Saturday, 22 December 2012

The Scourge of Bullying Runs Deep

This is staggering.

A new breakthrough study has found that bullying may have a serious physiological impact on children, altering their DNA and affecting the way they deal with stress in later life.

Not of interest just for gays, but for anyone wanting to understand the actual process of genetic change, ultimately helping to understand the mechanisms behind evolution.

Perhaps this is what the Mayan calendar predicted.

Gays know bullying.  I don't think it's a stretch to say that most of us were bullied.  I was very masculine but not totally in-line with the straights, and any step "out of line" in a straight crowd can bring instant and frightening repercussions.

"If you like him, go there now."

I overhead this in the Toronto subway last night, while standing with a group of young males.  It was a small, scrappy guy saying this to his "friend" who glanced from an advertising poster of a hot almost naked girl, to a picture of a hot, sexy male model (who was admittedly much more clothed but just as hot).

When he said "go there now" he was pointing at the subway tracks, telling his friend to kill himself if he liked guys.

As I struggle to understand the situation -- and recoil thinking I might have possibly said something equally as stupid at their age -- I wonder if it is somehow much worse that the homophobic friend didn't threaten to kill, but instead told his friend to kill himself if he thought hot males were worth a glance.

As much as this caused emotional turmoil in me -- should I have said something ?  Should I have at least made a face and stared at the hot guy in the poster and nodded in appreciation ?  -- my many years here on Earth have taught me that eventually we must move on from the horrors that human society can conjure.

For those like me who are interested in science, this study is simply mind blowing.  Do random mutations cause evolution ?  Does nature have its own subtle ways of flipping switches and writing code ?  Is it possibly a combination of these and other methods ?  Is Monsanto and their ilk endangering our ecosystem with irresponsible DNA mutations ?

We still don't know, but if this study really does prove that a most horrible behaviour can cause changes in a person's genetic code, then we certainly have the most ideal foundation possible, both from a scientific and a humanistic perspective, to build a model for understanding and growth.

Too bad the views of science and society are often so very, very divergent.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Toronto Mayor Ford: High School Football > Gays

Any time I've asked folks in the Toronto Gay Village for opinions on Mayor Ford, people have been very, very verbal in their disdain for the man that lovingly calls "the Andy Kaufman of Canadian municipal politics."

The sad fact is, Mayor Ford has historically exhibited a serious "ick" factor for "us kind" of people.

At the same time, he's been spending his spare time hanging with high school football players.

It was, in fact, his love of coaching high school football that led to his downfall.

Yes, the running joke in the classic hit sitcom "Married... With Children."

High school football.

Canadian politics were already a big steaming pile of mess -- our conservative national leader hates big cities, the province of Ontario is flat broke because our transfer payments go to support poorer provinces (like, cough, Quebec), and the City of Toronto has historically been duped into taking-on the costs of managing resources that should actually be the responsibility of the province.

The sad fact is, Mayor Ford's ideas to expand the subway system were totally in-line with the gay community's most important need: getting more of us into the city.  Until someone convinces me that gay dating sites can work, the best method of acknowledging another's possible interest and proceeding to interact in a safe and comfortable environment is to head downtown.  For Toronto gays who want to "get out" that usually means the original Gay Village at Church and Wellesley.

 It's tough enough for straight people to find love.  Reduce the chances of finding a match by 50 to 90 percent or so and you can easily learn to appreciate why gay villages exist in the first place.

While downtown dwellers might feel entitled to the fruits of our Village, the truth is the community is much stronger with better access to our "natural resources."  Better subways into the 'burbs would expand our community by opening up the downtown village(s) to more people.

That means more Church St. eye candy... and more boyfriends and girlfriends for our GLBT teammates.

Go, team, go.  Just remember: adults don't play with high schoolers, unless it's their job.

Mayor Ford, coaching high school football wasn't yours.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

What Price, Gay Paradise

Major combat operations appear, at times, to have ended.

It feels like gays have won planetary liberty, at least at a soul-felt level, across the globe.

At the same time, there are far too many tragedies playing out and in many ways the war is in no way anywhere near over.

Even in the few countries with universal human rights -- including, one would hope, sexual privacy as all Canadians since Prime Minister Trudeau have shared -- battles remain fought, many with horrible endings.

GLBT rights are spreading slowly throughout the world.  Even in faraway, unlikely places like Malawi.

Most often the fights that remain are started by foolish warriors.  GLBT battles are rarely, if ever, these days perpetuated by anyone except hyper-straight-acting juiced-up male goons, conservative politicians, or religious fundamentalists (of any faith).

Folks who are concerned about The Rise of the Gays causing their brethren to suddenly turn are themselves deeply confused.  In our modern times, the internet has provided free and easy access to as much gay information, including pictures, stories, and videos, as can literally be imagined (and beyond).  But this just hasn't caused a massive increase in the gay population.  Dick pics aren't just a dime a dozen, they are pretty much completely free (no links necessary).

As much as the freedom of the internet has benefited the GLBT community, our population hasn't exploded because of it.  This alone proves that efforts against the "promotion" of GLBT rights won't prevent gayness in anyone who isn't already.

Perhaps most sinister are the people who accept that homosexuals exist, but instead of accepting gay folks for who they are inside, would prefer to have gays seal their feelings inside and live a conformist's life in a miserable "traditional" marriage, or in religious-style celibacy.

No links are needed to demonstrate that a pile of religious conservatives have themselves been a part of gay scandals, or worse -- and mostly unrelated -- child molestation.  As always, it's important to note that most child molesters are male, and most are straight, but who knows if being closeted and self-hating doesn't work to make some lash-out in the most horrible ways.

Being totally honest with myself and others has certainly made me a happier person overall, but at the same time I have felt obligated to take-on the battles of our community.  Even in the proverbial land of Freedom, the United States of America, battles are fought every day for respect, safety, and basic civil rights.

There will always be hate in the world.  Humanity is chock full of it.  But at the same time, having an out-of-the-closet gay in your family, group of friends, neighbourhood or at workplaces everywhere encourages everyone to carefully consider their outward expressions of hate towards our community.

"Where are you going, out with your boyfriend ?"  Amazing how something as innocuous as this somehow means something so completely derogatory when hetero guys throw it at each other.

It's time for the other side to bottle-up their feelings, for a change.  We're tired of it.

And we're winning.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

October 11 - National Coming Out Day

We all have at least one agonizing story to tell.

Some of us feel like we should never come out.

Some commentators feel like perhaps they should not encourage everyone to come out in every circumstance.

Some people who come out suffer.

Some who come out die.

Today, October 11, 2012, is Come-Out Day.  Let's not forget that freedom is not free.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Phallic Fallacies: Cocksperts Compare

Gay guys seem to want to keep some facts about male sexuality a secret.

