Monday, March 29, 2004

You Didn't Stick The Landing

I had a feeling I was going to be in for it to a degree with my last (not counting the bit about Bomber Boy) post. I couldn't be happier. This is a subject that I wrestle with on an ongoing basis. I welcome the opportunity to hear opposing (and agreeing) viewpoints and I am privileged to bring this subject out where, hopefully at least the truth will be. I received two separate e-mails from the same person regarding that post. After the first e-mail I wrote back asking if I could post it and respond. I got a qualified "I suppose" in response, which in this case is good enough for me, because I really feel the whole discussion on both sides has some interesting merit as well as some radically different reactions to the same (seemingly) set of facts. That and the fact that the only completely public figure in this blog is me so no matter what the content he can't be identified. The following came in as two e-mails I am posting here as one longer piece. There was a minor edit as extraneous content and a couple of typos corrected:

________________________________________________________________

Saw your response in your blog... While you need to do what you feel
comfortable with, I'd challenge you to step back and see a bigger
picture...

If you smoke, have you ever given someone a cigarette? If you drive, don't
you worry about hitting other people and hurting them? - especially if
you've ever gone over the speed limit or driven after "a drink or two".
Have you ever served fatty food to guests? Bought clothes that were made
in a sweat shop?

The list could go on and on... The point is that risk is inherent in life.
Pretty much anything we do could hurt us or someone else. One of the many
reasons why people take risks is for personal pleasure, which was the case
with the gangbang. It's really no different than people who engage in
"extreme sports".

You're basically saying that it's OK to bareback an anonymous, blindfolded
bottom (if you pull out before you cum), but a gangbang where the bottom
is taking multiple loads isn't a good idea. My guess is that your
blindfolded bottom would have enjoyed being the gangbang bottom and would
have taken your load. The distinction between the two events seems
academic.

We're in a political environment where our personal liberties are being
stripped away in order to protect our "liberty". While you say the bottom
is free to live his life as he chooses, the general tone of your post was
that what he did was wrong and/or irresponsible. Just remember that
someone else may look at your sex life and say the same thing.

People have irrational outlooks on sexual behavior... I know of a guy who
was a neg bottom taking anonymous loads who wouldn't consider bondage
because of the off chance that he might get tied up and left to die. He
was willing to accept the fairly large risk of being infected with a
deadly disease, but the smaller risk of bondage wasn't "acceptable" to
him. And incidentally the risk of infection was real - one of his tops
intentionally pozzed him, which curiously he's OK with, but he still won't
consider bondage...

We're all allowed to hold irrational beliefs and even live our lives by
them, but please see how your post went a bit beyond that - to judging
other people's behavior...

A few more random thoughts on the matter...

Paul Morris (who's behind T.I.M.) is all about "documentary porn". What
happened on tape is typical of what the bottom does in real life - hell,
it was what he was doing the rest of the weekend when he was out on his
own... Whatever risk there is, is a risk he takes all the time - not just
when he's doing a porn video.

The current IML has a quote on his website that he's glad bareback sex has
come out of the closet (http://www.pawscave.dircon.co.uk/IML/being7.htm).
Before it was "out" people used to claim they weren't doing it, now
they'll admit to it. You can't discuss the issue with someone if they
simply end the discussion by saying they don't do it (when in fact they
do).

I'm not sure what you're response will be, but if it's along the lines
that it (bareback gangbang videos) makes barebacking attractive - I'm not sure that's the entire
picture. People know the risks, they know bareback gangbang bottoms they
see on screen are poz. They also know HIV kills (eventually).

When it comes down to it, how is the impact of a bareback video different
than you discussing your bareback experiences on a public website?

__________________________ __________________________

Well, I have to say sir, while I thought you started out pretty weak you finished strong. You did in fact "get me" a couple of times and I'll try to address those points as honestly as I can. And I have to say, some of the mental gymnastics you've managed to accomplish to explain your actions are truly impressive, and honestly, and I'm being serious, you've made me take a hard look at how I'm really feeling about this subject. so in that, at least, you're OK by me.

First, comparing a bareback gangbang to a bummed cig is really apples and watermelons don't you think? And to answer your question no, when I smoked I frequently refused to give out cigarettes but not as a means to protect anyone's health but because I believe people that bum cigs are the lowest form of sub-human excrement walking the planet. I smoked for 20 yrs and I never, NEVER bummed a cigarette. "I only smoke when I drink." Fuck you! You smoke! Buy your own. You're marked as pathetic and cheap. Also, it was a variant of taking responsibility for my nasty habit. I smoked, so I always had cigarettes and a match or a lighter. People that smoke, but never have the means to smoke on them are just pathetic as well. (I feel better) And no, if I drove and believed there was a real possibility I was going to hit someone I would not drive. That's the point I may try making throughout this discussion. If I know that my actions would bring serious overt harm to another human being how can I justifiably take that action?
I won't even dignify the fatty food or sweat shop analogy with a response. You're way better than that.

Risk is inherent in life. Agreed. Pretty much anything we do could hurt us or someone else. Really? Anything? Really? While some of the things I do may be risky for me , and you can even make a case that some of the things I do are risky for others, a blanket statement like anything we do is indefensible, isn't it? I walked to the gym today, and I suppose an air conditioner could have fallen out of a window and killed me, but other than that, where was the risk? I did laundry, and I suppose one of the machines could have blown a gasket and sent a metal laundry part into my head, but other than that, where's the risk? Ditto lunch at the diner. I know, choking on a chunk of chicken. Waveboarding and snowboarding is the same thing as a condomless gangbang. That's your position? Or can I submit that you created this "everything is risky" reality so a bareback gangbang is no more or less risky as a "mental gymnastic" to justify doing something that on some level, you know is unhealthy.

