Friday, June 27, 2008

Wanted: Lazy Weekend

Friday: To state it short & sweet, came home early and crashed.

Saturday: Got up early and helped my dad and bro out at the school and then came back and got ready for a "date" with SideKick. I wasn't really in the mood to go out (I'm a lazy guy ... in my mind, weekends = rest) but we eventually settled on the age-old classic, dinner & a movie. Headed to TGI Fridays where I was half listening to SideKick and half watching this dude at another table. I know, I'm bad. But he was sexy! The beer made me do it! Then we settled on the movie Wanted. Originally we were going to see Incredible Hulk but it was sold out and the only thing left was the director's hall theatre which cost extra money. Unless the Hulk himself was going to come out and shake my hand, I wasn't paying that kind of money!

Wanted kinda sucked in my opinion. A lot of action, blood, gore, and lots of rats (you gotta watch it to know what I mean) but when Morgan Freeman (head of the assassins) said they decoded their orders on whom to kill from a textile loom, I was pretty much ready to walk out the door. Furthermore, at the end, Morgan Freeman's character suddenly swore ("shoot this mutha-f----a!") which didn't fit at all with the type of character he had played up until that point. It was basically a movie made for teens (no offense SideKick) and they all cheered and clapped at the end. I mean, seriously!? Um, it wasn't that good but hey, the American movie-going audience isn't very sophisticated, especially pre-pubescent boys who only want to see Angelina Jolie climb out of a hot-tub half naked. And isn't she kinda old to be playing these roles (i.e. Tomb Raider, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Gone In Sixty Seconds); how many times can she play the bad chick with tattoos and guns? Concept was good, acting was sub-par and action was through the roof. Eh, nuff said.

Sunday: Went to a cookout at an old high school classmates house. Gawked over her boyfriend's new motorcycle (he's inspired me to take lessons), a cute party guest and munched on some good food. She's Asian so most of the guests were too but still managed to enjoy myself. Ran into another old classmate who didn't say two damn words to me out of those 4 years and now all the sudden she acted as though we were old friends. Whatever. And of course the topic of conversation was old classmates and where they are. This only solidifies why I'm not going to the reunion. One entertaining fact: the former class clown is now a police officer! Now that's funny and scary! Overall, had a fairly good time. Worked out afterwards, watched the Jill Scott (TV One) special last night which didn't do her justice, much better live!

Today: Here at work (again) and looking forward to the holiday weekend as well as the end of classes next week! Have a great week everyone!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry ...

My friend and I had a discussion the other day and somehow the topic moved to attitudes and black SGL men. He told me that when he's upset, he just lashes out at anybody and just finds the most hurtful thing to say. He "cuts deep" with words. My friend made it clear that in no uncertain terms that I'd want to get into an argument with him. Nevertheless, I countered him and stated that I have quite a wrath myself. And I do.

At the Chris Rock show last weekend, Chris said that people nowadays have to be politically correct even when they're angry and hurt. He responded, "F--k that! The whole point of an argument is because you're pissed off and you WANT to say the worst thing in the world to that person and now they got rules against that s--t?!"

Well, he has a point. I'm currently in a "standoff" of sorts with two former friends. One of my former friends, D.G., is a someone I've known since HS (almost 10 years) and she's currently pregnant, which is when the whole thing started. A lot of "he said, she said" stuff came up and she lashed out at me and while I tried to be civil, she wasn't hearing me. So I cut her off. The same with my newer former friend, Thai Guy (he's also black SGL). He basically made some assumptions about me and since Thai Guy is as stubborn as me, we cut each other off.

Now I'm obviously troubled by both situations because I didn't get a chance to explain myself. There is also some anger boiling under the surface and I have so many ugly things that I have thought about saying over and over. I've done it before. I've disrespected many of my family members, including my parents as well as friends and past boyfriends when I've gotten heated. I know I can "cut deep" and as I've gotten older, I've learned to just go someplace, cool down, and talk about the problem later. You can't take words back once they've been said.

However, I'm not so sure that many other black SGL guys are aware of that. The few I know, including Thai Guy, seem to have this anger management problem. He shared many instances over the past year when he blew his top, which in my opinion, was over nothing. Some SGL men always think someone has disrespected them or is out to discredit them. When I've tried to be rational and helpful concerning their issue, they think I'm taking the opposite side. I'm not saying I'm above all this because I know I have a temper; I'm just working extremely hard to keep it in check.

But is this phenomenon overly prevalent in the black SGL community? I'm aware that most SGL men of all ethnic backgrounds are known to use their wits as a defense mechanism. Believe me, you have to be tough in this world, but not all situations call for that. So are all SGL men filled up with rage and anger? And if so, do they know when to turn it on and off?

Sunday, June 22, 2008

... You're Too Kind

I want to say a quick thank you to everyone that has been reading my blog and leaving comments! It's only been a few weeks and I'm so excited that I have a small audience; don't want to make you feel unappreciated so thank you!

Most of the people leaving comments are my "idols" in the blogosphere. I've been reading them for years and they are like celebs to me. To actually be able to interact and feel a part of the group is a great feeling! So thank you again and I'll try to keep some interesting stuff coming! :o)

Exploring China (Pt. 4)

These are some shots from The Divo of the Great Wall in China as well as some of the Ming Dynasty tombs. Enjoy!

Above: The ceiling design in one of the tombs

Elvis Has Entered The Building

Came home last night and while I was changing for bed, I happened to have the TV on and caught "America's Got Talent" on NBC. There was this 23-year-old guy by the name of Joseph Hall who came out as an Elvis Presley impersonator. Now most Elvis impersonators are fat and depict Elvis toward the end of his career. Well this guy wasn't that ... he was HOT! I agree with Sharon, "you don't have to sing or dance, all you have to do is just stand there!" ... damn, I'm not an Elvis fan but after seeing Mr. Hall do his thing ... I might just be a convert!

