Me:(quickly and easily annoyed) Really? Give me an example.
Ray:The Crush. He’s not.
Me:(immediately angry and red-faced) O.K., being the Christian he claims to be, he should know that Leviticus 20:13 says, “If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable.” He has slept in the same bed as his “best friend” for the last year, even when they had separate apartments. Unless you’re spending Super Bowl weekend in Vegas with your bros, what straight dude sleeps in the same bed as his best friend night after night? Would you? No. Exactly. He’s a fucking faggot!
Ray:*steps back, winces, and walks away*
NOTE:First of all, me saying the F-word (and I’m not talking about fuck) is so out of character. I hate that word. I have no respect/tolerance for people who say it. The minute it came out of my mouth I cringed and crumbled inside. Second of all, to get heated over something so stupid is very unlike me. People describe me as relaxed, calm, easy going, and non-confrontational. However, lately I’ve been extremely angry and I’m attributing it to my sister’s approaching death. It’s an emotion that I’m not used to and obviously not good at dealing with. I need to somehow channel that anger into something more positive and less destructive because right now it’s just making me look gross, like cancer.
We called him Alf and he grew up in one of America’s greatest eras, the self indulging and decadent 80’s. His well-kept mullet and stone washed jean jacket complimented Smokestacks (his barberry red, flat bed truck that had two giant, chrome mufflers jetting up the side). He likes shrimp.
Yoga Instructor:To any new students, please come up and introduce yourself after class. My name is Mindy and I’d love to meet you.
Me:(while putting away the chair I used to rest my forehead on because I wasn’t as flexible as everyone else who had their nose pressed against their shin) Hi, my name is Jim.
Mindy:It’s nice to meet you. So are you a sports player?
Me:No. I'm just stressed.
NOTE:I’m assuming she asked me this because of what I was wearing: a pair of basketball shorts and a T-shirt with University of Washington written across it. In order to fit in maybe my next purchase should be a pair of black stretchy yoga pants. I wonder if they’d enhance my butt and package or just put on display how non-existent they are? You know what, I'm gonna keep the gym shorts and just focus on relieving the stress right now. We'll worry about the outfit later.
I guess it’s sweet that the CVS pharmacists politely and discreetly whisper the name of my birth control pills to protect my privacy, but I’m actually not embarrassed or ashamed that I ingest said pills, so please, no worries about letting the person behind me know that I take a small amount of estrogen and progesterone (with added iron) each day in order to manage my anemia and assorted inflammatory skin conditions.
The truly humiliating thing these days is to be found with refined, processed white flours and sugars in one’s grocery cart/canvas tote bag/mouth. I practically have to wear a disguise just to buy cereal!
…was a success. I woke up with two lighters in my bed. Not a man but definitely just as good. The life of a lighter. My girl Chanel says that should be a movie. It’s her idea so don’t steal it. To document all the hands it touches as it opens a beer, gets exchanged, borrowed, lost, stolen, chipped, and refilled.
Yesterday I met up with Ronnie for a coffee. We decided to sit at a table by the window. The shades were drawn because the sun was at eye level but it didn’t take long for Ronnie to pull the string and raise them.
“I wanna be seen,” he said as he looked out the window.
We sat there sipping on our iced mochas and catching up on nonsense when I noticed one of my regulars at the register. He’s an ex-pastor from Georgia who came out of the closet and moved to California and now works as a manager at a high-end retail store on Rodeo Drive. He’s a muscular mother fucker with guns like a tree trunk. At first he didn’t recognize me as I had my hat pulled down. After a double take he came over and said hello. Seeing any regular outside of work is like getting walked in on by your brother while masturbating. Awkward but not the end of the world (that’s reserved for when your mother walks in on you).
I told him that I was grabbing a quick coffee and then zipping over to the mall to do some shopping before they closed. I wanted to buy a new shirt for Boys Night Out because I’ve been wearing the same damn shirts for the past year. I have a tendancy to wear my clothes until they disintegrate.
He looked at me sideways and said, “The mall? What are you a teenage girl? Who shops at the mall?”
Ronnie, still looking outside, said, “Poor people.”
“And apparently 30 year-old gay men. Wow, the same exact demographic that watches The CW Network. No wonder there’s always adds for their shows there,” I said as I sucked up the last chunks of ice from the bottom of my plastic cup. The truth is I didn’t want to spend any real money (cash or debit) so my only other option was credit and the only card I have that I’m willing to rack up right now is my Macy’s card.
