Monday, December 01, 2014

World AIDS Day 2014

The first AIDS death I remember was Ricky Wilson from the B-52's.  If I remember right Rolling Stone listed it as cancer.  I don't even think it was labeled as "gay cancer" yet and certainly happened way before the term/word AIDS was created.  Aside from that, I was pretty far removed from the queer community in general, I was just growing up and biding my time while attending high school in Concord, CA in the 80s.

I moved to San Francisco in 1988 and within months got involved in ACT UP.  I was encouraged by a coworker to check out a meeting.  It didn't hurt that the BAR [Bay Area Reporter] had a pic of a guy I thought was cute.  I took up the Secretary role at my second meeting.   ACT UP opened my eyes in a lot of ways politically and definitely pointed me to a way of making informed decisions about healthcare.  I also was now around friends and allies that had roughly the same views I did but they could verbalize them much better. 

Living in SF I saw friends, allies and even people I didn't care for just disappear. I saw, like many of my generation, essentially shells of men walking, their cheeks and eye sockets sunken, skin looking thin and fragile and then they were gone from the planet within months, weeks, days.

At the same time as all of this, there was a new sexual revolution too.  As more knowledge came out about the virus, we learned how to have sex and protect ourselves.  I don't think I ever knew sex without a condom then.

Today is World AIDS Day, and things are so different than 25 years ago.  Advances in current medicine means we don’t have the drastic number of deaths happening daily or pages of weekly BAR obituaries. 

Then, of course, there is Truvada.  Earlier in the year, there were discussions of there not being discussions of the drug, which in an odd way made me think of Reagan and his silence during the onset of the AIDS crisis.  Now that discussions are happening, they seem to be a moralistic view of sexual behavior as opposed to health benefits or risks.  Once lauded AIDS activists are now taking an anti-Truvada stance, which just seems so contradictory.   Weren't we fighting not just for "healthcare for all," but also sexual freedom?   When I approached my own doctor, he too took a moralistic anti-Truvada stance telling me he felt it took condoms out of the equation and men would start having unsafe sex again. It's as if the statistics that show when taken daily, Truvada's prevention success rate is 99% are being ignored.  My ultimate decision to not use PrEP was due to one of its side effects being it can make bones brittle.  Since I already have arthritis I don't need any more help in brittle-izing my bones/joints. 

I don't have any conclusion here, just a caffeinated old man rambling, but whether you decide to use Truvada, condoms or a combination of the two, just let your decision be based on facts and not morals.  If you are single and enjoy being sexually active, don't let yourself be slut shamed or forced to conform to what is considered a traditional relationship/marriage.  And if you're in an open relationship, you're disgusting pigs...just kidding, again don't be forced to conform to what is considered a traditional relationship/marriage.  Whatever works for you/us, is what works for you/us, let that informed decision only be yours/ours.

Monday, July 22, 2013

It’s been one year now since he broke it off. So why am I not over him??

One of the horrible things about online dating sites and apps is it brings you in touch with someone you might want to avoid. And, unfortunately, this happened on GROWLR when i saw my ex’s profile. He lives in San Jose, I live in SF. Lately he’s been appearing local, which means he’s seeing someone out here. AND he seems to be doing it more frequently than he did with me.

I go back and forth between blocking and unblocking his profile.

We’ve been on and off for years, but seemed to be on a good path for nearly 5 years before he decided he wanted to see other people to “find himself," something he’s not done since he’s chose to live a closeted life. He’s in his early 30s.

But even in previous times when we’ve separated, we always got back together. One time I even called him on it and his reply was, “But i always come back, don’t I?" And the answer then was yes.

Our history of him always returning after a separation kept a little ember of hope within me that he would do so again. But this time it’s different.

Before we split, he went silent for a time, ignoring my calls, texts and not even saying thanks for a X-mas card I sent. At the same time I started having dreams of running into him with other guys. I’m a bit psychic with dreams. I know it sounds like “poppycock" as Big Bang’s Sheldon would say. But given what I’ve dreamed and what has happened just proves it’s not.

