December 20, 2024

Having Drinks with Phyllis Diller in the Hotel Bar

Back from Atlanta. It was an okay time! Conferences can take a toll on you. You're stuck in a basement of a hotel with no windows, wearing some monkey suit. I love talking about our books to anyone who's interested. There were some extremely nice people. The conference was a little fucked up to begin with (thus a very low turnout) so people were happy we were there and I had a lot of down time.

We were trapped at the Hilton Altanta in downtown, where there is nothing. Chick-Fil-As and Hooters. I'd mostly walk around in the 50 degree sun without my jacket on and relax. I ate so much crappy fast food that I was sweating cheese. That first night I spent my p diddies (that's entertainment-industry speak for per diems, yo!) on a $20 room service reuben. I sat in my underwear on my king sized bed and watched cable and pigged out.

Later, I went down to the hotel bar. I love hotel bars. Decorated like an afterthought, a half-hearted attempt at authenticity when really it's not a destination in itself but just like the hotel itself--a generic space to pass through. In the hotel bar you hear conversations you wouldn't normally hear because all involved are off to another destination the next day. The ragged arrive and smoke guardedly. People are exhausted. Perhaps some will hook up. You don't mind paying five bucks for a beer because you get a cup of nuts with it and the company is paying anyway (except for mine). I listened to this group of consultants--men in business suits--discuss how much champagne they drink in first class on flights to Australia. So much they piss themselves, apparently. On the big screen TV, Larry King was interviewing the authors of that He's Just Not That Into You" book, AND the guy from that bachelor show AND for some reason Phyllis Diller was on! It was crazy. She was so far beyond anyone else in that show, and kept making googly eyes at Larry. I figured it was time to leave when a drunk lesbian anthropologist invited me to play pool with her.

Friday night was weird. I hung out with some fellow young academic publishing types; we had dinner at this weird Southern-food tourist trap called Pittypat's Porch where everyone ate off tin plates, our waiter was from Russia, and Mannheim Steamroller Christmas carols played over the loudspeakers. For our Friday night entertainment, we rode the super fast elevators at the Marriot for a while.

Luckily, Adam saved me. Good old Adam! He wasn't in Minneapolis very long, and like every other cool person, as soon as I discovered him, he was on his way out. Now he attends Emory's School of Divinity. He's a great guy and him and his super-cool doctor-boyfriend took me out of Downtown Hell to Little Five Points and Candler Park. My people! We this fantastic meal at a restaurant owned by half of the Indigo Girls (thanks for the awesome spoonbread, Emily!!!!). And then to a party full of Doctor Killdares. But that was rather lame so we ended up at The Eagle, which is the bar that happens to catch everyone who finds the mainstream cookie-cutter gay clubs less than satisfying. The true leather daddies and bears don't seem to mind. Many of them pinched my tits or my ass and gave me friendly smiles! Hello, daddies! Met some cool people, out till five am, great last night. Thanks to Adam for salvaging my view of Atlanta. Back now, to zero degrees.

Posted by Jason at December 20, 2024 07:59 AM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?