Saturday, December 27, 2008

Living La Vida London!


It's the day after Boxing day and I have just returned from an amazing Thai dinner at a place called Waggamamma in Wimbledon with my friends Wendy and her sister Belinda. Like any other festive bird I am stuffed! I have been shoving Ferrerro Rocher chocolate balls and other junk food down my throat like a homeless person at a free for five minutes buffet.This is because -as we all know- Christmas is a time for binging. The show is up and running and we still have a lot of work to do regarding bums on seats and promoting the show and once again I find myself in a situation where my future seems very unclear and anything can happen. The show may blast off and we are set off to travel the UK and perhaps even Oz afterwards, or we may be back sooner in sunny Africa than we all aniticipated. Regardless, I am happy as Larry because I have read an amazing book called Teachings On Love by Thich Naht Hahn (a Buddhist monk) and am inspired and invigorated by the philososphy and teachings of Buddhism that he introduced me to. I don't want to write a sermon but, since reading the book I have scoured the internet learning all I can about Buddhism and I love that it is the only religion that has never been associated with any form of war, that it is tolerant and accepting of other religions and that it focuses on the responsisbility of the individual to be a good person and attempt to attain ultimate peace and personal wellbeing. I also like the fact that people like Goldie Hawn and Tina Turner are Buddhists as I would consider myself to be a good combination of the two of them. In African tradtion much emphasis is put on acknowledging your ancestors and paying homage to the beings that contributed to your bloodline and Buddhism shares this tradtion which I really like. I also really like the colour orange and the smell of sandal wood prayer beads so I think the Tibetan monks look fabulous in their robes. I would love to meet a really attractive Afrikaans Buddhist man at this stage of my life. Afrikaans guys are generally so well mannered and nicely raised and their old school values and rugged manliness is definitely my subscription. I'm not talking about Afrikaans Queens! They are a completely different bowl of bobotie. I'm talking about those rare manly Afrikaans guys prone to holding on just a little bit longer than they should after they've rugby tackled you. These traits coupled with the profound wisdom and gentle practise of Buddhism would create my ideal husband. I have watched The Secret so I will manifest him by acting as though I already have him in my life. So if any of you encounter me on the tube or on a bus speaking to what seems like thin air, you will be mistaken as I will be addressing the space that is soon to be filled with my dream man. Apparrently nature abhors a vaccuum and I have created one that the Universe will now have to fill. One can only hope. Otherwise, London is fabulous. I have encountered a very large population of older women with facial hair between Clapham Junction and Battersea, London drag queens are rubbish and I have almost gotten used to paying R30 for a cappacino. Watch this space, more to follow!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Heaven and back!


Since running away to London with the circus (Madame Zingara Theatre of dreams) I have literally been to Heaven but then also to hell. Its the most fitting place for a circus to run to because there are so many other circuses here. La Clique, Cirque du Soliel and of course the less flamboyant Oxford and Picadilly Circus. I am also by no means the newest member of Zingara any longer as we have a new Lira act done by a local British girl, two incredibly defined strong men, twin contortionsists from Sweden and a new soundman from Brackenfell. All of which other than the sound man are temporary because our other contortionists and strong people are stuck in their respective countries with visa issues. Since we got here it has been balls to the wall. There is no cheap labour in London so we have all been working like pack mules and have literally been doing things like shovelling gravel in the icy cold and erecting tents, dressing rooms and laying flooring and carpetting like its going out of fashion. All of this with the very strict public and safety UK legislation hanging over our heads. We have survived fire, evacuation and hygiene inspections of the highest standards imaginable and we have come through it all stiff, sniffling but still smiling. Last night was our press night and unofficial opening night. Tonight is the true opening. I cannot begin to explain the nerves I felt before facing that sea of crittical English faces all being paid to be our judges and juries. But happily by the end of the night I was almost late for my final speech because I had so many people puling at my stilts and tassles to tell me how much they loved the show. Phew! We're not in the clear yet but I am feeling quite optimistic. We are going to have to wait until the reviews come out and the bookings begin to improve before we can really celebrate but I have good feeling. Otherwise, last Saturday I went to one of the biggest and most notorious gay clubs in the world. Its called Heaven and it was fun but I must confess that after a long day of rehearsing on my stilts my dancing was a little like a meatball ballancing on a pair of soggy cardboard chopsticks. I was moeg! Also, I have never heard so many Kylie Minogue songs in one night before. She must own the place or have shares in it because they even played "Locomotion". I can feel as I approach my thirtieth year on this planet that I am more of a restaurant, dinner party or pub kind of person because with such loud music and dramatic lighting (or lack thereof) I am amazed that people ever meet anyone new in a club. Its almost impossible. I tried chatting to someone very briefly but I couldn't hear what he was saying through Kylie's "na na na na's" and eventually we both shrugged, smiled at each other and then went our seperate ways.
There are loads of South Africans and Aussies here and you can spot them on the tube or busses as the only people smiling, laughing or chatting to one another. I'm afraid that the reports about the Brits generally being a sour lot are quite true. Rude and aggressive but then again I am generalising because I've only been here about two weeks. There are all sorts of strange things about London, for example their Woolworths doesn't sell fabulous food and sweets but is more like our Clicks and their Game is very small and you don't always win when looking for something you need in one of their shops. All that being said, I like it here. Its cold and grey but it buzzes and there is so much to see and do. There must be something in the water here because everywhere you go there are hundreds of people with babies in prams and they even do group mom and pram exercises in the freezing cold in the parks. The babies are very brave and are wrapped up like little catterpillars with just their faces showing in their prams as their mothers practise lunges in unison. This is what its realy like to run away with the circus. There are clowns and contortionists wherever I go in the streets and the underground and they have helped me see how normal we all in Zingara are in comparison.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Finally! The Wheel turns.


It was a while ago but I am still celebrating to this day. Often in life we are called upon to finish last or “suck on the hind teat” to learn humility and to be able to look within and not judge ourselves based on circumstance. We experience loss, failure degradation and we supposedly develop character and wisdom in the process. But I have discovered that on occasion the pendulum swings in the opposite direction and suddenly you are head to toe in chocolate icing for once having your cake and eating it! This was such an occasion in my life. Something had shifted cosmically and I went from feeling invisible, awkward and slightly “special needs” to Adonis Diva Dance machine!
We arrived at this massive party with hundreds of men and I felt a wave of eyes wash over me like a scanner with a hope to print. “What the hell is going on?” I thought. “Do I have a crusty booger abseiling out my left nostril? Why are they all the glaring?” But I recognised those looks. The way my dog Zack looks at me when I’m eating biltong. Okay so it wasn’t every guy in the place but it was more than a handful and suddenly I felt super sexy. I can attribute this strange new reception to two newly acquired attributes: 1. The Wheel of good fortune. 2. Platinum blonde hair.
I have spent most of my adult life trying to have a washboard stomach and after years of diets and tummy crunching like a metronome I have finally found something that works! I call it the wheel of good fortune and my lovely friend Christopher introduced me to it. It is essentially two plastic wheels not unlike the training wheels found on a preschoolers bicycle with two plastic handles attached. Three sets of 12 reps a week and I have gorgeous rock hard abs and all for only R60 Rand from Game. That’s only four pounds and interesting considering a Big Mac costs five pounds in London. (I know I should do infomercials.) Then I had my hair dyed platinum blonde much to the dismay of my immediate family. This new look has proven to me over and again that blondes really do have more fun. I have never been approached so much in my life. On the dance floor, in the gym and even in an aisle at Pick n Pay! My friend Lloyd says it makes me look cheap and therefore more approachable. Bring on the bargain hunters, I say!
So at this particular party I noticed a tall gorgeous and shirtless man dancing like it was his birthday and although I normally would have considered him totally out of my league (I felt a bit like a weed dancing next to an Oak) I danced close to him for most of the night and on occasion would make eye contact and smile. He was surrounded by a group of equally well built and intimidating men any one of which may very well have been his beefy boyfriend, but I didn’t care. I was gonna dance close to this man and just enjoy the view. He would smile back from time to time but showed no major signs of interest and seemed very affectionate with all of his friends and I wondered if they were all a gorgeous polygamous gay sect. But I stayed on and danced and fought the urge to go home and sleep as it was already early hours of the morning after a show that night (2 and a half hours on stilts and a Kylie Minogue song. Enough said). Then a mind blowing remix of the club classic “Finally!” by Cece Peniston started blaring from the speakers and I began to transcend my body I danced so hard I felt as though I was making everyone bounce off the floor around me, the fatigue melted away and I felt invincible. As usual the lyrics seemed to be aimed directly at me and I threw my hips around as if I no longer wanted them. “Finally it’s happened to me right in front of my face my two lips can’t describe it!” It was a sign. Tonight was mine and nothing was going to get in my way. A few hours later I was watching the sun come up with Mr Tall, Dark and Dancing at a friend’s after party and enjoying the odd stolen snog when nobody was looking. A major entry for my gratitude journal and a lesson that winning is worth risking and waiting for. Its am amazing what peroxide and a little wheel can do for you.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Gypsy Queen.