OK. My turn as target. While I never once said that it's OK to bareback an anonymous, blindfolded bottom nor did I imply in any way that pulling out and shooting on him was in some manner elevating the not good level to something noble. That's all subtext you gave me. But I did do it and I said so publicly. The part I left out of that story is the conversation where we discussed the fact that we were both HIV+ and more specific details of our current health situation. It wasn't really an important part of the narrative at the time. The main point of that story was how scary/exciting it is to walk into a "strangers" apartment and take him. Sort of the "gay burglar" that used to pop up in 80's porn. I happen to be predisposed to pulling out and shooting on the guy, I think because I saw so much 80's porn. It just feels more normal to me. Besides in the scene we were in it just felt right to cum on the li'l fucker. Sort of a "there, consider yourself used and spewed on sort of moment". It's you who seems to be fixated on cumming inside him or it can't be right. If anything it feels like what you are fetishizing has limited you. As if it's never satisfying unless you cum inside him.

I'm fully cognizant of the gay man as "sexual outlaw" scenario, and part of me fully supports it, within reason. I'm also quite aware that anyone could pick up many parts of this blog and label me an evil freak. And yes, I get that people fit in a broad spectrum when expressing their sexuality. I myself am really turned on on one level with the loss of control a bondage scene would be, with me being the one restrained. But I've never in my life tried it because the control freak in me always screams "Are you kidding?" loud enough to dissuade me. I'm curious why an obviously educated man wasn't able to understand that it wasn't just a sexual issue with your non-bondage bottom but a psychological phobia.

In rereading my earlier post I honestly looked to see if I could find an area where you could infer that I was judging the bareback bottom in this situation. What I found was that, reading between the lines, if anything I believe I was judging the bareback tops by choosing to help this man become seriously ill or worse. Interesting you didn't see that. And I do still feel that this man is free to live the life he chooses, my question was that with new information in my possession could I be a willing participant in that choice? I decided I could not.

I have no doubt that the folks at Treasure Island media believe they are making "documentary porn". I have no doubt that this man does this in his real life, I have no doubt he spent Black Party weekend getting fucked repeatedly and I reiterate it's his choice. Is it at all possible that more mental gymnastics have been performed by Paul and the gang to, I don't know, justify and sell more videos perhaps? And when he catches all manner of STD's and ends up hospitalized how much of the bill do you figure the folks at Treasure Island are footing?

I agree with the current IML, it is good these issues are being discussed, I wish there were many more forums, discussions and studies being done to at least make sure people made informed choices. I support risk reduction and clearly, use a condom every time just isn't working nor do I feel it's realistic. Ironically, the link you've provided frankly and honestly brings up many of the ways how/why bareback sex occurs and advocates condom use clearly and pointedly. Don't do my work for me, man.

I don't really have an opinion as to whether these videos make it more attractive. Nor can you say that people know the risks on either side. The bottom may be in complete denial about what he's doing. The tops may intentionally be trying to find HIV- men to give them "The Gift" as you described before. I didn't know that bottoms participating in these activities are ending up with a host of other STD's and infections. I should have, it makes sense now, but I didn't. Does just being HIV+ kill you anymore? Is it a reason to put yourself in additional extreme danger? I'm counting on my family's rich tradition of heart disease to kill me before HIV does.

Lastly, as I spent all weekend working on a response to this really fascinating e-mail a thought occurred to me. I almost let you get away with something. The original reason for posting the story about the neighborhood bottom was it was a hot story. It was hot because he was blindfolded. It was hot because he left me a key to his apartment without (really) knowing me. It was hot because he was waiting for me naked and "asleep", ass in the air. It was hot because I didn't talk I just did. It was never about a bareback experience. I could have added that I rubbered up or I could have thrown it in in this response. But I'm trying to be completely honest. And yes, you correctly deduced that I didn't use a condom. But that was never the focus of the fantasy. Unfortunately, it seems to be the focus of all your fantasies. For you, a hot story about an encounter with a slightly kinky neighborhood bottom became a bareback experience that you could try to use to perform one more double back flip to justify things the way you like best. The fact of the matter, the reason for my original post, was to let more people know that no matter where you are landing in the sex/HIV/condoms never/sometimes/always discussion, when it comes to these extreme gangbang bareback sessions, videotaped or not, frequently the bottom guys are ending up quite ill. Better informed, maybe some people will make a better choice. In theory, my hot encounter with the neighborhood bottom could have been a dangerous choice, but it wasn't. In theory, one of us could have given the other an STD, but we didn't. Would I do it again? Hell yes. Would I ever consider participating in an extreme bareback gangfuck (videotaped or not)? No, people are getting hurt.

Friday, March 26, 2004

Is It Just Me?

Or do you think the Suicide Bomb Boy is gonna be a hottie in about 5 years?

Thursday, March 25, 2004

Full Disclosure

Please understand the opinions and beliefs that I have chosen are for myself and how I've decided to run my life. I make no value judgments on how you choose to run yours.

I wrote a while back about my answering an ad for a porn shoot. I haven't mentioned it since sort of for a reason. But a regular reader deduced correctly that the company in question was Treasure Island Media which, if you follow the link you will see that they feature extreme sex including extreme oral and gang bang parties. I knew this going in to the interview. During the course of the interview, which basically consisted of me getting naked, hard and getting photographed, I discussed being HIV+ with the New York director, who, as it turns out I did have safer sex with in the past. He bottomed for three guys at once. It was delightful. Anyway, I told him at the time that I was worried about infecting the uninfected and he assured me that everyone that participates in a shoot is HIV+ or unconcerned or they just assume everyone is. I sort of just accepted that at the time since the shoot was a month away and it wasn't like I was contractually obligated or anything. I do admit something was making me uneasy but overall I felt hey, we're all grown men we know what we're doing, what's the big deal, right?

