Sunday, April 26, 2009

"Don't You Wish Your Girlfriend Was Hot Like Bea?"

There is probably a slight over-abundance of Bea Arthur tributes flying around since yesterday (including my own), but I still had to talk about the clip below.

Because, unlike most, if not every other video on YouTube, I'm actually IN this one.

Well, you can't see me in the clip, but I was there. 

At that time in my life, I could be found having a cocktail in Sidetrack more often Teg Haggard could be found witnessing to homo hustlers. With this penis.

So, when I walked in that Sunday, early in the evening, my friend Scott Ament ran through a group of gay men singing "Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin'!" with Gordon MacRea up on the screen...


...only, instead of "There's a bright, golden haze on the meadow," these gay men were singing, "There's bright, golden haze on Jayne Meadows!"... which, I think, is a much better lyric...

...and when he reached me, Scott said, "Bea Arthur is here." I just stared at him, waiting for the rest of the joke.

You know, something like "Bea Arthur is here and she's fucking two alligators in the back room." Which isn't technically a joke, but I would accept it because the mental images it conjures up are STUNNING!

But this wasn't a joke and in minutes, the screens were showing hilarious clips from Maude and The Golden Girls and right before Bea was introduced to the crowd, they played a series of scenes from the movie version of Mame.

So that, when she walked up on this tiny platform and tried to quieten the throngs of gay men LOSING THEIR FUCKING MINDS, she had this to say about Mame...

"Thank you. Thank you so much. Thank you for sitting through that shitty movie."

Since I was the little gay boy who sat too close to the television set when he watched Maude because the woman in kaftan was who he wanted to be when he grew up, I was beside myself when she said that.

She spoke a little more and then, introduced her musical director, which is where this video comes in. I'm in there. Screaming...




Ummm... At .28, does Bea Arthur say, "What are you doing? Felching?!?" God, I hope so.

You should know that, after having SEVERAL cocktails at Sidetrack, Ms. Arthur made her way to the piano bar a block or so away where my friend Alexandra Billings was performing. 

Alex tells this story brilliantly. Bea walks in. Alex invites Bea up to sing. Bea sings "Some People" as if she's the love child of Foster Brooks and Harvey Fierstein

And then, as she gives back the mic to Alex, Bea Arthur hugs her and whispers in her ear...

"I'm so drunk, I could fart."

It just doesn't get better than that. 


Alex: I hope you don't mind me telling your story, but a line like that just has to be encouraged to grow and become a part of the national lexicon.

8 comments:

Prospero said...

So many reasons to love that woman! Thanks for one more.

jer said...

ugh. i'm so sad i could fart.

LuGo JiMeNeZ said...

Felching? wtf?

Project Christopher said...

I had a seance and Bea said she would allow me to use that line. But for telling that story I'm supposed to relay a message to you...

God'll get you for that Stephen

And she knows!

yellowdog granny said...

who will replace her?...no one that's who..

Aaron said...

There will never be anybody else remotely like her. I will miss her terribly. I'm so glad somebody got some video of that night at Sidetrack.

And I think somebody needs to make a new T-shirt with that quote on it...? ;-)

james said...

That must have been when Bea was doing her show at the Park West. I took my mom to see her. My mom and I used to watch Golden Girls together. It was one show we both laughed at, though there were some things that I laughed at more than my mom for reasons that will be evident in a couple sentences.

So, after the show we went to RJ Grunts, then I took my mom home. She lives on the second floor and my aunt and uncle (who go to alot of 'shows') live on the first floor. They stopped us on the landing and my aunt wanted to know all about the show and my mom said, you know, it was funny and Bea talked like a sailor, then she said, "and there were so many men there, too." My aunt laughed, I said, "um, yeaaah, you think?" but that was it.

That should have been where I took my mom upstairs and explained what I and those men had in common, but i didn't. Now she's Bea's age and isn't quite in her right mind much, so that opportunity may have passed.

Still, I like to tell that story and I'm glad i got to see Bea, and with my mom.

Anatomicsd said...

That version of Mame is still my favorite. Lucille Ball and Bea Arthur in one place. Does it get any better than that?