Something Wicked This Way Comes

As I entered the house, I could feel a chill in the air (cue: Exorcist theme). A presence I had been dreading for years had finally tracked me down and was moving in for the kill. I shut the door behind me and began to slowly ascend the stairs. Sweat poured from my brow and I began to regret coming home. But where else was there to go? I had to face my demons eventually. A flash of white caught the corner of my eye. I glanced down and immediately a quick shudder passed throught my entire body. It was here. My invitation to my first high school class reunion!

All right, all right, all right, high school wasn't really that bad! If I had to rate it 1 (worst) to 10 (best), it'd probably be at 5.

So, let's go way back, back into time. My high school wasn't a bad place. No metal detectors, no shootings, not many teen pregnancies. It was fairly normal. High school was quite diverse but definitely didn't prepare me for the real world. I was pretty active and belonged to a few organizations. Student government, marching band, quiz team, audio/video dept, etc. You get the idea. I did participate in basketball and tried out for golf (yeah, this was before Tiger Woods). I also took part in the junior talent show which really made me more respected. For example, my sophomore biology teacher, who was the loyal servant of Tom Selleck (long story!) and the Queen of Hell, nearly failed me. She told my mother I wasn't college material. After she saw me perform, she was eating out of my hand saying how talented and how far I'd go in life. Yeah, whatever. Yes, I'm a bit bitter. Why?

After the many years of college (I've been in four colleges in FL, NH and MA) I realize I was no where near prepared for what was out there. I did not have much help in selecting a school. The guidance counselors repeatedly encouraged the minority students into military service. I was in a lot of honors and college prep classes in HS and had awesome grades (except in science) but because I wanted to "fly planes", they pushed the Air Force on me. I'm okay now. Four schools and five years of full-time work will toughen you up quick. Yet, I still wonder about where I might have been had I receieved proper guidance.

The other reason I don't want to attend is because I am at a point in my life where I am finally in college, with my major declared and mere semesters away from graduation. In my opinion, attending this event would be a step backwards. I want to look toward my future. Moreover, I was not exactly a jock or a nerd in HS. I was quiet (still am) and tended to stick to a small group of similar friends. I was in the art class, enjoyed film classes and usually avoided the cafeteria during lunch. I was bullied during my first year but eventually overcame that. But even as a senior, I never really came out of my shell. On that note, I wasn't out of the closet in HS. I guess that's why I was so quiet; I was coming to terms with my orientation.

Going to the class reunion would probably "de-evolve" me into a quiet, shy person again. I'm sure many people would disagree. I have come a long way. I'm more opinionated, mature, wiser and definitely don't see things the way I did in that provincial school. However, I still lack a certain self-confidence and I feel that the moment I enter, I'll feel inadequate or unaccomplished. Granted I am blessed to be working, going to school, and just doing okay in general. Some alums are probably parents, others hooked on drugs, and a few I'm sure have died. However, I'd like to return with a partner, and with some accomplishments under my belt. Get my career started. I'm a seriously envious person and I know putting myself in this situation would be like letting a recovering alcoholic run wild in a liquor store. It's just going to be bad.

The reunion isn't until 2009 and while I have time to re-think my decision, I don't think I will. One friend already called me asking if I was going. I'm sure I'll have others ask me throughout the year. I admit, I am curious to find out how some people turned out but not enough to suffer through this. I harbor no ill-will toward any of my former classmates (there were some fun times!) but I just don't think I'm ready to go back to that point in my life.

There's No Place Like Home

Not much to talk to mention, I actually had a pretty quiet weekend. However, the highlight was returning to my old stomping grounds!

Friday: Left work early for a dentist appointment. Everything checked out except for a cavity on a wisdom tooth. How the heck that happened, I have no idea! I brush, Listerine, floss twice a day and yet I still got one. Just proves the theory that "bad things happen to good people" (yes, I think of myself as a good person ... sometimes!) Afterwards, I went into Boston to meet up with my cousin at Berklee. She reserved an ensemble room for a gospel jam session. Needless to say, the session didn't really go as planned. We were the only two for about a half hour so I got to play on the piano (oh man, I want a baby grand of my own so bad!) and help her compose a song or two. Then we were joined by some older guys who really didn't fit what we expected. However, we still had a good time. It was rough getting over there because I got drenched on the way to the station, then had some train delays. Once I got to Berklee, I ended up walking around like an idiot. A lot had changed so I ended up walking in this maze in the basement area looking for room B14. Several people I asked weren't much help (a bit snobby) and I couldn't get a signal down in that maze. It was like being trapped in a bad experiment!

After the session, on my way out, I ran into the niece of my friend Crazy whom I hadn't seen she was a little kid! Talk about a major flashback! She goes to school there and just came back from Greece from an internship. I'm thinking maybe I can exploit utilize her connection and occupy a practice room at Berklee now and then, especially since I'm an alum.

I walked with my cousin to her apartment and we walked around looking for food and talking about everything from music to family and I found out more regarding her feelings about being SGL. I had an awesome time just hanging out, talking about stuff. Straight out of "A Long Walk" (Jill Scott), we finally ended up at a sub shop and ate and talked some more. I met her son (finally) who grilled the hell out of me about video games and basketball. They dropped me off at the station but I decided to walk from Back Bay to Downtown Crossing just making the very last train for the night! Consequently, I was very exhausted!

Saturday: Went back to the dentist to have the cavity filled. My very first experience with novacaine and wow, let me tell you, that was out of this world! It felt like my lip was swollen and my tongue was drooling yet I couldn't feel a damn thing! It was too freaky! I'm glad it wore off after a few hours. Spent the rest of the day washing my car and making it look good for the fellas! :o) "cuz it's summatime ... summa, summa, summa time! ... time to sit back and unwind!"

