Friday, January 27, 2006

Oh the Sight of Shiny Chrome and Leather. Observations from the Motorcycle Show

Recently I ventured out to my first event involving crowds, the Motorcycle show. For a biker guy, this is almost like heaven. The glare of chrome just about everywhere and the smell of new leather. A lot of very hot bikes were on display, Harleys and custombikes, Japanese bikes, even some crotchrockets, Italian scooters and of course, dirt bikes. I even got my boots polished, but nothing like a bootblack would have done.

The Yamaha Star and the Kawasaki Vulcan lines were pretty impressive. Still these bikes cost more than 10 grand and are big bikes with 750 cc engines. The appear on the surface to be Harley knockoffs, but they do the rider plenty of motorcycle for the money. However, nothing beats or beatsoff the feel and ride of a Harley.

While my bike sits in the garage, I think wishful thoughts of warm, sunny weather, riding shirtless on my Hog. Then I will know that I have healed fully and that everything is right with the world again. Big hairy muscle hugs.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Married Men Who Play Gay On the Down Low, Living a Lie, But Can't Get Enough of Their Secret Gay Lifestyle

Leave it up to Details Magazine in its Jan/Feb 2006 issue to expose the common practice of so called straight married men hooking up with single gay men or other "married" gay men.

The article reports that these men frequent gay bathhouses and love to hook up during the week, like Monday nights during NFL season. One place where they play gay so their wives don't suspect this hanky panky are bathhouses in big cities like St. Louis. The Orgy Room is a popular hangout for these guys during weeknights. Lots of cash changes hands and plenty of wedding bands or tan lines on the fourth finger abound.

Some of the guys interviewed are very happy with this situation. They are happily married, but not the "quote-unquote stereotypical husband. They live in Red Republican states but gladly admit that they are a little pink underneath.

They hookup via the internet and have favorite bathhouses or bars to meet. Craigslist and Manhunt are popular places that they frequent on the net.

You would think they would be guilty playing around like this, and some do, but being found out and leaving their happy home is not a viable option for them. They have "traditional values" like having their wives put notes in their lunch sacks, going to church together, raising their children and sharing backyard barbecues with their neighbors.

But some find out soon enough that they can't have it both ways. I knew a guy just like this. He finally had to tell his wife. So she compromised. He could go out to the discos with her, dance his ass off with the guys, but at the end of the night, he would have to go home with her. For a while it lasted, but eventually he strayed and she couldn't give in anymore.

One of the guys interviewed for the story, Alex Westerfelt is project director of a group called Kansas' Healthy Living Project. The group gets grant money to sponsor such educational presentations like "Park Queen", a program promoting nonsexual "adult behavior" in public parks and conducted by a police officer. I guess the cop tells them it's a no-no to introduce yourself to some other dude during your park visit by rubbing his crotch in public when a handshake would do just fine.

While you'd think the vast majority of these guys are over 40, there are guys in their 20's who are married to women and are in a state of denial in saying, "I'm not really gay and don't want to live a gay life". What they are trying to do, according to Westerflet is "fill the emotional need they have to be ina relationship with a man, and they substitute physical intimacy for emotional intimacy". To me that is a recipe for a fucked up life, not only yours, but your wife and kids.

The article identifies this guy, "Chad" who is a father of three, who meets strangers in mall restrooms for mutual masturbation- when he's not volunteering along side his wife at church fundraisers. He rationalizes, why come out, when that would me giving up the camping vacations with his family, showing off the kids to the in-laws at Christmas, cheering alongside his wife at their basketball and softball games. This kind of guy is just bad news. He is too much of a coward to come clean with himself and his family. He is the most dangerous kind of guy a gay man could ever encounter.

I won't even go into how starved they are for sex that they can expose their wives to HIV and other diseases when they let their guard down and have unprotected sex. What these guys need is a big boot up their asses. On second thought, for some of them, that might be too much of a good thing.

Friday, January 20, 2006

What's On My Mind? Beefcake!

The other day I was doing my usual Google searches for interesting topics to write about when I came across an interesting article about beefcake calendars. Yea, I still have this fantasy about 12 of us being featured in a calendar someday to raise safer sex awareness.

The author, Byron Beck, writes Queer Window in the weekly Willamette Oregon weekly. Check him out at

Darn it, that click button gave me three images of the NYC 2006 firefighters calendar Byron was writing about. Well, as they say, all good things come in threes. WOOOF.

Anyway, Byron writes that the Portland firefighters calendar missed a golden financial opportunity to be more revealing and thus more profitable. They didn't show enough skin, and that's too bad. For me, showing skin is a healthy expression of who I am. It makes me feel good to see guys who express their bodies without shame and who take pride in themselves as active gay men.

