Thursday, June 16, 2016

Loring Park Episode #60: May I Leave The Stage Now?



This episode begins at The Depot hotel, where my friend Julie, her boyfriend, and others and I went to IGNITE, a semi-annual event in which speakers get five minutes to talk about a topic close to their hearts. I learned about living on houseboats, endangered tigers, grief, the need for more women in STEM-related businesses, and the difference between racism and bias. I felt so smart! It was sponsored by SURLY beer, and I picked the lightest one. They also had food trucks and I had a delicious taco courtesy of Stanley's.

***

We have so much to talk about! So I'm going through this identity crisis, right? In which I realize that I was never all that good-looking to begin with, but any good looks I did have are, like ... gone. And that's okay. It's what aging is.

"You're not fat," Reid said to me. Reid told me that 35 is the happiest he has ever been because he stopped giving a shit. "You're filling out. You're looking, like, y'know, a thirty-year-old should look like."

Should a 30-year-old still be at the bar? People look at you much differently, and by that I mean they don't really look at you. There is one older man who hates me for some reason. I have no idea why. He walked by me once and brusquely said "Go eat something", and I was feeling fat so I took it as a compliment.

I haven't even entertained the thought of dating since that moment when everything shattered all at once, and that was well over a year ago. For a while I had a crush on Sven, the 20-year-old go-go boy, because it was safe and harmless. Or so I thought.

We have all been going to bingo on Wednesdays lately because at the '90s, it has been at the 60 number threshold FOREVER (bingo queens will know what I'm talking about). I like going because now I have my own postcards for the Sunday night show.


Saturday, May 28, 2016

Loring Park Episode #59: An Enema and an Eggbake



This episode begins with me crying in the middle of The Saloon, like a goddamned lady.

I had been in my fourth week of limbo, in which I was living with my parents (by choice) but still wanting to go out and agreeing to stay with friends. Considering I had moved out by my own choice while still paying for all the utilities and my rent, I felt it would be beyond hypocritical for me to use my bedroom as a crash pad while still being mad at everyone.

A few nights before this, I was going to go home with Reid but there was a snafu and so I crashed at Jack's apartment. Jack's apartment is fabulously decorated, and not just because his boyfriend Barrett came over and they both have bodies like dancers (probably because they are dancers). On this evening, I was going to go home with Joey, but there was miscommunication and I thought he had left, and then I realized that I was stranded at the bar and this wasn't my faulttttttt (but it was).

Four years ago -- when life was bliss in hindsight -- I had a friend who lived in the suburbs who would frequently go to the bar, get drunk, and expect to crash at my place by the time it was bar close because he had made no plans to crash anywhere else and assumed I would just let him do it. And I did, about five times, and then I got really annoyed by it. I realized I was now being that person. I just wanted to go home. But what was home? Why hadn't I tried to work things out with Jared? It felt like a death or a divorce.

Sven, the pixie go-go boy, saw that I was crying and offered me a ride home to Esquire's house in South Minneapolis, where Steve was staying one last night before moving in with me. This is 29, getting a ride home from a beautiful and effervescent 20-year-old while the tears ruin your shitty make-up job.

The next morning I broke the faucet in Esquire's shower. I cannot have nice things.

Steve started his dramatic move, and I went to LUSH instead because I am a good friend. It was Robin's birthday and I can't turn down birthday cake! The drag legend Dee Richards joined us. I had more fun talking to Robin's mom and sister than anyone else. I love moms. I can't help it. As for my own mother, I currently owe her enough money to buy a house in Chanhassen.

***

Monday, April 25, 2016

Loring Park Episode #58: Disenchanted April

Previously on Loring Park Loring Park Adjacent St. Anthony Blues ...



I have never seen Enchanted April. All I know is that it's a British film and Joan Plowright was Oscar-nominated for it in the year Marisa Tomei won the Oscar. My friend StinkyLuLu wrote about it for his Supporting Actress Smackdown once upon a time.



I probably said this last year, too, that April is never a good month for me. Things always seem to go sour. I have spent Aprils in emergency rooms, hospitals, crying in the bathroom about a boy while reading The Glass Castle, living with my parents for a month because the apartment I wanted wasn't available until May, finding myself on a flight to New York because I got accepted to college at the last minute and I was nowhere near emotionally and spiritually ready for such a thing because I had been secretly been suicidal and depressed for the prior seven months.

