In my world

It's been a crazy week. Work has been super productive and I'm actually ahead on a few of my clients projects. Actually, I'm patting myself on the back as the paperwork and design is done on 3 homes that won't be turned over to the buyers until April 2006. It's a good feeling to stamp a file "completely" and file it away for several months.

T & I went to a wonderful Halloween party on Friday night. It wasn't a costume party (thank God) but the hosts went all out on the decor, theme, food & libations. Words cannot describe how much effort they put into this party. It was like something from Southern Living magazine. There was a Sushi bar, every kind of Hors' Dourves imaginable, plenty of cocktails, and countless Halloween displays from an entire animated village to a life sized skeleton doing the back stroke in the pool. We had a blast.

Last night we carved the pumpkins with CJ & her daughter. If I can get T to take a pic I'll post it. The one I created has 3 faces: perplexed, pissed off, and an "I need a drink" face. Pretty cool if I do say so myself.

Keeping with the Halloween spirit I'm going to see Saw II with CJ and and her other daughter. T is a big ole scaredy cat when it comes to horror flicks so I'm guessing he'll pass. I'm not expecting academy award performances or directing from Saw II but if it's anything like the first one it will be pretty f-ing intense. Can't wait!

So, we got the call early in the week that the in-laws were coming down for a visit the first week in November. I love T's parents and while they are very eccentric they easy to keep entertained. The last time they were down our subdivision had no infrastructure and out house was just a vision. Now it's a real community that we're very fortunate to be a part of. T's parents are a tad bit eccentric as I mentioned and this time they've booked a hotel as opposed to staying with us. It certainly doesn't offend me that they're staying here as I'm wont to stay in a hotel when I visit someone as well. There is just something weird about sleeping in a strange home. And then there's the hotel sex! Perhaps that's why Dad & G booked themselves a room -- to get their freak on. (T will be mortified when he reads this. Sorry babe)

Tonight we're taking my mom out to an early dinner. She was planning on cooking but dinner at her house is a big, drawn out ordeal. I've asked her to hook it up later in the week and being the best mom ever she agreed.

Now that I've bored my readers to death I'm going to hit the shower and start thinking about work. Maybe I'll post something really scandalous from the office today ;-)

I ain't taking this one for the team....

Seen at a recent anti-war rally:



What a fun morning

I am totally into this whole Halloween Phantom thing! I went and got my surprises for my 3 people. For the folks across the street (with THE most adorable little girl ever) I got a teddy bear dressed in a sweet witches outfit. For a widow friend up the street and a newlywed couple I got these scarecrow things that you stick in plants. Tacky I know but oh so fun. Part of the deal is that you have to post a letter on your front door stating that you were picked already and there are already a couple dozen homes tagged. I love it! While out driving and playing phantom I noticed all the cool Halloween decorations up. It makes me feel like a kid myself seeing all of the pumpkins..ghosts..etc... on all the homes. T & I are supposed to be carving pumpkins with CJ (my spray tan girl) and her 14 y.o. daughter this week. And it actually FEELS like Halloween.

I know...I'm rambling about all this but it just feels so right.

Feels like..Smells like..Must be...FALL

Twas a nice surprise to wake up to cool weather this morning. Even the drizzle of rain (and two little dogs that refuse to go outside for a morning tee-tee) can't stop the wonderful feeling that is in the air today. It actually seems as if this may be the end of summer. Tonight is supposed to be 37! Do I see myself sitting in front of a nice fire this evening? I do believe so.

So I took my pissy self out to a movie yesterday. If you haven't seen A History of Violence yet then hit it quick. The plot and acting were above average and Viggo Mortensen was looking all kinda good. As an unexpected bonus there were two scenes which were H-O-T.

I'm working by myself today and looking forward to it. With the rain it should be relatively quiet and I'll have the chance to catch up on my client files without distraction. And....I'll be able to watch my "stories" (Y&R and B&B) without distraction. Oh yeah, I can actually watch my soaps at work. I love my job.

This morning there was a surprise on the front porch and this time it wasn't another attack on poor Miss Hibiscus. There was a small pumpkin-flashlight thingie (which didn't work but that's beside the point) filled with M&M's and a letter from our "Neighborhood Phantom" asking us to spread the cheer and leave treats & a copy of the letter on 3 other neighbors front porches. While this is probably the most soccer-mom thing I've ever heard of I love it and plan on doing it myself. T had this to say about it, "So we're supposed to buy 3 broken Halloween flashlights to give away?" -- I do believe that's the plan, honey.

I'm outta here folks. I'm off to Target to buy 3 surprises for my neighbors.


The Bored Middle-Ager & The Restless

During the process of and the act or re-reading this post I've made a conscious effort not to revise or edit. Hell, I'm not even going to run a spell check because that will give me opportunity to change my lines and thoughts. I'm using this post in hopes of learning, growing and understanding "me" today.