For the longest time, I used to think these were a lucky case of "it's just me" but when recently comparing notes with others I've found that perhaps it just makes sense that male sexuality is something the gay community knows best.

Here are some of the most common misconceptions about the male missile:

1. Your dick always goes soft after ejaculating.

2. It's impossible to pee with a hardon.

3. There are squirters, and there are dribblers, but "storing it up" can make for good distance.

Let's take a fun dive into each topic.

Your dick always gets soft after ejaculating

It's something that we may have all been taught in Phys Ed, when the jock gym teacher was forced to teach us about cocks, balls, vag and the rest: The male phallus loses blood as soon as ejaculation is complete.

I can safely tell you that it's just not true.  At least not always.

Why is this fallacy so prevalent ?  Probably because most men do experience this every time.  With gay guys, however, there tends to be a hypersexuality that can sometimes either demand orgasm before the session is over, or motivate a man to get right back into it after a climax is complete.

Gay guys probably don't talk about this in mixed company because it may make us look (more) like ultra-horny deviants.  Plus, we don't like to brag -- most straight guys have sex or masturbate for one purpose: to bust a nut.  Not for pleasure, but for purpose.  Add the guilt many men feel after ejaculation -- not only with masturbation but even with a partner -- and you have a softie on (in) your hands.

It's impossible to pee with a hardon

This one was also taught in Phys Ed -- there is a "flap" that comes up during an erection that prevents the flow of urine, right ?  Well, for many guys, if not most, it's just not true.  Yes, the male body is designed to prevent urine and semen from mixing, and I'm quite certain there are complex biological firewalls intended to prevent a piss-and-cum combination from coming out at any one single time, but most guys with a boner don't have trouble peeing through it.

There are squirters, and there are dribblers

This one is probably the most complex of the three, and has the most potential to cause trouble, particularly in existing (gay and straight) relationships.  Here are the goods: guys who can "sometimes" or "used to" shoot a good distance are probably just lacking the stimulation the other times.

There are plenty of stories surrounding this one.  Some guys say they used to shoot strong but just got old.  Some guys say they shoot serious seed only if they "store it up" like a squirrel in the winter.

The guys I talked to suggested that, sure, holding off a couple of days might make for a more impressive shot now and then, but there's just as much chance of a globby dribble after a wait.

The answers ?  Stimulation and semen consistency.  The more exciting the situation, and the better the stimulation, the better the muzzle velocity in many cases.  For some guys, a new partner can bring-out the big guns.  For others, it is the build-up -- one guy said his best shot is usually his 3rd of the day.  While he agreed that the over-the-top titillation is a factor, he also suggested that less available sperm may mean a more watery and thus a more launchable load.

There's also the whole idea of timing.  A few said they sometimes try to "kegel it out" but others just let it rip naturally.

For guys in monogamous relationships -- gay or straight -- who used to shoot for distance but think they're just too old now might just be lacking appropriate stimulation.  Scary ?  Perhaps.  Just sayin'.

Just remember that a rocket-like cumshot might be a load of fun but it isn't everything.

As for your personal taste, long shots and dribbles are probably equal.  Another reason to stock-up on fresh pineapple juice.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Boy-Friends, Girl-Friends, Gay Friends

These are not my friends.  We never have this much fun.
Last week when out with my straight group of friends, I passed on the beer as I was exhausted, with only a couple of hours of sleep the night before.

Since I was in a weakened state, I took an unusual pounding in the verbal sparring that nearly always erupts when we're together.  You're not good at that, I know more about this than you, and remember that boo-boo you got for doing that dumb thing... the typical guy stuff, at least in my experiences living among the straights.

Being stone sober while they got a bit of a beer buzz might have made me particularly astute.  I think I figured out a simple truth, and I seek to learn how, if at all, this is different with groups of gay, instead of predominately straight, friends.

When girls get together, it's said they tend to drift into discussions about the girls who are not there.  This provides encouragement for each to go out with the girls as often as possible, if for no other reason, to avoid being the focus of discussion.

When guys get together, from what I've seen we aim to take each other down a peg.  Thanks to testosterone, most guys tend to strut with an inflated ego, and the get-togethers over beers or hockey are well-received because guys have learned that it's not only good to be taken-down a notch by people you trust now and then, but it's also great to take someone else down in front of everybody.

I don't yet have a group of gay friends, so I'm left to wonder -- is it the same for gay guys, and lesbian girls, as it is for their straight brothers and sisters ?  Is it the opposite ?

Or perhaps, depending on the mix of people, it's a bit from both.  I'm looking forward to finding out, but I'm also interested in hearing from you.

Monday, 27 August 2012

The Benjamin Button System

I've been telling people I'm on the Benjamin Button system.

Sure, I (so far [KNOCK ON WOOD OMG]) have some lucky genes in the aging department, but like many gay guys, I strive to fight Father Time.

There's no reason not to improve ourselves in every way possible as we get older.  Instead of aging, we can aim to improve ourselves, Mother Nature willing, year over year.

With some stumbles, personally I've done pretty good at this in these last few years of being a newly Out Gay, if I do say so myself.

I avoided sports as a child.  Was it because I was gay, or was it because I lived in mortal fear of breaking a bone or spraining an ankle ?

I learned very early in life that, to quote Chris Rock, life is not short.  Life is long.

If I avoided sports in fear of injury, perhaps this, too, points to "Gay."  It seems gay men are almost assuredly narcissists by nature.  A broken bone is more than an inconvenience, some sports injuries mutilate.  Yet Orlando Soria's recent poignant letter to straight people  (ironically poignant since it's a long letter, there are lots of points packed-in) states that all of us FFKs (Former Fat Kids) seem cursed with body dysmorphia... possibly for eternity.  He argues that gays could possibly be better people because of, in essence, our eternal self-hatred (at least that's what I took from his controversial post).

But to a degree worse than most, I ignored my health when I was younger.  That has made it a lot easier to live better today.  My core goal is to at least maintain what I still have, health-wise, but in any way possible, I now want to get better, and (fortunately or unfortunately) there's still plenty that can be done to improve.

I almost never eat fast-food anymore.  I don't smoke, and I am up on the current health sciences.

That should cover that all-important physical manifestation of the gay male body.

Perhaps it's far easier, however, to improve our biggest sex organ.  I do my best to learn as much as I can along the way.

If only we were all so inclined.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Gay... "Are You Sure ?"

It's terrible, but it's true.

"Dude, you're seriously straight ???"  That's a question that might get someone smacked-up in the wrong circumstances (sadly these "wrong circumstances" probably occur more often than imagined).

"You sure you're _____ ???"  This comes naturally all the time, from straight friends and even family of a gay, lesbian, trans or bisexual.  I've heard it myself from the most personal of sources.

