Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Clear As Mud(hole)

Oh yeah.

Since the Insight on my drive to work on monday morning... I am having such a good week. Such a good week.

Work has been great. I am One with the Cabinets. On top of my game. I feel that I've finally gotten a handle on things.

Yesterday at Starbucks ("Just what the hell do you do at Starbuck's everyday?"), I had a really interesting conversation about post-modernism in architecture and sociology.

My muscles are sore from two days of good workouts at the gym.

When I got home today, my father had some Bad News for me. He had gotten a phone call today: my US Airways flight to Milwaukee on Friday was cancelled. (Maybe you have to know my father to get the import of what constitues Bad News and how best to deliver it. An urgent cell phone message had me flying home... Faithful Companion ran away? My sister-in-law's cancer has gone out of remission? *sigh*) I solved it with a phone call. I'm leaving at 7:15 rather than 7:55, I have a stopover in Chicago, but I get into Milwaukee at the same time.

Three different people, indepent of one another, told me that my tattoo was awesome.

And... And... Guess who just ran down to the end of the driveway and back???!! None other than Mr. Broken Ankle. It wasn't me flying like the wind down the baselines as I was doing before that damn first baseman got in my way back in June, but it was a run. No pain, no strain, no fuss, no muss.

Thanks again, Wolf. I owe you one.

Monday, August 30, 2004

Here In The Mud

Last night, I set my alarm for 4:45 am. I woke up at 5:30, with the alarm blaring. I stumbled out to the kitchen, fixed a pot of tea, headed for the shower, then back to the bedroom to get dressed.

The bedroom.

Chaos reigns in the bedroom. Clothes are piled high. The bed is a tangle of sheets. Paths are cut through the coat of dog hair and dust the way deer make paths through a field.

Surveying this, and considering how I can't seem to get enough sleep lately, I was lead to one ineluctable conclusion: I'm depressed.

I hate that.


"Depression," as a former therapist of mine once explained, "is anger misdirected inwards."

Huh. No secret there.

Depression. I hate that. So what does that mean? I get a prescription for one of those wonderful Special Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors? I find a therapist here in Bucks County? Neither prospect is particularly savory.

Depression. That dull grey humour. The will to do anything just slips through your fingers like sand. You're just not up to it. A pretty fair description, evidenced by so many symptoms. My bedroom alone would get me a fairly high dose of Prozac.


Dressed, I walked the dog, then jumped in the jeep and headed to work.

Driving always is helpful to clear my head. And this morning, I was graced with a moment of clarity.

I remembered the conversation I had, sitting in my brother's jacuzzi, with my Spirit Guide. All those months ago. My Spirit Guide, Wolf, described me as being in a mud hole. A comfy mudhole, but a mudhole nonetheless.

That's it exactly.

Not to say that there isn't a neurochemical component of what's going on with me, but there's an important spiritual aspect here, too. Y'see, there I am in the mud hole. And although I won't be here forever, I'll be here for the forseeable future.

So. Keep my room neat and tidy? For what or whom exactly? If I knew it would be seen by eyes other than mine and my father's, I'd get things in ship shape in a jiffy. But that's unlikely.

Deeper. Deeper into the mud.

Clean out the garage! Unpack all those boxes! Uh huh. And the value--other than the kinesthetics of that--would be what exactly?


My gym-going is sporadic. Always some excuse. The broken ankle. The spasms in my back. The long day at work. Responsibilities at home. The time between bouts of Going To The Gym grows longer and longer. But c'mon, for what or for whom am I striving against the steel? As the acting student asks when told to do an improv of being a llama, "What's my motivation here?"


And SM. Y'unnerstan', SM for me is not just about getting my rocks off. It's a spiritual path. It's how I discover myself, my quest for excellence in myself, my renewing spring of connection and intimacy. And it just seems to have fallen by the wayside. It just seems that there's too much to negotiate... sifting the wheat from the chafe on the internet, finding a place to play, packing up the gear bag, driving the inevitable hour-and-a-half... it's all just so daunting. And so I don't look for opportunities, and often enough, bow out of opportunities that present themselves.


Deeper. Deeper. Deeper.

But here's the thing: awareness of the state of my soul was like a pint of blood. The grace of clarity. "Now I see," said the blind man.

Yeah, I'm in the mud hole. Living in my childhood bedroom. Severely reduced economic circumstances. Blah-diddy-blah-blah-blah. And those circumstances aren't going to change.

And whereas a year ago I was juggling so much, and making sure I never had dirty dishes in the sink or an unmade bed that didn't contain me, it's not the worst thing in the world. Take this time to relax my standards. Go gentler on myself.

But in some respects--in very small bites--I can put the brakes on this downward (Deeper) trend.

What can I do? What can I do without biting off too much, and just getting frustrated and... well... depressed?

Number One: Once a month. Once a month. Do something SM-wise once a month. Doesn't have to be a big deal. Just making it once a month to check in on the Philadelphia Bondage Club. Take a chance on some local guy, perhaps a novice (I'm good with novices!). Once a month. If you can't go for quantity, go for quality.

Number Two: Weld something! Okay, that's complicated. Clean out the garage. Get together the financial wherewithal to buy a welding machine and an oxy-feul set up. Clean out the garage. Sell stuff. Have a yard sale. Get rid of stuff. I won't need it for the immediate future. I can do that. I can take that on.

Number Three: Keep it clean. Spend an hour every weekend doing housecleaning. Nothing wrong with that. Nothing wrong with that at all. There's no good reason not to.

Number Four: Get out and enjoy Bucks County. Take long walks with Faithful Companion. Go see a movie at the acclaimed County Theater in Doylestown.

Number Five: Show a little gumption at work! Okay, so Hardware is a pitcher of spit. So what. I'm learning a trade. I'm learning. Stretch. Bend. Work. Put your stamp on it.

And that's plenty.

"Hey! What are you doing down there in that mud hole?"

"The breaststroke, Baby! I'm doin' the breast stroke."

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Dog Spelled Backwards

this is kinda fun...

What kind of God are you?
Favourite Color 
You earthly time was spent Feeding millions with a few hot dog scraps
Your throne is A great mountain wreathed in silver cloud, attended by angelic beings of light, arced with lightning and bathed in glory
You wear The inky cloak of the universe
Your Godly superpower is Unresistable charm and sensuality, drawing lovers, friends and enemies into your orgasmic grasp
This QuickKwiz by pelagicboreas - Taken 13098 Times.
New - Help with love and dating!

Saturday, August 28, 2004

Make Nice.

Fer shur.

Headed to NYC today for softball practice. We opted to have a practice before heading to Milwaukee, the Cream City, next weekend for the tournement. I was wondering what fresh hell I was heading into, what with the Republican National Convention going down.

Lemme tell ya. It was a pleasure. It seems that about sixty percent of the populace has headed out of town. Deserted sidewalks! Abundant parking! I shot through the Holland Tunnel and swung around onto the West Side Highway like I was turning off of Tollgate Road into my driveway.


I headed up to Randall's Island and there were the Ballbreakers. And then some. A few of us can't make it to Milwaukee, so we've filled in with some recruits from other teams. One guy joined us last year in Montreal (which I couldn't make, stepmother's funeral and all). The second guy is a pitcher. And my roommate in Milwaukee, nice guy that I am.

At first I didn't recognize him. Then I asked the spelling of his last name so I could give it to the hotel.

Long, long ago, back in my ACT UP days, I knew him. He was one of the luminaries of the organization. Or rather, his boyfriend was. They both had the biggest biceps in the room, but were ooOOOoooOOooh... how can I put this? Not the brightest bulbs in the great neon sign of life. Not sure if he recognized me. Probably not. Doubt I made it onto his radar.

Shocked and appauled? Well, all groups are prone to that kinda thing, and ACT UP was no exception. And now I'll be sharing a room with my past. How about that.

And how was practice on my ankle? Not a problem. I mean, I couldn't quite run, but I could chase the ball at something better than a walk. And no pain during or afterwards. So all of of those Olympians that are persevering with their injuries... well, I just stepped up. Me and Kerri Shruggs. Word, Kerri!

