Saturday, December 9th, 2006

Last night my friend Derek was in town, and we went out to eat, did some shopping and then hit the bars. I was all excited about that last bit because Thursday was when Ohio's new ban on smoking in public places was to have taken effect, so this would be the first time I could go to a gay bar in Ohio and not come home smelling all smoky. Well I was being naive and forgetting that people don't like to obey laws they deem to be senseless or intrusive, which of course I do myself when it comes, for example, to speed limits.

In the first bar we hit, the Right Corner, there was a sign on the wall left over from Wednesday night touting their big Smoke Out ending at midnight, after which, I can only assume, everyone had a big chuckle and continued to smoke because on Friday there were still ashtrays on the bar and lit cigarettes galore. I asked the bartender about that, and he said, "Oh the ban doesn't take effect until May." Right. Derek texted his bf Chip to text us back the number for reporting violations, which is 866-559-6446, but they only take messages during business hours M-F 8-5. Oh well.

A cute and friendly bartender from Stage Door
A cute and friendly bartender from Stage Door
(If you see him, ask him to take off his shirt)
So we moved on to the Stage Door, where smoking was also business as usual, although they have a second bar where there wasn't any smoking going on yet, though there were ashtrays laid out. I asked the friendly bartender what that was all about, and he said, yeah, he knew about the new law, but he'd been told by his boss to set out the ashtrays. I stacked them up and set them on a chair while we were there.
 


David doesn't want his face to be seen David's stripper doesn't mind his butt being seen

After a couple drinks, we hopped on over to the last bar of the evening, Cell Block, where, yes, there was smoking going on, but by that time we no longer cared quite so much. We ran into a friend of mine, David, who doesn't like having his photograph taken and who gets lap dances from strippers. During all the ruckus, Derek broke a nail (omg!), then he snapped a picture of me and him, and then I snapped one of Derek kissing ass.
Derek's broken nail Derek and me Derek kissing ass


Update 12-11-06: I did remember to call the Ohio Department of Health to report Right Corner, Stage Door and Cell Block, each of whom will be getting warning letters. Whether that will do any good remains to be seen.
Tuesday, September 26th, 2006
Yesterday, after my friend Derek made me breakfast in his fabulous Twin Peaks apartment (pictures are in the galleries), I spent the day flying home from San Francisco, adding to my experience as a jaded world traveler.


Is this worth an extra $64?
From that experience I knew that it's good to check in online and print your boarding pass before you get to the airport. When I did that with United for my trip home, I was asked if I wanted to spend $64 to upgrade to Economy Plus seating. For an additional 25% of what I paid for my round trip tickets, I would get 5 extra inches of leg room on one segment of my trip home but no more elbow room (they still pack them in 9 across) and they'd still want an extra $5 to give me a box lunch! I declined. But checking in online did mean that when I got to the airport, I got to sail past all the hordes of people waiting to check in and had to wait behind only one other person to check a bag. Why more people don't check in online, I don't know.

The flight from SFO to ORD was uneventful. I had my snacks and my iPaq full of episodes of Brotherhood. On the way out to San Francisco I watched 4 episodes, and on the way back I watched 2 — I decided to nap some too on the way back.


Not a
terrorist weapon
We arrived on time at O'Hare, and I lucked out in that my United Express flight left from the C terminal, so instead of trekking over to the E terminal I had time to get some fries from McDonalds. I scarfed mine down before it was time to board, but the helpful gate agent announced over the PA that although food could be brought on board, beverages, of course, could not, nor could condiments such as salad dressings or ketchup, so "if you have ketchup, put it on before you board." A terrorist who heads to the onboard john with a fist full of condiment packets is obviously deadset on killing us all, but one who heads to the john with ketchup-soaked fries probably just wants to wash his hands.

Part of the irony about this is that by this time on Monday evening we all knew that in less than 24 hours the ban on dangerous liquids purchased in secure areas of airport terminals would be lifted. At 9pm on Monday the 25th, a packet of ketchup purchased at McDonald's in O'Hare's C terminal is a potentially deadly weapon, but at 8am on Tuesday the 26th it's not? And that's not even considering that TSA had no way to know whether I smuggled a packet onboard in my coat pocket, much as they can't seem to prevent Steven Levitt from endangering the lives of his fellow travelers by refusing to turn off his iPod when asked.

