Category Archives: Breaking

Product Spokespersons

I hope that nobody reads Billy Masters’ column for great insights on race relations.  Last week, my dear friend Jenifer Lewis took me to task in a loving, but firm way.  “Of course you need to be told these things because they’re not part of your background…but you shouldn’t need to be told these things.”  So, whether I should or shouldn’t know everything about racial inequality, I am making an effort.

I’ve been reading with great interest about this Aunt Jemima controversy.  I am old enough to remember seeing the pancake purveyor dressed with a kerchief in her hair.  I also remember 1989, when she got a makeover – the kerchief came off, she put on lipstick and pearl earrings, and kinda resembled Roxie Roker from The Jeffersons.  Once again, Jemima is getting a makeover – she’s being completely erased.  This made me wonder – if they replace a glamorous African-American woman with someone like Ann B. Davis or Shirley Booth, who does that help?  It surely doesn’t help the family of Anna Short Harrington – the lady who portrayed the venerable Aunt from 1935 to 1954.  Anna was the great-grandmother of Larnell Evans Sr., and he’s pissed off.  “This is an injustice for me and my family.  This is part of my history, sir” – one always takes note of someone who uses the word “sir”.  “This woman served all those people…and it was AFTER slavery.  She worked as Aunt Jemima.  That was her job.  How do you think I feel as a Black man sitting here telling you about my family history they’re trying to erase?” 

So I delved deeper and learned about some other famous faces used to purvey products.  Like Uncle Ben.  Didya know he was based on an African-American farmer in Texas who supplied above-average rice to the US military?  The man pictured on the package is Frank Brown, the maitre d’hôtel of an elite Chicago restaurant.  In 2007, the character of Ben was upgraded from a rice grower to the chairman of the board.  Then there’s Frank L. White.  He was born in Barbados and immigrated to the US in 1875.  He achieved such renown as a master chef, he was recruited to become the face of Rastus, the chef on the box of Cream of Wheat.  To me – admittedly a white male of dubious privilege – I see these as iconic symbols to be learned from.  But soon, they’ll all be erased.  Progress.

Comedy and Covid

Remember the coronavirus?  While I continue to wear a mask wherever I go, I see more and more people eschewing the confining accoutrement and simply throwing the wind into the caution.  I was under the impression that the first entertainment venues considering re-opening were cinemas (as if I’d risk life and limb to see the upcoming Russell Crowe release).  Then I read of DL Hughley collapsing onstage.  You may ask – where on God’s green earth is a comedy club open to a live audience?  In Nashville, Tennessee (they’ve apparently been open since May 28th).  Before I go on, may I say that I mean no disrespect to anyone – but pandemic or no pandemic, you could not pay me to leave my house to see DL Hughley.  During his SECOND show of the evening (he also did two shows the previous night), Hughley paused, leaned on his stool, and collapsed onto the floor.  The capacity audience at Zanies in Nashville was shocked.  That continued the following day when they learned that Hughley – who had only hours before been spewing verbal barbs in their general direction – had also been spewing corona-laden saliva!

Hughley’s set was part of the Juneteenth Social Awareness-Thon, which also featured Snoop Dogg, Anthony Anderson, and others performing from their respective locales.  It was sponsored by Master Growers CBD and was a fundraiser for their Clean Hands for All campaign to provide 1.5 million bottles of hand sanitizer to people in inner cities.  If Nashville wasn’t on that list before, it is now.

 

Cuomo’s Nude Stroll

Our Ask Billy question comes from James in San Francisco.  “I’ve been hearing about this nude video of Chris Cuomo.  Do you have it?  He’s SO freakin’ hawt.”

According to various sources, the newsman could be seen roaming around naked outside of his house during his wife’s yoga video.  But did it actually happen?  Hard to say.  Said wife does indeed film yoga videos, and they are often shot in front of a large window that looks onto their yard.  But the video in question was allegedly deleted.  However, a still said to have been taken from that installment shows the back of a naked man.  Could it be Chris?  Sure.  Could it be doctored?  Also sure.  I’ll post the photo on BillyMasters.com and you can decide for yourself.

When a tree fell in my neighborhood and nobody heard it (but this someone took a photo), it’s time for me to end yet another column. I must take a moment to remember Bonnie Pointer.  Heaven must have sent her to form The Pointer Sisters.  Eventually she went solo, because Bonnie always marched to the beat of her own drummer. I was fortunate to interview her alongside sisters Ruth and Anita a few months ago.  More recently, I did an extended, emotional interview with Anita Pointer on Billy Masters LIVE.  We’ll post those on YouTube.com/c/BillyMastersTV.  You can find all of our columns and our shows on www.BillyMasters.com – the site that is proud 24/7.  If you have a question, send it along to Billy@BillyMasters.com, and I promise to get back to you before we find a video of Chris Cuomo doing downward dog.  So, until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.

LA Pride@50 with Billy

Last week, we celebrated 50 years of Pride on Billy Masters LIVE.  Since I co-hosted LA Pride for many years alongside drag legend Momma, it was fitting that she joined me as co-host of this special episode.  Along with various people who worked behind the scenes, Pauley Perrette dropped in to discuss helping out year after year, as did the fabulous Willam.  And our 2008 headliner, the legendary Olivia Newton-John, also showed up.  I was glad to commemorate 50 years of Pride – even virtually.  Another special episode was devoted to the late Joan Rivers.  That one included many people who knew and worked with her, including Jackie Beat, Charles Busch, Dan Glosser, and the greatest of all Joan Rivers impersonators, Frank Marino.  Check out BillyMasters.com/TV – or YouTube.com/c/BillyMastersTV.

This coming week, we celebrate even more history.  In 2015, Thomas Roberts became the first openly gay person to anchor a network evening newscast.  He’s had a fascinating career, so we’re thrilled to have him join Steve Kmetko in a discussion of how the landscape of television has changed over the years.  We will also welcome Levi Kreis, who performed at LA Pride in 2007 and won the Tony Award for Million Dollar Quartet in 2010.  Be sure to tune into Billy Masters LIVE – Tuesdays and Thursdays at 3PM Eastern, Noon Pacific on YouTube.

Adam Rippon for Okra

The subject of trans people, minorities, and sports came together when Olympic skater Adam Rippon announced that he had donated to The Okra Project, a charity benefiting black transgender people.  After news of his donation went public, another Olympian had something to say.  In a now-deleted Instagram photo (which we have on our website), Russian skater Alexei Yagudin wrote, “Fuck, Adam.  When will you die?  Earth’s mistake.”  Rippon, no stranger to criticism or hatred, responded, “Because of that I feel INSPIRED to donate another $1000 to the @TheOkraProject but this time, in his name.”  Perhaps the donation should have been made in rubles.

Black Lives Matter to Mitt

Then there’s Mitt Romney.  Being a native Bostonian, I have a long history with Mr. Romney.  While I have not agreed with him on many issues, he strikes me as someone who does what he believes is right – even if it may not be what’s right for him.  And he certainly doesn’t pander.  In the recent past, Romney has done more good than most politicians – starting with breaking party lines to impeach El Presidente.  And last week, he marched with Black Lives Matter.  Sure, there’s no way to know if he’s being sincere, but at least he’s doing the right thing.  So just for that, I say bravo, Mitt.  If Joe Biden really wants to make a statement about unity, why not reach across the aisle and ask Romney to be his VP?  Yes, I know he promised to choose a woman.  If Mitt really wants to heal our nation, he could get a teensy little procedure.