I am blessed. I have gone from being broke, miserable, unemployed and seriously doubting the existance of my guides, to no less than playing Pan the Greek God on stilts in a magical moving restaurant gypsy circus. Life is good. I seem to have a regular gig now with Madame Zingara for the next two months at least and I have once again felt something shift inside me spiritually. Not sure if its the new job and the wonderfully fantastical people I get to work with (drag queen acrobats and bearded ladies with hearts of gold) but I feel a deep seated desire to be more objective and do more things motivated by my heart than my head or my loins. I'm more diligent with my morning pages and am craving chant music and any meditative pastimes I can manage to squeeze into my day. Lately I've been chanting praises to Ganesh the God of removing obstacles and found this to be a great help. The term 'in this world but not of it' is a good way to sum up how I feel at the moment. I want to delve deeper into my spiritual being and see what great Love and Beauty I can find there. I am finding this quite difficult to write about because how I feel does not want to conform to the limited frame work of my writing abilities. I am lying on the couch with a very full stomach from a sunday braai and I am on my own as I have been so many times before and will be again. I know being alone is an illusion and that spending time with others to avoid yourself can also create a facade of self. I am aware that tomorrow will be quite a provocative full moon mostly because I will allow it to be. I feel kind of strange and as if my personality hasn't got the limited boundaries I felt it had yesterday. I feel rooted and all over the place at once. In most of my previous blogs I began writing them with a clear intention. Either to entertain an imagined reader or to see if I could express a thought that would resonate with others but I'm not really sure what I want from this one. I suppose I should just let it be what it is and if thats something vague and unfunny then atleast I've expressed that. I think I'm going to have a sunday nap on this full tummy.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Constant Cravings.


A wise teacher of mine introduced me to the concept of weighing my cravings up against my desires. (His name is Colin Campbell and I can provide details of how to get hold of him should anyone be interested.) I realised that in my life I am constantly being presented with a choice between a craving (instant gratification) or my desire (long term goal). For example: It is my desire to be in a mutually beneficial relationship with a man that I love and respect and who will stimulate me both mentally and physically (duh!) But it is often my craving to get “jiggy” with Mr. Dark-horse on the dance floor who is clearly 100 miles of bad road. Mr Dark-horse is not going to improve my life in any lasting way. He might provide one supercharged and electric (if not shady) experience and then prove to be emotionally unavailable and spiritually ill in all other aspects. But God he is soooooo HOT! And sometimes that which we know is not good for us is irresistible, like that cream stuffed chocolate ├ęclair which they clearly seemed to forget to mention was allowed in the Abs diet.
Daniel Goleman, Author of Emotional Intelligence, talks about a test that was conducted on hundreds of small children to determine whether or not they would prove to be successful in life. It was called the marshmallow test and was more accurate in determining a successful future than IQ tests and whatever the socio-economic backgrounds of the kids were. It was not their intelligence, nor their level of education and financial situations that determined whether or not they would succeed in life. But rather, whether or not they were able to delay their gratification over a period of time which set them apart as overall winners. The test involved presenting each child with a marshmallow and then leaving them on their own after being told that if they were able to wait until an adult returned that they would then be rewarded with an additional marshmallow. If they could not wait, they were allowed to eat the marshmallow but, then would not get another one. Follow up research found that all the children that were prepared to wait were the highest percentage of achievers out of all the other tests that were taken. The recipe for success therefore seems to involve huge lashings of delayed gratification. That means I have to tell Mr Dark-horse to giddy up and keep my ├ęclair in the fridge until Sunday (International cheat eating day.) I wonder if there is any value in buying a pack of marshmallows and storing them in my cupboard for a few weeks to remind myself to focus more on my desire rather than constantly indulging in my cravings. Weird thing is that I really don’t like marshmallows unless they are in a chocolate Easter egg or melting in a mug of hot chocolate. Why is it that we are attracted to so many things that could do us such serious harm over a period of time? Why do I crave bad foods, bad relationships and bad thinking habits? I suppose a goal is that much more satisfying to achieve if it is achieved after great effort. It seems so simple in theory. Say no to today’s pork sausage and so, say yes to tomorrows perfect six pack. But in practise these things are deceptively challenging. Lust is very good at overriding the brains mainframe as is the stomachs argument for a whole slab of whole nut chocolate. In essence I guess I need to reclaim my goals and desires by owning every decision I make along the way. Every bite I take or flirt I make with the wrong slice of cake (be it chocolate or beef) is one step closer or further away from who I want to be and who I want to be with. As my friend Catherine says: “Baby steps.” Baby steps indeed Cath.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Self-Help and Divining Rods.




I’m on the balcony overlooking the gorgeous Indian Ocean. I’m listening to Suzanne Vega and have just enjoyed the lyrics of Marlene on the wall. She speaks of a picture of Marlene Dietrich hanging over the events of her life with a mocking smile as Vega is in the process of discovering her destiny.
I realised today over a mammoth mug of green tea that sometimes it’s actually best not to know what’s coming next. But I think it does help to have a rough idea. I have read just about every self help and pop-psychology book to be found and have consulted literally hundreds of psychics, tarot readers, traditional healers, automatic writers and trance mediums but I think I have missed the point. I have been too focussed on the destination and not making the most of the journey (thanks superchilled.) I was thinking about whether or not the Khoi Khoi or any other aboriginal tribes ever felt the need to create a five year plan. (Perhaps that’s what they were painting on the cave walls.) They definitely had to plan for future events like harsh winters, by storing foods and accumulating enough warm pelts. But, did they devote even five minutes a day to establishing and planning their goals? I think maybe there is a little too much pressure to know what we are here to do and how exactly we plan to do it. These ancient peoples must have exercised foresight and self-discipline but not to the extent many of today’s self-help books would advocate. Then again if their living techniques were so successful why have all of these amazing original peoples been almost completely wiped out by society? I suppose the concept of everything in moderation including moderation applies to self-improvement as well. I have learnt some amazing things from my books which I would like to condense and share. Stephen R. Covey taught me that habits can be exchanged for better ones and that self-discipline can provide liberation. Robin Sharma and Julia Cameron taught me the value of spending the first hour or so of my day devoted to better understanding myself through writing or meditation so that I can be more compassionate and understanding towards others for the rest of the day. Neale Donald Walsch helped me realise that God only wants what I truly want in my heart and that I can become the best version of the vision that I have for myself. Dr John F. Demartini taught me that everything in life seeks equilibrium and that in every moment we are being tossed ecstasy or devastation and that we can choose which we want to catch and that it is preferable and more beneficial to catch both at once. All of these authors are only going to improve your life but they are not a prerequisite to a good life. Books too can become a crutch and an addiction to contradictory living systems. I think it’s important to take what you need from what you read and see in the media but not swallow everything whole like a pill and then later wonder why it clashes with your life. As for the psychics and fortune tellers, they have not disappointed because they were fraudsters and\or inaccurate. Most of them were disturbingly accurate and I found myself ignoring the wisdom of the author Eckart Tolle and constantly living in the future and so dying to myself in every present moment. It was like being so obsessed with what’s going to happen in episode three of “Heroes” that I completely missed some of the plot unravelling in episode two. It’s best to try and live in the now, but if you struggle, I can strongly recommend going for an astrological chart reading with a reputable astrologist like Rod Suskin in Cape Town if you know the time of your birth. He is very in demand and I had to wait six months on a list before I could see him, but he provided so much clarity about my planetary and therefore personality influences and three years on I still consult the reading which he allowed me to record on tape. He is also an author too so any one of his books can be found online or at any Exclusive books which will also provide much clarity. He is an earthy Capricorn and his no frills tell-it-like-it-is manner is a breath of fresh air in an otherwise quite wishy washy esoteric world. It’s beneficial because he helps you to focus on your present challenges and character influences and has helped me with my addiction to trying to control the future. Otherwise I suppose we are all pawns in the process of natural selection desperately trying to discern what makes us special and what purpose we serve. I am going to work harder at living in faith and trusting that I am fulfilling the purpose of my design, otherwise I suppose I would cease to exist. I am going to enjoy all the amazing moments as they come at me and I am going to start by having another ridiculously large mug of tea and maybe taking a swim in the sea that seems to be flirting with me from this balcony.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Shanti.


