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January 31, 2006

hot dinner date

Last night I had a dinner date with Miss InShaw at a new local U Street joint called Creme (1322 U St). I was tempted to go check it out after Durban Bud reported being called to check in with the dress code and remove his ballcap. I saw no one with a ballcap there and didn't try to wear one myself and test their standards, despite threatening to. Yeah, I wimped out, I know.

While the presentation was good I think the atmosphere of the place didn't deserve the pretention of a ballcap-free dress code. But I suppose with the nigh-unaffordable units across the street they can do what they like, and this ain't U-VA. Like a lot of new restaurants in the city, the portions were small (albeit healthy), but expensive. I got an $8 'glass' of red wine which constituted less than a cup of liquid. I summarily got wasted and almost projected the word "PRETENTIOUS" loudly when the music died down at an inopportune time. Miss InShaw did not expect her sausage to be so spicy and almost blew her eyes out on the first bite. I sampled her sausage and agreed, it was rather robust.

At least they jumped the shark ahead of time and jacked the prices right upon opening, unlike my formerly favorite eatery St. Ex which changed radically after becoming a Jenna Bush/Hill Hipster hangout. The menu options dropped and the prices went up, and I will not wait in line for a seat by the door. Here's to more reasonable and healthy eating options in the developing U Street corridor, which undoubtedly will last longer than the flavor-of-the-day style of ephemeral restaurants that are here today and gone tomorrow. While I loves my chili dog at the Ben's Chili Bowl institution once in a while, heartburn is only an option once or twice a year.

I love my straight coworkers at the university. It's nice when they're more liberal than you are and have to remind you of PC code violations. After mentioning the good service and occasional items bought through L.L. Bean, they retracted in horror and told me, "You can't shop there, they are HOMOPHOBIC!!!" and that they are apparently in cahoots with Coors and other similar businesses. I didn't know about that.

After reporting the weekend cocktail report to them over lunch I had to explain what a 'Cosmo' was, and that they are rather strong, noting that The Gay demand their drinks to be potent. When spending so much time together in drinking establishments, we are there for business and expect strong drink to get the party goin. Just mind your elbow space, and sip liberally before returning to your posse.

Posted by jimbo at 2:33 PM | Comments (8)

January 30, 2006

Yappy New Year!

Welcome to the year of the fire dog.

I was born in the year of the metal dog (Feb 6, 1970 to Jan 26, 1971). As all my various horoscopes, chart readings, zodiac and Myers-Briggs tests indicate, I am loyal, a good leader, keeps secrets for friends, hard-headed, blah blah blah. They are all the same and remarkably accurate for me.

The Beaverhausen family has a new dog named 'Saffy'. But, since it's the year of the fire dog they shoulda named it 'Safire'. Is it named after the sagacious daughter from 'AbFab'? Does that make John and Jamie more like Edie and Patsy? The answer is too obvious.

Posted by jimbo at 11:58 AM | Comments (8)

January 29, 2006

keepin' it real on the borderlands

Got my first round of schoolwork done online yesterday, as the spring semester has begun with two classes, Marketing Management and Organizational Communication. The classes are all starting to blend together, as their content all seems to be very interrelated.

Then it was out to Halo guilt-free and ready for a few cocktails more with Birthday Boy and Darth Jersey. When Darth Jersey admitted he used to play D&D back in tha day he had me when he mentioned the classic 1980 module adventure "Keep on the Borderlands." Swoon! I tried to assure him my gaming group is not like these guys.

While we were chatting Orkin Man (on banner photo at left) stopped by, and it's good to know he now lives in DC, so we should all be pest-free. However, not even the Orkin Man was able to repel a nearby Jennifer, who violated Rule #4 on Gay Bar Code of Etiquette for Straight Girls, making the mistake of parking right by us within elbow-bumping range, even though the lounge was not crowded. She quickly fled after a snarl from me about the virtues of respecting personal space was issued loudly over the din of the club music.

Posted by jimbo at 12:13 PM | Comments (2)

January 28, 2006

Sterling 90210, or, Annual State of the Breeders Address

Although last night's trip to Sterling, VA was arduous, like the last time I went out there to visit it proved to be good for some perspective. The Gays often become overly introspective at times because a lot of us are so focused on each other, dating, our gay friends, etc. that it may often seem like we are pretty messed up.

Not so. Comparitively, we are doing O.K. My closer friend in that group of predominantly straight folk who I visited usually unloads a year's worth of drama about the gang, and we are no worse for wear.

Case study: ever meet a gay person who cannot stay single for long? One member of the straight Sterling posse is the same way, going so far as to use his honeymoon pictures from the previous marriage on his Match.com profile not two weeks after his latest divorce. Classy.

The irony of all this is that Virginia lawmakers and legislature are in agreement that The Gays are the reason for infidelity and the fragility of marriage for straight people. Just a small sampling of that population tells me that they need no help from us on undermining their own marriages. The hypocricy and sheer wastefulness of this lawmaking effort just steams me up...if they want to help the institution of marriage surely there are ways to aid those straight marriages in peril, rather than to use a minority group that wants to subscribe to the madness of marriage as a scapegoat. Please, Virginia, look within, rather than without for someone to blame for your problems.

