Day 1 In The Land of Corn

Well I made it. I’m in the Land of Corn as this man calls it. I’ll be here till the morning of the 26th. That means I have 17 LONG, VERY LONG days in front of me. Actually I’ll be busy for most of them. At least off and on. The actual scope of the projects has yet to be figured out by anyone least of all me. I’ll have my first face to face meeting tomorrow so I’ll be a little bit better equipped to let you know what’s going on then.

So my day. I didn’t get up till noon. I slept more than 10 hours last night. This after staying up all night the night before to get my light plot finished. When the alarm went off I was still fast asleep. In fact, I was in the middle of dream where everyone hated me because I was bitching about something. This was at my undergrad school although everyone who was there was older. There was a bunch of stuff that happened, including my roommate dumping me for someone else because I was complaining about the state of the dorm we were going to be living in. There was much screaming at me, and embarrassing me by everyone involved. And then just as I woke up I found my friend SK and she was finally nice to me. She agreed to be my roommate and we were just headed to the dorm when the alarm went off. It was a very disturbing dream. I think it was forshadowing of things to come.

Once I was up, I had my usual pot of coffee and watched the news. It was a slow new day. The only thing of importance was the Olympic torch thing in San Francisco. But at that time, there wasn’t much to report. After the news and coffee I showered and then I started packing. I usually don’t pack until the day of the trip. I make little piles in my bedroom (or sometimes the living room). Each pile is important and I stick things there so I know I won’t forget them. So all my piles were complete, and it was time to make it fit in the bag. I probably should have used my monster bag since I was going to be gone so long. But it weighs a ton without clothes and I have never taken it to the airport that I didn’t have to unload something to get it under 50 pounds.

So I used my large carry on bag. It all fit…but barely. By the end I was stuffing socks and underwear into shoes and the corners of the bag. It took about 20 minutes just to get it all to fit. Then it was time to pack my computer bag. It’s just as difficult to pack as the regular bag. First in my medications. I always take them with me just in case the airline loses my bags. I can’t miss a dose. Next I actually need my computer and all it’s cables, mouse, mouse pad, etc. Then my phone charger. Then the book I’m reading and the book I’m going to be reading. Then all the paperwork that pertains to the show. A couple of legal pads to take notes on. A couple of diet cokes, because they cost 10 million dollars a piece at the airport. And then I look around and try to figure out what I’m forgetting.

Today I didn’t figure out what I was forgetting till I was half way to the airport. I forgot the cable to my camera. So as of right now I can’t download pictures to my computer. I sent an email to the tech director on the show asking if he knew where I might find one. If he doesn’t have an answer then I’ll order one and have it sent here. I can’t not post pictures of my wonderful adventures.

At 2:45 the car arrived to take me to the airport. Getting to any of the three airports in the metropolitan area can be very tricky. It can take three minutes or it can take 90 minutes or more. So you have to build in time to get there. I always take a car service. It’s much easier having a car show up at an alloted time and you don’t have to worry if there are no cabs. I won’t take public transportation because it takes too long and I don’t want to carry my bags any farther than I have to. The other nice thing about my taking a car is that I charge it to my friend Lou’s account. Then he expenses it to his company. So neither of us really has to pay. Just don’t tell anyone this.

So I get to the airport in exactly17 minutes. I had given myself an hour. I had also allotted two hour at the airport because I was flying American Airlines and the other news story of the day was that AA had canceled 850 flights in the US today. I was a little worried. I had checked online and my flight was scheduled to depart with no delays and had not been canceled but I was also worried that there would be a million people in line and it would take forever to check in. Exactly 36 minutes after I left my home, I was at the airport, checked in and through security. What the fucks that about.

So now I had to waist almost three hours. So I though I would get some lunch. What I quickly discovered was the only real restaurant was outside security. So back out I went. I went to Something Rock restaurant. It was like a knock off of the Hard Rock Cafe. I grabbed a seat in the back and the waitress approached me. I ordered a beer and a chef’s salad. Not so healthy/healthy all at the same time. And so my beer came and I made a couple of phone calls. Then lunch arrived and I ordered another beer. Then the salad was taken away and I had another beer. Why so many beers. I hate to fly. Actually I don’t mind flying. It’s the take off that scares me. So I always have a few drinks or take some Attavan. Sometimes both. It takes the edge off and I usually don’t mind the take off so much.