I admit I did a bit of cyber stalking and created an adam4adam account and did a search for Latinos in his age group. In all the profiles, I found his. A faceless pic of him in a jock that he had sent me via sext the year before. Although the profile stated he was “looking for friends" the picture busted up that lie immediately. Not to mention his profile mentioned his “role," cock size and cut/uncut status. But he had also listed he was looking for 1-on-1 sex in addition to friendship. I did confront him on it, and he explained that in his “weak sauce way" he was looking for people to network with since his social skills are poor. Is explaining in a weak sauce way the same as downright lying??

I just wonder if living a closeted life makes lying and hiding just a natural way to live. Did he get so used to not telling the truth to his family he loves that not telling the truth to any loved one or friend became par for the course?

When he finally reappeared it was to tell me now is not the right time to commit himself to a relationship completely with abandon and without reservations, how he was incapable of this until he gets himself in order. At the same time, he mentioned he had moved out of his parents place to a house he bought in San Jose. I knew he was buying the house because it was the excuse to not see me on weekends. He had even said “I’m doing this for us." But he also had intentions of using it as a income generator by renting it. And now he had moved into it and never told me. He had been there 5 months or so. If he loved me as he claimed, why would he withhold such a huge life step from me?

We would get together one more time after that. The next morning I got a text at work from him saying “you complete me." Man, I was soaring in the clouds. But then he knocked me right down with a message that same week that “things are different, in my head. In my heart. " Who does that to a person?? No explanation of why so it comes off as left field.

When he ended it, he wanted to remain friends and I stupidly acquiesced. I would soon learn that that is the worst thing you can do after a split. One day he decided to start a text conversation by telling me about how he was hurt by someone he got close to. Really? Really? Why are you telling me this? Did you not dig the dagger deep enough already? Was remaining friends your way to feel less guilty for obliterating my heart?

I had to live it to understand that asking to remain friends is the cruelest thing you can do to a lover when you break it off. Like the Supremes sang “How can we still be friends, when seeing you just breaks my heart again?"

He still doesn’t get how profoundly he hurt me. Unfortunately, before all this I really did think I had found my soul mate.

We had such a connection that was downright chemical. For years we confided in each other and we connected mentally and physically. And then it was gone.

After his last communication where he called me callous for being upset over his talking about his dating to me, I knew I needed to take a stand. Not a stand against him, but a stand for me if I want to heal from the hurt.

I sent an email that ended with:

 "Me callous? Who’s the one who said: ‘hey, I’m over you, get over it and let’s move on.’ and then to think you can discuss dating others???

Unfortunately, we’re both fooling ourselves into thinking we can maintain any sense of friendship. You let me go, and the only way to get over you is to just go. You yourself said ‘I’ve poisoned “us" and we’ll have to move on from here.’ You didn’t just poison us, you killed us!"

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

2009 update

Ok, first the bad news. I have been in pain for like nearly 2 months. Doc believes it's a pulled tendon and not broken bone as I can step down n walk, but it's really sore around the knee and hip, which is better than through the whole thigh like it was when it started.

Been working a lot from home, although I came into the office today.

The sucky thing is I have not been social (aside from visits from the bf) or been out to readings, movies, parties etc.

Jaime C. did pop in for a visit initially, showing off his new toy by a artist homeboy he knew I'd drool over.

Been netflixin like mad. Been watching the Three Stooges. The 3S jones came outta nowhere, then my mom reminded me that my grandpa had died the week I started jonesin. I'm named after him and when I'd stay the weekend with mis abuelos, he & I would watch the Stooges & Popeye. Other cartoons were cochinadas to him.

Lessee what are other things to tell to keep you up to date? Saw the Labelle reunion tour at the Oakland Paramount. Went with Sam & Jaime, we were right near the stage. It's always a religious experience to me when I hear big voices. Patti was bratty, Sarah was a Lady, and Nona was CRAZY!

Actually saw old ACT UP friends at a party earlier in the year. It was great to see them and hear what they're up to today!