Posted by jimbo at 10:42 AM

January 27, 2006

da UPers

Last night I went out to celebrate with a birthday boy and his evil Sith master Darth Jersey at the Green Lantern Shirtless Men Drink Free night. There was actually a hot crowd there for a change. Now, I'm from the north, and then there's North, and birthday boy is from the frikkin' Upper Peninsula of Michigan. For those of you who need a geography refresher course, there is the lower peninsula where you can find Detroit, and then there's the upper peninsula that sticks off the northern part of Wisconsin into Lake Superior. No one lives there and it's cold as hell, and what people you do find there are depression-prone folk of Finnish descent. But Birthday Boy was pretty perky for a UPer (you-per). Darth Jersey was quite the hottie too, I must add.

Tonight I am going to Sterling, Virgina via Metrorail. After work I will be going from College Park on the Green Line to the Orange Line, then all the frackin' hell out to Vienna, where I will be picked up then driven to the party. I only do this once a year, and as I recall last year I believe I made a vow to never do that again. But my memory sucks and I forget my vows. Days like this suck when you don't have a car. I have my passport and bulletproof vest ready.

I'll be doing this on Sunday with the D&D gang. It's like the video link, but there's like 6 of us.

Posted by jimbo at 11:24 AM | Comments (5)

January 25, 2006

please don't feed the birds, rats, etc.

While I consider myself a naturalist, I am not impressed by my wildlife photography skills. I can't even take a picture of a common D.C. rat in daylight. In the blurry photo collage below are pictures I took of a bold trio of common brown rats (Rattus norvegicus) seen today going for bread crumbs just outside the DuPont Circle Metrorail Station, Q Street exit:
Rattus norvegicus - the Norway Rat
Thier bold diurnal behavior is a good illustration of why it isn't good to feed pigeons or sparrows (house finches, actually) in any city. For one thing, the more you feed pigeons, the more they shit on your car. Also, the pigeons will survive without your handouts - trust me. Third, what the birds don't eat will be eaten by rats, then the rat population soars. Don't feed birds, and you won't feed rats. Also, keep your garbage can lids tight and secure...a rat can easily jump up into them for food.

My host family in Peace Corps had a pet white rat named Fedya. Fedya lived in the kitchen and lived his life on the seat of a chair, the towel on the cusion changed daily. Fedya lived a rich life, being fed kitchen scraps by my two young host sisters, who adored him and took him out into the living area to play all the time. But rats live an average of 18 months, 3 years max, and Fedya died of old age while I was there. The girls were very sad and cried for days. Later they got a puppy they named 'Garlic' in English, because they liked the sound of the word.

I took the rat pictures coming back from the Washington Auto Show, where a group of our students were representing with a vehicle they made and race themselves. Pretty impressive group of students. I looked around and realized I'm not really a car person. I was more impressed by the flashy displays and how they were built than the cars themselves. I won't post pictures of cars becasue they weren't that interesting to me. However, I'd love to have this little remote control gun unit at home:
mobile gun
It only went up to my waist, designed to shoot and travel by remote control. Hook up a Hoover vacuum attachment and I'm set. Security and tidiness in one little gadget!

Posted by jimbo at 5:15 PM | Comments (7)

January 23, 2006

I am 'Pog'

Jimbo would totally pogasm on Hunka-Dunan Sheik's beardGlennalicious mentions the word pogonophiles in a recent entry. Pogonophiles are those who find an interest in beards. I guess I have a severe case of pogonophilism, as does runner up Otterdoc as well.

Then Jeff from God of Biscuits (the original) says that the 'Bear' term is soo 2005 (It's really soo 2002, actually.) and we need to differentiate those that simply like beards, but are not roly-poly or feel compelled to wear flannel and ballcaps. As I wear product and am relatively fit but still love my facial fur and don't own faux workman's boots, I will choose to use Jeff's contraction of the word "pogonophile" into simply "pog."

I am "Pog." No, not one of those stupid trading flipper dingies from like a decade ago either.

Of course this subculture is going to fragment into a million more specific areas, with accompanying names, as we often do. Jeff wonders what an "iPog" would be, to which I answer:

Well, an iPog would be a bearded one who is plugged into the latest tech, of course. Bob Mould is an iPog, for example.

If we must (and someone will), here are some more Pogisms. Feel free to submit more:

Pogger: Someone who tops bearded guys.
Poggee: Someone who bottoms to bearded guys.
Autopogonification: getting off on your own beard.
Pseudopogonophile: He who only grew a beard when/because it was hip.
Andropogynes: Post-op transsexuals with facial hair.
Pogasm: Shooting a load on someone's beard
(My favorite - I made it up, credit goes to me for that one.)

Posted by jimbo at 11:00 PM | Comments (22)

January 22, 2006

Jimbo to Jeff Gannon: Please Go Do Drag

Casually sifting through the Opinion section of this week's Washington Blade looking for shirtless pictures of the publication's editor, I see another flathering frothy opinion piece by Jeff/James/Guckert/Gannon/Whatever featuring scintillating insights on gay culture like this:

In the gay ghettos of most major cities, revelers could grind the night away in a sea of shirtless, drugged-out narcissists presided over by an overabundance of drag queens and a smattering of porn stars who look like Tarzan but act like Jane.

