Shoot me if I’m ever that. Whatever. Kathy seemed as pleased by the exchange as I was.
When they got Liza Minnelli on the phone, of course, I was ecstatic and Liza did not disappoint, volunteering about her own day, “I’m sitting here a nervous wreck ‘cause I’m going on Saturday Night Live tonight. It’s Saturday Night Goddamn Live.” Always a bundle of warmfuzzies, Liza ended the conversation with “Okay, darling. I love you both. I’m so glad you called me. Thank you.”
On this week’s D-List (maybe the best yet), Paula Deen was, unsurprisingly, even more down home. Paula had invited Kathy and her entourage to stay over at her home in Savannah. I loved how warm and hospitable Paula was towards Kathy and her motley crew and I was particularly charmed by the sharp and sassy way that Paula, the epitome of Southern grace, handled all of Kathy’s inappropriate humor. Whether Kathy was coming on to Paula’s single son or just cracking a flat out dick joke, Paula always seem tickled and often one-upped Kathy with a hilarious, and yet somehow still ladylike, retort. My favorite example:
Kathy: (referring to her own single status) My vagina happens to be free.
Paula: Or at least reasonable.
Last week, in his wickedly funny Joe’s Pub show, Gay White and Terrified, Billy Eichner railed hysterically against the hypocrisy of closeted stars. One of the biggest laughs was when he called Obama to task over the Defense of Marriage Act, pointing out that marriage is a word, words change – even the word “word” now means “yes.” Amidst his pointed barbs, un-PC punchlines, and ranting and raving and ripping his vocal chords to shreds in tour-de-force song performances, Billy had something compelling to say about our need for leadership and role models:
This is the future right up in here, motherfucker.
It’s people like me, I’m talking about people like Bridget Everett, I’m talking about people like Julie Goldman, I’m talking Neal Medlyn, I’m talking about Jeffery Self and Cole Escola.
We are not the descendants of Adam Sandler and David Spade.
We are the children of John Waters and Bette Midler at the Baths, of Sandra Bernhard, of Paris Is Burning and Madonna, of Hedwig and The Angry Inch, of Kiki and Herb.
And how right Billy is. Just last Friday marked the premiere of the new series on Logo, Jeffery and Cole Casserole. Two twenty-year old college drop-outs no one had ever heard of became gay-mous in the span of one year making videos in Jeffery’s apartment as the VGL Boys. With zero budget and only a webcam, they created a pair of distinctive complementary characters, who through their bond and through their banter, were able to offer a wonderfully fresh perspective on everything from Gay Marriage to the revival of Hello, Dolly (via Cole’s gratuitously ingratiating recurring role as Bernadette Peters).
With their American Apparel apparel and almost adolescent appeal, Jeffery and Cole bring to the table a lot of New Gay energy, but they are at least equally New Old Gay (note their devotion to Broadway and insane obsession with the best and worst of 1990s Pop Culture). Their popularity is as much a tribute to their versatile talent as it is to the power of moxie and the importance, in these uncertain times, of forging our own paths. Sisters are doing if for themselves, y’all.