Thursday, July 31, 2008

Isn't there an in between?

Two weeks ago The Calvinator had diarrhea. It took him several days to get over it. NOW he is constipated! UGH.

Just thought I would share my misery with all of you.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Could It Be (Halloween) Magic?

For many years, there was a group in Houston known as Halloween Magic. They would put on a show (a really big show) around Halloween and proceeds would be donated to local agencies. I think my favorite show was Aquanet. It was based on the musical Hairspray.

Anyway, a few years ago they did a show and as it turns out that was the last show...well sorta. You see...

They really hadn't planned on it being their last show. It just sorta happened that way. So they have regrouped for one LAST show.

This year's show will be South Pacific: The Last Enchanted Evening. I'm 100% sure it will be a fun and entertaining evening full of laughter.

To make the evening more special, Str8 Up With A Twist reader AttyFrank is the Honorary Chairperson for the event! Beneficiaries for the evening are: AssitHers; Legacy; and Pet Patrol.

Table sales have already begun. In fact there was a party a couple of weeks ago. AttyFrank gave a really nice speech and the hosts for the party filled us with Spanish appetizers and Spanish wine. I was beginning to feel like Charo.

I hope that you will consider attending the show on November 1. To find out more about Halloween Magic and to see some photos from previous shows, click here.

AttyFrank & Legacy Katy at Halloween Magic Table Sales Party

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Don't Let This Happen To You

I picked this up from Kenneth In The 212.
Here is the story from NYPost.  
GYM MACHINE HURLS WOMAN By TOM LIDDY, PILAR CONCI and JAMIE SCHRAM Last updated: 9:29 pm July 28, 2008 Posted: 9:29 pm July 28, 2008

In the age-old battle of human vs. machine, the "abductor" defeated its foe - a portly woman - at a Harlem gym today A "very large lady" at the New York Sports Club was "sling-shot" off equipment known as the "abductor" - and had to be hauled from the gym in a rescue basket by firefighters, authorities said.

The accident was reported before noon at 345 W. 145th St., where a 38-year-old woman was using the machine, which firms muscles of the hips and inner thighs, witnesses said.

"She didn't close [the machine] properly," said one source who asked not to be identified.

"She was supposed to exit it from the side but tried to go over the leg bar . . and her loose pants got caught in the handle."

Gym members were aghast as they watched the accident unfold.

"If you are on a machine, it's you versus the machine," said another gym member who also asked not to be identified.

"She put too much weight on the machine. She was, like, sling-shot from it."

A FDNY spokesman said that because of the woman's large size, paramedics had to use a "Stokes basket" instead of a regular stretcher to lift the woman from the gym and into the ambulance.

She was then taken to New York Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center. A spokeswoman at the hospital had no immediate information, including the woman's weight.

Separately, the Fire Department responded Sunday night to the Queens apartment of a 400-pound man who was knocked unconscious by smoke - and had to be hauled to safety with special cargo netting, authorities said.

The fire alarm was reported at 8:50 p.m. at 61-15 97th St., the source said.

When firefighters from Ladder Co. 136 opened the door of the first-floor apartment, a lieutenant and probationary officer found an unnamed 400-pound man unconscious, lying face down, in a hallway near the living room, the source said.

Rescuers had to use cargo netting to envelope the large patient and drag him to safety.

So I went and looked up a pic of The Abductor and here it is.

I can't figure out how she could have been hurled but then I guess stranger things have happened!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Ramblings Of A Caffeinated Mind 14.1

Upcoming Anniversary
July 31, 2008 will mark the 16th year of my arrival in Houston. The past 16 years have been eventful. There have been more ups than downs. Along the way I have been a ton of wonderful people and a handful of not so wonderful people.

I know today is the the 28th but I'm at that point in my life where if I don't write it down immediately, I forget. Old age? Hmmmm.

Anywho. Just wanted to thank everyone for 16 fun years in the Bayou City. Let's hope there are many more to come.

And somewhere in my boxes of memories (really, there are boxes stuffed with photos, etc.) is a photo of my friend Robb who drove the Ryder truck for me. I took a picture of this little white boi in a big yellow truck at a truck stop off of I-45. (Remember in Jumpin Jack Flash when Whoopi Goldberg is using the pay phone to call the cops and she says, "I'm a little black lady in a big silver box. You can't miss me.")

In case you missed...
Amy Winehouse as a scarecrow. To read the story, click here.

Kaye's Kommunique
The other night I arrived at Quadra (at Status) a bit late. The crowd was thinning out but I still had the opportunity to see a few folks.

Someone that I did not expect to meet was Toma(s) Tillo! Toma(s) Tillo is a long lost brother of Kaye Sedilla. Toma(s) and Kaye found each other earlier this year when she was doing her lounge act in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. He didn't know he had a sister, much less a sister who is an international star, but when he walked into the lounge at Hotel Casa Linda he knew they were related. You see...

Kaye and Toma(s) both have big red hair with dark roots. Toma(s) would not let me take a photo of him but let me just say the resemblance IS THERE and that is how I knew he must be related to Kaye Sedilla.

Although communication with clients at The Betty Ford Center is limited, Toma(s) Tillo was able to speak briefly with Kaye Sedilla...well, let's just say she thinks she is Sopa Pilla. Toma(s) said that until Kaye/Sopa gets over her amnesia they will not be able to deal with her other issues.

Kaye/Sopa thinks she is going to be there for a long, long, time. Her spirits are high, just like her hair. Liz and Liza both sent Kaye/Sopa a message of hope and that really lifted her spirits.

Kaye/Sopa can't remember much about what happened on July 20 but she is sure that she was fabulous and wants to thank everyone who showed up.

If I hear anything else from Toma(s) or Cha Lupe (Kaye's 1/2-sister from the wrong side of the tracks), I will let you know.