Haven't watched baseball too much this season.

The other thing I been doin is reading Golden Age DC Comics. So far been reading Adventure Comics, Detective Comics & Flash Comics. Most the art is stank except for a few who have great style: Bob Kane, Bernard Bailey & Sheldon Moldoff. I've been diggin the Slam Bradley, Hourman, Sandman & Hawkman strips.

well, that's it for now!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Yes, I was a pussy

Let me start by saying upon arriving San Jose airport to yesterday, I been a pussy. (I know, I know, a sexist term, etc.) But I was flipped out about going to Mexico with the very little Spanish i know. On Day one, i spooked easy, plus I only had the $200 pesos Juve loaned me.

The first ATM I went to didn´t have letters on the keys, only numbers. And since I know my code by letters, I freaked out. Plus a line started forming, so I went back to the hotel tail between my legs. I ended up surfing the net, watching TV and napping a lot.

This morning I was more assertive. After watching Obama´s press conference on CNN, I went to the Business center of the hotel and looked up things to do via Trip Advisor and Google. I went to the front desk and used my bestest Spanish to ask how much it would cost to go to El Centro via Taxi. The lady behind the desk answered, $70 pesos. I said I only had dos cientos, and would the cabbie have cambio. She answered yes.

The cabbie got me to the Palacio de Gobierno but he didn't have change. He parked and went to a cab in front of him to get some. I tipped him, which left me with $100 pesos.

The Palacio was amazing. I did take pics, which I'll post when I get home next week. It sees like Guda digs the goddess Minerva. The one "setback" was that stairs and a trick knee don't mix. I climbed to Level 2, which would be Level 1 as in Mexico, Level 1/the ground floor is known as PB. I'll hafta ask Juve what it stands for again. I didn't go the extra steps to the Congress Room , so i missed another Orozco mural.

Upon leaving I asked a security guard for directions to a bank because I needed to exchange dinero americano a pesos. She pointed me to Banamex.

At Banamex, I told the "hostess" what I needed. She asked if i had any identification. I replied "¿pasaporte?, she sed Si! Then she gave me a number: 524. They were at 460-something. I waited my turn, it wasn't too long a wait. The exchange itself was quick. Then I told the teller (cajero?): "¿puedo usar my tarjeta en las maquinas? (holding up my Wells Fargo card) Es de banco americano Wells Fargo." He replied si. Thankfully, the Banamex ATMs had letras y numeros.

I then walked around looking for Californias, the bear bar. Unfortunately I took a wrong turn at Calle 8 de Julio. i saw a bunch of little markets, school kids, mechanics, and a place called Queer Nation, but it didn´t open until 5pm. After walking quite a few blocks, i rechecked my map and saw I went the wrong way. i retraced my steps.

i found the street the bar was supposed to be on. but being pooped and not having had coffee or breakfast, save a bit of cookie that Juve brought, I popped into Cafe D´val for a coca en botella, cafe americano fuerte y fajitas de res con tocino. So far tummy doing good.

After that I found Californias on the corner, but it too was closed being too early.

I did some more walking and found a plaza with an old library. Beautiful old doors, and pieces of the ediface on the ground. (Took some pics here)

I walked around more, finding a calle that was filled with front door farmacias. I kept getting asked if I was looking for something. I shoulda sed Si, por arthritis!

By this point I started wearin out, so i hit a corner market and bought tres botellas de agua. I sat in a´park and drank one, but got hit up by a missionary collecting money. He grilled me for a bit. A girl walked by and he said something. I didn´t respond. No, te gustas mujeres, he asked. I didn´t answer, just laughed. Then he asked me again for $$. I said no, and got up and walked on.