I've only been "out" for a few years now and I have to admit I've even found myself questioning my own "gayness" now and then.  It's not that my preferences are in question, but what about my tolerance ?  Perhaps I could deal with a woman partner of some sort.  Just to fit in.

I've convinced myself that I was born perfectly bisexual, and this might actually be true.  When I was young I often enjoyed sexy lady pics and videos.  But then again a nice breeze in the right direction, and, well.... you get the picture.

When alone with a porno mag, the ladies were hot to be sure, but I really preferred the magazines with couples getting it on.

But it was the small ads at the back of a Hustler or another "specialty" magazine that really drew my attention.  There were sexy dudes naked, and gasp even getting it on with other dudes behind black censor circles.

And when I really dig into my memories, certain guys in high school captivated my imagination.

So ya, mom, I'm sure.

I'm gay.

I've probably always been gay.

And I've never been more proud of it.  I'm special.

Happy, on the other hand... that, I'm still working on.

Friday, 6 July 2012

The New Kind of Gay

I will exit this stall faster than u
We're not sticking our dicks through just any hole.

We're rarely shopping for leather harnesses.

We're not usually cruising bathhouses or sex mazes.

Sure, we're adult males with higher than average sex drives (usually), ready to try pickup lines that would garner foot stomps or slaps in the "real" (read: hetero) world.  But we've somehow been able to live without posting our privates on Craigslist, begging for instant relief on all fours with a blindfold (I wish I was making this stuff up.  No links.  Go find it yourself).

We're the New Kind of Gay.  We're not fashionistas (all the time), we're not interior decorators (in fact some of us are really bad at it), we're not all culinary masters (though I'm contunually told I am ;) and we're not all looking to get our rocks off every moment of every day.

We might not have a feminine affect.  We might not have narrow hips and a delicate wrist.

In fact, we come in every flavour these days.

Sure, in many ways I'm a gay stereotype, but I'm also very much a "macho" man in most respects.  This is what makes me attractive to straight guys (but I'm done with this carnival ride).

The New Gays live and work anywhere.  Some still travel to the Gay Village whenever possible, but others are adamantly "non-scene."

We might be ourselves with friends and family,  and though we could have any kind of job. we sometimes just can't be out at work.

In fact, one of life's biggest challenges might even be keeping up our interactions with the straights in the "real world."  This is even more "real" if closeted at work.

The gayer I allow myself to be (pretty gay so far, as you can see from previous columns), the more I can can feel distanced from the hardcore straights.  They love their sports, and while plenty of gays do too, I could care less.  They challenge each other on trivial facts alone.  I've even found myself shouting claims of sheer speculation as pronouncements of fact -- a player's name, a date, a score -- just to add nonsense to nonsense.

I've learned that sports talk accommodates some missing facts.  Businessmen who get shit exactly right in their office will totally make stuff up to ensure they're involved in a sports conversation at the lunch table.  If a "straight-acting" gay wants to hang with sports-frenzied straights, it's not that difficult to suggest a "ya, that's the guy's name" with authority every now and then.

I do like sports after all
But as a rational and intelligent New Kind of Gay, sports trivia is just not something I've felt compelled to allocate brain cells to, with the exception of hockey.  If we had a decent team here in Toronto, I might not know as much as I do about the God Particle.

But no matter how much I might want to fit into the straight circles, there's one thing us New Kind of Gays must never forget.

Because of past experiences, my morbid fear when running in these circles is that rampant homophobia will eventually rear its hateful head.

Me ?  I'm totally done faking hate.  I nip anti-gay macho bullshit in the bud, even if I'm in the most closeted of circumstances.

No matter how closeted we need to be in certain circles, we must remind all non-homos -- that's 90 percent of the population or so -- that Gay Pride is not (just) some kind of outrageous display of gayness for the sake of it.  At its roots, it is a display of diversity and most importantly a reminder of our past marches for respect and human rights.

The past, that is, for Canadians, many Americans, and folks in other "modern Western countries."

For everyone else, it's still just a frightening past, a hate-filled present, but a hopeful future.

Saturday, 30 June 2012

Gay Chicken... Dip

Spend the day on YouTube if this is your kind of gay chicken
I was introduced to the idea of "Chicken Dip" back on the Bubba The Love Sponge Show when it was still on Howard 101 on Sirius.  Sure, it had Bubba's name on it, but these straight guys seemed genuinely addicted.  I just had to figure out what they were going on about.

I'm quite a ways from Tampa, so I haven't been able to try the original, but after looking at the ingredients and several similar recipes -- many of which made me recoil in horror -- I thought I'd come up with my own more healthy variation.

It's really quite simple to prepare, with only 5 ingredients (in bold below) but it does require a food processor.  The end result is a moderately healthy, chunky dip that has always disappeared quickly at get-togethers.

Here's how to make it:

1. Roast a chicken.  One of my favourite ways to do this is to cut from one side of the neck through the back to one side of the tail (know what ?  Chicken butt) and lay it flat.  I like to roast mine with some veggies, like carrots, bell peppers, and a tomato or two (yes, I am aware they are technically a berry and thus a fruit like me).  I also like to get some seasoning (dry or wet) under the skin when I cook it like this, but don't go too crazy.
2. After it's ready (meaning, roasted safely and left to rest), enjoy some roast chicken.  We don't need much for the recipe, a single breast, or both for extra chunky, and maybe a wing or two, depending on the size of the chicken.  In fact, it's probably best to use leftover chicken from the fridge, so put it away and go to sleep.
3. Break a package of cream cheese into a few chunks so it fits into the food processor.  Fellow gays can use the low-fat option here.

Here's where my chicken dip radically diverts from others.  Because (thankfully) I've rarely endured chicken wings at Hooters (only a gay could say "thankfully" here, though we all seem to enjoy breasts and not only on chickens if you know what I mean), I learned to expect carrot and celery sticks as a mandatory part of the chicken wing experience:

4. Add about 3 decent sized carrots, peeled, and about 5 celery stalks (I break the ends of each stalk backwards and pull back to remove the most fibrous strings).  Roughly chop the veggies into about 1 inch pieces and throw them in with the cream cheese in the food processor.
Not easy to find (in Toronto try Highland Farms)
5. Add the heat.  I use about half a large bottle of hot sauce but I'll leave this up to your tastes.  If you skimp here you'll likely have problems processing unless you add another liquid.  Probably because of the veggies, even the "I don't like hot food" crowd doesn't usually have any complaints, though.  I usually mix Frank's Red Hot and Louisiana Hot Sauce.  I like them both for different reasons, ok ?
6. Start by pulsing the cream cheese, veggies, and hot sauce together until the mixture starts to become unified.  You might have to scrape down the sides of the food processor.  Then run it for 10 seconds or so to get the mixture relatively smooth.
7. De-bone and take the skin off of your chicken wings and breast(s) and chop the meat into the size of chunk you'd like to see later on your chips.  If you'd like to include any fat or chicken skin (bad gay, but I'm there with ya'), chop it up separately and throw it into the food processor and give it a whirl with the dip mixture first, but keep your white meat chunks separate in a large bowl.
8. In the the large bowl, fold the dip mixture from the food processor and the chunks of chicken together ("fold" is gay for gently combining to preserve your chicken chunks).
9. For best flavour, heat the finished dip  on medium in a saucepan to a boil, stirring frequently, before serving.
10. Let it cool a bit, then put it in bowls (if you're sharing there will be a run for it so split it up) and serve with whatever you've got that will stand up to a dip like this.  I usually go with multigrain tortilla chips.