Heat Wave
It is hotter than Hades here in Houston. These temps are almost like the temps I lived with in Ft. Worth! OY! At least the humidity is low. And yes, I'm sweating.

Yesterday was my first day to assist with Communion during the 5:00 p.m. at St. Anne's. As a child & teenager, I was an altar boy (acolyte) for many, many years. So this was almost second nature to me but I still got nervous. You see...

There are steps that lead up to the altar at St. Anne's and they are made of marble. The last thing I wanted to do was fall down and drop the chalice. It is standing room only at the 5:00 p.m. Mass and in this day of YouTube, I so didn't want to be featured on YouTube. When the wine is consecrated you just can't wipe it up and get on with your life, there is a ritual that needs to be performed. There is a reason for my fear. You see...

Many years ago I was at the 12:00 noon Mass at St. George's in Ft. Worth. I wanted to sing in the choir that day but they needed an altar boy and my mother insisted that I be the altar boy. So I go to the sacristy to get dressed and the cassock that I select has an unraveled hem. I'm running out of time so I put it on anyway.

Everything was fine until...

Communion was over and I had to clear the altar. I was almost finished and I pick up the chalice with the consecrated hosts. I needed to set it on a small side table that was was at the bottom of the steps (4 of them) I take a step and my foot gets caught in the hem of the cassock. I go flying forward and never step foot on any of the steps (btw...the steps and floor were covered in carpet).

I land on my knees. I am holding the chalice with my right hand and my left hand is covering the top of it and get is upright and I didn't spill anything other than my pride. I so wanted to cry.

When Mass was over we processed down the center aisle and I felt like everyone was staring at me and laughing. My mother comes to the back of the church to get me and I was so embarrassed and mad. She says she doesn't know what is going on. I told her what happened and she said that she was sure nobody noticed because they were all singing and looking in their hymnals.

As we are leaving the church, an elderly gentleman walks up to me and says, "Good catch there!" I burst into tears.

A few months later we were at a restaurant and a lady walks up to us and is talking and then she looks at me and says, "Aren't you the boy who fell off of the altar?"

Hence my fear of falling down yesterday. It CAN happen.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

About Last Night

Remember that movie? It starred Rob Lowe and Demi Moore. It was released in 1986. It's one of my favorites from the mid-80s.

What you may not know is that it was based on the play, Sexual Perversity in Chicago. It was renamed because they were afraid movie houses wouldn't put that title on the marquee.

Well, this post isn't about sexual perversity but it is about last night. OY! LOL

It all started innocently enough. I met up with The Fabulous Miss Jolie Shay at Cyclone Anaya's. We were going to have a drink. Well...

We were joined by AttyHou and Wilma Dog Rebecca. It congealed around 3:45p.m. or so. A few drinks. Trips down memory lane. Lots of laughter. Discussions about our parents.
Well, as I am so prone to doing, I made a new friend at the bar who proceeded to buy me cocktails. The other three had left the premises and I actually got a phone call around 7p asking if I was going to Quadra (the birthday party).

In the meantime, I ran into AlnHouston and Heights Ben. (They asked about Kaye Sedilla/Sopa Pilla...more on that tomorrow.)

Well next thing I know, my new friend is a bit over served. I so wanted to go home and shower, walk Calvin and get to Quadra but I was also concerned about my new friend (whose last name I don't know).

UGH! He wouldn't give me the keys to his car. He wouldn't let me drive him home. So I followed him home to make sure that nothing happened to him OR anyone else.

Now here comes the odd/funny part...

He pulls into the garage, gets out of the car, goes to the door and can't find his keys. WTF? LOL

I start going through his pockets, searching the garage floor, etc. The car is unlocked so I get in the driver's seat and the keys are not in the ignition. I'm very perplexed and he is falling asleep on the hood of the car. For whatever reason, they keys are on the floorboard of the passenger side.

I get him in the house and the last time I saw him he was passed out underneath the dining room table. (Been there. Done that in Calgary. I swear it was the altitude that did me in in Calgary.)

I ran home, walked Calvin who was going nuts, showered and made my way to Quadra at Status just in time to say goodbye to everybody! Oops.

Well, here I am all freshly showered with no place to go and someone told me that AttyHou and Everyday Italian were going to Meteor. So I figured if I found a parking spot I would pop in. I did and I did.

It was actually a good crowd and I saw some folks that I hadn't seen in awhile. They were all waiting for the underwear fashion show. Who knows what time it was going to start so I left and went to Jack-In-The-Box for my Monster Taco, Jumbo Jack with cheese (no tomato) and a large Diet Coke. I wolfed that meal down like there was no tomorrow and unfortunately my stomach is telling me today that it did NOT appreciate that late meal. Oops.

So to everyone that I didn't see last night...sorry about that. I did have a good conversation with Kaye Sedilla/Sopa Pilla's long lost brother. His name is Toma(s) Tillo. Yes, that is how he spells it. Will give you the details of that conversation later.

Stay cool everybody!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

"May I please be excused?"

Dear Miss Manners: When one wishes to get up from the table to go to the restroom, I think it rude to just get up and depart. So I announce, "Excuse me, I'm going to the restroom." My friends seem to vanish from the table with no explanation, and I suppose they think no explanation is necessary. What to do or say or not say? Gentle Reader: Does it have to be everything or nothing? Leaving without a word is rude, but explaining where you are going is unpleasantly vivid for those who are eating. Miss Manners hopes you can content yourself with a mere "Excuse me," trusting that your destination is not much of a mystery. This letter to Miss Manners made me think of something. When I was a child my parents really tried to instill in me good manners. It worked for awhile and I'm not sure when I fell off the Good Manners Wagon (maybe after a drunken night of debauchery in New Orleans?) but every now and then I do slip back into good manners mode. You see...
We could never leave the dinner table without saying, "May I please be excused?" And we couldn't leave the dinner table until Joe or Helen (my parents) said, "Yes."
When I have been at dinner with friends, business associates, etc. I do find myself saying, "Excuse me for a moment." or "I need to excuse myself from the table." I don't ask for permission but I do let it be known that I am leaving and will be back or if I'm not coming back I also let that be known.
I have been at dinner tables when someone gets up and leaves without saying a word and to me it is a bit odd. It leaves me wondering what is going on. Were they offended by something that was said? Are they leaving and not coming back? Are they stalking somebody?
So I'm just wondering, is it common to verbally excuse yourself from the table? Just askin'.
And speaking of that, why do women go in pairs to the bathroom?

