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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...

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Five Things about Hot Toddy

Matty tagged me to list five things about Hot Toddy that everyone needs to know. I will list five things with the stipulation that you understand these five things are not binding in any way. If, for example, I change one of the things about me in the next couple of minutes (it happens, people) you can't whine about it and say, "But, Hot Toddy's Toaster Oven, you said you didn't like cantaloupe when you posted your five things, so how can you be opening a 24 Hour Cantaloupe Store?"

For now, right this very second, these are my five things:

1. I decided that I don't want to be an actor right now. I am not sure where this idea came from. All I know is that, somehow, the committee that meets daily in my brain arrived at this decision and informed me this weekend that I am to reinvent myself as a jock. This year I am going to start watching sports (other than erotic wrestling videos) and will be attending the Gay Games in Chicago this summer. I will be competing, mostly at the bar, in several events including, "Capture the Wrestler's Attention" and "Who Wants to Be a Bodybuilder's Husband?"

2. In order to fully become a jock, I will have to do more than just watch sports. The committee in my brain says I have to play sports (besides erotic wrestling) too. So, I will be playing softball for one of the teams sponsored by CC Slaughters this year. We met on Sunday to talk about the schedule. I hope I will be on The Toddtender's team, but he'll probably be on one of the higher level teams.

3. I requested to be placed on a team with teammates who think it is "cute" when you mess up. I still want to win, but I just want everyone to understand my role on the team. I am there to provide cuteness and to make people laugh. The other players are there to provide athleticism and make us win games.

4. The first thing I need to do is start calling it "Softball Practice" instead of "Softball Rehearsal". I think I called it rehearsal about five times on Sunday. I also found out that, in softball, the spectators are not called "the audience".

5. I do not like cantaloupe. It makes me gag. I will never open a 24 hour cantaloupe store.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Camp Songs

Happy Friday. It's time for a campfire sing-a-long.

Did you go to camp as a kid? Or did you ever work as a camp counselor?

I did both. I grew up going to camp 4-6 weeks every summer. I went to music camp and Boy Scout camp in Missouri. The same summer I would go to a music camp and a Bible camp in Minnesota.

I know just about every song ever sung around a campfire or in the evening program or at the dining hall breakfast table.

I'm a Little Pile of Tin
Pass it On
Arky, Arky
Father Abraham

And did you know you can sing "Coming Round the Mountain" at the same time as "When the Saints Go Marching In" as a group song? You can also add in "I'm Gonna Sing, Sing, Sing" and "Swing Low Sweet Chariot" if you want to make things really chaotic.

This morning at 5 a.m. my eyes snapped open and I found myself inexplicably chanting these words:

"Hi. My name is Joe. I work in a...something factory...."

I couldn't remember where Joe worked. He worked in a something factory. This was a camp song (no tune - just a chant) that I haven't heard in, easily, 20 years. How would I ever remember where Joe worked? Would I have to call my friend Lynda? We've been friends since the age of 14, and she knows every camp song too.

Do you grasp the magnitude of my insanity now? I was in bed at 5:30 a.m. looking up at the ceiling chanting, "Hi, my name is Joe, I work, in a....I work in a.....I work in a...."

"I work in a BUTTON factory."

(That's it! He worked in a BUTTON factory!!) Once I got the button factory part, the whole "song" came back to me...

"One day the boss came up to me. He said, 'Joe, are ya busy?'
I said, 'no'.
He said, 'Turn the button with your RIGHT hand...'

I googled the song this morning (busy day at work!) and discovered there is another line of the song that my counselor at camp never taught us. Apparently, Joe had a wife, a dog, and a family. I was never told this. Maybe my counselor was gay and didn't want Joe to have a wife and family. This validates the fact that there is a gay agenda, doesn't it? Gay camp counselors purposely teach small children songs but do not mention the option of having a wife or a family. They want to destroy the very fabric of our society.

Well, let's not dwell on the gay agenda right now. Let's be happy. Here, hold my hand and sing with me. "It only takes a spark, to get a fire going...."

Do you know a camp song? If you do, you can put your song in the comments for everyone to join in and sing. But PLEASE no "Kum Bay Yah"!

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Workday Chat

My best friend, The Handsome Prince, has a boyfriend, The Math Whiz, who works here at my company. We hardly see each other since we're in different buildings, but every now and then we get a chance to play a little game that is all our own. We used to play it all the time when I lived with him and The Handsome Prince. I pretend to hate The Math Whiz deeply, and he pretends to yearn for my friendship above anything else. It's great. Nobody else thinks it's funny but us. See if you agree. Here's our instant messaging chat from this morning:

Math Whiz: Remember that time that I invited you to lunch and you said that you couldn't cuz your break was over but then an hour later when I came back from lunch you were sitting in the exact same spot and you abruptly told me not to question your schedule.

