Monday, December 31, 2007

Four-score and 365 days ago...

A year ago I had my first gay encounter.

It wasn't sexual, it wasn't even really friendly, but we both felt it and it affirmed the fear within me that I had no idea what I was doing.

We were out in a university town, my friends and I from home guests of a few friends who had gone to this school. I couldn't get over how differently they socialized compared to other schools; here it felt almost like the American college system. The group of friends, 25 of them, were inseparable. They lived together, had class together, went to the bars was nice.

New Years Eve saw us entering one of the 'fancier' bars, the foreign guests and the locals mixing together to celebrate the new year. I was with a few of my closest friends, so that was really all that mattered to me, and quite drunk by the time the dancing started. I think I was even having fun.

He had crossed my field of vision a few times through the night, talking to some of the people in our party but never speaking to me directly. I didn't even know his name, only that he was a friend of one of their group, along for the festivities.

Something inside me pulled me to him, unlike anything I had experienced before. I just knew he was gay. No reason why, and he certainly was very 'straight acting', especially in this small-town homophobe crowd. It was so peculiar to me, to feel this 6th sense somewhere in the back of my mind shouting that I should do something with this guy.

For me, it was bizarre. Remember, this was roughly a week after I'd started this blog, and I was just beginning to understand the idea of what being gay meant and that I really wanted to pursue my attraction to men. And there I was, overstimulated and wondering what to do next.

He passed in front of me a few times through the evening, never really speaking or even seeing me, but each time he did I wondered what move I should make next. How could I get his attention, signal to him that I knew?

Midnight was fast approaching, only minutes away, when I noticed him sitting on the sidelines with a few other people, not really talking. I was there alone that night, and it seemed like he was as well, other happy couples bouncing around him. This was it.

I walked over to him, and he looked up at me. I can still remember the look in his eyes, that glance of confusion at first, but ultimately of some unspoken understanding.

"Hey, what are you doing sitting down," I asked. "It's almost midnight. You should be up here," I said, motioning towards the dance floor.

He gave me a bit of a smile, and awkwardly rose to his feet. We walked the few steps to the edge of the floor, as the countdown approached...10, 9, 8...

I looked behind me. He was standing there. Now what do I do?

...7, 6, 5...

In front of me, a friend was standing, shouting out the numbers with the crowd. I joined in, unable to do much else.

...4, 3, 2...

As the numbers came to a close, I shot a glance behind me, to see the boy walking back towards the sidelines. I guess it was a...


...failure. My friend reached out and grabbed me in a hug, screaming happy new year in my ear while I put the previous moments events to the back of my mind and sipped on my drink, welcoming 2007.

Of course, looking back at it now, it was an interesting and funny experience. I can laugh now, because when I think about it, what exactly was I going to do? Start making out with a guy, surrounded by my friends who thought I was straight in a homophobic college town bar at midnight on New Years? Would I sneak him down a back alley and blow him? Would he grab my hand and hold it as the streamers fell from the ceiling? Hardly.

It's funny that it happened. I hadn't really thought about it much until a little while ago, when we were again planning our celebration for the year. But in some way, I guess it was another step in the journey.

Tonight I'll be in Toronto, surrounded by friends. When midnight comes, I'm going to be alone again, a little anxious of what to do with myself while couples all around me embrace and probe each others mouths for leftover bits of hors douvres. I'm not crazy about going out with a group of almost exclusively all couples...except for the other two single guys who are coming along. But they have a nasty habit of picking up single women when out at bars, so I don't think we'll have a good shot at standing awkwardly together.

In the off chance that some guy sets off my gaydar, and is standing awkwardly himself at the dawn of the new year, I think I just may know better than last year how to handle the situation.

To all of you I wish the very best for health, happiness and love in 2008. The new year really can be a clean slate, and no matter if the changes you wish to make are small or big, I hope you find a way to make your dreams come true.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Turned tables...

You've probably noticed the poll's I've conducted, on the right of your screen.

I was curious a little while back about who exactly was walking through my door. After all, this is the anonymous Internet, and site counters don't keep track of if you're a bisexual 30-something who likes reading about my comical stabs at being gay...

So I drafted up the two polls to try and "capture the snapshot," if you will, of who all is reading. Here's what I've found:

Ages -
Under 29: 31 (60%)
30-45: 12 (23%)
46-60: 7 (13%)
60+: 1 (1%)

Orientations -
Gay Male: 50 (63%)
Bi/Pansexual Male: 10 (12%)
Questioning/Curious Male: 6 (7%)
Straight Male: 5 (6%)
Lesbian Female: 1 (1%)
Bi/Pansexual Female: 0
Straight Female: 3 (3%)
None of the Above: 4 (4%)

First off, I appologize to anyone who was offended by any of the categories. As for age, yeah, I know I'm lumping a lot of different groups pretty close together, but I was just looking for a general trend. In terms of orientations, I realize I didn't put any options for Trans people, or people with undefined sexualities. I'm sorry.

So, not surprisingly, you guys are mostly under 30 gay men. But it's interesting to note that people of all ages are reading, and I think it's really amazing that anyone over my age is reading...I hope that means I'm hitting on some universal topics that are of interest to everyone.

But, like any good researcher, I'm more interested in the outlyer results. I'm a little surprised that so few straight women are reading...I guess that's a general stereotype that women are interested in the lives of gay men. I couldn't seem to get women interested in my back in High School...and it seems that hasn't changed! Though I mind a hell of a lot less...

To all the questioning/curious guys reading, I hope some of the things I've written have been a help in trying to figure yourself out. I'd suggest going back and checking some of the really old entries to see where I was coming from, and how things developed. And of course, I wish you all the best of luck in your own journey.

What amazed me the most was that 5 STRAIGHT males are reading! Guys, that's amazing. You're all a rare breed, and I'm so impressed that you've taken the time to read about things you may not want to hear about... Really, you people, whoever you are, are an inspiration and I hope the rest of the world catches up to your attitude and acceptance of us ominous 'others'.

So there you have it, a brief look at your fellow readers! Another obvious question would be, "Are you out?" but maybe I'll save that for another time.

Until then, thanks for voting.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Three hundred and sixty five days...

A lot has changed.

More than I ever thought it could. Good. Bad. Otherwise.

I can gladly say I feel more at peace with myself today than I did exactly one year ago, when I flailed wildly, resisting myself and hating my circumstance. It was so hard for me to understand...but I knew I was doomed to unhappiness and self-hatred and loneliness if I continued to let things be. I also had no idea what to do, where to go, and who to turn to.

Over the past year, my life has changed more than it had in the 20 years before it. For the first time I kissed and meant it, held hands and got the flutter in my chest, dated same-sex partners, gone to bed with them...

Sitting here now, I almost cannot imagine my life without these things. It seems like five years ago, not one, that things started to change. I am so very thankful that they did.

Am I at peace with myself now, 100%? Yes and no. I'm at peace with my sexuality. I don't have that crushing weight on my chest that screamed the need for change and to let me be me. I'm at peace with my friends, who have not turned their backs on me during my harder days or lost respect for me because I'm 'different'. I'm happy to say I love sex!

You know that I still have my tumultuous times, mostly centering around my place in the gay universe. I feel isolated from the gay community in a way I didn't really see myself feeling when I started this journey. A year out of a lifetime isn't exactly a long time, but when it feels like the rest of the world can just come out and embrace things, learn and understand and become part of a community, I feel like I'm very much behind. I'm not at peace with that aspect of my life.

I'm also not at peace with my family. I'm still worried my Mom doesn't really grasp the situation, and I haven't even told Dad yet. How badly I just want it to be out there, so I can stop wondering about what might happen if someone said something...I just want more of a resolution to this part. It's not that I don't know who I am, but I want my close family to know and understand, and ultimately accept too.

Like I have said before, I don't regret the things I've done. I do, however, regret things I did not do. I'm not an extrovert with brazen sensibilities. I think before I act...sometimes too much and for too long. I don't regret the people I've met, the places I've gone or the decisions I made. I'm just sorry that I didn't do more, pushed myself out on a limb and really took myself to the limit. I regret the simplest things, like a missed kiss. I regret the biggest things, like not forcing myself to join the GLBT group at school, or forcing myself to walk through that bar door instead of past it.

What surprises me the most about my experience is how hard it's been, even at my age. I was 20 when I started this journey, and everyone said how young I was and how I had my entire life ahead of me. I will never understand the younger gay guys, some even as young as high school kids, who somehow figure things out, come out and really get the most out of life as a young gay man. Even now after all my progress, I have relatively little gay 'street cred' compared to these twinky boys who were out at age 16. And jealous as I may be for their position in society, I am also overwhelmingly happy for them, that they did not have to go through so many years, when life is so simple, not understanding themselves and not being who they are.

This blog has been my saviour. Without writing my thoughts down, I would never have been able to think things through, and come to a better understanding of how I feel and what I want. Many times I have started writing a post only to have an, "Ahhh," moment, seeing the light and getting a better understanding of my problems, positions and questions. Without the act of writing, I don't know how I would have discovered things about myself.