I finished the matinee show and then decided not to go with my fellow cast members to a screening of the new Batman on Imax. I had some thinking to do. I sat on my ace and devoured a mediocre but filling lasagne, did some people watching and then popped into Exclusive books on my way home and bought a CD called Following Sound into Silence “Chanting your Way Beyond Ego into Bliss.” It’s a chant CD by a guy calling himself Kailash (previously known as Kurt A. Bruder.) It is now playing off my lap top as I write this. He is a little off key at times but it is quite soothing mixed with the steady cyclical “whooshing” sound of the dryer (I am washing my stinky hunchback and fishnets.) It’s nice to type this and hear the gentle click of my laptops space bar punctuated by the occasional “shanti, shanti” (even if it is a bit flat.) I am wondering what I should do with the rest of my life. AGAIN.
I love acting and singing and I feel completely alive on stage but I hate the uncertainty and the less than adequate salary. I’m always scrimping and saving just to pay rent and every month I bend my credit cards as though they were made of silicone. What are my options? I could teach. There is security as a teacher and benefits but the salary is not much better and my gut tells me that I’m not ready yet. But one day I will teach. I would love to study some form of applied psychology like Logotherapy or alternative medicine like Kinesiology so that my Cancerian desire to heal and nurture is satiated at least. But how long will my Leo rising sleep before it throws me back in the spotlight? And what of the big Gay pressure? You know the pressure that says you must have a good home that looks like a magazine photograph and a hot set of wheels? The same pressure that keeps us doing stomach crunches and sleeping in layers of self tan. This industry is a sea of insecurity and here I am in a gorgeous flat in Durban overlooking the sea and wondering how I’m going to make next month’s rent. I have decided to say in Johannesburg until the end of the year so that I can at least start feel a little bit more settled. Then there’s the one man show. To be honest I don’t really feel ready to do that just yet either. I don’t want to risk all that money (that doesn’t belong to me) on a project in a city that still has very little idea of who I am. I can’t imagine anything worse than creating a show only to see it bomb because nobody comes. I feel I need to wait a while. I know that I’m going to get it in the ear from quite a few people who I’ve been promising I’ll do the show to. But I have to follow my gut. I have no real sense of security at the moment, but I am beginning to realise that all notions of security are an illusion. Lovers come and go as do friendships. Shows rehearse, open and then in the blink of an eye they close. The family you make in these tiny dressing rooms and the life stories you shared as you paint on new faces, fade like wisps of smoke. I have to quote Riff Raff in the Time Warp: “It’s astounding, time is fleeting...” I wonder if Oprah, Ghandi and Bill Clinton have had days like this where they wonder if they weren’t sent to the wrong place like French luggage to an Ethiopian Airport. I pray that by the time I’m 30 I am at least clearer on what it is that I am supposed to be doing while I am here on this earth and also how this occupation will keep me in Calvin Klein’s and Clinique facial products as well as cover all my costs.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Man Enough?


Is it just me or is it really getting tough to measure up enough out there? I thought it was sufficient that I was a man who happens to be attracted to other men in order to qualify as a gay man. But these days the bar seems to have been raised and there is all this other criteria that has managed to sneak in. In order to qualify as a good specimen of homo preference you have to have washboard abdominals, big chunks of chiseled arms and legs and enough tattoos to put a map of the London underground to shame. We gay men are even beginning to outstraight the men who don't have to act straight cos they are. Its not that I'm so camp that my wrists are like an oscillating fan or anything, it's just that I'm beginning to feel ashamed of the fact that I'm sensitive and can be vulnerable and even (Charles Atlas forbid!)emotional at times. I meet gorgeous and intelligent gay men who seem to be putting in overtime at Butch camp because they feel that if they don't act masculine enough that nobody will find them attractive. Ironic, here I am, an actor, frustrated because I feel so much pressure to act a certain way. But the truth be told I want the softer albeit feminine side of me to be loved and appreciated as well. I can act "straight" but will doing so help me find someone to Love all of who I am to the fullest? It's not as though I've been smoking Texan plain and rearranging my balls in public in order to catch myself a squeeze but I have noticed a warmer reception from good looking guys when using the lower registers of my voice and greeting them with a firm handshake. Then later on when things are going well I notice the panic and repulsion once they learn my job often involves make-up and the occasional pair of heels. I am happy to be a man. I love the strength in my body,gruff in my voice and the rasp of my morning stubble. (Don't get me wrong there are plenty of strong bodied women out there, but there are also women out there with raspier stubble than mine so lets leave it at that.)However, as much as I love my manly traits, I also love talking about my feelings, nurturing the ones I love and occassionally shedding a tear watching Oprah. I am blessed with a father and a brother who I believe to be fine examples of what a man should be. I am doubly blessd because both of these men love me to bits, and just the way I am. I love that I am at once soft and yet also strong. (Kind of like toilet paper I guess:-) So I'm going to leave my acting to gigs that pay, and keep flying solo until I can land somewhere where all of me will be allowed through customs. Please fasten your seatbelts and make sure your seats are in the upright postion. Chicken or beef?

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Not a happy camper.


Just got home from doing two shows of Rocky Horror. I pumped myself full of a generic cocktail of pseudo ephedrine, Ibuprofen and delivered a particularly manic and somewhat nasal rendition of Riff Raff twice. The audience was great and enjoyed the show. You gotta love coastal towns. They all get so hammered I'm sure they would've given a wet fart a standing ovation. Okay so I'm feeling a little cranky. I think doing the time warp in heels four times in one day with a head cold qualifies me for that. I don't quite feel like sitting in a corner rocking myself and playing Sade's King of Sorrow on repeat. But I'm not exactly a box of sunshine cuddles either. Things haven't been going the way I'd hoped but I think I am dealing well with the disappointment. What is freaking me out is that I am finally going to be getting a one man show to start running hopefully by mid October and although I know I've procrastinated enough the thought makes me feel like I could lose the rushed dinner I had between the two shows. It terrifies me and I'm not even sure why. I would hate to spend the rest of my life just surviving and being mediocre. But, how very daunting the prospect of carrying and maintaining the responsibility of possibly being a true success also seems to be. My sentences are getting too long. Over and out.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Queenzilla Strikes Again!


What happens when you mix six highly developed egos, filthy costumes, stockings and a few strains of body odour that could qualify as a neurotoxin? Then, what if you squeeze all of this into dressing room smaller than 3 metres square with no ventilation? Not my idea of a good time. I woke up this morning with a swollen throat, achy body and a few other issues that I really didn’t want to have to deal with. So, by the time I got to interval in the show tonight I was desperately trying to keep my inner volcano down to a dull roar. I usually have a temperament that can be compared to that of a care bear, but tonight I was feeling more like one of their man-eating grisly cousins. I bit my tongue down really hard but eventually the persistent little fucker slipped out and promptly caused me to bite at least one persons head off. It felt AMAZING! I don’t feel any guilt or remorse. I’m only human! I pride myself on being a very considerate and sensitive person generally, but tonight my tolerance for suffering fools was similar to my lactose tolerance. Nil. My inner acid-bitch-queen came out and it wanted blood. I am happy to say that I wasn’t too cruel nor did I really cause any permanent damage but I did make it very clear that I was not to be taken for a chop. There is something deeply gratifying about telling someone where to get off whilst dressed in fishnets, heels and a fully loaded hunchback. I have had a lovely warm bath and am planning on severely sedating myself on corenza C in a little while. I hope this will restore me to my natural fluffy pastel coloured state of being. If not, I am still comforted by the fact that I will at least have a few previously “challenging” individuals walking on eggshells within the cramped 3 meters we will once again be sharing tomorrow night, for fear of lightning striking in the same place again. Tonight I embrace my shadow aspect. Mwah ah ah!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Foolish Faerie


Now I think I know what was meant by the term: "Fools rush in." But now that I have wiped my eyes and realised that I had wished upon a sattelite and not upon a star, I strangely have no regrets. Things don't go the way we plan but I suspect they end up going the way we need them to. I have been living in a bit of a dream world and reality has presented me with an alarm clock with two grenades in place of the silver alarm bells. I read a fantasy story many years ago (probably Raymond E. Feist) about mere mortals that are seduced and abducted by androgynous faeries that then intoxicate them and keep them in a deluded state of bliss, only to find (once they awake from their delusions) that they are dressed in tatters and have been roaming the countryside like madmen, nearly starved having scrounged on grasses and wild mushrooms.They had not been dressed in faeirie finery and eating delicasies as they were lead to believe whilst under the influence of magic. These poor men and women had been enchanted and, probably what is more sad, because they wanted to believe that the faerie land they thought they were in was actual reality. I feel a bit like that. I have spent the last few weeks with hazy eyes and an idiotic grin on my face and have recently woken up to find that things are not the way they once seemed. Reality can be a bitch but at the end of the day she does have my best interests at heart. Now is a time for clarity. I am going to make the most of it. But for all the clearness and alarms going off I still believe in Love.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Cupid's Bazooka!


