My Favourite Things (of 2011)
12. What Matters Most. The new cd by Barbra Streisand is sublimely perfect. I don't spend a lot of money on new cds. I usually go to itunes and buy by the song. Usually it is songs recorded and performed on GLEE. Sometimes it is movie soundtracks, sometimes it is vocals - but it is almost always just by the song, unless it is a movie soundtrack -- because that is a journey and you need the soundtrack to THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM from start to finish.
This year, though, I spent money on a few actual cds and, aside from What Matters Most, my favourites were Michael Buble Christmas, Kristine W Straight Up With a Twist, Mary J. Blige With Each Tear, the cast albums to Sister Act, Follies and Anything Goes and ALL my Glee music. Now, some of these cds may have been released in 2010 - but they didn't make their way into my Ipod until 2011, and that's when it starts for me
11. The new season of Glee. I don't care who wants to tease me and judge me - I am a Gleek and proud of it. This year I saw the writers make Rachel and Finn likeable again (and Will, too). I saw Mike Chang learn to sing and deal with his parents; and I saw Santana and Quinn (my two favourites on the show) get some good storylines (especially Santana) and some FIERCE numbers (especially Santana).
10. Some seriously good new tv. I can't begin to talk, at length, about them all; but I can say that I am addicted to SUITS (it's like crack),
I adore Bernadette Peters and Jan Maxwell and.. don't make me name them all (Elaine Paige, Danny Burstein, Mary Beth Piel, Terri White .. I said DON'T). I went to see the show in D.C. and then I saw it three more times in New York. There are haters. I am a lover. I will remember it. Always.
7. SISTER ACT. ANYTHING GOES. THE PEOPLE IN THE PICTURE. ONCE. I saw a lot of good theater this year. Not all of it; but some of it. Good, great, not so good. There was a lot of talk about Sister Act being harmless and The People in the Picture being substandard and about Anything Goes being wrong and about Once being boring.
I don't give a rat's ass what anyone else says. Sister Act made me happy. Donna Murphy in The People in the Picture demonstrated the standard for which all actors should set their goals as artists
Anything Goes brought me out of a depressed state so bad it threatened to ruin Christmas for my family. And Once made me feel that thing you feel when you are in a theater watching something that you know will take theater to the next level.
So to all the dissenters I have just one thing to say: shut your pie hole.
6. SLEEP NO MORE. I had heard about it and I wasn't interested. My dearest friends gave me tickets for my birthday and Pat and I went and it was the most theatrical experience of my life, except my life.
5. Being in the NOH8 campaign, along with some of our dearest friends. Pat and I LOOOOVE this campaign created by Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley.
When they did a shoot in New York, we just had to go, just as our friends have done, here in New York, California, Dallas, all over the country. We are proud and honoured to be a part of this photographic series.
4. My Cooking Party. A year ago I got a job. It was the first job I've had in fifteen years. In the last fifteen years I have run a photography studio and picked up odd jobs here and there, including (but not limited to) internet auctioneering, housekeeping, personal assisting, personal training, estate organization and distribution... The time had come, though, for me to get a job with a paycheck and some regular hours. My best friend helped me get this job and I was shocked to find myself in a new line of work for which I was ideally suited with two employers that weren't only great bosses, they were great friends. I found myself a part of something, once more, with co-workers and camaraderie. We go to work and we enjoy each others' company and making the work day perfect for our clients, our bosses and ourselves. My friend Joanna once told me that everyone gets three careers in their life. I've had a lot of jobs but only two careers. I was a photographer and, now, I am an event coordinator. I don't know if anything else I've done counts as a career and I don't know if I have another one coming; but, for now, I am deliriously happy.
3. The happiness of my family. I've watched some good things happen to the people I love this last year. Not super monumental things, perhaps, but some good things. Little wins, you might say. Things like: employment. Or weight loss. Or new babies. Or new relationships. An actor booking a gig. A privately owned company breaking even one month. An acting class every Sunday... ok, that one's really special to me because that's my husband. Every Sunday he gets to go be an actor and learn; and he comes home glowing. And during this year he has done some acting; and he comes home glowing. That's the best thing of all for me. Watching the people I love be happy.
2. The weddings. Not mine. The others. AJ and Marc. Vince and Miller. Christopher and Kevin. Bobby and Matt. Richard and Daniel. Jason and Ken. I didn't go to all of them; but I knew of them. I saw photos on Facebook. I sent a wedding cake to one and took a wedding cake to one.
After all they have done for us during the last year, being able to make their 11th hour wedding happen in a more romantic and exciting way than their planned trip to city hall was a highlight, not of my year but of my life.
Being around to witness so much love; it was a perfect way to spend the year.
1. MARRIED AND COUNTING. The wedding tour that took Pat Dwyer and I to Vermont, New Hampshire, Iowa, California, D.C. and Coney Island and left us with a beautiful film documenting our love and our quest to help bring marriage equality to the forefront of peoples' lives was the trip of a lifetime. Witnessing the passing of gay marriage in New York and seeing the people (those in power and those humbles trying to influence those in power) with a passion for change was beautiful and inspiring.
It was an unforgettable experience that I owe all to Allan and Jennifer, to Pat and to the people I call family. I am, indeed, a lucky man. See the trailer for Married and Counting on our Youtube page: