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Frank Gumola - Journal | Weblog

Tea For One

The first thing I did when I got home from work today was make iced tea. The second thing I did was add a shot of vodka to the ice cold beverage.

Upon returning home to my apartment yesterday after being away for a week, I discovered a toilet that would not stop flushing and a kitchen sink that thought it had a previous life as a garbage disposal.

I may need more ice.

On The Road Again

YBJ left this morning for a week of fun in Utah. This is the first of many photos he sent via his camera phone.

As you can see, he appreciates the beauty all around him. Just like his big brother.

When Tomorrow Comes

One of the many items I have been enjoying here at Spa Mama (Seriously. I had a facial this morning.) is this nifty little drink. I'm not exactly sure why my Mother would have such an item, and in bulk, no less.

Who am I to argue it?

Yesterday was quite chaotic. I actually helped out with the yard work. I know, I know. Hold your gasping, I was wearing elbow length gloves and fashionable sandles.

OK, the gloves weren't elbow length. But still, I was raking the lawn. It was only funny because there were four of us trying to get everything cleaned up before the tornado hit.

The tornado never arrived, but the weather was nonetheless frightening; I felt like Helen Hunt in Twister.

We return home tomorrow afternoon and I've decided on a project for myself: W.O.W.

Week Of WiFi. I plan on posting using only my PSP for about a week. It should be interesting, and it will most certainly try my patience.

And after a few days of baby sitting my nephew I have that in spades.

Vacation Update

So far I've watched about six movies I've been dying to see, had a marathon phone session with my LDSA, and reclaimed my "Coolest Uncle Ever" title with the cutest nephew ever.

And no, I totally don't mind him drooling on my new polo.

Holiday, Celebration

I'm out in the middle of nowhere for the next week or so. It's kind of nice, really. Quiet. Nice big pond in the back yard too.

Get me to a mall, quick.

The Long Walk

Picture it if you will: I'm casually walking out of the mega complex en route to the bus stop. The weather couldn't be more beautiful. Sunny, a wee bit overcast, and just breezy enough for me to be happy I brought along my light, slightly oversized jacket. I'm walking, pondering if I should have a cigarette. I reach for my sunglasses, look up, and there it is. My bus. The last bus into town. Early. Of course, any sane person as exhausted as I was would have simply waved a hand and offered a "Meh".

This is the part where I remind you how not sane I have been behaving lately.

I sprang into action. And by 'sprang into action' I mean I waved my arms over my head and bellowed like a wookie wannabe at a Star Wars convention.

Of course the driver kept right on going leaving my sunglasses and my light yet slightly oversized jacket covered in a fine mist of what can only be described as the filth of the earth.

Needless to say I walked home. I could have called a cab. I could have phoned for a ride from YBJ.

Instead, I simply kept on walking dreaming up plans for my revenge tomorrow.

They involve eating massive quantities of chili for lunch and sitting near the driver on the way home.

Best Week Ever Links

My vacation starts Wednesday. In honor of what I hope to be my Best Week Ever, I'm listing some of this week's best links ever. Oh yes, there will be laughing.
  • Banned Ren and Stimpy short. And for very obvious reasons.
  • The state legislature of Idaho addresed a major issue last year and passed a commendation for Napoleon Dynamite. Idiot!
  • I thought I'd seen every single PSA from the eighties until I came across PeeWee Herman telling me that crack is whack.
  • I cannot believe I found a local crazy mentioned on Best Week Ever's site. I've often told the boyfriend I thought this man was nuts, I can now prove it to you all as well.
YBJ is joining The Boyfriend for the aforementioned sports programming festivities. Perhaps I'll do some laundry. Or tackle my latest Sunday obsession.

Shoddy Hostel Is Trite

I finally sat down long enough to watch this movie. To be honest, I was extremely disappointed. Yay for the survivor not being the one the viewer expects; and yay for a bit of gore. Otherwise, I found it a waste of time. All that hype, all that anticipation; for nothing. At least I have this one to satiate my suspense/horror/gore/cheese factor needs.

