The Red Shirt Diaries #21

The Big One edition.

I just got back from a quick escape to the coast with The Fox.  This is an important point, only because we specifically discussed potential caffeination strategies simply because of the beach house’s remote location.

Coffee wasn’t going to come handily.  Either you have to make the dreaded drip at the house, prepare to trek into town for whatever offerings you find or take some with.  

It’s a worthwhile trade off for this view, though.

The Fox is a Stok fanatic, which is a pre-made cold brew that you can buy in the store.  So, he was taking a bottle of that to get him through and offered to take a second for me.  I told him that I would likely just grab some Monsters to get me by.  I used to have a daily habit, but weaned myself off when I moved back to Portland and found worthy cold brew that was accessible on the daily.

Still, I spent the next several days listening to facts about how bad Monsters are and how they were named as one of the 10 worst things you can buy at the grocery.

Our route home from the coast was atypical for The Fox.  Normally, he will stop off in the hinterlands of Portland at the Costcos and Wincos to stock up for Armageddon. However, this time we stopped by the Fox Family Homestead to pick up Sallory – who is off on another family world tour and in need of a lift into the city and the airport.

No better reason to change the usual routine than that!

So, the usual Costco stock up and Winco Stok up run was put off a day.  I was asked if I needed anything and really could only think of hamburger.  Later, as we all played a pick up game of Where I Hurt – it’s a mental poker game I play when a group of us complain about our respective maladies – and my losing hand consisted solely of nightly calf cramps, I added magnesium.

The Fox rolls up to my front door with the ground beef and magnesium later as well as some back up lasagnes and a flat of Monsters.

Enabler.

I can find a place in my pantry for those!

However, it did prompt this question about our usual coffee date this morning:

My Earthquake Kit.

Of course, the big one is nigh.  There’s scarcely a month that passes without at least one of the weekly rags publishing some sort of article about life after certain death.  Most recently, it was a Dr Know entry about whether houseboats were the next big housing craze in Portland – after RVs and ADUs – particularly as a potential way to survive and ride out the aftermath of The Big One.  The response, I will leave to your sleuthing.

Because

This morning’s quandary for the Red Shirt was, “Would I want to survive?”

Even with the Monsters The Fox provided and the cash stash my parents taught me to have, I imagine Portland will quickly de-volve into some sort of post-apocalyptic knock-off version of itself.

Zoo Bombers will run the looter gangs.

Vegans will become cannibals before the first aftershock.

Yard chickens will become prophets – because it is still Portland.

And, somehow, I think all the little things about humanity that bother me will survive…even becoming amplified.

My inner optimist wants to believe that survivors will band together to create a better tomorrow.  Focused on making a community out of the ruins of our hipster culture.  But realistically, I think sacrificing myself by running into my crumbling building to rescue my neighbor’s (completely fictional, but give it time) balcony chicken will be the better move.

“All hail the prophet Cluckerella!” will be my last words as I fling my neighbor’s (again, completely fictional) balcony chicken off the balcony to freedom from our collectively crumbling roost.

The Red Shirt Diaries #21

Hey Look, I Got A Liebster Award!

liebster-award-title-photo1

So, this happened.

I was busy being slowly crushed by the daily onslaught of bullcrap at work over the last few weeks and not even Living Gay Brisbane could snap me out of my funk with his nomination for the Liebster Award.

I really appreciate the timing and am sorry that it took me so long to get around to doing my part and publishing my post and passing on the torch.  His is one of my favorite blogs and he has recently taken it off WordPress to his own platform called Millennial Gay, check it out.

Ok, here are the questions that were put to me:

1) Why did you start your blog? and where do you see it in the future?

I started this blog because of a Facebook dare, basically.  A couple of my friends suggested that I should write a book.  Flattering, and I’m not going to lie…I’m fairly susceptible to that.  If I want to be.

Anyway, a book seemed like a tall order, one that was fairly far off.  I started this blog to help me find my writer’s voice.  Three years have passed, and I think I’ve settled into a comfortable style, but I’m still not sure my stream of consciousness tendencies lend themselves to a novel.