Byron likes his beefcake and so do all of us. These calendars have been around for a while. They are a source of additional income for organizations and groups. Some are duds, but others have become institutions.

For gay men, images of beefcake can make or break our day. And if it's for a good cause, why not? The FAB 5 on Queer Eye thought the same thing on a recent episode. They invade the straight world of the Fraternal Order of Moose and bring their magic touch to the lodge. These Moose guys seem to be a good natured bunch and the FAB 5 enlist them for a calendar project to raise funds for their various charities. They have not been very successful in recent years raising funds, so they were game for a beefcake calendar shoot.

Some of the guys are hunky and did some hot shoots being macho construction workers or sitting on a throne, or other manly occupations. It definitely was one of their better programs.

Kyan is in charge of "checking out the goods". Oh brother. But the photographer was awesome and most of the shoots emerged quite woofy. Only one guy, the youngest of the Moosemen, came off as stressed out. And he just had an "ok" bod.

It just goes to show that even straight men who aren't afraid of their bodies can get together, strip down and enjoy the flow. Just think of what a bunch of hot gay guys would do in the same situation. Quoting Bryon, "We pick up these things (beefcake calendars) up in the first place to raise our temperatures-and a few other things, too." I can't argue with that.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

My Thoughts on "Brokeback Mountain" and "Book of Daniel"

Howdy men. Just got back from the multiplex to see, "Brokeback Mountain".

It is a tender love story with beautiful outdoor scenery depecting the wilds of Wyoming but shot in Alberta, Canada.

Our heros, Ennis and Jack, do have a deep love, which of course is ended by the death of Jack.

While I don't particularly like gay love stories that end in death, the story was realistic for the time period, the early sixties to late seventies.

I don't think I can do justice reviewing the movie. Just go see it. It is worth the admission.

It is well acted, Heath Ledger is brilliant as Ennis, and the music score is fantastic.

For their love to happen, one of them was the agressor, this being Jack, played by hottie, Jake
Gyllenhaal, makes the first move and keep up the sporatic, but long term relationship.

Both men marry but can not resist their love for each other.

Heath's Ennis is the quiet one, and the character I can relate to, the most. Though I have been the initiator on occasion, so I can also relate to Jack.

It's more about body heat and urges. These men need the emotional as well as the physical attraction each holds for the other. The bond is definitely there.

What I left the movie theater was a relief that I live in the world today, and not 40 years ago, as an open gay man. While things aren't totally easy for any of us, we do have the freedom to mate, to connect, to love one other far more openly than these men could ever dream of.

On a far lighter note is the new TV series, "Book of Daniel". Here gay and lesbian characters too face heartache, but also the support of an understanding family, though quirky as it may be.

The scenes and dialog flow much like "Desperate Housewives" but with a religious slant. The characters need to further evolve, but for now, the gay characters have acceptance within a complicated but funny world. No one has died on this series so far. Whatever the religious wrong doesn't like about this series, it is of no importance. The series, if it is successful, will have to grow on the public. To survive, the show has to find a wider and/or more devoted audience.

If you guys have seen either one of these gay themed entertainment "events", feel free to comment. For a blustry weekend, they provided some welcome escape as well as reflection.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Predictions For What's Left of the New Year

Seems like everyone has there own take on predictions for the New Year. Here are some of my picks:

1. Brokeback Mountain will win at least one Oscar.

2. The Pitt-Jolie baby will be a girl.

3. The Dow will fall back under 11000.

4. Alito, unfortunately, will be confirmed as the next US Supreme Court justice.

5. Queer Eye will do a gay wedding show. The grooms will lock Carson in a closet and get fitted for his and his leather tux.

6. If it doesn't snow much on the East Coast by March, it will be a mild winter. The Groundhog, however, will see his shadow.

7. Southern Decedance in New Orleans will return with a vengence, bigger and better.

8. The winner of 2006 International Male Leather in Chicago on Memorial Day weekend will be bearded and muscular. He will win because he looks the hottest in a bar vest.

9. More gay male couples will marry this year in Canada, UK and Massachusetts. Some will be famous. Some who have already married will get divorced as well.

10.. All of you guys will continue to be studly, cuddly and hunky.

Monday, January 09, 2006

You Just Never Know What You'll Find Cleaning Up Around the House

Every year around this time, I like to clean up around the house. I had come across a box of books and magazines I had stored on a shelf in the basement when I moved. I needed the storage space to put away some Christmas decorations, so I started rummaging through the box. A little part of my life was stored in that box. I had come across a 20 year old Spartacus Guide for Gay Men.

