Just some thoughts and ideas going around in my head while trying to figure out where I am and where everyone else is going.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Travelling by Air

Now I believe in equality and democracy and the American way and everything… that is until I don't get my way and then everyone has to suffer, but why do I always have to be put in the GLBT section of the plane whenever I fly? I mean, take my last trip for example.

It was bad enough that I was in the last row of coach. You know they really should call it steerage because they treat you like an illegal alien getting ready to sneak aboard the Titanic and you know what happened to those people when they asked, "Excuse me sir but does anyone know where the life boats are?" Never heard of again. At any rate, it was Boeing 7 something 7 and I was seated in the row just in front of the only coach toilets, an aisle seat to be exact, when these two young women, they could have been in their mid thirties, but when you reach a certain age, everyone seems to be so young; well they excused themselves and informed me that they had the window and middle row seats. I guess they thought they were being helpful and that I couldn't figure out that information for myself since it was the last row in the airplane.

How thoughtful, I must remember to send cards next year.

Well they sat down and larger of the two in the window seat immediately asked the stewardess for a glass of water for her friend. I should have known then there might be trouble. The water came and the friend took out a pill and swallowed it down. Then they started cooing and petting with each other and I realized I’d seen this stage show before, but never quite so close up. You see I’ve been travelling since the days of when the airlines would provide you with hot towels, meals and clean seats, and the passengers would dress for air travel and behave only in certain manners. Now here I was looking rough sitting next to Riff and Raff making out in the back row. My, how times have changed.

Anyway, I am not a particularly large person, bigger than a lot but smaller than a lot more. So I took up much room as I needed without encroaching on anyone else’s space but grabbing both armrests for myself; trying to get comfortable for the 2 hours plus journey.

The plane was eventually pushed away from the gate when window girl, unexpectedly closed the shade. I turned my head flustered that I would not be able to look out of the window like I normally do. The plane started to taxi onto the runway, we were number one and ready for take-off. In just a few seconds we would up and in the sky.

We started to gather speed as the plane rolled down the runway when all of a sudden; I felt what I can only describe as the Nazi death camp grip on my right wrist. Middle row girl was almost in a trance with her back pressed against the back of her seat, had grabbed a hold of me with a clutch that would have made Darth Vader proud and was shaking, no vibrating as her knees spread apart and pressed against me and her partner on the other side. At least I think she was vibrating, it could have been me trying to get some blood flowing in my arm before she made it wither away.

After a minute or two when we were up in the air and no longer being buffeted by the wind, she relaxed her grip turned to her friend and they rested their heads against each other. No “pardon me,” no “excuse me for the inconvenience.” Well what can you do? Young love. Young dykes.

A quick digression - I decided to go to the bathroom piss and put on a sweater as soon as I could. When I got there, I did what I had to do, but I struggled to put on the sweater. I looked about the small enclosure and wondered how my Ex could have said he was a member of the mile high club and I couldn’t even find room to take a fart. What acrobatics he must have performed there. I should have known earlier not to walk away like others told me to, but to run.

I’m back – Well, so on my return trip to back to Philadelphia, I had the window seat this time and not so far back in the fuselage. I sat next to a young white man and young Asian man. Now I know they were gay, because you never see a white guy and an Asian guy together unless they are fucking or doing business. Although in some parts of the world there would be no distinguishing between the two. They both shared a head phone set and watched Ocean’s 12 or something on their computer. When the Chinese looking fellow wasn’t watching the movie he would rest his head against the other ones shoulder. Ahh, young love...again.

I decided not to go to the bathroom this time because I remembered Brad Pitt’s dilemma in “Fight Club.” What should I give them, the ass view or the dick view as I passed by them? Either one I‘m sure, they would have been happy with, but I decided to hold it until the airport.

So back to my question, out of an airplane that can carry up to 150 or more people, why do I always seem to be sitting in the gay section? Can anyone tell me?

Monday, December 24, 2007

To Tampa

I shall be in Tampa for a few days during this festive season and I wanted to let everyone know that I wished them a safe and happy holiday.

What do think too corny?????

Friday, December 21, 2007

American Gladiator

So what is this entire hullabaloo about? Some members of the blogosphere are acting as if someone ripped off their left testicle and left it to dry in the sun, all because Alex Castro (Militia) is now a gladiator. He is a gladiator in NBC’s reincarnation of American Gladiators debuting in the upcoming season.

