a trip to the cleaners. Whew. Drenched in sweat doesn't begin to cover it.) Posted by Hello

Rebekah's on deck for the DDR! Posted by Hello
Slide Track World Champions:Bobby G Earnheart Jr., Kimberly Petty, Rebekah Allison, and Bryan Gordon. Posted by Hello

Don't we look amazing!?! Posted by Hello

28 August, 2004

The Sad State of The State

Firstly, the title of this blog entry doesn't refer to W. It could. He's symbolic on so many levels of many of the problems facing our country, but he didn't cause this one...that is, unless he did father the Hamm twins. It's striking how much Paul looks like W. Morgan does as well, but as I've always liked him more, I like to think that it's not as strong a resemblance.
Anyway, today's topic refers to honor and greed. One of those we generally think of when we think of the word "champion." The other has come to be linked in the eyes of the world, except of course, for the G.O.P. (and I contend it's their first name), with America. Much of America cheered on Paul Hamm during his comeback victory in the Men's All Around Gymnastics event. I personally wanted Marian Dragulescu to win. He's hot, and I may be adopting Rumanian kids, so I have a special spot for that country, but I digress.
To those of you out-of-the-know, Hamm was incorrectly awarded a gold medal due to a judging error. The bronze medalist in the event should have received the gold. When this was pointed out to him, do you think he did the honorable (read=champion like) thing to do?
Phillip Bondy, of The New York Daily News writes, "Hamm might have become a transcendent star here...if only he had seized the moment and risen above... He could have lobbied for the South Korean, Yang Tae-young, invited Yang to the top of the podium to share the gold medal. Instead, Hamm stood by the letter of the law, and his championship was severely diminished... Hamm, frankly, comes off as just another selfish athlete defending his turf." I have to agree.
Now let's move from a tarnished American example of what my parents taught me was being a bad sport, to the opposite end of the spectrum. Irina Karavaeva of Russia is the woman who insisted on giving back a gold medal at the 2001 world championships, because of a judging mistake. "The Russian people were very proud," said Sergei Turunov. I would be too.

26 August, 2004

2nd Row Corrs Seat Available!

Well, I don't normally solicit here at the blog, but I paid big bucks for this pair of seats, and I don't have a date for the show. I'm asking $75 o.b.o. for a second row center sear for the Boston Saturday, Aug. 28 show featuring my favorite band, The Corrs. Any takers email me!

08 August, 2004


Today was the complete opposite culmination that I'd expected from the early stresses of moving up the Eastern Seaboard. Packing is never a joy but seemed especially drudgerous this time around. Everything was made especially bittersweet by the incredible birthday celebration provided by my friends from Alabama. I was truly blessed with them, and I'll cover that in a week or so, once I'm set up in Boston. Today's blog is about how amazingly today's move came together.
My departure from Myrtle almost didn't happen. The line for security at the Myrtle Beach Jetport was at least one hundred and fifty feet longer than I've ever seen it. It seems that all the airlines that fly out had flights scheduled in the same half hour period. Luckily, a Spirit representative came to collect passengers to move to the front of the line for their flight which left ten minutes after mine. I hadn't located a Delta representative, so I followed the Spirit rep. As the Spirit rep started checking the crowd to make sure that we were all Spirit passengers, a Delta rep came up behind her. I grabbed her and told her that I was on the Boston flight. She put me in the front of the security line and told me to run, which I did. With my belt and shoes in my hand, I ran to the plane.
I was supposed to wait until Eleven o'clock to get into the temporary place that I'm staying. That's when Patrick, my temporary roommate gets off of work. That meant eight hours of making myself busy. Well, my friend Jonathan offered to pick me up at the airport. This selfless act of generosity, not to mention driving me to a hardware store to make a copy of the key and then to drop Patrick's original back, allowed me to get online and work on this blog, as well as look for alternate apartments.
The room that I'd wanted, in the "South End" neighborhood of Boston went for $600 a month. Today I found out that when it was shown on Tuesday and Wednesday, the guy that wanted it has not called the roommates back. I was able to view the place, which seemed nice to me, although the neighborhood was sketchy. Apparently, that building was part of the first "projects" ever built in America. The location was still close to work, and I basically offered to take it. The guy looking for a roommate was a bit cagey. When he saw how much I wanted the place, his security deposit went up. That, and the fact that it was my first day in town made me Leary, but if he'd accepted a check then, I would be moving in this week.
Next was a "Welcome to Boston" dinner with Howard and Mark. I love those guys! If "The World Congress of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Trans-gendered Jews" serves no other purpose, it brought me to them. Before we ate, I went online and found a new apartment listing. After a call to the guy organizing that house, we decided to look at the place after dinner.
Where the other place was sketchy, this was homey. The roommates are MIT students and former MIT students. They play video games and watch football. What's not to love? After a brief discussion, the check was signed. I'll be a Cambridge resident on September 1.
After all the terror of this move: Could I get everything packed? Would I remember all that I needed? Would the transfer go through? Was it sane to move to Boston with no apartment? Would I have a bed tonight?... Everything seemed to come together today. I do wonder about that former roommate who had a breakdown and is now in a ward. One other thing troubles me...My address...It's Elm Street.