I also cannot wrap my mind around how fundamentally blogging has changed my world. Because of this blog, I know people all across North America and Europe, who were in the same similar situation as I was. I've met bloggers in person, spent hours on IM to people I may never meet, and texted and phoned my newfound friends, sorting out our lives and our places in the world. Without bloggers and readers, I would never have considered things, understood myself and the world we live in like I do.

In some ways, I wonder if our blogging is a bit of a curse as well. How would things have been different for me if I could not blog, but was forced to start my coming out some other way? Would I have gone to the GLBT office on campus and talked to someone there? Would I have visited a bathhouse in desperate search of answers? Would I still be in the closet, miserable and defeated? Would I have killed myself by now?

I will never know the answers. In some ways I wonder if I could have found what I was looking for faster had I just thrown myself to the wolves. But a large part of me looks at that alternate universe and sees nothing but black because of the missing component of this blog. I do not know where I would be if it was not for all of you. When I think of the faces of people I now know, I cannot imagine life without knowing you. And quite simply, I would never have known you.

This journey has been hard. Not a single step has been easy, unquestioned or painless. There have been times when my energy is tapped, when I have no more to give to myself and nowhere else to get it from. I have felt alone and afraid, with no one to turn to. I have pat the empty side of my bed and asked my eternal question, "Why?" I have cried with and because of my family.

But I have come so far.

Am I proud of myself? Who knows. I'm pleased that I know who I am now, that I understand myself and accept myself. I'm happy that I've come out to my friends and can live freely in my identity. I'm glad I have more to myself than the fact I'm 'gay', and that people seem to recognize that. I'm happy that I've tried (though failed) to love and be loved. Still, I feel there is so much to do... but maybe the worst is behind me.

Thank you for being with me, for however many of the past 365 days you have been. I hope you'll stick around for the next 365.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Glad tidings...

There is nothing more comforting than Elvis Presley singing Christmas/Religious songs.

After I sent my guests home tonight, many bottles of wine and even a bottle of Bollinger put away ("Thanks to my very best friends, from highschool to today, I love you all" I told my story to one of my best friends while one slept on the couch, the others preoccupied with the piano playing Cohen's "Hallelujah."

For the first time ever, I cried about a boy and an impossible situation.

While holding each other on the couch, she told me it was the most romantic thing she'd ever heard.

What can I say, other than I feel drained. Even after I sent a text and received a phone call, I don't know what to say.

Thank God Elvis is on the stereo, reassuring me that Christmas, family and friends are what matters at this time of year.

"Listen to those wonderous bells..." he said, during 'The Wonderful World of Christmas'.

"Shall remain every day in our hearts..."

But still, why does it ring so true, "It won't feel like Christmas without you, no matter so many miles between..."

Gah...I'm a hopeless romantic that will die after I get myself in too deep one too many times. But then what?... and why do I torture myself so now. This wasn't the way it was supposed to work. But, as my friend said, "It's the way things happened, can't you just be happy for it?"

Friday, December 21, 2007

Shopping with Mom...

I never knew Christmas shopping could be so...awkward...

Mom and I had gotten what we needed that day, and were about to pack it in. After a moment, we wound up stopping for dinner, because we both figured we'd rather eat there than go home and cook...hey, it's Christmas, right?

A few doors down from the restaurant was a sex shop. It looked kinda small, and kinda run down, but hey, sex stores are fun. As we walked by, my Mom looked through the window and said, "Maybe we should get your father something from in there, he always talks about going in...sometimes I think he's serious!"

We both laughed, because it's true; he's always joking about needing to stop off for a few things. At least, I hope he's always joking...

We sat down to dinner, and tried again in vain to figure out some small gift for Dad to open that would be a complete surprise. My mind kept pulling back to the sex store...what could I possibly find in there? I kept racking my brain...after all, what do straight men buy at sex shops? Considering most of their stock is, uh, penetrable items, I don't understand what the average straight dude buys.

After dinner, we were walking past the store again, and I knew it was now or never. "I'm going in," I said, laughing, "are you coming?"

Might as well play this for all it was worth...

She hesitated for a second, then nodded. And so, mother and gay son entered the den of inequity together.

I tried not to make it too obvious that I was staring at all the, uh, penetrable products, because I didn't want to scare her too badly. I was half expecting a quiet question about my experiences, after me blurting out, "Well damn, they don't have a lot of selection, do they?"

In the novelty section, cards, candy and games were priced to sell. I selected a pair of chocolate tits for dear old dad, and made my way further into the store. We hit the lingerie section, complete with articles for him and her. Jokingly I walked to the His section, scanning the wall until inspiration hit.

There, hanging low on the rack, was a Tartan jockstrap.

It was a regular jock with no material in the crotch, and a little curtain of silky Tartan-patterned fabric covering the crotch. We both burst out laughing.

That was it! That was the present! A perfect gag gift that will make for hilarity all day. We both could not stop laughing at the imagined antics of said strap, which, though not sporting the family Tartan, will be the source for most laughs of the day. I have no doubt that at some point it will wind up on my father, grandmother, lamp, Christmas tree and possibly the turkey.

Surprisingly enough, Mom seemed to really get into it. "Make sure you get the right size," she said. Oh God, I don't want to know what happens to this thing after Christmas day...

That night I went home and wrapped it up in a big box, weighed down by two cans of beans. So my fathers new Tartan jockstrap is now tucked under the tree, with Grandma's body wash, Mom's new purse and Grandpa's box of chocolates.

Twisted Christmas.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Mental health/physical health...

I just realized something about the last post and my over-arching gay situation.

It's the same thing.

I'm scared to go to the gym, because I don't know what to do there, or how to act, or the 'rules' and how things work. I don't have a friend in my life to be an introduction, to show me the ropes and help me make a smooth transition. I know where the gym is, but I don't know how to enter into that culture successfully.

I'm scared to go to gay bars, because I don't know what to do there, or how to act, or the 'rules' and how things work. I don't have a friend in my life to be an introduction, to show me the ropes and help me make a smooth transition. I know where the gay bar is, but I don't know how to enter into that culture successfully.

Totally different things, I know, but it's hitting me like a tonne of bricks. But it's the same sort of confusion, terror, dread and unknowing I feel when I think of either situation. And how cut off I feel from finding helping hands.

Food for thought...I guess this just means even though I'm really well rounded, there are a few 'scenes' in life that I have no clue about. I'm not built with the capacity to just throw myself into a totally new and foreign situation. I need to research and understand everything before I then walk through the door. I get my confidence from my intelligence, understanding and ability to problem solve and outthink.

I have no confidence in these few yet important parts of life because I know nothing about them. And what's over-riding my ability to just do it is my fear of rejection and failure in a situation I've already convinced myself I'm going to drown in.


Get thee to a gym...

My mother doesn't know how to be helpful sometimes.

This is yet another classic example of her 'trying to help' with things in life. We were talking about nothing, and out of the blue she tells me, "The gym is having $25 passes for students for the Christmas holidays until school starts again."

What she didn't say was, "You should join."

I took a few seconds to decide how I should respond to this. I played it at face value. "Oh, that's nice."

The thing that drives me mad is her inability to just come out and say 'Lets go to the gym together while you're home, it'll be easy and you might like it.' She just drops this 'hint' out of nowhere, I guess expecting me to jump all over it with excitement.

Truthfully, I would love to join the gym. I'm thinned down. I'm not toned up. This needs fixing if I am ever to be exposing my upper arms, chest and stomach to anyone under more than a candle-glow of light. And God-willing that will be soon, so I need to start working now.

But my problem is, I have no idea what one does at a gym, or how they do it. Hell, I don't even know what guys wear at a gym. I don't own a stitch of sport clothing, or even 'running shoes'. And that isn't even the biggest part.

I was never an athletic kid in school. Far from it, I hated (and still hate) sports, the jock mentality and the cliquiness of physical fitness. I've been so under-exposed to it that I have very little concept of what one does in a gym, other than some very clever porn movies I might have seen. And something tells me marathon sex on the mats isn't what the gym is all about.

I'll admit it, I'm scared of the gym. I'm scared of people (boys) with nicer bodies than mine, scared of people (boys) who will undoubtedly laugh at me while I haplessly try to navigate this 'fitness' thing. Even though I'm sure most people are quite nice, I can't help but associate gym-goers with jocks. It's like prisoners in a jail, you instantly tense up when surrounded by people who are so out of your element.

But I want to start going, I want to learn what you do, and I want to overcome this insanity that is my complete lack of knowledge about gym practices.

The biggest issue is simply that I do not have any skills at all. I wouldn't know what you do with a weight, how far and fast you run on a treadmill, how to use something called an 'elliptical trainer'. And I'm embarrassed, because I'm a boy, and boys are supposed to know how to do this stuff.