Derulo’s penis…again!

Our Ask Billy question comes from Gary in Maine.  “Did you see Jason Derulo as Spiderman?  What is it about him and his penis?  Why is he always showing it off?”

If you had Jason Derulo’s penis, wouldn’t you be showing it off?  In the video, Jason is winched into a snug Spiderman costume, which features something Tobey Maguire never had – a large, cylindrical mass cutting across his nether regions.  Perhaps we should feel sorry for Derulo.  Maybe he’s one of those guys who is simply always hard.  I’ve known men like this – such a burden, as you’ll see on BillyMasters.com.

Lea did what in a wig?

Then there’s Lea Michele, who I always heard was “difficult”.  Then we heard from Samantha Ware, who appeared on Glee.  In response to a Tweet Lea made last week about standing with the protesters, Ware wrote (in all CAPS, which I will change): “Remember when you made my first television gig a living hell?  Cause Ill never forget.  I believe you told everyone that if you had the opportunity you would ‘shit in my wig’ amongst other traumatic microagressions that made me question a career in Hollywood.”  Similar stories were shared by Amber Riley, Melissa Benoist, Alex Newell, and Willam Belli.  Michele’s response?  “Whether it was my privileged position and perspective that cause me to be perceived as insensitive or inappropriate at times or whether it was just my immaturity and me just being unnecessarily difficult, I apologize for my behavior and for any pain which I have caused.  We can all grow and change and I have definitely used these past several months to reflect on my own shortcomings.”  This sounds kinda like an apology I once gave to a close friend.  “I don’t know what you’re angry about, and I don’t think I did anything wrong.  But I’m sorry you’re upset.”  Thanks…no thanks.

Meghan and the Facts

I often feel Meghan McCain is the target of unfair vitriol.  But she most certainly stepped in it.  Last week, The View was on vacation – something which really fucked up my schedule.  It’s hard enough for me to keep track of what day it is.  Eating breakfast without The View only happens on weekends!  After last week’s riots, Megan posted, “My neighborhood in Manhattan is eviscerated and looks like a war zone.”  The first sign that things were not as they appeared was that the Tweet was posted from Virginia!  Then someone Tweeted back: “Meghan, we live in the same building, and I just walked outside.  It’s fine.”  McCain backpedaled (while also doubling down): “I sent a Tweet yesterday based on the news.”  Did she?  She didn’t say, “I hear my neighborhood in Manhattan is eviscerated and looks like a war zone.”  Her initial Tweet was presented as a fact – based on no facts at all.

I have trouble with people who can’t simply say, “Oops, I was wrong – sorry.”  Roger Goodell, commissioner of the NFL, said, “We, the NFL, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest.  We, the NFL, believe black lives matter.  I personally protest with you and want to be part of the much needed change in this country.”  Bravo.

 

Lady Graham & the Hooker

For years, people have whispered that Lindsey Graham is gay.  I can’t say he is or isn’t – I never fucked him (but that’s hardly a litmus test).  The Republican senator from South Carolina was the target of claims initiated by gay porn star Sean Harding.  “There is a homophobic republican senator who is no better than Trump who keeps passing legislation that is damaging to the lgbt and minority communities.  Every sex worker I know has been hired by this man.  Wondering if enough of us spoke out if that could get him out of office?”  Sean then Tweeted, “I cannot do this alone.  If you’d be willing to stand with me against LG please let me know.”  LG stands for “Lady Graham” – allegedly the nickname hookers use for Lindsey.  Harding added that every news network wants to interview him, and high-profile attorneys are offering their services.  If Sean offers his services, I’m in!

Why is this all happening now?  I don’t believe it’s Graham’s support for El Presidente.  Nor do I think it’s his seemingly racist views.  I believe it’s because, for the first time since becoming a Senator (in 2003), he is in danger of losing his job.  Many polls predict that a young, black Democrat could beat Lindsey in November.  Days after this column comes out, South Carolina will have their primary.  When the dust settles, Jaime Harrison will likely be the Democratic nominee.  Some suggest this would not be the first time Graham would be up against a young, black man – but to make such a claim would be beneath me.  It also may not be the first time Graham was beneath a young, black man!

Adding her formidable voice to the fray, Patti LuPone has some advice for Graham.  “On a personal note, why don’t you just bite the bullet and come out?  You might just come to your senses.”  The unmarried Graham has rarely addressed the rumors.  The most he’s ever said was to TMZ – “To the extent that it matters, I’m not gay.”  What about to the extent that it doesn’t matter?

 

Get Into Grand’s Undies

Our Ask Billy question comes from Paul in San Diego.  “Is it true that Steve Grand is designing underwear and swimwear?”

After years of showing off in others’ wares, it’s high time Grand winched himself into his own.  He’s designed a collection of various styles of swimwear, underwear, activewear, and even a thong under the moniker Grand Axis.  Alas, with factories being closed, he has no products to ship out and his hands are tied.  Hmmm…Steve Grand, in a thong, hands tied.  There’s a photo you likely won’t see on BillyMasters.com – but we’ll show off the rest of his assets.

Cheyenne Jackson’s Secret

Cheyenne Jackson recently said something that shocked even moi!  The dashing and debonair dude revealed that over the course of 14 years, he’s had FIVE hair transplant procedures.  Not only that, but he posted photos showing the scars!  “I started losing my hair around 22.  My older brother was balding too, but was way braver & cooler & just shaved his off.  It was really emotional for me to watch it fall out & I felt less attractive & truly less like myself as the days went on, so I saved up and got my first surgery at 28.”  That led to several more procedures.  “Why did I care so much?  What does that say about me?  Being a vain actor in an industry that rewards beauty, I vowed to keep this my secret forever.  I feel SO stupid saying that but it’s my truth.”  He would take hair and makeup people aside and share his secret.  Their response?  “Ummm… yeah… so?”  Cheyenne sums it up by saying, “I’m sharing because maybe this will inspire someone out there to share a secret they’ve been hiding, or show a scar that they’ve been afraid of anyone seeing.  Let it go.  What I’ve learned during this pandemic is that shit like this just doesn’t matter.”  Of course, it’s easy for him to say that now with a good head of hair – to say nothing of a career and a hot husband.  Would he feel the same with wisps of hair or a shaved head?  Who knows?  That’s beyond my pay grade.

People’s Couch & Billy

It was a big week on Billy Masters LIVE!.  Throughout the pandemic, we’ve been doing live shows on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 3PM Eastern (noon Pacific).  Last week, a staggering number of people took a little time to enjoy Billy Masters…LIVE!  Of course, I can’t take all the credit.  On Thursday, two of my favorite funny people were guests – Judy Gold and Wendy Liebman.  But it was Tuesday’s show that really grabbed the fans’ attention.  My guests were Emerson Collins, Blake McIver, and Scott Nevins – who, collectively, possess roughly half my body fat.  They couldn’t have been nicer…or dishier.  Emerson was producing an all-star reading of Del ShoresSordid Lives to benefit small theatre companies (you’ve already missed that one); on June 5th, Scott Nevins will host Voices of Hope: Together We Thrive, a live streaming glittering event to benefit the Desert AIDS Project; the following night, Blake McIver brings his Barbra Streisand tribute concert to the web.  You can find more details and watch the shows on BillyMasters.com/TV or on our YouTube channel.

