art Gay

Hamish Bowles

Dinner on Friday night with Ian Drew at Essex and Beauty.  Large, noisy new restaurant..a bit too blingy for me but the food was excellent and paid for by the restaurant.

Try the steak tartare on the thick, tasty rice cake.


After dinner we went to a miserable East Village gay bar where men sat beside each other trying to snag other men elsewhere on Grindr.  Their faces lit up by LED screens causing them all unwittingly, with their ghostly green visage, to look like that Ingres portrait of Napoleon.

Napoleon by Ingres

Ian finished his drink.  We left.

It has been startlingly cold.  I love the cold.  I get to dress up!  Hats, hats, hats.  Coats, waistcoats, velvet scarves.   I love my burgundy velvet scarf.  Last night I wore my Dior cape.  It did not pass unnoticed.

Dressed accordingly, the Little Dog and I, walked to Soho House and began to write my film.  Then, oddly, I had another really great idea for a film (or novel) inspired by my new, young HIV friend.    It gushed onto the page like a waterfall.  First, second and third act.   Beginning, middle and the end.

Met and flirted with Brendan Fallis who is super cute.  Steam room buddy.

Even though I am having a great time, I still irrationally fear bumping into Jake.  Consequently there is something utterly ruined about these New York streets.  Like after a blitz or something.  Strewn with emotional rubble.

There seems to be a Jake clone on every corner and every time I see a man who looks like him I shudder.

I think of the special moments we shared here.  Making love in the Jane Hotel.  Reaching out and touching him in the street.   Kissing him for the first time this time last year in the back of that bar on Third Avenue.  Then the sadness comes.  The questions, the feeling that I have been punched in the stomach.

If I’m hurt…can you imagine how badly that girl feels that he deceived for 7 years?  Poor love.  I hope she got herself back on her feet.  Found somewhere nice to live…met a nice guy.  She’s lucky she escaped.  If he was beginning to do meth when I met him he’ll be HIV positive in no time at all.  What a fucking cliché.

Hurt people, hurt people.

Yet, I exist in two completely different spheres.  The reality of my life outweighs the fantasy.

As if to prove a point I had dinner with Federico, my artist friend from Palermo.   We ate at Westville.  The food came late but the conversation was very lively so it didn’t seem to matter.   Then, my NYU poet friend Anthony joined us and we headed west to meet Hamish Bowles.

Hamish greeted me warmly.  We’d met a couple of times many years ago.

Hamish is the real deal.  The man Patrick Kinmonth and Issie Blow wished they could have been.

My fantasy about Hamish: that he went to Eton, life served effortlessly to him….couldn’t be further from the truth.

We actually had rather a lot in common.  He too lived in Kent during his formative years.  Went to a grammar school in Canterbury.  We would have been knocking about Canterbury at exactly the same time…probably both very horny gay teenagers wondering where we could get cock.

Like Fenton Bailey he succeeded in spite of everything.  In spite of his difference.

Hamish is primarily an academic, but his glamorous day job is the European Editor at Large for Vogue.  He is a respected authority on both worlds of fashion and interior design.

In April 2001 he was appointed creative consultant at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, with responsibility for organizing and mounting the internationally renowned and critically acclaimed Costume Institute Exhibition, “Jacqueline Kennedy: The White House Years—Selections from the John F. Kennedy Library Museum”.

Hamish has a huge collection of haute couture that he lends to museums and galleries all over the world.  The Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Fashion Institute of Technology, and The Museum of the City of New York in Manhattan; the Palais Galliera and The Musee de la Mode, the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Museum of London in London among others.

Recently he curated the Cristóbal Balenciaga show at The Spanish Institute.  Opened by Queen Sofía of Spain entitled, “Balenciaga: Spanish Master,” the show examines the work of Cristóbal Balenciaga and his Spanish influences.   60 pieces of clothing and accessories including some from Hamish’s own collection and many unseen publicly before.


I am going to see the show on Tuesday.

