Sunday, October 30, 2005


What is it with men?

Lately, I've been keenly aware of an odd phenomenon. When I lived in NYC, all the hot men--or just the men likely to catch my eye, get my attention, not necessarily make me forget what I was saying mid-sentence or something--were gay men. When I would run across "seeking straight-acting, straight-appearing" in personal ads, it didn't make sense to me. You're really looking for somebody with a bad haircut who wears sweat pants and a tshirt that says "I'm with stupid" or something? Straight men in NYC were pretty much filler. Seriously, my heart goes out to heterosexual women.

But here in Bucks County... Well, on my last few trips to the Raven, I leave after about twenty minutes or so. Surveying most of the crowd, I just think, "What the hell were you thinking when you decided that lemon yellow pleated (!) shorts, a circa 1999 print long-sleeved shirt tucked in, and tassled penny loafers would spell hook-up success? And damn! Did you fill up your lap pool with that awful cologne you're wearing? And did you not understand the directions on the bottle of Miss Clairol, or didn't you bother to read them at all?

But, then I head to the Clemons Market in Plumsteadville. And it's filled with these hot men. Men with awesome beards, filling out their Carharrts, military brushcuts... The other night, there was this guy there who made my shopping list go right out of my head. I swear, if you were to drop him in the middle of the Dugout on a Sunday afternoon, it would be like a zombie movie. He'd just be devoured. Nothing left within seconds.

So, in NYC, the gay men are hot, and the straight men are schlumpy. But in Bucks County, the straight men are hot, but the gay men are schlumpy.

What's that about?

The Baron von Philadelphia and I were puzzling over this. And we might have come up with the answer.

Y'see, Bucks County is pretty much a resort community. Gay men here, for the most part, aren't from here. They get country places, or decide to retire here. And whereas in a big city like NYC, we are all of us always aware of the Darwinian struggle for survival. You gotta represent, right? But these guys, the guys who show up at the Raven, have a diifferent mindset. It goes something like this: "I have a fabulous 1752 farmhouse that I've painstakingly renovated, my landscapers have done an amazing job, I drive a convertible BMW, my stock portfolio is doing great: I can have any guy I want." They're looking for an accessory.

So that's the state of things. So I'll deal with it.

But I sure miss NYC. And that... that... numinous cloud of romantic possibility. I mean, it's not about hooking up all the time. It's just, you'd be sitting there at Starbucks, and you'd just have to look around, and gosh, there's a hot guy! And he looks at you, and you look at him, and he smiles, and you smile, and he heads off to the grocery store, and you go to your meeting. It's not like you have to take care of business there and then. But maybe you'll both be standing in line waiting for the ATM sometime, and you'll introduce yourselves, and exchange numbers, and get together for dinner, and find out there's a lot in common, and you like the same things, and there's lots of mutual sexual attraction, and you go home together and find out that you're super compatible in bed, and you continue to spend time together, and you take a trip together and have a blast the whole time, and then, there you are fifty years from now in the gay retirement community reminiscing about your wonderful life together. Or whatever. It doesn't have to happen, it's just nice to have the possibility.

It's like when you're driving across country, and when there's always gas stations available, you don't need to think about it. But, when you're heading through the Sonoran dessert, you're really really really aware that you've only got a quarter of a tank, and it's been a long time since you've passed a gas station, and you're just wondering if you're gonna find a gas station again.


So Bucks County is sort of my Sonoran dessert.

Funny thing is, understanding what's going on makes it all totally tolerable.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

And Counting

Saturday is the big day! The first anniversary of my 40th birthday.

• Tonight at the gym, I did flies with sixty-five pound dumbells. That's a lifetime record. Pretty good for a man my age, huh?

• Loving the World Series! (Go White Sox!)

• I am loving Wednesday night services at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Doylestown. I swear, I can't figure it out. It's like watching the same opera every week. Like reading the same poem over and over again even though you know it by heart.

• Had a great weekend. On Sunday, I joined the Baron von Philadelphia for some Culchah. There was this program on the music and life of one Frederick Delius down in the City of Brotherly Love. Okay. I'll fess up. I was hoping it would be obsessional and Pythonesque. I mean, I never heard of the guy. But, alas, there were no freaks. Just a bunch of polite middle of the road folks. Alas. But the victuals were tasty. And it was great spending time with the Baron.

• Two thousand and one Americans have died in Iraq. With the revelations about the futility of their deaths. It's just got me so dispirited. The only ray of hope is that Bush will continue to trend downward, and he'll be vying with Warren Harding as the worst American President since the First World War.

And how do I plan to spend the Birthday Weekend? Welllll.... The Baron is coming to visit. Friday night, we'll probably hang at Starbucks forever. Then on Saturday, I'll make a nice dinner for the Baron and my father. And then, that night, the Baron has agreed to join me for... a Haunted Hayride! I was planning on going to the one at Trauger's that I enjoyed a few years ago. But the guys at the gym said that the Haunted Hayride at Delaware Valley College was the most spectacular Haunted Hayride ever conceived.