As to the shows this week, we celebrate my 16th wedding anniversary to porn superstar, Kurt Young.  We’ll also have Frank DeCaro, who wrote the book, Drag: Combing Through the Big Wigs of Show BusinessLady Bunny will hop in to talk about her upcoming special.  You never know who’ll pop up on Billy Masters LIVE!

 

RIP Larry Kramer

Ever since I came out – in 1986 – Larry Kramer has been saying he’s dying.  34 year later, he did just that.  At the age of 84 (a respectable age for anyone to die), a man who changed the world passed away.  I suspect he didn’t go peacefully – nothing Larry did was peaceful.  He fought to start the Gay Men’s Health Crisis in NYC, he fought to start ACT UP, he fought to get his play The Normal Heart produced, and he fought Barbra Streisand to regain the rights when she couldn’t make a film of the play.  By all accounts, Larry wasn’t an easy person to be around.  But you’d sure want him in your corner when the chips were down.  In a very few short months, we’ve lost three pivotal voices for our community: Larry Kramer, Terrence McNally, and Mart Crowley.  Throw in Jerry Herman and Roy Horn, and you’ve got a mighty dramatic musical with an animal act!  Rest in peace.

One of the people who remembered Larry Kramer was Dr. Anthony Fauci.  Here is an extended quote: “This is a very sad day, not only for me, but for many people who’ve had the opportunity to deal with Larry Kramer.  He was a most unusual figure in a very positive sense.  He was a firebrand.  He had extraordinary courage to speak out and challenge the system that was in place at the time of the early years of HIV/AIDS.  As a government official who was trying to do a job to address this, he saw me as the face of the federal government.  And we became adversaries.  I wasn’t an adversary to him, but boy, he was an adversary to me.  He attacked me, he called me a murderer, he called me an incompetent idiot – I mean publicly.  But then, as I got to listen to what he had to say, I realized that he was making some important points that we in the establishment needed to listen to.  We became, gradually, friends.  And then we became very good friends.  And then we became colleagues in the struggle.  So it turned out that, you know, I loved the guy.  And I think he loved me back.”  Once again, wise words from Dr. Fauci.

Double Fisted Fawcett

Our Ask Billy question comes from Danny in Denver.  “What do you know about Christopher Fawcett?  He’s an underwear model and absolutely gorgeous.”

You didn’t ask, but you’ll probably be pleased to hear that Fawcett is openly gay.  HOORAY!  He’s also openly married.  BOO!  To fill in some other blanks, he’s 34 years old, lives in NYC, and has modeled extensively for DKNY and CK.  But, please, don’t limit Fawcett to undies.  He’s also happy to pose in nothing at all – as you’ll see on BillyMasters.com.

When you’ll need two hands to turn this Fawcett, it’s definitely time to get out the elbow grease and end yet another column.  You may not be stuck at home, but you’ll still need some entertainment.  Might I suggest you check out www.BillyMasters.com – the site that doesn’t require social distancing.  And, of course, go to our YouTube channel of Billy Masters TV and subscribe.  I’ll make it worth your while.  For details on how, drop a note to me at  Billy@BillyMasters.com, and I promise to get back to you before Macy’s opens up a back room.  Until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.

Bombshell in Concert

Did you all watch Bombshell in Concert?  It was without question one of the most THRILLING things I’ve ever seen.  For those who don’t know, Bombshell was a musical about Marilyn Monroe that was being staged in the NBC series Smash.  After the series was cancelled, fans clamored for a stage version of Bombshell.  This concert performance of that score (written by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman) was a benefit in 2015 for The Actors Fund – and was fortuitously filmed professionally for archival purposes.  Although it wasn’t televised on NBC (where Smash aired), it was livestreamed on People Magazine’s website – also as a benefit for The Actors Fund (to watch it, click here).  Since it was a benefit, union rules only allowed a week for some vocal and dance rehearsal in a studio, and then a few hours in the theatre the day of the show itself.  Despite this tight schedule – to say nothing of the fact that the concert happened two years after the series’ demise – everything was picture-perfect, including the thrilling choreography of Joshua Bergasse.  The fact that Megan Hilty was effortless was expected from this Broadway vet.  It was Katharine McPhee – at that point, a Broadway newbie – who blew me away.  She handled intricate vocals during difficult dancing with aplomb.  And it’s impossible for me to let a Smash item end without noting the presence of the dreamy Wesley Taylor.

For you Smash/Bombshell fans, I have good news and bad news.  After numerous efforts, coming up with a cohesive book for a Marilyn Monroe musical that would include all of the score has proven impossible.  That’s the bad news.  The good news is that the original producers have announced plans for a musical based on Smash the series, which would retain most of the score.  Should this happen, it could mean that there would be two Marilyn Monroe-centric musicals on Broadway at the same time – both written by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman.  The duo has also written a musical version of Some Like It Hot, which is set for a Broadway bow in 2021.

 

Lori & Moss – Guilty

You know who has given up?  Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli.  You’ll recall that Lori and Mossimo were implicated in Operation Varsity Blues, where parents tried to buy their kids’ way into colleges.  The Loughlin-Giannullis spent roughly half a MILLION dollars to get their dippy daughters into USC.  Although I don’t care about them, I’d really enjoy seeing Lori and Moss serve considerable jail time.  After all, they pleaded not guilty repeatedly (versus Felicity Huffman, who quickly admitted guilt, apologized, did her time, and moved on).  The couple also unsuccessfully tried to get the case thrown out of court – going so far as to force the FBI to disclose whatever evidence they had.  When the Feds revealed text messages and photos, the couple suddenly changed their tune.  Too little, too late, if you ask me.  Throw the book at them – preferably a book that’s been sitting in a crowded supermarket for a while.

Batwoman Flies Away

Time for a Whodunit!  Ruby Rose, who plays the title character in Batwoman, abruptly quit the CW show days after the show was picked up for a second season.  The producers vow to recast!  Why is Ruby leaving?  Lots of rumors are circulating – including one about her being injured during a stunt and deciding she wasn’t going to risk permanent physical damage.  But people whisper that’s not the real reason.  Allegedly there was a “personality conflict”.  Between whom?  My sources are mum, but I’m not one to give up that easily.

Matt Goss Goes Nude

Our Ask Billy question comes from Chris in Pennsylvania: “Who is Matt Goss?  I think I read about him in your column.  Did you see the photos of him wearing a cock sock?  He looks enormous.”

Matt was a member of the UK pop group Bros, and has since been a solo artist, with a residency in Las Vegas (and, yes, we know each other).  He’s also mighty hot and obviously a fitness fanatic.  As to the cock sock, here’s what happened.  Matt was a guest on the UK chat show, Celebrity Juice.  During a game, he was dared to play the guitar naked.  He retreated to his room, and returned brandishing a guitar which covered his genitals.  Fellow panelist Mel B. insisted on proof that Matt was nude.  At that point, Goss lifted his guitar to show his rod and staff snugly ensconced in a rather thick tube sock.  You can see all on BillyMasters.com.