So there I was thinking that Cupid was a fat kid with wings and questionable eyesight. I was wrong. Previously he seemed only to shoot me but not the other person and on rare occasions the other way around. The chubby little sniper was taking pot shots and my life was the empty bean can on the fence. But quite recently he decided to stop mucking about. He took aim and has bulls eyed me and this time it seems he managed to get another casualty in the crossfire. Thank God! It’s so humiliating being the only “moegoe” to fall on your ass with affection. I HAVE A BOYFRIEND! I can hear a chorus of Cupid’s cousins singing “hallelujah”, as I say it. He’s amazing. He is creative, intelligent, sexy, and spiritual and he reads! There are complications however. Like with any good birth.
I am in Durban typing this with chipped black nail polish on my fingernails because I am playing Riff Raff in the Rocky Horror show and he is at this very moment manifesting a magical event somewhere in Johannesburg. (He is a Magician; he makes wonderful things with magical carrots.)
So I decided to be proactive and bought a return ticket to fly and see him for two nights because I am not prepared to wait three weeks to see him. (He’s coming to Durban then to see me and the show.)
I think that there must not be enough space in the human brain for amorous feelings and sound logic and good reason. I would never normally do something like this. But I realise that the way I have been feeling has been anything but, “normal”. Will all the cynical singletons please stop deep-throating their index fingers in an attempt to gag. This is my blog and I will gush if I want to. In the past my feelings of endearment felt much like an affliction. It hurt and I lost weight. This time the exact opposite has happened. I feel energised and charged and as though a beaming disco ball has been set into my solar plexus. Many in the cast of “Rocky...” have fallen sick or become emotional due to the stress of opening a new show and I have felt nothing but exuberant vitality coursing through me.
I have made many wishes on many stars and blown away many stranded eyelashes for this. I have cut birthday cakes, klinked wine glasses with a steady eye contact and read countless tarot spreads. I deserve this! Don’t we all? Yes I’m a little scared. But most of all I am excited and there is a part of me that feels deeply put at ease. I’m so happy to have found my heart again. And yes it is like riding a bicycle. I hope that all who read this find themselves on Cupid’s list. May you and someone magical be his next targets!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Mugabe: The Musical.


“Don’t Dream it. Be it.”-Richard O’Brien, The Rocky Horror Show.
I am enthralled in the marvellous mayhem that is rehearsals for The Rocky Horror show. I am spinning like a top but am also squealing “weeeeeeeeee!” like a kid on a swing. I love musical theatre! I’m not sure which day it was on that God created the homosexual, but I am sure that he created the Musical shortly thereafter. I didn’t study musical theatre or dance like most of my fellow cast members and am still quite ignorant about a lot of things that the genre’ is made up of but, like a handsome stranger, I know that I like it and that I want it in my life. The days zoom by and we spend all day running around, singing, dancing and learning new things. It’s like kindergarten without the powder paints and crushed egg shells. The cast is phenomenally talented and I am so entranced with the wonderful world of Transsexual Transylvania, that all my previous concerns have just “poof!” disappeared (Someone tell that to my credit cards.)
There are other perks as well. Because of the constant singing and dancing your body gets ripped and you get to dress up in fishnet stockings and grind your crotch against attractive, talented people and on top of that get paid! Why would I possibly want to do anything else with my life? I’m not sure why anybody does anything else really. I might have to cut my gushing short because I would hate society to lose thousands of much needed farmers, neurosurgeons and aeronautical engineers when they discover how wonderful it is to be a performer in a musical. Other than the show I also have a new man in my life. His name is Martin and he has brought both direction and a refreshingly crisp British accent into my world. I am completely enamoured with him. He is a fantastic GPS application that came with my new phone and I now feel like there is nowhere in Johannesburg (or the world for that matter!) that I cannot go. I talk back to him and am sure to thank him when he suggests I turn left or right at an approaching intersection. He’s very clever and just because he isn’t a real person does not mean I should compromise my concept of good manners and decorum. Otherwise I am still flying solo and -to be perfectly honest- it’s turned into a rather pleasant flight (despite some initial turbulence.) I’m good company and my conversations with myself are becoming more eloquent and animated by the day. I’m looking forward to seeing how they will develop. I know I probably sound like a thin gay version of Shirley Valentine, but I’m enjoying myself anyway (in every way possible.)
Perhaps if Robert Mugabe, and Jackie Selebi were more musically inclined the world would be a better place. Then again Jacob Zuma has already been heading that way with his classic “Umshini Wami!” which is after all a musical ode to the AK47. Maybe it is just The Rocky Horror Show specifically that would be the solution? Winnie could be Magenta, Nkosazana, Columbia, Zuma, Frank ‘n Furter (being the master of seduction that he is.) Then Mugabe could rather fittingly be the deformed alien Riff Raff who becomes the new commander and kills everybody at the end with a beam of pure anti-matter (lack of food and medical resources are basically the same thing.) I think I’ll put in a proposal to Mbongeni Ngema first thing in the morning and rename it Mugabe: The musical. I wonder if the NAC would fund it?

Monday, June 16, 2008

B&B


I am in my parent’s new home, just a stone’s throw away from the Vaal dam which is like an inland mini-ocean. I have been going running along the banks in the afternoons so that my body doesn’t start illustrating my love for my mother’s cooking. I feel like I am in a gay South African version of the film “Like Water for Chocolate” because every meal that my mother serves is fortified with some kind of magic ingredient that loosens my highly strung nerves and cradles my heart until it stops its bitching and moaning. The house is gorgeous. Its double storey with four bedrooms and the belly of the house is a generous open plan, connecting the kitchen and the living room with a high churchlike roof, which is made up of whitewashed wooden beams that hold everything together under the watchful eye of Angelica. Angelica is the hand carved guardian angel that I bought my mother for her birthday to look after us all, and she does. I have been here a week already and it has been a warm hazy blur of Love, laughter and tea. These people have and always will Love me and it feels like the gooseflesh you get sitting in the sun when even your bones have gotten cold. They don’t just accept or tolerate me. Here I am enjoyed like a square of rationed chocolate. I Love my family because they Love me for more than being a brother or a son. They are above all things in my life my greatest blessing. I will move back into my little flat amongst the trees in Northcliff soon and commence rehearsals for The Rocky Horror Show, but until then I am enjoying every minute of the time I spend with these wonderful people that made me. I Love hearing my father’s authoritative tone in my voice when I reprimand the baby in our family (a gorgeous three year old German Sheperd named Zack.) I love setting the table and putting Pompy , our adopted terrier (previously my Ouma and Oupa’s now both watching over us like Angelica) to bed outside under her own duvet because she suffers from late night potty training memory lapses. I spent way too much time on my own in Cape Town and am so happy to now have all this wonderful company. The bed in the room I sleep in is so comfortable that even three of the five cats we have are constantly to be wrestled with for a comfortable spot. I am glad that I have not settled with anyone yet because it makes this time I share with my family so much more intimate. This week we had so many guests that I now feel confident that my mother and I could run a lucrative bed and breakfast. My uncle came to stay followed by a friend of my mother’s and then my aunt and uncle and niece. So much territory was covered. Love, betrayal, death, regret and even marriage (which some would argue is an accumulation of the former four.) Conversations became heated and then cooled and all was punctuated delectably by my mother’s sublime cooking. She is the happiest I have seen her in years and I taste this in every mouthful. My Little brother that is so much bigger than me in so many ways has set something in motion that may provide me with a career. But even if it is not lucrative and so nothing comes of it now, I will feel its rippling impact for the rest of my life. It is good to be believed in.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Transit.


I am on the road again! I can hear Eddie Murphy’s voice as the Donkey in ‘Shrek’ as I say it. Once again I am doing the trek between the Mother City and The City of Gold. Hopefully this will be the last time for at least another four months. Right now I am propped up in a very comfortable double bed in a room at the KaMa Lodge in Richmond, in the heart of the Karoo, which is the land of scrumptious lamb and giant prehistoric mosquitoes. (Last time I was here they chewed me straight through a thick protective layer of Peaceful sleep!) This place is lovely and dirt cheap. The tannie who runs the place has just served me the most amazing lasagne and whilst I ate it I had a very challenging conversation in Afrikaans with a Oom from Robertson who leaves his wife to farm apricots and grapes as he travels South Africa evaluating the values of other people’s farms. I am contemplating how I always seem to be in transition. I have just finished one show (Let’s Mixit 2) and am waiting to start rehearsing another (Rocky Horror). So I am driving to my folks in Deneysville on the Vaal dam to take in some transitory R and R. I am currently, in between cities, in between jobs, in between boyfriends, and in between salary payments. That’s quite a few betweens to be in. But I have this really good feeling inside. I’m not exactly sure what or when, but my gut tells me that something amazing is on its way in to my life and I am so excited. It’s even more exciting because I haven’t even got a clue as to what it could be. Sort of like a psychic lucky packet I guess. I feel very strong and up for just about anything. Interesting because, just a few days ago I was shaking in my boots at just about everything and everybody. I think I was feeling lost and envious of others and was upset that I had nothing to believe in. Religion is such a load of garlic polony (processed and it stinks) and the entertainment industry is so pretentious and shallow at times. Something has shifted and I think that it’s my mind. I’ve been waking up with more gusto in the mornings and I can feel strength, creativity and vitality surging through me. Maybe I’ve begun to believe in myself. I hope so, because it’s about f&*%ing time!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

No KTV For Me.


