Sometimes the party lifestyle seeps into your every day; the clothes you wear…or don’t wear, the things you talk about…or try not to talk about, and the food you eat…and avoid.
I’m talking about pinching pennies for your booze fund. Katelyn and I discovered the best caloric value for your buck is this macaroni and cheese pizza they sell at the Grocery Outlet for $1. It’s what it sounds like: mac’n’cheese on a freaking pizza. It tastes as amazing as you’re imagining. You bake it and…. well, I put ketchup on it. I like ketchup on my mac because I’m five. And you eat half one of those and get like 500 calories for 50 cents.
Right, so we get home at 4am congratulating ourselves for avoiding the mexican $7 burritos/nachos/food-binge of doom and instead split the $1 mac’n’pizza and we’re satiated with the gluttony of cheese. Yes.
The other thing that happens when you’re eating and you’re partying (eat-party-eat-party) is that you don’t have time. After getting off work at 7 and taking your pre-party nap and laboring over your costume, there is no time for food. You can’t chop a salad, you can’t toast a sandwich and juice a carrot. You have to eat on the go. So we have this thing called “Pocket Cheese.”
Pocket Cheese was originally a piece of cheese, individually wrapped, that you stick in your pocket on your way out the door to eat later. (Or maybe you think you have clean pockets and it’s not wrapped, but, whatever…) Pocket Cheese has its setbacks. Katelyn stashed a piece, all ready to go, and we went to the liquor store to get our plastic-bottle of Ancient Age whiskey, a bag of ice, and a 2 liter of Coke. She went to pay and the cheese fell out of her pocket, onto the floor and weirded out our fellow shoppers.
Nowadays, Pocket Cheese is anything you eat, on the go, before the party. “Katelyn I’m goin’ in the fridge I need some Pocket Cheese.” Well, can’t do this fish taco, too saucy and cabbage-y to manage in a pocket. I went for the grapes. Grapes are now Pocket Cheese. I had those for dinner, then also beer. Beer is food. My brother told me it has the 13 essential vitamins and minerals. He eats two meals a day and Beer Meal (3-5 beers or two 40s), and he’s fit enough to play Ultimate Frisbee.
Anyway, life is good when you got your priorities in order.
By the way, y’all should admire this gem. Let me know if you find anything equally amazing about San Diego:
This will be a brief post, because I need to take today to get ready for Potrero War – my second time going. I’m not really a LARPer (Live Action Roleplay-er); I don’t even have my name figured out. I make the minimum effort possible – I wear a silk vest and pants from the thrift store, and it’s questionable whether my shoes are period. I camp with gypsies, and they don’t make me play those silly “war virgin” games (like wash people’s dishes) because my girlfriend and I are self-sufficient. Okay, my girlfriend is self-sufficient, I just make her do everything for me.
Still, I’m drawn to go to War. The premise is that we’re all gathering together to support the troops. They fight during the day; you can hear the clash of blunted swords on armor. Each fight could represent their last day on earth, so at night we party. Singing, dancing, and drinking. So much drinking. I will wander around the camps with my tankard and it will be filled with wines, homemade ales and grog, and Jim Beam.
If I had to make any conclusion, I’d just say nerds sure know how to have fun ;)
This is not my guide to enjoying Pacers. My guide to enjoying Pacers would go something like this:
Figure out how to get in free or at a reduced rate, such as a friend with free passes or a web promotion.
Bring cigarettes, extra if you actually smoke the things.
Bring women friends if possible.
Buy 9-dollar domestic draft pitchers (Miller lite or Coors lite or some other crap beer).
Sit on the adorable enclosed patio in the back and leave your cigarettes out on the table.
Inevitably, a stripper will ask for a smoke. This is her break, so don’t start shoving dollars in her underwear. Instead enjoy her company and the atmosphere. If you’re lucky, enjoy watching her flirt with your girlfriend.
Don’t sit and stare near the stage unless you have cash to throw on it. That’s just rude.
So, I carry around a little brown notebook, call it “Life Odes” written in large letters on the front. The first page is a sketch of a “Juicy Fruit” shaped lip balm, which I colored highlighter yellow. A few pages in you’ll find a lipstick kiss (my own) and a bucket list. The first entry is checked off: “stripper bites my vagina.” I had emphatically created this page to break the news to my friends; I threw down the open notebook on the table and slid into the booth.