The world seemed a little less complicated a generation ago. For instance on page 35 of that edition which had a hot illustration of a hot dude drawn by the artist, Salmov, it listed under Kabul, Afghanistan, the Flower House Hotel on Chicken Street, ( I didn't make this up) with the following description: "Local youths who visited the restaurant were very beautiful and friendly." The informational listing also stated the following, "We fear that homosexuality is illegal and that you have to be very much on your guard." Things somehow never quite change.

Amsterdam and San Francisco seemed to have the most gay listings with New York not far behind. Lots of sex shows were listed, which would be somewhat scaled back today, replaced by more escort services. Various gay bars and guest houses took full page ads illustrating their accomodations and their guests having fun. Not a hairy chest to be found in this edition, but some moustached faces graced certain advertisements, hanging on to the clone look of the late 70's and early 80's. Even Damron's took a quarter page ad at the beginning of the USA listings.

It had been a few years since I came out, and 1986 seemed to be my year to travel to Boston, Hot'lanta, NYC, Chicago, San Diego, LA and other places. And I wanted to know more about gay places in the world. Both of these guides were the only references out there at the time for gay men. Before the internet, a gay guide had to depend on dated information and hope that the establishments listed were still in business. More times than not, the bar that seemed hot when you read the listing, was no longer around. But there seemed to be a new one nearby. You learned to find more current information once you got to your destination by word of mouth.

Today, with the net, this lack of updated information doesn't exist. So guys who are treking out for their first gay adventure, have plenty of current sources to take the mystery and sometimes misery out of gay traveling.

So you'll never know what you might find rummaging through a box stored away on a hidden shelf. Looking through that Spartacus guide brought back good memories. But I was too young back then , too afraid, and too skinny to have given big hairy muscle hugs in my bar vest, boots and leather jeans. That's why I like to live in the present and be able to share insights and thoughts with you guys.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Happy New Year and other stuff

Howdy guys. Wishing you the best of New Years. Hoping that Daddy Santa brought you everything you wanted.

My Holiday was a little different this year. I had to skip being one of Daddy Santa's helpers. That was a downer. My Mom visited. She is very sweet and the visit went fine, but something was missing.

As I saw her off yesterday at the boarding area of the airport, (thank goodness that relatives can get to see their Moms and Dads to the boarding area) I had mixed feelings. Maybe because of going through security with my new titanium hip which did present its own challenges, I felt that things did personally change for me in 2005.

But you cope. Everyone changes their lives to fit the situation. It could be worse, you tell yourself. So you get on with your life.

With that in mind, here are my resolutions for 2006.

1. Getting rid of this f@#king cane. I have found that a cane, even if I was shirtless, is not a positive thing. It is an annoyance. It doesn't get you any pity sex. Nothing. So a shirtless hairy hunk would be better off walking his dog than walking with his cane.

2. Growing bigger tomatoes. I will start sowing seeds later next month and begin growing plants indoors. I enjoy that very much. There is always something about getting my hands dirty. So I will pick proven varieties that will yield more fruit. Never can get enough of fruit, guys.

3. Being a better top man. I feel that I let some guys down during this recovery thing. I guess you can tell your true friends during adversity. But I wasn't my usual self, these last several months. I need to continue on the soapbox promoting gay men's health issues, safer sex practices, and being there for gay men who have doubts about what it is to be a gay male. We continue to live in complex times. Those of us who have taken this path less traveled, can make it easier for newly active gay men to get it right the first time and enjoy gay life. "Brokeback Mountain", though a flick and fictional, is a good start. Setting safer sex examples is another way.

4. Doing more with less. As we get older, we have to face various challenges. Keeping up our bodies, our minds, our sense of humor. So I am going to make sure I can be the best I can personally be. But this takes a mindset. So I will try to be very positive and strong, but I won't accept things as they are. Together we can make life better for all gay men.

5. Appreciating the simplier pleasures of life. I will spend more time enjoying sunsets, watching wildbirds and squirrels at the bird feeder, breathing the spring and summer air, listening to good music, being sensitive to my surroundings.

6. Giving more hugs. A guy can never give enough hugs to another guy. I wasn't doing this much these past several months. When I did, the f@#king cane would fall to the ground. And I can't bend like I used to. But I continue working on that. Another reason for hot bottom guys and their good hips and knees, and showing them the appreciation they rightfully deserve.

So there are my resolutions for 2006. Predictions are the subject of a future blog post.

It wouldn't be me if I didn't wish all of you studs big happy hairy muscle hugs and best wishes for the New Year.