A while ago, my column on the worst types of gays did way better traffic than the one about the best types, so I'm back to being a bitch, people. Let's stretch only a tiny bit and talk about the worst dates in history. (Don't worry; it's still a really negative slant, OK?) Whether they were blind dates set up by friends, matchups arranged by the parties themselves, or just plain hookups, enough horror stories have come out of these attempted bonding rituals that it's no wonder gay marriage has been gaining so much steam. (The feeling is: If you find the right one, pounce, and leave the icky searching process behind. Quick!) So let's all gnash our teeth over these fucked up matchups from days of whore, and let the traffic begin.
Artist Scooter LaForge: "I met this guy on a dating site, and my rule of thumb is to always meet in public. He was very attractive in his photos, nice lean body and nice face. When we met at Carnegie Deli, he was probably 10 years older than his pics and he had a belly, but I still thought he was attractive and we proceeded with the date. Our conversation was going well and I found him really sexy. Toward the end of the date, I excused myself and went to use the restroom. My stomach was bothering me and I was nervous and could not stop shitting. On my way back to the table, I had a trail of toilet paper about 10 feet long sticking out of my pants. When I got to the table, I noticed it and ripped it from my pants and nonchalantly balled it up and stuck it in my pocket. I was mortified. But he was a gentleman and did not even blink about it, and we got back to the conversation.
"But things got worse. After leaving, we walked through Central Park, and it was getting late. He invited me to his place and I agreed to go. I found him sexy and was hoping to get some action. We got to his place and started to make out. One thing led to another and he started to give me a blow job. He was making really loud sex/slobber noises and kind of grossed me out. I just felt warmth on my legs and figured it was slobber. I politely stopped the blow job and went to use his restroom. When I got in there, I pulled down my pants and realized he'd puked in my underwear! I took my pants off and disgustedly threw the underwear in the garbage. I cleaned myself off and wanted to get out of there as quickly as I could. I said good night. He wondered why. I thought, 'Dude, you just fucking puked in my underwear'. I lost my attraction for this guy, but to this day we are friends. I have never brought up the puke again. I figured he knew what was up when he found my puke-stained undies in his garbage can."
Drag star Hedda Lettuce: "The worst date was 10 years ago. After a polite dinner, we went back to my house to have some 'tea'. In the throes of passion, he heard a barking in the other room. I had locked my Maltese, Monty, in the bathroom so he would not interfere with our lovemaking. The guy said, 'Is that a dog in there?' 'Yes,' I girlishly responded. 'Why don't you bring him out and have him join us?' he offered. Shock flashed in my eyes as I spat out, 'For God's sake, it's a Maltese. If it was a Doberman, I might understand, but it's a Maltese, you sick bastard! Get out!' He called the next day, but I did not answer." Woof.
Stylist/accessories designer Christian Freedom: "There was the elegant doctor who took me to dinner at the Russian Tea Room. Midway through, he told me I reminded him of his mother. I responded, 'Did you like your mother?' He said, 'No, I hated the bitch.' Then there was the fashion exec who I went to an art opening with. We were supposed to have dinner in Chinatown afterwards, but he bailed, saying he had to go home. When I asked why, he said he had to change into his leather gear before going to the Eagle! Also, I went out for drinks with this sweet, rather buff man. He'd recently moved to New York from upstate. When I asked what town he was from, he mentioned the name of a prison. I asked what crime he'd committed, hoping it was something minor. He said, 'I kidnapped my ex.' I slept with him anyway. Afterwards, he said, 'Wow, you looked much thinner in your clothes'. The bastard!"
