Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Gay For Pay New York Fire Fighter; Jonathan West Gay Porn Top; Ravenous Romance Feature

Gay For Pay New York Fire Fighter

Last night while on Twitter I came across a tweet by a well known gay male porn star who was feeling frustrated and not sure about whether or not he wanted to continue in male adult entertainment. He's been around for a while now, and I think his thoughts are fairly normal...even if he doesn't realize it himself right now. The point is that everyone has to move forward eventually, which is a perfect example of this part of the post.

At first I thought the most surprising thing about this article I'm linking to now was that a guy was hired by the Fire Department of New York and he's gay and a former gay porn star. I thought wow, good for him. But it gets better toward the end, which I'll get to in a second. But first:

Jonathan Jesensky, 33, starred in at least 10 gay porn films before joining the ranks of New York’s Bravest as a rookie firefighter on Tuesday.

Jesensky, who also served in the Marines, ditched his porn career, where he’s known by his X-rated alias, Jonathan West, before he was hired as an FDNY EMT in 2012.

They allegedly knew Jesensky did gay porn before he was hired.  When interviewed, his co-workers claim to know nothing about Jesensky's porn days and refused to discuss it. Jesensky refused to comment and his porn web site has been taken down...after his real identity was discovered by fans.

His record is almost perfect, and he's a former Marine. But what really seems to be the most surprising aspect to all this is that he's not gay and he performed in those films for the money. And from the comments quoted in the article he was very good at what he did on camera. I'm not familiar with him.

You can read more here. I have no strong opinions on this one. If he can make money doing gay porn, none of my business. The only time something like this bothers me is when gay guys pretend to be straight and do gay for pay. It happens. Watch the new movie out Beside Still Waters and see what I mean.

They said this over at Gawker. 

OK, but is he at least gay? A gay firefighter is..something you don't see everyday. Maybe every other, but surely not everyday.

I think the most important thing here is that he knew when it was time to move forward with his life and say goodbye to the past. 

Jonathan West Gay Porn Top

Warning: this part of the post is NSFW, or at least the links aren't. I just wanted to link to a few places where FDNY's gay for pay firefighter, Jonathan West aka Jonathan Jesensky, has a web presence as a gay porn star. At least we now know that Jesensky/West is a top.

This web site gives a more detailed description.

Here's more about his work as a porn star.

If you do a simple search you'll come up with tons of links to web sites that either talk about him, or his films. He seems to be good at everything he does, and I don't mean that in any way as a slur. There's no hidden sarcasm either. I actually admire him for being one of the few who has made it beyond porn and moved forward with his life in a different way. He seems like a genuinely nice man.

Ravenous Romance Feature

Someone told me about this link to a very nice blog post about one of my e-publishers, Ravenous Romance. I know I'm often remiss when it comes to posting about my publishers, but I've had all excellent experiences with Ravenous Romance and I have no complaints whatsoever. And it's nice to see someone write a post like this, totally unsolicited, to let people know she's just discovered a new publisher. I don't know this blogger at all. We've never even met on social media, but it was nice of her to do this.

I'm excited to find and feature publishers that are new to me. I have some author friends published with this one, but I didn't visit their site before now. Ravenous Romance specializes in affordable sexy reads. Let's take a look at some of their latest releases, all of which are $4.99 each! They also have a special where if you buy 4 books (hey, look, 4 new books) you get a fifth one free.

You can read the rest here. The blogger gives a few examples of what Ravenous publishes, and I'm one of them, with my newest release, Too Hard To Handle, in the Glendora Hill series.

Too Hard to Handle

Monday, November 24, 2014

"Manspread" Photos; Kirk Cameron Teaching How To Act With Gays; Best Gay Teen Romance

"Manspread" Photos

I've actually heard this "term" in a couple of places: manspread. It's what happens when a guy spreads his legs in public, especially on a subway, and takes up too much room. It's considered rude by some. This is a link to another link at Time where there's a short rant about it.

Moylan says that men who spread their legs on the subway take up too much room, and it’s unfair to other passengers.

“As a human male who possesses a penis, I can say that there is no possible way that your package is that big,” he writes. “And if you have a package so large – as in an actual parcel – that is making you sit like this, you probably should do yourself and the world a favor and spring for a cab.”

I disagree. If you sit too long with your legs too close together it gets downright painful...unless, of course, Moylan doesn't have much going on between his legs. It's a natural process. When men sit they automatically spread their legs for obvious reasons. And while I'm sure some men can sit with their knees clamped together, most can't.

You can read the rest here.

However, this link isn't totally about a boring not so funny piece from Time Magazine. This is why I didn't directly link to Time. You can also see a few excellent photos of manspreads from a gay POV. I sometimes think this is why dark sunglasses were invented.

