Sunday, December 22, 2013

Sunday Morning Questions: Classy as Shit Edition

Most of my Manhattan adventures (of the clothed sort, that is) tend to take place in Starbucks. I was puzzling out the other day why that was, when I was fixing to type out another account of something odd that happened in a West Village branch of the franchise. What I realized is that I tend to use coffee shops in New York City as a hangout between appointments during cold weather months. In the spring and summer, if I have downtime, I can always relax on a park bench in Union Square Park or somewhere along the High Line; there are plenty of places to park my butt for a couple of hours and watch the people go by.

In winter, though, I don’t want to sit outdoors. So I keep in my head a mental database of the larger, less populated Starbucks branches and other coffee shops near the places I need to go. If I need to get out of the cold for an hour or two, you’ll find me there, wedged in among the students and hipsters and food bloggers, catching up on my email or reading. That’s where I was last week, on a particularly cold Monday night. I’d had dinner with a friend and taken a downtown train to the general vicinity of my meeting. The brisk walk from the station to my destination’s neighborhood did nothing to warm me up, and I was early. So around the corner I went to buy myself a half-hour of warmth and a coffee-adjacent beverage.

The Starbucks I chose was busy. A couple of people stood in line in front of me, so I breathed on my fingers and tried to coax them out of their popsicle-like state. While I was waiting, a gentleman came in from the wintry weather and stood behind me. He was on his phone. Speaking French. In a very deep and masculine voice.

Naturally, I turned around to check him out. He was much shorter than I—everyone is shorter than I. Maybe five-seven. Dark-complexioned. His dark hair was buzzed down nearly to the scalp. His equally dark eyebrows were thick and even, like brushstrokes. And oh my god, was he ever handsome.

Long-time readers know that I don’t usually buy into the nonsense in which guys automatically count themselves out of the running with Oh, that guy’s WAY out of my league!, but holy fuck, this guy was totally out of my league. His was the kind of masculine beauty that makes jaws drop. The fact he was wearing a heavy trench coat and business attire beneath only made him more compelling. I was trying to be casual about checking him out as he continued to parlez with his phone partner, but as he talked, our eyes met. Then the woman behind the register asked to take my order.

Once I was done with the transaction and standing by the pickup counter, I took a deep breath and checked out the guy again. He was staring right at me. While part of my brain was very calm and matter-of-fact about his scrutiny, some high school girl inside my brain was jumping up and down and shrieking in panic. Oh my GOD he’s looking at me! Is he looking at me? Why is he looking at me? Is he? He IS? Oh my GOD!

Yeah, I know. Not my proudest moment. But wait. It gets worse.

So I collected my coffee-adjacent beverage and managed to navigate across the shop without tripping over myself or biting my lip with my braces or any of the other things Jan Brady might have done in such a situation, and found a seat on the cushioned bench that ran along the exterior plate glass. I was wearing a formal moleskin coat and a scarf of a length that makes Tom Baker’s neckwear look skimpy; it took me a while to untangle myself from it. By the time I had my coat open and my scarf untied and my gloves off, the person sitting immediately next to me had finished her coffee and left. Then I heard a very deep voice inflected with an unmistakable Gallic accent saying, “May I be cozy wiz you?”

I looked up, and the French guy was smiling at me. I KNOW. It was like one of the best dreams I’ve ever had, come true in the fading light of day. I looked into those big brown eyes of his, admired the faintest trace of stubble adorning his sculpted cheeks, and said in sultry tones, “Get as cozy as you like.”

Well. That’s what I wanted to say. When I thought of it a couple of minutes later. That’s what I should have said. What I actually said, as my suddenly useless tongue flopped out of my mouth like a particularly juicy St. Bernard’s, was this: “Hhhhnuuuuhh.” Then I moved over.

Oh yeah. It was real classy. He seemed a little startled to be slavered at by a mental defective, but he sat down and immediately pulled out his phone. Then he made another call in French while I moaned softly to myself and beat myself up internally and tried to pretend I had super-hot Frenchmen getting cozy with me all the damned time.

I didn’t say another word until I had to go, about ten minutes later. He and I had spent time checking each other out sideways in the meantime, as he conducted his call. He hung up just as I started collecting the three miles of my scarf. “Are you leaving so soon?” he purred.

I’d kind of planned for this moment. I intended to say something clever. Something witty. Something European. Something that would convey my lusty good sense of humor and my intention to land him flat on his back on the bed of his designer-decorated apartment. So I opened my mouth and “Huhh-huuh-huh!” came splatting out. Then I tittered like a geisha and went running out of the coffee shop with a flaming face.

Classy as shit, that’s what I am.

Considering getting your favorite unpaid blogger a last-minute Christmas gift? You could always get one for me too, while you’re at it!

Let’s get to some questions from readers. I haven’t done this in a while.

You are so full of yourself.

Wow. Ya think? No shit, Sherlock.

I mean, I spend time writing about me, myself and I on a regular basis for total strangers on the internet. How many months of getting a monitor tan while jacking off while reading me did it take for you to come to that brilliant conclusion?

Actually, you know who I find tends to tell someone else—anonymously, of course—that he’s full of himself? Someone whose life is sad and extremely empty, that’s who. Truth.

Is there a sexual experience you've had and, afterward thought, nope don't need to do that again? If so... what was it?

Scat. I would like to make clear I was on the giving end, not the receiving side of that particular fetish. The other fellow was in hog heaven, so to speak; I kept thinking that despite being the dominant partner, how humiliated and vulnerable I felt in that position.

So nope. Never again.

How does someone get to meet the breeder? :)

Proximity is a factor—it helps if you're in the metro NYC area. A willingness to work with me on finding a time and place is key. But hey, if you want to pay for a plane ticket and fly me to you and put me up for a couple of days, I'm game for that too!

I've met, and consequently written about, quite a few of my readers at this point. I think they'll testify that I am real and that I give a guy a very good time.

Have you ever misinterpreted someone's body language as sexual advances?

Oh, absolutely.

I started learning to read people in my early teens, when I was active at cruising spots like my local park and library. The ritual of sexual courtship in those places could be quite stylized, as men would pass each other multiple times, making eye contact and showing preference, through their body language and stance, for their intended mating partner. The strutting, the showing off, and then finally the consummation as the pair would wander off into the woods or down to the toilets, was like an episode of "Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom" that never made it to air.

But there were quite a few times, especially when I was younger, that I misinterpreted a friendly posture, open legs, an inviting smile, or a dangling hand as an invitation, when it probably wasn't. I also learned to read, by the blank stares or puzzlement when I would come close to these guys and they wouldn't understand why, when I was just plain wrong.

Nowadays I'm more apt to misread the kind of body language that's closed down or shut off or turned away as disinterest, when it's really the guy's lack of confidence to make known his desire for me.

If they were filming the story of your life, what would it be called?

Tales from the Slurp Ramp: The Peregrinations of a Sexual Adventurer, starring Bradley Cooper.

Monday, December 16, 2013

My Little Polish Snowman

Ordinarily, when a guy throws enough red flags in my path, I slam on the brakes. I’m sleazy, but I’m not stupid. Tell me about your arrest record, brag about those multiple restraining orders against you, get clingy and declare you’re in love with me and want to relocate after we’ve only exchanged a few sentences . . . I’m out of there.

Now, anyway. It took a lot of dumb decisions in my youth to figure out those super-obvious things. I had to get learn the hard way that ex-cons are often locked up for a reason, had to flop miserably at long-distance dating to realize it’s not for me, and as for the clingy stalkers . . . well, I’m still trying to figure out how to shake those. But I’m getting better. Nothing’s more effective as a learning technique than reaching into that fire and learning first-hand that it burns.

That’s why, twenty years ago, I wasn’t smart enough to avoid people like Jay. When I think about Jay, I picture a short Polish guy with a pencil mustache built like a kid’s snowman. One round ball for his little head, one round ball for his chest, and one big round ball for his belly and legs. I’m definitely being unfair to the guy. He was more muscle than lard. It’s undeniable, however, that he was a squat little ball of a guy, no more than five-foot-three or four, sporting a military brush cut and a pencil baby fuzz mustache on his upper lip.

I met him on AOL, back in the day when AOL was a happening place and if you were doing anything online, you and your 2400-baud modem were there. (That “You’ve got mail!” voice still haunts me.) He sent me a digital photograph of himself in his old Army uniform—which was an unusual thing to send, because this was before every cell phone had its own camera. If you had a cell phone, that is. Most people didn’t. This was a time even before cheap web cams; he’d scanned the shot using some kind of device attached to a dot matrix printer that read the photo line by line and saved it as a pixelated image.

I was pretty impressed at his technical derring-do. Those primitive scanners took hours and hours to produce digital photos. There was very little one could do with one’s computer while it was chugging away . . . save for kick back and listen to the Victrola whilst looking at rotogravures of Teddy Roosevelt. Yes, I am old. You don’t have to tell me. Jay’s photo, in the end, resembled a mass of bleeding grays with a round little snowman in the foreground. It looked like a freshly-printed Victorian engraving left out in the rain.

But I was young, and I was horny, and he didn’t live so far away, so I started seeing him.

Jay was cheating on his partner. They were one of those annoying pairs who, in bars and public gatherings of the gays, would hold hands and talk about how wonderful their love was and how they believed in the sanctity of monogamy and how amazing it had been when they had been handfasted in a meadow by some kind of hippie-dippie minister. Yes, I actually saw the whole nauseating act in public several times, after I started fucking Jay. A friend of mine at the time was big into the gay country line dancing scene. I know, I know—about half of you are asking Why?! It was big in Detroit at the time. No, I don’t know how that happened, either. Anyway, I would accompany my friend to a bar called Diamond Jim’s about once a month so that he could spin around in his shiny cowboy boots to “Achey Breaky Heart” while I checked out the butts on the other guys. It was a win-win for everyone involved, basically.

Eventually Jay and his partner would walk in. Diamond Jim’s was their hangout. Jay would avert his eyes at the sight of me, cling more tightly to his boyfriend’s hand, and lay his head on the boyfriend’s shoulder. They were happy. No, they were a picture of bliss. Contentment was their lot. They only had eyes for each other. Then Monday would roll around and I’d be fucking Jay all over the lovebirds’ nest, giving him the nasty sex he wasn’t getting from the boyfriend and making him squeal like a stuck pig.

(Later on I fucked the boyfriend, too. But that was years after Jay. And it’s a whole ‘nudder story.)

