Monday, June 29, 2009

Does Fort Worth ever cross your mind?

Text message @ 546P (CDT): Large protest tonite at tarrant courthouse as a result of hate raid at new Rainbow Lounge. One person in icu with head injury after being thrown on the floor by police. Ugh FW's own Stonewall.

I was a The Social with BCBC when that text message arrived from a friend and reader of Str8 Up With A Twist. He is now a Fort Worth resident. I read it and thought, "WTF?"

Even though I grew up in Haltom City and call Haltom City home I did do consider Fort Worth home. It's a medium sized that is sometimes big town forward and sometimes small town backwards. Fort Worth has billed itself as Cowboys & Culture and Where The West Begins and Dallas Is Where The East Peters Out.

Many years ago when I was in 6th grade back in the '70s, Fort Worth changed it's City Council to single member districts so that minorities would have a fair chance of winning representation on the council. In that first election, a family friend of ours won a seat and became the first Mexican-American Hispanic on the council.

The city has a very diverse population and in the most recent City Council election, one of the districts elected a gay, white male to the seat. Yes. There was some controversy because of outsider money being funneled in to support his campaign but hey folks, that's politics!

So anyway, I was in Fort Worth on the weekend of the 19th and happened to ask if there were any new bars in town and I was told about the Rainbow Lounge. It just opened. Imagine my surprise when I got the text message. Then I read this from the Fort Worth Startlegram Star-Telegram. Then I read this from Daily Kos.

I feel like this is a situation of 1 step forward, 40 years backwards.

OK Fort were upset about outsiders contributing to a political campaign in your city? Just watch out! This incident is being spread via bloggers and Facebook and now all eyes are you. MAKE THINGS RIGHT! Just sayin'.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

T 'n T (This and That for June 25, 2009)

OK. What an odd day just in general.

Last night was a fun night hanging out with Kevin and Keith at Guava Lamp. Who knew the place would be hoppin' on a Wednesday night? To sum up the evening, let's just say it involved Long Island Iced Teas followed by tacos from Jack-In-The-Box and getting to bed in the wee hours of the morning.

So I'm already running a little slow just because I didn't get much sleep. Plus, it has been hotter than hell here in The Bayou City. These temperatures are August temperatures and it is only June!

And then this morning it was announced that Farrah Fawcett died after a long battle with cancer.


This was on the heels of Ed McMahon's death on Tuesday.


So this afternoon while I was still a bit spent from the previous night's activities I hear something about Michael Jackson going into cardiac arrest and then the next thing you know, he is dead at the age of 50!


I did read something from one of friends who posted a comment on Facebook. He said, "...just when you think the day couldn't get any worse, sources confirm that Dick Cheney is still alive."

And don't you know Governor Mark Sanford is doing cartwheels? I'm sure he was practicing Don't Cry For Me Argentina but all of sudden he isn't the lead story on the news this evening.

source: Getty Images

And speaking of Mark Sanford, I guess he won't be the poster child for defending the santicty of marriage between a man and a woman. And one more thing about him, he looks much older than 49. Just sayin'.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Jukebox Wednesday

This past week has been a rollercoaster of a ride. Some highs and some lows. Some good times and some sad times.

I was with my sister to celebrate her 50th Birthday. Also used the time to celebrate Fathers Day. While it was a time for celebrating there was also some sadness. A cousin unexpectedly died. Mixed in with all this are the day-to-day issues that arise not only for me but for my family and friends. Wouldn't it be nice if things never went wrong? Is that so wrong? Just askin'.

For today's Jukebox Wednesday, I have selected one of my favorite Ray Charles songs. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Did somebody say "Arby's"?

Anybody who reads David Dust knows that he really loves Arby's. He even took a train to eat at Arby's. I haven't had the heart to tell him that I have one less than 1.5 miles from my residence in NoRO.

So anywho, the other day The Calvinator were returning from our road trip and what do I see in the middle of nowhere? (Well actually it was in Waller, TX where Hwy 290 intersects with Hwy I guess that is the middle of nowhere.) An Arby's! I pulled The Cal Mobile over to take these two pics JUST for David Dust.

