Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Sweet Cruise -> In Video and Photos

Considering the journey on the first ever Sweet Cruise was bookended with a hurricane and then a quarantine, this was still the best time ever! Since my writing style is generally snarky and sarcastic, it's hard to find the words to describe just how lovely this entire adventure was. Even with the hurricane and the flu epidemic, no one complained and everyone was in good spirits. There were so many lesbians from all over the world, and everyone was so friendly, you could literally just strike up a conversation with anyone anywhere.

The first day, the ladies all congregated in what I call "Tribes" - the groups that would travel together the rest of the journey. All day, every day, we could sit on beaches together, gamble in the casino, go "zip lining" (you guessed it, I passed on that one), dance in one of the dance halls, and meander around the decks.

In addition, there were panels every day on subjects like Women-Owned Businesses and our Equal Rights, with prestigious panelists from our community, along with meet and greets in all areas of business.

One of the main goals of this trip, however, was bringing lesbian volunteerism into the communities we visited. Since we are fighting for our lives with equal rights in the areas of marriage and Don't Ask, Don't Tell - the concept of bringing visibility to the masses was really embraced by co-founder Shannon Wentworth, who organized volunteer missions at each one of our stops.

Check out this video of the the volunteer excursions and I dare you not to cry!

Did you cry? I wept seeing this!

With all the incredible talent we had on board, I took the opportunity to have a staged celebrity reading of one of my lesbian feature films in development, The Road To Dinah. Here's a quick little clip starring Erin Foley and Nicol Paone (with Gloria Bigelow):

For all you people out there who came up to me offering to invest in the film, now would be the time to contact me!

And here we are all happy and carefree just a few hours before we hit Hurricane Ida full force:

That first night, most of the ship was violently ill as the captain steered our ship in insanely rocky waters as far away from Hurricane Ida as possible. Many others - like myself - managed to stay relatively fine, but still were up all night wondering how much worse it was going to get. Then, the few smart ones, downed a bunch of drugs, passed-out and managed to sleep through it.

I don't want to name names (Gloria Bigelow) but I have it on good authority that a few of the women were on the phone to their financial advisors around 3 am trying to cash-in their IRA's in order to rent a helicopter to come out and air-lift them off the boat.

As one of my friends put it, that first night was very much a scene from Titanic, only instead of the violins on deck playing Nearer My God To Thee, it was Lady Gaga blaring loudly through the speakers to the tune of Just Dance.

Monday, November 16, 2009

This Wednesday

This Wednesday, come by and see what's left of me after 7 days on the Sweet Caribbean Cruise with 1200 lesbians and a hurricane.

Also, this time, the first 15 people through the door with a canned food good will receive a free cocktail!

We're mixing and mingling this month with the world famous Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles and the West Hollywood Visibility Committee, who will be there collecting canned goods for our friends over at the Gay and Lesbian Elder Housing, Los Angeles.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Sweet Cruise Update

Hello kittens,

As many of you know, I am floating around the Caribbean seas on a ship many have referred to as a giant lesbian sorority at sea.

One stereotype of lesbians is that we love drama, so our Sweet Cruise directors did not disappoint on Day One as the itinerary involved driving through a hurricane. The boat started rocking as we left the calm waters of the Mississippi River into the Gulf and the boat started rocking (um, to say the least) at around 10 pm. At that point, all the lesbians who were bummed that they were on the 5th floor - also referred to as "steerage" or the "Leonardo DiCaprio" ward - got the last laugh as the folks in the forward penthouse suites got to experience the fun of being lifted - full body - out of their beds all night. While they were having Hoot n' Annies downstairs, the 10th and 11th floors - also known as the Artists' Wing because all the talent was stashed there - were up all night as things flew off shelves and doors were slammed open and shut.

In fact, my next door neighbors - lovely couple from Australian - heard so much "banging" in my room, they actually called the steward to open my door to make sure everything was okay. Of course, at 2 am, I was up on the very top of the boat with my tribe* hanging off the front of the boat. Because that's how we roll. Meanwhile, now the joke is that my room gets more action when I am not in it. The banging was just my safe door.

All night, about 1/3 of the passengers threw up all night. You could tell the LA lezzes because the next day they were kinda thrilled about this and called it the Hurricane Ida diet.

A few nights ago, we had a celebrity filled staged reading of one of my upcoming feature films, The Road to Dinah. This was a blast for me, and a chance for the women to see what goes on behind the scenes of making a lesbian film. The reading included Mariah Hanson, Erin Foley, Gloria Bigellow, Nicol Paone, Jamie Babbit and more.

Here's an excerpt:

And here's the "non private collection" photos from the last few days. All I can say about the "private collection" is that I am going to have to have a really, really strong ego if any of these bitches start posting those photos. Any time you indulge in anything fun or crazy, like ten thousand cameras come out and there are flashes like you are Lindsay Lohan coming out of a nightclub.


Get the flash player here: http://www.adobe.com/flashplayer

Party time:
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'80's Dance Party:

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Yesterday I ran around Roatan with 10 apha females. Managed to avoid eating iguana and passed on drinking "jungle juice".

More later, kittens, today I go shopping and the tribe is already ringing my phone off the hook wondering where the fuck I am.

*the term we use to describe the packs of lesbians that have naturally formed amongst the passengers.

