Friday, October 30, 2015

Friday fragments

Welcome to Friday fragments, my weekly recap of topics too big to forget, yet too small to be their own post.

We had a great time in Montreal!!  Although we didn't expect to have Tornwordo as our tour guide every day, he generously spent time with us during each day of our visit and we saw lots of great sites and had a ball.  
Photos and descriptions will be coming in next week's posts.

Tomorrow night is Halloween.  My crazy friend Liz texted me this:

Our longtime friends Ron & James and Mike & Clark are coming today for for their annual weekend visit.  We used to hang out a lot when we lived in VA, and they would come visit our beach house with us every year beginning in 2003.  So this weekend is our 13th annual weekend together.  We don't tend to 'do' a lot when they're here (ie: site seeing).  Since we only see them once a year we usually spend it talking, drinking, laughing, eating, and catching up on the goings on in each others lives.  

Can I see a show of hands of who was surprised that Tim Gunn used his 'Tim Gunn Save' to bring Edmond back?  Anyone?  Anyone??

Have a fun and safe Halloween weekend!!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Montreal bound!

This morning we left on our road trip to Montreal!  (Yes, I wrote this yesterday and set it to post today.)

I'm excited for several reasons:
  1. Neither of us have been to Montreal before and I've heard it is reminiscent of Paris
  2. We will get to spend time with our friend Tornwordo and his husband who live nearby.  They've offered to be our personal tour guides during part of our visit
  3. I enjoy road trips because Spouse & I often have good conversations, listen to lots of good music, and on this particular road trip we'll get to see lots of colorful fall foliage
  4. Our studio apartment is right in the heart of the gay village, offering us walking access to many ethnic food restaurants, bars, clubs, cafes, entertainment, and the metro which will take us nearly anywhere
  5. Spouse will get to use some of his 'use it or lose it' leave from work
  6. We're going in Spouse's ML 350 which has built in navigation, although I'm bringing printed directions just to be on the safe side
  7. Since we're not flying we won't have to squeeze into seats designed to fit purging super-models, we won't get infected by sick travelers, and we'll have the ability to stop if we see something interesting along the way
  8. Driving gives us the freedom to bring as much stuff as we want.  Rather than picking just 1 jacket and hoping its sufficient for the weather we encounter, I can bring more than 1 since we'll have plenty of room in the car

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Back to the Future

Back to the Future is 1 of my all-time favorite films.  The premise is that a time-traveling car can transport people back to the past and into the future.  However, everything that happens during these visits has the potential to change things in the present.

The film came out in 1985 and the leading man Marty McFly (played by Michael J Fox) is transported back 30 years into the past to Nov 12, 1955.  Then in 1989 Back to the Future II came out.  In this sequel Marty is transported 30 years into the future, arriving on Oct 21, 2015.

That's today.

Do you feel as old as I do??

Monday, October 19, 2015

Anne Marie & more, part 2

 I think I've finally recovered from my 'big weekend'.

To recap, I worked on Fri from 9am til 4:30pm, then went directly to Dos Locos without going home 1st.  I met up with dear Anne Marie and her husband Todd and we got a chance to chat a little before the others arrived.  Eventually the rest of the gang trickled in:  Steven & Thad, Joe P, Derwin & Carolyn, and finally Spouse.  (He was late because he had to let the dogs out and feed them.)

Anne Marie & Todd started off with a pitcher of passion fruit sangria. 
Anne Marie
Next came the chips with salsa, guacamole, and queso.  I could have made a meal of those!  Everyone ordered and our food came out quickly - one of the perks of going to dinner early.
Carolyn, Thad, Derwin
Joe P had a classic margarita which looks to be about the same size as his head.
Joe P
Shortly after finishing my quesadilla I had to run to the Blue Moon to prepare for my show, but the rest of the gang stayed behind and celebrated Todd's birthday.  The staff placed a giant sombrero on his head, sung 'happy birthday' and gave him a complimentary dessert.
Spouse on the left of birthday boy Todd
Then it was show time!  I performed my Elton John medley and was joined by Pamala Stanley who sang 2 duets with me.  It was a lot of fun!!
Me in my Elton John costume
Then shortly after 10pm we started the 2nd show, in which I performed as Neil Sedaka.
The crowd was very responsive to my Legends in both shows, and I was asked to pose with patrons for photos.  It was lots of fun!!  I got home at 12:30am, which made for a very long day.

Sat I did it all over again, minus the dinner with Anner Marie & Todd.  The show on Sat was reversed, so I did Neil Sedaka 1st at the 7pm show and Elton John at the 10pm show.  Again, the shows went great and were well-received.  I got home at 12:15am, completely exhausted.

