Sunday, February 28, 2010

Coming Up...

Read more »

Friday, February 26, 2010

Blog Tour

Read more »

LEATHER 101: Ads

Read more »

Thursday, February 25, 2010

LEATHER 101: The Fun Side

Okay okay....The Village People weren't a "leather group", but they had a leatherman so it counts.

Aside from the movie Crusing, I can't think of another instance where gay or leather entered the countrys psyche.  

I remember The Village People back in the day (though I was but a small child), and I even went to see "Can't Stop the Music", the horribly wonderful movie (starring the group, Steve Guttenberg, Valerie Perrine, Bruce Jenner and director Nancy Walker) with my sister and friends and btw we hated it! 

Back then I had a crush on the Construction Worker played by David Hodo mainly because of his jeans and sunglasses.  I found him very sexy even as a ten year old kid and man did I want those sunglasses!  Later on, I found the appeal of the Leatherman Glenn Hughes who sadly died of lung cancer. 

Through the years, band members came and went and some came back again for a time but they were never quite the same.   I also remember when their album "Sex On The Phone" came out in 1985 and laughing at their image change and marveling that they were still around.   I wish I would have bought that record.   Sex On The Phone was actually pretty decent and the video is a hoot.   I would have posted some of their videos but for some weird reason TVP have joined the ranks of "embedding disabled by request" on youtube which pisses me off.   How selfish and short-sighted of their powers that be.  

I think The Village People reflect (albeit in a small measure) the fun side of leather, and I am a huge fan of the boys to this day!
Read more »

Time Travel Thursday

Read more »

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

LEATHER 101: Whatcha Pleasure?

Back when David Letterman was on NBC, Bill Maher was a guest and did a funny bit during his 'sit down' about how gay men have it all figured out.  

He read a personal ad out of a newspaper (yes Mary......that's how they did it before the internet) where the guy gave a list of everything he was looking for in a match.....and it was a loooooong list.  He appeared to read it verbatim and it was full of the usual height requirement, weight limit, hair and eye color etc along with an alphabet soup of abbreviations a young boy from Idaho had no clue about.  The ad placer was even looking for a guy into watersports which got an ebarrassed reaction from Letterman and a huge laugh from the sophisticated late night audience, but left me asking aloud "What's so funny about jet skiing?"  

Anyway, years later as the little fagolah from Idaho grew into a more savvy queer I learned what those abbreviations meant....and that watersports (which I have never had a yen to try thankyouverymuchforwondering) did not mean "jet skiing".   That's why the old hanky code fascinates me....those boys in leather seemed to have it all figured out didn't they?   I have no clue if this is still in use, and I really doubt that it is, but it's a captivating lookback at how Leathermen orchestrated their dance of hooking up.    

Whatcha pleasure?  Read the list.
Read more »

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

LEATHER 101: Cruising

During a hot New York City summer, body parts of men begin showing up in the Hudson river. Police develop a theory it’s the work of a serial killer picking up gay men at S&M Leather bars like The Eagle’s Nest, The Ramrod and the Cock Pit, taking them home and then stabbing them to death after tying them up. Officer Steve Burns (Al Pacino) is sent deep undercover into the Leather underground in order to track down the killer.

Cruising was released in the 1980s and followed the typical treatment of gays in film, portraying them as comic foibles or as murderous deviants. The subject matter of the film struck a nerve with gay leaders of the time, and when Cruising was in production, Gay Rights Activists and members of New York’s gay community protested the production of the film, even going so far as urging them to disrupt filming. Gay owned businesses were asked to bar the film-makers from their premises and people attempted to interfere with shooting by pointing mirrors from rooftops during filming, and blasting whistles and air horns.

The MPA of America originally gave Cruising an X rating until the director deleted 40 minutes of footage said to depict graphic sex and club scenes.
Like it or not, Cruising was a landmark film for the time, given the homophobia of the 80s, but the quality of the film is murky and debatable. You can still catch cruising on late night airings, (how I actually saw it for the first time) and on DVD.