As I begin year four, I think I’m looking forward to at least two more years here.  My goals for this year are to reformat my blog and to actually participate in NaNoWriMo in November and then next year, perhaps look into ways to introduce ads to my blog.

2) What advice would you give to your younger self?

Be more patient and don’t sell yourself short.  

I was impatient to get my adult life launched as a means of escape from school life traumas.  When I was offered advancement in my retail job, I took that instead of pursuing my original interest in a law career.

3) Who in your circle did you first show your blog to?

I tethered my blog to my Facebook page, so when I publish something, everyone can see it.  It was Facebook’s fault this happened, anyway, so they had it coming.

The first person I presented it to was The Silver Fox.  He’s a Facebook Curmudgeon and refuses to participate, so I had to go out of my way to show my best friend what I was up to.

4) Love, Sex or Money? Which one would you choose?

Love.

The question didn’t ask for an elaboration, but that’s not my style.

I’ve had money, sex and love all at some point in my life.  Sometimes, I even thought I had it all.  

Well, here I am.  And I’d be crazy to answer love and not acknowledge how damned lucky I am to have the people in my life that call me friend.  They are my chosen family and – just like my biological family – I love them dearly.

That said, I still wonder if there’s an enduring mate for me out there somewhere.  I have money and sex both when I need them.  Love is a little trickier.  I have the love required to maintain my happiness and well-being, generously supplied by my friends and family.

For me, that enduring love that has eluded me thus far in life would enhance that baseline happiness and tie it all together into one tidy partner.  Er, package.

But, what the hell do I know?

5) What is your idea of the Perfect first date?

I like event/activity dates for a first date.  It takes the focus off of small talk and allows me to get to know someone while also figuring out how we play together.

Gimme a hike on a lovely day.  Blowing a few bucks on video games at Ground Kontrol.  Or bowling!  That’s fun stuff and we can take those activities at our own pace as we talk and learn about one another.

Then again, my old friend DP asserted once that long-term relationships are just one night stands that never ended, so I guess I should be open to a perfect first date ending with a bang, too.  

6) What are your non-negotiables when it comes to a relationship?

I have to be with someone I can talk to.  If we can’t talk, and I mean really talk, then our first fight will probably end us.

On top of that, there has to be respect.  If we truly respect one another, then that first fight and any subsequent fights are nonexistent because they are just conversations.

And then my last non-negotiable would be that we have to be able to play together.  Sure, including sex.  But moreso even just having shared interests outside the bedroom.  Relationships take a little work to maintain – I guess, I’m the single guy, remember? – and if you’re gonna put in the work, the reward should be playing together.

7) First time you realised you were in love?

It was just hormones.

I thought I was going to let that stand alone,  but I keep coming back to it.  Man, when I was a young buck, my friends teased me that I fell in love every time I turned my head.  

It was kinda true then and it’s kinda still true today.  I think many men are beautiful.  I’m attracted to a wide range of types…was it love?  No, that is and was really just hormones.

But the rush is still a thrill to experience, even if it only lasts for as long as it takes to order coffee.

8) Celebrity Crush?

Tom Holland.  Fer realz.

Ok, maybe not…that’s more of an old man’s fantasy.  I’m just attracted to his youthful spirit and physique.  But this old man would not mind slinging a web or two with him.  Maybe if he was ten years older, I could call it a legit crush.

But a celebrity that I do have more of a cerebral crush versus a physical attraction to is RDJ.

I think he’d be a good fit for me personality-wise.  Assuming what you see on interviews is genuine and not just branding.

Obviously, I need to stop watching Avengers movies late at night.

Ok, so now it’s my turn to nominate my own Liebster Award winners.  Since this is a tough choice for me, I’ll stall by saying that if they choose to participate, I want them to answer the same questions I did.  

The reason it’s tough is because 

A) Living Gay Brisbane is one of my faves and he nominated me, so that’s kind of off the table.  He’s one of the bloggers I interact with most on WordPress, too, which is partly why I enjoy his blog so much.