Changing the subject completely...
I'm sure I will see many of you at Quadra tonight. This is a birthday party that four guys put on for themselves. It is always fun because people come of out of the woodwork. Last year I ran into someone that I had not seen in forever and this is one of the first people that I met when I moved to Houston 16 years ago.
It is also fun because it isn't a fundraiser AND we don't have to bring presents! The party is at Status which is across the street from The Cha Cha Palace (the scene of Kaye Sedilla's Last Salsa.) I've never been to Status (just like I've never been to me) so exploring something new is always a delight.
Stay cool today. It's gonna hit the über high 90s here in The Bayou City!

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Yesterday I ran into someone that I had not seen in awhile. When he saw me he had an odd look on his face and he said, "I was JUST thinking about you and was wondering how you were doing."

I said, "I guess that might fall into the category of Be Careful What You Wish For Because You Might Just Get It!"

Then this morning something even more odd occurred.

I was sitting at the office reading the paper. I had JUST finished reading an article and someone who is quasi-high profile was quoted several times in the article. JUST as I set down the paper he walked in. Honestly. Within 2 seconds.

Now here's the rest of the story.

This is the person who bailed out of a job interview with me (the position reported to him and one other person) and someone else got the job and I know that if he had participated in the interview he would have been thoroughly impressed but it didn't happen.

I sat there with the paper open to the article and sure enough he walked past me, paused and went and found a copy of the paper on another table. Then he sits down next to me and starts to read it.

This is all happening in a matter of minutes and I debated about turning to him and saying, "Hello ______. We've never met but we had the opportunity a month ago when I showed up for a job interview and you left the office before I got there. We also had the opportunity to work together but I guess that isn't going to happen. Would you please remove the lid off of your tall Pike so that I can spit in your coffee?"

I chose not to talk to him. I figured he was probably going to have a bad day anyway and get slammed with some angry emails when he got to the office based upon the contents of the article in the newspaper.

And yes, I should build a bridge and get over it.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Dolly (update)

Around 4:00 a.m. today I heard the rumble of thunder off in the distance. I didn't think too much about it because last night a weather forecaster said we would have a 40% chance of rain if even that. So I'm thinking that someone off in the distance is going to get some rain. A little while later a storm was sitting on top of NoRO and giving us a much needed drenching.

Our chances for rain today are now up to 70%. Dolly is packing a punch on South Texas and is expected to make landfall in a few hours. And we're waiting for some more rain.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Miss Mint Julep 2008 (Kaye Sedilla's Last Salsa)

Just as tomatoes were taken off of the Salmonella contamination list, it was time for Kaye Sedilla's Last Salsa.

Here are a few pics from Sunday's event. To see more, click here. P.S. Kaye was rehearsing for the role of The Joker in the next Batman movie. Another reason to never drink and wear too much makeup.

R.I.P. Estelle Getty

Associated Press is reporting that Estelle Getty has passed away. Estelle Getty is probably best known as the wisecracking Sophia Petrillo on Golden Girls.

Sophia always had the best lines when she made her observations about Dorothy, Rose and Blanche. Her comedic timing was impeccable.

One of the funniest things that she said was about the the cliques at the nursing home. She said, "There's the hip group, the not so hip group and the broken hip group."

Thank you Estelle for many, many laughs.

Estelle Getty of 'Golden Girls' dies at 84
By BOB THOMAS, Associated Press Writer

Estelle Getty, the diminutive actress who spent 40 years struggling for success before landing a role of a lifetime in 1985 as the sarcastic octogenarian Sophia on TV's "The Golden Girls," has died. She was 84.

Getty, who suffered from advanced dementia, died at about 5:30 a.m. Tuesday at her Hollywood Boulevard home, said her son, Carl Gettleman of Santa Monica.

"She was loved throughout the world in six continents, and if they loved sitcoms in Antarctica she would have been loved on seven continents," her son said. "She was one of the most talented comedic actresses who ever lived."

"The Golden Girls," featuring four female retirees sharing a house in Miami, grew out of NBC programming chief Brandon Tartikoff's belief that television was ignoring its older viewers.

Three of its stars had already appeared in previous series: Bea Arthur in "Maude," Betty White in "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and Rue McClanahan in "Mama's Family." The last character to be cast was Sophia Petrillo, the feisty 80-something mother of Arthur's character.

"Our mother-daughter relationship was one of the greatest comic duos ever, and I will miss her," Arthur said in a statement.

When she auditioned, Getty was appearing on stage in Hollywood as the carping Jewish mother in Harvey Fierstein's play "Torch Song Trilogy." In her early 60s, she flunked her "Golden Girls" test twice because it was believed she didn't look old enough to play 80.

"I could understand that," she told an interviewer a year after the show debuted. "I walk fast, I move fast, I talk fast."

She came prepared for the third audition, however, wearing dowdy clothes and telling an NBC makeup artist, "To you this is just a job. To me it's my entire career down the toilet unless you make me look 80." The artist did, Getty got the job and won two Emmys.