After practice, I (headed through the near deserted streets of the West Village and) stopped into the Leatherman to check on my Wesco's. Astute readers might remember that I purchased a pair of custom made Wesco's back in May. Since then, they've been... well... custom making them. At the time, they said four to six weeks. And I'm still waiting. Apparently, getting a pair of custom made boots by Wesco's has become more popular than showing off your cellulite with your low riders. What Wesco Central is telling the Leatherman is that I can probably expect my boots in October or November.

I wish that the price of Wesco's was skyrocketing, then I could get all smug about having frozen in the price way back when.

Ah well.

So I was feeling hungry. Hungry for... hotdogs! And what better place to get a hotdog in New York than Gray's Papaya! Whilst I chowed down on my franks and Papaya drink. It met all my needs.

Enjoying my hotdogs, I reflected on the Great Bivouac, all those New Yorkers getting out of town. Perhaps everybody took Mayor Bloomberg's message ("Make nice!") to heart. And gotten the heck out of town. With all those parking spots open, that's sure one of the nicest things that NYC has ever done to me.

The sidewalk outside of St. Mark's in the Bowerie was crammed with what looked like information tables, sort of a clearing house for folks in town to do direct action and such. Geez I wouldn't mind being there this week. What a lot of fun. Alas, I'll just have to settle for watching it on television.

Then, a cigar on the piers, dinner, a stroll through the (near deserted) streets, and I was headed back to Pennsylvania.


Coming down River Road, the moon was enormous over the Delaware. Gorgeous. I love when nature serves up these little treats.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Weak! Weak! Weak!


I'm getting up at 4:30 am tomorrow to be at work at 4:30. And what do I do? Stay up till 11:05 watching the Country Countdown on CMT (Country Music Television, for the uninitiated), so I could see Big & Rich's Save A Horse (Ride A Cowboy).

Like I haven't seen it a million times before.


Also a productive night. I finally booked my tickets for Milwaukee.


Yes, Milwaukee. Home of Laverne & Shirley & Jeffrey Dahmer. (Outrageous! You can't visit Jeff's house! They tour it down and put up a parking lot!)

I'll be there Labor Day Weekend for the Cream City Classic Softball Tournement with the Ballbreakers.

You native to those parts?

Cool! Show up and cheer us on to victory. Or, look for me getting blotto in one of the many watering holes that lure thirsty ball players in after the games.

Dairyland, Ho!


Now I'm going to bed.



These days, on the porch at Starbucks, it's a little bit chilly when you're out of the sun. And when I leave for work in the mornings, I need to wear a sweatshirt or a jacket.

You know what that means.

Summer is shot to hell.

Days grow shorter, nights grow colder.

Heading to Delta?

Start now to cultivate a fetish for fleece. Or triple down. Leather is soooo Ten Minutes Ago.

And be sure to pack your jammies with the feet in 'em!

Pissed Off

I got to work at 6:10 am this morning. Another Really Urgent Job. Another Big Crunch. Another Top Priority Deadline.

I could be describing last week. Or the week before that. Or the week before that. Or July. Or June.

Enough already!

"Dutch, we really need you for a ten hour day tomorrow."

Well I really need to get here at seven and be gone at three-thirty.

Today, it came to a head. We had three Really Urgent Jobs. Two of them were smallish, a butler's pantry (five cabinets) and a 'snack area' (Da fuck?) consisting of about ten cabinets. We were pounding them out, when, once again, disaster struck. The really big Urgent Job that we had worked on last week is shipping tomorrow. It is ugly. Uh-uh-UH-gleee. We're talkin' ugly. Sort of a butterscotch-colored paint job, with barn red interiors on the glass cabinets and a barn red island. Ugly.

Well, it turns out there were multiple problems with it in Quality Check. So lots of doors and cabinets had to go back into the Spray Room to be re-shot. And when they came out, the Hardware Team, consisting of yours truly and Columbine Boy, had to re-hang all the doors and re-mount all the drawer fronts and re-glaze and re-hinge and re-magnet.

Pain in my ass!

Now, keep in mind, today was Jug of Piss day. I dutifully have been filling up my jug. The plan was I would shoot out of there at 3:30, get over to the clinic... 'scuse me, the "Wellness Center," and drop it off before the rest of the world got off work. If I didn't, it would mean I'd have to wait for hours in the waiting room, as it's first come, first serve.

Well, three-thirty came and went, and we were working on the Ugly Kitchen. I kept making deals with myself. "Okay, I'll leave at 4 pm." "At ten after four, I'm outta here." "Four twenty at the latest."

I ended up leaving at four-thirty. I drove hellbent-for-leather over to the "Wellness Center," and was marching up the walk with my Jug O' Piss in hand. I scowled at a sign on the door celebrating the recent birth of Andrea Alexandra or some such (a pox upon thee, Andrea Alexandra!), when I saw the sign: Wellness Center Hours: Mon-Fri 8 am - 4:30 pm.

I will have to keep my Jug O' Piss.

Cursing Andrea Alexandra, cursing the Wellness Center, and most of all cursing my job, I headed back to my jeep with my Jug O' Piss.

I was still in a white hot rage when I got to Starbucks. I calmed down reading 'Dwell' magazine, and had pretty much collected myself when Actor Guy showed up with his dog. I held the dog's leash while Actor Guy went inside and got himself some coffee.

Around the corner of the building came this... this... this boy. He was deeply tanned. Wearing shorts that showed off his really hairy legs. He shaved his head, but had about three days growth on his scalp and face. And bee-stung lips. And eyelashes as long as palm fronds. He was incredible. I was awestruck.

But it gets better. He told the two women who greeted him "I'll be right back." And a few mintues later, he was back. With some cigars he had just purchased at my cigar store.


As he was saying his goodbyes to the women and heading off to smoke his cigars, Actor Guy came back out with his latte. We talked. We're pretty much becoming buddies. As I sat shooting the breeze with Actor Guy, something dawned on me.

After a long hard week at work like this, I really should be figuring out a way to get laid this weekend. I have earned that, right?

But I'm not interested. Instead, I'm pursuing these weird blue-collar Oxford Platonic relationships with straight men. I mean, the porch of Starbuck's in Doylestown is just teeeeeming with these unbelievably hot men. All of them straight. I won't even say "presumably straight." They're straight.

I mean, what is this, 1949 or something?

And it gets worse.

Gay men are just seeming sooo... soooo... so gay. There's just no appeal for me.

Which basically makes my chances of getting laid this weekend zero. (Although the South Korean judge gives me a -2.83.)

What a recipe for frustration.


Maybe it's all about SM. Maybe it's kind of a scene. Many of the best scenes I've topped in don't conclude with ejaculation. That would almost be beside the point. It's about the connection, the discovery, the openness, the delight.


Maybe I've found something that I like more than sex. Two things, in fact: SM, and these platonic blue collar friendships.



But let's be clear. Neither, in fact, can be considered a substitute for sex.

Day of the Jug

I've got this big orange (and a great shade of orange, sort of a burnt orange) plastic jug.

I'm collecting my urine!

Can SingleTails readers look forward to an account of a hot water sports scene sometime soon? I wish. No, it's much more pedestrian. When I had my check up a week or so ago, the urinalysis proved inconclusive in some way. (Relax. No need to cue the Dark Victory soundtrack just yet.) So my doctor asked me to collect my urine over a twenty-four hour period, rather than just one shot. So I started after work yesterday, and today after work, I'll be taking The Jug to the testing place.

I'm going to be particularly attentive to what the person to whom I deliver The Jug says when I hand it in. I'm hoping for a 'Thanks!' or maybe even a 'Good job!' What would you say when presented with a jug full of urine? Well, no sense asking you, you're one sick puppy. At least I assume you are as you're reading SingleTails.

And this ought to make for an interesting day at work, huh?

Albeit an early one. I'm due in at 6 a.m. I hate that. Makes for such a long day. And I'll be spent afterwards. But we've got all these jobs that are Shipping Tomorrow! I hate these created emergencies. What's the goofy sign that office drones hang over their desks read? "Please do not assume that a catastrophe on your part implies an emergency on my part"? Something like that.