Then, on Sunday, I head up to NYC for my SM and Spirituality group. Dinner and birthday cake are promised! Soooo looking forward to that.

Sorry to be posting so infrequently lately. I'll see about doing better on that. Maybe I'm slowing down in my old age.


Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Full Day

A job is going out at 5:30 am tomorrow morning. And disaster struck. Some weird reaction with the finish wrecked three of the cabinets, so that they all had to be resanded and refinished. And the finishing process here involves staining, sealing, scuffing, glazing, and top-coating. At 1 pm, when we were to start putting on the hardware, they had just been sanded.

What to do?

The powers that be had an idea. My partner and I would punch out and leave, and come back at 7:30 that night when the cabinets were dry to finish them up. I was definitely cool with that.

So I got off work at 1:30. And proceeded to get all my needs met!


First stop was Starbucks. It was a beautiful day today. So I got an iced-quad-venti-one pump vanila-light ice-latte, and sat on the porch, enjoying a cigar and reading a really great book. This time of year, you never know when the sit-on-the-porch-enjoying-a-cigar day might be the last one until June. So I make the most of them. Of course, sitting on the porch meant sitting on the porch. Since Starbucks has spirited away the porch furniture for the year. But no matter.

Than I hit the gym. Stretching. Doing chest work. Shower. Steam room. Touch-up shaving. Felt maginficent. Every moment of it. Breathing deeply, finding strength I didn't know I had. And tipping the scales at 184.9 lbs., the most I've weighed since June 23rd.

Then, off to church. Wednesday evening services at St. Paul's Episcopal Church. We were a small group this evening. As many of us in the congregation as there were up on the altar. And that would be four altogether. They do Rite I, all the "we do heartily thank Thee that Thou has vouchsafed's" and "the rememberance of them is grievous unto us's" and let's not forget the "quick and the dead's".

Almost time to show up back at work. Better grab something to eat. So I ducked into Doylestown's only thai restaurant for a nice bowl of Pad Thai. Tragically, as there isn't a multitude of thai places as there is in NYC, I paid double what I usually pay for a Pad Thai. But I have to admit it was among the best.

And... And... While I was sitting there in the window eating my Pad Thai, this verrrrry hot boy walked by, one I hadn't seen before. I immediately went into eye hockey overdrive, cruising him like crazy. He noticed. And I got a hit! He smiled my way. Very cool.

So let's add it up: I fed my senses (Starbucks porch, cigar, latte, beautiful day), my intellect (the book), nourished my body (the gym), tended to my spirit (church), and my stomach (Pad Thai), and my dick (hot boy).

I think that covers all the bases, right?

I am definitely doing something right.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


I got a parking ticket in the mail.

Bad luck, huh? Well, it goes beyond that.

My car was ticketed for parking at 201 East Lincoln Highway at 4:50 p.m. on Thursday, August 11th. However, I was nowhere near 201 East Lincoln Highway on August 11th. In fact, as far as I can determine, I've never been to 201 East Lincoln Highway in my life. And, my silver Jeep Liberty is described as a white Chevy.

You see my plight.

Apparently, one Police Officer Carboni wrote down the wrong license number.

My juices got flowing.

Back in my NYC days, not a parking ticket went by without yours truly making an appearance in traffic court. My record was about fifty-fifty. Courts tend to rely on the fact that most people will do one of two things: pay the ticket to get rid of it, or not pay the ticket and let the fees and penalties build up, and eventually, the City will get the money. Few and far between are the folks like me who show up to point out that the complaining officer didn't write down his badge number, and therefore the ticket is invalid. Which works, by the way. I've even gotten off because of illegible handwriting, as in, that could be a two, but it could also be a five.

And this seemed like an easy one.

So I called up the courthouse in Coatesville, Pennsylvania, and asked about what was involved in taking care of it. And the nice lady informed me that I had to post $50 in collateral. Then, a hearing would be scheduled for me. And hearings are held at 9:00 am on friday mornings.

Say what?

I pointed out to her that 9 a.m. was a really inconvenient time for people with jobs. The nice lady informed me that people could take vacation time to attend the hearing.

"People" don't work at my place of employment where you get five days vacation per year.

Okay. Now I could pay the $55 to just get rid of it, grin and bear it. And enrich the coffers of Coatesville, Pennsylvania. Because with a 9 am appearance date on a Friday, that would mean that I probably wouldn't be getting to the shop that day until noon. So, I'll lose $50 at $10-an-hour.

So here's my plan. I show up, plead not guilty, win, and then.... And then I take Officer Carboni, the town of Coatesville, and the office of the magistrate to small claims court for my lost wages.

Now, I very well might not have a leg to stand on here.

I am aware that the government, in many cases, is protected from lawsuits for tortious actions incurred in the course of, well, being government. And it might be covered by that.

But, the way small claims court works, if the other party doesn't show up, then you win. And a judgment is entered against the defendant. And I'm wondering if I can file right in good old Doylestown. That's quite a hike from Coatesville.