"The only comfort at this moment is that although Estelle has moved on, Sophia will always be with us," White said in an e-mail to The Associated Press after Getty's death was announced.

"The Golden Girls" culminated a long struggle for success during which Getty worked low-paying office jobs to help support her family while she tried to make it as a stage actress.

"I knew I could be seduced by success in another field, so I'd say, 'Don't promote me, please,'" she recalled.

She also appeared in small parts in a handful of films and TV movies during that time, including "Tootsie," "Deadly Force" and "Victims for Victims: The Theresa Saldana Story."

After her success in "The Golden Girls," other roles came her way. She played Cher's mother in "Mask," Sylvester Stallone's in "Stop or My Mom Will Shoot" and Barry Manilow's in the TV film "Copacabana." Other credits included "Mannequin" and "Stuart Little" (as the voice of Grandma Estelle).

"The Golden Girls," which ran from 1985 to 1992, was an immediate hit, and Sophia, who began as a minor character, soon evolved into a major one.

Audiences particularly loved the verbal zingers Getty would hurl at the other three. When McClanahan's libidinous character Blanche once complained that her life was an open book, Sophia shot back, "Your life's an open blouse."

Getty had gained a knack for one-liners in her late teens when she did standup comedy at a Catskills hotel. Female comedians were rare in those days, however, and she bombed.

Undeterred, she continued to pursue a career in entertainment, and while her parents were encouraging, her father also insisted that she learn office skills so she would have something to fall back on.

Born Estelle Scher to Polish immigrants in New York, Getty fell in love with theater when she saw a vaudeville show at age 4.

She married New York businessman Arthur Gettleman (the source of her stage name) in 1947, and they had two sons, Carl and Barry. The marriage prevailed despite her long absences on the road and in "The Golden Girls."

Getty was evasive about her height, acknowledging only that she was "under 5 feet and under 100 pounds."

In addition to her son Carl, Getty is survived by son Barry Gettleman, of Miami; a brother, David Scher of London; and a sister, Rosilyn Howard of Las Vegas.


Associated Press Writers Robert Jablon and Solvej Schou contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. The information contained in the AP News report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Hello Dolly!

Out of nowhere Dolly popped up in The Gulf of Mexico! This is the first tropical depression of the season that could be a threat to the Texas Gulf Coast. Dolly will probably make landfall south of Houston. We could sure use some rain from the storm. Don't get me wrong. I don't want Galveston/Houston to take a direct hit but we do need some rain.

TS Dolly should serve as reminder to everyone along the Gulf Coast and the East Coast to get prepared.

Panic At The Disco

As expected, Kaye Sedilla brought down the house with her first number during Mr. & Miss Mint Julep Contest. She stepped onto the stage and acted all coy and demure and then ripped open her cape to reveal an über mini dress while she performed Leah Howard's dance version of Macy Gray's Sexual Revolution. In true Project Runway-Shear Genius style, she went to the TRESemmé ® hair salon and came back as a blonde and wearing a red, fringe dress. She closed the show with a remix of Gloria Gaynor's Never Can Say Goodbye.

When it was all said and done and after the trash had been picked up I told Kaye Sedilla that it was time to go. She needed to catch a flight out of Houston and go to Palm Springs. You see...

Kaye is going to spend some time at the Betty Ford Center. Kaye Sedilla has issues to deal with and it is time to get some help. We were leaving the Cha Cha Palace and then it happened.

We were walking down San Jacinto to the car so that she could get to the airport to catch United Airways flight 2834/219/2792 out of IAH when it happened. Kaye had been overserved on adult beverages and she fell down and hit her head! Yes! Her head!

I reached over to pick her and kept asking, "Kaye Sedilla. Are you OK? Kaye Sedilla. Are you OK?"

She looked at me and said, "Who is Kaye Sedilla? My name is Sopa Pilla, honey."

All the way to IAH I kept testing her memory and finally gave up. After I got her through security and informed United Airways that she would need some help, I called the Betty Ford Center and told them that in addition to needing help with her issues, she was going to need help remembering who she is and where she came from. Just like a soap opera I tell ya!

If you would like to send a message of hope to Kaye Sedilla, please leave a comment. She will be reading Str8 Up With Twist while she is in rehab.

And check back later this week for photos from the event.

On behalf of Kaye Sedilla and the Board and staff at Legacy, I would like to thank everyone who supported this event through tips and table purchases. It all goes to a good cause. Thanx everybody!

Friday, July 18, 2008

The B!tch Is Back

I'm glad Kaye Sedilla only comes to town once a year. She arrived this afternoon from Buenos Aires and went on and on and on about nothing. She told me that she didn't fly Coach, Business or First. She flew in the cockpit and sat on the pilot's lap most of the time. Not only is she a diva she is also a puta. She's going out with a bang (read between the lines).

And being the diva that she is, when we approached NoRO she saw all of the police on Shepherd, Memorial, Kirby and Allen Pkwy. She thought they were there for her. I had to inform her that President Bush was in town and they were securing NoRO and River Oaks for his visit. She was a bit disappointed.

And being the diva that she is, she has finagled two songs for Sunday's benefit. (Is it proper etiquette to plan an encore?) She is performing in the first set and has made arrangements to do her encore in the third set.

If she weren't going into retirement/seclusion, I'd probably be putting her in her grave (alive)!

She wants me to remind you that Mr. & Miss Mint Julep is this Sunday at Rich's (or as she likes to call it, The Cha Cha Palace). The doors open at 1:30p.m. and the show starts at 2:00p.m. I'll be in the shadows taking care of her every whim.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Ramblings Of A Caffeinated Mind 14.0

That's how I feel this week.

The week got off to a rough start and it has zapped my energy. A couple of friends have had some things happen within their family and it has really put me down in the dumps. All I can really do is keep them in my thoughts and prayers.