Kirk Cameron Teaching How To Act With Gays

When you read things like this you have to wonder if they're meant to be taken seriously. Ultra Christian right winger and former child star of the TV sitcom world, Kirk Cameron, is now giving pointers on how to behave around gay people.

A video has surfaced of a (partially out of context) highlight reel from one of Kirk Cameron’s appearances on a wing-nut Christian channel called The Way Of The Master Television that is disturbing even by his standards.

“If we fail to be blunt and straightforward about that sin, we’re doing a disservice to our gay friends.”

There's more here, with a link to a Christmas film Cameron just released. I have to wonder about him. I really do. I used to think he was so hot when I was just a kid. It just doesn't make sense and if it doesn't make sense the odds are it's most likely not true. In other words, it's not easy to get a part (or any attention at all) if you're a former child actor with limited talents from the TV sitcom world and sometimes you do what you have to do.

Best Gay Teen Romance

This looks interesting. It's being called the best gay teen romance ever. It's a film by Daniel Ribeiro and it's titled, The Way He Looks. (Notice, it's not entitled...it's titled...I see that a lot lately and the difference between the two words is important. In other words, a book or a film is "titled" and a person with a bad attitude usually feels "entitled." You don't look so hot if you confuse the two.)

It’s been winning awards and acclaim everywhere — and it’s now playing in theaters across the country. Is Daniel Ribeiro’s new Brazilian gay teen drama The Way He Looks the best gay teen romance ever? Here’s a select A-Z list of top contenders — running the gamut from this year’s other hot new gay teen release, the Dutch track team romance Boys to the 1978 Danish classic, You Are Not Alone. Enjoy the trailers and chime in with your votes and write-in candidates in the comments below (and click thru on the links to visit the GoWatchIt.com pages where you can find out where to watch them all).

I haven't seen it...or any of them yet. You can check them out here.

Chase of a Holy Ghost

.99 Kindle Book


Sunday, November 23, 2014

Ex-Gay Therapist vs Harvard Gay Student; Rent Boys Talk Truth; Jonathan Groff On The Comeback

Ex-Gay Therapist vs Harvard Gay Student

There are a few points in this article I thought were interesting. The first one is that I can't wait until the day comes for gay people when telling their parents is NOT this huge grand affair that creates the kind of drama that makes a woman want to drive her car off the road. I know there are arguments to this, but my point is that there should NOT be arguments for this.

In short, Scott Blair took his LSAT s and checked the gay box on a Harvard application. When Harvard called to say they wanted him, they told his mom he was gay, without knowing they were outing him. His mom confronted him, he admitted he was gay, and that's when she lost it.

“I almost want to drive this car into a tree,” said Scott’s mother. “Can you let me out of the car first and then you can go ahead?” he answered like a true lawyer-to-be.

And it only gets worse. His parents joined some kind of weird ex-gay group in New Jersey and they asked Scott to meet with an ex-gay therapist. This meeting happened when Scott was already in his second year of Harvard Law School.

But it does get better from this point, thanks to Scott. His training as an attorney left him well-prepared to deal with the creepy ex-gay therapist.

First, the counselor started with the “there is no gay gene” schtick. “Every study that’s reported to find a gay gene has been authored by gays,” he continued.

Scott's response: “I have no idea what studies you’re talking about, but sexuality is very complex. Everything that humans do is very complex. All a gene does is control the expression of a protein. I would be extremely shocked if one gene could control anything like that.”

The counselor looked at Scott with confused bewilderment, never having received such an answer. His next move was to pry into Scott’s upbringing –specifically his parents’ divorce. He told Scott that many people who are angry at their mothers following a divorce are “turned off” to women.

“So if I was angry at my mother, that would make me gay, but you also asked me how I felt about my father. My guess is what you’re going to say is that if I was angry at my father, that would make me want to seek the company of other men.”

You can read the rest of the question and answer with Scott and the counselor, here. Scott mops the
proverbial floors with him, and he does it with a smile.

This also why I always warn people never to get into an argument online with an attorney, not even if you're totally right and know all the odds are stacked in your favor. You won't win.

Rent Boys Talk Truth

They titled this with the term "Sex Worker," and while I see nothing wrong with that I prefer the more common usages: rent boy or prostitutes.  Although not so PC, most people know what a rent boy or a prostitute is.

I really dislike articles/promos like this in gay publications. This is another one of those articles that allegedly states rent boys are telling us all the truth about what it's like to be a rent boy. I never bought into that kind of rubbish, and I never will. When you think about what a rent boy does for a living, and who he has to do it with, and then you read between the lines, it's hard to imagine how these guys get through a day. So I don't believe it's the truth. And I'm not knocking rent boys, nor am I judging them. I know why they do it. I'm just wondering how they can do it.

In any event, this is rich wtf-ery...it could have been titled Fire Is Hot:

Prostitution is a young person’s game.

