Views on pop culture through my eyes

Posts tagged ‘friends’

Christmas Parties

It’s that time of year for Holiday/Christmas parties. Everything from a big banquet to an intimate holiday party.  Here are some memories from holiday parties through the years:

Christmas outfit2

Christmas outfit2

Work Parties
I have been lucky enough to work for companies that treat their employees to a Holiday Party.  When I worked for an insurance company, I was treated to dinners at country clubs and hotels. When I worked for a 2-person design firm, the boss and his wife would take me and my partner out for a meal and a show. We saw magicians, Cirque Du Soleil and mystery dinner theatre. At my current job, we have big celebrations at hotels and country clubs too, plus there are drawings for prizes too like TVs, DVD players and more. I have been lucky and won both a DVD player and a digital camera too through the years.

What has changed through the years is how open I have been about being gay. Those early holiday parties I didn’t feel comfortable enough to take my partner to them, and I went by myself. I definitely regret that now. But I had some growing up to do, and had to get comfortable in my own skin.

I am thinking about going to this year’s company party dressed in my dress kilt. I am out now to all, and my partner has come with me the past several years. I know I would totally rock it.

Friends Parties
Our friends love to throw parties too… most years we are busy every weekend in December until the holiday. Lots of great food, along with socializing with old friends and meeting new ones. Some of the parties have had gift exchanges, toy or canned food drives and Christmas carol sing-alongs. We also usually fit in going to 2 different church groups too for their parties.

Family Parties
On Christmas Eve, my family tradition is to gather at my parent’s house. Some of us go to the early Mass, then we come back home for dinner. We usually have ham, scalloped potatoes, salads, and of course pumpkin pie. The family members there include my parents, siblings, grandkids and great grand kids plus neighbors too.

Then after dinner, we have our time for caroling. My Mom has song sheets made up…. But at this point, I pretty much know all the songs by heart since I have been singing them for so long. We will sing everything from Frosty the Snowman to Silent Night to White Christmas. We usually end by singing 12 Days of Christmas… with each of us taking a different part by picking a card out of bowl. Everyone wants to get “Five Golden Rings”, since that is the showiest part to sing.

We will then usually go to a few neighbor’s houses to sing some carols for them. Then it is back to the house to open the gifts. I act as Santa Claus (by donning my Santa hat) and distribute the gifts to my family members.

Our Party
We love to entertain. Our party is usually on the last Saturday before Christmas. The latest we have had it is December 23rd. I guess we are the only crazy ones to do that! The house will be decorated with a ton of lights and candles, plus a large Noble fir tree. We usually make a turkey or ham, plus plenty of side dishes and desserts too  like sweet potato cheesecake. There will be a good mix of Christmas music and party tunes playing in the background. And Christmas videos on the TV.

This year, we have decided to not have a party — since we are planning our wedding soon. What a good reason to not have a holiday party! I look forward to resuming our holiday tradition of hosting a party as a married couple in 2014.

Whatever your traditions are, I hope you have a safe, happy and healthy holiday season. Best wishes for the New Year! And thanks for reading this blog.

KiltManinSoCal is a Los Angeles-based writer and designer. Be sure to check out the latest T-Shirts for sale here, including Marriage Equality and  Rock the Kilt lines. They make great gifts for friends, family and loved ones.

If the Show Was Still on…

Ever wonder what your favorite TV characters would be up to in 2013? Recent years have seen shows leap to the big screen (Sex and the City), as well as experience re-boots (Dallas). After the “Sex and the City” movie (the first one) came out and was a big hit, there was talk of bringing “Friends” to the big screen too, but it hasn’t happened and doesn’t seems likely. And with “Dallas” a hit again on TV. It got me to thinking about the other big soap from the 80’s “Dynasty” and what would they be up to… So here goes my take on where our favorite characters would be today:

Friends

Ross and Rachel
They were giving it a try at the end of the series. I think they would have had another kid, but would have broken up, without ever getting married.

Monica and Chandler
Still together, they would have a large family and Chandler would have gotten fat.

Phoebe
Still with her husband Mike, she finally made it as a singer, and now was coaching contestants on a singing completion show like “American Idol.”

Joey
After years of womanizing, he realized he was gay. And is comfortable in his relationship with a former co-star. He runs a talent agency now placing people on reality shows.

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Friends v. F*** Buddies

I have had this title for awhile… So here goes. I don’t have any friends with benefits or a f*** buddy. I never have. Yet for other people, this is nothing. It has happened for them, and will happen again. Is it more prevalent in the gay community or does it exist in the straight community too? (It does if you believe recent romantic comedies).

As a gay man, I long for friendships with other men. Someone I can talk to, hang out with, and share some fun times. Sex has gotten in the way a couple of times — one or the other wanted something more, but the other person didn’t and the friendship fizzled out.