By the time I got to the mall I only had 45 minutes to shop. I raced through the shirts looking for something in medium. I’m normally attracted to anything baby blue but this time I found myself collecting anything black and gray. On the way to the fitting room I grabbed a few pairs of jeans just in case. The motion light flicked on as I entered the fitting rooms. The loud speaker crackled and a voice said, “Attention all shoppers. Macy’s will close in 15 minutes.” I ripped off all my clothes and started trying things on and spinning in the mirror. I tossed all the ones that said, “No way, it shows my love handles,” on the floor. All the ones that said, “Maybe, as long as I don’t eat Italian,” went on the bench. And the one that said, “Hell yeah, I like sports,” got hung up on the door.
I was happy for finding something in such a short amount of time. As I bent over to pick up my pants, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror. I was wearing only my underwear and a pathetic pair at that. There were holes where the cotton was falling from the elastic and they drooped like a soiled diaper, just like my father’s used to. I stood there examining myself in the mirror, wondering if Ronnie was right… Then I stuck out my butt and wiggled it like the Charmin Bear and said, “Eat it,” and giggled.
“Show me a girl who says she wants a nice guy and I’ll show you a liar. TRUTH!”— A co-worker’s status update. When I was in the closet I used this as one of my many excuses as to why I didn’t have a girlfriend. I never really thought about it I just said it because it shut people up. Now when I hear it I realize how ridiculous it sounds. Women LOVE nice guys. Maybe when they’re immature they like assholes because they have the energy and intrigue to play games but deep down every girl wants a nice guy and it’s him who they’ll marry. So I told my co-worker to just wait it out for a bit and eventually he’ll find that girl who deserves and appreciates his niceness. In the meantime, I suggested he joined me for a night in Boys Town where his nice guy charm would be greeted with open arms. He thought it was a great idea. Boys night out!
Last week I went to a friend’s birthday dinner at a sushi restaurant. By the time I got off work, took a spritzer (shorter than a shower, just enough time to splash the major holes and jump out), and zipped through L.A. traffic I arrived just as everyone was ordering their entrées. I weaseled my way in at the end of the 20 person-table. At the other end, unbeknownst to me, was a guy the birthday girl had invited as a possible hook up for me. He and his friend left as the bill was being paid and I never had a chance to meet him. When my friend told me what was going on I asked her, “Why didn’t he say hello?” She said that he told her that I wasn’t his type. He said, “I want a guy who likes sports.” Say what?!
Where did he get off saying that I didn’t like sports? From the way I was dressed? I was wearing a blazer over a nice button up that was tucked into a fancy pair of jeans. Something I’ve seen a million professional athletes wear to charity events. Maybe he thought I wasn’t athletic after my performance during Sake Bombs. I must have placed the chop sticks too closely together because when I slammed my fists on the table to knock the shot of Sake into the beer, it got stuck on the side and I had to sip it instead of chug it. I always have bad luck like that but it doesn’t mean I can’t throw a football or shoot a basketball. Maybe it was because I gave another gay two kisses on the cheek when we greeted eath other. But shit, that’s about as equivalent as a quarterback slapping the running back’s ass when they score a touchdown.
Yeah, I fucking hate sports (except when I’m watching Mark Sanchez) but he didn’t know that. I never told him and he never asked. I’m so petrified of being rejected that it’s crippling me from finding a date but it seems that I’m getting rejected even when I’m not trying. Fuck it, this proves that there’s no point in stressing out about rejection because it’s one of those things that’s gonna happen whether I like it or not.
My married friends from Vegas are visiting. They said this is their last trip out here before they settle down. They’ve said this the last four times they”ve visited. It’s just so scary taking that next step in life, especially if it means giving up our freedom. But we’ll be experiencing this even when we’re 70 and at the DMV and they’re revoking our license because we can’t pass the eye exam. We just got to let go and move on.
So that brings me to the next topic. I write for my friends so I value their opinion when it comes to what’s interesting and what’s not. They’re my “ask box.” After hearing what they liked about my blog, I ASKED for their opinion on what things they thought were ridiculous. My friend looked me square in the eyes and said, “The Mississippi Pool Boy… What is that all about?” I thought about it for a second and then said, “It’s entertaining and fun. I do it just to feed the hungry.” She said, “Let ‘em starve.” Must value her opinion.
Rusty:There’s a left-handed guy at the party and he just played Ace Of Base. Ur team, right?
Rusty:I was pretty sure he was. I mean, he loved me! :)
NOTE:Rusty is learning how to spot the closeted gay, which will benefit her because in the past she’s been known to fall for them. There are some girls who just always get stuck with a gay. It’s not their fault. They exude what a closeted homo likes: matronly behavior. They’re kind and sweet and will rub our backs when we’re puking in the bathroom after too many shots of tequila. In a time when our lives are so confusing, scary, and dark all we want is to be comforted. While we get it from girls like Rusty, they’re the ones who end up getting burned and hurt in the end. It's not fair.