Math Whiz: remember?

Hot Toddy: I am on the phone with HR right now - I am letting them know about an employee who is abusing Instant Messaging. Sorry it is taking me so long to respond to your barrage of messages.
Hot Toddy: HR wants to know - I mean, I want to know your employee number, please.

Math Whiz: but last time I gave it to you i got suspended without pay for two weeks
Math Whiz: I am sure it was just coincidence

Hot Toddy: Also - do you have any empty boxes at your desk or can you get one? You might need it this afternoon.

Math Whiz: but i am still a little nervous

Hot Toddy: Do you have a lot of personal pictures and stuff at your desk? Just curious.

Math Whiz: um yes
Math Whiz: here I can tell you each and every one of them
Math Whiz: they all have great little stories behind them
Math Whiz: or better yet I can bring all of them over to your cube and just hang out with you and go over them all

Hot Toddy: When you box them up this afternoon you can drop by and show them to me unless for some reason your badge stops working for this building at 1pm.
Hot Toddy: I mean - -

Math Whiz: hey wait
Math Whiz: what?

Hot Toddy: I mean - that is silly. Why would your badge stop working

Math Whiz: yea
Math Whiz: like it did those two weeks i got suspended without pay
Math Whiz: right after i gave you my badge number

Hot Toddy: that is crazy talk - i don't know why i said that
Hot Toddy: If HR lets someone go, I am sure they will give the person plenty of notice in case the person wanted to corrupt files on our system or something
Hot Toddy: It is not like someone is just going to drop by your desk and escort you out of the building

Math Whiz: but during my suspension they put this black hood on my head and something like soap bars in pillow cases were hitting me all over my torso
Math Whiz: it all just seemed suspicious to me
Math Whiz: like an act of hatred or something.

Hot Toddy: Anyway- I try to only use IM for business purposes as clearly stated in our company policy, so I am going to have to close now. Have fun using IM to chat with all your little friends - you never know if or when that privilege might be taken away from you, so enjoy it while you can.

Hot Toddy: Good day sir

Math Whiz: but...

Hot Toddy: I SAID GOOD DAY!!!
Hot Toddy: And.......scene.

Math Whiz: lol... aaahhh it never gets old.

Hot Toddy: i know - we are ridiculous

Math Whiz: okay now that i got that out of my system I can get back to work.
Math Whiz: bi bi

Hot Toddy: buy buy

He's right, though. It never gets old. And the scary thing is we just keep getting better and better at this routine.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Hot Toddy in a Window

To date this is the only picture I have of myself from my trip to Japan. I think we're getting together to exchange photos and reminisce about the trip soon, so maybe I'll have more pictures to post.

(Pony, I am leaving the poor alignment in that last paragraph intentionally, because I know it will drive you crazy). I carried a camera around for a couple days, but there was so much to take in, and I rarely remembered to snap a picture. Thank goodness gcb took pictures.

In this photo, I'm standing in a window on the 60th floor of the Sunshine City Building (if you don't know Japanese, there's probably no point in clicking that link), where Superman and gcb and I enjoyed a panoramic view of Tokyo.

Our group was very diverse, and I thought that we got along great. One evening at our ryokan (inn) we met Phillippa, an acting and modeling agent from New Zealand. Phillippa and I met while I was taking a shower. Actually, I was getting out of the shower, and she was standing at the sink in our shared bathroom area. Then we met up again while I was in the ryokan lounge drinking with the guys. She and I joked around a bit, and Superman pretended to be jealous. "So, who's your friend?" he snarled.

20 minutes later, you'd think Superman and Phillippa had known each other for years. The three of us got along very well. I think this happened because she knew we were gay guys, and some women just really dig gay guys, which works out well because a lot of us gay guys just really dig women. Initially, Phillippa was told that two of us in the group were gay. She picked out Superman right away. According to him, this is because he's the best looking one of all of us. After correctly identifying Superman as a Superfag, Phillippa then guessed the other gay guy must be either gcb (the one on the right in the photo - not the one with blue hair) or Metro (shown with his fiance, Juju). Wrong! I guess I was her fourth guess since I was drinking whiskey (surprise). If I remember not to hold out my pinky while I'm drinking whiskey, I can look pretty butch. Or maybe just pretty. Or maybe just pretty drunk.