Yum.  This was my lunch today and I'm looking forward to the leftovers.

Most other recipes call for some sort of Blue Cheese, either in chunk or salad dressing form.  Unlike some I don't hate blue cheese, but I also don't need it (or its added fat and calories) to have a Buffalo Chicken experience.

"Well, I never !"
Others out there also call for still more cheese, usually in the form of shredded cheddar.  There's little reason for it and I'm not sure how it fits-in with the original Anchor Bar favourite flavour.

There you go -- not a typical recipe, nor a typical blog post from yours truly, but if you try it I think you'll agree that this is not your typical kitchen project, either.  Make it your own if you must tamper with perfection, but in whatever form it takes, this seemingly simple creation will be with you forever.  It's a crowd pleaser that won't leave your party goers lethargic, and that's a noble goal in this summer heat.

Friday, 15 June 2012

Dear John (Lithgow)

Are you still wondering if this will be good ?
I just had to thank John Lithgow as personally as I could for his performance in The Columnist on Broadway.

Yes, I'm over 40 but I only recently visited New York City for the first time.  I didn't come from a rich family.  We all had to put in long hours in the family business.  Our only family vacation consisted of a one-week drive to Florida.  The Plymouth overheated every 1.5 hours.

Here is my fax (yes, I had to send a fax, from the Plymouth) to his publicist:
I just wanted to thank John Lithgow for the moving performance while visiting Broadway for my first time ever.
I was in the first row balcony for the matinee on May 26 for The Columnist and it was an incredibly moving experience for me.
Thank you Mr. Lithgow. You are truly an inspiration. 
ed green

I used to think of myself as some kind of "Imagineering" robot machine, absorbing a net search like nobody else, ready to cyber-realize any single place on Earth.

I just didn't expect to experience what I did in Manhattan.

First of all I found a clean city.  That was a huge surprise.

I also found extremely nice people everywhere I turned.  There were only 3 street beggars in 6 days, and they were all courteous.  In Toronto today it's more like 3 every mile.

Though I met new friends and had a lot of fun interacting with them, I needed Saturday afternoon in Manhattan to be all mine.  When I got to the TKTS booth, I had two plays in mind: Venus in Fur, because it came highly rated, and The Columnist, not because I was a gay guy (I had no idea what it was about going in), but because of one single reason: John Lithgow.

I believe the kidz say... "ZOMG"
As an amazing bonus, only the best reason to watch Stargate Universe, Captain Matthew Scott (umm, is everyone named Matthew hot or what ??) played by the sexy hot and hotly talented actor Brian J. Smith was almost naked on stage, almost within reach.

It was John Lithgow's performance that drew first a tear from my eye, and then the water works.  My shirt was literally drenched.  Lithgow's portrayal of Joseph Alsop (a true story from the Kennedy era) was the most moving performance of my stay in NYC.

That's saying a lot.

I really do want to run away to NYC now.

I fear that I'm now a New Yorker and there's nothing I can do about it.  I'm going to give the Toronto theatre scene a good ol' college try, and if they need me, I'll volunteer.

Maybe the next NYC bum asking you for change will be a handsome Canadian ex-pat, trying to get $80 together for his next Broadway fix.

If it's me and I smell bad, just say so.  I want to be fresh if I bump into John... or Brian.

Saturday, 2 June 2012

Happy Gay Days Orlando 2012

I remember hearing Mike Morales on the Howard Stern Show denying that he visited Disneyworld during a period of time known as Gay Days.  He allegedly even, gasp, wore a red shirt, signalling in this event that he was indeed a queer.

My, how far we've come.

Mike has come out on-air since, and I've come out to my friends and family too.

It's important for people close to you to know who you really are, and it's important for the cause of human rights to have our friends and family members as supporters, too.

Everyone knows someone gay, whether they know it or not.

And despite all the rumours, being gay does not automatically bring with it a wild lifestyle.  Public displays of affection are probably more rampant in the hetero world, for instance.  And I've never seen anything happen in a public bathroom, not even in the gayest of gay clubs.  The most gay act I've seen in a bathroom is a bunch of sopping gays rushing straight to the mirror to fix their hair on a rainy night out (yes, I was one of them).  The urinals and stalls were empty.

Sexuality is an orientation.  Your orientation reflects your predominate preferences and desires (we'll leave true bisexuality -- and I do believe it really exists -- for another day).

Lifestyles -- slut, prude, outrageous, conservative, committed, happily single -- come in all orientations.

For Gay Days Orlando this year, the "Florida Family Association" -- tagline, "Defending American Values" -- is again hiring planes to drag air warnings in and around the Disneyworld resort during Gay Days Orlando.

They are concerned that those icky gays in their red shirts are going to be leaving gay stains all over the Mad Teacups and the other rides at the park.

They are worried that untarnished traditional Christian children might witness happy same-sex couples holding hands with love in their hearts and living their lives without guilt or shame for who they love.

They are selfishly worried about more, but never mind all that, let's turn this back to us: they think we're all sinners and we are going to hell.  And that's just mean.

I just left them the following message of support (follow the link to let them know your thoughts):

Most gay people are probably:

- cleaner than you
- more respectable than you
- and more importantly, nicer to people than you.

Gays gentrify neighbourhoods, increasing property values and community safety. Most GLBTs have learned to embrace everyone of all religions and personal preferences.

Can you say the same about yourselves ?

It's time. Learn to embrace all humans equally, and not just those in your own congregation.

You can't shame away the gay, all you can do is shame yourselves.

In my years on this Earth, I've been a witness to many different communities including "traditional family" and religions ones.  I am proud to say that being a part of the gay community has taught me tolerance and acceptance like no other set of values I've seen before or since.

If joy, the quest for true love, and the lesson of acceptance is hell, then turn up the heat.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Psst, You'll Get Old Too

I am very fortunate to not look my age.  These days, it's usually my pop culture references that reveal my years.

When us 40-somethings were young, we were captive to the new technology.  Colour TV broadcasting really was an incredible leap forward for technology and communication.  It was so captivating I'd argue it was (and still can be) addictive.

