The Thrill is Gone

The Thrill is Gone

he was bored

& looking for sex

as if sex was a solution

so far

nothing had lived up

to his expectations

his profile listed

his interests

it was like the index

to a gay sex manual

<>

at nineteen

he wanted to try them all

while he was still young enough

to enjoy them all

before he was bored

by them all

<>

what I hadn’t tried

of his endless index

had never appealed to me 

at any age

many I had tried a few times

had no interest in exploring them again

even though

he wanted an older guide

who was opened-minded

<>

we chatted a awhile

because he liked my dick pic

when it became clear

I had boundaries

my disinterest in

repeating what bored me

made him bitter

judgemental

the less defensive I became

the more defensive he became

but at least

he was no longer bored

crushing boredom

This is based on real life events & in some ways is why I bother with any online gay cruising sites – I find things like this amusing & sometime a little puzzling. These sites are also a way of passing the time when I have ten minutes with little to do. Like this guy here I was bored, but not really looking for sex just a reminder that sex was possible 🙂

I saw his shopping list of sexual delights & thought, well there’s a few things I enjoy here but the rest isn’t on my menu plan. I wasn’t even curious enough to look at his pics but he contacted me via the site’s chat line. More info was exchanged & the more that was exchanged the less interested I was. I even asked him if he had actually read my profile – if he had he would have known what he was asking about me.

One of the ‘code’ words I watch for in profiles is ‘open-minded’ – which boils down to kink: diapers, chastity cages, that sort of thing. If one isn’t interested you become close-minded. Similar to saying ‘no’ to a drink, to say ‘no’ to kink can make some guys defensive – as if that ‘no’ is a judgment on their choices. 

Over the years I’ve learned that many men on line are looking for attention not contact. His laundry list was extensive enough that there was something for everyone there. It struck me as indecisive, which seemed natural at his age, too. My other caveat pops up here, the one that says: men lie on line. There is no way for me to verify his age, his profile pics, or his shopping list. The twenty or so minutes we chatted was enough role playing for me.

clutching at straws

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Out With The Bathwater

Out With The Bathwater

he wanted to drink

my bathwater

or so he said

I never did take him up on it

if he had said that

after a few dates

I might have found it

appealing  

almost flattering

but to start with that

was a bit much

it was the sort of

coming on too strong

I called ‘a red flag’

similar to sending a phone number

in the first message

or as the first message

not even a call me

or I liked your profile

I’m not going to call that number

<>

he wanted to drink

my bathwater

when I asked him why

he said that it was pretty obvious

the water

was something that had touched

every inch of my body

the way he wished he could

I was amused

intrigued

all his pics were blurry

or close ups of his nipples

no face pic

<>

I asked for a face photo

never heard back from him

The on-line hook-up world is full of every fetish you can imagine. Obviously I know more about the ‘gay’ male faction but am sure this array of kink is found to the same degree in the hetero scene. Most sites are full of vanilla guys with a dash of leather, s&m, b&d & there some sites are devoted to specific types of play or types of men: bears, older, black – so you can narrow focus.

Profile info usually includes what sort of play the person is interested in & I, unlike many, read that section of a profile (after I check out their hight 🙂 ) Even profile nicknames tell me enough: PoppersRus – is not for me. If approached I make it clear that, based on their interests, we aren’t a good match. Some guys get a bit huffy mind you as if my not being interested in x is judging them. Whatever. If you want to, say, dress as a baby including a diaper, that’s fine by me but I’m not interested – my lack of interest is not a sign of disapproval.

This piece is based on a couple of actual non-encounters. I am perhaps more cautious than some, mind you, but some first contacts don’t even get responded too. Bathwater Jim did a reply though because his (I assume it was a man) approach was novel enough to warrant that much. The reply turned into one of those corny dating book pick-up lines. ‘if I told you you had beautiful body would you hold it against me?’

The anonymity of the internet allows people to approach strangers in ways they probably wouldn’t in person. It’s easy to brave when both parties are faceless, voiceless. I enjoy profile pics but know that with the right angle, lighting & photoshop anyone can be larger than life. 

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The Toothbrush Isn’t Talking

The Toothbrush Isn’t Talking

all I am hiding

are my emotions

really

no I don’t have anything

in my hands

up my sleeve 

I didn’t put anything

where you couldn’t find it

everything is out in the open

<>

what good would it do

to hide your underwear

so you can’t get dressed

to hide your shoes so you can’t leave

hide the towels so

you have to 

dry off between the sheets

with me

me

who has nothing to hide

except my feelings

or rather my lack of them

<>

though you claim

my claim of lack of feelings

is actually hiding something

because my door is so open to you

I have made place

for you my life

you even have 

your own toothbrush here

it is out in the open too

<>

see nothing is hidden

really

except how I feel

which I can’t reveal

until you open up

to tell me what you have hidden

in your heart

The need for ‘transparency’ is getting to the point where if you don’t reveal you once looked at a naked person you could be taken to task for sexual harassment. I have a friend who refuses to appear & speak on any internet video feed lest what they say changes context as contexts change. What was harmless one decade becomes damning in the next. 

