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Seething Cakes of Hatred

Making pancakes, as I learned at AP's birthday bash at the beach this weekend, is an unbelievably tedious chore. I don't know why I...

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Hot Toddy in Two Acts

Act One

Now that Thor and I are no longer together, I'm working on letting go, and it's so hard. I haven't been there for my friends the way I should be, because my soul is wrapped up in the fetal position.

Auburn Pisces' latest post made me feel so guilty. I have been going through the motions. My body is there, but my spirit is hiding. After I read Thor's letter, in which he asked me not to call him anymore, I helped my friend AP hang Christmas lights. I wasn't really there with her; I was just a tall robot performing a task.

The other night she was upset, and I handed her a cigarette. Then I went into her room to try and clean up the mess that had upset her. I wasn't very successful. I had just returned from a night at the bar, so my feeble attempt didn't accomplish much. Next, I went downstairs to my bedroom and threw myself onto my bed, where I cried and screamed at Thor. I muffled my face with my pillow, but later learned that AP heard me anyway. While she was upset and hurting, I was in my room feeling like I would rather be dead than deal with my pain. Like her, I feel I have nothing to give.

For the past two days, I've tried to change that. I have dressed in new clothes and worked out and tried not to drink too much. Friends tell me I seem lighter and stronger than they've seen me in months. I am making an effort to pull myself together. I invited lots of friends to join me for happy hour yesterday, and we had a great time. I cracked jokes, flirted, played, danced my special "Hollaback Girl" dance, and made sarcastic jabs at Pony. (He can take it as well as dish it out)

Act Two

The Professor has been away, so I had to catch him up on the story of my being dumped. His thoughtful words and kind heart moved me. And I found myself getting real, in spite of my resolve to entertain the masses.

As an actor and blogger and musician and writer, I've learned to find my value in my ability to entertain. You performers will understand what I'm talking about. If I am not moving you emotionally, I'll worry that I'm not doing my job. So, when I heard a song playing in the bar that made my heart hurt, I began to falter. My act started to bomb. I started to lose my shtick. Between that damn song (Late nights, playin' in the dark and wakin' up inside my arms. Boy, you'll always be in my heart and I can see it in your eyes. You still want it. So don't forget about us...) and my honest talk with The Professor, the facade began to crumble, and so did I.

Mz Karma saw it first. The tears came to my eyes, and she started to reach for me. I shook my head, because her kindness would only make me melt, and I quickly walked away from my friends. I want to make them proud. I want to inspire them. I no longer want them to see me cry. I don't want Thor to know I cry about him, and if he ever talks to my friends again or reads this blog, he'll find out I'm not doing so well. I know he wants me to get on with my life.

I came back and sat down again. I made a couple more jokes, but they were weak. I sat back and watched friends who are couples and friends who were flirting with each other. I tried so hard, it was almost as if I could physically exert myself to have fun. But my energy ran out and another song began playing, (Here comes the rain again
falling from the stars, drenched in my pain again, becoming who we are. As my memory rests but never forgets what I lost, wake me up when September ends)

Before I knew it, everyone was leaving to go to dinner. I said that I wanted to be alone. As I was hugging Pony goodbye, I began to cry in the arms of this man who has been a constant friend to me. A year ago I was crying over him. Now I find myself crying in his arms over somebody else.

I'm trying. Really, I am. I don't want to sit around and mope. I don't want to hurt anymore. I agreed to go on a date with a certain Volkswagen. Actually, he invited me to sleep with him, but I insisted on dinner and a movie.

Monday, November 28, 2005


Last night The Handsome Prince and The Math Whiz wanted to take me out and get me drunk, but they couldn't because I was already drunk.

It was great to be with my two former housemates again. We had a great time out on the town. I had to apologize to The Handsome Prince because he shared some concerns with me a few months ago, and I hardened my heart towards him because of it. I let our disagreement drive a wedge between us, and I've missed him terribly.

The reason that I love him so much is because he understands me. He told me that I have nothing to apologize for, and he told me that he wished things hadn't turned out as he'd feared.

I doubt this will do any good, but there are a lot of speculative comments regarding my HIV status and the status of a couple guys I've dated. I wish this would stop. I have never posted anything about the status of any of my boyfriends, so anything you have read here about that subject have been anonymous comments by people who have no firsthand knowledge of anything. The only time I've addressed HIV and how it impacts my life personally is in this post.

Please remember that comments can come from both friends of mine and from people I've never met. Sometimes I share the opinions of my commenters, and other times I couldn't disagree more.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Thanks and Penguins

I appreciate all the supportive comments. Also, the e-mails I've received have meant so much.