Comic/video interviewer Mike Diamond: "When I was about 15, I went to see the creepy spider movie Arachnophobia with a big blonde hunk I'd been really crushing on. During the film, sitting in the dark theater, this guy reached his hand down the back of my pants and stuck his finger in my butt...and kept it there. Being a gracious, easygoing young thing, I didn't complain about it. But every time there was a scary scene in the movie, I would jump, and my sphincter would clamp up and tighten around his finger. (In retrospect that was his evil plan all along!) After the film, we walked over to Union Square (this was back when it was still sketchy). He was giving me a blowjob behind a tree (me: gracious young thing) when a gang of thugs rode by on bikes and hurled big liquor bottles at us. One smashed into the tree, inches from my face! Well, without a word, my 'big hunk' got up and dashed away in the quickness, leaving me alone and exposed in that dark, dangerous park. That date taught me that most men (hunks and thugs) are total chickenshit. But the worst part is that to this day, every time I see a spider, my asshole spontaneously clenches."
Wall Street Lawyer: "I recently went out with a guy who picked the place, ordered two drinks, and when the bill came, he just stared at it. I asked if he wanted to split it and he said, 'Not really. I just had to pay a bunch of bills. I was hoping you would pay.'
"I went out with [a pop singer] one time. We bickered so badly about pretty much everything that he jumped out of the cab at a traffic light on our way to dinner.
"And I recently went out with this guy who kept looking at his phone and then I noticed that he looked like he was starting to cry. When I asked what was wrong, he said, 'Here, read this!' He showed me his phone--he had been texting his recently ex-boyfriend the entire night, telling him how much he missed him and would give anything to be back together with him. Then the ex responded something like, 'Get over it--we are DONE!' That's when he started crying and asked me if I thought the ex 'really meant it'."
Department Store Employee: "I was dating a schizophrenic. We were going to go to the ballet to celebrate his birthday. I was running 10 minutes late because the gift I'd ordered for him--a kimono--wasn't quite ready. He threw a hissy fit like a 3-year-old child, screaming and crying at the Christopher Street train station. All over 10 minutes! It was humiliating. 'You're just pushing all my buttons! You know I have abandonment issues! You're fucking with my birthday!' The thing about schizophrenics is that by time we got to the ballet, he was fine and we had a great time. But I was in shambles. We wound up being just friends."
But wait! I made it past the doorman at Joan Rivers' invitation-only funeral at Temple Emanu-El on Fifth Avenue yesterday, and found an event that was so funny and touching that even Anna Wintour would have moved her face. It started with the New York City Gay Men's Chorus singing mildly insouciant show tunes like "Hey, Big Spender" and "There Is Nothing Like a Dame." Then a holy man took the podium to promise he wouldn't be the "rambling rabbi" that Joan feared, instead giving easygoing comments about how warm and giving she was as a person and show biz icon.
Next up, six-time Tony winner Audra McDonald sang a bittersweet version of "Smile," clearly angling for more awards. And then came the first guest speaker. It was shock jock Howard Stern. Who wasn't listed in the program. People got nervous. What would he say? And were we allowed to laugh at it? Well, the curly haired demon didn't disappoint. His first comment set the tone: "Joan Rivers had an extremely dry vagina." The whole place broke up laughing and suddenly a religious temple had become the Friar's Club. Stern explained that Joan made that very remark on his radio show not long ago, and she added that her vadge was like a sponge whenever she laid in a tub full of water. Joan had told Stern, "If Whitney Houston had a dry vagina like mine, she'd be alive today!" By now, the crowd--which included every old power broker from Donald "You're fired" Trump to Judge "You're guilty" Judy--was in stitches and crossing their legs so they wouldn't wet themselves. Even more shockingly, Stern went on to seriously talk at length about how dedicated and dazzling Joan was, as he welled up with very real tears. "She wasn't just about being shocking," he admitted. "She had a heart. I should learn from her!"
There were other speakers, including daughter Melissa Rivers, who went for a fairly light-hearted letter she'd written to her mother, probably so she could stay relatively composed. And then Hugh Jackman took the stage to sing a song he said Joan had requested--Peter Allen's "Quiet Please, There's a Lady On Stage," an ode to Judy Garland in her twilight years, which Jackman did in The Boy From Oz. By the end, Jackman had us standing and clapping along in a fitting tribute to the respect Joan demanded with her combination of trash mouth and fine manners. As we left while a bagpipe ensemble played "New York, New York," I was haunted by another of Stern's comments: "I hope Joan is somewhere right now chasing Johnny Carson around with a baseball bat."
