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A Night Out

Bruce was my plus one for the Denver Art Museum’s preview of the recently renovated museum tower and newly constructed welcome center (the round building in the photo).  It was my first big event without a mask since the pandemic.  All attendees had to be vaccinated (yeah!).  The cocktail party dress code resulted in a well-dressed crowd.  I opted to skip the black-tie dinner event on Friday night as the cheapest ticket was $1,000.  Everyone was in a festive mood.  I saw so many people I hadn’t seen since the pandemic.  It was a most enjoyable evening. 

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A Trip To The High Country

Bruce and I drove to the high country on Saturday morning to look at building lots.  Bruce has finally started acting like an actual real estate agent as opposed to playing one on social media.  He’s forming an LLC under his holding company to construct houses in the high country.  His father is providing some of the financing.  Bruce’s father gave instructions to buy as much land as possible so we headed to the mountains to check out lots.  Who doesn’t like spending someone else’s money?  We picked out four lots.  Negotiations will start this week.  Six other lots are on the second choice list.  Bruce still has to secure an architect and builder. 

It was good to see Bruce display his knowledge of real estate.  He’s been to the high country several times exploring various areas and scouting lands.  I was surprised by all the work he has put into this project.

His first listing in town goes into the MLS this week.  Bruce also has a handful of clients looking to buy houses in the lower end of the market. He’ll be busy this week showing houses.  Bruce was off to an extremely slow start but his pace is rapidly accelerating.  I believe real estate is his calling. 

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Recent Viewings

I hit a few of the co-ops on Friday night by myself.  I had been out with Bruce two nights in row.  The fundraiser on Wednesday and a gallery opening on Thursday night.  I wanted to have art night without watching Bruce work the room, which he can do like no one else.  I’m also still on a hiatus from Bart after a rather unpleasant conversation about hateful statements he makes.

A few pics from recent viewings:

Louis Recchia, Inside Out, oil on canvas, 36 x 48, $750, Pirate Contemporary Art.
1,Tracey Russell, Something about Cicadas, acrylic on panel, 30 x 30, $1,400, Core New Art Space.
Michael Hedges, The Dreaming Tree, oil on canvas, 70 x 62, $9,500, Space Gallery.
Karen Scharer, Thunder After Dark, oil on canvas, 72 x 60, $13,500, Space Gallery.
Kathryn Oberdorfer, In Gratitude, acrylic, oil pastel and pastel on canvas, 36 x 48, $700, Spark Gallery.

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Giving Back

Last night I was Bruce’s plus one at a fundraiser for one of his causes.  The event was held in a stunningly-beautiful house in Cherry Creek situated on a double lot.  The open-floor plan house with a sleek modern interior had doors opening onto an expansive patio and pool which easily accommodated the hundred or so attendees.  The trans community was well represented at the art auction event.  A local drag queen was the MC.  I didn’t find any art I was interested in so I donated a couple of hundred bucks, which, paled in comparison to Bruce’s contribution as an event sponsor.  Bruce also dropped a bundle on art in the auction.  I met a few Bruce’s coworkers, one of which was a strikingly handsome man in his early thirties.  He was most engaging which made the evening very enjoyable. 

Bruce dropped me off a little before 10.  I googled the house before I went to bed.  It had recently sold for $7.5m.  Given Cherry Creek real estate prices, the house is easily worth penny.

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Rooftop Cocktails

Bruce met me a gallery opening on Friday afternoon decked from head to toe in Ferragamo.  He was wearing an exquisite pair of custom lace-up alligator shoes.  The shoes were almost as expensive as the art.  The shoes became a topic of conversation. 

After the gallery opening, Bruce hosted a small cocktail party on his rooftop deck.  Mike called me on the short drive to Bruce’s townhouse.  He wanted to know the parking options as he was trying to decide which car to drive.  The Bentley he recently acquired or his G-Wagon.  I told him the G550 would be easier to park given the only option was on-street parking. 

I arrived at Bruce’s house first and let myself in as his front door was unlocked.  His house was a mess.  His other guests were arriving at 6 and there was clutter everywhere.  It was type of clutter that a person who grew up with domestic help would have, who never learned to clean up after themselves.  When Bruce arrived I told him we needed to pick up the place.  I pointed out his guests had to walk through four floors of clutter to get to the roof.  Bruce didn’t care as the guests would be on the rooftop most of the night.  We barely made a dent in mess when the first guests arrived.  A handheld vacuum stayed mid-way up the second flight of stairs all night.

It was a most enjoyable evening even though Bruce only offered drinks.  Not a nosh in sight.  Mike and I were the only single guests.  The other guys were couples.  All were friendly and handsome with interesting tales to tell.  Conversation was lively all night.