This piece isn’t directly about that 🙂 but looks at how & what we reveal of ourselves in our personal relationships. When does one reveal one’s sexual history, health issues? A buddy of mine started dating a guy & after a few dates realized they had potential he revealed a health issue & the other guy went ballistic. My buddy was devastated a she wasn’t hiding anything but waiting till there was some trust & a reason to reveal.

There are enough songs, books, movies about things that never get said. We, as humans, hope that our actions will convey our emotions, not merely our words. To say I love you & treat someone like shit as opposed to treating someone with kindness without saying saying I love you.

The underwear verse contains actual experiences of mine, slightly exaggerated. I didn’t really hide things just made them harder to find to delay departure. I’m more inclined to lack of expectation than I am to lack of feelings though. That is one of those things that goes unsaid. Things last as long as they do & I don’t build that much on expectations. But when I give one of my bed buddies undies as a birthday or Christmas gift I always say – I can’t wait to see them on you. So I guess that’s an expectation after all 🙂

I convey affection easily with words, but anything deeper not so readily – why is easier to say ‘I love those undies on you’ than it is to say ‘I love you’ ?

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Picture Perfect 56

Picture Perfect 56

“You need anything before we head out?”

“I got Hazel to pack us a lunch in case we need it. Plus she filled my travel mug.” He shook his Lyfend mug. He figured trail bouncing would be good test for it.

“I’m thinking the old Moose Trail won’t be too bad. Runs along the high ridge. Mostly rock too so shouldn’t be too mucky.”

Larry backed his SUV up then drove up a low hill near the entrance of the plot his tailer was on & directly into the woods. “I found this trail with the snowmobile the first winter I had one. One of my jobs is make sure this trail clear but not … too easy. The winter people like a bit of a challenge.”

The jeep rocked back forth as it negotiated the trail. Branches slapped at the roof, windows & the sides. Larry stopped at the brink of a steep downward grade. He grinned at Dan, released the clutch sending them bouncing down the side of the hill. Dan found himself grabbing the dash to brace himself.

“This is what I call driving.” Larry said happily.

“Now, I’m sure you aren’t queer.” Dan shook his head.

“What?” Larry laughed. “I could say the same thing about you.” 

“Me?”

“Yeah. Most gay guys spot my big feet within minutes. In my case it is true what they say. Why do you think I made sure you saw them before you changed into those boots?”

“Jesus! I just thought you were being … nice.”

“No, playing hard to notice. Gay’s not something to broadcast in these parts.”

“You’re kidding me. You’re gay?”

“More like bi.” Larry shrugged keeping a tight grip on the steering wheel as they bumped over the uneven trail. “You might have good gaydar but lousy bidar.”

“I only use gaydar when I think it’ll serve a ….” the left side of the jeep did a sharp dip then righted itself. “A purpose. You get much opportunity out here.”

“Summer mainly. I suggested, half-joking, to the management at the Tartan they should advertise for LGBT honeymooners. I was shocked they were willing to put up a rainbow flag. They don’t grasp that there is a generation that grew up watching queers on TV. It means nothing to them.”

He stopped the SUV. A tree had fallen across the trail. “We’re going to have to move that. It’s a two man job. Think you can manage.”

“Is that a dare?”

They got out of the truck. 

Larry walked around the tree peering into the trunk on either side. “I’m seeing where we would best put it.”

“Put it!” Dan tentatively lifted the part of the fallen trunk nearest him. “We’ll need a … I don’t know what to move this. It must weigh a ton.”

“Not a bad estimate.” Larry laughed. “We will have a little help.”

He went to the back of the truck and pulled out two steel spars about five feet in length. He gave Dan a pair of work gloves.

“You’ll need these. Let us … try over there first. You see where that other tree has been broken under this one.”

“Right.” Dan pulled on the gloves.

Larry showed him how to ram the spar under the tree as he did the same.

“Press down gently.”

They bounced the fallen tree trunk a few times.

“That’s good news. It is not lodged in that deeply. Now we go to here.” He jabbed under the tree. “No. the soil is too loose. We need bedrock.” He moved a few more feet along. “This boulder should suit us.”

They both pushed their spars under the trunk.

“Lift a moment, now push as hard as you can.”

The trunk felt immobile to Dan. “It’s like trying to move a sofa with a tooth pick.” He said.

“Yes. One of those situations that lube won’t solve. Stop for a moment. Once more. All your weight.”

For a split second Dan’s feet left the ground. He lost grip on his spar as the trunk moved a fraction then slewed off and away from them. While it did Larry pushed him to the ground. Freed from he weight of the tree his spar bounced into the air where he had been.

“What the …” Dan sat on the wet ground staring at the tree trunk. “I can’t believe we just moved that fucker.” His hands were stinging from the pressure he had been applying. “I have never done anything like that in my entire life.”

