The closest I came to being adopted by the Mafia (besides living and working on Staten Island, a borough of the Big Apple, and the most Italian American county in the U.S.), was Peter, a short, stocky, swarthy, hairy, Italian gorilla with a shaved head and thick black beard and a build that Tom of Finland would have used as a model. By this time I was back from L.A., working for a hospital on Staten Island and on vacation in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, where we met.
He was a New Yorker too, and at 45, had retired from “construction” and was living off his treasury bonds and munis, plus rental properties he owned in five states. We played in a few of the houses he played musical chairs living in, Jersey, the City, and even his condo on Collins Avenue in Miami, and he was the one who introduced me to the kinkier side of man-to-man sex like e-stimulation, definitely an acquired taste. He wanted to keep me – I was just 30 at the time – but I was headstrong about my career and I cherished my independence. Hell, at least he didn’t hire a hit man when I called it a day.
Yes, I was a silly boy; he probably would be dead by now and I would have been set for the rest of my life like some jerk I met on the beach here in Lauderdale who after taking care of his “partner,” 30 years his senior, for 15 years, and not working a day all those years, is now living off a trust fund.
On equal footing with hairy Mediterranean studs in my “best hard-ons in my life” diary are Middle Eastern men, and George, who would become my life partner, a Syrian American from Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, fit my criteria to a tee. He was, and still remains a no nonsense guy, a jock with a religious allegiance to the Mets, who shares my conservative politics and views about The Life. When we connected in a West Village bar he was 38, ten years my senior, but had only really started having sex with men a few years before. In fact, he had almost walked down the aisle – with a woman – three times before we met. Average height, square in the shoulders like the actor James Caan and just as hairy, with great legs and a manly ass, he still captures my attention after all these years when I see him naked. Yet sex between us waned early in the game which is why I regretfully over time have become a Runaround Sam to satisfy my prurient interests.
So why do we stay together, you ask? Because we both are recluses at heart, content with the stability of a long term relationship, and because I’ve never known a more str8 gay man in my life, nor think I ever will.
Yes, there’s more. Tomorrow …