Amoeblog

(Which sees our author recovering.)

Posted by Job O Brother, March 21, 2010 12:55pm | Post a Comment

Whew! Am I glad to see you! Because it means that it’s a new week, and let me tell you – I used last week until it was nothing but a grey and tattered rag. So I can’t wear last week anymore, but I can use it to clean my car.

But I don’t have a car.

Life is complicated.

Since I arrived in Hollywood five years ago, a young and vibrant crackerjack of a kid with high hopes and boundless dreams, I have used my wit and spunk to cultivate a lifestyle wherein which I spend most of my time hidden away in my spooky study, hunched over my laptop and writing scripts about young and vibrant crackerjack kids which I ceased to resemble about five years ago. It’s a circle of muthuhfuggin’ life.

As a result, I haven’t ever actually developed a circle of friends. I’ve just kind of Yoko Ono’d my way into my boyfriend’s social circle, hoping no one would notice. People from my hometown find this hard to believe.

“Job, how is it that a young and vibrant crackerjack like you hasn’t been surrounded by fawning admirers?” they collectively ask.

“Well gang,” I answer as I mix up a batch of my famous celebrities, “I’ve just been so focused on my writing career. I’ve already met the person I want to be in a relationship with for the rest of my life, so unlike my single friends I’m not driven out to socialize in order to find a mate; plus there’s something about fun and laughter and good times that gives me a tummy ache.”

But it’s 2010, the year I make contact. I’m done with being a reclusive writer. A writer, yes – I’m that by nature more than choice – but reclusive, no. While I love Virginia Woolf’s books more than I love most people, I don’t want to end up like her. I will rise from her watery grave! (metaphorically speaking) I will walk the Earth and meet it’s people! I will… well, I guess I’ll be a Virginia Woolf zombie? (metaphorically speaking)

A zombie needs a room of her own and brains if she is to write.

Ugh… I hate it when I lose control of these blogs. I’d take medication for my ADD but I always get distracted.

Anyway, last week I uncharacteristically went out for St. Patrick’s Day. Like, to a bar. Where people were.

I know, right?

And here’s the kicker: I had a great time! It turns out that fun and laughter and good times are as enjoyable as they say. Who knew? I still got a tummy ache, but that didn’t come until the next day, after consuming more beer than I had blood in my body.


Did you know if you drink too much beer you get drunk? No one tells me these things! And it gets worse: the next day you feel awful. Like… like… (I’m searching for words to describe how it feels.) Like you've been hung… over some… thing. I don’t know. Hung over something. Hung? Forget about it. It feels gross – let’s leave it at that.

I suppose I should have anticipated this would happen considering that the MC of my evening was my new friend, Señor Danger. The name’s a tip off, I suppose.

Señor Danger picked me up in his truck, which is roughly the size of the state from which he came, and we spent the next two hours looking for parking (I didn’t realize we were looking for parking until about an hour in; I just thought we were taking a really complicated route to his house).

We relaxed in his apartment, drinking some preparatory bruskis, and waited for a taxi. It was my first time at his place, so I quickly snooped his book and music collection, which is always the best way to discover who someone is. Titles like How to Win Friends and Influence People into the Back of Your Windowless Van and The Holy Bible, King’s African Riles Version, would perhaps prompt lesser people to question Señor Danger’s character, but I perceived a diamond in the rough.

No, really. There was this rough patch in his linoleum, and stuck inside it was this perfect, glittering diamond. I showed it to Señor Danger and he said I could keep it! I was so excited. He muttered something more about some curse or something: “…life around me… crumbling into ruin… monkey’s face… etc…” I was too hypnotized by the beauty of the gem to pay attention.

His music library consisted of a lot of country and Latin jazz, and that’s something to be proud of.