Most male sex workers skew younger, usually between 20 to 30 years old. They tend to describe themselves as “fit” and “good-looking.” A large number of them call themselves “Jake,” and more often than not have brown hair and brown eyes.

“To succeed, these young men need to be skilled negotiators, small business operators, engaging conversationalists and fit, active and appealing,” Scott says.

Most clients are older, married men.

Clients tend to be predominantly middle-aged, married men who identify as “straight.”

“I discovered a side of my personality that I didn’t know existed,” one male client revealed in an interview. “And I discovered that I love to be sexually dominated by another man. For a long time, I was in relationships with women and had what I would call ‘traditional sex’, but somehow with time this stopped working for me.”

Go ahead, read between the lines of those statements above and see what you come up with. It sounds to me like good looking young men selling their bodies to older married fat-assed cheaters who never came out of the closet. I find that hard to praise. It's sad, but not praiseworthy. I also find it hard to knock because I'm a realist and I know people need these things, too. Aside from everything else, one thing is for sure. If these young rent boys had money of their own I doubt they'd be doing older men to make a living.

The rest is here. This "article" is really nothing more than a book promotion by someone who found yet another way to exploit younger gay men with the kind of clickbait that's hard to resist. You'll find as much truth there as you will interviewing any politician in Washington. As I said, I'm not knocking the rent boys, I'm just knocking the people who are always there to exploit them.

Jonathan Groff On  The Comback

I think everyone knows Jonathan Groff is starring in "Looking" and that "The Comeback" is another HBO show starring Lisa Kudrow. TC was recently brought back to TV after a looooong hiatus and Goff is a fan of the show. I'm actually a huge TC fan, too. It think Valerie Cherish, the main character on TC, is one of the most interesting women characters on TV. It's the way she thinks, and the way she reacts. It's perfect.

In any event, here's what Groff said:

I’m a huge huge Comeback fan. I literally watch it so much that throughout the course of shooting this season they’ve had to tell me to stop saying my lines like Valerie Cherish. Like, ‘You’re line’s sounding a little Valerie Cherish can you just take it down a notch,’ and I’m like, ‘Oh, right. Sorry sorry sorry.’ Sometimes we’ll actually rehearse our lines as Valerie Cherish while we’re rehearsing a scene. We are all obsessed with the show.”

Of course this could all be just a huge promo...one HBO star promoting another...but I have nothing to gain by telling you how much I love "The Comeback." It really is a great show. There's a nice photo of Groff here. showing some arm pit action.  

Cage James

.99 Kindle Book

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Straights Don't Like Gay PDA; Bette Midler Gay Culture Is Ordinary; Strictly Come Dancing With Gay Couples

Straights Don't Like Gay PDA (Public Display of Affection)

This is interesting because there's a mixed message coming from many in the mainstream with regard to gay people showing any signs of public affection, in direct contrast with gay rights and equality. In this case it's gay people (men and women) kissing in public.

In a survey of 1,000 Americans, 70% said they supported inheritance rights for gay couples, but far fewer were supportive of gay people kissing in public. 

Of the straights interviewed, 95% said they approved of straight couples kissing on the cheek in public, but only 55% approved of gay male couples doing the same. When asked if it was a lesbian couple, 72% approved. 

Over 20% of heterosexuals surveyed even disapproved of gay men telling the respondents about their relationships.

You can read the rest here. I think this just proves how much discrimination there is out there, and how much all LGBT people need to start standing up for themselves in different ways...which will happen in time. I also think as more gays assimilate this PDA issue will disappear eventually.

Bette Midler Gay Culture Is Ordinary

First, in full disclosure, I've been gay all my life and frankly Bette Midler's never been my most favorite performer. I like some things she's done, others not so much. So this notion that all gay men think of her as an icon isn't exactly correct. I really do think it's becoming more important to clarify some things, and one is that Midler's only an icon to a certain segment of the gay community, not the entire gay community.(The same goes for Kathy Griffin, Liza, Cher, and a few others.) You can read this piece by Nick Boeving about gay icon, the late Joan Rivers.

So with that out of the way, I'm going to remain as objective as I can to Midler's recent statements:

'The extreme characters you used to see in the Village in the old days, you just don’t see them anymore,' Midler tells Advocate.com. 

'I really do miss them because there was a feeling I used to get that people were expressing themselves in the most elaborate of ways,' she adds. 'Now the [gay community] has kind of gone mainstream. It’s sort of ordinary now, and a little bit of the specialness has rubbed away.'

I can't help but think that sounds a lot like a confederate southerner after the Civil War claiming how much they miss the good old days of slavery before the Civil War. Or even worse, it's like men of the 21st century saying they miss the good old days when women in the 19th century couldn't vote, work, or in some cases even own property and handle their own money.