In other FrankieNews™, I thought I'd share a few web gems:
  • It appears Google really does have a sense of humor.
  • If you enjoyed the previously linked list of 80's YouTube videos, perhaps you'd like to peruse this large list of TV Show Theme Songs.
I bought The Boyfriend this lovely little item for Christmas last year. While he's keen on sharing his toys; I've been eyeing a sleeker model for myself.

The Boyfriend is gearing up for another day of sporting events; that leaves my brunch and I alone to peruse the web. I'm stopping by around 3-ish. Have coffee and danish out, okay?

I Should Be So Lucky

The day began on a sour note; ended a bit happier. The Boyfriend has been quite depressed lately and has spent the past few days tight lipped about exactly what has been bothering him. I already knew, and after a lengthy discussion (and after discussing it with best friend Bradley, aka Rozz Markel...there, I have a reason to include her new promo pic), we've decided to just do it. We've talked about it several times yet we've never made concrete plans. Until tonight.

We're moving.

Just over a month from now, if all goes well, we'll be living in Cleveland.

The Boyfriend was in a peculiar mood when I returned home from work; I suggested a few libations to lighten both our moods. En route to our bar of choice we were stopped by four mutual friends at three different locations. All jumped from their barstools to greet us outside to say hello. This happened within a three block radius, mind you. I found it heartwarming that our friends were inside these establishments and rushed outside to greet us upon seeing us walking by.

I turned to The Boyfriend about a block away from our final destination and reminded him exactly how lucky and loved were really are in this town.

Change is inevitable. My purpose for moving back to this sleepy little gayborhood has been fulfilled. It's now time to move on to something bigger and better.

Time to trade up, if you will.

Art Gone Awry

I just found MOBA, certainly not to be confused with that other similarly named institution.

Be sure to check out the portrait of George, and on the pot no less.

Stumble, Tumble, Rumble

I thought I would share some wonderful links I have very recently stumbled upon. In no particular order : (Apologies if these are not new to you. I've been gone for a while, in case you forgot. And I'm sure you haven't.)And finally:
  • Keane's new music video is now available for viewing on the band's MySpace site. I find these boys rather dreamy.
I'm working crazy hours until Wednesday, when my vacation begins. Yes, I finally get a week of no work. I'll go bonkers the first few days, but rumor has it the landlord wants to ask me to move to another apartment within the building. Something about having the elderly moving into the building on the first few floors. There are six floors and quite a few seniors reside here. This actually makes sense to me. And my living room ceiling has some serious damage which was never repaired before I moved in, so a new apartment sounds fab.

On a totally unrelated note, a fellow employee gave me some delicious marinated pork tenderloin to cook at home. The Boyfriend and I supped on sesame and ginger marinated goodness. I have a tendency to over cook meats, especially pork, but this turned out beautifully.

I've found myself relaxing and de-stressing quite a bit while cooking lately. I've got another tenderloin thawing in the fridge, this one soaking up sweet hickory sauces. If I get half as relaxed while cooking that one, I'm buying these in bulk.

Everybody's Changing

The obvious Keane post title? The song "Everybody's Changing" reminds me of a beautiful young woman I have had the extreme pleasure of having been part of my life. I can't recall if I have ever, through any incarnation of this journal, written about my friend Andrea. Please forgive me if I have; she's been on my mind a great deal the past few days.

Andrea once met a few friends (myself included) out for a few rounds of both billiards and drinks. Light-hearted at first, a bit more comfortable and somber after just two drinks; she confided in us her extreme unhappiness with her home life. Things were not very good and she appeared quite depressed. We expressed our concerns and offered our hearts and homes. The evening ended on a hopeful, yet sorrow filled note. We felt her pain.

The next time I saw Andrea was at her funeral. She looked so incredibly innocent and beautiful. The first thing I noticed was how her long, golden hair had lost just a touch of it's sheen. I realized she was fading from our lives.

"I will never see her again", I thought.

My boyfriend and now good friend was in front of me, YBJ behind me; his hand on my back, holding me up. I brushed my finger across the sleeve of her gown. I gasped for air as if it were my last breath. Tears running down my face, I turned to her Mother.

With incredible grief in my eyes I told her who I was and about my love for her daughter.

I turned to Andrea for one last look, and said my goodbye.