Calvin hasn't been feeling too good. He is on the rebound but I feel like I'm constantly watching him to make sure he is OK.

I'm VERY frustrated with this job search.

I've had some bad runs this week and haven't been working out.

And I'm humming this!

and this is how I feel!

BTW. Pet Shop Boys produced this song for Liza. When PSB did their own recording they put in a maniacal laugh in it. When Liza recorded it she didn't want to include the laugh. Interesting huh?

On Tuesday, I posted a pic of a dead squirrel in conjunction with birthday greetings to KIM. Well, here's the rest of the story.

First of all, I thought KIM's birthday was later in the month but his Facebook profile said his birthday was on Tuesday. So, figuring that I had lost more of my memory I assumed that Facebook was correct since KIM created his own profile. Turns out KIM's birthday is on the 25th.

Now about the squirrel. A few months ago The Calvinator and I were out for a noon day stroll and we found a dead squirrel just laying in the grass. It didn't have any tire marks on it but maybe it got hit by a car, made its way over to the grass and then died. Maybe, as suggested by by Free Flow it died of natural causes.

And why did The Calvinator want to give this present to KIM? Well, KIM has an ongoing battle with squirrels at his swankienda in East River Oaks (ERO). I'm sure the ERO squirrels are having a blowout party while KIM is in Italia.

Mr. & Miss Mint Julep
Don't forget! Kaye Sedilla makes her final appearance at this event on Sunday. A rumor is circulating about the diva. I will ask her about it when I see her this weekend. Check this blog on Monday for more details.

Reality TV
Many of you know that I'm hooked on reality shows. This has been a good week to feed my addiction.

Big Brother premiered on Sunday and Project Runway premiered last night.

For the first time since season 3, Big Brother has decided to return to its roots and has put contestants in the house who don't know each other. Although viewership is down from previous seasons, I will say that I'm liking this season already. Good eye candy and they've already booted out the self-proclaimed puppet master. There is a quirky lady from New Orleans (is that an oxymoron?) that could be fun if she can calm it down and not be so annoying.

I was bit bored with the designs from the contestants on Project Runway. This was their first challenge and several of them used table clothes for their dresses. Creative? I think not.

Kelli won the challenge mainly because she used some creative techniques on the materials purchased at the grocery store.

Jerry lost because he had an awful creation. Yes. It looked like something from a horror movie when the ax murderer has escaped from the insane asylum and is chasing you.

Let's hope they get a bit more creative with their designs.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Buon Compleanno!

Today Kenny In Montrose (KIM) is celebrating another birthday. KIM is out of the country. The Calvinator wanted to send KIM birthday greetings. On behalf of The Calvinator, I post this pic in honor of KIM's birthday.

Have a happy one!

Monday, July 14, 2008

I'm Still Sweating

When It Comes to Top Perspiration Producers, Phoenix Wins Fifth Title As No. 1
Sweatiest City; New York City Leads in Total Sweat Volume

CINCINNATI, June 25, 2008 – In celebration of the beginning of summer, Old Spice, the No.1 selling anti-perspirant/deodorant stick and body wash brand with guys, today announced its Seventh Annual Top-100 Sweatiest Cities List – just in time for the season’s hot weather. In addition, this year Old Spice is introducing its list of Biggest Sweat Producers, taking into consideration the total sweat produced by entire city populations.

Famed desert city Phoenix burned up the charts again to take the No. 1 spot as America’s Sweatiest City in this annual ranking of the nation’s heaviest sweaters(based on amount of sweat produced per person). To earn top spot as Sweatiest City, Phoenix’s average temperature was 95.1 degrees in June, July and August 2007, resulting in the average Phoenix resident producing 26.4 ounces of sweat per hour (more than 2 cans of soda). With scorching temperatures often in the triple digits, the Valley of the Sun also took this top honor in 2007, 2006, 2005 and 2003.

“People might be surprised that a city known for its ‘dry heat’ tops the Sweatiest Cities list,” said Dr. Paul Ruscher, associate professor and associate chair of meteorology at Florida State University. “However, sweat tends to evaporate from the skin much more quickly in places like Phoenix and people just don’t feel it as much as say in New Orleans or Miami where high humidity leads to that dreaded sticky, ‘muggy’ feeling. Regardless of where a city falls on this list, there’s one thing we can all agree on – hot weather means sweating.”

Biggest Sweat Producers
For the first time, Old Spice looked at sweating through the lens of just how much sweat could be produced if the entire population were walking around for one hour on a typical summer day.

New York City leads the list when it comes to Biggest Sweat Producers in the US, even with an average temperature of 73.8 degrees during June, July and August 2007 (that’s 20+ degrees cooler than Phoenix). On an average summer day, New Yorkers can produce 1.3 million gallons of sweat per hour – enough to fill the 106-acre Central Park Reservoir in about one summer month (32 days, to be exact!)

The Big Apple is clearly the big winner when it comes to producing the most sweat, more than
double the amount than second-place Los Angeles (608,664 gallons of sweat per hour). Our nation’s other Biggest Sweat Producers include: Chicago with 449,285 gallons (No. 3); Houston with 387,790 gallons (No. 4); Norfolk, VA with 376,087 gallons (No. 5); Phoenix with 311,629 gallons (No. 6); Philadelphia with 238,869 gallons (No. 7); San Antonio with 229,606 gallons (No. 8); Dallas with 222,420 gallons (No. 9) and San Diego with 184,929 gallons (No. 10).