Remember that annoying girl in high school who was always pissing people off because she’d give her opinion when it wasn’t asked for and her only defense was, “What? I’m just being honest.” I wanted to smack the shit out of that girl.
Well, last night I was THAT girl. I’d like to blame it on the sangria but then I’d be acting like that OTHER girl who never took responsibility for her actions and she’s just as annoying. But you know what’s really annoying? The fact that I’m 30 and still comparing myself to a teenage girl.
I constantly have to remind myself that just because I think I know how someone should live their life, that doesn’t mean that’s how they’re going to live their life. And it certainly doesn’t mean that I should voice my opinion about it. If Dad was around today he’d grab me by the shirt and say, “Worry about yourself.” I’d scream, “Daaaad! You’re so embarrassing,” and then run to my room, slam the door, and cry on my pillow and think about how he was totally right. Ugh, the life of a teenage girl is so exhausting.
Last night I met up with Ed and his friend Lizzie to see a play at the Pico Playhouse in which one of her friends was involved. Gotta support the community.
When I wasn’t nodding off (it was late and I’ve been working crazy hours and I’m old and it was past my bedtime and ZZZzzz) my brain was working extra hard to imagine what the people on stage did in real life. Amateur theatre is reserved for a select group of actors. They’re hard working and more disciplined than the hot guy who’s waiting to be discovered while perusing the aisles of Target. They’re aware that building your resume is a proper and necessary step in becoming an actor; that it doesn’t just happen by luck. Most importantly, they’re aware that they’re probably not gonna make it big. So what are they doing during the day to distract themselves from reality make money because this non-paid theatre gig is definitely not covering their iPhone bill.
Is Man #1 driving his dented, ‘94 Corolla to a shitty serving job where he’s gonna have to fight the urge to drink during his shift and then bounce out early to stop off at his friends house to smoke a joint before going to rehearsals? Is Woman #3 waking up early to go to the gym to run on the Elliptical for 30 minutes before starting her long day as a personal assistant, where she’ll have to eat lunch (a soggy peanut butter and banana sandwich she made that morning) in the car on the way to pick up some bitch’s dry-cleaning? Is Man #2 walking dogs in the morning and then jumping on the bus to take a 2-hour journey over the hill into Hollywood where he’s got an audition for a nationally televised commercial (which if gotten, would guarantee him a fat check that could cover his next batch of head shots)?
Imaging what struggling actors do in their real lives is so much more entertaining to me than watching what’s happening on stage.
When I was 12, Uncle Stan took me and my 2 brothers (one was a year older than me and the other a year younger than me) to the ballet. We saw The Nutcracker. It was amazing and I still remember how warm the snow scene felt. So after the show we went to the grocery store to buy ice cream. My younger brother got separated from the group and we all had to go searching for him. Uncle Stan walked from produce to bread, looking down every aisle. He reached aisle 14 and that’s when he saw Baloney at the other end, all by himself and in his own world, doing pirouettes.
I love him so much! I’d like to take credit for the carefree behavior he exhibited that day. You know the rule: the younger brother always has to play/do what the older brother decides. Well, I subjected him to a lot of things while growing up, like dance classes and once-a-week viewings of “Pretty Woman.” He can still recite every line with me! Now and days, his wife and I like to joke around with him about all the things I’d make him do that my other brothers wouldn’t and how it’s shaped him into the well rounded and open minded human being he is today.
We pulled up to a canary colored, two story house with bars on the windows and a front lawn that hadn’t been watered since the Rodney King riots. We knocked on the metal screen door and the noise rattled through the neighborhood, waking the Doberman pincher next door and sending it into a barking fit. The door opened and a Ving-Rhames-looking dude peered out from behind it.
“Who do you know?” he asked in a deep voice.
“Rodney,” Nathan said.
He opened the door and let us in. Everything was dark inside, literally and figuratively. The crowded house had a thick cloud of smoke lingering at eye level. The men were all dressed in pinstriped suits and violet hats while the women wore revealing mini-skirts and 6-inch heels. Gold reflected off necks and fingers and teeth. It was nothing like the Pimps and Hoes parties I used to go to at the Alpha Phi Omega house in college, this shit was real. But for some reason I felt completely comfortable. Maybe it was because I was so consumed with the idea that I was about to suck cock for the first time that I could care less where I was.