This adorable dude played some computer guy.  Isn't that enough of a reason???
Back then if we were lucky enough to have one our computer had only what information we were able to feed to it, either by keyboard entry or by cassette tape.  The TV was a better communicator, so we all grew up with a common culture, fed to us by the television.  Everyone watched Gilligan's Island re-runs.  Everyone watched Three's Company.  And if you had good Canadian friends, they'd laugh at your Beachcombers or Danger Bay references.

And they knew Hammy and they didn't question that a mouse could fly a plane. Hell, Matty probably had a fucking train locomotive somewhere.  And no, he never went into a gay guy's ass (hopefully no rodent ever has and all of that nonsense is just a sick joke).

Our computers very slowly became connected to our home phone line, but when we connected, our home phone line was in use.  You would drop any time someone picked up the phone.

Oh, and you called another computer directly.  Forget YouTube, or even hearing or seeing anything other than text (not that there's anything wrong with that ;).
Oddly sexual.

Not everyone was online, but everyone knew "Boss, the plane !". Everyone knew that all bartenders should be named Isaac.

Then an amazing thing happened.  Re-runs fed a new generation the previous generation's pop culture en mass, so for a while there we all knew what everyone was talking about, very nearly to the person.

Then, shortly after, the  (gasp) Internet came to town.

The generations that follow it were no longer restricted to a dearth of live video content ranging from 3 fuzzy stations to (gasp) 13 glorious cable channels, and sometimes they even all broadcasted something.

Remember what happened next?
There are still plenty of ways to consume the classic TV shows and movies to be sure, but Magnum P.I. can barely compete with new HD shows made for hundreds of channels and networks.  And there's internet shows and networks that let you watch whenever you want to.  The traditional networks are letting us watch on-demand now too, ensuring that the water cooler talk of yesteryear is probably gone forever, at least where TV shows are concerned.

Today we have viral videos and millions of minutes of home-made content on virtually every subject imaginable, with even more fresh content being added whenever dude with the new content's sister doesn't pick up the phone when he's uploading to Compuserve at $59.99 per hour.

Though we all certainly grow old over the years, this phenomenon has caused (gasp) accelerated gay aging.  This is especially terrifying, as the loss of the re-run generation means we won't all get to understand the same cultural references from one generation to the next.

Cultural references of today rarely come from television (unless from TV's bastard offshoot, Reality Television).  And with audiences allowed to be as fragmented as they want, perhaps our old ideas of cultural references are never coming back.

Lines from Cheers aren't worth repeating.  Even quotes from The Simpsons are borderline banned. Does anyone watch SNL anymore?

It's a brave new world for us "getting older" gays.  And that's all of us.  Just you wait.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Abs, Gays, Gyms, Bears: A Connection ?

I can't believe I haven't mentioned this much on my gay blog because it is has made a "massive" impact on my whole life.

I'm not ripped.  I'm not skinny.  I'm a big boy.  Not fat, but certainly "gay fat" or more acceptably, "a fattie" (but for the record, not as sorry as the abused body below).

My genetics and nutrition (Canada is a very giving land) ensured I grew an impressive frame, to be sure, but my lack of interest in sports (except hockey of course) and a love of all things food gave me quite a paunch in my younger years.

Most gays learn to appreciate a healthy physique and we try to stay in better-than-average shape.  Of course this is a blanket statement with many exceptions, perhaps no other category as complex as that called the "Bear" (more about that below).

For my frame, I'm mostly kept together today and I look wonderful clothed, thank you.  And I can flex myself a proud smile most of the time in the mirror, but unless I'm deep into tequila or something I'm by no means imagining myself to be an underwear model anytime soon.  Probably not even in a full thermal waffle suit, and then maybe only after a 12 week regimen.

Aww, you rest girl.
But there's no questioning that being gay has made me lose weight and keep it off.

Maybe there's a message there for fat closeted Republicans (though I can't think of any offhand nor would any images appearing here suggest otherwise.  Thanks lawyers).

But no matter how much better I look as a gay guy, I'm not looking forward to a 6-pack of abs any time soon.  Not on my belly, and probably not on my boyfriend's tum.

I'm starting to understand that there is an abs scene, and then there's the rest of us.  With some exceptions, as always (one of those exceptions is the string bean whose musculature shows through no matter what they do and what they eat -- if that's you, feel free to email me ;)

And of course it only takes $20 a song to have handfuls of hot abs at the wonderful if not a bit
To erase the imprint from the pic above
pricey adult gay male entertainment clubs like Campus and Stock Bar in Montreal and Flash and Remingtons here in Toronto.

I've never been able to re-live fingertip memories with such excitement and vivid detail before (perhaps I'm destined to be a cabinetmaker after all).

I always ask a ripped male stripper, "how often do you go to the gym ?"  They're not all gay, in fact gay strippers are usually the minority, but they're obviously bisexual considering they allow guys to grope them and (almost always ;) get aroused by the manly attention.

There has only been one guy who said he didn't work out, that the abs were a gift from nature, but I could swear I saw a bit of a twinkle in his eye along with his final word on the subject: "Honest !"

The gay-guy-gym scene, the hyper-muscled, hypersexual homosexual is mind-blowingly fun to experience... through movies and pictures and some erotic stories please and thanks, that's enough for this horny guy.

I just don't think I'd want to keep up.

Not advisable if you have athelete's foot
My body enjoys physical workouts closer to home, and closer to my own facilities.  I'm not looking to slide into someone's athelete's foot puddle anytime soon.

But there has been a lot of thought put into the gays-and-gyms thing.  Working-out to protect yourself and your loved ones against a known hateful element, just at the time when you've decided to stop hiding who you are, seems like a smart thing to do.

But in the end, it's more likely just another level of man-on-man hotness that I may never get to experience in a relationship.  It's an exclusive club, you gotta give abs to get 'em back, unless you're willing to pay $20 every couple of minutes for a bit of a feel of what many, many years of hard, monotonous work can do for the human physique.

Of course, there are plenty of exceptions.  The "blue collar" man is highly fascinating to me, but the gay/straight odds seem to plummet when going down this highway.

Then there are the bears.  "A Bear" used to just mean a big burly hairy gay guy, but it turns out that covers a lot of ground.  In the gay world, anyone with visible hair anywhere except the pits, crotch, and ass became a bear, or "bearish."

Bears are not necessarily fat, and in fact last year it seemed to swing so far the other way that bears couldn't be fat anymore !  This only lasted about a month or so last summer, and for now fat, hairy guys aren't just fat, hairy guys anymore.  They can be Bears once again.

For now.  Gay culture moves forward unrelentingly.

If I'm asked on a dating site, I'm clicking the "average" button.  Choosing this body type hasn't been traumatizing in the least.  Having to choose "a few extra lbs" with my extra paunch before I came out was not a fun thing to do.