Other Study Highlights
• On a typical summer day, residents of Los Angeles – the city with the most cars on the road in the nation – can collectively produce enough sweat to fill the gas tanks of 27,667 SUVs in just one hour. With national gas prices soaring past $4 per gallon, it’s too bad sweat can’t be used as an alternate fuel option!
• Living up to its nickname, the Sunshine State has four cities appearing in the Top 10 Sweatiest Cities, more than any other state – Tallahassee (No. 3), Miami (No. 6), Tampa (No.8), and Fort Myers (No. 10) – collectively producing enough sweat to fill Shamu’s tank in 9.9 hours (that’s 6.5 million gallons)!
• This summer, the race for president will be heating up. When it comes to the Sweatiest Party, it’s a close contest – however, with slightly warmer temperatures, delegates heading to Minneapolis (No. 79) for the Republican National Convention will be sweating it out more than those heading to the Democratic National Convention in Denver (No. 82).
• When taking a look at what region reigns when it comes to producing sweat, that honor overwhelmingly goes to the South, where residents can collectively produce 3,634,581 gallons in just one hour on a typical summer day. This is nearly double the amount of second-place West region, with 2,088,923 gallons. Next is the Northeast, producing 1,942,536 gallons. The Midwest rounds out the list, with 1,494,856 gallons.
• Like hometown hero Elvis, Memphis burned up the charts, coming in at No. 5 (up from No. 14 last year) and breaking into the Top 10 Sweatiest Cities for the first time since 2002!
• San Francisco is the nation’s least sweaty city included on the list, coming in at No. 100. Yet even with an average temperature of just 63.5 degrees during the summer months, each San Franciscan can still produce over 17 ounces of sweat per hour – clear evidence that sweat happens even in cooler weather conditions.
Tips to Stay Cool, Dry and Sweat Free This Summer• Water – Drink plenty of fluids to replace what you lose through perspiration – at least eight to 10 glasses of water per day – more if you’re outdoors and very active.
• Replace Salt and Minerals – Sweating removes salt and minerals from the body. If
participating in a strenuous activity where you anticipate heavy perspiration, drink fruit juices and sports beverages to replace the lost minerals.
• Choose Clothes Wisely – Wear lightweight, light-colored clothes that breathe easily.
• Reduce Sweat Output and Stay Odor Free – Use an anti-perspirant/deodorant daily, such as Old Spice Pro Strength, the first clinical-strength offering from the brand. Designed with heavy sweaters in mind, Pro Strength is an advanced solid that provides all-day clinical strength odor and wetness protection.

The Sweatiest Cities rankings are based on computer simulations of the amount of sweat a person of average height and weight would produce walking around for an hour in the average temperatures during June, July and August of 2007 for each city.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


On a recent post, Blog My Runs discussed being addicted to sweat and not in a fetish kind of way. In the same post, he mentioned acclimating to hot weather. This made me think of a post I'm Not Fit To Run did about acclimating to hot weather.

I am a sweater; not an argyle or cardigan or wool but someone who sweats. I have a sweating history that I thought I would share with you. You see...

When I was a fat kid wearing clothes from The Husky Department at Montgomery Ward my face would get red and I would sweat with just the smallest amount of physical exertion. My family used to tease me about my red cheeks. At some point I grew into my weight and stopped profusely sweating until the late '80s and then the buckets started to fill up with sweat. You see...
One of my closest friends from college convinced me that I needed to try aerobics. I was living in Ft. Worth and there was a place on Camp Bowie Blvd. named Aerobics To Go. The place was always packed.

Being prone to addictive behavior I got hooked on aerobics. I was there 5-6 times a week. My favorite time to go was after work because when we would finish class we would go down to Uncle Julio's for chips & salsa and Margaritas. They would normally seat us on the patio because we were a bit wet.

One of the things that I noticed was that I would have puddles of sweat around me when class was finished and other people would have a few beads of sweat. I needed a beach towel to dry off while other people needed a tissue.

I then noticed that my body could not distinguish between healthy exercise and having fun. When I would out dancing, ten minutes into it I'd start to sweat just like I was in aerobics class. It is embarassing.

OK. So fast forward to Mr. Sweater moving to Houston. Houston has two seasons in the year, Summer and August. The mornings are humid and the afternoons are hot and somewhere in the middle of the day humid and hot collide. In fact, a couple of weeks ago I decided to go for a run instead of eating lunch. I'm running and sweating and about to give up and then I ask myself, "WWVD?" (What would Viv do?) I kept running and let me tell you, when I was finished my sweat soaked shorts were clinging to me and I could hear my shoes and socks making a squishing sound.

Eight minutes into a run I am sweating and folks we're talking about big drops of sweat. When I stop to cool down and stretch I have puddles around me. Same thing with spinning or the Stairmaster; puddles I tell you!

On the other hand, I see people who don't sweat. What are they? Lizards and snakes wearing human costumes?

I've also noticed that my sweat seems to increase after consuming too much alcohol. I remember one day I was running with runnerOne at Rice University. It was the day after returning from a trip to New Orleans. A few minutes into the run I started to sweat and he looks at me and says, "What were you drinking? I can smell vodka coming out of you!"

Here's the odd thing. I don't sweat much when I do weights. However, I will break a sweat when I walk The Calvinator. Do you know how much I hate wearing wet underwear? Even the walk to Tony's Corner Pocket made me sweat. When we got there a couple of folks gave me a hug and they said, "You're wet. Have you been running?"

So anywaze, that's my ramble for the day all thanx to Blog My Runs. Stay cool and stay dry!

Saturday, July 12, 2008


Earlier this week I posted this about the Noah and Luke storyline on As The World Turns.

Str Up With Twist reader AttyFrank found a website devoted to Nuke. To read more about them, click here.

You talkin' to me?

I'm not just sayin' this because he is mine but I swear Calvin is part human. He is tempermental. He is moody. He is funny. He is an escape artist. He is a dog that attracts quite a bit of attention. Calvin wags his tail to the beat of his own drummer.
Many times at Memorial Park people will stop and ask me about him. After our walks we usually cool off and rest in the jungle gym area. People will walk up, ask his name and then ask if they can pet him. He obliges them. Men and women love to hug on The Calvinator.