I only realised fully today that I will never be a KTV presenter. Strange as it may seem, I think a part of me still believed that my inherent children's television programme linking abilities would eventually be recognised. I have always felt that I would be perfect for the job, but as I approach my thirtieth year on this earth it finally dawned on me that even my chances of presenting 'Twentysomething' are slim, never mind finding myself in that skilled and eloquent stable of continuity presenters to be found at the SABC! I went to school with Jeannie D the presenter from Top Billing. I am sooooooo jealous of her. She gets to travel EVERYWHERE! Look fabulous ALL the time, and get paid to flirt outrageously on screen with Janez Vermieren (underwear model and D.I.Y. presenter.) She must have had a series of really shit former lives because the girl's certainly got it good in this one!
I think I would make a great presenter. I can be funny and when I don't have a acne break out that are like replicas of Lionshead (like now!) , (Not a word Jacob!!!!!), (bitch.) I can clean up nicely and lull you into not changing the channel. The irony is that I don't watch TV myself. I hate TV. I like being on it but it bores me if I watch it. I can watch about twenty minutes of Crime and Investigation (morbid I know, but I am fascinated with psychosis) and the odd Oprah Winfrey or Catherine Tate (same thing really) then I have to go and do something constructive like seeing if my soya milk has curdled in the fridge. I think I just may have A.D.D. or A.D.H.D or O.C.D. Whichever! All I know for sure is that I do not have K.T.V!

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Muse-ou


I have to talk a bit about my greatest Love. And this would have to be music. Even though I cannot play a musical instrument, I know that in my soul I am a musician. There is nothing else that gives me more joy than creating and performing music. When I sing I struggle to make eye contact because I feel that the great wooden doors of my being are flung open and I am completely exposed to the naked quick. I fear that I will be seen for all that I am and that this may not be enough. Yet I am slowly learning to be seen, as I sing. I feel guilty about how much I enjoy any work relating to music because to be paid to make it seems so drastically to my advantage. Even if I never earn a cent from music I will never stop making it. But I pray that that does not end up being the case.
“Singing takes the pain away. Singing helps you face another day.” These are the lyrics of my latest song entitled Lovely Old Lady. It speaks of how I truly feel about singing. When my heart has been broken and flinching in a corner like a trampled cockroach, music was the bostik that I used to put it back together. I have sung all my life. In the shower, on the loo (Yes Tipsy Tart I know you do too! ;)
When in the studio working on a song I forget about everything and just zone in on the layers of sound being weaved together. (Yes Jacob, even Gaydar!) Time speeds up and all of a sudden I’ve been sitting there for six hours without thinking about myself or analysing my existence. I have been purely consumed with the creation of a something that provokes feeling. I am not able to do this alone (Thanks Zayne!) but it feels like the truest purpose I have ever served. I love acting and writing but creating a song and then performing it, make them both pale in comparison. If God spoke I think He/She would sing.
I hope to create many songs and share them with the world. Songs that tell stories and songs that bring relief. I want people to feel my songs stir something inside them. I want my lyrics to tug at their hearts and quieten their minds. I also want to make songs that make people smile and laugh at themselves. If I was trapped on a deserted island all alone it would be the songs in my head that would keep me company and prevent me from losing my mind, as they do now.
Love and Songs are so intricately linked together and even though I am still perplexed as to what Love really is I know in my gut that it has a lot to do with music.
“It’s like losing control; it’s like being a part of a whole. It’s like losing your mind, trusting your soul, just letting go... For better or worse how I love music.” – Lebo Mathosa R.I.P.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Watch This Space!


I am sick and tired. But the real sick and tired that involves mugs of med-lemon and stinking of Vicks, not the figurative mantra of the negative masses. Actually, with regards to outlook, I am in quite a good space, (when I’m not coughing.) I have been contemplating the lyrics of a James Morrison song in which he claims that he is “not lost, just undiscovered.” I relate to this sentiment.
Like thousands of other magnificent people, I do not have anyone wrapping their arms around me at night telling me how sexy, and wonderful I am. But even without this verification I believe these things to be true. I am not starring opposite Nicole Kidman in a blockbuster and buying mansions in Mumbai but, I still believe I am a talented actor that will go places and do great things. This is my job to believe this. If I don’t do it nobody else can. Apparently the universe abhors a vacuum. (Wonder what the people at Electrolux think of that.) So if we create a vacuum in terms of self-perception and worth then the Universe will most likely fill that gap with a whole lot of crap that may not fit so nicely into our lives. I. E. If we don’t determine our worth then we will use fashion magazines, and celebrity obsessed media as a means to measure ourselves. (I am being so Mariah Carrey right now.) Best to not go around in a vacuous state then, (sorry Britney). We can’t let other people dictate the story of who we are. I believe we get to make our stories up as we go along using the props and characters that life throws at us. My story is a romantic comedy.
There’s this zany yet attractive actor trying to make the big time and find Love along the way. Yet he keeps getting cast as a drag queen or asked to take his clothes off. Despite his charm and devastating good looks he seems to be out every time Love wishes to make a delivery. He is disillusioned and is thinking about giving up. (That tedious part I’ve already been through, but now for the good part.) He begins to write a blog that really takes off and soon there are people from all over the world and all different walks of life logging on to his blog. Inspired, he then rewrites some of his blog entries as a one man show entitled “The Naked Drag Queen”. He is terrified and faces all his demons in the process of putting his thoughts on to stage and even contemplates abandoning the project a few times. (There must always be a dramatic bit.) He finally gets to his opening night and at first it seems as though his worst fears will be realised. The audience doesn’t seem to like the show. But then! Dahm! Dahm! Dahm! (Dramatic music for effect.) They begin to react and as the show progresses it becomes clear that they Love it! Soon he is on the road, performing his show about the elusiveness of Love all around the world. He is successful. He has everything he ever wanted, except Love and he is no longer finding his material all that funny. Then, one day whilst in the middle of a show he notices a set of eyes on him different from the others. He continues to share his witticisms on life and close encounters (yet never close enough) with Love to the audience, as he feels these eyes like spotlights upon him. As the show progresses he sees these eyes develop, at first, the unmistakeable sheen of deep fondness, followed by the illuminated orbs of a heart freshly lit. (He wants me.) After the show they talk for hours and wonder how either ever managed a winter without the other before that night. Suddenly, our hero has a whole new theme for a one man show (Now that we found Love, what are we gonna do with it?) and can finally leave the last one (Looking for Love) alone because it has served its purpose.
This is how I would like the story to go but I am open to a few variations. I am also open to any suggestions but, be warned. It’s my story at the end of the day, and I call the shots! (I don’t even own a vacuum!) I am such a sucker for a happy ending! I am also, on flu medicine that contains pseudo ephedrine, which I am told is a basic ingredient for “Tik” so do consider this when judging my flight of fancy to harshly. THE END (For now.)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Sour Grapes?


It’s one thing to be all alone in your own home. But tonight I am, once again, on my own in somebody else’s home. Well not completely alone because there are two very skinny dogs with me. Dogs that would much rather have someone else other than me here and I’m afraid the feeling is mutual. They are very sweet and affectionate but they are not mine and in truth I prefer cats. Cats are independent and far less irritating. I feel guilty for feeling disgruntled because the reason I am alone is because a very good friend of mine (who usually lives here) has met and connected with someone in the most amazing way. He has the most hysterical Cheshire cat grin on his face and his feet hardly seem to be touching the ground. He has waited long and hard for this and deserves every moment of this starry eyed brain-mushed bliss. But frankly, it is very inconvenient for me. In truth even when he is here he has his “friend” with him and although he is lovely in every way and I see him becoming a close friend too, When we're together, I come down with a chronic case of Thirdwheelitis. Three really can be a crowd. (Sometimes I fight the desire to be the bigger person.) I have lost my hunting partner. The person who I would go clubbing with until the early hours, in search of “the one”, only to return unsuccessful, and then compare failed strategies with me over a mug of tea, is now cuddling up to DVD’s, getting a good night’s sleep on a Saturday night and having sex, regularly. We can’t even argue properly, because he always has someone with him who is predisposed to being on his side, even if he’s wrong. (Which is all the time! ;-) Even as I write this the dogs are driving me mad. They are psychotically chasing one another around the microscopic lounge and have already knocked a mug of scalding med-lemon onto my lap. (I have a cold.) I am ignoring them because I fear that if I were to try to discipline them, I would resort to capital punishment and their delicate “rexic” frames wouldn’t cope with it, and besides it’s far too late. They kept me up all night barking at Casper the friendly Ghost recently so they are definitely not in my good books. (Had to be a ghost because no one with a pulse was anywhere near the area they were barking.) So yes, I am happy that my friend is happy. But I am not happy that it leaves me on my own with company I would not freely choose for myself (like a certain Turkish breed I was also left alone with the night he met his squeeze.) Imagine if you and a friend are both starving. You go out in search of food together. Then, your friend finds something to eat that is only enough for him. You are happy for your friend but you are also still hungry and now left to forage for food on your own. Sounds like the perfect ingredients for a self-pity party to me.
This is nobody’s fault. This is not anyone else’s responsibility (Jacob there is nothing YOU can do.) This is just a circumstance that I need to bitch about. I have a gorgeous little flat, full of my favourite things, close to my amazing family and even occasionally containing a gorgeous cat (on loan from my downstairs neighbours.) But it’s over a thousand kilometres away and I can’t go there until mid June. So I am a sour grape dangerously close to becoming “a grape of wrath” with these dogs. This is not so bad really, because fermentation is a natural process and without it there would be no fine wines and yoghurt would stay milk. As a school boy I would often be told by patronising adults that “my time would come.” And in many ways they were actually right. (I am no longer short and fat and sporting a dodgy “step” haircut.) But, when will my “time” to hang up my clubbing shoes come, so I can settle in with an amazing man and rather invest in decent linen and a flat screen TV? I suppose that this will ensure that I REALLY appreciate it when I eventually find it. I know how delicious just about any food tastes when I haven’t eaten for a long time. The problem is I am still going to be living in different cities for the rest of the year (touring musicals) so I am really more ‘1820 Settler’ than someone to ‘settle in with’ at this stage. I agree with Eckart Tolle’ (author of The Power of Now) It is pointless to fight against things the way they are. I guess I’m expressing my current discomfort with my circumstances in the hope that it will help me take action to prevent this situation in the future. What are my options? Refuse to take work that uproots me every three months and risk unemployment? Change my career entirely? (I have been considering studying Kinesiology, as it will provide me with a good excuse to touch strange men.) Or maybe do like the cheesy church hymn says and “trust and obey for there’s no other way”. At least the dogs have settled down now. I must admit, they are quite cute when they’re asleep.