It doesn't go well, is what I'm saying.

This year I decided I was going to anticipate it. And maybe that is why my April, again, did not go well. I had put it in the air that life always goes to shit in April. So first we will go to a night in March, in which I was at Jetset with Joey and a gal pal of mine who I won't name.

My gal pal came over first and we pre-gamed with delicious vodka lemonade drinks and read old LiveJournals of ours. Remember those? We went to Jetset without incident, and then within two minutes, she could barely stand up. I realized it was my responsibility to go home with her in an Uber. She almost biffed it on the way to the car.

Our Uber driver, bless his heart, thought that we were a couple. My gal pal came to life as I asked her if she remembered our honeymoon in Mexico, and how I had sun poisoning.

"I told you to bring sunscreen," she giggled. Improv! All was well!

And then, like a light switch, her brain went into a different mode. "Why are you stopping?!" she cried at the driver with terror in her voice.
"The light is red," I tried to explain. "We always stop at red lights."

We got to her apartment, an old brownstone with no elevators, and she insisted that she didn't live there. I showed her where her name was on the entrance and we began to walk up the three flights up stairs. While we were between first and second floors, a young man who kind of looked like Eminem opened his door and gave me a death glare.

I paid it no attention and we made it to the second floor. OK. One more floor. Here we go. And we're walking, and we're walking ....

...And then Eminem comes sprinting up the stairs running at me. I freak out. My friend stumbles and lands on her face.

"Is everything okay?!" he yelled. "Are you trying to do something to this woman?"
"No," I said, speaking rapidly. "We were at Jetset and she got too drunk so I'm bringing her home."
"I thought you might be trying something with her," he said.
"I am gay as hell," I cried.
"Yeah, I get that now, " said Eminem. "Um, have a good night."



I cleaned up my friend and went back to Jetset. Before I had left, I had seen Under Armour was there and so was my friend Ian (who is loud and hilarious), so I messaged them to see if they were still there. They wrote back, and I planned to act like nothing had happened. But then Joey was talking to Miles and it was a deep conversation, and I felt that maybe I should go to The Saloon. But now it was 2 A.M.! The Saloon stays open until 3, so I took a Lyft from a lovely Ethiopian woman who had no idea where she was going. Hennepin Avenue was blocked off. It was a mess. I thanked her for her time anyway and walked to The Saloon at 2:20, where they told me they weren't letting anybody else in.

"Oh," I pouted. "Thank you."

Sven, the dancer and coat check boy who looks like Link from Zelda, was on his way out. "Do you need a ride home, Jakey?" he asked. His smile was the brightest thing on the street.


Sven is like a Manic Pixie Dream Twink, so I was kind of surprised when it turns out he drives a pick-up truck.

"I only live, like six blocks away from here," I said.
"Okay," he said. That smile. I can't.

He pulled over on Lasalle.

And before your mind goes there, I am going to say that we held hands for an hour and a half. I KNOW. I remember back in WWF days, and Jerry Lawler would tell Jim Ross, "If Lady Godiva rode in here, you'd notice the horse." Still, it was a lovely moment. I hadn't held hands with a boy in a pick-up truck in over a year, and that boy was not a manic pixie go-go dancer who was good with animals, but the polar opposite in every conceivable way -- although maybe he was good with animals. I'm pretty sure he had a dog. Anyway, nothing romantically is going to happen between me and Sven. He is nine and a half years younger than me! On paper, it's ten years, but if I say nine and a half it isn't as gross.


Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Loring Park Episode #57: Hard Wired



Because I sincerely miss blogging and need to go back to it and not do it about things that happened months ago, we're just gonna recap everything that we missed and then do, like, a real episode soon*

*We celebrated Christ's 2015th birthday



It is always so nice to see Danny, who has now been made "Mr. Manuary" courtesy of FM 107.1! He can now join Jason Matheson in the annals of local celebrities that my mother finds more interesting than me.

Oh, I forgot to tell you guys. I was in a play!

I haven't done theater since the failed play five years ago, unless you count If They Shoot 25-Year-Old Gay Men, Don't They? -- but I don't count that since I wrote it, directed it, and played myself. Instead, I was cast as Danni in "Hard Wired", a romantic comedy about a couple who breaks up but then finds themselves accidentally dating again via technology. My part was the easy Sean Hayes part while the other three actors (who were so amazing and gracious) had to do the, y'know, actual ACTING. With all that, I wasn't mad when a review said I stole the show with a stage presence concealed beneath my small frame. I was so happy for the opportunity and felt so blessed by all the people that came to see it. We had four performances at Bryant Lake Bowl in January.