Anyway, Phillippa accompanied us out for a night on the town. Things went pretty well, but after a certain point (the point where everyone was drunk) Phillippa and gcb started arguing. I didn't hear the whole thing, but she was complaining about the way Americans stereotype New Zealanders. He did little to diffuse her anger when gcb replied, "I don't think Americans even really know about New Zealand or acknowledge its existence, so I wouldn't worry about our stereotyping you." He was kidding, of course, but it didn't sit well with our Kiwi friend. You know how sensitive all those people can be. Every last one of them. Not that I'm stereotyping.

Things never went south with Superman and Phillippa and I (both literally and figuratively speaking), so the next morning I received a gift from her. It was a tin of mints labeled "Sentimintal Guy Charlie Brown Peppermints". It was such a sweet gesture of kindness. So I started crying really hard. I'm just kidding. I didn't cry, but I'll bet you totally believed that for a second, didn't you? Yeah, you did. It's because I cry a LOT. Too much.

In fact, on the way to the airport, I watched two old women saying goodbye to each other. One of the women got on our train and sat next to us. Through the window, she waved goodbye to her friend once again. "If they don't stop, I'm going to lose it," I whispered to Superman. Moments later, as the train pulled away, my eyes filled with tears. I subtly looked over at the woman on the train and saw that she was leafing through a magazine and was not the least bit upset. As I wiped a tear off my cheek, I started chuckling. Superman looked over and saw me laughing and crying at the same time and seemed baffled.

"I'm crying because that woman had to say goodbye to her friend. The funny thing is that woman isn't even crying because she had to say goodbye to her friend. I'm crying, and she's the one who had to say goodbye!"

I am such a "sentimintal" guy.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Three Things

I am trying to get some pictures ready for posting. I'm stealing them from the gcb's site at the moment. I'll let him know at some point.

Hey, gcb, I'm stealing pictures from your site.

Okay - now that I've gotten that out of the way, I need to say three things before I can post about Japan:

1. Yesterday I went to check out the website of the cult I used to be involved with. Sometimes I go on these secret reconnaissance missions to see what my former "brothers and sisters" are up to. (Mainly, they just want to dominate the world with their "one true church" of Christ.) While I was on the site looking at the "family album" I saw the hottest college wrestler, who is one of the "brothers". I ended up googling for pictures of him all afternoon and was quite successful in my quest. He is almost hot enough to make me go back to church. We could study the bible together and then have a sleepover at his house.

2. Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince. I won't spoil anything, but I finished the book and I'm pissed. If J.K. Rowling ever gets stuck in a snowy embankment near my cabin, I'm tying her to the bed and keeping her prisoner until she rewrites the ending.

3. I forgot the third thing.

Monday, January 23, 2006

First Words

Writing an entry this morning feels almost like I am starting a blog for the first time and need to introduce myself. There is so much to tell, and I'm not sure where to begin.

I managed to post two entries from Japan, and both times I felt an incredible sense of release afterwards. I realize that I need Hot Toddy's Toaster Oven more than I thought. If I can't write, I feel frustrated.

This morning as I got ready for work, I thought about how thankful I am to have my own bathroom. In Japan we shared a bathroom with the other guests at the ryokan, so it is great not having to chat with strangers as I brush my teeth. Sleeping, however, is another story. I loved sleeping with Superman. Well, not sleeping with him, per se, but sleeping in the same room as him. Something about the sound of a man breathing deeply next to me at night actually helps me sleep better. Since I have been home, my sleep is not as restful. Maybe I am just suffering from jet lag. Or maybe I just need a superhero of my own.

Speaking of superheroes, I did think of Thor while I was in Japan. I tried not to, but on the day that would have been our eight month anniversary, I was so sad. I almost felt him reaching across the ocean and grabbing my heart. I wish my love for him didn't have so much power over my emotions. I'm still working through things. It will take time.

I am going to miss the Excelsior cafe in Ikebukuro where we had breakfast most mornings. That cafe was specially selected because there were food menus to point at, so I could get a consistently tasty breakfast (ciabatta egg sandwich) and always knew how much it would cost (only 480 yen).

I will also miss the best inflight magazine ever. I was obsessed with this publication from Air Canada. Ask anyone who went on the trip with me. I couldn't shut up about enRoute. I may have to schedule more trips on Air Canada just so I can read great articles like this one about Psychogeography on a regular basis.

More Japan stories soon....

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Gomen Nasai (So Sorry!)

Sorry for not writing much on this trip! You can't believe all we are doing. We have three days left before we return home.