Monday, May 19, 2008

On Sale Now!


(This is an analogy. I am not a rent boy but thanks for the offers ;-)
The problem with letting your “product” sell for cheap, is that it’s very difficult to get the price you really want afterwards. When you allow your bargaining powers to slip and your standards to drop you may (in a moment of weakness or desperation) allow your “goods” to be purchased for less than the original asking price. You may even find yourself dealing with dodgy customers that you would normally have nothing to do with. Normally you would aim at the high end of the market but these dodgy clients have been consistently persistent and sometimes it’s such hard work keeping the upmarket ones happy. Then the word gets out that you’ve been distributing your “wares” generously to lesser respected corners of the market and suddenly rumours spread that yours may in fact be an inferior “product.” The solution to this problem may be to find someone else in similar predicament so that you can launch a combined marketing campaign along the lines of “buy one get one free”. But alas that way you are (at best) both only going for half of what you are worth.
My solution - to having sold myself short - is to take my “product” completely off the market and to keep it in storage until there is more of a demand. (There are farmers in the North West who have made a fortune by doing this with their maize.) Like red wine or brandy that’s been kept in cellars or in barrels in the dark for many years to be sold now at exorbitant prices. But what happens if my product becomes outdated and there is no longer a demand?
The problem is that the market is currently flooded. And the drama, art, music and ballet schools across the world are spewing out fresh batches of bright eyed, bushy tailed “product” every year. I was offered an upgrade for my cell phone recently and immediately declined it in outrage. It still works perfectly well and it’s not that old! How would you feel being replaced when you are still more than useful. There always seems to be something newer and more impressive waiting in the wings for its big debut, whilst something else is taking its final curtain. I guess the moral of the story is not to let your product go for less than it’s worth, in the first place. Hindsight is always 20/20 vision.
I like flea markets because they prove that even damaged goods can be bought and sold. But, I don’t want to be a vender with a bargain. I want to be a high class salesman with something exclusive, priceless and rare. Maybe I should get into import export. Foreigners have always taken a shine to me. I’m already on several sites on the internet so who knows maybe I’ll be sold at a really good price to someone really discerning on E-bay. Someone who knows what I’m worth despite my recent going rate.

Friday, May 16, 2008

"UTE" of ILL REPUTE



As many of you know we have a huge assortment of gay men in Cape Town. So many in fact, that we have started to develop different categories in which we can classify ourselves. There are “Twinks”. The young, fresh faced, skinny boys, with spiky hair and eager, puppy dog eyes. They’re particularly endearing because most of them still believe in Love and monogamous relationships. Then you get the “Preppies.” They are often seen out in something striped or knitted. Their clothes indicate that they may be students or sportsmen and some will even wear a pair of fashionable spectacles. Their hair is very neat and short and like “drag queens” they may shave their legs, but only because they wish to minimise injury to their legs should they come off their bicycles during the Argus. They spend a lot of time in straight clubs and bars claiming to be non scene and then wondering why they never meet any nice guys who are actually gay and not just up for the occasional drunken blow job in the men’s room. There are “Hobbits” or “Oompa Loompa’s”, as I call them, who are short stocky gay men. There are big burly “Bears” who look like the grisly yet seemingly huggable creatures they are named after. And then there are “Cubs” which are bears in training. Then you get my personal favourite “Muscle Mary’s”. I love “Muscle Mary’s”. The only problem is that “Muscle Mary’s” can only really love themselves or other “Muscle Mary’s”, and despite my every effort and having consumed a mountain of protein powder, I am not a “Muscle Mary.”
I am a new breed of homosexual and I am not alone. I am a “Ute.” Yes a “Ute” and it is no coincidence that it rhymes with cute. “Ute” is short for the word “Utility” and this is apt for many reasons. "Ute's" are user friendly and handy to have around, sort of like the Swiss Army knives of the gay world. “Ute’s”, like me, drive utility vehicles or “bakkies.” This is considered quite butch but in truth mine is silver and it sports a rainbow sticker. We are practical gay guys who like to throw the things we own onto the back of our “bakkie” and then hit the road. We are usually quite slim or athletically built but not bulky enough to be “Muscle Mary’s”. “Ute’s” lack the mass or the sufficient amount of body hair to be “Bears” or “cubs” and we are a little too unkempt and less inclined to wear stripes to be “Preppy”. “You have to be younger than 25 to be a “Twink”, and most “Ute’s” are in their early thirties or approaching that age. “Ute’s” are lucky in that they can date gay men from other classifications quite easily. “Bears”, “Twinks” and “Preppies” like “Ute’s” and I myself have been able bag the odd “Muscle Mary.” We have great cross-over appeal. “Ute’s” live in their jeans and corduroys. They are not as obsessive about their hair as “Twink’s”, “Preppies” and “Muscle Mary’s”. “Ute’s” prefer Hang Ten hoody’s and Billabong clothing and accessories to the Abercrombie and Fitch and Diesel fixation shared by many of the other groups. “Ute’s” are not overtly feminine nor are they excessively masculine. They glide along blending into the straight world very well until they come across another “Ute” and then their true rainbow colours come out. They are very animated story tellers and are unafraid to use the upper registers of their voices to make a point. But you can easily take a “Ute” home and introduce him to your parents and they will think he is a very colourful and likeable character rather than a queen that knocks on your back door.
I have a few friends that are “Ute’s” and have noticed an increasing amount of “Ute’s” emerging. Walking their dogs on the promenade and camping one another in D.I.Y stores. It’s comforting.
The problem with being a “Ute” though is that sometimes we are “utilised” a little too often. “Ute’s” must guard against being messed around by the other “moffie” types. “Twinks” often use “Ute’s” to learn how to experience their first break up. “I’m sorry but you’re just too intense and I don’t love you anymore. I love Lance because he also uses gel to spike his hair and he rides a cool scooter and not a “bakkie.”” “Ute’s” need to watch themselves with “Muscle Mary’s.” Most “Muscle Mary’s” will secretly always be looking for another “Muscle Mary” and that’s if you don’t find yourself replaced by a portable mirror. I realised that I didn’t seem to fit in any of the other categories and have developed a reputation for being a nice guy (with a tendency for taking off his clothes and occasionally playing a woman.) I felt lost and invisible being unclassified and unable to crack the nod into the Bulging biceps club. Then I noticed that there were other men like me floating around in this gay “no man’s land.” Other men who were not quite one type or another and also prone to long term relationships followed by long periods of being on their own. I even met and befriended one whose career also requires that he wear skimpy clothes and dress in drag. (Come on Adam don’t be shy!)
But because “Ute’s” are built to carry heavy loads and go the distance they manage to cope quite well.
“Ute’s” make the perfect boyfriends because you always have someone with a “bakkie” on hand to help you move heavy furniture.
You don’t have to spend a fortune on birthday and Xmas presents because they don’t need labels and designer fragrances. Anything in the male section of Body Shop will do.
A “Ute” will make you many cups of tea and will keep you entertained with many hours of animated story telling. Or sit quietly next to you on a Sunday reading his book.“Ute’s” are the best of both worlds. He will cuddle with you under a duvet watching a soppy DVD and then help your dad build a fire for the braai. “Ute’s” are not afraid to get their hands dirty but are very hygienic and always smell good. I love being a “Ute”. It also rhymes with “astute” and “parachute.” Both are apt descriptions, because “Ute’s” cover great distances and as you fall the experience can be quite exhilarating.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Amy and Apricots


