Joe the Bummer

Speaking of mindless brutes, Mr. Plumber has taken to wearing this “Don’t Spread My Wealth, Spread My Work Ethic” t-shirt lately. Could someone please tell us how Samuel J. has been paying the rent the past eighteen months?


how bout spreading yer cheeks buddy?

@Capt Howdy:

Dude, no. What? Arrgh. Bleh. Feh. Feh-feh-feh. WTF? Ugh. I think I just went hysterically blind. Urk. Gah. Blarggh.

What in God’s name is the matter with you? Why? Just…why?

@Capt Howdy:

Ohhhh, again with the mind movies. Nonononono. Ewww. Do.Not.Want.

@Tommmcat Still Gets Carly Confused With Meg:

wadda ya THINK . . . can I QUOTE . . you NOW . . . WURzel . .BITCH . . .

Whoa…dude, am I the only one being lectured about conservative leadership by Mr. Clean right now? I really need to stop huffing paint.

@JNOVjr: Mr. Clean is much, much sexier.

@Capt Howdy: But wouldn’t the pink panties bunch up in his plumber’s ass-crack?

@Capt Howdy: Too femme. But interesting concept. If we could maybe work in some spandex I could get on board. As it were.

speaking of self loathers, have we seen this:

Heterosexual actors play gay all the time. Why doesn’t it ever work in reverse?

It’s not just a problem for someone like Hayes, who even tips off your grandmother’s gaydar. For all the beefy bravado that Rock Hudson projects on-screen, Pillow Talk dissolves into a farce when you know the likes of his true bedmates. (Just rewatch the scene where he’s wading around in a bubble bath by himself.)

tell me I am not the only one this makes ill

@Capt Howdy: Kristen Chenowith ripped a new one on the Newsweek columnist.

Who is ghey himself.

@Capt Howdy: I can’t take credit, but the answer is Neil Patrick Harris.

@Capt Howdy: Does this also go for James Dean and Monty Clift?

@SanFranLefty: “. . . and singing and dancing for all!”

I <3 her.

how about Gandalf?
did he think he was nellie?
I mean I guess the hat did scream Margret Hamilton but I never thought of it that way.

the fact that he is gay was pointed out to me when I was ripping on him on another blog. I was speechless.
a rare thing.

@Capt Howdy: I forgot about Sir Ian. Bet the author is hoping other people did, too. Also, his response to Kristin Chenoweth is weak sauce.

I mean I like short guys but I never thought about, you know,
about Gandalf . . . . . liking short guys . . . .


Chenoweth’s argument that gay youth need gay role models is true, but that’s not what I was talking about. I was sharing my honest impression about a play that I saw.

no, you fucking nimrod, what you did was admit that once you “knew about the icky” Rock Hudsons performances were spoiled for you.
get help. seriously.

He seems to confuse movie and TV stars with actors. Not the same thing at all.

Movie stars can’t come out. Nobody gives a shit about actors.

Ian McKellen is a movie star. a pretty damn big one. and he is about as out as you can get.

you know, seriously, I heard this many times from my “progressive” straight friends when I was in the film business in LA. I never ever thought I would hear it from a gay person.

for instance, remember Ann Heches brief out of the closet thing?
that was just before Six Days Seven Nights was about to come out and about that time I was having lunch with some people and someone said something like, “man, I bet Ivan Reitman is shitting his pants right now”

why? I asked.

rolled eyes.

stern lecture.

@Capt Howdy: I was sharing my honest impression about a play that I saw.

“I was saying that I didn’t believe Sean Hayes in the role, because Sean Hayes doesn’t have the chops to play the part. But instead of saying that, I decided to say something else.”

In other news, whenever I see Ashton Kutcher in a trailer for a romantic comedy I think about Demi Moore, and whenever I see Shatner in anything I think about “Rocket Man”.

@nojo: Funny. When I see Ashton Kutcher, read his name or hear it uttered, I think of the sweat of his brow dripping on my Canon or Nikon or some sort of cameras or something.

