Thursday, September 30, 2004
Monday, September 27, 2004
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
Faithful Readers: I'm stepping from behind the lush, velvety (yet entirely masculine) Joe.My.God. curtain for a moment to let you know about an event scheduled to take place October 24th, in Washington, DC.
BlogJamDC! "The Homo Speak, Readings by national gay bloggers."
Bloggers scheduled to appear include DogPoet, GeekSlut, Wonkette, Chrisafer, VividBlurry, Waremouse, Morel Life, and ME, with others likely to be added as the event draws closer.
The event is being curated by Bob Mould and Jim Barrett . Bob will also MC, and Jim will also read from his acerbic and popular blog, Jimbo.Info.
There will be a Blowoff (the hot party thrown monthly by Bob Mould and Richard Morel), immediately following the readings, in the same space, with Bob and Richard working their magic on the turntables.
I am humbled and honored to be invited to appear. It's not hyperbole to say that the other bloggers on the slate represent the most interesting and original of the homo blogosphere. To be included on the same bill is a bit unnerving, to say the least.
First on my list of things to do, I have to dig out my copy of Husker Du's -'Zen Arcade' for Bob to autograph. Second, (and here's where YOU come in) I need to figure out WHAT it is that I'm going to read. Please feel free to suggest something, either in the comments or by email. I've only been blogging for a few months, and therefore only have about 50 stories to select from. I've got another month before the event, so there'll be more posted by then.
I've got to fill 6-8 minutes. And since I don't sing, dance, juggle, or strip , it will have to be something from Joe.My.God. Help!
Thursday, September 16, 2004
The Pocket Piece, Part 2
The Pocket Piece, Part 1
'It's Donovan, of course.'
I pulled the receiver away from my ear for a moment and stared at it in disbelief. Jim, Ken, and Ed, my traveling companions, all looked at me curiously.
'Oh, hi.' I was truly lost for words.
'Betcha didn't expect to hear ME pick up your phone, huh?,' Donovan giggled.
'Well, no. Um...what's going on there?'
'Don't panic, I didn't break in or anything! I ran into your roommate on the street last weekend and told him all about the job interviews I have up here, and he very kindly offered to let me stay in your room while you're in London. He's SUCH a sweetie!'
My roommate Robert WAS a sweetie. And I made a mental note to punish him for that, when I got home from vacation.
'So did you get offered any of the jobs?' I asked. (Please no, please no, please no.)
'Well, actually the only one I got offered was the first interview I had, with The Nature Company, in the East Bay,' Donovan replied.
I thought to myself, 'Oh, great! But at least he'll be over on the other side of the Bay.'
'Of course, I'd only consider living here in the City,' he continued.
'So anyway, my follow-up interview with The Nature Company is next Tuesday, and that's the day Robert said you got back, so I thought we'd go out and have a celebration dinner and you can tell me all about London!'
'And you're staying at my place until I get back?'
'Well, yes...Robert said I could. Unless you have a problem with that.'
'Fuck YES, I have a problem with that! I've known you for less than a month, we've only fucked a few times, and I am freaked the fuck OUT that you have moved into my house for two weeks, you goddam stalker!'
OK, maybe I didn't say all that. Or any of that. Instead, I was true to my form, and rather than seem rude to a near stranger, I acted like it was OK. Which it wasn't.
'No, sure...it's fine,' is what I finally croaked out.
I hung up the phone and sat on the edge of the sofa. The guys all stared all me for a long moment.
Finally Ken said, 'Well? What the hell was THAT all about?'
'That was about me murdering Robert when I get home.'
That night, we did another tour of bars and discos around London. This time we focused on Earl's Court, dropping in at the local leather bar, The Coleherne. The Coleherne was unusually bright inside, almost like a retail shop, creating an ambience that Jim and I found very unappealing. At the bar, a sympathetic local directed us to try a disco a few blocks away, called Bromptons.