Erin extended her stay in town, in part for a cheaper flight, but also in part so see she could see the show! Here she is with my parents and grandparents. My dad was there and chose to be paparazzi instead.

On the left is my lovely and ageless Auntie Lynn. She doesn't like to drive so her husband drove her to the show and then got coffee for an hour because he doesn't like plays. It's a good thing we weren't doing Angels in America. (See, because that show, is like, six hours long. Also, who the hell would I play in Angels in America?)


Tan Man came to the show and brought a gaggle of gays who all sat in the front row. The other actors were amused by it. "Is that front row all your friends?" they asked. "Why are all they so hot?"
"Because they all do fitness and that crap," I said.

Martha and Deborah came, Joey and his work friends came, two aunts and another uncle came, my friends Julie and Adam came (I agreed to go on a cruise with her this year, then had to tearfully call her two weeks later and tell her I can't afford a piece of shrimp on a cruise -- she was kind about the whole thing), and I felt very blessed for the great turnout. There were a few people whose absence was a bummer (my brother and my roommate), but people have their own lives to live.

Did I mention I'm super poor? And when I say that I'm poor, I mean that it's my fault I'm poor. Capital One is suing me. I am finally living out my dreams of being a Real Housewife on Bravo when I can talk incessantly about my upcoming lawsuits.


Anyway, everyone but me went to Vegas, and I got to field questions for a month about why I wasn't going to Vegas. The Vegas crew was Jared, his boyfriend, his mom, Fred, Steve, Joey and Liam. Girls from work were ALSO going to be in Vegas at the same time. I felt like hot fried shit. On a Thursday night when I was in my pajamas for money, I saw that they were checked into the Mariah Carey concert at Caesar's Palace and I went from feeling like hot fried shit to hot fried shit AND a side of bacon.

Steve texted me that night and said that they didn't go, and the person who tagged them in that was trying to get attention from me -- oh, I forgot to mention I was tagged in it, too, with a super cute "Jakey would be jealous." Yeah. Because that's what friends do, right? After a few more instances of idiocy, I effectively cut that person out of my life. It's a weird thing that happens when you get older. Yes, I hate that I'm bald and fat and act like a puffy coke whore, but I love that I don't care about toxic people anymore. I have so many wonderful sources of positivity in my life (see above! all the people who came to the show!), that I don't need to fake-nice to people who don't deserve it from me.



Friday, January 22, 2016

Loring Park Episode #56: The People I Met

Because it has been so long since I have done an episode, we are going to buck tradition this week month whatever.

I have met the most fascinating people over the past two months, in my continuously erratic and messy life.

And then I'm gonna blog a lot more often and we'll get back to normal! I promise.

The Comedy Section

I had a show at The Mounds Theater in St. Paul with my good friend Elizabeth Ess and the talented Pat Bauer and Cici Cooper. It is an old movie theater where they now do comedy shows.

There were five people in the audience and the Mike & Ikes were stale. Of those five people, one was my father and three were my friend Chad and his two friends.

Elizabeth would book the venue the following month and they had it half-full. Show business is the devil.

Still, I enjoyed walking to the convenience store with Cici as she remarked that the neighborhood we were in reminded her of New York.

Last Comic Standing



My mother and I went to go see the Top 5 of Last Comic Standing at Mystic Lake Casino. Andy Erikson was a major source of encouragement in my early career. I went to her wedding reception. After the show, all five comics were graciously signing autographs and merchandise. I was too shy to talk to any of them. Even Andy, who, I like, know. I finally got a picture with her. I wanted pictures with other comics but I just clammed up for some reason. I get like that sometimes. I was like that with Bianca del Rio, too, but that was a week after I had a major personal relationship fall apart and I would have been sad about anything. All five were hilarious and we had a great time. I had lost my debit card TWO DAYS BEFORE so my mother lent me $60 to lose on slot machines. I never paid her back, either.

I have borrowed so much money from her. Two hours ago I got another overdraft notice. It never ends. She tells me that if nothing changes, nothing changes. I am beginning to realize she is right. I'm not just realizing it, I'm just in less denial about it.