I love soft eating apricots. You know, the ones you get from Woolies? They are great and they have such a wonderful orange colour. Patrick Holford (the right eating guru of my universe) says they are a great source of iron as well as being rich in antioxidants. The only problem is that they are preserved with Sulphur dioxide and this closes my chest and gives me heart burn. But still I eat them. Sometimes I know I really shouldn’t do something but I do it anyway. Why is that? Another apricotlike or apricotesque problem I seem to be having is getting involved with men that keep me at arm’s length. Come on, we’ve all been there. You wait all day for your phone to ring or vibrate with a SMS. You keep checking to see that it hasn’t beeped in case you may not have heard it (despite your newly developed sonic hearing.) It’s pathetic, you know this, but you do it anyway. You meet a friend for tea but, you only half listen to anything they say because you’re thinking about him. Eventually your phone does ring your heart races your eyes ignite and it’s the bank trying to get you to take out a life policy that will ensure everyone in your family gets loaded but on condition that you die.
Amy Winehouse has a song on her Back to Black album called ‘Love is a losing hand.’ It seems so morbid but I can’t stop singing it. The only lyrics I know are, “...though you’re a gambling man, Love is a losing hand.” And this I repeat over and over as I fix my dinner or remove socks from the dryer. Not exactly the best mantra to adopt if I want a winning mutually beneficial intimate relationship. Maybe I should start singing Finally by Cece Peniston it goes: “Finally it’s happened to me right in front of my face and I just can’t describe it.” Or something more upbeat like “I’m walking on sunshine.”
Well, it is Love, or the lack thereof that inspires me to write and express my feelings so I guess I owe it to my current single circumstance that I can entertain you the reader (or person in the audience.) I wonder if you would enjoy my work as much or even more if I ever find it. I would like to hope that you would. Maybe Amy is wrong and Love is on the cards for me and maybe, just maybe, I’ve been dealt a royal flush.

XXX Rated.


There are so many things you can become addicted to these days. Alcohol, heroine, tik and even Lazari’s pink cupcakes (just off Buitenkant street in Vredehoek.) But now I have been informed that you can become addicted to sex and that there are even 12 step programmes used to help those with a constant need to do the “deed”. I must say that if there was a requirement to be enslaved to at least one addiction in your life time, sex at first glance, would seem the most attractive. Sex is the ultimate instant gratification. I can only speak from the perspective of a man because woman are a fantastic mystery to most gay men, but for us it’s very simple: There is a beginning, which can be as exhilarating as hunting in the wild (without getting blood on your cargo pants), a middle that causes all stresses and concerns to disappear, and an end that is final and thoroughly satisfying. Sex is a lot like drugs and booze. You forget about the mortgage and your deadlines at work. Everything else ceases to exist and you transcend yourself for a few blissful seconds.
I read in the February edition of Life magazine that the brain releases a series of stimulating chemicals like oxytocin and serotonin during attraction to another person and that lust is fuelled by testosterone for men and women. Well, these chemicals, although being organic, must also have the potential to be addictive. They are described as being “natural opiates.” (Poppy flowers and Marijuana can also be grown organically.) Also, there is an increase in gay men taking tribulus, zinc and other testosterone stimulating supplements to aid them in their bulking up in weight training. This must impact on the sexual energy of the entire gay community. Sex and sexuality require stimulation and factors like an increase in testosterone and chiselled athletic bodies add fuel to the fire within every gay man’s loins. This must cause some kind of ripple effect within the lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community as well because we share the same dance floors and hunting grounds and I believe you don’t need to be attracted to someone to pick up on their sexual energy. I suppose in this way sexual energy can be likened to a strain of the flu virus that makes its way across the dance floor. First you see one couple groping and kissing in a corner and then slowly but surely there is another and then another and those still on the floor dancing are thrusting their hips at one another, more feverishly than before.
Sex can be a welcome escape from the realities of poverty, isolation, decay and guilt. But like drugs and booze it can aggravate the situation much more once it’s over. For example: Imagine I am having trouble feeling validated by my boyfriend (this is just hypothetical, I would never be this needy in reality and I don’t even have a boyfriend, YET!) He seems busy all the time and distracted during sex and I interpret this as him neglecting me. I feel unattractive, insecure and ugly. I keep gargling with mouthwash and doing stomach crunches because I fear that it may be my breath or my jelly belly that is driving him away. Then one day shopping in Cavendish I bump into a guy called X who I know has always had a bit of a ‘thing’ for me. I didn’t really find X that attractive before but now I see the way he looks at me and it makes me feel sexy and wanted. I take X into a toilet cubicle were we then “X” and I feel great for exactly 1 and a half seconds after which, I am crushed with guilt and self loathing. I then go home and behave like a brat with my boyfriend, because I know I have betrayed him and no longer deserve to be with him, causing a huge argument that makes him upset and angry with me. “X” the floozy that I “X”ed in the toilet then tells his closest friend about the incident and swears him to secrecy. This is like sending a press release to CNN international and soon everyone knows including my boyfriend who also then becomes an X. It’s amazing how quickly a story can become XXX these days!
I’m not sure that a sex addiction is as quick to develop as a heroin addiction. I think it is more similar to alcohol, in my opinion. Surely the act of drinking and enjoying the soothing and pleasurable qualities of the substance must be energized and invested in over a period of time for the chemical and emotional dependency to develop. Or maybe I’m wrong. Maybe, there are alcoholics that were hooked after their first sip of wine and perhaps, there are people out there that have been sexually compulsive since their very first “slap and tickle” session, finding themselves, in a darkroom by the end of the week, with a track record akin to a prostitute at a truck depot.
I recall someone referring to mankind as a bunch of “flesh bags” carrying around a stew of “chemical soup.” In that case we are constantly adding to and changing the nature of our chemicals inside our soups. The hormones that we have change our chemical composition, the emotions that we indulge in can affect our brain chemistry and the substances that we ingest can also dramatically alter our intended “recipe’s”. It’s actually a little scary. I have been witness to events going terribly wrong when the recipe has not been adhered to and the ingredients changed. I remember being creative in the kitchen as a child and a mass of pink goo exploding from the microwave . A goo that was initially intended to be a strawberry sponge cake.
There is a delicate balance of elements in order for things to exist as they do. Too much almond essence can ruin a milk tart and too much garlic will ruin your chances of a good night out. This balance can be the difference between a tasty curry with a bite and a morning loo session in which something bites back on its way out. Now, I amble along the cobbled streets of the gay quarter and wonder when I’ll be witness to someone exploding and splattering me in a mass of pink goo.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Factory Reject


So okay maybe I overestimated my ability to deal with rejection a teeny tiny bit. This is not the way I feel when I don’t get the part I was auditioning for. This feels a little more like the time I mistakenly rubbed a certain “sensitive” area with deep heat after a groin injury. A persistent and most inconvenient sensation I would not recommend. He’s just not that into me. If I am a serving of grated beetroot on a Spur salad buffet then he has not chosen me for his side plate. Beetroot often gets rejected because it makes everything else on your plate go a bright pinkish red and God forbid, everything on your plate should become a shade of pink. Come to think of it beetroot is one of the gayest roots I can imagine with carrots coming a close second (because of their phallic nature.)
My last rejection was more like a funky shoe that gets bought, worn a while, and then returned because it “didn’t fit properly”. We all know how tough it is to sell worn shoes! This guy didn’t even want to try my shoe on! Maybe I wasn’t Nike or Reebok enough for him. Maybe if I was more Adidas and less Ug boot then I would be wrapped around his souls right now. But, it looks like I’m not going to be sharing a morning pot of tea with him anytime soon. Was it my teeth? They are a bit skew. Maybe my hair was too long or he doesn’t like my brand of deodorant. Maybe he was intimidated by my talent and good looks and was afraid of living in the shadow of my inevitable and impending fame. Why is it that he doesn’t subscribe to my magazine when I would gag to lick every page of his?
What frustrates me most is that I now have no one to sigh and get glassy eyed over anymore. I spent the afternoon roaming the waterfront hoping to find someone new to develop a crush on, someone, who might take the bait, someone who might say “yes”, this time. I even hovered around the gay section of exclusive books but I soon felt like I was the only accidental visitor to a rather perverted retirement home. I love old people but they shouldn’t think that age permits them frisking rights on the young. So tonight I have been licking my wounds and contemplating sending him an sms containing only the word “poes”. But I decided against it. It’s not his fault I’m going to be famous.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Let Him Know Then Let it Go!