B) I think that some of the bloggers I follow might not be into it, and that’s part of why I love their blogs.  They have more serious content, but at the same time, we trade comments that are both light and fun as well as constructive and supportive.

Ok…enough stalling.

MeRaw, you’re up!  I love your daily entries.  It’s heavy themed stuff, but the love that your daily posts demonstrates is a beacon to me.

Topher Gen…you, too!  There are four or five young, gay bloggers that I follow and your posts are really great work.  I appreciate them but I don’t know too much about you, so…will you have some fun with me here?

Thanks for reading this far, if you stuck with me all the way through, no gold star for you!  But I hope you’ll take a look at the blogs that I nominated as well as Millennial Gay to get a better insight into who I spend my free time reading!

Love and Pizza!

RULES:

Display your nomination on your blog and thank the person who nominated you.
Nominate other bloggers for this award and let them know about it.
Form questions for them.

Hey Look, I Got A Liebster Award!

Thanks For The Self Love, Simon!

This was the worst movie.

But more on that later, and if you haven’t seen it…fair warning: Here there be spoilers.  Possibly.

In all honesty, this movie was delightful.  I quite enjoyed it.

I am quite a sucker for a coming of age story.  This one didn’t disappoint.  I had warned the Silver Fox when he expressed interest in seeing it together that I was going to be a sappy, emotional mess – I cried at Rocky – but he still wanted to see it with me.

Instead of my regular Regal theater, though, he wanted to go to the Living Room theater, which is actually closer.  Still, I considered making it a wedge issue so I could go cry into my popcorn alone, but let it lie.

Then there was timing.  He has a busy day of appointments and it’s my day off.  When I broached the subject of timing, he declared he was in as long as it started around noon.

So that happened.

There were struggles.  

An ideal family.

Teen angst and awkwardness.

All wrapped around this so personal topic of coming out.

Having been down the path where Simon strode, I felt a connection to him right away.  It was more personal by proxy than straight up vicarious.  Unlike Call Me By Your Name, where I felt more like a voyeur, this movie pulled me into it.  I felt those struggles, the awkwardness and the support.

And I felt the connection, the so tenuous bond between two gay teens as they tried to define themselves publicly by labeling what they wanted to do privately.  It all started when a boy code named Blue posted an anonymous coming out letter to the high school’s message board.

Simon takes this opportunity to reach out, also anonymously via email.

Humorously, these email exchanges spark Simon’s inner Colombo and his days are suddenly filled with both his usual straight subterfuge and now his secret mission to figure out who Blue is based on any incidental clues he could discern from their emails.  The faceless actor playing Blue morphs into whichever classmate Simon pegs as the potential Blue.

It’s optimistic agony to watch.

On the side is the accidental story of Martin, who happens upon Simon’s emails on a school computer after he forgets to log off.

“It’s cool, my brother’s gay”, Martin says before blackmailing Simon into manipulating one of his friends into going out with him.

Martin, you little piece of shit.

And Simon does it.  Poor, terrified kid.  To be threatened with outing in the crucible of high school…such heartlessness.

But, lessons are learned!

Don’t make assumptions.

Stand up for what’s right.

Be true to yourself.

Don’t sell out the people you love.

Of course, Simon has to lose it all before he learns these lessons.

Martin, an excruciatingly awkward personality…grating, as he is, courageously flames out with a grand gesture to his crush that turns into a very crushing, public failure.

Of course, to draw attention from his very public humiliation, he uncorageously posts all of Simon’s emails anonymously on the school’s message board.

Then, all the kids do what kids do and get selfish for a while, circling their wagons around Camp Me. Y’know, like American adults do…

Simon digs deep and finds his character, giving Jennifer Garner a beautiful Mom Moment.  Nothing on Michael Stulbarg’s Dad Moment in CMBYN, but lovely in its own distinct way,  Where Elio’s Dad is sensitive but stoic in Csll Me By Your Name, Simon’s Mom is more raw, you can feel her pain at the helplessness she experiences in protecting her son from this process.

After all is said and done, Simon, and the audience and the high school get the big, Blue reveal.

