Archive for November, 2008

The Feast

K is flying home this afternoon. I can’t wait to see him. I need a big hug.

I’ll be cleaning the house today and starting preparations for the Thanksgiving meal. K’s parents were planning on driving up from Durango so we planned a dinner with just the four of us. Then they decided to stay in Durango. K and I had turned down other dinner invitations so we quickly put together a guest list. Cindi, Judy, Martha, Lori, Patty and Jerry will be joining us for dinner. It should be a great time. Here’s our menu:

Oysters Bienville

Roast Turkey with Black-Truffle Butter and White-Wine Gravy

Sage Stuffing

Yukon Gold Mashed Potatoes

Yams with Bourbon

Green Vegetable Medley

Cranberry Tangerine Conserve

Pumpkin Tart with Anise-Seed Crust

Homemade Chambord Truffles


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I Want To Be A Lesbian

My friends, Martha and Lori, loaned me the first four seasons of The L Word on DVD. I started watching season one Friday night. I’m hooked on this show. All of the women are beautiful, well dressed and have great hair. They have well designed living spaces. They are all employed but seem to spend the bulk of their time meeting at a coffee house. The coffee house is run by a woman named, Marina. She is hotter than hot. All of the women on this show are hot. I find it rather odd that in the eight episodes I have watched I have not seen a woman larger than a size 10. Where are the large women? Where are the bull dykes? Where are the butch women? Where are the not so attractive women? Where are the older women? Wouldn’t it be fun to be a chic lesbian, live in West Hollywood, hang out with your friends all day while your only concern is meeting the woman of your dreams?

It’s time to get back the real world. I’ve got a house to clean. I have to go to the grocery store. I have to prepare for Thanksgiving. I have to look for a job. I have to do cardio. I have laundry to do. I have to wash the car. I’ve got a normal life.

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Next week I’ll be assisting my friend, Jackie, with a photo shoot. She’s one of the best construction photographers in the country. An architect has hired her to shoot a new high-rise condo building that he has designed. I’ve been on other shoots with her and we always have a good time. I love observing her creative process. I’m always encouraging her artistic side. It should be a lot of fun.

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A Conversation With My Father

Today is my father’s birthday. It is one of the two days a year that I talk to him. I called to wish him a happy birthday. The conversation turned to my job search and my financial situation. My father offered to give me $10,000.00 to help me get by. I was absolutely shocked. My father was offering money. This was a first. I told my father that I appreciated the offer and reassured him that I did not need any money. I told him I had sufficient savings to get by until I could find another job and that, if needed, we could live very comfortably on K’s salary. He told me he felt relieved that I was financially stable. My father said he had no idea I had a six-figure income.

The monetary offer has left me bewildered. What happened to my father? Has he mellowed in his senior years? Is there a possibility that I may actually have a decent relationship with him for rest of his life? Have I been poisoned by my mother’s version of events since I haven’t been talking to my father? Have I misunderstood him all of my life? Has meeting K made him realize that I am a fully functioning adult in a serious relationship? Did we ever really know each other as mature adults? I have a lot to ponder.

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A Thanksgiving Memory

I think you may be tired of reading about my friends dying and the pending loss of employment. Thanksgiving is just around the corner so I want to share a memory of a meal I’ll never forget.

I was around twelve years old when this incident happened. It was Thanksgiving day and my mother was busy preparing the feast. My mother has always been known for her baking skills but give her a piece of meat and she will cook every ounce of juice out of it. Unfortunately, this story is not about an overcooked turkey. The day before Thanksgiving my mother had made an apple pie and several pumpkin pies for desert. Our house had a small kitchen and counter space was at a premium so my mother had placed the pies on top of the kitchen cabinets for safe keeping. My mother was standing in front of the stove attending to cooking pots. My mother asked my father to get one of pumpkin pies down so that it would be ready for serving after the meal. Instead of getting a chair or a stool to stand on, my father reached up and inched the pie off the top of the cabinets with his fingertips. I was watching from the dinning and had no idea all hell was about to break loose. My father had succeeded in getting the pie off the cabinet and was holding it over his head. He backed up a step and bumped into my mother. My father lost his balance and the pie flew out of his hands and landed on the floor upside down behind him. My mother lost it. She started screaming at my father calling him every name in the book. He yelled back. The ensuing fight was a blur of son of a bitches and goddammits (my parents never said fuck but goddammit was the equivalent for a good catholic family). My brother, my sister and I watched in horror. My mother got so enraged that she pulled a kitchen chair over, climbed up on the chair and proceeded to throw the rest of the pies on the floor while cussing out my father. This was one of the worst fights ever and there were many. I ran for my room to hide followed by my brother and sister. I don’t even remember who cleaned up the mess. Dinner was served a little later. It was a peaceful meal. Conversation was almost nonexistent except for the saying of grace. The only words I uttered were asking for second helpings. I was afraid that another battle would erupt. All of us acted like nothing happened. Needless to say we didn’t have anything for desert that year. Looking back on that day I can now see the humor in the situation. It was like a scene out of a bad movie. But on that day I was terrified.

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Why We’re Angry

I think everyone should read this post on Dogpoet.

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My friend, E, lost her battle with pelvic cancer on Saturday. The funeral is at 4 p.m. today. I almost burst into tears in the grocery store when Gigi told me. I’m so sad. Why does life have to be so fucked up at times?

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The Visit

The trip to St. Louis went a lot better than I expected. Although at times I was in a rather strange mood given the fact that I have less than two weeks to find a job to avoid being laid off. The weather was a good reminder of one of the reasons I wanted to leave the area. It was cold, windy and humid most of the weekend.