I got to Dayton safely and waited patiently in baggage claim only to discover, along with about 6 other happy travelers, that my checked bag had not made the trip with me. Waiting in line, I got to hear a disgruntled businessman in front of me harrass the poor woman at United's baggage counter about what he was supposed to do about getting contact lens solution at this hour (almost midnight) and whether United was going to reimburse him for his troubles. She truthfuly told him that they weren't going to do anything about that. Yay for corporate honesty. We've already taken your money, all the other airlines are as bad as us, so fuck you! Want to read more bad things about United? Check Michael Bluejay's rant or Untied.com.

When I got to the counter, I handed the woman my claim ticket, and she said, "What does your bag look like, Mr. Perkins?" Well, as I explained to her, my name's not Perkins. How did I get his claim ticket? It's what the agent in San Francisco gave me after accepting my bag. It never occurred to me to double-check her work. Apparently Mr. Perkins and my bag flew to Pittsburgh, but they'd ship my bag back to Dayton, assuming Mr. Perkins would part with it.

Today, I called United's baggage customer service number (800-221-6903) and waded through a bunch of options, only to have the friendly computer tell me they didn't have any information about my bag but that I could say "AGENT" if I wanted. So that's a new tip to add to my world traveler experience — if you call United, say "AGENT" right away, and don't bother talking to their computer. I got a nice friendly Indian woman who was able to report that my bag was in fact on its way to Dayton and would be arriving on flight 5806 at 1:25pm. They'll be kind enough to give it a ride home if it's willing to wait between 2 to 4 hours.
Tuesday, April 4th, 2006
Derek's 28th birthday was yesterday, and so to celebrate he went out with the SPC (a private club in existence for a while but named only last night), whose members include me, Ryan (who's been present at earlier club meetings), and Chip (the club's newest member). (Check out thingstodoindayton.blogspot.com to read about some of Chip and Derek's adventures.)

I met the group at the Stage Door, where I found them engaged in an enthralling game of video "what's different about these two pictures." That got boring soon enough, so we went to Club Masque, which on Monday nights has no cover charge, which we discovered is because no one is there on Monday nights. That was okay, though, as it allowed our drunken antics to go mostly unnoticed. As you can see, Derek is quite flexible for a 28-year-old, he sometimes launches sneak attacks on unsuspecting SPC members, and Ryan doesn't like to have his nipple exposed for viewing on the Internet.

Thursday, December 2nd, 2004

It was about this time last year that my friend Derek and I visited St. Croix. When we got back I posted pictures and an account of our trip in my gallery. That page is one of the most popular on my site, averaging around 70 hits a month, mostly by people who have searched on Google for information about or pictures of St. Croix.

In the year since our trip I've gotten only two e-mails about my St. Croix page, both from people rather disappointed in the tone of my account, feeling that I was too negative. My first correspondent was another gay guy, someone who goes to St. Croix often and actually bought property there this year. He was very pleasant, just wanting to note that crime happens everywhere (though he too experienced crime on St. Croix) and to point out aspects of St. Croix that he particularly liked. My second correspondent, whose e-mail I received today, was an anonymous woman who rather sarcastically said that she was "so sorry that [my] trip to St. Croix was sooo bad" and that St. Croix was "not perfect like everywhere else."

Perhaps my account of the trip was too whiny, but as another of Derek's friends who blogs points out, personal blogs tend to be a place where people can vent and thus can be perceived as overly negative. And what I said about St. Croix was truthful, even if it didn't include a disclaimer that bad things can happen anywhere and that St. Croix is the best place on earth and I didn't mean to offend anyone who absolutely loves it and can't take any criticism of it.

I did close my account by saying that it was "a good trip" and as you can see from some of my photos, St. Croix can be especially beautiful, as it was on our last day there. If you haven't been there, don't rule it out as a place to go. However, do consider that there are other equally beautiful places, including Key West, whose Fleur de Key guesthouse has much nicer rooms and and showers than the Cormorant.