We discussed Cary Fukunaga’s Jane Eyre, he had just seen at a private screening for Anna Wintour.  You’ll remember that Jake and I met Cary this summer in Whitstable with Mia.  Hamish said that, although a bit slow, he loved the film and cried all the way through.  He reported that the costumes were perfect and historically accurate.  He said that Mia’s performance was excellent.

Discussed Michael Bessman’s house that once belonged to the Baron de Meyer.

I cried all the way home.  I couldn’t help myself.

I should be really happy.  Deep down I am.  I just need to learn how to consistently mine the joy I know is there.

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Dogs Gay Hollywood Malibu Travel

Little Dog? We eat those in our country..

Amelia (Lady Rizo)

Just spilled water all over my lap top which after a few shakes is now working again.  So clumsy today.  All over the place.

Firstly, I have to tell you THIS:  The NYC heat is frying my brain.

Now, I must tell you this:

I have been sitting on/keeping from you an insane and shocking moment the past couple of months.  I just didn’t know how or if I should even mention it.

One of my freaky Hollywood neighbors text me after we had dinner before I left California asking if I had ever ‘been intimate with the little dog?’ it was NOT a joke.

He intimated that he had ‘feelings’ for his kitten.

I really didn’t know what to do.

I urged him to get help.

This is just one of the many reasons I don’t want to go back to LA.  I missed my flight – overslept.  Had to buy another ticket.  It’s all the same.  There must be more insane/lonely/desperate people per square mile in LA than any other city in the USA.

I know that this might sound a bit racist but every time a Korean looks at the little dog I wonder if they are thinking what sauce they would eat him with.  Once, outside the Mud Cafe on 9th a Korean told me with a smug smile that she could not understand our absurd preoccupation with an animal that they grill.

Saw the Kids are Alright yesterday evening with Amelia.  We had a lovely lunch in Williamsburg.  We made plans after her genius performance at Joe’s Pub the previous night.  I had to walk over the boiling hot Williamsburg Bridge as it was unexpectedly closed to traffic.  Walking over the bridge made it all the more exciting adventure.

After our lovely lunch in Williamsburg– omelets and watermelon/mint juice we, Amelia and I hunted the shops for exciting sale items.  I bought socks and underwear at the 70% off Paul Smith Shop.

This is the performance from the night before:



Saw Amelia perform Lady Rizo with Jake.  He loved the show.

Afterwards we hung with Amelia and her husband at a small bar on Lafayette.

The following afternoon me and Jake bid our adieu.  I have absolutely no idea if or when we will see each other ever again.  We have not made plans.  We will see each other if it feels right I suppose.

Last night, the streets were boiling hot and humid.  At night the thunder, lightning and torrential rain cool everything down for a few glorious moments.

Anyway, The Kids are Alright: Annette Benning is marvelous in Lisa’s movie.  A totally convincing alcoholic dyke.   The other performances were wonderful too but Benning’s was by far my favorite..and there again was Mia Wasikowska!  Our Whitstable lunch condiment.  I assume she is well on her way to getting an Oscar, possibly next year?

Julianne Moore lacked control in A Single Man, her talent all over the place like a prolapsed labia.   Compare that asinine performance with the very genuine, tight..measured performance in the Kids Are Alright.  I would have preferred Olivia Williams of course but who the hell wouldn’t?

My ONLY gripe with the movie was the wholly unresolved issue of Ruffalo’s character who just vanished in a puff of metrosexual angst, ferociously seen off by Benning’s well observed impression of an alpha male.  Unfairly berating Ruffalo on her doorstep, telling him that he was an ‘interloper’.

He was the sperm donor.  After all they had been through, he should have been included in the family at the end of the movie.  The kids wanted a relationship with him.  It seemed unfair and churlish to jettison his character..although probably quite realistic.  After all, it was they that contacted him.  Moore who seduced him, Benning who suggested the ill-fated dinner at his house etc. etc.