And, my cause of action is not wrongful... uh... summonsing. That's beside the point. My cause of action is based on the magistrate in Coatesville not holding hearings for one evening a week.

I'll keep you all posted.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Channel Surfing

So has anybody seen the Bud Lite commercial in which we're treated to a view of a well-formed young man tied spread-eagle on a tin roof while he's menaced with a pole-wielding buddhist Master?

Thanks, Bud Lite!

Everything That Rises Must Converge

Whoa! What a great night!

Because Mr. Pittsburgh Leather, whom I met at Inferno, and I have been chatting on worldleathermen, and he invited me to come out to Asbury Park last night for the Mr. and Ms. New Jersey Leather contest. Now, contests don't... uh... move me, really. And Asbury Park isn't exactly down the road a piece. And I was thinking that it would be a good night to head down to Philadelphia and hit the Bike Stop.


Because there's this hot bear guy I've been chatting with on AOL who lives in Asbury Park, I thought I could kill two birds with one stone.


Because it was a full, or a nearly full moon last night.

...I found myself driving east on Interstate 195, headed to Asbury Park.

Specifically, to a nightclub called Cruisin', where the event was held. I managed to find the place without too much problem, even though some streets were closed due to the recent flooding.

It wasn't jam packed, but the crowd was pretty kickin'. Saw just about everybody I knew from the NJ leather community. (And I guess that as a former resident of Beautiful Downtown Jersey City, I can count myself as part of the NJ leather community. At least, I always loved wearing my "New Jersey!" tshirt that I bought at a rest stop on the turnpike to MAL and Inferno and such. There is something fun and pugnacious about being from New Jersey. The implied, "You wanna make something of it?" when you tell folks where you hail from.)

And with the formation of several groups (Andromeda, the Argonauts, Garden State Bears), there really does seem to be something of a sense of community in bloom in the Garden State of late.

Ran into Mr. Pittsburgh Leather when I was just inside the door. The contest was in full swing, with the fantasy segment tearing up the stage. (Literally. A table upon which a certain baker of amazing cakes had been thrown collapsed.) Trayla Trash--none other!--was excellent as the MC. Note to producers of such: it is terrifically unlikely that you will ever be able to do better. Get Trayla or call it off. And there were plenty of hot men in the house to keep me interested. Not too long after the Q&A segment (oh, and the questions were pretty lamentable, not to heap scorn or anything, but they were), my bear guy showed up.

He pretty much takes the cake for AOL meet-ups. Totally great guy! Pretty much a big, happy man. With a great touch. Verrrrry tactile. Woof!

During the seemingly interminable tallying of the votes, Trayla--oh, assisted ably by a Ms. New Jersey Leather from years past, Storm--kept things interesting, conducting a chinese auction to raffle off a St. Andrew's Cross, and the opportunity to beat the ass of a Mr. NYC Eagle who dropped trou' and braced himself against the thing in anticipation. Mucho bucks were made for people living with HIV/AIDS affected by hurricane Katrina, and none other than one Miss Cox of NYC won the auction. Miss Cox's preference, however, was not to beat but to bite the ass in question, which she did, leaving a nice mark on each cheek, and garnering a whelp of pain from Mr. NYC Eagle.

Oh! And note to Lolita: when it was announced from the stage that you would be teaching something or other at some event in Baltimore (I wasn't paying attention because it was a women's event), a roar of recognition went up from the audience. New Jersey loves Lolita! And well they should!

Finally finally finally the winnners were announced. Congrats to Tom Savage and Peanut. Yay! Woo-HOOO!

Then, they started clearing the dancefloor of the chairs and judges tables. And I thought to myself, omigosh, I'm gonna get the chance to step out.

Happily, Happy Bear loves to dance, too. And is a frequent visitor to Cruisin'.

And so, friends, I was happy to show the leather community of New Jersey how it's done on the dancefloor.

Oh Man!

I haven't danced like that in years! I think the last time I got to dance was when I was with Donee and Diabolique at the Montreal Eagle during the softball tournement there the first year I attended Inferno. Oh. Wait. No. There was a Black Party in there, too.

But it just took me back, way back. To Kurt's, which we used to call Skirts, in Philadelphia, and Chip Duckett's Mars, Save The Robots, Fuck with the delectable Aldo Hernandez spinning, and the Clit Club (yes, the Clit Club!) during my early years in NYC.

Children, I can cut a rug. I can punish the parquet.

From what I saw in the thoughtfully provided mirrors, and the longing glances I spied from many admirers, I looked great out there on the dancefloor, too. Shirtless, wearing the chaps my Sir got me over a pair of leather shorts. And Happy Bear was great to dance with, only taking one brief break.

So take heed, Asbury Parkians (that can't be what they call themselves, but whatever): the dance floor at Cruisin' has not seen the last of me.

Anyway, today is a beautiful day. I'm off to try and track down a copy of the NY Times, get some brunch, then come back here to the Ol' Homestead and chop some firewood.