If pressed, I'd suggest I'm "bearish, I guess" for the sole reason of my chest hair.  But body hair is a whole 'nother topic we can discuss another time.

Perhaps I'm a cub, whatever the hell that means.

And though I'm a good swimmer, I don't think I'm much of an otter.

Monday, 9 April 2012

It's Not Easy Being Gay

I've always attempted to immediately shrug-off any evidence of a mid-life crisis, especially now that I'm getting close to that literal median age using the scientific data of our day.

Congratulations Navy Lt. Gary Ross and civilian Dan Swezy
It's a "basic training" gay-guy move to try to hold-on to youth, but there's no special deal for gay dudes.  Everybody has to face Daddy Time (he might be hanging out in the leather bar) and with him comes, gasp... aging.

In case you haven't heard, it's not a perpetual Gay Dance Party for us man-leaning-bi or entirely homo guys.  And as time goes on, it seems things might even get a bit tougher.

Derek Hartley's first book gave me a stark impression of "that guy."  He's a 40-something who may be hanging near the door of the big gay bar, or maybe he's holding up a pillar on the dance floor.  He's still hanging where the young gays go, but he's a decade or two over the average age of the house.

I've been "that guy" and I'll be "that guy" again.  And again and again.  And again and again and again and again.

This April's surprise suicide of an author writing a book about dealing with getting gay old stirred-up feelings of contemplation and self-doubt, muddled with the usual sadness and disappointment surrounding a person's decision to take their own life, particularly in the GLBT community.

Sometimes we can't live with ourselves, but sexual freedom means we need to know ourselves first.  There's no cheating here.  You must know yourself. You must take your life into your own hands.

"Love yourself first" as caller Jimmy reminded us on tonight's Derek and Romaine Show on OutQ.

I might be completely at peace with my own life today but I must pause when I think that parts of the world want my head cut-off because I'm choosing to follow my passions instead of "making a decision" to ignore my true feelings.

I can't tell most of my beer-swilling guy coworkers these thoughts.  Regardless of how adorable fag hags appear in gay cinema, I can't confide in the girls at work either.  It wouldn't kill my career but any negative impact to my business that has nothing to do with my business is, obviously, unwelcomed.

Few are ready to confront their own feelings, let alone mine.

If I had someone special in my life, this would totally change, of course.  I have no interest in hiding a relationship if it seems it would be lasting.  Work sometimes involves "couples events" and I very much look forward to bringing my stud along, when... if I find him, that is.

I've learned to loathe dating websites and I haven't been out and about as much this Spring as last.  It's shockingly easy to allow work to create the bulk of your human interactions, but if there's one work lesson to learn, it's to not shit in your own backyard.  Or your front yard.  Or on your desk.

But the chance to instantly befriend a person after meeting them decreases dramatically over time, in case nobody's told you yet.  Getting old seems to add a multiplier of sorts.

There are probably too many variables here, but believe me when I tell you that gays aren't the only folks pondering the curse of time and the results of aging.  For gays, one added variable is the age when we declare our true feelings to ourselves, to friends, to family and then finally to the rest of the (civilized) world.

I've tried to tell my 80 year old dad as clearly as possible, but he keeps "forgetting" and asking me when I'm bringing a girl to the next Family Dinner.


Can't blame him, though.  I haven't exactly declared my homo preference with Broadway lights, yet.

I even catch myself continuing to sometimes challenge my own sexuality.  Perhaps all the hetero guys are faking it, too.  After all, it's amazingly homo how most hetero guys talk -- they might think it's keeping them straight, but maybe it's all about self-doubt and pack-driven negative reinforcement.

Add this new "gay dead" illusion to being gay and over 40 and pop goes the weasel -- shitty pun, to be sure, but this man's suicide doesn't tell a story about anything except the life of this one man.

The rest of us will get through our 40s.  And 50s.  And 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and beyond.

Together, hopefully.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Imagine This

Gay test: Do you see abs, or ___ ?
I haven't posted any images of hot dudes holding hands or kissing recently, and that seems easy to fix.  Ironically after my last post I should be the first to admit that a picture can really make a story.

It's not that imagery is needed.  That said, it's only on second glance that I noticed that the guy on the right is among a line of cots.

That one detail could mean all the difference in a story.

If you're lucky enough to be able to read this, which is around 74 percent of the world according to this faith-based link (I hope they enjoy following back) then you are also graced with the massive ability to augment your mind's eye with something similar to how High Def TV can make reality even sharper than it actually is.

A hot nerd (in my book)
When the Red Light District of your mind's eye could use a suggestion or two, an erotic story is certainly the closest thing to "being there."

For me it all started with Penthouse Letters.  In the magazine they slipped a gay(ish) story in now and then, and in the small booklet exclusively composed of letters, there was at least one guy-on-guy story in every single issue back in my day.

You can create stories or ideas in your mind, and if you're generous you might even write some stories -- fiction, fact, or fact-based can all be very very hot.

Pen names aren't a dime a dozen anymore, they're totally free.

But before you begin, there's a great place to start, and that's to experience what's already out there.  As usual, the Internet provides, with vast stores of legendary stories already told.

Measured in bits and bytes, erotic stories are without question the best thing a pleasure center could ever experience.  A typical story can blast you to Mars and back and still come in around 18k.

That's some sexy, nerdy goodness.

Monday, 19 March 2012

Are A Thousand Words Worth A Coffee Date ?

"Do you have a face pic ?"

Asking the question means you've already started communicating with someone without knowing what they actually look like.

Sure, you might have a cock shot, or an ass, or a torso... maybe even a matched set.

So far you don't have any reason not to continue (and maybe a couple of reasons to continue closer to that torso).

Unfortunately, that eventual face pic can, if you're like me, more often than not provide a good reason to flee.

For whatever reason (the fashion industry ?  Television ??) I'm very much into good looks and I don't care to settle.  Hot torso or not.

This, complexly intermingled with my mild self hatred and a curable case of body dysmorphia is not helping my anxieties at all.  I don't have many awesome torso shots, and quite frankly I have been a bit obsessed with my own face pictures lately, and for good reason.  I don't photograph all that well.  For whatever reason(s), statistically I am way more attractive in-person.

I've tried the dating sites and I've tried circulating out and about, and based on my brief exposure as a fresh gay there's just no comparing what I can attract on a web profile to what I'm able to attract in person.

If you demand evidence, here are 3 examples of how, so far, I've been far better able to find physical attraction in a person in-person:

Guy #1 saw me on the patio of a bar in the village, and came on in for a drink.  He was a young, sexy brunette that was well-dressed and seemed interesting so we exchange numbers.  He then went on his way.  When we met-up another night for a drink, he told me he was getting over a long-term relationship and rarely ventured out into the Village, but when he did he liked to set his sights on a target and went for it.