“I guess you don’t get to handle such big lumber in Toronto.” Larry lit a cigarette. “You handled that quite well for such a little guy.”

“Luckily your feet didn’t get in the way.” Dan started to stand but he was washed by a wave of dizziness. Spots danced before his eyes.

“Easy there.” Larry reached down to help him up. “All that exertion caught your body off guard.”

Dan let himself be led to the truck.

Larry went to the back and brought out a six-pack of beer & a plastic bag with some bananas in it.

“Time for a breather.” He offered Dan a beer.

“No thanks, I’ll stick to caffeine until we’re back on solid ground” He got the mug from the front seat. In the bouncing around the camera had been turned on. He resisted checking what footage it may have captured. “There’s a comfort station here after all.” 

They tossed their banana skins into the brush.

“Ready to push on?” Larry asked.

“Yes.”

The the next couple of miles were as rough but Dan was accustomed to the sway and lurch of the truck.

“There here is the old logger road.” Larry steered the ATV down a steep but short incline to a wider dirt road marked with tire ruts. “This will take us directly to the highway. How you doing there? Haven’t had much to say since we did right by that tree.”

“Thinking about what makes a man a man. A male a male.”

“Ah. There is more than one way to be who we are, right. I’m sure not your typical gay. Least ways not the type you usually meet in Toronto.”

“That’s for sure.”

“You are not quite what I expected. All I see are men who want to marry men, or who want to have sex with any man who is available. Available! They think it’s a challenge, their right to … corrupt the staff.”

“Corrupt!”

“You didn’t find it easy to see me as gay. They see me as the bulky, heterosexual, staff. A challenge to get in the sack. You’re not like that.”

“Let’s face it, we’ve been too occupied for me to think about anything else but why I am here & how to get to where I’m supposed to be.”

“In the movies the hero always has a hard-on for the random women in his moment of crisis. Sometimes it is all they seem to think about. The bomb is about to go off – let’s make out. Here we are.”

The road ended at the highway. 

“Great.” Dan was hoping the forest drive would last longer. After being surrounded by the trees the highway on either side of them was empty. 

“You know where we are headed?” Larry asked.

Dan turned and pulled his shoulder bag from her back seat to the front. He got out the Cold Case itinerary. “We’ve been booked into the Wickham Arms.” 

“It’s a decent b’n’b. Older than the Tartan though. I’ve stayed there myself.”

“Me too. But I’m sure it’s changed since the eighties.”

Dan wondered if Baxter had picked the Wickham in particular because he knew this was where Dan had stayed at the time of the disappearances. 

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Picture Perfect 53

Picture Perfect 53

Dan pulled into the Waterside parking lot and it looked unusually empty. It took a moment for him to realize that the mobile war room was gone. As he got out of his rental he spotted Baxter waving to him from the motel’s breakfast diner.

Baxter opened the door for Dan to enter. 

“We’re about done here so I’ve sent the portable to Stellerton.”

“I thought we’d be here another day?” Dan said.

“Well we’ve been given a nudge to move along.” Warszawa said. “I’ve already been in touch with the Division Captain in Truro and he sound much more receptive to cooperation than the unit here. I’m not sure what you did to them, Baxter, but they are really pissed about something.”

“I didn’t do anything? Stephanie Carter made the initial contact with them when we filmed the initial cold case show last year. We didn’t even leave the studio to put that one together. Did we?” he asked Stephanie.

“No. I made a few phone calls to newspapers in the region, then the families. Everything was done that way. Electronically not face-to-face. We had a local crew shoot some location footage. I did talk to … ” she checked her pad  “… a Staff Sergeant McKillop from the subdivision here. He was more concerned with how I got their number than anything else.”

“So you showed up here last week without alerting them that you were coming?” Warszawa asked Baxter.

“Not my department. All the travel arrangements were made by Stephanie and Harold Carmichael. I have enough to do without that to deal with.”

“That might be part of their issue. I’ve looked at that initial broadcast. You don’t show the RCMP in a good light. They feel you ambushed them.”

“That’s a part of what the show is supposed to do.” Stephanie said. “We present facts and put them in a context. We can’t help it if that context throws a negative light on the investigators. We found all too often that many cases go cold because of something at that level. Evidence being tainted or lost. Focus on one suspect at the detriment of other avenues.”

“We had Dorothy O’Connor’s family to interview here.” Dan said.

“Still do but Mrs. O’Connor has been hospitalized. Heart.” Roberto explained. “So we decided to move on to the next stage. We will come back and hopefully she’ll be up to it by then.”

Roberto then ran through the next several days of their itinerary. “Our next major set up will be Stellerton. From here we’ll travel to the Nova Scotia interviews. After those we’ll head to Cape Breton for the the last of them. Once they’re in the can we’ll do the O’Connor interview. Any questions?”

Dan went to his cabin to pack. A job that took him less than ten minutes. He checked in with the Depot in Toronto. Next was Peter. 

Peter was only wearing a black jockstrap when he appeared on the screen.

