YALE/NYC TOUR Part I: Cinekink on Ice
After a flurry of erotic and professional preparations, we were off on our Valentine/Lupercalian East Coast Adventure.
I’d packed my winter coats, hats and boots, my notes for SEX WEEK at YALE 2008 (full SWAY bloggamy coming soon!), a sampling of Lust et Veritas thongs and T-shirts, three Lupercalian whips , a bag of Moore/Block in ’08 pins and platforms, a couple of Speakeasy Calendars, a full suitcase of Doc Johnson Pocket Rockets (for the Yalies), The 10 Commandments of Pleasure (for Saybrook Master Mary Miller) and an XTC glass G-spot stimulator (for me). As giveaways, I also jammed in DVDs of The Bonobo Way, our world renowned Squirt Salon, Weimar Love, Yale’s Whim ‘n Rhythm at Dr. Suzy’s Speakeasy, Zorthian (Yale Class of ’36), Dommes & Hollie, Hoods & handjobs, and Blonde Island: Funk Me, our erotic political satirical music video on the nature of sex and the folly of war, that was about to receive its East Coast Premiere at the Cinekink NYC Film Festival Pioneer Theater the night of our arrival in New York.
The Jet Blue red-eye was a breeze. It seemed like it was just a few minutes after I buckled myself into the sensuous leather seat, that I heard the pilot welcoming us to New York. I met Carlo in JFK at 5 am, then Joanne drove in to whisk us off to Great Neck, the bedroom commuter community between Manhattan and Long Island where you can hang out with squirrels, wildflowers and domesticated investment bankers, and still make it to the City inside an hour.
Joanne left for Queens where she works as a designer (her current project, From Think to Ink, is a collaboration with New Yorker cartoonists on how to create your own New Yorker-style cartoons; cool, huh?). I unpacked as Carlo called the Great Neck cab company, telling them we had to be at the Two Boots Pioneer Theater in the East Village by 6:30 pm. The dispatcher said that without traffic, it would take 25 minutes; with traffic, it could take as long as 55. Just to be safe, we gave ourselves 90 minutes, and asked them to send a cab over at 5 PM. After all, this was Funk Me’s East Coast Film Premiere (it had already had its World Premiere at the LA Erotica Film Festival), and we didn’t want to miss one red-carpeted moment of it.
Jet-lagged but horny, we fell into a tangle of lips, hips, tongues and buns up in Joanne’s attic, climaxed once each, and then slept until 2 when we awakened to a Winter Wonderland of snowflakes falling on all the glorious Great Neck flora and fauna around us. I pulled on my big shiny black 6-inch heeled, latex boots, and Carlo donned his dashing HBO Boxing coat, and by 4:55, we were standing at Joanne’s door ready for pick-up. By 5:15, there was still no cab, but we weren’t panicked since we’d given ourselves the extra half hour. As 5:30 rolled around, we started exercising our panic muscles and called the dispatcher who assured us in that confident Long Island drawl that “tha drivah’s just arown tha cawnah” on Middle Neck Road. We knew Middle Neck was only a couple of blocks from Joanne’s house, so we stopped panicking and made a few calls to see which of our Big Apple friends was joining us at the premiere. About a dozen had promised to be there, but now everyone was pleading deathly ill; two had the flu, one had full-blown pneumonia, one had broken his leg skiing, one had a crippling migraine, another had a sick son and another said she just didn’t have the chutzpah to brave the snow. We gazed at the two inches of light snowfall outside Joanne’s picture windows and laughed at how wimpy our friend was being. Then we looked at the clock – 6:15 pm and still no cab – and went back to panic mode. We called the cab company and again they reassured us that the driver was on Middle Neck just a few blocks from our door. “But you said that 45 minutes ago,” I reminded the dispatcher.
“Yeah, well, it’s taken fawty-foiv minutes for him to go one block. It’s insaayn out theyah.”
“But this morning when we booked the cab, you said it would only take–”
“Whatevah! It’s bumpah-ta-bumpah on Middle Neck. Tha cahz are craashin inta each otha on awl tha side streets.”
“But there’s less than two inches of snow–”
“Honey, Lon Guyland is paralyzed. This is the woorst blizzahd we’ve seen in yehas. “
Yehas? Ye Gods! When I lived Back East, this wouldn’t have been a blizzard; it would have been just a little snow, a “few flurries,” and it wouldn’t have stopped my grandmother from driving across town to play bridge. It occurred to me that since Global Warming, New Yorkers had forgotten the fine art of driving through the snow.
But I hadn’t time to ponder the sociological effects of climate change. I had to get to the theater! I tried the personal approach. “Listen, I flew in from LA this morning to attend the New York premiere of my movie.”
“Oh, wow, hun, congratchooLAYtions!”