Today at Memorial Park Calvin proved that he isn't just any other dog struttin' his stuff.

SIDEBAR: Calvin does strut. He wags his butt with the confidence of a bodybuilder.

We were chillin' out in the jungle gym area and there was a kid sitting near us. The kid would hit his hand on the bench to try and get Calvin's attention. He did this several times and Calvin refused to look in his direction. So then the kid said, "Hey dog. Hey. Dog." Calvin wouldn't even turn around.

I politely tell the kid that his name is Calvin. So the kid says, "Hey Calvin." Calvin got up and walked over to the kid and gave the kid some sugar and let the kid pet him.

A few minutes later when we were leaving there was a guy who had just finished running asked me about Calvin's breed. Calvin was ignoring the guy as we talked until the guy asked me his name. When he said Calvin's name he turned around. The guy leaned over and Calvin was licking all over his face. The guy thought it was sweet but I knew it was the salt in his sweat that Calvin was going after.

Speaking of dogs...

While we were at the park, we saw Midtown/Montrose David, Neighbor Nina and Upper Kirby Steven. While I was talking with Upper Kirby Steven some dogs were approaching that were out of Calvin's line of vision. All of a sudden he jumps up and starts his whimpering and whining which lead to this topic of discussion...

Do dogs have dogdar? You know, like radar or gaydar? Just askin'.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Where The Hell is Matt? (revisted)

Remember when I posted this?

Well, in today's Houston Chronicle they posted a story about Matt and the video and what it means or what it doesn't mean. To read the story, click here.
EDIT: The story is no longer available on the Houston Chronicle website.

Also, I did find out that Stride gum is sold here in Houston. I found it this morning in the candy section at Kroger on W. Gray on the very top shelf. I almost missed it. Haven't tried it yet. I bought it because they are the company that financed Matt's trip to make the video that makes me smile.

Kaye Sedilla's Last Salsa

As previously reported, international performer Kaye Sedilla will be making her final performance on July 20, 2008 at Mr. & Miss Mint Julep Contest. Kaye's final performance coincides with my last year on the board for Legacy.

This is Kaye Sedilla's Last Salsa and timing is everything (for two reasons).
1. Kaye has stated that she doesn't want to compete on the world stage with Cher, Bette, Madonna & Tina.
2. With the salmonella outbreak in tomatoes, cilantro and jalapenos it is difficult to make fresh salsa and so this is the last salsa for Kaye Sedilla.

Mr. & Miss Mint Julep Contest is a benefit for Legacy Community Health Services. It will be held at Rich's (2401 San Jacinto, Houston, TX). The doors open at 1:30 p.m. and the show will start at 2:00 p.m.

Kaye is not a contestant but is a guest performer. Kaye and the other performers and contestants will donate their tips to Legacy.

There isn't an admission fee to attend this event. However, if you are interested in purchasing a table (if you want to make sure you have a place to sit), please let me know and I will put you in contact with a representative from Legacy.

If you are unable to attend the event and would like to offer some under wire support for Kaye's performance to benefit Legacy, please contact me at:

I hope that you will be able to attend.

BTW...there is actually more to the story behind Kaye Sedilla's final performance but you will have to check back on July 21 (for the rest of the story).

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Seeing Double

...and no, I haven't been drinking.

To read the story and to see the stills, read about it on Improv Everywhere.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Nude Recreation Week

I never knew this but the week after July 4th (Independence Day) is Nude Recreation Week. In fact, this year marks the 32nd Annual event! Who knew?

You are encouraged to take it all off at a beach near you. The Naturist Society would like for you to do yard work, household chores, conference calls, and exercise—in nothing but your birthday suit.
OK. Can we back up a bit here? Going nude on the gym floor at LeFittes will get me kicked out. Trust me. There are some people that I don't want to see nude...not even in the lockerroom.
Running nude at Memorial Park will get me arrested and thrown in the pokey. Plus it might be a bit uncomfortable running 3 miles in nothing but a pair of running shoes.
Yard work? I don't do yard work. Just because I have a Mexican last name doesn't mean I do yard work.

Household chores? Hmmm. Probably shouldn't fry bacon in the nude.

Anywho. If I had a body like some of these folks, I might consider going to a nude beach. I don't. And I won't.

If you decide to shake what your momma gave you and celebrate Nude Recreation Week, I wish you a week full of happiness (and stay away from the Poison Ivy)!

P.S. Remember on Designing Women when they were explaining the difference between being naked and nekkid? It is something like this...naked is when you don't have on any clothes and nekkid is when you don't have on any clothes and you get caught doing something.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

As The World Turns

When I was a tyke I spent quite a bit of time at my grandparents' house on the north side of Ft. Worth (looking back on it I guess it was el barrio but I was from a suburb so I didn't know any different). You see...

Both of my parents worked full-time jobs and on their way to work they would drop my sister and me (and then when my brother came along him too) off with my grandparents. Oh don't worry. They stopped the car so that we didn't have to do a tuck 'n roll.

When it was time to start school we were enrolled at a parochial school that was not far from them so that we could stay at their house after school until our parents could get us.

I loved my grandparents but my grandmother had this odd thing about television. You see...

She wouldn't turn on the television during the day while we were there unless it was time to watch the noon news, followed by Bobbie Wygant (the entertainment reporter on the NBC affiliate) who always ended her spot with "bye-bye!" It was then time to switch to the CBS affiliate to watch As The World Turns. I grew up with the Hughes Family and the Stewart Family. They were like family to us.

After As The World Turns was finished the television was turned off until it was time for Dark Shadows. Yes. I was a toddler watching a soap opera about vampires. When that was over the television was turned off again. On a rare occasion my grandmother might turn it back on for Dialing For Dollars.

