Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Light Of Darkness

It has happened of late that I have fallen into the acquaintance of Ben Roussel. I have also been reading the Autobiography of Mark Twain, so if my syntax shifts wildly in tone for no reason you’ll know why. Ben added me on Facebook some time ago and even though I didn’t know him personally, I did add him to my modest friend archive. It was during a period when, for instance, if the editor of a national gay magazine who I heretofore had never met added me, I would accept their friendship. I believed that by doing so I wasn’t just being dumped into some vast repository of their own ego but instead was building the kind of good will that would lead to articles about me that would further my career. None such articles materialized and it has happened of late that I have started to delete all of those people. But not Ben Roussel.

Some months ago when I escaped the glass terrarium I work in and headed to one of’s happy hour parties, I was finally introduced to him in person. Naturally, in my warm and welcoming way, I cornered him on the stool where he had been shackled to pass out raffle tickets and demanded to know why he had the audacity to add me, the quintessence of the perfect stranger, on Facebook. Ben told me that he liked my writing and I seemed like the kind of person he would want to know. Never let it be said that I can’t be flattered instantly out of my most deeply held core beliefs no matter how weak the tea is that’s being served.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Industrious Fellows

My beat, if I have one, is not what is new and cool. There was a time in my life when being at the place everyone else was at was of utmost import. Since moving to New York ten years ago, I have enduring the sameness of Bowery Bar, the overpriced drinks at Duvet and the allure of the John Blair Gold Card. As much as I may loudly proclaim my status as an outsider, I have spent more than my fair share of time on the inside.

Winter is a difficult time in New York City. Before the year ends, the city swells with unbearable tourists, clogging every artery like unwelcome cholesterol, the heart of the city seizing under the stress. January brings in the inevitable trade-off of fewer people but more snow and bitter cold. If you polled eight million New Yorkers, they would overwhelmingly champion the latter. These twin anxieties lead to a kind of hibernation. As uninhabitable as most NYC dwellings are, they become more palatable as the pendulum swings in their favor during the darker months of the year.