And hoo boy, the sex was naaaaasty. That alone was the reason I kept coming back, over and over, for about three years. I held a dual teaching and administrative position then, and had vague enough duties and little enough supervision that all I had to do on a day with no classes was mutter something along the lines of, “I have to go over to the medical campus for the morning,” and then basically take off a few hours to go fuck someone. I’d drive to Jay’s place in the suburbs, walk in his back door, and find him totally naked save for a harness, ass in the air, his greasy rosebud twitching around and clamping onto the handgrip of a cordless drill. Or I’d find that he’d stripped, blindfolded himself, tied his hands with a length of rope and thrown it around the clothes washer in a way that rendered him effectively helpless.

Sometimes I’d find him on the kitchen floor, round little legs up in the air and face contorted as he forced giant cukes and even eggplants up his hole. A couple of times I discovered him in his dog’s cage, wearing a collar and lapping water out of a bowl. Didn’t matter how I found him. Every single time I made damned sure that he ended up spread-eagled with eight inches of my unwrapped dick shoved in deep. The little fucker loved my dick. He would keep up a running commentary as I speared him with it. “Oh FUCK, that head is SCRAPING MY GUTS!” he’d yell.

For someone who lived in a quiet suburban neighborhood with neighbors not too distant on either side, and for someone who was all wuvey-dovey with his boyfriend at every opportunity, he certainly didn’t make much effort to keep from yelling these things at the top of his lungs. The ceilings would ring with “God DAMN you are BUSTING MY PUSSY WIDE OPEN!” or “Just FUCK your little boy with THAT CUNT SMASHER! FUCK ME, DADDY!” At the time I had already transformed from someone who dabbled at topping to someone who really knew and liked what he was doing. I was flushed with pride at having this little ex-Army guy screaming “JESUS CHRIST you fuck me SO MUCH BETTER THAN MY BOYFRIEND and CHRIST your COCK is SO MUCH BIGGER!” while I nailed him. And I nailed that little fucker everywhere in that house. Floors. Kitchen counters. All the furniture in the living room. The guest bedroom. Their bedroom. After I’d bred him he’d squeeze out the spunk in his ass onto the coffee table or bathroom floor and lick it up, then jack off onto my feet or my loafers and slurp them clean. I had my own little nasty whore bottom who stroked my ego and inflated my dick, and for a while it was good.

Yet I was ignoring the danger signs. Afterward, when my footwear was sparkling and my cock was spent, Jay would start talking. And talking. And talking. The dude never shut up. Mouthy as he was during sex, once he’d lapped up the last drop of cum like a good puppy, he’d start yapping and never shut up. I would have to edge toward the door inch by inch, as politely I waited for him to come to a natural break in the story so that I could make my escape. I know, I was stupid, trying to be polite. It’s lost on some people. Those breaks never fucking came, and I’d find the morning turning into noon turning in the afternoon with the two of us standing there while he battered me with his personal history.

Most of his stories had to do with affronts he endured from business establishments around town who DARED to be RUDE to him. He would launch into an endless story about a waitress in a pancake restaurant to whom he gave a perfectly ‘legitimate’ seven percent tip who tossed a snarl his way when he exited, which made him confront her about her ATTITUDE and then how he DEMANDED THE MANAGER FIRE HER ASS. Or some mechanic at the quick-lube oil change tried to RIP HIM OFF and STEAL STUFF from his GLOVE BOX while he was in the waiting room and you really have to WATCH THOSE MONKEYS OR THEY’LL RIP YOU OFF FOR EVERYTHING YOU’VE GOT.

These days, I would’ve listened to one of those stories with narrowed eyes, excused myself, and erased the guy’s number from my phone. Back then, I would pretend to listen, nod, and think, I wonder if he’s got any military gear still? And if so, would he wear it when we boink?

There was one story in particular that he repeated several times about how he used to work at one of the city’s bathhouses for about, oh, two weeks. He had to keep the job from his boyfriend, who wouldn’t have approved of him picking up condoms from men’s changing rooms or mopping the cummy communal floors of the movie room. But that was okay, because they paid him under the table, in cash. But then one day he was walking by the pool and this old fart just reached out and TOUCHED HIM on the ARM. RIGHT THERE. LIKE THAT! He couldn’t BELIEVE he was being DISRESPECTED LIKE THAT so he PUNCHED THE GUY IN THE NOSE and BROKE IT. Well, he was BLEEDING A LOT, anyway. Then, could you BELIEVE IT, the manager of the bathhouse FIRED HIM ON THE SPOT when it was OBVIOUS that HE, a VETERAN, was the one being DISRESPECTED.

I would listen to this familiar tale with deep sympathy for the bathhouse, thinking to myself that yeah, managers usually don’t want their employees socking paying clients in the face and breaking their noses. Especially in a shady establishment in which married men and politicians and teachers and priests and bankers and businessmen were having illicit sex—an establishment that probably didn’t want the police roaming its halls. Right? But I’d keep my mouth shut and think to myself, My dick’s kind of hard. I wonder if I could go again.

I don’t know how I put up with Jay for three years. I wasn’t hard up for fucks; I never have been. It’s just that the sex was so loud and hot, and his ass was so round and sweet, and I loved slamming my little Polish snowman. But then came the day it all ended.

We were fucking in his spare bedroom. It was a fussy chamber dominated by a massive antique four-poster bed. The thing had a tester on the top that was printed with blue flowers and was dripping with lace; there were matching pillowcases trimmed so thickly with the same lace that I don’t know how anyone slept on them without scratching open his face. An old quilt in an antique ivory color covered the bed. Up around the flowery pillows were a number of old dolls of the Madame Alexander variety. We’d fucked here a couple of times and every time I’d entered it, I would think to myself, Damn, this room is faggy.

So were going at it. I had my pants dropped to the floor and my work shirt open. He was naked, his hole turned into a gape by my cock as I rammed in and out of him. I remember he was holding both his heels in the air with one hand, and beating the dusty mattress with the other as I stood at the foot of the bed, slamming in and out like a porn star. “JESUS CHRIST I need you to FUCKING RAPE ME!” he was yelling in his usual style. “MORE LUBE! MORE LUBE! GET IN ME ALL THE WAY DEEP FUCKER! I WANT YOUR DICK COMING OUT OF MY NOSTRILS!”

He reached over his head and retrieved a bottle from between the pillows. I slapped some of the water-based gunk onto my cock. I put more on his hole. He snatched the bottle back.

But he left me with a problem that is the bane of tops everywhere. Namely, the condition known as Slimy Fuck Hand. One of my hands was dry and normal. The one I’d used to slap on the lube was cold, clammy, and glistening with the stuff. Considerate bottoms have a hand towel nearby to combat the affliction. Jay was not a considerate bottom. I had to go back to work, so wiping it on my trousers (if they’d been up high enough, which they weren’t) or shirt wasn’t an option. I could’ve wiped it off on his legs or body, but that didn’t really solve anything. The next time I grabbed him there, I’d have Slimy Fuck Hand all over again.

So I did what I could to get back into the groove again. I reached out and wiped my hand dry on the bed covering. It was thoughtless, I admit. But it was necessary. If someone did the same thing in my home (even though I provide a hand towel), I wouldn’t really give a rip. My blanket is from Target. Chances are that once the boy pulls on his pants and leaves, I’m popping it the wash anyway.

However Jay wasn’t so easy going. He transformed from starving nymphomaniac to shrieking banshee in about zero-point-five seconds. “Jesus Christ was the FUCK ARE YOU DOING?” he started screaming at me, as he rose to his knees. “This is my GRANDMOTHER’S HEIRLOOM QUILT that she made with her VERY OWN HANDS when she was STILL LIVING IN THE HOMELAND YOU FUCKING FUCKWIT.” My jaw dropped as spittle flew from his mouth and his face turned beet red. “You think I can just WASH THAT WITH TIDE?! Don’t you know how VALUABLE IT IS?!”

On and on he went , foaming at the mouth and growing angrier and angrier with me. I thought about the mechanics in the garage, and about the stiffed waitress, and especially about the guy with the broken (or at least bloody) nose, and buttoned my shirt and stuffed it back into my pants. When he paused to take a breath, I finally asked him, for the first time in three years after one of his imaginary outrages, a sensible question. “If it’s so irreplaceable, why the hell are you fucking on it? Put that shit away if you don’t want it to get dirty.” Then, while he was stunned at my backtalk, I turned and walked out of the room, down the hallway, and out the front door.

He followed yelling at the top of his voice. “YEAH YOU BETTER RUN AWAY, LITTLE GIRL. LITTLE GIRL RUNNING AWAY! NEXT TIME I SEE YOU I’M GOING TO SHOW YOU WHAT I THINK OF YOU, YOU FUCKING PUNK!” And other delightful hits from his repertoire.

I never saw Jay again.

Naked, that is. I did see him out in public with the boyfriend, up until the time I moved from Detroit. I know that he came to his senses within the week and wanted to pick up where we’d left off. But he didn’t apologize for flying off the handle at me, and I wasn’t so desperate for his hole that I was willing to overlook the dangerous flaws to which I was no longer oblivious. On AOL I’d tell him no thanks, or just ignore his emails. In public I’d avoid him. He didn’t want to raise his boyfriend’s suspicions, so he wouldn’t push it when he saw me at the bar. Just like that, it was over.

There’s a lot of bottoms needing cock. Hell, forget tops and bottoms. There’s a lot of sex to be had. Your chances of getting some aren’t going to evaporate if you give up partners who are incompatible or unenjoyable or, let’s be frank, who are totally unstable.

Jay might’ve been something of an oddball, but it was from him that I learned a valuable lesson: ditch the crazy and move on to the next available ass. It’s out there waiting.

Friday, December 13, 2013

On Spencer

I can’t evade thoughts of Spencer, this week. It’s been a year and three months since I last saw him mere days before he moved to Europe to finish his education and pursue a career. A year and a half earlier, I’d left him to move to the east coast. But oh, during that long year when I was alone and trying to sell my house to make that move, he and I were inseparable. For the better part of a year he slept in my bed, ate the meals I made just for him. He returned my kisses. When we made love, he surrendered completely.