Later that week I got a hold of a copy of The Gift. For those of you who have never heard of it, The Gift is a documentary about bareback sex. More specifically, it's about people who either: a) Intentionally expose themselves to HIV (bug chasers) to become poz or b:) intentionally expose others to HIV (gift givers). None of it was really news to me. I live in New York City and I get around on line. I know all about conversion parties and bareback orgies and even people who just want to become HIV+ because those are the "cool" (!) people. I've never participated in that but my feelings about all of it has been, hey, I can't live your life for you. I was still fascinated if not for the stories but the people telling them. How people will use an amazing amount of mental gymnastics to justify their behavior. How much I wanted to slap that whiny bitch, Doug who did nothing but cry through the whole fucking documentary. However I did get one crucial bit of information. The bottoms in these bareback orgies are ending up very sick. I felt like such an idiot. As soon as I heard it it made perfect sense. As I say, do the math. Even if the bottom guy is HIV+ he may not have any other STD's going into it but he sure as shit might after. What are your odds with one or two guys? What are your odds with 20? Or more? If even a few of the tops routinely attend bareback orgies what are they passing on? One of the men interviewed for The Gift had diseases they couldn't identify. But he doesn't participate in bareback orgies "so much anymore". Holy shit. I had no idea. I guess, with hindsight, I didn't want to know. And it's one thing if what I'm doing might be a danger to myself. It's quite another when what I'm doing, or participating in, and by videotaping it giving my tacit approval of, can cause someone to get horribly ill. No way. As soon as this information sunk in I knew I was out. And I guess this bit of information in my e-mail made me know I chose well:

Now that it's over, I'm curious what you were trying to say about the
gangbang... What exactly were you thinking that would bring me down?

In case you're interested, 24 guys were videotaped fucking him, and he got
21 loads from 18 of the guys (6 had "performance" problems). Plus he went
out to El Mirage Friday night and Black Party Saturday night - who knows
how many loads he took at those places... So it was a good weekend for
him...

And by the way, good story about the blindfolded bottom... Too bad you
didn't cum inside him though...

Later.


On the one hand, this (gorgeous, I know, I saw pics) man is free to run his life how he sees fit. I just can't be there and can't be a part of something that I know could hurt him.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Cleansing Breath......

OK I'm done. I freely admit that there are times when you will tell me my black shirt is black and I'll argue that it's blue, what can I say? I'm Italian. I like to fight. However, that is not to say I feel I was wrong. Far from it. I read something on a public posting that I felt at the very least was poorly done if not hurtful and I spoke up. That's called freedom. However, he's partly right too. There are many more important parts of the entire gay/HIV/AIDS spectrum that need to be picked up and shaken to get bogged down in this nonsense. Besides, if I'm itchin for a fight I still have a long overdue beat down of Harvey Fierstein to deliver. (I just typed a thinly disguised parting insult, which I erased and replaced with this text) I am the bigger lady, I am the bigger lady.

So as my way of moving back to a more pleasant blogging experience, please put your seat backs and tray tables up and prepare for takeoff.

Because you demanded it, OK only you

The One About The Hot Neighborhood Bottom (Part 2)

I arrive at his door in about 30 seconds. First thing find the key under a brick. The whole building’s made of brick. No, he said loose brick. It was then that it struck me it was like being on a treasure hunt. With “the treasure” being some creamy white bootay. Was I smiling? Just a bit. Found the key, opened the door, replaced the key, only to retrieve it as both doors need the same key to open them. Note to self, return the key after using the man. I head up to his floor, assuming there will only be one door as he only gave me his floor implying a door number wasn’t necessary. There were multiple doors. Only one was slightly ajar. Slowly, I entered a dark apartment. It was then that it first occurred to me that if I had inadvertently picked the wrong door, this would be an excellent way to get a baseball bat to the head or worse, shot. As I’m creeping through a total stranger’s living room I’m thinking, “Shit, he could have left at least a little light on.” As well as, “Please, nobody shoot me.” For the life of me, I couldn’t find a bedroom door. I almost gave up and left as it was going from an adventure to kinda creepy. Eventually, I managed to locate what I assumed was a bedroom door, I pushed it open and found my prize. A very nice looking man, naked and ass up lying on a bed. Thank you, spirits. A prettier sight, there ain’t.

I take off my jacket, sneakers and dress shirt and move to the bed. I gently brush my fingertips across each globe and he stirs. Upping the ante, a little more forcefully I brush my fingers in between both cheeks, across his hole and over his balls. I get the moan I was going for. I pull off my T-Shirt. I start massaging his ass, grabbing handfuls of butt and playing around his hole. More moaning. Unable to resist anymore (remember, I said I was starving) I plunged my tongue directly into his hole. He practically shot off the bed. I made an absolute pig of myself trying to get my head inside this fucker. I spit on his hole. He fuckin loved it. By the time I was licking him from his balls straight up past his hole, my goatee clearly causing extra sensations that hadn’t occurred to me, I had to hold him by his wrist so he couldn’t squirm away. Finally, I got a finger good and spit on and pushed it in. He was ready to get fucked. And I still hadn’t said a word.

I took off my pants, nothing comes between me and my Levis, and ran my hard cock along his spit slicked crack. That can make me shoot just as easily as fucking. I grabbed some lube off the nightstand and pulled his ass up and put one hand on the back of his neck. I slowly pushed my cock inside him. He moaned. When I was all the way in I stopped and held him there.

You feel so good, he said.

Fuck. (My first word since I'd arrived.)

I tried to throw him a good fuck, judging from the noises he made, I did good. At one point I was literally laying on top of him doing that pelvic thrust maneuver just rocking over and over. I got so into it I almost came. A little while later I flipped him over on his back. I figured that the visual of fucking a guy who’s blindfolded would be really hot. It was. I’m ashamed to admit that eventually I remembered that I was hungry food hungry. So I pulled out and brought myself to the finish line. As my last act in our little role play I held him down under me as I shot a respectable load on his chest.

Can I take the blindfold off, now?

Yeah.

Monday, March 22, 2004

The lady doth protest, too much....

Read this, come back.