I essentially would be a danger to myself and others.

"I wouldn't even know what to do at a gym," I told her, sort of expecting some answer as to how one starts to learn about working out. "It'd be totally new to me, I haven't got a clue how you do anything..."

She paused. "Oh, well, I'm sure people would help you get started..."

What in hell is that supposed to mean? Talk about making me not feel any better about the situation! At least she could have told me a story about someone new to the gym, and how they made out. But no, she just figures people would 'help me out'!?

So boys, tell me, how does one start going to a gym? And how does one do so without making an ass out of himself?

Thursday, December 13, 2007


I'm being shoved back into the closet, albeit temporarily.

And I'm not even talking about back home! Though, naturally, like all closet issues, it relates to home. Tomorrow night a group of us are going out to celebrate the end of the semester. This group includes several good friends, as well as one girl I went to high school with, who's visiting my roommate.

Laura asked me yesterday about what we were going to do. "Actually, everybody knows about you except her of the people going with us!" she said, concerned. "What do you want us to do?"

I looked at her. What should they need to do? I mean, it's not like I'm going with a guy on my arm, and the chances that we'd get into a 'gay' conversation are pretty remote...yet I started to get a little nervous. I mean, what if she finds out? I apparently 'act differently' around my Toronto crew than I do with people from home/high school, and Laura was concerned that one of the Toronto people would out me through a casual conversation.

This doesn't scare me, really, but for the fact the girl visiting would no doubt be blabbing the news around bright and early the next morning. Essentially, she would be one of the people I would fear would do the very thing I want to avoid; making a big spectacle of my sexuality even though it has nothing to do with her or anyone she'd talk to.

"How about I just tell everyone not to bring it up," Laura said. "I just would feel terrible if somebody said something that outed you completely by accident, so if I say something now they'll be good with watching their conversations..."

I agreed, hesitantly. It makes me feel bad, causing such reaction that we now have to watch what we say in our own home so that I don't get outed to the town crier.

But still, is this a bad price to pay so I don't get put under the microscope?

However it goes, I don't plan on hiding too much. Worse comes to worse, though I won't be saying "I'm gay" to anyone, I don't have a problem with her drawing her own conclusions...besides, if I'm talking gay with someone, she probably wouldn't be involved in the conversation anyway. I don't plan on censoring much of anything, because there really shouldn't be anything to censor! We're not going to a strip club, it's just a bunch of people going out to celebrate Christmas and the end of school.

So why am I a little worried?...


Christmas shopping is not going well.

Nevermind my parents are impossible to buy for, plus my grandfather...but my few friends I plan on buying gifts aren't making it easy for me either.

The most common answer I've received is, "I don't really need anything," followed by, "There's nothing I really want."

I'll admit, I fall into that camp relatively easily. The only presents I've 'asked' for was stuff I bought and was promptly taken from me to be used as Christmas presents. But why is it so impossible for my generation to think of things they want for Christmas? I mean, we're all starving students after all...yet I can think of very few things I simply do not have or cannot afford, other than luxury items I'd never be given anyway.

Perhaps it's time to get all philosophical and tell my friends, family and neighbors that Christmas is about spreading the love and not about consumerism. I've never been bogged down in the "me-me-me" thinking of Christmas, so it's not like I'm discovering this for the first time. makes me wonder. I mean, does the fact that I don't ask for something I might really need say that I already have everything in life I currently require? Of course, that doesn't mean I bought the $600 D&G sweater I'm in love with...but damn, I don't really need that anyway.

Currently sitting under my Christmas tree, with my name on it:
-2 Boss shirts, both of which I'll be stealing for different Christmas functions so I look hot
-1 pair Boss pants, currently being not even under the tree yet
-1 chest of Bordeaux wines
-1 1kg Cadbury's milk chocolate bar, imported from England

Hmm...other than a new camera, I really don't think I need much else (and I don't even 'need' a new camera). And looking at that little list, I've already got more than many others will see.

So now I've just got to focus on getting some things for other people. And who knows, maybe I'll buy a goat for some African village to actually get something somebody really needs.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

We'll meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

Seems like I have to write another obituary.

I do these because the people I write about have changed my life somehow. The first I wrote was for Micifus, the boy who shared his story that inspired me to take a good hard look at the way my life was going, and gave me that glimpse into something better.

I hate goodbyes. Nothing in life is sadder, because it's such a final thing. When someone stops writing, they usually do so because they've moved on. And they don't come back. The last few seconds of film roll, we see our hero walking into the next chapter of their life, and it is usually left to fantasy to see if indeed they live happily ever after.

Tim, of I Think I Might Be Gay, has retired. Again, not a surprise. After talking with him about retirement once before, I knew the end would be near. But the beautiful thing is, he's moved on. Like he said in his final post, he's a different person than he was, a better, more fulfilled person. For that I am both happy and jealous.

Tim was the first blogger I ever became connected with. We exchanged e-mails, which led to the occasional IM conversation, which lead to talking almost every day. He's my first in the blogging world, the first guy I got to know personally, the first I added to Facebook. The first person to know the full me.

Over the months, I have come to think of him fondly as my friend in Utah, someone a few timezones away who I've gotten to know thanks to the insane marvel of the internet. Timmy, we were riding the forefront of history, considering I befriended a guy who I still have never met. Actually, still have yet to have spoken on the phone, but I'm sure we'll get around to it. But the point is, thanks to circumstance and technology, I have shared brilliant moments with a man I would never have encountered in my entire existence.

What to say about I Think I Might Be Gay. Well, turns out he was gay after all. But his journey is a continued inspiration to me, because it shows how, from the strangest of circumstance, one can embrace themselves for who they are, discover new things along the way, and eventually find the satisfaction and peace they sought for so long.

Tim, what can I say about you. You inspire me to keep discovering myself, to continue evolving and questioning and to push myself to become who I want to be. I won't lie, I'm jealous of your progress, because you made such amazing changes in your life to great benefit. But with that is a huge amount of respect and joy. And through it all you remained so humble and grounded, as if the things you accomplished weren't all that big.

I remember once very recently I was in a particularly reminiscent mood while talking to you. Near the end of our conversation I said, "God, I'm glad I met you." And I really am. Just thinking of you now makes me smile, the laughs we shared and the insight we were able to give each other. I cannot imagine my blogging career without you. Or my journey coming out. As you said, had we been in the same state, we'd probably be pretty good friends, and with that I cannot agree more.

I cannot thank you enough for being my ground during all of this 'thing'. You always were truthful, always were sincere, and always were sane when I was fretting over this or that. For all those times, I thank you.

So, for those of you not familiar with Tim's story, I suggest you give it a read. It's all about a boy who starts to figure himself out, finds out who he really is, falls in love with a boy for the first time...moves on, and becomes an even more amazing human being than he was. Something we can all aspire to.

Thank you for sharing yourself with us Tim. It was a great time.

Much love,

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Different life, different path...

A gay boy avoided setting off my gay-dar.

He’s my age, my year, cute in a scruffy sort of way. I always had wondered about him; he had that indie edge that could either mean homo or homo-wannabe. The last few times, I’ve always been left with a sense of wonder…what if…I mean, he’s cute! And how fun would it be to fool around with someone in my program!?

Add to that, I’ve felt the last few times we’ve been in the same room his eyes were on me. Of all people, he seemed to pointedly say hi and engage in conversation with me. At first I wondered why; he’s pretentious most of the time and I was always worried he didn’t really care for my presence. But after a while, I started to feel like he was treating me a little differently than others.

His outing came via a mutual friend. We were walking together, she complaining about straight men, me agreeing with her analyses. “Actually, I don’t think I have any straight male friends,” she said. Of course, knowing that she was a good friend of Scruffy Boy triggered that inner question, and as much as I wanted to respect his privacy, I also really wanted to know.

“But what about Scruffy Boy?” I asked.

“Oh, he’s gay. Super gay. Done practically everything that it takes to make you gay, but he doesn’t really admit it to himself,” she said, matter-of-factly.

“Whaa?” I said, confused. I mean, of all the people I expected to be fine with being gay, he would be one.

“Yeah, he’s sort of in denial, doesn’t really tell anyone about it, and isn’t really out yet,” she said, still walking, staring straight ahead.

“But…why? He hangs out with a bunch of gay guys all the time,” I countered.

“Small town, conservative family that wouldn’t take it well, that kind of thing. I guess he doesn’t want to lead a double life.”

“He would be so good at it, though, I mean he already has the connections…” I trailed off.

“Really, he’s just not comfortable with it yet. I’m one of the only people he’s totally honest with, don’t know why…” she said.

“Probably because you’re the one who’s sorta pro-gay,” I laughed, and she nodded.

I should have stopped there, but I prodded on.

“Is he seeing anyone then?”

“Not right now,” she said, then dropped the bombshell. “But last year, he was dating this guy for a few months.”

