a blog with cultural bulimia.

Monday, February 28, 2005

Orange is my favorite color.

Christo says he isn't bothered by the closing of "The Gates." That's what creating is all about, he says. You want to move onto the next thing.

I finally got to Central Park to see The Gates. And I loved it. The park was covered in snow and the contrast was breathtaking. Well, I could only walk a little, along 59th street, but it was enough to taste the experience.

To all the naysayers, one thing: you were probably misguided and focusing on a single gate. Yes, they were cumbersome, unelegant and stiff when singled out and taken out of the contest. And that's why there were thousands of them. They were much bigger them each gate. They also included the people walking under them, them once-in-a-lifetime effect, the landscape around and the city skyline as a backdrop.

Vai pra puta que te pariu.

Translation: Go back to the whore who gave you birth.

Swearsaurus is the world's largest resource of multilingual swearing. It will teach you a vast array of swearing, profanity, obscenity, blasphemy, cursing, cussing, and insulting in a massive 165 languages - because it's good to experience cultural diversity!"

Internet Fame Is Cruel Mistress...

...for a Dancer of the Numa Numa:
"The question remains why two million people would want to watch a doughy guy in glasses wave his arms around online to a Romanian pop song."

Friday, February 25, 2005

clinging to life.

"if the Pope is this desperate to stay alive, what hope is there for the rest of us?"

Thursday, February 24, 2005


from TIME Magazine:
6 min. 21 sec. Amount of time a typical half-hour local-TV-news broadcast devotes to sports and weather.

38 sec. Amount of time a typical half-hour local newscast devotes to U.S. foreign policy, including the war in Iraq.

Freaky world.

Dubai is creating a 'community' consisting of 300 islands in the shape of the world. Island C14 represents Rio de Janeiro. I don't get it.

born, castrated, and spruced up just last week.

 "Tart drag queen LINDA SIMPSON's newly revived My Comrade magazine isn't porn, but it's definitely for discerning adults who like their pop culture served with whips and boas. The mag's benefit bash at the Ukrainian National Home was suitably arresting, but it was laced with so much advance drama I almost ended up in a real home. At the event, I was supposed to present a My Comrade Hall of Fame award to scene queen AMANDA LEPORE (who's also in that porn flick, wouldn't you know), so I wrote a speech about how much kooky joy she's brought us over the years. I was then informed that Ms. Lepore didn't want me to say anything implying that it's a "legend" award and/or that she's been around for a while, so I rewrote the speech to make it sound like she was born, castrated, and spruced up just last week. Then, the night before the ceremony, I was told she wouldn't accept the award at all because any kind of career honor would make her seem, you know, old. Dejected, I moved on to preparing for the next event—presenting Fetus of the Year to BEATRICE ARTHUR."
La Dolce Musto

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Email of the day

Sent by Out There:

"So welcome back to the world of the living. We missed you. You are fortunate to have friends who sound (and look!) so good. And consider this; you have more fans, and more people cheering for you than you even imagine. I often fantasize that we really are a community, and every time I see a selfless act of kindness like you describe of your friends, it helps to reinforces that notion. Given our current political realities in this country, it becomes clear that we need each other more than ever. So here's to GZ and DF. Somebody buy those guys a smoothie."

love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.

 I'm ambulatory. Sort of. I thought I was stronger, being that my world at the hospital had very close, easy-to-reach borders.

I'm staying at my friend Mr DF's on 23rd and 9th and the block between 9th and 8th is sooooo long... So, eventhough the borders have been lifted, my world still feels constrained. I feel constrained.

I'm sure many things will come out of the whole experience. It has too. People are demanding: "you have a new lease in life" and "what are your plans?" They are eager to know which makes for pressure that I do not feel like handling right now. How can I possibly have plans for the future if I cannot see further than 2 blocks?

But one thing has already had a profound impact in my life: the friends that stood by me, motivating me, coming to the hospital as if it were a pic-nic, trying not to notice the machine attached to my neck and spoiling me by catering to all my needs - even if it was for a pedicure... (btw, how is it that Hillary Swank in "Million Dollar Baby" can talk perfectly while in a respirator and I could not? I guess she IS a very good actress...)

So, anyway, the following message was sent by Mr. GZ (originally sent by Mark Nelson but written by Brian A. 'Drew' Chalker) and, like for him, it sums it up for me:

People come into your life for a Reason, a Season, or a Lifetime.

When you know which one it is for a person, you will know what to do for that person.

When someone is in your life for a REASON, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed. They have come to assist you through a difficulty, to provide you w/ guidance & support, to aid you physically, emotionally, or spiritually. They may seem like a Godsend, & they are! They are there for the reason you need them to be. Then, w/out any wrong doing on your part, or @ an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end. Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away. Sometimes they act up & force you to take a stand. What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled, their work is done. The prayer you sent up has been answered, & now it is time to move on.