So I had my three beers and wandered back through security and down to my gate. I still had an hour-fifteen to go. So I made some more phone calls. I talked to my roommate Chuck, and my friend Donna, and my friend Angie. And while I was talking to Angie, I was cruised by a little 20 something frat boy. At first I was surprised but we he beckoned me to follow him. What could I do but follow him. So I told Angie I would call her back and followed him. And he went into the men’s restroom. At this point all I could think of was Larry Craig getting arrested and that really wouldn’t make my day. But I wanted to see what he was up to so I followed. He went to the urinal, and I went to the one next to him. I stood there long enough to see his erect penis smile at him and then went away. It was a very nice penis I might add. When I got back out of the restroom I called Angie back and started walking toward my gate. Just as I got there they called my name to come to the desk. And so I said good-bye to Angie and went to the counter. They shouted at me to go to the plane they were just about to close the gate.

Damn, I’d been on the phone not paying attention and almost missed my flight. It didn’t help that I was a little tipsy and had already changed the time on my watch so I was kind of thinking I still had an hour. Whoops. Luckily, I got on the plane but they’d given my seat away so I was in the back next to the bathroom. This wouldn’t have been so bad but every time the door opened the most foul smell in the world came sweeping out. It smelled like a port-o-potty that hadn’t been cleaned in weeks. It was disgusting. I tried to tune it out. So I put on my I-pod and went to sleep.

And the plane arrived exactly on time. I got my rental car which took all of about three minutes since it’s billed through the school and all they needed was a license to make sure I was who I was supposed to be. So then I was on my way. First stop the movies. I had decided to stop by and just see what was happening. And the answer was not much. I did meet a nice boy from the University of Iowa. But that’s a story for another time. Maybe even for another blog. And then I headed east to my little town of 12 people.

I got here around 10:30 and of course the place was dead. They roll up the sidewalks and lock everyone away for the evening. Even McDonald’s and Dairy Queen were closed. I went and go the key to my place from security and then drove to my humble abode. As always it is in Iowa, it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting.

My arrangements are such. It’s an old house that has been turned into sleeping rooms. There’s one bath up and one bath down that are shared by the many guests of the house. Tonight I think I’m the only one here, but it was 10:30 when I got here so they may have been in bed already. My room consists of a bed and a dresser and a night stand with a lamp. That is all. No TV. No desk. It’s a little bare. I’ve already sent an email to the tech director at school saying that I need something to use as a desk with a chair so that I can work on my computer. Right now I’m sitting in the kitchen which is ablaze with flourescent lighting. It’s the only surface in the apartment that I can sit at. The rest of the house is such. There is a kitchen that is stocked with a couple of plates and some silver ware. There is A skillet but no pans. There is a stove but except for the skillet nothing to cook with. There is a coffee pot and a microwave and a toaster. It’s all white so with the lighting it’s BLINDING in here.

After I explored the accomodations, I was off to Wal-Mart for Diet Coke. One can not live on water alone. I got to Wal-mart and I wanted to get coffee, a coffee mug, some half and half, sweet and low, and a few things to nibble on. I had been told I would be staying in a furnished apartment so I thought I would be some place where I could cook. That’s obviously not the case. I did buy some microwavable dinners so that I don’t have to eat out everyday. As it is eating out consists of McDonald’s, Hardee’s and Dairy Queen. The KFC is too far away to get to. There’s also a smoked filled restaurant called Kelsey’s which I went to when I was here last spring, but it’s hard to eat when the entire restaurant is smoking. I had forgotten that you could actually smoke indoors in some places.

So after Wal-mart is was home to put everything away. Unpack. And then make dinner. I bought a sub sandwich at the grocery which I took a picture of today. The reason I got it was because it made me laugh. You’ll understand when I post the picture. Then I watched an episode of Law and Order: Criminal Intent can I tell you how much I hate Vincent D’Onofria. He spends the entire show with his head cocked to one side, yelling at people. He is know Christopher Meloni. Who is my boyfriend. He just doesn’t know it.

And that is the wrap up of Day 1 in the Land of Corn, better known as Iowa.

PS: It’s late and I’m too tired to proof this. If there are any typos, misspellings or other confusions please forgive me. I know not what I do.

Party Life…

I gave up my shift at work tonight.  I was dead tired and the thought of being there all night was even more exhausting.  So I went in and it took about three minutes to get someone to cover the shift.  Of course I could use the money but I wasn’t sure if I could do a 9 hour shift tonight the way I was feeling.

So I got home earlier than normal this evening only to discover that a party was being thrown next door.  The noise level is deafening.  The music is so loud the walls are shaking and the dishes keep rattling in the cabinets.  I’ve been debating for the last 30 minutes about how long I’m going to let this go on before I call the cops.  I kind of wish my roommate were here because the party would have ended hours ago, but unfortunately he’s out of town, so it’s just me.  I also don’t want to be an ass, because god know’s I’ve been the one to throw the party before.  I figure I’ll wait till I’m ready for bed and see how loud the noise level is in my room with the door closed.