I don't know WTF she's talking about with regard to "specialness." Maybe she should watch more Glee. Or, Ask Oprah and her best friend Gayle to do a special on OWN abut it.

Look at it this way, Midler would never have said that about any other minority in America without getting slammed from one end to the other. And, this is really another good example of passive aggressive homophobia where the straight person making the comments doesn't even realize it. I don't think Midler meant harm.

You can read the rest here.  

Strictly Come Dancing With Gay Couples

I posted a while back about an article where someone slammed the concept of gay people dancing together in high profile dancing competitions...like the TV show, Dancing With the Stars. I'm too lazy to look for that link, however, this article to which I'm linking now discusses gay couples dancing on a BBC show called Strictly Come Dancing.

Strictly Come Dancing will feature same-sex couples dancing together for the first time this weekend.

The BBC dancing competition show will feature the professional dancers doing a 'Cops and Robbers' routine, likely to appear on Sunday night's results show (23 November).

Gay pro Robin Windsor, who was forced to pull out of this year's competition due to a back injury, will return to dance alongside the other pros.

You can read more here. It's happening, slowly but surely. It's still making headlines, it's still shocking to many, but someone should let Bette Midler know that now we're actually allowed to dance together on big TV shows just like everyone else. It may sound ordinary to some, but it's one more step toward equality for the rest of us and I for one don't miss the "good old days."

The Sheriff and the Outlaw

by Ryan Field


Friday, November 21, 2014

Zac Efron on Masturbation; Free Gay .99 Excerpt; Alec Baldwin On Grindr & Don Lemon Rape Comments;

Zac Efron on Masturbation

Here's a link to one of those multi-linked articles, where at one point they show a video of Zac Efron talking about how often he masturbates...with James Franco. Pure clickbait, but it's fun...and it's Friday.

Zac Efron is simply better at everything than the rest of us. Not only can he masturbate 17 times a day, he tells James Franco that he can do it without using his hands and offers an impromptu demo.

You can read the rest here, where there's a video. It's actually an interesting link because it also mentions Mike Nichols and there's a great Shirley MacClaine clip as well.

Alec Baldwin On Grindr 

It looks as if Alec Baldwin is making some kind of statement with his new web series, Alec Baldwin's Love Ride, about gays in a general sense. I think everyone knows what happened with his gay-hate rants that may or many not have been misinterpreted. I'm not getting into that now because I actually don't think Baldwin is a homophobic man, nor does he dislike gays. I think he's got a really bad (vicious) temper and doesn't know how to control it.

I don't support what Baldwin said. But it bothers me that Baldwin paid so heavily for his statements and since that happened others have gotten off with a pat on the wrist. James Franco gets away with passive aggressive homophobia all the time and they can't get enough of him. Nick Jonas gay baits and even gay men who don't have the slightest clue about cultural appropriation stick up for him. Maybe this is my conspiracy paranoia working overtime, but it just doesn't seem fair that there always seems to be two sets of standards.

Recently, everyone's dream guy, Don Lemon, over at CNN made a few ridiculous statements with regard to rape culture and so far no one's gone after him the way they went after Baldwin. And frankly, I think what Lemon said about women was far worse than what Baldwin said about gays during Baldwin's out of control rant. Lemon was not ranting or out of control. He was sitting quietly in a TV studio and he wasn't even slightly upset. If you do a search for Don Lemon and rape comments you won't come up with much from the lgbt media.

In any event, Baldwin gets into gay love/hook ups in this article.

They cover the differences between Grindr, where the couple met, and Scruff. As Alec puts it, “Scruff is where you send pictures form the waist up, and Grindr from the waist down.” How little he knows…

He concludes that the couple is “awesome” as he is fed questions from his lesbian friend off camera. He even offers up her uterus at the end of the ride. How generous!

This is one of those times I'm personally at odds with many in the gay community, especially gay media. As an openly gay man I find it somewhat disingenuous that this publication wrote this piece with this tone, and that most have yet to go after Don Lemon for what he said about rape...to a woman who was allegedly raped by Bill Cosby. But Lemon and Baldwin apologized, but only Lemon was given the free pass. There's something wrong with that on a much deeper level.

You can read the rest here. What they basically do is remind you of Baldwin's past offenses in a way that comes off looking shabby and tired instead of clever and relevant.

Free Gay Excerpt: Four Feet Under With My Buddies

When this story was released I had about a hundred things going on and I never really had a chance to promote it very well. I know that it appears to be only about a foot fetish, but it does actually go much deeper and I wanted to give a sample to show that. There's a story here, too.

Here's the amazon link, and it can be found in most places where e-books are sold. Please also keep in mind that this is a raw version before edits because it's more compatible with google blogger than PDF. 