26 July, 2004

Re-invent Yourself

     Madonna never ceases to astound me.  I've been an avid fan for 20 years, and I feel that I know her as well as any fan.  I'm not saying that I know the birth weights of all of her siblings or that I could tell you the birth weights of her kids, but I do feel that I seem to be one of the few who apply the tools of the Literature Major to examine not only her songs, but her life and career choices as well.  Despite this, she continues to surprise me, in ways large and small.
     My witnessing the Reinvention Tour almost never happened.  I'm about to undergo a large move, and I'm feeling a bit pressed for cash.  Last week, both myself and my friend Gregg Williams (a brilliant actor and impressionist), who was to attend the show with me, considered selling our tickets.  The money would have helped me to have the dreaded "First/Last/Security" needed for a new apartment.  We finally decided that our tickets were too good, and that Madonna was too much a force of nature to be missed. 
     From the excitement in the air before the concert, I could tell that we probably weren't going to be disappointed.  Despite the second worst drive to Atlanta that I've ever taken, (made so by horrendous traffic and multiple accidents ahead of us...If you're wondering, the worst drive was one that I took a year ago, which ended about 30 miles short of Atlanta with my car on fire.  The tragic thing was that I had just finished my liter of Mountain Dew, and, having no other liquids in the car, I was afraid that I might have to empty my bladder to extinguish the fire...Luckily, a policeman arrived before I dropped trou.) I felt the tension of the impending move and work drain away. 
     When I saw "The Drowned World Tour," I had floor seats.  My "Reinvention" seats were MUCH better.  As we marched up to Row R, I kept expecting some usher to tell us that we had gone too far and would have to go back.   (Spoiler Warning: Read no further, unless you don't mind my revealing details about the show.) I looked up and saw the catwalk which she would come out on.  It was about 8 feet away from us!  Sitting next to me was a Jewish couple who commented on my "Jesus was a liberal Jew" jersey.  I replied that I hoped that Madonna would notice it, and trade me.  Alas, it didn't happen.  When the show didn't start immediately at 8, the couple and I joked that Madonna was waiting for Shabbes to end.  When the house lights dimmed, both Greg and I began acting like schoolgirls.
     In a word, the concert rocked!  I neither prefer the new nor the old Madonna.  I've loved every album.  When I'd heard that the concert was all "old stuff," I was a bit disappointed.  My low opinion of "American Life" gathered on my first listen never lasted through the second listen.  Luckily for me, she did include 3 songs from that album.  The first, "Nobody Knows Me," is one of my favorites from "American Life," mostly because she totally pegs gossip in the song, labeling it "a social disease." The costumes and motif for that segment were straight from "The Matrix," and held much more meaning and style than the last two films in that trilogy.  American Life" allowed, (in my admittedly 100% anti-W opinion) for a tasteful criticism of Bush, and the dancers looked incredibly hot in fatigues. 
     I've never been a fan of John Lennon's "Imagine."  I find it simplistic.  In a world with "nothing to kill or die for," where are our families?  Wouldn't it be better to do away with the need to kill or die, rather than the things that we feel worthy to make us choose either of those  difficult choices?   I now realize that I've been splitting hairs.  I know what he "meant."  (Of course, this is me, so I still contend that he could have phrased it better)  The spirit of that song was in that concert hall.  It was truly a fitting song for this woman, who has spent her entire career pushing down boundaries between men and women, blacks and whites, and gays and straights.
     This leads me to my favorite moment of the concert, but first, you'll need a little background for my mindset.  A couple of weeks ago, I read an interview with Bette Middler in The Advocate.  I was shocked, and a bit horrified that she will not support the legality of Gay Marriage until "further research is done."  Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but this woman made her career on the cash and word of mouth of gay men.  She played in bathhouses for Pete's sake!  She'll support bathhouses, but not Gay Marriage.  Needless to say, I'm no longer a fan.  (Special aside for my girl Fran Drescher:  When the ACLU approached Fran and allowed her to choose whatever topic that she wanted to address, Fran created the most poignant of all of their ads and threw her support, popular or not, behind us.  THANK YOU, FRAN!)
     So...back to "Frozen."   The familiar beats began.  I got chills.  The "reinvention" was a bit slower and more haunting than the original.  Performances of the song that I have seen have placed the emphasis on the loss of the singer, using the strength of her love to strengthen the loss.  This time, it was all love song.  Behind Madonna, on the 60 foot screen, were two lovers.  They kissed, touched, and made love.  They didn't @#%.  They made love.  The genitals were in shadow, it was all completely tasteful, but never sexless.  Despite this, it was a moment of love, not simply sex.  The lovers were shown in a warm blue, diametrically opposed to the harsh reds and greens of the Matrix bits.  At the moment of climax, a piercing, heavenly white light shown through both bodies on the screen, uniting them.  I wept the entire time.
     Why?  At other concerts I have seen countless visions of love, from accompanying videos to couples kissing to fathers holding their children.  The lovers were beautiful, but neither the most beautiful people, nor the most talented actors that I've seen perform a love scene.  The performance was the best that I've heard of "Frozen," but that wouldn't make me cry for minutes.  I couldn't stop crying because...both of the lovers were male.
      Rather than make the "Middler Cop-Out," which there was never ANY chance of, Madonna could have said, during the concert, "I support the legality of Same-Sex Marriage."  That would have made me proud.  I wouldn't expect Madonna to shrink from that, even in conservative Atlanta.  What I never dreamt of was a 60 foot tall all male couple engaged not in sex, which is what most straight people imagine when they think of gay at all, but by a loving act, becoming, however fleeting, one.  It doesn't take the same level of courage for Madonna to do this as it would for (no one barred) anyone else, but I celebrate it, as I celebrate the Madonna that I've always known.  The woman who refused to be told that she could not do what the men could do, who said "screw you" to Pepsi when they had problems with her kissing a black man in a video, and who, throughout her career, has refused to put gay men in the back of the bus because she respects and loves them.
     I haven't the room to give attention to the amazing multimedia part of the show, which impressed me far more than did "Drowned World."  I think it's because I understood it more.  Sometime, after the move, I'll reexamine that show and see if my interpretation of it has improved.  I will mention that the reinvention of "Deeper and Deeper," was a highlight.  Madonna dedicated one oldie to the fans that have stuck by her for the last 20 years.  The title says as much about the way that we feel about her....Madonna, we're "Crazy for You."