Oh, What a day…

I’ve been kind of bummed all day.  For no reason really.  It’s just how I feel.  I think it might have something to do with being up so late last night.  I’m no longer used to the really late nights after being in Maine for a month.  I’m used to being in bed by 11:00 or midnight at the latest and getting up by 9:00.  Last night I got into bed at 3:00 a.m. and probably read for 30 minutes before I turned off the light.  And then I woke up at 10:30 a.m.  I tried to go back to sleep, but it was no good.  I finally got out of bed at 11:00 a.m.

And then I made the mistake of stepping on the scale.  I discovered that I had gained a pound since yesterday for no apparent reason.  Nothing’s more depressing than realizing that you are gaining weight when you are trying to lose it.  I’m sure it’s some fluke, but it’s made me think about being fat all day.  I was sitting on a machine today at the gym and like all gyms this one is surrounded by mirrors.  As I sat there I found myself staring at my reflection.  I did not like what I saw.  The face is okay.  But everything south of that needs to go.  My gut is huge.  My legs are huge.  My chest is huge.  And my butt’s the biggest of all.  For all my trying to remind myself that I am almost 30 pounds lighter and on the path to being skinny, all I could see was the fat Maddog.  At one point I almost left the gym.  It felt useless to be there.  No worries, though.  I stayed.  I didn’t lift weights as long as I should have, but I got through most of the exercises and then did five miles on the treadmill.  Hopefully tomorrow I won’t feel like this.

I’ve been on a cleaning kick since I’ve gotten home.  Before I start my job, I’d like everything to be in it’s proper place.  Which means organizing the DVD’s and CD’s.  Straightening up the bookcases and getting rid of the books that I’ve already read and will never read again.  Going through boxes, and drawers and organizing things, throwing things away, or finding a home for them.  So far I’ve done half my office space, the dining room and one bookcase.  This also included dusting and cleaning everything thoroughly.  I also now have a pile of about 30 books sitting beside my desk that I’m going to take to my favorite used bookstore down in the East Village.  They’ll pay me for some of them, but I’m not too worried about the pennies I’ll get.  I’m more interested in donating them to a place that I like.

In the past two days I’ve applied for two theatre jobs.  They are one off free lance gigs, but they’d both be great experience and would further my contact base in NYC.  I’ve always said you get your next job from your last job and that’s always proven to be true.  So keep you fingers crossed that these two opportunities come through.

Life changing decisions

My visit to New York was very short lived.  I got back to Portland about 7:45 this evening.  The drive back was fairly uneventful although there was a fair amount of back up entering Massachusetts.  Of course it was nothing compared to the traffic and back up going south.  I was very thankful I was headed in the right direction.

I got here and quickly let the puppy out and then headed down the street to my favorite Maine restaurant The Front Room.  It’s a very cozy neighborhood restaurant that has amazing food, for reasonable prices.  The service is always excellent and you couldn’t ask for a more casual place to drop by and have dinner.  It’s only a couple of blocks from Michelle’s house so as soon as Max’s business was taken care of I walked on down.  I was starving by the time I got there.  I woke up late today and decided to skip breakfast, which I know I’m not suppose to do.  But what can I say, I’m not perfect.  I ended up having a very nice Caesar salad, followed up by the grilled pork chop with grilled vegetables.  It hit the spot and the best part is that it’s all allowed on my diet.

Speaking of diets.  Today is day 18.  Most days it’s okay, but there have been a couple of times I’ve started to say fuck it and have some ice cream.  Especially in New York.  The city is filled with good food that’s bad for you and while I was there I was definitely tempted.  I managed to get by unscathed though, by the skin of my teeth.

So what’s in store for the week.  Well I guess the first thing I might talk about is that I think I’m going to stay in Maine for a while.  Yes,  I have an apartment in New York that I’m paying rent on, but although I love my apartment and I love my roommate, New York has not felt like home since I got back there last summer.  I feel like a stranger there and very alone.  Trust me when I say that’s there’s nothing worse than feeling lonely in a city of 8 million people.  I’ve sort of come to believe that I should have stayed in San Diego.  I had friends there that I loved a lot and I had pretty consistent theatre work.  In NYC the jobs have been few and far between and because the city is so inundated with actors, designers, and directors, it’s hard to get your foot in the door if you are not known.

So what will I do in Maine.  Well first and foremost, I want to continue losing weight.  As you can see in the side bar on my sight I have a ways to go.  I don’t like the fact that I haven’t taken care of myself in the last few years.  I have a whole list of reasons this occurred.  In just under a year my father died, I broke my foot, my appendix burst and my boyfriend dumped me.  By the time it was all over I was spent.  I had nothing left to give and just didn’t give a damn.  It didn’t help that the boyfriend dumped me because I had gained 20 pounds.  (I’m not making this shit up).  I went back to San Diego and said fuck it.  And for the past four years I haven’t even tried.  I have eaten what I wanted, when I wanted it with no concern about my weight or what it was doing to my body.  Oh, I noticed but when you are in the throws of depression it’s hard to do anything about it.