“Thank you, but—“
“Is that Sundance?”
“No, it’s Cinekink.”
“CineKINK? Even bettah! Ya hear that?” she was now broadcasting the news of my premiere to what sounded like a bunch of guys in the office, or maybe their voices were coming in from the dispatching device, and they were all actually sitting in traffic on Middle Neck Road. “She’s in CineKINK! Oh Hun, that’s hot. Gut faw you.”
“Thanks,” I tried to bring her attention back to the problem. “But I was supposed to be at the theater at 6:30, which, at this point, is impossible, but the movie starts at 7, so maybe, if the cab gets here in the next 5 minutes—“
My other cell was ringing. It was Joanne: “Listen, I know I said I was going to meet you in town for the premiere, but traffic is insane, accidents everywhere, so I’m on my way home. Are you at the theater yet?”
“No, we’re still at your house.” I refused to look at the clock which seemed to mock my utterly impotent efforts at beating it. But the chimes wouldn’t leave me in blissful ignorance: it was 7 o’clock.
“The cab hasn’t come?” Joanne was saying, “Oh my God, he must be in this traffic. Or maybe he gave up. Y’know, you might want to give up. You’re taking your life in your hands out here.”
With the dispatcher in one ear and Joanne in the other, both yakking about cars crashing and bumpah-ta-bumpah immobility, I felt sandwiched between two different kinds of emergency frequencies, and it wasn’t long before I short-circuited, and the tears started spilling from the corners of my eyes. Great, now I’ll have mascara streaks down my cheeks; well, I can always blame it on the snowflakes. “I’m going to miss my premiere!” I wailed pathetically into both receivers.
“No, yawr not,” assured the dispatcher, who seemed to really care. “We’re gonna get you theyah.”
“Take the train!” commanded Joanne. “That cab is not gonna make it.”
“The train?” I repeated plaintively. “How do we get to the train?”
“Well, you have to take a cab…”
Now our third cell was ringing. It was Cinekink Film Festival Director Lisa Vandever sounding merry and bright: “Hey Dr. Suzy, welcome to New York! The theater is packed! Where are you?”
“I’m in Great Neck!” I moaned, my own neck feeling the pain.
“Great Neck? ” She made it sound like Siberia, and it may as well have been. “Listen, if you were going to be here soon, I’d make them wait a few more minutes. But its 7:15, the crowd’s getting restless, I gotta start…”
Just then, Joanne pulled up, wheels screeching and spraying sleet all over Carlo who was dealing with the situation by pacing up and down her driveway, looking at the virtually empty icy road in front of us while chain-smoking Marlboro Lights. Joanne burst from her car like a Valkyrie and hustled us into it. “I’m taking you to the train,” she asserted like the strong-willed suburban soccer mom that she is.
The “train,” that is, the Long Island Railroad, is what transports most commuting Great Neckers to Manhattan. Carlo, being a Bohemian Czech/Italian Prince with a deep-seated aversion to utilizing any kind of public facility, was not happy about taking what he insisted on calling the “subway,” but what choice did we have? Joanne’s car skidded wildly around the ice skating rink that now surrounded her house, sliding down to the famous Middle Neck Road which we could now see was a sea of horn-honking, exhaust-belching, apocalyptic, “bumpah-ta-bumpah” madness.
“If it makes you feel better, you look gorgeous,” Joanne declared. “Very sexy.”
“Thanks,” I sniffed. Of course, that made me feel worse, since my sexiness was going to waste in this frozen wasteland of stalled SUVs, broken BMWs and crunching brakes. Then suddenly, like a golden angel flying out of Chaos, a taxicab took a right from the Middle Neck bottleneck onto Joanne’s street. “That’s our cab!” I cried, rolling down the window and hollering “Stop!” at the befuddled driver. Then, before Joanne could say “You’re nuts,” Carlo and I were scrambling out of her car, traversing the frosty road and sliding into the cab.
“Doktah. Suzan Black?” asked the cabbie. “Close enough,” I confirmed, “We’re going to the Two Boots Pioneer Theater on 155 East 3rd Street in the Village.” It was 7:25 and counting, but I was feeling good, having achieved the small victory of getting into the cab. I opened my bag to phone Joanne, then noticed it wasn’t my bag. There I was, holding somebody else’s open bag overflowing with money, makeup and credit cards. Could the last ride have left her purse in the backseat? Then I saw Joanne’s name on the driver’s license. Had Carlo accidentally taken Joanne’s bag into the cab? No, he assured me; I had. What kind of Twilight Zone had we now entered? I found Joanne’s home number in Carlo’s phone book, and punched it into my cell. No answer; maybe she hadn’t made it home yet. But now the phone in Joanne’s bag was ringing. I figured I should answer it, but no one was there. I tried calling Joanne at home again to no avail. Again her cell rang, and when I picked up, no one answered. It seemed to be my destiny to spend the night of my New York film premiere on two phones, one in each ear, both somehow driving me nuts. Then I realized that the “home number” in Carlo’s phone book was really Joanne’s cell, and all this time, I’d been calling myself. I had to laugh. Then I couldn’t stop laughing. Carlo squinted at me. The cabbie turned up the radio. “Worst traffic conditions in decades,” the announcers were saying “Accidents everywhere…If you don’t absolutely have to go out, stay right where you are.”
