Another opening, another blow (job)? The new Sunday-night gay sleaze-fest, Magnum, is a raunchy bash at The Park, which you were urged to attend early because a rival promoter had supposedly tipped off the coppers about it. Just to be safe, I lubed up and got there a week in advance. Hosts Dean Johnson and Jonny McGovern scored last year with triple XXX nights at the Hole, and this time their slogan was “drinking, dancing, sodomy,” so there were tongue-wagging queens around the block—though inside, I saw mostly ritualized exhibitionism, quasi-decadence, and people calculatedly bumping into each other in hopes of starting something. (My glasses were a bit fogged, mind you.) Go-go sex gods brandished their sheaths all through the sprawling boîte, writhing on various carefully placed mattresses in a steamy cruise room. And though I never did see any cops—unless they were under the covers, I mean undercover—Danny Pintauro from Who’s the Boss? was there, telling me he’s looking for a job. There was also a clubbie exclaiming, “There are ugly men with big dicks in the hot tubs!” Please—there’s no such thing as an ugly man with a big dick!
Last week, I described how a cute man with a big dick—porn star Jeff Palmer—passed it around at a racy club appearance at the Stonewall. Well, on his Web site, Palmer bizarrely states, “I had AIDS, but not from any HIV virus,” and adds that since he stopped taking medication, “Jesus Christ and his angels are taking joy on [sic] my protection. He gave me back my life.” Now give me back my dentures.
A cute guy with a big head is the subject of The Elephant Man—newly revived on Broadway—and it turns out he’s hung like an animal. You must believe me that the Rupert Graves character, while discussing how the guy’s penis escaped deformity, says, “It is quite normal . . . there’s no bone in it.” I’m not even gonna touch that one.
An actual new play, Topdog/Underdog, started 37 minutes late on opening night, the creators holding the curtain for esteemed guest (or, if you prefer, arrogant schmo) Sean “Puffy” Combs to arrive. Honey, I don’t mind waiting to see a play on the verge of winning the Pulitzer Prize, but for Sean “Puffy” Combs? While we passed the time, The Goat‘s co-producer Liz McCann was heard to murmur, “I don’t know who Sean ‘Puffy’ Combs is!” (She probably knows him better as P. Diddy.) But her partner certainly knows about bestiality on Broadway. When a guy approached her to say, “I felt violated watching The Goat,” the woman replied, “Well, a lot of gay men find that they’re really moved by the play because they take the goat as symbolic.” I took it literally—I’ve got a crush on a really cute alpaca at the zoo, no lie—but I was moved nonetheless. (And that makes eight weeks and running that I’ve been obsessed with this illustrious interspecies epic. My b-a-a-d!)
At the after-party at the Supper Club—where they’re still waiting for Puffy—I asked Chris Rock how he liked the challenging (i.e., grueling in spots) Topdog. “It was all right,” the comic said, mildly. “Oh right, you’re a reporter,” he added. “It was great!” He later sent his pregnant wife back to tell me he actually thought it was “fantastic!”
It was back to The Park for the Paper party for Human Nature, where Jimmy Fallon‘s fantastic sister, Gloria Fallon, gently teased my Vienna roll. Gloria told me she actually discussed with Jimmy the fact that I have designs on him, and he said he was well aware of that. All righty then, do I have a porn star’s chance in heaven? “Maybe,” she said, but I should add that she was laughing so hard she almost choked.
Anyway, in Human Nature, Patricia Arquette is typically ballsy, but not really naked; her privates are covered with thickets of hair (don’t ask—the movie’s painful). Between this, that Kevin Bacon play, and anything with Russell Crowe, why the trend toward hirsute stories? “Maybe because we’ve gone so far the other way,” Arquette told me at the party, “with people having no pubic hair. There are ‘smoothies’—people who take out teeth and remove their bellybuttons and eyeballs.” I was sure the cutie was just telling stories out of school, but I indulged her and asked how she stays so fearless on-screen. “I just show up and pray to God,” Arquette said. “My primary relationship is with my son, and after that is God, because my son came to me from God.” (Funny, I thought he came from musician Paul Rossi.) I told her that for me, William Morris comes first—they and their angels take joy on my protection—and she grinningly replied, “Stop it! I’ll have to save your soul!”
While we’re dabbling in savings, money expert Suze Orman might be my new deity if it turns out she’s one of us. On a recent TV appearance, Orman kept talking, without pronouns, about a “person” she once had a relationship with. Adding yet more intrigue, a USA Today article once reported, “Orman remains single and says extensive traveling and personal appearances leave little time for personal relationships.” Do you buy that (or would you maybe rather buy a money market fund)?
Out people with bankrolls swarm bingo nights at the Gay Center, where drag host Sybil Bruncheon tosses off quips all through the game-playing insanity. Last week, while everyone studiously filled out the boards, Bruncheon fluffed her feathered headdress and said, “I feel like I’m presiding over the SATs on the Titanic.”
Everybody won at the MCC Theater benefit at the Supper Club, where they were probably still waiting for Puffy. The entertainment highlight was Harvey Fierstein and Kristin Chenoweth duetting on “Do You Love Me?” (Kristin played Tevye, naturally, and Harvey Golde). But the true star was the woman at my table who observed, “The only one not crying when Halle Berry won the Oscar was Nicole Kidman, which proves she can’t act.”
Speaking of which, can I say something nice about the Broadway production of The Graduate? It’s vile, but having just rented the classic movie version again, I realized the play does give Elaine greater detail and a stronger rationale for going against mom’s wishes (if also a nonstop feyness that’s positively leaden). Alas, in the play and the movie (both of which are based on the book), the alcoholic victim of neglect, Mrs. Robinson, represents sleazy sellout vulgarity at its worst, and in fact all the grown-ups are portrayed as absolutely corrupt and grotesque. Meanwhile, we’re supposed to cheer Elaine for being repulsed by a stripper and thrill as Benjamin the stalker decides that this pretty, vapid creature is the answer to all his ills.(The play, by the way, doesn’t give us the “Elaine!” ending, an omission that’s one of its few original touches. It does give us extra, incongruous ’60s music—including a song from Midnight Cowboy—no doubt because they needed to fill out the CD of Graduate music that’s currently on sale!)
Did you know that in ’67, when the movie came out, Dustin Hoffman was 30 and Anne Bancroft 36, so the alleged generational gross-out shock value was really nil? Another fascinating factoid: The same year saw the release of Thoroughly Modern Millie, which has also just been adapted into a Broadway show. Hey, kids, In Cold Blood came out in ’67, too—do I smell an upcoming musical called Blood? Start getting in your limo, Puffy.