My life has become a soap opera sans the drama, romance, intrigue and excitement. I feel like I'm starring in a show about nothing. I've been prone to bouts of boredom and even depression since I was 15 but this feels different. I don't think that depression is rearing it's ugly head again because the symptoms just aren't there. And trust me when I say that I recognize the symptoms. After more years than I care to remember of dealing with on-off again anxiety disorder and clinical depression I know what it feels like and this ain't it. If it were then I would know what to do to get back on track. No, this is like I said earlier, I really feel like I'm the lead character in the most boring show to hit the airways.

What I'm going through has nothing to do with my relationship with T. He remains the most wonderful influence in my life and nothings changed in regards to him. My work remains consistently profitable and enjoyable. I still love what I do and take pleasure in doing the best job I can do. My new home continues to nurture, protect, and embrace me. No one in my family is ill or going through anything unusual. Financially, I'm not hurting. In fact I've got money in savings, retirement, checking, wallet, and laying around in drawers at my disposal. In black & white everything seems pretty damn perfect in my life. So what gives with this "new role" all of a sudden that's taking my inner self and turning me into a 2nd rate actor in a 3rd rate show that has become my life? Mid-life crisis perhaps?

I know that I need to be doing something but not sure what. I feel like I'm constantly waiting for something to happen....for someone to hand me a cue card and tell me that "I'm on". But that director-someone seems to be taking as much time handing me the script to my next scene as I seem to be taking in doing something...anything in changing this funk.

I'm bored. I can't seem to shake the fact that there is very little that I want to explore.

I am procrastinating. When I should be doing something...anything I just feel like waiting.

I've become one dimensional. The layers of "me" are peeled down to the very plain shell.

I feel anxious. Not like panicky-anxious but a bored anxious. A simmering stew of nothing that when it eventually boils over won't even leave a stain.

I want to do something outside of this current role but I don't want to do anything that will jeopardize my status with this role. I want to take chances and expand my character in this boring show I'm in but I don't. Perhaps because when I was younger I took too many chances and made reckless decisions. I'm smart enough to not make the same mistakes twice but I've become so "cast" in this role that's my life that I'm unable to make changes at all. I'm also too smart not to jeopardize my relationships and livelihood. Thus the dilemma at hand.

I feel somewhat energized after writing all of this down. I feel like I've made notes for a new plot to my character that I'm eventually going to hand over to the director and demand be written into my show. What I also feel like is that I see my mid-life crisis coming and I want to be ready for it when it hits.

FYI: The theme song for my incredibly boring soap opera is the utterly boring:

In Some Small Way (by the incredibly boring Celine Dionn). (Blaghhhhh)


You just have to love this

Rabid bitch and mouthpiece of the GOP, Anne Coulter, darkened the ground of my city last night. How anyone with a shred of common sense could actually find credibility in this vile creature is beyond me. Given the moral fiber of those for whom she writes I really shouldn't be surprised. Anyway, a friend forwarded this bit of satire to me and being a connoisseur of dark humor I loved it. Strap-on Veterans for Truth: A tribute to Anne Coulter.

What goes up always comes down

In the past few weeks I've been aggressively setting into motion a plan for retirement. I've been adding to meet my 2005 IRA contribution, studying up on and purchasing mutual funds, and playing a bit on the stock market. What I've concluded is that this is really fun. Who'd have ever thought that the once party-boy who lived to "make the entrance" at the bars has now traded in all his drink cards for the madness of investing. There's something quite addictive to watching the market in live stream. Every few seconds there are thousands of people buying and selling all around the world. Prices go up and down as frequently as I take in and let out breaths and it's just so fascinating to me.

Medical & pharmaceutical companies seem to be the safest and most profitable investments in the long run. Face it, the need for anything surrounding medicine & healing will always be there. As our bodies wear down there will always be companies scurrying to invent, market and sell us something to make us all better.

Infrastructure comes in second as far as a secure investment for me. No matter the condition of the current and future economy there will always be the need for building & maintaining our roads and utilities.

The ultimate goal is to retire in 10-15 years. I'd like to keep the house we're in (which will be paid off in 7-10 years) and in the meantime find a small place in a yet undiscovered lake community (yeah right) with a much cooler climate. Florida with it's hurricanes and humidity is getting old fast. The summers seem to get longer and hotter. I love the community we live in and have made some lifelong friends so leaving here for good doesn't seem like the long term plan. But I want the option available just in case. Right now the area I live in is steadfast liberal and quite Democratic in nature. But that could change. I can safely say that I will not live in a Republican dominated area. That said if the little blue spec in Florida's sea of red ever disappears I am so out of here.

I guess this surge of planning for the future has something to do with my recently turning 40. My worst fear is to be an old gay man trapped in a Republican community that despises me and no funds to get me out of here. I absolutely refuse to grow old and live in fear or misery. It's just not going to happen.