“Nice,” I said, “I’m glad for him. But how’d they meet?” Always on the lookout for tips…

“Funny story, he actually got picked up by some guy in 4th year. Yeah, this guy totally just picked him out of the crowd, started talking him up, then they were going out,” she said as my jaw dropped.

“Aww, that’s sweet. Well, I’m glad he got to have that while he was even deeper in the closet,” I managed. It’s true, I am happy for him. But the story made me a little sad, too, because I’m selfish and self-centred about things like relationships.

How ironic that my classmate, who was always deeper in the closet than I was, got picked out of a crowd by an older guy, swept off his feet and wound up in a relationship longer than any I’ve ever encountered.

I tried to fight it, but I couldn’t help it. The question sits in front of me unanswered; why him, not me? How him, not me? Not to discount his pain and agony from being perpetually closeted, but damn, he was on a roll for a guy that I wasn’t even sure was gay.

He basically lived what I had fantasized about, the hidden hope I had when I went off to university. Just be yourself, and somehow someone will open up to you and you’ll find your path. That, I always hoped, would mean someone would ‘tell’, and take my hand and walk me out of the closet, and maybe even love me along the way.

It’s a bit of a kick in the balls to know that the guy sitting a few seats down from me got my wish. Obviously it didn’t turn out like mine would possibly have, but still, he’s damn lucky to have that experience under his belt. I guess it just goes to solidify my bizarre path in life, my seemingly constant difference from others and unlucky circumstance that has kept me from experiencing that.

Hell, even now as an ‘out’ guy, I’ve never had anyone remotely move on me, let alone the ‘experienced older student’.

I’m now caught in a bit of an ethical pickle. I’d love for him to know that I know, for him to know that I’m gay, and I’d love to talk about it all. But I technically shouldn’t even know, because it’s not like I figured it out by myself. Someone else told me about a closeted guy, and I just don’t feel right bold-faced asking him about it, even though we’ve got the similar background.

There’s always the ‘hint about it’ method, but again, that implies that I know about him, and I’d feel pretty bad if he thought people were talking about it behind his back. I’m sure the only reason she told me was the fact that we’re a) all friends and b)gay.

And of course, now knowing for certain Scruffy Boy is gay doesn’t make me want to jump his bones less…but that’s getting wayyy ahead of myself. Strangely I would feel less ethically wrong if I slept with him without talking about it. But then again, that would sorta confirm things without verbal communication…

It’s a delicate situation, I’m a nice guy, and I’m not sure if I should just drop the subject altogether or tread lightly forward.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Pack away your worries...

I'm trying to firmly make a decision for the next month and a bit.

That decision is actually more like a UN declaration:

"...Though the case warrants further study, and by no way does this statement detract from it's importance, it must be resolved that, to fully engage and enjoy the Christmas holiday (hereafter referred to as the holiday), we, the undersigned, affirm that as little thought and worry shall be focused on the following situations: sex life, relationship status, gay community interaction, 'out' status, isolation and any homosexual-related hardships.

We realize that, as it is the holiday season, with the imminent return to rural environments, there is very little point to exuding much/any energy on problems that cannot be solved while in that geographic location.

There will me much time to ponder such situations during said holiday, but we must make every effort to devote as little time as possible to fruitless worry and dread, as it will interfere with the enjoyment of friends, family, turkey and snow. As seen in previous instances, case subject spends hours, even days, pondering his issues, sometimes at the expense of living 'in the moment'.

While it is unhealthy to truly block any thoughts, or to suppress them from all conscious thought, it is even more unhealthy to devote time better spent on other activities simply to revisit issues that cannot be resolved during said holiday.

As a result, the forthcoming holiday will be devoted to loving family and friends, drinking, eating, laughing, and lifting all spirits with lightheartedness and a carefree attitude. This will not be an 'act', rather, the re-embracement of the simplest pleasures in life.

Upon the end of the holiday, thoughts may turn back to the aforementioned issues, but it is the hope of this committee that such thoughts will be lessened and ultimately worked toward a path of resolution, so the carefree attitude may continue freely into the next calendar year.

Signed, the committee on the betterment of Steve's sexuality, personal life and integration."

If you remember, I started this blog on December 26, 2006. My head was in so many different places at that time, not many of them good. I was screaming silently inside my mind, frustrated to wits end, probably depressed, and all during Christmas. This year, I don't want it to be like that. The biggest question of my life thus far has been answered, and really, there is relatively little more important during Christmas than enjoying it with my family, reaffirming my spirituality and clearing my mind and body.

Sure, I've got my problems like usual. I wrote it out not too long ago, after finally realizing what really has me scratching my head at night. But nothing can be solved by another Christmas worrying over things that aren't as important as living in the moment, this moment, of December 2007.

Now, if I can just get through all these exams...

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Let it snow...

Finally I've figured out what my preferred weather system is.


I was joyful beyond words last night, walking from my place out to meet friends for dinner. Through the day, the snow had flown off and on, but I wasn't expecting it to be dumping when I was headed out the door.

As soon as I rounded the corner from my door, a smile crossed my face. It was cold, but a manageable cold, one you don't really notice too badly until you're frozen stiff. Gloves and scarf and iPod all firmly in place, I set out amongst the falling snow.

Like I had said before, snow silently fall is so peaceful, and even more so at night. With the beautiful glow of the city lights as a backdrop, huge fluffy white flakes settled on the asphalt and patches of grass.

The entire walk I was smiling like an idiot, humming along to my iPod and completely enjoying the feeling of walking through this storm. Really, I don't know what it is that makes me so entranced by snow over, say, a thunderstorm...but I now recognize that my favorite weather system is a good snowfall, especially at night. It turns the gray city streets into a different, magical setting.

The dinner was also nice, something I needed I guess. A few of us met up at around 7, and tried to get into a couple restaurants. But of course, no reservations on a Friday night near Christmas means a bit of a wait for a table. But it was worth it.

We wound up at a fairly nice place with a 45 minute wait. Someone suggested just buying some ingredients and cooking at my place, but I really didn't want to have to walk all the way back. We took up a spot at the bar, had a drink and just talked. The minutes blew by, and we had our table.

During the dinner conversation, I became a little apprehensive in wondering if people knew about me. There were the usual sex questions, and someone started talking about bath houses and what exactly went on in there.

"Oh, group sex, public sex, one-on-one sex in public or private...pretty much anything," I said blandly.

"And how do you know so much about this?" one of them joked.

"Well, not that I've actually been to one before," I said, laughing.

Time wore on, and I don't recall how it came up, but someone was asking a question and suddenly tagged on, "But I'm not entirely sure, your sexuality seems to be a bit ambiguous, so do you mind if I ask what orientation you are?"

I shook my head, and said, "Not at all, I'm gay."

"Ah, well that's what I thought, but wanted to make sure," he said. "Oh, and I'm totally cool with it, by the way." Why do people have to tag that on? Obviously I would suspect you're alright with it, if you didn't jump from your seat and run the other direction.

Still, it's nice to hear that people want to go the extra step and really remind you it doesn't matter.

Outside, from our seat beside a window, I could see all sort of people, and all sorts of snow. Magic.

Conversation then took another turn, as I was informed of some sort of informal declaration about people in our program. Apparently I rank as one of the 'cool' people in my program, part of a very short list according to the people privy to such information. I was also declared one of the best looking, but of course, I'm not letting this all go to my head...

Actually, it's almost funny for me to have such statements made about me. I would never consider myself a ranking member of the 'cool kids' in my program, yet I've been voted in as such. It kinda makes me feel good, considering I'm not out to impress anyone by acting any differently than I normally would. So that must mean...people like me for who I am?

Oh, there's also one person who doesn't like me much, but I like her fine so we all think it's a miscommunication.

After several drinks and hours of conversation, we left at around 12:30 a.m., light-hearted and talked out. Outside, the snow was still falling in quiet wisps, and as I walked home I still had the goofy smile on my face.

This time, it was about more than the snow.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Unintentionally hard-hitting question...

An old friend asked me an interesting question the other day.

"And personally?"

We'd bumped into each other in the hall, and tried to catch up with each other. A little difficult when both flanked by two other people, none of which know each other. We covered the little bit of ground that we normally would, just the very basic, "How's the semester treating you."

She talked a little more, because she's overly-talkative and slightly self-centered. Not that I mind, because I'm always interested in hearing how others are doing. I sometimes find it hard to talk about myself, and I really don't know why. It seems like it's my nature just to draw stories out from others, not simply talk about my own life.

I find that happens often, especially when meeting new people, always unhelpful when thinking dating or trying to hit it off with someone. Sometimes I draw on a piece of inner vitality that super-charges my wit and storytelling capabilities, and I can hold someone entranced in conversation.

But mostly, I find it difficult to just talk casually about myself. Often, I find myself saying I'm kinda boring, simply because I can't think of interesting things to say, or things I think other people would find interesting.

When reviewing my life, I've actually got lots of experiences and things going for me. But it's hard to translate that sort of thing into everyday conversation. Which is what made her question so profound for me.