I have one quick story and then I have to go because Metro is standing behind me waiting for me to finish typing and he is sweating (it has been several hours since our last metal arcade fix). You can read more about medal arcades in gcb's blog.

So, the other day we're shopping and I was hungover. Those are two themes of this trip. Shopping and hangovers. Anyway, I bought a Japanese grab bag that had this little envelope taped on the outside. Inside the envelope were several little capsules. "I hope to god these are energy pills," I exclaimed as I popped a couple of them in my mouth and downed them with water. Superman stared at me incredulously. "Did you just take pills from a grab bag? Pills you can't even identify?"

I figured nothing too terrible could happen to me. And there was a chance the pills would cure my hangover or give me energy. I continued exploring the strange items in my grab bag. Chips and candies and crackers, mostly. I finished looking at everything in the bag and realized there was a theme. I told Superman that I had a theory maybe the pills I took were candy. He started laughing hysterically. I have never seen him laugh so hard. When I put another couple pills in my mouth, I tried biting into them. Chewing gum. It was chewing gum. Superman nearly choked to death as he laughed at my mistake.

The gcb and Grizzo are doing a great job of writing about all the details of our days. I suggest you go visit this blog if you want to be updated on our trip - there are several entries to read, although for the most part the entries are boring because I am only mentioned a couple times.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Moisture Dessert

We are in Tokyo and having a great time. Most of the time when I travel abroad, I learn some of the language in advance so that I will not sound ignorant. (By the way, I cannot use contractions while writing this post because I cannot find the apostrophe key on the keyboard) - but in Japan I am surviving by pointing at things and speaking English (loudly - if you talk louder, everyone knows non-English speakers will understand you)

This morning I turned on the television in the guest lounge at our Ryokan (traditional Japanese inn) and I asked Superman, "Why am I turning up the volume? I can't (found it!!!!!) understand anything they are saying anyway?"

You would be proud of me - I am being a true writer - carrying my journal everywhere and writing down every little detail so I can remember to share it all on Hot Toddy's Toaster Oven. (thank god i found the apostrophe before i tried to write my blog title - otherwise I would have had to type "The Toaster Oven Belonging to Hot Toddy")

Last night we went to a 7-11 (here they are called 7 and i Holdings - no idea why) and we all bought unidentifiable snacks and drinks and passed them around. I bought something called a Vodka Burn and it turned out to be basically a Vodka Red Bull (you can buy liquor at convenience stores - this place is paradise!!) and Devo bought something called "Moisture Dessert". After the gcb tried it, he said, "that tastes horrible" - to which I replied, "It is called 'Moisture Dessert' - what did you expect it would taste like? You can't expect a product called moisture dessert to be tasty, can you?" We decided that the words "moisture" and "dessert" really shouldn't ever be used together.

Metro is amazing. He can pop off all these Japanese phrases like it's no big deal. I am so proud of him - and thanks to his efforts we won't starve. I mean, I can always point at the menu and speak loudly in English, but it is nice to have a backup plan.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Fetus Cocktails

Last night I was sitting with Willie at the bar and a guy came up beside me and ordered the strangest thing.

I turned to this stranger (strangers are just friends we haven't slept with yet) and asked, "Did you just order a Human Embryo?"

He looked at me like I was some kind of weirdo, which I'm not. I am not just some kind of weirdo; I am a very specific kind of weirdo.

So, in response to my very reasonable question, "Did you just order a Human Embryo" this guy acts like a prissy queen and rolls his eyes at me. Then he walks off to look for people who would apparently treat him like the royalty he thinks himself to be.

Yes, sometimes I say random things to people just to see what they will do, but this time it really wasn't a pick-up line or even an attempt to make casual conversation. I just needed to clear up this crazy situation. I swear he ordered a Human Embryo. So, I had to call J the Bartender over and asked him what that guy had ordered.

So Bartender J tells me what the guy ordered. Now, don't you think Amber Ale sounds a little bit like Human Embryo? Just a little?

No? Well, it sounded like Human Embryo to me. If you ever order an Amber Ale I'll bet you can't do it without thinking about this story from now on.

This incident begs the question, if I can't even understand English, what the hell am I doing traveling to Japan where they speak Chinese or Korean or whatever?!?

(I leave on Monday!)

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

In Bed with Hot Toddy

Paper yen or coins? Are there many tall Japanese guys? And what do you call those bag things that hang around your neck to keep your passport and money secure?

No wonder I'm sleeping alone. What man in his right mind would put up with my random musings so early in the morning?

this is an audio post - click to play