Oh! And here's a great thing! I don't feel stiff and sore at all after last night's exertions.

How cool is that?

Dang! That was fun!

Saturday, October 15, 2005

The Question

What am I going to do with my life?

It persists.

And it's a tough one.

A million years ago, I attended this all day seminar for "student leaders" when I was in student government in college. And... Well heck. Let's try it.

Right now, stop reading this. Sit back, close your eyes, let your mind roam free, and then, do your best to come up with a list of some things you want to do in life.

Just, whatever. No right or wrong answer.

See Ankor Wat? Climb a Mayan pyramid? See the summit of Anapurna? Write the Great American Novel? Get psychoanalyzed in Vienna? Work your way through Julia Childs' The French Chef? Take two fists? Collar a slave? Make a million dollars? Skydive?

Great things to think about. But hold off. Before you start thinking about how you might go about realizing some of these goals, or worse, thinking about how far you have to go to meet your goals.

Just stop.

Clear your mind.

Think of lemons.

Think of pickles.

Think of pickled lemons.

(Mad phat props to anyone out there who can track down the pop-cultural reference in the last three sentences to their source. I'm relatively certain that no one will ever get it. Here's a hint: think of a line drawn Brenda Vaccaro.)

Okay. Now sit back. Relax. New area of inquiry.

Imagine that the phone rings. It's your doctor. Your tests have come back. The news is really bad. It's Dark Victory time. You've got about four or five days left until the end comes.

So. Today is Saturday. You've got until Tuesday or Wednesday.

So how are you going to spend the next few days? Who do you want to spend them with? Where do you want to spend them? What do you want to do?

Now here's the kicker.

You have just been asked the same question twice.

Only one difference: timeframe.

So, how close were your answers? And what does that say to you?

Here's another thing I've been thinking of.

What would I do if I knew that failure was inevitable? So it didn't matter.

Fear of failure is crippling to me. In ways great or small, from going to grad school to talking to some guy in a bar. What if I fail?

So reverse that. Failure is inevitable. Right down in flames. Down the toilet.

There's just no end to what i would do.

I'd open up this little cafe dind of place. Called Input. I'd serve coffee, espresso bar set up. But, more importantly, tea by the pot. And little baked things. And protein smoothies and stuff. But also, a nice One Pot Meal. Vietnamese fish stew. Beef stew. White bean chicken chile with cilantro and green chilis. Wifi situation going on. Lots of comfy places to sit. And there would be a small selection of books, magazines, and CDs.

Get it? Input.

Or open up a spa. In the European style. A blazing sauna. An ice cold pool. A small commisarie. Massage available. A lounge. And the point of all of it is just to relax.

And welding. To start with anyway. Collars, shackles, restraints... I have a great idea for a frame to restrain a man for whipping. Need a gibbet for your lucky slave? I know there's lots of that stuff around, but what would set my stuff apart would be amazing design. And then, branch out. To custom designed dungeons. Well, dungeon implies sconces and straw on the floor and all. And that's a wee bit... récherché. "Erotic envioronment" might be a better term. The erotic environment of your dreams and desires, designed and built for you by a man who loves his work.

And the book, of course. All the books. Book after book after book. Writing and writing. And... y'know... readings and maybe NPR interviews. Not that I have so much to say, but more so many conversations I'd like to start.

Nothing but possibilities. And since I'm doomed to failure from the get go, there's nothing to lose. And it would sure be fun.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Not Jimmy Breslin, But...

All the time I lived in New York, I never quite felt myself to be a New Yorker. New Yorkers all have this sixth sense of what it's all about. A savoir faire about them that I never managed to attain. When confronted with someone who really really had that in spades, I would retreat to a sort of Aw Shucks Country Boy In The City persona, peppering my speech with timeless sayings like, "I can't dance and it's too wet to plough" and "Lord willing and the creeks don't rise." Until Bill Clinton made that just way too obvious and grating.

But here I am, a country boy in the country.

And now, I'm aware of thhe extent to which I am a New Yorker.

Nothing major. No fuhgeddaboutits or anything. Just, y'know, some little things that crop up.

• I drive like a New Yorker. When the light turns green, my foot is already pushing down the gas pedal. And if the person in front of me isn't already moving at a good clip, I'm calling him or her every name in the book.

• And speaking of driving, I have a strong opinion about how to get from one place to another. Although it used to be "what you wanna do is take the Jackie Robinson, you know, the Interboro? And that puts your almost right there at the Whitestone Bridge and you can get right over there to the Bronx"; now it's more about "If you make a left onto Harvey Avenue and then turn right onto Union, it brings you out below that interminable light at Main and Court and the Courthouse crossing." Although now, the people whom I gift with my wisdom give me baffled looks instead of responding with their own take on the "Best" way to go.

• Even though I'm a tourist, I never look like a tourist, and within an hour of being in a foreign city, I am immediately acclimated. So much so that I can give fairly accurate directions to any tourist who asks. It's true! However, the downside is that when I am driving on highways and parkways and such in between said cities, I get really really lost.