I received a letter from Thor yesterday, and he explained what is going on with him. For the first time in months, he poured out his heart to me. It was a very hard letter for him to write, and it was hard for me to read. There is a lot of love between us, but things are complicated right now. He is a beautiful man, and my love for him has not diminished one bit. It's just that he needs time to figure some things out, and he doesn't want (or can't) cope with the emotions with me in the picture. Sure, I feel rejected, but I do not and will not believe he means to hurt me in any way. And who is to say what the future will bring? Life is full of surprises.

In the meantime, I'm living day by day and thinking of interesting new ways to meet people. Here is the note I handed a boy at the bar Wednesday night:

"Hi, Michael. I think you are hot. Do you want to dress up like penguins and play basketball with me sometime?"

Don't question me. It is a special new screening process I'm implementing.

By the way, Michael never did call. And I thought everybody liked basketball.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

What Would Renee Do?

A year ago I found myself wondering what Renee Zellweger would think of me.

Today I was thinking about Renee and her ex, Kenny. Renee handled the end of that relationship with class, and what's good enough for Renee is good enough for me. Besides, do any of us really want to endure another round of weeping and gnashing of teeth on this blog? I sure don't.

So, to make Renee Zellweger proud of me, I'll just say that I am single again. It was not a mutual decision, but the relationship I was in seemed to be a different one than the one Thor was in. When he left, everything changed, as I feared it would. I love him very much, but one phone call a month (maximum) doesn't make me feel special.

Since I no longer have any way of contacting him, I can't even talk about this decision with him. Yes, it hurts like hell and I feel lied to and fucked over (okay, Renee probably wouldn't say that, but I'm doing my best here...)

I guess the situation was summarized quite well last evening when I had this conversation with a friend who recently popped back into my life...

W: So, does this mean Thor and you are no longer together?

HT: I guess so.

W: Oh. So, does that mean we can have sex?

HT: I guess so. Sometime.

W: Cool.

HT: But I don't want a relationship.

W: Perfect.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Truth #1

The truth is, I have not heard from Thor in over a month. The last time we spoke, he shared devastating news with me, and none of the letters I've written him since have been answered. I have tried to support him through the difficulties he's facing, but yesterday I accepted the fact that Thor has not been truthful with me. Hopefully, some of what he has told me over the past six months has been true. It would be nice to hold on to at least some of the sweet loving words he said to me.

Details will be shared when I feel ready, but I find it so interesting that my friend Verdi left this comment for Thor last week:

*** A NOTE TO THOR ***

Dear Thor,

This is rather forward of me, and not very proper, but ~ I can't help myself. I hope you'll forgive me. . .

Likely you are aware of this fact, but - you are the envy of the Western world, man. Perhaps you are a shy person; perhaps you aren't entirely thrilled to have Hot Toddy express his love for you here, almost daily. . .

BUT, Thor, you've had more beautiful prose-poems addressed to you, here, than Hadrian ever stamped coins with his lover's ( Antinous' ) visage ~ so many lovely temples, Todd has built, just for you.

Does it, or would it, or could it, detract from any of these things if I
( meekly, humbly, on bended knee ) observed that, in Todd, you've got the MAIN CHANCE, that so many of us never got, and never will ???

I know, I know - cut the Mahler. ( I am always guilty of saying far too much. ) But there's a wonderful man, out there, who loves you with all his heart, who will hold your hand through everything that could ever happen, care for you in the most unselfish way, and simply be your BEST FRIEND, until the house lights go down.

I know, I know - I'm always ( always ) too bold. I am so weak, Thor, that I've even said a word. What will happen, will happen. What you WANT, will happen.

But, unlike so many of us, you CAN have what you want: even if it's as little as a perfect friendship. ( And that's no small thing. )

I am just 40. I have had no luck in love, and no chances ~ which is OK, because I have so many stellar friends. But, unless you really, really, love opera, please don't turn out like me, Thor, singing, under your breath, every day, "Chi mi frena in tal memento ?" ( "What, what, holds me BACK, in this precious moment ?" )

That's all I have to say - and I've said far too much ( unconscionably too much ). I simply hope that you'll have the kindness, and charity, to understand that these are words
( however vain ), from a distant friend. Given in care. For friendship, or for love: please take your perfect chance.

Abashedly, from afar,
"Verdi" ~ xoxoxoxo

Thor, I love you like an ocean. I wish you could accept that kind of love.