I understood already that the italics portion of this post came from a much longer discussion thread posted elsewhere. (I had been actively following it for a while.) That's not the point. The point is that you took two little sentences from an extremely lively (and apparently vicious), lengthy discussion about HIV+ escorts and plopped them down in the middle of a page with no apparent reason or discussion to follow. I never once accused you of doing this maliciously. I did, and still do, think it was foolish and just plain lazy. I'll leave the debate about whether it was "intriquiging" or not to others. (that was mean)

Further, at no time in the original discussion thread was this individual characterized as a person with AIDS. Indeed, the original discussion was triggered by the fact that another escort had just learned his friend had seroconverted to HIV+. It was you who opted to then turn around and characterize him as a PWA. Believe me, the man already has a lot to deal with notwithstanding some in the gay community and their disparaging attitudes regarding escorts, now we'll add on all the new prejudices he's about to encounter being HIV+. And here you go and convert him again in print as someone with AIDS. And it's because you do indeed have readers that this kind of thing concerns me. If someone that isn't well educated on the subject reads the original thread where this man is HIV+ then reads on your blog he's now a PWA how could they not infer HIV+ = PWA? If that's not how you meant it I'll take it as more evidence of a lazy, ill- informed post. Rather, I'm thinking you let a little of your own prejudice leak on to "the page."

"As a volunteer for (sic) local AIDS prevention group,...."

I liken opening a sentence with that to:

"I can't be a bigot, we donate to the NAACP."

Yes, it was an extremely lengthy and at times exhausting discussion to read, and yes you did provide a link to that discussion, but if you can't take a look at what you posted (or rather failed to post, or rather incorrectly posted) and see it was at best half-assed if not downright prejudicial, then I'm just sorry. For you.

Oh, and cloaking yourself in the robes of another courageous HIV+ man just to make yourself seem less lame? Truly lame.

Saturday, March 20, 2004

This Was "Bugging" (pun intended) Me...

Note to Watercolour Boy:

HIV+ does not equal PWA, although every PWA is HIV+.

That was a stupid post and your ignance is showin. Stick to getting fucked.

As well, someone who got it right:

#66535, "RE: Another HIV + escort..."
In response to Reply # 0
Mon Mar-15-04 01:18 AM by DevonSFescort

I'm sorry to hear about your friend, Ryan, and that you have had to deal with this with many other friends. I hope your friendship is able to remain strong, that you can be a source of support and strength to him, and that you yourself get the emotional support you need to cope with what is happening to so many of your friends.

I agree with you that internalized homophobia contributes to a lot of destructive behaviors that many gay men participate in. However, your friends who barebacked ARE responsible for their behavior, and I don't say that because I'm interested in assigning blame, or because I consider them any less deserving of compassion because they made bad choices. Rather, I say that to give your friends a little credit: if they're responsible for their behavior, that means they have the power in their hands to change it, and to engage in behaviors that are healthier both for them and for others. Yes, it's too late for them to avoid getting HIV, but it's not too late for them to stop wrecking their health and endangering the lives of others (who, in turn, it must be said, are responsible for their own choices).

The religious right hates you as much as it hates your friends -- maybe you too have had to struggle with some self-hatred brought on by internalized homophobia -- but with regard to safe sex, at least, it sounds like you have not let self-hatred "do the driving." Nor do your friends have to continue to let self-hatred make the decisions for them. Many people have risen to their greatest heights in life after hitting rock bottom or getting very close to it. I bring all this up because I hope that if you can muster up some belief in your friends' ability to turn their lives around, that that belief will be contagious, so to speak, and that you will "infect" them with the right kind of positivity that will help them to take things to another direction.

It isn't easy, though; there's no doubt about that, and I'm sorry you didn't get more support on this thread. It saddens me to think that news of "another HIV+ escort" is nothing more to some people than an occasion to critique how you bump travel posts, what your profile on AOL says, or what you're like as an escort. For what it's worth, I think news of "another escort's" seroconversion and continued harmful behavior is sad and important enough to be worthy of either sympathetic responses or respectful silences. It's a sad day when people on an escort website second-guess a escort's motives for venting about a friend's self-destruction. You're right that they are wrong to make you the issue. I hope you fewer numb, jaded responses elsewhere than you found here, and more supportive ones instead.

xoxo,

Devon

Friday, March 19, 2004

I Think I'm IQute!


Your IQ score is:
127. You scored 127 on Tickle's IQ test. This means that based on your answers, your IQ score is between 117 and 127. Most people's IQs are between 70 and 130.
In fact, 95% of all people have IQs within that range. 68% of people score between 80 and 120.

There's more to intelligence than a single number, a single score or a single label. Tickle uses four distinguishable Intelligence Scales in the Ultimate IQ Test. By analyzing your individual scores on those four scales, we are able to look beyond the raw IQ score into how you process information and thereby determine your Intellectual Type. How do you relate to other IQ test takers?

Your Intellectual Type Is:

You are equipped with a verbal arsenal that enables you to understand complex issues and communicate on a particularly high level. These talents make you a Word Warrior.

Whether or not you recognize it, your vocabulary is your strongest suit—use it whenever you can. Since your command of words is so great, you are also a terrific communicator — able to articulate big ideas to just about anyone. Your wordsmithing prowess will also help in artistic and creative pursuits. The power of words translates to fresh ideas off paper too. Since you have so many words at your disposal, you are in a unique position to describe things in an original way, as well as see the future in your mind's eye.
In short, your strengths allow you to be a visionary — able to extrapolate and come up with a multitude of fresh ideas. And you are in good company — bask in the brilliance of Word Warriors who have walked before you. William Shakespeare let loose the power of his pen. His ability to articulate the most subtle nuances of human nature and to create colorful characters are why his stories still have a major impact — even 400 years after he first wrote them. Whether you put pen to paper or use your understanding of the words around you to come up with creative approaches to problems, your potential as a Word Warrior is terrific.

Great Jobs For You

Because of the way you process information, these are just some of the many careers in which you could excel:
Writer
Translator
Publisher
Attorney
Poet
Politician
Journalist
Lecturer

Some of Your Greatest Talents

You've got tons of strengths. It wouldn't surprise us if you:
Can clarify complex issues
Can articulate commonly understood truths
Can foster understanding
Can creatively solve problems


Your 4 Intelligence Scales

Now let's look at the factors that contribute to you being a Word Warrior with a 127 IQ score.

