My DemographicI find it a little unnerving while ordering a book on Amazon.com when those suggestions of other things to buy pop up based on past customer sales. It can sure make a guy insecure about his masculinity when he reads "Customers who bought Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook also bought Treating Menopause the Natural Way."
Recently I was excited to see the new film starring Helen Mirren called "The Queen." (Insert obvious wisecrack here.) I didn't think much about who else might be at the theatre that night although I was not surprised to find the entire audience filled with gay men of all ages, but leaning toward the squirrelly bookish type and dozens of middle aged women, albeit many at "the far edge of middle age" as Ethel Thayer in On Golden Pond would say. ("Ethel, people don't live to be 150.")
Last week I attended a book signing and talk with Ellen Burstyn at the Barnes and Noble at 66th and Broadway. She has a new memoir out called Lessons in Becoming Myself. The talk was fascinating by the way. But once again the room was filled with middle aged women who perhaps recall seeing themselves in "Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore" back in 1975 and of course there were gay men of all ages. Some of these were skinny young actor/hippie types but most were that really squirrelly old theatre queen type who holds up the line at the Duane Reade with a million cat food coupons and lives in a cluttered studio apartment which, when you visit, he will not let you leave until he plays the 1953 recording of Joan McCracken singing "It's Me" from Me and Juliet for you. (Oh wait, that's me. Never mind.)
My god, I'm becoming "the man in the chair."*
*From The Drowsy Chaperone.