Gotta go! Time to get in the shower. And, make another donation to The Jug.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

At Long Last


Having given up all hope, I decided to give it another shot and buy some strawberries. All the strawberries I've had this summer have been all but flavorless. Strawberries are tricky. Although I came late to it, I I've gotten pretty good at picking fruit. It's a simple, three step process.

Step One: Look pretty? If it's red, is that a nice shade of red? We like that.

Step two: Pick it up. Is it heavier than it's size would reckon? That means it's juicy.

Step Three: Hold the stem end up to your nose. Does the zucchini smell like zucchini? Does the apple smell like an apple? Smell and taste are essentially the same sense. So if it smells flavorful, it's gonna be flavorful.

And you're good to go.

But that doesn't work with strawberries, does it? There they are, sealed in their wee plastic coffins. It's always a crapshoot, and during this summer, full of rain.

But finally I lucked out. Tonight I took a chance again and brought home one of those little plastic coffins. After dinner (eggs!), after I cleaned up the kitchen, I sat down with CMT on and decided to sample them.


What's as good as a good strawberry? And nine out of ten of them were good strawberries. So sweet, so juicy, so full of flavor.

"Jeux Avec Gods"

What is that?

I'm intriged. "Games with gods." A frenchman from Marseille had that listed among his fetishes in his profile on World Leathermen.

Games with gods.

I can relate. I've played games with gods for sure.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Things I Hate About You

So there's this show on Bravo, in between Queer Eye and Queer Eye, hosted by Mo Rocca, called Things I Hate About You. The premise is simple. Each week features a couple. Each partner builds a case against the other partner. He snores. She spends way too much on clothes. He farts and burps. She pays more attention to the dog than she does to me. A panel of judges assigns points, and there points are tabulated and a decision is rendered on who is the most annoying.

Okay. I'm fascinated.

Absolutely there are those... those... things. You meet somebody, you date, you really like him, you move in, and BLAMMO! Here are the things. They totally make you nuts.

Inevitably, I cast my mind back to the Seven and a Half Year Relationship. (Special Guy, of course, was totally thing-free.) Absolutely there were things. What if the Ex and I had been on the show? What would our things be?


Here, I think, would be what the Ex would have on me...

1. He Disappears

"I'll be home at 7 p.m." he says to me before he leaves the house. At seven fifteen he's not here. I call him at work. They tell me he left at six thirty. He walks in the door at eight. I ask, where have you been? "Whaddyamean? At work." When confronted with the evidence, he'll offer, "I stopped and picked up milk" or something. Where does he go? What happens to him?

2. He's Addicted To Data

There we are having dinner together. Time for us. Uh oh. There's the New Yorker sitting on the kitchen counter. he picks up the New Yorker and is immediately engrossed. He's addicted to data. He's got to constantly be fed. He spends the entire morning reading the paper and listening to NPR on the radio. He says he needs to keep up on things for his job. How long would it take to find out if there's any mention of his needle exchange program in the Times?

3. I'm Drinking That

In the morning, he pours himself a humongous mug of tea. It goes upstairs with him to get dressed. It comes downstairs. If it's a weekend, it will follow him outside to do yardwork. Down to the laundry room to do the wash. At some point during the day, the humongous mug of tea will be left behind. On the deck. Up in the bedroom. On his desk. Wherever. I'll find it and take it down to the kitchen and put it in the sink. Inevitably, I'll hear, "I'm drinking that!" The humongous mug of tea, by the way, will never ever end up in the sink unless I intervene.

Okay. My turn.

1. On Being Wrong.

I usually drive. Because he makes me nuts when he drives. Always flying into a rage. But that's another story. Anyway. Say we'er stuck in a traffic jam on the FDR. It's a traffic jam, right? Nobody is going anywhere. He will become convinced that one of the other lands is moving better. And tell me I'm in the Wrong Lane. I hate changing lanes when all the traffic is stalled. You have to get somebody's eye and do the pleading smile and wave, or be an asshole and cut them off. And let's be clear: there is no Right Lane! Same deal when I'm parking in a parking lot. I pick the Wrong Spot. Or coming up to a toll plaza? I pick the Wrong Tollbooth. And so, he yells at me and insults me.

2. I'm Killing Him

He has all of these ever evolving food issues. No dairy. Only soy milk. Nothing baked. No pasta. Only pasta. No meat. I do all the cooking. Every night, I'm challenged with coming up with a something delicious and wonderful for dinner. Most of the time, I hit it. But, alas, there we'll be half way through dinner and he'll realize that those are pieces of chevre on the salad. And flip out. Because he's not doing milk. That week. And so, he accuses me of being insensitive to his dire health situation (in his forties, he's getting love handles; and ten years ago, before I even met him, he came in with high cholesterol, which has since resolved itself). He'd get all upset, like reeeally upset, and accuse me of trying to kill him.

3. Clothes Minded

About half the time when I get ready to leave the house in the morning, what I'm wearing will not pass muster. He has a thing about the collars of tshirts: they have to be tight around the throat. And then there was the thing about khaki pants. He became convinced that you could only wear khaki pants in the summer. Despite me showing him that the khaki pants I was wearing had been marked by the GAP as 'winter weight.' Or I had the top button on my three button suit buttoned. Or that I had no buttons on my suit buttoned. Or whatever. Too formal. Too relaxed. And here's the kicker: I would sent upstairs to change. There I was. All of 34 years old, and I had to go change my sweater. And he did this--on the average--about two or three times a week.

I watered my complaints about him down for purposes of television. The screaming rages, for example, probably wouldn't be good for ratings, although I'd totally win with those. And he would probably bring up his chief complaint, that I did NOTHING and contributed NOTHING and initiated NOTHING in our relationship and homelife, although probably not, because he couldn't deliver these charges without being in an incoherent rage.

Damn relationships are tough. Just baffling to me. How do people do that? Why do people do that?

I almost wouldn't want to use that r-word to refer to what I had with Speical Guy, and what I now have with Big. There's no Working On. There's no obligations. There's no questions of infidelity. It's pretty much just about wanting to spend time with someone because doing that makes you happy.

Maybe that's an adolescent and immature way of approaching a relationship. Maybe Dr. Phil and his ilk would be appauled by that. Maybe there's a reason why the time I spent with Special Guy endured for five months.

But let's be clear. My life is good. I like my life. I'm satisfied, happy, fufilled, and kept interested. Having an amazing man in my life is gravy.

Another Reason To Like Belgium

Guess what the bears in Belgium do for Big Fun?

The current craze is... kite flying!

I love that.

Sunday, August 22, 2004


The Plan was that I would head down to Philadelphia, getting on the road around 3 p.m. This would get me into town around 4:30, so I'd be able to get to I. Goldberg's and spend a blissful hour trying on boots before they close at 5:45 p.m.

Of course, my father, my indecision about what to wear, and traffic interfered. I didn't end up leaving until 4 p.m., and didn't park my car until ten minutes after I. Goldberg's had bolted their doors for the night.


But, I needed some stuff from Kiehl's, so I headed over that way. Peppermint Body Wash in tow, I was hungry, so I grabbed a chicken caesar and a protein smoothie. Joe Rose must be cutting me a major break on his prices, as the night before I had spent about half of what I estimated for the ink work, and that money was burning a hole in my pocket. So I headed to Borders, where they were more than happy to relieve me of some of it. Purchases included the new KD Lang cd, the latest from Rufus Wainwright (with which I'm planning on gifting the Baron von Philadelphia), two books on architecture, and Have His Carcase by Dorothy L. Sayers and I'm reducing the Dashiell Hammett books I haven't yet read by one with the purchase of The Glass Key. I hate the fact that one day I will have read all there is to read by Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler. That will be a dark day indeed.

Stocked up on Input, I went to Milennium Coffee, got myself a latte, and enjoyed a cigar while I got caught up on my phone calls. And plunged into the Dorothy Sayers, opening with the gripping account of detective-story writer Harriett Vane, recently acquited of the charge of poisoning her lover with arsenic, discovering a man in a blue serge suit with his throat cut from ear to ear while walking along the seashore.