Now I have to.  In the past four years I’ve gained more than a hundred pounds.  I’m not proud of it and god knows it embarrasses me.  There’s hardly a day that I’m not embarrassed to walk into a room.  It doesn’t matter if I know the people or not.  This weekend working on the show that I did, I hated that I had to be around people who knew me when I weighed 180 pounds.  I feel judged and frowned upon.  Of course it’s just as bad meeting new people.  Before Michelle left she asked me if I wanted her to introduce me to some of her gay male friends.  I immediately said no.  I do not want to be known as the fat guy.  And yet there’s no getting around it.  It’s hard to pretend you are thin when you weigh 292 pounds.  But it’s what I do.  It’s the only way I can get by.  Of course I very rarely look anyone in the eye any more and I haven’t cruised someone on the street in years.  I mean, really, who would want to sleep with the fatty.

And the moral of this story.  I have to lose weight.  So that’s my first agenda here in Maine.  I have to continue to lose weight no matter how frustrated I get.  I can’t take another year of feeling the way that I do.  I just can’t.  I’ll try to keep you posted on my successes and failures.

Second of all, I have to get a job.  I need to find something to pay the bills while I continue to look for free lance work as well as a full time teaching gig.  Unfortunately right now the well is dry.  So I have to find something that will allow me to pay my rent in New York, keep my bills current and let me start working on my student loans.  The catch to all of this, is that it needs to be a job that I can ditch for a couple of days or even weeks if I get free lance work.  Unfortunately, I haven’t figured out what this job should be.  I could go back to waiting tables, but who wants to be the 42 year old waiter at Applebee’s?  I could get a temp job but my typing skills suck.  And there are other jobs available, I’m just not sure how open they’d be to me missing if I get real work.  That all being said, I do have a job interview on Thursday.  I’m not even quite sure what’s it for, but I took the action and now I have to let go of the result.  If it works out, great.  If it doesn’t then I’ll look for something else.  And as always I’ll keep you posted.

And third of all in Maine, I need to keep working on my real career.  I need to put myself out there.  I need to send out resumes and portfolios and stop by and see people and try to get my name out there.  All I need is the first 6 or 7 jobs here on the east coast and the rest should follow.  It’s just getting those first few jobs that’s difficult.

And thus begins a new chapter in my life.  Maybe I should change the name of my blog?  Who knows.  I’ll think about it.

Ten “FUCKS” and counting…

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Sorry about not posting last night.  I was in the mood of all moods and knew that I’d just spend two pages ranting and it would do no one any good.  I’m in a little bit better mood tonight, but just barely.

So why was I in a bad mood?

Well it started when my roommate called to tell me that “Princess” as he’s come to call her had not sent a check for her portion of the utilities.  Princess is the sublettor if you are joining the program already in progress.  She had promised me a week ago that she would drop a check in the mail.  We are still waiting.  Unfortunately, that means I’m responsible for her portion of the utilities.  Which means I have to leave my roommate a check for almost 250 bucks when I leave this weekend.  This does not make me happy.  First of all I don’t have a spare 250 bucks.  Not many people I know do.  Second it pisses me off that she’s fucked me once again.  I don’t remember the last time I got fucked this many times and didn’t at least get breakfast out of it.  All told she’s cost me about 2,500 dollars since this little engagement began.  Not to mention that my roommate has made it very clear that I’m no longer allowed to sublet my apartment.  So in reality she’s fucked me for a lot more than 2,500 bucks.

My bad mood continued when my friend Michelle didn’t call me again yesterday.  Earlier in the week I got an email from a NYC director looking for someone to light his show next week.  It didn’t pay a lot, but it would have been a great credit and there’s a good chance that it will be reviewed in the Times which is a good thing if the work is good.  Unfortunately, I’ll still be house sitting for Michelle next week and I’ll still be taking care of Max.  So the only way this would work is if Michelle could get someone to take Max for a couple of days.  So I returned the email to the director and said yes I would love to do it, but it was contingent on Michelle dealing with the dog.  As soon as I got the initial email I called and left a message to tell Michelle what was going on and told her to call me as soon as she could.