Alex Castro
Why all the consternation and hair pulling? Well Mr. Castro apparently has posed naked before for such fag rags as Colt. He has also appeared in gay soft porn videos for companies like Muscle Hunks and Sharpshooters Studios and some people are astounded that he can now find work in the legitimate entertainment industry. Like as if he’s performing Hamlet somewhere.

Alex Castro
What people should be astounded about is the fact that a stupid and sophomoric television show that was cancelled in the 80’s has come back. Is this all that network TV is capable of producing now?

Listen, this shit isn’t Shakespeare. Let the man do what he does best, show off his assets. The only sad thing is, it's NBC so his best assets will still be confined to smutty video and magazines... when you can find them.

Alex Castro

Alex Castro
Alex Castro

Alex Castro

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Dinner with Auntie

There is a book that they are hawking on NPR called the Complete Book on Aunts and it states how as a “group title” Aunts are dying out. I haven’t read the book, but it shows how aunts have played or not played various roles in various cultures. In fact, the role of aunty wasn’t really established in English speaking cultures until sometime before the Victorian period and it really started to flourish after civil war in America and the World War I in Europe.

Writers like Jane Austin and later Charles Dickens would sometimes write about maiden aunts who would take in and care for lost and forlorn orphans. They would also guide pubescent young men and women into making suitable choices for marriage. Later in the mid twentieth century, we were introduced to aunts like Bea and Mame who would guide children into making suitable choices for life.

Before the 18th century, you never heard of anyone named Aunt Ruth or Jezebel in the bible even though I am sure they were somebody’s sisters. You also never hear mention of Aunt Drusilla or Aunt Julia Minor from the early days of the Roman Empire and sisters of which ever Caesar was in power at the time. The term Aunty never really became popular until society with its Victorian mores started justifying why someone’s sister had reached a certain age and still had no man in her life. Why Bertha was sitting at the end of the table hogging all the bread rolls as her only comfort with no marriage looming in her future. They had to explain why Sally was living by herself or with some other spinster woman down at the end of the street? So they came up the title Aunt and let’s face it, Aunt is really code for dyke.

Now there is nothing wrong with being labeled a dyke. It just means that no one is laying down that pipe unless it’s made of rubber or plastic, and is strapped on. No shame in that. I know a lot of women that don’t need to call themselves aunty anymore and live their lives and enjoy it. This is the twenty-first century and no one needs to act like the strange man behind the curtain in the Emerald City any more. No, the embarrassment only comes when you are living your life still trying to get some and you end up in a crowd of people looking like somebody’s great aunt who has never seen it and probably never ever will.

Take for example my recent dinner at XIX, a restaurant in the Park Hyatt Philadelphia at the Bellevue. “What, the Bellevue?” you say. “Isn’t that the hotel where legionnaire’s disease came from and all those people died?” Yes, but let somebody else’s blog talk about that shit, I’m talking about dinner.

Anyway, I was surrounded by all of the old world charm and opulence that the "Grand Old Dame of Broad St" could offer on the 19th floor of the building, The dining room, although not too large but actually small enough to be intimate, was bathed by a low light that reminded you of sitting on the banks of the Seine or riding in a gondola on the Canal Grande in Venice. In other words romantic. There was a humungous string of oversized pearls that hung from the ceiling in the dining room over our group of mainly gay men. How appropriate.

We were there to celebrate the birthday of a friend of mine who having turned or about to turn 40 had decided to commemorate it by going to this restaurant. He had his partner with him, whom I am actually closer to and almost everyone else there was also similarly paired with their partners. The only exceptions were my friend’s sister another guy and of course you guessed it, me.

Now during the last two or three years, I have become used to being the one with no special person to turn to, or even being with someone who would not last longer than the night. Hell sometimes they wouldn’t even last the length of time that it would take to think about it. But this night, this night, something different happened.

I was speaking to the person across from me and I asked him, for what reason I forget now, how he felt when he turned 40, since except for the young-uns, I thought that was the general age group and theme of the party. Well faith and begorrah, shock and awe, Captain and Tennille. Alright, I don’t know how to describe the distress and anger that he was going through. But you would have thought that I had just made a sexual proposition to his mother or some other nearest and dearest as he clutched his imaginary pearls.

So I looked to my left and then to my right and apart from the old man at the end of the table with the nineteen year old, don’t ask I don’t have all the details yet, I suddenly realized that I was the oldest one there. I was the elderly maiden aunt that everybody tolerated but spoke about behind her back. I felt embarrassed for myself and I decided then and there that I should keep quiet and to myself before someone started asking me questions about what it was like during Prohibition or something. Suffice it to say, I realized that even if I didn’t hog any of the bread rolls, I behaved and was probably perceived as somebody’s maiden aunt who was to be helped and pitied.