How can I escape Spencer? His presence lingers still as a tall and broad-shouldered apparition who wanders through my life with proud and graceful steps. I see him sprawled on my sofa, his toes pointed to the ceiling as he practices in the air the nimble legwork he picked up in ballet practice that afternoon. I see the books he gave me on the shelf by my bed, every time I rise in the morning and right before I crawl into the sheets after dark. Every time Spencer watched me dole out dried mackerel flakes to the cats as a treat, he’d wrinkle his nose and exclaim, It smells like a Korean whorehouse in here! I say aloud the same words now, almost nightly, as I divide up a palmful of the stuff.

I still have an old bottle of his lotion beneath my bathroom sink, left over from before the move. There are some days I’ll sit on the edge of the tub, pop the cap, and remember his scent. Just for a moment, though. Then I attempt to stuff the hundred pounds of pain I’ll feel back into the seventy-five-pound container that’s all I have for it, and attempt to ignore the overflow.

Originally I’d intended to write something sexy this week, but my plans went off the tracks over the weekend. I was already having one of those frustrating days when nothing’s absolutely wrong, but everything wasn’t really going my way. If I set something down, it was certain to spill or tumble; if I looked for milk in the fridge, the carton was sure to be empty save for a teaspoon. The clock stopped. All the batteries in every remote conked out. The mail contained nothing but bills. Then I sat down with my laptop, opened up one of my personal pages of social media, and saw that Spencer was getting married and staying in Europe.

I’d suspected it was coming. He was finishing his program this month and hadn’t made any noises about coming home or about what he’d be doing after he was done. Instead, he’d moved into a new apartment with a new roommate. He’d made a couple of vague posts that sounded domestic. I wondered if he was seeing the guy with whom he’d moved in. I didn’t ask, though. I didn’t want to hear the answer.

To find out that he was planning to marry the guy, though, came as a shock. After all the mild disappointments of the day, the news hit me in the midsection like a baseball bat. I sat in my chair for a minute, stunned. Then I had my first, genuine reaction: Well, good for him. I’d managed to run across his announcement just moments after he’d posted it. My congratulations were the first he received.

I hit return. I bathed for a moment in all my memories of Spencer—the nights of lovemaking, the evenings watching television, the long snowy days when we cuddled beneath blankets and talked into the night. I let it all flood over me, losing track of the real world as every sense and sound and relived joy roared past. Then I came to, and numbly thought, Well, that’s that. This time, though, it felt as if I had to pack away two tons of sadness with only the same old seventy-five pound container.

All week I dragged the remnants behind me like Jacob Marley’s chain.

I keep going back to the moment when I found out, and parsing my reaction. I was genuinely glad for him. Spencer is amazing, and talented. I want him to be enormously happy and successful; he deserves to be with someone who understands and wants him and who can take care of him in a way I couldn’t—in a way that doesn’t have an expiration date built into it, anyway. He needs that. I was happy for Spencer first, and mournful for myself second. That’s the absolutely correct order.
Spencer was unexpected joy during a dismal time in my life. He made a dark year not merely bearable, but wonderful. Special. I’ll never stop loving him for the light he brought into my life, or for the laughter and passion we shared in equal amounts.

We were both lost boys when we clung naked to each other. Now he’s been found and taken home. Still, I think neither of us will entirely forget those cold nights made warm by being in each other’s arms. Nor will I ever be rid of his shadow as it tiptoes through my life from time to time, reminding me of the beautiful dancer who once, for a time, was mine.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Friday Open Forum: The Micromanager

Taking a six to eight weeks hiatus from my sex life—rather unwillingly, I might add—does a couple of things to a guy. For one, I was feeling so decidedly unsexy during the whole sick spell that I didn’t so much as masturbate the entire time. (To be honest, I was feeling so poorly that I didn’t even miss it.) After a month and a half-ish of abstinence, when my health roared back, my erection roared with it; I almost needed a bucket and a mop to clean up the load from that first orgasm. Whew.

For another, it gave me a little distance and perspective on some issues I’d been taking for granted, over the last few years. Some of those I’m still thinking about. I’d like to address one of them, though, and get some reader feedback as well.

Every online site that I know (not to imply that I sniff haughtily and turn up my nose at others) has some kind of function that allows a member to control who sees his photo. At the most basic, it allows him to set some photos to public, and some to private. Usually—unless there are explicit instructions on the website detailing that certain types of photos should not be visible to everyone—I leave all my photos open. Anybody can see them. Face, dick, the whole thing. In part I do so because I have a philosophy that I’m not really ashamed of who I am as a person, including my, shall we say, rather vibrant libido.

I think I mentioned that when I first moved to the tri-state area I got a lecture from someone online—I think it was on Manhunt—who was absolutely appalled that I would allow a shot of my erect dick to appear next to my smiling mug. “That’s just not the way we do things here!” he shuddered, in what was the online Manhunt equivalent of fanning himself, reaching for his smelling salts, and groping delicately for a fainting couch.

Fuck that. I think most grown adults are capable of imagining that other adult men not only have dicks of their own, but that sometimes they get erect and need attention. A dick is nothing of which to be ashamed. It’s a body part, like an elbow. I’m not ashamed of my face, of my nose, or of my junk. I’m not ashamed of being a sexual person. Besides, anyone who’s cruising Manhunt or any sex site isn’t there to exchange Christmas cookie recipes or talk about comparative religion. Anyone protesting about seeing a hard penis doth protest too much.

The primary reason I went to all open photos a few years back, though, is because managing that dance of who unlocks first and when and why is just so tiring. One of the guys has to say unlock plz. Then the other has to say u first. Then there’s no u and i dont go 1st!! Sometimes there’s a standoff of epic proportions, a electronic peen-fight of chicken in which the loser has to unlock first and face the possibility of the other guy finding him unattractive . . . and the subsequent empty moment in which he realizes that the guy has blocked him, rejected him, and moved on to someone else. I figure that by letting guys see all of my photos, face, body, and dick alike, they can figure out on their own whether they want to make a further move. I’m spared having to exert my psychic powers and the services of the Delphic oracle to augur when might be the best strategic moment to unlock for the guy.

Here’s the thing I’ve noticed since I began looking around online again, though. I have absolutely no patience for men who micromanage their photos.

You probably know the type. They’re the ones on Manhunt who write long paragraphs in their profiles that in effect say, No offense but I lock my photos every time before I log off, so if you want to see them again, you will have to ask me. On BBRT and Adam4Adam in particular they have an annoying habit of unlocking and then locking again on some kind of accelerated internal time clock that seems to be connected to how quickly they want me to respond.

Yesterday, for example, I was doing some legitimate work in another window of my laptop and tabbed over to my browser, where on A4A a guy had unlocked his photos for me. I looked at his profile. All the photos were locked. A minute later, I got another blinking note that the same guy had unlocked his photos for me. Now, my response time wasn’t sluggardly; I clicked on his profile in less than thirty seconds after I received the email. But there they were, locked again. I know it wasn’t a server error, either, because I wrote the guy the note that read Why do you keep locking your photos immediately after unlocking them? and got back the answer maybe u aren’t looking quick enough.

Fuck that, too. I blocked the guy.

I can speculate endlessly on the reasons guys micromanage their photos—who can see them, who can’t, for how long they allow the photos to be visible. A lot of the men, however, seem really to get off on the notion that guys are begging them to unlock—as if the number of requests they generate through denial is directly proportional to their virility and desirability. And some seem to be genuinely paranoid about what I might do with those photos, which in itself shows a mistrust I find borderline offensive.

Look. Your photos are your photos, on these website. I fully support a guy’s right to set his own pictures to private. I encourage anyone to show online only what he’s comfortable sharing. That’s totally his right, and his business. But I swear to god, when a guy starts toinking around with viewing privileges and letting me see only the one out-of-focus shot of his upper thigh in a murky bathroom in the middle of the night in a February winter when he’s got seven other locked photos of which I might’ve gotten a brief glance before he snapped them shut again . . . well, I’ve discovered in the last couple of weeks that I’ve just lost the patience for that kind of gamesmanship.

So I’m asking those of you guys who are confident to post photos online. What do you think about those who keep a tight rein on unlocking and relocking photos? Or if you’re one of the folk who relock frequently, what’re your reasons for doing so? And if all your photos are open and visible, why haven’t you shared the link with me yet? Sound off in the comments for today’s open forum!

Monday, December 2, 2013

The Lower Level

The apartment building lobby is the plainest of the plain. Beige walls. Beige mailboxes near the doors. Beige carpet leading to beige staircases, everything inoffensive to the eye. No matter. I’m not here for the interior decorating.

I take the stairs to the lower level and follow the hallway to the higher numbers. We’d arranged the tryst the night before, when I told him I’d be dropping the family at the train station early in the morning. I’ll put the key under the mat before I go to bed, he wrote me. How about you just come on in and get into bed with me. When I pull back the plastic mat in front of his door, it’s lying there, metallic and shiny. I slide it into the knob, twist, and feel the lock release. I ease the door open, step inside, and leave the key on the front table.

The living room’s neat and inexpensively furnished. He’s drawn the blinds and curtains tight so that very little light leaks through. The CD tower, the computer desk, the back of the sofa are all silhouettes. Across the carpet I shuffle, past the kitchen and the bathroom and down the short hallway to the end. It’s stuffy in here; he keeps the heat high.

He’s beneath a thick duvet. I can see his close-cropped short hair in the dark, but not much else. He’s still as I stand by the bed and remove my shoes, my socks, my sweater. He’s breathing deeply. Perhaps he’s faking, but it sounds as if he’s fast asleep.

That won’t last long.

I remove my T-shirt. Unbuckle my belt. It makes a faint metallic sound as it and my pants slide to the floor. I step out of my trunks. The only things I’m wearing now are a cock ring and a smirk. He stirs a little when his naked flesh is exposed to air. It’s only a few minutes after seven in the morning. I’m still pretty sure he’s sleeping—or he’s doing a mighty fine job of faking it.

I pause to admire his body. It’s a crapshoot with photos online, you know. Some are old, some are deceptive. Some guys just photograph better than they appear in person, and it’s only afterward that you go back to the pics and see all the things that should’ve been obvious on the first viewing: the clever angle that hides the paunch, the body stretch that hides the hunched shoulders, the bad skin that’s been smoothed by a blur. This guy hasn’t deceived me in the least. His photos showed a lean and athletic Latin man with face stubble trimmed in a Nike swoop across his chin, fit and fine.

And that’s exactly what he is. One of his arms lies by his side while the other clutches the pillow. They’re as muscular as his photos, bulging in a way that makes my cock stir. His ass is a marvel of worked-out roundness. There’s a trace of fur across the cheeks, and a valley of the stuff between them. He has one leg pulled up so that I can almost—almost—see his hole.