Now for a little background information.  Michelle and her girlfriend Lisa are camping in the middle of nowhere Michigan.  They barely have a bathroom let a lone cell service.  So getting in touch with them is almost impossible unless it truly is an emergency.  However, I was asked, since I’m taking care of Max to leave a message each day so that they’d know every thing was okay.  Just a quick check in, they’d check their messages, and then they’d know all was well.  So I’ve been doing just that.  Leaving messages each day, saying call me as soon as you get this message.  This all started on Monday.  Michelle finally called me this morning.  Five days after the initial phone call.  Seems they haven’t been checking their messages and so they didn’t know to call me.

I was pissed as hell.  Why the fuck had I been wasting my cell phone time to call them to check in if they weren’t going to check their messages.  Why the fuck did they set up the fucked up system in the first place.  So of course she tells me it’s no big deal to get someone to watch Max while I’m in the city.  There are a couple of options that should work.  This message was exactly ten hours after I sent yet another email telling the director that I’d been unable to get in touch with my friends and therefore felt that the best thing to do would be to turn the show down now, before it was too late to find someone else.

FUCK!  FUCK!  FUCK!

Of course I emailed him back this morning but it seems to have been too late.  I’ve heard nothing from him and I don’t really blame him.  Who would want someone as wishy, washy as me doing their show.  So not only did she cost me money, a design credit on a show with potential, she made me look like a complete idiot.  I’m not one to stay mad and for the most part I’m over it, but it still pisses me off that this happened.

So when I got home last night I was pissed.  The dog didn’t come near me because she could sense something was up.  She hid in the living room all night.  And as I said, I would have posted something but it would have just been one long FUUUUUCCCCCCKKKKKK!!!!! and I didn’t see what good that would do.

Just as a reminder.  I’m in NYC this weekend.  It took about 7 hours to drive down today.  It’s supposed to be exactly five.  It rained for the entire trip, and for the last couple of hours or so traffic moved at a steady 15 miles per hour.  If I was in shape again I could have run faster than we were driving.

That being said.  The air conditioner’s on.  I don’t care that it’s 58 degrees outside.  It’s humid in here and I haven’t had my own air conditioner all summer.  And besides, I’ve paid for a month of utilities that I didn’t even get to use.  So the air’s on, the bed is made and in about 12 minutes I’m going to be curled up in my big queen sized bed.  Yippee!

Have a great weekend everyone.

I got hamper’s of ironing to do, and my diet pill is wearing off…

Not much to report today.  Saw the movie Hairspray.  It was toe tapping fun.  It won’t change your life, but it was definitely worth the 11.00 bucks I paid for it.  Of course I got the musical theatre gene with my gay gift bag so it’s hard for me not to like it.  I was upset that two of my favorite songs from the show were missing.  Well sort of.  Mama, I’m a Big Girl Now is played during the credits but The Big Dollhouse is missing all together.  Hmmm.  They definitely should have asked my opinion before they cut it.

The review I read today commented on John Travolta’s performance I kind of agree with.  They noted that both Divine and Harvey Fierstein did the role of Edna without the help of hours of makeup and latex and performed it with their own strength.  It’s clear that John spent hours in the make-up chair and most of his weight is padding.  His performance is good, but it would have been nice to see a “real” full size man in the role.

I also got to witness some of the things that my roommate has been bitching about with my sublettor.  I got up today at 4:30 (no comments please) and went out to the living room to find the air conditioner running and all the windows open.  She acted completely surprised when I called her on it.  How stupid do you have to be not realize something as simple as this.  I feel bad that the roommate has to deal with her for 5 more weeks.  It can’t be too soon when she decides to move out.

One last note.  I haven’t recieved a comment in four days.  Was just curious if something is wrong with my blog or have I pissed you guys off some how.  It may be that everyone’s just too busy.  Either way, someone please say something and let me know you’re out there.

I’ve clicked my heels together…

And now I’m home.

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It’s 1:11 and I’m sort of getting ready for bed.  I’ll talk about that in a minute.  I got home around 11:45.  And when I say I’m tired, it’s an understatement.  My friend Pete and I have been on the road since 10:00 this morning.  The trip took almost two hours longer than it was supposed to because of a major traffic accident in Cincinnati and because I-80 is completely under construction in Pennsylvania.  After a while it was almost a joke because we’d only drive 10 or 12 miles and hit construction again.  So what should have taken 12 hours took almost 14.  Ugh.

It also didn’t help that we didn’t get to bed last night at my mom’s house until almost 3:30 and my mom woke me up at 6:30 to say hello and chat for a bit before she left for work.  I did manage to get about another hour of sleep before the alarm went off to get up.  So if you do the math you can see that I’ve only had about 4 hours of sleep.  So you can’t exactly call me rested.