 

Laughs @ Billy Masters Live

Last week’s installments of Billy Masters LIVE were amongst my favorites.  But the week got off to a rocky start.  Hours before Tuesday’s show, a guest cancelled.  At the last minute, Alec Mapa jumped in to save the day.  I then invited Bruce Vilanch and Jackie Beat to join in the fun, and what fun it was!  Speaking of fun, Broadway diva Faith Prince was a dream of a guest.  I knew she was brilliantly talented and delightfully daffy – but I had no idea we’d get deep into the minutiae of her career and craft.  A really fascinating interview.  Being joined by drag diva and vocalist extraordinaire Randy Roberts certainly didn’t hurt!  I surprised them both with buddy John McDaniel, who even sang a song for Prince.  Great shows continue on our YouTube channel at Billy Masters TV.

Here’s a brief plug about this week’s shows.  Many of you Broadway buffs know all the drama surrounding the musical Seesaw.  Both original star Lainie Kazan and her replacement – and best friend – Michele Lee have discussed this openly.  But they’ve never sat down and talked about it together…until now.  A Billy Masters Exclusive.  And on Thursday, we have a stack of questions for legal eagle Gloria Allred – including why we were photographed dancing – and why she let me dip her!  Find out Thursday…on Billy Masters LIVE (easily accessible on BillyMasters.com/TV).

Hairspray and Hamilton

Some stories I avoid reporting – I assume they’re old news to most readers.  And then people think I missed something.  So, here goes.  You all know that Hamilton has been the biggest hit on Broadway for the past five years.  While Lin-Manuel Miranda and the rest of the original cast were in the show, they filmed three performances and edited them down to one fabulous film – LIVE!  Disney paid $75 million for the rights, and planned to release it in 2021.  In light of the current crisis, they’ve opted to release it on Disney+ on the eve of Independence Day, July 3rd.

If you need your fix of musical theatre, go online to see a plethora of musical talent assembled for the finale from Hairspray.  Dozens of luminaries took part in a brilliant rendition of “You Can’t Stop the Beat”.  Eagle eyes will notice several stars who have also popped up on Billy Masters LIVE, particularly two notable Motormouth Mabels – Jenifer Lewis and Darlene Love.  By the way, Jenifer recorded her section moments after appearing on my show – which would explain why she’s in the same outfit!  Yes, #BML always gets everything first.

Love Between Evan Hansons

Quarantining makes for some strange bedfellows.  For instance, who knew that two of Broadway’s Evan Hansens are dating?  Yes, we’re talking about the original star, Ben Platt, and his successor, Noah Galvin.  You remember Noah – he’s the one who was on that short-lived sitcom that owes part of its swift demise to that vitriolic interview he gave to Vulture.  As part of Galvin’s redemption tour, he took over the lead in Dear Evan Hansen on Broadway and made quite an impression on people…including Platt.  On a podcast, Noah said, “Ben and I are dating.  I asked him this morning.  I was like, ‘Are we allowed to talk about this?’  And he’s like, ‘Don’t go into our nitty gritty, but yeah, people can know.’”  On behalf of my readers – we actually enjoy the nitty, to say nothing of the gritty.  The couple are quarantining together – along with a female Broadway performer.

Adding to the incestuousness, Ben and Noah are not the only Dear Evan Hansen alums to have hooked up.  After Noah Galvin left the show, he was replaced by Taylor Trensch.  Taylor is now dating his understudy, Ben Levi Ross – who in turn led the national tour.  So, to all my single readers out there, here is my advice – get cast in a Broadway show.  I know that seems a daunting task, but frankly, so is dating!

NasX Shows Off…Again

Our Ask Billy question comes from Terry in Chicago.  “Did you see those photos of Lil Nas X in his hot tub?”

I must confess I didn’t know anything about Lil Nas X’s hot tub photos until you mentioned them.  Were they steamy?  Sure, in that hot tub way.  But they weren’t as hot as the full-frontal nudes we have on BillyMasters.com.

When I have to worry about the coronavirus and tigers, it’s time for me to end yet another column.  And didn’t I hear that someone allegedly caught it from a tiger?  You don’t think…do you?  While I look into this, you should check out www.BillyMasters.com – the site where you can read gossip and watch some great original programming.  If you have a question, send it along to Billy@BillyMasters.com, and I promise to get back to you before Lil Nas posts photos of himself in a hot tub…with a tiger!  Until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.

NYC Gays Go Dancing

Despite the restrictions, underground gay dance parties appear to still be going on.  Some industrious New Yorkers put together an invitation-only soirée where neither masks nor clothes were required.  How did we find out about it?  Because one of the attendees, Argentinean porn star Ian Frostok, thought it was a good idea to post 50+ Instagram Stories from the event!  In doing so, he also got the people photographed in hot water – including DJ Alec Brian (who claims he only took the gig to pay his rent).  Since the scandal, both Ian and Alec have deactivated their Instagram accounts.  With this level of intelligence, I’m surprised they aren’t working for the US government.

Dragside Pickup

And like me, many people have come up with inventive ways to keep people entertained.  I was tickled when I read that a restaurant in Michigan City, Indiana, hired drag queens to deliver food for curbside pickup.  Fiddlehead Restaurant calls it “Dragside Pickup”!  Before anyone accuses them of cultural appropriation (a term I find revolting), Fiddlehead is an LGBTQ-owned establishment.

If any of you are were thinking the coronavirus would be under control anytime soon, think again.  A month ago, LA Pride was rescheduled to Labor Day weekend.  Last week, plans changed and it’s now gonna be a virtual event.  Then, the city of West Hollywood cancelled the Halloween Carnaval due to concerns about the second wave.

 

Billy’s Biggest Fan

Billy, you are a new find of mine.  I’m now your biggest fan.” 
Paul Shaffer – yes, THAT Paul Shaffer – after showing up to surprise my guest, the legendary Darlene Love. 
Yet another typical episode of Billy Masters LIVE!.

You know what hasn’t been cancelled?  Billy Masters LIVE.  As you saw in the opening quote, Paul Shaffer (from The Late Show with David Letterman) stopped by to surprise my special guest, Darlene Love.  If you had told me I’d have either of these people on my show, I never would have believed you.  We were also joined by beloved songwriter, Marc Shaiman.  That show had a whole lotta musical folks surrounding a whole lotta love.  With a good helping of gossip – ‘cause that’s what we do!  Check out our YouTube channel at Billy Masters TV.

On another show, I was joined by journalist Sue O’Connell to chat with legendary diver Greg Louganis.  I surprised him with fellow Olympic diver, Kent Ferguson.  That show had a whole lotta abs!  Didya know Greg Louganis has been DYING to be on Dancing with the Stars?  And yet they’ve passed on him – even for the season devoted to athletes!  And yet, DWTS has found room for such luminaries as Jerry Springer, Buzz Aldrin, and Master P.  We also unearthed the audition video Greg and Kent made for The Amazing Race – another show they haven’t appeared on.  But they both appeared with me – as you can see on BillyMasters.com/TV.