I wish, when I had found my real dad he had been like Mark Ruffalo rather than the lying villain on offer.

Somebody suggested that if it had been a straight couple who had cheated with a surrogate mother..would the mother be part of the family?  Well,  if the kids wanted her..I suppose so.  It posed many interesting and complex questions about what family means.   What it could mean.

I loved everything about this exquisitely crafted movie but one thing above everything else totally blew me away:  all of the characters took turns being the persecutor/rescuer/victim.  Genius.  There was so much at stake for all of them.

Saturday after the movie met Ian at Soho House NYC, which was jammed with gays.  One particularly drunk, gay in swim short was making a total fool of himself.  He should have been chucked out but everyone was a bit scared of the repercussions I think.  Ate pork chops.  Took cab to The Phoenix, a gay bar in East Village.  Drank sickly diet coke.  Met 20-year-old Persian boy.  Nice for the ego.

This morning I saw Mike Z, a friend from LA, at the park whilst walking our dogs.  Now I am waiting on him to come pick me up for lunch.  He may forget.  I am really hungry.  Ravenous.

Ended up eating polish sausage on my own.  Never trust a drinker to do what they agree to do.

Busy week ahead.  No idea what’s in store.  All I know is that once I get home I am going directly to the new road to see it being built.  I can’t wait.

Rant Travel

No Teeth

Things change between some people and some things never change.

Back at home in Chelsea after two glorious days in Whitstable.   The train to London was filled with fat women with no teeth from Ramsgate.   The Little Dog sat on his lap all the way here.   They are my strange family of travelling souls.

The house in Chelsea is neat and cool.  We are sleeping in a huge room painted a dirty rose color.  Phil bought us new toothbrushes. The cupboards are filled with boxes marked BOOKS AND PLATES.  Knowing that I love them Phil found two gilded (ormolu I think) stork shaped candlesticks for the dining room table.  In our room she filled a vase of my favorite pink peonies.  I moved them into the kitchen so I can look at them whilst I write.  Phil has a lanky, 11 month old, wolf-like lurcher called William who irritates both of us by leaping all over our bed.  Her 15-year-old daughter Moffy is going to be a model and this morning there are other very elegant girls sleeping on the drawing room sofas, their handbags overflowing with cigarettes, condoms and tampons.

The companion is in bed moaning at Phil’s dog that wants to be his friend.  “Out, out!”  William skulks away, unwanted.

We arrived in London yesterday, the hottest day here so far this year.  It was still 88 degrees at midnight when we sat on the steps in front of the house, drinking tea, explaining to the travelling companion what coal holes were and how they worked.

The house is much bigger than I remembered it.

After a lovely lunch at La Famiglia (I ate ham and figs) we walked up the Kings Road to the Designer’s Guild summer sale and hankered after a beautiful chair and a bulbous teapot.

Last night we drove to Battersea Park and walked for two hours.  The Little Dog is happier in London than anywhere else we visit.  He is free to run and leap and now he has a new friend to play with-even though their new friendship started off with growls and snapping.

Nobody knows how to access the wifi so neither of us automatically reaches for our phones or laptops as soon as our eyes open.  It is very therapeutic not having the Internet so freely available.

Less eager to check my emails, more of an event to do so.  We have to walk to the Starbucks on the Kings Road and drink warm iced coffee.

I really shouldn’t be so eager to placate myself with the soothing, addictive page after page of regular web sites I open every morning.

Even though we are only half way through our adventure I am already dreading having to deal with LA and the eventual closing down of my life in the USA.

I didn’t mention that the travelling companion bumped into (of all people) Cary Fukunaga in Wheelers the Oyster Bar in Whitststable.  He is here directing Jane Eyre. He was with the actress playing Jane Eyre – Mia Wasikowska who was Tim Burton‘s Alice.   Even before I knew who he was he had an air about him that reeked of unbridled entitlement.   It came as no surprise to hear that he directs-we are all the same.  All directors have that air about them that may indicate that he is indeed the real deal.  Time will tell.  He wanted a table in the back room but Anita refused to give him one.  If only he had been a little softer, more charming, he would have gotten what he wanted.