Based on the results of your test, Tickle divided your scores into four distinguishable dimensions — mathematical intelligence, visual-spatial intelligence, linguistic intelligence and logic intelligence.

Here's how each of your intelligence scores break down:


Mathematical Intelligence

Your Mathematical Percentile



You scored in the 80th percentile on the mathematical intelligence scale.This means that you scored higher than 70% - 80% of people who took the test and that 20% - 30% scored higher than you did.

Your mathematical intelligence score represents your combined ability to reason and calculate. You scored relatively high, which means you're probably the one your friends look to when splitting the lunch bill or calculating your waitresses' tip. You may or may not be known as a math whiz, but number crunching might come a little easier to you than it does others.

This is the kind of question that helped to determine your mathematical intelligence score:

A boy is 4 years old and his sister is three times as old as he is. When the boy is 12 years old, how old will his sister be? 16, 20, 24, 28, 32.

answer: 20.
The sister is (3 )three times older than her (4) four-year-old brother. Three times 4 is 12, in other words, when he is four, she is 12. Twelve years old is 8 years older than 4 years old, which makes her 8 years older than him. This never changes. Therefore, when he is 12, she is still 8 years older, or 12+8=20.


Flexing Your Math Muscles

Like anything, keeping or improving your math talents requires practice. Here are some everyday mental exercises that could particularly helpful to you:
Balancing your checkbook
Figuring out your monthly budget
Predicting what the change will be the next time you buy something
Calculating your waitperson's tip in your head




Visual-Spatial Intelligence

Your Visual-Spatial Percentile

You scored in the 80th percentile on the visual-spatial intelligence scale.
This means that you scored higher than 70% - 80% of people who took the test and that 20% - 30% scored higher than you did.

The visual-spatial component of intelligence measures your ability to extract a visual pattern and from that envision what should come next in a sequence. Your score was relatively high, which could mean that you're the one navigating the map when you're on an outing with friends. You have, in some capacity, an ability to think in pictures. Maybe this strength comes out in subtle ways, like how you play chess or form metaphors.

Vision Quest

Like anything, keeping or improving visual-spatial talents requires some practice. Here are some everyday mental exercises that will be particularly helpful to you:
Playing chess, or video games like Tetris
Studying maps and become the navigator on your next trip
Sculpting or photography


Linguistic Intelligence

Your Linguistic Percentile

You scored in the 100th percentile on the linguistic intelligence scale.
This means that you scored higher than 90% - 100% of people who took the test and that 0% - 10% scored higher than you did.

Linguistic abilities include reading, writing and communicating with words. Tickle's test measures knowledge of vocabulary, ease in completing word analogies and the ability to think critically about a statement based on its semantic structure. Your score was relatively high, which could mean you know your way around a bookstore and maybe like to bandy about the occasional 25-cent word to impress friends.

Here's the type of question that contributed to your linguistic intelligence scale score:

Inept is the opposite of:

Answer: Skillful.

The answer is derived by prior knowledge that "inept" means "unskillful" (Oxford Concise Dictionary).

Word Power
Like anything, keeping or improving linguistic talents requires some practice. Here are some everyday mental exercises that will be particularly helpful to you:
Doing crossword puzzles
Start reading just for fun
Befriending your dictionary
The next time something breaks, try reading the instruction book first

Logical Intelligence

Your Logical Percentile

You scored in the 90th percentile on the logical intelligence scale.
This means that you scored higher than 80% - 90% of people who took the test and that 10% - 20% scored higher than you did.

Tickle's logical intelligence questions assess your ability to think things through. The questions determine the extent to which you use reasoning and logic to determine the best solution to a problem. Your logic score was relatively high, which could mean that when the car breaks down, your friends look to you to help figure out not only what's wrong, but how to fix it and how you're going to get to the next gas station.

Here's the kind of question that contributed to your logical intelligence score:

If some Wicks are Slicks and some Slicks are Snicks, then some Wicks are definitely Snicks.

Answer: False
The statement is false because while some Wicks might be Slicks, there is no conclusive proof that any of them might be Snicks.


Logic Lessons

Like anything, keeping or improving logical talents requires some practice. Here are some everyday mental exercises that will be particularly helpful to you:
Trying some brain teasers
Throwing away the instructions and relying on instinct to fix something
Playing chess


So let's go people! Apparently I'm a fucking Brainiac. Someone hire me away from that dreary bar.

Take the Tickle IQ Test

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

The One About The Hot Neighborhood Bottom

Saturday. Noon (ish).I’m awake and feeling fine. I’m making plans to hit Miss Martha’s house as some color coordinated home furnishings are in the offing today. I’m still adjusting my caffeine levels for the trip as you cannot look at bathroom rugs and matching hand towels without the proper level of anxiety and uncertainty that a caffeine rush can enable. It just makes it way more fun.

So while I’m gassing up I check the e-mail, check the hooker reviews, browse craigslist and then what the hell, let’s see who’s lurking about on gay.com. I log on in my vers/top guise (they fall for it every time), and start checking things out. I don’t remember who I spoke to or rejected out of hand for violating the no pic/no profile rule. Please girls! I’ve said it before. If you intend to hop on a gay chat where 98% of the guys on there at least want to discuss hooking up, in theory, mayhe later, at least post a profile. Keep it simple, age, weight, top/bottom/whatever’s clever. How long you’ve been living under that bridge eating the neighbor kids. Oh, and it’s very important to let a body know if you’re a latin top. OK that one’s just for me.

Just as the thrill of the hunt was losing its magic, low and behold a chat window pops up. I wish I could relate the conversation to start with. I just can’t remember and I don’t want to make one up. Suffice it to say he let me know he was horny and in the neighborhood. He asked for pictures right away as gay.com was currently blocking the “adult” photo I had posted. And for the record, I’ve only seen late teens and adults cruising the gay.com chat. As if some 10 year old is going to find, understand and use gay.com chat. This business about protecting minors is asinine. Anyway, I dutifully send a set of naked j/o pix and a couple from the newest collection from two weeks ago. To which I get the reply:

Nice!
I’d like to have that up inside me.
I sent you a few pix.