“You like, sir?” Peter said stepping so his bulge filled the screen.

“What do you think?” Dan got hard instantly. 

“Perhaps you’d prefer this view.” He turned sideways to offer Dan a profile of the pouch. “Or this is more to Sir’s liking.” He turned again so his bare ass filled the screen.

“Don’t bend over.” Dan said. “I don’t have anything handy to clean my screen with.”

“Yes, sir.” 

Dan watched as Peter walked away from the screen. The close up of his ass making way for more of the room.

“Hope you didn’t mind.” Peter said facing the screen.

“I’m not complaining.” Dan said. “Now put some clothes on before I catch my death of frustration.”

“Yes, sir.” Peter pulled a hoodie over his head. “That better.”

“Better, no, less distracting, yes.”

Dan quickly went through the day’s events. Peter nodding or laughing every now and then. 

“Hippo Dogs!” Peter said. “Sounds … phallic. Was Chamberlain as mouth watering?”

“You know, I didn’t even give him a thought. There was enough in the Museum to occupy me. He certainly didn’t give off that vibe though.”

“He is a fine arts major.”

“How do you know?”


“Web site. You aren’t the only one who can do instant research you know. Face pic is okay. Long shots he’s overdressed and … they aren’t highdef so he pixilates if I zoom in for close ups.”

“Someone must be horny to be pixilating curator crotches.”

“Super horny.” Peter stood with his cock pushing its way out of his jock strap. “Staying at your place is cool but having all your things around me is frustrating. Your undies without you in them. Your bed without you in it.” He was massaging the underside of his cock with two fingers so Dan could see it. “Yes, that is my precum, sir.”

Dan moved his chair back from the desk and adjusted the laptop so that his cock was on screen. His eyes went from the smaller inset of what his camera was relaying to Peter, to the bigger view of Peter’s cock. 

“I’ve never watched myself jerk off on camera,” Dan said. The voyeur watching himself.  “Do you think porn stars jerk off watching themselves jerk off?” he asked Peter.

“I could google that for you, sir.” Peter gasped, his fist rapidly jerking his cock, his balls held in the cup of the jock strap.

“Show me your balls.” Dan said. He felt his own climax approaching.

“Yes, sir.” Peter shoved the jock lower to free his nuts. “Like that sir.”

Dan came. “Exactly like that.”

“Did you come, Sir?” Peter asked.

Dan licked sperm off the back of his hand. “Yes. Doesn’t taste as good as you, though.”

“As good as a Hippo Dog?” Peter laughed.

“Not as salty.” Dan grabbed a motel towel and wiped his hand on it. It wasn’t the sight of Peter’s balls that got him off, it was Peter’s obedience.

In the month after Sanjay moved out & Dan worked out the Quintix contract Peter had become more than just a diversion. Not quite a lover. Dan felt Peter was too young for a long term relationship, even though Peter was sure he was. 

“Anything to report?” Dan brought the call back to his purpose.

“Nothing, sir. Business is good at the Depot, according to Brenda that is. Maybe some changes at the Carafe though. Jill’s thinking of moving on.”

“What! Competition from a cross the street too much for her?”
“Actually quite the opposite. Business is doing too well for her. Thanks to that friend of yours she can’t keep up with the demand for the scones.”

“Friend of mine?”

“Moxham.” Peter said.

“Do I note a tone of attitude? He is just a friend you know. Not that that is any of your business.”

“Sorry, Sir. I know I agreed not to get …”

“Enough! If I want an emotional weather report from you I’ll ask for it!”

“Yes, sir.” Peter took a breath. “Mr. Moxham has come into the cafe regularly since you’ve been gone. He always brings someone with him – his millionaire clients, I guess. One loved the vanilla bean & oatmeal scones that his company has been ordering a large quantity every day.”

“That sounds like a good thing.”

“Jill figures she should go into full time baking. Which means no time to manage a cafe.”

“Hmm. Perhaps I could get Sanjay to take over.”

“What the fuck!” Peter exploded.

“Just kidding. Which is what I think Jill is doing too.”

“I’m not sure.”

“I’ll talk to her when I get back there next weekend. I better double check these schedule changes.”

“No, he didn’t ask about you.”

“Who?”

“Mr. Moxham. He was all about the scones.”

“Peter, enough.”

“Yes. sir.”

“I’ll call tomorrow. It’ll be a different room, thank God. Can’t imagine it being much worse than this one.”

“Yes, sir. Thank you.”

The screen went to blue. 

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Nu-Disco Goth

One of the TV ‘reality’ talent showed I enjoyed the most was So Your Think You Can Dance. Thanks to pandemic & the plethora of other talent shows Can Dance came to an end. The show introduced me to many great, non-mainstream, musicians. Much of this CD compilation are such musicians. 

 

Nick Monaco is electronic music DJ who founded Unisex Records. One of his tracks came up not ehh how & glenn I saw a video of The Stalker on tumblr. Homoerotic is putting it mild. Here I have The Stalker ep; Veni Vidi Vogue ep; & Naked is My Nature. Bouncy, inventive & great keystroke music. Not emotionally draining & sweet. 