Jeffrey, Jeffrey, Jeffrey. I shake my head ruefully in your direction. Where do I start with this statement and the cascade of even more presumptuous comments you make about "gay culture"? And how the hell can this crap you write get put in print? There are so many things wrong with the statements you wrote in that column it is clear that you have more issues than National Geographic. And no, I don't think you are "self loathing," as it's clear you really love yourself a lot. I guess the best way to help your emotionally retarded self is to channel my inner Rose Nylund again and tell you a story about when I was a student at St. Olaf. So sit down and get yourself comfortable...

I remember thinking like you once - when I was 20. I had just come out to family and friends and was still dealing with who I was and what I was going to do about it. While my memory rarely serves me, I do have a distinct recollection of standing in the downstairs bar of the Hotel Washington in Madison, Wisconsin, which has since burned down (I didn't do it). The bar in the basement was called 'Rods', and as I looked around at the cocktail and leather queens I almost projected my thoughts audibly:

"I'm not like these people."

Well, yes and no. Now that I'm 35 and old and crotchety, I don't think like that anymore. The "I'm not like these people" period is just one of the phases of coming out - a process which takes far longer than you think and has many more stages than just coming out to friends and family or to the general public as a prostitute. Some people, like you Jeff, get stuck at this phase. Like the dude in that one Star Trek movie who didn't come out of the transporter beam quite right, you're a mess right now.

Of course you are not like other people, you are a unique individual, Jeffrey. But then again you have similarities with other people too, and we all want to be part of a community - it comforts us to have a posse. Some of us buy heavily into a concept of what being gay is, while others, like you, keep to the outskirts like a hyena, moving in for a taste here and there as you describe in your recent piece. I see people like that all the time, always on the periphery, never joining in the fun, whether it be dancing, drinking or even simply talking. They seem very afraid that they will possibly sell out their soul or something?

Yes, some gay people and some circles of gay friends are on lots of drugs, narcissistic, into self-humiliating leather scenes, are drag queens, and all the things you say you saw on New Year's Eve. On that same night I was having a quiet dinner at Logan Tavern with my friends, none of whom are on drugs or are drag queens. But I have had evenings like you described, and gosh darnit I had a frikkin' blast doing it too.

It took me a while to figure out that being gay isn't so different than being straight - it's just more fabulous but with a small group of uptight religious crazy people screaming at you all the time. Each aspect of the "gay community" that you describe is a choice - like a smorgasbord or buffet table, you can take any part of it or leave it. Some of it is quite tasty, while other dishes leave a bad taste in your mouth. I'm not going to load up your plate for you, but I suggest you just buck up and get your plate and load up for a taste or two from the buffet line. I can promise it is tastier than the one over there, but first you have to try it.

No one is making anyone go to a gay bar three nights a week, subscribe to a Sir/boy lifestyle or to have several drag outfits. But I recommend everyone try it. None of these things will stick to you like a herpie sore forever - they are all interest-free commitments you can withdraw from at any time.

And you can come back to some aspects of your pre-coming out phase. Right around 2000 or so I was thinking, "Gee, I sure miss backpacking, birdwatching - and fishing too! I used to really enjoy doing that back in college, but I never do it anymore. I'd like to do that again once in a while." I realized that I had kind of dropped a lot of things I used to do in lieu of going out, partying and doing the gay scene, which was a lot of fun but was starting to get boring. I still do the gay stuff once in a while, but not in fifth gear like I used to. I find it to be hard work. And now I'm doing things once in a while that I remembered I used to like to do, and I enjoy doing them. I guess it's because I'm getting older, but I think it's also having realized that no one is making you do anything "gay", you aren't required to do any of this stuff, and I don't think there is really this horrid "gay community" that you disparage so badly, Jeffrey. There is a wide range of options for you to take part in and subscribe to, but some of them won't jive with you. But to say that all gay people act a certain way or do a narrow selection of things is pretty retarded. Plus, you really don't know what being a drag queen is like until you've tried. So get your ass down to the Goodwill and look for a cheap cocktail dress before the next Drag Race in October. I assure you it will be fun, but no one is stapling the dress to your body permanently, so relax. Some insight and perspective would do you good.

Posted by jimbo at 6:49 PM | Comments (14)

January 20, 2006

I can see clearly now the Sunbox is here

JimboBrite
I just acquired a small Sunbox, or "Happy Light" today from a friend. As you can see in the pic it is rather strong. I still have to use it as directed, as in bask in it for 20-40 minutes a day. I'll try it from home this weekend before bringing it into work where I'll need it more there. On the weekends or days off I usually get outside for a long walk or bike ride, which usually does the trick. DC winters are wet-cold and grey-skyed a lot, and have seasonally gotten me down worse every year. When I lived in Portland, Oregon I was working two jobs. After my day shift at Kinko's I would rush to my short-term night job at an athetic club where I would nap for 10 minutes in a low-level tanning booth, which did the trick to keep my spirits up in the Pacific Northwest gloom. I beleive because of it I was the most tan gay boy in the city at that time. I know regular cardio and better sleep patterns help, but it's often a challenge to get on the treadmill from the weight floor in the winter, and I'll admit City of Heroes keeps me up way later than I should be. But I'm workin' on trying to keep away the temporary blues, crankiness, hermit cloistering and sadness spells that hit me this time of year. Nothing I can do about the suspected genetic Scandinavian predisposition to depression in my family, but I hope my Happy Light helps a bit.