ADD: Shatner used to remind me of Hasslehoff. Or vice versa.

@nojo: When I see Shatner, I think “you say sabotage, I say sabotage.” (Shatner’s version has the american dipthong pronunciation of the “a,” “ei” ).

@Capt Howdy: MY BRAIN! (I hear he’s big in Japan…)

Germany actually as seen in this “video.”

BTW, everyone’s big in Japan (ba zing!)

@ManchuCandidate: Oh, no you didn’t just give me that ear worm! I see your Uga Chaka and raise you this! You’re welcome.

I’m still reeling from baked’s revelation of earlier this week that Peter O’Toole is 142 now, among other data.

Unless you are either lusting after or have fallen in love with said person and, moreover, intend to seek intimacy with that person, what business is it of yours which sex that person enjoys making love with? [I suppose we have to make an exception for matchmakers.]

@Capt Howdy: LOVE IT! I love them, and I’ve been searching for the episode where they dance around an exploding boot. I can’t find it, though. :-(

@Capt Howdy: I would call Ian McKellan an actor who’s had some lucky movies. But he grew up in the theatre and has the background and attitudes of an actor. His breakthrough was in Edward II playing the gay king and he’s in Godot as we speak. It was never exactly a secret and when he openly acknowledged it no one tore up their panties and sent them to him to protest his betrayal of them. I very much doubt he would give much of a damn if he never shot another green screen movie as long as he lived. Plus he’s a Brit where this is not such an issue. But look what happened to Paul Reubens. He’s a really gifted actor and a smashing guy but he’s been vilified and shamed for years now. By gay men too. I do think it’s still the kiss of death for a man who hopes to have a career playing action guys to be known to be gay. But this is not what toolfeatures was discussing in Newsweek. He was saying that gay men, by their very nature, cannot be convincing playing straight. If he’s right then shut down Hollywood.

Years ago I was playing a ‘sensitive’ young man in a TV mini-series for Ganada. One of the directors, who was a raging left-wing asshole, was actually embarrassed because I didn’t stand butch enough. I had my hands on my hips in one scene and he got all bent out of shape. That wouldn’t happen now.

Now all the soaps have gone west – I think there’s one left in NY – there isn’t the same panic. But the lengths to which gay actors went to protect their identities was pretty amazing. NY is a bit better now, particularly in the theatre. We’re moving beyond the AIDS plays into marriage plays – such is the fashion. Moving beyond pity into something approaching a balanced view. Which is an improvement. There’s nothing a bourgeois NYC audience likes more than to feel themselves to be broadminded.

When Boys in the Band was first produced none of the NY agents would even submit their clients. A few of the men who were in it were dropped by their agents. That wouldn’t happen now. So that’s good. And men like Cheyenne Jackson are quite open. But Hollywood seems to me to be an extremely conservative, if not reactionary town. The situation I think is not unlike red-baiting. You could get away with being thought a commie if you worked in NY. I guess up to a point. You couldn’t in H’wood. This was sort of why Kazan was never forgiven by the people – a lot – who never forgave him. And why they still walked out of rooms if he came into them up till his death. He didn’t need to name names. He would have continued to be the most celebrated theatre director in the US. But he wanted movies. So that’s the deal he made.

I’m not saying I think that’s how it should be. But if you’re a young man on the brink of big things and you decide that now would be a good time to come out your career will simply stop. Jodie Foster won’t come out for God’s sake. Neither will Queen Latifah. The business follows society. I don’t think it shapes attitudes I think it discusses them as soon as it can no longer ignore. I think it very interesting that the only movie in the States to deal with abortion, Juno, hardly mentions the word. Instead we have a charming, if somewhat treacly fantasy about everyone’s perenially favorite topic: be who you are. Compare that to the truly terrifying Four Months, Three Weeks and Two Days and it’s like day and night.