Sunday: Catch up day. Practicing for class, homework, reading, laundry and a little bit of BBQ food!

Today: Let's just say, the weekend wasn't long enough! Have a good week everybody! :o)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

What Can You Say ... It's Family!

Recently I got back in touch with a cousin of mine who I did not grow up with. We traded e-mails, and phone calls and I attended her performances (she's a singer) to show support and love. Last week, we went to the Alicia Keys concert and I had a blast with her. She's so outgoing and fun to be around. We chatted about Jordin Sparks and Jermaine Paul and traded musical critiques on everything. But then Ne-Yo emerged and I inadvertently mentioned that I thought he was so hot! I then froze. I had indirectly revealed my orientation and while I was wearing my pride bracelet, I wasn't sure how she'd react. I had no idea what she thought about SGL (same-gender loving) people. Nothing more was said and then on the drive back to the house, I learned why.

I asked her, "you don't seem to be bothered by this" [held up my bracelet].

There was a little silence and then jokingly replied that "well Cuz, you're a little obvious! ... I'm kidding!"

She continued, "I understand because I've been there myself, I've dated a few women."

I kept driving while putting all the signs together. When I had last attended her concert, there were a group of her girlfriends in the club, some of them were fem and others butch-looking and a few were getting "cozy." I wasn't bothered obviously but it started making me wonder. I guess I was stupid for thinking that because she has a son that she wasn't one of the "fam." I guess I'm a bit slow on the uptake! lol

So she proceeded to tell me that the friend I had seen her with before was someone she had been seeing but was now taking time for herself. I supported her and asked if her family knew. She assured me it was okay, that everyone knows but I know better.

This whole incident has me wondering now ... is there a SGL gene in my family? The reason I wonder this is because my mom's sister is a lesbian and has a partner of over 25 years and an adopted son. I also have a cousin on my mom's side who is SGL and HIV positive. Furthermore, I discovered that my biological maternal grandmother was reputed to have been bisexual. And now my cousin (also on my mom's side). You see where I'm going with this?

I've long held the belief that being SGL was determined by your environment. Many of the guys I have dated had absent fathers or crummy relationships with their fathers. Moreover, I noted that my relationship with my father is strained at times. It's mostly due to him being old and stubborn and not necessarily because of my sexual orientation. Additionally, my family is extremely loving toward me, they really hover around the guys I've brought home so I don't think it was lack of support that made me this way. I've never been abused and I had a happy, well-adjusted childhood.

I'm beginning to re-think my theory and after this recent revelation, I believe that one's sexual orientation is genetically determined. It can't be a coincidence that so many people in my family are not straight.

However, this leads me to further questions. Is my family the only one out there like that? And what do you think: nature or nurture?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


What in the hell?!?! The toy manufacturing company claims that it was just simply a toy but I'm sorry, when you make a doll in the form of a monkey for a black candidate, of course it's going to set some people off. I don't usually get into the whole black/white thing. I've got friends from all ethnic backgrounds and I'm hardly in a position to be racist or discriminate since I'm gay and black. But seriously? Are these people that naive to claim that "they didn't know?" Give me a break!

You can read the full story here.

What More Is There To Say ... ?

... except that it's great to be in a city of champions! :o)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

K.C.'s Workout Plan (Pt. 1)

I've been inspired lately to do a makeover. See, I was checking myself in the mirror and noticed how much I've changed physically in the face over the years. The glasses and the dread locks do make me look like a different person. It's almost like being Superman disguised as Clark Kent. This past Sunday, my sister and her family were shocked by my new look, as are most people when they see me again after a long time.

But I want to do more than just makeover my face. I've been going to the gym now for over 3 years and haven't seen major results. Sure, I can run over 5 miles without being winded and I was lifting over 100 lbs. (don't laugh, I'm so weak!). However, I've been feeling the effects of too much food, and not enough exercise. My doctor wants me to see a dietician and that's the mother of all insults! So I'm determined to drop at least a good 10+ pounds by the time I go back to see him. This is the heaviest I've been (201) and I don't like it. Pants are tight, gut is sticking too far out and I just feel friggin' bloated!

I returned to the gym this morning (5 AM) for the first time in weeks and ran about 2 miles. Felt good. Tomorrow I'm hoping to get in there and do weights. Cutting back big time on my portions and sticking to my salads and fruits. I doubt I'll ever look like some cute lil' gay model but at least I can tone some stuff up and maybe not feel as big.

My mantra is "it's my body" and I'm topping dominating it. I'm already on the right track since I took a nutrition class and I already go to the gym. I just hope I can stay focused and not slack off like I have in the past. I'm inspired by Bullet Proof Soul (BPS) and his 40/40 and plus I'd like to look good for SideKick. I'll update every week, so wish me luck! ...

Monday, June 16, 2008

Respect For Russert

I'm not a overly politically minded person and tend to get on the bandwagon when it suits me. When I learned that Tim Russert of NBC had passed away suddenly late last week, I was stunned like everyone else. I'm a big fan of the Today Show on NBC and watch it every morning while I eat breakfast and get ready for work. It was through the Today Show that I was introduced to Tim Russert. Subsequently, I only recently become a "fan" of his throughout this past primary season. I can't stand "talking heads," the political analysts who all feel they have something important to say. Each one gets on their soap box, trying to out do the other and while some cloak their biases, other "heads" reveal their support for certain candidates. Granted it is only their opinion, but I prefer a neutral tone. Tim Russert fit what I liked and much more. He was fair and balanced. He was the only analyst I would listen to. The way he explained politics, his attitude, his love for the job really impressed me. After a segment on Obama or Clinton aired, they would turn to the analysts and if Tim wasn't among them, I immediately tuned out. While I never watched Meet The Press or caught his show on MSNBC, I had great respect for him and it saddened me to hear of his passing. It definitely won't be the same.

