Another Installment of My Gay Advice Column, “Go Ask Daddy”

27 May

Buddy: I’m negative and have always practiced safe sex but now I’m meeting guys who want to fuck unwrapped and say it’s okay because they’re on Truvada, that new anti-HIV preventative, or , if they’re poz, they’re “undetectable” and show me studies that prove a neg can’t be infected bare backing with an undetectable poz.

Shit, it’s confusing! What should I do?

Daddy: First, I congratulate you for being a safe sexer. Most guys, even from the time AIDS first reared its ugly head, aren’t.

Truvada, which has been used for years as a drug for treating AIDS, does what it says it does. But the big but is guys in controlled trial drug studies weren’t fully compliant in taking the med like they were supposed to do. So could you expect any better from the so-called Truvada “whores,” guys out there who love to get laid and are supposedly taking the med to get laid AIDS-free?

As for recently released studies that found that there is no – not slight – but no chance that a negative guy can get HIV from a poz partner whose viral load is “undetectable,” the results seem solid. In both studies, the men did not use condoms and the HIV negative partner was not on Truvada. Over 30,000 sex acts revealed ZERO transmission. The poz guys had been on antiviral meds for at least five years and ninety percent had healthy T-cell counts.

In the end, though, you have to trust the guy is telling you the truth. You, not he, have to decide for yourself if you want to fuck with a sleeve or without one. Asking the guy if he’s negative or negative and taking Truvada or poz with an undetectable viral load and making your decision based on his answer is like asking an ISIS terrorist with an American passport if he’s got a bomb shoved up his butt when he boards that jumbo jet bound for New York.

The Last Gasp

25 May

The Last Gasp

Well, today marks the end of the unofficial beginning of the summer season in most of the country, but for us down here in south Florida, Memorial Day weekend represents the last gasp of our tourist season which began around Halloween. And what a season it was, breaking all records; in fact Florida saw more vacationers in the first quarter of 2015 – 28 million to be exact – than any time in its history. Not surprising, considering the rest of the nation broke records, too, experiencing one of the most brutal winters in recent memory.

Even more eye-opening is the fact one out of seven of these visitors to the Sunshine State, 4.4 million, came from the global LGBT community and were responsible for over a billion dollars to the state’s economy.

But for us locales, the exit of the “el touristos” from New York and Chicago and Atlanta and San Francisco and London and Berlin and Buenos Aires is almost a welcome break. The bars and restaurants on Wilton Drive will now be manageable on a Saturday night, and not Grand Central Station at rush hour (last night I waited in line twenty minutes to get into Hunters, our popular dance club), and those of us who are hookup site or phone app addicts won’t have to deal with those cock-teasing hits from out-of-towners who two weeks before their arrival were drooling on their keyboards about making it with us and then are never heard of again. Think lying naked next to an equally naked guy at one of the clothing optional gay guesthouses may have something to do with it?

As for me, I’ll be closing up my home, hurricane shelters in place (it is the theoretically the start of hurricane season though we haven’t been hit in almost a decade – thank you global warning, I think), and will throwing my three little critters, Bebe, Annie and Pete, in the back of my Honda Element and head up to the home in rural Northeast PA I co-own with my partner to spend the summer as a baseball widower to his Mets obsession as I work on my next book, a love story.

No, I won’t miss the Ramrod’s underwear night with all its cliques of drunk, obnoxious twinks, nor the sex club Slammer’s eight buck specials where lecherous old men in Bermuda shorts and baggy T shirts strut around like peacocks thanks to Viagra, nor even our heavenly gay beach, Sebastian, where the sand is so hot now it can blister the soles of your feet if you forgot your floppies.

But I have to admit it’s nice to know when those fall winds begin a-blowing back North and everyone else will be saying a sad farewell to the warm weather come Labor Day, I’ll be back on 95, returning to my little world where Summer never ends.

Mad Men

22 May

Mad Men

Well, it’s finally over. Don Draper and his entire crew have now entered TV folklore. I was addicted to the show but got increasingly depressed watching it. First, because I found it to be one of the most existential series ever (Maybe “The Good Wife” comes a close second – the last show this season left Julianna Margulies exactly where she started – with nothing); and secondly because I lived some of “Mad Men” in my own life.

You see, my very first professional job back in 1971 was as an assistant to the editorial supervisor in the public relations and advertising department for New York’s Blue Cross. My boss, Betty, who taught me everything about the business, always seemed uptight and high strung, and now, after Mad Men, I know why. As talented as she was, like Peggy Olson in the series, she obviously felt insecure, surrounded by a bunch of womanizing, liquored lunch boobs much like those in MM. Hell, the chief of the department, George Goodlett, even came from J. Walter Thompson, one of the top ad agencies, having been the guy who dreamed up the slogan Blue Cross used for years: “There’s more to good health than just paying bills.” He was a chain smoker’s chain smoker (again much like so many of MM’s characters) and died of lung cancer a few years after I left.