Some people come into your life for a SEASON, because your turn has come to share, grow, or learn. They bring you an experience of peace, or make you laugh. They may teach you something you have never done. They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy. Believe it! It is real! But, only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons: things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person, & put what you have learned to use in all other relationships & areas of your life. It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.

Thank you for being a part of my life!

O Pato

Elza Soares

Click here for other Bossa Nova original recordings.

I don't know about you, but I am getting pretty lonely.

"It is not chance happening that the crystal meth crisis in the gay community has occurred. The generations that became afraid to have sex during the 1980's and 90's have found consolation behind a computer screen. The computer offers a safe place to connect for instant porn, in-and-out sex (yes, just like a fast food fix), and if the drugs make us feel that much better about the whole process, then what the hell. The problem lies in the isolation that accompanies online sex, dating, and life nowadays. The drugs comfort that need, and increase the isolation. Not to mention how quickly crystal becomes physically addictive...

So what's next? Peer pressure like in the 1980's does not have the same effect because we are so much more socially isolated than we were twenty years ago. I know I am, my Mom is, my friends are; aren't you? Since our society is being eaten away by isolationism, how do we get people back from behind their iPods into society? How do we get the boys back into the bars? In a country where we do not have strong social traditions, where do you go to reintroduce cultural socialization. In Italy, they walk in the evenings; In Germany, they gather at beergardens; In France, cafes. Yesterday, I went to my local coffee house in the bohemian section of Boston, Jamaica Plain, and like you, found myself alone amongst a flock of wired people.

I don't know about you, but I am getting pretty lonely."

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Rice to riches

This is one of my favorite places in NY - great design and great product. I have always wondered how profitable it could be, with its huge servings that were impossible to finish (although I have always managed to) and its packaging that you always wanted to take home. One of each color...
Was the rice pudding a front? Perhaps. Was the dessert a passion? Absolutely.

Yes, Peter Moceo Jr. was arrested earlier this month and charged with running a $22-million-a-year gambling ring in the New York area. The authorities are also investigating whether his food shop, Rice To Riches, in Little Italy in Manhattan, was used to launder some of the profits. The store remains open, and Mr. Moceo, through the lawyer who represented him at the arraignment, Raphael F. Scotto, denies a connection between the shop and the charges.

But there has always been something strange about the business on Spring Street. It seems too beautiful, too expensive an operation, given that it sells only coffee and 20 flavors of rice pudding. Beyond that beauty - the serving case with specially designed pudding bowls, the oval glass entryway sculptured like a grain of rice, the quirky flavors like Stubborn Banana and No Guts, No Carrot Cake - lies a tight-lipped tale.

The NYTimes > Health > Scientists Explore Meth's Role in Immune System

"Whatever crystal meth's influence on the immune system and viral replication turns out to be, experts stress that its most alarming impact is on behavior."

Responsible behavior.

"Do you ever feel personally responsible about the unsafe sex enabled by your Website?
It all boils down to personal choice. We believe that people have the right to PNP [“party and play,” or to do crystal meth and have sex] or not to PNP, to use condoms or not use condoms. What we hope is that people will back up their choices with responsible behavior."
The Manager of on the HIV Super-Strain

And so we enrich our life from within.

"Technology has given us a universe entirely for ourselves — where the serendipity of meeting a new stranger, hearing a piece of music we would never choose for ourselves or an opinion that might force us to change our mind about something are all effectively banished.

Atomisation by little white boxes and cell phones. Society without the social. Others who are chosen — not met at random. Human beings have never lived like this before."

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Out of the hospital.

 So it finally happened yesterday. My good friend Mr. GZ picked me up at the hospital in the afternoon and drove me to Mr. DF's apartment, where I'll be staying for a while. We took a detour on the way there because Mr. GZ wanted to drive through Central Park so I could see 'The Gates'. He has been one of my biggest motivators but in no way an unexpected surprise. He made an effort to make my recovery less lonely (a lot of people did and i will get to them little by little): one afternoon around the holidays he showed up at the hospital with tons of Christmas decorations, including lights that the nurses did not allow him to string along the walls.

He couldn't understand why I felt uncomfortable with all the attention I was getting: "Just know (and be comfortable to accept) any help or assistance that your friends want to offer! Reverse the positions and if you would offer similar help under similar circumstances, then don't think twice about accepting it."

I have always admired him for his "this is who I am, like it or not" atitude but only lately have we got closer and had more intimate conversations. He is going through his own personal 'health hell' and, in the end, our fears are very similar. Ah, the future...

