This past weekend, I again was lured beyond the mountains that surround the Coachella Valley. This time, I headed West to San Diego to spend some time with Alpha and to attend the final SuperPigs get together at the home of Roadkill and his boy.
I was thinking about heading out on Friday, but that didn't happen. Y'see, I was a little freaked out. A couple of days ago, I started getting this pus-y discharge from my penis.
I know, right?
I jumped the gun a wee bit by announcing to That Cowboy that I had a venereal disease. And it could possibly be a venereal disease, although that would mean that I got it way back on July 4th weekend. And from what I've read about syphilis and gonorrhea, that would be outside of the window for the onset of such symptoms by about ten weeks. So, it's more likely that I have prostatitis or urethritis. Alas, I also don't have health insurance, so I'm scrambling a wee bit about just what to do. I'm gonna give a call to the Desert AIDS Project and see if they can set me up with a visit to a doctor or a month's supply of erythromicin or something to assuage the situation. Although it doesn't really interfere with much, it does leave these little spots in the crotch of whatever pants I happen to wear, and it's kind of a boner-killer. And as I had swollen glands on Friday, I wasn't in what you might call a festive mood, so I decided to hold off to go until Saturday morning.
And so I did.
The drive is an easy one, taking--according to Google Maps--just over two hours. Considering that this was my morning and afternoon commute not so long ago, it's an easy trip.
And soon enough, I was parking outside of Alpha's building (and by "Alpha's building," I'm not just referring to the place where he lives, because, you see, he built the thing), and there was Alpha himself greeting me with a warm, "How's my clap-stricken buddy doing?"
Alpha was another person I told I had the clap, and when I explained that this might not be the case, he said, "Oh right, it's probably prostatitis." Apparently everyone has heard of or had prostatitis but me. And according to MedLine, "50% of all men experience prostatitis at some point in their lives." And one of the recommended treatments is "prostate massage."
Prostate massage... check.
News that That Cowboy will welcome.
Alpha needed some new flip-flops--without black soles because it seems that black-soled flip-flops make your feet turn black--so we headed out in search thereof. First stop was the discount store of a high-end department store (can't remember the name). Their flip-flop selection was pretty meager. They were offering lots of cold-weather clothing and outerwear. This seems to me to be absurd. This is Southern California afterall, and we don't do the cold weather thing. (Recall, if you will, the episode of 'Bewitched' when Santa Claus was up on the roof and the lawn was green and the palm trees were waving in the sunshine behind Samantha's head.) But retailers seem to insist that no matter the weather, we must buy parkas in September.)
I suggested Old Navy, my source for so many good things, and off we went to the Fashion Valley Mall. There is actually a neighborhood of sorts in San Diego called "Fashion Valley." Who could live with all that pressure? What would you wear to run out and pick up the mail? Every time you told anybody where you lived, they'd give you the once over.
At Old Navy in the Fashion Valley Mall, we indeed find a wide selection of flip-flops, going for some unbeatable low price like three-for-$10 or something.
And heading back with our flip-flops, I made a terrible discovery. There was a James Pearse store.
Now I know basically nothing about men's fashion. When I buy shirts, I ask myself, "can I wear this with leather jeans?", and when I buy pants or shorts, I ask myself, "Can I wear this with just a leather vest?" And that's all there is to it. But years ago, when I was in LA with my Sir, I found this shirt. It was a simple white long-sleeve shirt, but the cotton was so soft and fine. It was almost gauzy, but not quite. Much like the Look magazine photo spread of the Kaufmans sitting by the pool of the Neutra designed Kaufman House that launched the whole mid-Century modern ideal, it evoked this whole sybaritic living-outdoors Southern California life and I wanted to put myself in the picture.
I still have that shirt, even though me being me, about the second time I wore it I got myself with a ball point pen and despite my best efforts, that mark is still there. Although I was a little bit more successful in getting out the latté that I dribbled all over myself while wearing it.
The designer of that shirt was James Pearse.
Finding James Pearse stuff back East is no easy thing, but I managed to find a cool James Pearse hoodie that I added to my collection. But back in June, I went to the place of the original James Pearse find in West Hollywood and they had nada. I asked.
And here I was confronted with an entire James Pearse store. And I was financially pretty flush since I just made $600 bucks shooting a bondage video.
Not no more I ain't financially flush. But I do have all these great new James Pearse clothes. And how fitting that here I am leading this idyllic, sybaritic Southern California lifestyle!
Famished from our visit to Fashion Valley, Alpha and I went to this great mexican restaurant in Hillcrest that featured lobster burritos. That were amazing.
Back at Alpha's, he got ready for a date, and I got ready to head over to Roadkill's for SuperPigs.
The average annual rainfall for San Diego is 9.9 inches. In an instance of the Objective Correlative, Saturday night was one of the handful of times during the year that San Diego got a soaker. My iPod offered up Shirley Bassey singing "A Foggy Night In London Town" on the way over, and boy, was that fitting. I couldn't find parking near Roadkill's so I ended up walking a few blocks in the rain to get there, but managed to pick my way down the steep driveway and arrived happy though damp.
