I relish my anonymity, such as it is. Of course I have a radio show, which has an audience. But the audience is far away from where I live. So it’s easy to forget if the phone doesn’t ring during the show or after work at a bar, that I have even the smallest measure of fame. Even this blog, with entry after commentless entry, I feel virtually unknown. It’s nice.
The only times I have ever been recognized in the city were in bars and the first time was at Barracuda some months ago. I returned to the scene of the crime last night with my roommate to meet up with Ben Harvey. We have a lovely friendship that is more about the fame of other people than our own. However, Ben gets concerned sometimes that if an evening isn’t interesting enough, I will fail to blog about it, committing our banal existences to the obscurity they truly deserve. However, as I assured him with my last posting, there is no sow’s ear so paper thin that I couldn’t stitch a silk purse out of it. He isn’t the only one. I estimate about ten people read my blog and virtually all of them visit to see if they are back in it again when it updates semi-annually. Sorry Charlie! No mentions today.
It wasn’t my intention to go out, just like last night. But I was reading Ben’s email early yesterday morning(or hours too late depending). I read my mail obsessively but I do have a secret email address now and I forget to read it all the time. Derek@derekhartley.com and my office email are checked obsessively all day. Even MySpace is never left for more than a few minutes at a time during waking hours. But my secret email address known by even fewer than this posting is occasionally forgotten for days. No one writes me there. So it is just too depressing to visit it day after day to see that nothing has changed. Really only Ben and Jennifer actively email me there, and Jennifer is on vacation this week so I have been especially lax.
But Ben had emailed me after midnight last night saying that he was going out to Barracuda TOMORROW (his emphasis) and I remembered him commenting on my funny insistence on carefully using the word tomorrow in my emails because I usually write them at 3am, making the word ambiguous to most earnest observers or those who also are awake and checking email in the middle of the night (like Ben). So I sent him a text message during the show just to make sure that he meant Friday and not Thursday and of course TOMORROW was tonight, and always anxious to see him again, I agreed to dash off for a quick drink before heading home to pack, make breakfast for my visiting Dad and fly off to New Orleans for a long weekend of booze, beignets and boys at Southern Decadence.
At Barracuda, Ben arrived again with Harvard Ryan in tow, along with assorted actorly characters. His friend Dave, the “Al Roker of Australia” who is in fact, hot and thin. Eric Michael, an actual actor who is loathe to say he is an actor for fear of people thinking he is primarily a waiter. “Working actor” I told him, “That’s what you need to say.” Especially if you don’t want to be confused with the homeless. As usual, I could only get two new names so the guy from The Lair and the guy who looks like Josh but with even more intense eyebrows will have to go nameless for this entry. There might have even been another guy floating around there too, but there was just too much gay in our circle to keep an easy focus. I wasn’t the only one having trouble. It was too many people for Ben to juggle at once, and it felt a little like he was trying to manage a party in his own apartment. It is easier to host the Malaria virus than to try to host a gathering inside a gay bar. Too many working parts. And Peter Stickles swirling around in the air like Tinkerbell the whole time, flashing and flinging pixie dust, and my roommate camouflaged in the corner to blend in with the wall did not help Ben in his herding efforts at all.
Finally Conor arrived, his intense, yet oddly reassuring gaze as soothing as a border collie’s. Conor makes me laugh which doesn’t happen very often for me, making it all the harder to cut the evening short to catch the 12:10am train to suburbia. I like funny people because, despite all outward appearances, I don’t like being the center of attention. I am always drawn to people who are more famous, more loud, better grammarians or prettier than I am so that I can enjoy being in the audience. It is more fun for me to not have to work all the time, and being with the crowd, instead of in front of it, is my natural state of being.