This week I heard a house finch and a song sparrow singing their spring songs. I think it's a bit premature, but it's a promising sign of spring.

I went and saw 'The Squid and the Whale' last night, and it was OK. Again, I don't think I'm a huge fan of real-life, smarty-pants non-fiction type movies. I just leave the theatre shrugging my shoulders. I'm more of a sci-fi/action movie fan.

Riding on the bus with Corky. I like his recent entry about the PDX public transport system, cookie dough, and gender nonspecific male behavior.

Posted by jimbo at 3:27 AM | Comments (6)

January 19, 2006

more weekend pictures

Here's a few more pics from the weekend taken by the most awesome photographer next to Todd Franson, Henry Linser of Metro Weekly. Here's smiley Tim, me and Christoff when the dance began:
Reaction.jpg

For all who have been asking, here's Dreamy Ron with a friend from San Fran:
DreamyReactionRon.jpg

There's a pic of my favorite sexy dancer of the evening (on right, but the guy on the left ain't bad either) there too on MetroWeekly's pictures from last weekend's events. His sinuous moves were hypnotizing me, and just lookit that smirk!

Posted by jimbo at 12:54 AM | Comments (2)

January 18, 2006

the 5 weird habits of jimbo

It's a good thing I'm generally blank on what to blog about this week, as I'm "working from home" as I had a dental appointment in DC this morning, and the haul back to work would have cut the day in half. So I will actually work today. Xena, Warrior Dental Hygenist, drew plenty of inadvertent blood while prodding my gums, but I feel like a happy grouper having been to the cleaner shrimp station at the coral reef at least.

From Homer's blog, a rare MeMe thingy from me:

Name five weird habits:

1). I love cleaning my ears with Q-Tips. If I don't get my ears probed with Q-Tips at least once a week I start to get cranky.

2). I have to start sleep with my head sandwiched between two pillows, back flat to the mattress. I don't know why.

3). I like to nap on the Metrorail ride home from work. Once boarding the train, I put my elbow on the window sill, chin in palm and will actually sleep. I have missed my stop on occasion, but more often arrive at U Street rested but dazed.

4). Breakfast is my biggest meal of the day. It's the reason why I get to work so late. I'm trying to switch over my toast and cereal to oatmeal, however.

5). I have to start my workout with a resounding crack of my back on the vertical abs crunch machine. Otherwise I feel like I haven't started right.

Most of these aren't that weird, but I told you I'm having a blogging block.

Posted by jimbo at 2:54 PM | Comments (9)

January 16, 2006

six million tons of fun

I hope everyone is mindful of today's holiday. A very, very short march just went by my house on Vermont Avenue, NW, accompanied by a single police car here in Chocolate City. But there were fewer than 60 people marching to commemorate Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Birthday, who was known to lead far larger gatherings. I hope the crowd doesn't get any smaller as the years roll on.

This afternoon I will be the Dungeon Master when the geek gang comes over for Dungeons and Dragons. This will be the only role-playing I will have done all weekend, despite the Mid-Atlantic Leather celebration having passed.

I got a lot of work done last week as the boss was not there to pester me about minutae that he thinks requires action at every juncture. However, trying to do desktop publishing while three screeching harridan government workers are out in the hallway avoiding work by discussing whether or not to go home early (please, just go home early) made for a tough Friday. So I was bundled up in my jammies and pillows Friday night to watch sci-fi Friday. The scruff episode of Stargate: Atlantis was pretty much full-on prime time porn to me, where Lt. Col. Shepphard basically walks into a scruff enhancement (time distortion) field from which he must be rescued. Battlestar Galactica was even better than expected, as I had predicted Cain would be slain, but guessed wrong as to how she would die.

Our rugby team did coat check at various venues over the weekend from which we got profit from the tips. I worked coat check at a cocktail event on Saturday night. At one point in the evening I saw an old trick whom I wanted to avoid, so I ducked into the aisles of black leather jackets, hiding between them. I found I could go deeper into the coats, so I did to ensure my concealment. Further in I went, until I noticed snow on the ground, and the smell of pine needles...finally the bundles of coats opened up into a snowy glade with a single lit gas light lamppost. In the distance I heard sleigh bells, and suddenly a sled pulled up, pulled by two slaves bound in leather. In the sled was a The Leather Queen Jason, who asked, "Would you like some Turkish Poppers?"

Side Note: I found an interesting blog about everything white: Absolutely White.

Anyway, Blowoff was a huge ton 'o fun, and it was good to see Circle in a Square come down from Philly, and Cynically Optimistic from NYC. Notably absent was JoeMyGod, who vowed to come down for the fun! An old (and I mean OLD) friend of mine made a surprise appearance, so it was good to hang out with the coven of hags again. I hear they had to pull the stake out of her heart so she could come out to Blowoff.

Photo caption contest entry.

Photo by Cynically Optimistic. Caption contest for above image.
My entry: "Jimbo! What part of 'FOOD FOOD' didn't you understand over there? I said I wanted a corndog!"