On a side note, I don't know what's wrong with me (hormones maybe?!) but I actually got misty-eyed this morning when they showed this picture.

Luke Russert came to the Meet The Press studio and placed his hand on the chair his father usually sat in and for some reason, I was close to breaking down. I've only cried a few times in life in reaction to something on TV. (1) the last scenes of Philadelphia and (2) The Laramie Project on HBO. That's it. Not much brings me to tears. Even watching the horror of 9/11 didn't bring me to tears. Maybe having a boyfriend is really causing the ice walls of my heart to melt!


I was so upset with SideKick on Saturday. The night before, he had called me moaning and groaning about this much older DL guy that he had been seeing. The guy had basically used him for money and was even trying to hook up with SideKick's friend. I hadn't said anything last time but I didn't hold back. I just told him like it was. So because I was so forthcoming, he agreed to attend pride with me the next day. Of course, he rolled in 3 hours late due to train problems and teenage friend problems. Then to add insult to injury, he basically ignored me and started walking around the festival checking for cuties. So I basically told him I'd call him later and left rather peeved.

On the train ride home, I was ticked and then a nagging voice started asking me, "why are you so upset that he's checking out other guys?" "Why are you mad about the old DL guy?" That's when I realized that I really care about SideKick, and not just in a friendly way. But accepting that truth was a struggle within myself and still is. You see, SideKick is about 9 years younger than I am, obsessed with his Sidekick and while he's got plenty of great qualities, he's also not on the same maturity level as I am. Don't get me wrong, he's mature for his age but not in the same way my friends are. He's got a beautiful smile, outgoing personality, and can cook his butt off! He's not your stereotypical buff guy or twink. He's a bit thick but that's all right by me!

We met a year ago and he wanted to hook up but I didn't. I told him, I just wanted to be friends and was really focused on my studies. He tried. He tried. He tried again. Oh boy did he try to wear me down! He came close a few times and we shared a lot of intimate details but I continually told him I didn't feel comfortable with the age gap and that while he's sweet, he wasn't my type.

But he's been on my mind a lot lately and I do get visibly excited (my family can attest to that) when he calls! And I even met SideKick's best friend who was rather cute but still found myself attracted to SideKick. I talked to my mom over the weekend and she said, there's nothing wrong with the age gap (she and my dad are 16 years apart) and that if you like him, go for it. Ironically, my friend The Divo had prophesized earlier this year, "sometimes the one for you is staring you in the face." Little did I know it was SideKick.

We met up late Sat. night and I confessed what I felt for him and we talked, flirted and eventually kissed that night! I haven't been kissed in about two years now and man, it felt good! I admit, I'm actually afraid of love. I'm afraid of failing. I'm also concerned of what others may say and afraid of breaking his heart or getting mine broken. I'm also afraid he might not be the one. I'm at the point in my life where I want a serious relationship, maybe move out and marry and have a family. He's young and while I'm sure he's not completely like I was, I know that exploration is a part of youth. I'm learning to open up again. I want to trust and embrace but it's hard. I don't want to end up bitter, cold and alone. But it's also hard to completely give myself, especially since I'm used to just doing what I want, and being independent and single. I hope SideKick will be patient with me. I don't want to hurt him but I need time to fully blossom.

To live beautifully human, one needs to take a risk, to step out on a limb. And I'm doing just that. I don't know how long we'll date. We are opposites in personality (he's outgoing and social and I'm quiet and shy) and maybe that will help us click. We could be together for years or just a month. Who knows? I just would hate to let this opportunity pass by without trying. So baby, if you read this, just go easy with me and I promise you won't regret it! :o)

What Have You Done Today To Make You Feel Proud?

The perfect weekend! I haven't been this active on a weekend in a long time. And it couldn't have gotten any better! Although, I plan to catch back up on my sleep by next week!

Funny, everyone was so superstitious on Friday because of the date. But I changed my thinking and found it to be my luckiest day. Aunt Thomasina was out (paying homage to the 13th; you know how evil does!) and my commute to and from work was flawless. Everything just flowed, plus I was looking forward to pride! That night, my friend, SideKick, called me up to bitch about this older DL guy he's been seeing. I was kinda annoyed so I basically just told him point blank to "ditch the guy, you deserve better, he's just using you, blah, blah." I'm usually not so forceful (that's reserved for my oldest friends) with someone I've only known about a year but I just couldn't stand by anymore. He ended up dumping old dude.

So Saturday I headed to a dr. appt and while I'm not a skinny-mini (yes, I have a strange-ass vocabulary!), I'm not grossly overweight. Anyway, my doc had an intern in the office who was “yes sir-ing” him up the wall! And of course my doc decides to show off so he's booked an appt for me with the dietician in August. I'm kinda offended since I took a nutrition course last semester and know a lot more than I did before. So I've resolved to work my butt off in the next few months, drop the pounds and change my habits and hopefully I can avoid some anorexic chick telling me what I should and shouldn't eat. I'm pretty good anyway. I don't eat any junk food (like once in 3 months) and salads almost every day for lunch. Plus I'm eating Cheerios every damn day (trying to do that cholesterol thingy). We'll see in a few months ...

So after that humiliating visit, I was off to pride. SideKick called me and said he wanted to meet up. My mom had bailed on me so it worked out fine. Of course, I got all the way over there and ended up watching the entire parade all by myself and walking around the city looking like a loser! I was so heated! SideKick is about 9 years younger than I am and rolled in with his lil' teenage posse about 3 hours after it was over. He totally ignored me and the crew began trolling for cuties. So I just bought a t-shirt, a rainbow bandana and was out (no pun!). I was so so heated going home, mostly because he blew me off and I thought it would be just the two of us. I actually missed The Divo. I had a blast at last year's pride because of him. Anyway, SideKick and I made up later on in a very nice way (see: Epiphany).