OK. So back to As The World Turns. At one point (and this was after I had started school) my mom was working close to her parents so at lunchtime she would go over there. She started watching As The World Turns because her own parents would ignore her for thirty minutes while the show was on. My grandmother always referred to it as the show. And yes, even though my grandfather acted like he wasn't interested he could tell you every story line that was happening.

There was one character on the show named Annie. Annie was real sick. So one day back at my house we're sitting there talking about Annie being sick and my dad gets real concerned because he thought my Aunt Annie was really sick. We got a good laugh out of that because that is when we realized how the citizens of Oakdale had become a part of our life.

I don't watch As The World Turns much any more. My parents watch it religously and so does my sister. However, I can turn it on and in one episode pretty much figure out what has happened in the past year.

I had been alerted to the fact that Cyndi Lauper was bringing her True Colors Tour to Oakdale so I made it a point to watch it the other day. Cyndi did a great job on the show. And in case you missed it, I have the YouTube clips for you.

I wondered the other day what my grandparents would have thought of Nuke (Noah & Luke) kissing on the show. However, considering everything else that has happened on the show, I'm sure my grandmother would have sighed and said something in Spanish to my grandfather and left me wondering what was said.

I can definitely say, the show today ain't my grandmother's show.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Independence Day recap

I really didn't have much planned for July 4. I was actually content to just spend the day at home with The Calvinator. In year's past I have done the Uptown Park Run Wild 5k but I decided to boycott it this year. (I have my reasons.)

I took The Calvinator for a walk at Memorial Park. I could see dark clouds coming in from The Gulf and right around 1:00 p.m. we got slammed with a storm. It made me sleepy and I fell asleep and missed a neighborhood party.

I was contemplating walking down the road a bit to watch the fireworks and then the phone rang and that is when the adventure started. You see...

Garden Oaks Mike, Everyday Italian and AttyHou were also thinking the same thing so I agreed to go with them. The plan was to walk about 1/2 a mile or so and watch the really big show. So we loaded up on cocktails and started the jaunt.

The more we walked the more the plans changed and the livelier the conversation. By the time it was all said and done we had walked 2.62 miles to Tony's Corner Pocket. We got there with just enough time to say hello to a few folks, grab a cocktail, grab a spot and then it was time for the fireworks to begin.

Here are some pics that I took. To see more pics, click here.

So we were a bit tired from our 2.62 mile walk and we decided to hang out at Tony Corner's Pocket. On our way over, it was mentioned that we could grab a taxi home. Uh...sure...grabbing a taxi in Houston is an easy thing to do especially on a busy night. It is now time to leave and guess what? No taxi!

So we start walking and let's just say it probably wasn't the safest thing to do especially when you're cocktailed.

We had walked about 3/10 of a mile when somebody's Guardian Angel sent two rickshaws down W. Dallas. They agreed to take us part of the way home. We still had 1.41 miles or so to go. I'm not naming names but someone was a moaning and a groaning about having to walk.

We finally made it back to NoRO and I was a bit damp with sweat. Showered and fell asleep on the couch rather than go to House of Pies for a snack.

Needless to say, I was a bit tired on Saturday morning. And THAT is how I spent Independence Day.

Friday, July 4, 2008

How Do You Red, White & Blue?

Happy Independence Day!
(Be careful out there.)

Thursday, July 3, 2008

I Could Have Been A Contender

Regular readers of Str8 Up With A Twist know that I run. I run so that I can eat. I run to keep the weight off. I run in the hope that maybe I won't come down with diabetes. I run to keep my sanity. I run for the eye candy.

If I had only known that I could have been a piece of art (instead of a piece of meat), I might have considered traveling across the pond to be a part of Martin Creed's Work No. 850. I realize that I would not be immortalized like Michelangelo's Daivd. However, it would have been cool to say I was a part of a piece of art. I know. I can always pose naked in a Spencer Tunick photo; not sure that the world is ready for that.

Anywho, I enjoyed reading the following article

Sprinters dash across Tate Britain


Martin Creed, the artist who won the 2001 Turner Prize with lights going on and off, presented his latest work on Monday: a runner sprinting every 30 seconds through Tate Britain's Duveen sculpture gallery in London.

For his Work No. 850, Creed, 39, advertised in running magazines to recruit semi-professionals age 18 or older. Employed by Tate, they are paid 10 pounds ($19.95) an hour to make 15 runs per half-hour shift.

"Running is good to look at," said the artist, dressed in a navy summer suit, as sprinters in shorts whizzed by, one by one, through the columned corridor. Creed himself made a couple of dashes in his suit. "It makes me happy to watch people run."

"We've done a lot of these over the years, but nothing quite like this," Tate Britain Director Stephen Deuchar said of the Creed project.

The Tate had "a history of taking on quite a few difficult commissions," he said, citing Doris Salcedo's recent concrete crack at Tate Modern (Shibboleth), and Carsten Hoeller's slides (Test Site).

"There is something inherently absurd in the idea of a runner passing every 30 seconds for four and a half months," Deuchar said.

Still, he said, Creed's was an "extraordinary piece" that should be taken as "a kind of metaphor for life being the opposite of stillness and death."

Tate Britain's Duveen Galleries Commission, for which Creed made the piece, is now an annual event, thanks to Sotheby's sponsorship.

Puma AG provided the sports clothes and shoes worn by the runners, which they were allowed to choose. A pool of 50 people will make the 30-second race from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily in a complex logistical operation.

Explaining his work to a huddle of reporters, Creed said the sprinters will "slow down if there's some obstruction," and "weave around people" during visiting hours.

Visitors are not allowed to run with them.

The exhibition runs from July 1 through Nov. 16. For more information, click here.