It’s not like I didn’t know who Aaron Rodgers was before all this.  I mean, he’s engaged to Shailene Woodley!


The Jeopardy Guy?

Not about the engaged part but the fact that, not being much of a football fan or someone who generally follows sports (Note: Though I do like watching a great tennis match), I wouldn’t know or care about a famous NFL receiver .

Kidding again!

I know he’s a halfback.  Um, fullback.

Okay, yes —    QUARTERBACK!

But truly, on this issue and in this news cycle, who cares???

It might take a while

Last night I made dinner for two vaccinated friends and we three multi-vaxxed gay guys all of a certain age talked about three different ways to lie.   

Before I tell you what the three are it’s worth noting upfront we’ve all spent our lives in the entertainment industry where over the years, whether you like it or not, you receive a master class in learning how to recognize and, yeah okay, sometimes execute all three types of untruth-telling.

#1Make stuff up.  That’s just saying a lot of unvarnished sh-t that you know isn’t true because it helps you and, well, because you can. 

#2Lying by omission.  This is when in answer to a question, or in making a statement, you knowingly leave out facts you are aware are essential and that, if revealed, would prove the exact opposite of the argument you are making or the impression you are trying to make.

#3 – A hybrid of #1 and #2.  Using language that is vague enough to answer a question and technically tell the truth but in just enough of a wiggle room kind of way that enables you to get the reaction and response you want.

Good question

Of course, even if you succeed, being this kind of expert wordsmith doesn’t make you George Washington. Rather, you’re just a more polite version of Donald J. Trump.

Someone who joyously engages in #1 (Note: See my crowd size and we won the election by A LOT) but tried to govern us through a pandemic with #2 and various side dishes of #1.  Yeah, it really is that simple. 

Even though it can get incredibly complicated, especially when you’re not a natural born Trumpian-like liar.

You tell ’em Larry!

Rodgers, the three time NFL MVP who has so far led the Green Bay Packers to a 7-1 winning season, told reporters and media outlets back in August regarding COVID-19 vaccine requirements, that he’d been immunized prior to the season beginning.  (Note: #3) Then quickly, he added:

There’s guys on the team that haven’t been vaccinated and it’s a personal decision.  (I’m) not going to judge those guys. (Note: #2.  Soooooo #2).


This week, sadly, Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19 and had to come clean and admit he was unvaccinated. 

And then he had to do some cleanup.  Actually, A LOT of cleanup.

In the entertainment business, this is usually the time a studio head gets gently ousted into an independent producing deal or a director or star leaves a project due to artistic differences.

Ding ding ding!

Though if you’re super “A” list, like Rodgers currently is, they might just weather the storm by hiring some expensive damage control experts.  Another way is for you to apologize, tell the absolute unvarnished truth, take the consequences and then try to use your platform to do some future good by learning from your mistake (Note: Attempting to make the world a slightly better place in some small, benevolent, role model-y kind of way).

Rodgers so far seems to be taking a third road that judges across the world warn against – serving as your own defense attorney and refusing to admit to the screw up that got you into all this trouble in the first place.

And looking like this isn’t helping

The Packers’ current star QB seems convinced his primary transgression right now is merely choosing to follow his own protocol of protection against COVID-19.  He simply doesn’t get that it’s the lie that almost always brings you down.

Except when you get away with it.  Which, in this case, he hasn’t.

See, it’s Rodgers’ belief that because he played this season by following all of the protocols for unvaccinated players that he is the VICTIM here.  So instead, he proclaims:

..I’m in the crosshairs of the woke angry mob right now… So, before my final nail gets put in my cancel culture casket, I think I would like to set the record straight on so many of the blatant lies that are out there about myself.


Then, in classic client as his own ill-advised attorney style, he goes on to mansplain his vaccine lie.  How the media was on a witch hunt (Note: Yes, he went THAT Trumpian) for unvaccinated players in August and that accounted for his use of the word “immunized.” 