So after pride, I went home, got changed up and my bro, Rugrat, and I went back into the city to see Chris Rock. Besides the anal ushers and the tight-ass seats (my knees were jammed into the seat back in front of me), we had a great time. Chris was funny as hell and ragged on everything from R. Kelly, Anna Nicole Smith, Barack and Michelle Obama, McCain, Bush, Britney Spears, gas prices, Osama Bin Laden, men and women and numerous sex jokes! And even my beloved Tim Russert wasn't immune. This was my first comedy show and Chris is a comic genius and just blew me away! Afterwards, Rugrat and I walked across the city to the Cheesecake Factory and had dinner outdoors. It was great brotherly bonding time. I like the CF for it's classiness but the food is rather "blah." I really should've just ordered the cheesecake and called it a night.

For Father's Day, we all went to my sister's house and I got to see my bro-in-law, nieces, great-nieces and great-nephews. It was a lot of fun, even if I was sucking in grill smoke! This was my first time seeing my newest great-niece (she's only a month or two old) and she's just too cute! My dad was actually less cranky than usual and actually enjoyed his day. I filled up on soda, burgers, chicken, steak, cake and mac & cheese. My bro and I kept chasing the lil' kids around, squirting them with a water-bottle we found and they just had a blast! I know they must've slept well last night.

My day hasn't started too well today but I'm sure it's bound to get better. Everyone enjoy your week!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Cross My Mind

I've been promising for the past few posts that I'd reminisce a little about Kingston so here goes. In order to declare oneself beautifully human, you have to acknowledge your mistakes and your past. Kingston was my first boyfriend and my first love. He's Jamaican, tall, dark, chocolate and sexy as hell! Well to me he was! And still is.
I met Kingston while I was dating my high school girlfriend. I was off at school in Florida and we met via an AOL chat room (romantic, eh?) on Jan. 15th, 2000. I still remember he came in and I IMed him and said in my immature way, "they don't talk to black guys in here" ... great first liner! Anyway, we struck up a conversation and before you knew it, I was up all night long, every night, typing away. We traded those dumb survey e-mails (you know the ones your annoying ass friends send you over and over again asking "who's most likely to respond?") and I sat on my bed, in my dorm room with my laptop, laughing, giggling and totally infatuated. My roommate had to be annoyed though he never showed it. Eventually we progressed to phone convos but they were hard at first because of his accent. I remember going back online telling him, "I'm sorry, but I couldn't quite figure out what you said!" My teenage love affair got so serious that I started skipping classes and all I could think about was him. What he looked like in person, how great it would be to just be with him.

Well to speed things along, my girlfriend and I broke up after a while (I think she suspected something was up) and I ended up packing my bags and heading to NYC to meet him. Yeah, stupid! I hear stuff on the news now about all the gay bashings and killings and I'm so thankful that I had a guardian angel with me. Meeting a strange guy in a huge city (plus I lied to my folks since I hadn't come out yet) could have spelled disaster but instead it turned into something I'll always remember. I stayed on Park Ave. in this upscale but tiny hotel room. We ended up spending every waking and sleeping moment together. We went to his neighborhood in the Bronx, went to Central Park, Times Sq., the Empire St. Building, and Christopher Street and almost managed to get to the Statue of Liberty. The weekend was mostly overcast, muggy and rainy but I didn't care. I was in love. It started to rain in Central Park and he gave me his shirt (too big) for me to wear and I still have it to this day.

The first moment I met Kingston, I was hooked. He had these huge biceps in this tiny black muscle tee and always carried a white towel like he was coming from a workout. And the bubble ... Lawd have mercy! Like Jill said, "it would turn me on just to see you walk into the room, across the room, out of the room ... " He was the first guy I ever kissed and it was so strange feeling his stubble on my lips. Whenever I was held, I felt so safe and secure and while he wasn't out to his family, I always felt he opened up to me in ways he never could with anyone. I have a thing now for Jamaicans, dreads and all things curry, thanks to Kingston.

Flashing forward to the present, things fell apart. I don't think I could handle the pressure of a long distance relationship and got suspicious. I also think I needed to explore. I was now officially inducted into my gayness (LoL) and wanted to discover more. Believe me, my black book can attest to the strange s*** I've seen! But even after all these years, he's moved on, I've moved on, we still have a connection. We talk now and then on the phone or via IM but it's more like an unconditional love. I recently got back in touch with him a few years ago and while we've both aged, he still looks good to me. Most would disagree, but he's always been my boo. There's a spark but it's not as strong. I like it that way. He came to visit during pride week a few years back, and we were sitting up watching QAF after a long hot day in Boston. He simply decided to stretch out and his head ended up on my lap and he was snoring. I realized at that moment how comfortable we are with each other. He's not free to be himself at home but here, my family came to accept him and consider him like family and he's visibly relaxed when it comes to some PDA (public displays of affection).

Kingston's in a relationship now and our convos are steadily dropping off. He's reached the big 3-0 mark and seems to be ready to settle down. I used to get very envious and jealous (even though he's not my man anymore) when he blew me off. I guess, I still have a soft spot for him in my heart. But I'm also realizing now that he has to be happy. I just hope what friendship we do have doesn't die completely. Beyond every guy I've ever dated, he's the only one I truly gave my heart and soul to and loved unconditionally. He's seen me at my best and at my worst (that's a long ass story that involves a lot of booze) and while I never truly appreciated what we had and do have, I do like it. If you happen to read this, I just want to say thank you.