Guy #2 was an exotic dancer.  Originally from Europe, he was young and cute and blonde (I'm a sucker for this combination) and we had a great private dance (he tore my clothes off !).  Afterwards, I hung out in the club for a while and he spent the evening with me (as much as is possible in his particular line of work) and told me that he was totally into me.  Though, he explained, his boyfriend was a Toronto guy who was a lot like me.

Guy #3 worked in the Toronto gay village, and I found him really sexy.  He was young, cute and blonde (clearly this combo helps the odds with me), and only after I saw him checking my profile on a dating site did we have more than a basic "Hi" "Hey" "What's up" conversation.  Based on our limited (yet visceral) real-life interactions, it turned out he thought I was pretty neat, too.  And he was always sober when we interacted.

For the record, Guy #1 was sober too.  And I probably bought Guy #2 his first drink of the night (I like to go to "those places" really early [or really late]).

All three of these guys are hot, believe me -- and I'm incredibly picky.  And they're into me.

But when I send a warm greeting to a guy on a dating site near their level, I rarely, if ever, get any reply back.

On dating sites,  I try to present a realistic view.  I do want to scare-off anyone who is looking for mindless hook-ups, but I don't want to scare-off a guy after we meet if I haven't presented an accurate portrait.

I've been on the other side of that story, and it's a hard lesson learned -- don't paint a picture of a person without first meeting them.

Don't paint a picture of a person without meeting them.  Don't do it.  You will be disappointed.

Good luck not painting that picture, by the way.  It's probably impossible.  But keeping this in mind helps keep my profile a realistic description of what a guy can expect should he actually want to venture out on a coffee date with me.

Recently I've had to remind myself of these Three Guys because quite frankly I can get a bit disappointed when I hit-up the dating sites instead of hitting "The Scene."  Though we've had a mild winter I just haven't had the opportunity to "get out" as much as I'd like this year.

I can get to know a guy over chat or email, and I've even had some very personal cam-to-cam experiences.  But these pen pals are rarely in my neck of the woods, in fact some of the hottest cam gods have been Aussies on the other side of the Earth !

Unlike my pen pal back in grade school (yes,we literally sent physical letters back and forth, long before the Internet was just a missile launching chat site) today I'm fiercely interested in what a guy looks like from "all angles" and that includes a mandatory face pic.

Pen pals and C2C dudes are just not dating material for me.  Gazing into the sweet face of my man is what I dream about these days.  The rest comes from that.

I wish gay Speed Dating was all the rage instead of a novelty today because I usually know who I'm attracted to within a few seconds -- I take-in a man with my eyes, and then once I hear the utterance of a 3-or-more-word sentence, I'm ready to pass judgment.

Pass or Fail.  Done deal.

Yes, I judge guys.  Quickly.

Of course I feel my own personality is more difficult to get across.  I need more than a look and 3 words.  I have decent writing abilities and I put a good amount of effort into my dating site profile descriptions.

You'd think all that attention to detail would help me attract a perfect match.

If my magical prose doesn't attract a man, only my images remain to represent me.

I'm decently handsome, but... ugh, not so much in pictures.

Does this suggest I shouldn't have a face pic on my dating profile ?

"I don't date torsos, nor dicks for that matter.  Face pic or you have something to hide."

Considering I've posted the statement above on at least one dating site, there's no way I could ever take back my uggo self-snaps.

Guess I'll just have to get back out there instead.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Dear Kirk Cameron

Dear Kirk Cameron,

While recently approaching the age of 40, I did a great deal of "soul searching."

Though God knows I stayed mostly straight, I was still very single.  I had not a single rewarding relationship with a woman, in the Biblical sense or otherwise.

It appeared that I craved bananas.

I very naturally came to realize that I just wouldn't be happy unless I pursued a relationship with another man.

Taking cues from Creationism, I followed what I felt was natural, what God might be suggesting to me as the most expected path for my spirit -- the banana in the hand, so to speak.  This pointed me not to companionship with the opposite sex, but to a person who is more similar to me.

Thankfully for me, nature can (sometimes, at least) provide for those of a like mind.

For me, it just feels natural to think of another man like how a modern, genetically-selected grocery store banana opens with a tab, and slides smoothly down the throat.

Sorry for the deadpan sex reference Kirk, but I fear you've been hoodwinked.  It's time to shoot water cannons against your fears of a man marrying another man.

Equality only brings more balance and more love to a very uneasy world.

Should God drop an Ethernet cable (Cat 6 or better please) from the Heavens tomorrow, and Humanity plugs into the Universal Eden-net, I'll be totally sold -- at least for a while.  End of discussion.  I'll do what God says.  And I won't be alone.

Until, that is, God asks us to do what doesn't seem natural, beneficial and/or what's right for our fellow Man.

Even with such a sweet, thick cable dangling from the sky filled with Universal knowledge, there will be many of us here on Earth questioning what it really is about, "Who" is behind it, and what "It" may really want.

Even with such a literal connection to God, many of us won't be sold.

In this case, you shouldn't be disappointed.

You should be impressed.

And proud.

Some have faith in stories passed down from generation to generation, transcribed before the age of the printing press and translated from language to language.

And some are born to question.

But many -- most, hopefully -- will always accept what others feel is "natural" as long as it doesn't hurt others.

It's called Freedom.

This human reaction shouldn't so easily be extinguished.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Justin Bieber

18... O RLY??
It's a name that is used in office jokes, macho punchlines, and in parody of the whole notion of celebrity.

Or, at the least, in cynical mocking of child stars.

The unspoken name in music these days seems to be... Justin Bieber.

As an adult gay without kids, I just didn't get much exposure to The Bieb.  (For the record, homo males are the least likely to be "into" children.  Google if you need to.)

Straights chide anyone who might be gay-ish, suggesting that they must know everything there is to know about Bieber (my straight friends know I'm a homo and I've heard it).  But only after seeing The Movie on (add more content including more gay-themed flicks or I'm cancelling) can I admit to being aware of him as a performer.  And I must say I thoroughly enjoyed the movie, and learned to appreciate his natural musical talents.  He is one of the first internet-born superstars, but, sadly, he might be (like most child stars) caught up in what's probably not the most ideal upbringing.

As a "normal" 40s gay man (ie. not a pedo and barely ever on YouTube) I hadn't had any exposure to him.  But girl, I love a show and The Bieb puts on a show.  The movie seemed to be a respectable, honest portrayal.  I came away learning that the kid is actually talented.

Very talented.

Seems this comes as a surprise to people.

Maybe it's his "distracting" good looks ?  He is as cute as a button in most pictures.  In others, he looks a bit like a mid-30s lesbian farmer (a fashionable one, no doubt).