We got stuck in traffic - President's Day Friday - but I could not care less. With a good friend, anytime is quality time.


by Andrew Sullivan

"The real problem in the gay male epidemic right now is the use of crystal meth (it is hurting the health of people already HIV-positive just as much as it is contributing to the infections of people who are HIV-negative). This drug has rampaged and is coursing through straight rural America and parts of gay urban America. As many of you know, I'm a libertarian when it comes to recreational drug use (and what consenting adults do in private). But I draw the line at this drug. It's evil, potent beyond belief, it's destroying people's minds, careers, lives and souls. If we don't get a grip on it, it may undo all the progress we have made against HIV in the gay world. We gay men shouldn't simply fund advertizing or ask health authorities to help (although that's necessary). We should start insisting privately on zero tolerance of this drug among our friends and loved ones. We should do this informally, socially, privately - out of love and concern for one another. We should encourage every addict to get treatment. "

Clothing Optional Dinner.

Diners enjoy buffet dinner in the buff: "'Wearing clothes and going to church does not protect you from moral evil,' Stafford said, lamenting what she saw as a tendency to demonize people just because they like to be naked."

There ... Yugo

by Albino Neutrino

"Millions of people complain that Ms. Parker Bowles has a ring like a fossilized Yukka plant. But they don't know what Charles' first idea was for a big 'let's get marred, durling' present. He wanted to present her with a shiny new Fiat Yugo, fresh from the factory. Camilla, however, said that might this might be a little bit tasteless, between huge yelping laughs, as she nearly choked on a hard boiled egg.

Charles was very confused by this. He only wanted to present the car and say 'There ... Yugo'. Charles is a man of few jokes and he'd been working on this one for years, so he was sorry that he never got the opportunity to use it. He never really did understand what all the fuss was about. That's 'fuss' in the general sense, not the particular."

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Sometimes you just have to stop and bitch about the roses.

6 months later...

I have been debating how to resume blogging, how to explain what I have been through, in a clever and creative way. But I have been unable to. Block. So I've decided to plainly state the facts and put it behind me. Than I can deal with what is ahead.

September 6th, 2004 I was taken to St. Vincent's Hospital. I was at a party, accepted a dose of GHB in spite of the fact I had been trying to stay away from the "Gay Partying Culture", and that dose turned out to be more than I could deal with. I passed out, vomited and aspirated my vomit, causing a lung failure. By the time I got to the hospital I could not breath on my own, was put in a ventilator and under an induced coma that lasted 2 months. I've been told that in several instances my chances of survival were minimal.

The next 4 months were spent in a hospital bed. Recovering.

Today I was discharged from Physical Therapy. The last session was a stroll in the park outside the hospital (Goldwater in Roosevelt Island). It's a beautiful sunny day in spite of the fact it is the middle of February. Hopefully I will be leaving the hospital by the end of this week.

And that's that.

At least, in general lines, for now. I'm sure I'll address all of it but for right now I just needed to state the facts and move forward.

Of course, none of that answers the question of whether God exists.

God and Evolution
Published: February 12, 2005

"(...) It turns out that our DNA may predispose humans toward religious faith. (...) Imagine if, as a cosmic joke, humans have gradually evolved to leave many of us doubting evolution.

The notion of a genetic inclination toward religion is not new. Edward Wilson, the founder of the field of sociobiology, argued in the 1970's that a predisposition to religion may have had evolutionary advantages.

In recent years evidence has mounted that there may be something to this, and the evidence is explored in "The God Gene," a fascinating book published recently by Dean Hamer, a prominent American geneticist. Dr. Hamer even identifies a particular gene, VMAT2, that he says may be involved. People with one variant of that gene tend to be more spiritual, he found, and those with another variant to be less so.

There's still plenty of reason to be skeptical because Dr. Hamer's work hasn't been replicated, and much of his analysis is speculative. Moreover, any genetic predisposition isn't for becoming an evangelical, but for an openness to spirituality at a much broader level. In Alabama, it may express itself in Pentecostalism; in California, in astrology or pyramids.


Partly that's because the religious seem to adopt healthier lifestyles - they are less likely to smoke, for example. And faith may give people strength to overcome illness - after all, if faith in placebo sugar pills works, why not faith in God?

Another possibility involves brain chemistry. Genes that promote spirituality may do so in part by stimulating chemical messengers in the brain like dopamine, which can make people optimistic and sociable - and perhaps more likely to have children. (Dopamine is very complex, but it appears linked to both spirituality and promiscuity, possibly explaining some church scandals.)

Evolutionary biologists have also suggested that an inclination to spirituality may have made ancient humans more willing to follow witch doctors or other leaders who claimed divine support. The result would have been more cohesive bands of cave men, better able to survive - and to kill off rival cave men.

Of course, none of that answers the question of whether God exists. The faithful can believe that God wired us to appreciate divinity. And atheists can argue that God may simply be a figment of our VMAT2 gene.

But what the research does suggest is that postindustrial society will not easily leave religion behind. Faith may be quiescent in many circles these days, or directed toward meditation or yoga, but it is not something that humans can easily cast off. (...)"