@Capt Howdy: By the way. Awesome Hoff video, dude. It’s got dachshunds!!!!!

dont disagree with a lot of that except Ian has gone past luck some time ago.
he grabbed key roles in two of the biggest franchises around. after he came out.
and Pee Wee. well, that had a lot to do with what he was caught doing.

I understand the problem. and if I was an actor I might not come out. but I think I probably would.

@Capt Howdy: Found it! Yay! From All Gummed Up. Boot dance begins at about 6:30.

Who had that YouTube trick to link to the right spot?

@Capt Howdy: It depends what kind of actor you are. Theatre? Probably fine. Movies? Probably not fine. Can you imagine Sam Worthington announcing that he’s marrying Brad, his high-school sweetheart? Ian McK is in the enviable position of being open. But notice that he doesn’t kiss anyone on screen.

@JNOV: Yr link is broken, but add #t=6m30s (or whatever’s closest) to the end of the URL and you’ll be set.


Did you see McKellan’s Lear? That wasn’t just acting, that was ACTING!!!!!!!!! But I love it when Brits chew scenery; they do it with panache and skill that American actors just never bother to develop.

If you are out, casually, and not in anyone’s face about it, you work. But I remember being real careful when I did my day player stint in NY on Guiding Light– but that was more self-imposed than anything else.

I doubt you could hit it big as a gay dude even now, unless it was a camp, character kinda thing. Robert Gant seemed like he was gonna make it work for a while, but that faded after Kiss Me Deadly (fyi, totally genius, a gay spy film with wossname, that bitch from Melrose Place was in it; Complete garbage). You never know, though. Maybe it will go for him, though he is a little long in the tooth now for leading man.

so we are talking about “romantic” leads.


actually I think he could pull it off.

I was not going to bring that one up because frankly, although he does rule, he can be a bit regal. if you knowwhatImean.

@Capt Howdy: And, random old hippie in those Hobbit movies.

@Capt Howdy:
also he got a lead part in the new AMC Prisoner. which I have not seen yet but was very well received.
he is also the baddest badassed bear in The Golden Compass.

and he is the best Nazi ever in Apt Pupil.

@Capt Howdy:

OOH yeah, plus guilt-inducing young hot Brad Renfro, before the dragon caught him, alas.

@Tommmcat Still Gets Carly Confused With Meg:
you know who he sort of reminds me of? Dirk Bogarde.
he pulled off some romantic leads.
McKellen, not the kid.

@Capt Howdy:

High-school shower-butt in that pic. Mmmmm.

Good movie too.

@Capt Howdy: Slow and dumb, unlike the original that was just mindblowing. AMC played reruns just before the release of the new version so I finally got to see the series finale, which was actually kind of anti-climatic.

@mellbell: Dang it! and HUZZAH! I love that trick! Many thanks!

I read good stuff. I was saving it.

@Tommmcat Still Gets Carly Confused With Meg: What’s up with Brad Renfro? (Please don’t tell me he OD’d or something.)

@Tommmcat Still Gets Carly Confused With Meg: Couldn’t get into that Lear. I’m not a fan of that kind of acting. Too self-involved. But many people admire it. It’s in the tradition of Olivier who, in my opinion, destroyed a generation of Limey actors. Haven’t see any Lord of the X Rings. Very very nice man but not my cup of tea. Bit like a thinking man’s Patrick Stewart.

I mentioned D Bogarde a little while ago. He was an anomaly in that he was entirely open to his friends but there was not a whisper spoken publicly. And he was the Robert Pattinson of his day. When he was making public appearances they had to sew his fly shut. And this continued through the filming of Victim which is a movie that actually did have an impact in that it arrived just as they were discussing the law that decriminalized sodomy in the UK.

But for instance, Gielgud was arrested cottaging a couple of weeks after his knighthood. And when he appeared on stage that night the audience rose to its feet to welcome him.

It’s a patchwork. But the article in question struck me for its very retrograde view that a gay man was lacking something straight men had. And though the queers might pretend they could never make up the lack. And as anyone who has seen me in a pair of tights will tell you – nothing could be further from the truth.


