The concept of a blogging "how to" lesson is amorphous; how do you teach someone to write whatever they want? Most importantly, he didn't insult me by taking a condescending tone when I literally needed him to explain what a blog is, and he waited for me to wrap my brain around the concept. A website where you can type, but then it comes out looking different on your own page?...how do you type it? where do you type? where does the typing go?
Bradford then went on to pioneer Queerty. When he resigned, he suggested me as a replacement, and I worked there for several months as well. At the time Bradford was deep in the throes of matrimonally-destined bliss, and working hard to save money for his new lake house. It all sounded so delicious, the (very nice and interesting) boyfriend and the great job and the whole life he led in his apartment high in the sky of the city. Although I never told him, when I visited him and his BF in New York, I didn't see them talk to each other much, only to their guests.
The Times article is about the end of their relationship, and how they cope with being intertwined with real estate bills and such, a common conundrum these days. Citing ther reasons for "what went wrong," Ben—the paramour—criticized Bradford's habit of blogging the details of their lives together: "It seemed like Bradford often needed to put it online for it to be real," he said. Ouch.
I have destroyed a few relationships by writing them as well. Promising encounters with exciting men were quickly soured by my decision to type a quick tale about our dates. I never said anything of consequence, I would only write funny things that I would feel comfortable with them knowing I had said. I actually thought it was flattering that I would take to the internet to say something nice, but...no. It freaked them out.
It was raining when we left. And it was very early. It was a dreary morning.
We had very sleepy faces.
But a ride in the car perks up everybody after a few minutes.
At times things got out of hand, with frolicking puppies romping around as I drove in the express lane on I-95, steering with my knee.
But we made it safe and sound.
When we pulled into the parking lot, however, things got very quiet.
Normally they jump around to get out of the car and sniff exciting new things. But not today.
They knew something was up.
Did they know we were back at the shelter? I don't think so, they couldn't see yet when I took them home, I don't think they'd recognize the building. Perhaps they understood my face was sad.
So we sat in the parking lot for a few more minutes, in the quiet, one last time. Puppies sitting still, looking up.
Will they be happy? I'll never know. I hope so.
Will their new owners know they don't need a leash, and they follow when they go on walks? Will their new owners know they like to run in the ocean? Perhaps at their new home, there will also be a plentiful supply of sand crabs to bark at and chase. If not, terrorizing the neighborhood cat is also good.
I have raised more puppies in the past few months than most people will raise in their lives. And what do I do to calm my nerves when it's 3 in the morning and the puppies are keeping me awake by crying? I think about the blog post I'll write to make it all worthwhile. I'm doing it for you, Cyberspace.
This isn't terribly entertaining, it's just pointers.
I would just like you to know I am not concerned with you today.
My days are spent doing the bidding of others, making others happy, worrying about "the big picture" and how to make you, World, a better place. But what about what I need? What about making me happy? Have I become such a doormat that I let you push me around like this?
I cannot remember the last time someone said "Hi, how are you?" and actually waited for an answer. And let me tell you, I'm a little worn out, I have these puppies that are a lot of work and I haven't been sleeping more than a few hours each night. I'm not complaining, they are adorable, but it's what I have going on now, should you be interested. I have no idea how single mothers get out of bed every day--or mothers with unattentive spouses, which would be worse.
So today, I'm only thinking about me. Me, me, me. I don't care about what NPR is saying about the problems in Israel, I don't care about Madonna's quest to adopt every orphan in Malawi. I don't even care about cleaning my apartment, which is a total mess. I am a delightful person and I choose to celebrate myself, even if no one else pays attention.
1) It's a very good, rather dark, and entirely adult movie. 2) You need to have read the book to understand what the hell is going on. 3) If you have read the book, there are no surprises and the end is ruined. 4) If you JUST read the book, and all the details are still fresh, don't bother seeing this movie—too much has been changed for the sake of fitting the general story into a 2-hour movie and the differences will drive you bonkers. 5) The locket-in-the-bowl scene is, like, wicked scary.
The trick to raising puppies is to learn their schedules: how long are they awake, how soon will they fall asleep. How long until after they eat will they fall asleep. When will they pee, when will they poop. With these two, they have the exact same rhytms, a complicated choreography of nap/pee/eat/poop rituals of varying time spans. I've split them up, thinking they took cues from each other, but their bodies really do work within 2 minutes of each other. As Bruno would say, "amazzzzing."
Yesterday I decided to challenge nature a bit; something a wise man would never do, but I like to live on the edge. I was at my office had a 30 minute drive home, at which point I would need to drop off the dogs and leave right away. The dogs needed to eat; it is after this point they run around sniffing for more food, jump on each other, and them poop. This process that takes approximately 20 minutes. I thought, if I feed them now and keep them in their carrying case, they'll be calm, they'll fall asleep, and they won't need to go so soon. I can make it. So I fed them some food, gathered up my belongings while they ate, and then shoved them in their carrying case, scampered to my car and roared off into the sunset.
I slalomed through traffic, trying not to jostle my canine companions out of their digestively-regressing slumber. The clock ticked by: five minutes, six, seven. I hopped in the carpool lane illegally for a bit, skirting an accident that threatened to slow traffic, but made it back to the regular lanes undetected. And all was well.
But then, at 17 minutes—boink! The puppy's head popped up.
It was the brown one, who generally pooped first. The while one generally follows in a few minutes; at this point she was still sleeping. But the brown one...she was awake. And she began to whimper, and look for a way out.
I noted the mile marker, I had several exits to go, there was no way I was going to make it home. So I careened across four lanes of traffic and took the next exit, saying "shhhh shhhhh shhhh puppy" and gently rocking her crate, just to keep her startled and hopefully close up her poop chute for just a few short moments. But the whimpering only got louder.