Read more »

Monday, February 22, 2010

LEATHER 101: Primer

To those just coming out, and the rest of the world, the multitude of subcultures within the gay community is often shocking and daunting.  
How do you accept, or even fit within such a rainbow of interests and desires that go against the 'norm' of society?  

Is it any big wonder that a minority who is victimized and reviled by just about everyone, (I'm talking about gays in general), would come up with a way of life that would fly in the face of so called "decent" and "moral" people?

Rupal has a famous saying, "you're born naked and the rest is drag"....and there's a lot of truth to that.

Mention leather, and immediately dark rooms, scary alleys, big gruff looking men and raw SEX come to mind......and that's a big part of it.  But if you step back from the shock value there's alot more to it, and it is fascinating.

Throughout history, gay men and women have had to come up with ways to identify each other as a matter of networking, practicality and even survival.   When the sexual revolution struck in the US and gay rights took off?  There was an explosion of expression in the birth of the gay community, and one of those forms of expression was leather.

Built on hedonsitic practices and expressions, those living the "Leather Life" were unapologeticly geared toward a specific kind of sex.   The immediately identifiable, brutal,  in your face heirarchy, type of sex......but of course even the Leather Marys had to dress it up a bit, and borrowing from the biker culture, and a few other influences adopted the acoutremonts of leather.
Read more »

Theme Week

I thought it might be fun to shake things up a bit and try something a little a theme week for the blog.

To kick things off, the first Daily Aural is a video produced by LTHRScorpion. His vid (set to some good house music) takes you into the London leather scene. If you're not really familiar with the leather life, or just have a passing fancy, his vid is your chance to check it out from the safety of your laptop.

For the Gay Artist Spotlight this week, I'm featuring the work of Tom of Finland. His highly stylized works had an enormous impact and influence on gay culture as it was developing. His work is a part of our history even if you're not into his particular brand of homoeroticism.

There's more to check out so look for multiple daily updates throughout the week.   Hope you find something to enjoy!
Read more »

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Coming Up Next Week

Read more »

Saturday, February 20, 2010


Now I wanna make it clear......I'm not a 'size queen'....unless it comes to advertising. I saw this on Queerty a few days ago and my jaw dropped. (ooh....that reads kinda dirty, but true)

Apparently the public advertising codes and ethics regulations in New Zealand are somewhat.....lax when compared to the US. but I think this is just funny....and yet also inappropriate at the same time.

This bilboard was put up but NZ's Auckland ad agency 'Collenso BBDO' and it's advertising the show HUNG on HBO.

If you haven't seen Hung, it's about a divorced High School basketball coach who decides to capitolize on his enormous God-given attribute and become a male escort. He (& the show) is 100% hetero and you never see his "special purpose" so if you're hoping for some cheap thrill, let me save you the frustration. (Hey, I have cheap thrill moments too......I can own that.) Thomas Jane is one hot guy, his ex wife is played by former lesbian Anne Heche (whom I can't stand) and though it's mean....I have to say this to someone......the two actors who play the kids on the show? Are frighteningly ugly. There. I said it. I'm going to hell.

Anyway, I started watching because I thought the opening was hot but quickly soured on the show about 6 episodes in. It isn't necessarily bad, I just didn't enjoy it.

Here's a pic of Thomas Jane who plays the coach, and the opening of the show where he disrobes while walking through the city.

Read more »

Friday, February 19, 2010

Brutally Cool

Remember when you were a kid and the thrill of a vending machine?  

Using your allowance or a coin begged from your parents for toys gum, treats or trinkets?

For me it was every trip to the grocery store.  I had already staked out the best machine whichever store we went to, and knew that a calm pre-meditated approach for the money was waaaaay more effective than a frantic begging session. After all, if the first tactic didn't work, incessant begging could always be used as a backup plan.