I didn't stop because I had already stopped at Sonic in Hearne, TX for a large Cherry Limeade.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Life Is A Cabaret Old Chum

So last night Running My Mass Off, Alnhouston & Realtor Ben went with me to the Hobby Center to see Cabaret. This production was produced by Theater Under The Stars.

It was different from the 1998 Revival that I saw at Studio 54. That one was VERY dark and when Sally Bowles sang the title song it bordered on a mental breakdown. It was a very cool production.

This TUTS production is much brigther probably because there is a bunch of red costumes. The twist on the band is really funny. The choreography for Tomorrow Belongs To Me is amazing. Not everyone noticed how the dancer shaped his body in a swastika. The Emcee is entertaining and can high kick with the best of the girls but don't ask him to do a split!

I've seen the movie several times and this was the third stage production that I have seen. I get swept up in the debauchery and always forget about the turning point in the story when I am reminded that this is Berlin right before the Nazis took control. It is a chilling moment.

Even though this isn't a feel good musical it is still an entertaining show. There are some cute songs (Don't Tell Momma) and some show stopping songs (Cabaret, Maybe This Time, Tomorrow Belongs To Me).

After the show, Running My Mass Off and I went to Artista to hang with some of the cast members and to have a cocktail. We had never been to Act Out @ TUTS. Maybe next time I'll belt out a tune @ the piano! Just sayin'.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Jukebox Wednesday

Whoa! I just realized I haven't posted anything here since Sunday when Kathy Griffin and Bette Midler got me laughing. I've been running, spinning, working out (all in the name of trying to lose the winter weight).

I'm still a pit p!ssed off at NTB; let a grudge go, I know. You see...

A couple of months ago I needed a battery so I went National Tire Battery (NTB). I took three hours to replace a battery because they didn't have one for the The Cal Mobile! Uh...isn't battery part of your name? THEN for a third of the cost, I probably could have replaced it myself.

So while I was there the guy tells me that I need two new tires. He said my car would never pass inspection.

So I needed to get The Cal Mobile inspected and in these Tough Economic Times I really wasn't looking forward to spending several hundred dollars on tires. Now, I'm not a mechanic and I don't play one on tv but I do know something about tires.

So yesterday I was looking at the tires and I couldn't remember which two he said needed replacing because they all looked the same to me.

So I decided that before I went and spent several hundred dollars on two tires I was gonna see if the car would pass inspection. And guess what? It did! And they said my tires were fine!

So my advice to you: Don't patronize NTB!

Now about Jukebox Wednesday...

I figured y'all were due a showtune and today's selection is an abbreviated version of Rose's Turn from Gypsy. Bernadette Peters performed this at the Tony Awards one year.

When she was on Broadway, USA Today did a review of her performance and also interviewed her husband. She got rave reviews. Her husband said that it was eerie to watch her transform herself each night on stage; it was a person he didn't know.

So for your viewing pleasure, here is Bernadette Peters!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

For Your Laughing Pleasure (NSFW)

Do you ever go through those periods in your life when you just wish something would go in your favor and you really just need a good laugh?

Well today I watched the opening episode of Kathy Griffin My Life On The D-List. The first part of this cracks me up! She is on stage with Bette Midler and repeats her classic line from New Year's Eve with Anderson Cooper. The other part that cracks me up is her commentary on Toni Basil.

In this next clip, the best exchange is around the 2:11 mark:
Bette: "You have merchandise?"
Kathy: "I have t-shirts that say, 'Suck It'"
Bette: "Kathy. What are you going to wear when you're burning in Hell?"
Kathy: "I don't know but I'll pick something. I'll have a good gay pick out something red and fabulous."

I have no idea why this cracks me up? Maybe because next to Kathy, Bette looks like a saint.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

T 'n T (This and That for June 13, 2009)

OK. So let's sort of catch up with what's on my mind. I don't have much of one left so this won't take very long. HA!

1. Today has to have been the hottest day of the year (so far). I went running this morning at Memorial Park and before I left I think I heard the man on the telly say it was 87% humidity and 78 degrees at 7:00a.m. This afternoon it reached 95 degrees. OK peeps. It doesn't get this hot in Houston in June! Maybe in August! What circle of Dante's Hell am I in? Just askin'.