• Even though I'm not looking for a new place to live, I'm always looking for a new place to live. When the subject of real estate comes up, I ask, "How much are you paying?" without even blinking. (I've been told that outside of NYC, this is considered rude. Like asking, "How much money do you make?" or "When was the last time you had sex?" But I do it anyway.) And if I get a reply, I immediately do the algorithm Monthly Cost ÷ Square Footage + View x Location, and know immediately if it's a good deal or if he or she has been had.

• Happy Holidays! I just know when Jewish holidays are being celebrated, even though I'm not Jewish. I know when Ramadan is being celebrated, even though I'm not Muslim. Same goes for Chinese New Year. The Hindu holidays I'm shakey on. (Alternate Side Of The Street Parking does that to you.)

• When asparagus is in season, and I go to the supermarket and don't find tender, fresh-picked, locally grown asparagus, I'm dumbfounded and outraged. I know my produce. I want my produce. I demand my produce.

• It's Sunday. It's 2 pm. It's time for brunch. Brunch is the best meal of the week. Whether your preference is eggs benedict or mahí mahí seviche or a cubano sandwich, life without brunch is a mistake.

• I've never worn the same uh... outfit... or ensemble... or whatever in public twice. Even to work. Especially to work.

• I have no problem striking up conversations with perfect strangers. I'm the guy that turns to the person behind me in the check out line and says, "Jennifer Aniston should just move on, right?" or "How can those Iraqis vote on a constitution that they've never read?"

It's been two years siince I've lived there. I still read the Times whenever I can. I'm looking forward to Mike Bloomberg's second term as Mayor, if only because New York has never had a mayor who made design one of his top priorities. But I am no longer constantly haunted by the suspicion that I've got somewhere to be in fifteen minutes (because there's nowhere I have to be). I'm moving to different rhythms, my expectations are lower, and I'm more susceptible to delight and surprise.


I guess I'm a hybrid.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005


Still have a headache. But managed to make it to Starbucks, where I was able to forget that fact for a while.

And got to some good ol' fashioned writing in my journal.

I addressed to myself a question that's been hounding me over the past couple of days: "What are you going to do with your life?"

Just that. There I'll be, all content like, and out of the blue, I'll wonder, what are you going to do with your life?

I mean, of course, afterwards. After I'm no longer here in Bucks County, looking after my dad. Which in all liklihood, won't be any time soon.

The first problem that arises is, what will you do for work? I mean, I'm pretty sure that the location of the next chapter of my life will be somewhere in Southern California, a climate and population to which I feel much better suited.

And I'll work doing what?

Because, I am increasingly aware of the fact that as I get older, it's harder and harder to find a job. Nobody, of course, wants to hire a 50 year old. And 55 is, of course, the Magic Number. You'd better be in the job you want to do for the rest of your working life when you're 55, because after that, you ain't going nowhere.

That's not fair! That's unjust! That's entirely reasonable! Let's face it, I just can't compete with a 22-year-old college graduate. They have fresh ideas, boundless enthusiasm, and they're willing to do things like work for eighty hours a week. And I'm just not. I want a comfy sinecure. But the world is not willing to provide those.

So that'll be a tough one.

And, add that to the fact that it's a changing world. It's all plugged-in and decentralized and non-hierarchical and connected. Will there even be things called jobs by the time I'm needing to get one? A fair question.

Okay. So that's something of a tricky issue, huh?

And this other thing I've been thinking about.

Note what it says up in the corner of this weblog. All the blah-blah-blah. "My commitment to bachelorhood." Y'see that?

Back after I emerged from my benighted sojourn in the seven-and-a-half-year relationship, I was moved to reflect. One of the things that seemed verrrry obvious to me is that I have never been able to make the relationship thing work. Maybe I just hadn't met the right guy, but maybe I wasn't cut out to be in a relationship. Maybe I was made to be a bachelor.

I though about a wonderful book I had read, Paradise Piece By Piece by Mary Peacock, the poet. In it, she discusses how she has managed to make for herself a complete, fulfilling, satisfying, and joyful life, even though she made the decision to not have children. And for most women, the short cut to a complete, fulfilling, satisfying, and joyful life is by dissolving into Motherhood.

I decided that I would stop causing all this grief by making vows and such to men I would inevitably disappoint, and build for myself a complete, fulfilling, satisfying, and joyful life as a single man. I would not be half of a couple ever again. I'd make sure all the elements were there, and I would go it alone. In some ways, it would be tough, but I'd think through how I could make the tough things less so, and keep in mind that coupledom had many aspects that weren't a bed of roses, too.

And that was going pretty great! I was engaged, busy, having a blast, meeting new people and making friends, and making it work.

And then I met Special Guy.

I wrestled at the outset about the whole single guy thing. But I decided to scrap it. He was worth it. And he sure was worth it. Because here was a guy with whom, for all intents and purposes, I was compatible. We clicked. Being beside him was where I wanted to be.