The taxi came, and after a classic verbal exchange with a heavily accented driver wherein which each party repeated directions – with neither driver nor passenger fully understanding the other – until everyone gave up and assumed it would all work out (which it usually does), we cruised into Boys Town. All the while the taxi radio blared…


...Which is a song that always makes me kind of sad, because they played it at my Grandma's funeral. But I digress...

We met up with a couple of Señor Danger’s pals, St. Andrew and The Nurse.

“Who names their kids these things?” I wondered to myself, until, and to my relief, I remembered that these were just pseudonyms I was making up for my blog.

After a meal of ground beef patties served on rolls of baked bread, garnished with vegetables, melted cheese and various sauces, plus a few more preparatory brews (see a pattern forming here?) we set out in search of a party.

We ended up at some cantina where beers were $1.00 each, which sounds like a great idea until about $20.00 later. Señor Danger and I were accused of being brothers on a few separate occasions (us white people all look alike), and we alternately answered that we were brothers, or that we were lovers, or on at least one awkward occasion, combined these two answers into one.

Time passed. The bars in West Hollywood seem to match the volume dials on their sound systems with their clocks, so with each passing hour the music grows louder, until about one o’clock ante meridiem, when you can feel the music more than you can hear it. Señor Danger noticed a slight trickle of blood dripping from my ear, so we decided to call it a night.

We walked back to his home in Beverly Hills, all the while discussing what was most broken about us, both emotionally and spiritually – a topic that, as a man of Swedish decent, feels as natural to me as discussing weather.


After safely seeing him home, I set out for my own abode on the Miracle Mile. It was a pretty straight-forward route; from Beverly Hills you head east on Wilshire. Even so, and even with the aid of Google maps, I managed to set forth for what would have eventually been Santa Monica, had my compassionate boyfriend not intervened with a late night car rescue. Did you know that when you’re drunk it makes you more likely to make poor decisions? No one tells me these things!

The next morning I had to go to work at Amoeba Music Hollywood. Here’s where working in a record store has a real advantage: if you show up looking hung-over, you pretty much look like everyone else. I spent the day begging my co-workers to select headache-friendly music choices, such as these:






...All of which is stuff you can find in the back room at Amoeba Music.

My search for new friends and experiences outside my home continues. If you’re interested in being rad with me, do drop me a line. (metaphorically speaking)

(In which Job zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Posted by Job O Brother, September 20, 2007 10:00pm | Post a Comment
I’m writing this blog in a race against time.

I just popped two Tylenol PM caplets a couple of minutes ago. I expect my ability to compose grammar will degrade rapidly… starting now.

The problem is that I have too much to tell you. I almost tripped over Lily Tomlin’s feet at the HBO after-party the night of the Emmy’s. (I’ve been told that these so-called “Emmy’s” are an award they give to people in the television business, but I wanna do some fact-checking on that before I present the data as true.) I also caught Glenn Close bopping her shoulders when the band began playing Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing”.

Why do you Earthlings go so ga-ga over that song?!


Just a small town girl, livin' in a lonely world.

The boyfriend snagged us a chauffeured Audi. This fuggin' car had red, lit-up buttons on everything. Like, even the buttons had mini-buttons on them. I was intimidated. I don't like to think the car I'm riding in is smarter than me.

At a certain point we ended up in Anna Paquin's limo and headed over to the TV Guide party, just in time to miss Kanye West. I sent Kanye a box of Violet Crumbles to make up for it. It's his favorite candy bar. For Thanksgiving last year, he assembled the entire meal - turkey, stuffing, yams, Waldorf salad - using ONLY Violet Crumbles. It was an innovative and delicious meal and everyone who attended enjoyed themselves until we suffered diabetic shock and passed out drooling stomach bile.

Okay, some of that last paragraph is untrue.

Melissa Logan’s birthday party was two nights ago. I was there after a few rounds at The Advocate’s 40th anniversary party. William Baldwin was there, and I wasn’t sure if his standing across the room and paying no attention to me whatsoever was his idea of a come-on, but what else could it have been? The poor man just can’t come to grips with the fact that I am happily committed to Corey.