Then, I hit More Than Just Ice Cream for dinner (chicken quesadilla), and headed to the Bike Stop.

What to wear?

How I am plagued by this question. All my leathers sit in my closet, calling to me: Wear me! No, me!

It's sooooo much easier to lay them all out and present them to my Sir, saying, "What would you like to see your boy wearing today, Sir?"

And, it was made a wee bit trickier by the new ink. I soon discovered that wearing a heavy leather belt would get uncomfortable. So how about a flight suit? I put on my Propper Tactical One Piece, but decided that I wanted to have the chance to show off some of the ink, and so that wouldn't do.

I opted for LeatherLite. I wore my Wescos, a pair of EMS hiking shorts (lots of pockets, lightweitht Miracle Fabric Of The Future), and a white wife-beater a size or two too small for me so it rode up in the back. And topped it all off with my Schott NYC zip-up orange hooded sweatshirt. And put on my leather arm bands. I'd probably be turned away from the Mineshaft of yore, but I think it was fine for the basement of the Bike Stop. There were some heavily leathered men there last night (more, no doubt, than there were at the Eagle NYC), so I just had to deal with not being the Most Leathered Leatherman in the place.

I grabbed a beer and greeted acquaintances, and made my way to the little leathergoods store they have. Back in the day, when I was a Philadelphia dwellin' leather lad, me and my cool friends would mock the place a little bit, saying, "Welcome to the Bike Stop! Please visit our Gift Shoppe!" Ah well, those were my salad days indeed, green in experience and cold in heart, not knowing a good resource when I saw it.

And I bought a bag.

Go figure, right? Me and my bag fetish. And this is a good one. It's done in olive drab canvas, lots of compartments (paperback, cigars, cellphone, date book), and will be perfect for wearing with my one-piece motorcycle racing leathers, which sadly have no pockets. (That's why you've never seen me wearing it.)

While I was checking out the bag (eyes dilated, pulse racing, blood pressure dropping... "It's... it's... ...a bag!!"), I ran into this guy I see just about every time I go there. He's from South Jersey. Usually there with his bear boy, but tonight he was solo. I don't know why he does it for me, but he does it for me. He shaves his head, and his pate has a gleam I can only dream of. Good bushy goatee. Nice gut on him (which it turns out he's trying to lose. (Damn you, Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson and your miserable Anti-Obesity Let's All Eat Right Exercise And Lose Weight Campaign anyway!) The guy is just Viagra for me. I see him and I get a stiffy. And he is well aware of that fact.

He asked what I had been up to, and I mentioned my Tattoo Odyssey. He checked out the boots to shorts portion, and those links visible over the belt line of the shorts on my lower back.

At this point, everything going on in the Gift Shoppe came to a halt. All eyes were on my tattoo. Many murmurs of appreciation.

"So, can we see the rest of it?" asked Gift Shoppe boy.

Well that would mean I'd have to drop my shorts here in the middle of the Gift Shoppe, I thought, as I undid my shorts and dropped them around my ankles.

I guess it's the effect of Dore Alley. Screw you, Powers That Be! I'm gonna stand here in the middle of the Gift Shoppe of the Bike Stop with my shorts around my Wescos and show off my tattoo!

So I did.

Those murmurs of appreciation just about changed to wolf whistles and an uproar of applause. The tattoo work really does look great, and I'm sure my firm butt and semi-hard dick (under the sway of the powers of Viagra Guy) made for a good picture.

At least it sure worked on Viagra guy, who was stroking my dick through those lightweight EMS shorts for the balance of the time that I spent at the Bike Stop. His goal was to get me to cum, so I'd have cumstains on the front of my lightweight EMS shorts, but I'm a long way from eightteen years old, and a harder nut to crack than that at this point.

All good things must come to an end, and I was starting to feel tired, so I bid adieu to one and all ("'Night, Frank! 'Night, Bill! 'Night, JP!"), retrieved my car from the garage, and made the bleary eyed trip back up 611 to home.

I was in bed by 3 a.m., and slept until the ungodly hour of 1:30 today. It's a beautiful day. I spent some time working with the ten-foot bullwhip doing some pruning of trees and shrubs (I can do some jaw-dropping graceful cracks with it, but don't have the accuracy yet that I would need to whip a man with it), and now I'm off to take Faithful Companion for a nice long walk.

Perhaps, as we're walking down some country road, when I'm surrounded by only trees and fields and no houses nearby, I'll drop my shorts around my ankles, enjoying a moment of semi-nudididity. It sure brought good things my way last night.

Remember: Say Yes. Yes is the magic word. The abbracadabera that opens the gates and brings good things into your life.

Say Yes.

Truth Is A Belgian Cheese

Lately, I've been talking to a lot of guys on WorldLeathermen from Belgium. It's fairly astonishing. When you click on "Who's Online Now," you get a list of countries, from Belize on down to Zaire, and the number of men from each country signed on. There are always several hundred men from Belgium signed on. Usually more than Australia, Netherlands, UK, and other alleged global poles of leather. And of course, the hottest man I've ever seen on the internet was a Belgian.


What's going on in Belgium?

Do they put something in the water there?

One of my childhood heroes was King Albert of Belgium, as he was portrayed in Barbara Tuchman's The Guns of August. He was handsome, tall, intelligent, and grave. The Belgian constitution makes the king the commander-in-chief of the army. And during World War I, King Albert made many visits to the front lines. In this, he was alone among the commanders-in-chief during the first world war. And, I think, subsequent wars. This, of course, made him beloved among his soldiers, and the Belgian people.

Between my junior and senior year in high school, I went to France with my french class. It was a great trip. Twenty-one days. We started in Paris, then went down to Geneva, around Lac Léman to Lausanne (where for the first time I got fucked, by an Egyptian businessman who picked me up in the men's room of a pizza parlor and wanted me to 'stay'; gosh, how would my life be different if I had taken him up on that offer?), through the Mont Blanc tunnel and into Italy, arriving in Nice, then up through Provence to the Pyranees and Carcassonne (the southwest of France is one of my favorite places in the world), to Bordeaux, the Loire Valley, Normandie, Caen, Rouen, and back to Paris. Anyway, I always had a knack for languages, and my french was just about better than anyone else on the trip, outside of the teachers. Particularly when I'm drunk--still the case--I can just prattle on all but effortlessly. And very often, my french interlocutors would refuse to believe I was american. Apparently I don't have an american accent when I speak french; I have a belgian accent. And, apparently, I look belgian. "Je ne suis pas Belge. Je suis Américain." I said this over and over again. One hot anarchist punk boy I was chatting with in Paris refused to believe I was American. "You don't have to be ashamed of being belgian," he told me. I showed him my passport. "Pfpftuiii! I could be back in an hour with a half-dozen passports that make me a citizen of as many countries. Admit it! You're a belgian! You should be proud of being a belgian!" This impressed on my young mind a fascination with Belgium. Was Belgium perhaps some sort of a spiritual homeland for me? The way the Colorado Rockies were for John Denver? ("Like coming home again to a place he'd never been...")

Belgians drink more beer per capita than any country in the world.

Belgium is very flat, and so practically indefensible. Hence, the history of Belgium is the history of being overrun by whatever European power happened to be ascendent. Kind of a right of passage of becoming a strong nation: conquering Belgium.

And then there's the Belgian Cheese.

There I was, sitting in my Epistomology class in college. Epistemology is the philosophical inquiry into knowledge. How do whe know? How do we know that we know something? That kind of thing.

The professor was very much an Existential-Phenomenologist. He had studied at the University of Louvain in Belgium. I liked him a lot. He was endeavoring to explain to us the Existential-Phenomenologist take on Truth. The E-P's have it that truth is both something that we ourselves create, and it's participatory. You make your own Truth, but at the same time, you are part of a project involving the whole human race, past and present, that endeavors to apprehend Truth. And so even though my truth is slightly different from your Truth, as my subjectivity is distinct from yours, together, we have a role in creating that great thing we call 'Truth.'

And we weren't quite getting it. Lots of blank stares greeted him. So he decided to offer an illustration.