Will & Grace – Fond Farewell

Another show that kinda wrapped things up was Will & Grace.  As with their previous series finale, they foisted a baby storyline on us.  Why is it that everyone thinks the only way for gays to be happy is to be in a relationship or have a child?  Of course, you can’t go by me – I’m sitting here typing alone, naked, drinking vodka, and eating my body weight in expired peppermint bark!  The W&G producers kinda confirmed the tension between Debra Messing and Megan Mullally saying, “It was not an easy year.”  They do, however, credit Messing for getting the finale shot before everything shut down.  “Thank God Debra had it in her contract that we had to be done by Christmas.  I finally found the silver lining in that really pain-in-the-ass clause,” said producer Max Mutchnick.

In case anyone needs further confirmation, I noted that on Jess Cagle’s SiriusXM show dedicated to the finale, we only got three-quarters of the cast.  No Mullally.

 

Anita Pointer Tells All to Billy

It was a big week on Billy Masters LIVE.  Tuesday’s show featured legendary designer Bob Mackie and Anita Pointer of the fabulous Pointer Sisters.  We had a lot of fun looking at some of his amazing designs for the sisters and reminiscing about the good ole days.  But when I went one-on-one with Anita, she opened up about some tragic situations she’s lived through in recent years, culminating with her leaving the trailblazing group under less than amicable circumstances.  It’s a raw, vulnerable discussion, and the first time she’s discussed these things in detail.

On Thursday’s show, we dished the dirt with Michael Musto and laughed with singer Roslyn Kind.  Once alone, Roz and I talked about her recent tour with sister Barbra Streisand, and her very personal connection with The Trevor Project, the nation’s only 24/7 LGBTQ suicide prevention hotline.  If you’ve missed any of these great shows, check them all out on our YouTube Channel or simply go to BillyMasters.com/TV.  Coming up this week, the greatest diver of all time, Greg Louganis, and the legendary Darlene Love.  You can also expect some surprises.

Meghan takes on Elisabeth

Meghan McCain has often discussed how she holds former View co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck in high esteem.  That said, she took issue with how Lizzy was handling the early days of the coronavirus.  During an appearance on The View last month, Elisabeth said, “We’re going to Purell, pray that God’s got us in our tomorrows, right?  We pray that this coronavirus is extinguished, that it’s stopped in its tracks.  I think we should prepare.  I think we should pray.  I’m not going to let coronavirus rule me.”  On Watch What Happens Live, Meghan said, “I think it’s really REALLY unfortunate and dangerous that she said that.  I don’t need to co-host with her again, and it’s unfortunate because I’ve been a huge fan of her a long time and anyone who’s screwing around with this virus and putting out misinformation – I just don’t have a lot of time for right now.”  Needless to say, Hasselbeck didn’t take this particularly well and took to social media and said (in part): “Meghan – I am going to call you and handle this in the best socially distanced direct manner possible – but hey girl – We are all just doing our best, and I don’t know why you are taking an opportunity to be so aggressive towards me during such a stressful time.” 

Silver Fox becomes a Dad

 

You’ve got to get up pretty early to surprise me with a story.  Actually, you only need to be up before 1PM!  Still, I was surprised to hear that Anderson Cooper had a boy – and I don’t mean “had a boy” in that icky way.  He actually sired a child…via surrogate (there’s only so many surprises I can take).  The silver fox announced that after years of being called a “Daddy”, he was an actual daddy to Wyatt Morgan Cooper.  “On Monday, I became a father.  I never actually said that before out loud, and it still kind of astonishes me.  I’m a dad.  I have a son, and I want you to meet him,” Cooper said as he showed a photo to his international audience.

As if that wasn’t enough, reports indicate that Anderson reunited with his ex-beau, Benjamin Maisani.  The two split up in 2018 amidst reports of certain indiscretions.  We hear that Anderson was on the dad train well before the reconciliation, and he’s taking things slowly with Ben.  According to US Weekly, “Ben is selling one of his clubs and cutting back on how much he does at night so he can spend more time at home with Anderson and the baby.”  It’s kinda easy to cut back on club work when all the clubs are closed.  But it’s the thought that counts.

Many people are giving Andy Cohen credit for inspiring Coop to become a dad, but he’s working towards a more lasting legacy.  After recovering from Covid-19, Andy was shocked to learn that gay males are unable to donate blood plasma.  “I was told that due to antiquated and discriminatory guidelines by the FDA to prevent HIV, I am ineligible to donate blood because I’m a gay man.”  Cohen added, “There have been great strides in testing for HIV since these rules were enacted.  You can get an HIV test in 20 minutes.”  He’s advocating for a change in the laws.

Ansel’s All Wet and Nude

While many asked me about this, our Ask Billy question comes from someone here at Billy Masters MultimediaAaron in Texas wrote, “Please tell me you have the uncensored photo of Ansel Elgort in the shower.”

For those of you who don’t get out much – which is all of us these days – lemme explain.  Little Ansel (we’ll get to that) wanted to raise money for Brooklyn for Life – an organization that helps restaurants provide 75-100 meals per day to Brooklyn frontline workers.  On Instagram, he posted a photo of himself in the shower…naked!  Of course, he censored his nether regions.  To see all, you had to join an OnlyFans page, and the money would go to the charity.  Clever, right?  Not clever enough.  Instagram took down the censored photo…but not before Ansel raised over $300K!  So, Aaron was asking whether I could find the uncensored photo.  Ask and you shall receive.  I hasten to add that whatever Ansel was covering is roughly the size of his thumb – which perhaps is enormous.  I was amused to learn that Elgort had his father take the photo.  “Ansel clearly has a very different relationship with his dad than I had with mine,” said Aaron.  You can see the photo on BillyMasters.com.

When we’re questioning Ansel and Tom’s daddy issues, it’s definitely time to end yet another column.  What a week!  Lots of cutting – and Demi Lovato nowhere in sight!  But that cutting Billy Masters humor is always on display, both in print and on the air.  Check out Billy Masters LIVE on YouTube at 3PM Eastern every Tuesday and Thursday.  Of course, my written barbs can be found at www.BillyMasters.com – the site the site where a picture is worth a thousand words.  Send your questions along to Billy@BillyMasters.com, and I promise to get back to you before Colton and Cooper cut each other!  Until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.

Don’t Do This At Home

Last week was a big week for haircuts.  First, Colton Haynes took to the web, saying “Here’s my attempt at making a YouTube video…pls don’t try this at home kids haha.”  Clippers in hand, he said, “We’re gonna do a haircut today.  I’m not a professional hair stylist, so don’t call this a tutorial at all.  Don’t do this at home, kids.”  He might consider shaking up his catchphrase.  As to his skill, I don’t anticipate a career at Supercuts.  But you can see the clip here – and, again, remind you not to try this at home, kids.

There must have been something in the water, because Anderson Cooper also attempted a self-cut.  As with Colton, Coop was not particularly successful, as he explained to Sanjay Gupta.  “I’m hoping you make a tutorial about how to give yourself a haircut, because last night I took a razor and buzzed my head and I gave myself a giant bald spot over here, which I find very…I missed.” We’ll post that, too.  You can see it here.