If this were my life, it would have been the epitome of the beautiful on the inside, fat and pimply on the outside – this is why I’m single – guy.  

But, no.  

This is Hollyweird.

Simon gets his impossibly romantic albeit excruciating An Affair to Remember/Sleepless in Seattle moment to wrap up the storyline.

Blue turns out to be the black, Jewish – and gay, as it turns out – classmate:  the triple threat guy that we all wanted him to be in the first place.

It was tres romantic.

Yes, I slow cried several times.  Thank gawd…this face doesn’t need ugly crying in public!  I’m single enough as it is.

Why was a movie I obviously enjoyed and connected to the worst movie?

A) because I said so.

B) the barely pubescent villain anonymously outs Simon after telling us he has a gay brother…what a pig-fucker.

And,

C) Simon and Blue finally meet and (hopefully) consummate their virtual affair 17 days before graduation?

No, unacceptable.

My inner romantic won’t allow for the reality that Simon and The Triple Threat will only have summer break plus 17 days before being torn apart by college.

It’s terrible.

Thanks For The Self Love, Simon!

The New American Psycho

Surprising no one, the way we behave toward one another bothers me.  As the voice of treason, I am not silent about it…pleasing no one.  I’m not any happier about it than you are, trust me.

But you’re either a part of the solution or you’re a part of the problem, right?

I’ve been looking for and ruminating on a root cause for this shift in behavior.

What is the bogey that enabled this new sense of…blithe disregard for each other?

Was it our increasing Short Attention Span?  Were we or are we becoming too SASsy for our own good?

Fidget Spinners, for instance.  I think most of us acknowledged the idiocy of this it toy from last year.  However, did you see parents explaining to their children that this was a stupid toy and a waste of $10?  

No.  No, you didn’t see that.  Because: shut the kid up is more of a parenting agenda than reasoning with ones child or developing critical thinking skills early on by making a child articulate why they want a toy.  Hint: it’s because everyone has one.  How about just making them earn their treats anymore.  

Definitely a part of the problem…but just a symptom, not the cause.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for using this as a tool to soothe a child or adult that pings hard enough on the autism scale that they can actually count the spins.  But face it, that wasn’t the target customer here.

But adults – parents included – have their own fidget spinner:  Pop Culture.

How about that Hozier guy?  Remember him, the Take Me to Church guy?  Good for him, being the “it” artist in 2014/15, replaced midway through ’15 and well into 2016 by Ed Sheeran.  

Poor Hozier…sold some records and then what?  Our collective OCD saw something else shiny and new to distract us.

Poor Ed, too.  Stealing the pop culture crown – only to learn that pop culture is basically a wood chipper when the mob learns you’re a great singer with a mild personality and not the Kardashian-monster-type personality we’ve come to expect of our pop icons.  All this from a guest turn on Game of Thrones, no less…speaking of pop culture run amok.  I don’t watch, but The Fox does and I spent the better part of two years waiting for the GoT shoe to drop whenever I was with him.  

Not just in movies or TV shows we watch or discuss.  The GoT obsession followed us to our local wine bar where somehow we learned that the co-owner and Som extraordinaire dated Jon Snow when she lived in LA.

But it’s not pop culture, again…that’s still just a symptom, methinks.

Ten-ish years ago, a friend of mine said this about relationships:  Relationships happen in the moment – which I believe.  However, he went on to say that you meet someone and hang out and hook up then never leave or nothing happens.

I’m not sure how I feel about that.  I’ve definitely experienced the back half of that assertion, a lot.  But the first part sounds so easy.  And not in a slut shaming kind of way.  The hooking up immediately part is pretty much The Gay Way, but the never leaving part sounds more like a relationship of comfort for a 20-something. I think that is sweet and helpful for providing security while one finds themselves and that these relationships can create some great gay adults – talk about an oxymoron, emphasis: moron – but what about the folks that doesn’t happen for?

Lol.  Ed Sheeran just came on the radio at my coffee shop.

Eventually, I think these people become institutionalized by the hook up and get used to nothing happening after.  They forget their hopes and expectations of more.