ANDREW RANNELLS GIVES GOOD HEDWIG
A date with Broadway's Hedwig and the Angry Inch revival is still a good idea, thankfully enough. The lithe and fearless Neil Patrick Harris galvanized the town with his athletic portrayal of the botched transsexual rocker's journey through blow jobs and singing gigs. His stiletto heels were hard ones to fill, especially since he copped the Tony in one of the awards' "Duh" decisions in June. But Andrew Rannells (from The Book of Mormon and Girls) does an extremely creditable job, subverting his pretty boy looks to dive into the humor and pathos of the hypnotically culty role. The show is a confessional concert, this time done on the Broadway set of Hurt Locker The Musical, a bad idea which allegedly closed the previous night during intermission. And so, with exploding car parts literally hanging in the air, Hedwig reveals what it's like to go from "a slip of a girly boy from Communist East Berlin to an internationally ignored song stylist" with a Barbie doll crotch and an axe to grind. To punctuate the rocking, the sardonic humor, and the pathos, Hedwig's husband Yitzhak (a pricelessly deadpan Lena Hall, who also won a Tony) keeps sadistically opening the stage door to let us hear Hedwig's obsession, rocker Tommy Gnosis, perform for a much larger audience and continually congratulate himself for his own success. While working out the roles a person plays in life, as well as the parts they leave behind and the symbiosis they can eventually find with the proper astral twin, Rannells is both funny and touching, singing with power and taking the time to find Hedwig's quirks and chasms. And the wigs!
THE WINTOUR OF OUR DISCONTENT
Angry column inches are not an issue for Anna Wintour. The Vogue editrix is fashion's biggest cheerleader, even through her impenetrable glasses, helmet hair, and constant angst about whether putting Kimye on the cover was the right idea. A day in her enchanted but high pressured life was the focus of "Ryan Raftery is the Most Powerful Woman in Fashion," a clever pastiche at Joe's Pub, with Raftery hilarious and even poignant as the frosty style-poobah. The show is a simultaneous spoof and celebration of the woman who nervily told Oprah Winfrey she could be on the cover of Vogue if she lost 20 pounds. (And she did!)
In between taunting people for their alleged weight issues, Raftery's Wintour indulges in musical interludes ("Que Sera Sera," "The Bitch Is Back"), plus an ode to the Sky Mall magazine you get in first class, soaringly done to the "Skyfall" theme over an elitist slide show. Best of all, Wintour duets with her beloved Andrew Leon Talley (a wonderful Romelda Teron Benjamin) on a version of "Class" about how everyone's horrifyingly wearing flats these days, after which Talley reminds Anna she's perfect and incapable of bad choices. But Wintour's not so sure. As she tells the audience, "Kris Jenner is essentially running an Armenian whorehouse out of a Calabasas compound, and you have elevated them to celebrity status!" The show even manages some real pathos when Wintour's aloof but proud father passes on, leaving good wishes instead of cash. Raftery himself is not so distant. After the show, he comes out sans wig and sings an anti-Kim Kardashian ditty called "Let Her Die" (to the tune of "Let it Be"). Sample lyric: "Book her on Malaysian Airlines. Let her die!"
And finally, the ever fashionable Markus Kelle is the flamboyant nightclub doorman who's the city's reigning queen with a clipboard and a quip. And TV land has noticed. Markus will not only be featured on a Showtime program about nightlife, but he's done several episodes of The Mysteries of Laura, in which Debra Messing's lady detective character keeps running into him all over town. "It's all thanks to you," he told me, meaning that my New York Times profile of Kelle is what garnered the small screen attention. Great! Now if I can only get myself a part--and a date!!!!