I lay down on the white sheets next to him and pull the duvet over our bodies.

It’s warm beneath the heavy textiles. Warmer still when I slide behind him. My cock finds his crack, the hardness of it nuzzling the furry crack. My right arm burrows beneath the pillow as my left surrounds his chest. I pull him close to me. It’s then that he begins to waken—or to do an Oscar-worthy imitation of it. He startles; I see his head jerk to see who’s joined him. Either he recognizes me in the near-dark, or he remembers his promises of the night before, because he settles, then melts into me.

I’m kissing the back of his neck, running the flat of my hand up and over the bristles of his hair. His shoulders are broad; I run my palms over their natural bulk, down his biceps, over the light hair of his forearms. My left hand grabs at his ass, squeezing it, stroking it, grabbing at it. When I pull apart his cheeks, my cock hones in on its target, rubbing against the outermost ring of his hole.

He curses softly, and buries his face in the pillow.

I slide down between his legs. I hear him moan a little bit as my hands pull apart his ass. It’s mine, this ass. He’s giving it to me. He’s pushing it up against my breath, humping the mattress fruitlessly in need and frustration. I know he can feel my hot breath against his skin. I know he can feel my beard against his flesh, prickling when he moves against it. Desire is making him anxious. Even his respiration increases. If I laid my hand on his chest, I’d feel his heart fluttering like a bird.

I pull apart his ass and dive in with my face. His hole tastes good. It’s lightly sweaty from a good night’s sleep, but it’s obviously clean. He reacts as if he’s never had it eaten before. Bucks. Whimpers. Lets loose with a torrent of Spanish I don’t really understand. I don’t need to brush up on my high school foreign language skills, though. I know what he’s telling me by the way he pushes, by the way his hole opens for my tongue. He clutches at his pillow as he would a lover. I manhandle his cheeks. I don’t care if my paws leave prints on that round butt. He can’t complain. He knew, when he left that key beneath his apartment mat on the lower level, that I’d take ownership.

For long minutes I chew at his hole. My lips and teeth draw it out, make it wink at me. His breath is increasingly short and raspy. My own cock is retribution itself, stiff and red and angry. Pre-cum is soaking his sheets. I want to punish him for making me this way, for making me need release in these wet and puffy ass lips. I flip him over so that he’s on his back, then rise between his legs. It’s the first time I’ve seen him face to face. His eyes are dark and round obsidian, glinting in what morning light has infiltrated the bedroom. There’s that little swoop of facial hair, the obscenely handsome face. His chest is hair-free, but lightly freckled. There’s a trail of fur leading down from his navel, though, and he lifts his hairy legs into the air without my having to ask. I stare at him while I spit in my hand and mix it with the lube my dick’s already been pumping out on my own.

He must have been doing the same to me. His eyes finish their dance across my face and body. “God damn,” he whispers at me. “You are a hot daddy.”

“You know what I’m here for, boy,” I whisper back. They’re the first words we’ve uttered to each other.

I can see him gulp and strain to try to look at my dick. I’ve already seized his ankles with my left hand, however, as I’ve guided my cock to his hole. It’s engorged with lust for the guy. It wants to split him wide open.

“You ready?” I ask.

He bites his lip. Nods. Then his head jerks back. He gargles out incomprehensible noises as I slide into that wet, tight hole.

His ass wraps around my meat tightly in a hot embrace. His body shakes. Struggles. Then I pass through his tight inner ring; I can feel it stretch and open around my head.

I pause. When I loom over him and brace myself on the mattress, my face directly over his, he stares up at me with half-closed eyes. “Thank you,” he whispers. He looks almost drugged, but I know that expression well. It’s the expression boys wear when they’re truly in the moment, feeling full and complete and in love with my dick. Hell, I challenge myself to make every man wear that look, every time I fuck.

“You’re welcome, son,” I say softly. Then, as he clings to my arms, I drive the rest of my inches home.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

From the Archives: Faculty Party

I sat down this evening to write about an incident from my youth that had been on my mind for the last couple of days. I got a couple of paragraphs in, and then thought to myself, "Hey, maybe you'd better check to see if you've written about this guy before." Surely enough, I had, two years ago. Sigh.

Apparently the story wants to be repeated again, though. So here it is once more.

To my readers in the U.S., I wish you guys a happy Thanksgiving. And to everyone else, I wish you many things for which to be thankful.

When I was a kid during the nineteen-seventies, would occasionally throw end-of-semester Christmas parties in our home right before the holidays started.

Days before the party they'd start making a go of cleaning the living room, though for neither of them was tidiness ever a strong point. They weren't drinkers, but the colleagues and students they'd invite to these yearly shindigs would show up laden with spirits, and there'd be leftovers. Our basement bathroom—a mildewy, forbidding place that seemed so much like the movie set of a serial killing that I'm still reluctant to enter it when I visit my dad's home—was filled with liquor bottles that we'd begin hauling up the night before, until the dining room table was crowded with liquids of different colors (and of dubious age). My mother's ash trays got a thorough cleaning and the good ones were strewn around strategic places; my dad would pull out a bunch of LPs and eight-track tapes and have them stacked by the stereo.

My mom would spend an afternoon in the kitchen with cans and an opener and a jar of mayonnaise and emerge with space-aged canapés. The cats were banished outdoors. After a cold dinner, and before the doorbell would ring, I'd be sent to my room for the evening. Faculty parties were not for the young.

They were exotic, especially when I was fairly young. From my room, with a book in my lap, I'd listen to the swinging strains of psychedelia on the stereo, often improbably mixed with Nat King Cole singing Christmas carols, or Peter, Paul, and Mary. I'd listen to the laughter and smell the cigarette smoke and the clink of the liquor bottles and the increasingly loud and inebriated conversation and think to myself, This is what being grown up is all about.

My parents' guests were usually two-thirds other faculty from the university, and the rest were upper-level undergrads or graduate students. One of the things I used to do as a ritual, after the party had started, would be to go through their coats. They all lay there on my parents' beds, taken upstairs and tossed on the mattresses upon entering. When it was quiet upstairs, I'd tiptoe out and into my parents' room and just examine what their colleagues and students were carrying in their pockets. Mostly it was boring stuff like keys, or small change, or cellophane-wrapped Kraft caramels. Once in a while I'd stumble upon cigarettes, or more frequently, tiny little unsmoked joints tucked away in breast pockets, acrid-smelling and spilling weed from their twisted ends.

I had to time my stealthy investigations right. More often than not I'd be interrupted, either by hapless students looking for the bathroom, or couples (not always married, not always of the same generation) looking for a private tryst among the coats. I wouldn't say that my parents' parties were orgies, exactly, but they had their share of fucking. In the bedroom, among the wraps. In the spare bedroom, on the rusty twin bed that had been my father's as a boy. Outside in the back yard, behind the massive brick nineteen-fifties barbecue. In the basement, or down the outside cellar steps.

And once, in my room.

I was pretty young the night that Dr. Jones came into my bedroom. It was late—late enough that I'd given up watching the little portable TV from the kitchen that my parents had lugged up to my room for me to watch that evening, and had gotten into bed, but not so late that I was asleep. I had a book in my lap, and my knees propped up, and had stripped down to a T-shirt and briefs. Then my door opened. "Anyone home?" asked a tall black man. He slipped in quietly, raised a finger to his mouth to indicate I not say anything, and then made a pantomime of tiptoeing to my bed.

I knew Dr. Jones from my dad's office. They were in the same department; I'd seen him a couple of times a year since I'd been five or six—enough to recognize the face and associate a name, but not enough that we'd ever actually spoken. I raised my eyebrows. I think I told him that the bathroom was on the other side of the upstairs hall.

"Oh, I'm not here for the bathroom," he said. The man sat down on the edge of my bed. He was in his forties or fifties, and had a grizzled beard limned with white; it looked like his halo had slipped over his head and around his neck. An oversized mole decorated his dark, dark skin on his forehead; he had a large, nineteen-seventies Afro shot with gray perched like a helmet on his head. "Just needed to get away from the party."

He reeked of alcohol. His eyes, though unwavering as he stared at me, had that liquid sheen of the thoroughly inebriated. I nodded, and waited for him to say something.

"So," he started, putting his hand on my knee. Then, finding that awkward, he removed it. "You're just . . . sitting up here, real quiet?" I told him I was. "Must be real nice to be up here, where it's . . . quiet."

Again, his hand landed on my leg. This time, it made its way up to my thigh. Dr. Jones might have been an expert in African history, but subtle he was not. "What you doing there, boy?" he asked, when he reached my hip.

"Nothing," I told him. Despite myself, my boner was raging beneath the covers.

"You must be doing something, if you're making me do this." He pulled down the sheets. "I didn't come up here thinking I was going to do this. Must be you making me do it."

Maybe that kind of talk worked on other young guys, but I saw through it. His big hands pulled apart my legs, right below the knee. I didn't resist "You are a real pretty boy," he told me. "Real, real pretty. You got that creamy skin I like so much. Don't be scared, now." He talked like Barry White on a quiet storm radio station after midnight, and I have to confess that I was more aroused than frightened. "You got those pretty blue eyes, looking at me like that. You're making me do this," he said. "It ain't me, baby."

His lips were on my calf, my knee, my groin, and then he was pulling up my T-shirt and yanking on my briefs. I heard the crackling of their elastic as he yanked them down, hard. My barely-teen cock flopped out of the cotton and slapped audibly against my belly. "See what you gone and did?" he asked, breathing heavily on my twitching, hard flesh. "You made me do this."

Dr. Jones roughly grabbed my balls, almost making me yelp out in pain. Then his mouth engulfed my dick. I'd had sex by that point, a few times. Even in my limited experience I could tell he wasn't the best of my encounters. He used too much teeth; he created too much suction rather than let his mouth and lips travel up and down the shaft. He was simply too drunk to do much good.

But a blow job was a blow job, and I'd spent the evening waiting for the party to end so I could turn out my lights and masturbate and get to sleep. A stranger's mouth on me was even better than that. It didn't take very long before my young nuts were retracting and my dick started to pulse out a tiny load of semen. Dr. Jones swallowed it all. "Fuck," he said. "See what you did?"

He mumbled another sentence or two into my balls, as he nuzzled there. Then he was very, very still.

He was asleep, in fact.