I shall let NPR know that not all maiden aunts are dying out. Some of us are alive and well, keeping the tradition of saying the wrong things at the wrong time. By the way, I kept the pen that I signed the check with as a keepsake of the event. That’s so old womanish.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

James of Survivor

Not much to say today. I don’t have my muse to give me ideas and so I have to think for myself. That will be a joke.

Besides, it’s been cloudy and cold and wet in South Jersey since this morning and I’m not sure what I should do today just because of the way the weather makes me feel. But I am sure of sure of one thing, I’ll be watching the season finale of Survivor China tonight.

I don’t really care who wins, but it’s going to be last time that I will be able to see James. I don’t really get to watch that much TV like I used to, so when I have the opportunity to see a fine looking brotha broadcast on TV, I take it.

It’s not that I will be able to see James half naked like most people like to see him, since he has been kicked off the show and you only see him dressed in his civvies on the jury. But it will be my chance to say farewell and dream a little again.

Who would have thought that I could develop a crush on a grave-digger? What is this world coming to?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Mandingo Fantasy

The other night I was talking over a pizza with Curtis, a friend of mine and fellow blogger and we were talking about why so many white men like to have black men for lovers or just sexual encounters. I don’t think of myself as a racist but I’ve never been with a white man or at least admitted to it, but I said that that many white people were looking for that Mandingo fantasy.

Now I wasn’t talking about Mandingo, the name of the movie that I saw in the eighties or the book that it was based on. I was talking about Mandingo, the big dick African warrior of urban myth that would come and take you, manhandle you, rape you but leave you smiling and begging for more. Well maybe I am talking about the book and movie, where Ken Norton, a big black buck came in and took care of business for his white mistress. She wanted the Mandingo fantasy where she was ravaged by the black man but still be in control and still safe.

I say this is a fantasy, because most black men, although blessed physically, rarely come up to the standards that their white counterparts are looking for. Very few us will have that ten to twelve inches of man meat that they want. In fact the only person that I have ever come across with that kind of measurement is Mitch.

Mitch stands about six feet three or four and has a face that is almost punishingly ugly. From what I understand, his family no longer talks to him. I’m not sure if it’s because he is gay or because they are frightened of his looks. But he has an ass of two firm round orbs that stick out like a park bench, so solid that you could bounce a quarter off it. And his dick is a thing of beauty. It is so long and thick with veins popping in all the right places and a head that reminds you of a small Portobello mushroom that you would need to shave off all the hair from your ass so you could fit the whole thing in. To see him move when he is naked is to melt into your own dreams, slide into your own fantasies.

He is always surrounded by white men. Men he has been with and men that he will probably be with. These are people who even though know they will never measure up to his measurements in height or dick length think they will always be in control and they and will never be hurt by him. But I think as in most relationships they are hurt, because eventually they realize he is more that just a fantasy. He is a real person.

White men will always long for Mitch or men like Mitch. In fact black men will want him too. The Mandingo fantasy isn’t just confined to the white community. As gay men we all long for someone who will take us into a different world. As humans we all look for that partner that will affirm what we think of ourselves or cover what we least like about ourselves.

As for me, I think I will just rent Mandingo the movie again and leave real life and real fantasies for others to deal with.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

The Many Faces of Bette

As part of what is known as the TV generation, that is the generation before cable, MTV and the 24hour news networks, I grew up watching lots and lots of television.

Television was there when I came home from school and my parents weren’t. Television was there on the weekends when my friends were unavailable to play with and I needed some sort of interaction with something, lame as it was. Television marked the Rights of Passage, the older you grew the later you were allowed to stay up and watch.

As a consequence, I grew up watching many old shows that I can remember today, at least partly; Star Trek, Julia, I Spy and the Flying Nun to name only a few. And then I remember the movies.

Now many of these movies would be considered as classics today. In fact you can only see them broadcast on Turner Classics, AMC or the occasional 6 movies that they show over and over again on your local PBS station. I learned and grew to love the old stars like Bogey and Bacall, Tracy and Hepburn, Gable and Lombard, Crawford and Davis. Not that Joan Crawford and Bette Davis were ever really a team. They only made one movie together, “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?” and from all accounts they couldn't stand each other so they never worked together again.