The guests departed for dinner just before 9.  Mike was meeting his nephew at Capital Grille while I headed home. Before we parted ways at our cars, Mike remarked about the messy house, the sink full of dirty dishes and unkempt guest bathroom without a hand towel.  It seems Bruce never learned about entertaining, which, is odd given his mother hosted lavish parties and fundraisers in the mansion he grew up in. 

I spent the rest of night snacking while watching a Netflix dating show about young adults on the spectrum.  The most interesting evening was a good way to kick off the weekend.

Pamela Joseph, Doritaenopsis (orchid), acrylic, gold leaf and mixed media on plexiglass, 40 x 45 x 3, 2002, $18,000, Michael Warren Contemporary Art.

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Covid Scare

Last Saturday morning I got a text from a gym pal.  Even though he was fully vaccinated, he tested positive for Covid.  We had a conversation at the gym on Tuesday.  Then it hit me.  I may not have allergies due to the ongoing poor air quality from forest fires but may have Covid.  I text Bruce to let him know as we hit the gallery openings on Friday night.  He panics.  We both start searching for rapid Covid test center.  Everywhere we checked is booked until Monday.  We settle for a drive thru test center which takes 24 to 36 hours to get the results.

I received the results on Sunday morning.  I was negative, which was a relief.  Bruce also tested negative. I am thankful for the friendly and efficient staff at the testing center. I’m also thankful the results were received a few hours shy of 24. And there was no charge to us. That’s a good thing.

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The Have and Have-nots

After getting my booster shot yesterday after work, I hit the gym before meeting Bruce at a gallery opening.  Upon entering the gallery we were greeted by the owner and the manager.  Scotch was offered but we both declined as I had a few stops to make and Bruce was stoned. 

Bruce advised the owner he wasn’t going to buy the sculpture on loan on his rooftop deck but fell in love with a more expensive sculpture. Bruce decided to pass on the sculpture for now as he’s dropping $5K on weekend in P-town with the new boyfriend.  He said he needed to economize, which means flying commercial. 

As we were leaving the gallery, Bruce asked me if I wanted to come over and help paint his media room.  Seriously?  I was wearing a linen shirt and summer bucks. He offered to loan me a pair of pants and suggested I could paint shirtless. I declined the offer as I had other openings to attend. If Bruce can afford a pricey weekend in P-town he can afford to hire a house painter. 

We parted ways.  I headed to the co-ops while Bruce drove home.  The co-op openings were a mixed bag, but mostly positive.  I ran into Miss Y who was with two ultra-chic lesbians who looked like they just walked off the runway of a cutting-edge fashion show.  They were friends of Miss Y’s live-in girlfriend who was out of town on business.  Miss Y bought a sculpture which will be a nice addition to her collection. 

After the co-ops, I met Miss Y and her posse, which had grown in size, at a new gallery in the Golden Triangle just a few hundred feet from The Art Hotel.  The gallery has a DJ and a bar.  It’s owned by the nightclub next door which financially supports the gallery.  A huge pride flag hung in the window of the gallery. It was a welcoming sign.  The crowd was definitely more upscale and well-dressed than the co-op crowd.  The art was stellar and expensive.  I didn’t see anything under a grand and most were over 5.

I called it a night a little early.  I bid adieu to Miss Y and the fashionista lesbians.  I was feeling really fatigued.  Perhaps it was booster shot side effects.

I walked by The Art Hotel valet on the way back to my car.  There was a Jaguar SUV and a McLaren waiting to be parked.  I passed the DAM with its Gio Ponti building sitting dark after a $150m renovation. The reopening this fall has been monetized with a series of splashy events.  Next, I encountered a row of tents pitched on the hell strip in the block before my car.  Expensive art, $200k sports cars, and a pricey art museum renovation yet there are people living in tents just a few blocks from the Capitol.  It’s becoming a city of the have and the have-nots.  How sad is that?

The drive home was uneventful.  Ferdinand arrived home as I pulled in the driveway.  Moments later a G-Wagen blocks my driveway.  It’s Mike.  He knew I was out and about because he was tracking me on Scruff.  He wants to go for a drink.  I use booster shot fatigue as an excuse. I skip my usual Friday night candle-lit bath. I’m in bed a little after 10 headed to dreamland.         

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From Adventure to Death

Friday night’s adventure was an interruption of my normally repetitive life.  The rest of my weekend was filled with errands, house chores and a gym visit.  I doubt anyone wants to read about a trip to Costco or repairing the irrigation system.