2. Today is the 9 month anniversary of Hurricane Ike making landfall and making my life miserable. However, my misery was nothing compared to many others. Nine months later, some people are still in recovery mode. I did hear that Brennan's of Houston will re-open in a few months. Brennan's burned during the hurricane. If there was one defining moment of the storm when I actually wondered if hunkering down was the correct decision, it was when I heard that Brennan's was on fire. A transformer started the fire. I have a utility pole in the front yard that was exploding with a rainbow of colours that night and it really scared me. We are officially in Hurricane Season right now so let's hope it is a quiet one. Just sayin'.

3. Bryan held a fundraiser last night for Annise Parker. Annise is currently City Controller for Houston. She is a candidate for Mayor. I first met Annise in 1997 at a fundraiser when she was running for City Council (At-Large position). I was so impressed with her I told AttyHou we needed to have a fundraiser for and we did and she won and has continued to serve the citizens of Houston.

So now she is running for Mayor. Currently she is the front runner but the election isn't until November and we all know how things can get all crazy. I'm going to do everything I can to help her maintain her lead.

She gave a really good speech last night and energized the crowd. I didn't realize how many people outside of Houston and outside of Texas are keeping an eye on this election. I forget that I live in the 4th largest city in the United States.

Annise is running on her experience and qualifications. She is the most experienced and qualified candidate who happens to be female. I hope that people will look at her experience and her plans for Houston. Regardless of where you live, I hope that you will check out her website and consider making a donation. She mentioned last night that a $5 contribution really does help and it gives you some buy-in to her candidacy.

4. I am going with some friends to see Cabaret on Thursday evening. I debated about going but then I thought, "What good is sitting alone your room?" So I bought a ticket!

Stay cool everybody!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

What Musical Theatre Composer Will Write The Score To Your Life?

I am a very big user of Facebook. And you're thinking, "Tell me something new." I guess that is sort of like Adam Lambert telling everybody he is gay. DUH!

Anywho...Today on Facebook, one of friends posted this quiz: What Musical Theatre Composer Will Write The Score To Your Life? Being a Broadway baby, I couldn't resist. And here are the results.

Jerry Herman

I couldn't have asked for a better composer!

Nobody writes a 'pull yourself up by the bootstraps' number better than Jerry Herman. In scores like La Cage Aux Folles, Mame, and Hello Dolly!, Jerry Herman gives every star actress and hopeful chorus dancer a chance to sparkle, kick and walk down a staircase. Your life is a study in overcoming adversity, achieving your goals and putting your best foot and brightest smile forward. The world is a challenge and you're ready to take it on. Touted as perhaps the most 'hum-able' composer of the American musical, Herman's music is straightforward, bright, and about as positive as it comes. Gangway world, get off of your runway!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Jukebox Wednesday

I actually had another song selected for today's Jukebox Wednesday. However, since this is Pride month I thought I would select one of the anthems. There are several recordings of this song that I like. Gloria Gaynor does a "get off your feet and dance to beat" version of the song. The Original Cast recording from La Cage Aux Folles is good too. However, my favorite recording that I couldn't find on YouTube is by Linda Eder. That lady belts it out like it was meant to be sung.

I chose this song today because the other day at Miss Ginger's Roundup, someone decided to perform and wanted this song. I was outside and someone came running up to me asking if I had this on a cd in my car? Believe it or not, the answer was, "No." And then I looked at Kevin in wonderment as to why I don't have it in my car on a cd? I have several versions on the iPod.

So for your listening (and viewing pleasure), here is John Barrowman singing, I Am What I Am. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Gayest Show On Earth

Yesterday, David Dust did a pictorial editorial about the Tony Awards. I was too consumed with amazement at Miss Ginger Grant's prowess in raising funds for Legacy at Miss Ginger's Roundup. So in the spirit of David Dust, here is my commentary on the 2009 Tony Awards.

I have always said that if the Academy Awards are The Gay Superbowl then the Tony Awards are The Gay World Series. The Tony's have always had a gay tinge to them but there was a turning point a few years ago when Tony came out of the closet. I think someone kissed his partner on air or publicly thanked his partner or something like that. And then of course there was the year Hugh Jackman performed a number from The Boy From Oz and totally camped it up for our viewing pleasure.