I like the style. Great big wedding-cake with fireworks performances! Rhetorical cadance! Bravada!

If you are trying to win a bad video contest, you can’t come unarmed – you have to bring nuclear weapons.

@Tommmcat Still Gets Carly Confused With Meg: I learned the term at a dinner with several senior (i.e. elderly) partners from a major major NY law firm.

Am I going to have to go to Urban Dictionary?


Sex between consenting male adults in a public restroom = cottaging

@Tommmcat Still Gets Carly Confused With Meg: Oh. Pfft. Like I’ve never had sex in a public restroom.

i don’t watch grey’s anatomy, but isn’t the young gay actor playing straight?

@Capt Howdy: hey howdy, picked up the last episode of last season’s dexter, along with precious. i held the lastest trek in my hands, but just couldn’t do it!

hahahahahaha brigantine?

i think he died, but i remember adjusting his wig for him.
he looked exactly like the crypt keeper.

@baked: Were you really a Hef Girl? If so, that’s eight shades of awesome.

@baked: Haha! No, bounced from a Brigantine bar but had sex in a restroom in Sausalito.

@JNOV: I sincerely hope that wasn’t how I was conceived :| Oh and before you correct me, it was a joke. You’ve actually told me the story of my conception on at least two occasions.

@Tommmcat Still Gets Carly Confused With Meg: The lavs in London used to look like cottages. The English like everything to be cosy.

@JNOV: Overshare time? On the deck of a basement pool during a party at the Ritz hotel, unnamed banana republic, early 80s; under the boardwalk at the Shore; and on a Greyhound bus somewhere in Texas. Got caught only at the shore, so that was technically interruptus.

You guys, I love you all, but I have not been able to fully follow this conversation, because I don’t know many of the actors and films.

It can’t really be a debate over whether a gay guy can play a romantic straight lead, I refuse to believe that, of course a gay actor can do that, if he is an actor.

Am I wrong, is that really debateable? I would not have thought so. Isn’t the proof in the fact that so many romantic male leading roles have been played succesfully by secretly gay actors?

I would think the only debate is whether an openly gay actor could be accepted by the masses playing a romantic straight lead. And not because of any flaw in the performance, but simply because, there are a vast number of homophobes, who, once they knew, would have that homophobic reaction, a rejection of the performance not because of any flaw in the performance, but because of their homophobia.

I don’t know if this is of any relevance, but my best real life friend in the world, not a great friend, not the most loyal friend, not likely to include me in many of his activities, but I am such a loner I am not a great friend either, so thats not an issue with me, I love him, because when we are together, we so completely click on every level, no reference made by either of us, no matter how obscure, is ever missed by the other, he’s smart and wickedly witty and always obscenely hip to what is current, but also possessing an encyclopedic knowledge of pop culture, Nojo, comes to mind, you’d like him, he belongs here. Bisco, you’d like him too, though he is a bit too much the hipster, but I forgive him, and he’s much a namedropper and starfucker, but I don’t care anyway.

The reason I bring him up, is that, every straight person I know thinks he’s gay. And thats ludicrous, when we were single guys on the prowl, he was , well, awesome, he cut a swath, he is offensively hetero, I used to follow him like a scavenger, feading on the scraps he left behind.

I think that men who are truly sympatico with women, truly love women, as opposed to notching up conquests just to impress their male friends (now thats gay), tend to have a lot of feminine qualities, its why the can connect with women, which macho boys and the women who love them perceive as gay.

Its just all an example of how perceptions of sexuality are so flawed, and homophobia so deep, in so many, that they get these things so wrong.

perceptions are so often wrong,

@Nabisco: Growing up, spending my salad days in a shore resort town, I got caught in the act so many times, on the beach, by cops, that I think I got more used to it, less upset by it, than the cops.

The one occasion that was cool, I was assistant manager of a big, popular outdoor bar, on the water, and one night, after it closed, a waitress I was friends with benefits with, insisted, after closing, that we climb up on the bar and do it on the bar, and this was in the open, under a canopy, overlooking the water, on top of the bar. I am certain, though she never admitted it, that I was a ‘safety” entry in some competition among the waitresses, about who could, would, do it on the bar. I am sure she applied to Harvard, but had to settle for Rutgers.