So imagine my astonishment when applying for a teller’s job at the now defunct Chemical Bank on Water Street in NYC when in a crowd of about 300 applicants, one of the interviewers shouted out the name "Betty Davis." The entire room or I should say warehouse of people turned to see if the Hollywood legend was indeed there. I mean I don’t think that she had worked in a while and who really knows about other people’s finances. This was the time when people were trying to figure out who shot JR and anything was possible. Anyway it turned out to be someone else, whose sister I worked with for about 2 weeks and told me that Betty had been plagued by that name all her life and was trying to live it down. So let’s advance a few years to the mid eighties.

I was walking down Christopher Street towards the Piers, the Promised Land back in the day, on an early Saturday evening when I noticed a moderately sized crowd standing outside a theatre. I closed in and saw a tall grey haired man looking very distinguished and very important enclosed by the crowd and one or two television cameras. Former Governor Hugh Carey of the great State of New York I thought? (Well not in those words, but you know what I mean.) I wasn’t sure who he was so I got in closer. That was when I looked down.

There she was, somewhere between belly button and nipple level stood Bette Davis. She was wearing some Willi Smith monstrosity that was about 50 years too young for her. She looked old and shriveled, like death warmed over actually, but she still looked feisty. She smiled at some of the crowd with that sneer that she had developed after surviving her mastectomy and stroke and signed one or two autographs.

The women next to me screamed out, “We love you Miss Davis,” as Bette, propped up by the grey haired man was escorted to her stretch limousine. They drove off and I thought, I should jump onto the trunk of the car and then she would let me in, talk to me and take me away from the dirt and drab of New York to the sunny, happy climes of Hollywood and I would become a star. Dreams.

I learned later on that she had been to see the play, Steel Magnolias and was thinking of taking one of the parts in the upcoming filming of the story. She never did of course. I can only imagine that it would have been either the Shirley MacLaine or Olympia Dukakis role. She was physically too frail to both work and continue smoking after having a stroke. And so I never got to Hollywood and I never became as well known as I thought I might have done when I was a child. But I don’t think the story or movie of my life is over just yet. There’s still time.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Things that make you say hmmm.

Its late and so I really have nothing profound to say. Although some people may think that I have nothing profound to say anyway, but I do have a question. Why do runners no longer seem to wear underwear or support? Wont they be slowed down by all that bouncing flesh?

Just something that has occurred to me tonight.

In fact, now that I think about it, whenever NBC air track metes like the Olympics and such, they always try and avoid showing the front of an athlete below the waist. I guess too much trauma for that housewife in Idaho.

"Harry, get the vapors!"

Sunday, December 2, 2007

I'm not Stella

I am not been one of those people who has travelled from circuit party to circuit party. Neither, am I someone who has been to all of the black gay events that are seen on almost every major holiday in every major city. I am more of a stay at home person whose big excitement for the week will be finding something new on TV or maybe a trip to the park for sightseeing the boys or reading a good book alone on the bench. But this year, I have been giving some thought to celebrating next year’s Memorial Day weekend in Mexico. Why there?

Well Mexico was the country that was chosen for Memorial Day’s bacchanal by the San Juan Brothas organization. They are a group of people who have dedicated themselves to having the best god damned party and get together for gay black and Latino brothers on the island of Puerto Rico on the holiday. A party, where the sex and the alcohol flow freely. Where everyone has a good time and everyone walks away with good memories and maybe a few regrets. Hopefully these regrets are cleared up with a few visits to the clinic. But next year, as rumor has it, Bill Gates will be holding a conference on the island and so almost every hotel in Puerto Rico has been booked up in advance. What was the group going to do?

Well they chose Puerto Vallarta in Mexico as the spot to be for a few days but changed it to Cancun when a host hotel, ME, was found able to accommodate both the group and the anticipated arrivals.

This is a hotel that seems to sit on land that is stuck out in the middle of the sea on land not much wider than the width of the building. This is where a friend of mine at my gym has a time-share he’s trying to sell, says that they have just finished replacing all that sand that was lost from the last hurricane and brought to an end all the repairs to the building structure. Hmm. Nothing says a vacation of rest and relaxation better than when you are putting up boards in the windows and facing a life threatening event.

Then I wondered to myself, who else would go to Cancun? My answer was young people, married people, straight people. People who want to be doted on hand and foot. White people. Not that I have anything against being among these people, in fact some of them pay me and call themselves friends, but how am I going to get loose in front of them? How am I going to be able to get my groove on or even back?

Well I guess I have until next year to figure out these conundrums. But if I don’t and you see me out on Memorial Day in Rittenhouse Square, please leave a little room on the bench, I'll probably have a good book to read.


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