"Truth," he said, "is a Belgian Cheese."

Imagine a huge wheel of cheese. Even though it's all one cheese, the flavor can be slightly inconsitent throughout. So if you were to carve out a slice from yourself, a thin wedge (your Truth!), your wedge wouldn't quite be like any other wedge that could be carved from the cheese, although it would be still the same cheese, and very similar in many respects. But my wedge of cheese is never going to be exactly the same experience as your wedge of cheese. Truth is both individual, and participatory.

Truth is a Belgian cheese.

So maybe, when the shop closes down for a week of maintenance next July, I'll head off to Belgium. (Like coming home again to a place he'd never been.) I'll dive into Belgian history, culture, and architecture. (Frites! Huitres! Biere!) And I'll fuck my way through that lowland nation with all these men I'm talking to on WorldLeathermen.

And I'll eat Belgian Cheese.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

The Clock

On Thursday, I went to Doylestown Hospital to get my ankle x-rayed. My ankle is still not 100%. I don't think I can quite manage to run from... say, home to first base. Walking Faithful Companion, I can manage to get up some speed by basically skipping, but I wouldn't want to do that down the baseline.

Doylestown Hospital is a good place. My stepmother always maintained that it was so clean and well run because the hospital is run by women. A group of concerned women of Doylestown got together over a century ago and built it from the ground up.

I didn't have to wait very long for the x-ray, and the next step is to see my doctor to get the results. After my long day at work, lying back on the table for all of a minute and a half was welcome.

Afterwards, I made my way back through the hospital to get to my parking lot. As I was passing through the (spotlessly clean) lobby, I saw the clock.


Y'see, even before the move to the new building, there was always a grandfather clock gracing the (spotlessly clean) lobby. I was born in Doylestown Hospital, and a couple of yers after that earth-shaking event, my mother started making regular trips there for what constituted treatment for cancer in the early 1960s. As this was back in the days before Same Day procedures, these often involved lengthy stays. When my father, brother, and sister would go to visit my mother, I'd stay in the lobby. (Children who were not patients were not permitted in the wards of the hospital, nasty little carriers of contagion that we were.) And I was fascinated by the clock. Comparitively, it was enormous. Towering. The slow swinging of the pendulum, the chimes on the quarter hour. And my mother, somewhere upstairs.

Oddly, I have almost no memory whatsoever of my mother. Her battle ended when I was three and a half. But I remember the clock.

Isn't that odd? I don't remember her, but I remember the clock.

And there it was. There was the clock. Still taller than me by about two feet, the swinging pendulum.

And there, above the face of the clock, is a painting, slowly turning behind a little window. It shows the sun and the moon and various astrological symbols, painted with faces. The expressions on the faces are cool, knowing, and serene. Slowly they turn, the sun appearing at the left in the morning, making its way to the right, and disappearing at the right hand side of the window in the evening, just as the face of the moon appears at the left side.

I loved the Borrower's books when I was a child, stories of a family, Pod, Homily, and Arriette, about an inch high, who lived on items they borrowed in a human house. They lived under the clock that stood in the hall, and thus their family name was Clock.

And in a picture book I had as a child telling the story of the Wizard of Oz, in a depiction of the witch's castle, was a man transformed into a clock by the witch.

Grandfather clocks.

And now, thirty-six and a half years later, there I stood, looking again at the clock. Looking at the cool, serene face of the sun.

For all the time I've been alive, that clock has been ticking away, the hands rounding the face, the pendulum swinging, the sun chasing the moon chasing the sun chasing the moon. On and on. The ceaseless march of time.

Friday, August 20, 2004

A Little Backbone

The Tattoo Odyssey continues!

After the last session two weeks ago, Joe Rose, Tattoo Artist Extraordinaire, had reached my hip. Tonight, we plunged in again. The Wildly Humourous DVD played to distract me (or distract Joe from my squeals of agony, I'm not sure which) selected for this evening was Invador Zim. Invador Zim showed on Nickelodeon until someone there thought about just what they were exposing their juvenile audience to and pulled the plug. It is really weird! One episode we watched involved steeling organs from children and replacing them with tv remotes, cell phones, and the like. If I saw that when I was nine I'd still be having nightmares.

Anyway. Link by link, Joe set to work. First stop was the pelvic bone. Then I had a brief respite of Not Too Bad until we hit my spine, when things got Really Bad. I'd heard that taking ink over the spine was tough, but nothing could have prepared me for what I endured tonight.

Wow! That smarts!

But I've discovered this Zone, a mental state I drop into when I'm stretched out on the table. The pain just happens, but I view it as sort of a necessity. I go through it.

To a large extent, this is possible because I'm enjoying the finished product so much. It really is looking great. And I was thrilled to realize that after tonight, the tattoo will be visible over my belt. In part, this is the effect I was hoping for: a tattoo that emerges from and disappears again under my clothing, capturing (I hope) the imagination of onlookers as to just where exactly it goes in the meantime. In other words, getting people (men in particular) to be thinking about my body and what I'd look like naked.

After all, that can only be good, right?

Well, as usual after our sessions, I'm exhausted, so I'm heading to bed.

Our next session is on September 10th.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Balls O' Fire

At this point, whenever I wear the chain collar or chrome cockring from Big, I break out. Red, itchy, and scaley. I miss wearing the collar keenly, and so I've been making do with a leather thong. But I can't not wear the cockring. So what I've been doing is keeping it on until I can't stand it anymore, and then giving it a rest for a few day. And, it's summer, and summer for me has always meant jock itch.

All this adds up to some really really itchy balls. I savor the rare opportunities presented to me when I can just scratch away, going hog wild. I'm finding that my Starbuck's card, always in my pocket, makes a very useful tool for this purpose.

I know I know I know. You're not supposed to scratch. But I have always been a scratcher. Never able to resist an itch. So I bleed. So what? It feels good.

And, I suspect that scratching is less abrasive than my other way of... *ahem* "treating" my situation. Y'see, when I get in the shower in the morning, the water is initially really hot before I adjust it. Hot as in intolerably so. Except--you guessed it--on my balls. I just let the steaming water flow over them. It feels wondeful. Absolutely wonderful.

And, it tends to make them verrrry sensitive. Just a wee tickle and it has the sensation of electricity.

So yeah! I'm a balls scratchin', cigar smokin', whip wieldin', cabinet makin', stick weldin', leather wearin', dog walkin', latte swillin' kinda guy.

The World best make room for me.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

The View From The Corner of Main and State Streets

Whaddya call fourteen year old girls who dress like sex workers?

At the Starbuck's in Doylestown, we've coined the term "Prosti-Tots."

Monday, August 16, 2004

Chowder Or Bisque?

What a great weekend!

Taking advantage of the mild winter at last, I set up a pretty fair play space out in the shed in the backyard, and had back-to-back-to-back boys over all weekend long! Boys in chains! Boys to whip up on the cross! Boys in the sling that I braided myself out of plastic bags from the supermarket! It was great! All weekend long! I lost track of the number of boys I whipped, but for sure I had six boys in chains!


Maybe not.


But it was a good weekend nonetheless.

I had to work on Saturday from 7 am to 11 pm. This pretty much put the ix-nay on any Friday night activity other than the Olympics. Work on Saturday went well, and afterwards, I made a beeline for the Farmer's Market in Doylestown, in hopes of meeting up with Farmer Guy. Probably due to it being the middle of growing season, Farmer Guy has been rarely seen on the Rialto (a.k.a. the porch of Starbuck's).

And there he was, deeply tanned beneath his straw hat. And Jiminy Crickets! What fare! We chatted and caught up, and before I realized it, Farmer Guy was filling up a bag for me with heirloom tomatoes, fingerling potatoes, and some beautiful peppers. After the market shut down, Farmer Guy and I headed down to Starbuck's, me toting my sack of veggies. Actor Guy showed up, and there I was, pretty awestruck by the sight of two muscular, blond, blue-eyed men. Woof!