Sun morning Spouse & I met Steven for breakfast at the Crystal restaurant.  Afterward we stopped at the grocery store for a few items, then went home where I relaxed with my doggies and Spouse made an apple crumb pie.
Homemade apple crumb pie
I literally didn't do anything productive all day - just rested from my big weekend.  That evening we had dinner at Steven & Thad's and took the pie as dessert.  We came home, watched "The Leftovers" and went to bed at 10pm.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Anne Marie & More

Its Fri and I've got another big weekend ahead.

As I type this I know that Anne Marie and her husband Todd have arrived in town for a weekend getaway.  Spouse & I will be meeting them and Steven & Thad and Joe P and Derwin & Carolyn for dinner at Dos Locos.  We are sure to have a fun time!

Afterward most of them will mosey on over to the Blue Moon to catch me in an extended LEGENDS show.  Although the summer LEGENDS series has ended, it is Jazz Fest this weekend so the Blue Moon decided to do a special "More Than Just Jazz" program for the weekend.  I'm doing a show at 7pm as Elton John and then another show as Neil Sedaka at 10pm.  Fortunately there will be time for me to visit a little more with Anne Marie & Todd between the shows.

Tomorrow I work at my day job as a realtor, then go back to the Blue Moon to do it all again; another 7pm show as Neil Sedaka and a 10pm show as Elton John.  I imagine I'll be exhausted by Sun.  Fortunately I'm off Sun so I can rest up.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Wednesday, October 14, 2015


I would like to go on record as declaring that the fact that someone is talking (loudly) on a mobile phone in a public place does not make them important or smart.  In fact it makes them the opposite of both.

I was in a retail store yesterday and this woman was wandering through the store, picking items up and then putting them back down with 1 hand because her other hand was pressing her phone up against her head, talking about nothing.  

I can understand the occasional need to talk on the phone while shopping.  "Hey mom, did you want 6 birthday candles or just 1 candle shaped like the number 6?"  That's completely appropriate.  But this woman yesterday was just gosipping with a girlfriend.  "So I told her she better not be spreading nasty rumors or I'd be forced to start spreading even worse rumors about her.  Uh huh, that shut her up.  I wanted to say 'cat got your tongue, bitch?' ha ha ha".  

Do I not speak for the rest of the civilized world in saying "We don't want to hear that!"

Later that same day I was in the grocery store, picking up a few items.  Several times I passed this young man wearing a big hoodie with the hood up and dark sunglasses, talking on the phone in a foreign language.  Just my luck the shortest cashier line was the one in which I was standing behind him.  Now, this guy wasn't talking loudly and I have no idea what he was saying since his conversation was not in English.  But the entire 10 minutes I was in the grocery store before getting in line he was talking on the phone, and now in the check out line he was still on the phone, presumably talking about nothing.  In his defense, maybe he was a bomb expert who was giving intricate instructions to someone attempting to diffuse a bomb, but I doubt it.

The cashier greeted him but he didn't speak back to her; he simply nodded his head.  Then she asked if he had a store discount card.  Again he didn't speak to her; he just nodded his head again.  Rather than getting his debit/credit card out and being ready, he continued talking on the phone until the cashier announced the total.  At that point he fumbled around to get his wallet out from his jeans pocket which was covered up by the over-sized hoodie, and tried to get the card out and swipe it without dropping the phone.  The cashier looked at me and I rolled my eyes and shook my head.

Just because you CAN talk on the phone in public places doesn't mean you SHOULD.  Use some common courtesy and realize others don't want to be forced to listen to your mundane gossip nor be inconvenienced by your delayed actions.  

Monday, October 12, 2015

What a weekend!

To say it was a "full weekend" or "busy weekend" would be incomplete.  Instead, I'm going to say it was a "GREAT weekend"!

I started my Sat with meeting brand new clients at 9:30 and showing them a number of homes that matched their criteria.  They were very nice and I enjoyed spending time with them.  After lunch they decided to write a very good offer on their favorite home, so I got that all put together for them, went over all the details, and supervised their initialing and signing on the various pages to be sure none were overlooked.  The next day the offer was signed as-is by the seller!

After work I had a quick dinner at home and then met Joe P at the theatre for a 7pm performance of "Lips Together, Teeth Apart", written by Terrence McNally.  
The play features only 4 characters; 2 straight couples who are visiting the Fire Island beach house of one of the woman's deceased gay bother, in 1991.  They are forced to confront questions of tolerance versus acceptance, fears of infidelity, and what happiness really means.  To me this play was a mash-up of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf" and "Steel Magnolias".  There were harsh words and tense situations, but always peppered with humorous one-liners and sharp wit.  Joe P and I not only loved the play itself, but also the 4 actors who never 'over-acted' any of the scenes.  We both agreed that this was our favorite of all the plays and musicals we've seen at this local theatre.  Thoroughly enjoyable!