Wait for it

Enter asocial media.  The dreaded dating app.  By our gay 30s, we’ve been bred – hush, Diezel – to expect less.  And we’re Americans, so we want as much of whatever we can get as we can get.

Basically, we’re all a bunch of whores self medicating our loneliness with meaningless sex.

But that’s not good enough.  We’re still gay, so we’ve got to make it fabulous and then, beyond reason, this hook up culture of ours becomes aspirational.

JFC.  

Now straight people have hook up apps.  Whoopee!  Everyone can now experience a life of nothing happening.

Great, deep, connective virtual conversations with the one.  The one that you never end up meeting in real life.

Or the one that scratches your libidic – warning: that word has high Chrisism potential – itch and then you never end up hearing from them again.  

These realities happen over and over again and more than people finding reward from this cycle, I hear people giving up.  Returning to a focus on the friends that have been there time and again after either scenario.  That becomes their focus, and it’s not a bad one.  It’s just that – as a too longtime frequenter of bars and clubs…it’s their sole focus.  People are with their friends and they aren’t open to outsiders breaking in.

So…what’s the right balance?  I’d seriously like to know, because suddenly, the only thing happening in the moment is sex with no expectations.  We are becoming hopeless, as hopeless as any other addicts:  either we get our fix and that’s fine, or we go on the wagon and tell everyone about it in an innocently judgy-slash-superior fashion. 

I blame Vegans for that behavior taking hold in American discourse.

While I think this is another symptom of the problem, I think those that break the cycle and change their behavior bring us closer to the cure.

Enter my early morning reading today.  I read this article about a woman who thought she was confronting a Neo-Nazi in a restaurant I’d challenge a Neo-Nazi could scarcely afford.

She wasn’t.

She just didn’t know what the word Luftwaffe actually meant, which was what our alleged Neo-Nazi’s tee shirt was raping her snowflakey eyes with.  Jumping to conclusions – assuming the worst, if you will – she said something.  

Now, im one for saying something.  Kudos for that.  It’s what happened after that leaves her short in my ledger.

As this was happening, the husband of the owner was doing some Snopes-worthy googling and learned that while this is associated to Hitler’s Air Force, the term literally only means “Air Force”.

Not Jew Bombers.

Not Air Hitler.

Just…Air Force.

End of story.

He goes out to soothe the still unfolding shituation, barely getting a couple of words in before our erstwhile Nazi hunter storms out of the restaurant and takes to social media to decry the unfair treatment of our self-appointed hero, being thrown out of Katchka, and all.

Which was barely partly true.

There was a dude there in a tee shirt with a German word on it.

The rest is dramatic hyperbole.

But maybe this isn’t exactly the psychotic behavior that’s been bugging me so much as it is just telling of our decreasing national character.  Maybe it’s just another symptom of the problem that is eluding my pointing finger.

But then, no.  

I check myself by asking, what if we applied character to all of these situations above?

Parents being responsible and shaping their children into good humans instead of placating them and essentially creating a race of entitlement instead of a generation that understands the cause and effect of earning things for oneself.  Bonus points if they also teach them to think critically for themselves instead of simply following the crowd of consumers.

Adults taking that same critical thinking to analyze their in-the-moment self gratuitous acts and determine what the potential ripple effects could be before acting: swiping left or jumping into bed with a stranger.  

“Will this make me a better person?” – No One on Grindr, Ever.

How about our Katchka Failed Hero?  What if Deavon Snoke has stuck around, I posited this morning at coffee.

The Fox – probably spot on – asserted that she’d have endured furtive glances and whispers of other diners for the rest of her meal,

However, I challenge, what if she’d stay-a culpa-ed and bought our Neo-Not-zi dessert or a shot of Katchka’s much lauded horseradish infused vodka by way of apology?

She’d have demonstrated courage and character.  That’s what.

Alas, the only courage she possessed was publicly shaming what turned out to be an innocent person, then cut and ran to play victim on social media, likely damaging the restaurant in the process of showing up her ego.  In doing so, she showed herself to be more bully than hero, a designation that requires no character.

That’s the new American psycho, in my opinion…that right there.  Fuck everyone, so long as we look good.

