Saturday, December 5, 2015

A Letter To Elton John

December 5, 2015

Dear Elton,

I had a dog named Reg once.

My partner and I were searching for a name for our new Airedale. He was an actor with a penchant for classical theatre (the partner, not the dog.) I suggested Reg and he loved it. Months later I let him in on the secret: “You know our dog is actually named after Elton John." He laughed, and loved that too. The partner died in 1996. The dog in 2009. I loved them both passionately.

I’m not writing you about a dog.

Almost 25 years ago (April 3, 1991, to be exact) I gave up smoking crack, snorting cocaine, and drinking alcohol. I was lucky to have a great support system of friends around me. I told them the truth, feeling the most important thing was to stop lying.

Right around six months of sobriety, I saw a David Frost interview that, in a strange and wonderful way, provided exactly the kind of support a new recovering addict needed at that very moment. I too had been a "vampire," hiding during the day, pulling the shades. Lying to friends, family. It was an interview with an honest, REAL person who was going through the same thing I was. It meant so much to me. The honesty. The integrity.

This honesty was coming from someone whose music I had loved for so much of my life. In addition, there were not a lot of gay role models in ‘70s, rural, small-town Wisconsin. But then there was one - one I’d sung along with so many times - who talked openly about his sexuality in Rolling Stone magazine. Honesty. Integrity.

And then there's the commitment to those of us with HIV/AIDS. I have benefited greatly and directly from the Elton John Aids Foundation. As did my late partner.

There are those folks in life who you think, “Someday I need to shake his hand,” " Someday I need to thank him in person." This is my feeble attempt at that. If I met you in person, I’d probably just cry. Like a stupid little baby. A 52-year old, grown man, stupid little baby. 

Should that day ever come - you better not be a bitch to me. 
Should that day never come - at least you got this note.

And you know how much you have touched - changed - my life.

Thank you Elton. Thank you so, so much.

Tony Clements


Saturday, November 21, 2015

Thursday, June 20, 2013

i feel the urge

sometimes there are things you want to say out loud that you can't really say out loud but why shouldn't you?  because sometimes they need to be said.  like now.  which is why i'm here.

here are a couple of things i wanted to say on facebook today -- i hate that i even wrote that last sentence (i hate more that i even thought it) -- but i did not say because, well, it's facebook.  everyone's blog. did you know that?  that everyone has a blog now and it's called facebook?

so here.  two things... unrelated:

1. it's not your moment.  just... not your moment.  your friend is posting on facebook about his dead father and something really special that happened at his funeral?  hold back on writing "that happened at MY dad's funeral TOO!" i know we're all fucking narcissistic and thrilled with writing about our every move on facebook (i don't really give a shit about your workouts and i doubt any of your other "friends" in quotes do either), but let that one moment be your friend's moment. not yours. asshole.

and B) if you have something to say to a group of people, say it to them.  don't be a dick and try to make a point by lifting one person up while you actually denigrate everyone else.  "you were awesome" is a wonderful thing to say, unless what you actually mean is "everyone else sucked."  that's cowardly, and shitty, and unfair not only to that group of people you're really talking to but to the person you supposedly complimented.  this is the equivalent of the person in the group who "asks a question" in quotes not because they legitimately have a question but so that everyone else can hear the answer they already know.  it's a game.

grow up and learn to communicate like an adult.

end of rant for today.  i think.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

doc's first saturday intermission pic

the broadway community is a tight-knit group. but on saturday afternoons, when they're all scattered across different theaters, how do they stay close? by tweeting saturday intermission pics!


Friday, September 14, 2012

disney on classic 2012: the cast

gif maker

(back row) chris blem, tony gonzalez, tony clements, john rapson.
(seated) mackenzie thomas, carlyn connolly, lauren mcgee.