“But the reality is, honestly you where never good for me and I was never good for you. I just remember what we used to do … “ – Jill Scott (Cross My Mind – Words & Sounds Vol. 2: Beautifully Human)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

All Hail the Goddess of Soul

If ever I had forgotten why I had “fallin” in love with Alicia Keys before, I sure as hell had a smack-in-the-face wakeup call last night! I don't even know where to begin it was just that amazing! You know, I don't even think amazing is the best word to describe her!

First of all, I'm a pianist so to give you a little background, I originally went to college for aeronautics but quickly realized it wasn't for me. I'm not a technical-minded person. So I went through a depression, a little counseling, some career counseling and went with my original talent. I've been playing since I was 6 years old. Started on organ (mostly theatre and pipe organs) and then self-taught myself the piano. I transferred to Berklee and swam in the sea with the big fish for a while but alas, it wasn't to be (very $$$). Several years later and I'm at UMB working on my BA in Music. Needless to say, it was Miss Keys who inspired me to “go ahead” with music and try Berklee out. Now back to the concert.

Jordin Sparks & Ne-Yo (that's my big-headed baby but I love him and those thick lips and sexy eyes so step with all that negativity about him!) did a excellent performance but they were mere insects in the presence of a goddess once Miss Keys emerged! She began the show with a recorded vid of Cedric the Entertainer, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis and Jennifer Lewis at church and sending lil' "Licia" out into the world. So she exited the church and then the screens parted and in this UFO-like entrance (picture bright light from a hatch, smoke, shadow, think Close Encounters of the 3rd Kind), she blessed us with her presence! She did several numbers, great choreography, dancers, the band is tight. Then out from the same alien-hatch emerged her baby grand on a pedastal. It was kinda eerie (it did that several times throughout the night) since one time it was under red lighting and smoke and the piano looked it was coming from the mouth of hell but anyway, I digress. She dismissed the band temporarily and gave us a few classics like "How Come You Don't Call Me" and "Butterflyz" along with "Goodbye."

She did the song "Prelude To A Kiss (Nana's Reprise)" and had a montage of the children in Africa she visited and asked everyone to text to a certain number as a donation to support her Keep A Child Alive foundation (click on the link if you want to donate). Not too many people, including myself, did it so I'm not sure how much they made. Felt a bit bad but with times tough, not to mention that most people already paid a fortune to get in to the concert (and eat), I'm not too surprised. I greatly respect her charity work and admire her dedication and resilience and hope to donate in the near future.

Alicia had a few breaks and let her backup singers, including Jermaine Paul, command the stage while she changed, and then came back to do "Superwoman," "Teenage Love Affair," "Go Ahead," "A Woman's Worth," "Unbreakable," "Diary" (with Jermaine), "Karma" (which had a James Bond spy theme!) and then revisited "Fallin'." She did a number of lesser known songs but ironically didn't touch "If I Ain't Got You" ... she kept the energy going, music non-stop and then when it seemed it was over she popped back out and got the crowd to their feet with "No One." And lastly, she hopped up on the piano at one point and played backwards. Excuse me for I must bow to the master! All hail the Goddess of Soul! I respect the piano greats (Donny Hathaway, Stevie Wonder, Elton John, Duke Ellington) but playing backwards ... DAMN ... I need to step up my skills! LOL

I prefer the intimate feel of our raggedy Orpheum Theatre but last night's show proves Alicia has grown too big for a small venue. The lighting, camera work and the special effects demonstrate her maturity. My first time seeing Alicia was on the First Ladies Tour (Beyoncé & Missy) and while she was spectacular then, she didn't have that certain flare. I saw her again but there were still no fancy screens, or cameras. But this time, she's really come a long way and if this is just after 3 studio albums and one live album, I can't wait to see what she has in store for us in the years to come!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Happy Birthday ... you're under arrest!

Okay, I know I said that Kingston would be the next post but I forgot the file on my home computer (I'm at work) so as soon as it gets e-mailed over to me, I'll post it. In the meantime, today is my brother's birthday and he got one heck of shock last night!

I got all the way over to class (UMB) and found out we didn't have class. Granted I was pissed (and hot)! Our first 5 page paper was due (after an extension) and I had really rushed to read the assignments and get it done only to find that out! I was relieved because I got the rest of the evening to myself but if I had checked my school e-mail, I might have avoided a trip over there on a hot crammed up subway train! So I hopped on the bus to go home when I notice a bright yellow SUV go flying by the bus! Yeah, I saw my brother with a bunch of people in MY car! Needless to say, I was ticked! So I try to call him but he's not picking up. I get home and realize I needed to go out and pick up his birthday card. I change clothes, and head back out. Our parents were away for the night so the only vehicle left was our green van dubbed the Green Monster! It's a deathtrap but it couldn't be any worse than the crazy ass Explorer I used to have. That thing damn near killed me! I know, another post! So I pick up the card, grab a Father's Day card too and head back home after stopping for a coolatta.

As I'm pulling up to the house, I notice a police car behind me. I'm thinking, "hmmm, okay, they're just out patrolling especially since that incident with the music the other night." I pull up to the curb and begin parking and then notice the po-po never passed. I check the rearview mirror and there he is behind me. I was starting to sweat, and I had the AC on. I've been fortunate enough to never have been pulled over by any police and I wasn't about to have that happen now. I get out and the guy comes over to me as my brother comes out. Apparently my brother called the police because he thought the van had been stolen!!! So he told the cop and the guy was fine, that "at least I don't have to do any paperwork!" and drove off. You think I was sweating? My bro took about 15-30 min. just chilling in the kitchen. The van belongs to our dad so I think he was afraid he'd get in huge trouble! He thought I was off at class so he didn't know I had come home. Course, if he hadn't taken my car, I wouldn't have had to use the Green Monster.