And it didn't hurt that in the past they have hired Mr. Eye Candy "I'm Not Gay And My Wife Will Tell You So" Jackman to host. And even though the Tony's came out of the closet a few years ago, this was the year the closet door and the hinges were demolished. No one is complaining.

I watched the Tony's with Running My Mass Off, her husband and her father. It was a wonderful time and we all had our opinions on the nominations and winners. We did concur that the sound sucked!

It wasn't until the next day that I realized Bret Michaels missed his mark and got hit on the nose when the set was descending. He definitely kept his sense of humor and added credibility to the fact that this is The Gayest Show On Earth. From

"Bret Michaels may have broken his nose and busted his lip during a scenery-related malfunction at the Tonys on Sunday – but the Poison frontman and Rock of Love star left with his sense of humor intact.

"He told me, 'All I remember is Shrek and the donkey helping me up, and Liza [Minnelli] giving me a towel,'" says his rep, Joann Mignano. "And Bret was laughing when he heard [Tonys host] Neil Patrick Harris said he gave new meaning to 'headbanging.' "

The evening was filled not only with gays but with gay icons, some eye candy for the gays, and fashionistas but before I get to that...

In a more serious matter, a tribute was paid to those who have died and helped make Broadway what it is. Bebe Newirth introduced the tribute and it started with Natasha Richardson.

AP Photo

Even though this is how it ended, I think this sums up the whole show!

Reuters Photo

(All of the following photos are from Getty Images.)

I don't understand why the gave Liza so much airtime. Here she is:
And here she is again!

I'll let the rest of these photos speak for themselves!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Miss Ginger's Roundup

Noted performer, philanthropist, fundraiser and lady about town, Miss Ginger Grant held a fundraiser yesterday for Legacy Community Health Services. I still don't understand the math, even if Miss Ginger did give a math lesson, on how rounding up would raise more money but it worked and Miss Ginger has reported via her blog that $10,000 was raised.

Not only did Miss Ginger Grant round up some money, she rounded a gaygle of performers to assist with the endeavor. The glitterati and fashionistas flocked to the BRB to be a part of the crowd. As you can see by the photos, a good time was had by all.

From the home office on Roy Street in NoRO, Str8 Up With A Twist says, "SAAAA-LUTE Miss Ginger Grant!" You're the best.

Friday, June 5, 2009


Doors are funny things. They open; they close. You can see through some and some you cannot see through. Some you have to push and some automatically open. Some are heavier than others. Doors can either let things in or keep things out. And Doors sing.

I've had an odd experience with doors this week. One was closed but then another one opened. Then there was one door that I could see through and I didn't think I liked what I was seeing but I opened it anyway and it hit me in the face...only to make my headache and mood much worse.

All this talk about doors made me think about The Doors. And here is one of my favorite songs by The Doors. (BTW...this was WAY before synthesizers. Gotta love the musicians performing with them.)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Jukebox Wednesday

OMG! About 10 minutes ago I remembered that it is Wednesday which means it is Jukebox Wednesday and I haven't posted anything. Come to think of it, I haven't posted anything since last Jukebox Wednesday. OOPS!

I've been busy doing things. Work. Not running much. Gym. Meetings. A party at Sloan/Hall on Friday night. A pool party on Saturday. Church. Work. If you're a friend of mine on Facebook, you have seen some photos uploaded from my Crackberry. Not the best resolution but pictures nonetheless.

So, here is my selection for Jukebox Wednesday. It is a song by U2. I have been to one U2 concert and that was in 1997. They brought The Joshua Tree Tour to Ft. Worth. They had a special guest that night...B.B. King! Yes! B.B. King! He performed once with them on the tour and I was there! You can see the footage from Rattle & Hum here. And if you look really hard into the vast, dark, people filled Tarrant County Convention Center Arena, you can see me.

One of my favorite U2 songs is I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For. In Rattle and Hum, they go to a church in Harlem and sing the song with a gospel choir. When I saw this footage I realized that this is how the song was meant to be sung. Enjoy!