            The day we buried old Clyde it rained. A slow, steady drizzle began at noon and lasted for the next thirteen hours. And the only thing I could think about was I hadn’t gotten laid in months.
            I stood outside beside my mom, dad, younger brother, and housekeeper, Mattie Johnson. We all wore black and held miss-matched umbrellas with frayed edges. The only one who actually cried was my younger brother.
            And that’s because we were burying his pet rat and we couldn’t have cared less. He’d insisted we all congregate in the back yard in a show of mutual respect and we all decided to support him. He’s only ten; he made up a shoe box to resemble a miniature casket, with brown paint and tiny little cabinet handles he’d pilfered from my dad’s tool shed. He even read a short eulogy he’d written on the back of a school essay in blue crayon and expected each one of us to say a few words about Clyde when he was finished.
            When I glanced at the expression on Mattie Johnson’s face as she gazed down into a dark hole that looked about four feet deep, I smiled. Her eyebrows were quirked, her lips pinched, as she searched for the right words to describe the pet rat that had always made her either jump or scream.
Mattie Johnson cleared her throat and rolled her eyes. She took a deep breath and said, “Ah well, rest in peace old Clyde.” Then she shot me a serious, urgent glance, letting me know she was finished and it was my turn.
            I reached for my brother’s shoulder and said, “He was a great little guy. We’ll all miss him. He was one of a kind, buddy.” Then I flung my father a look to let him know it was his turn.
My father cleared his throat and glanced down at the shoe box in the hole. He seemed to be at a loss for words until my brother’s little head went up with an unyielding glance that even tugged at my heart. That’s when my father softened and said, “Max is right. He was a great little guy and we’re all going to miss him, kiddo. He was one of a kind.”
I rolled my eyes at my father for mimicking me, and he shrugged. He could have come up with something original.
            Then my mother talked about the time “good old Clyde” escaped from his cage and we couldn’t find him for three ways. Mom laughed and smiled; she held my younger brother’s other shoulder and sent him reassuring glances as she spoke. She rambled with a sing-song tone, and for a minute I worried she might break into a chorus of The Sound of Music and expect us all to yodel.
The only one who didn’t smile this time was Mattie Johnson. And that’s because she’s the one who found Clyde the last time he’d been lost. He’d somehow found his way to her bedroom off the kitchen and into her underwear drawer. When she opened the drawer to get dressed the next morning and reached inside to pull out her granny panties, she saw Clyde looking up at her with his beady red eyes. She screamed with such might we all came running down to see what had happened. By the time we got there, Mattie Johnson was out cold across the pink and white chenille bedspread and Clyde was still in the underwear drawer rummaging through her panties.
            After the funeral service, we all went back to the house for a small reception my younger brother had planned out in advance. In Clyde’s honor, there were celery stalks, carrot sticks, lettuce leaves, and some kind of grainy thing no one touched. For the first time since I’d been granted a license to drive I was thrilled about getting another speeding ticket. We had to go to court that afternoon and we only had about an hour to spare at the funereal reception after Clyde’s services.
            At this point, I should probably explain the reason we were going to traffic court is because my mom has been studying to be a lawyer for a long time. I would have paid the ticket and been done with it. I still had a few points to spare before my license was revoked. I would just drive more cautiously. But mom was in her last year of law school and eager to pass the state bar and get started. She was a little too eager, if you ask me. When she heard me explain the reason I got the speeding ticket…because the wind was blowing and a huge branch from a weeping willow tree was blocking the speed limit sign…she insisted I plead innocent to the ticket and fight it in court. At first, I was against this. I actually begged her to let me plead guilty even though it was true about the branch covering the speed limit sign. It really wasn’t my fault this time. Ever since the last speeding ticket I’d been driving like a ninety year old. But my mom insisted she’d represent me and that I had nothing to worry about.
             Three hours later, I slumped through the front door of our home with my head down and my hands in my pockets. My mom followed, with her lips pressed together and her gaze fixed on the back of my head. Mattie Johnson was in the kitchen getting dinner ready; the pots and pans were clamoring in all directions. My dad and brother were on the living room sofa watching TV. When dad looked up and saw us walk inside, he smiled and asked, “How did it go?”
My mom shrugged and set her purse on the chair next to the hall closet. “Not quite like we thought it would, dear.”
            I turned and sent her a sharp stare. Then I turned the same glance on my dad and said, “You won’t believe it. I still don’t believe it. The judge was almost ready to dismiss the entire case, with the stipulation that I attend a few hours of driving school. They weren’t even going to give me points against my license. I was home free.”
             My dad stood up and smiled. “That’s great, son. Sounds like your mom did a great job.”
            “I’m not finished,” I said, with a deadpan tone. I glanced back and my mom and rolled my eyes. “When I jumped up to thank the judge, mom turned around and told him it wasn’t acceptable. She pointed at the judge and insisted the speed limit sign was being obstructed by the willow tree branch, and then went into an hour long dissertation. She mentioned other cases like this; she gave examples from books. I’m not joking either. By the time she was finished, the judge was hanging over the bench ready to beg for mercy.”
            Mom put her hands on her hips. “I was right. And that judge knew it.”
Dad frowned and asked, “What happened after that?” I could see he wasn’t portending good news by the way he rubbed his jaw.
            I looked up at the ceiling. “It wasn’t pretty. I won’t go into all the details. I lost my license for three months, I get three more points, and I still have to go to driving school.”
            “I’m going to appeal this,” Mom said. “I’m not going to stop until I win.”
I turned and headed toward the stairs so I could wash up for dinner. On my way, I said, “Please don’t do me any more favors, mom. I’ll wind up without a license for the next decade.”
            The thought of being without a driver’s license for three months was more than I could handle. I sat at the dinner table that night pushing my food all over the plate and didn’t say a word. I was going to a local community college and it was bad enough I was still living at home with my mom and dad and not in a dorm. It was even worse that I still jacked to gay porn in the bedroom where I grew up. My long term goal was to attend a four year university in the fall. I’d been accepted; I knew I would have plenty of freedom then. But the thought of being without a license while still living at home and commuting to college turned my stomach to the point where I couldn’t even look at food. Everyone tried to cheer me up. Mattie Johnson even offered to make me an ice cream sundae with wet nuts. But I just sat there sulking, staring down at my plate.  I wanted my license. And the only wet nuts I wanted that night were between some guy’s hairy legs.
            After dinner, I had to ask my mom for a ride. My dad was going out to play poker and Mattie Johnson didn’t drive at night anymore. I was still mad at mom for what happened in court. But I didn’t have much of a choice. I always worked out at the school gym about four or five nights a week. It’s quieter and there aren’t many people around at that hour: there wouldn’t be other guys stripping and changing in front of me. Jock straps and athletic cups make my knees weak. I felt comfortable in the locker room on the off hours and I didn’t have to worry about getting turned on. I was usually the only one there and I always wondered who locked the doors at night. Although I’m not the best athlete and not the biggest guy around, at five feet seven inches tall and one hundred and fifty pounds, I always did my best. I have great pecs that really pop when I’m pumped, if I do say so. And I know I’ve turned a few heads when I take my shirt off and people see my abs. I always figured the more I work out the bigger and better I’ll get. Besides, when you’re gay, still living at home in the small town where you grew up, and going to community college, there’s not much else to do on a Friday night.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Real Life HEA; Raunchy Naked Men In Seattle; Aging Models Parody Film Scenes