Ken and Ed decided they LIKED the atmosphere at Coleherne, so Jim and I set out for Bromptons on our own. But when we got near the address we thought we'd been given, we began to doubt we'd heard the guy correctly. We could hear dance music thumping from deep inside, but there was no sign, no street number, only a single bare bulb illuminating a rather dank looking doorway. Adding to the general creepiness, there was a huge graveyard across the street, tombstones as far as we could see in the fading dark distance.
Next to the door, in the shadows, we could make out the outline of a person sitting on a stool. When he shifted slightly, some light fell on him. We could see that he was completely covered in tattoos from his wrists up past his neckline. His head was shaved, and the side of his skull was tattoed with a dagger, complete with blood drops. He was smoking, his fingers curled to pinch the cigarette in that way that British thugs smoke.
Somebody pushed the door of the building slightly open and barked out at the guy. He nodded once, and the door closed again.
'Um, he must be the doorman,' I said, uncertain.
'For who, the circus?,' Jim snorted.
'The Scary Circus,' I agreed.
'The Scary PIRATE Circus.'
'So, do you think this is the place? They're playing dance music.'
'This is London. EVERYBODY plays dance music, not just the fags.'
We waited nearby for a few minutes to see if any customers went in or came out, that we could identify as 'family'. No dice. Finally we decided that even to risk going in, on the CHANCE this might be a gay disco, wouldn't be, ahem, prudent.
We were just walking away when the Scary Pirate Circus Doorman called out to us.
We turned around.
Jim and I took a few nervous steps back towards the door. The SPCD leaned forward and squinted at us, then flicked his cigarette butt onto the ground in front of us. He got off his stool and stepped forward, then rubbed out the smoldering cig, using the heel of his boot. I could sense Jim move over closer to my side, and I did the same towards him.
SPCD reached into his pocket and with a quick motion, pulled out.....another cigarette. I guess Jim and I must have flinched a little when he did that, because he laughed a bit. His laugh was like the noise a gravel-filled truck makes on a rough road. He looked us up and down and he lit his cig, then finally spoke.
'Hello darlings, ' he purred.
I almost burst out laughing.
'You chaps are very horny looking. You should come inside and see what it's all about.'
Jim looked at me and shrugged. And we went in.
-to be continued-
Thursday, September 09, 2004
The Pocket Piece
Donovan wanted to go to the sex club with me. I had a problem with that.
In my mind, there was nothing as tragic as two boyfriends cruising a sex club together. One of the two would be wishing he was there by himself, and the other would be wishing they were just both at home. Boyfriends are RARELY on the same page, sexually.
I had met Donovan about a year after I moved to San Francisco, while on a vacation back home in South Florida. It was Thanksgiving week, and several of my buddies and I drove down to South Beach from Fort Lauderdale to hit some of the White Party events.
That Saturday night, we hit a club called 'Salvation' (formerly a club called Diamante', although I remember when it was the location of the Miami Beach Sanitary Fish Market). We were pushing through one of the packed and steaming hot hallways connecting the different dancing areas, when I was spun around by a little guy grabbing my arm.
'Hey! You're from San Francisco!'
I smiled at the guy. He was boyishly cute, short, furry, olive-complected and had a goofy grin.
'No, sorry. You must be thinking of someone else, I'm from HERE,' I replied, shouting a bit to be heard over the music.
My friend Jim whirled around and smacked me on the back of my head.
'You dizzy mess! You ARE from San Francisco...NOW!'
Oops. I apologized to the guy, who was still holding onto my arm in order to keep the crowd from sweeping him away.
'No, don't worry,' he laughed. ' I'm Donovan...I live in LA., but I've seen you....around in San Francisco, I mean.'
By then, I was losing track of my friends in the hall, so I invited Donovan to follow me so we could get acquainted. Four hours later we were still fucking on the 14th floor balcony of my friend Ray's apartment, as the glorious South Beach morning light began to strike the highrises along Alton Road. We watched as the first stabs of sunlight marched across the island, each building suddenly bursting into brilliant golden light, like freshly struck matches.