As an adult, I don't get excited about vending machines's the price of growing up I guess.  However.....I read about Art-O-Mat in a magazine and now I'm in danger of getting hooked again.   

Clark Whittington had the bright idea of re purposing cigarrette machines to dispense pocket-sized art.  For 5 dollars you can own an original piece of art by a legitimate artist!   Traditional, folk, portrait, sculpture, flip's all at your fingertips.   I think this is absolutely cool, and am actually contacting them to get a machine in my hometown in Idaho and for Denver.  

How brutally cool is it to be an adult sometimes?  
Here's a few examples of what you might find popping out of a machine!
Read more »

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Time Travel Thursday

Read more »

Monday, February 15, 2010

Empathy On Both Sides Of The Aisle

I found this on CNN today and can empathize with both sides of this situation.......(and I don't think the guy is 'that' fat btw). 

Kevin Smith's most famous role is a guy who rarely speaks. But he's got a lot to say -- much of it profane -- after being kicked off a Southwest Air flight because he didn't fit comfortably into the seat.

Southwest said in a statement airline officials had called Smith to offer their "heartfelt apologies," but also stated his removal was for the "safety and comfort of all customers." 
Smith, 39, originally purchased two tickets "as he's been known to do when traveling Southwest," the airline noted, but when he decided to fly standby on an earlier flight, only one seat remained. Although he had been seated, he was asked to leave.

Smith, who played Silent Bob in his Clerks movies and who has battled his weight for years -- "I know I'm fat," he confesses -- was given a $100 voucher and arrived in Burbank on a later flight. But he was in no mood to accept an apology.

"I broke no regulation, offered no 'safety risk' (what, was I gonna roll on a fellow passenger?)" he tweeted. "I saw someone bigger than me on THAT flight! But I wasn't about to throw a fellow Fatty under the plane as I'm being profiled. But he & I made eye contact, & he was like 'Please don't tell...'"

After landing in Burbank, Smith wrote, "Don't worry: wall of the plane was opened & I was airlifted out while Richard Simmons supervised."

My own weightloss/lifestyle change is going full throttle, but wow I feel for this guy or anyone like him.
Read more »

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Rest In Peace

Michael Phelps, who started at The Advocate in 1996 and worked up the ranks to become publisher before being let go from the magazine, was found dead in his Los Angeles home Wednesday. He was 45.

The cause of death is unknown.

Phelps demonstrated a commitment to fitness and athletics. He was also a philanthropist and an ardent supporter of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center.
Read more »

Danger Of Facebook

I'm assuming by now, just like in the movie "The Body Snatchers" you have slept next to your alien pod and are now on Facebook, right?   If not, don't soon will be.

I'm on Facebook, and I have to say I'm not a 100% fan of the site.   Not because you have to understand the privacy settings, or because it can take over your life...but because of the emotional crap it brings up.  

It used to be, when you were done with High School, other than class reunions every ten years or so, you were done.   Now, not so much.  Thanks to facebook, people you knew eons ago...some barely so, are now back in your life, and it's not just old school chums either.   I've had people track me down I never thought I'd see again, let alone had any desire to.  

True, the ignore/unfriend button is there, but that has consequences too.   In the beginning I accepted a friend invite from a former best friend.   In a moment of nostalgia I thought it would be okay to reestablish some kind of tie but when all he did was dredge up really awful feelings I quietly unfriended him and all of our old (still his) posse'.    When he realized I'd done so, he began emailing a few still mutual friends having them ask me why I'd unfriended him, and  on and on.    I couldn't believe it.    I almost deleted my whole facebook membership because I kept thinking "I'm freakin 40 and why am I feeling like I'm back in school?!" 