Real Life HEA

For those who don't know, and I know most don't, HEA means happily-ever-after in romance publishing circles, gay or straight, historical or modern. Without HEA there's no point to a book being called a romance. It defines the genre. I'm not talking about romantic drama or romantic comedy. I'm talking about Romance. For me, that's not up for debate. And that's partly because in real life we rarely see HEA. In real life we all deal with divorce, cancer, rape, nasty friends and all kinds of other things that gut us daily. I want that HEA in romance. But sometimes, in real life, we do see a happy ending, and in this case it's for two gay men.

John Smid, who once claimed to have been “cured” of homosexuality and who worked with various “ex-gay” groups, is once again a married man. Only this time, he didn’t marry a woman. He and his partner, Larry McQueen, announced they tied the knot last weekend.

In 1980, Smid left his wife to be with guys, but he had misgivings and tried to go straight again by marrying a second woman and becoming a leading spokesman for conversion therapy. He ran Love In Action, an ex-gay ministry based in Memphis, and sat on the board of Exodus International for 11 years.

Here's the rest. There's a fantastic statement made about how other "ex-gays" should look for their own truth, too.

Raunchy Naked Men In Seattle

When people like me here in the east with a strong New York influence think about places like Seattle we often conjure images of  hippie types walking around in a daze wishing everyone peace, love, hope, and change. We think about coffee shops with brick walls where mostly white people read poetry and the best sexual thrill comes in the form of a haiku. We dream about moving there to live more peaceful lives because everyone drives a little silver electric car and no one flips the bird in heavy traffic. But that's so wrong of us, and here's just one of many reasons why. They're evidently having a lot of fun out there and we're missing it all.

A party called Area 2181 hit the Eagle in Seattle over the weekend, featuring a meat market of ill repute and plenty of cruising. Dark corners, crotch-grinding, and dom/sub gear fogged up the windows, or at least it would have if they weren’t already blacked-out.

Go-gos Matt, Ethan and Ben sampled each other in the cage, while promoter Kirk James roamed the premises wearing as little as possible. Resident DJ Pavone welcomed guest DJ Jens Irish, with a house/acid/techno sound that kept the asses shaking late into the night.