"So, how about school. What fun academically are we having this year?" she asked. I filled her in on the power-struggle with the prof, and the general comments about the year. She nodded along, tossing in a story quite like my own professor. Then came the one I find most difficult to answer.

"And personally? How are you doing?" she asked, wide eyed.

I paused for a moment, drawing a blank stare. Really, I'd never considered this. I think about my problems (real and perceived) far more than I think about the good things in life, but I don't recall the last time someone so pointedly asked how 'I' was doing.

"Fine...oh fine, you know, things aren't bad. Just kinda wrapping up the semester..." I said.

I'm fairly certain that her question was aimed at finding out if I was single or not. From her end, that was probably all it meant. But it opened a great question within myself.

How can one answer that question honestly, much less to someone who isn't a 'best friend'? It's so personal. The public answer will always be a variation of 'fine', but if one is being honest, the answer is probably going to be a lot darker.

I thought about it as I walked home. If one of my closest friends asked me how I was doing personally, how would I respond?

The answer would be, I feel isolated. That's the one clear label I think defines my current apprehensions with my life. Sure, there's the loads of good, but we usually (and unfortunately) concentrate on the bad.

My isolation comes in many forms. I feel isolated from friends of yesterday, isolated from the friends of today, who seem to do very little in the span of a week. Isolated at home in Toronto, single in an apartment full of couples. Isolated in companionship, as in, lacking it in any adult form. Isolated from the mystical 'gay community', which I seemingly can find no secret knock to open the door and start spreading my wings. Even isolation within my family, with my horrible secret standing in the corner whenever I'm in the same room as my father.

The other label I was tempted to use was loneliness, but I don't necessarily think that tells the story. Sure, I'm 'lonely' for some added nights out, and certainly chronically 'lonely' in the relationship department, but I think the term isolated really captures the better meaning of it.

As I continually remind myself, there is lots to be grateful and happy about. My education is something I'm proud of, as are my scholastic accomplishments. And of the intricate knitting of my friendships, I'm also quite happy to report complete comfort with them all. I'm happy that I get to live my 21-year-old life in many ways that I want to, happy to sweep my floors and clean by bathroom.

But inevitably it always goes back to the bad. Academics and cleaning products won't keep you warm at night.

I feel like I'm missing the 'big picture', the 'out there' part of life. I read enough and see enough to at least begin to understand things I may (or may not, depending on how you see it) be missing out on. And I wonder, when will I?

Something within me is begging for a dash of immaturity, a dash of the wild side. If anything, I want it simply to let me know if I'm happy in the place that I am after all, or if I really do want some of the things I wonder about. At the same time, I don't know how one pursues that without being 'in for a penny, in for a pound.'

In High School, I always carried with me a buoyant optimism. Things would be better, once I was a little older. The awkward teenage years would be behind me. And so it went, indeed, as I got older things did get better. My optimism helped keep me afloat, with the possibly naive chanting in my brain that good things come to he who waits, and, once you make some changes, things will be better.

These days, I'm forgetting my buoyancy. I really need to re-light that flame within myself, to look back at how things indeed had changed for the better, as time went by. Sure, I'm still not in the place where I think I want to be yet, but Rome wasn't built in a day. And when I think about how my life has changed in the past year, I get dizzy because I never even imagined that things would have happened as they did.

But still, there are the elusive moments that I'm still wondering about. I'm not getting any younger, and when I think about kids who are 18, even 20, and have more of that cultural capital than I do, more connections, more understanding and acceptance, I get a little upset.

I'm not getting any younger.
But things take time, the other side says.
You have to make your own path.
Only if the doors are open, the other side says.
This is your fault, you've failed, you're the same person you've always been even if you want to believe change is around the corner.
I can't be blamed if it's just 'not my time' yet. Remember when I said, "It just wasn't in the cards?..."

I guess it's time for a change again. But I thought I'd already done what I needed to do. Guess not, after all.

Same old question. How?

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Double shot...

Toronto has become a world-class city, thanks to the opening of one store.


(Not actual Toronto location...)

That's right, the famous espresso line, available in Europe for what feels like a million years, is finally physically present in Canada. I got my machine a few years ago, pretty much when they came out in Canada and have always loved it. The coffee is brilliant, there are lots of varieties, and of course the really great pretentiousness of belonging to the 'exclusive club'.

Before, one had to order their coffee capsules via the Internet. They'd come in from New York, the closest physical Nespresso depot to Canada, and the only store in North America.

When I was in France over the summer, we stopped at several of their branches, and I bought lots of coffee. I mean, it beat paying shipping!

Still, I always complained to the people in Europe that Toronto is a big enough city to warrant a store. We've got everything else (more or less) so why not a pretentious coffee store too?

I might have made a bit of an ass out of myself, upon discovering the store this afternoon. Lisa and I were toque shopping (for her, not for me) and were walking through the lower level of The Bay at the Eaton Centre, when something caught my eye.

There was a wall with the machines, but coffee capsules as well. As I approached, I saw the sign, and the thousands of capsule boxes backing the wall. "Oh my God!" I cheered about a million times. The girl I dealt with was happy to see that I was happy, because apparently that's the reaction they're getting from current customers.

I got to taste a few new blends, and bought a few sleeves. We got to talking about the location, because they're in a super-shitty place that really, "Doesn't reflect our target market," as the sales girl said.

Apparently they're already looking into moving into a place on Bloor St., maybe even into the Holt Renfrew flagship store...a setting that would prove infinitely more appropriate.

With all my excitement, I found myself wondering about a job there. After all, I love their coffee, and it's way better than working at a coffee shop. But like hell I'd be getting a job before Christmas, so I'll have to see what happens in January. I'll keep my fingers crossed.

Until then, I'm just going to enjoy the coffee.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Gay Facebook...

So is it standard operating procedure for gays to have their own 'gay' Facebook alias?

I know it sounds odd, paranoid even, but it's a trend I've noticed. Gay guys who have their own standard Facebook pages, with their names, schools, workplaces all networked. Their photos of the family vacation, the dog, their dinner with friends...the usual stuff.

Then there's the second Facebook account...the one with a slightly different name (or altogether different), the one with the semi-nude, mostly-drunk, hands-on-abs photos that Mom shouldn't see when she looks at your profile.

And I make that claim with the knowledge of at least one reputable case.

Enter: The Doctor. He's early 30s, dating a boy I know at school, who's 'out' but not entirely so on Facebook. The Doctor's boyfriend is what some might call reputable, in the sense he's trying to keep his public image squeaky clean while privately having some good fun. To my understanding he doesn't have the second gay Facebook alias. But the Doctor sure does.

I asked our friend-of-a-friend, why would someone want two Facebooks? She laughed and showed me the photos, which included the handsome Doc in nothing but Ginch Gonch at Toronto Pride '07. Apparently he didn't want those photos getting back to the mates in the office, much less the fact he's dating a boy in university.

But isn't that a bit of a double standard? When we come out, and so publicly as to parade in (delicious) underwear, is it not public knowledge that this person is simply gay? Or does some wall exist around the Village that prevents penetrating 'straight' eyes from seeing what the dear Doctor does on his weekends?

And really, what does it matter if he's gay? Clearly it does not effect his practicing medicine, yet there is the obsession with separating the hybrid public/private performance of the 'regular' Facebook account, and the off-the-books 'gay' account.

I wondered after learning of this trend who exactly this benefits and who it detracts from. On the one hand, gays are still segregated and ostracized in the professional world, and it seems totally plausible that one would want to keep his private life separate from his professional endeavors. But at the same time, the age old argument rears it's head; if we are to combat such isolation of the community, people must be free to share their whole selves with the rest of the world without undue and unfair judgment.

Still, I can empathize with the notion of keeping some things separate from others. After all, would you really want your family and old school friends looking at who's face you were sucking last Thursday night? While on the one hand, I'm sure some wouldn't really give a damn what got online, others might be a little concerned.

But what does this say about the 'gay situation'? That the world is only going along with us 'in principal', and that actually seeing your friend rubbing the bare chest of another boy on Facebook crosses that line? Or that gays, while being out and unashamed, are censoring their 'gayest' moments from judgment of the straights in their lives, and ultimately their employers too.

And really, is it a question of personal preference or suppression of the community? Its a question of collective versus individual approach.

I don't have the gay Facebook, and judging by the way things have gone, I wonder if I ever will. That is, will I have the need to keep pictures of me clung to a sweaty, half-naked boy from being tagged to my regular account? Doubtful, because those pictures don't even exist for me.

But who knows, maybe one day. It'd kinda be nice to have that personal space, to just be comfortable with the 'friends' you have on Facebook. That's one of the inherent flaws of the service as it is, the fact that I've got people on there from all through my past, that I'll never really see again, but that I don't want to leave any memorable images with.

So tell me, one of you must have the gay Facebook.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

First of the season...