Bright Light Bright Light is Welsh nu-disco creator. The fact that he’s Welsh was a plus. I have Life Is Easy, Make Me Believe In Hope. Similar to Monaco but with more vocals. Uplifting, sex positive, danceable. Lyrically easy to understand & emotionally non-demanding without being banal. Good fun & great keyboard music.  

Somewhat different is Rozz Williams who was a goth who moved into a sort of punk cabaret sound. Rock music that doesn’t blister the ears. I have tow of his posthumous cds Accept The Gift Of Sin, Sleeping Dogs – they feature originals, live tracks & cover versions of Lou Reed & David Bowie. Great stuff & worth tracking down. 

Christophe Filippi is another one I never would have heard of if it hadn’t been Think You Can Dance. I have his Movements. This music for reaching out with one arm slightly lifted to a distance hopeful fray of light on a horizon. Deliberate, almost ponderous with longing vocals. 

Finally: Dirtybird Players a dance and electronic Music compilation by the Dirtybird label that includes Nick Monaco. If you want a state of the art (2017) of this genre this is a compilation for you. There is a nice diversity of sonic textures here & yet another good key stoke set of tracks.

 

The Allegory of Love 3

“He’s not going anywhere. Brian’s my guest. He’s my friend.” Steve called from the living room.

Ron stomped to the living room. “Some friend.”

I followed, pulling on my sweatshirt, afraid of how I might do if Ron continued to get physical. My intuitive reaction was to kill.

“Since when can’t I have a friend here?” Steve rushed at him. “You have enough of the.”

Ron pushed him back. “Since it was this trash. He insulted me without cause. You were there.”

“So, that’s it. Some girls can’t take as good as they give.” I thought. Even though I couldn’t remember what we said to each other that time years ago. I knew my words were as spiteful as his. The fact that I found Steve so attractive was probably what he remembered. My mind flooded with cruel defensive remarks, but all I wanted was out, before I became as unmanageable as Ron.

“I don’t want to make your life difficult, Steve. This isn’t worth fighting over.” I felt I had to say something, but didn’t want to feed into Ron’s anger by saying too much. He seemed too enraged to listen.

“You are right. Trash like you isn’t worth fighting over. He admits it. Now get out of MY home. Never show your face or that tired ass here again.”

I wanted to ask him why he was so frightened. I didn’t think I was a real threat to to their relationship. I never made complicated demands on Steve. Never pursued him. A simple little tumble every now & then was all I wanted. Maybe the fact that Steve enjoyed my ‘no demands’ was threat enough.

“This is my home too.” Steve shouted.

“Good. Great. I’ll be out of here in the morning if that’s what you want, & then you & your trashy friends can fuck your brains out all you want & get AIDS & die for all I care.” Ron’s voice rose to a scream. “But while I’m here I don’t want this piece of trash where I can see it.”

“You’re like this with anyone I like. Why do I have to friends you approve of?”

“Why do you live like this?” I thought, knowing it impossible to reason with anyone this angry. All they  want to hear is their own anger. “Someone should rescue you,” I thought, admitting that that someone wasn’t me. Steve would have to rescue himself, that is, if he wanted to be rescued at all.

“I’m going. Call me.” I said. For me the only way to deal with their anger, without become a part of it, was to walk away from it.

Ron stood by the door, arms crossed over his thin chest, glaring intently at me. Steve sat on the sofa, slumped forward, arms hanging between his legs, looking at me. I almost said, “Come with me” but wanted him to say that himself.

I waved goodbye. Ron shoved me out the door. If he had hit me with half the force he slammed the door with I’d have been flat on my back. In the elevator down I wondered if this is what love became – fear & procession.

I muddled the scene over the next day, looking for a right thing I could have said or done. I had just started to write Steve telling him how I felt, when it dawned me that I had been used. Steve hadn’t asked me back to his place to get in my pants, but to annoy Ron. Ron’s anger proved that he cared enough about him to be hurt by me. I doubted if they were even aware of what they were doing to each other. And me? I wasn’t using my head if I expected them to change just to satisfy my teddybear longings.

And as Steve brushed by me tonight, with that hook in his thigh, I long to take the bait, but I don’t do more than look. I’m not going to piss in that wind, tonight.

“Not again!” I reluctantly pushed Steve’s roaming hand away. “Don’t start something you’re not going to finish.”

“He’s not going anywhere. Brian’s my guest. He’s my friend.” Steve called from the living room.

Ron stomped to the living room. “Some friend.”

I followed, pulling on my sweatshirt, afraid of how I might do if Ron continued to get physical. My intuitive reaction was to kill.

“Since when can’t I have a friend here?” Steve rushed at him. “You have enough of the.”

Ron pushed him back. “Since it was this trash. He insulted me without cause. You were there.”

