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May 16, 2006

Can't Take His Eyes Off of You

Malbug_17Morrison Most TV news anchors can't ad lib their way out of a crumpled up tissue.

But it can be fun to watch them try, because sometimes the unscripted banter will reveal the deepest thoughts of local news personalities.

Take WNBC's "Today in New York" co-anchor Rob Morrison.  He was at his tinfoil hat-wearing best this morning, convinced that his TV talks to him as he introduced a piece on today's Tony nominations.

Sure, his bio says he has a wife.  But it sounds like he might also be willing to carve out some conjugal space for "Jersey Boys" star John Lloyd Young.

[Watch video – 0:50, WMV format, high bandwidth]

[Watch video – 0:50, WMV format, low bandwidth]

April 28, 2006

Quote of Last Night

"Donald Trump donated 436 acres of wilderness to the state of New York but asked that the land be named after him. It's true, yeah, the park consists of 400 acres of trees, all combed over to one side."

— Conan O'Brien, last night on "Late Night With Conan O'Brien"

April 27, 2006

Gimme My Special Rights!

Malbug_13Gay Americans are quite rightly engaged in a historic battle for our rights.  It is unconscionable that we should be denied legal status for our families in most places, or the ability in some states to adopt children – or, as of July 2004 in Virginia, to enter into private contracts that are even remotely reminiscent of the appurtenances of marriage.

But even as we demand these rights, we consistently slip on a banana peel that we ourselves have tossed carelessly onto the kitchen floor.  We play into the hands of those who fear that we want not equitable treatment, but "special" rights.  In fact, we often give our foes more than ample reason to conflate our desire for equality with homo-favoritism.

Case in point.  Two, actually.

A 17-year-old student from Trumansburg, N.Y., was kicked out of school for wearing a T-shirt protesting yesterday's Day of Silence, which is meant to draw attention to the bullying and harassment of gay students.  (He was followed out the door by several others.)  And what was this hateful, intolerable message on his chest, this unforgivable offense that the superintendent said was making other students feel "threatened"?

"It's Great To Be Straight."

Continue reading "Gimme My Special Rights!" »

April 13, 2006

Shout Outs

Malbug_13Drunkard A hearty hey-now to Fausto & Mark and their zany crew, Jessica and anyone without a website whom I met last night at the monthly Adam New York event.

But someone, please, remind me to go easier on the Grey Goose next time.  After a while, it tends to lead me to assault a couple of guys: namely, Ben and Jerry.  (Or perhaps weep softly while watching Elliott Yamin's home videos on DVR.)

For those in the New York area, come out to the Starlite Lounge tonight to meet the Feast of Fools in person!  They're the gayest podcasters ever.  And very sweet guys, to boot.

April 11, 2006

Playing on Another Field


Corey Johnson steps from the out-athlete limelight and into politics.

March 05, 2006

Entertainment, Tonight

Malbug_13All those trips to East Hampton, and I never knew that we had been in the presence of a piece of kitsch history.

The husband has turned me onto the phenomenon known as "Grey Gardens."  Originally an acclaimed documentary about a pair of eccentric (to put it mildly) ladies who were related to Jackie O, and now in production as a movie to star Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange, it has also inspired an Off-Broadway musical that has been even harder to get tickets to than "Wicked."  (Really.)

Well, we did manage to get tickets, but they are for tonight.  Oscar night.  So I present for your reading pleasure a selected mix of sites that will be providing ample live-blogging snark for the Oscars:

First, there are my eternal lovers at The Pen15 Club.  Bookmark these guys, now.

And then there are the rest:

LA Weekly's Deadline Hollywood Daily

Entertainment Weekly's Popwatch

PAJAMASMEDIA's team coverage

The indispensable, fantastical Cinematical

Robertik's Oscar fashion snark forum


If you're aware of any others worth mentioning, let me know.

February 22, 2006

Empire State Pride Pitch Perfect on Hillary

Evita With another Clinton election on the horizon, gay support for the architects of the Defense of Marriage Act seemed a fait accompli, but lo and behold, the head of one New York State gay organization is having none of it.

The head of a leading gay rights advocacy group in New York has begun criticizing Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton's position on same-sex marriage and encouraging gays and lesbians to stop giving money to her re-election campaign. [. . .]

In his memo, which was reported on Tuesday on the Politicker Web site of The New York Observer, Mr. Van Capelle said that he refused to "lend my name and sell tickets" to any fund-raiser sponsored by a gay group for Mrs. Clinton's re-election campaign. He said supporting such fund-raisers for Mrs. Clinton would "actually hurt" the gay and lesbian community.