Corey chatting with Perez Hilton at the party, as I try to find a cocktail that doesn't look like a parrot.

I’m already forgetting what I’ve written. The Tylenol is gaining on me.

And speaking of sleeping pills, I’ll be going to see Rufus Wainwright’s tribute to Judy Garland this Sunday at the Hollywood Bowl. If everything goes according to plan, by the end of the evening I will have goaded a gang of Judy/Liza drag queens into pummeling me. It’s an obscure fetish and I have to take advantage of every opportunity to make it happen which presents itself.

(I have another fantasy of women dressing like Virginia Woolf, stuffing me into their coat pocket, and drowning themselves in rivers. This is a very difficult fetish to enjoy and it’s almost impossible to find women who’ll do this for me. And yes, I have checked Craig’s List, but girls will draw you in, full of promises to be Woolf and I’ll drive across town only to discover that they’re actually Vita Sackville-Wests. Total mood killer.)

Which leads me to wonder what kind of oven-cleaner Sylvia Plath used?

Wait… what is this blog about again? Or is this a letter? Who are you?

I better post a distracting picture and escape before you catch on…

(In which Job clarifies the difference between the gay community and lunch.)

Posted by Job O Brother, July 15, 2007 01:08pm | Post a Comment

Thursday night, after a sexy and glorious workday at Amoeba Music Hollywood, my boyfriend Corey picked me up and whisked me away to the premiere party for Outfest, held at the historic Orpheum Theatre in downtown LA.

Outfest is LA’s most popular film festival for the GLBT community. (GLBT stands for Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender and should never be confused with the BLT, a popular sandwich.)


Know the difference - Bacon, lettuce, tomato vs. gay actor, Montgomery Clift

"Outfest is the only nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring that the extensive but threatened LGBT film heritage is preserved. Since the beginning of the struggle for LGBT equality, visionary filmmakers have recorded their lives, challenges and triumphs on film. Outfest is committed to saving, preserving and providing access to that precious, affirming heritage for generations to come." - quote from their website

Put another way, this is a chance to see lots of muscle hunks come to terms with bullies and remakes of “Pretty Woman” that could be called “Pretty Women”.

If I sound cynical, it’s because I am, a bit. But that’s not a reflection of Outfest, rather, a problem I often have with queer cinema. I’ve never been a fan of romantic comedies, and because the definition of gay is indicative of sex, so many gay films are “romantic”.

That’s just one issue I have. On the whole, queer cinema suffers from the same things that mainstream films do. Clichés and what-not. It’s particularly discouraging to see gay films that mimic straight films but, you know, with gay people in ‘em. It’s rare to find a film that is distinctively “gay” outside of the love scenes.

That’s not to say there’s no room for light entertainment within queer cinema. Don’t get me wrong! I realize that not everyone wants the films I do – in fact, most people don’t.

Beyond my personal tastes, I absolutely believe it is important that organizations like Outfest exist. It is vital that minorities see themselves represented in media. When I was a kid and still mystified by my own sexuality, seeing gays in film and on TV provided a sense that I was not alone, that there were others like me, and they were successful and unashamed.

Of course, being born in 1974, those glimpses were rare, and it took a real stretch of imagination to feel kinship with kd lang as she got a straight-razor shave from Cindy Crawford. Still, it helped.


Straight-razor… heh…

The party was populated by the usual crew to be found at such an event. I didn’t see anyone A-list. Tori Spelling mingled as camera crews followed her every move, gathering footage for her “reality” TV show. Perez Hilton stood behind me in the line for free booze. Chi Chi Larue strode through the crowd looking much like Marilyn Monroe would have if she were still alive.

The biggest treat was listening to my man Corey as he talked shop with the people who really keep the Hollywood business functioning. I got to hear a hilarious story about Arianna Huffington from one of her former assistants, but I’m not allowed to tell you about it. You just can’t keep a secret, I’m afraid. You have only yourself to blame.