Apparently no one from the party noticed he was missing for over an hour. Not until people were starting to drift off into the December night did my father come into my room. "Have you seen—?" he asked, and then saw himself what he was looking for. Dr. Jones, sprawled on his back, head lolling over the mattress edge, arms at his side, snoring loudly at the very bottom of the bed where I'd rolled him. "Gawrsh," said my dad. He rolled his eyes.

I shrugged, trying to make it seem as if I were used to adults passing out on my bed every night of the week.

"Was he a pain?" My dad dipped down and grabbed his colleague beneath the arms, trying to stand him to his feet. I told him that he wasn't, not really. "Come on, Lamont," he said, shaking the older man. "Time to go home."

Dr. Jones hadn't stirred up the entire time he'd slumbered, after that hasty blow job he'd given me. He opened his eyes in confusion, saw my dad, saw me, and then became very suddenly and drunkenly awake.

"It's okay," said my dad, gently escorting him from the room. "Come on. We'll get you some coffee."

And that was my one and only encounter with Dr. Jones. I got the impression he was never really sure of exactly what we'd done, if anything; his memory was probably hazy of those confused few minutes before he passed out. Whenever I'd pass him with one of my parents in the department offices, he'd blink at me and work his lips as if he wanted to say something, but couldn't quite decide what. I, in the meantime, would only smile in the same way I smiled at any of my parents' colleagues, without betraying what happened between us.

If he thought it was a fantasy—well, at least he had a hell of a good fantasy.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A Flipped Switch

During my lengthy and delirious illness last month, at least I managed to bring a little comedy into the household. There was the time, for example, that I decided it would be nice for everyone in the immediate vicinity if I took a shower. I got up, blundered into the bathroom, turned on the faucets, and then went back to bed to wait for the water to warm up . . . then I promptly fell asleep for ninety minutes. On the minus side of that, all the walls of my flat were moist for the rest of the evening. On the plus side, no one complained about dry skin for a few days.

I also discovered that an extended illness makes me even more absent-minded than usual—and here we’re already talking about a pretty high baseline in which I’m doddering around mumbling, What was I about to do next? or Where are my pants? or What month is it? I got up one morning determined to be helpful, emptied a can of food onto a plate for the cats, and then left it for some reason on top of a bedroom dresser. (The cats found it, eventually.) I put a DVD box set in the refrigerator, and left a half-full container of ice cream in a cupboard. (The cats found that eventually, too.)

But I think the oddest mistake I made during those long weeks was when I accidentally switched from top to bottom for a couple of weeks. That was interesting.

I think I did it on one of my more feverish days. I logged into a site and saw that for some reason, the little ‘About me’ box still had some travel plans listed in it from, well, 2012. I went to change it. Somehow I managed to do so. But along the way, the same way I ended up putting ice cream next to the spaghetti in a cupboard, I managed to change a menu item from top to bottom.

And I didn’t notice, or even think about it, for a few days. I was feeling decidedly unsexy during my illness. I think it was the first time in my life I’ve gone a month without even so much as an erection. I wasn’t online much. If I was, it was to look at the pretty pictures, not because I was actively cruising. But a couple of days after I think I made my little error, I started to get emails from guys I’d never seen before.

Nice dick, but what’s your ass like? one guy wanted to know.

Damn boy I want to shove this dick up that tiny pink hole, said another.

U pretty. how hard u like 2 b fucked son? read the third. By that time, I was kind of noticing a pattern here. (Actually, I was busy blushing and modestly muttering, “Pretty? Son? Oh, go on,” at the last guy’s mail.) At first I ascribed it to something in the air—some random alignment of the stars that was making all the guys in the area feel more toppish than usual. It took me a full week to figure out I’d been a dumbass who’d accidentally flipped the switch on my profile.

By the time I’d actually clued in to what I’d done, though, I’d come to a couple of conclusions. The first was a gratifying realization that if I ever did decide to pack up my erection and take dick for a living, I at least wouldn’t be coming up totally dry. The second was that my bottomy profile seemed to attract a definite type—namely, uncut men of color.

I mean, some of the dicks on these guys who were messaging me about my little pink fuckhole were massive, meaty slabs of thick dark meat that made me look like a wee little tadpole in comparison. The men themselves were hot and handsome guys for the most part. Muscular. Built. Some in their twenties, some in their fifties, and lots from in between. Most of them were outspokenly aggressive. No white guys. Most were black, but there were a good number of Latin men in there as well.

And I kept looking at those profiles and thinking to myself, Damn, that is really tempting.
I’m not really sure what the attraction was on their part, unless it was the notion that they weren’t going to find a better contrast to their own skin than my lard-white complexion. I was flattered enough not to question it.

Don’t worry, full-time bottoms. I know you’ve got enough competition amongst yourselves without a fever-addled amateur mucking things up. I’m not flipping. If I were, though, at least I’d be consoled by the thought that I’d still be popular in some beds.

Friday, November 8, 2013

A Note on my Absence

Many of you—well, some of you at least—have been wondering where I’ve been for the past month. Was I dead? Did the stalkers get me? Did I at last come to my senses and make a devout vow to keep my dick in my pants and my hands off other men’s junk and never again to kneel on a floor except in godly prayer?

Nah. I was just sick.

It started off as one of those things in which I felt fragile and slightly delicate. Like some heroine in a regency romance, I wanted to fan myself, clutch the arm of a fainting couch, and declare that I’d been overcome with the vapors. Then the next thing I knew, I was flat on my back for roughly four weeks, staring at the ceiling and groggily wishing that someone could just put me into an induced coma and wake me up when it was all over. I had the chills, I had fevers, I had nightmares. Fun stuff.

Early in the month I managed to drag myself to the doctor. He looked me over, said I was dehydrated, and then sent me to the phlebotomist for blood work. The phlebotomist was a big German woman with her hair in a bun. “Sit!” she ordered, pointing me to her chair. I sat. “Roll up ze sleeves!” I rolled ‘em. Because she really did talk like that, and I was frightened to disobey. She reminded me of Frau Blücher in Young Frankenstein.

I watched as she poked and prodded the insides of my arms. “Vhy do you have no weins?” she wanted to know. “Make ze fist! Clench ze fist! Relax ze fist!” Her expert fingers felt like they were leaving bruises as she searched for the missing weins—I mean, veins. “You are dehydrated!” she announced at last, as if I’d done it on purpose just to spite her.

“Yes, the doctor said that,” I agreed.

“This is no good! No good!” she yelled at last. In the distance, horses whinnied and lightning flashed. She untied the length of elastic from around my right arm and tourniquetted it onto my left, then scowled as if she intended to scare the veins into appearing. They didn’t. Finally she prodded around some more. “Most men, they have big strong manly weins!” she told me. “You, though! You have leetle beety baby weins! For you I use leetle beety baby needle for your leetle beety baby weins!”

I felt obscurely defensive on behalf of my little bitty baby veins. “I’m big where it counts,” I protested.

Frau Blücher stared at me. Then she let out a hearty laugh that rocked the fillings right out of my teeth. “Beeg where it counts! Hah-hah-hah!”

So at least I made a new friend there.

The doctor didn’t do much for me other than refer me to a specialist, whom I couldn’t get in to see for a good two weeks. The specialist, however, gave me some much-coveted drugs that have been, knock wood, getting me back on track. That is, at least I’m spending most of my days upright rather than imprinting the fabric texture of my sofa onto my face while I drool and blankly watch The Chew.

When I’m sick, though, I really don’t feel like writing. There were times in my youth when I imagined to myself that should I ever be struck down by some fatal, lingering illness, that I’d use my remaining time to pen some touching, insightful, and beautifully-written memoir about my malady. Nope! I now know that if that time ever comes (knock wood again) I apparently will be the first to say, “Fuck that mess.” Then I’ll lie in my hospital bed scarfing down junk food. (Sadly, my appetite was the only thing unaffected last month.)

But when it’s difficult for me to string together anything more coherent than “More aspirin, please”, it’s tough to write blog entries. There were a couple of times I hauled out my laptop and contemplated posting something brief just to allay the fears of my readers, but then I’d think about the effort I’d have to put into pushing all those little keys and it would seem like way too much work for what I could manage.

Thanks to those of you who emailed or left comments while I was out of commission. As I said, I’m feeling somewhat better, and anticipate getting back to my normal energy levels soon. Bear with me while I get back to speed, would you?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


I was in tenth grade. I was fifteen. And I had a tortuous crush on my neighbor’s sixth-grade homeroom teacher.

For the nineteen-seventies, Mr. McConnell was a foxy man. He had a handlebar mustache and a wedge of brown hair that was flat on the top and puffed out in a wide arc to the sides of his head, only to be cut off below the ears. I thought he was dreamy. If today I saw a photo of him as he was then, I would probably think he looked like a porn star. But in the seventies, any man with a ‘stache, tight pants, an open shirt, and a little bit of chest hair looked like a porn star.

My crush began in the eighth grade, when I would encounter Mr. McConnell leading his columns of students, lined up two by two, from the lunchroom back to their class. We eighth graders would be on our way to our lunch shift. Every day we would pass in the hallway. I’d stare at him with unspeakable longing. Mind you, I was sexually active by then. I’d taken hundreds and hundreds of fucks. I was hopping on my bike and hitting the local parks for sex the minute I got home from school, most days. I’d worked sex parties for cash. I’d had a (sadly unconsummated) affair with my sixth-grade teacher, for the love of gawd. But when I was confronted with a crush, my reaction was to go slack-jawed. My mouth would dry up. My eyes would have the mournful expression of a bloodhound’s.

Little by little, I gleaned what small bits of information I could about him. He was thirty-six. He was married, though his wife lived in her native England. His first name was Nathaniel.

Oh, how I ached to be the boyfriend of Nathaniel McConnell of the handlebar mustache, the hairy knuckles. and the smooth, ironed shirts with the scoop-necked t-shirts underneath and the neatly-tied neckties hanging to his slim waist and with the alleged wife. I knew the wife was a myth, a cover, a beard. England? Whatever. It was almost as if he’d never heard of the my girlfriend, who lives in Canada cover. I could’ve made up better lies than that in my sleep.

Every day that year at 12:35 in the afternoon I would see him approaching, his class trailing behind him, and I would look at that impossibly handsome face and covet it for my own.

And then he started looking back.

It was about a month into the school year when it happened. He would search me out in the crowd as we approached each other, nail his eyes on mine, and then, at our perigee, the corners of his lips would raise into a smile. Day after day it would happen, so I was certain it was not a mistake. I would then go into lunch with butterflies in my stomach, unable to eat or concentrate. No wonder I was so skinny.