Anyway, talk about a way to kick off your 24th birthday! Happy Birthday, Rugrat! :o)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

I'mma Put You On The Bus

Awww, a nice hot, hazy and humid Tuesday! By the way, for those that don't know me, I don't like heat or humidity! I'm not a huge fan of sub-zero temperatures either so I guess fall and spring are ideal for me.

So it's pride week here in Boston and I pulled out the old dusty ass rainbow bracelet. Us SGL guys know that's not really about pride ... it's all about sending that signal to another SGL that you're gay and looking whether or not your in a relationship. Sidebar: yeah, this weather is making me crazy horny! Ugh, all I can think about is Kingston. Next post! I promise! So I'm running late and already sweating by the time I make it up the bus stop. I'm cranky, irritable and just downright hot when as I'm getting on the bus I had a "Madea's Family Reunion" moment. Dude driving the bus was insanely cute! I've seen him a few times before. I didn't like him for his looks as so much for his courtesy. Not too many dudes that haul that citybus stop for you, let alone pull over to the curb. Imagine that! Everytime I see him, he's always like "sup" and looking good with the leather gloves and cornrows. Picture J-Holiday grown and sexy. I've got a thug addiction like every other lil' gay boi out there. I want to settle down, try the family and marriage thing (Massachusetts baby!) but I can't help getting caught up in ol' dude's swagger. I felt kinda bad since I wasn't as friendly as I usually am back to him today. Well, the delirium didn't last. Crowded train. Another hot walk up to the office. And then, just to bless my day, Aunt Thomasina made an appearance.

In a nutshell, she is a supervisor who so happened to be distantly related to me. The name is a play on Uncle Tom since she's like Condoleeza Rice a kissup. Anyway, she's known for having a nasty attitude, completely unfriendly and last year, basically cussed us all out in a meeting w/the VP. Yeah, so let's just say that while I try to find the good in people and try not to "hate" (it's such a strong word), I really can't stand this woman and I’m very close to hating her! Thankfully, she's no longer part of the family (divorce) and I only have a few more months to put up with her. She and I hashed out our problems in private after that disastrous meeting but I've never really had much respect for her since then. We're cordial but that's about it. I avoid passing by her office and like today, when I saw her headed into the lunchroom, I just turned right around and went back to my desk. The less contact I have with this so-called woman, the better.

Oh well, at least my J-Holiday bus-driver got the day started right!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Weekend Recap

Friday: I couldn't WAIT for Friday because I'll admit, I'm a lazy son of a gun! I believe that sleep is the best thing in the world (besides eating and love) and I swear I can't get enough of it. I can sleep in on a weekend and still wake up feeling tired! But alas, I couldn't rest because there was a very important errand I had to run. Getting my eyeglasses! Wow! Wow! Wow! (sorta like Borat says it!) ... I can't believe what I've been missing! I can't see stuff far away (myopic) and on the drive back, I was reading every license plate, checking out every hot guy, reading road signs, looking at all the potholes and cracks much clearer, checking out more hot guys, actually braking for pedestrians ... and did I mention checking out all the guys?! I wish I had gotten glasses much sooner ... I also got some sunglasses so I can "window shop" guys.

Saturday: Was out the door early to get my lineup. I don't go to my barber as much anymore since I've got locks now but it's been such a quick minute since I've been, she (yes, I said she, women can cut hair!) hired some white dude. And just like in the movie Barbershop, he's got first chair. Dude was working on a head when I came in, and was still working on the same guy when I left. I'm thinking he won't last if he keeps moving at that pace. I was going to work out (it's been about two weeks since I've been to the gym) but I got lazy. I love running don't get me wrong but it's so very hard to get motivated lately. I know I'll never look like some of these skinny gay dudes running around here but I'd like to have some type of definition. Coming to work on the train today, caught a glimpse of my reflection on the windows and I've made a decision to get my fat butt motivated again and do the damn thang. Spent the rest of Saturday working on the piano Sonata in E minor (H.XVI No. 34, 1st movement). Yeah, by the way, my piano professor is trying to kill me! (more on that in another post).

Sunday: I was coming back from Dorchester (my bro and I work as custodians on the weekend) and wouldn't you believe I found my friend, Crazy, sitting on my front porch. He was the last person I expected to run into! He hung out most of the day and it was good to see him although I prefer it when people call me before they just drop in. He seems to be getting his life together and he's talking about going to college and a few other things. We had a small cookout (amidst all the grad. parties in our neighborhood) and he hung around for a while. I was a little pissed because I had planned to work on my 5 page paper (due on Tues.) so I lost a day. Well, that's what work is for! ha ha! I drove him back to South Station and as I was crossing the Zakim, there is this HUGE ass golden basketball trophy (for the NBA Finals - BEAT LA!) over the tunnel entrance which almost caused me and several other drivers to crash into each other. Quite distracting. Can you imagine telling the police, "yeah, I was too busy looking at the huge gold basketball and I didn't swerve in time"?

Today: Well, I'm tired as hell. Why? I'm a stubborn guy. First up, there were two HS grad parties on our street last night (along with a few others on nearby streets) and while I don't like using the n word it just about applies in this case. They had the music blasting till almost midnight and it wasn't like I could close my windows unless I wanted to sweat to death. Which is what I did even after these fools were gone. I probably should've got my AC out but like I said, I was too tired to go down and drag it up so I suffered all night. So I'm running on about 2 hours sleep. Yeah, and I get to write a 5 page paper! Ugh, Mondays suck! Only good thing I forsee this week, my bro's birthday, Alicia Keys concert, Chris Rock show and gay pride on Saturday! Maybe it'll get better and cooler! Stay out of the heat and if you're in the midwest, stay dry! Have a good week!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Exploring China (Pt. 3)

Well, it's been a few days since I updated the whereabouts of The Divo in China so here's the latest. He stopped in Xi'an, the capital city of the Shaanxi province, viewed the Terracotta Army and The Temple of Heaven. Then he proceeded to Beijing where he visited the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square. Sorry for the excessive use of hyperlinks but I just wanted to make it easy in case anyone didn't know where or what each pic was about ... enjoy!