Farmer Guy had to head back to the farm, and I lingered and enjoyed the afternoon with Actor Guy. (The Ford Modeling Agency has work for him. "Yeah, but it's just print work. I'm not tall enough for runway," he demures. I guess the Ford Modeling Agency isn't plugged into gay porn, right? Alas for that.)

Then I hit the gym. Totally on a roll with the gym lately! And I'm really happy about that.

At the supermarket on the way home, I had to consider: what to do with tomatoes and potatoes?

Duh! Chowder!

Now, help me out here. If it's made with milk, it's chowder, and if it's made with cream, it's bisque, right? Or is bisque just french for chowder? Noooo... I think that 'bisque' refers to any soup that has cream. Tomato bisque, onion bisque... Right. So chowder must be made with milk.

So just what was it I made? Was it chowder or bisque?

You, the reader, decide! Here's what I did...

Melted about two tablespoons of butter in my trusty marmite, added flour and made my roux. Then a nice dollop of Breakstone's Fat Free Sour Cream, a little container of light cream, and then about half of a pint of milk. Stirring all the while, and having it steam but never simmer, I kept it nice and thick. I let it reduce while I gave the potatoes a boil in salt water. Into the bisk went some frozen white corn, and then the drained potatoes, and finally the tomatoes. Then, I added some peeled and veined shrimp, and finished it off with some white pepper.

Oh man! It was good! And Farmer Guy's tomatoes! I swear I haven't had tomatoes that good in years! I am suddenly a big believer in heirloom tomatoes, that Farmer Guy went all the way to Lancaster County to track down. Y'see, when tomatoes are hybridized, the qualities they want to accentuate are those that make tomatoes sell: red, round, difficult to bruise, and full of juice. What's missing from the equation? How about taste???!! Heirloom tomatoes are pretty much unchanged. So they look pretty crappy. Mottled and small. But the taste is amazing! Just an explosion! Nothing tastes like a good tomato.

Because hurricanes were threatening on Saturday night, I deferred to my father and decided to forgo my trip to the Bike Stop. But, as the hurricane failed to materialize in these parts, I waited until my father went to bed, then headed down to the Raven. It was a slow night at the Raven. No visiting bears to speak of, just a lot of locals in flipflops and International Male-esque duds. Not my scene. So I had a beer and headed for home, getting to bed before 2pm.

Sunday was enlivened by a visiting reader!

He and a friend were fresh from the Philly Phisters weekend playparty at Rivendell, just to the north of me. Apparently the weekend was a wee bit on the poorly planned side, but they were delaying the long drive back to Boston with a stopover in New Hope. We met up at the Starbucks, visited Le Chateau Exotique [sic], which has some reeeeally intersting rubber floggers at verrry reasonable prices (I hope to be showing one off at Delta next month), and ended the day with pizza.

For dinner? What else? Leftover chowder! Dear Old Dad sure didn't complain, and neither did I.

And now it's back to work.

*sigh* Worked a 10.25 hour day today. And it's a long way till Friday.

Friday, August 13, 2004

Something About Jimmy

My former governor is gay!

I never liked Jim McGreevey. He always struck me as being a hack totally devoid of imagination. Bret Shundler, on the other hand, made a great mayor of Jersey City. One of the only mayors of Jersey City not to leave office by indictment.

And it will be sort of interesting to have an Openly Gay Governor for the next three months in the Garden State. Kind of a first.

Unfortunately, it seems that McGreevey did what Bill Clinton didn't: abuse the powers invested in him by the State of New Jersey, getting his sweetie a cushy job in the State House. (And putting your boy in charge of Homeland Security kinda shows that endeavor for the sham it is, huh? He couldn't have put him in charge of developing trade between New Jersey and Sardinia or something?)

Here's a hot tidbit: my current governor, Ed Rendell, has a really hairy back.

Mum's the word on how I come by this information. Tongues may wag as tongues are wont to do.


I love the Olympics. Like nothing else. Whatever the sport, it don' matter. (Well, I'll admit that curling in the Winter Olympics doesn't do a lot for me.) But just the whole thing... some kid from nowheresville gettin' out there, and despite adversity (there's always adversity) giving it his or her all.

The Opening Ceremonies were fantastic. Just stunning. I would've given anything to see it live.

Now I'm settling in, watching the Parade of Nations. (My father doesn't even look up when I give up a 'Woof!' any more.) And there were Woofs a plenty. An Iraqi, a Dutchman, an Afgani, an Estonian, and an Icelander were pretty memorable.

And speaking of Iraq, how about that? Isn't that cool that they have a team competing? I hope their boxer gets a medal. From what I've heard he's pretty goood.

Woof! Love those Poles! Look at that swimmer!

And omigosh! Cambodia! An entire generation wiped out by the Khmer Rouge, and they've got an Olympic Team! Go Cambodia!

Rwanda! Go Rwanda! I wonder what the mix of Hutuus and Tutsis is on the team!

Go Russia! I love the Russians! And they're wearing flat front pants. Not like some of those other coutnries that seem to be clinging to pleated pants. Get with it, people!

Alas. We are busy at work. So I'm not sure how much of the Olympics I'll get to watch. I'm working tomorrow--that would be Saturday--and will probably be doing ten hour days all next week. I got kinda huffy about that. I wouldn't mind if that were the exception rather than the rule, but it seems to be every other week. I don't mind the overtime money, in fact I welcome it. But I'd feel a lot better if I got the impression that management felt that this constant and ever present backlog was a problem that could use addressing.

Anyway. Bring on those women power lifters!

Thursday, August 12, 2004

"Watching Robert Deniro Movies and Talking Italian"


iTunes doesn't seem to offer Robert Deniro's Waiting, by the Bananarama. But I did manage to find Popularity by the Sparks.

"Dig My Big Thick Moustache"

Oh yeah.

I burned a great cd the other night. The occasion I had in mind was driving down to the Bike Stop on Saturday nights. Listened to it on the way to work, at lunch, and afterwards today. (As I came back from lunch, Nightingale asked me, "Was that Fanfare For The Common Man, Dutch?" Sure was!)

Here's the playlist...

Promenade Allegro Giusto, from Mussorgsky's "Pictures From An Exhibition"
Scorpio Rising, Natalie Merchant and the 10,000 Maniacs
Because The Night Natalie Merchant and the 10,000 Maniacs
Wild, Sweet And Cool The Crystal Method
Brotherhood Of Man from the How To Succeed In Business... soundtrack.
Hold My Hand Hootie and the Blowfish
I Only Wanna Be With You Gootie and the Blowfish
Fanfare For The Common Man Aaron Copeland, performed by the London Symphony Orchestra
Right In Time Lucinda Williams
Falling In Love Again Marlene Dietrich
Give It Away The Red Hot Chili Peppers
Higher Ground The Red Hot Chili Peppers
I Am Superman REM
Burning Down The House Talking Heads
Life During Wartime Talking Heads
Discotheque U2
Macho Man Village People
Taste The Pain Red Hot Chili Peppers

It just carries my mood right along. And it ought to get me door-to-door.

Cool beans!

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

The Very Model

Good day.

The worst thing that happened today was I was unable to pick up a half-galllon of Rosenberger's Iced Tea on my way to work. All they had was Rosenbergers Mint Tea. To my shock and horror, I learned from the label that it was, in fact, a purely herbal concoction, and thus, absent any scintilla of caffeine. I was dragging myself around.

But, I sure perked up at lunch. Today was the day that I gave my sanding presentation to the Whole Shop. At the outset, I was asked what the title was for my presentation. Without missing a beat, I replied, "Monster Sanding Table."

Nobody fell asleep. And it seemed to be overall well received. As well received as listening to someone talk about sanding for fifteen minutes can be, I guess.

After work, when I arrived at Starbucks, there was much buzz. It seems that Actor Guy (who is unbelievably gorgeous... when the weather is warm, we all compete to sit at his table so that we can be carressed by the breeze generated by his lush, blond eyelashes) got a call from the Ford Modeling Agency, to whom he had sent his headshots and resume.

Didn't I tell ya? I believe I did mention here several months ago that any moment he'd be plucked from our midst and plopped up on a billboard eleven stories high looming over Houston Street.

