Sunday, May 18, 2008

Weekend Blogging

Eric, the roommate and I have been enjoying a heavy rotation of Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Airplane over the Sea and were listening to that as we sipped Jameson and caught up on the week behind us before parting ways to our respective Friday nights.

It had stopped raining by the time I made it back outside. The air was sticky and the street smelled of a fresh humid shower, bleachy and refreshing. I walked to the L train to take it across town but a block away I saw the glint of yellow in the "Do Not Cross" tape which was pulled tightly across the subway's entrance. The train wasn't running for some reason and I sighed while opening my wallet and begrudgingly putting my hand in the air to hail a cab.

Hell's Kitchen is kind of a pain in the ass to get to from the East Village. There's no direct route and I always, somehow, even when I aim to take a train, find myself taking a cab whenever I go there. "It's just faster I tell myself," yet it never really feels that way and I always have to tolerate Sue Simmons and the News 4 New York people giving me the latest in news, weather and sports. Alas, I flicked off the pesky frustrations with the excitement that the night was the annual Gay Blogger Meet-up (GB5.) I had been following the details of the event via JMG and Father Tony for a few weeks and I was looking forward to catching up with the Blogcrew and putting some new faces to some old and well respected reads.

I arrived at HK Lounge around 9:40 and eagerly greeted the bouncer with the secret GB5 password I'd had been waiting to utter all week. I love using passwords or secret lingo at bars. It makes you feel undercover-ish or that you know something everyone else doesn't. Once I was at The Cock and the password was Spunky Brewster and another time at Snaxxx it was Doodie Kaka. At HK the bouncer just looked at me with no expression and ushered me along.

I've never been to HK Lounge before but I had been reading about it in the rags lately and was looking forward to checking it off my list. The place is your typical Hell's Kitchen gay bar, white formica everywhere, white-cubed lounge tables, white sofas, white candles but with that exposed wood look, making the place seem like the gayest log cabin ever yet in a good way (?)

I'm greeted quickly by the always joyful and energetic Little David who welcomes me in and sticks a name tag in my hand so all us bloggers can identify ourselves in the case we don't know what one another looks like. It's always an interesting experience to put a face with a blog. There's a nice sense of in meeting people in reality who you've known so long virtually.

I bumped into Father Tony trying to put on my name tag and he broke from his current hug huddle to offer me a warm embrace and his outgoing self. We go to the bar to get a drink and I see JMG and Aaron and SuperDaddy and CircleInASquare and Stash along with some new faces like Mike, Tater, Tony and Homer - who I've been wanting to meet for awhile now so I could talk the majesty of Tucson with someone. The GB5 password entitled us to free well drinks and cheap beers. Thus, the topics we spend much of our days blogging about were anything but the topic. I did manage to have one Clinton/Obama conversation with Aaron though and I was able to briefly live vicariously in Tucson through Homer's stories of living in my beloved desert town. The night was a great success and I left looking forward to meeting up with everyone again the following day in Central Park.

The weather reports were fickle all week but Saturday proved to be a gorgeous day. In the whole blogger weekend the Central Park meet up held the most allure because it was outside, in central park and promised that sense of spring tranquility. The enormity of Central Park can only be realized by actually stepping foot in it but I managed to find the roller disco with only a few pushes of the skate board. There, just feet away from the famed Central Park Roller Disco stood what has come to be known as Bear Hill, the meeting spot for bear-clans and their blogger friends. JMG, Little David, Homer, Aaron and Atari Age were there already laying on blankets and soaking up the cozy sun while sitting in portable chairs were new bloggers with new blogs for me to investigate. Stories were passed around as were cookies and a frisbee and before long there were damn near 30 of us gay bloggers talking of our blogs and current events, life and our latest happenings. The cookies came in a box wrapped with old bakery string and in a case of neotony and gay men proving a symbiotic relationship Aaron started a round of Cat's Cradle while Homer tried to go back in time and remember the moves. They got stuck around the 5th move or so and Mike and I gave it a whirl. Not to rub it in anyone's face but the moves of Cat's Craddle aren't too distant for me and Mike and I were able to get to the 6th or 7th move before being completely stumped and losing interest.

Since the neotony was flowing and the day so nice I thought it a perfect opportunity to pull out the new jump ropes and jump with the guys. Father Tony helped me spin the ropes and like gays to a disco ball there was immediate interest. Right away Mike was throwing himself in and Little David went as far as taking his shoes off to become part of the action. After a solid ten minutes of jumping - or what I call "enough cardio for the weekend" we all took a break and threw our bodies to the earth. The day went on we all enjoyed more conversation, more stories and more mingling, digital walls were erased, hands were shaking and there were 30 of us, all sharing a slice of a hill in the sun in the city.

Big thanks to Father Tony for throwing this. It was nice to meet you all.


Adam said...

I thought I was the only one who had homesickness for Tucson. I see now that I am not alone, it is a truly magical place.

Father Tony of the Farmboyz said...

Even though we lived in a white Connecticut suburb, my parents made me take the bus (and I don't mean a school bus) to attend Catholic grade school in the worst part of Hartford. During recess, I hung with the black girls. They had the best candy. They taught me to double dutch. Their rhythms and lyrics unlocked my inner black girl. We should start a league.

The Bum said...

As you know, any advice from Father Tony is best heeded. We met but never talked. Your youthful exuberance was refreshing and charming from a distance nevertheless.

David said...

Thanks for joining us and skewing the demographics. ;-)

Now if you can teach me how to jump rope and look cool like you do, instead of spastic like I do, my life will be complete.

Y | O | Y said...

It was nice to meet you, even if it was brief!

Anonymous said...

It was cool to meet you, even if it was mainly watching you do Cat's Cradle. LOL!

Mike said...

Cat's Cradle was fun, as was jumping rope...but meeting you was the best.

RG said...

I'm sorry that CB and I got to the pic-a-nic late, and that we didn't get much of a chance to chat.

It was nice to meet you as well. I'm sorry I missed out on the double-dutch jump rope. Oh well...

You and some of the other boyz from NYC are going to have to get your butts up to Boston so EvilG, Atari and myself and show you around.