Above: Chairman Mao's picture at the Tiananmen Square entrance to the Forbidden City

Above: The Throne Room in the Forbidden City
Above: The Imperial Gardens in the Forbidden City

Above: View of Beijing from Summer Palace

Above: Marble boat (really made of wood) inside Summer Palace

Above: Temple of Heaven

Above: Inside the Temple of Heaven

Above: More of the Temple of Heaven

Friday, June 6, 2008

... Makes You Wanna Slap Your Momma!

To quote the great Maya Wilkes (Girlfriends), "Oh hell no!"

I know if I had even talked that way, let alone even attempted to slap my moms, I'd be six feet under and I got the marks to prove my moms didn't play games!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Is It Friday Yet?

I think this lil' guy looks just about how I feel
:: sigh ::
... one more day, one more day ...

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

All By Myself

I'm being a brat. I know I am. Why would I admit to something like that? This blog is about being human and you do have to acknowledge your flaws as well as your good points. I am taking two classes this summer semester (it's only a 5 week semester), one of which is just piano lessons. The other is a 200G-level course, what UMB terms my "intermediate seminar." The course is about great world leaders. The visiting prof. is a nice person, very open, sociable, down-to-earth. No quizzes, no exams and no textbooks. Just a lot of packets and a total of 3 papers. After last semester's 15+ page paper, I think I can handle anything! Okay, okay, let me get to the point.

I'm a very quiet person and I hate working in groups or discussing anything in class. I prefer to sit in class, have a lecture, do my exams, read, take notes, write papers and leave. I don't care to really interact with my classmates. I've felt that way since grade school. I'm not going to be a psychoanalyst and try to figure out where the problem started but I know it's in my nature. And as most people know, it's extremely hard to change your nature. I've always preferred to do stuff alone. I never got along with my roommates at summer camp, in college, and even my bro (when we shared a room as kids). I never really took to team sports (basketball, baseball, bowling, gym class) and when we were forced to work in groups, I always ended up doing the majority of the work in anticipation that everyone else in the group wouldn't pull their own weight. Essentially, I like being alone. Not always, but most of the time. That's hard for some people to grasp if they're social butterflies but as I usually say, "to each his own."

Anyway, the prof. had us create a circle with the desks so we could "discuss" the readings. Now, I can speak up in class and I can give my opinion if pushed but I usually prefer to just listen to what others have to say, especially when I feel there is no point in arguing your opinion because it won't change anyone's mind. In the end, we're all going to pass the class, get our lousy three credits and never see each other again. What does it matter that we have to "discuss" our "feelings" and "opinions"?! Ugh! Per that last interrogative sentence from my immature side, I've decided to just suck it up and deal with it.

Consequently, the experience is making me slowly realize something. I stated I "hate" discussions and group work and realized that all "hate" really stems from a fear. In my case, a fear of socializing and rejection. Whenever I attend functions, be them church, school, family or friend-related, I always get anxious. I tend to stay to myself, act as wallpaper or go outside to get away from the crowd. However, that's not always the case. For example, I attended my high school prom and NJ's prom (ex-girlfriend) and had a blast. I danced and socialized and overall had a great time. But there have been other occasions when I went to clubs and was just outright miserable. And even worse, if cornered I get real bitchy and childish about it (e.g. cause a scene). As much as I'd like to think himself well-adjusted in life, I think it's time to address this. I've been dealing with my personal issues (physical and mental) over the past year one at a time and I think it's time to tackle this one. I am going to check around about social anxiety and see if there is counseling or group therapy I can attend to help with this.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Weekend Recap

What a great weekend. I got a few things accomplished and I think this might be the kick in the pants I needed to attend to my personal chores (Note: I'm a huge procrastinator!)

Friday: I came home preparing to take a nap (we get out of work early on Fridays) but some of the "kids" on the block were getting ready for prom. This massive blue bus (think decked out schoolbus with a 1-800 number on the side!) pulls up and a ton of guys in tuxes and girls in dresses filled the street, excited. When the heck did I get so old as to call the "kids"? Man, 10 years flies by! And when did kids start going to prom in buses? Am I the only one who thinks this is weird??!!

Saturday: After months of putting it off, I went to pick out a pair of eyeglasses and while I'm not 100% crazy about the look, at least I'll finally be able to stop killing pedestrians! I tried out that For Eyes place and I managed to keep the price under $150 for two pairs! Not bad. I also went shopping for work pants. Now, I brought my mom along to help me with the glasses but she ended up shopping with me for the pants too. I should've listened to the little insane screaming man who was jumping up and down on my cerebellum telling me to drop her off first but I didn't ... let's just say that this event took over an hour!

Sunday: My brother and I decided to get energized and do a ton of yard work. It's freaky how we think alike at times. We think alike at times (as often as a blue moon) and I guess we just felt compelled to do something. We have an annual family cookout that usually averages 70-80 guests every year so we've only got a month to really get stuff together! I also got to talk to my cousin whom I'm starting to get to know again (we weren't raised together). She is very outgoing and easy to talk and I found myself reflecting during the conversation how sad it is that family B.S. kept us from knowing each other. We're going to the Alicia Keys concert next week and while I was initially hesitant to invite her (I suck at rejection), I'm glad I did because I know I'm going to have a good time!

Today: I'm super-sore! I haven't felt like this since that time with Kingston ... that's going to be another post entirely! Have a nice week everybody!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Exploring China (Pt. 2)

These are pics from the town of Zhouzhuang, which is about an hour and a half from Shanghai (in the Jiangsu province) and a major tourist destination. It has been called the "Venice of the East."