“So, that’s it. Some girls can’t take as good as they give.” I thought. Even though I couldn’t remember what we said to each other that time years ago. I knew my words were as spiteful as his. The fact that I found Steve so attractive was probably what he remembered. My mind flooded with cruel defensive remarks, but all I wanted was out, before I became as unmanageable as Ron.

“I don’t want to make your life difficult, Steve. This isn’t worth fighting over.” I felt I had to say something, but didn’t want to feed into Ron’s anger by saying too much. He seemed too enraged to listen.

“You are right. Trash like you isn’t worth fighting over. He admits it. Now get out of MY home. Never show your face or that tired ass here again.”

I wanted to ask him why he was so frightened. I didn’t think I was a real threat to to their relationship. I never made complicated demands on Steve. Never pursued him. A simple little tumble every now & then was all I wanted. Maybe the fact that Steve enjoyed my ‘no demands’ was threat enough.

“This is my home too.” Steve shouted.

“Good. Great. I’ll be out of here in the morning if that’s what you want, & then you & your trashy friends can fuck your brains out all you want & get AIDS & die for all I care.” Ron’s voice rose to a scream. “But while I’m here I don’t want this piece of trash where I can see it.”

“You’re like this with anyone I like. Why do I have to friends you approve of?”

“Why do you live like this?” I thought, knowing it impossible to reason with anyone this angry. All they  want to hear is their own anger. “Someone should rescue you,” I thought, admitting that that someone wasn’t me. Steve would have to rescue himself, that is, if he wanted to be rescued at all.

“I’m going. Call me.” I said. For me the only way to deal with their anger, without become a part of it, was to walk away from it.

Ron stood by the door, arms crossed over his thin chest, glaring intently at me. Steve sat on the sofa, slumped forward, arms hanging between his legs, looking at me. I almost said, “Come with me” but wanted him to say that himself.

I waved goodbye. Ron shoved me out the door. If he had hit me with half the force he slammed the door with I’d have been flat on my back. In the elevator down I wondered if this is what love became – fear & procession.

I muddled the scene over the next day, looking for a right thing I could have said or done. I had just started to write Steve telling him how I felt, when it dawned me that I had been used. Steve hadn’t asked me back to his place to get in my pants, but to annoy Ron. Ron’s anger proved that he cared enough about him to be hurt by me. I doubted if they were even aware of what they were doing to each other. And me? I wasn’t using my head if I expected them to change just to satisfy my teddybear longings.

And as Steve brushed by me tonight, with that hook in his thigh, I long to take the bait, but I don’t do more than look. I’m not going to piss in that wind, tonight.

“Not again!” I reluctantly pushed Steve’s roaming hand away. “Don’t start something you’re not going to finish.”

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Fear Walks In

Fear Walks In

some people

bring fear into a room

ideologies that I am expected

to accomodate

without knowing

<>

they prejudge me

for prejudging them

merely because of who I am

of who I appear to be to them

<>

I am an enemy on first sight

without having to say a word

or take any action

other than being there

of being unlike them

they feel unsafe

because I am not invisible

and it is my fault

<>

all my fault

for not understanding

what they haven’t told me

At a recovery meeting, when we could meet face to face, after a step had been read aloud – going from person to person around the room – a member shared on their difficulty with the hetero male normative language. When they read their section they de-gendered the language & as did some of the others who read. They implied that those of us who did not, lacked sensitivity to important gender issues. 

I gave an inner shrug – I’ve been around recovery rooms long enough that I am not unsympathetic to this but at the same time I’m in recovery to recover not to deal with linguistics or how to do the gender appropriate reading aloud of the literature. 

Referring to God as a him is off putting to some people, referring God at all is off putting to some people – if I don’t take pains to make the proper substitutions I make them feel unsafe. What can one do. Stop reading aloud? Ask for a show of hands, before reading starts, of people who feel unsafe because there are cismales in the room who don’t mind being called he? Online some people are including their pronouns as part of their names. (By the way my pronouns are it or that.)

After reading at an lgbtqia open stage an audience member spoke to me about enjoying my pieces but wondered if such sexually explicit material was appropriate because many in the community were triggered by such material. I had introduced one of pieces as being explicit but I guess I hadn’t allowed people enough time to leave the room. I’ve spent enough energy in saying my ‘partner’ & avoiding gender specific pronouns so as not to offended delicate hetero sensibilities that I’m not going spare lgbtqia by suppressing myself. I’d rather not perform than get trapped by self-censorship.

The fact is I’m not all that sensitive.

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Jonesing for Joplin

Quincy Jones is a chameleon. His work with others is classic without a sense of his personality over-shadowing theirs. He lets the artist shine & I’ve heard anything he’s been involved with & thought ‘that’s a Quincy Jones production.’ He is not a revolutionary like, say, Phil Spector.

I have a couple of lp to cds of his ‘solo’ work: This Is How I Feel About Jazz, Plays Mancini, Ndeda. The first I found in a remainder bin & it is smooth bop. Ndeda was double set I bought used, that is a compilation of some of his soundtrack music (In The Heat of the Night) & instrumental things like Soul Safari. The Mancini is sweet & they are a perfect match. If nothing else Quincy Jones is a tasteful, elegant producer.