@JNOVjr: Dude, I am so sorry. Send me the therapy bill. (You might want to stop reading right about now.)

@Nabisco: Haha! There is some truly gross stuff under the boardwalk — you’re lucky you didn’t get a hypodermic stuck in your ass, plus beach sex involves sand. Itchy!

I’m almost a member of the Mile High Club. Do handjobs count?

@JNOV: Handjobs are very special, after the age of 16, they are rare as hen’s teeth, and always a special occasion, maybe its the nostalgia factor.

@Benedick: The English like everything to be cosy.

Except for the toilet paper in those lav cottages.

@JNOV: There is some truly gross stuff under the boardwalk – it was actually one of those tony (toney?) shore towns where the boardwalk was all walk, no carnies. The cop just told us to “move along”.

My time in Texas featured a lot of PDS. Pestorking in Barton Springs while some drunken tubers went by was a highlight, as were all the times we pulled off the side of those farm to market roads for quickies near the mesquite bushes before the fire ants got to us. Gotta love those wide shoulders on rural Texas roads! ADD: it was either a good or bad thing that the OH at the time was crazy as a loon. Any of the Stinquettes want to comment on that OH’s claim that she was able to have an O every time – it wasn’t just with me, she honestly claimed that she literally never missed a beat, no matter who the partner was.

@Nabisco: Sounds like you had yourself a bipolar girl. I’d share more, but I’m afraid I’d damage my kid for life.

i guess it is overshare time. i kept that a secret for a long time…i didn’t want male associates to have your reaction…there was a time i actually wanted to be taken seriously, can you imagine?
now that i’m openly eccentric, yes. yes i was. for a few years. it was the greatest job in the world when going to school. we made a fortune in a short amount of time. oh the stories i could tell!!!

and i did it under the boardwalk

and there’s nothing like a bi-polar girl :-P

@JNOV: That is so sweet, you told your son the story of his conception. I assume in graphic detail, I would expect no less. Heartwarming! That’s what family values are really all about.

@JNOVjr: I assume you’ve seen your mother’s comments here about her, um, marital aids little helpers?

I know, I’m evil. But I’ve made a reservation for all of us in Hell. Got a good table fireside. Don’t forget to RSVP. Gonna be a great party.

@PedonatorUSA: Um…I think those posts are waaay buried, Fuck You Very Much. ;-P

@JNOV: Yes, I think I did. I know her sister was, and her dad was a totally f*&ked up alkie who left them when she was a teen. As long as the flame between us burned (one out of a total of three years) it was really hot, though.

@baked: I couldn’t help but pick up on the “bunny ears and tail” mention on the biking to work post. It’s precisely because you are so insanely intelligent and had that job that I think it is awesome, not for any skeevy way.

By comparison, I went to a Hooters for the first time in my life last autumn because it was supposed to be the place in town to see My Team on Sport Sunday. I suppose Hooters girls are about five levels below the level of cool that Hef Girls aspired to back in the day. Not only was the service lousy and the food mediocre, but they wouldn’t even put My Game on the big screen. I still tipped well because I knew it was expected.

count me in…unless i get off on insanity.

Sorry, remind me again, is the Teapartyexpress, The Peoples Liberation Front of Judea, or the Judean People’s Liberation front.

These fruit loops look al the same to me.

good save. and hef girls didn’t aspire to anything. we were, by contract, not allowed to gain or lose 5 pounds among other rules. we had weigh ins once a week. i shit thee not. and hef somehow got around all the laws of the casino control commission and the union (local 54–yeah!!!) and hired cocktail waitress’ to his specs. fun times, no really.

@JNOV: Just trying to be helpful, as always! A fosterer of family communication, that’s me.