But when that ended, I made what we used to call in my high school debating club, a "fallacious assumption."

Because I couldn't be with this guy who was perfect for me, I'll just go out and find another one.

And to a greater or lesser degree, I've been looking ever since.

Riding that same carousel, going from horse to horse. No, not this horse, that's the horse for me. All that switching horses, not realizing that I'm just going around in a circle.


I am a single man. I will have a rich, full, complete, satisfying, joyful life as a single man.

When I thought--deeply--about these things back then, a phrase resonated with me: I will be a secular monk.

Monastacism has always appealed to me. Life in community strikes me as a perfect mode of being. Alone, together. A walled garden. Preserving what's best, but inviting considered change. Learning from and caring for my elders, mentoring and learning from my... uh... youngers. Having a home.



The whole intentional community thing. A community of leathermen. With numerous guest rooms, so that we can always welcome visitors. Tops, bottoms, Masters, slaves, switches, pigs, older, younger. The only thing we share in common is a desire to live more deeply, and a conviction that SM is a way to do that.

That's what I'm going to do afterwards.

And so I can rest.

Pity Me

I'm home sick from work. Since Sunday, I've had a headache. Assumed it was just one of those 'weekend headaches' I get, which I attribute to disrupted sleep schedule and an irregular diet after the strict regimen I keep monday through friday. Tylenol was no help. Got to bed early on Sunday night, and was surprised when, after a a good night's sleep, I woke up with a headache on monday morning.

But, y'know, just a headache, right? So I headed off to work.

Oh man.

I worked the sanding table. Between the screaming of the orbitals, the exertion of lifting up the cabinets onto the benches, and the constant bending over... I thought I was going to end up curled in the corner sucking my thumb.

Got plenty of sleep last night, but lo and behold, once again, I woke up with a splitting headache.

And so I called out.

Now, the only thing I hate more than being sick is being home sick. It's a wasted day. And I'm only going to get about 27,375 of them.

And the tricky thing is, it's a headache. With a cold, you can sort of track the life cycle. But there's no life cycle for a headache. It's just a headache. It's either there or it's not there. Will it be there ten minutes from now? Maybe. Will it be there three days from now? Maybe.


I think I'll take a headachey shower and make the headachey drive into Doylestown and have a headachey latte at Starbucks.

There's a meeting tonight of a group called CAPS, short for Caregivers for Aging Parents. I'm not feeling the need as keenly as I was back over the summer. But it might not be a bad thing to check out. I wonder for how long the chit chat would endure before it would turn into all of us shrieking about how if "he/she does that ONE MORE TIME I swear I'm sending him/her to the most low rent badly run unlicensed nursing home I can find!"

Vito, you're blocking!

So yeah. Gotta get my headachey self out of the house. Not that I'm not enjoying watching back to back episodes of The West Wing, because truly I am! But I think I need some human-to-human interaction.

And look at that! The chicken soup I had for lunch hasn't even made me very nauseous.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Nancy, Barrymore, Pinsky, Bledsoe, A University In New Jersey, And Me

Cool. I got this off Lolita's page. It's a fun game You can play! You type your name into Google, followed by the word 'needs.' Then record the Top Ten. I went for the Top Eleven.

And here they are...

1. Drew Needs Your Help Now!
2. Drew needs to get his head out of his,
3. Extensive discussion on what Drew needs in its next president
4. Drew needs to be fixed because over one million lives depend on it
5. Drew needs to join Veronica Mars!
6. Drew needs lots of love and affection
7. Drew needs to be reformed, but to abandon this much needed facility is unacceptable
8. Drew needs a positive, loving family that can be patient with him
9. Drew needs ample healthy and positive outlets for feelings
10. Drew needs to spend more time in intensive care to get rid of some of the fluid
11. Drew needs to keep up with the trend

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

All The Usual Unreliable Sources: A Retraction

It looks like I jumped the gun. There are, apparently, several... uh... endeavors out there bearing the name of Exodus. One tries to assist the formerly homosexual among us, but another, and most likely the one mentioned by the Former Governor of Texas as having benefitted from the work of Harriet Miers--I even spelled her name wrong--helps the formerly incarcerated adjust to life on the outside.

And that's laudable!

whipping boy points out that there's a third Exodus group, that seeks to relocate Christian Fundamentalists to some state in the South and so that when their numbers are significant enough, they can leave the Union and set up some sort of theocracy. (I don't get that. They already control the country. They really see a need for that? But on the other hand, how can I make a donation?)

Sorry about that.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Uh Oh

In introducing his nominee for the Supreme Court today, the former governor of Texas listed the many charitable organizations to which Ms Meyers has given so generously of her time and talents.

Among them, Exodus Ministries.

Now that has a familiar ring to it. I googled. And I was right.

Exodus Ministries is the wacky wacky group that reaches out to homosexuals (that's me!) to offer pastoral counseling and prayer so that they can leave behind that sinful lifestyle choice they made.