You have to remember FB is part of the new media and our understanding of all it's implications are still young.  Don't get me wrong....I like it, alot...however like any new technology/social phenom, it has a learning curve because admit it or not, there are dangers that go hand in hand with Facebook.  (stalkers, hackers, emotional toll and even coming out all over again.  Now THAT was fun)

Below is a slide show I did of my highschool memory book for my old classmates.  It's set to Aqua's "Back in the 80's".  Thought you might get a kick out of it.  Their live version is in the Daily Aural on the top left....I am still just so in love with this group.

Read more »

Friday, February 12, 2010

Lead Legs

6 miles yesterday, leg presses, extensions modified squats, standing  and seated calf raises.


Barely able to walk.................and on a friday.   I just want to eat and go back to bed!

My legs feel like aching lead today......I'm not complaining....just sharing.   Really.   
Read more »

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Time Travel Thursday

Read more »


British fashion designer Alexander McQueen has been found dead after taking his own life. He was 40 years old.

His death comes just days before the start of London Fashion Week and weeks before he was due to unveil his new collection at Paris Fashion Week on March 9.

Lady Gaga wore McQueen’s signature stilettos in her “Bad Romance” music video.
Read more »

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

On My Bookshelf: My Lives by Edmund White

I was SO excited to find this book AT THE DOLLAR STORE no less AND in hardback because I'd read the reviews and thought it sounded like a good read.

Welllllllllllllllllllllllllllll let's just say the jury is still out.

Edmund White's work is known for mixing fiction with factual elements of his own past.   He's a famous and well received author who's novels include: A Boy's Own Story, Our Paris, and The Married Man among others.   While I recognized his name, this is my first read of his, and I'm not happy.

I'm not stuipd, and have a fairly well developed vocabulary, but I don't like having to slog through a novel because the authors intent (or style) consists of using an eurodite vocabulary which would stump an ivy leauge snob.    So far, about sixty-five pages in, this seems to be the case with Edmond White, and despite a fascinating story.......I may not finish this one.  

So the jury is still out for me, regarding My Lives.   I should like it.  I WANT to like it, but it aint lookin good.
Read more »

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Clean Out Your Computer Day

Cleaning out your computer may be a chore, but it sure speeds things up.   Deleting junk, moving files, uninstalling all the apps you thought were cool but never used all make a huge difference.

One thing that's often overlooked though is your monitor.   Don't forget to clean the inside of your screen.   If you don't know how, it's easy. 

Watch this:
Read more »

Monday, February 8, 2010

Coming Wednesday

Aunt Frannie's Recap of Rupal's Drag Race, this wednesday!
Read more »

Human Is Okay

I'm a little old to be going through the kind of angst I've been experiencing with my mother lately. The kind of angry exchanges we've had were probably better suited to the teenage years, but being the WASPY family we were......that was taboo.

All in all, our conflicts have been childish at times, vicious at others, and overall hurtfull.

One of the lessons I've learned is women do not fight fair. Instead of sticking to the issue, they employ what I call a 'scatter techique" which is meant to 'shock and awe', and WOW is it effective. They'll pull 15 things out of the air and throw them at you to knock you off guard.... and it works.  You end up shell-shocked.

Intellectually I know part of my mom's attacks are due to old age and all the insecurities and fear/anger that comes from her situation and that stage of her life.  However that doesn't change the hurt one feels when you're on the receiving end of her barbs. In fact, because it's my mom I end up feeling 10 years old all over again. It's when her snarky comments devolve into outright evil hostility, you start to question whether she's right or wrong, and that's baaaaaaad territory.

Self doubt, coupled with whatever else is going on in life is dangerous because it magnifies every aspect of your existence. For instance, she said to me the other day, "The only reason you're nice to your brother now is because he's dying. You're only nice to other people when it suits you."
How do you process something like that?

I told her that A: what she'd said wasn't true, and B: If that's what she really believed then I felt sorry for her.

But when all is said and done, and you're left alone with your thoughts....the knife in your heart begins to bleed, and you wonder..."Is she right?"