Anyway, just imagine jr’s funny face if/when he reads that. Priceless! (Though you’ve probably raised him such that he wouldn’t bat an eyelash. And I mean that as a compliment.)

@baked: Darling, your seat will be at the head of the table.

@Nabisco, @baked: Hooters is just another example of how something wholesome and pure, like boobies, can be commercialized and cheapened in the most crass manner when recently graduated corporate bean-counters discover an under-exploited opportunity.

@baked: Hef got around all the laws about discrimination and such the same way the casinos do now, they designate the hottie server corp as “entertainers,” show biz, not regular old waitstaff. Different rules apply; the Rockettes, for example, are not required to hire dudes, or short, fat people.

@baked: All the things you swore me to secrecy over, now flung to the winds, I feel so not special.

@baked: Even your name, I saw it first here.

@baked: Yes. T.R. Knight.

My entry in the “yes the ghey can play straight” is one Matt Bomer of the USA series White Collar. He’s quite the hottie.

@TJ/ Jamie Sommers /TJ: Um yeah, that Matt works for me.

(s0rry for the delay in response, had to take a minute or fifteen with google images)

oh stop…
have you tried weight watchers fudgicles? FABulous…90 calories…taste just like the ones you got from the ice cream man on the beach..
what a geezer i sound like. mine awaits! i adore you, eat a popsicle.

i just realized, i’m coming out !!

@JNOVjr: Thank you, but I am only needing to check the meters. Oh! There is a meter needing checking now…

@TJ/ Jamie Sommers /TJ: Of course, my favorite is Tied Up!

@baked: taste just like the ones you got from the ice cream man on the beach Um, I don’t know where you get your weight watchers meals, but nothing compares to the popsuckles proffered by my ice cream man on the beach. Those weight watcher substitutes are a bit light on the cream, missy. Sacrilege!

must overshare something else this on this thread :

when i was carted off to rehab, my greatest fear was that i would know someone there and die of humiliation. the first person i saw was our bunny union rep. in 28 days, there were 4 people i knew. it wasn’t as bad as i imagined, they weren’t embarrassed.. better hold that seat for me Pedo…my crazy mother brought contraband when she visited.
she got caught once, and made a big stinque. what’s wrong with a little marijuana and cocaine she wanted to know! in. rehab.
memories of mommie dearest….

@baked: Favorite remark of the day: “when i was carted off to rehab, my greatest fear was…” You can then more or less add anything you want.

You all were having a good time after decent people are asleep.

good morning benedick dear!
i was carted off…no participation or agreement on my part.
i was in bryn mawr hospital after some nervous nelly (rat) couldn’t wake me. maybe i was just tired? the funniest part of the story is, i was in the hospital wth guards 24/7 very large women standing guard for my escape. they came for me from rehab with instructions not to let me out of the car for any reason whatsoever. they treated me like bonnie parker.
and i despise cocaine. i have no idea what goes on in that womans head. never will. i wanted COFFEE, illegal in rehab, she heard cocaine.

@baked: my crazy mother brought contraband when she visited.

/shakes head/

My mother did the whole “what is this thing, young man?” when she found a pipe in my oh-so-70s winter coat. At least when she found shrooms growing in a jar in my closet she honestly didn’t know what they were, but she very definitely never would have brought me anything in rehab.

@Nabisco: My father’s idea of the good old days was being able to smoke pot on the top of a bus when no one knew what it was. Or shooting up in the lav at Ronnie Scott’s in London. A few years after we first came here he made a sentimental trip home and was in said club (R S’s is a jazz club) when one of his oldest friends appeared in a ripped up raincoat covered in crap and bleeding. They had a fond reunion then pater quizzed him on the coincidence of finding him there that night. Old friend had been on his way to a gig, stoned of course, and had been passing RS’s when he fell out of the cab, became confused and figured he might as well stop in for a drink or nine. He’d forgotten where he was supposed to be playing so they both got bombed instead. And they wonder why I grew up like this.

my grandmother was worse, who mostly raised me.
she found a long wooden pipe in a drawer and attached a note suggesting i shove it up my tuchas. i still have the note. and when she found a pound of hash and confiscated it? she told me she flushed it. i had a fit and found it back in my drawer the next day.
i had to work hard to get this normal*

*no commentary, thank you.