The best part of my evening?  Getting a call from the girl subletting my apartment telling me she wasn’t going to be staying at a friends after all, but would be staying in my apartment.  The call came not two minutes after I was boasting about getting to sleep in my queen size bed tonight.  Not the little twin I’ve been sleeping in, but an honest to god grown up bed.  I could have reached through the phone and hit her.  I stayed calm and finished the conversation and then yelled like an angry man when I was off the phone.  I then picked up the phone and called my roommate to tell him about her latest antics.  He was not surprised.  He’s taken to calling her the “Princess” because she acts as though she’s entitled to the world.  He spent the first 10 minutes of the conversation telling me about new and inventive ways she’s been annoying him.  And then he pointed out per my post last week, that indeed after this experience he would be hard pressed to ever let me sublet my room again.  So not only is she annoying him, she’s fucked me.  Gotta love her.

It does feel good to be home though.  I actually got to watch The Daily Show which I haven’t seen in 7 weeks.  And I got to sit on my sofa.  And just lounge there without some drunk 19 year old actor coming in to be noticed.  It will be nice to spend time with grown ups this week.  That is if you don’t count the girl living in my apartment.  Okay so she’s not all bad.  She just told me that I can sleep in my own bed tonight.  But still it would be nice if she weren’t here.

Tomorrow I have to run errands galore.  I have to go the bank, to the barber, and then just do some normal type errands.  And then come home and sit in my underwear and watch TV because no one will be home until around 10.  I can hardly wait.

And with that my friends.  Good night.

Day One: Oklahoma

Day One Oklahoma:

I don’t know if I’m cut out for this. I’m 20 years older than most of the other participants in this little extravagance. Many of them are still in college. Once we get past the subject of what beer should we drink there’s very little else to say. But I’ll come back to that…

My day. My day started around 9:00 when the alarm woke me. I jumped up and began packing. Last night I had made little piles in the living room of things I needed to bring with me, but none of it was in a bag. I’m sure Chuck was wondering what the hell was going on when he got up this morning, because there was stuff on the couch, the chair, my desk, the floor, and the kitchen table. So I jumped out of bed at 9:00 and began the task of packing. First I had to go downstairs to pick up my laundry which I had dropped off at 2:30 to have done. Thank God for the 24 hour laundry place downstairs. I arrived back upstairs and promptly dumped my laundry on the bed. Oh, Fuck. I forgot to tell them not to use dry sheets. I love the smell, but I’m severely allergic to them. Before I could even get that first thought out I began sneezing. I searched through the laundry found them all and dumped them in the trash.

Then I began packing. I was packing to be away for 4 weeks, living in a dorm. So I needed to pack as many clothes as I could, towels, sheets, plus all the materials I need to function as a designer. I started throwing things in suitcases, trying to balance the weight. I have the mother of all suitcases and it’s huge, but unfortunately it almost always weighs more than 50 pounds and the airline wants to charge me for it. So as I’m packing, I put all the light stuff in the big bag…towels, pillows, blankets. I put the tripod, printer, scripts (4 tons of paper) in the little bag. After about 30 minutes most everything is in and the bags don’t feel too heavy so I hope for the best.

After I’m packed, I jump in the shower. I take the quickest fucking shower ever. I’m in and out in 5 minutes. I get out, dry off and realize that I’ve packed the clothes that I want to wear. I quickly find them, pull them and get dressed. I spend the next 20 minutes picking up around the apartment doing a couple of favors for Chuck in the kitchen and getting ready to leave. At 10:45 the phone rings. It’s my master electrician. (Little bit of theatre information at this point. I design the lights. I figure out where they go, what color they’ll be and when they’ll be turned on and off. I have a Master Electrician or M.E. who is in charge of implementing my design. In a perfect world I wouldn’t lift a finger. I send off the design, come back in two weeks and it would be in the air ready to go.) So my ME calls. He’s called to tell me that he doesn’t own the software program that allows him to access ALL the information contained within the design. He doesn’t own the program that let’s him know what color the lights are, where they are focused and what they do. How the fuck is this possible. Everyone owns this program who even thinks about being in lighting. Hmmm. One more notch in the hat for things going wrong. I explain to him that I’m waiting for the car to pick me up and that we’ll have to wait to discuss it when I get to Oklahoma. He says okay.

I haul all of my shit into the hall, lock the door, go downstairs and am greeted by the grumpiest driver ever. He doesn’t speak to me as I load my stuff into the car. I get in, and buckle up. At which point he asks me direction to the airport. What the fuck. The whole point of having a driver is so that I can sit in the back seat and sleep on the way to the airport. I don’t know how to fucking get to the airport. If I knew that I’d be the driver. I tell him what I think is the right way and we are off. It takes a few minutes but finally we are on our way. It was a rough start but we get there without incident.