In honor of Outfest 2007, and because I don’t want you to think I’m homocinemaphobic, I offer up the following films as suggestions of rad things to watch; one for every letter in the aforementioned acronym:


"Dude, your nipple is, like, hella awesome!" Keanu Reeves & River Phoenix

For the ‘G’, I recommend watching “My Own Private Idaho”, Gus Van Sant’s modern take on Shakespeare’s play “Henry IV”. It beautifully explores gay love and desire without offering moral platitudes, and doesn’t content itself with only “gay” issues. Oftentimes funny and always poetic, it also perfectly captures the (sometimes self-destructive) essence of the Northwest grunge scene of the early 1990’s. It also stars the late River Phoenix in one of his finest performances.

Next is the ‘L’. This is a tough one, because there’s actually quite a list of movies I love that qualify. Ultimately, though, I’m going to settle on the classic film “The Children’s Hour”, starring Shirley MacLaine and Audrey Hepburn.


"Darling, I would never confuse you with Katherine..." Shirley MacLaine & Audrey Hepburn

I realize the irony that my choice of lesbian film didn’t actually star a lesbian, but the movie stands as significant. It broached a topic that dared not… urr… film its name…? Furthermore, it starred two A-list celebrities, adding weight and credibility at a time when homosexuality was still widely believed to be a psychological disorder. It is beautifully shot and packs an emotional wallop.

I can’t help but sneak in another film, however. It’s more obscure. “The Sticky Fingers of Time”, written and directed by Hilary Brougher. The story, essentially science-fiction in nature, is still human in a way that reminds me of a Philip K. Dick novel. It’s very low budget but uses this to its advantage and struck me as intriguing, haunting and, how you say, dope.


Terumi Matthews & Belinda Becker in "The Sticky Fingers of Time"

Then on to the ‘B’. B, B, B… hmm. Oh, I know!

“The Hotel New Hampshire”. This gem has a cast of stars a mile long, yet remains surprisingly unknown. This is perhaps due to its acute quirkiness, and storyline which ambles along without clear climaxes, much as our lives do. Alternately hilarious and slapstick, then suddenly tragic, it follows the lives of an eccentric family headed by a whimsical father (played by Beau Bridges) as they find fame, fortune and love, then lose it, then gain it again. (Wow, that sounds awful… I’d never see it if I heard someone describe it that way!)


Jodie Foster makes love to Natasha Kinski in a bear suit! I mean, what more do you need?

It features a very naughty, yet somehow sweet, incest love scene between siblings played by Jodie Foster and Rob Lowe. I cannot recommend this movie enough, even if I can’t recommend it well.


Rob Lowe & Dorsey Wright, working it all out

Finally, the ‘T’. Again, so many to choose from. I’m afraid I’ll get my Fan Club status revoked for not championing “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”, but that’s so obvious and anyhow, writing about it would lead to another eight pages of me boring you with nostalgia.

So, I’m going to settle on “Orlando”, Sally Potter’s gorgeous adaptation of the book by Virginia Woolf of the same name.


Superlative actress, Tilda Swinton as "Orlando"

It’s the story of a young man, Orlando, born in Renaissance England. Having been ordered by the aging Queen Elizabeth I (played with humorous gravity by Quentin Crisp) to never grow old and die, he doesn’t, and the film takes us through major time periods unto present day, all the while exploring love and sex as relating to gender.

It is quite simply a visually perfect film. Anyone who delights in set and costume design must take a peak. It stars the amazing Tilda Swinton in the title role. And you get to see her naked, if that matters to you. And it does.


Tilda Swinton, Tilda Swinton, Tilda Swinton, and also, Tilda Swinton

So, there you have some considerations for queer cinema that transcends the usual bunch. If you’re in the neighborhood, be sure to check out Outfest. Just watch out for Tori Spelling’s camera crew, ‘cause those dudes are f**ing all over the place.