Katchka by the way – the restaurant from this morning’s readings means “duck” in Ukrainian.  The restaurant’s owner never wanted to forget the word that saved her grandmother’s life.  In fleeing her home in Belarus as the German Exterminators stormed her hometown, she was stoped by a soldier.  She claimed to be returning home to Ukraine and definitively not a Jew. The soldier was skeptical but challenged her with a random test, what is the Ukrainian word for duck?

Luckily, it happened to be the same word in both languages, katchka…and life and death literally became a matter of a trivial coincidence.

The New American Psycho

Blocked!

Ok, it’s not writers block, per se.  It’s more a conflict of decisiveness.

What to write.

Whether or not to indulge my natural procrastination.

Subject matter.

My will

When I get stressed, I want to write about my stressors to therapeutically get them out of my head.  However, some of my readers are familiar with some of the sentient stressors in my life and I don’t want to put them in an awkward position of loyalties.

So, what am I to do as I sit in the coffee shop on my Saturday while the Silver Fox reads the interwebs and asks salient questions like, “What does ‘FFS’ mean?”

Get a refill, of course.

While I was up at the counter, an old co-worker popped into my mind.  Not because he stressed me out like some of my current work associates.

He was hilarious.  Mostly for the same reasons that he thought he was hilarious, so that was a nice confluence of opinions.

Mostly.

Dave was born in the Philippines, moving to the US for college. I worked with him at a hospital in Pasadena, CA after my boss – Mother Mary – moved there from Hoag.  She got me a job in procurement.  My new boss, The Hairpiece heads our four man team housed out of the bowels of the hospital.  The door to my office was literally a ramp.

I think I worked in the former morgue.

Anyway, The Hairpiece had an assistant who I replaced when he got promoted to whatever he spent his time doing…I never did figure that out.  I think he mostly spent his time sucking up to The Hairpiece while looking like a cat in a Rocking Chair Factory.  Quite interesting to watch since he was a fey man with a good case of nerves.

Understandable, since The Hairpiece was know to have a short fuse as well as Short Man Syndrome.  And that frigging rug fooled no one.

Who has a convertible (Le Baron) in SoCal and  never puts the top down?

His hairline used to sweat…all 360 degrees of it.

Rounding out our team of four was Dave, the Filipino.

And that, that right there was what I remember most about Dave.

Philippines.

Filipino.

Dave’s accent used P and F equally interchangeably.

He was in charge of distribution, my counterpart to procuring.  Really, I’ve no idea what The Nerves did.  I bought stuff, Dave passed it out, The Hairpiece randomly screamed around the sectioned off concrete pit we called an office and The Nerves just stood meekly in a corner with darty eyes.

Because Dave’s lair had actual owned product in it, his area was locked and controlled access.

My office – literally at the bottom of the ramp, versus around a corner like everyone else’s – was unlocked, usually with the door wide open.  I would keep my door closed during the SoCal so-called winter, but didn’t like having to, I weighed comfort against comfort.

Closing the door kept me a tad bit warmer.

It was a door with a frosted glass insert – no name on my door – on the top. This was pretty much headlight level for vehicles pulling up to the procurement office, I liked to see what was coming my way since having a glass topped door made it impossible to pretend I wasn’t in.

Plus, the water cooler was in my office.  If the Arrowhead man lost control of his load – shut up, Diezel – coming down the ramp,  I wanted to know how many 5 gallon water bottles were careening my way.

Because the water cooler was in my office, and because Dave the Filipino’s office was always locked, the coffee pot ended up in my office.

This made me the de facto office Coffee Bitch.

Which brings me back to my refill this morning, which is now half gone.

Dave was a coffee drinker.  Seriously, he had a problem.  The Nerves started out high strung and Dave the Filipino started out with an urgency I could appreciate.  A good quality in a co-worker, unless he’s an occasionally over caffeinated Asian.

Occasionally I would be off my game in the morning or he arrived early, he’d storm into my office with his usual urgency for his morning hit.  Finding the pot empty, he’d bring the empty vessel to me and shake the carafe at me screaming, “Chris, Chris!  Where the puck is the pucking copy?!?”