I check in. I scan my credit card so the automated machine can find my reservation. I check my two bags. I select two seats. I print my boarding pass. I go the ticket counter. At this point I say a little prayer. Please don’t let my bags weigh too much. I plop both of them on the scale hoping this will confuse them. I have my id checked. I’m asked the questions about liquids. I’m then asked to take the small bag off the scale. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Yeap. My big bag weighs 65 pounds. How is that possible. It has two towels, two pillows and a blanket. I’m asked to distribute the weight more evenly. I explain that the other bag is too full. That I’m stuck and will just have to pay the fee. I take out my credit card and am about to pay when the person says…”Oh, never mind. I know what kind of day you are about to have.” I get a little scared at this. She tags my bags and then makes me promise to be nice to every ticket agent I come in contact with today. I say okay. At this point she explains that all the morning flights to Dallas have been cancelled. All the afternoon flights are postponed. I’m checked in but there’s no guarantee that I’m going anywhere. I’ll have to check in at the gate once they finally announce the time the flight is leaving. And so I’m checked in with a promise of niceness and 50 dollars richer than I should have been.

The travelling isn’t so bad. My 1:40 flight has been postponed until 3:30. There’s no guarantee I’ll make my connection into Oklahoma, but we’ll cross that bridge later. So I sit in the airport and wait. I’m actually not so bad at it. I took a poll of the boys walking by that I would sleep with. I’m finding that my type is switching to older men as I get older. Not that I would turn down any number of the cute young ones playing around in the airport today. We finally boarded the flight at 3:30 and at 4:07 left NYC. There were still no guarantees that I would make my connection but what can you do. The flight was packed. I was sitting next to a guy equally as large as me and we were squished into a chairs like sardines. We arrived in Dallas at 6:30.

It was my lucky day. My connecting flight was the plane I had just gotten off of. I got off the plane, peed, got a Diet Coke, and then got right back on the same aircraft. I was one row behind where I started. The flight was not crowded this time and so the middle seat was empty. What wasn’t empty was the window seat. “Bertha” was sitting in the window seat. During the 55 minute flight I discovered that she works on main frame computers…if you keep them with tape and nothing crashes it’s quite the easy job . Her sister had been waiting since 1:00 to pick her up at the airport. She was visiting from Baltimore because her nephew was getting married in St. Louis. Her sister and her husband were leaving tomorrow to head to St. Louis and Bertha and her niece would be leaving on Friday. Bertha also love Sudoku. Her mother’s family is from Oklahoma. Her brother -in-law is a minister. He was in seminary in Texas and they wanted him to get a church in the east but it didn’t happened. I could go on but you get the drift. When we landed she wished me well in Oklahoma and I was off.

I was met by the Technical Director. Sort of. There was a yound kid with a mohawk standing by baggage claim. He kept looking at me but I couldn’t tell if he was cruising me, or waiting for his girlfriend. I grabbed my luggage and went outside. About 5 minutes later the kid with the mohawk approached me and asked me my name. We introduced ourselves and then he led the way to the car.

First Stop: The Dorm of Love. Actually it’s called Honors House and looks like a frat house. I was given the key to my room and shown where it is. Unfortunately it’s on the second floor. I say unfortanetely because that’s the floor without air-conditioning. Fuck. It’s was hotter than hell in my room. I dropped my stuff off and then it was off to dinner. We went to an Irish Pub that I don’t remember the name of. The food was good and the beer was better. We were joined by my ME. The one without the software. I might add at this point that the ME is beautiful. He’s soft spoken and sweet, and is very easy on the eyes. In fact he’s quite sexy. I couldn’t help staring at him all through dinner. We ate, had a couple of beers and headed back.

I of course made them stop at the grocery store so that I could get Diet Coke. We also bought more beer since that seems to be the staple they all exist on here. We then headed back to the Dorm of Love. It was over flowing with people this time. There were people cooking in the kitchen, hanging out watching TV, drinking in the halls. It was just like being in college, except I’m 42 and getting paid. I came back to my room made a few phone calls and then went downstairs to find the gang. We hung out and had beer and laughed a lot, got some work done and the whole time I’m thinking I’m old enough to be there fathers. Oh God, what have I done.

About the dorm. It co-ed. Including the bathroom. I’ve never done that before. It’s quite small with about 7 or 8 rooms on each floor. The average age of the participants is 22. This was before I moved in. I’m sure I’ll fuck the average. It’s loud. Right now its 1:52 and there are people yelling every where. There’s no air conditioning on the second floor. This may be a problem.

I’ll finish by saying…OH MY GOD WHAT HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO!!!!!!!

ps…I’ll pull my camera out and start documenting my adventures tomorrow.

pss…I was going to include a random picture of a dorm, but when you Google “dorm” you get tits. Lots and lots of tits. UGH!