And he most definitely did: (blur inserted to protect his identity. Although I don’t think he cares.)





(I know, I got hard too.)

"Great pix. Love the blindfold. That’s fuckin hot." I said.

Thanks. What are you doing today?

Shopping. Probably gym. No plans later.

I’m supposed to be meeting a friend. We’re going gallery hopping.

Cool.

I could be late, if you want to come over and fuck now. I could wear the blindfold.

Damn!

Apparently, my cock did for sure. But the rest of me really wasn’t up for it now. I know, I know! I’m a bad fag! Here some cutie with a bit of a piggy edge is throwing himself at me and all I can think of is what kind of new curtains I’m getting. Hmmm, Maybe I’m a good fag after all.

Although I am kind of late already, he says.

Thank the lord an opening!

You should go do your thing. I’ve got the whole day free. I’ll be in and out all afternoon. E-mail me when you finish and we’ll get together if you want.

You sure? You don’t want to come over real quick and fuck me? I like it kind of rough.

What do you mean by rough? I’m not into hitting or slapping I hate that shit.

No. Just aggressive. Someone who will push me down and make me suck his cock.

Stop! You’re making me want to jerk off right now.

You sure?

(After the longest 10 seconds ever) Mmmmmmmmmmmm Yeah. I have to go. I’ll see you later.

OK. Bye sexy.

Flash forward. I shop/hang curtains something something it’s 9:15 I’ve just returned home, I may have hit the gym and I’m about to start dinner. E-mail check. Instead I find one of those permission things that MSN Messenger sends when someone wants to add you to their list. It’s him. I click OK and literally, 3 seconds later:

*Bing* Hi.

Hello sexy, how ya doin?

Fine. My friend just left. You want to come over?

I’m starved, I think to myself. The debate begins. Eat dinner/ eat ass/eat dinner/eat ass. Can I combine them somehow?

I’m gonna lay down for a while before I go back out, he says.
I could leave the key my friend was using out front. You could let yourself in and I wouldn’t hear you.

Oh, he's got me now. He wants to do that anonymous fuck thing. That is so hot. I've done this several times in the past. When it works, it's fuckin awesome.

He sends me the address and the hiding spot for the key. I notice for the first time he’s literally right around the corner. I can’t believe I almost said no twice!

What do you want me to wear? He asks.

Besides the blindfold? I want you naked. And leave a light on and I want the covers down so I can see your ass as I walk in. (I'm fully into it by now, in case you can't tell.)

You want me lubed?

Definitely not.

OK. I’m gonna crash now.

I putter around the house for ten minutes or so, just to heighten the anticipation (for both of us), then I head out.

End of Part 1

Friday, March 12, 2004

Before I Forget

I popped in to the gym late this afternoon. Right next to the branch I usually go to is a Taco Bell. As I left the gym I walked by The Bell and glanced in the window. Right squarely in the front facing the street sat a woman. I judged her to be about thirty. It was kind of hard to say. What I could say for sure was that she had gone into The Bell. She ordered her nutritious taco dinner and had carried it to the front window. She sat and unwrapped her nutritious taco dinner. She may or may not have had a bite or two. It was impossible to judge as she was now face down in her taco dinner. My first thought? Hell yeah! That's what I wanna see! If you're gonna commit to something fucking jump in with both feet. If you want to say, party like a rock star, don't do it half assed. How do you know when you're partying like a rock star? When it's 6:15 on a Friday evening and you're face down in your taco. Mission accomplished.

As I returned home contemplating the tableau I couldn't get the image or the expression out of my head. Face down in your taco. It's quite an evocative expression, isn't it? I mean, if I told you I was sick as a dog, a mess, that I was practically face down in my taco, you'd know what I meant wouldn't you? Would you now? And would you consider using face down in my/her taco as an expression of the lowest of lows? Rock bottom in both deed and word. Pretty please?


Oh, and one more thing.....

(From The Mailbag) - OK mail pouch

Dear Tom:

I have become an avid reader, if I remember correctly I think I found out about your blog from Devon. Anyway, you're cool. I wish you only the best.

I would like to send you some printed material, this is not bullshit, I am serious. This is not a joke or bullshit or anything mean. Would you mind providing me with a mailing address?
I know this sounds goofy as fuck and I assure you it's something that you will like seeing, just a regular envelope with some info in it. I'd even FedEx it, if you don't mind getting woke up by the sexy FedEx guy!

R----
Amarillo, TX

______________________________________________________________________________________________

Dear R----,

Thank you so much for taking the time to write to me. I'm sure most people would be totally paranoid giving out a mailing address but I'm not most people I'm a little nuts. So here you go:

??? Second Ave #??
New York, NY 1????

Now fair warning. If you're planning on coming here to kill me it's best to hang out in front of the building around 2pm. I rarely leave the house before then. I'm hardly ever home at night so you'll have about a three hour window of opportunity to get the job done. And please, don't FedEx whatever you're sending. The FedEx guy isn't hot and he comes at 10am.

I don't believe I've had an avid reader before.....

Keep reading I'll keep writing.

Tom


So if I wind up dead or letter bombed anytime soon, look for this guy.
In The News (OK Not)

The housecleaning mode I'm in apparently extends to my blog. I took the time to edit my links (which have mysteriously moved from the side to below. That was unintentional). See who's made the cut! Welcome you and you and you! See who has been unceremoniously dropped! You stopped posting and so did you and I'm sorry dear but you bore me.

Also, note to self: You are too old to do 1/2 hour on a Stairmonster without stretching before and possibly after. Horrible middle of the night calf cramps will ensue. At least I can do 1/2 hour on the Stairmonster, you lazy bitches!

So, neither one of these people is me, but do you wanna hear the story behind this picture?