Backtrack: We’d gone to Pacers for a fetish night, which seemed to be a regular Pacers night supplemented by a few kinky ‘performances’ and several well-undressed patrons. That is to say, the only way I could tell some of the attendees from the strippers was to look for their purses. Staff swept up dollar bills with a push mop to make way for an awkward latex fashion show. The seemingly unrehearsed women fell onto the stage like cattle out of a gate, and milled around without choreography in the slightest. I needed a drink.
(Of course, Rubber Doll did much better than the latex models. Her acts this night included pulling pom-poms out of a slit in the front of her nude-colored latex one-piece, shooting silly string from a Madonna-esque bra, and blasting sparks off a two foot steel rod she gracefully strapped in front of her hips. It all sounds silly, but there’s something delightfully radical about a woman spraying a predominately male audience with silly string, sparks, and other substances.)
Back to that drink I needed. My friend offered his tab; apparently he knows the owner and the whole bill would be comped at the end of the night. I didn’t hesitate, and ordered a shot of Jame-o and a whiskey coke to start. “Oh, and a White Russian.” The generosity didn’t end there. After I finished my drinks, my friend offered to buy me a lap dance. Perhaps because I had a good free buzz on (let’s admit it, free buzzes feel better than paid-for buzzes) and because I like new experiences, I accepted.
Our stripper didn’t quite understand the arrangement. In an accent not unlike Katya Kazanova’s she explained, “I do him; I get him started for you.” Perhaps she thought we meant to go in together, which I assume is against the rules. “No,” I said in her ear, “I don’t care if he gets off. I want you and he has the money.” Or, at least, this is how I paraphrased myself when my friend asked me later how I got her to cooperate. “I don’t know what you doing, girl,” she replied, “but keep doing it.”
She ousted another pair from the 3-walled leather cubicle, which I felt weird about for about 5 seconds, and sat my friend across from us in the opposite booth. Normally I might object to letting a guy watch me get tantalized by a woman in her panties, even if he did pay for the dance, but I like this guy. He threw up thumbs and grinned at me when I peeked past her shoulders.
I assume she did the usual lap dance-y things but my brain just likes to remember that she nibbled on my crotch. Yes, at some point she bent down and chewed on me through my red pants. Somebody told me later that they don’t usually do that. Well I figured as much! This was after she made out with me, her tongue whirling like a windmill. The only other person to kiss me like that admitted to a history of sex work; do they teach this at the Academy*?
“Hey Katelyn, want a stripper kiss?”
The stripper didn’t quite finish exploding my mind, because some musical cue scared her to the stage. I sat close and watched her dance. “Don’t fall in love,” my friend said. I laughed, but threw all my dollar bills at her.
I want to say I enjoyed the performances, went home, and slept well. I can’t. We stayed after closing for what I’ll call “amateur-hour.” The ‘amateurs,’ a.k.a. my friends, got their chance to jump-up on the stage and fling themselves around the pole. The owner’s wife gave me an iPhone and told me to take pictures of her. Maybe I just felt artistic but I stood up on a chair and took 237. Also later I hit people. Also later we went to my friend’s suite at the Hard Rock Hotel and gabbed ’til 7:30am.
Outgoing text, 3:49AM: What is my life I don’t even.. Just after-partied at the titty bar. Made out with a stripper, beat a boy with a belt, tied a girl to an X and spanked her
When I flopped into bed – after we closed the door to our windowless bedroom and put a towel at its base to block out the light – I moaned to Katelyn, “we are such irresponsible, bad, bad children.” Yet the next night I slapped my thighs and chanted, “Party party party!” So we did.
*Poor attempt at Firefly reference. I am finally watching it for the first time!
For more tales of my debauchery, attend my performance at the Whistle Stop Bar, Thursday May 30th, as part of the showcase, “America’s F*&$% City,” hosted by So Say We All. Link to facebook event.
First, can I just say I AM SO EXCITED for the new QOTSA album. I just checked my alternate email inbox and found a message marked Tue, May 7, 3:12 AM. Apparently I spent $51.43 on vinyl and a CD. It is the uber deluxe bestest vinyl version you can get and my favorite band, so I ain’t even mad that I broke my no-credit-cards-past-1am rule. Play their song “I Appear Missing” while you read, if you like, below.
I am working on a Pandora station called Everything Homme Touches. When that’s mashed into submission to my tastes, I’ll post it.
Anyway, I wanted to examine something that’s been bugging me; when is it okay or even necessary to interfere, and when do you let people handle themselves?