Coven of Hags

Another photo from Cynically Optimistic. Me with some longtime friends in DC.

On Sunday I went to the ever-popular lobby of the MAL event hotel to meet up with several old friends, shop around for goods and guys and generally hang out. I spotted SingleTails in the cigar tent and we chatted with some blog readers who said hello. Yes, you can say hello if you see me! I won't beat you up like Bjork would.

That night I met up with Tim to go out to the Reaction dance, where we ultimately danced with Dreamy Ron and his friend for a bit. It's nice to dance with Dreamy Ron as eventually really hot guys show up to dance with us. I also spotted Mr. Bartender and The Boy from DC Urban Family and their friends (all cute, especially Kevin), and shook it with them for a while too. The music was GREAT, spun by Chris Cox of Thunderpuss, who did a very fast remix of 'Mesmerised' my currently favorite workout track.

Posted by jimbo at 12:51 PM | Comments (9)

January 13, 2006

Blowoff this Saturday night

blowoff2006e.jpg
After a long wait, Blowoff is upstairs this Saturday night at the 9:30 Club. Much more space for people and interpretive dance! I'm looking forward to it.
beauty salon sign
Oh yeah, and it's Mid-Atlantic Leather Weekend too, which promises a very interesting mix for Saturday night's Blowoff. I may or may not go to Sunday night's Reaction dance. Last year I didn't have that much fun at MAL, so we shall see.

Pee Wee Herman: There's things about me you don't know, Dottie. Things you wouldn't understand. Things you couldn't understand. Things you shouldn't understand.
Dottie: I don't understand.
Pee Wee Herman: You don't want to get mixed up with a guy like me. I'm a loner, Dottie. A rebel.

Posted by jimbo at 1:48 PM | Comments (4)

January 12, 2006

dead horse, beaten

Last night the other gays in the village finally took me to see Brokeback Mountain, and I'll have to concede that it was better than The Dukes of Hazzard.

Seriously though, before I am burned at the stake by the gays with a pyre of damp Kleenex smouldering at my feet, I must get it out that while it was a well-told and sad tale of regret, it is unworthy of the overwhelming hype I've read on other blogs and in the press, both mainstream and gay. Calm down, people. It was good, but I'm not overwhelmed at the moment, and I don't think this film is going to send ripples of change in het society's perception of gay relationships. It's just a well-made film about regret, moreso than it is a 'gay film'. That's what Ang Lee does best. Even The Hulk was about regret. Whether it be from the green-skinned, ninjakind, Sigourney Weaver, or gays...regret is Ang Lee's thing and he's good at it.

Perhaps I'm underwhelmed because I left people like Ennis behind me when I made the choice to move to the city to open myself up to the possibilities of relationships with men. I feel bad for the characters, but I know many real guys like them who are satisfied with their life the way it is and are unwilling to change for a same-sex relationship. One guy I knew when I was first coming out is still married, but living separately and alone, still in the smallish city with occasional trips to bear weekends at the coasts to fulfill his gay sex needs. I am sure he will die single, which is no crime in itself but he never let himself a chance. The other I knew from Peace Corps, whom after service moved back next door to his parents, never to mess around with men again after his brief experimentation during training. Gay is just too much for some people to grapple with. The movie paints a very real picture of many who do not immerse themselves in a healthy relationship or into a gay community.

So perhaps the massive blow to many people's emotions from the film comes from never having encountered people like this before as I have. Urban queens made the hyperjump to the city and often completely avoided the shit that Jack and Ennis put themselves through, so find such troubles, well...troubling.

Or maybe I just like sci-fi films better. And I don't have a problem with straight actors playing gay characters. Duh, they're actors - acting like something else is what they do. I mean, we can't find enough robots to play Cylons, nor aliens to play aliens. So sometimes we're going to have to settle for straight actors playing gay people.

Posted by jimbo at 2:34 AM | Comments (19)

January 11, 2006

yet more vapid sci-fi lusting

Joe FlanniganI'm actually kinda crazed at work today, so no rabid, mouth-frothing rant today. SORRY!

So instead I will talk about scruff and chest hair patterns. Many blessings to my patron from Quinnipiac University who sends me this awesome hi-rez headshot of the hunky Joe Flannigan, who plays Lt. Col. John Sheppard on Stargate: Atlantis. Everyone repeat after me, with high voices: "He's so DREAMY! 'sigh!'" On this Friday's new episode of SG-Atlantis, entitled 'Epiphany', Sheppard sports a nearly-full beard, or well-advanced scruff, depending on how you look at it. Some chest fur teases too. Quinnipiac says the picture to the left is 'scruffy' but I consider it mere stubble. It's scruff if I can bite it with my teeth, as I would with Joe Flannigan's scruff in Friday's episode.

Joe is currently on my desktop both at home and at work. I used to have this huge, hi-res photo of Jamie Bamber on my desktop but the image looked kind of spooky...I kept feeling like Jamie Bamber was stalking me or something. It's really not a good feeling thinking Jamie Bamber is stalking you, even though it sounds like a good idea.

BAMBER TIME!As you may have guessed, I'm more of a face person. And scruff. And I can never stop looking at that little 'V' in a person's collar line (present on both pictures here) which may or may not give promise to the presence of chest fur. That's what I look at. When someone tells me, "Oh, that guy is sooo hung! Look at that bulge!" I'll have to admit I'm usually the last one to notice - I have been looking above the shoulders, not below.

