Background

A Pool Hustler's Daughter grows up in subterranean America. She dreams big, hustles daily and loves her Daddy. With empathy, fascination and grace she navigates and inhabits every tier of society; sees beauty and hope and magic in all things; respects and lives by the "mitzvah."
A Pool Hustler's Daughter calculates the trifecta payout at the racetrack, hides money on three parts of her body, has an arsenal of "Uncles," and keeps a baseball bat by the front door. She values friendship, loyalty and experiences over "things." Like her father, she seeks to learn "The secrets of the universe" and believes "Life ain't on the square." She applauds the self-made and those who learn to "overcome" their circumstances. Her door is always open for a sofa to sleep on, a hot meal, or an eager listener for a life story.
























Thursday, August 1, 2013

Twas the Night Before Gay Pride

I don't know how I missed Prince's show with New Power Generation at City Winery Chicago last night - but I did. I had my cream faux satin teddy and sparkling purple thigh highs on and everything. I was wearing a head band! With something written in Japanese! No idea what it said, but it looked cool - that's the important thing. I crimped my hair and was carrying my daughter's Hello Kitty electric guitar. My purse was leopard and covered in purple fur that I bought from a card table on Chicago and State Streets run by an African of indiscriminate origin.

Africa is a big place. I think it's even bigger than the US. Obama's there, now, right? But I heard from Charlie Rose( or was it Nancy Grace?) that maps and globes make America look bigger. Ever hear of industrial psychology? It's known as the "Cartographer's Dilemma." No, it's really not called that, I just made it up on the spot. I do that sometimes, you know. That's how I talked my way into Paisley Park the first time.

Anyway, African guy throws in a Louis Vuitton backpack for an extra dollar. I tried to go all Jewel on his ass and was like "Why not buy one get one free?" and he laughed at me and said something in French or Portuguese - or Swahili - for all I know. Then he started chanting "America! America!" I had to actually take my headphones out of my ears to listen closely to make sure he wasn't chanting "Death to America" as I had just gotten off the red line train and was bombarded with signs that said "If you see something - say something." I wondered if "If you hear something, say something" meant the same thing?

So, I listen to this guy and no, he's totally not a terrorist, I'm like totally not going to turn him into the police. And instead, he actually closed up shop early and joined me at Forever Yogurt. Just like me, he couldn't believe the topping selection. Like fifty toppings! So, there we are enjoying our low-fat creamy goodness together at Forever Yogurt and Malik - his name is Malik FYI - and he loves America! Malik asks me what I'm doing tonight and I say "Going to see my boss."

Malik asks "Who's your boss?"

And I answer him rather quickly, with a seemingly healthy/but potentially dangerous conventionally grown blueberry skin stuck to my front tooth "Prince. My boss is Prince. I'm in his entourage."

Wait, off subject here - why did I not get in to the Prince show last night? Answer me that question - PLEASE. It's a friggin' WINE BAR of all places not...FIRST AVENUE! Okay, maybe it has something to do with the restraining order Prince has on me...but I thought that was only legal in the state of Minnesota? Me - alone - and cold - you know wearing lingerie at night when it's fifty degrees is tough. Tears streaming so hard mascara is running down my cheeks and I lose a contact and am legally blind.

I stumble into famed chef Stephanie Izard's Girl and The Goat restaurant on Randolph and it's late at night, and I'm vulnerable, and needing to be comforted with some game meats - and some organic potato vodka - and they won't seat me. They tell me - "We don't want your kind here!" and I'm like "What do you mean? MY KIND? Members of Prince's entourage? Okay - not "Officially" in Prince's entourage....What? Foodies?" Then the stuck-up hostess tells me they are booked solid through 2040 and to try the Greek diner on the corner.

I get to the Greek diner on the corner - and I survey the room - it's Midnight and I see - out of my one good eye mind you - a room full of women who look just like me. They, too, are dressed in lingerie and leopard prints. They, too have "big hair" and boots like Julia Roberts in the box office blockbuster film Pretty Woman. I sit down happily and order a salad with dressing on the side - oops I lied - I order gravy fries and a chocolate malt. A Policeman walks in and grabs one of the women in lingerie and puts hand cuffs on her and starts to drag her out of the coffee shop. I stand up to defend this woman and tell the Cop - "You just can't go around arresting Prince fans. Not all of us could get into the show. Small venue."

And the Cop laughs at me and says "These aren't Prince fans lady, they're prostitutes."

"Prostitutes?" I ask, "Not Prince fans?"

"Hookers" the other cop - I am now referring to as "Doughnut" - I gave him that nickname by the way. The first Cop will now be known as "Italian Beef."

"Hookers?" I ask one more time, losing my appetite(okay, I really didn't lose my appetite yet.)

"Be careful lady, these whores might try to steal your wedding ring."

"Whores?" I ask.

Then one of the "ladies" stands up, nearly choking on her Francheesi (she knows choking isn't good for business and clears her throat loudly) "Who are you calling a whore?"

"Not...you" I say, running my scared ass out the door, ahead of the police - Doughnut and Italian Beef - now laughing at me. I break a heel running and walk north on Halstead listening to "Sexy Mother Fu**ker" on my IPOD over and over again in an attempt to recover my self-esteem and before I know it - I am in Boys Town.

There is a group of revelers drinking beer out of an open window that start to whistle and ask me "Didn't get lucky tonight?"

One of them yells at me - "Join us!" - his name is Bob - but for literary purposes let's just respectfully refer to him as "Soulmate" here forward.

I start to cry and tell Soulmate "I couldn't get into Prince's show, got called a whore by some cops and am kind of dizzy as I can only see out of one eye at this point. I'm forty-one but lie and tell everyone I'm thirty, and I am pretty sure I now have a rash between my thighs from sweating in these tights..."

Soulmate interrupts me and says, "Sounds like my last Wednesday night, honey. Now get that fat ass in here and let me buy you a drink. Tomorrow's Gay Pride."

I walk into the bar and Soulmate puts his arm around me and says "You make me feel better about myself. Please stay here and tell me more about your sad and pathetic life."

Then I try and kiss Soulmate and he pushes me off of him and says "I'm gay. You're in a gay bar."

I give him a sad look and I lose a fake eyelash.

"But I will dance with you" he tells me.

I feel a lot better now because everybody knows Gay Men are the best dancers. I sit with Soulmate's friends and strangely feel at ease. They, too, like dressing up, taking on other personalities. They, too like Prince(but only the dirty songs.) They too, want to belong somewhere...

We raise our shots of Screaming Orgasms high and Soulmate toasts "To Prince!" I stop everyone from drinking their shot and raise my glass "To Gay Pride! To fitting in one day!"

Then Soulmate gets quiet for a moment and looks into my eyes and slowly and patiently says "Fuck fitting in...To always being yourself. Even if it causes you to lose a contact...or gives you an occasional rash."

Then our table gets rowdy and we all scream "HERE! HERE!"

And then, when Prince's "Sexy Mother F***er" comes on and I limp with my one good shoe out onto the dance floor with Soulmate - who's totally gay and totally not into me by the way - well, I finally feel like a "Sexy Mother F***er" - for realz.

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