And we were, in fact, staying right where we were, stuck in the middle of the Middle Neck Bottleneck that was moving like a turtle on Seconal. As we stewed in our heavy coats and helplessness, Middle Neck became Middle Earth, the endless limbo between what you want and where you are, between the glamorous salvation of a New York film premiere and the horrifying damnation of a Lon Guyland car accident. Contemplating this, I remembered that “The Goal is the Journey,” and whatever happened, this whole stormy experience would eventually make a great bloggamy.
That is, IF we lived through it. After spending 10 precious minutes inchworming one block down Middle Neck, our courageous cabbie announced he was going to take a “shawtcut.” We peeled off onto a side street that felt like getting on some kind of Alpine Matterhorn Wild Ride, with shiny wet cars crashing into curbs, mailboxes and each other all around us. Skidding along with the Ice Follies, weaving around out-of-control vehicles, I forgot about the premiere and just tried to breathe deeply and slowly into my pelvis (my solution for just about everything I have no solution for). Then, miracle of miracles, before I could say “Get me outa heyah!” there we were, at 155 E. 3rd Street.
I must say, the timing was perfect. Well, not quite. Just as we arrived in snowflake-dappled triumph, greeted by the welcome applause of the doorman and concession manager, one of my damn cell phones rang. So there I was, reaching around to get the phone on the threshold of the Two Boots Pioneer Theater, when both of my boots went flying in front of me, and landing me smack on my (fortunately) well-padded butt. I was a bit stunned, but fine, though I did have to suffer through Carlo giving me one of his stern don’t-you-dare-kill-yourself-or-I’ll-kill-you looks. Later, I felt slightly less klutzy when I saw at least three other people slip and fall on the same spot, one of whom looked mad enough to sue Cinekink, the Pioneer and Mother Nature Herself for creating this crazy weather.
But I couldn’t ask for a better entrance. I walked into the theater – filled with people who lived or worked in Manhattan – just as Lisa was thanking the other filmmakers. She glanced at me and, without missing a beat, announced “And here is the director of Blonde Island: Funk Me, Dr. Susan Block, all the way from Great Neck!” Of course, the fact that we’d flown 3000 miles from LA that morning was irrelevant compared to our incredible voyage from Lon Guyland. The crowd welcomed us like heroes. The Q&A had more to do with weather-wrestling than filmmaking. New Yorkers are the greatest when it comes to showing their appreciation for determination. The celebration continued through the after-party at China 1 on 50 Avenue B, which, mercifully, was within walking distance. We gobbled down delicious Chinese food, drank martinis, danced, and talked about sex, love, life, death and, of course, politics, whereupon I announced my run for Vice with Frank Moore as my Prez, and gave everyone chic Moore/Block campaign pins. Then I whipped a few willing derrieres with my spiffy Chinese Lupercalian flogger, made by Gene from a chopstick and a leather thong.
With almost all traffic gone, the 3 am drive back to Great Neck was a Holiday on Ice. That night, we rocked the rafters of Joanne’s cozy attic with more hot Lupercalian sex, as the sleet turned to rain, romantically ratatatating on the roof right above us. We slept most of the next day, then woke up ready for the next stop on our Valentine/Lupercalian East Coast Voyage: New Haven, CT for SEX WEEK at YALE! Boola-boola! Lust et Veritas! Bulldogs & Babes, Skulls & Boners, here we COME…
Coming Up 3/22: Spring Equinox Purim Bacchanal!
Celebrate Spring with the Bonobo Gang at the Speakeasy on Saturday night, March 22, with a wild Dionysian festival of fun and orgiastic games at our Spring Equinox Purim Bacchanal.
If you want some fascinating, eroticizing background, check out pics and stories from last year’s fantastic Spring Fever Bacchanalia or our Spring Showers Show, our Queen Esther Commedia Erotica and my erotic exotic interpretation of The Story of Queen Esther, the teenage beauty contest winner who saved her people from genocide with her powers of sexual seduction in the Bible. As for our March 22 Show, we don’t even know who our featured guests are yet, but there are sure to be a bunch of hot ones, not to mention all the hotties hanging around the bar, gallery or dance floor, so you can’t go wrong by making your reservations now.