Of course, I’d have a few minutes of fun with that.

Depending on my mood, I’d engage him in friendly conversation while the coffee brewed, substituting as many Fs for Ps or vice versa as possible.  If I was feeling more devilish, I’d pretend that our copy machine was missing, asking The Nerves if it was here when he arrived or The Hairpiece if we should file a police report.

The latter usually earned me a fading litany of “Puck you, you pucking round eyed pucker” as Dave retreated to his office.

I’d always deliver him a fresh cup as a peace offering afterward.

Blocked!

M.A.S.H. Up

I had the most realistic dream last night.  One of those dreams that makes you doubt reality.  

The strange aftereffect was further enhanced by a couple tangents.

First of all, the dream was about David Ogden Stiers.

He’s kind of one of my so-called life extras, a phrase I carried away from my time with Sacha.  By the by, Sacha complains that I only write horrid lies about him – basically – so I’m sure he’ll be blind to the fun memories I have of life extras with him.

Alas.

Anyway, DOS was a life extra because of the Pearl District Segue Dude, who whips around the Pearl on his segue – in case you were struggling with the name – looking a lot like DOS, who had famously lived in Oregon.

Giggles reminded me that he had indeed still lived in Oregon at the time of his death when she posited that there might be an influx of M.A.S.H. celebs through the airport for his services.  She was giddy to the point of distraction, which was pretty crazy for someone born within a year or two either way of the show airing.

So, I guess that’s Tangent One, before I really ever get to the damn dream.

Nice pacing, Xtopher.

In the dream, Giggles’ own dream of celebrity sightings during her shift did, indeed, come true.

Except

Alan Alda pulled a Carrie Fisher and dies on his arriving flight.

My dream reaction was so vivid that I woke up.  Then I couldn’t tell if it was something I’d seen as a push alert on my phone when I checked the time or part of my dream.  The two potential realities coalesced that quickly.

I go into my phone and start checking the news.

Some Korean actor killed himself after some #metoo allegations surfaced.  Giggles is a huge K-pop fan, so that tangent just keeps fueling my confusion and distraction.  Not that K-pop and Korean actors share the same spotlight or affections in Giggles’ universe.

The D’Wayne dude that inspired Scott Bakula’s character on NCIS New Orleans died.  I’ve never really liked the New Orleans franchise, nor Bakula’s character…so this news was kinda awkward.

Surely Alan Alda dying would scoop either of those two celebrity-ish deaths.

Still, I google Alda specifically just to be sure.

Still alive.

Phew.

…and he’s been married to the same woman for 60 years!  Amazing!  Then again, he’s one of those people that I just assume is an amazing human based solely on his acting.  I fully admit that there’s no correlation, but there it is.  

Don’t judge my crazy brain.

So, in awesome Pam Ewing style, I’d dreamed it all.  This was not tangent two.

This was.

Of course, I had to tell the Silver Fox about it on the way to coffee.

Of course, he had to scoop my ass with his own DOS story by reminding me that one of his condos – either the one he rented, which I believe is correct, or the one he ended up buying – belonged to DOS’ boyfriend.

Me: Y’know, I don’t think you ever actually told me that!

Which devolved into a brief summary of this guy’s resume and a reminder of DOS’ famed involvement with the symphony community on the Oregon Coast.

Now, that’s a tangent.  As only The Fox can provide.

I was still kinda turning this damn dream over in my mind as I was out running errands when I saw this on Broadway.

Sorry about the crap picture, but I was relieved to see Segue Dude alive and well after the surreality of my morning.  Just zipping down the busiest N/S street in downtown Portland like a damn boss.

M.A.S.H. Up

Dating Into Oblivion, ep2

Here we are…Bachelor Number 5.

Sorta.

If January was an embarrassment of no-shows, February was mostly a cluster fuck of bad timing.  Ultimately, Bachelor Number 5 had a lot more qualities about him that worked against our compatibility than just bad timing, though.