Billy & Jenifer At Last

Meanwhile, everything’s smooth sailing at another talk show – Billy Masters LIVE.  We finally had the episode you’ve all been waiting for – Billy Masters and Jenifer Lewis.  To say we fulfilled your expectations would be presumptuous on my part.  But since I started doing yoga, I’m now able to toot my own horn.  We laughed, we sang, we showed videos of Miss Lewis performing (with and without me), and we were joined by some special guests.  Director, choreographer, dancer, actor, and ageless beauty Jerry Mitchell surprised his old college friend.  So did Mark Alton Brown, who not only went to college with them but also wrote the script for Jackie’s Back.  Obviously we had to perform a scene from the cult classic – and were joined by esteemed songwriter, Marc Shaiman.  In this 90-minute marathon show, you got to see the real Jenifer (and, consequently, the real Billy).  And, see it you must – on Billy Masters TV at YouTube.

We also did a show about After Forever – a web series you should check out (it’s available for free on Amazon Prime).  Co-creator and star Kevin Spirtas was joined by co-star Mitchell Anderson on Billy Masters LIVE, and we had an interesting chat about gay men of a certain age, the coming-out process, and the landmark of making an award-winning series in the digital age.  Once again, I had a surprise guest in Bill Brochtrup, who appears in the second season of the series.  All of my shows are available on our YouTube channel, or BillyMasters.com/TV.

On Tuesday, April 28th, our guests will be legendary designer Bob Mackie and original Pointer Sister, Anita Pointer!

 

Divers Dudes Lock Lips

Let’s start with the elephant in the room – and trust me when I say it ain’t no elephant.  As we were going to press, “someone” online was making a very big deal about a certain video in which two divers were seen making out.  First – I have the video.  When these things leak, we all get them.  It’s of UK diver Tom Daley kissing US diver Tyler Downs.  Downs is kinda a young Tom Daley – and who thought that was even possible?  Downs is 16 and, in an ironic twist, has stated that his favorite diver is…wait for it….Jack Laugher!!!  Who is Jack Laugher?  Another British diver!  In fact, Laugher won a synchronized diving event with Tom Daley back in 2012!  Oh, diving is an incestuous business – and I say this as a former award-winning diver myself (OK, all I won was my high school letter, but still…).

In the video, Downs and Daley are at an event in a hotel room where they’re both shirtless.  Again, as a former diver, let me tell you that swimmers and divers are far more UNcomfortable when they have to put on clothes.  As to the kiss, it has all the passion of kissing your mum – which, unless you are from certain Southern states, is not very.  Not even a scintilla of spit is shared.  To my expert eyes, the term I’d use is “clenched”.  So, if “someone” feels compelled to pass it along “to the authorities”, I have one thing to say – bitch, please!

However, it has led to renewed speculation about the relationship of Tom Daley and Dustin Lance Black.  Is there any evidence that they have an “open relationship”?  None that I’m aware of.  Sure, there was some dallying prior to their marriage.  But if it doesn’t bother them, it doesn’t bother me.  Others have issues with a 25-year-old kissing a 16-year-old.  Hey, what do I know – Tom was 18 years old when he started dating the 38-year-old Dustin Lance Black, and nobody was bothered by that.  You can go to BillyMasters.com and decide for yourself.

Reality Star Pitches In

Our Ask Billy question comes from Kurt in Phoenix.  “Is Dan Renzi [from The Real World Miami] now a nurse?  There was someone who kinda looked like him on with Rachel Maddow last week.”

Yup, that was him.  Since his time on MTV back in 1996, Dan has gone through a plethora of professions, until he stumbled upon what he really wanted to do – help people.  He’s been a nurse for almost a decade and has most recently been living in Kansas.  However, the moment NYC became ground zero and the need for healthcare workers became dire, he immediately uprooted himself and went to pitch in.  Some of the experiences he related to Maddow were sobering.  “If you told me that not too many years after I graduated that I would be living in a hotel in New York while I was putting bodies in body bags because this mysterious virus was mowing down everybody’s grandparents…how do you process that?”  Again, the new normal.

Meghan & Harry Feed Angels

While I’m riding out the pandemic in Boston, Prince Harry and Meghan are in Los Angeles.  And they’re actually pitching in.  The royal twosome volunteered at Project Angel Food, which prepares and delivers food to homebound people who are either medically or financially in need.  Harry and Meg volunteered in the kitchen on Easter Sunday and then returned on Wednesday to deliver meals in person.  We’re told the idea was Meghan’s, who wanted to show Harry LA through her eyes.  The organization’s executive director said, “They were extremely down to earth and genuinely interested in every single person they met.”  Since I know you’re wondering, they delivered 20 meals.  That may not sound like a lot, but lemme ask you a question – how many meals have you delivered?  So, good on them.  If you’d like to make a donation, check out AngelFood.org.

Aaron Schock Goes South

Here’s what I get out of all the Aaron Schock criticism – you’re all jealous of his looks, his body, and the people he sleeps with.  I have a hunch if I asked any of you to get specific about your gripes with his politics, it would be a mighty short list.  Yes, he’s quarantining in a fancy-schmanzy Mexican resort with a group of hot gay boys.  And, yes, it does kinda look like he’s on the set of a Bel Ami flick with six guys all named Vaclav! And, yes, one of those hot gays with single-digit body fat is paying all the bills.  Jealous?  I think I can answer that – yes.  Do any of us really care if he’s quarantining or not?  No.  Do we care if he’s wearing a medical-grade mask or the mask from Eyes Wide Shut?  No.  I am, however, perfectly content to drift off to sleep picturing Schock as a human Lazy Susan.  So let go of the jealousy.  And if you’d like to see every inch of that Lazy Susan (especially when it’s aroused), check out BillyMasters.com.  You’re welcome.

Fran and Ex Dish with Billy

20 April 2020

“Who’s ‘They’?  We were writing the show.  He did that. 
He did everything…including write the scene probably!”
 
Fran Drescher on Billy Masters LIVE when I asked who cast her at-the-time straight
husband Peter Marc Jacobson as a gay actor on The Nanny.  Why’d he play the role? 
Check out BillyMasters.com/TV – the answer may surprise you.

Week three of Billy Masters LIVE has been a banner one.  It kicked off with our very own Judy Gold and Varla Jean Merman.  Let me warn you – while Varla was in full regalia, Gold was deathly ill and had just come from being tested for Covid-19.  And yet, the show was hysterically funny, while also filled with great insights.

On Thursday, we had the fabulous Fran Drescher!  You may have noticed, I’m only booking people I personally know and like.  So if you ever wondered what Fran is really like, check out this episode.  She’s everything you want her to be…and more.  The stories we got – it was like friends chatting in her living room (which we kinda were).  To top things off, I surprised her with even more people she loves, including her ex-husband Peter Marc Jacobson, her first agent, Dan Guerrero, her attorney, Mark Sendroff, and the incomparable Lainie Kazan (who has played both her mother and her aunt).  To get every drop of the tea we spilled, watch the full show at BillyMasters.com/TV.