All through eighth and ninth grade we exchanged our daily glances and smiles, fleeting and sweet. When I would be walking alone in the halls and happened to encounter him, he would even sometimes bestow upon me a much-treasured ‘Hi there.’

And then, when I was in tenth grade—the high school and middle school shared the same building—my neighbor got him as her homeroom teacher. I was jealous. It drove me crazy that this twerp, this nobody, this little sixth grader got to see him every day and bask in his glorious mustachioed presence for hours at a time. I would grind my teeth whenever she dropped his name casually in conversation, with a “Oh, Mr. McConnell said this” here and a “Mr. McConnell thinks that” there. The only thing I wanted to hear was that Mr. McConnell said he wanted to strip me down and have his wicked way with me.

It was during the tenth grade that I was at the peak of my fascination with ancient Egypt as well; for years I’d wanted to be an archaeologist when I grew up. I’d seen it as my natural destiny, somehow. In fifth grade I won a city-wide art ‘what I want to be when I grow up’ contest with a watercolor self-portrait of myself posed in front of a pyramid. The prize involved someone from the administration erecting a pyramid in our school auditorium (it was made out of sticks and bedsheets, and its construction did not involve slave labor) and getting someone from the local museum to visit and give our class a talk about ancient Egyptians and their daily lives. The museum guy brought a mummy foot in a plexiglass case. I felt oddly gypped when I wasn’t allowed to keep it. In sixth grade, the King Tut exhibit came to the U.S. and I went to see it with my parents. I felt as if they’d flown it over just for me.

The fire continued throughout grade school. By tenth grade I had an especial enthrallment with hieroglyphics. I devoted massive amounts of time memorizing them and how they were constructed. I pored over The Book of the Dead. And one day, when she was hanging around our house waiting for her mom to come home, I showed the next-door neighbor a fun way to create her own hieroglyphics. “This is cool,” she said, after one of my impromptu lessons. “You should come show it my class!”

“Excellent suggestion,” said my dad, who was passing through. He had an eye on my resumes for the colleges I’d be sending out the following year. How many other kids could put hieroglyphics instructor on their applications? “I’ll see what I can do.”

What he could do, apparently, was talk Mr. McConnell into letting me teach about hieroglyphics in his class for one hour a day, one day a week, four weeks in a row, at the beginning of the next semester. Ordinarily I would’ve met my dad’s meddling with a surly teenaged reluctance. But this particular scheme involved Mr. McConnell, and as long as I got to see that dreamy face of his up close, I would’ve taught anything my dad suggested. Even clog dancing.

It was my first experience teaching—oddly enough, I was fantastic at it. Probably because I had teachers for parents. For some reason, Mr. McConnell never met with me to make sure I knew what the hell I was doing. He just let me into the classroom and watched from the back, arms crossed, while I tried not to get distracted.

Much of the time I was in my neighbor’s class I spent helping the kids understand how Egyptian pictographs represented specific sounds, and how those pictures and sounds, combined in different ways, could make entire words. I started out with them making their own hieroglyphics. They used construction paper and glue to make cartouches of their own names—oval loops containing the pictographs they’d come up with to represent the sounds.

It was a lot like rebuses. One kid was named Monique. She came up very quickly with a pictograph of a person with a round mouth who was obviously in pain, and then another of someone (or at least their heel) leaping into the air to escape a rat. Moan + Eeek! = Monique. A kid named Walter drew a picture of a wall, and then of a turd. Everyone thought that was hilarious. Mr. McConnell did, too. And the kids were loving it. Around the classroom I would go, person by person, helping the kids break down their names into their component parts and brainstorming a pictograph to represent it. Mr. McConnell would help out, squatting down and murmuring with the students to pass the time along.

At the end of each session, he would stand beside me and tell the class to thank me for the great time they had. I wasn’t so much grateful for the obedient chorus of thanks as I was for the warmth of his hand on the small of my back, where he would always place it while we stood there together. It was as intimate as we ever got.

The fourth and final session happened to coincide with my birthday. Every student had, at that point, two cartouches of their names created from construction paper to take home—one with their own hieroglyphics, and another with the real Egyptian pictographs. We’d spent most of the class with the students showing off their handiwork and explaining why they’d chosen the various images, and when it was all over, Mr. McConnell came to my side and as usual, put his hand in the small of my back, which longed to be touched.

“We heard it’s your birthday,” he said to me. I’d not said a thing—I flushed at the thought he’d actually done some research on me. “So as a gesture of appreciation, we made you something.”

From his desk he pulled a simply enormous homemade birthday card. It was easily two feet high by a foot and a half wide, and decorated with glitter and smiley faces and stickers and everything a sixth-grader loves. Inside were wishes for a happy birthday, with all the names of the students in big old magic market letters. In a neat cursive, in the page’s center, was my crush’s signature. Nathaniel McConnell. “Oh wow,” I said aloud. I was genuinely stunned. “Thank you guys!”

The classroom was moderately noisy at that point when Mr. McConnell once more put his hand on my back. “So how old are you today?” he asked.

“Sixteen,” I told him.

I remember his voice as being intimate in the words that followed. “Sweet sixteen and never been kissed?”

Whatever poise I’d developed around Mr. McConnell during that month instantly vanished. I stood there with my jaw hanging open and my tongue unable to produce speech. If I know myself, I probably turned beet red. When my vision stopped swimming, I gathered my materials, took my card, and spirited myself out of that classroom.

And that is as intimate as Mr. McConnell and I ever became, sadly. But wow. It meant a lot to me at the time. I saw him for the rest of the semester when our classes would pass each other down the lunchroom hallway. His eyes would bore into mine, and I would stare at him, mute and longing. We’d exchange smiles. But as much as I longed for him to find me in some forgotten corner of the school building—in my imagination, it was always the shop—and shove me against the wall and press his mustache against my tender boy lips, it simply never happened.

What I do have, though, is a sweet memory of the warmth of his hand, the tones of his gentle voice, and a birthday memory of his words to me. Sweet sixteen and never been kissed. As far as mementos go, I’d say I came out pretty well.

I know I kept that card at my parents’ house until after I graduated from college. I don’t know where it is today—my folks probably threw it out. I wish I still had one of my middle school yearbooks, though. I’d like to look through its pages at the faculty photos and see if Mr. McConnell’s face is anything like my memory of it, intense and brown-eyed, alert and alive.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Nasty Little Faggot

“What do you want?” I ask him. He’s kneeling on the floor, naked, knees spread wide. His wrists are crossed as if they’re bound, though nothing is holding them together. His little peter curves up to point at the ceiling.

He’s mesmerized by cock. My cock, which is dangling in front of his face. It’s bait to a hungry fish; his lips work in and out as unconsciously they strain for it. His eyes are the size of saucers, as he stares at the heavy, blood-filled meat exuding heat a few inches above his face.

“What do you want?” I ask again.

He delivers his answer with a rattle in his throat. “I want that cock.”

“Why do you want my cock?” I demand.

He thinks about it a moment, trying to suss out the response I expect to hear. “Because it’s big. Because it’s beautiful. Because it’s yours.”

All true enough, but it’s not the answer I want. “It’s because you’re a greedy little cocksucking whore,” I inform him. “And big dick is what you were made for.”

For the first time in a while he removes his gaze from my dick, and looks me in the eye. “Yes.” His agreement arrives on a sigh.

“It’s because you’re a nasty little faggot,” I tell him. His eyes are locked onto mine. They’re full of adoration. I’ve penetrated right to the secret core of him. I’ve spoken the words that unlock his deepest secret, and in the speaking, unburdened him of it. “Because you’re nothing more than a fucking little skank hole.”

“Yes,” he repeats. “I’m a nasty little faggot boy.”

“Anyone’s cum dump.”

His eyes are beginning to glaze. His cock jerks once, twice, three times. He wraps his hands around it. “Nothing but a cum dump.”

I grab my own dick, thwack it into my palm with a heavy slap. “Well fuck, son. What’re you waiting for?” When he lunges at my erect cock, I halt him with my hand on his forehead. “You don’t get it yet. Fuck. Work your way up, kid.” I shove him back so he’s on his haunches again. “From the feet,” I explain, like he’s simple. “Like a nasty little faggot does.”

The look he gives me is of sheer worship. And that pleases my dick.

No one around this tony community in which I live would recognize this guy as he is now, sprawled on the floor, sucking at my toes, squirming around like a worm in the dirt. He’s one of those fastidious types in public. Neatly dressed in trendy fashions from Zara, little Harry Potter spectacles on his face. I’ve seen him and his boyfriend out and about at the local bars and gay gatherings for a couple of years. When we meet, he and the boyfriend recognize my face well enough to smile and nod, and occasionally exchange pleasantries. We’re not social friends, by any stretch of the imagination.

“That boyfriend of yours know you’re here?” I ask.

“No,” he says. He’s tonguing out the space between two of my toes. He looks up at me in sudden panic. “Please don’t tell him.”

“That really depends on how good a job you do, doesn’t it?”

“Yes sir.” It’s a rhetorical question, but it spurs him on. He’s slurping his tongue all over my feet now, obediently licking the soles when I lift them up, one by one. His ass is pointed in the air; his back arch. In his head, he’s already getting fucked.

“You want me to tell him how you’ve been putting that pussy up in the air for me for months? How you begged me to break that bareback cherry?”

“Please don’t,” he begs.

“Why, are you ashamed of what a little cumdump whore you are? You don’t want him to find out how you’ve been slutting around behind his back with some guy at the bar you barely know? You worried he’d dump that ass when he finds out how many strange dicks have been up it since mine?”

“Please.” He huffs out the word. His face is red. He’s aroused. “Please don’t tell.”

“Suck it, faggot,” I tell him. I grab him by the hair and lower his mouth onto my dick. “No teeth, or I’ll slap the shit out of you.”

This is the root of him, the inner core deep inside that fuels his every waking dream. Daily, in public, he cultivates an air of fastidious perfection. Impeccably-dressed, nicely-coiffed, soft-spoken, a little effeminate. Genteel. Arm candy for his older boyfriend. In private, he wants to be a dirty little whore. The kid wants it all: Men’s Vogue days, Treasure Island nights.

Which side of him is closer to his real nature? I think I know. The artificial tends to fall away from a guy when I drop my pants in front of him.

