Monday, May 31, 2010
So Natalie is on a vacation...
I then learned the sisters of the threesome, Martie and Emily, needed to continue to create new music as much as Natalie needed a break from it. So Martie and Emily have created a new group, The Court Yard Hounds, to feed their desire for creation. The Dixie Chicks have not broken up, and they are performing a few concerts this summer, but they aren't putting out any new music, yet.
I downloaded The Court Yard Hounds new music, and even though I do miss, miss, miss the sound of Natalie's voice I also enjoy this new music. At first in principle I claimed not to like it, but after a week I can't stop playing it...it's very earthy and wholesome music.
So go and buy The Court Yard Hounds music. Enjoy.
And read this article in Out Magazine. It's very interesting.
I love you Natalie, Emily and Martie.
Do you remember last summer when I told you (here) how my mother and father took their four-year-old (me) and five-year-old (my brother) sons to see the Jackson Victory Tour? We had 4th row seats, and when Michael Jackson ripped off his brother's shirt and threw it into the audience we got one piece of the shirt. My mother and father found the ticket stub and the shirt...see the above photos...this is the best concert souvenir EVER.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Regrettably, I've learned that "sticker shock" is a real medical condition. This week in our dinning room I went into stick shock after meeting with the landscape architect.
Two years ago in July we bought a 1980 house on a normal 80x125 city lot. Six months after we bought the house we started seeing some cracks in the walls. We had many different foundation repairmen look at our house and bid on the repair work. The bids were so inconsistent ranging from $1,500 to $9,000 that we decided to hire a structural engineer. The engineer said we lived on Texas clay, and we needed to learn to live with a few small cracks. He said he wouldn't repair the cracks, but he would add french drains in the front of our house.
So we had two different companies bid on installing french drains. Both the independent bids came in at around $2,000. However, one guy said we needed a master landscape plan since he'd have to rip out our bushes to install the french drains. We hired a landscape architect to draw up a master plan. On Monday he came to the house to show us the plan and to give us the bid to implement his plan. The landscaper, my husband, and I were in the dinning room looking at his plans. As the landscaper started talking about french drains, boulders, and trees, I began to think this is going to be really expensive. To me really expensive would be $5,000 and really, really expensive would be $10,000. After all, our front yard isn't that big and we were talking about dirt and rocks and plants.
After the landscaper finished walking us through the plans he gave us the bid...
...he said it would cost us $28,800.44 to implement his plan and he needed a 50% deposit. We were in the dinning room when he told us this, and I honestly did not know what to say or do next. I just asked if it came with a new car, and then I stumbled over a few words and I tried not to look at my husband because I was worried I bust into laughter. Do we look like millionaires? Do we look like fools? Did he want us to take a second mortgage to pay for the landscaping? What the hell was he thinking? Who spends $29K on dirt and rocks and plants?
My husband and I cannot stop laughing about the situation.
Sunday, May 23, 2010
I know many wonderful individuals that are Catholic. I have many friends that are Catholic, and I have great appreciation and affection for those friends. However, the Catholic Church (the original boys club) annoys me to a very great extent.
The main reason I'm annoyed with the Catholic Church is that they opposes gay marriage and the social acceptance of homosexuality and same-sex relationships.
I'm also annoyed with the Catholic Church because they treat women like they are the second class sex. Women can't lead the church, and in a traditional Catholic home women play a supporting role to men in all aspects of life. That might have worked in 1710, but it's 2010.
I stumbled onto a new reason to be annoyed by the Catholic Church. Last week I heard an NPR news story about a nun that was excommunicated from the church because she approved an abortion to save a woman's life. The procedure was successful. The woman lived. I don't understand the church's logic. I value the life of the mother that has other children at home. The doctors said she'd die if she carried the 11-week old fetus to term. The Catholic Church implied that there is no choice in this situation, because you cannot do evil (abort the fetus) to do good (save the mother). Of course, no action would mean both the mother and the fetus might die.
I know this is a terrible, terrible situation, but I have at least two issues: 1) I think it's unfair that the Catholic Church which has always been led by men can tell women what to do with their bodies, 2) I also think it's unfair that the Catholic Church would be fast to excommunicate a nun who saved a life, and yet they have NEVER excommunicated a priest that has been guilty of abusing boys.
It's great to be Catholic if you're a hetero man, but I sincerely wonder why any gay man or any woman would be Catholic?