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Lez Boat

My video tribute to The Love Boat shot on Day One of the Sweet Caribbean Cruise.

Rock The Boat (Don't rock the boat, baby)

It seems like everyone ignored the warnings, and 1200 lesbians boarded the NCL Spirit at the New Orleans port on Sunday afternoon. It was a rush job, considering they moved up our launch so they could float around the oncoming hurricane, which by noon was upgraded to a category 1.

Once everyone figured out how to check in and actually get on the boat, we all rushed over to the champagne reception where we caught up with Sweet president Shannon Wentworth and her team, who were hustling to get everyone on board.

Next was the lifeboat safety drill, then all the ladies headed up to the top of the boat to hang by the pool whilst we launched. There I ran into Shewired.com editor Tracy Gilchrist, Wolfe Video founder Kathy Wolfe, LA Gay and Lesbian Center Board members Tammy Billik and Jane Costello and award winning film maker Katherine Linton (Lesbian Sex & Sexuality). It's just so wonderful running into all the familiar faces from SoCal, along with all my friends from all over the country - all in one place!

The most popular dinner place the first night was - of course - the sushi restaurant! I witnessed my first (make that my first through tenth) sake bombs (dropping your shot of sake into your Sapporo), then everyone headed over to Henry's Pub where Nat and Meg from AfterEllen.com hosted the most outrageous evening of karaoke! My god, what's the deal with all these women that can sing! The place was absolutely packed, with women standing and dancing in the booths...with overflow going onto to the deck.

About this point, the boat was eeking out into the Gulf and that's where the rocking and rolling started. We all packed into the Stardust Ballroom and starting dancing up a storm. As the boat moved more and more, the women kept dropping like flies - rushing off to their cabins. All I can say is "god bless dramamine". It was a good thing I was dancing with the lesbian surf team from LA since you needed strong leg muscles to actually stay ON the dance floor and not get tossed back and forth.

We went outside to notice the pool water was swooshing up and over to the left, then up and over to the right until there was absolutely no water left in the pool We were brave and headed up to the very top and front of the boat. Lovely view and loads less rocky.

Then it was a long, long night of swaying. Everything flew around my cabin! Meanwhile, Ida was upgraded to a category 2 as we all fell asleep and hoped for the best!

Here's my first video vlog from my cabin:

Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Lez Boat...soon will be making another run...the Lez Boat...promises something for everyone

IMPORTANT - EVERYONE GOING ON THE CRUISE, UPDATE: YOU HAVE TO BE ON THE BOAT BY 2 pm because if we don't leave by 4 PM, we will hit the hurricane.

And so begins my 8 day coverage of the inaugural journey of the SWEET travel line - The Sweet Caribbean Cruise, starring Hurricane Ida! I'm coming to you today from N'Orleans (I learned how to say it last night), where I am at a kinkos paying way too much for copies.*

I'm going to try to remember what happened last night at the kick off parties. Through the fog I do recall saying I was not going to drink too much, party too hard or stay out all night on the first night. Ooops.

We started off at the Sweet Kick Off party on the Mississippi, then went over to the only lesbian bar in town, called Rubyfruit Jungle where owner Mary told us NOT TO GO ON THE CRUISE WITH A HURRICANE COMING! Since lesbians are infamous for ignoring red flags, we just smiled and nodded.

The Jungle is rumoured to be haunted, so we were trying to talk to the spirits. Prior to us arriving, a tour bus had stopped by as part of a haunted tour. Mary told us this joint is frequented by ghosts and "those of the vampire lifestyle."
Get the flash player here: http://www.adobe.com/flashplayer

*I just learned the lesson of planning. Instead of printing and copying my script in Los Angeles, I just paid $50 to do it here. So much for fucking brunch today. Meanwhile, please come to my script reading of THE ROAD TO DINAH on the cruise on Day Four at 7 pm. Starring Mariah Hanson, Erin Foley, Nicol Paone and Dalilah Rajad.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


48% of voters in Maine wanted equal rights.

Meanwhile, these fuckers better hope they don't run into me in a dark alley any time soon.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Heads Up: Suzanne Westenhoefer, Erin Foley, Jason Stuart, Liz Feldman and Andre Kelly on Stage Wednesday Night

When this came in the mail the other day, I had to pass it on. People, this is going to be off the hook! Some of the biggest names in comedy (and gay comedy no less) are going to all be on stage in one night at the Improv this Wednesday.

If you haven't been to Gays R Us yet, it's the best night out. You cocktail in the bar prior to the show, then the show is fast-paced, hysterical and very interactive (and of course, completely gay) then you cocktail with the comics post show in the lounge. As I've said before, the laughter is better than lithium - I always walk out of this night high as a kite from laughing so much.

Here's the info and remember to print out this invite for a discount:

Hollywood Improv : Wed Nov 4th, 8pm
Another installment of the Gays R Us Comedy Show! Comics include: Erin Foley (mc), Liz Feldman, Andre Kelly, Jason Stuart, Page Hurwitz,
Mike Uryga, Erin Schauer with the fabulous Suzanne Westenhoefer headlining!!
8162 Melrose Avenue one block west of Crescent Hgts
RSVP suggested: (323) 651-2583
$14 cover at door, but only $10 with flyer (below)