Monday, November 21, 2005

My Enemy

"You are not as unhealthy as you think you are!"
-- Nurse Practitioner to Hot Toddy as I sat crying in her office over my recent weight gain

"We have to get you past this idea that all of your relationships will only last two months."
-- Thor to Toddy on one of our dates

"Why do you think you are so unworthy of love? "
-- Juju to Toddy on a break at work

"No, you are not pathetic for buying ready-made mashed potatoes at the grocery store. "
-- Auburn Pisces to Toddy after my trip to the grocery store

"You are such a loser."
-- Hot Toddy to himself

Last weekend I walked into a local bar, and a table of guys whistled at me. Some of them were acquaintances, and some of them were strangers. But I felt bad inside, because I thought they were being sarcastic. I thought they were mocking me. Later the same evening this guy who likes me "that way" said he envied me, because all those guys (he was one of them) had whistled at me when I walked in. I didn't tell him that I had misinterpreted their whistling and thought they were making fun of me.

A couple years ago at Pride, a guy in the bar squirted me with a water gun. I felt bad inside, because I thought it was an act of hostility. It wasn't until later that day that I realized one of my friends was squirting boys he wanted to flirt with. It occurred to me then that perhaps the water gun incident had been an act of flirtation.

Yes, I'm damaged goods. (Personally, I think everyone is damaged goods, but there are way too many people out there who won't admit it.)

I'll admit it. I've got issues.

This morning I went for a check-up and, after being weighed, realized that I have fallen off the bandwagon. Actually, I have fallen off the bandwagon and tumbled down a steep embankment into a sewage ditch but not before splitting my head open on a boulder. But, unlike the lady in the commercial, I've fallen and I can get up. I will get up.

My new doctor is very compassionate. She reviewed the concerns I'd listed on the form I'd filled out upon checking in for my appointment. She asked about my heartburn, and I told her that I haven't been going to the gym and that my heartburn usually goes away when I'm getting enough exercise. We agreed that my renewed commitment to fitness could be the key to feeling better. Then she asked about my depression, and I told her that in the past year and a half I have found myself feeling heartbroken about every three months. Then I told her that I am currently in a long-distance relationship and that I am having difficulty eating and, sometimes, sleeping. My voice started shaking. She pushed a box of Kleenex towards me, and I lost it. If I am hurting and a person shows me kindness, I'll most likely break down and cry.

I told my doctor that I've been avoiding a checkup for a long time, because I didn't want to know how much weight I'd gained. I didn't want to admit how angry I am, because I have let myself go. If I don't eat regularly, I don't lose weight. On the contrary, my body stores fat at an incredible rate if I do not keep my metabolism up by eating frequent small meals. For the past couple months I've been drinking almost every day and frequently skipping meals. And for the past year, I've barely worked out at all. As a result, I feel like a failure.

As I told my doctor that I plan on committing to myself and to the gym and to becoming healthier, she was supportive, but still seemed rather surprised. "Todd, you might need to lose a few pounds, but you are not as unhealthy as you seem to think you are."

Story of my life. Granted, it is no mystery to me why I don't feel good about myself right now. But, damn it, why must I be my own worst critic? I kick myself when I am down. I tear myself apart for the smallest things. I am surrounded by people who love me and give me their hearts, and all the time I feel that I don't deserve it.

Why would you read my blog/be my friend/be my boyfriend/want to kiss me/burn me a CD/buy me a drink/call me/write me/love me?

Inside of me, there is a "Hot Toddy". Inside of me there is also an "Ugh, Todd". They don't get along well. Hot Toddy is the kissing bandit who will kiss two boys at the bar even if they are standing two feet from each other. Hot Toddy loves to make everyone laugh. He makes fun of himself, but doesn't really mean it. He dresses great and smells great and feels great.

Ugh, Todd is a different story. He sucks. But he's going to go away now. I have the workout clothes ready to go today, and the stack of Men's Fitness magazines at my desk must weigh 5 pounds. That may be too heavy for weak lazy Ugh, Todd to lift today, but in a week or two Hot Toddy will tackle it with no problem.

Thursday, November 17, 2005


Sometimes I struggle with my ego. It is huge, and I find that there are days when I really think too highly of myself. It is really hard sometimes to be smarter and so much better looking than everyone around me. That is why I post Defirmations on my bathroom mirror and say them out loud every morning.

This morning I was chanting, "I am a gross monster and am virtually undateable" to myself and instantly felt my self-esteem lowering to an acceptable limit. But after I put some molding cream in my hair and threw on my new Michael Kors coat, I started to think I looked pretty good. So I picked a different Defirmation and started chanting all over again.

"I am getting fat and old. And I drink far too much," I said vigorously and quickly followed it with another mantra, "People don't really like me. They tolerate me!"

By the time I left the house this morning, I was a wreck. I felt completely average and realized I am no smarter than anyone else except my supervisor.

Those Defirmations are really doing the trick. Not once today have I walked into a busy street expecting traffic to stop for me. I rode in the elevator with two ladies at work and did not assume they both have a crush on me. One of them probably does, but not both of them.

If you are a raging egomaniac, you may find this little Defirmation helpful the next time you're feeling that all-too-familiar sense of entitlement:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the fact that I can change nothing, the courage to walk out of the house looking as hideous as I do today, and the wisdom to remember where my office is since I am such a stupid idiot.

God, this is a dumb post. I suck.
(See?! It's still working!)

Tuesday, November 15, 2005


Don't you hate when you feel like going to happy hour but you can't because you have to go put on your rhinestone-studded white tux and sing classics of the 1950s on a riverboat on the Columbia River?

I know we all go through that same scenario from time to time. I just needed to vent.

Friday, November 11, 2005

My Guy

Six months ago you blew into my life with all the force of a tropical storm. You shifted everything around inside my heart. You told me I'd done the same for you, and you promised we'd always be together. You held my hand, tickled my feet, stole my heart, and won my devotion. You took me hiking and washed my feet before you put my shoes back on.

For me, there has never been a man like you before. I can't and won't stop loving you now, and there will never be anyone like you in my life again. You have more of my heart today than you did yesterday or the day before that.

Thor, you and I have been through so much in six months. The logistics of being with you have never been easy, but loving you has been as uncomplicated as breathing. Seeing forever is hard sometimes when you are so far from me. But sometimes, I feel you so close that I can't believe you're gone. Last night I came home from my singing gig and hurried to the bedroom, half expecting to see you waiting for me in bed. It wouldn't be unlike you to surprise me that way. It almost seemed odd that you weren't there smiling at me when I walked into the room. Maybe you really were there with me after all. Sometimes, I can still feel you sending me your love.

I can't imagine my life without you, and I promise to stay strong for you. I know where I stand in your heart, and you know where you stand in mine.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Bitch Slapping Auburn Pisces

She acts like she's such a humanitarian.

But you should see her at CC Slaughters demanding more boy porn, hooting and hollering for Patron Silver (which CC's now serves), and trying to steal handsome barbacks away from me.

The barback-stealing is what riles me most. Yes, I am spoken for, but if a person knows that I find a certain new barback to be extremely appealing, that person should step off and allow me to bask fully in said barback's attention. The other night as Auburn Pisces' flirted with MY barback, I felt my face growing red with anger. Moments before, my barback and I discussed adopting babies together someday. Sure, he's straight, but he'd make a good father, and I told him so.

Then this hussy - this Jezebel - this woman who claims to be my friend and is also my landlord started flirting shamelessly with the father of my adopted children.

After a couple minutes of restrained silence, I finally found my voice.

"Hey, Auburn Pisces. For the first time since I've known you, I'm seriously considering bitch slapping you."

The weird thing is, she didn't seemed threatened. Not in the last. Maybe she really does have ovaries of steel.

Monday, November 07, 2005


Last night I had a dream that I took a bunch of free popcorn from CC Slaughters at happy hour and put it in a big white bucket. Then I put Saran Wrap over the bucket of popcorn and brought it home. I lovingly placed the bucket of stolen happy hour popcorn on top of my dresser so I could eat it later.

I think I may go to the bar too much. Does anybody want to take a stab at interpreting this dream?

Friday, November 04, 2005


Two days ago I was walking through the lobby of the building where I work and saw the most beautiful male specimen. The specimen was so well-muscled and immaculately groomed, that I decided to further study him. I examined my specimen from head to toe, but primarily focused my examination on the subject's torso. I walked by several times and noticed that he was speaking to one of my co-workers in a language that is foreign to me. The topic was possibly construction or digging or some type of manual labor, because my specimen's biceps flexed as he made extremely manly rugged sexy gestures.

There are a limited number of reasons to linger in the lobby. First I pretended to listen to voice mail on my cell phone while trying to hide the lust manifesting itself in my eyes and one other place. Then I strolled over to the stamp machine a few feet away and simulated window shopping for postage stamps. I contemplated the myriad of choices in the stamp machine and tried to seem as if the decision-making process was baffling me. I reached into my pocket for change, making some minor adjustments while I was down there, and proceeded to count out money for stamps.