Doubtless, T.F.G.T. was signaling to his right-wing religious supporters that they were being taken care of.

So that's bad.

Crazy Little Thing

Oh I get it.

This... this... mood I've been in since I got back from Inferno.

Feeling so happy, so content. And free (mostly) of my preoccupation with hot dudes. I guess it's kind of obvious.

I'm in love.

In love with Roadkill and Alphan.

Not, y'know, an obsessive, all-bent-out-of-shape kind of love.

Just that sense of it all being Right. That your heart is safely entrusted. That you're in a Good Place.

Oh man.

I am blessed.

Kolchak Is Risen

When I was eleven years old, my absolute favorite show on television was Kolchak: The Night Stalker. The premise was simple. Each week, a wise-cracking reporter named Carl Kolchak would stumble upon some homicidal supernatural phenomenon. Vampire, werewolf, Hindu demon, alien, vengeful suit of armor, Cajun swamp monster, witch, demonic Senate candidate... His editor, the police, the powers that be, whoever, were unable to believe him, so Carl alone confronted and defeated the terror.


And what I remember most vividly was that Kolchak was shown on trash night. So after having the bejeezus scared out of me, my father would inevitably make the announcement: "Drew, it's time for you to take out the trash."

That meant that I had to lug a huge heavy trashcan out to the end of our driveway in the dark. Did I mention it was dark?

I've probably never run so fast as I would on the trip back, certain that a headless, sword wielding guy on a motorcycle was right behind me.

Last week, I caught the season premier or the new Night Stalker. It holds promise, but in that au courrant kind of way, they left things all ambiguous like instead of wrapping it all up in an hour. And, of course, it was gorier than the original, where the gore was largely implied.

All in all, not must see tv, but if I think of it, I'll catch it.

And luckily, it's not on Tuesday night. That's trash night.

Szczliwy *Polaski* Dzien

Or for you English speakers, “Happy Pulaski Day!”

I’m having a rip watching the Pulaski Day Parade on the Parkway in Philadelphia. It could eeeeasily be a Christopher Guest film. A passel of thick-legged youngsters in their Catholic School Uniforms were described by the hosts as “awe-inspiring” as they went by the mostly vacant VIP reviewing stands.

Our Governor, Ed Rendel, who would show up at the opening of a can of peas, is there, of course. But it looks like that many folks with difficult to pronounce names in the Greater Delaware Valley have found other things to do today.


And I’ve got other things to do today, too. Like chop up a cord of firewood. It’s eighty degrees out there, but my father is still itchin’ to start a fire. “Dad! I’m only human! I’m not a machine!”

Oh. My. God. One of the hosts, a local newscaster, just “came out” as not being Polish, but Latvian. Getting a chilly response to that.

Ahh, but let’s listen to the Marcella kochansska-semberich Chorus (all eight of them, median age 68) as they sing the Polish Partisans’ Hymn! ¡Con mucho gusto!


Had a great time at Datt and Male’s housewarming party last night. There place looks great. Male is a clown. Professionally, I mean. And before Datt moved here from Seattle to get the partners in domesticity thing going with him, the ground floor of his house was filled with stilts and rubber noses and rubber chickens and enormous shoes and such. (Going for comedic effect here. Male’s clowing is, I believe, way more sophisticated than that.) It was great! I last saw Datt and Male at Inferno, so it was like a booster shot.

Also ran into GI Joe and his muskelbear husband. Muskelbear husband and I excitedly and passionately recalled our activism against U.S. intervention in Central America during the 1980s. Muskelbear got to spend some time there, working in Nicaragua. I was way too much of a wuss for that. And I regret that. I did, however, get to meet President Daniel Ortega when he spoke at Riverside Church, and organized a pretty feisty demonstration outside the Nicaraguan Embassy when his successor, President Violetta Chamoro eliminated the HIV prevention education campaign the Sandinista government had set up.


Good times.

Then I went to the Bike Stop.

And for the first time in a long time, had a truly Off Night. What was up with that? Way kooky. There were four hot guys there last night. Men who held possibilities. Men I wanted to meet. And I got exactly nowhere with three of them. Nada. No hits. Not so much as a smile or glance in my direction.

On the verge of screaming out the lyrics of that great B-52s song, “Why won’t you dance with me? I ain’t no limburger!”, just when all hope was lost, Number Four sideled up next to me, smoking his cigar, and his arm hair brushed my arm hair.

We talked. He lives in Warrington, south of me. Didn’t get his number. But did let him know that the best place in the world to smoke cigars is on the porch of Starbucks in Doylestown between the hours of 4 pm and 5:30 pm when I’m sure to be there. And, Doylestown’s own Classic Cigar Parlor just around the corner has a great selection, and they’re good people to do business with.

So maybe he’ll take the bait.

But of course, so much striking out made for a mopey drive home. Mostly along the lines of, “Dang! Why can’t I meet a man?”

And, of course, there are ample reasons for that. For one thing, I’m ridiculously picky.

