Friday, January 26, 2007

It's a GAY, GAY, GAY World. We Interact with Each Other No Matter Where We Live.

Guys: I found this great article by Brian on the
web site.

Searching for a connection Rural gays turn to new technologies to ease sense of isolation

By BRIAN MOYLAN Jan. 26, 2007
Rural gays turn to new technologies to ease sense of isolationMANY GAY PEOPLE have a song they identify as their coming out anthem. Maybe it’s a song with lyrics about empowerment or a track that was popular in the gay bars when they first started going out. For Mike, a 42-year-old auto mechanic, his coming out anthem could be the familiar “You’ve Got Mail” greeting that sounds when he logs onto America Online.
“I knew I was gay since I was 12, but I was afraid to act on it and I didn’t know who to talk to. I didn’t start coming out until I was 30,” says Mike, who asked that his last name be withheld for privacy reasons. What made it even harder for Mike is that he grew up and still lives in Helena, Mont. Though it’s the state capital, there is only a population of 26,000 people, and the nearest gay bar is 64 miles away in Butte. There are only two other bars in the state, one in Great Falls, about 100 miles away, and one in Billings, almost 300 miles away.
He never ventured out to the bars and didn’t even know they were there when he was younger.
“I just kept to myself, rode my motorcycle and got drunk at straight bars for no reason,” he says. “My brother signed me onto America Online, and I found the men-for-men chat room, and for the first time, I thought there were more people like me.”
Twelve years later, Mike has had two long-term boyfriends (though the last one lived about 100 miles away), watches Logo — the gay cable channel — on satellite TV and is out to his family and a few people at the auto dealership where he works.
MIKE’S STORY ISN’T uncommon for gay people who live in rural communities, but the internet has ended some of the isolation for such people by letting them develop communities online and in their towns.
James Martin, a 48-year-old accounting clerk, grew up in rural West Virginia, but spent many years living in more urban areas of North Carolina before moving to Anchorage, Alaska, several years ago. Though it’s a city of 700,000 people, Martin says that he used the internet to locate other bears and community events geared for them before making the move to Alaska.
He says being able to do this research is a big shift from when he was coming out, where the only connection he had to gay people was in medical books in the local library, most of which portrayed homosexuality as a disease or something negative.
Tim Niehaus, a 21-year-old restaurant worker, also used the internet as a research tool, talking to gay people online before he ever talked to any in person. In Eagle River, Wis. (population, 1,500), that was his only resource. He now lives in Stevens Point, home to a branch of the University of Wisconsin, which boasts 20,000 people (including the university), and he met many of his gay friends online.
Though they may be spread out, there are plenty of people in rural communities to meet in online chat rooms. Jeff Soukup, president and chief operating officer of PlanetOut, Inc. — which owns the websites and, as well as RSVP cruises and LPI Media which publishes The Advocate and Out magazines — says that half of the sites’ U.S. traffic is from the South and Midwest, where the biggest number of small towns are located. Soukup says that the company’s two sites get 5.4 million unique visitors each month.
NEWER TECHNOLOGIES ARE making it easier for gay arts and culture to come to these communities as well. Logo and Here! TV, another gay television service, reach a national audience through satellite television and digital cable (though some digital cable providers still don’t broadcast the channels in all markets). The companies are also using streaming video and podcasts on their websites to bring their programming to anyone with a high-speed internet connection. These and other technologies are out there to bridge the distance gap.

We are all connected in this great big world of ours and that brings us all together. I am so glad that technology makes us gay brothers, where ever we are. I am a better man because I know all of you. Stay warm and sexy.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Is There Such A Thing As A Gay Male Mid-life Crisis?

Seems that our friend, Dan Savage, has devoted a lot of his column this week to just such a question.

The guy writes about his hottie partner who is turning 40 and wants to celebrate at a clothing optional gay resort and have sex under the sky.

Been there, done that. And for me, it was just fun, and had nothing to do with time or space, for that matter.

I don't think wanting to be sexy, playing safely, and just being a guy has anything to do with a guy being a horndog. Enjoying leather, boots, jockstraps, play toys, whatever, do it if it feels good.

The partner shouldn't have a hang-up about it. But there are limits. Three ways are always best when all three players are consenual. And when all three are enjoying the playtime. That's why for three ways, the key player is the top guy who gives both his playguys equal attention.

It's winter now, and sure, it is the perfect time to snuggle and get real nice and cozy physically with your man. The sexiest thing this time of year is a pair of long johns with a nice button fly. Sure gives new meaning to the phrase, "Are you glad to see me?"

A healthy appetite for sex is nothing that should never be turnoff or dismissed, no matter how old a guy is. Channeling that energy into safe, sexy fun is something that should be enjoyed to the fullest.

Our man Dan, I feel, was right on with his advice, as usual. Explore, be adventurous, and consensual. The same old, same old, isn't who we are, sexually or otherwise. If sex becomes so routine, so mechanical, then something is missing.

I truly believe that you get out of something only by investing in the time and trouble of making your best effort. That goes with life and with sex.

Friday, January 05, 2007

New Years Resolutions that We can all share together for the common good

Yes, it is that time of year to make and in some cases, already break, New Year's Resolutions.

I thought that maybe we could share together some New Year's Resolutions that we wouldn't break, and that we could easily commit to.

You guys know how much I love to hug. That aside, you might assume that I would also be a "tree hugger". You'd be right again.

So how about we try this spring to plant a tree. If each of us would commit to planting a single tree, a seedling would do, and help to nuture it, we would be doing our collective share in making the air a little cleaner and the environment a little better.

Likewise, we all set personal goals for ourselves, be it losing weight, gaining muscle, etc. Let's pledge to help each other with these personal goals. That way, it won't feel so lonely trying to do it alone.

An idea I saw on Ellen during the holidays, about loose change, could also be something we could do collectively and give to a favorite charity, gay or straight. A lot of our biker buds out there have favorite charities which we could devote some of our loose change in helping others.

Feel free to add your own ideas. You make this a place great to hang because you guys are the best. Never forget that.

Hoping you all are having a great start to the New Year. Together we can make it fun and sexy.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Happy, Happy New Year Guys

Howdy guys. I just wanted to wish you guys the Very, Very Best of New Years.

Over the years you guys have always been there for me. And for that, I am very, very grateful.

So not to slack off, I give you some of my predictions for 2007, with a gay slant.

I predict that the new Lifetime TV show, "Gay, Straight or Taken" will air all its episodes and be a mild hit for the cable channel.

Also I predict that two Hollywood closeted celebs will be outed this year. And yes, Anderson Cooper does count.

Gay marriage will continue its uphill legal battles, but we will get closer to this being reality, at least in one state, hopefully California.

Also Rosie O'Donnell will put her big foot in her mouth at least once each weekday on the View.

You guys will continue to shine in my eyes.

And finally, drum roll please,

Continued BIG HAIRY MUSCLE HUGS. It wouldn't be the same without them.

Enjoy the day, guys.