I grabbed a cab closer to the Palacio. I told the cabbie I wanted the Hotel Victoria express, but he didn´t know where it was. He asked if i had it written down, so i pulled out my passport. He told me get in as cars started honkin behind him. He read the address in my passport, and away we went. He asked if the Victoria express was a store, I told him it was a hotel. He asked me my name and if I was from San Francisco, and what i was doing in Guadalajara. I told him i was visiting with a friend who was working here this week. He asked if i had family here. i told him, no I was just visiting, and that I had familia en la Cuiudad de Juarez. We got to the hotel pretty quick. He helped me out the cab and I gave him $100 pesos. He reached in his pocket for change, but I sed no cambio. He insisted, but I sed no no no necessito. He said "Gracias, Evaristo" and shook my hand.

Now my feets is killin me, more specifically my ankles. My mom had run an errand prior to me flyin out, so I pulled out the bottle of alleves, with the easy-open arthritis cap, she got me. Let me say, someone needs to tell that pharmaceutical company what "easy-open" meands to a person with arthritis. Holding down 2 tabs with one hand, while twisting the cap with the other IS NOT EASY OPEN!!!!! Needless to say, I made cracks in the bottle, but never got it open. Have to wait for Juve to come back.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

first notes

arrived in guadalajara yesterday. took a direct flight from san jose, ca. mexicana airlines seems very southwest except with assigned seats. juve n i looked to see if we could get seats together. at first the counterperson said no, but then as we boarded she called us over and said 3 people cancelled, so we got a row of seats to ourselves. best airline food i´¨ve ever had too: enchiladas. washed down with a coke and a coffee.

at the guadalajara airport, we got through customs. and juve just kept bookin so didn´t hit the atm or cambio place. [which was a mistake cuz our hotel has no atm, n when i finally hit one today saw the numbers didn´t have letters. I memorized the letters of my PIN not the numbers grrr] We grabbed a cab, and jue was not expecting to tip a guy who carried our bags to the cab. an unnecessary job, but oh well. turns out we´re not in downtown G [el Centro] but Chapalita.

We were both pretty zonked but grabbed dinner in the hotel. Boneless Buffulo Wings which were unbreaded and covered in a mole sauce. I had a burger, he had a steak.

After we just went back to our room, while he tried locating his co-workers to determine their agenda for the ALA conference.

Not much around our hotel, I walked around today.

I have 200 pesos Juve left me, tomorrow I´ll be more brave and grab a cab to el Centro. tonight I´ll figure out the numeric equivalent of my PIN and grab some cash.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

The debate 2 quick thoughts

just a few quick thoughts:

When McCain addressed the young black man, he said "You may have not of heard of Freddie Mac & Fannie Mae before today." Why would he assume that??? And would he have answered that way if the question came from a person of non-color?

My mom had a conniption fit when she heard McCain call Obama "that one." her mouth dropped and she just repeated "that's not right, that's disrespectful." It made me think of 2 things: "That Girl," although McCain didn't mean it in a positive light; and the scene from Trading Places where Dan Akroyd getting bailed out of jail bellows "That man tried to have sex with me!"

Sorry. No deep political thought here, just rambling before heading out to work.

oh yeah, moment that made me sing the chorus of Pat Benatar's "Out of Touch": a woman asks a question about being green and green initiatives. McCain then talks about nuclear energy?????!!!!! WTF Last I remembered nuclear power was the opposite of green.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Still undecided in D9

So far the field has been narrowed down for me to David Campos and Eric Quezada, with a slight leaning towards Campos.

Eva Royale disqualified herself cuz of this. I stand by my comment: "Eva's coming forward in a big press conference with her posters plastered around her at her press conference had NOTHING to do with being an outstanding citizen pointing out injustice, it ONLY was a ploy to make her Supervisorial bid public. Eva is irrelevant for the future despite her past accomplishments. C'mon Dolores Huerta (whom she had with her) does NOT speak for modern day Latinos."

Mark Sanchez proved he doesn't fully get it and pulled a bitch move in my book. See here By effectively dismantling the incentive for JROTC, which despite queer folks opinion on the military, Sanchez really screwed over kids of color and at-risk youth by not offering any alternative program. (ironically,m the few folks I know who were in JROTC all eventually came out as kweer adults.)

Eric Storey just gives me bad vibes. I'm hippie that way.