Here's the link to photos you won't want to miss on a boring Thursday.

Aging Models Parody Film Scenes

I'm in my early forties and I often find it amusing when younger people have such a strong attitude about youth, especially because they think they're always going to be young. They actually think 30 is old. Wicked as it may be, I love to think about them when reality finally hits and they realize they're going to get old and they are eventually going to die. That's life. That's not something anyone can escape. You will get old...if you're lucky. And it's going to happen sooner than you think. 

This doesn't always mean you have to embrace getting older...at least not mentally. And no matter how hard you try to fight aging physically, the mental part is always going to be the most important factor. The last thing I ever want to be is one of those old ass-hats who sit around complaining about texting and all that evil technology, and wondering why no one sends Christmas cards through snail mail anymore.

But you do have to accept getting older no matter what. And I think these models in this calendar are doing a wonderful job. In a way, this could be a great HEA, too.This is one of those times it kills me because I can't share a photo legally here on the blog for copyright reasons.

We’ve been covering a lot of calendars here lately. There’s the hipster anti-hunks, the oddly sexy orthodox priests, sizzling gingers and of course the naked Warwick rowers. But we may have just found our new favorite.

A retirement community in Germany has released a calendar where seniors recreate famous movie scenes. And it is just as adorable as it sounds.

Here are the months that stood out to us, reminding us simultaneously that we love cinema and our grandmothers:

The photos are here. I suggest checking them out if you're a fan of Breakfast at Tiffany's

The Sheriff and the Outlaw

by Ryan Field

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Gay White Men and Black Female Culture; All Gay Prison Wing; Pope On Gay Marriage; Ten Old Time Gay Slang Words;

Gay White Men and Black Female Culture

Last summer, in July, there was a debate going on all over the Internet about the way black women feel as if some white gay men are stealing their culture. This one falls under the category of cultural appropriation, which I posted about yesterday, if you scroll down a little. It's interesting to me because I see an almost identical argument between gay men and straight women happening in m/m romance from time to time, and it has nothing to do with whether or not women can write gay fiction or misogyny. That's a weak argument when compared to cultural appropriation. The only big difference here, in this case, is that the black women who feel as if their culture is being pilfered by gay white men are speaking up about it and they're not taking it passively.

Evidently, the entire firestorm erupted after an article titled, "Dear White Gays: Stop Stealing Black Female Culture," in a Mississippi newspaper, written by a student named Sierra Mannie. The only honest comment I can make about that title is that I wish she hadn't made such a broad generalization. Not all gay white men, me included, are trying to steal black female culture. But that's an entirely different argument for another time. The point is that many black women do feel this way and I'm not going to disagree with them if they feel this strongly about it. The black woman always gets the last word on black female culture, not me. I don't have the right to do that. I only get the right to have the last word on gay culture...me and all the other gay people out there. I could research black female culture, I could interview women about black female culture, but I'm not, and never will be, part of black female culture. And for me to argue that point would make me an idiot and a racist.   

Here's a quote, with strong language, and I think it's important to make it clear we're not talking about transgender people here. That's another discussion, too.

“You are not a black woman,” Mannie writes to the offenders, “and you do not get to claim either blackness or womanhood. It is not yours. It is not for you.”

The author of the article I'm linking to, J. Bryan Lowder, goes on to comment and make distinctions about the kind of gay white male who does these things. And I couldn't agree with him more if I tried.

Here's an excerpt I found spot on:
There is nothing wrong with this argument, as far as it goes. Gay white men like myself are indeed not black women, and for us to “claim either blackness or womanhood” would be strange, if not outright offensive. On that limited point, I join with Mannie in bemoaning the type of white queen who struts around in a kind of performative blackface, claiming to hold a “strong black woman” captive inside himself and invoking other Tyler Perry-like caricatures with oblivious glee. This kind of behavior, I think it goes without saying, is racist.

Likewise, Mannie’s survey of Structural Inequality 101 is well-taken, if not particularly original. Anyone at all familiar with these issues can only nod at a statement like: “A culture of racism is bad enough, but pairing it with patriarchal structures that intend to undermine women’s advancement is like double-fisting bleach and acid rain.” Indeed, being a woman of color in the United States is in many ways a bum deal—and probably, on balance, a worse one than gay white men enjoy.

I agree with Lowder and Manning, and frankly I'm sick and tired of the cultural appropriation I see going on everywhere these days. It's harmful and it is racist and I know how Manning feels because I feel a different kind of cultural appropriation at times. The most positive thing, as Lowden points out, is that the segment of gay white males within the gay community who are doing this is very small...on the fringes. And that's encouraging, because it's the same with the appropriation of gay men often face, too. At least I don't feel it that often, and I stay away from the "places" where it happens the most...usually Facebook, Twitter, and certain blogs.