Sun morning Spouse & I met Steven & Thad for breakfast at the Crystal.  A little later I headed to the CAMP Rehoboth Block Party where I was to perform "Philadelphia Freedom" as Elton John, courtesy of the Blue Moon where I have performed as Elton John in the LEGENDS show.  My song went great and the audience was very receptive.  Shortly thereafter I performed a finale song with 2 other singers, 1 of whom was recording artist and 'friend' of the Blue Moon Pamala Stanley.
(Pamala and I will be performing together again this coming Fri & Sat nights during Jazz Fest.)  Then I spent a little 'meet-n-greet' time with the public where I talked with people and posed for photos with them.  
It was a lot of fun!  Back in my 'civilian' clothes, I was about to head home when I ran into Joe P and several of his neighbors/friends, so I decided to hang out at the Block Party a while longer.  In doing so I saw/greeted/talked to so many people I knew, both personally and professionally.  And while I didn't see him, MSNBC host Thomas Roberts and his husband stopped in for a drink at the Blue Moon.  
Joe P met him and had a lovely conversation, which totally made Joe P's day.  It was really fun!  The weather was ideal so there was a great turn-out for the event. That evening I met up with Spouse and Steven & Thad for pizza.  I'm not sure I could have squeezed much more into the weekend.

Friday, October 09, 2015

Size matters

We've all heard the saying "Size matters".  Well, I'm here to tell you its true!

Recently Spouse & I traded up from iPhone 5 to iPhone 6 Plus.  The difference in size is substantial and quite welcomed!
iPhone 6 Plus and iPhone 5
Let's face it:  most of us use our phones as interim computers so having a larger screen makes lots of activities easier.  Those of us with eyes that are over 40 (ahem) appreciate the larger screen and larger font.  The improved camera in the newer, larger phone takes superior photos too.  And despite the 6 Plus being larger, it is also thinner and lighter.
iPhone 5 on top of iPhone 6 Plus

Before getting the new, larger phone I had a small concern that its size may be cumbersome to slide into a pant/jean pocket, but this turned out to be a complete non-issue.  I have found that trying to text 1-handed is harder now, but the larger size and lighter weight are well worth that trade-off.

Both of us are really, really happy with our new iPhone 6 Plus phones!

We purchased the phones from an authorized Verizon partner store, so they did not take our old phones in trade.  However, upon transferring our contacts/photos/etc from our old phones to our new ones, we received offers from Verizon to buy back our old phones for $200 each.  They even provided the postage-paid shipping boxes!  So now we have a $400 credit on our Verizon bill.  

We couldn't be happier with our new phones and the entire transfer process.

Monday, October 05, 2015

(no) Indian Summer

I'm a summer person.  This is likely no surprise to readers, since my blog shows that I live at the beach, love going to the beach, drive a convertible, love wearing shorts and flipflops, and love sitting on my screened porch.  I should live in southern CA where the weather is like summer all year round.

One of the great things about living in the mid-Atlantic region is Indian Summer.  Its not unusual for us to have sunny skies and temperatures in the 70s well into Oct, of which I take full advantage.  I actually have a memory of sitting out on the beach the 1st Sun in Nov some years back, but I can't find it in my blog.  I continue wearing shorts and flipflops and driving with the top down as long as I possibly can, squeezing out the final minutes of Indian Summer every year.

But this year I feel like we're being cheated with no Indian Summer.  The month of Sept was cooler than usual and we've had rain and/or overcast skies much more than usual.  Now here we are in the 1st week of Oct and we've had cool temps, wind, and rain from Hurricane Joaquin for the last week.  Today it was in the 50s when I got dressed for work, although its supposed to go up to 66 today.  I had to wear long pants and socks and closed shoes to work - its depressing!  

I'm definitely NOT 1 of those people who gets excited about fall.  To me, fall simply means the end of summer, a reality I try to avoid as long as possible.  I don't even like shopping for fall clothes, since I find the colors almost as depressing as the passage of summer.

The 10-day forecast does show daytime temps creeping up into the low 70s during the day, but its just not the same as a good old fashioned Indian Summer.

Friday, October 02, 2015

Flu shot

Yesterday evening I met Steven & Thad and Joe P to get our free flu shots.  Our local hospital does several flu shot clinics this time of year and to make sure we all get one, we do it together.  Spouse did not come since it conflicted with his work out time, but got a flu shot today during a doctor visit.

I never used to get flu shots.  I was like 45 or 46 before I got my 1st one.  My primary care doctor talked me into it by telling me that thousands of people die every year from the flu, and that a simple flu shot can greatly reduce the risk of getting or dying from it.  So now I get one each year. 

After getting our flu shots the 4 of us went to dinner.  That makes it more fun.  We went to Purple Parrot and I had a good taco salad.  It was an enjoyable, early evening.  I was home by 7:00.