People are mad, truly.

My alarm just went off, 9:03 a.m. The tune that greeted me is familiar..."White Christmas", by good old Bing Crosby.

Dear's started.

Like a kid on Christmas, I jumped up and tore open my shades, looking out at...

SNOW! snowed!

But why people are so excited, and need to celebrate by turning the radio station into a constant stream of Christmas tunes in November, is beyond me.

If I survive my trip to school today, I'll post some pictures.


OK, so it's 3:30 p.m. and I made it both to and from school, and took a long walk around the city looking for winter pictures. Here's what I got, from around city hall.


I was surprised at how exciting and festive it was to walk through the snow. I guess it's one of the last vestiges that grown-ups have to enjoy little slices of innocence. Really, what is more pure than a snowfall, especially the first of the season?

For me, I was surprised at how uplifting it was. For a few minutes, I just looked at the world around me with a different attitude. Eyes actually open, drinking in the scenery. And of course, all the nostalgic thoughts that come along with Christmas, wintertime and the soft silence of falling snow.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Highlight of my day...

I've made changes these past few days.

The first occured last night. Nick, my musician friend, who I came out to rather shabbily on Halloween, was playing a gig in the city, and I went out to watch. I'm starting to wonder if he values our friendship as much as I do, because I think I was the only person he invited. Which feels pretty nice.

We went out afterwards to have a few drinks and grab food. He tossed around the idea of staying downtown, and I of course reiterated his standing invitation at my place. Around 2 a.m. we stumbled in, and got ready for sleep.

Standing in my bedroom, I wondered how things would play out. Would he motion for the couch, asking for a blanket? Or simply plop down in the living room until I grabbed him a pillow?

"Set the alarm for 6:30," he said, standing at the foot of my bed. I stood there for a minute and hesitated. I mean, a straight boy getting into bed with his gay friend? Uh...ok. I guess this means he really, really doesn't care.

Once we were settled in, and the little weirdness of the situation left my mind, I became very aware of the body lying beside me in bed. I mean, I sleep with my female friends all the time, because it's like sleeping with a non-sexual being. I've never slept with a straight guy like this before.

For a moment, it made me a little sad. I mean, here I was in bed again (finally) with a guy who's spending the night with me. But it's totally non-sexual (and I wouldn't want it not to be with him!). I don't get to cuddle with the boy next to me. It just served as a very real reminder of the fact I don't have what I want. The fact that there was a physical body lying beside me instead of the usual hypothetical/imagined body just added to the reminder. A tease, if you will.

Jeez...a cuddle tease? How sad am I...


Today I went to class, and decided to get a haircut afterward. There was an appointment available for the mid-afternoon, so I took it, and headed out.

I've always wondered about my hair colour, so I was surprised when the girl washing my hair asked me about it.

"You have really unique colour, is it natural?" she asked. I responded yes, indeed, it's that way all on it's own.

"I've never even coloured it before," I said. "But I've been thinking about it recently...I kinda want it lighter."

I put the question to my hair stylist, asking what colour/shade/whatever would suit me. "Well, lets just ask our colourist!" she said.

The next thing I knew, I'd had a three-minute meeting with the guy, who had wonderful purple hair, and was agreeing to getting highlights.

My stylist was a little surprised. "Are you sure you're ready to do that?" she said, knowing my usual caution with things like that. But the colourist had promised it would be natural and complimentary, and that he was really excited to do it.

What felt like a lifetime (and a million little foil wrappers) later, I was being led to have my hair rinsed out. The blue gunk that was making my hair turn light was ready to be rinsed, and the colourist ran water over each strand, getting it all out.

As he was working, he was talking. "Wow, I love it!" he said, "you're going to be happy you did this!"

His next statement was even more surprising. "So, how would you feel about being a hair model for me?" he said.

I tried not to fall over laughing, and I did a pretty good job. "Oh," I said. "Well..."

"See, we're doing this photo shoot, and I'd like to do a real contrast on you. Like, start with this that you've got now, then do something really dark...maybe black, but go a little crazy, do some funky colours in it. Nothing permanent," he said, laughing. "But I think it'd look really cool."

"Why not," I said. "Sounds like fun."

I still can't get over the fact that he thought I'd be a good fit. I mean...I just usually feel...unattractive. At the best of times, I'm never confident about how I look. I never know if I'm attractive. So the proposition was both a massive compliment and a huge surprise.

When we were all finished, the stylist did a few last snips, and I was ready to go. I looked in the mirror at the new shade, the new cut...and thought it looked pretty damn good. She too was impressed. So was the girl who walked by. And the girl at the desk. And the pretentious gay stylist.

"Well, look at you," he said. "Wow, it looks really good."

I realized they were all staring at me with that gaze people use when watching TV at a department store window during state funerals, etc.

"Woo, see, you're the centre of attention now," the gay stylist said. "Everyone's looking at you."

"Uh...yeah. OK, that's kinda weird," I said, and laughed.

I kinda wanted to ask if my new hair would get me laid tonight if I were to take it for a spin on Church St., but I decided to savour the compliments I'd gotten already.

Besides, I have to leave something to do later, right?

Monday, November 19, 2007

An afternoon meeting...

At this point, he's probably flying over the Maritimes.

What a flash, how quickly time passed. A short hour and a half, and who knows when we'll see each other again. And all the questions that it raised after the fact, all the insecurities in myself overstimulated simultaneously.

Dave called me just before I was about to duck out of class. "I'm at the airport," he said, "so whenever you get here..."

I grabbed my bag, did another faux-cough for my prof and said I really needed to get to that doctor's appointment. A little while later, and I was rocketing towards the airport.

For some reason, I'd forgotten how long the terminal was. Eyes scanning the room, I was bombarded with faces I'd never seen before. Looking for a face I'd never really seen before. But there he was, pretty much exactly how his photos looked.

A handshake and a few pleasantries later, we were trying to find a place for coffee, and wound up grabbing a beer (a good choice I'd say!).

Conversation flowed. What can I say, it felt relaxed and comfortable yet so rushed. So much I wanted to say, to ask, but time prevented it. We chatted non-stop, about lots of things. Lots of 'business' talk about blogs. He's warm and funny, and I hoped I wasn't being introverted or distant.

I'll admit that I didn't worry while I was across the table from him. It felt natural, at least for me. Short of the ticking of the clock, there was little to distract from our conversation. It was peculiar, to know intimate details about someone you've never met; having the regular chit-chat after knowing so much about the other's personality and insides.

Our time grew to a close, after two quick beers, and we walked to the security checkpoint. He stretched out his hand, I grabbed it, and feebly said, "Hug." We pulled in for one, said goodbye, and he ducked behind the checkpoint.

Once I was on the bus back towards the city, I couldn't get our meeting off my mind. How special, to have been able to sit across from someone I may never have met. How strange, for the same reason. How natural, and fun it had been to share just a few minutes over a beer.

And of course, what did he think? He had already said I don't look like what he had envisioned ("I thought you were going to be a frat boy!" he said laughing, which I thoroughly enjoyed). Did I meet his expectations? Bore him to tears? Make him laugh, or cry from disinterest?

My insecurities plagued me for most of the ride home, wondering, going over our conversation. I hope he enjoyed himself, and that he wasn't disappointed with the 'real me', the offline version.

When I got home, I finally picked up my reading that I still hadn't done since almost a week ago. He'd written a post about kissing, and listed a few boys he'd encounter in the future who would possibly be open to the idea. While I agree it would have been putting the cart in front of the horse, from his point of view, it would have been wildly romantic to lock lips in front of the departures desk. Not that I'd have been so bold, if I'd have read his post before our meeting. But for a brief moment my imagination took hold and I was taken by the romance of the thought.

Appropriately, my iPod shuffled to a Stevie Nicks song, "Too Far From Texas". Totally out of context, but still funny coincidence nonetheless.

Hope you had a good time in Canada! Come back anytime.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Weekend away...

I managed to make it home alone.

That is to say, without the certain someone who was probably interesting in coming along too. Thought I may have been having fun at the bar, I started to get really nervous when it was time to leave.

Last night we went out with a couple groupings of rugby players in Ottawa. It started with watching the hockey game here with my host and her friends, then proceeded downtown to a big bar, filled with rugby players of both sexes.

This was a nice prospect, because I got to drink in the hot guys surrounding me. Some of them were the token not-so-hot players, the ones with flattened noses and contorted facial features. But there were lots of others who made up for them.

Around that point we got into a bit of a discussion about the team, and homosexuality. One girl boldly announced that any of the male rugby teams would shoot a player who was known to be gay. "It's just that bad," she said, "they're fucked."

She explained that there were openly gay girls on some of the teams, and that nobody cares. But that the guys are all complete homophobes, and that no gay guy would ever be out to his teammates. She had even talked to a coach about it, and he seemed pretty confident that there were guys on the team who were pretty deep in the closet.