Near Jones is a set of lp to cd transfers of Scott Joplin music performed by Joshua Rifkin, Southland Stingers, Canadian Brass & New England Conservatory Ragtime Ensemble. Joplin almost became a footnote, his music relegated to music scholars until the movie ‘The Sting’ that made his rags universal & they were resurrected by so many ensembles one lost track & sometimes couldn’t tell who was playing which one. I enjoyed them in small doses 🙂 

Most of the recordings are too respectful, treating them like Chopin Etudes, some are jazzier & some are more in the line of sweet polite salon orchestras. So many artists recorded these I’m surprised there isn’t a Tomita version 🙂 Unlike many early 1900 blues performers there are no historic recording sof Joplin actually playing but there are some player piano rolls he made which are fun & can be found on YouTube.

A short story discovered in my archives. It goes back to pre-1995 as the original printout is dot matrix 🙂 I’ve done minimal editing. It is based on a real incident. 

The Allegory of Love

1

“Not again!” I reluctantly pushed Steve’s roaming hand away. “Don’t start something you’re not going to finish.”

He squinted up at me, uncertain & a bit drunk.

I leaned in to speak directly into his ear. “Just because I don’t like being used doesn’t mean ‘stop so soon’.”

“Used?” He took a deep swallow of his beer. “What do you mean?” He stepped back & bumped into a man in leather.

The bar’s music was so loud I couldn’t hear myself. “Call me. I can’t talk here.”

Steve nodded & disappeared into the crowd. 

Thank God I thought, breathing a sigh of relief & dismay. I do like Steve, but too much to continue with pointless flirtation.

I suspected that time a couple of weeks ago was our last encounter. It had been under the same circumstance. Me feeling the lure of the full moon & Steve feeling the lull of enough brew. We’ve had fun many times before & I always look forward to what I called ‘rubbing our two sticks together.’ 

Steve shared an apartment with Ron. When I met them both several years ago at a mutual friend’s birthday party. I was instantly attracted Steve. They were introduced to me as friends not as boyfriends. Ron was a bitch, or so it seemed. Ron & I got into clawing at each other for some reason. Something we’re all too good at, I suppose.

I ran into Steve a few nights later & came on to him like the proverbial ton on brick. It was a meltdown in the sack & has been nearly every time we got our sticks together. Usually at my place but sometimes at his, if Ron wasn’t in. Over the years sex was so good, & Steve comparable enough, I would have set up housekeeping with him, except there was that Ron in the ointment. 

Steve never described them as being lovers, but Ron seemed to run more of Steve’s life than anyone should run anyone’s. But who am I to judge?

I was open with Steve about my affection for him. He wasn’t displeased, but I could sense that emotions frightened him. Staying with Ron seemed to be his way of keeping scary feelings at bay. For lat couple of month I felt their relationship was about to change, but our last encounter made me see things differently.

I’d arrived at the bar later than usual & was making my first foray into the smokey land of men, when Steve reached out of a dark corner. He grabbed me by the belt & pulled me in for one of those long, sloppy kisses that turn me to jelly.

“Good to see ya, Brian.”

“It’s been awhile.” I laughed. I knew he was a bit looped; he usually was to be so bold.

“Watcha’ been up to? The photo biz still keep you in focus?” He teased, running his free hand over my stomach.

“Things are developing well enough. And you? Getting anywhere in men’s wear?”

“Got a promotion.” He said proudly.

“Things must be going well.” I gently bit his ear.

“We’re opening a new branch since I took over.”

“Great! Soon you’ll be Queen of the Reduced to Queers.”

He giggled. “I really like you. You make me laugh.”

“You make me …” I squeezed his bunds.

“Same here.” He returned the squeeze, while draining his beer. “I’ll be right back.”

He darted off for another beer. As I watched him merge into the crowd, I wondered if this was going to lead to one of our meltdowns. Short, stocky & hairy, he was the perfect teddy bear for me to curl around tonight.

Back with a beer, he hugged me affectionately. “You know my little wang goes ‘boink’ whenever I see you.”

“That’s nothing to complain about.”

“How am I in the sack?”

Feeling a little insecure tonight?’I thought, as I replied. “You’re great. I keep coming back, don’t I”

“You treat me so …” he took a swallow of beer.

“Tender?” I offered.

“Yeah! Like you cared.”

“Why shouldn’t I? You deserve it. Just one thing.”

“What?”

“Often we’re too rushed. I want to savour what I enjoy. I hate to eat & run when the food is so good.”

“Thanks.” He pulled me in for another fly-popping kiss. “Let’s go.” He said pulling on his jacket.

“The coast is clear tonight?”

“Ah, who gives a fuck? It’s my home as much as his.”

“You’re sure? You know I …”

“You coming?”

“Sure.” I felt a slight misgiving. “What the hell. We can go to my place, if you’d rather.” I suggested as we walked along. “You really don’t a nose-bleed going that far north.”