How they’ve (his fellow players) all endured Draconian measures…not based on science, such as undergoing daily COVID-19 testing that must be negative before entering the Packers’ facilities; wearing a mask inside and around vaccinated people; physically distancing; not leaving his hotel and other travel restrictions.

In other words, behaving like a working human who cares about others and the future of humanity in the midst of a global pandemic.

Basic. Human. Decency.

As if that wasn’t enough, Rodgers went on to whine that he was tested over 300 times and was negative every time before finally testing positive this past week.

Well, um, yeah, that is the way it works. 

As we three gay guys of a certain age would have gladly told him.

We had lots and lots of friends who were healthy and HIV negative before, one day, they contracted HIV and tested positive.  Then, they got sick with full-blown AIDS.  And in the eighties and nineties, like too many with full-blown COVID-19 in 2020 and, still, into 2021, sadly died.

That’s how viruses roll.  You become positive AFTER you were negative for months…or even…years.

Truth hurts man!

To further buoy his explanation, Rodgers brought 500 pages of research he compiled to appeal his non-vaccination status to the NFL.  It’s a cornucopia of information of #1s, #2s and #3s that you can read about here.

But basically he presents it to support his claim that he needs an alternative to a shot because he’s allergic to an ingredient in the MRNA vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna).  This despite the view from the head of the American College of Allergy Asthma and Immunology’s COVID Vaccine Task Force that “you’re as likely to get struck by lightning as you are to have an allergic reaction to a COVID vaccine.”

And then you’ll go BACK TO THE FUTURE!

(Note: Not to mention anecdotal evidence from our own internal study — The Chair has allergies to countless pathogens, gets regular allergy shots, has asthma and is OLD(er).  Yet he has been thrice vaccinated thus far with nary a serious reaction).

Oh, one more thing.  Rodgers says he also hesitates to get the J & J shot because he’s heard of multiple people who have had adverse events, including leaving themselves open to sterility, which is something he greatly fears because the next great chapter of my life, I believe, is being a father. (Note: There is zero link between these vaccines and sterility.  00000.00000%).

It is not for us to say that it might be a good idea for Aaron Rodgers to delay fatherhood a bit.  But as a blogger and non-football fan, I am free to write it on behalf of the families of the 750,000 dead Americans and all those AT RISK that he might have infected had his team not required him to take the COVID protocols he so vehemently and so publicly continues to resent.

Green Day – “American Idiot”

CoVid Star Power

We are all the stars of our own lives.  This applies to each of us, whether we choose to luxuriate in the spotlight or are repelled by the mere thought of being noticed.

All of this is to say we have the ultimate say on every choice we make because at the end of the day we are the person taking the action.  It’s not only our name and reputation, but it’s our decision that keeps the entire project that is US afloat.

And nowhere has this been more apparent than in the recent uptick of COVID-19 cases across the United States.

Oh god

New COVID-19 cases are increasing in all 50 states in the US at an alarming rate.  Sure it’s worse in Florida, Missouri and the Arkansas border than it might be than where you’re reading this, but rest assured cases are also UP where you are.

Thanks Delta-Variant.  Thanks mask refusers.  Thanks pandemic deniers.  And most of all, thanks TO THE NON-VACCINATED.  They are all truly the STARS of their OWN SHOW.

Me, 24/7

The above sentence is meant to be read and/or said aloud with sarcasm.  You can also throw in a dollop of anger, impatience and even hate on my part on any given day or if the mood strikes you.   And given the news lately, it likely will.

CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said on Friday that this is becoming the pandemic of the unvaccinated.  This is because that population accounts for over 99% of recent COVID deaths.  However, that doesn’t mean the rest of us can’t get a mild case of sick with perhaps lingering  lifetime effects from this disease.   

Nor does it mean that kids under 12 years old, who right now don’t even qualify to get a shot, won’t soon be in danger.  In fact, doctors tell us that if virus keeps surging the youngest members of our population will be the most affected.  Even now in Mississippi, a state with one of our lowest vaccination rates, seven children are in intensive care with COVID-19 and two are on ventilators.

