July 9, 2010

When you swish upon a star: a big gay book by a little gay actor



Leslie Jordan is my new hero...

"I have been blessed with a deep appreciation for beauty. I think that's why homosexuals were put on this earth - too make things pretty. I love to be around beautiful things, and that is why I love to be around Mark Harmon."

How could you not love Leslie Jordan?

"Including pilots that were shot but not aired, I have had fifteen series regular roles, I have been in so many failed television shows I always feel the need to apologize to the cast in advance."

Leslie Jordan is awesome...

"When I drank I was known as the Tiny Terror. I had a history of slapping people across the face. Sometimes, people whose faces I could barely reach."

In case you missed the D-level never-even-made-it-to-video horror flick Madhouse, you may know Leslie Jordan from Ally McBeal, Designing Women, Boston Legal, his Emmy-winning recurring role on Will & Grace, or any number of other TV comedies over the past thirty years.

And I just read his autobiography, My Trip Down the Pink Carpet. It is smart and funny and a fast read. As I am a fan, I expected light and funny, which I got in spades, and then I also got insightful and emotional. True, I wish there was more on Will & Grace and other fun backstage stuff, and while the book may be short on that stuff (ooh, short, I made a funny), it is so rich in what is there.

Jordan was born in the south and knew he was gay before he knew what gay was, as he both felt ashamed and loved to play with dolls. Oh, and then there were the unrequited teenage crushes on football players.

This is his tale of accepting and eventually embracing his truth and building himself a new life. It veers between stories of church in the deep south to stories of Cloris Leachman having a wardrobe malfunction. Jordan is a caring, giving man, who has made a lot of bad moves (yeah, who hasn't), usually fueled by his own insecurities and his propensity to go ape shit every time he sees a pretty boy. Or foreign gypsy. Or tattooed cowboy with a crack habit. You get the idea.

My Trip Down The Pink Carpet chronicles his adventures with fame, failure, alcohol, self-hating, cheap hookers, crystal meth, gypsies, sex, Luke Perry, Tammy Faye Baker, religion, play writing, ecstasy, Reba McEntire, a night sharing a jail cell with Robert Downey Jr., and eventually self acceptance. Holy crap, that is quite the adventure!

Leslie Jordan is awesome...

"I realise that using the word "dreamboat" is a bit unseemly for a man my age. But I'll admit it right here and now: I am a high school cheerleader in an old man's body."

15 comments:

Rusty Hoe said...

I love Leslie Jordan. Aside from his screen work I've seen him interviewed a couple of times and he is hilarious. He was brilliant on Will & Grace, he and Karen were hilarious together. Will definitely be grabbing a copy.

marymac said...

LOVE IT! A total must read. The cover is FAB, he is fab, and mostly, YOU are fab. Love all around.

Cheers!

xoxo

Bob said...

Loved the book, love Leslie!

Salt said...

*adds to must read list*
I LOVE him!

Elly Lou said...

I've heard SUCH great things about this book. I'm so bummed I missed his one man show.

TICKLEBEAR said...

i wikkied the guy, and despite the fact i watched many of those shows on and off, either i missed those episodes he was in, or he literally flew "under the radar"...

but you make him sound like such a darling!! and if he digs MARK HARMON, well, i hate him, 'cause he's threading on my own turf. step away boy!!

i guess i'll youtube him now to see if there's anything there... do you think?

spending a night in jail with RD Jr??
if it weren't because he was there for being in an altered state, that could be interesting surely.

tiny terror, eh?!?
:D~
HUGZ

Jabacue said...

Love your blog title!!
Leslie Jordan, eh? That's his name. I'd be on the floor laughing when he was on 'Will and Grace'. Thanks for the bio on this character/actor.

Climb2Nowhere said...

That book sounds hysterical! Definitely on my list of books to read!

Bodaciousboomer said...

I really enjoyed him on Will and Grace. He was the perfect foil to Karen.

Brahm (alfred lives here) said...

I too know him best from Will and Grace, and then from Boston Legal, a show I loved and where he appeared several times, until Betty White killed him by whacking him on the head with a frying pan.

And I vaguely recal seeing him on 'Designing Women' many years ago. Always the comic relief and a riot!

Fun fun book. And touching too.

Stan in NH said...

If you've never seen Sordid Lives, check him out in that. The movie is a scream, and Leslie is a stand out as "Brother Boy". He's a real charmer who we do love dearly. :)

injaynesworld said...

He is hysterical is everything he's in. And he's right. Gays do make things prettier. I'll have to check out his book now.

Brahm (alfred lives here) said...

Yes, check out the book, is a great read. And thanks for visiting and commenting!

Linda Medrano said...

He's priceless! I love him to pieces!

Brettandthecity said...

Wow..

What a great effn tittle. LMAO!!!!! What a great post. I completely love that little fairy. Makes me wish I had a little pocket sized gay father.

I have to download the book on Kindle.

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