My heart hurts when I read about the gay couple in Malawi sentenced to 14 years of hard labor because they are...um, gay. (I am gay. My husband is gay.) Do you realize that's like being sentenced to 14 years of hard labor because you have brown hair, you have hazel eyes, you're left handed, you're...um, straight. Homophobes all over the world think "gay" is something you do, not something you are, and they have no problem punishing gay people. It is a very small minded way for adults to see the world, and we must stand up to homophobes.
Madonna has released the following statement on her website:
"I am shocked and saddened by the decision made this week by the Malawian court, which sentenced two innocent men to prison.
"As a matter of principle, I believe in equal rights for all people, no matter what their gender, race, color, religion, or sexual orientation.
"This week, Malawi took a giant step backward. The world is filled with pain and suffering; therefore, we must support our basic human right to love and be loved.
"I call upon the progressive men and women of Malawi—and around the world—to challenge this decision in the name of human dignity and equal rights for all."
I encourage you to sign Madonna's Stand for Equal Rights.
Saturday, May 22, 2010
I think at some point I want to watch Lost from the beginning, because it does seem like a really interesting show. Until then, I'll just go to the Lost watching party and camp out my the dip and desserts.
My husband's parents live on a lake. Their 10 year old jet ski died at the end of last summer; today my husband's father picked a new Sea Doo! I love being related to people that live on the lake and have fun lake toys. Next weekend we're headed to the lake, for sure!
Beautiful! My blue bells are in bloom and they look beautiful. This is a cast iron planter my mother gave me when I was in college; it was a perfect size for me to plant a few flowers outside my my apartment door. I think the planter gets more interesting looking as it ages with rust.
This happens all the time. I'm guessing that catalog companies cannot figure out two men with different last names living at the same address? Instead of just sending one catalog to our address, they send one catalog addressed to my husband and one catalog addressed to me.
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Monday, May 17, 2010
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Yesterday Jordan, Dave, and I did a lunch hour drive-by (camera phone) shooting of this house in Fort Worth. You really need to see it in person, but we wanted to take photos of this impressive display for all of you that won't make it to Fort Worth. Their yard decorations are made entirely out of beer cans. That's all empty beer cans. Think of the amount of time it took to first empty the beer cans, and then modify the cans, and then string together this yard art.
I love a little quirkiness in life. I always enjoy unique souls in our world.
Monday, May 10, 2010
The hetero men I work with (like most straight dudes) are all excited about their fast cars. They like fast sports cars. When I came into the office today I started talking about how much I loved driving the RX350 and they just laughed at me. They said you have to either be a woman or a man over 50 years old to drive the RX350. They said if I bought one it'd be really gay. Lucky for me I am gay!
I'm going to go buy one...as soon as I save an extra $50,000....(pause for me to do the mental math) Okay, I might be 50 years old when I can afford one. It was smooth. Like butter.
When I told my husband I made a purchase while searching for a gift for my mom he said to me: "Honey it's not Husbands' Day it's Mothers' Day." After hearing that statement I was worried he'd encourage me to return my pretty blue pot to Crate and Barrel or give it to my mother, so I planted my silver dollar eucalyptus tree in the pretty blue pot before he got home from the airport.
On Saturday, together with more focus, we finished our Mothers' Day shopping at the Dallas Farmers' Market. We got each of our mothers their own pretty pots jammed with flowering plants...it was the perfect gift for our beautiful mothers.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Monday, May 3, 2010
Our vacuum cleaner went out. Instead of buying another one that is made entirely of plastic, cost a few hundred dollars, and only works for a few years we decided to buy an Oreck XL Platinum Pilot Plus vacuum cleaner. Both our mothers use Orecks, which means we already knew our Oreck is an impressive rug sucker, and we were also impressed that the Oreck we bought includes a 15 year warranty. Fifteen years! A 15 year warranty is impressive; as long as we take it into the shop for free annual tune ups, then it will be under warranty for 15 years. We will be 45 years old when this vacuum cleaner's warranty ends. Fifteen years is a long life for a home appliance.
Why don't more items have 15 year warranties? If they can do it with an Oreck, then why can't they do it with cars, boats, beds, appliances, etc. Think of how much less stuff we'd put into the landfills if most things we owned came with a 15 year warranty...