I have come to realize that I am not addicted to alcohol nearly as much as I am addicted to people. And people cost money because Uber costs money and then there is cover and then I am going to have a drink or two or three.

And the people. Oh, the people I have met.





I was lucky enough to perform in the 10,000 Laughs Comedy Festival this year. It is the third year that the Twin Cities comedy scene has put it on, and they invite comics from all over the country. Because I am horrendous about checking my e-mails, I had assumed I was only performing in the Thursday show of that week. It was not until I chose to Google myself like an asshole that I realized I WAS IN TWO SHOWS ON SATURDAY. WHATTTTTT.

My co-worker Annette graciously switched shifts with me on Saturday so I could get to the Comedy Corner by 7. Work was crazy busy and I left early without permission. Not only that, but I was supposed to drive Jared home and he was going shopping and instead of waiting five extra minutes for him I told him to take the train, because his dilly-dallying (to use a phrase of my mother's) had negated my leaving early and now I was going to get in trouble with management for no reason. When I got to The Corner Bar, I wasn't on the list to perform in the first show. This was all karma. My diva antics caught up to me. I was a nobody and show business continued to be the devil. Bob Edwards, who helps run the festival, caught the error and fixed it, and all was well. I did a show at 8 and then a show that didn't start until 12:29 A.M. It was COMEDY, it was fervid, and I wonder what everyone thought about the strange little man huddled in a hoodie in the green room for most of the night. I went to The Saloon after 2 and texted my bartender of my drink of choice so that he could make it before serving was officially stopped. This is why I am broke. Why can't I ever stay home?????

The comedy shows were sandwiched between my high school reunion, an event that I was dreading but actually enjoyed. I went to The Saloon when that was over, too. Why? Why, why, why???? Tales of An Aging Bar Star Who Did Not Get a Degree and Does Not Work at Target Corporate.  I didn't change very much from high school. I still have a crush on the dumb jock and the devout Christian guy, the latter of which I didn't talk to until the end and I am sure I absolutely terrified his wife by inviting myself to the baptism of their first child whenever they have one. Evangelicals don't even have baptisms. They have dedications.

Boys Boys Boys






I went to Halloween with Piano Man. He was in my bathroom in gold lame underwear trying to put on his sexy Pharoah costume. He is tan and chiseled and I got the vapors.

"Jakey," he asked. "Can you help me?"
I declined because I was about to faint and also because I have the fine motor skills of an infant.
"JARED," I declared. "Will you help Piano Man with his costume?"

Jared saw the show and was also at a lack of words.

"Jared," I said, "Remind me to call the plumber tomorrow. I think that pipe burst and now the basement is flooded."
"Oh, I checked already," Jared said. "The basement is very flooded."
"Oh no," said Piano Man. "Can I help?"
"No," I said. "You have done enough damage."








We gallavanted to First Avenue for the Flip Phone Event and met up with Joey and his sisters. There was a sexy Swedish Chef from The Muppets and no one knew who it was. That made me sad. I danced with Under Armour because he was wearing a coconut bra and not much else. I LOVE GAY HALLOWEEN.

The next day, Jared's boss had a question about his Facebook post. "What happened to your basement?" she asked with wide eyes. Flushed with embarrassment, I didn't stick around to hear his answer.

***

I acquainted myself with a couple who explained they were in an open relationship. I was sitting next to an adorable twinky singer and a boy from Montana who was a Wilhelmina Model. He would later tell me that he hated modeling and he wished he didn't have to do it anymore. The boys in the relationship were explaining how open relationships work, and while I certainly had my own opinions, I realized I would learn more if I shut the fuck up. I never saw the model again. I see the singer a lot. He hangs with a different (read: way younger and prettier) crowd, but he's good people.

I fell in love for exactly 48 hours.




We were at The Saloon, of course. There was a boy there who was a broski epitomized, with his Ralph Lauren button-down and olive skin and tall, lean but muscular frame. Everyone's jaws were dropping. I don't know what it was -- the stimulants mixed with the tequila, the viewpoint that life is short or what -- but I felt like saying something instead of being an open-mouthed wallflower.

"Excuse me for being so forward," I said, "But you're very handsome." You're very handsome is classy. You're very handsome is not OMG you're sooooo hottttt. You're very handsome is not please fuck me.

"Thank you," he said. Even his teeth were perfect. He kind of reminded me of Kevin.