By (somewhat) popular demand

Greek Chicken & Rice

2 lb. boneless & skinless chicken breasts cut into palm size sections
Coat with and marinate 1 cup dry white wine, a little sea salt, quality olive oil, fresh cracked pepper, and Greek Spice for about 2 hours

In a medium, heavy sauce pan combine:

1 can low-fat Cream of chicken soup
1 cup low-fat sour cream
1 can chicken broth
1 cup dry white wine
2-3 tablespoons crushed garlic
1 sliced red pepper
1 small can pitted black olives drained
4-5 stalks green onions chopped
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 teaspoon Greek seasoning
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Fresh cracked pepper to taste
Sea salt to taste
2 tablespoon butter or margarine

Just mix all this together and let simmer on low for an hour or so to thicken.

You can bake the chicken or grill it. I grilled it.

In a large, heavy fryer or deep pan boil 4 cups water with butter or margarine
and add then 4 cups instant white rice. (Brown could be used too I suppose) Remove from heat and let set 5-6 minutes.

Lay the chicken over the bed of rice in pan and then cover with about 1/2 of the sauce. Top with fresh parsley if you want to look fancy :-) I prefer more sauce so the extra sauce can be used as desired. Makes about 8 large servings.

Along with this main dish I served:

Fresh green beans steamed and then topped with a little melted butter and drizzled with Greek Salad dressing. It gave the fresh beans a lovely sweet flavor. ( I plan to try fresh steamed asparagus next time.)

Red potatoes baked in olive oil and Herbs of Provence spices. (my T made these and they were awesome)

Fresh (bakery) sour dough bread with olive oil & spice for dipping.

Bon Appetite!

The meal was great if I did make it myself.

Time for a quickie

The past few weeks have been crazy. The trip to Atlanta cut into my blog time as has work and even some play. Over the weekend I experienced three new things that I'll quickly hit on.

1) I played in a golf tournament for the first time. I've hit a few balls many years ago but never played 18 holes (and no we didn't complete all 18) and found it was a lot more fun than I expected. I'll be buying some decent clubs and taking lessons in the weeks to come.

2) I went to my first Bar Mitzvah. Wow! What a treat. So much food, laughs, and the beauty of the service itself was touching. It really got me thinking about my own spirituality and how deep inside I realize it's time for me to look past my disdain for organized religion and look for a church that I can tolerate. I miss the sanctity of a religious service and the peace in myself as I connect with the higher being.

3) I made a FABULOUS Greek chicken dish that I'll share the recipe to later. It was a true hit.

It's been a hectic time and I've had some fun but I'm ready to get into a routine again. Will post more later this morning as time permits.



You can't go back home

T & I survived the trip to Atlanta. It's really funny but for a city that I was born, raised and spent most of my adult life in I never felt a connection to the city. The traffic was a horrible as I remembered, the over-crowding was the same and for the most part it is still a very dirty city.
Sure there are plenty of new developments and urban renewal is flourishing but there is a trail of abandoned areas for every "in place" created. It was nice seeing my friends and the family that I cared to see but it was ever so good to come back to my real home.

We stayed at the Waverly Hotel at the Galleria which was quite nice. The location was as good as you can get as far as being by the interstate(s) and in an area that is still relatively nice so that made the trip a lot easier to deal with. I've officially made the obligatory 10 year visit and I'm glad it's over.

So when we get back there is some D-R-A-M-A going on in the office. We have a meeting at 4:30 today and who knows what the hell's gonna come from it. The only thing I worry about is being able to keep my mouth shut if blame starts being cast for something that I or my team had no part in. I am not one to sit back and quietly watch judgement being cast when it's not due. Should be an interesting meeting none the less.

Every time we go away and board the dogs our older one, the Chow, comes back home with a stomach bug. Poop....more poop...and more poop. Add to this he is a stuborn old dog and refuses to take medication without a fight so yesterday was not a good "parenting" day for T. He somehow took charge of poop control and medications so he was not a happy camper by days end. I'll make it up to him somehow.


Enlarging your world Mad World

Mad World - Gary Jules

All around me are familiar faces
Worn out places
Worn out faces
Bright and early for the daily races
Going no where
Going no where

Their tears are filling up their glasses
No expression
No expression

Hide my head
I wanna drown my sorrow
No tomorrow
No tomorrow

And I find it kind of funny
I find it kind of sad
The dreams in which I’m dying are the best I’ve ever had
I find it hard to tell you
I find it hard to take

When people run in circles it's a very very
Mad world
Mad world

Children waiting for the day they feel good
Happy birthday
Happy birthday
And I feel the way that every child should
Sit and listen
Sit and listen

Went to school and I was very nervous
No one knew me
No one knew me
Hello teacher tell me what’s my lesson
Look right through me
Look right through me

And I find it kind of funny
I find it kind of sad
The dreams in which I’m dying are the best I’ve ever had
I find it hard to tell you
I find it hard to take

When people run in circles its a very very
Mad world
Mad world

Enlarging your world Mad world