I have had an epiphany! I decided to inform someone that I have a crush on him. I was only slightly braver than the first time I did this which was five years ago via sms. I did it last night via an internet dating message. Strange but I feel liberated! I have not had a response yet and am not feeling optimistic about it but, I am so glad I did it. Now it’s his problem! So do it! Go out there and tell him, or her, how you feel so you can get on with your life. Let’s start a revolution, in which all those bound by their secret feelings are set free! It is so shit to harbour an infatuation and sit on it like an old egg that never hatches. My mind-bending realization is that it is better to have a bruised ego than a broken heart! If I had sat and secretly squatted on the fact that I wanna lick his face like a dog and then acted like I felt nothing every time I saw him, my infatuation would have gotten too much and would eventually flatten me (which is why I believe it’s called a crush.) I have done this many times before and it’s sore and eventually tedious for your friends, who have to hear you agonize about how amazing this guy is, “if only he knew I adore him.” Your time is better spent replacing your bulbs with the energy efficient type.
I find that you can actually start aching for a person like your stomach can ache for food. But, I know that if the other person [whose leg (amongst other things) I want to hump] knows how I feel then the pain is diminished. I’m not sure why that is. Auditioning for show after show and then only landing the odd one, I have come to terms with the fact that there will be times when I am rejected. So I have decided to translate this into my love life. I get a lot of “no’s” in my industry but that doesn’t stop me from going for the big roles. So now I’m going to go for the guys I always thought were out of my league, like I go for the most challenging roles. When I get rejected it hurts but I can dust myself off and move on safe in the knowledge that this clearly was not meant for me, this is not my "Kismet", my destiny (thanks Jacob for teaching me this wonderful word). Then I gotta move on to the next challenge. It's better than staying at home on audition day and envying the lead that does get cast. I have already received a few “no’s” and am expecting to hear more “no’s” but just think how phenomenal it’s going to be when I get a “yes!” ;-)

Monday, May 5, 2008

Forbidden Fruit Cocktail


This has been one action stacked and emotionally discharged long week-end!
It makes me think of the lesser known scripture of Adam and Steve in the proverbial Garden. Adam is tempted to have of Steve’s forbidden fruits even though he knows that Steve is actually involved with someone else from another garden, somewhere overseas. Adam knows that he really shouldn’t but what is one to do, when one has a weakness for fruit?
It’s all about the packaging so I suppose Steve must have been sporting a rather fetching basket and as to what transpired between the two, one can only surmise from the chapter to follow: Ready, Willing, Cane and Able.
History is fond of repeating itself and so I felt much like I imagine ancestor Adam must have felt all those hundreds of years ago, this very week-end. I developed a forbidden fruit crush on someone and am reminded of how things “change” and then “stay the same.” He is tall, dark, gorgeous and completely unobtainable. There are men that have made me wish to be thinner or bigger or smarter or more affluent in order to win their favour. But, this guy made me want to be more of who I am. He takes no shit and is clearly not a fan of pretence or facade. He has beautiful eyes that can dissect your being and isolate character flaws like a surgeon’s laser. I noticed how he disallowed any superficial chit-chat and how keen he pricked his ears up, if there was even a hint of mercury or spice (bullshit) in what I was saying. I got the impression that there would be no space or time provided for me to be or do anything other than what I am at heart. He is only interested in who I am and not what I was or want to be. This is a challenge for an actor who is used to having so many options at his disposal. With him I’d have to leave the masks and make-up at work before coming home. I felt myself falling and it was like watching an annoyingly unavoidable crash like an unmanned shopping trolley scooting downhill towards a freshly painted car. It’s not usually very practical when we fall, nor is it graceful and one inevitably ends up a bit grazed and bruised.
There are things I could tell within minutes of meeting him. I can make him laugh but it’s not a given that he will, if I try. He reads in bed but, will probably never read this (Though I pray he does.) He stretches like a cat and has a dark sense of humour but is prone to smiling at strangers. He smells good and if he was with me and we went to a dinner party together, he would place his hand on my knee when he felt I was feeling insecure. But even though I am tempted to tell him I love him and cause him to get a rather ineffective restraining order (See previous blog Media Slut) I am conscious of the fact that I don’t really know him (even though this does nothing to diminish his yum-factor.) But he’s not available. I cannot have him now because he belongs to someone else and that just makes him even more desirable.
Isn’t it strange how the really delicious things in life are always really bad for you? I would be with him if doing so merely made me fat, gave me cholesterol or clogged my arteries or gave me ‘the runs’ (as is often the case with fruit in excess) But, having an affair would compromise my already low running supply of integrity and, wrack me with gnawing guilt. I have an overdraft of guilt as it is, and I really don’t need the bad karma. Also, how could I enjoy a trusting loving relationship, if I incubated it in a Petri dish of deception and betrayal? I’d rather leave that shit to Shakespeare. So I say, “not tonight, Josephine!” I want all of you and not just some of you, on loan from somebody else. Call me when you’re single. And until then I will keep my phone on me at all times in the hope that I was enough of myself on the night that we met.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

PINCHING MY INCH


I am a relatively healthy person. I gym at least twice a week and am quite energetic most of the time. But my self-sabotaging aspect (we all have one I believe) has a rather sweet tooth and an inflated notion of what is a healthy portion of food to consume in one sitting. In other words, I am a piggy. This has resulted in me manifesting and maintaining a rather persistent inch of fat around my waist. I don’t like it one bit yet I know that my actions have brought it into being. I also happen to believe that everything happens for a reason and so everything must then exist for a reason (Including my unwanted fat.) One less samoosa here and a few less slices of pizza there and I would probably be in Washboard city. But no, my subconscious would rather catch the bus to Tubby Town. The weird thing is that I am naturally tall and slim and my arms and legs are long and thin, so I am now beginning to feel like four strips of bamboo shoved into a week-end tog bag. Okay I’m exaggerating, I’m not exactly built like Santa Clause and I am confident enough with my body to have appeared nude three times on stage but we are all entitled to a little body dysmorphia (Any tips on how to spell that?) This kind of self-criticism is not good for the self image and so I think its time for some analysis.
Even the word “fat”, has become provocative. I feel my shoulders flinch slightly, every time I hear the word, and I don’t really try to stop myself because, I know it’s good for burning calories. I can’t even walk past a copy of Men’s Health without feeling an odd combination of attraction and nauseating guilt.

What is fat any way? According to the limited high school biology I remember it’s a protective layer that provides a reserve in times of famine and acts as a shock absorber around the internal organs to prevent our guts suffering from whiplash every time we hit a night club. So the original purpose of fat is to be a useful back up and an ingenious layer that protects us from wear and tear. So, if we have more than the prescribed amount of fat due to us, then maybe it must be because we are hyper sensitive and are creating a more substantial barrier to protect us from the harsh outside world. Hmmm…The world is getting fatter to try and cope with a harsher quality of life? (It brings a whole new meaning to the term, “sealed for your protection.”) But, is life really tougher now? I think those guys in the biblical times really had it much worse, what with leprosy, floods and plagues in comparison to our little global warming issues? Plus, they didn’t even have microwaves Woolworths and ATM’s. I think we have it made, in comparison.

Come to think of it I make good use of my belly fat. I use it as a scapegoat for many of my shortcomings. I allow myself to believe that it is because I don’t have a six pack that I have not yet become a famous actor and part-time model. The rest of my features have nothing to do with it. It is for this same reason that I am still single and Patrick Dempsey has not yet realized how perfect we are for each other. I think I might even be blaming my excess adipose for my financial lack as well. I mean otherwise in difficult times I would just be able to lift my shirt and random people would just start flinging money at me. (To be fair models are actually paid more in commercials than actors so this is not so far removed from reality.) When broke I could always be an underwear model but, not with my current padding.
So, my fat is forming a layer (figuratively and literally) that then protects me from the pain of facing my failures. This is all a wonderful theory, but, maybe what I should really do is just eat less sugar, do more cardio and spend less time drinking cappuccinos as I analyze my stomach sitting at a computer. ;-)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Media Slut.


I am a media slut. That is because I have been interviewed by journalists no less than three times over the last two weeks for the show I am currently working on called “Let’s Mixit.” I love being interviewed because it forces me to think about my life in a sensational and entertaining way so as to provide the journalist with stuff that will make stimulating reading. Luckily my life has been quite strange so far so I haven’t had to fabricate anything just yet. I don’t know many other people who make a living performing as other genders, races and now, religions. (I am currently playing a middle-aged Muslim woman.) Being interviewed makes me feel less ordinary and cellophane-like. It is my ambition to eventually be so famous, and have had so many interviews, that I eventually find them tedious. Not a very original ambition I guess. Not as original as the man in Seapoint who has spent his life, trying to look exactly like, Rod Stewart. He must enjoy the attention he gets when people mistake him for the vintage rock star as he walks on the promenade. He is an original by making himself into a replica and I admire his dedication and attention to detail. I mean, he could have chosen Brad Pitt or even Warren Beatty but chose Rod instead.
I like the idea of thousands of copies of my name and face being printed out and distributed world-wide. I imagine the ink from the picture of my face smudging the hands of hundreds of strange people that I will probably never meet. Maybe my face will become a fish and chips parcel or a contributing aspect to a ten-year-olds’ paper mache’ bowl. Sweet!
Maybe someone will see my picture and read about me and fall madly in love and know that I am the person they are to spend the rest of their life with. Hopefully this person will be gorgeous, wealthy and not mentally unstable. I would hate to have to get a restraining order as I doubt how effective they are in South Africa. (I imagine the police are so busy fighting the hectic crime that they wouldn’t find the time to help me keep a freak at bay.)
Maybe this is the start of my spectacular career and all these interviews will act as a catalyst to catapult my reputation onwards and upwards. Then I will finally pay off all my debt and eventually start getting in the property market and buying fabulous fashionable and faddish things.
Then some time after ten years from now I will drive past the promenade and see a complete stranger and say to my chauffeur: “Strange, that man looks just like me.”