My cock is slick with his spit. He’s choking on it by the time I withdraw and shove him roughly onto the bed. He howls with pain as I drive into the hole. I can tell by the way he clamps down on my meat that he’s in distress, but this is how whores get fucked. No mercy. Relentless. By the time his mind and body catch up to the heat that’s already pulsing through his still-hard cock, I’m halfway there.

“That boyfriend of yours would kick you out on your ass if he knew what you were doing right now,” I say as I pound his quivering butt.

“Please don’t tell . . . !”

“I don’t know. I think it might be fun to see the expression on his face when he finds out what a cum-hungry little bitch you really are,” I muse. “I bet he’s all polite in bed and shit. Probably thinks a wild time is turning on a fuck flick and jacking off together. Am I right?”

“Only if I’m lucky,” he moans. The words are heavy with rue.

“Who gives you what you really want?”

“You do,” he whispers. “You do.”

“Who gives your faggot holes the sperm they really need?”

“Fuck . . . you know it’s you. It’s totally you.”

I’m close. “Then fucking take it, you little whore.”

My cock pulses. I drive in to the root, and let the seed blast out deep inside him. His back arches more, his butt rises to meet me. He wants every fucking seed I’ve got, and I’m hostage to his need. Finally, after a long time in which his hungry holes milks my meat for every drop, he slides off me.

“Clean it off,” I tell him.

He’s already on it, sucking any traces of sperm from my jizz-slick dick. I hold his head on my dick as I maneuver myself onto the bed, and then I cradle it as he continues to suck and suck.

“Good boy,” I tell him.

“I’m your little faggot,” he murmurs, before losing himself in the scent and sensation of my semi-rigid shaft again. “Just a little faggot.”

Yeah. I won’t be telling the boyfriend. This time.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Lessons from Pasta

Things I’ve Learned About Gay Guys After Being Subjected to Twenty Berjillion Facebook Posts About Pasta Last Week

1. Immediately after someone posts a notice resolving to boycott a brand of pasta, the first three comments are going to be along the lines of That brand sux! __________ is soooooo much better!

Well, welcome to the conversation, Miss Fancy-Pants. I’m really glad that the latest cause célèbre involving outrages against gays and lesbians has given you the perfect opportunity to leap in and show everyone what superior taste you have. I am so compelled by your exquisite discernment that I am hoping, when I prowl back in time to 2011, I’ll find a sensitive comment from you about the devastating Thailand floods that affected over thirteen million people and killed hundreds that reads, Phuket is sooooo overrated anyway! Go to Aruba if you want a real vay-cay!

That brand of pasta was one I used for over a decade and a half because it was recommended to me by a close female friend’s father, who owned a popular and highly-rated Italian restaurant for years and years. If it was good enough for him and his family—who were all born in Italy—it was good enough for me. I can’t begin to count the number of meals I’ve served to my family over the years made from that pasta. Thank you, but I can do without you seeing my anger and upset at the unkind words of the company’s leader merely as an opportunity to show off what’s in your pretentious little home pantry.

2. The fourth comment is going to be some queen saying So what??? Gays shouldn’t be eating carbs anyway!!!

Hey, thanks. Like we didn’t have enough self-image dysmorphia as a population without some little body Nazi shrilling at us what we can and cannot eat, and what we should and shouldn't look like.

Now sit down and shut up. I’ve got some donuts to eat without guilt while you watch.

3. The fifth and subsequent comments are going to be, I don’t know why you buy your own pasta. Making your own is soooo easy and soooo much more delicious! All you need is flour and eggs!

Oooooo, gurrl. You have picked the wrong stay-at-home husband for this hair-pulling catfight, Martha Fucking Stewart.

I am a man who kneads his own bread. I am a man who boils and bakes his own bagels. I am a man who keeps track of what month it is by what fruits he’s currently making into jams and preserves.

Bitches, I am a man who makes his own yogurt. (And even I think that’s a little excessive on the home self-reliance front.)

I know that making pasta only requires flour and eggs. I’ve made pasta. And you know what? The next time I want to spend two hours making a mini-volcano out of flour and pouring some carefully-whisked eggs into it, and then trying to roll out and slice fresh pasta on the two square feet of kitchen counter that I currently have, before actually making dinner itself, instead of simply taking a box out of the cupboard and boiling the dried noodles inside for eight minutes, I will give you a ring-a-ling on the cell so that you can coach me through the process.

I wouldn’t advise holding my breath until it happens, though.

4. One of the comments that follows will be a passive-aggressive statement to the effect that OMG the Chick-Fil-A boycott was a failure! Why are we buying into the media frenzy? It just makes us look mean and vindictive instead of like nice people!

I’m just going to toss out a quote from Nietzsche, here:
When the oppressed, downtrodden, outraged exhort one another with the vengeful cunning of impotence: "let us be different from the evil, namely good! And he is good who does not outrage, who harms nobody, who does not attack, who does not requite, who leaves revenge to God, who keeps himself hidden as we do, who avoids evil and desires little from life, like us, the patient, humble, and just" -- this, listened to calmly and without previous bias, really amounts to no more than: "we weak ones are, after all, weak; it would be good if we did nothing for which we are not strong enough."
We make a fuss because we are strong and growing stronger. We make a fuss because things matter. We cause a ruckus because we realize we’re no longer weak and without power, and because we understand people are listening.

Boycotts don’t work instantly. Progress comes slowly. Over time, though, and with education tactics like boycotts work; companies and institutions will change and have changed under constant pressure. To assume that every battle will be won instantly, and without setback, is naive.

The show-offs, the diet fascists, and the guys who spend too much time with the Food Network are nothing. They’re comic relief. The apologists who would have us and our allies do nothing, however, so that we don’t ruffle feathers? They’re obstructive. They’re dangerous, because they’d have everyone believe they’re the nice gays, the gays who aren’t controversial, the gays who behave at the table and never make a fuss because it isn’t decorous.

They’re also the gays who accept slaps and pretend they’re kisses, who would rather see us all kicked and beaten rather than run a risk of not seeming nice. In the long view of history, they’re the most dangerous of all.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Sunday Morning Questions: Mix Tape Edition

Anyone remember mix tapes?

When I first started buying popular music, back in my late teens and early twenties, it became important for me not only to listen to the music I collected, but to share it with the people I cared about. My first real stereo was a system I bought straight out of college, from Sears—I know, real top of the line audiophile stuff. It was affordable, though, and I bought it because it was perfect for my needs. Not only did it have a turntable for my burgeoning collection of LPs, but it had a dual cassette tape deck. With high-speed dubbing, no less. Double tape decks were rare in those days. The high-speed dubbing was almost unheard of.

I loved that system. During grad school I would spend entire nights in my apartment in my parents’ basement, sitting on the cold tile floor cross-legged while I made mix tapes for my friends. I’d choose songs that not only they’d like, but that I was pretty sure they’d never heard before—songs for which I had a lot of enthusiasm. On my electric typewriter I’d type up the names of the songs and the artists, and then I’d make some custom art. Usually it was a chunk of a New Yorker cover, which when snipped down to fit in the cassette case would be colorful but abstract. Then I’d lovingly send them off to my best friends and hope they loved the mixes as much as I.

Over the years the typed inserts became computer-printed; a couple of years later, I burned my first mix CD. Even the concept of ‘burning’ a CD was exotic at first. The phrase brought to mind images of a blacksmith’s forge, and using a pair of white-hot tongs to pull a shiny CD from the flames so I could hear the sizzle when I plunged it into a horse bucket of cool water. The last mix tape I made was for Spencer, shortly before we parted ways. It was a thumb drive with a dozen mp3s on it.

But the thing is, people remember those mix tapes. I have friends who mention long-forgotten songs I sent them decades ago, and who’ve talked about all the love I put into those gifts of music, from the thoughtfulness of the song choice to the New Yorker artwork in which they were wrapped. One of my oldest friends recently went through all the tapes I’d given him over the years, and bought digital copies of all the songs from either Amazon or iTunes, so he could keep them as playlists on his computer. Those little gifts mean something, years and years later. That makes me smile.

Spencer used to go to sleep to a set playlist of songs on his iPod. He’d chosen them to lull him gently into his dreams. During the year when I was living on my own, trying to sell my house in the midwest, he was spending most of his nights in my bed. After he’d taken his bedtime shower and slipped into bed, steaming and warm and wet, we’d make love and drift into slumber in each other’s arms. The last memory of would have, most of those nights before I nodded off, would be of his strong, muscular arm reaching over me to my clock radio, so he could turn on his iPod and start that playlist.

It lasted for nearly an hour and a half. I know the first four songs well. I wouldn’t recognize the latter hour if you played it for me. I’ve always been deeply asleep by the time it played. The last night before I left Michigan for good, at a going-away party thrown in my honor, Spencer sat next to me as my guest of honor. We held hands beneath the table. Before the night’s end, he slipped back to me the thumb drive I’d given him a few weeks before. It held his Sleepytime mix.

You know, I still listen to it. There are nights when I can’t sleep. I keep a pair of earbuds by the bed. I keep the Sleepytime mix on my phone. I’ll plug in, turn on, and listen to the songs Spencer cultivated, the songs to which we fell asleep month after month, night after night, holding each other.

And little by little, I drift off, comforted. I still haven’t heard the back end of that mix during my waking hours. I’m not sure I care to. But I do know it’s the mix tape that means the most to me. It always will.

Let’s get to some questions from readers before I start bawling. If you’d like to ask something, come on over to and ask what you’d like. If you’d prefer to email me, just put ‘Sunday Morning Questions’ in the subject line of your email. My address is in the sidebar. I’ll answer anything, trivial or not, so long as it’s not too invasive of my privacy.

Do you ever fantasize about being forced to "service" a dominant stranger?

I do. My twist on it, though, which I’ve shared several times, is the fantasy of being forced to service a dominant bottom, as a top.

I'm not convinced the bottom for that task exists in real life, though.

thanks for your blog, i'd never have the courage to be out there,too much catholic guilt, your blog is my guilty pleasure, thank you sir

If you are so burdened that even reading about someone else having sex makes you feel guilty, my friend, I think it's time to do something about it.

I never look at my sex writings as prescriptive. I don't set words to paper as a recommendation of how anyone else should live his life. My acts are my own, and that's how they should remain. No one should push themselves past their own natural levels of comfort with any sexual exploration.