Friday night K met me at the Four Seasons after work. We had dinner with my brother and sister in law at Chez Leon in the Central West End. We had a great time catching up. My brother gave me a few pointers on how to handle my parents the next day and which topics of conversation to avoid.

Saturday morning K and I had breakfast at the casino next door to the hotel and then picked up my parents. Not much has changed at my parent’s house. Other than new living room furniture everything else was the same. I almost gagged when I entered to house. Both my parents are smokers and their house has forced air heat. It was worse than being in a bar. My parents were warm and inviting to Keith. We talked for about a half-hour and then took a drive to Pere Marquette State Park near Grafton, IL to have lunch. Getting my parents out of the house was one of my brother’s ideas. Get everyone on neutral territory so that my parents will be on their best behavior. We had a good day. My parents seemed to like K. After the drive we returned to my parent’s house and visited for a few hours. I could not wait to get out of their smoke filled house. I felt like I had spent a night in a smoky bar. Neither one of my parents smoked while we were there but the house is infused with cigarette and pipe smoke. It’s so gross. The once white refrigerator is now harvest gold because of their smoking.

That evening K and I had a quiet dinner in Laclede’s landing and talked about our future and what to do about my employment situation. He is being very supportive but I wish he were home with me. K wanted to gamble so we went to the casino next to the hotel. After about fifteen minutes I had to leave. The cigarette smoke was driving me crazy. I had to get out of there. I returned to the room and took a long hot shower trying the clear my lungs. I then took a nice hot bath. K returned to room and joined me in the bath after showering.

On Sunday K and I picked up my parents and met by brother, sister in law and nephew at Macaroni Grill near Creve Coeur for lunch. It was a nice lunch. After lunch we went to my brother’s house in Ballwin and relaxed and talked. The conversation went well except when my father used the “N” word. I panicked. K looked at me. I looked at my brother. Everyone froze except my parents. I chose to not say anything about use of the “N” word and changed the topic of conversation. My brother had advised me not to admonish my father about his use of that word in order to keep the peace. My father claims he is not a racist but uses that word freely. I completely disagree with my father on this point. I felt conflicted about the situation. I really wanted to correct him but I was a pussy and just let it go. Perhaps if this were not K’s first weekend with my parent’s I would have said something. I wanted to get through this weekend without a huge argument. K later told me how shocked he was when my father used the “N” word. I warned him in advance but it is still shocking to hear that word used in conversation.

I expected the worst possible outcome and was pleasantly surprised at the outcome. My parents still argue and take the opposite side on most issues. A disagreement would start between my parents and I quickly changed the conversation so that the situation would not escalate. I’m glad the trip is over. I’m happy that my parents have met the man I have been sharing my life with for the last sixteen years. My mother told me she liked K. My father said nothing about K. My brother is now pressuring me to visit more often. I realize that eight years between visits is really too long to wait.

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I finally got a chance to talk to Lynn. As I suspected there has been a lot of drama in her life. Both of her adult sons have moved back into her house due to financial problems and pending bankruptcies. Her mother had a stroke and may not be able to live on her own. She went from having an empty nest to a full house in a matter of weeks.

Lynn told me about her new employer. It’s a small telecom company based in Oklahoma. She is their first black employee. She is their first employee of any color other than white. Everyone is a republican. She spent last week in Oklahoma at the home office. The lunchroom had a life size cardboard cutout of John McCain. Lynn was horrified. All of her peers were talking about how great it will be when McCain is our new president. Nobody asked Lynn whom she was supporting and she did not even attempt to bring up her volunteer work for Obama. She felt like she was in the enemy’s camp. The election results were not discussed on November 5th. It was as if it never occurred. Lynn’s going to stay with this firm for a little while since she’s picking up a lot skills and knowledge that will enhance her resume. She spends most of her time at job sites on military bases and travels home to Denver every two weeks. Lynn doesn’t mind having her sons at home since she’s usually away. However, her mother’s health may force Lynn to find a new job that will allow her to spend more time at home.

I’m hoping to get together with Lynn some time after Thanksgiving. I always have a great time with her. I remember one time Lynn and I were talking to my friend Ross. Ross made a remark about a nearby woman having a nappy kitchen. Lynn just about died laughing. She didn’t think white people know the term nappy kitchen. Pretty soon we were all laughing about dirty kitchens (another way to describe a nappy kitchen). It was a hoot. Lynn is so much fun. I really miss being around her every day.

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I Will Beat A Bitch’s Ass

I listened to the voice mail message and heard a woman’s voice say, “I will beat a bitch’s ass”. I instantly knew it was my friend Lynn. I hadn’t heard from her in months. I immediately called her and got her voice mail.

I think it was back in 2005 when Vanity Fair did a profile on model turned mogul Kimora Lee Simmons. In the article Kimora was quoted several times saying “I will beat a bitch’s ass” in reference to what she would do to women making a play for her husband, Russell Simmons. Lynn wanted to read the article so I gave her my copy of Vanity Fair. She thought Kimora came off as “boojwah”. We gad a good laugh about the article. We soon adopted the quote as our own. We would leave on each other’s voice mail. It always made us laugh.

I miss Lynn. I loved working with her. I was saddened when she chose to leave the company and pursue work with a smaller family owned firm. She’s always in a great mood even though her personal life can be filled with family drama at times. If she doesn’t call me back I’ll guess I’ll have to drive over to her house and beat a bitch’s ass.

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