Everybody is changing. I don't feel the same.

Here, There, Everywhere

Changes in my work schedule prohibit me from writing much lately, and for that I apologize. To make up for it, I offer the following links as a peace offering:I swear I'll get back to my old posting self very soon. I've got a great deal going on around here, and I may not be going on vacation after all. I've waited seven years for a decent break from the normal routine of everyday life.

I can wait a bit longer.

The (Not So) Young And The Restless

General concensus around these parts lately is that I've been entirely too cranky. I'm going to have to agree. Especially since I'm being forced to go on vacation next week. Well, not really forced, but everyone (including myself) thinks it's a very good idea.

I don't really know what to say except that I've been feeling extrememly burned out at work. Fried. I snap at the slightest inconvenience. One tiny thing doesn't go as planned or worse, my way; and I just lose control of my emotions.

I can't treat my friends, co-workers, and higher ups any worse than I do at times. I need to regroup, just chill.

And so I shall.

Even though I know I have a few open invitations to travel; I'll be spending a great deal of time doing absolutely nothing. And some time working on the apartment. There's the faux finish in the kitchen I never finished. That particular project is over a year old. New tile will go down on the floor as well. My bedroom looks as if my closet exploded. I'm so not kidding. My landlord even commented on it during a bathroom drainage repair visit. He needed to get to the back of the tub, through a small opening in the bedroom.

I asked for a moment to tidy up and promptly threw everything into one corner, and a blanket on top of that.

Then there are a few, newer projects I'd like to tackle. The larger, second walk in closet is to become a computer room. I want to refinish the hardwood floors throughout the place as well.

I just pray The Boyfriend isn't around if something goes wrong. I may end up using a power tool or two in an inappropriate way.

Duck, Duck, Oops

I called YBJ this afternoon hoping he hadn't made plans for dinner. The Boyfriend and I were in luck, he hadn't. We gorged ourselves on all things buffet, tried on several different types of sunglasses, and are now lazily lounging around my apartment. Just as we were getting into the car for the trip back here, YBJ decided to point out a little something I missed just a few hours earlier. Knowing my brother's warped sense of humor, I walked ever so slowly around to the front of the vehicle. I'm glad I saw what I did after I ate. It seems a large black bird of some sort flew directly into the front end of YBJ's vehicle this morning. And stayed there.

Ever see the little Christmas wreaths people tie on their cars around the time of the holiday season? This is pretty much the same, only a 'kill it and grill it' version.

I'll never be able to eat Peking Duck again.

Memories

I cannot believe that I am willing to admit this to you, but a very, very, VERY long time ago; I was here. No lie. Be nice.

Who, What, Where?

I haven't much time to post anything of any real importance this evening. I've spent the past twelve hours at work and am running out the door with (who else) The Boyfriend to indulge ourselves in (what else) a few cocktails. Where? Where else?

Rumor has it there are six (six!) male strippers lined up for the evening. We have our supply of ones at the ready. Fives if they're extra cute.

Timing 2.0

Remember my 'timing is everything' post? This book title, author and release date all perfectly coincide with one another.

Relay My Way

The Relay For Life organizers and participants have invaded the downtown Warren area. I'm not going to complain at all about what an inconvenience this event creates for my daily travels. It would be wrong of me to mention anything about how, for the next few days, I have to wonder if and where the bus will pick me up for my morning commute.

It would also be wrong of me to mention how terrified and embarrassed I was to look out my living room window to find a gaggle of pink shirt clad women admiring my Tai Chi moves.

SAW? PWL? OMG!

You know, you are not the only one addicted. I've just spent the past hour looking up and watching a few old favorites, including one that was once considered a bit too racy for the mainstream. I find it quite humorous that this video once caused such a stir. I've always adored both the song and video.

Looking back, I can see why my father was worried when I brought home the twelve inch vinyl single and promptly and proudly displayed the cover in my bedroom for all to see.

As an aside; I will always, ALWAYS love the production team of Stock, Aiken and Waterman. So there.