He actually is very serious about his acting. He trudges up to NYC every Saturday to go to a workshop, he's been in an independent film, and has done some extra work. He's terrifically compelling. He has what they call 'presence.' But he's a genuine, good guy. A framer by trade. Can't fault a man who earns his living as a framer.

I mentioned my mulling evicting my deceased sister's ex-husband's cousin, and he asked to be my roommate. I think my reply was something along the lines of 'humina-humina-humina-humina...' There I'd be, sabotaging the furnace before we head to bed, in order to contrive a way to get into his bed.

And he reads books, too!

Okay okay okay. I know. There I go getting all krrrushed out on a straight guy again.

Oh. But one more interesting tidbit. He mentioned at one point that he 'kinda liked' sunburn. The physical sensations it brings. He said that he really loved it when his back was all sunburned and sensitive and a 'girl with long fingernails' runs her fingers down his back.

Uh huh.

How about after you've been flogged for a while and somebody lightly runs their fingers over your back? Like that?

I bet he would.

Sunday, August 08, 2004

Just A[n Existential] Thought

I'm surprised that life doesn't offer more in the way of... novelty. ...Of variety. ...Of possibility.

It's like your walking down a path, and your treading in the footprints of the hundreds and thousands and millions of people who have walked down that same path. The Road Less Traveled is an illusion, to be sure.

I always imagined that my life would be Different. That I'd hack my way through the underbrush alone, off into unmapped terrain. But now. No matter which way I turn, there are those footprints into which I'm putting my own feet.

And after me will come hundreds and thousands and millions of more people, obliterating my footprints with their own.

There should be more in the way of option.

Friday, August 06, 2004

"Take Me To Astro's Grave."

Oh Man!

What a great night.

Tonight was my appointment with Tattoo Artist Extraordinaire, Joe Rose. We went from my upper thigh to just above my hip, pretty much to where my belt falls. Joe had sort of a sour stomach and wanted to get out of there early. (That did not prevent him from getting absorbed in his work and very excited about the design and it's execution, I'm happy to report.)

As I was driving down to New Hope for the appointment, I had some butterflies in the stomach. Nothing serious. Just a little bit of "eeeeEEEEeeeeee..." thinking about the pain to come.

Fer nuthin'! We were doing a pretty meaty part of me, my thighs, so it wasn't much of a problem. I didn't wince or whine or say 'fuckfuckfuckFUCK!' the entire time.

Quite the reverse.

We got onto the subject of Funny Stuff We've Seen On Comedy Central. Reno 911 figured prominently in our conversation. "when Trudy was dating the serial killer, and she's like, 'Curiosity killed the cat, but here goes! why do you have a human size bird cage?' and when they made the little kid ride his bike off the roof of the super market! And so on.

I was laughing. A lot.

But the absolute best was Joe describing to me an episode of the Family Guy, which I have never seen. The theme of the show was 'child stars,' although because the Family Guy is animated, it was animated child stars they were discussing. At one point, a character remarks, "Well, Elroy Jetson seems to have done alright." Cut the scene to an older, broken down Elroy Jetson, getting thrown out of a bar. They load him into a car, and Bamm-Bamm Rubble (older, broken down) is the driver.

"Bamm. Bamm. Where to, Mac?" asks Bamm-Bamm.

"Just take me to Astro's grave," says Elroy Jetson.

I was howling. And not from pain! And every couple of minutes, that would come to me again, and I'd start giggling. The whole night long, I was giggling away.



I laugh at pain!

Y'know what's weird? Joe and I really like each other. At least, I like him a lot. And I'm pretty sure he likes me. And then there's the whole thing with the crowd at Starbucks. Irish Guy and Handsome Guy and all the rest of 'em. And then there's the guys at work. It's like, all the cool guys I know are straight! I don't know any cool gay guys. (Well, I guess Farmer Guy would count as a Cool Gay Guy. Yeah, definitely he would. But it's the middle of growing season, he has zucchini and kolrabi and bok choi to harvest, so I'm not seeing much of him lately. For the better part of my adult life, I barely knew any straight guys. And now, I barely know any gay guys. Pretty odd. Never thought I was so ambidextrous.

And the ink, by the way, looks really great.

Thursday, August 05, 2004

Come September


An exciting development.

T'other night, Keckler sent me an email. Keckler is my sponsor for Delta. (BTW, I'm pronouncing it the way the Russians refer to the airline, "Dyelta," with the 'l" pronounced at the back of the throat, the way you probably pronounce the first 'l' in "lull.") Keckler generously offered to sponsor Big, too.

I emailed Big and extended the offer, giving him, to the best of my ability, my understanding of the best (the scenes! the friendship! the time we'd have together) and the worst (the food! the 8 am breakfast!).

Big and I discussed, and he's checking into airfares from SF to Philadelphia on the weekend of September 17, 18, 19, and 20.

Now, I am really looking forward to Delta. (The other night, a comment made by a Chicago Hellfire Club full member upon learning that I was doing Delta but not Inferno this year--"so you're playing the lounge instead of the Big Room"--kinda gave me pause.)

Me and Big. Big and his boy. I'm new to Delta, as is Big. We'll be experiencing this new thing together. Amazing.

Uh Oh.

There's this new show on television this fall. It's about kid who gets his dream job working as a batboy. Filled with slo-mo home run hits.

Uh oh.

FACT: I will not miss an episode.

FACT: I will be sobbing through just about all of them.

Yeah. aseball does that to me.


I did it!

I've broken into Doylestown Cafe Society! At Starbucks, that is.

I am so thrilled!

Yesterday, I was sitting at Starbucks, smoking my cigar, and a young woman took an empty chair at my table. She introduced herself, and it turned out that she was the recent ex of one of my sanding table boys. So that sort of broke the ice, and we chatted up a storm. About a half hour later, she was joined by... Irish Guy. He's another Starbucks regular after whom I've pined for awhile. (Straight. Nachullee.) Recent Ex made a departure, and Irish Guy and I talked for a while.

So then today, I'm sitting enjoying the latte and the cigar, and out comes Irish Guy. He joins me. We talk. Interestingly, we were joined by a few young women--way narcistic teenager young women, the only interesting feature in one of them was that she works in an animal testing lab, as in the place where they test those personal hygiene items none of us buy on animals. I didn't think such places still existed? Does PETA know about this? But Irish Guy and I continued our conversation all but independent of the young women, other than shivering when she mentioned that she was working with a lot of 'puppies and bunnies' lately.


Anyway. So we were quite the table of bon vivants, Irish Guy and I talking about Ireland (he's a big fan of the Burren, too, and agrees that a bicycle tour of the Emerald Isle is a really bad idea, although it sounds great if you haven't been there).

And then I hit paydirt. Along came the guy who is absolutely the hottest of all the guys who hang at Starbucks. Several weeks ago I wrote enviously about his Tarzan-worthy pecs.

And didn't he just sit down at our table.

And didn't Irish Guy and the Young Women head out, leaving me to get acquainted with this hot man.

And guess what! We totally bonded! He's great! He works doing framing for a construction crew, and both of us love our work, the strenuousness of it, the cameraderie, the satisfaction we get out of it. All that stuff I wrote here back in November and December about the World of Men Who Work With Their Hands? He's totally on the same page.

And, he heads up to Baruch every weekend to take acting classes, so I guess he's not totally oblivious to the fact that he's hot. And, he's a big fan of Southern California, although he's never been, and listened rapt with attention as I told him why I was, too. But then came the clincher: we talked about our dogs. I think after we talked about our dogs we would have signed the papers to donate our kidneys to one another. Serious bonding. He was also interested when I mentioned that I had run a needle exchange, as he's been previously 'messed up on drugs.'

So there we go. I know their names, they know mine, no more sitting and watching. Now it'll be warm welcomes and passing the time of day.

This will all cause my father to seriously despair, since it means I'm gonna be getting home even later on weekdays.

Could it be that in time I'll have people to go to the movies with? Could 'so doing anything for dinner?' be too far in the offing?

I'm sooooo happy.