Aging parents are nothing new. Almost everyone has them (or will have), and while what she said was not true at all, her words made me recall stupid incidents, decades old, where maybe I wasn't the nicest person in the world.....and the self doubt began it's work.

The truth is, no one is perfect...not me, not you and not her. We're all human, simply trying to do the best we can every day. Sometimes we succeed, and sometimes we fail, but we try, and that's what's important.

Should I obsess over when I was a jerk at 16 and didn't want my drug addicted, alcholic brother sleeping in my room? No. Today I love him, and I pity him for the damage he did to himself physically and mentally during those awful years, but I do not have to pay one smidgen of her prescribed penance. I do however have to grow enough to transcend the hateful place she's trying to place me in.

It's not easy, but I'm trying to remember being human is okay....for both of us.
Read more »

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Think You Have It Tough?

Malawian police have arrested a man for allegedly putting up posters supporting homosexuality, which is illegal in the southern African nation.

Peter Sawali was charged with conduct likely to cause breach of peace, said police spokesman Davie Chingwalu.

Sawali, 21, was putting up posters that read, "Gay rights are human rights," on a busy road in the city of Blantyre, the spokesman said.

The man had stacks of glossy posters with the same message in his possession, according to the spokesman. An investigation is under way to seek more suspects, because Sawali said he was not acting alone.

"Homosexuality is illegal in Malawi and is punishable by prison time and hard labor," Chingwalu said. "Basically, he was promoting a criminal act. This is what this is all about."

If convicted, Sawali would face up to five months in prison, hard labor and a fine of about 2,000 kwacha ($14), police said.

Homosexuality is a largely taboo subject in Malawi.

"All these countries want to impose their culture on us, but homosexuality is a crime, according to the penal code in Malawi," he said. Those found guilty of homosexuality in Malawi face a maximum of 14 years in jail.
--cnn report
Read more »

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Rest In Peace

Read more »

Rays Of Light

When I was in the military they gave me a medal for killing two men and a discharge for loving one. ~Epitaph of Leonard P. Matlovich, 1988

Who would give a law to lovers? Love is unto itself a higher law. ~Boethius, The Consolation of Philosophy, A.D. 524

No government has the right to tell its citizens when or whom to love. The only queer people are those who don't love anybody. ~Rita Mae Brown, speech, 28 August 1982

War. Rape. Murder. Poverty. Equal rights for gays. Guess which one the Southern Baptist Convention is protesting? ~The Value of Families

What is straight? A line can be straight, or a street, but the human heart, oh, no, it's curved like a road through mountains. ~Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire, 1947

I'm a supporter of gay rights. And not a closet supporter either. From the time I was a kid, I have never been able to understand attacks upon the gay community. There are so many qualities that make up a human being... by the time I get through with all the things that I really admire about people, what they do with their private parts is probably so low on the list that it is irrelevant. ~Paul Newman
Read more »

Friday, February 5, 2010

Earwax; Natures Evil, Sick, Twisted Sense Of Humor

Amazing how such a little, seemingly inconsequential thing like earwax can make such a huge impact on a person's sense of well-being.

After using some earplugs to go to sleep last night, I think I must've pushed some wax deeper down the canal and now it's like half my head is stuck in water.  Really thick.....sound deafening water, totally on the right side, partially on the left.

The day started out with such promise too!   I've been working on that resolution list I began in feb and despite the weather, I managed 5.36 miles this morning, AND stuck to my diet!  Now this pesky petroleum in my ears is bringing me back down to earth.

In retrospect, I should have cleaned my ears before shoving those damn ear plugs in, but I didn't and now I'm being taunted by nature's evil sense of humor, only I'm not laughing!  (okay maybe a little, but it's not a pleasant laugh)

So if we happen to run into each other tonight, and you say hello and I just stare off in the distance, remember.....I can't hear you!
Read more »

Smart Thrifty

Just about everyone I know is a little snooty when it comes to shopping at the dollar store. I know I know…..they’re all stocked with boatloads of crap, but be forewarned…..don’t knock the dollar store, when you’re around me!