@baked: My best friend in h.s. was forced to watch his Southern Baptist dad take the circular saw to his favorite wooden pipe.
@Benedick: Wow.
@Benedick: I’ll second that.

@baked: You are utterly bonkers, you really should have a warning label. Not bad bonkers, but people should be warned, is all.

@Benedick: Musicians. It has always been thus, has it not?

@Nabisco: I recently bought a beautiful hunk of genuine gaboon ebony, its amazing, you know, ebony is, can you believe it, literally ebony. It makes the most beautiful, just beautiful, pipes. I make them shaped like a teardrop, or a lozenge, rounded and polished till they shine, deep black, a joy just to hold.

@Nabisco: You can grow mushrooms in a jar?

@baked: Did you say “hash?”

@Promnight: You can grow mushrooms in a jar?

There was a time when you could “walk” into a “headshop” and buy shroom kits. The spores were legal, what you grew with them, not so much. I made two batches, long thin stems with tiny heads on them, but with a dollop of ketchup they were mostly edible and the kick? Fantastic.

The trick was to keep them in dark spaces, hence the upper shelf of my closet at home, hence Moms Nabisco finding them when she was putting away my clothes.

@Nabisco: Fascinating.

Nowadays, at the cigarshop/newstands/porno for the computer illiterate places that pass for headshops, they sell the “artificial marijuana,” there was a media scare about it a month or two ago, that seems to have died down, but I went and bought some, still haven’t tried it, though. Howdy did a report, I believe it was Howdy.

I am preparing for a beautiful, romantic night out on the boat, with the person I love most in the world, it will be an evening of fine food and meticulously prepared cocktails, out on the water, as the sun sets and the stars come out, perfect and beautiful.

I am going alone, of course. Spousal unit and offspring are off in that renowned cosmopolitan intellectual mecca of Statecollege, PA, attending stepdaughter’s graduation.

I’m gonna put this post on facebook, oversharing central.

The cuisine is being driven by simple expediency, by what is on hand; I recently made an impulsive, extravagant purchase, and have taken a vow of relative frugality.

I have in my fridge 3/4ths of a bag of cultivated mussels (I baked the missing 25% last night in a tikka massala sauce I got from a jar, and lightened and brightened by putting in a food processor with one whole fresh tomato and one jalapeno pepper, that was good) and a flatiron steak, which used to be called a “chuck blade,” and was offered next to the bones for your dog, they paid you to take it away, but now the hipster foodies lap it up as “flatiron steak” and it costs an arm and a leg. Hate when that happens, you can’t buy lamb shanks for 99 cents a pound anymore, either, because of all you fuckers out there learning how to cook.

The mussels I have already made into a soup. I had potatos, I wish I had leeks, leek and potato soup with mussels is a standby, but, relative frugality mandates I not rush out for leeks, so I took 6 large cloves of garlic, and 2 big shallots, and boiled them in a little water, put in 2 large peeled idaho potatoes, cut in chunks, I steamed the mussels in another pot, then added the broth from the mussels and simmerd the garlic-shallot-potato mix(with a bay leaf) while I let the mussels cool and then picked them from their shells (I youtubed the Squeeze song “Pulling Mussels From a Shell)”for appropriate musical accompaniment (Benedick, what do they mean when they say “Maid Marion I heard tipped her feet, pulling mussels from a shell?” Are mussels symbolizing something with which they share a resemblance? Does “tipping your feet” have anything to do with “round heels?”).

Pureed the potato, added butter and heavy cream and the mussel meats, yay, tres bono, you betcha. Treyf bono? Treyf bien?

When I plan to cook a meal on the boat, I do a complete preparation of all ingredients, pre-packaging them, arranging all ingredients like a mis-en-place in a big tupperware, the way I imagine a celebrity chef prepares to appear on good morning america.