"It will send a message to other elected officials that you can be working against us during this critical time and not suffer a negative pushback from the gay community," he said. "We have become a community that throws money at politicians, and we demand nothing in return. And that's what we get: nothing. It's the wrong message to send."

Mr. Van Capelle notes he will still vote for Clinton, but in his capacity as the head of a gay rights organization, he is not justified in signing on to fundraisers for a candidate working against the group's expressed interests.

Perfect. Hopefully certain others will follow suit.

February 14, 2006

3 AM Cinema

Urbania One of the great advantages to having an adverse reaction to pain medication prescribed for an injury is being able to catch late night cable when independent movies are showcased more frequently. Tonight, I managed to see an airing of the 2000 Sundance hit Urbania starring Dan Futterman.

Quite honestly, Urbania is unlike any gay film I've ever seen. It opens as the main character, Charlie, finds himself walking the shadowed, autumn streets of New York, wandering from bar to bar, searching for an elusive street hustler. He leaves phone messages for an apparent ex boyfriend while flashing back on their once happy life together. He visits a fellow gay friend (Alan Cumming), a man whose once glittering social life lay in ashes, his frail form wracked by the last, grim stages of AIDS. What has happened here? Where is Charlie's boyfriend, his friends, his life?

I can't give any kind of real answer without spoiling the film. Suffice to say, Urbania is a strange mixture of a character darkly nagivating through his grief at a relationship lost, intimacy unattainable in the aftermath, and a thrilling, almost erotic fascination with the paradoxically homophobic hustler who set all these events into motion.

The movie's worth a see for the acting, the dialogue, the atmosphere, and not least of all the actors (cutie Futterman, an angelic Matt Keeslar, and a very sleazy Samuel Ball). It's a surprisingly moving film, especially in the final act as Charlie comes to terms with everything he must.

February 13, 2006

I Recall, Central Park in Winter

Malbug_13Sunday was a good day for frolicking in New York.  A fresh blanket of deep, crisp snow covered the area, even deeper than the 16 inches promised (and these weren't "Gay.com inches"), and ending almost precisely when forecasters said it would (4 p.m.)  In fact, it was a record snowfall.

So we sallied forth to Central Park, an idea that just about every other Manhattanite seemed to share.

A few photos follow after the jump ...

Continue reading "I Recall, Central Park in Winter" »

January 27, 2006

Cuomo Stonewalls Dem Club


Cuomo_1 The Stonewall Democrats of New York City have asked Andrew Cuomo, son of former Gov. Mario Cuomo and former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, to answer charges that he was involved in the distribution of anti-gay signs in his father's first gubernatorial campaign.

Signs reading "Vote for Cuomo, not the homo" surfaced during Mario Cuomo's 1982 primary battle against Mayor Ed Koch.  The younger Cuomo, who is running for New York attorney general, appeared to duck questions about his involvement in the episode during a candidates' forum.

Some in the audience were even left with the impression that Cuomo was questioning whether the signs had existed at all.

[Newsday: "A discord from Cuomo's past resurfaces"]

November 27, 2005


Malbug_13Wow, I actually just got a little misty at Robbie's Thanksgiving post.  Thanks, man.  (I will be sure to pull that one out to respond to the next "fan" telling me what a louse I am!)

I didn't plant as many holiday "time bombs" as Robbie implied.  In fact, the only one I was able to complete ("Targeting Target") already detonated at around 1 a.m. on Thursday.  This blogging thing is a harsh mistress, I tells ya'.

I started writing this on Thanksgiving Day as we were headed east on Long Island (quite literally, blog "rolling") on the Hampton Jitney.  I wasn't able to finish before we pulled into Southampton, so I am finishing now as we head back west.  This is their "Ambassador" line, which means you get the same crummy Otis Spunkmeyer muffin and WiFi, but a little more legroom.  (UPDATE: We just got a complementary glass of wine.  Huzzah!)

There were only a couple of celebrity sightings to report this weekend.  First we saw the fashion designers Mark Badgley and James Mischka at the restuaurant James on Main in Southampton.  Honestly, I wouldn't have known them from Bartles and Jaymes if my husband weren't such a clotheshorse.  I'd share the picture I tried to take of them if it weren't such a joke.  But at least I think I discovered a better camera setting for clandestine, no-flash photos.

The fact is, I am becoming something of an expert at taking bad pictures of famous people.  See, when I encounter celebrities, I want to take their picture, but I don't want them to know that I am taking their picture.  So when I stand behind Alec Baldwin and his Asian girlfriend in line at the Starbucks in East Hampton like I did today, the result is something like the picture I took of them at the "fixins" station:


Continue reading "Blog-Rolling" »

November 14, 2005

Why Are Heterosexuals Destroying Marriage?


Sex_new_york_coverAs if looking to prove that TV isn't the only medium with "November sweeps," the latest edition of New York magazine – with its orgiastic cover – is landing in mailboxes and on newsstands everywhere.  Stare as long as you want: They managed to cleverly conceal all of the naughty bits.

A quintet of stories look at the state of sex in America today.  The one article focusing exclusively on gays takes a look at the "bear" subset.  (As Andy has already pointed out, it inexplicably relies almost exclusively on non-bear John Waters for it reportage.)

Other stories feature a group of female sex columnists getting all Helen Reddy on us, parents' ignorance of their kids' sex lives, a new aphrodisiac nasal spray that might clean Viagra's clock, and a professional porn collector.

But the lead story on the "new monogamy" in America single-handedly puts the lie to the blowhards who cite gay marriage as a threat to the "sanctity" of hetero marriage.  (Stanley Kurtz, call your office.)

Continue reading "Why Are Heterosexuals Destroying Marriage?" »

October 19, 2005

Is This a Dagger Which He Sees Before Him 38 Times?


The New York Sun has a hilarious take on the naunced rhetorical stylings of my fine junior senior senator, Chuckie "Out of My Way, There's a TV Camera!" Schumer:

Dagger1_1No sooner had Senators Mack and Breaux unleashed their ideas on making the federal tax code more simple and fair than Senator Schumer unsheathed his rusty old dagger, describing the idea of eliminating the federal deduction for state and local taxes as “a dagger to the heart of the people of New York.” Voters might be inclined to listen — except for the fact that Mr. Schumer sees a dagger virtually everywhere he looks.

A 2003 plan for flexible work schedules instead of overtime? “A dagger to the heart of the middle class,” Mr. Schumer said, according to the Associated Press. A 2002 plan by federal regulators to urge Wall Street firms to establish backup facilities outside New York City? A “dagger pointed at the heart of New York,” Mr. Schumer said, according to the Daily News. High gas prices? “A dagger at the heart of our economy,” Mr. Schumer said in 2000, according to the New York Times.A unilateral declaration of Palestinian statehood would be “a dagger through the heart of the peace process,” Mr. Schumer said in 2000, according to the Agence France Presse.

Hate crimes “put a dagger in the heart of what America is all about,” Mr. Schumer said in 1999, according to USA Today. A proposal to change the federal transportation funding formula was “a dagger pointed at” New York and California, Mr. Schumer said in 1999, according to the Washington Post. School vouchers? “Daggers that plunge into the heart of what is the American way,” Mr. Schumer said in May 1999, according to the New York Post. Cuts in federal student aid? “A dagger to New York’s college students,” Mr. Schumer told Newsday in 1995.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but Mr. Schumer sees daggers more often than a four-eyed knife thrower looking through a kaleidoscope.

[HT: Taranto]

[Amusing image added retroactively of a man known more for his stagger than his dagger.]

October 07, 2005

Jeff Launches!


A website, I mean.

And I must say, I like his picture there better than his (admittedly cute) mugshot-like photo here.

October 05, 2005

Malcontent Rips Off Joe

Malbug_13Number 5 on the Bravo list made me think of JoeMyGod, so this morning I am ripping him off with a pair of "Things I Don't Hate."

I don't hate this car, which I saw last night in Grand Central Station.  It even sorta matches my hair (at least, these days) and would thus make a great birthday gift:


And I don't hate this:


It is not too different from Joe's office view, except that I look out on the East River, and the photo above is what I am graced with on the way home.  Just like looking at the Capitol Dome for 10 years never got old, the Chrysler Building will always serve to inspire me.

October 03, 2005

Hamptons Post-Script

Malbug_13LeakyThere is apparently something about the Hamptons that makes little children there spontaneously lose bladder control.

I swear to God, I would have taken a picture of this if it wouldn't have led to a potential kiddie porn rap, but we saw the following on Saturday in East Hampton:

We were walking up Newtown Lane when we saw a little girl, maybe 3 or 4 years old, in a tree box.  She was squatting down, holding onto the small fence surrounding the tree for balance, and bare-ass naked, in front of some very high-end furniture stores.  Her butt was thrust outward to keep her pants unsoiled by whatever was about to come out of her.