Speaking of spilling tea, you know that Jenifer Lewis is one of my best friends.  And she’ll be on Billy Masters LIVE on Tuesday, April 21st.  Needless to say, the opinions of Miss Lewis are hers alone and are no reflection on Billy Masters Multimedia.  The one thing I can promise is that it’ll be memorable.  You won’t wanna miss this!

Tori Needs Cash

Some people in lockdown are coming up with ingenious ways to pass the time.  Take Tori Spelling.  The former starlet has offered fans a chance to join a live video conference with her.  Isn’t that nice?  Ah, but there’s a catch – the virtual meet-and-greet comes with a $95 price tag.  I’m torn – on one hand, who the hell does Tori Spelling think she is?  CherCeline DionDonny and Marie?  On the other hand, if people are willing to pay it, what does it matter to me?  Sure, Billy Masters LIVE is free…but not everyone is as, shall we say, accommodating to their fans (especially the black, married fans).  On the positive side, Tori’s meetings are on Wednesdays at 4PM EST – so she’s not conflicting with me, should we happen to share any fans.  Spelling’s hubby, Dean McDermott, came to her defense.  “All the studios, everything is shut down.  She has no way to work like everybody else.  She has no job to go to.”  That’s all true.  But, really, you can’t blame Tori’s career on the coronavirus..

Ripa Needs a Hug

Families have either thrived or faltered during quarantine.  Let’s look at the Consuelos/Ripa household.  Kelly Ripa revealed to co-host Ryan Seacrest that two of her three kids are not talking to her.  Correction – she is not talking to them.  Why?  Because they won’t hug her.  “I haven’t gotten to hug my parents.  I want to hug my parents.  I miss hugging my parents.  And my kids, like, won’t hug me.  And I’m like, ‘Guys, we’ve all been in lockdown together.  We’re fine.  You can give me a hug.  It’s fine.’”  Ryan offered to hug Ripa – or was it Consuelos?  Perhaps he’d hug another member of the quarantined family whom he might have bumped into online…if you catch my drift.

Stars on Billy Masters Live

“If you’re gonna wear a mask – and you MUST wear a mask – it better say something.”  
Original Dreamgirl Sheryl Lee Ralph makes her entrance on Billy Masters LIVE
wearing a black mask encrusted with crystals that spelled out DIVA! 

You know what show is doing very well?  Billy Masters LIVE.  When I woke up at the crack of noon last Wednesday, I had oodles of messages saying that our latest show had gone viral.  “Viral?” I asked.  “It’s like Ptown over Fourth of July!!”  What piqued people’s interest was when Bruce Vilanch, Andrea Martin, and composer Marc Shaiman joined me in performing a scene from the musical Hairspray (watch the full show here).  Bruce was Edna, Andrea was Mrs. Pingleton, and Shaiman played Tracy.  Naturally, I played Penny – due to my penchant for sleeping with black men.

As if that weren’t enough, Thursday’s show featured Sheryl Lee Ralph and Sam Harris joining me in the famous dressing room scene from Dreamgirls (watch the full show here).  Obviously, I played Lorrell – due to my penchant for sleeping with married black men!  The fun continues live every Tuesday and Thursday at 3PM Eastern on Facebook and YouTube.  Of course, the replays can always be found (for free) on BillyMasters.com.  Just click on TV.

 

Who is Biggest?

Our Ask Billy comes from Ryan in Maine.  “I heard that some guy claims Justin Bieber has a huge cock.  What do you think?”

This story got started by a personal trainer named Rick Morrison. While he admits to having never worked with the Biebs, that hasn’t stopped him from expressing an opinion (who does he think he is?  Me?).  He claims to have seen the pop star coming out of the shower wearing a towel.  Later, while walking through the locker room, he spied the Canadian “butt ass naked.  I mean, junk hanging out and everything.”  Obviously this could be an awkward moment which requires, perhaps, an apology.  Rick simply said, “Shit, Bieber, you just made me so insecure” – which tells us more about Rick than about Justin!  When people online questioned the veracity of this report based on the flaccid photos we’ve all seen, Morrison said, “I’ve seen plenty of naked celebs in the locker room before.  Shawn Mendes, Adam Levine…but no one was ever that damn blessed.”  May I ask the location of this gym where one sees naked male celebs walking to and fro?  Regardless, here’s one rule I live by – unless you’ve seen someone’s penis erect, you have no idea what they’re working with.  I have not seen Bieber’s penis erect.  Soft, I can say with the utmost certainty that it’s nothing to write home about – if you’re given to writing prose about a penis.  Should you be interested in checking out his flaccid phallus, we’ll oblige on BillyMasters.com.

With all this talk about penii, we’ve definitely come to the end of yet another column.  Finally – some of the old normalcy is back!  Now, when will I get back to sleeping with fans?  The only way to know for sure is to check out www.BillyMasters.com – the site where we’re offering special subscriptions to aid and abet you (until I can abed you).  Don’t forget, we’ve got those TV shows every Tuesday and Thursday at 3PM Eastern.  If you have a question or a guest you’d like to see, e-mail me at Billy@BillyMasters.com, and I promise to get back to you before I give you a video tour of my “basement”!  So, until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.

Online Entertainment

We are all doing what we can to entertain the masses.  Even I, your beloved Billy, am doing twice-weekly LIVE telecasts from one of my many humble abodes.  Tuesdays and Thursdays at 3PM Eastern, I can be found on YouTube, Facebook, and even BillyMasters.com under “TV”.  We’ve had some fascinating revelations from various luminaries – the anecdotes of Charles Busch and Steve Kmetko are required viewing.  All free, all live, and all archived.  Coming up this Tuesday, April 7th, Bruce Vilanch and Andrea Martin will regale us.

Taylor Swift Revealed

Someone recently asked about the writing of this column in these crazy times.  “Is there still any celebrity gossip going on?”  The answer is a resounding YES!  Although, I suppose it depends on how you define “celebrity”.  Take Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, and Taylor Swift – please, take them all!  I realize they’re big stars, but…YAWN!  Remember all that chatter about Kanye dissing Swifty in his song “Famous” a few years back?  At the time, he swore he ran it by her to make sure she wasn’t offended.  Kim even released a brief snippet of the phone call to prove that the conversation actually took place.  When Kanye was chastised, Taylor didn’t back him up because…well, you all know how I feel about her (not that I think he’s any prize).  I never weighed in on the scandal because, frankly, I couldn’t care less.  But now we have more of the phone call, and it’s kinda fabulous because Kanye was telling the truth.  Not only that, but it proves to me that Taylor is…well, you all know how I feel about her.  I’m posting it on BillyMasters.com and you can hear it for yourself – from the horse’s mouth..

Patti Goes Nuts

In these unsettling times, there are few things I am sure of.  But, if there is one thing I can say with absolute certainty, it’s that Patti LuPone is insane.  This is not new information to any LuPone devotee.  But we now have video proof that could send her away for a long, long time.  Her descent into madness coincided with the pandemic we are currently living through.  People are looking for all sorts of ways to while away the hours, and Patti is no different.  She decided to go on a social media blitz and give people a tour of her basement.  This is no regular basement.  There is a full-sized pinball machine, a jukebox, scores of photo albums, and assorted theatrical souvenirs.  These took up three videos.  However, we’re focusing on the fourth.  In that one, she wanders down the stairs in full Norma Desmond regalia – oh yes, complete with turban and sunglasses.  “You there.  Why are you so LATE?!” she asks in her distinctive clipped cadence.  As she sings “With One Look”, she wafts over to a slot machine – oh, did I mention she’s got a slot machine?  Just check it out…on our website, naturally.

