Happy Friday B*holes!

I’m back and so are they! The comix! Enjoy!

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P.S. For that one, I kept the original caption and just subbed in the one letter really.

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Shape Memory

Have you ever seen shape memory alloys? They’re pretty cool pieces of metallurgical engineering. You can distort them, and then by changing temperature, they go back to their original set shape:

I think the same phenomenon happens in people, to a certain extent. At least it does with me.

Whenever I go on an excursion which is chock full of new experiences, I find that I sort of “expand” to take them all in. The sights, the people, the newness, the adventure, all serve to change my shape.

And like a hobbit leaving the Shire, by the end of the journey, I’m elementally the same but fundamentally different.

But then, as all good things do, it comes to an end and I find myself home and trying to fit back into my routine existence.

At first it chafes a bit– my new shape not wanting to yield and conform to the old confines. But then slowly, over a few days, shape memory takes over and I revert to the original form of my life.

The difference here, though, is while my external “self” has shape memory, my internal “self does not. The sense of loss lingers awhile– inside I’m like a balloon that’s lost air, the stretched skin now puckered and thin.

And mourning the loss.

I’m sure that by Friday, routine will have taken hold, and by this weekend I’ll be right as rain and back to my old self.

Mostly.

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Ego Boost

What was I so worried about before going to LA?

I don’t know- I stress about the unknown. A lot. And since I’d never interacted with other gay choirs before, I just didn’t know what to expect. A welcoming environment? Cliques? Judgment?

All my worry was for naught.

Everyone was quite welcoming and accepting. It was like we were in one, huge “love bubble” all weekend. Everyone who travelled to the event had their shit together and it made singing easy.

(Except for LA who was on stage, the rest of us sang all mixed up– so I didn’t sit by any members from my choir.)

And I needn’t have worried about being outcast or ignored. As it turns out, I was quite popular!

I honestly lost count of the number of guys that came up and fawned over my hair and haircut. Evidently I have myself a good cut this time– or perhaps “silver daddies” are in or something.

Plus I did something I almost never do– I put myself out there without fear.

If I saw a guy I wanted to talk to, I simply walked up and talked to him. Or I walked up to a group and introduced myself to the group. I just bit the bullet and did it.

Sounds easy, I know. But we’re talking rooms full of gay men, where the mixing time had a party/bar vibe. Nobody wants to be rejected at a bar, so that fear is very real.

But I wasn’t rejected. Quite the opposite actually. And that was really nice! Maybe my false confidence was attractive??

Anyway, I met lots of guys from each of the different choruses. I exchanged contact info, Facebook friended, and generally made some new, good acquaintances this past weekend. People I’m sure I’ll see in 2016 at the next GALA event in Denver.

I guess I lost sight of the fact that we all had music in common, which is an excellent relationship starting point.

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A Perfect Day

Have you ever had one of those days that is just epically wonderful from the moment you wake up that morning until the moment you drift off that night? A day that takes on an almost magical quality that you wish you could bottle and keep forever?

I had one of those on Sunday.

It started in the morning where I ended up randomly finding Andrew Lippa (the composer of I Am Harvey Milk) and his husband in the pool.

One of my goals for the weekend was to get like 2 minutes of Andrew’s time so I could talk to him about the piece and gush a little. But the weekend rehearsals and performance times were so scripted I wasn’t sure how that was going to happen.

But there I was, alone with the two of them. So I told him how much the piece meant to me and how it was the reason I auditioned to sing in TCGMC. He was touched. I gushed for two more minutes about the cleverness of his compositional choices, and even discussed why he chose the lyrics “run from this Iowa town” (being an Iowan, I sorta took offense). But he had perfectly thought out and well reasoned explanations for it.

In short, he was absolutely lovely and I was walking on air afterward.

Then I bumped into fellow members from my choir and randomly ended up tagging along with them to get some breakfast.

We walked to this bizarre market in downtown LA where there are all these small, ethnic food stands. The choices were amazing!

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Although the name was definitely intriguing, the line was not. So I went here:

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Where I had this orgasm-inducing Thai green curry. OMFG, so good! It was like a party in my mouth and everybody was coming!

Then it was back to the hotel to prepare for the afternoon matinée performance. Here we are in a group photo before the concert:

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To be honest, Saturday evening’s performance was flat. We’d had a full rehearsal that day, and the evening before so everyone was exhausted. So the emotional content wasn’t there. Plus everyone was nervous about fucking up I think. So… Meh. It left me wanting.

But Sunday’s performance? It was everything I wanted. Powerful. Emotional. Rousing. Epic. Definitely an experience I’ll carry with me always.

And my whole row doffed our shoes and sang in stocking feet for added comfort. Somehow it added camaraderie and made singing that one last time even more special.

Then afterthought concert the concert participants had a private gathering in a park near the hall. Lots of adult beverages were consumed, and I got to hang out and get better acquainted with my fellow chorus member Jeremy:

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He is wonderfully nice and laughs easily at my humor. We had an awesome time together and it was great making a new friend.

We also walked up and introduced ourselves to Cleve Jones who just so happened to be in attendance. Yeah. Fucking Cleve Jones!!! Who was also lovely and who made me cry before both performances with his words about Harvey Milk. I told him as much when I met him.

And then I met him.

Erick (with a c-k).

I’d been sort of eye-flirting (some might say eye fucking) with Erick for a couple days whenever I would see him. He is also a bass but from The San Francisco chorus. Ginger. Bearded. Handsome.

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We were both still in our tuxes at the after party (him dashingly so) and I saw him standing at one of the cafe tables. He was with one of his fellow chorus members whom I had already met. So I said to myself “Self? You will regret it forever if you don’t talk to him.” So I walked up and introduce myself– finally.