Mike called on his way to work this morning to let me know Larry died of lymphoma.  Larry was a guy who was part of a crew who hung around my friend Bill’s pool in the early 90s.  Larry could best be described as body by God, brains by Mattel.  He looked great in a Speedo.  The crew split up after Bill died.  Some continued to party while others quit the scene to concentrate on careers and a few others died. I lost track of Larry after Bill died.  I heard Larry moved to Palm Springs to work as a cater waiter.  Our paths never crossed again.  Larry was working at one of the swank suburban country clubs as a bartender when he died.  The country club hosted a memorial service for Larry on Sunday which Mike attended.

Mike then told me about a man who committed suicide in front of his neighbor’s house last week.  The man, who did not live in Mike’s neighborhood, poured gas over his truck and himself, got back in the truck and set himself on fire.  One of Mike’s neighbors watched in horror as the man stumbled out of the truck on fire and collapsed on a lawn.  Mike was not home at the time.  He arrived home just after the body was taken away.

Mike’s cul-de-sac of affluence and serenity has been devastated by this horrific event.  The police investigation discovered the man was involved in a domestic dispute with a woman in an adjoining neighborhood.  The woman was hospitalized.  The man chose Mike’s neighborhood to kill himself. 

Friday night was fun and exciting while Monday is quite gloomy so far. 

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An Art Adventure

Bruce invited me join him for the First Friday Art Walk.  We met at the sister gallery of gallery where he bought his last painting.  He was invited to come early to preview a new exhibit.  He currently has a $10k sculpture on loan on his rooftop deck from the gallery. Bruce showed up in double monk strap Ferragamo’s, Hermès sweater and Maison Margiela pants.  I was decidedly more casually dressed in J.Crew.  Drinks were immediately offered.  I had water while Bruce enjoyed a beer. 

After touring the exhibit, the curator, who used to live in Denver but now has a primary residence in Amsterdam and farm in Portugal, opened a bottle of apple cider produced on his farm.  The cider was too sour for my liking but I drank it as the curator was very proud of his product.

We left the sister gallery and drove over to the main gallery.  Thankfully, a parking place had been reserved for Bruce.  Parking was scarce due to the First Friday art crowds.

The gallery manager showed us a few paintings in the back room from our favorite artists.  There were some stellar works.  Bruce texted a few pictures of the paintings to his new boyfriend who lives a few states to the east.  A $20k painting was put on hold.  Bruce thinks it will be perfect for the new house his father is building.  Framing decisions were made for his painting which is still on exhibit.  We left with sufficient damage done.

Our next stop was a clay gallery a few doors down.  I introduced Bruce to the owner.  She gave him a tour and made artist introductions. Bruce purchased a ceramic bowl which needed to be glazed and fired.

Further down the street a stop was made at another high-end gallery.  A $5k painting was put on hold. It’s by the artist who painted the painting Bruce gave me for Christmas.

We wandered around a few of the other galleries.  Nothing was appealing.  We enjoyed the street scene while we wandered back to have a second look at the $20k painting.  Street tacos were picked up a block from the gallery.  Bruce conversed with the vendor in Spanish tipping her $20 on a $15 purchase.  There would be no pricey post-art dinner at his favorite restaurant.

Back at the gallery we had dinner at a long table on the gallery floor while a few people wandered around the gallery.  Shots of Scotch were offered.  Interesting conversation with the gallery manager flowed effortlessly while we ate. 

Soon it was time to close up shop.  We bid farewell to gallery manager before hopping into Bruce’s car.  Bruce invited me back to his house to smoke pot and relax on the rooftop deck.  I declined the offer as I had been up since 5.  I didn’t want to spend the night at Bruce’s house or have to Uber home.  Bruce dropped me off at my car by the sister gallery.  We parted ways after another art adventure.

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I hit that galleries by myself on Friday night.  I needed a break from Bart and his negativity.  I often wonder how he has a desire to keep living given his bleak look on life, society, his job and the future of our planet. 

I was asked two times where my boyfriend was during my gallery tour.  Both times I explained that Bart was just a friend and we were not involved.  It seems people assumed Bart and I are a couple given we attend so many gallery openings together.  I guess there could be worse things people could assume about me.

Saturday morning I ran into Mrs. N at the grocery store.  We hadn’t seen much of each other even though we live on the same street.  Pandemics can have that effect on neighborly relationships.  We had a nice conversation in dairy aisle.  Mrs. N told me she heard I had a new boyfriend who has a Lamborghini.  I told Mrs. N that Bruce was not by boyfriend and, in fact, I’m still single.  At least she didn’t remark on the age difference.  Mrs. N did extend one of those vague invitations to come over for cocktails sometime. 

Two very handsome men in my life but neither one is right for me.  The search continues.

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