Now Kyan Douglas on last night's episode of Queer Eye was downright scruffy, fyi. I'd link to something but the official Bravo TV website is fucked up at the moment. Some webmaster in NYC doesn't know what he/she's doing! Cross-browser compatibility, anyone? Oh wait, I promised not to rant today.

Gurl and I are developing a new chest hair rating system, somewhat based on my B.H.I. scale (Body Hair Index) . While B.H.I. rates how hairy a man is, my new chest hair scale will help gay men and women describe the chest hair patterns on a guy, which until now has been hard to relate to friends and family. I have yet to name the system, but will use the suit symbols on playing cards, that is the club ♣, spade ♠, diamond and heart ♥. Again, I'm a little busy today, but a full graphical depiction of my chest hair scaling system will be in place by this weekend.

Posted by jimbo at 1:30 PM | Comments (6)

January 10, 2006

Judge Jimbito: 'A Birdwatcher Has No Agenda'

...or, "No one expects the Ornithological Inquisition!"

American BitternRemember when I went birdwatching for a local annual census event in December, and spotted a fairly uncommon bird for the region? I got a strange phone call over the holiday break where the coordinator for our local birdwatching efforts had to inquire about our spotting of the American Bittern, the only one spotted in the region on that day. (Two years ago I spotted the first red-headed woodpecker in many years. Now I wonder if it was actually counted in the census.) He asked me about specific behaviors of the bird, coloration, and who was with me when I spotted it. I understand their trepidation in accepting our observation, as newbies to the hobby can become exciteable and jump to crazy conclusions.

However, this week I get an e-mail from the Supreme Council of Birdwatching in the region with a veritable inquisition, including the following questions:

The requested information would include:
Time -
Location -
Observer -
Observation Details (optics used, distance from bird, viewing conditions, photo?, etc) -
Past experience with the species -
References consulted (if any) -
Report based on notes or memory -
Details of plumage, shape, size, vocalization, habitat,etc. -

Is this an inquiry for a Supreme Court Nomination or am I just a birdwatcher who got lucky? So now I'm starting to get pissed off as it seems they are questioning my spotting and identification skills. While this is an amateur organization I'm soon going to have to point out that my birdwatching posse that day consisting of Bryan, Rickie, and myself have a high combined level of expertise. Rickie has field experience in bird identification, with Ph.D. level coursework in ecology, which requires identification skills. I have gone birding with Bryan before and respect his knowledge. I have held a bird identification book in hand since age 8, hold two applicable undergraduate degrees - Biology and Natural Resource Management - and as a park ranger in Alaska on a ferry boat route that went through the habitat of two rare species I had to be able to identify these birds (pelagic cormorant and a murrelet) for visitors who came to Alaska to specifically spot these creatures.

Don't know what a murrelet is, do ya? Yeah, that's right.

I have gone on a wild goose chase - and won. I have been on a snipe hunt - and have come close enough to the bird to hear it 'hiccup'. I have seen pink starlings, vermillion flycatchers, indigo buntings, black-legged stilts and emerald kingfishers. I don't keep a 'life list' as I percieve it as an acquisitional practice rather than recreational. But listen up bitches, if I had one it would wrap around yours - twice. Size matters, and in this case mine is huge.

I have seen mot-mots, hoopoes, lapwings, dippers, shearwaters, and toucanets. I have gone out to open seas just to see one species of albatross and paid my dues by puking my guts out on the journey from seasickness. I have worked with field biologists who only spoke Russian, yet we communicated freely in Latin, the taxonomic language. I have traveled out to the edge of the Siberian steppe just to see the westernmost population of pink flamingos in Central Asia. I had my binoculars and identification book ready when I crossed over an extention of the Himalaya mountains going on foot from Kazakstan to Kyrgizstan. I've been around the world and I have a good handle of what any bird east of the Mississippi River is, and when I see one that has an easily identifiable plumage and behavior, my expertise is in question?

DO NOT QUESTION ME ON THIS MATTER! You can critique my rugby skillz, tell me I can't sing, disrespect my cooking, correct my spelling and question my taste, but when it comes to birds, you had better keep your mouth shut. Although I sense a bit of local elitism, and perhaps ageism, for most of the inner circle of good 'ol boys and girls in the Supreme Council of Birdwatching tend to be an older bunch. How could a youngster like me possibly know anything about birds? Especially when my optics are not top-notch, that is in excess of $1000 or more in binocular snobbery.

One more inquiry from these people and I'm gonna pull out my birdwatching street cred. I got this same attitude when I tried to join up with the local trail hiking group. The thinking around here seems to be "How could anyone outside the Mid-Atlantic region have experience in __hiking/birdwatching/etc.__?" This comes from people who think the Appaliacians are "mountains" where you will never be more than 3 miles from a road.

Posted by jimbo at 10:30 AM | Comments (11)

January 9, 2006

no longer like one of you

Donald Sutherland is on to you
I survived my first weekend in several years without a cell phone. No siezures, no conniptions, no breakdowns aside from some minor issues meeting up with someone for a night out. But I had run out of energy by then so it didn't matter too much that attempts at planning sans cell had failed. Most of the issues have to do with getting my home phone number out to people who were not aware that I have one.