At the end of the night it was time for the sidewalk sale while we all waited for a cab or Uber. (The sidewalk sale, for the uninitiated, is when people wanting to get a hook-up wait outside the bar at closing time. These have lessened in the age of Grindr. Nevertheless, my sidewalk sale days are long gone. I am expired goods in a sea of fresh meat.)

The impossibly beautiful broski was off to hail a cab.

"Have a good night," I said.
"Aww, that's my DUDE," he said.
"Let's broski hug," I said.
"Nah," he said. "Let's hug for real."

We hugged and for three point five seconds I was literally dead. I would have told myself that I had a good run. I laughed. I loved. I saw Paris.

The next day, we somehow ended up at Jetset. It was a Saturday and so Joey, Jared and I decided to venture to The Saloon anyway, because The Saloon stays open until three even though they stop serving at two and we were still feeling social. Also, we must have started really late for some reason Maybe we worked. It is not important.

What is important is we were out on the patio that night when a crowd of gays were around a tall specimen and you could almost step in the drool on the cement. And mid-sentence, he stopped all that was around him ...

"Hey," he said with a concave grin. "My buddy."
"Hiiiiiiii," I said, and I could feel myself turning red.
My friend from high school asked if he was straight. I hate when gay guys do that. When women do it, it's okay, like when my friend Kate and I were at Honey and found out the cute bartender was bisexual.
He said he was straight but I didn't care as this was an eighth grade crush and I was going to have the best of it.

I talked about myself and life for as long as I could and he wouldn't stop smiling.

"Are you always like this?" he asked.
"He is," Jared said, almost sadly.
"I've just never met anyone that's so ... animated," he smiled.
"It's exhausting," he said.
Joey could not stop laughing. "You always use that dumb 'bro' voice for every straight guy you meet," he said. "But he actually sounds like that!"

We went to the dance floor and a Stage Five Clinger of a woman kept trying to dance with him. "Dance with me," he pleaded. "Just say you're my boyfriend."

I danced but not too close because I didn't want to get a boner. Then his friend who was short but muscular tried dancing with me. I didn't know what to do. I felt like I was on display like Melissa Gorga. Was this a test? For once, Joey and Jared were staring at me as if I was the belle of the ball. I didn't dance with his friend. The beautiful straight man left, but I gave him my number and told him to come to my next show. He did not come to the show and I would later lose my phone that had his number in it. Maybe he was a unicorn or all a dream. For an early Christmas present, my mother gave me a phone that is the size of a small doberman.

That was the only person I saw at the bar that gave me heart palpitations.

Well wait.

There was that one night ...




My mother told me not to go the bar.

 The whisper told me not to go the bar. 

I went to the bar an hour after I said I would be there thanks to a delightful wave of IBS and OCD that blended in a Saturday evening alphabet soup. The gentleman I was meeting was on his way out when I got there.

My friend calmed me down and fixed my shirt. He called me pregnant an hour later but I wasn't even that mad about it.

And at the bar, he stood right by me. Swigging a beer. Same flannel wear, same raspy voice, same smart blue eyes always hiding something. The whispers had been right. But here we were, for the first time in six months since he emphatically (and understandably) left my life, and it was meant to be, and I was going to conduct myself like an adult. I would not cry. I would not shriek. I would not swear. I would only say hello if initiated.

"Sean!" he yelled. Well, of COURSE he knew the gorgeous engaged heterosexual I had just met. I was now ready to throw away everything I had just said and unsolictedly bust his balls. "Of course you know Sean!" I was ready to cry.

...And then in a double-take later, I came to realize it was a different person. Looked and sounded damned similar, but close only counts in horseshoes. Or something. I don't know.

The movie in my mind had many different beginnings and endings.

In real life I got a most lovely beginning. The ending sucked but it was at least an ENDING. Some people don't even get that.

And on we go.

Maybe that's okay that it wasn't him. After all, this is what I looked like that night:







UGH. Also, I have no idea who that boy is. Doug wanted me to take a picture with him and I didn't argue.

Before I know it, I will be at the one-year mark when what seemed like the never-ending story finally ended -- as I said, it was a bad ending, but it ended. I can only accept it. Unlike the last big estrangement, I have only had one memorable dream about him. We were at a Starbucks in Dallas and I met who I assumed was his partner. We were cordial and he seemed very happy. I rarely drink coffee and I have never been to Dallas, unless you count the time I was stuck at the airport for eight hours and my aunt was so delirious she insisted that there was no such thing as Texas anymore.