Saturday, August 21st, 2004

My first event today was a family luncheon at Applebee's. My uncle Will's birthday was the 16th and my uncle Bill's is the 26th, so today was a celebration of both. My sister's in-laws came too, so the event was in part a celebration of Jackie's retirement. (Yes, Larry is wearing a Bush pin. No further comment.)

My second event was Saturday evening worship at Cross Creek. I usually go on Sunday mornings, but since I was going to visit my friend Keith's church on Sunday I decided to go to Cross Creek tonight. The Saturday service, at 5:30pm, had fewer people (at least this weekend), but was a fun opportunity to talk to people I hadn't seen in a while.



My third event was the Dayton Gay Men's Chorus performance as the opening act for the Rubi Girls at Celebrity. Our sound check was at 8pm, but we didn't go on until 10:30, which left lots of time for getting loosened up. As often happens when there is alcohol there was some nudity, which I probably shouldn't mention lest it attract more Google Image searchers. Despite some troubles during practice with the piano, our performance went pretty well, and, as always, the Rubi Girls were fabulous!

Sunday, April 4th, 2004
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Yesterday was Derek's birthday. Since drinking and barhopping are favorite activities of his, a little group including his sister and some friends did just that. I joined them downtown at Boston's, then we stopped in at the Stage Door for shots and then went on to Celebrity.

In compliance with Don't Ask Don't Tell no names will be mentioned (appearance on this blog is not an indication of sexual orientation). As you can see, there was an obsession with watching passers by on Second Street (including suspected hookers and strange patrons of Stage Door), with hair and personal appearance, with crotch shots, with half naked Kroger salad bar boys, and with drinking, ending, of course, with the obligatory shot of Derek passed out drunk (compare to this shot from December 2002).
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Friday, February 20th, 2004
Making a lemon tart Today was my turn to host my church dinner group, and Derek planned the menu and organized the cooking (I was sous chef). As you can see, making a lemon tart is fun. We took a break in the middle of cooking to go to Goodwill to get Derek a sweater -- do you like it?


As Julia Child says, you have to taste the wine before cooking with itAs Julia Child says, you have to taste the wine before cooking with it We follow Julia Child's advice when it comes to cooking with alcohol, which is that you taste the wine before using it, perhaps not a bad suggestion if you use better than $3 wine from Kroger.


Dark murky Guiness -- a tasty treat?Guiness'll knock you out I didn't take any pictures of our guests. It was a fairly quiet evening, and everyone was gone by 9 or so. Derek and I headed over to Stage Door to play some darts, and then, bored there, we headed up the street to Boston's, just in time for the Guiness toast. I declined a pint of Guiness on the grounds that I'm gay, earning me a laugh from the bartender and a punch in the shoulder from Derek. He had to prove his manliness and ordered a pint at the last minute. It took him a very long time to finish it, and he pulled a face after every sip. I did try one sip and vow that I'll never put Guiness in my mouth ever again.
Thursday, December 11th, 2003
Derek and I went to St. CroixWant to see my pictures from St. Croix?
Saturday, October 19th, 2003
Notice all the photographers Jennifer and Derek Todd and David, while we were all checking out Therapy Jimmy Lee and me Don and Dwight
There were interesting costumesJimmy and David Last night I went to Masquerage, an annual fundraiser for ARC Ohio. I went with my friends Jim and David, whose friends Tim and Todd rented a limo because it was Todd's 30th birthday. Our friend Jimmy Lee came along too. Derek and his sister Jennifer were there but didn't get to ride in the limo. There were lots of interesting costumes (and lots of, like mine, not so interesting costumes) and lots to drink and eat. After the fashion show, we hopped back into the limo (in which there was just a little nudity), stopped by Stage Door to get a drink and wait until it was a suitable hour, and left for Celebrity to cap off the evening.
I got to ride in a limoThere was some nudity in the limo (if you want to see the brown eye, you'll have to e-mail me to ask for it)We saw a stripper at CelebsJimmy and David
 
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