Inside the door, I was busy with the whole registration and disclaimer-signing business, when I came to consciousness of a flogging scene going on just beyond the front door. Omigod! It was 'bastian flogging hawgs! How cool is that? Right off the bat, familiar faces!
I sat and watched. 'bastian's style is unbelievably energetic. What a work out! For both parties involved! Hawgs was thoroughly enjoying it on the receiving end, laughing and giggling (I've seen hawgs giggle, I think I can go gently into that good night now), as 'bastian rained down blows on his back. It was a beautiful, remarkable scene.
Afterwards, I greeted 'bastian (hawgs was still in his blissy post-getting-flogged space), and 'bastian said he had to get ready for his next flogging scene.
I would have needed a few days recovery after that. Maybe a week.
Upstairs, I had a beer and asked after Roadkill. "Oh I think he's down in the Master bedroom whipping butters."
I made my way down there, and sure enough, that's what was going down.
But wait, I love that song.
But wait, I know that song.
But wait, I know this next song, too.
It's my SuperPigs mix!
Roadkill was whipping butters with the mix iPod Shuffle I made up as accompaniment!
I was overjoyed.
Years ago, Roadkill put out the call that he wanted music for SuperPigs, and I answered the challenge. I started out with burning CDs, but pretty quickly, I realized that wasn't going to work. But my local Apple Store in Doylestown, PA was having a sale on iPod Shuffles, so I invested in one. In curating the mix, I wanted to make sure that every song on there--whether hard and guitar-y or whimsical and light--would be a song that two kinky men could fall in love while listening to.
After I made the presentation--and Roadkill was über-gracious, I asked how it had gone after the next SuperPigs party. Roadkill confessed that although he liked it a lot, he wasn't sure that it would work for SuperPigs, it just wasn't what people were used to hearing, something more trance-y would be more appropriate. But he really liked it.
But here I was, listening to a my mix and watching a whipping scene.
And a great whipping scene.
Nobody--myself included--does it better than Roadkill.
After the scene was over, still singing Bowie's "Under Pressure" to myself, I headed upstairs and onto the deck. One of the best parts of SuperPigs, hanging on the deck, chatting, snacking (Cake! Yum!). I chatted with hawgs and 'bastian, and 'bastian paid some much appreciated attention to my boots. After 'bastian headed off to do yet another flogging (I am convinced that they took whatever he has and put it in a can and called it Red Bull), I started up a conversation with a fellow Palm Springs guy, who I've talked to a lot online but never in person. He's an amazing man and has an amazing story. But somehow, we ended up talking about real estate. (!)
Not that it was a bad conversation. He and I share some similar ideas about smart and sustainable development, or more to the extent that the powers that be in Palm Springs seem to. He announced that he was getting ready to head back to the Desert, and I decided to man up and ask him if he could stay long enough for me to flog him.
And he said yes.
Man, was that ever a treat.
This handsome man had this broad, muscular, beautiful back. I ran him through a variety of of flails from my collection, making each one a journey in itself, and, I hoped, having it all add up to a journey. His back responded wonderfully, reddening up. And so did he, going to this wonderful place. As I was winding down, I got the emotional response I wanted. That connection, that Here Now, that essential thing. And there he was, down on his knees at my boots, this big, handsome man.
In the same room while we were doing our scene was this piercing and suspension scene. It sounded awfully intense--although SuperPigs is kinda known for intensity. From what I could gather, everybody seemed to enjoy themselves.
Upstairs, Roadkill and his boy Jeff were taking a break as the party was starting to break up. I thanked Roadkill again for the music and he did me the favor of telling a few of the guys there that I was the one who had put the soundtrack together. They were all appreciative. And geez, that was great. You sort of send something off into the Universe, and it's great when you hear about the impact that it's had. How many men who I will never meet have taken note of that music that was playing? Roadkill's boy commented that often, a song would come up in the rotation as if in response to how the dynamic of a scene had changed, striking just the right note.
I headed back to Alpha's house. All was quiet and dark when I got there. I brushed my teeth and climbed into bed.
Sunday morning, after Alpha plied me with chicken and cornbread, I hit the road.
Quickly, I made a discovery. My BlackBerry was dead. I had no Google Maps app to guide me. I was flying blind. I remembered Temecula and Hemet, so I headed to Temecula, and when I saw an exit for Hemet, I took it. Thus began an extended journey through tiny towns in Southern California following a road which seemed to have a stop light every forty feet or so. But eventually, I found my way to the 10, and there I was, heading through the pass past the wind turbines to my desert home.
I chilled for a bit, and then gave a call to That Cowboy. He was watching television and invited me over, so I headed across the Wash. It's just the best of all worlds.
This is the life I want to live.
And I even have a great soundtrack for it.