Pssst. It’s me.

It’s been a very hectic week for me.  First Chuck’s friend was in town from Sunday to Wednesday and then my friend arrived from Wednesday to Monday.  We’ve had non-stop house guests since last Sunday.  Not that either of us mind, but it does make getting the things you would normally get done in a week difficult.

Most of you know that I am a night person.  I do most of my best work after 8:00 p.m.  And I only get better as the night progresses.  Because there’s been someone sleeping on my couch for the last week I haven’t been able to be a night person.  I have had to go to bed at semi-regular hours which means I haven’t gotten as much done as I would have liked.  I have fallen behind in posting on my blog.  It feels like weeks since I last posted.  I know it’s only been a few days but it’s how I feel.  Many of you have probably noticed a lack of comments on my part as of late and it’s because I’ve been unable to catch up on the blogs that I read daily.  I also haven’t been able to put away the things I brought home from Iowa so my room is a mess and worst of all, the design for my shows in Oklahoma is not finished and won’t be by Monday when it’s due.  Whoops.

I like being able to blame all of this on my house guests because it’s easier than taking responsibility for it myself.  If I were being honest I might point out that I have not been out of bed before noon all week.  I might also point out that Friday and Saturday night I was out drinking with friends who are in town this weekend.  I might also point out that I helped my friends set up their portfolio’s on Friday for a conference they had.  But this is only if I’m being honest.  And since I don’t feel like being honest, I won’t mention these things.

My design for the shows I’m doing in Oklahoma are due tomorrow.  I’m not finished with them.  In fact, I haven’t even started drafting the show although the rough is finished.  It’ll take me all day tomorrow to finish and that’s if I work non-stop.  I almost feel bad about it.  But I’ve been getting the shaft from a fellow designer who’s been making my job almost impossible to do, so I’m using that as an excuse.  I’m sure that by end of day Tuesday I’ll have it emailed off.  As I keep saying what’s the worst that’ll happen.  They could fire me.  But if they are going to do that I hope they do it before I leave on Wednesday.  (Just for the record, I very rarely turn in work late.  I pride myself on meeting my deadlines and would have for this project if it weren’t for the scenery person.)

Hope everyone has a wonderful Memorial Day.  Eat a hot dog or hamburger for me and don’t forget to save me a beer.

“Have you always been big?”

I did a very rare thing today.  I spent the day at home.  Not only did I spend the day at home, but I spent it working.  I wrote three letters of application for various teaching jobs around the country.  They’ll get mailed out tomorrow.  I also spent a couple of hours working on the design for my next three shows.  The design is due next Monday and I’m going to have to work my ass off to get it done on time.  It’s not that my getting work done is rare, it’s just that typically I find reasons when I’m in NYC to go downtown and do things.  Go to the movies, cruise for boys, meet with friends, go to dinner, etc., etc.  I did go to Staples, but it’s just up the street and I was gone about 45 minutes.  I would have been gone less time but I was talking to my friend Michelle.  We’d been playing phone tag for about a week or so and had a lot to catch up on.   I have to admit that it felt good to get so much done.  Now if I can only get even more done tomorrow.  Of course I have to go downtown tomorrow to Kinkos to get some copies made of my design.  But it should only be an hour or so.  I’ll have to make it quick.

images-1.jpgNow for the interesting part of my day.  My roommate has a friend staying with us for a couple of days.  It’s no big deal.  I have had several over nights guests and he’s always been very accomodating.  As a matter of fact, I have a friend from San Diego who will be staying here over the weekend.  What’s so interesting about this house guest is that he was home all day.   He sat on the sofa and worked on his computer.  He was so quiet I almost didn’t know he was here.  Of course it meant that I couldn’t walk around in my underwear, or crank showtunes on the stereo but it was okay.  None of this would be worth mentioning but at about 5:00 o’clock or so he began to get ready to meet my roommate for dinner.  He was in the middle of this when he says to me…”Have you always been big?”  I wasn’t 100% sure what he was talking about.  So I said, “You mean fat?”  He said yeah.  I was completely caught off guard.  Who asks someone that when you barely know them.  In reality when do you ask someone that when you’ve known them forever?  I told him my usual story of why I’ve gained weight.  And he had a few other things to say and then he went about getting ready to go.  I’ve had several hours to think about this.  I wasn’t pissed.  I’m not pissed.  I’m just curious as to what kind of background a person comes from that makes it allowable to talk to someone about something so personal when you barely know them?  I’m from a backwoods, country family and you wouldn’t mention it to your family, let alone a stranger.  So my question to you guys is…”Would you have asked a question like that?”