But what counts is that I now have no question in my mind that Justin Bieber is a talented writer and performer and it's just a matter of time before his music matures.  He had soulful rhythm when he was 6.  By 8, he was drumming better than I ever could.

But by age 16 in the movie, his voice was grovelly, and that's just not "normal" and might not be the best life for a kid (here I go, challenging celebrity worship again... internet micro-celebrities should hopefully balance this whole system eventually).

As I edit this, J-Bieb (as I like to call him) just turned 18.  According to Wikipedia, after March 1st, fellow Canadians are able to legally gaze upon Justin as the full-fledged adult male that he will (probably very, very, very slowly) become.

How to handle that scratchy throat -- heal it, or encourage it to be permanently  raspy -- it's almost surely what his managers discuss in the darkest hours, after Justin falls fast asleep in his "crib."  I bet they hope his voice doesn't shift into adulthood too soon, or ever for that matter.

It's almost impossible not to think of Michael Jackson and his plight.

Hopefully once Justin is "of age" he will still be as grounded as he seems to be now.  Canada usually exports classy, high quality entertainers, of that there's little doubt.  Justin's no exception, so far.

So fellow gays, it's now not (so) wrong to hope for a leaked celebrity nude pic of J-Babe's post-18th-bash showing one big, hairy J-Biev.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Born This Way, or Fagging-Out For Fun ?

The whole nature vs. nurture, or perhaps better put the "Born This Way" vs. "catching the gay" argument has little bearing today on the fight for GLBT rights.

In the Free World, we must be able to act as we feel, as long as we don't hurt others  (or ourselves, at least to some degree).  If this means that more people end up embracing gayness in whatever form, for whatever reasons, either permanently or temporarily, that's just how it goes.

More is obviously good for us, right ?  That seems to be the big concern by the haters.  Don't worry American Conservatives, even if more people choose to sprinkle some gay into their lives, there will still be plenty of wanted and unwanted kids being born (about 7 babies born every minute in the USA alone).

I felt compelled to reply to a Davey Wavey post (I'm a big fan, by the way) about the recent brouhaha caused by a celebrity saying she personally felt that she made a choice to "go gay."

Here's my comment to Davey's post:
Love your posts and videos Davey but on this one I have to agree with most of the comments here, in particular that there IS choice involved in almost everything, and thank goodness for that.
What we MUST fight for is FREEDOM TO CHOOSE, something it appears American Conservatives need to brush-up on as they DO NOT embrace freedom if they don't believe that your personal life is your own business.
Besides, if gay isn’t a choice in many cases, how do we get hot straight-guy hook-ups ? ;)

Today, it seems that entertaining the thought that "gay is not a choice" is counter-productive to GLBT rights.  At one time in the past it probably did help to suggest that an innate same-sex attraction may exist on a genetic or hormonal level but in the end, who cares how one person might fall in love with another and want to spend the rest of their lives (or a couple of weeks, or even hours) together ?

But what about inside the GLBT community ?  There are clearly some "born this way" gay guys.  Davey Wavey is perhaps a perfect example.  I'm not that clear-cut a case, in fact from another comment on Davey's post I've learned I am "stromo" which means I'm a masculine homo with a fairly poor fashion sense and a messy house.  Guilty as charged !

If the "Born This Way" homos are right, then where does that leave me ?  "No femmes" masculine fetishists aside, I sometimes feel like I'm considered a gay "wannabe" outsider by the mainstream gay culture today.  There seems to be a choice to make of twink, buff, or bear, with no space for anything else.

Instead of looking inward, we should really all be focusing on gay hate.  Is it in the water ?  The upbringing ?  Or is it usually just a case of gays or bisexuals practicing self-hate, which, frighteningly, ends up aiming outward ?

I know that if I couldn't embrace my own attraction to guys, I'd end up being one miserable, probably ultra-conservative, sonofabitch.

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Dear Coworkers, I'm Gay

In this day and age -- at least in this civil, free land we call Canada -- how can a gay in the workplace be such a disruptive force that he (or she) should just stay in the closet ?

It's a tough question that I must ponder almost every day.

I'm out to close friends and to some of my family, and since I'm a typical human who makes friends at work sometimes, that means that I'm out to some of my coworkers, too.

In my current role, I have to interact with hundreds of staff.  If I was was totally out, without question there would be some folks who think I am acting against their god, and some who would figure I'm "gay" in the 1970s "non-cool" sense.  My ability to do my job could be affected if (when) these people started to act-out their uneasiness.

It's strange, because I've never been one to think that sex in any way, shape, or form has a place in the office.  Being human, I have of course had a few transgressions in this regard, but in general I keep my private life private, and my attractions to myself, especially when compared to the straight guys and their chatter.  Of course we're all expected to accept this as "guys just being guys."  Even in my circle of friends, where I am now very much now known for my real preferences, there has been a time or two where my gayness has caused an angry outburst of "enough, already !"

I think we've all come to realize that in the Western World today, being a straight guy actually means you're expected to not act gay.  To foster this behaviour, you might pepper your speech with some hatred towards homos.  If you might have an inkling down the Kinsey curve, your straight friends will be there to help you "man-up."  Let's just forget that being a straight man in most of the world involves some pretty gay behaviour -- hand-holding in the Mid-East, and towel-snapping and drunken grab-ass over here.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

The answer to the question "gay or straight" today is really more about trying to force a suspected "not totally straight" guy to come out and say "I'm not gay!"

Perhaps kids today are more accepting, in public anyway.  We have come a long way, after all.  Yet just as straights want to keep people straight, gays seem to want more -- and more famous -- outings.

Even before they were of legal age, Taylor Lautner got a fake People cover "outing" him, Justin Bieber is labelled as gay by maniacal 13 year old girls who feel he's not man enough.  Gays hoped Daniel Radcliffe would just declare his infatuation with dick.  Tim Tebow is devoutly religious -- and a virgin -- yet he's known to display rather effeminate mannerisms though I'd be the first to admit that appearing gay and being gay are very different things (for the record, they all say they're straight).

This is actually one thing that's very obvious in the new generations: Thanks to metrosexuals, it's now perfectly fine to be effeminate.  It doesn't mean you're gay.

The same, of course, applies to "straight acting" guys.

It's a topsy-turvey world.  Thank goodness for the internet.

Maybe we're all just after the same thing here, to feel that we belong and are amongst like-minded people.  For someone that has always made an effort to be different, I find it interesting that even I need to figure this all out, if nothing else, so I can feel a sense of belonging to a group of like-minded people... like-minded or at least after the same thing, be it happiness or income.

I don't need to always be with people of the same leanings.  I just need to feel like I am accepted and needed at my job.  Right now, for better or worse, that means I'm usually "just one of the guys" at work, though secretly I'm amazed anyone would ever think me anything but gay, in the best sense of the word.