Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Go-to-Gay: The new man in town

You may or may not have heard, but Wade Rouse and Gary Edwards have decided to retire from their joint role as CLC's Go-to-Gay. We loved having them here and will miss them, but hopefully they'll contribute a guest post from time to time.

After hearing this news, our Chick Lit Cheerleader, Jen Tucker, came to the rescue and introduced us to Keith Stewart, author of Bernadette Peters Hates Me. She claims that he is hilarious, and we definitely agree with her after reading his answers to our loaded questions.

Please give Keith a warm welcome as we inaugurate him as our new Go-to-Gay!

What is your favorite dish at a Chinese restaurant?
Chinese food is one of my favorites, and choosing a dish is easy. It’s Hot and Sour Soup. I could live on it. I would eat it every day. Some things I love about it, besides the Umaminess: (1) I have no idea how to make it myself, so I only can get it when I order out, (2) there are mystery ingredients in the soup that taste great, but do not look like edible items at all, and (3) those teeny-tiny little shrimp are always in it.

Although you didn’t ask, the item I hate most at Chinese restaurants is the large fish dish you have to call ahead to have prepared for you. If you’ve never noticed, all eat-in Chinese restaurants have this huge fish in their repertoire. Many times, it isn’t on the actual menu, but it is available. They act like it takes extra time to specially prepare it, but I’m telling you, all they do is coat with breading and fry up AN ENTIRE FISH. Head, bones, tail, gills, eyes. It is the whole thing. Flash fried and sent to your table to stare at you while you try to eat it without getting choked on a bone and dying. Eww, it gives me shivers.

What are you a self-proclaimed expert at?
I am an expert on ways to cheat on your daily step count with your Fitbit. This isn’t a particularly proud moment for me, but I admit, I am good at it. I have the unfortunate luck of being an out-of-shape person with several in-shape friends. Had I realized the stress and turmoil accepting these people as my “friends” on, I would have never done it, but now that I have, it is too late to take it back. As a result, I constantly see myself at the bottom of the rankings for number of steps walked. I have earned exactly two Step Badges, and have never been close to receiving one for climbing stairs. I have never won a challenge of any sort. I rarely even hit my daily step goal, even though I lowered from the default goal that the sadists at the Fitbit company set for you. So you can see why it was necessary to find ways to “boost” my steps while still maintaining my current level of (non)activity. Through trial and error, I can now can bust out 5-7k in steps without moving from my recliner while watching The Vampire Diaries. I can get in a quick 3k in steps on the drive to Dairy Queen for a Blizzard. I still haven’t won a challenge, but it is only a matter of time. Only a matter of time.

What one food item do you wish was healthy?
Pizza. If pizza were healthy, I would be an Olympian.

What is life's greatest mystery?
Life’s greatest mystery has to be why the mind wreaks such havoc on the body? Honestly, my mind just flat out enjoys messing with me. As a writer, I can’t tell you how many times while on the verge of falling asleep, I have thought of the perfect line for a poem or come up with the best story idea I have had in months. It is so good, I tell myself I could never forget it and will start writing it all out first thing in the morning. Of course when I wake up, I can only remember that I am already running behind, and I forgot to refill my water pill yesterday, which means my face will have an extra chin today.

Another sick trick my brain likes to pull on me is telling me how tired I am all day long. Signals are sent resulting in my barely being able to make it through work and dinner. I force myself to stay awake until there is at least a semblance of darkness outside. Then I hop in bed, get under the covers, turn out the light, and my mind says, “SURPRISE! I FOOLED YOU! WE ARE GOING TO STAY UP ALL NIGHT AND WORRY!”

If anyone has an answer to this mystery of life, I am all ears.

What do you need more of right now?
Willpower! I am the easiest pushover in Kentucky. I have such good intentions to eat well, exercise, write two hours daily, keep my house clean, wash my car, get to work on time, etc. All it takes is to glance at a Facebook notification or to hear the familiar “tweet” ushering in a text, and I am sucked into a time wormhole that blindsides my day. How I wish I could be disciplined, productive, and, oh look, Sean Hayes is broadcasting live on Facebook!

If you were to start a collection now, what would it be?
Each year at Christmas, I compile a list for my blog called The Most Inappropriate Christmas Gift List. I usually spend a couple of months researching the dark alleyways and underground stores of the interweb to find these items. I have been doing it for four years now, and at this point, my friends and family join in on the research. I am always getting links to items for my list. If I could have a collection of the macabre items on that list, I would be the happiest man alive.

Keith Stewart is the author of Bernadette Peters Hates Me – True Tales of a Delusional Man. A native of Appalachia, he splits his time between his hometown of Hyden and nearby Lexington, Kentucky. His blog is . You can find him on Twitter at @Shiglyogly and Facebook at @AMSCOT (A Strong Man’s Cup of Tea). He is a regular contributor to and the He lives with his husband, Andy, and their two dogs, Duke and Dudley.


Janine said...

Hi Keith! I think you are going to fit in good here. I enjoyed your post today and you made me laugh on what started out as a sad day (it was my best friend's dad's funeral). I look forward to seeing your next post. Chinese food has always been a bit of a mystery to me. And the Fitbit story. Love it.

Kristi said...

Eww! I had no idea there were tiny shrimps in hot & sour soup! I love it though but always have to eat around the weird looking mushrooms. I can't wait to read more of your stuff!

Keith S. said...

Thanks, Janine! I'm sorry you had a sad day, and glad you were able to laugh anyway. See you soon!

Keith S. said...

Kristi, they are there! Those mushrooms are freaky, too. In fact, now that I think about it, I can't believe I like Hot and Sour Soup as much as I do!