Or we did have sex, and then you think you will be friends with the person at the very least… but that doesn’t happen either. You end up running into that person someplace else, and you both have the feeling “Haven’t I met you before?” Yeah, we had a drunken hook-up at so-and-so’s party…

I am sure straight guys run into the same issues with having female friends. Can a straight guy have a female friend he hasn’t slept with? I’d love to hear from people on this.

I’ve wondered if me being in a relationship has scared off potential friends. Because I am not available, and they want a boyfriend. Maybe there is even mutual attraction, but we know that we can’t act on it, or if we did it wouldn’t be anything more than a temporary fling? I have my life partner.

Also, I know it is sometimes hard being friendly to my partner’s ex’s. Yeah, I know they had sex, and it was in the past, but I wonder if they still want him. And are they being friendly to me just to please him, or do they genuinely like me too.

Recently I have tried to reach out to some past partners… I had fun with them, and I like them as persons. Do they like me too outside of the bedroom? Can my partner handle the friendship, or will he be worried that we will hook up again? What if I want to hook-up again?

Relationships are not easy.. for anyone, gay or straight. They are work… but ultimately they are worth it.

Spice69man is a Los Angeles-based writer and designer. The eBook, A View from the Cheap Seats, can be downloaded from LuluAmazon and the iBookstore. It can be read on any computer, smartphone, or tablet.

High School Reunions

Do we really want to go to a high school reunion? It’s been 29 years since I graduated from high school. I went to my 20th reunion out of curiosity. So my thirtieth reunion will be in 2013. I don’t know that I want to go.High School and today

Some back story is needed here. What was high school like for me? I went to a Catholic all boys high school/college preparatory school. It was a 5-year program, such that when you graduated you had an Associates Degree in a Major. My major was Drafting & Design. I came to Bosco Tech from a Catholic grammar school. It was a tough school academically. I remember having 8 hour days, and then tons of homework.

As I have said in earlier posts, my teenage years where a bit tough for me. I was picked on in grammar school such that my parents thought I had an ulcer (I didn’t). I was called fag and gay a lot. That continued and amped up that first year in high school. I was made to feel that I was inferior, that somehow God made a mistake with me. I didn’t even know I was gay yet, yet somehow everyone thought I was. It was a dark time for me.

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Great Duos

Hall and Oates
Daryl Hall and John Oates are the most successful duo in music history. With hits spanning 4 decades, everything from “She’s Gone” to “Do It for Love.” These blue-eyed soul white boys from Philly have proven to be masters at pop, rock, soul, new wave, A/C and more.Daryl Hall and John Oates

Donny & Marie
OK, so this is a guilty pleasure pick. Who didn’t watch their variety show from the 70’s? It had music, it had comedy, it had ice skating. I remember having the album from the show and singing along to “I’m a Little Bit County, I’m a Little Bit Rock n Roll.” Also, going to the movies to see their movie “Going Coconuts.”

David and Maddie (Moonlighting)
When this show first came out, Bruce Willis and Cybill Sheppard had great interplay with one another. The dialogue between them crackled with sexual tension. It was good for a few years, but when they did finally get together the show fell apart. I will still keep those early episodes though.

Richard Pryor/Gene Wilder
These 2 comedy greats worked so well together, they starred in 3 movies together: “Silver Streak,” “Stir Crazy,” and “See No Evil, Hear No Evil.” Enough said. Check them out on video.

Satin and Christian (Moulin Rouge)
Nicole Kidman and  Ewan McGregor brought back the modern musical in Baz Luhrmans’s “Moulin Rouge” featuring the songs of LaBelle, Madonna, Elton John and Nirvana among others. When Christian sings “Your Song”, you will be swept away.

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Letting Go of the Past

It is never an easy thing to do. But it is a necessity with life. We may not understand why things have happened to us in our lives: why we lost a job, a relationship didn’t work out, a good friend fades out of your life, a loved one dies suddenly. Life sucks sometimes…but we need to move on. We need to let go to move forward.

For a long time, I had an issue with friends coming into and out of my life. I thought a lot about it all and wondered why things didn’t seem to turn out like I wanted them to. Some background is needed here. Two of the best friends I have had in my life are no longer in my life, one is dead and the other is alive somewhere, just not my friend anymore. My friend, Damon, died of AIDS over 12 years ago. He was one of the first friends I made at the LA Gay and Lesbian Center. We had a lot of laughs and good times, plus many heart to hearts. I miss talking to him…but I am glad that I knew him. The other friend, Joe, was my friend from high school, the first one that I came out to. We were friends through college and beyond, then we just seemed to fall apart. He moved around, his marriage fell apart, and he flaked on me a few times. I even confronted him about it, asking him if he wanted to end the friendship. He said No… well, his actions spoke louder than his words. I haven’t spoken to him in 10 years or more…

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