And this topped off a great day at work. I effortlessly prepped the cabinets in the hardware department. On with the hinges. In with the shelves. Er... Hung with the doors... ummm... Mounted with the drawerfronts. (Funny thing about prose, when you just turn down the wrong path and run right into a briar patch, huh?)

And at lunch, we had both a catered affair to celebrate One Year Without a Work Related Mishap That Caused Lost Time (Yahooo! Yippee!), followed by a ceremony where all of us who are participating in the Apprenticeship Program received our Certificates. And, we got lovely parting gifts! I received a set of chisels, a set of screwdrivers, and a tape measure. Our new tools came in these really cool holographic gold gift bags with tissue paper coming out the top. When I went up to take mine from She Who Must Be Obeyed (the big boss), I greeted the bag in her outstretched hand with, "Why the package alone!" She Who Must Be Obeyed got a look on her face as though she just realized something. Wonder what that could be?

And, they called in our instructor to hand out the certificates, something they probably won't be doing again, because he took his old sweet time about doing it. So we were all getting paid for sitting around, eating cookies, and applauding one another. It took forever. It was 1:15 before we all got back to work. Unheard of!

Good day all 'round.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Okay. Looking For Some Support Here.

Give me a shout out.

Tell me again that it would be a REEEEALLY BAD Thing to have my deceased sister's ex-husband's cousin--who is living in this country illegally--evicted.


We're talking verrrry bad karma. And just a really crappy thing to do.


Even though he's several months behind on the $300/month rent he's supposed to pay my father for the two bedroom house he rents next door...

Even though me moving in there would give me autonomy, a place of my own, relative independence...

Even though I'd be able to clear my stuff out of the garage and turn it into a welding workshop...

Even though I'd be able to have people come and stay for a week or a weekend...

Even though with me out of the way I'd probably be able to get my father some measure of home assistance...

Even though I'd be close enough to still do the cooking and keep my father company...

Even though I'd have dungeon space...

Despite all that, it would be a bad thing, right?


Yes it would be.

Thanks. Just had to process that.

Monday, August 02, 2004

Ink Pics

Kinkdog requested some pics of my tattooing. Here's my best shot at that. A rush job, and it shows.

Now let's see if Blogger is up for cooperating tonight...

Okay. That looks good...

And that looks right...

Huh. Could it be? Pics are once again easily postable? One more.

Alright. I'll hit publish and hope for the best.


Yeah, I'm grumpy. Grumpy grumpy grumpy.

Tired at work today, and I drilled the front rather than the back of a door to put a hinge on. First mistake in the past four days that I worked. Stupid stupid stupid. It's not like I don't know better. And it's not quite true that I wasn't thinking. I was thinking my way through the job, the way I need to think my way through every job, because I don't know the drill by heart yet. But I was thinking about making sure the the hinge plate was tight against the jig rather than doing the right side of the door, and before you know it...

Ah well. Nobody freaked out too much. Which bothered me. Do they think "well-of-course-Dutch-is-gonna-screw-up-cuz-he-always-screws-up'? Is that why they didn't make a fuss?

[You see how this troubled mind of mine works, huh?]

Yeah. I'm feeling discouraged.

I've been reading girl fag's blog (like I always do, i's wunnerful, so should you!), and she's been talking about setting up house in her new apartment.


Damn I would love to be setting up house in my new apartment. Picking some good paint colors, stocking a kitchen, figuring out how to make the place work as a playspace.


But no. I have a bedroom that's packed to the rafters with a quarter of my worldly goods, and a garage stocked with the other three quarters. I'd paint, but there's too much in there to move around to paint.


Enuf o' dat.

Had a really good email exchange with a guy on WorldLeatherman. He's on his own Ink Journey, which is well documented on his website. Lovin' kinkdog. What a great guy. Really interesting ideas. Very Right On.

And our brief exchange got me outta my head. Ink as a journey. Yeah. I'm getting ready for my next session with Joe Rose on Friday night. Across my butt and up my back. The chain continues. Journey within a journey. Like a circle in a circle like a spiral in a spiral. Eddies in the flow of the great river of my life.

So I can be satisfied with that. That's enough to to hold my focus and attention.

So it's all good.

Sunday, August 01, 2004

Whip Workout

Man! Am I rusty!

In terms of the basic throws (side arm, overhand), my accuracy is as dead on as ever. But what's up with my underhand? I love doing soft underhand throws to tease my bottoms. I'd be teasing them in some pretty odd places. In fact, i don't know if behind the kneecap could be considered a tease. And my showin'-off throws (circus crack, overhead-reverse) leave a lot to be desired. Half the time, I don't get cracks, I get thwups. And those showin'-off cracks are crucial to show the man you're gonna whip that you know how to work those things.

But enough of punishing oak trees for now. I've got to get in a lot of practice between now and Delta.

Telling The Bees

the local paper, the Daily Intelligencer, gives a little red plastic newspaper boxes to subscribers. One graces the end of our driveway.

Ours has a nest of bees. They're at the very back. A small nest, about thirty of them. Probably yellow jackets.

Yellow jackets are the vermin of the bee world. They eat flesh. Dead animals. They're aggessive. They'll sting with very little provocation.

On those mornings when I have to be at work at 6 am rather than 7 am, the paper usually isn't delivered when I leave, so my father is the one to go out and get it. I've gotten used to gently removing the paper and dropping it on the driveway to get the bees off. My father probably wouldn't be down with that. He's probably going to get stung. And that would be bad.

I should kill them.

I should go and by some Raid, and in the early morning or in the evening, when they're alll in the nest, give them a good spritz and kill them.

But I don't want to.

I don't want to have to end their little bee lives. I don't want to have to dispatch them from this mortal coil, turn them to dust.

And that's silly. No good reason for it. They don't even have brains, just collections of ganglia. They wouldn't be aware of it.

But still. All God's creatures. The apotheosis in Shelly's 'Prometheus Unbound' comes when the titan declares, "Let no living thing suffer pain." Bad karma. All that.


I guess age and time make Budhists of us all.

Here's that Quizilla Thing That's Making The Rounds

The Strange Attractor
Category VI - The Strange

Though you're not quite sure why, people are drawn
to you like moths to a flame. You really
are too cool for words.

What Type of Social Entity are You?
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Lock Up Your Sons!

And now, my weekends are my own again. And I'm thinking about Delta. (The event, not the airline.) Men to whip. Men to chain up. Men to flog. Men to take my piss. Men to chow down on my boots. Men to pummel.

And I'm wondering if I can manage to beat any bottom boys out of the bushes before Delta rolls around in seven weeks.

Cuz it's been way too long since I've had that magic. And--what I feel I'm really needing now--to be the one creating that magic.


Down day today. Make myself something to eat. Hitting the gym. Doing some chores around here. But I think I'll find some time to wander around the yard pruning the shrubbery with my whips.

Adieu, Ballbreakers!

Yesterday was the playoffs. It was double elimination, meaning that you lose two games and then you're out of the playoffs.

And we're... uh... out of the playoffs.

But we won the first game we played yesterday! As we arrived at the field, calling out coach to find out what field we were using brought some unhappy news: coach was at the animal hospital. His dog was choking on something. He wouldn't be there for the first game.

We gathered for our team cheer, a wee bit down in the dumps as we were going up against a team that had served us our sorry butts in the recent past. "Ba-a-llllllllBREAKERS!!!"

"Guys," I said, "Let's win one for Tish!" (Tish would be our coaches golden retriever.)

Because we were the lower seeded team, we were visitors. So we were first up at bat. Crack! A good hit. We got a run. So we finished our first inning at bat with a lead. Not so the Falcon's, our opponents. Our fielding was spot on. No errors at all. So we got to the second inning and the score was 1-0. That felt good!

And that continued. Our bats were there, our fielding was there. Crack! Crack! Crack! We continued to rack up the ribbies. The Falcons would hit a pop fly and we would catch it for the out. If it was in the infield, we'd get it to first base before the baserunner.

And the old Ballbreakers were back! We were having a good time! All of us were on our feet, cheering on whoever was at bat, greeting each good shag with "Nice snatch!" All that good stuff.

Winning isn't everything. It's the only thing. When it comes to having a blast, that is.