Covid Conspiracies

If you believe in conspiracy theories, you would have to wonder if Kathy Griffin’s sudden ailment was a plot.  While struggling to claw her way back after the Trump fatwa, Griffin was unlucky enough to be ill with all of the corona symptoms.  First they came and went.  Then they came and stayed – and intensified.  Kathy and husband Randy self-quarantined and consulted with a doctor via phone.  He advised she go to urgent care.  They sent her to the ER at Cedars-Sinai.  Once there, they evaluated her and sent her to the Covid-19 area.  Although the doctor wanted to test her (and Randy) for the coronavirus, it wasn’t possible.  Why?  Because her chest x-ray was clear, although a CT scan showed an infection.  She had two options – get admitted to the hospital, or go home and self-isolate.  She took the latter option.  She went public primarily to show that there are not enough tests.

Could someone please look into how Prince Charles got the coronavirus?  I’m not pointing fingers, but let’s break it down.  Say Prince Charles dies (God forbid).  And then that old woman dies.  What happens?  William becomes King.  And who becomes Queen?  Kate.

RIP Terrence McNally

We now have our first official celebrity death.  Playwright Terrence McNally wasn’t someone who craved the spotlight.  But he has the dubious distinction of being the face of the coronavirus.  The analogy to Rock Hudson being the face of AIDS is not exactly ideal.  McNally was not closeted, not a heartthrob, and pretty much lived his life openly (with the possible exception of his alcoholism, which Angela Lansbury called him on and helped him deal with).  He was a lovely, intelligent, thoughtful man.  He had a variety of ailments over the past several years, and Covid-19 was simply the straw that broke this giant’s back.  In all the tributes which have been pouring in, nobody seems to have a bad thing to say about Terrence.  We knew each other and had loads in common.  But, for whatever reason, sadly, we never really “clicked”.  Nonetheless, my feelings for him as an artist and as a person are boundless, and I send his husband Tom my warmest wishes during this difficult time.  He is now at peace – at last.

Legendary NYC drag queen Mona Foot is also a casualty of the coronavirus.  The news was announced by designer Geoffrey Mac, who just won Project Runway.  Foot, also known as Nashom Wooden, was one of those larger-than-life characters who drew people in and nurtured them.  As Mona, he hosted a weekly contest called Mona Foot’s Star Search at Barracuda in NYC – a show which many feel inspired RuPaul’s Drag Race.  An apt comparison, especially since it was Ru who taught Mona how to apply makeup when they were both appearing in the off-Broadway play, My Pet Homo.  When we can go to the theatre again, let’s hope someone mounts a revival of that!

 

Dr. Deborah Birx

Since this crisis began, I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time watching “the bitch in scarves” – and you all know who I mean.  She’s that chick who looks like Michael Learned wearing a different scarf at each of Trump’s press conferences.  Occasionally she adds a broach.  So, I decided to find out who she is.  Her name is Dr. Deborah Birx, and several outlets claim that her maternal fashion choices are comforting us.  I dunno about you, but Big Mama Masters rarely rocked a scarf – and never a broach!  Digging into her background more, The Guardian of London says, “She’s a legend in the fight against HIV.  Now Dr. Deborah Birx is taking on Covid-19”.  Turns out Dr. Birx was an army physician in the ‘80s when people started dying of what would eventually be called HIV.  After losing a growing number of patients, she dedicated herself to stopping the virus.  President Obama named her US Global AIDS Coordinator.  She is currently the White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator.  I dunno about you, but that actually does give me comfort – a helluva lot more than those damn scarves.  When they make the inevitable movie about these harrowing days, I am sure Meryl Streep will play Dr. Birx.  Perhaps Dr. Fauci could be played by Peter Dinklage.

 

Coronavirus & HIV

Welcome to the new normal.  Everyone is staying home, and Billy’s in a sling 24/7 – it’s a world gone MAD!  To top it off, many people aren’t staying home and, well, I’m kinda getting used to this sling.  More people are dying every day, others are testing positive, while others either can’t or are afraid to take the test.  You know what this sounds like?  The 1980s!  Well, except for the part about me being in a sling…I guess I just needed to ease into it.  Is it just me, or does it seem completely unfair to go through two plagues in one lifetime?

Let’s put this into some historical context.  When the AIDS crisis first hit, nobody knew anything: how you got it, how it was transmitted, how to prevent getting it, how to cure it, etc.  In short, the same questions everyone has now.  Back then, doctors gave us their best guesses, and people either took their advice or didn’t.  But the one thing I remember vividly is that if you were fat, the presumption was that you were healthy.  And even this has a historical precedent.  During the Renaissance, the wealthy were always painted as being large and rotund.  Why?  Because if you were fat, you clearly had enough money to buy food!  So when this whole coronavirus is over and some of us look a bit chunky in our Speedos, it simply means that we were safe (and, in my case, eating my weight in peppermint bark every day).  And there’s your silver lining.

 

Latest Gay Political Scandal

Not all local government officials are created equally.  Take Andrew Gillum.  Just before the pandemic hit the US, Gillum (a Democrat who almost became Florida’s first black governor) was caught in a South Beach hotel room with another guy.  Making matters worse, the other guy was allegedly ODing on crystal meth.  At some point, a third man arrived, found Gillum vomiting in the bathroom, and his companion unresponsive in bed.  He called 911 and began chest compressions (presumably on the unresponsive guy).  When the cops and paramedics arrived, they found a room riddled with baggies of drugs, empty bottles of (ironically enough) Corona beer, various prescription meds, and soiled linens.  I know…icky!  They also found an injectable medication for erectile dysfunction – ‘cause, you know, when you’re drunk and high, sometimes you simply cannot perform.  When the officers tried to question Gillum, he was unable to provide coherent details – for obvious reasons.  And yet, inexplicably, they didn’t take him into custody.  He checked out of the hotel and returned to his home. 

What makes this all worse is that 1) Gillum is married to a woman and has three kids and, b) the companion who was ODing was male escort Travis Dyson.  Actually, his “working” name is Brodie Scott – which doesn’t sound nearly as porny as Travis Dyson.  Anyway, he’s mighty hot and mighty hung – and you can see for yourself in the many photos and videos posted on BillyMasters.com.  I’m not completely sure, but I think the third guy who stumbled into the hotel room and called 911 was Travis’ fiancé.  Hmmm….more to come, I’m sure.

When we’re all in bed together, it’s time for me to end yet another column.  Before closing, I must acknowledge the passing of Kathy Griffin’s mom, Maggie.  In person, she was everything you’d want…and more.  She was a helluva gal, and we’re tipping it in her memory.  If you don’t have a box of wine handy, you can simply head on over to www.BillyMasters.com – the site that’ll keep you amused (and healthy) through this crisis.  If you to have a question, send a note to Billy@BillyMasters.com, and I promise to get back to you before we get to the bottom of Andrew Gillum.  So, until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.

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