29 June, 2004

Weekend of Amazement

I went home to Hell's Kitchen this past weekend, and I can't say enough about it. The entire weekend was truly amazing. I don't mean, simply, that it was a fun weekend, although it was that. Nor was it merely a diversion from life in Myrtle Beach, however much that was needed. It was a truly amazing weekend.
Firstly, the reason for my trip, a Shabbat dinner with Rabbi Steven Greenberg, was almost everything that I'd hoped for. He's a truly gifted speaker, and for those of you who haven't read his book Wrestling with God and Men: Homosexuality in the Jewish Tradition, his subject matter is interesting for Straights, Gays, Goys, and Jews. Click on the title to today's blog for a link to buy the book at Amazon. It's 30% off. The dinner was great. The BJ melodies really made me feel at home. Rabbi Greenberg wants me to write out my story, so I'll be joining in the tradition of leaving the world a better place than I found it. I wish that I'd had more time to chat with him. That's the "almost everything" that I'd hoped for, but there were many people and I'd have felt bad monopolizing his time.
I had lunch and hours of conversation with a beautiful, and what's more, interesting, intelligent, and funny man. To top it all off, he has an accent! What more could I ask for? His name's Jeremy, and alas...he lives in NY. Of course, I'll only live a few hours away when I move to Boston. Keep your fingers crossed for me!
An Israeli film, Planet Blue, amazed my friend Katya and I, not by it's quality, but by the fact that it had sell-out crowds for 6 years. While not a horrible movie, I can't imagine it having one weekend of sell-outs, let alone 6 years. It's gotta be a drug thing. I just don't get it.
I attended Afterbirth:Kathy & Mo's Greatest Hits. If you're going to be in NY before July 11, go to http://www.secondstagetheatre.com/after.html and buy tickets NOW. They're both incredibly talented actors and writers. I literally cried laughing. Multiple times.
Speaking of crying, two films which I saw in NY made me cry. Saved made me cry laughing. I howled for most of the film. It was also touching. I expected quality acting from Jena Malone and Mary-Louise Parker, but Mandy Moore and Macaulay Culkin suprised me. The Notebook I had to see. Ryan Gosling is so beautiful that I'd watch a film of him reading the phonebook. It was definately worth my time. If you have any interest in "Chic Flicks," then go and see this movie. I've never been in a theater with that many running noses before. It was also a hoot to exit the theater to ushers with stacks of napkins in their hands for the patrons.

