By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
Photo by Tenaya HillsIt seems I'm not the only one with an exclusive love relationship based on mutual gain. He comes over to fix the dryer and throw away the possums my dog has slain (Lilo, Possum Killa, is up to three!), and I nitpick and badger and shush him when he talks too long (which is always) and tell him he may absolutely not wear that horrid shirt on his big gay date. Are you still talking? Jesus! Zip it!
He is my gay husband. He is my one and only.
And it seems all the other art-world ladies have gay husbands, too, even if theirs are straight.
I ran into all of them Saturday at the Orange County Museum of Art's gala thingie; they were joined at the hips of their platonic lovebunnies, cooing at them really. Are they in love with their (straight) gay husbands? I wondered. It seemed like it. Or are these men local versions of the New York "walker" who accompanies those old society dames around town, but with the added bonus that we don't just see them at the opera; they call us every goddamn day, talk talk talk talk talk, and we listen. And we act like their girlfriends and they act like our boyfriends until it's time for them to go hit on someone else. In a stairwell.
So there I was at the beautifully Guggenheimed new OCMA for the opening of its very strong new "Biennial." But unlike the bad old days of OCMA, the crowd wasn't disgusting.
Now, let me tell you how it used to be. It used to be the old rich people, and then came the young rich kids in their late-20s to mid-30s who made a big deal of congratulating themselves because they were going to take on the mantle of being the next generation of museum grandees even though they very clearly didn't give a fuck. They had mean, unfriendly eyes, and if there weren't the possibility of finding a husband (or some stranger) at an opening, they simply wouldn't have been there. They would have been at Bandera where they belong.
So, yeah, those people weren't there at all. Instead, director Dennis Szakacs managed to de-yup it completely, importing instead all manner of cute LA hipsters—not the snotty kind—and tons of the lesbians and gays! Still, Szakacs was awfully stingy with the drink tickets.
All the good local peeps were there, too, but they weren't fresh meat like the LA cuties were. Curators Irene Hofmannand Liz Armstrong were fierce. Orange County Register and Riviera writer Daniella Walsh was hanging with portraitist Bradford Salamon, the Huntington Beach Art Center's Darlene DeAngeles was with ridiculously handsome photographer Phil Marquez,and my Eichler-tract friends Jon and Deb, who were very worried about me following that one column, came over to check for razor scars and issue an invite for dinner and a Tom Collins. You do remember that one column? I apologized for making them fret, but I'm still waiting for the Bush administration to apologize for making me crazy in the first place. I suspect it might be a while, but I like to keep hope alive.
Everybody's favorite local boy Sandow Birk was there, but we missed Leonard Nimoy, who'd danced attendance the night before. (We had a debate-watching date instead Friday night with Suparna the Rocket Scientistin Old Town Pasadena, where the alleys smelled like vomit and vaginitis, and couldn't make OCMA's Friday dinner, which was just as well since our debate-watching drinking game pretty much entailed taking a belt every time one of them opened his mouth and we weren't in our freshest Leonard Nimoy-meeting form.)
In fact, we were having such a ridiculously good time Saturday night, especially with the absolutely darling Fielding slacking melodiously on the stage, that when we were supposed to leave with Shar and Tenaya to go see Jack Johnson at the Moonshine Festival doohickey at the Pageant of the Masters site in Laguna Beach, we joyously flaked. "Just go ahead and shoot the Moonstone thing without me," I told Tenaya, our pretty and elegant photo editor. "My camera's in the car," she said. "I can go get it and take some pictures here before we go."
All the way out to the car? Please! Good Christ, no!
I am very, very lazy, and I expect no less from my friends.
When we all were thrown at the gala's midnight closing time, we somehow ended up at the Costa Mesa Memphis. Oh, yes, I remember! Because Dan from Memphis was at OCMA, and he said, "I'm going over to Memphis," and everybody said that sounded like a really good idea.
And a really good idea it really was!
The teeny little bungalow was a mass of writhing (and stumbling) bodies, and people we'd accidentally cussed out at OCMA (we get like that when we're happy) were buying us even more drinks after we most vociferously said no, and Dave "The Chairman" Mau was behind the bar keeping the peace, and if I had to guess, I'd bet it looked like a Justice Scalia-sanctioned orgy.