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Out of Control

Out of Control

I am a man

in a man’s body

there was a brief time

when I doubted this

a time when gender was fixed

by cultural controls

<>

to explain

variations in object desire

people were reduced

to data

that data was used to explain

what didn’t fit

so that men

in men’s bodies

who desired other men’s bodies

were actual women in men’s bodies

genders misplaced

trapped and looking for release

that a man would desire another man

was explained

in terms of heterosexual norms

because only a woman

could would should

have sexual desire for a man

<>

when I realized I desired men

I almost accepted the theory

that I was a woman 

trapped in a man’s body

though it never made sense

but it was deemed more acceptable

than man to man attraction

the data proved that

yet my human experience

refused to conform to that data

<>

facts spun to conform

not inform

a pervasive compulsion to control

what 

at least in my pants

in out of control

One of the things that Hot Damn! It’s A Queer Slam encouraged me to do was examine, in even greater detail, how our sense of sexual self is ‘created.’ Much of it comes from pop culture. Rampant heterosexuality dominated & even as the lgbtqia community was coming into the mainstream it often remained caught in those heterosexual behaviour constraints such as marriage for acceptance, being a good homo by adopting children to create the typical family.

Even sexual interactions were caught up in this coding – top, bottom, fem, butch, masc, whatever. This piece looks at some of the theories I read about in exploring sexuality – the wrong body has recently morphed into trans body diaspora, which, to me, it logical. But back in the day it was considered a fringe rationalization to make non-het sexuality acceptable.

Similar is the theory that one is haunted/possessed by the spirit of the opposite sex- so its really not me that likes men but the ghost of the woman that has taken over my body. 

Both theories that I find amusing as opposed to informative or definitive. I still live in a culture that is sex-a-phobic period. As much as there appears to be an appreciation, say, for women owning their own sexuality it’s still seen through the male gaze of acceptance. It’s also a culture in which suffering is deemed authentic & while pleasure is deemed intellectually shallow.

So I’ve stopped wondering about the puzzle of my sexuality & have opted to ignore any data, any attempt to explain it & choose to enjoy because I am fine with being intellectually shallow.

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Amends

An acquaintance in recovery, someone whom at one time I guided through step work & some life decisions, called me recently. I haven’t heard from them in three or four years. They called to make an amend for their overly intellectual stance on sexual issues.

I wasn’t sure what to say. At the time I knew them, I never felt one way or the other about their stances on anything. I certainly was never offended or hurt by anything they said. An amend is to address damage done, offences given. When we went our separate ways it was with no rancour on my part. 

Part of the process of recovery is to grow & change & to move on when one feels it is time to do so. I didn’t see any need then, or now, for them to apologize for moving on with their growth. I listened while they went though their amend & didn’t feel the need to ask for any more information than they gave me. I said I accepted the amend. We joked a little about covid & keeping safe & that was that.

It did remind of the last time a member made an amend to me earlier in my recovery & I accepted it. A month later he accused me of not even being able to accept an amend – apparently I was supposed to say how much I appreciated their humility & how hard it must have been for them to make the amend to begin with. But much like this most recent amend I had felt nothing much about the incident he was being humble about.

I also kept that to myself – why diminish what was important to them by saying it was nothing to me. I did look back on our interaction -nothing that transpired stood out for me. I listened, they talked, I made supportive comments & when directly asked gave opinions. Life goes on. There’s no need to make amends for that.

Honesty

look I’m going to honest here

I like people to think

I’m one of those guys 

drawn to the inner light of a person

someone who has that unique gift 

to sense the tender spiritual values

the hesitant sweet flicker 

of the ethereal in a soul

and once I have that flicker

my heart is the candle lit by your flame

I fall in righteous burning love

<>

but let me tell you 

that is not the case here

I dig that way you look in those jeans

the hug of denim on your calves

that brush of hairy wrist

when your each across the table

is what gets me burning

I don’t give a fig for spiritual values

for all I care you could be 

a callow insufferable arrogant prick

really

I just want to get naked with you

I want to run my tongue over you

feel you do the same to me

<>

take you 

without the weight of personality 

don’t tell me your political views

your favorite sport team is irrelevant

the last book you read 

screw that

forget all pretences 

of being intellectual thinking creatures

and be the animals 

we are ashamed to be

<>

I don’t even have to see you again

I won’t give you a phone number

don’t want yours

I just want you

head to toe

mouth to mouth 

<>

wipe that shocked look 

off your face

it only comes from 

all those years of inculcation 

that to act like barn yard animals

is somehow less that honourable

that to give in even once

to the rutting gut busting urge

is demeaning  isn’t right

who wants to be right

when it feel so right

<>

come on

I’m ready to drop my pretences

as fast as you can drop your pants

look I’m being honest with you

I know how rare that may be

when we have to commodify desire

to mask lust as art or apologize for it 

but I’m not into apologies

unless its to say I’ll be sorry

if we let this chance go by

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