Thursday, March 11, 2004

While You Were Out

Sorry. It appears I lapsed into a minor depression. Not the extreme depression I've experienced before. More of a normal "low" that seems to usually follow the occasional "high". I spent about four days feeling extremely focused able to multitask in a variety of fields. I would cook dinner and dinner for tomorrow at the same time. I was watching a PBS show on money and investing while installing mirror tile in the living room. I purchased four things online. Two are in support of a cell phone that I found at work about six months ago. I pulled it out again the other day ( I have a tendancy to rummage when I'm manic) and remarked to myself that it seemed like a pretty nice phone. Just for the hell of it I Googled it and what do you know, the phone lists for sale at about $280. You can get it on Ebay for under $200. I had a thought that you could probably talk the people that sell phone plans into activating a phone that "technically" didn't belong to you. After further research I discovered that you can by a new battery for any phone, no surprise there, but you can also purchase a new computer chip for it too. In effect making the phone new and "yours". Believe me, I know for a lot less trouble you can get a free phone just for signing up with a plan but in my mania I've focused on this phone. I want this phone. I hate those free, tiny little matchbox phones. This phone can send/recieve text, email and browse the web. It's got a color screen. Most important this phone has bulk. It's a man's phone *Rrrrrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrr*. Suck my phone. Suck it!

The nice part of the minor depression that follows the mania is that I emerge more rational, more contemplative. The bad part is that I exist totally in my own head, the danger being my internal dialogue has a tendancy to turn dark. I torture myself with what ifs and how come's. I imagine worst case scenarios and then practically live it. Usually, and hopefully, like now, I catch it before I start back down a road I never want to travel again. Instead of sad and scared I feel peaceful and able. I decided I want to re-do the kitchen. Partly because it will be fun and partly because now that I cook a lot, I've discovered that it's really not set up very efficiently. Before I do it though I've made a pledge to finish the other room makeovers I've started. I have no idea why, but I start these extreme room makeovers and then right when they're almost done I just stop and move on to something else. In the bathroom, I need to finish off the area right under the sink. Put in a little storage shelf and then curtain it off. In the living room. I need to replace the mirror tiles (done), hang curtains (half done), replace an end table (done) and put in a couple of rolling ottomans and some plants. That sounds like a lot but it really isn't much and I've made a promise to myself that I don't get to buy/make/do one thing in the kitchen until I finish the details in the other two rooms. I'm sure there is some psychological explanation for this behavior but I'll just call it "wierd".

I've been taking online tutorials on a variety of subjects including Excel and Frontpage. It's really pretty easy. I'm exploring the details of trying some actual online courses. Do online degrees actually count for anything? Can you get hired with an online degree?

I feel much better now. I'm gonna get a nosh, shave my man parts and then hit the gym. It's a beautiful day.

Sunday, March 07, 2004

Happy Anniversary? (or) HIV! The Early Years!

Well, it’s official. Today marks one year since I received my HIV diagnosis. I’m wearing a party hat as I type this. Official in more ways than one. Because I was such a bad faggot lo those many years, at least when it came to taking care of myself, we’ll never know exactly when I contracted the virus or how long I’ve been a walking bug factory. So March 7, 2003 becomes the official, official date. I’m thinking of re-naming it my unbirthday. The day I began the long march towards death day sounding a bit of a downer to me. I guess rebirthday is probably the better choice but, truth to tell, my rebirth began long before my diagnosis. In some ways it’s how I ended up with my diagnosis. It was after my birthday in 2003 that I decided to take total charge of my mental and physical health. You see, when I turned 40, in an effort to stave off depression at my rapidly advancing age, I decided to use each birthday as a jumping off point. A chance to make a significant and lasting change to me or my life that would be both a challenge and a reward. A chance to change or improve or to learn or to grow. At 40, I gave up smoking. I smoked until the night before my birthday. Then before I went to bed I gathered up and threw away every cigarette and ashtray in the house and physically carried them down to the garbage. Then I opened the nicotine patch, put the first one on, and that was that. I awoke on my birthday a dedicated non-smoker. And it took. I haven’t had a smoke since. So it was the following year I dedicated to my overall health. That worked out well, huh? Actually, finding out for sure I was HIV + was, for me anyway, something of a relief. Not that I did this intentionally far from it. But HIV for a lot of gay men is the biggest of the big boogeymen. The scariest scary. I’ve been quietly personally a tad impressed with my ability to face a great fear without fear. And while my quick response stock sentiment would be “being HIV+ blows, man.” It has, again speaking for myself, forced great changes in how I take care of myself both physically and spiritually. If the cumulative information from the last year of blood tests ( I think 7 times) has revealed anything, I’m textbook healthy, otherwise. Perfect in every way *blush*. And speaking as a man who periodically would address a life kept in containers within boxes within facets, being HIV+ has afforded me the opportunity to pick up the entire giant snow globe and give it a good hard shake. The changes are exciting and most welcome. I wonder, at times if I’ll be as serene when/if the virus manages to begin overwhelming my body’s defenses and I have to begin what could end up to be a lifetime of medication. I suspect I’ll deal. I usually do, it seems.

Saturday, March 06, 2004

Random Thoughts Saturday

- Miss Martha is Guilty!
Even though I said as much in this here very blog, it's still pretty surprising to me when rich people are found guilty of anything. Apparently, when you factor woman and bitch into the legal equation you get a very different result. I'm really sad to hear she's just been cancelled here in New York City. I would curl up on the couch at 2 am with all the lights out and tune in her show. That Stepford voice she used to narrate things would frequently lull me to sleep.

- My First Time
I just ate my first grapefruit. I have had various forms of grapefuit juice in my life, (with and without vodka) but it struck me as I was eating it this morning that I had never done this before. How do I know? Because I did it wrong. A couple of notes: It's not enough to cut the grapefruit in half you also have to cut the fruit away from the skin, otherwise you end up with a big pulpy sticky mess in the dish. Also, it needs Sweet & Low.