Gym Bunny

The evening went rather well. I wish I could say I have some photos to show. I mean, I can say it, I just can't show them. The Boyfriend got his fill of wonderful pics; I just haven't found the correct program to enable me to upload them to my computer. So be patient a bit longer. We even got a few good ones on the walk home.

All together now: "Awwww."

The Dragzillas were out in full force this evening and every single one of them had a tale to tell through song and dance and The Boyfriend and I stayed for four of them. That's about all the drag we could handle for the evening. I was anxious to get home; The Boyfriend was anxious to get to bed. He has an early day tomorrow.

The bastard actually got the gym membership today.

I hid all things chocolate while he was out taking a tour of the establishment.

Monkey See

Getting a bit bored with MySpace? How about a new and improved Aim Page?

Still Lost

According to this personality test, my personality best matches with Dominic Monaghan, shown left. I disagree. I do think we'd be a cute match in real life, though.

The show's getting good again, and plans for the evening have altered slightly. The birthday festivities (mentioned below) will just have to wait a bit.

I just need to pull The Boyfriend away from his latest obsession so I can get the better bigger tv for the evening.

Happy Birthday, Darling

One of the first people I befriended after moving back here oh so long ago is to this day a complete bitch, a dear friend, someone I can rely on, a helping hand, and is single handedly responsible for helping me become the fabulous nobody I claim to be today. My local popularity status is nothing compared to this one's.

I could bore you to tears with the stories I have. I won't. Save for one, and the highlights will be enough: Frankie becomes drag slave and helps Rozz dress for the evening. Show goes well. Frankie and Rozz get drunk. Drink, Frankie and Rozz, drink. Oh look! A young street walker needs a ride home. Stop and pick him up drunk Rozz, stop and pick him up.

The evening ended with Rozz and myself consuming all of the young man's tequila. We then took a self guided tour of his apartment bouncing a blue kickball off the walls of every single room we entered.

Did I mention this was a complete stranger's home? And that Rozz just didn't care? I can't recall if I was frightened or not; for the amount of alcohol we both consumed that fine evening pretty much blocked out our ability to feel anything. Except when a fit of laughter was going to come on.

When that happened we'd just gaze at one another and completely lose control.

That was then, it's still like that now.

Happy Birthday, Bradley. And Rozz.

Rozz is the bitch everyone loves.

And quite honestly, bears an uncanny resemblance to the new Pete Burns. Only Rozz's pouty puss and overly siliconed cheekbones wash off at the end of the evening.

Update: Someone wasn't too happy with me directly linking to the image, which I shouldn't have done. The above link is now repaired and the image is in a nice, new, well hosted location. My bad.

PSP Voice Over IP

It seems the rumors are true and I may have made a wise investment. As long as I keep the ugly wrist strap on it so I don't drop it.
PSP will recieve GPS, Voice over IP, RSS Video, and a Camera by the end of the year.
I already have a few RSS Audio feeds set up, and I knew about the camera. But voice over IP? I'm really looking forward to that. I'm also happy they decided not to use the boomerang controller on the PS3.

Parting

YBJ stopped over for a bit this evening, bringing The Boyfriend in tow.

(You know, I feel a bit guilty using acronyms at times. I often assume everyone knows who YBJ is or what LDSA means. Maybe I should start a FrankiePedia or something.)

I wondered aloud a few times throughout the night about what was keeping him at work. The guilty parties were free alcoholic beverages from a previous employer and good company from my brother.

I find my concern for my brother's whereabouts growing at a rapid rate. His company is relocating him to Salt Lake City soon; as a result I try to spend as much time with him as possible. We play around on the internet for a bit, fire up the PSP or PS2, and sometimes I'll torture myself by allowing he and The Boyfriend to watch a sporting event or two.

Sometimes it feels like enough. It feels like Saturday night. It feels, for lack of a better word: fulfilling.

I won't be the same when he's not around.

For Pete's Sake

I only recently found this video and I wasn't sure how I was going to feel about it. I rather enjoyed seeing the original members together again.

Correction: I'm not certain the blonde is one of the originals. Still, pretty video.

Wait...there's more. This one deserves an very big shout out.

The Changing Of The Boards

There are a few billboards just outside my bedroom window. I can't recall if I've ever mentioned this fact. I know some of you know this, and some of you may know of the problem I'm currently having because of these strategically placed advertisements. For those of you not in the know, here's the rundown.