You can read the rest here. If you do a simple search there are a lot of articles about this that were written around the same time last summer.

And in case you don't feel like searching, here's one more article on the topic. I know I've lost half of you by now, but I think it's important enough to mention because it's so wrong. What cultural appropriation does is silence and dismiss. 

Cultural appropriation happens when members of the majority (in this case, white men) decide that blackness is a performance, a set of vocabulary, and some exaggerated hand gestures that white men can put on and off in the same way that they perceive black women do. Cultural appropriation happens when white men determine what the essential qualities of black women are and only see black women with those qualities as worthy of attention and praise. In the case of white gay male appropriation of black womanhood, those qualities are being fierce and the undefinable “sassy.”

But more important, the same thing applies when straight appropriation of gay culture takes place.

All Gay Prison Wing

I never knew anything like this existed...an all gay prison wing. And this one is allegedly the only one in America.

It's been dubbed the "gay wing" in LA's downtown jail and someone recently did a short documentary on it.

The film centers around Dave Williams, AKA Yah Yah, a transgender inmate known for her performing impromptu fashion shows in her dorm, where she takes pride in showing off her flashy refashioned jail attire. Yah Yah turns bedsheets into halter-top baby-doll dresses with matching white Cinderella gloves, and jail uniforms into tie-dyed hot pants.

The quotes are interesting because it's another segment of the gay community I've personally never identified with. Unfortunately, as with most articles like this they fail to tell us why Dave Williams is actually in jail. But it's a prison; he obviously did something illegal and I think it's important to keep that in mind...otherwise those of us who are following the laws are wasting our time.

The rest is here. The article goes on to mention other things about this particular prison life, like the way straight inmates sometimes pretend to be gay just to be sent to the gay wing...they allegedly have some kind of "gaydar" test to figure them out. I have no idea how that works, but I'm curious.

This one kind of bothered me:

The sense of community there is so strong that it isn’t uncommon for people to re-offend once they’re released to be back with their chosen family.

In case you didn't pick this up, "re-offend" is the PC interpretation of breaking the law, committing the crime, or in some cases maybe even causing willful harm to someone who is following the law. And I'm sorry if I can't jump up and down screaming Huzzah! in this case. I do think it's important to protect these people from certain obvious things that could happen to them if they weren't in an isolated section, but I find it very hard to support the concept that convicted criminals are having a good time in jail to the point where they feel a sense of encouragement to re-offend just so they can go back to prison.  

I hate to sound like a hard ass, but isn't the point of prison/rehabilitation to punish the offender?

Pope On Gay Marriage

I have to admit that I follow everything related to the Pope and gay marriage closely because I was raised Catholic, went through 12 years of Catholic school, and I know how Catholics think and respond. In other words, in Catholic school you are taught to think like a Catholic and if you don't you're most likely going to run into trouble...which I often did, trust me. There's a certain amount of brainwashing that runs deep and it NEVER wavers. It's all based on the principle of the sheep following the shepherd. So when I see people in the gay community jumping up and down for joy when the Pope offers a slight tidbit that he might be a supporter of gay marriage and equal rights, I stand back and wait for the proverbial shit to hit the fan.  And it always does.

Like this:

The Pope said: 'It is fitting that you have gathered here to explore the complementarity of man and woman. This complementarity is at the root of marriage and family.' 

He added: 'Children have the right to grow up in a family with a father and mother capable of creating a suitable environment for the child's development and emotional maturity.'

Many are calling this a step back for the "liberal" Pope with respect to gay marriage. I'm calling it "it is what it is" because I know how they think. Unfortunately, this could also be the reason why so many Catholic schools and parishes are closing all over the United States.

There's more here. The comments are kind of sad because you read about people who had hope and now that hope's been shattered once again. And I'd also like to make it clear that most straight Catholics I know don't think this way and the Pope's disappointed them, too. The most interesting thing about all of this is that there's this huge dichotomy between the executive branch in Rome and the people.

Ten Old Time Gay Slang Words

When I opened this article I thought I might at least know a few of these old time gay slang words, but I never heard any of them...not even from older gay friends I've known over the years.

Here are a few examples:

Barbarella (n.) – Unrestrained homosexual, uncontrollable desire by a man for sexual intercourse one that needs to have sex all the time. Enough with the slut shaming. You are not a whore, you’re a Barbarella. Much classier!

 Mother Superior (n.) – older and wiser gay male who has been around the block a few times; similar to “auntie,” but more favorable. Ageism in the gay community is awful. Cross-generational friendships can be enlightening for both parties. Maybe this would help spin them a bit more favorably.

The rest are here. I'll bet you don't know what a "Tinkerbell" is. According to the comments, I'm not the only one who hasn't heard of them either. I think that's because a lot are from the UK. 

The Sheriff and the Outlaw
by Ryan Field