The puppy then began to claw at the gate of the kennel; I tore around the corner of the exit, spotted a parking lot at the next block, and hit the gas. She was fully whining at this point, sniffing around, looking for someplace to go. I thought, If I can just pull over, I'll let her poop on the pavement, I don't care. But as I screeched to a halt at the entrance of the empty lot, the case slid off the seat, and the puppies tumbled over each other to the front...and it literally scared the shit out of the little dog.
This of course woke the white dog, who then frantically tried to claw her way out from beneath her sister; but her claws dug into the mess, smushed it into between her toes, and kicked it around the edges of the kennel.
And I just sat there and watched, horrified. There's not much else to do.
So when all the business was ended, I walked around to the passenger side door and removed the kennel from the front seat to place on the ground. I wanted to clean them up a little, but I didn't have anything to use other than the towel at the bottom of the kennel; so I folded up the dangerous parts and prepared to use the clean corners to wipe up their messy fur. But the gate is open! It's time to run around and play! So zoom zoom zoom they shot around my feet. I tried to grab the with the clean parts of the towel, but it didn't work very well. And try to be dignified as I may, this culminated in me standing in an empty parking lot, holding an already-soiled towel and waving it like a matador and shreiking in disgust while the two shit-stained puppies did figure eights around my feet.
I eventually tossed them back in the kennel, I went home, I changed my clothes; the dogs spent the rest of the night in the (empty) bathtub, where they could piss and shit all they wanted and walk around in it. Which they did.
I was late for my meeting. But when I finally made it home, I had to change my clothes.
They synopsis: The first half of the movie is relatively pointless, and at times uncomfortably bad. But the second half, when he puts himself into ex-gay therapy—suddenly the movie has a point and it is HILARIOUS. And he makes a great statement.
Here we go:
Film is raunchy, funny, and very gay
In September 2008, Sacha Baron Cohen popped up in the news: filming on
one of his famous comedy-documentaries, he had sneaked into a Milan
Fashion Week show and somehow worked his way onto the runway. With his
cameras rolling, he walked along the fashion models, wearing an
inexplicably-odd suit, pulling a massive prank that would make the cast
of MTV’s “Jackass” jealous. The runway lights were turned off, the
show was cancelled, the polizia were called—and Cohen's work was done,
whatever it was.
Of course, we now know he was filming his latest creation, "Bruno," a
somewhat-staged documentary about an Austrian fashion journalist who
sets out into the world to make himself famous. After the success of
his first film "Borat," a hilarious and shocking look at American
culture—it won Cohen the Golden Globe award for Best Actor—expectations
have been high for what Cohen has in store this time around.
The plot of “Bruno” is very thin: he wants to leave his life as a
journalist, so he heads to Los Angeles and attempts to reinvent himself
in various ways. He tries acting, he tries hosting a TV show, he
wanders around trying new things, failing miserably at each turn and
horrifying everyone along the way.
When none of those ideas work out, he realizes Hollywood will not
accept him if he is gay, so he travels to the Deep South for some
ex-gay therapy. And of course, hijinks ensue at every step of that
Thin plot or not—when "Bruno" is funny, it is uproarious. The fact
that Cohen puts himself into these situations, and then escapes with
his life, is a testament to his comedic genius. At one point, he
assembles leaders from the Palestinian Liberation Organization for
discussions on the difference between "hummus" and "Hamas"; what does
this have to do with the story? Nothing. But it is an amazing moment.
But “Bruno” is a mixed bag; there are times the film drags, where Cohen
seems to have lost some of his spontaneity. It is awkwardly obvious
many of the scenes are completely staged; I swear I saw one of the guys
from the “orgy scene” also in the audience at the “ultimate fighting
scene.” And many of the stunts are uncomfortable to watch: Bruno
somehow wrangles an interview with then-Presidential candidate Ron
Paul, but then corners him in a hotel room and drops his pants to show
off a hideous thong wrapped around his danger zone. Ron Paul is
horrified, of course, but anyone would be. It’s hard to understand the
point of the stunt—other than catching Paul calling Bruno a "queer" as
he fled the scene, but it's hard to blame the poor guy.
Cohen's over-the-top portrayal Bruno's "gayness" has come under fire as
being a negative stereotype, and the film had to be re-edited several
times to tone down the overt sexual lasciviousness, which offended
audiences both straight and gay alike. But the fact that Cohen toes
the line of offensiveness is the genius of the character. He is
proving a point: the mere existence of Bruno is threatening to people
around the globe, as he travels from country to country scaring the
locals just by being himself. (Although admittedly, stripping down to
a g-string and cornering Ron Paul in a hotel room did seem a little
threatening.) Cohen’s films are shocking not because of what he does,
but because he coerces people into letting their guard down and being
honest, which usually ends up with them saying something racist,
homophobic, or otherwise foolishly bigoted. It’s scary to watch his
films, and wonder what kinds of people are living out there in the
The film climaxes at an ultimate fighting match, where Bruno tries the
most macho activity he can find to battle his gayness—but ends up
locking lips with another man in the ring. The crowd goes crazy,
throwing chairs and screaming threats as if they were watching
something ghastly. This stunt made the news when it happened as well;
although if two women did exactly the same thing, it would just be
As the audience at the fight screamed in horror, the audience in the
theater I was at also shouted in protest, saying what they were
watching was "disgusting" and "terrible." But they were too busy being
grossed out to understand they, too, were falling prey to Cohen’s
trick. Life imitates art.
This should not scare away gay moviegoers, however. At this point the film is so funny, listening
to a bunch of homophobic thugs get grossed out next to you really
doesn't matter. "Bruno" takes a while to get going, and Cohen misses
the mark a few times, but once he figures out what he is trying to say,
the movie is flat-out funny.