Another heavy duty player I had less contact with but who still cast a long shadow was Dr. Ropper, head of Blue Shield, at that time a separate corporation. A total megalomaniac, he committed suicide in the garage of his Scarsdale, Connecticut estate after the two corps merged and he was left out in the cold – apparently with no other purpose in life.

Decades later, now a VP for Marketing for a multi-facility health system on Staten Island, NYC’s forgotten borough, I experienced some of the same pain and uncertainty MM’s characters did in the end when, just like their agency was swallowed up, my system merged with a much larger one. I went from being a big fish in small pond, with godfathers to rely on, to a very vulnerable small fish in a big pond, left to fend for myself. Many of the colleagues I had worked with for years were at a meeting one day and gone the next, like some Jewish family swept away by the Nazi in the middle of the night. While I survived the merger, I was passed over for the new head marketing job even though I had more experience than anyone else around the table, and realized then that my days were numbered and that it was only a matter of time before they would be through picking my brain. Fortunately, I had planned to retire early long before the merger ever happened and was one step ahead of them. Two years after the merger was finalized, I filed my resignation; three years after I left, the whole damn thing collapsed under the weight of bad management. My system was sold off like slaves at a slave suction, but the major player that had driven the merger was just closed down.

At my little farewell party attended by over a hundred of my business associates, my long time born–again Christian secretary, big boobed like Joan in the series, but as ugly as Big Bird, decided to get her comeuppance for all the expletives I would utter about many of these assholes after I hung up the phone promising them the moon.

“Ray, you always told to me to have a plan B in life,” said Elizabeth with a benign smile. “Well, I have a Plan C. After your little party we’ll discuss what it will cost you to stop me from telling all these people what you really think of them.”

Bitch.

Another Installment of My Gay Advice Column: “Go Ask Daddy”

20 May

Another Installment of My Gay Advice Column: “Go Ask Daddy”

Buddy: I really dig this guy and I thought he dug me, too. We had some of the best sex the two of us have ever had in our lives but suddenly, after a month, he “cold turkey” stopped answering my texts and calls. I’ve texted or reached out to him on the hook-up site where we first met at least half a dozen times with no response. But I just can’t forget him. What should I do?

Daddy: There’s lots of reasons why your love isn’t answering:
daddy 2 (3)(a) He’s dead.
(b) He’s in rehab.
(c) He works for the CIA.
(d) He decided to become a priest or join the Peace Corps.
(e) He has a partner and you were just a good fuck.
(f) He’s married – to a woman – with three kids.
(g) He met somebody better.

Or maybe he just lost interest – what I like to call the “New Meat Syndrome.” So, if I were you, I’d give him one last send-off,and  tell him if and when he wants to reconnect, he knows where to find you.

THEN MOVE ON.

If somebody doesn’t like you, or has lost interest or just leads a complicated existence, accept that reality. All the crying in the world ain’t gonna change that. And if you did get a hold of him in one of his weaker moments, and he reconnects out of some kind of guilt, not because he wants to, you’re only setting yourself up for further heartache.

In the meantime, get some goldfish as a distraction. At least you don’t have to housebreak them.

Got a question for “Go Ask Daddy?” Send it to str8gay8@aol.com; all questions kept confidential. 

Okay, So What’s Next?

18 May

Okay, So What’s Next?

Assuming that next month the Supreme Court makes gay marriage the law of the land, what should be next on the gay agenda?

South Florida Gay News essentially asked that question of a handful of locals. Discrimination on the job, homelessness among LGBT young people came up, certainly noble and legitimate concerns. But only one hit the nail on the head, at least from my perspective, when she pointed to “dislike within our own community.”

We’ve been bitching for decades about how str8 society and the mainstream world shits on us, but have we looked at how we treat one another? No, we don’t have to “love” every gay out there – some are admittedly obnoxious or just plain dumb – nor are we obliged to go to bed with every person who stalks us.

Hardly.

But there is something called mutual respect.

I mean how many times have you, or your buddies, or me for that matter, been guilty of this:

Criticizing what other people look like without looking first in the mirror.

If you’re older, criticizing the twinks (hey, remember they’ll be paying your Social Security) or the twinks laughing at the old men (you’re gonna be there some day too, buddy, and sooner than you think in an era when the milk and honey days for the U.S. have come and gone,)

Leaving a hook-up date high and dry instead of letting him know (and not ten minutes before) that you can’t make it, for whatever legitimate or made-up reason.