The two men were still talking, and my beautiful male specimen stood in a very macho stance, legs apart and t-shirt straining against his pecs. My specimen continued talking about digging or building things or, possibly, the idea of wrestling me to the ground and making me submit to his will. I knew my charade had gone on for far too long, so I left the lobby. I only glanced back seven times as I headed for the elevators.

If I were capable of subtlety, the entire examination could have remained completely undetected. Nobody would ever know of my obsessive interest in the beautiful male specimen.

Today in the bathroom at work, I chanced upon the co-worker who had been chatting with my foreign muscleman. That is a complete lie. I was walking to the mailroom, saw the co-worker going into the men's room, and followed him in with the sole intention of finding out more about the guy he was chatting with the other day.

"Hey, was that your brother you were talking to the other day in the lobby?" I asked nonchalantly, wiping drool from my mouth. I had that question planned two days ago when I made the decision to research my subject further.

"No, he is - - "

I interrupted my co-worker in an attempt to seem like I had a reason (other than lust) for asking the question. I didn't want to be too obvious. "Oh, I thought he was your brother. Because he kind of resembles you. And because I heard you both speaking - what was it - Russian?"

"It was Romanian," said my co-worker.

I then started asking random questions about the origins of the Romanian language, listed a detailed description of my own passing familiarity with Swedish and French, and tried to figure out how to get to my point: Who is this beautiful male specimen!?

I washed my hands, but I couldn't leave the bathroom without answers. So I actually started preening at the mirror like a Hollywood starlet in a 1940's film. I brushed my hair back from my face, ran a finger across my eyebrows, and then brushed my hair back some more. It was as if I were sitting at a vanity in a black and white movie talking into the fake mirror that is really the camera. All that was missing was cold cream and a towel wrapped on my head.

I had already completely messed up my chances of getting back to the subject of my beautiful male specimen with my inane talk of foreign languages. So, I did the only thing I could think of. I backpedaled.

"Anyway. He looked like he might be your relative or somehow related to you."

"I know him from church," said my co-worker. I choked back a sob and left the bathroom heartbroken. I knew that asking if I could go to church with my co-worker sometime would be, well, a little too transparent. As if I weren't completely see-through already.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Singing on the Queen

Yesterday when I posted, I thought it would be obvious that #5 was the lie, but I guess there are other parts of my life that are equally unbelievable. All those other things really happened. I retract what I said about Jaden. She is not a hoot. She is actually, "a little spitfire". (Better, Jades?)

Tonight I shall mount the Queen of the West and sing classic songs of the fifties and sixties. That, too, is a part of my life that seems a little bit unbelievable, even to me. Sometimes when I am on the riverboat in my rhinestone studded white tux jacket dancing and singing "Love Potion No. 9", my life seems a bit unconventional.

Today my heart feels big and sore, trying to push right through my skin....

I miss Thor so much. We talked a couple days ago, and at least I got to tell him I love him and hear him say those same wonderful words to me. I know there is nothing anybody can say other than "hang in there", but I wish there were magic words to make me stop feeling so sad. Maybe singing tonight will help me to put my focus on others instead of on myself.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005


So much has happened lately at CC Slaughters. Guess which one is the lie.

1. I met Jaden, my BFF, when she came to Portland. She is a hoot. A hot hoot. But my BFF wouldn't let me call her by her name. Kept making me call her Nancy or Lorraine or something. I didn't cooperate. I was, like, "Sorry, Jaden, for calling you Jaden. From now on I will be sure to call you Lorraine, Jaden."

2. Clayton came up to me while I was playing Word Dojo and apologized for throwing a beer at me and Thor when he saw us kissing. He said he wants to be friends. Then said that I deserve to die alone. Then he said he didn't really mean that. Then he asked me not to call him Angry Bear anymore. Then he said he loved me. Then he told me that he knew I had a thing for Thor from the moment they both took off their shirts in The Vortex to see who had better chest hair. Ummmmmmm.....

Sometimes it is hard to think of something to say in reply to certain things people tell you.

3. I met The Professor, who reads Hot Toddy's Toaster Oven and sent me an e-mail letting me know he was living in town for a while. He teaches at a local college, has a fabulous head of hair, a sparkling personality, and a hot boyfriend. We are so much alike, obviously. Well, except for the professor part.

4. I threw Smarties at Jesus on Halloween night. He didn't notice, which really caused my faith to waiver.

5. Somebody offered to buy me a drink, and I said no.

Spot the lie and win a prize. You must be present to win.