I noticed while going out of the house that being without a cell phone means that you can't be contacted, and you can't call anyone unless you find a pay phone. It's kind of liberating knowing no one knows where I am and no one can 'get' to me. My time is completely my own, with no external intrusions other than with real people real time.

While walking without a cell phone I found myself thinking more, not about any particular topic in general, but of many things that I think people don't allow themselves time for anymore. It makes me wonder if people will cease to let their minds simply wander anymore without the constant distraction of incoming digital information, and how their thought processes will develop because of it, or not. Allowing a train of thought to run its course before it is interrupted by a call or the need to call someone may somehow be important.

On the street I met another disconnected friend, that is, a person without a cell phone whom I hadn't seen in a long time, and we communicated verbally and with body language. Crazy talk, I know.

While I'm still the last gay in the village to not have seen that one movie, I did meet another friend on the street who was talking about it. We were not interrupted by incoming calls, so we had a complete contiguous exchange of ideas and conversation. He had the best quote I've heard yet, saying it was little more than a movie about "cowboys on the Down-Low," which was spot-on coming from a native of DC.

Somehow I managed to plan (without a cell phone, mind you) on meeting up with Gurl to go see The Ringer. It was fairly good, but actually turned out to be very much a chick flick rather than a 'tard-humor movie in bad taste, so I was kind of let down. Save it for Netflix, in my opinion. Seeing the movie, starring a rather dreamy Johnny Knoxville, reminded me of my biggest regret of 2005: paying money to see the cinematic interpretation of The Dukes of Hazzard, which featured an unforgiveable crime of putting fake scruff on Seann William Scott. Someone will pay for that.

Posted by jimbo at 9:49 AM | Comments (13)

January 7, 2006

this geek is impressed...again

Ohmigawd...I'm going to implode with excitement before next Friday...last night's episode of Battlestar Galactica (Ressurection Ship) gives promise to an awesome season indeed.

I know Admiral Cain's character is too two-dimensional to survive for long, and that Commander Adama is gonna TAKE HER DOWN! Don't mess with a Commander who's down with his crew, nor a President with breast cancer...they will fuck you up!

Just my theory...but if y'all ain't watching this show yet, recently rated as the best TV of 2005, you're missing out. All hotness aside, the entire cast is excellent, as is the writing, acting, and the intensity that is just killing me!

Posted by jimbo at 3:31 AM | Comments (5)

January 6, 2006

now I can be _really_ righteous about cell phones

Now that "real content" has been defined for blogs on Vividblurry, let me get back to my hysterical rants. I got rid of my cell phone today, so now I can be really righteous when I have to run over a meandering cell phone user on the sidewalk with my bike, tell someone on the shuttle bus to shut the fuck up, or see some lame-ass retard texting someone in a club.

Aside from the ability to ascend to total rigteousness, the bills had become too expensive. I got DSL to pay for so I can play City of Heroes ya know. Plus I got sick of Verizon calling me every week to "improve" my service (read: stick more add-ons to my payments). Sorry, cupcakes, you pushed me too hard and gave me a good enough reason to boot your ass. Now I will have to practice the long lost cultural practice of "planning" and "appointments" by e-mail or from home/work phones to meet up with friends instead of "Ohmigawd I'll just call you and meet you there." Crazy talk, I know.

Want to know what's gay today? Ohmigawd I like got Madonna's Confessions on a Dance Floor and it's like sooo awesome! Like Gurl bought it for me for Christmas and I like Jump, Push and I Like New York like those are like my favorite songs from the CD. I like think Jake Spears helped out on that last song, like "DUH!" he lives in New York and stuff! New York is sooo cool I just love going there.

And I'm FINALLY going to see Brokeback Mountain this Sunday!!! I like know I'm like the last gay in the village to see it and stuff, but I like had to see Kong first.

Posted by jimbo at 10:36 AM | Comments (8)

January 5, 2006

hypersensitive DC residents gleeful about impending smoke ban

I'm home and feeling congested and irritable today, so I write about the hopeful ban on cigarette smoke in restaurants and bars in The District. It's still up for a possible veto from the mayor, or override from Congress, which would be even more irritating than being sat next to a table of chain smokers in a bar. The ban is set to activate a year from now, so start your smoking cessation programs now if you can't handle not smoking in bars.

I for one cannot wait until DC catches up with New York, San Francisco and Spain. I'm fairly certain I'd go out more often, or at least I'd stay out longer anyway. I'm just becoming more and more intolerant of coming home smelling like smoke. The stuff even seeps into your skin, which totally grosses me out. While trying to breathe in smoky bars, my throat goes dry, my nose itches and congests, and if I'm wearing contacts, my eyes dry up and on some occasions contacts have popped out spontaneously when my tear ducts retreat from the smoke. While I'm not allergic, I do have a very good sense of smell. I know who you've been making out with, by the way - he uses Perry Ellis 360 brand cologne. While I'm on a rant, you Queens take it easy on the cologne - it's not to be bathed in, only lightly spritzed on your body. Spray, delay, away.