We met the owner of the house. His name was Marvin. He was an older gentleman in his early 60’s and had a nose so thick and bulbous that it looked like the crust of a DiGiorno pizza. After a few minutes of talking, he led us upstairs to a room. He opened the door and said, “Here you go,” and we filed in. He closed the door and left.
Wasting no time, Karla took off her top and let her puppies inhale the stagnant air. She then took off my shirt and then Nathan’s. I could see my heart beating out of my chest. It didn’t take but 5 minutes before we were all sitting butt naked on the bed. I remember, for a quick second, looking at the quilt strewn across the foot of the bed and thinking, “Was that a flea that just jumped?” but quickly forgot about it the minute Karla said, “I wanna see you two kiss.”
As I leaned in I thought, “Holy shit! Holy shit! Holy shit! This is it! I’m about to kiss a guy.” Our lips touched and we gave a quick peck. We pulled away and then Karla grabbed our heads and pushed them back together. The first thing I felt was his stubble. It was rough against my soft skin and I liked it. Our tongues formed knots and it wasn’t long before our hands were caressing each other’s heads. I could feel tiny electrical shocks shooting through my body. Nathan and I were so enwrapped in the moment that we hadn’t noticed that Karla weaseled her way between us and was giving us hand jobs.
Things got really dirty really quickly. We all rotated from person to person, kissing and sucking and rubbing. At one point, Nathan was standing on the bed getting a blow job by Karla as she was laying half way off the bed receiving oral pleasure by me. That’s when I heard the door handle jiggle. On all fours with my ass cheeks to the door, I looked over my shoulder and saw Marvin poking his head in.
“Eat. Dat. Pussy,” he said in a low, stern voice.
“You got it,” I said and then put my face back into Karla’s crotch. We were all rolling on ecstasy and drunk as skunks, so a little voyeurism didn’t bother us. Marvin watched for a second and then left. We continued like there was no interruption. 15 minutes later the door handle jiggled. It was Marvin, AGAIN. By this point we could care less about him; if he was going to get naked and join in then great otherwise we weren’t interested. Suddenly he started to whimper and pout. His bottom lip quivered.
Annoyed, Karla took the dick out of her mouth and said, “What’s the matter Marvin?”
My boy Stanley (we’re close like that now) was telling me about his first sexual experience with another male. He was 12 when he fooled around with the 14 year-old neighbor boy. I can’t imagine what it’d be like to explore at that age, especially with the same sex. I thought that only happened in Mexico. He and the neighbor ended up having camp outs in the backyard every other weekend where they’d do sicky things.
Then it was my turn:
I was 22 and working as a host at a restaurant. I was young and doe-eyed and untouched, which drove the female staff to throw themselves at my Bambi ass. I’d constantly turn them down, knowing damn well that I really wanted to get rammed by the take-away boy Damien. However, there was one girl who was persistent and wouldn’t take no for an answer. Her name was Karla.
She was a second generation Latina from El Salvador and full of fire. She stood at a respectable 5’3’’ and had curves (a nice way to say short and stumpy). Standing next to each other we looked like Rocky and Bullwinkle. She had these giant double D implants that were part of the major reconstruction she was undergoing in order to get a full spread in Playboy, a dream of hers since she was a little niña. The poor thing was always on a diet as a result of editors constantly turning her down because she, “needed to lose just a little more of that baby fat.” I could never figure out if that meant weight that she was still carrying from childhood or weight that she got from carrying a child? Karla, after all, was a mover and a shaker. Life’s obstacles didn’t get in her way. She was determined and always got what she wanted, which is the type of woman who’ll either force a closeted gay man into marriage OR be the one who pushes him into exploring his sexuality and coming out of the closet. Thankfully, mine was the latter.
We had been “dating” for about 2 weeks when things got serious once she told me that she was bi-sexual and followed it with, “and I think you are too.” My response was, “Sure.” That was the first time I had ever acknowledged my sexuality out loud. Being the freaky go-getter she was, Karla wasted no time in finding us a 3rd party. She scoured the dance floor and every smoker’s patio, private cabana, and bathroom stall in sight for a possible candidate. After an hour of intense hunting, she finally found one.
His name was Nathan and she met him while bumming a cigarette. He was tall and had peach skin and wore plain clothes. He had a natural, sexy type of build that you get from riding a bicycle everywhere or lifting heavy panels on the construction site. He was handsome but completely unaware of it, which meant he was from L.A. Only out-of-towners are aware they’re handsome because some nobody from their small town stopped them one time in the grocery store and said, “You should be a model,” so they took their advice and moved to L.A.