Inside Ray's apartment, we could hear the boys come trooping in from Salvation. I made a vague promise to find Donovan on the beach later that day, although I knew that I probably wouldn't try. I escorted him out as he made a sheepish exit through the apartment, accompanied by a withering commentary from my friends, who rarely saw me hook up with anybody.
'Oh. My. God. Joe did a Take-Home Piece!', Jim said, once Donovan was gone.
'Shut up,' I retorted, brilliantly.
In our sick, silly circle of friends, we had created names for almost every kind of possible sexual hook-up. A 'piece', obviously, was a hot guy...a piece of meat. So we had Take-Home Piece, Car Piece, Tubs Piece, etc. If you did someone once, but didn't want to hit it again, he was an 'Ex-Piece'. Someone you were planning sex with was a 'Future Piece'. An 'Almost Piece' was someone who you NEARLY had sex with. There were innumerable permutations of the Piece System. Someone who you thought you wanted to have sex with, almost did, but were glad you didn't, was a 'Future Ex-Almost Piece.' And so on.
Donovan was a 'Pocket Piece'. Small and portable. My type, exactly.
About a week later, back home in San Francisco, I got an email from him. He was coming up from L.A. for a job interview and wanted to have dinner with me.
I surprised myself by saying yes. I really wasn't interested in dating anyone, I had only been in San Francisco for a year and was voraciously consuming all the city had to offer. But Donovan HAD been hot sex, that one time, albeit I was wasted and probably would have nailed anything within reach that night.
Donovan hung around after his interview, and we had a nice dinner in the Mission, then enjoyed a stroll around the Castro. It was one of those achingly beautiful San Francisco winter nights. The weather was warm enough to forego coats, but with just enough nip to make you scurry around a windy corner. I took him back to my rented Victorian on Hancock Street and we spent the rest of the weekend naked and screwing.
Monday morning, Donovan offered to drive me to work, on his way back to Los Angeles. As he drove, he talked excitedly of his various job prospects, most of which were in the Bay Area.
Pulling up to my office, he said 'So listen, I wanna do this again.'
My brain immediately began doing a file search. Ah, there it was: 'VaguelyPromise.exe.'
'OK, sure. We should sometime,' I said, with a bit of forced enthusiasm.
'How about next weekend, then?'
For once in my shameful dating life, I didn't have to invent a lie, and I felt SO relieved.
'Oh, I think I told you...I'm going to London for ten days with the guys you met in South Beach. We're leaving on Saturday morning.'
'Oh, I didn't think you were going so soon.'
'Yeah, it's next week and -'
Donovan cut me off, 'So, why don't I come up on Friday and help you pack?'
Friday morning Donovan was at my place in time for breakfast. He must have left L.A. in the middle of the night. He helped me shop for some last minute items. He waited in the barber shop while I got my vacation haircut. He even did my laundry in our basement, while I went to the gym for a last workout.
I was getting a bit unnerved by his relentless attention, so I began to soft-pedal any interest I might have in dating him. I even let him overhear me talk to the Miami boys about the filthy perverted dirty gay homosexual sex we'd be hunting for in London. He just sat on the bed and leafed through a magazine, without commenting.
That night, I told him that I was planning to stay up all night, so that I could sleep all the way to London. Of course, he offered to stay up with me. Before dawn, he drove me to SFO for my flight.
We made our good-byes in the 'Unloading Passengers' lane, as I skillfully convinced him that he probably couldn't see me off at the gate of an international flight. Donovan wished me a good trip, and I watched his big truck disappear into the morning fog.
London was a blast, of course. A drunken, silly, debauched, blurry blast.
About a week into our trip, I decided to call home and check my messages. The phone rang only once.
I was startled to hear my phone picked up.
'Oh, um I think I have the wrong number,' I said, thinking I'd fucked up the international dialing code or something.
'Is this Joe?'
'Uh...yeah. WHO IS THIS?'
'It's Donovan, of course.'
-to be continued'