The sun was setting, the temperature perfect, the sky impossibly blue and cloudless, the conversation easy, and the smiles shy and genuine.

He works for the ballet, has taught dance, sings, is smart, well traveled, laughs at my jokes, has a dead sexy voice and has the most incredible blue eyes that made the breath catch in my chest every time he looked at me.

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The after party drinks stopped flowing at 8 pm, and by 8:30 or so we were walking back to the hotel together. We decided that we should celebrate a great day by hitting a couple bars in LA.

We changed and Uber’d our way to the Faultline. Where we drank and laughed and a bit, and made out like teenagers in front of the whole bar.

The first kiss was… le sigh. And the first deep kiss was enough to completely disoriented me. Yeah- he’s that good at kissing.

We eventually left and walked up Santa Monica boulevard to the Eagle– where we made out like teenagers.

And then made our way back to our hotel. We held hands all the way during the ride and then as we walked through the lobby and up to my room.

I never hold hands. Hell, almost never let people hug me! And yet felt completely natural.

We made our way to my room (thank jebus for no roommates!) where we continued to make out like teenagers. And then slowly… eventually… disrobed and climbed into bed.

It was wonderfully unexpected and nice to fall asleep as the little spoon, and equally so to wake up as the little spoon a few hours later.

Our goodbye was rushed and less than perfect as my shuttle was soon to pick me up for the airport. But it was to be expected as it was now Monday and time had expired on my magical day.

It’s now Tuesday and I find myself feeling melancholy and a bit broken. And yet profoundly glad, too. Sunday was such a rare and achingly special gift for which I will be forever grateful.

It really was a perfect day.

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LA LA LA

Well, I’m nearly ready for my Cali adventure. I’m tying up lots of loose ends at work, got my clothing figured out, I have a relaxing massage tonight, and have wrapped my head around the trip.

I think.

As much of a homebody as I am, I think I need an adventure. Something new. A change of scenery. Even if it’s only for a little while.

Oddly enough, the one thing I’m least worried about is the main reason I’m going out there: to sing I Am Harvey Milk.

I’m excited to perform it again (and to meet Andrew Lippa, the composer). I can sing the piece in my sleep, so that won’t be an issue. And I’m confident that I’ll do the TCGMC proud.

What I’m most nervous about is getting around the city. I don’t like visiting cities where they don’t have a well designed and efficient public transit system. Basically I’m cheap and don’t want to take Uber everywhere.

Plus LA isn’t known as a “walkable” city.

Furthermore, there’s really nothing in LA that I want to see from a tourist perspective. Literally nothing. It’s a city of manufactured culture that has had me rolling my eyes for about a decade now.

Ok– maybe seeing the ocean would be cool. But that seems like an inordinately long (and expensive!!) journey from downtown, and I do have rehearsals and concerts to contend with.

One way or another, it’s going to be an adventure. I promise lots of pictures and at least one good blog post.

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Scenes from a Walk

These represent a chronological catalog of things I saw on my walk today:

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Oh, and as a PS, I snapped this one as I was leaving rehearsal last night:

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Theme Song

Thanks to actually clicking and watching a random video post on my FB wall, I have found a new theme song to kick:

Cuz I got a lot of junk in the trunk– no whut I sayin’?

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Preparation G

So my LA preparations have begun. I’ve printed all my itineraries and schedules. I’ve cut my hair and trimmed my beard, and I’ve started the teeth-whitening process.

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You can almost taste the stress.

But mostly I find myself in “clothing crisis” mode. I’m completely stymied. What to pack? What to wear?!? Dear god, what about SHOES??? And how will I get all my hair and shaving products through TSA?!?!????

I’ve already basically given up on looking “nice” while out there. I don’t have nice summer clothes. I have work clothes, and work out clothes.

And then cargo shorts and T shirts.

My clothing crisis is twofold: first, I am NOT packing multiple suitcases for a 3 day trip, and second, I still have to bring a tuxedo and possibly something for an after concert “gathering”.

My plan is to take ONE carry on– just a garment bag suitcase. That’s it. And the rest of my wardrobe choices for the weekend must fit in said bag or be worn on the plane.

But what to wear to this “after concert event”? There was no dress code posted. I don’t know if it will skew more toward gala or gay bar?

And while I know it’s always better to over-dress, that just means more clothing to pack. And possibly different shoes.

Fuck.

Being gay really sucks sometimes.

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Li’l B*Hole Comix

LBC Yeah you know me!

It was time. So… Yeah.

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And of course I’ve left a brilliant one for you to caption. Do it to honor Murica for our independence! Put your caption idea in the comments :

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Drum Corps: Eden Prairie

Tomorrow there is a drum corps show in Eden Prairie (fancy suburb) and I’ll be going. It’s too close not to go.

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Also, it will be a good chance to see good ol’ Minnesota Brass in action in their brand new uniforms!! (And color guard camel toe!!!)

The lineup is actually pretty decent for a smaller show. 3 of the top 10 corps will be there (blue devils, bluecoats, boston crusaders) as well as a fun smaller corps (Jersey surf). And of course Minnesota Brass is there, performing last, no less!

I’m most excited to see the Bluecoats. Their show is entitled “Tilt!” And they’ve actually reformatted the football field on about a 10 degree angle and they do lots of fun tilt theme movements.

The Blue Devils? Meh. Sure they’ve won 15 times– but I hate their shows. They litter the field with props and then don’t march. But they call it “esoteric” and the judges jizz on it. This year their show is called “Fellini-esque”. I call it autofellatio-esque.

Barf.

However, this will be my one chance to see live drum corps this year, so in taking it. I was going to go to DCI Minnesota, but it was kicked out of town by the All Star Baseball Game.

Who gives a fuck about the All Star game??

Anyway, I’m really looking forward to it. I just hope it doesn’t get rained out.

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