This allows me to do better than I do when I do my usual evening ad-lib preparation, there is no time for marinating, most of the time. Right now, I have decided to simply marinate the single portion of flatiron steak, I am going to be sealing it in a ziplock, might as well throw some flavor in there, too. So far, I have put in chopped garlic, coarse ground black pepper, and adobo. Now, I am agonizing over which way to go, asian, some toasted sesame oil and some soy, or italian, in which case I would add just a bit of this italian-flavored vinaigrette I keep on hand, and some chopped fresh thyme and oregano from the garden.

I cannot decide.

Speaking of asian and italian, last night I made sushi carpaccio, and it was the coolest little trick ever. I had bought a nice fresh semolina batard, and there was that flatiron steak. I cut a few thick slices of the bread into the shape of the rice part in nigiri sushi, I cut the crust off and made the little oblong shape, then sprayed them with a little olive oil, gently toasted, and rubbed them with a cut garlic clove. Then I thinly sliced the flatiron into pieces of the same dimensions of the fish in sushi, and briefly, like a minute, marinated in a little lemon juice, olive oil, and salt and pepper. I put a few capers on the sushi-toasts, put the beef on top, then placed a little thin thin thinly shaved shallot, and shaved reggiano parmagiana on top, a pass with the pepper grinder, and hey, yo, that was cheap and easy and good.

The voice inside my head tells me not to choose between italian and asian, combine the two again.

@baked: My favorite moment in rehab was when the therapist apologized to me for thinking I was exaggerating when I described how controlling my grandmother (who raised me) was. Seems she had had a call from La Grande Dame and found her to be “the most controlling person I have ever encountered in my 25 year career.” Thank you very much.
Also, where did you go to rehab that they didn’t have coffee? It was like oxygen at Betty Ford. I still have my official Betty Ford Center coffee mug. Which was, of course, the first one Mr Cyn’s mom grabbed when she came to visit.

@Promnight: No idea what those phrases might mean. I never heard them. Neither has the Dictionary of Historical Slang.

Food sounds fab. I used to make a stuffing of spinach and good parmigiana with a little ricotta to hold it together. Cut the cleaned and scrubbed mussels open before cooking, put in stuffing, tie them with string then cook right away in a white wine broth with the usual. The mussels contract around the stuffing and are very good.

Remind me never, ever, ever to play the Never Have I Ever drinking game with you all. I’d be under the table and comatose in about 3 minutes.*

*Note: Said with respect and awe, not disapproval. I leave the disapproving to the bunnies.

@Benedick: A much better use of time and resources, IMO. I could watch that all day. I have an Astor Piazzolla channel on Pandora.

@Mistress Cynica: Can you buy Betty Ford Center coffee cups online? I totally want one.

I guess they don’t sell pint glasses with the logo, eh?

@SanFranLefty: Pint glasses from Betty Ford?? Martini glasses, more like, or scotch tumblers.

@Benedick: *swoon* That did my heart good.

But part of me still wants to say “He’s wearing white shoes after labour day!” But I think that whenever I see white shoes.

@CheapBoy: I think that dance exists where it is always early summer.

@SanFranLefty: If not, they should. The logo has faded on mine (mid-80s, doncha know–everyone who was anyone went to rehab) but Betty’s bright red signature on the back is still crystal clear. I think I lost my “Camp Betty” t-shirt in one of my moves.

@flippin eck: I had to look that one up. Heh. As if this lot needs alcohol to overshare!

The biscuits found some wild bunnies in the yard a month or so back, Jr. picked one up and the image melted my heart. I’m sure the bunny disapproved.

@Mistress Cynica:

good morning! just saw your rehab memories…
oh. we had coffee, gallons of it poured day and night!
but it was DECAFF…caffeine is a DRUG!!!
REAL coffee was what we wanted, the single biggest “drug” we all craved.
cigarettes were permitted, so i spent most of my time in the screened in smokers section, whining and puffing with company.

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