After getting to know each other over a few cocktails laced with ecstasy, we all agreed that we were interested in taking this new friendship to another level. Nathan suggested that we go to an after party he heard about through another guy he met earlier that night and that’s where we could probably find a room. “Just follow me,” he said as he jumped in his car and sped off. Karla and I followed dangerously close behind. It seemed like we drove forever. I watched as the lawns turned from lush and green to dry and brown. When we turned onto Crenshaw Blvd, I looked at Karla and said, “Where are we?” With her eyes crossed and head bobbing, she muttered softly, “I think we’re in Compton.”
“Excuse me, but I just have to explode. Explode this body off me. I’ll be brand new, brand new tomorrow. A little bit tired but brand new”
I listened to this song on the regular during my senior year of college. I’d play it every Saturday morning when I woke up after a night of heavy drinking and still had fuzzy buzz. It captured exactly how I was feeling at the time. The pressure of being in the closet weighed heavy on my chest and it made my heart ache and pound and putter. I felt like I was going to explode. Blood and guts and venomous gasses all over the walls of my room. The idea actually made me feel better. Exploding seemed better than bloating.
“Be careful walking down this street, there’s dog shit everywhere. Yeah, my neighbor has a little shih tzu, appropriate name, and doesn’t pick up its crap. I’m gonna get a taser gun and shoot her one day. Maybe even the dog too.”—A pear shaped older woman with purple nails and frizzy grey hair, wearing an oversized plain red T-shirt and loose-fit Wrangler jeans stopped Uncle Stan and I on the street to tell us this. Uncle Stan says that people in L.A. are so friendly and talkative, which he loves. He’s a talker himself and will strike up conversation with anyone. The other day he was saying, “So I was talking to Janet and Pepper,” when I interrupted him and said, “Who the hell is Janet and Pepper?” He looked at me like I was from the 9th planet Pluto and said, “Your neighbor and her dog.”
Life is easy. Life is hard. Life is birth. Life is death. Life is polite. Life is vulgar. Life is up. Life is down. Life is lite. Life is heavy. Life is long. Life is short. Life is a lot of things. If it were just one thing we’d all be bored.
When was the last time I snooped? I think it was when I was 8 and my brothers and I would search through the clothes in my parent’s closet hoping to find money. Too young to realize we were poor, we’d only ever end up finding gum wrappers, spare buttons, and if we were lucky a paper clip. A paper clip had a lot of value because not only was it shiny like a coin but it could also be used as a poking device when torturing your younger brother.
Other than that, I’ve never really snooped. I’m not a fan of it. I’ll definitely observe what’s on the surface but I’ll never open/search through something without permission. I know people who live off snooping and sure enough they’re always finding something upsetting. I don’t see the intrigue with searching for upset. But if you are a snooper, you must live by the cardinal rule: NEVER use what you find against someone. Keep that shit to yourself until it eats you alive.
I gave Uncle Stan the password to my computer yesterday in case he wanted to check the Internet or watch a DVD while I was at work. Somehow he “stumbled” upon a video I had made last week when I was drunk. It was of me playing a voicemail from him and then discussing how I thought 10 days was too long but that I had to stop being a little shit and just get over it and accept the fact that maybe part of the process of getting into heaven was by having your gay uncle stay on your couch for 2 business weeks. I never posted it because it just didn’t work.
That night when I got home, he was acting strange. I knew something was up. Every time I asked him a question he’d say, “Why do you care?” It was a little uncomfortable. I told him that I was hoping that during this trip he’d be able to pass along some wisdom, you know, about being gay. That’s when he said, “Well, I saw your drunk video and it doesn’t sound like you want wisdom from me.” I immediately flashed back to 8th grade when Becky Santucci ran to the bathroom crying because Danny Stevenson called her a slut. Drama amongst gays never ceases, no matter how old you are.
In a split second, shit got real. If I’ve learned one thing about a secret being exposed, it’s that you must be as honest as possible from that point on. No beating around the bush or sugar coating excuses. So I told him everything YOU already know (which isn’t fair that you knew before him… I’m still trying to figure out what I should/n’t and can/’t say with this whole lifestyle-blog shit). How we’ve never had a real relationship and that it was awkward for me to have him here for so long and that I’ve never really been keen on building a relationship with him but was willing to try. He said he had thought about leaving the second after watching the video (which made me feel like a monster). He was hurt and embarrassed that I acted like our relationship was a joke.
We talked for hours and hashed out a lot of issues that have been affecting our relationship. In the end, like two rational adults, we agreed that we weren’t going to pretend that everything was hunky dory but we also weren’t going to let this effect the growth of our relationship. He’s not getting on a plane quite yet and I couldn’t be happier. I’m also changing the password to my computer…