I became an uber shopper when I was laid off, and I’m proud to say I’m continuing that frugality now that things are better. It took abject poverty for me to truly understand the value of a dollar.

First thing to remember is just because it’s a dollar doesn’t mean it’s a good deal. You have to factor in value and durability but if you’re smart about shopping, (meaning you know what things cost elsewhere) you can find some great deals and usually some entertainment via the clientele.

I’ve found by shopping at the dollar store I save at least 50% on liquid soap, napkins, frames, suit garment bags, and a whole lot more.

My favorite deals? Greeting Cards (2 for a dollar!), Hardcover books, Ibuprofen, Liquid Soap and Hand Sanitizer. My favorite most recent find? Gel shock covers, and an arm sport band for my iPod! I had been fighting a should or shouldn’t I war with myself over buying the Nike sport band for my iPod for the longest time, but couldn’t justify paying the high retail price……I not only stumbled across the arm band but the covers as well which came 3 to a pack!
Shopping at the dollar store can be a very cool, very smart, thrifty tool if you know how to use it.
Read more »

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Time Travel Thursday

Read more »

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

On My Book Shelf: The Martha Rules

Love her or hate her, Martha Stewart rules her queendom with a lovely embroidered iron fist.  It's a good thing to remember, and if you own a business, are starting one or even managing one, this is a great book to have.

" In 2004, I entered a Federal Prison Camp in Alderson, West Virginia." is how Martha begins "The Martha Rules" and by kicking off the book with that sentence...that information, you know she's going to be candid....well mostly.

I'm a huge Martha fan, and if you've read this blog recently you know I met her some years ago, and really enjoyed the experience. 

Yes Martha has her faults, some minor, many glaring but you have to admit, when it comes to building an empire, she knows what she's doing.    In this book, the big 'M' shares personal stories of her business experiences and cites examples of people with whom she has worked  while offering practical advice in a straight-forward manner for the entrepenuer or manager.  Heck, her advice is even applicable for employees of any rank.

There were no shortcuts, no tidbits on lying to Federal Agents over insider tips, just a set of guidelines to making a successful go at owning and running your own business.   My  "Martha fanaticism" aside, this is a book I'm going to re read maybe a couple times.

I'd give it 4 out of 5 stars!
Read more »

Monday, February 1, 2010


It's no secret I'm a HUGE Varla Jean Merman fan, and she literally just posted this about an hour ago so it's still got that "fresh youtube smell". This was a great addon to my day, and then tonight Rupal's Drag Race is on Logo! February is starting out very well for moi!
Read more »

Shattering The Old Resolution Track Record

I didn't make a New Year's Resolution this year, did you?

Since almost all resolutions fail, I thought a change of strategy was in order, so I decided to try to circumvent fate, and save my resolutions for February.  Perhaps giving the new year a monthly breather might bode well for the life changes I want to make. 

I'm keeping my finger's crossed.

This year, I want to take my health seriously.  I want to finish droping the extra weight I've been working on since the summer, and I want it off permenantly.

This year, I want to finally learn a second language......fluently.  

A new job has been in store for a couple years now and I'm planning on making this the year to make that happen too.

Finally, I've spent a good deal of time (almost two years) going over the mistakes I've made in my ethics, careers, relationships etc, and I want to work on those changes which must come from the inside as well.   I've always thought I was a pretty good guy, but my self esteem has taken a beating the last couple years or so, and I want to change that.

These aren't vague, pie-in-the-sky resolutions either.    I've laid them out on paper, examined them over and over, and made a list of steps to help me achieve them.  

Change is a nobel endeavor.  When we cease to change, to adapt for the better, we cease to live.

So the new decade has arrived, and its first month has passed.   This year is going to be different.  I'm going to shatter the old resolution track record and this time I'll make it happen.

If not, there's always next year, right?
Read more »

Powered by Blogger