I've noticed as I glare balefully at smokers, most of the time they are not actually inhaling the stuff - the damn cigarettes just sit there and smoulder, comforting them in some way while making my eyes burn and my clothes stink. At least work harder at killing yourself - inhale more frequently and deeply to filter out that crap in your own lungs.

Smoking on beaches is also nasty - and I'm all for banning the practice there too. I want to smell the ocean, not someone smoking a quarter mile upwind. And the sand does not absorb your butts, so pick them up and take them with you. If you've ever worked at cleaning up outside a restaurant, you will find that smokers almost universally believe that their butts somehow disappear magically.

Other stupid smoking habits: huddling around the entrance of a building where the outside air is getting sucked through the same doors. All the smoke just goes right in anyway. Or the addict who cannot wait until he/she leaves the Metrorail terminal, lighting up as he/she ascends the escalator, exhaling that first satisfying gasp of toxin which blows back down into my face and into the train station.

Particulates from other forms of incendiaries are often larger and less irritable to the mucous membranes and other sensitive areas of your bodies. Cigar and wood smoke, for example, is less irritable to me than cigarette smoke. I'm guessing cigarette smoke may have tiny enough smoke particles that happen to irritate the hell out of me. As for smoke-specific establishments like cigar and hookah bars, let them keep smoking there, where smokers will be banished just as smoke-irritable folk like me were once exiled to smoke-free establishments.

Back in college I had a co-op as a park ranger in the Quad Cities area, where I was surprised to find that the fairly large metropolitan area consisting of Davenport and Bettendorf in Iowa and Moline/East Moline and Rock Island in Illinois, and surrounding communities still allowed leaf burning within city limits. The practice was particularly hard on asthmatics, who had built a somewhat powerful health advocacy group to ban the practice. Some days the entire region had a visible haze at street level. I see they are still working to fight for a smoke-free city in Moline, but some stalwart patriots think it's just weaklings whining:

"I'm aware people have health problems, but they're the minority. I thought the government should be for the majority of the people," argues Don Madson.

Yes, let the asthmatics, hypersensitive, and other infirm suffer, and keep on burnin'.

Posted by jimbo at 12:37 PM | Comments (10)

January 3, 2006

superstud sci-fi friday

This big 'ol geek is quaking in his boots for Superstud Sci-Fi Friday, January 6:







Ben Browder of Farscape and Stargate SG-1 Joe Flanigan of Stargate: Atlantis Jamie Bamber of Battlestar Galactica

Will the Ori plague wipe out humanity? For how long will Daniel Jackson be allowed to go unshaven? Will Sheppard ever escape the Wraith hive or will he be forced to go unshaven for weeks on end? For how long will Helo be bound in handcuffs? Will Apollo ever put his shirt back on? All these questions and more buzz in my head like a nest of Wraith cruisers....

And then in the theatres there's the sequel to Underworld (Evolution) featuring fabu Kate Beckinsdale and hot-tay Scott Speedman, which promises to be cheesy but I don't care. Werewolf/vampire hybrids are cool. And then some half-vampire action with BloodRayne, based on a video game I've never played. And I still haven't even seen Harry Potter yet.

Posted by jimbo at 3:46 PM | Comments (10)

January 2, 2006

it's over

'whew!' That time of year is over, and I'm much relieved, but getting up for work tomorrow is going to be painful as I've nearly changed over to full nocturnal mode from the full week off. Before the vacation I wondered what I was going to do with myself, but looking back I wonder what I did with my time. Oh well, I slept a lot and got some chores done, and the gingerbread cookies turned out all right, with sprinkles on top.

Had fun again with the D&D gang last night, then off to Taint for a bit and met up with Markie and Sean, but the smoke was getting to me so I took off. But before I did I had to poke Markie and Sean since I see them mostly via City of Heroes. They are in fact real people! Today I went to the Hirshhorn Museum with an excellent art guide and generally nice and woofy character in general and got to see Ann Hamilton's palimpsest, featuring live snails eating cabbage. We had to put on booties to enter the room-sized exhibit for the floor was coated with beeswax (sculptors seem to love beeswax for some reason) which in turn coated a layer of tiny slips of paper with stories on them. I guess the cabbages represented your brain, with the snails eating away at your memory, just as the slips of paper with memories on them coating the walls, yellowing with age, also decay and crumble away.

As my memories do...here's a brief link orgy to the fading images of 2005...from most recent to most distant: bird census, hip-hop jimbo, Kris Kringle Jimbo, shameless product promotion jimbo, hot fisheries biologist, Aquaman, Miss Adams Morgan Jimbo, Harper's Ferry Jimbo, Rehoboth Beach Jimbo, GIANT OCTOPUS, proper stretch technique jimbo, Jimbo & Petunia, crab feasting jimbo, luau!, Gracious W.Y.S.I.W.Y.G. Host, City of Heroes, Vancouver, B.C., Bob rocks the Capitol, muscle relaxant jimbo, hot marine biologist, Muppets on Crack, more hot fisheries biologists, Duran Fuckin' Duran, baby, Blowoff - Upstairs! Now With Clickboo's Armpit!, much snowboarding was done, Tucson, Arizona, Matthew Foxxy-Fox (simply because he's hot).

Posted by jimbo at 7:27 PM | Comments (3)