Never more relevant

I won’t bore you with too many figures but just know that new cases are up 10% over what they were a week ago and 38 of our 50 states have seen a 50% increase. 

Across the US there were an average of 26,448 new cases per day over the last week. 

That might not seem scary in a country with 328 million people until you realize this figure was 67% higher than the week before.

If you take into account where we were in COVID-19 cases in, say, January 2020, and then look back and do the math of just a few months later, you’ll catch my drift.  Meaning we could be moving into deep sh-it once again if we don’t get our acts together.

Translation?  The answer is not to run to the nearest bar or local Med Men outlet (Note:  Google the latter) to not deal with what’s happening.  Instead, it’s to act like the best star in the world (Note: Think Tom Hanks or Meryl Streep) and step up, do your homework and carry the entire production on your shoulders if need be).

If we lockdown again, I’m ready for my Wilson phase

I live in Los Angeles, the most populated county in the country.  Because we’ve had a FIVE HUNDRED PER CENT increase in cases in the last month, an indoor mask mandate has been reinstated  as of Saturday night this weekend. 

What does this mean?  It means that if you go inside a supermarket, a workplace, a gym, a theatre or ANY INDOOR PUBLIC SETTING YOU HAVE TO WEAR A MASK.

It’s said that L.A. is leading the fight against the Delta Variant of COVID-19.  But, well, are we?

Or is it more like this?

I was fully vaccinated at the end of February and since then have always worn a mask at indoor public settings.  Except, well, a couple of times where I sat indoors at a restaurant when there was social distancing and I had to take my mask off to eat.  And then slowly decided to keep it off while I was inside because it seemed easier and no one else had one on.

Translation:  Truth be told, I never felt totally comfortable being unmasked in an indoor public space after I was vaccinated, even when I was six feet apart from others.  But I did it a few times (Note: Okay, maybe even more) anyway.

As a guy who used to lean towards the hypochondriacal, until I got older and realized there is truly NO escape from death, I figured that with the vaccine I could drop a shoulder strap or two at a socially distanced indoor restaurant. 

The Delta variant’s best friend

Still, there was no way I’d be doing a full strip indoors, even in L.A., at the movies or the, well, supermarket.  At this point, I no longer have any desire to prove just how comfortable I am onstage or center stage EVERYWHERE, even though, living in Hollywood, there is ALWAYS a chance you can be discovered, or rediscovered, at any moment and at any given age.  Or so the legend goes.

Nevertheless, it seems far too many Americans do see themselves as the center stage star of their own burlesque routine in towns big and small all across the country.  Rather than recognize they are part of a cast of millions in a daily blockbuster production called real-life, they see themselves as the spoiled pampered star at their local dinner theatre doing the same old thing in the same old way to less and less and FAR LESS success.  But, I mean, why change now, right?

Keep tellin’ yourself that, Norma

Those who’ve spent their adult lives in the entertainment industry realize at some point there is no reasoning with certain of these types.  They believe it is their right to act and strut and sing out exactly as they always have even if they put the entire rest of the cast and crew, in fact the entire show or project, at risk.

There is no shared responsibility. There is only the wants, needs AND DESIRES of the STAR. The star’s only real life are those moments that they are center stage and, for stars like these, those moments are every second of every waking hour of every single day. Consequences for all others be damned.

By the way, that kind of star doesn’t always have to be the performer.  It can be the director, the producer, the writer or the financier in the background.  It can even be, um, a former president of the United States.


Or it can be the person staring back at you each morning in the mirror, whether you choose to acknowledge it or not.

We all have the final say on what we do individually.  It’s our names, our reputations and our decisions that keep us afloat and, en masse, it is all of those things that keep the entire project that is the U.S. afloat.

Or sink it quicker than a summer stock production of The Sound Music in Atlanta featuring the Trump family.

Carly Simon – You’re So Vain