Trimmed fingernails? Check.
Not a lawyer? Check.
Kinky? Check.
Ink? Check.
Facial hair? Check.
Chill ride? Check.
Nice muscular back? Check.
Good with conversation? Check.
Over 35? Check.
Cigar smoker? Check.
Outdoorsey? Check.
...ooooh, but what’s this? Likes science fiction. Well thanks very much for playing. And we have a lovely parting gift for you.

And of coourse, as I get older, I think I’m just getting more and more set in my ways.

Ah well.

Not sure where this renewed interest is coming from. Just when I had completely given up and settled into a comfy bachelorhood. There ought to be aspirin for that.

Don’t Ask Me How I’m Doing

I’m crappy!.

The Yankees beat the Redsox 8 to 4. There I am recovering from that terrible blow.

So I head to Starbucks to drown my sorrows in caffeinated beverages with steamed milk. And I find that a terrible, horrible thing has happened...

Starbucks has taken away their porch furniture.

And it’s supposed to be 80 this week. Perfect latté and cigar weather.

So it’s all hopeless. I’d off myself, but next Memorial Day, it’ll be back. I think I can hang on till then.


And I didn’t meet Him at the Raven this afternoon.

When He does show up, man is he gonna get it for making me wait.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

The Autumn Leaves

Some scattered thoughts...

• Okay. Even I have to admit the weather has been gorgeous here lately. Even though it's not hazy, hot, and humid. And even though several times I've been cold. Beautiful, clear crisp autumn days. Perfect for... --what else?-- sitting out on the porch of Starbucks enjoying a latté and a cigar.

•I didn't think it would ever happen, but it's happened. I figured out a place to wear my Utilikilt. Careful readers may remember that when I reluctantly plopped down my plastic to purchase "the kilt that made Seattle famous," I was filled with buyer's remorse even before the charge was approved. "Where in the name of all that's good and holy am I going to wear this?" I wondered. And so, lo these many years, my Utilikilt has hung in my closet.

But next friday, Doylestown will be celebrating their second First Friday. Bunches of businesses, restaurants, bars, the Classic Cigar Parlor, and Starbucks (my mainstays) stay open late, put merch out on the sidewalk, and the streets are filled with folks. Lots of live music all around town. A great time. Actually, a really great time. A joyful carnival atmosphere pervaded everywhere. And one of my favorite Starbucks kids spent the night in a chicken outfit. (How cool is that??? Very!) So to join in on the fun, I'm going to wear something fun and special. Like my Utilikilt. I think the kids will like it. And I think it strikes the right note.

•Several times over the past couple of weeks, I've had this vague, wistful feeling steel upon me: I wish my sister was still alive. Especially now, autumn, Hallowe'en and all, she really loved this time of year. And she'd be so much fun to hang out with. But, of course, she's not.

•I am still feeling all bliss-y and float-y from Inferno! Still! Here's the best I can do to describe it: I feel as though I've been emptied out, as though someone (that would be Roadkill) pulled the plug and let a bunch of stagnant water out of the bathtub that is me. But, at the same time, I feel full. Complete. Sated. Content. Wanting nothing. Hungry Ghosts at bay.

•Tonight, I'm heading down to Philadelphia to attend a party given by my buddies, Datt and Male. Really looking forward to it. I'm making my stepmother's Baked Pineapple. The wheelbarrow full of butter and the five pounds of sugar are all ready to get mixed up and baked into a nice, sweet, starchy pineapple goodness. I swear, it makes grown men cry. It sure got raves at the GMSMA holiday social a few years ago.

And, at the back of my mind, I'm wondering if there will be a nice eligible bachelor there. Someone with that winning Outlaw Biker look. Someone omnivorous. Someone happy. Someone who smokes cigars. Someone with an unspoilt wilderness of hair on his face. Such men are rare as unspoilt wildernesses in these parts, but still, maybe...

•I'm not drinking. I mean, I'm not Not Drinking. I'm just not drinking. I noticed that when I have even a beer, I just feel crappy the next day. And this from the guy who awed the upperclassmen as a freshman at college with my ability to put it away. They all were like, "Yeah, I wanna go shot for shot with him." Ahh, sing Ho for misspent youth!

•I thought up this ad campaign for the local Chamber of Commerce: "What's So Great About Bucks County?" Of course, I'm not going to approach the local Chamber of Commerce with this idea, because I'd be gleeful if they instituted a policy of shooting tourists on sight and did everything in their power to disuade folks from moving in and building McMansions. But, one answer to that rhetorical question would absolutely be "Hallowe'en!" Hallowe'en is HUGE here. I mean, already several lawns are littered with spooooky paraphrenalia of the season. And that's just going to build and build. The low-hanging-fruit of conversation starters at Starbucks is, "So, what are you going to be this year?" I, of course, have no answer to that, but I like the answers I get. So far, "A Family" is the best answer I heard, in which the other family members will be made from foam rubber soft sculpture.

Anyway. Time for me to get the Baked Pineapple in the oven.