"'Oh sure' he said, 'there's guys who are gay, but they can't come out. I know.' I mean what the fuck!?" she said.

Kinda sad, looking around the bar at all the guys, and knowing there's a handful who are in an impossible situation. How terrible it must feel to be surrounded by homophobic guys, and to have to play straight for fear of some pretty harsh must be really depressing. I know we've heard about guys in sports who have secret boyfriends or relations, but it must be so oppressive. They must really love the game, to put up with that crap.

Later we got to drunk-dialing people...and I accidentally called Danny. I was going for the entry just below him in my phone book, and thought I'd gotten it. It rang a few times, then a voicemail came on.

"Oh, FUCK!" I said rather loudly, but it was thankfully drown out by the noise of the bar. So now he's got 'one missed call' on his phone from me, and I look like a desperate idiot...I mean calling at midnight on a Saturday isn't exactly good timing. I don't really expect that much will happen except a head-shake on his part.

Around this part of the evening we all started dancing. I'd been chatting with an older girl who works in some government office, and of course was the only person at the table having somewhat of an intellectual discussion. We went out and started dancing...and it was terrible. 'Frigid' I would say. I mean, it felt like as awkward I imagine it is when dancing with a guy you're into but is just so not into you. Not that I was 'interested', but I wanted to dance! (Which was strange in itself).

She bailed after a few songs, and I was left searching for someone else. And there she was...the blond who had been eying me all night. She was a friend-of-a-friend who had came along with the group. We started dancing around, just having a good time.

A little later on, Ashley's boyfriend kinda danced over our way a little. "Just have confidence!" he said, and shoved my arms towards her ass.

I rolled my eyes a little, and smiled, and just went with it. I mean, I was having fun, and could not be more unattracted to her, so whats the harm.

She certainly did respond though...and made her interest clear...

Strangely, some other guy came up to her and started talking to her, while I had an arm around her back. What's this? I gave him a bit of a look, but considering I didn't really care what she did, I let them talk. After a few words, he looked over at me. "Don't worry dude, she's all yours," he said, and walked off. OK, so was he booking her for next weekend?...ah well.

Things started dying down, so we went back to get more drinks. There was only six of us left at our table, and plenty of seating...but the other guy who was 'encouraging' me before practically begged the blond to sit on my lap, which she happily did. We did a little talking, and I confirmed not only did I not like her physically, her mind was similarly unattractive.

The lights went up, and it was time to go home. It was only Ashley and I heading back to her place, as her boyfriend had left moments before, preparing to hurl. We were waiting for one other person, the blond girl's friend, but she was off flirting with the bartender.

"We can't wait for this," Ashley said, "she'll be here for hours." So she sent her friend over to wait with her.

"OK, we have to leave," I said. "She's not coming home with me! I'm not going there. Period."

"Aw, come on, have a bit of fun!" she laughed, jokingly. "Besides, I didn't announce it to everyone, they don't know..."

"I don't care!" I said, mock-hysterical. "I have my virginity to preserve."

We ducked out the door and grabbed a cab, and I'll hopefully never see my new friend again.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The blah continues...

The shit is over.

I hope, anyway. And it's not over, it's just over for now. But it didn't end well.

Yesterday, I met with the prof who is panning us all. We talked for 20 minutes about my academic progress, where she embarrassed me repeatedly asking such questions as, "Are you having this trouble with other courses?"

The highlight of the meeting was a statement that made my eyes bulge and my fists clench. "You should stop whining," she said flippantly. "You're almost out of university, in the working world you'll be on your own with this. You've got to develop your skills, and I'm here to help you."

Uh, what? I'm not a 5th-grader. I approached her as a mature student with real concerns about not only my grades, but how the course is being evaluated in general. And she treats me like a kid who's having a hissy-fit because his mark was too low.

"Don't worry about it so much," was another piece of brilliant advice. "It's not like your grade will be ruined."

I got very quite after that, and as hard as I tried, I probably looked furious.

In the end, we made a few arrangements so that I could hopefully pull my marks up, which included a last-minute assignment due this evening, as opposed to something due next week.

When we were finished, she looked at me and said, "About the whining. I was joking, it looks like you took it pretty to heart though."

No shit. A joke is when you make light of a situation. Not insult someone straight-faced and, upon seeing they didn't get it, inform them of the funny you just made.

It's been a bad week, because all I've lived and breathed for the past three days has been this. I'm finally released now, and happily packing for my trip to Ottawa to visit Ashley. I leave tomorrow afternoon, and was very excited.

Until I got a phone call a few minutes ago from my mom, who hadn't talked to me yet this week. I told her I really couldn't talk, I was working on something that I needed to hand in shortly, and that it was a really long story that I didn't have time to tell.

This led to a few questions from her, which lead to me answering some, including the grade's I'd received in this class so far. Which lead to her knee-jerk reactions: "Well, you're going to pull your marks up, right?" and "I'm sure things will be fine in the end." Two statements that infuriate me, and thanks to my raw mood, I managed to get into it with her on the phone.

It ended very badly, with me saying I really couldn't talk about it. I asked what was new with her, and she just dead-panned. "Nothing. Nothings new. Well I guess I'll let you go," she said, and ended the conversation coldly.

I was frustrated and angry, and I just sat and finished my work. But as soon as I hit send, I started feeling really guilty.

My excitement of the freedom of the weekend ahead was shot to shit, as all I can think about now is how badly I feel for being so short with her. Instead of feeling relaxed and happy now that I'm done, I feel guilty and really bad.

Now I don't know how to apologize, because I don't do that very well, mostly because I'm never in the wrong. Tonight I think I may have been.

Or at least that's what the guilt sitting on my chest is saying.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The good, the blah (part 2)...

My Monday was a lot farther of a roll downhill, after my nice weekend away.

I returned Sunday night, hammered out that post, and almost as if fate had willed it, got a call from the Fuck Buddy. An hour later...well, you get the idea.

Even though that meant staying up much later than I intended (since I have an 8 a.m. on Monday morning), it was completely worth it, and a nice cap to the evening and weekend.

This morning I bolted awake, thanks to my alarm, from a great dream. One where you're floating around, and details are very fuzzy, but you're not unhappy with that at all. I reached over to shut off the alarm, and felt a pull in my neck-left shoulder.

Youch! Whats this?

I felt this pain basically where the neck and shoulder meet. What could have caused this? I chocked it up to sexual injury, and continued to the shower.

Class was interesting, as was my weekly lunch with Kelsey. He's very like-minded, and our discussions often fall into political and social debate. It's fun, because he's one of the more intellectually stimulating people I spend time with, and we always think through problems and current events.

All in all, not an unpleasant morning.

Things took a downward turn upon arriving to class. Our marks for some assignments had been posted, and the prognosis was not good. Our prof is a super-hardass marker, and does not tolerate our pathetic attempts at our assignments. Not that I think we're pathetic at all, but that's her answer.

Essentially, the entire class is on the verge of flunking. She's put the fear of God into us, and with 'mini-assignments' worth 10 per cent each, we're struggling to get by. Nobody wanted to discuss their horrible marks with each other, but after some private consultations with people, I determined we're all in the same boat. It feels pretty bad to be bashed so unashamedly by our prof, and left us all in an academic funk from which I'm not sure how to lift myself.

Then, another classmate came in. She's a dear soul and I could see the lines from lack of sleep and cloud surrounding her. Marnie was clearly not in a good state. Moments later, she was telling the girl next to her about her new tattoo, "I got for my mom...she was just diagnosed with breast cancer."

My blood ran cold. My heart shrank, and chest hurt. She got up and left the room, and I followed her.

A moment later we were wrapped in a hug. "I heard what you said," I offered, and told her about my mom. "I'm so sorry. But I'm here, if you need to talk, about anything. I never had anyone when I was dealing with it, so if you have any questions, ask."

She kinda teared a little, and then I did...and I didn't want to start crying in the hall so we went back inside.

Through the class she asked me a few questions, about how to balance school and going to appointments and such. I told her my experiences, and she drank them in. I can imagine how difficult this is for her, and I told her so. "A lot of people just don't know," I offered.

Later, before we were done, I pulled her over again. "You know, if you need to talk, about anything, anytime, call me. I'm always around."

She looked at me with the dazed-tired eyes I've seen before. "Thanks. I mean, really, thank you. It's nice to know who your friends really are."

I've been waiting for this to happen, waiting for one of my friend's family to fall victim to breast cancer. Waiting for the moment where I'll offer advice, a sympathetic ear, and a hug for someone who really needs it. I guess she's found me finally. I just hope I can help.


I took the subway home because it was raining. Careful not to slip on the wet stairs, I went to the automated token machines, pulled out a $10 bill and slid it in.

The machine went into a frenzy of grinds and beeps. The green light turned red. My tokens did not come out. My $10 bill did not come back. This is not good.

I went to the man behind the partition and relayed the sad news.

"Call the number," was all the asshole had to say. What number exactly?