When I say "just outside my bedroom window", I mean it. If I open my window I can touch the back of the billboard. Hell, if I wanted, I could climb out there and spend a lazy Sunday picnicing beneath a ten foot tall hand holding a Razr.

The problem I'm currently dealing with only arises every few months; or when it's time for a new advertisement to go up. Whichever comes first. Since there are two ads side by side, it sometimes happens more than that.

And now for the problem. The men (or women) in charge of changing the ads like to do so with the company vehicle's radio on very loudly, and they leave the van doors open or the windows down. This wouldn't be a problem if I were a morning person or if I enjoyed the type of music blaring into my bedroom. I'm not, and I don't.

The first time it happened I walked outside with my hair looking like it had been put into a blender and set on the highest speed possible. I was wearing pajama bottoms and I was barefoot. I stood there a moment and waited for the reaction I was hoping for. The worker turned around, knowing he was being watched. His eyes said it all. I simply slammed his van door shut and he jumped down and silenced the noise for me.

The last time it happened I was already awake and on my way to work. But I didn't care. I thought he'd learned his lesson. It may not have even been the same worker. Again, I didn't care. I locked up my apartment, headed outside the building and walked over to the van. Careful to keep my anger in check, I simply shut the van door. The worker heard the muffled sounds of his music (terrible rock, not the good kind) and turned to say something to the party pooper which would be me.

He didn't say a word.

I emailed the company on Friday and got a reply this morning. Miss Manners (she was oh so polite) promises to bring the offending issue to the attention of the Operations Manager.

I'm keeping a Super Soaker next to my bedroom window in case she forgets.

AwesomeStart

I very recently discovered AwesomeStart. I usually use Google as my start page, now I can customize it to my liking. Submitted designs are reviewed and if accepted excepted accepted, posted to the site within twenty-four hours of approval. I'm currently using the Kingdom Hearts theme from the video game gallery. I'd love to design and submit a Domokun theme, but after reading the submission guidelines I'm not sure if my design would be excepted accepted excepted.

From the site:
All submissions go through a strict review board. Should the review panel approve, it will be posted within 24 hours of its review. We receive many submissions, and not all may be excepted.
Bitter Butter Better get started.

Lazy Sunday Highlights

I decided to enjoy the sixty degree weather a little today. The Boyfriend and I took a brief walk, made a few purchases, and briefly discussed joining the nearby gym.
    He: "I've put some cash aside as a down payment for my six month membership."
    Me: "Does my new shirt make me look fat?"
The discussion continued on the way home.I highly doubt we'll be doing any extra curricular excercising any time soon. Not that kind anyway.

Can You Feel It?

YBJ called me a few times yesterday. I was entirely too busy to return his call during the day, and by the time I got home I'd simply forgotten he called. The Boyfriend and I were enjoying our first drink of what would soon become many when YBJ walked into the straight-friendly establishment looking for me.

It just tickles my heart that my much younger (he's very early twenties, kids), very straight brother is so comfortable with who he is that he has absoultely no problem whatsoever walking alone into a gay bar. And promptly sitting right next to one of my personal gay icons, Denise Russell (Dennis Werntz. Also, (s)he's the only drag performer to ever perform at the Grand Old Opry.)

The Boyfriend and YBJ played a few games of pool while I simply looked on, getting a bit more intoxicated on both the alcohol and the love I was feeling at that moment. Something was in the air. Game two began when another patron threw a twenty in front of us and demanded to buy our next round of drinks.

We then tagged along with YBJ back to his prior destination for one last round before heading home.

I have a bit of hangover this morning. Somehow I don't feel it's alcohol related.

Saturday Night Live

The Boyfriend and I are heading out after a long, long workday. A few cocktails are the first order of this evening's business. He made a very wise (in my opinion) purchase last night thanks to a friend with a spare and a big heart. So maybe after I download a few drivers and such, I'll finally be able to post a few goodies from our evenings out.