***

My New Job






After seven years, I got a new job.

I am making a lot less money but I am a lot less stressed out and everyone tells me that no, eventually, I WILL make a lot more money, it just takes time and effort and hard work and all that fun stuff. The schedule is great and I am surrounded by gorgeous men all day. A girl could have it worse.

***

Marin

I went to a fancy dinner party at Marin Restaurant that I couldn't afford. My card got declined. People used words like "penthouse" and "cabin". When I got there I ran into the plexi-glass and that was when I was stone cold sober.  I had no business being there but I did sit across from the owner of Tiger Sushi and she was SO nice. I am forever a fan now.



Also, one Monday night Steve and I were going to Marin for Happy Hour but went to The Saloon, as we always do, and NICK AND JOE JONAS WERE THERE. I cannot have nice things.


***

Jared has a boyfriend. He stays over about eight days a week. He cleans up after himself and I like him well enough. I am trying to remain positive and think about that if we ever had a home invasion, it is one more person likely to attack the intruder. I stay at my parents' house a lot more often now. One time I wanted to stay over at Joey's but he had to work in the morning and I typed in all caps how hurt I was. That was an embarrassing 9 A.M. "Oh my god I was drunk and stupid" text that followed.

I have gained ten pounds and feel like a lonely and angry marshmallow.

30 is looming.

This is my new reality.

On we go.

***

And I will try to write MORE because we have so much to talk about next week.

Like Christmas
And New Year's (my favorite time of the year)
And my return to acting!!!! I got cast in a play. So exciting. So scary.

I wish you all a happy and prosperous 2016. Let's hang out more often this year.

Xoxo
Jakey

Monday, October 5, 2015

Loring Park Episode #55: Blue is the Grossest Color


Hello, children! Again, we are three months late. Since my financial situation is screwy again, I am hoping it leads to more nights in of blogging. I'll have less to write about it, but maybe it'll even out, no?

July began with our hot water being turned off! Apparently when you move to a duplex instead of an apartment, you have to establish a water bill. I am lucky enough to have parents who live nearby and I had no problem using their facilities. While waiting for the Centerpoint representative to arrive, I spent an entire afternoon reading a Forbes article about the wealthiest person in each state. Wisconsin's is the owner of Menards and he's a total Republican, but I found it interesting that he makes everybody (including executives) clock into work. Neat!

***

I enjoyed myself at Drag Queen Game Night with Piano Man. Piano Man moved further east of the Cities and I don't see him very much. We were going to exercise around Lake Calhoun (ha! last time I went I wore flip-flops and Steve and I walked around the whole lake and I had disgusting blisters for a month), but our schedules got delayed, so I convinced him to accompany me to Drag Queen Game Night. Piano Man is one of those men who is really attractive but since I don't see him very much, I forget about it until I'm in his presence. He picked me up in his car and smelled musky.

"Should I wear my glasses?" he asked. He was wearing a basketball jersey.
"Sure," I said. "You look smart."
"Or should I wear my hat?" he asked, and put it on backwards. "I know you like your broskis."





None of us got called up to play games (Drag Queen Game Night operates a Price is Right-format where your name is announced). I still enjoyed the show, as they rotate their cast monthly and I had a heck of a time being in the show in May, where I may or may not have sold the most tickets by a cast member. Hashtag humble brag.

We sat across of drag queen Jamie Monroe during the show and got our picture with her later. She enjoyed the view of Piano Man's biceps. Is that your man? she mouthed. I blushed but told her no. I used to do that thing where I would hang out with a cute boy and let people assume things, but I realized that it isn't fair to people to do that anymore. Piano Man went home with somebody else and I wasn't even mad. I got to sit by him for two and a half hours, dammit.

Former high school classmates of mine had a house party, and I attended before going to Big Louie's bingo (addiction is real). I enjoyed seeing everybody, even though it was jarring knowing that our ten year reunion is coming up. Some of us are a little paunchier. Some of us got hotter. Some of us have kids and dogs. A ridiculously attractive broski who announced he was voting for Trump was there, and I wanted to hate-fuck him for Bernie Sanders. Just my luck I would feel the bern. Of gonorrhea.

No, I'm kidding! He was perfectly nice and weighed 220 pounds. I shamelessly invited everyone to my shows the following week, because I was lucky enough to be working for a whole week at House of Comedy!