Blatantly lying to a guy (because it’s just easier) that you’d like to hook-up again when you have no intentions of doing so. Just say it – “Thanks, but I’m just one of those one fuck wonders.”

Looking at a guy who complements you in public like he had shit on his face because he’s not your type, instead of graciously accepting the complement, even if he’s a troll, and moving on. Remember, those pretty boy genes were just a roll of the dice; or maybe your uncle is a plastic surgeon.

Feeding a ‘ho or meth head’s silly vapid ego when they boast about all the shit they did, instead of feeling sorry for them and saying so.

Constantly bitching about all the silly crap in your life without realizing you might have it pretty lucky after all. (Meet my buddy, Vinnie, handsome, intelligent – and permanently paralyzed by a rare viral infection.)

Until we “respect” one another, we will never deserve the respect we think the rest of world owes us.

“A Summer Place:” All That Glitters is Not Gold

15 May

“A Summer Place:” All That Glitters is Not Gold

The other week, I caught that iconic movie, “A Summer Place,” made over half a century ago, on TCM, and while I had seen bits and pieces of it over the years, I decided this time to watch the whole thing. I was never a fan of blond surfer boys or thought Troy Donohue (real name: Merle Johnson ) in his first starring role, all that attractive, but after seeing him teamed up with Sandra Dee, I understood why they instantly became the reigning teenage heart throbs of the late fifties and early sixties. Donohue was 23 at the time he made “A Summer Place,” Sandra Dee, an ex-teen model, a just barely legal seventeen.

The movie was released at the tail end of 1959, at the dawn of what would prove the wild Sixties, where all the conventional, sometimes trite morality depicted in the film would be blown to bits. In the movie, Troy’s mother and Sandra’s father both have rocky marriages. His wife is a controlling bitch, her hubby a once wealthy, now broke alcoholic. The two had had their own teenage love affair decades before and now reunite when her former lover, now a rich man, returns to vacation at her hubby’s seaside resort. They eventually divorce and marry one another, while their kids fall ever deeper in puppy dog love. In the end, Troy, a decade before Roe vs. Wade, knocks up Sandra. Most girls “in the way” at that time were shipped off for an extended stay with some maiden aunt in Iowa, but with the blessing of their new step-parents, the young lovers go off into the sunset, convinced love will conquer all.

Sure.

With my smartphone in hand, I’ll often check what happened to actors in a flick I’m watching, and Troy and Sandra’s real lives couldn’t have been more different from their “A Summer Place” screen personas.

The movie made Troy an overnight star, but by the mid-sixties, he wanted out of the “boy-meets-girl” roles and asked Jack Warner, the mogul who ran Warner Brothers, to release him from his contract. When Warner, an absolute tyrant, refused and Donohue walked out, Warner made sure he was blacklisted by every studio in town, essentially and abruptly ending Donohue’s film career. He eventually turned to alcohol and drugs, and died of a heart attack, a shadow of the pretty boy he had once been, at 65. Surprisingly Donohue was str8, unlike his handsome peers like Rock Hudson, Tad Hunter, Montgomery Cliff or Anthony Perkins.

As for Sandra Dee (real name: Alexandra Zuck), a Jersey girl whose parents, like Natalie Wood’s, were Russian, anorexia, hardly recognized at the time as a disease, shadowed her her entire life, and in the end, along with alcoholism, contributed to her death from kidney failure at just 62.

But does it really matter what happened to them in real life? Forever they will immortalized as that innocent golden duo where all that mattered was love.

Another Installment of My Gay Advice Column, “Go Ask Daddy”

13 May

Another Installment of My Gay Advice Column, “Go Ask Daddy”

Buddy: I’m a total top, always was, always will be. But I’m constantly hit on by other tops – some real hot fuckers – who keep trying to convince me I’d love bottoming. Now, I tried a dick up my hole when I was young, even daddy 2 (3)played with dildos to see what it was like. Zilch, nothing. I tell these guys there’s still a lot two tops can do and on a rare occasion I convince them. But 9 out of 10 wanna hole and that’s that. So, next time a top tells me it’s my civic duty to let him fuck me, what should I tell him?

Daddy: It’s simple. Ask him: “Do you get fucked?” If he answers “yes,” or “sometimes,’ he’s a closet bottom. If he gets indignant, or doesn’t answer, just tell him, “Then don’t ask me again.”

Remember, there’s still plenty of masculine bottoms who’d love your man tool in the right place.

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