However, sex is a blessing. If you're religious, I don't know how you can justify to yourself that God made such an abundantly beautiful world with so many wonderful things . . . and yet believe that sex is supposed to be an awful act, a torture, a torment, or something that only a man and a woman approved by a representative of the church may do solely for procreational purposes. That's just not the way this world works. Religion might try to regulate sex in order to keep its adherents in line, but sex was given to us for pleasure, and for us to make connections with each other. It's a true gift. Not a source of guilt.

So if reading a sex blog brings you pleasure . . . enjoy it without guilt. Start with that leniency, and move on to others. You'll be a happier person in the end.

What's the last fun thing you bought for yourself?

A rice cooker. Does that count? If not, I buy myself video games on a fairly regular basis. The last one I purchased was Game & Wario, I think. Oh, and I bought some nice dress boots for myself last week. They’re classy.

Some of your fans (me included) lust after you, do you lust after anyone in the world?

Hmm. I think all my readers know I’ve had some pretty serious (and by serious, I mean goofy) crushes on various pretty bartenders. Long-term readers might remember I had a serious case of hotpants for my backyard neighbor, back in Michigan. (No, that’s not a euphemism. I wish it were.) I manage to work out my lusts on available asses on a pretty regular basis, so instead of burning with lust for various people, I just get schoolgirl crushes on random guys who delight my eyes.

What's the dumbest thing you’ve ever done to impress somebody and what's the dumbest thing anyone's ever done to impress you?

I once bought a rose a day for someone I wanted to woo, when I was in college. I thought it was beautiful and romantic as a gesture, but after about three days I realized it was coming across as creepy and stalkerish.

Most of the stupid things people have done to impress me have also leaked over into stalker territory—guys who follow me around the city, or who bombard me with hand-written notes—or who send me frantic instant messages the minute I get online, or who keep calling many times repeatedly over the course of a day—say they're doing it to show their devotion, but it's the kind of behavior these days that makes me wish I had a restraining order.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Sink or Swim?

I’ve mentioned before I occasionally see a friend of mine I’ve known at this point for nearly a quarter-century. He’s a glum personality; I’m afraid that in a couple of past entries in which he made appearances, I assigned him the unfortunate soubriquet of “Eeyore.”

But it’s fitting. He’s a sweet guy. I genuinely believe he’d give to me the shirt off his back if I complained I was chilly. In all the time I’ve known him, though, he’s always been a bit of a downer. Not a whirlwind of drama, mind you. More like a powerful but silent magnetic force that can walk into a room full of the most upbeat and high-spirited folk around—a real Baz Luhrmann Great Gatsby of a party with hot jazz and hotcha flappers sipping bathtub gin and doing the hot new sensation called the Charleston—and without really meaning to, can suck up all the fun until there’s nothing left in the room but some limp crepe paper streamers and a sad, tattered print hanging on the wall of Edvard Munch’s “The Scream.” Within minutes he can have every single person in a five-room radius moping, contemplating the futility of his existence, and reaching for the extra Ambien.

Come to think, I’m pretty sure I saw that exact situation on an episode of Fringe.

I went out on the town with Eeyore and another friend of mine not so long ago. As a trio we bar-hopped our way across Manhattan, pretty basically. We had drinks at a few establishments along Christopher Street. We stopped off for happy-hour $3 Long Island iced teas and drag queen fun before dinner. (I drank bottles of water.) We decided to have dinner before heading off to the Eagle, which involved me, the sober one, guiding them up Seventh Avenue and restraining them at intersections by planting my hands on their chests, so my two extremely inebriated friends wouldn’t blunder out into oncoming traffic. For all of those three hours we were together before dinner, the entire time Eeyore kept talking about the guy he’d taken home the night before.

I hadn’t paid much mind to the story, because all the guys Eeyore takes home are strippers. Dancers, I mean. (When I fuck dancers, they’re ballet dancers or former contestants on So You Think You Can Dance. When Eeyore gets with a dancer, it’s a stripper.) You know those newly-engaged women who, when you’re trying to relate your father’s medical issues and your own recent work woes, lean forward and flash the rock on their fingers and manage to turn every conversation into OMG your diamond is so BIG! ? Well, it was like that with Eeyore and the stripp . . . er, dancer.

I was trying to recap the plot of Blue Jasmine for someone and it would trigger Eeyore into saying, “That reminds me of something my dancer said last night after I took him home. . . .” Or I’d ask Eeyore how was his vacation in Chicago, and he’d reply, “Oh, it was fine. I found out the dancer I took home last night was from Bushwick. That’s not very far. Do you think it’s too far?”

It wasn’t really until we were sitting down at dinner and Eeyore picked up the menu and said, “I think the dancer I took home last night would really like this place. They have hamburgers,” that I turned to him in surprise. Here I’d been kind of politely ignoring his dancer stories in the same way I might have overlooked a big old booger hanging from his nostril. I’d been thinking, Oh my god, how many times can he bring up the fact AGAIN that he had sex last night? And when a sex blogger who’s constantly parading his tricks in front of an international audience of thousands is getting annoyed with with someone exhibitionistically talking about fucking, you know it’s got to be excessive.

But over the hamburger menu I realized that for the first time in I didn’t know how long, Eeyore actually seemed kind of happy. I commented on it. “Well yeah,” he said. “Of course. I mean, I almost got laid for the first time last night in twenty years.”

And I shouted, “WHAT?!

He repeated it for me. “I said, last night was the first time in twenty years that I was close to getting laid.”

“Twenty years,” I said.

He nodded.

“Two decades.”

He nodded again.

“Since 1993.”

By now he was looking at me like I was a blithering idiot. “Well, yeah.”

I stared at him for a moment and then, with outrage, demanded to know, “WHAT THE FUCK?!”

I have a tendency to think of myself as unfairly deprived if I have to go for five days without sex. Twenty years, to me, sounded like the stuff of science fiction. I’d known that Eeyore’s track record wasn’t stellar. All of his stories tend to end with the dancer (stripper) stealing his wallet, or leading him on, over the course of weeks or months, for lap dance money and then leaving him high and dry. Or else they involve the mercenary cleaning out his bank account and moving on to the next john.

But jeez. I assumed that from time to time in there, there’d been some actual nookie.

“There are just things in play that prevent me. . . .” he started to say.

I wanted to know what.

“My job. . . .”

“. . . . doesn’t involve a vow of celibacy and allows you plenty of hook-up time,” I countered.

“It’s a crazy city. . . .”

“. . . . where I manage to have sex several times a week.”

“I just wasn’t raised that way. My parents. . . .”

And here’s where I lost my patience.

I can’t count the number of times I’ve had people—friends, lovers, readers of my blog who’ll write in to me or engage me in social media—tell me that they want to experience sexual joy, but that they can’t because of outside factors. I’ve had men tell me that they want to let go and play with whom they choose, but they can’t do it because they were raised in a religious household. I’ve had dozens and dozens of guys tell me they want to play with men, but they can’t because they’re married. They’ll tell me they were raised in the South and their upbringing prevents them from seeking sex with men. Or any number of other factors—all external, all allegedly beyond their control.

When a guy tells me that he wants to be more sexually adventurous (or, you know, to have sex more than nearly once every twenty years), but then rattles off a number of outside forces preventing him from achieving his goal, I know it’s not any of those externals that truly restrain him. Religion can be overcome. There are pigs worldwide from every ethnicity, nationality, and regional background. Not every relationship comes with a lock and key. No, what I hear is a man telling me that his inaction is a result of a mysterious societal conspiracy. Other people, vague and undefined, are making his choices for him. What I hear is a man telling me that he’s too frightened to make his own choices.

Look. I grew up in a family with no less than four ordained and practicing ministers, all Southern Baptist. It doesn’t get much more religious than that. I’m married. I was raised in the very same South. I know I’m not everyone’s touchstone, but none of those things keeps me from being a total whore. I don't allow any of those factors to keep me from pursuing sexual adventure any more than they I would allow them to keep me from reading what I want, watching the television shows that interest me, or listening to that demon rock and roll. I don’t allow external, invisible forces, up to and including God himself, to dictate my day-to-day happiness.

If Eeyore had, in answer to my question of why he’d been celibate for two decades, replied, Well, I’ve decided that it’s important to me to wait for a special someone, I would’ve thought about it, probably privately decided that his response wouldn’t be mine, and then given him a pat on the back and some words of support. That would’ve been a choice he’d made, based on a philosophy he believed in. If a married reader tells me that he wishes he could fuck around, but that he’s made a choice to stay true to his marriage vows because it makes him a more honest and committed person—fuck yes, more power to him. I admire anyone who makes a choice and owns that choice and isn’t afraid to stick to it.

For me it all boils down to whether a person is an active protagonist in his own life, or whether he’s passive and adrift and allowing invisible forces to carry him downstream. An invisible god shouldn’t be making choices for you. Kowtowing to the a disapproving, inchoate society or the thought of frowning and unhappy parents (who, in Eeyore’s case, have both been deceased for years) means you’ve taken the passive route. Thinking about your choices, and making the ones that are right for you—even if you’ve been told that they’ll make Baby Jesus cry—make you a warrior in your own life.

It really doesn’t take a lot to move from passive floater to an active leader of your own life. Mindfulness helps. Reflection. Learning to recognize when you’re allowing fear and commonplace external forces to dictate your direction. I truly believe it’s important to take as much control of our own lives as possible, because every one of us one day will find ourselves facing external obstacles that will throw the triviality of everything else into sharp relief. I’m talking about illness, and accidents, and irreplaceable losses of love and family. It’s when those roll around—and they always do—that we realize that we had happiness within reach all the time.

Whether or not you grasp it, or at least chase it, is up to you.

All of us are living on borrowed time. Every single one of us. One day it all comes due. Trust me, I know from experience that it’s possible to drift for long periods of time on tides that seem beyond our control. But some day we wake up and realize that a year has passed—five years, twenty years—and we’ll never again have that time or the opportunities it presented. I know that I’d rather face that moment knowing I threw myself into those waters and relished the sport and challenge of them. I’d rather splash and make noise and make a goddamned mess than drift quietly and apologetically through life. I’d rather regret the choices I made for myself, crazy as they may be, while I can make them, rather than regret fearing everything, making no choices at all, and blaming it all on forces beyond my control.

Again: I know my choices are my own. I don't expect anyone to follow in my exact footsteps. I just want people—I want you—to be the person at the helm of your own life. I want you to conquer those fears holding you back, whatever they may be.

For Eeyore, breaking a twenty-year dry spell is a first step. Learning that it’s not too late to quench his thirst is up to him.