I am so excited about Betty White hosting Saturday Night Live! Set your DVR's, immediately. I first appreciated this talented woman while watching The Golden Girls with my Granny growing up, and then I discovered her horny character SueAnn Niven's from YouTube clips of The Mary Tyler Moore show. I love Betty White! She's also a legendary champion of animal rights. What's not to love?
She's been working in Hollywood for six decades. She's 88 years old and as relevant as ever in her career choice- show business. How many people are still relevant in their careers at her age?
I am so excited to see her on Saturday Night Live that I might have to watch it live this week!
The song is about reconnecting with your roots. I love the part in the song where she sings about her mother clipping pictures of houses from Better Homes and Gardens magazine, and then her father building her mother's dream house. Isn't that a beautiful and romantic idea? I'd be the happiest man on earth if I could build my husband's dream house and then we could live there together happily ever after...
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Lately my mind has been thinking about adoption, and current events have provided fuel for my thoughts.
First, did you read in People magazine that it was a four year process for Sandra Bullock to adopt her son? If it took Sandra Bullock (a millionaire celebrity) four years to adopt, then how long will it take us regular folks?! Or how long will it take us regular folks that are homos?!
Next, have you heard of the new book The Other Wes Moore? It's about two men with the same name, about the same age, from the same neighborhood, being raised by single mothers, and one Wes Moore ends up a tremendous success and the other Wes Moore ends up serving a life sentence in prison. The difference is that the successful Wes Moore had a family that gave him different choices. When the successful Wes Moore was headed down the wrong path his family forced him into military school. When the other Wes Moore was headed down the wrong path there was no one in his family to force him to make different choices.
In some ways there is less rejection risk for gay guys to have a family if they go with surrogacy instead of adoption. However, the new book The Other Wes Moore leads to a compelling case of why we should adopt even if it's a very difficult process for gay guys. We could provide a child that is already here on earth a safe and loving environment in which they can grow and achieve their full potential. We are two college educated working professionals that have a great and loving family. If any child we adopt is headed down the wrong path, then we will force them to make different choices.
The invitation said, "Please be prepared to dress for a special occasion." I said we needed to wear our suits, but my husband said we didn't need to wear suits. It was his company. It was his special recognition dinner. So I followed his lead...and I did not wear a suit...
When we arrived at the Four Seasons ballroom we were the only men not wearing suits. I can't believe I let my engineer husband pick our attire. It was funny because we were also the youngest people in the room by at least a decade and we weren't wearing suits, and the oldest people in the room were in tuxedos.
Saturday, May 1, 2010
So, this is my new bit. I say something completely astonishing and have it ignored by my husband. I don't know why, but it's funny. Try it at home.
She is an adult that takes absolutely no responsibility for the way her actions affect other people. She thinks because "she was following her heart" she can do anything she wants in life? She claimed that she did not break up John and Elizabeth's marriage, but she was dating and sleeping with a married man...even after she knew Elizabeth thought the affair was over. Next, she openly claimed that she didn't use birth control on Oprah and (surprise, surprise) she ended up pregnant with a married man's baby. Was that love child an accident? What really sent me over the edge during the hour-long interview was when she admitted to Oprah that their was a sex tape, but she thought she destroyed it by cutting the tape. Wait, what? She's foolish for thinking we're thinking she's the victim of a sex tape scandal. How does an adult (of any intelligence) not know how to destroy a tape?! Not only did she not destroy it- she left the "destroyed" tape in a box in her friend's house. So did she want the tape destroyed or did she want the tape found?! And her justification for all this stuff was that she was just following her heart...
I just cannot tolerate adults that go through life without the ability to understand cause and effect. It's not the fact that she had an affair with a married man that bothers me; it's her inability to claim the pain she caused others because of the affair. Oprah asked her if she thought she hurt Elizabeth Edwards, and she just said we'd have to ask Elizabeth. She would not admit to causing pain to Elizabeth Edwards, however, she also admitted to buying John Edwards a cell phone so they could hide their calls, which implies she knew the relationship would harm other people. It's almost like she's living in a fantasy land where she is only good and she can do no harm...
My husband makes fun of me for caring so much about people I do not know. He'll make fun of this blog post, for sure. Okay. Whew. End-of-rant. The takeaway is no matter what you do in life at least you can take full ownership for your choices. Own it. Own your choices, because the choices you make dictate the life you lead.