Even more strangely, her family was standing around her, cheering her on and making pissing noises to ease her through what appeared to be severe pee-shyness, rather than quickly escorting her to any of the nearby bathrooms that permitted public use.

I ask why the Hamptons seems to elicit such behavior only because Gawker posted a quite similar story a couple of years ago, writing it off as "normal."

So are the Hamptons' over-privileged spawn of yuppie scum really just Manhattan's publicly urinating homeless of tomorrow?  I'm just wondering.

Malbug_13And finally ...

Our hotel was nice enough, as far as last-minute Hamptons reservations go, but the walls were ... well, a wee bit thin – as evidenced by the following clearly overheard conversation:

MAN: Hey baby!


MAN: Guess who's up?


MAN: Mr. Pee-Pee!

Things remained quiet long after that exchange, so we can only assume that Mr. Pee-Pee is still up at this very moment.

It Was Definitely a Sign

Malbug_13As we wandered East Hampton on Saturday, freshly disembarked from the Jitney, we knew we must have been close to our hotel when we saw this:


And then this:


A few more Hamptons photos after the jump.

Continue reading "It Was Definitely a Sign" »

September 30, 2005

Prescient Chinese Secret

Malbug_13Last night we planned a trip for this weekend to the Hamptons.  Then we had Chinese food.  Here was our fortune:


Spooky.  Have a good weekend, y'all.

September 23, 2005

Run, Jeff, Run!

Malbug_13Jkc2002 Jeff Cook, an old-school Malconfidant (that's my too-cute term for "friend," seeing how every other blogger has an arsenal of neologisms), sent me an email by way of his exploratory committee for Congress:

Our campaign is challenging conventional wisdom and the politics of complacency in Washington.  The political insiders are already paying attention to our campaign.  They are learning what you and I already know--that now, more than ever, is the time for strong, unifying leadership to restore faith and confidence in our institutions.

I don't know much about his (Republican incumbent) opponent, Sue Kelly, even from my eight years on Capitol Hill (which is probably part of the reason she is getting a primary challenge.)  But I do know Jeff.

What makes him different?  He is running as unabashedly Republican and gay.  His campaign alone is a mark of courage.  He is also smart, well-spoken and very personable.  (It doesn't hurt that he is as cute as a button!)  Would that there were hundreds more Jeff Cooks nationwide.

In an article in The Hill ("Gay Republican will challenge Rep. Kelly in primary in N.Y.-19"), Jeff elaborated on why he is running:

“I have become really concerned in the last couple of years about the direction of some of the leaders in our party,” Cook said. “If the Republican Party is unwilling … to stand up to the trappings and the temptations of big government, then who will? We’ve got to have a dividing line. There’s got to be a party to stand up for the taxpayer.”

Alluding to former Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork’s book Slouching Towards Gomorrah, Cook warned that the country is “slouching towards larger and larger government.”

Good luck, Jeff!

August 21, 2005

Blogosphere Reax to Weld Announcement

.08 Acres (and a Donkey) says: "Someone is going to run to the right of Weld in the GOP primary. The question for Weld is whether there are enough liberal Republicans left in New York to win the nomination."

The Bad Hedgehog says: "The first thing Weld is going to have to explain to all of us is WHY."

Colorado Pols says: "Maybe Governor Bill Owens has a new political future as governor of New Mexico or Wyoming."

Minipundit says: "This guy is the perfect blend of social liberalism and economic moderation. I don't care if he's a Republican; he's my guy."

Blogcabin says: "If Mitt Romney can run for President from Michigan, I say why not?!?"

North Dallas Thirty says: "Personally, this would be a tough choice for me on the gay-rights issue."

The Four Horsemen says: "He was elected in Massachusetts and appointed ambassador by Clinton - sounds liberal enough for New York. Welcome to the race Mr. Weld."

The Politicker quotes Empire State Pride Agenda, which says this of Weld on gay rights: "His recent statements represent a complete and disappointing reversal of his original position."

Bostonist says: "We can offer kudos to Weld for resisting the siren song of the white house, which seems to be luring Republican governors from their jobs left and right these days."

And finally, Gothamist says: "Weld is a native New Yorker and has been working at a city law firm, which might temper some carpetbagger criticism, but his liberal leanings - support for abortion rights and gay rights - might be unattractive to conservative New Yorkers (the ones upstate)."