Monday, August 31, 2015

Loring Park Episode #54: The Pride of Stevens Square


Today wasn't fun.

I'm trying hard to get excited for Pride. Maybe it's because I think I'm getting old or have a gut or don't feel like I can afford to go anywhere (not that such a thought will stop me. Did I mention I'm in debt consolidation? And that I am not in debt because of hardship but because of serious impulse control problems?) I must remind myself that this weekend is not about looking good in swim trunks but about freedom of expression, self-acceptance, and being lucky enough to spend time with supportive family and friends.

While driving to South Dakota last weekend, I put in a mix CD called "Songs About Leaving", that I made when I knew I was leaving UW-Stout (ultimately one of the saddest chapters of my life, but that's for an entirely different novel). I had no idea what songs would be on there, only that I knew none of them would be older than 2007 (I am OLD, my children). Track #9 was "My Wish" by Rascal Flatts. I remember my mother loved that song and encouraged me to put it on CD mixes for all the young people in her life. And even though our relationship was absolutely terrible at that time, I had appreciated her for thinking that, and resented myself that I was too blinded by anger to see her the way my friends did.
And then I bawled my eyes out until the song was over because even though I didn't graduate from either of the colleges I went to and I'm *still* being helped by my parents on the edge of 30, I was driving four and a half hours by myself to a venue in which I was going to get paid because people believed I was actually talented and good at something and worth the amount I requested.

I never saw the contract until after the trip and I was supposed to do a lot more work than I actually did. Lesson #300: Always check your e-mail if you're going to be a professional, and being worried about a Christian radio host replying to a novel you sent her at 3:11 in the morning is not an excuse to avoid your e-mail. In a tangent, she wrote me back and it was absolutely breathtaking. Her name is Susie Larson and her show is called "Live the Promise" and today the topic was about avoiding WORRY. I am sending her a Christmas card, but because this is me, she probably won't get it until February.

I have been missing somebody to the point of insomnia, chest pain and gastric distress. I am learning it's okay. From the first time we met I had been convinced that this person greatly needed ME, but now I have realized how self-centered such a notion is. This is a person who needs God and a good therapist, and there's not a damn thing I can do about it. Our last conversation ended with "I'm gonna need a few days" before the car door shut and sped away in the darkness. That was 57 days ago. Not that I am counting.

A month later I would have a nervous breakdown in the parking lot of a hospital and a nurse in a yellow sweater found me and walked me to my appointment. If you are going to have a nervous breakdown, do it at a hospital. Everyone acts like it's totally normal. Yellow is a calming color. Rosie O'Donnell has written essays about yellow, how it is the color of everything that is real and how she felt fame took it away from her. I tweeted her about my meltdown and that the nurse wore yellow. "Nurses r the best," she wrote back. My mother is a nurse. This is not a coincidence.

I have no idea where I was going with this.  -Facebook rant, June 24th 


I was in a strange mood as Pride loomed. It wasn't just about my body. I mean, yes, I should work out, and I was never fat, nor was I ever ripped in years previous, but this is my last summer of my twenties (kind of) and maybe I was projecting.

The first omen that things would turn around happened when my boss said I could be off on Friday! I was leery of asking for Thursday and Friday off since I had asked for every other weekend off in June due to the Sioux Falls gig and my uncle's wedding. Jared wanted to host a big Pre-Pride party on Friday and I had planned on working until six o'clock and coming home to bitch at everyone.




I used this same .gif during last year's Pride episode! Thursday night I met Jared and Joey at Honey for Flip Phone, which is one of the first unofficial events of Pride. Just like last year, I totally forgot how long the line was going to be! I was late because I was Nairing at my mother's house. "Jacob!" she cried. "That smell is going to burn down the house!"

 Joey and Jared let me do cutsies and I immediately felt the rage of those who were behind us and pretending to be our friends. It still took us 45 minutes to get in because the club was at capacity.

"This line is longer than my last relationship," I lamented.
"If this was your last relationship there wouldn't even be a line!" cried Jared.

It should be noted that my Grindr profile says I just got out of a really bad non-relationship and I still think that way.

It took us about 45 minutes to get into Honey, but once we did, it was its usual blast. I did the "Heartbreaker" rap while dancing with Under Armour and he was impressed because he hasn't seen me do it 50 times like everybody else has.

Little did all of us know how our lives would be changed forever the next day.