I had to travel to New York again (in December) for a reading from a new book in which I have an essay. Paws and Reflect explores the bond between gay men and their dogs. And before you yell at me because I don’t currently have a dog, I did have a dog. Several in fact. And the one I chose to write about is the one that lasted the longest and grew up along with me. Caesar. A noble name for a noble dog.
My essay, “The Little Emperor” details life with Caesar and the lessons he taught me.
The reading was an experience I won’t soon forget. I’ve done readings before – in NY even – but this one was star-studded! Sharon Sakson, one of the co-creators of this book, was in attendance and did a great job of coordinating the reading. In attendance also was Ron Nyswaner (wrote the screenplay for the movie Philadelphia) who told a very affecting story, and David Mizejewski (of Animal Planet fame) whose story was a lot of fun, and a number of others.
Of course, there were lots of dogs in attendance. They were all cute and all well behaved. But one of my favorites -- probably my favorite -- was Miss Kitty. Cute, loveable, and perky, Miss Kitty won me over completely. She looks you in the eye and makes a quick connection that you feel lucky to have. Sharon is Miss Kitty's companion.
The reading went well. Everyone in turn told their stories, some spoke extemporaneously, some, like me, read their stories. Whatever way each person did his job, the audience was pleased. Then there was the signing -- lots of autographs and lots of fun.
The reading was held at the Chelsea Barnes & Noble and I’d wanted to stay overnight afterwards so as not to have to drag myself home late at night. But nooooo, New York hotels were not to be had for anything less than $395.
I don’t care what William Shatner says, not even Priceline was able to find me something in Manhattan for under $395 – no lie. Not the first week in December when apparently everybody in the universe flocks to New York to shop.
One small chain I called said they had rooms available at two properties – can’t remember the names of the places but I remember the prices. The first the room would have socked me for $600. So I asked her to tell me what the other property cost. “That will be $1975 per night.” There was no inflection in her voice. Didn’t seem to faze her that a room, any room, could cost that much.
When I was able to speak again, I told her that it was a little more than I was looking to spend.
For $1900 I hope they have the bellboys coming in and out doing blow jobs and whatever else you want because no hotel room is worth that kind of money unless there’s lots of sex involved and I mean lots!