I mean, as a brassy extrovert who’s not afraid to tell people to get their balls off of me, sometimes I resent it when a lesbro gets over-protective. Pro-tip: pretending to be my “boyfriend” in order to “rescue” me from some asshat is going to annoy me almost as much as the dude telling me I’ve got pretty teeth 10 times in one night. Also, is that some sort of PUA thing? Teeth? I have little baby chompers and the dentists had to put gadgets in my mouth to make it bigger; I don’t really think my teeth are that impressive.
So, this guy I’ve met twice in the bar before — he’s from Detroit so I’d told him about this blog — came up to me and asked me to be his wingwoman. He indicated a woman I’d seen on the dance floor earlier, who actually binged my gaydar for a change (my gaydar is fairly silent and inobservant). She was standing with another young lady. “No, she’s not on your team,” I said. He insisted. “No. This is the wrong place,” we were at the Brass Rail, “and I am the wrong person,” I said. He went on a tangent and told me he has no trouble getting white chicks and won’t I please help him get this sexy black woman all the while hanging on my neck. “Seriously, I am the wrong person,” I said through my tiny teeth, a little bit of heat in my lungs.
He flew solo and persisted in pestering them. I didn’t know if I should walk up and say, “hey, this guy bothering you?” or let them take care of their own business, thank you very much. When do you reach out and when do you respect other people as capable adults? And how does alcohol change this? Worse, would they see me as another predator? Ultimately I decided their two to his one was sufficient and turned my back so my eyes would stop rolling.
Below is my breakdown of when I’d want someone to help me, where “you” could be a casual friend or a stranger. (Close friends would probably know me better and be able to do more.) It is assumed you see me in a basically one-on-one situation. Do you agree?
Leave me alone if:
You know I’m gay and a guy is potentially flirting with me, but I’m smiling, making eye contact with him, and/or touching his arm or shoulder (I might be enjoying the conversation)
Really, if anyone is talking to me and I’m smiling, making eye contact, and/or touching them
I’m arguing with someone but there’s zero physical contact and I am making eye contact with my opponent (I might be enjoying the argument)
Enter the conversation as a neutral third-party, but don’t confront anyone when:
You know I’m gay and it seems like a guy is hitting on me aggressively
(You don’t know I am gay but) you suspect that I’m not enjoying a guy hitting on me
You suspect that I’m not enjoying a woman hitting on me
I’m arguing with someone but I keep looking away, crossing my arms, turning my body away, and/or make repeated eye contact with you
The person I’m talking to seems like somewhat of a stranger to me and is considerably more drunk and/or being more familiar than me (I might want to be nice, but need help managing someone who is a little out of control)
Say something to point out my agressor might be doing something socially unacceptable (Do you know this guy? Is she bothering you?) if:
I’m arguing with someone and they keep touching me even though I do not reciprocate their touches and/or even try to push them away
Someone (probably bigger than me) has me cornered, I’m avoiding eye contact with them, and I’m looking around (as if I’m looking for someone else i.e. to help me)
I make repeated eye contact with you (my way of asking for you to come over)
I’m sitting at a booth, trying to eat some food with my friends, and someone is looming over us and we’re alternating between telling him to go away and pretending to get on our phones, and we don’t want him to sit with us, but we’re kinda trapped in the booth, and this guy is shaking like he’s on drugs, and it’s 3am seriously party time is over…. (this actually happened)
This is a tricky topic for me, because while I’m an independent woman and I resent being treated like I need to be rescued, there are times when I could use some social help. Smoking patios can be rather narrow in this town, and I have been physically trapped in undesirable conversations. I may be able to leave the conversation, but don’t want to give up my chair or position because I’m doing my best not to be defeated or there are just not enough damn chairs. Or, more often, the agressor is a mutual friend.
I don’t know why more women don’t try to come to my rescue. I suppose we just aren’t given the scripts to “be the hero” and though we might want to reach out, it conflicts with the other scripts we’re taught to “be nice” or “avoid direct conflict” and we don’t really know what to do. I also suspect that like anyone else, women fear social judgement. They won’t risk interrupting a conversation because, let’s face it, how many times have you tried to help someone and they responded with rudeness?
I think we have to address that sometimes this rudeness is warranted or at least understandable — that by coming to someone’s aid you are essentially identifying that person as “in need.” Someone who is “in need” can be seen as inferior, weak, or defenseless. Because that person you tried to rescue has been spending the last 5 minutes to an hour defending herself from an aggressor, she may be in the type of mindset such that she refuses help in order to continue to look strong. Your interruption may actually be beneficial, but you may get no reward other than seeing an intense situation get derailed. Of course, you in no way deserve a reward for trying to help someone.