22 June, 2004

Grumblings 6/22/04

Of course, as I get closer to my trip, I get more anxious. When this happens, many of the things that normally bother me no longer seem important. They become transitory. Of course, some things still do. Probably the best "sparring partner" for hashing out gripes that I've found is my ex-roommate Rayna. When we're chatting, it sounds to outsiders like we're attacking one another, but we're really just having a good time. Most of the time. Occasionally, someone slips, or one of us is overly sensative, and that's where the trouble begins.
Tonight, after work, we ate at a bar. We split the bill, and disagreed over the tip. Our totals were close, her's around $16.50, and mine about $20.50. Basically, I was leaving the girl 19.5% of my part of the bill. Rayna was leaving almost double that. She expecte me to as well. Rayna was upset that our checks were together. I was "riding on the coattails of her tip." I was charging the bill, so I gave her some of the cash back and told her to tell the waitress that I "was a cheap bastard," and to give it to her as specifically from her.
I consider the service mediocre at best. 15% was sufficient for me. There was no way that I was leaving %40 for bad service. I'm a server, and I wouldn't do that. It's true that those in the service industry often overtip. A friend who's a bartender (and P.H.D. candidate in African Studies, so you can believe she's a smart cookie!) has a policy of always asking the server to add 20% to the bill. She says it actually saves money.
It's all behind me now anyway, so "No worries!" I'm NY bound in 2 days!

19 June, 2004


If you're straight, click on the title above. Join the organization. If you don't support the right of same sex couples to marry you shouldn't be reading my site anyway. Sure, you're entitled to your own opinion in a free society, but if you think me undeserving of marriage, I can think you undeserving of civility....So get the *#@ out of here!
The link leads to the Straight Alliance for Marriage Equality. I LOVE these folks...standing up for what they believe is right with little immediate benefit for themselves. Immediate is in italics because there are benefits to the entire world of legal Gay Marriage. Unfortunately, these are not easily identifiable to everyone.
I've been moving up the date of my move to Boston. I'm actually looking at mid-July, which is when I was originally going to do the move. It may be fate!

18 June, 2004

Shabbat Shalom 6/18/04

I got my shifts covered for next week, and my flight booked!!! I go to NY Thursday the 24, and return Monday the 28. That's Pride weekend, for those of you what don't know! I've got my ticket for Rabbi Greenberg's appearance at BJ (I bought it just in case I could go. I figured that if I didn't make it, it was a nice donation to BJ). It's going to be a great trip!

Much love to you all, and peace on the Sabbath!

Bobby G

Mission Accomplished

I've conducted my first Torah study as a Jew. I taught/questioned/moderated the Korach portion tonight. It was a blast! I feel sorry for anyone who isn't a Jew. We have the life! LOL. Now I'm working on getting to NY next weekend to meet Rabbi Greenberg. If you're at all interested in his book, follow the link above to Amazon, where you can buy the book with 30% off. I Strongly reccommend it.

Much Love,

Bobby G

17 June, 2004

Korach's Rebellion

Follow the link in the title above to a fantastic D'var Torah on Korach. This really resonates with me, as I'm discovering just how much and how fast the world can, and should, be changed.
In addition, I just discovered that Rabbi Steven Greenberg will be speaking at Congregation B'nai Jeshurun next Friday. If I can get my shifts at work covered, I'm going!

Typical me...dancing, excited, sweaty... Posted by Hello

Into the Blogasphere!

I've joined the Blogverse!! And those of you who know me were wondering how such an opinionated man could wait so long for the perfect venue for my rantings. Of course, now I have to figure exactly how much of my space will be used keeping you all updated with events in my life and how much goes to attacking George W. For now, let's reiterate that I'm at war with the man, and leave it at that.
Over the last weekend, I've been busy. I attended a friend's birthday party, which turned out to be a hoot. The high point of her gifts was a sign which read "Gas, Grass, or Ass: No One Rides For Free!" I gave her The Corr's "Forgiven, Not Forgotten." She's close to a ringer for Caroline Corr (and alas, for you straight guys, not single).
I'm still in the process of quitting smoking, which really colored my weekend. Using my mutant ablility to enter into far-fetched situations (Ta'veren?), I managed to get the gummy part of a nicotine patch into my left eye on Friday. Flooding the poison out with visine managed to compound the chemical burn. My eye swelled enormously, as my friend Greg introduced me to Matt,a cute Marine Biology student, who has yet to call me. We did talk for about an hour, so there's something. Of course, I was pulling puss out of my eye the entire time. Monday led to a doctor's visit, 2 days out of work, and a prescription for antibiotic, steroid eyedrops, but I'm feeling much better.
In the works: The move to Boston...When?

A bit more edgy a look.... Posted by Hello

That's me, on a typical day, in the HRC gear. Posted by Hello