Seeing Gary tonight in North London.  We are going to a Diana Krall event at Kenwood House.

Travelling companion and I are having a lovely time.   Not without consternation but actually and mostly we laugh and try to make sense of our odd friendship.

There was something inevitable about this I suppose. Though there is an emotional imbalance and sexual disparity that is more revealed as we spend time together.  I understand – who wouldn’t?   It’s just the way things are.

We may know each other a little too well.

I have never, ever thought of love as anything other than fleeting.  Being here in London has filled the hole, the gaping, yearning hole that rots my life from the inside out.  London! Look around you!  The art, the architecture, the color and movement inspire and nourish.

Phil is off to a woman’s Buddhist retreat for the day.

Is this Sunday?  I think so.   We are thinking about extending our trip.  Staying in London longer, maybe going to Berlin.

Anyway, another day has passed since I wrote the above and even though we are in the very heart of London there is something oddly bucolic about this house.

Saturday morning we walked up the Kings Road toward Sloane Square.  Where the Duke of York’s Barracks used to be, there is now a food market that sells delicious looking food from all over the world, Caribbean, Mediterranean, British (of course), Indian etc. etc.  We ate curried goat and rice.  Delicious.

(We were going to have lunch at the Blue Bird restaurant but who ever now owns it is not taking much care.  The staff were rude and unhelpful.  The tables dirty, the food uninspiring.  It used to be so elegant.)

Bought ourselves Oyster cards and after a long walk through Eton Square and the back of Belgravia we caught a bus to Piccadilly Circus and hung out in Soho House.  He drank champagne and I coffee and fizzy water.  The staff brought the little dog a plastic box of water and a chicken breast.

After ‘lunch’ we walked back toward Bond St stopping in at Richard James which used to be so glorious but now looks a bit sad, the staff all puffed up and arrogant.

Popped into the new Louis Vuitton store, which is, I am very sad to say, TOTALLY VILE!  Packed with retail-obsessed tourists this monstrous, badly conceived, gaudily decorated ‘shop’ was also swarming with London’s boys in blue.  Policemen and women who I assume had been called to deal with a shoplifting incident.    It was almost Dickensian, the rich and the poor come to the emporium to either buy or steal.

We popped into APC and he bought a jacket that he is desperate to wear because he looks incredibly chic in it.   We are teaching him how to buy beautiful things.   Every gay man needs a style mentor.  He is so lucky to be a small to medium.  The summer sales here are stuffed with small to medium bargains.  50%/70% off everything with plenty of room for can easily get a further 10% off of everything.

I bought a teapot and six cups and a milk jug for my new life in London.

Anyway, we wended our way home.  It was incredibly hot.  We lay down and slept for a little while.

At 8ish Phil stuffed us in her car and drove to Hampstead where we saw Diana Krall then after..believe it or not..we went to Cary Fukunaga’s birthday party.  My opinion of him did not alter much.  We are both quite awkward but he gets to drink.  We are both quite competitive but he is 32.  We are both talented but John Lyons wants to suck his cock and not mine.

Is Cary Fukunaga gay?  Probably.

We met a delightful lesbian and an odd gay boy who started craving shots and drugs and became so very dull.  We sat in the most beautiful garden and smoked cigarettes.  The gay boy told us about all the thrilling gay club/bar opportunities that we could have in East London.

On the way home he sleepily laid his head on my shoulder and drunkenly told me all manner of charming things but I am acutely aware that I am still on guard.  I know that if just one person says just one cruel word about these two men together I would kill them.   Too many men in big cities are killed by homophobes and I am not going to be one of them.  Consequently, whenever it may be apparent that we are gay in public my fist is clenched just in case some fool wants to try killing us.

We were home by 3.30am.

Jake Bauman by Adam King

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