Or, you might be trying to help someone who really didn’t need your help. Hence needing to break down when it’s appropriate to intervene.
Then, I think, we have to be more willing to accept and acknowledge help. I sat on a chair in a really packed PB party: the attendees were a mixture of fraternity-types and redditors. Some smashed random came up to us and asked if we were playing beer pong. He tried to put his arms around us. My friend felt confrontational, possibly because beer pong got shut down awhile ago, duh, and this was our second strained interaction with him that night. So she told him, “Yeah, we’re playing beer pong right now.” When he asked where our cups and balls were, I indicated the latter were in my lap and grabbed my crotch.
He asked a slew of confusing questions after that. A woman interrupted, “Hey, you girls alright?” and I didn’t really understand she was helping us. It was the first time anything like that had happened to me. Even though I was probably doing ok — what with my fancy word play and getting the dude to say he would enjoy touching my testicles, if I had them — he was becoming increasingly obnoxious. “Wait,” I turned to the gal, “Thank you for reaching out to us. I wish more women would stick up for each other like you just did for us.”
So, yeah, the moral of the story is that if I’ve resorted to discussing gonads with a guy, I probably could use your assistance.
Dayglow San Diego pissed off about 3,000* people last year who couldn’t get down to the over-packed floor, so I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised when it got re-branded as “Life in Color” this year with noticeably restricted ticket sales. I didn’t comprehend this at first. I walked in past a dude shouting “is anyone selling tickets,” I didn’t wait in line, and I walked in to what felt like a very empty San Diego Sports Arena Valley View Casino Center. I thought to myself, where is everyone?
I think they did right. Security felt relaxed throughout the night. I didn’t really get patted down; a tired-looking woman whisked her hands on my sides while avoiding eye contact. So much for the sticks of Stride I hid in my crotch (wasn’t sure if they’d be confiscating gum and I really wanted to have it, don’t judge me)… I heard about 30 people bum-rushed the event fences, so for awhile they checked tickets in and out of the smoking patio. Later, I helpfully asked a zoned-out yellow-shirter if he’d be checking my ticket. He laughed, said “yah” before ushering me through the door without even a glance. Ok, saucer-eyes, I guess not.
Or, maybe, you know, security didn’t spend a lot of time patting me down because I didn’t wear very much clothing. Picture stolen from Mel Marcelo, who photographs like 90% of the event pictures in this town.
Later I jumped up on my lesbro’s shoulders for a better view of the stage because I felt like being TALL. I made eye-contact with one of the guards. ‘Want me to get down?’ I mouthed. He shrugged and let me stay. Kids sat all over the floor, enjoying light shows and massage trains. At Beyond Wonderland last year they did not allow anything like this. It felt like being in a kindergarten where you’re allowed to eat the crayons. I got down from my perch and said, “I’m looking for people to adopt as my rave children.”
I enjoyed the relative emptiness of the venue. We saw the same faces, had space to burst around the halls, could find friends again we made an hour ago. A skinny, solo guy shook and jittered next to me. His eyes pointed in different directions. Overcome with empathy, I asked if he needed a hug, and squeezed him like I could make his pupils point forward again. Later I spotted him looking much happier, and much less cock-eyed.
Another picture by Mel Marcelo. I wasn’t too sure about my decision to wear braids until a girl ran up to me, touched them, and told me I looked “so cute, like an anime character.”
I had a major moment of skeptism when they unleashed the confetti. I hadn’t even made it down to the floor yet; I sat in the darkened stands at the far end. A cloud blasted into the paint smothered bodies below us. “Great,” Katelyn said, “Let’s make paper mache. Wow.” She insisted that it was paper, but the pieces fluttered like wings and shimmered like mylar. They floated upward (turns out it was the rising heat) and really did look like live butterflies. I imagined insect antennae and legs sticking to wet skin and grimaced. Yet the whole night all I saw was a single square of tissue paper stuck to Mel Marcelo’s clavicle — the only evidence that the thick sparkling swarm had ever existed.
Visit this article for photos of a similar confetti cloud effect @ a paint party in Dallas last year – it’s a good read too.
*Ok, rough estimate. I had a difficult time tracking down actual numbers. Google Fu is weak today. I blame hangover. When do I ever not blame stuff on my hangovers?