Believe The Hype

Anyone who knows anything about me knows that I love all things fashion. Anyone who knows anything about me also knows that I love all things Madonna. Not "love" in the sense that I would rush the dance floor at my favorite disco upon immediately hearing one of her tracks being played. I'm too old for that now. (Now, I simply walk. Not run.) Besides, it's the new more adult Madonna I adore. Timing is everything in the world of entertainment, and Madonna once again uses the masses (read: me) to her advantage.

Visiting your local purveyor of all things print on May 19th will permit you the purchase of the latest issue of W. In it, a 58-page photo spread featuring the Material Girl and six Andalusian stallions. Some of the photos (by Steven Klein) are rather gorgeous. I found others breathtaking.

As I said, timing is everything. Madonna's new tour kicks off just two days later.

Snap, Crackle, Plop

He was there again last night. Behind me, embracing me. His lips had found the nape of my neck; and then everything went wrong. I fell, rather violently, down a flight of stairs and heard screaming. So much screaming. On the way down I heard the sickening sound of bones breaking and felt a sharp snap in my back.

When I woke I found my pillow soaked with tears.

No more late night chili snacks.

Signs Of The Times

After a not so long night of inebriated queens dissing me for not calling the correct numbers, it was quite a treat to come home to find these goodies in my inbox. My gifts to you, should you choose to click them:What was that? You'd like more entertainment for your visiting dollars? I can help. Please, do check out what is being billed as quite possibly the gayest music video ever made. I'm not bestowing such a title; I'm simply providing you with the link. Remember who loves you, kids.

Update: A little flash fun never hurt nobody either.

Persephone Says Hi

Oh. After watching all this time, now it's all starting to make sense. Maybe.

Password: breakingstrain

Relax, Don't Do It

Over the past three days I have eaten one meal. Maybe. Little bits of crackers here, some cottage cheese there. I've been pulling a few double shifts at work and by the time I've gotten home; I'm simply too exhausted to fire up the oven. The nearby fast food joints and my favorite local eatery are also usually closed by the time I'm done with my workday. To walk through traffic anyway.

I'm usually in a cooking mood, but like I said; I've just been too tired.

One of my co-workers brought in some lovely nibbly bits this afternoon and after tasting just one, I was hooked. I googled the recipe as soon as I got home and I can't believe how simple a tasty tidbit like this is to make. It's practically thrown together. Not that I'd make a complete meal out of it or anything, but still. Great with beer.

I'll be spending my evening tweaking the CSS here, catching up with a few of you, and finally; watching this documentary.

Oh, and since I actually had time to stop and eat today, I did.

Marathon Man

I may have previously mentioned that I live right smack dab in the middle of downtown Warren, Ohio. I'm directly across the street from the city's ampitheater and the city shows movies there during the summer months. A few eclectic shops are close by, as is my favorite nightspot. I also live just a few steps away from the Trumbull County Courthouse, located in the (what else?) historic courthouse square. Home also to a beautiful little gazebo.

The gazebo has been one of my favorite little places in the city to just crash and pull out a good book. But I can't do that this week.

This week, while I sit at the bus stop (in front of the courthouse and near the gazebo) watching the chaperoned, shackled prisoners walk across the street from the courthouse to the jail, I get to hear the original good book being read aloud, rather loudly. Microphones, amplifiers, the whole lot. Nonstop.

Is that blood on my earlobe?

Vain, Vain, Go Away

I find myself thinking about my age more than I care to lately. I did something to the muscle below my left shoulder blade last night. One of two possibilities: I slept in a funny position (which I often do) or, er...I won't go into detail about the other. Let's just say The Boyfriend was involved.

I just took two of these for the first time. I so do not want to become one of those people who cheerfully pass the product on to others, like the smiling actors in the commercials I've seen.

I've also noticed a tiny grey hair growth spurt along my hairline. I swear the unsightly strands have decided to band together to form a thin stripe just over the left side of my forehead. I guess it could be worse.

Luckily, I haven't seen too many lines or wrinkles taking up residence on my face or around my eyes. And I still get mistaken for being in my mid-twenties (I'm not ashamed to say I'll be thirty-eight this year). I suspect having a twenty-one year old boyfriend helps keep me young and beautiful.

On the outside, at least.