- I'm Disappearing!
I accidently lost two pounds in the last couple of weeks. I say accidently because I'm eating three squares a day and pretty large portions too. I think my body is just settling into it's new weight so I can expect a pound or two fluctuation for a while.

- I Have an Itch
That can usually only be satisfied by the purchase of a big ticket item. The question is, what? My laptop is fine but I admit I was distracted by the shiny new sub- $800 Dell that just came out. My PC is turbo now and I've fallen deeply in love with the girl. Maybe a simple external drive might be cute as I have no use for my firewire port right now. But that's not big ticket enough. Maybe I'll forget tech and see if I can figure a way to juggle the books and come up with enough scratch to buy a new mattress set. My bed takes a queen (ha!) but I've only got a full size mattress without a box spring on it.

- What I'm Reading Now:
Life Outside - Michelangelo Signorile - The Signorile Report on Gay Men: Sex, Drugs, Muscles and the Passages of Life

Psychic Vampires - Joe H. Slate, Ph.D. - Protection From Energy Predators and Parasites

HTML in easy steps - Mike McGrath

Ah well, It's beauteous out and the rain has stopped. I'm off to tha Kmart and to ogle NYU boys!

Thursday, March 04, 2004

Of Course, Wither Nyack Goes So Goes The Nation

Nyack supports same-sex unions

By GREG CLARY
THE JOURNAL NEWS
(Original publication: February 28, 2004)

Nyack Mayor John Shields yesterday afforded full legal rights to same-sex marriages and their families in the village, stopping short of performing such marriages himself because Nyack village does not issue marriage licenses.

"As the mayor of Nyack, it's my job to do what's best for the village," said Shields, a Democrat. "Respecting marriages performed elsewhere is one more way to demonstrate my commitment to families and their importance in our community."

The move is largely ceremonial, Shields acknowledged, but said it was important enough an issue that he wanted to take an official stand.

Shields, who is gay, said President Bush may have created more problems for himself than he realized by taking on such a diverse population as gay and lesbian Americans.

Gays are fighting to be able to do what any good U.S. citizen should want to do, Shield said, defend the country, pay taxes and raise families.

"It seems to me that people who form commitments add to a community," Shields said. "I don't see what the issue is."

Upper Nyack resident Louis Tharpe, who has lived with partner Jim Bumgardner for almost 20 years, said he was happy to hear that Shields had made the Nyack decree, adding he would be calling his own mayor to see if Upper Nyack could start licensing same-sex marriages.

Tharpe and Bumgardner exchanged ceremonial vows in 1987 as a protest in front of the Internal Revenue Service's Washington, D.C., headquarters, to highlight the marriage benefits they were not getting.

Tharpe said he was scheduled to be in San Francisco in the next two weeks and the couple looked into getting legally married there, but the first opening is April 14.

"Being married in San Francisco or in New Paltz is of dubious value," Tharpe said, noting that the courts will ultimately rule on the legal status of same-sex marriages. "But the more people who get married and the more times the sky doesn't fall, the weaker the argument against gay marriages is."

Toni and Claire Bonde are raising two sons in Upper Nyack. Claire Bonde said yesterday that Shields made the right move.

"That's a start at least," she said. "I'm excited to hear so many people talking about this, whether people agree or not. We're out to everyone around here and nobody bats an eyelash. That's what is so great about Nyack."


Reach Greg Clary at gclary@thejournalnews.com or 845-578-2442.

Christ, why am I up at 5:15? Oh yeah, I run a bar. Night chitlin's.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Living Proof

I'll try not to mention this subject again unless asked, but I feel I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the results from my diet. First, it worked. I lost the 10 lbs I wanted to lose (plus a couple more) and more important, I've totally changed my eating habits. I have breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. I occasionally snack if hungry. I'm eating a lot of protein and a lot less carbohydrates although I have no interest in going carb - free. That's not healthy. I cook with extra virgin olive oil. Since I started my diet until now, I have not had a potato in any form. And that includes chips and my beloved Doritos. I go off at least once a week and have a quilty pleasure. This week it was pepperoni pizza. Last week it was egg rolls with hot chinese mustard. I haven't had any pasta. I'm trying whole wheat pasta this week. The only bread I've eaten is whole wheat pita. (Which I love, by the way. I'd heard from a lot of people that whole wheat breads were "too chewy". I believe that was an exuse to hang on to that loaf of Wonder White.) I get hungry now like clockwork. The revulsion I used to feel at the thought of a morning meal is now totally gone. I cook a lot of foods ahead of time like 4 chicken breasts at once or 6 hard boiled eggs. Anything that will keep for a week or so I make in bulk. That way you're not constantly cooking huge meals. Red pepper, green pepper onion, mushrooms of every kind, cucumber, tomato, almonds, pine nuts, kidney beans and lentel are all my new friends.

Originally, I had planned to post simple before and after pictures. But my idea sort of looked like a weight loss ad in the back of the Enquirer. You know, for the Fatbuster 24JX tab? I took some pictures the night before I started my diet. I took some more about two weeks ago. The results are pretty dramatic.

First, (and to show that I seem to have no sense of shame) the before pictures. They have been "shopped" to black and white because they are so hideous they deserve no color. Notice the Blimpie sandwich attempting to escape from the fat roll bulging out my back.





Now, I will show you one after picture right away. Not perfect. But I wasn't shooting for perfect. Just better. This is better.



Now for the good stuff. I was feeling inspired after trying to decide which diet pics to show you. I didn't think any of them would be good enough for this blog or for any of my loyal readers. (hi Ryan, yo Geek) So I hauled out my digi and set up some lighting to get some shots I thought might be more interesting and illustrate the results of my diet as well. Y'all will have to let me know how I did. *snicker*

Notice the absence of love handles here:

baby got back view.jpg

I've gone from having a belly to a tummy:

peeping, Tom.jpg

Of course, I ended up taking lots more pictures:

Image019 copy.jpg

I have no idea what, (beyond that) I plan to do with them. Now you know what I do on my day off.