I went back to the metal thief just as a woman was putting another $10 into it.

"Don't!" I hissed. "It ate mine." She smiled and thanked me for stopping her from loosing the money.

As I was writing down the phone number, a man entered my peripheral vision. "Is there a problem?" he asked. I warily looked at him.

It was a transit cop. I explained my sad story about loosing the money. He smiled warmly and apologized, and pointed out the number and the machine ID to give to the operator, then told me to mention the time when I called. "They'll be able to spot your money easier," he said.

"But you still need to ride today?" he asked.

"Yeah," I said on a sigh.

"Well, here, we'll send you on your way then," he said warmly, and walked me through the bank of token-takers and onto the platform. And I got a free ride home.

I guess what goes around comes around.

The good, the blah (part 1)...

Well, lets start with the good.

On Friday I finally bought my new Mac with Leopard. It was exciting, but more or less without amazement. Hit the store, heard the sales pitch (which was unnecessary...I already know what I want!), did the cash thing and headed out. I also went home for the weekend, to see my family and get a change of scenery. And to tinker with my new computer (even though there was no Internet).

Friday evening I pull everything from the box like a kid on Christmas. Since it's all one piece of machinery, it took around a minute to plug in my keyboard and mouse (which I love by the way) and then plug into the wall. The seconds went by, and it was all booted up.

But wait! This isn't Leopard, this is the old operating system!

In a frantic moment, I shuffled through the small pile of paperwork that came with the computer. Diagrams, how-to's, the OS install kit for the former Leopard drop-kit that the sales guy had promised. Ahhh crap!!!

I called the store and spoke to a very nice gay boy with a pretentiously spelled name (can you say future post?). He was very sweet, and wanted to fix my situation ASAP. The only option really was to return to the store the next day.

I was less than pleased. Here I was, at home, and I had to re-pack my computer and go back to the city! So Saturday morning my mom and I went for a drive...

The store was packed with weekend shoppers pushing into one another. Why it was so crazy I'll never know...I mean can't people shop on other days of the week too? We headed to the counter, box in tow, and got a strange look from the boy standing behind it.

I explained in horror that the drop-kit wasn't put in my box, and how I neeeeeed Leopard. He went into the usual regretful story mode, and promised to grab me a new machine and to personally make sure the proper discs were in the box.

Of course, my mother went into pissed-off-consumer mode and asked what compensation we'd be given for being so royally screwed around. It turned out the guy was the manager for that shift, even though he looked something like this:

Honestly, he was amazingly hot. Looking like he'd just stepped out of a porn movie, this twink of possibly 22 was such a sweetheart. With a bit more tan than #1 and the eyes and longer hair of #2, he was stunning.

Throughout the exchange, I suffered some blood fluctuations.

Anyway, it went off smoothly enough, and I even got to drool over the sexy manager for 10 minutes while he sorted things out. He was, like I said, very sweet and made it as painless as possible. Reluctantly, I tore my eyes away with my second new Mac of the weekend.

Thankfully, this one indeed had Leopard. I'm liking it so far, other than the fact I still have to Migrate all my files from my old Mac over, and set up all the technical stuff like codecs and such here on my new Mac. It's a little frustrating, and kinda tedious, but in the end I'll have a great setup and great memories of the sales boy.

"Is there anything else I can do for you?" he asked, with a little smile.

Plenty, I thought.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Speaking of...

I apologize for the tardiness in my posts.

I've been off the grid since Wednesday evening, and actually semi-busy doing things. So for your brief entertainment tonight, here's a few random thoughts from my week.


Seems like Elevator Boy had a party. At least that’s what Facebook said. One of the newsfeed items was that someone we both know was attending some sort of shindig at his place, so naturally I clicked to see where and who would be attending.
Not that I knew anyone going other than our one mutual connection, I was intrigued just the same. Then I thought I was getting creepy on my Facebook stalking and promptly closed the window and forgot about it. After all, my main goal with him is to simply introduce myself so I don’t feel like a stalker every time I see him. And checking out his Facebook does not help that argument.


Speaking of Facebook, it’s been weeks, and I still have not heard from Former Gay Best Friend. Makes me a little sad that he couldn’t take the time out to answer me, even if it was just to say no thanks. After all, he was the one who added me to Facebook; he initiated conversation earlier with a few messages back and forth.
So now I’m tempted to message again to just see if he’ll reply. Perhaps I just got lost in the shuffle online and he didn’t remember getting the message? I’m not sure…hey man, if you happen to be a reader, don’t be freaked out! Message me, because we have a lot to talk about. (That was my imagination just now, in case you didn’t notice…)


Speaking of gay boys, I’ve been seeing my fuck buddy a little more often than usual. More often being more than once a month, but less than once a week. Our meetings are fun, because I get to have sex. But it’s getting to the point where things are getting a bit…stale. I want a little more ‘challenging’ sex, if that makes any sense. We basically do the deed, and while that is always enjoyable, he’s very lazy in bed and doesn’t go out of his way to make it a fully engaged experience.
Plus, he apparently doesn’t like to bottom. This puzzles me to no end, because I cannot imagine a boy who does not take at least some pleasure from the act. He also is tongue tied while we’re in bed, but has no problem in telling me online what he likes and doesn’t like.
“Yeah, sure,” he said to my last message asking if he was free. “But you can’t fuck me. I’m so not into that haha.”
Hrm…I really should find someone new to sleep with.


Speaking of lazy, I’ve been terrible at keeping up my links. There are so many people I need to link to, and a few I have to remove due to retirement. I would also like to overhaul the layout, because I haven’t changed it once since I started blogging. But because I am both unmotivated and untechnologically skilled when working in HTML/online stuff, I don’t know how to do that. Any requests/suggestions for what you’d like to see changed?

Monday, November 5, 2007

Reading, and pictures...

OK, so I love to read.

Books are wonderful. When I moved back to Toronto, I literally purged my entire collection of 'literature', which was composed of lots of second-hand mystery and crime novels handed down from my family, a few poorly chosen science-fiction novels and my university level literature collection.

After I made quick work of practically all the crappy second hand trash (donating them to charity), I proceeded to reorganize my collection and start to fill in holes. My dream would be to have a nicely fleshed out library in my home, nothing too fancy but full of substantial works. Not that I've got lots of time to delve in to Beowulf...but books on shelves, complete with fancy bindings, are always impressive. And the leather club chair. And the bottle of cognac.

Tonight, however, my mind is far more preoccupied with slightly less learned reading (and slightly more erotic).

I've been trying to find a good gay magazine, and damned if I can get hold of one that addresses everything that I'm looking for. I want something with a style and fashion section (preferably one that I can afford at least the socks from), but not simply hot guys in swim gear that I will never wear. Some entertainment would be nice, but not all campy Madonna praising drivel. Interesting features are a necessity, and if they include sexual-related stories that's even better.

Photography is good, but not when it becomes the bulk of the publication. And though I love looking at the really hot model boys in practically nothing, I also love looking at really hot model boys wearing really hot clothes too.

A food/wine/entertaining section would be nice, but may be asking for too much.

I picked up DNA the other day, and really did like the photography. However, it's a little content-light, and at $11, I don't know if I'm willing to spend that much just for sexy speedo boys.

Tetu is an excellent option...but only in French. I picked up a copy while en France, and found it to have a nice selection of photography as well as written content. Thought I could muddle through it with a little work, I don't think I'm taking quite enough out of it with the language barrier. But hot damn their coverboys are gorgeous.

Attitude is an English magazine, and I did enjoy the mixture of photography and newsy pieces. But it just didn't feel like a fit for me. It did, however, feature a good amount of sex-related articles without being trashy or too much of a cheap porno.

I tried XY once, and would probably have liked it when I was *gasp (God help me)* younger. The boys are super-cute. But the content is as fluffy as the twinks.

The best fit I've found is M Mensuel. It's got a great assortment of products and fashions that I can actually afford but also look good, celebs, hot boy photo shoots, and some interesting 'gay news'. There was even a section on gay blogs (though I already knew of the ones written about). The only's another French magazine, though with shorter and a little lighter fare, this one is an easier read for me than Tetu.

One of the great advantages of living in both Canada and Toronto is my access to gay magazines, everywhere. Large book retailers stock them in the normal magazine section. There are shops in the gay village that no doubt sell all the latest issues. Hell, even larger 'news stand' stores have a gay section. So it's not about lack of choice thus far.

So I'll turn it over to you now, and ask for your advice. What are your favorite magazines to curl up with? Is there one that has a bit of everything I'm looking for in it? Or maybe some that compromise a few things, but are still good reads?

It's the beginning of the month, so lets choose me some new reading material!

P.S. - Even though I have lots of porn on my computer, every so often I like to grab a magazine. I have no idea why, since these boys don't move, don't speak and don't make noise. Maybe that heightens part of the fantasy. Not to mention it holds them in a perfect pose for all eternity.

When I grab a copy and head to the bathroom, it's usually: