Monthly Archives: October 2006

October 30, 2006

Okay, I am just now catching up on this season’s episodes of Grey’s Anatomy, and I have one thing to say:

If Chris O’Donnell and Patrick Dempsey both wanted to spend their time having sex with me, I know exactly what I’d do.

E.S. would be free to join the three of us if he wanted to, but really I wouldn’t care one way or the other.

Posted on by Joel Derfner | 11 Comments

October 27, 2006

Swish: My Quest to Become the Gayest Person Ever and What Ended Up Happening InsteadAvailable Now!

Click here to read reviews of Swish.

A few years ago I wrote a book called Gay Haiku. Writing a book had never been a particular goal of mine, except for two weeks during the eighth grade, after I read Truman Capote’s Other Voices, Other Rooms; my resulting desire to be an author lasted until I finished Breakfast at Tiffany’s, at which point I realized it would be much more interesting to be a prostitute. But in 2003, as part of a fund-raiser for a theater company some friends of mine and I were starting, I wrote 49 haiku about all the bad dates I’d been going on and all the bad sex I’d been having since my boyfriend and I broke up. The haiku turned out well, so I wrote 20 more and sent the collection to an agent as a manuscript called 69 Gay Haiku. She liked it and sent it to a publisher; he also liked it, but he said 69 haiku wasn’t enough and 110 seemed like a more appropriate number. I was upset, not because the prospect of writing more haiku was so horrible, but because 69 Gay Haiku was the only decent title I had ever come up with for anything and I was loath to discard it. I suggested the title 69 Gay Haiku Plus 41 More but the reception with which this idea met was singularly unenthusiastic.

When the book appeared on shelves, however, I stopped being upset about the title because all of a sudden I got to tell people things like, “Monday’s no good for me, I’m having lunch with my publicist.” (The only thing I’ve ever said more glamorous than this was, “Yes, I can meet you at your apartment for anonymous sex tomorrow morning, unless I have to go to Prague.”) The fact that my publicist and I spent the entire lunch in question gushing about how vigorously we wanted to rip Chris Meloni’s clothing off didn’t matter in the least; what was important was that I could use her in a sentence. This was by far the best thing about becoming a published author.

The worst thing about becoming a published author was that, inexplicably, it did not make all my problems go away. Walking into Barnes & Noble and seeing my name on a book jacket was exciting, of course, but when I left the store the thought filling my head was not Gee, now my life is perfect but Why didn’t the cute cashier fall in love with me as I purchased my own book? Am I fat? Or could he just see that I’m a bad person?


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October 24, 2006

If I were a pessimist, I would insist that these images from the Times online edition (yesterday and today, respectively) indicate that our society really is beyond redemption.

King picture.png

Picture 6.png

However, I am an optimist, and I am choosing to believe that the two different misspellings of à la, along with the lack of italics, are the result of nothing more than gremlins in somebody’s computer somewhere, and that the print edition gets it right.

Note that I have no intention of checking the print edition to find out whether my belief is correct or not. I’m an optimist, not an idiot.

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October 23, 2006

The other night, after E.S. and I had sex, I dropped my head onto the pillow and shut my eyes.

“What are you doing?” he said.

I did not open my eyes. “I’m going to sleep.”

“No,” he said. “We have to stay up and talk about our emotions.”

I really should have pushed him in front of the N train when I had the chance.

Posted on by Joel Derfner | 9 Comments

October 17, 2006

Okay, if I am not the last person on earth to have found out about “How Not to Act on J-Date,” then you must go here at once. Have the sound on; you’ll need it.

Posted on by Joel Derfner | 9 Comments

October 10, 2006

The man who has never been seen in the same room as me is participating in a reading in Soho this Friday evening along with some other LGBT writers. He will be reading a short story that he thinks is grim and pretty funny but that I suspect isn’t nearly as accomplished as he believes it is.

If you’re interested in coming, the relevant details can be found here.

I have it on good authority that he’s going to wear something tight.

Update: The reading starts at 7:00.

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October 8, 2006

Every couple years or so I switch from a shoulder bag to a backpack (or vice versa). When I weary of a shoulder bag, I long for something that will distribute weight more evenly across my back. When I tire of a backpack, I yearn to carry my things in something that won’t make me feel as if I were in seventh grade.

A few months ago, I decided it was time to retire the trusty shoulder bag that had seen me through good times and bad since 2004. However, my search for a backpack to take its place in my affections proved to be more frustrating than I had expected. The bag store where I had bought my shoulder bag had closed, and every time I went into a sporting goods store I was overwhelmed by the complexity, size, and technological subtlety of the backpacks on offer. They had pockets and zippers and straps whose purpose I could not fathom, and/or they were capacious enough to hold any number of corpses I might not wish to leave in plain sight, and/or they featured heated compartments or MP3 players or built-in emergency flares. I was interested in none of these (except for the room for the corpses, but those ones really looked ridiculous on my rather small frame). I had almost given up and resigned myself to a life of back problems.

Then I walked into Staples and saw this:


I bought it at once. I am now happier than I have been since learning that Tycho Brahe died not from accidental mercury poisoning via his alchemical experiments but because he was poisoned by his protegé Johannes Kepler, the father of astronomy (among other things).

E.S. expressed his concern that the people living in the crack house two doors down might not react with unmitigated enthusiasm to a pink and silver backpack. Here I played my ace in the hole: the people in the crack house two doors down love me. They call me Jimmy, after Jimmy Olsen, Clark Kent’s enthusiastic if not overly penetrating sidekick at The Daily Planet. Whenever I walk by, they tell me to have a blessed day. They will love the pink and silver backpack too.

Now I just need to find some unicorn and rainbow stickers to put on it, preferably puffy ones.

Posted on by Joel Derfner | 18 Comments

October 4, 2006

Friday morning, E.S. and I went into Manhattan together, he to go to work and I to the gym. As we waited in the Atlantic Avenue subway station, he said something incredibly annoying–I can’t remember what, alas–and I made as if to push him onto the train track. Then we had the following conversation:

E.S.: In front of the N train? Is that really how you want me to go?
FAUSTUS: No. It’s not nearly painful enough. But it’s what’s available.
E.S.: I just don’t want my last thought to be he won’t get the insurance.
FAUSTUS: I won’t get the insurance anyway. Your sister is your beneficiary.
E.S.: Never mind.
FAUSTUS: Oh, look, here comes the train.

Posted on by Joel Derfner | 5 Comments

October 3, 2006

I had a delightful lunch today with a friend who works for O, The Oprah Magazine, which has its headquarters in the Hearst building. On our way out, we saw a group of male models sitting in the reception area, apparently waiting to audition for something or be photographed in something or advertise something.

And I realized I didn’t know the collective noun for a group of models, regardless of sex.

I have been searching for the proper term since I got home, and I’ve found nothing, which seems ridiculous. I mean, come on. You’ve got a neverthriving of jugglers and a sequitur of logicians (okay, Bertrand Russell made that one up, but still) and nothing for models?

So I propose that we adopt the collective noun a vapidity of models.

All right. Now that I’ve done my intellectual heavy lifting for the day, please excuse me while I go watch last week’s Biggest Loser.

Posted on by Joel Derfner | 23 Comments