That bad timing was mostly a product of my being sick for a week, struggling to get fully recovered for another and then dealing with some pretty hostile BS at work for a third week.

The free spaces in the shortest month of the year outside of those three weeklong timeframes didn’t really leave much for me to work with.

Sidebar:  the only man on my early morning MAX to work this morning happens to be a cute, lil twink nerd.  He’s mostly sleeping a couple rows up from me, but just woke up long enough to stick his finger in his nose and then bite his nail.  

I’m screaming inside. 

Ok, so…Bachelor Number 5.

In a moment of questionable optimism – and probable inebriation – I created an OKStupid dating profile.

While it’s not overtly a hook up site/app, it still qualifies as asocial media in my book because of its swipe culture:  left to reject, right to express interest.  These swipes are encouraged based mostly on the picture, you don’t really get a lot of data about the person until you open their profile.  Really, we’re dismissing people based on looks here, aka:  fuckability.  But it’s got an addictive quality to it, this swiping.

Once you actually click on someone’s profile, you can see what they have to say for themselves.  What they like, how they spend their time.  People are encouraged to answer questions ranging anywhere from values to politics to dating to sex in order to help the algorithm determine compatibility with the most important person in the world:  you.

Still sounds fun, but it gets a little tedious.  Questions aren’t filtered based on the basics you provide in your profile, so I get questions like, “I think I would enjoy experimenting sexually with someone who is the same gender”

Definitely me.  ✔️

But in the case of Bachelor Number 5, I could also discover that we are both tops, so that was helpful…if not poorly timed since I swiped first and found this out later.

We had only traded a few messages beyond the initial “Hey, how are ya”.  It wasn’t something he was making a priority, a minimum of a day passing between my messages and his responses.

I tend to read that as a sign, part of my E.O.G. charm as The Silver Fox and Little Buddy have pointed out.  In this experiment, I was keeping that impatience in check.

Over the course of the week we traded messages, he went to visit Shittatle for the weekend.  I tried engaging him about what neighborhood, whether he goes up often, how I lived there for a decade, etc.  He still just gave me…not much to go with.  So, by the time he messaged me back on Tuesday after his trip, I’d learned he was a top and not really looking for friends.  At least not putting any efforts into creating friendship with me.  That partnered with his geographic undesirability – Beaverton, if you can believerton that – it was pretty easy for me to check him off of my list of potential mates.

Swipe.

But, February wasn’t a total bust.  I did finally get a chance to connect with one of my January Bachelors early in the month.

He’s a cute kid.  Twenty seven, now, not really a kid…but he hasn’t really come into his own yet.  I feel his struggle.  But I’m not engaging with it, as is my usual reflex.

So, y’know…coming out of last year without that habit was good for me.  

Remember, this particular bachelor is someone I tried to meet unsuccessfully three years ago.  To his credit, this time around he was dealing with my grumpy old man-ness with jovial alacrity.

Or not really paying attention.

Speaking of geographic undesirability, he lives about 30 minutes away in Vantucky.  With me not driving, that puts a lot on him, effortwise, if we’re gonna see one another.  Which is another solid plus for him since I don’t even have a parking space to offer a guest.

When we finally got together, it was just a shared bottle of wine at my place.  He took about a half a glass to warm up and then it was off to the races.

Talking, you depraved perverts.

Unfortunately, he was kind of just barfing out his life story, not conversing.  But we finished the bottle and I learned some stuff about him.  I didn’t get a lot of talking in, so he probably only learned that I could listen and decided I was cute…which is always nice to hear.

We decided to do it again the following week, so naturally, I had to get the plague that was going around.

Whaddyagunnado?

We texted throughout the week and he was gracious about my frailty, but over the next ten days or so…pffft.

His responses started getting further spaced.  And shorter.  There’s not much I can do with “Hey” greetings or “Yea” responses.  So…I don’t.

Maybe we’re just meant to be acquaintances.  Which is fine…but he is just so darned tasty looking – a feast for these old, lascivious eyes, if you will – that it is a little disappointing.  But ultimately, I want to nourish more than my libido.

Alas, poor Whorick.

Dating Into Oblivion, ep2