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Afterglow: A Critically Acclaimed New Play

It’s been quite some time since I’ve written, but I felt the need to share a recent, enlightening experience with you, my dedicated readers. Please excuse me while I shake off the rust, as I do my best to share enough details without giving too much away because I highly recommend you experience the following for yourself…

Patrick Reilly, Brandon Haagenson and Robbie Simpson. Photo by Mati Gelman

Recently, I had the pleasure of attending the opening night of Afterglow, a raw, two-act, off-Broadway play exploring the emotional, intellectual, and physical connections between three men and the broader implications within their relationships.

The play opens with a hot, steamy bedroom romp of silhouettes writhing in the sheets in carnal pleasure. Soon, these silhouettes reveal themselves to be two married, naked men in an open relationship, Josh and Alex, engaged in a triad of passion with their new friend Darius. As is always the case, the sex is complicated, messy and cannot be devoid of emotions and feelings. Connections between the three characters begin to form and morph throughout the rest of the play, and all three men must come to terms with their individual definitions of love, loyalty, and trust as futures are questioned, relationships are shaken and commitments are challenged.

Brandon Haagenson and Patrick Reilly _04. Photo by Mati GelmanThe play’s logistics are unique and enchanting. The stage is small and seating is intimately set on both sides. We are in Darius’ studio/massage parlor. We are on his roof. We are in Alex and Josh’s bed. And, we are in their shower. Yes, I said in the shower. The play involves a simple, morphing set design, transformed in a delicate ballet between the three characters, that keeps your focus on the emotions and interactions of the players. We are simply the fly on the wall witnessing every giddy moment, every dirty little secret and every heart-wrenching emotion.

Personally, I gravitated to one scene between Josh and Darius in which they discuss New York City dating in the era of apps. Darius, with acute accuracy, describes what it is like to be on a first date in this superficial and shallow pond so on point, I felt I’d been recorded on one of my rants to friends over a cocktail. Another moment that profoundly struck a chord was a simple line delivered by Alex: “Love is easy. Relationships are hard.” No words uttered on the stage have rung truer in my ears. In fact, there was rarely a moment I did not empathize with each character and the emotional burdens they bore.

Following opening night, I had the opportunity to discuss with the playwright, Asher Gelman, his play loosely based on his own experiences. He informed me, “Afterglow refers to that euphoric feeling we get immediately after a great experience; in this case, great sex that serves as the inciting incident for the rest of the play.”

Robbie Simpson and Brandon Haagenson. Photo by Mati GelmanThe play explores polyamorous relationships, a highly-debated topic in the gay world. While some may view this play as a cautionary tale against open relationships, the cautionary tale here, at least, the one the Asher intended, is about “communication and what happens when it breaks down; what happens when people stop being honest with each other, especially those they are closest to.”

I won’t ruin the experience for you, but I can tell you the play allows the audience the freedom to decide what happens next. Happy endings don’t make us think; they don’t challenge us,” added Gelman. “Happy endings relax us; tell us that everything is going to be fine and that we don’t really need to worry, because, no matter how bad things get, everything will work itself out. Life is not so simple, and there is no magic to save us from ourselves. So, you get to complete the story, based on what you want to see. But that’s up to you; my job is finished when the lights go out.”

Afterglow is showing at The LOFT at the Davenport Theatre — 354 West 45 Street and runs about 90 minutes. Tickets are very reasonable and can be purchased by visiting Telecharge.com through September 16th. I HIGHLY recommend slating an evening with your lover, your best friend, multiple lovers or even by yourself to take in this experience and feel the emotional chords it strikes within you.

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Yoga For Better Sex

Below is a press release from My Yoga Online:

From February 1-14, My Yoga Online will be taking the techniques of yoga—including pranayama, bandhas, asanas, kriyas and more—and applying them to enhance the sensual aspects of your physical and metaphysical self.

 

MyYogaOnlineThe essence of sacred sexuality is to awaken our ability to love. Yoga can be a powerful tool for unlocking life-energy and using it to elevate yourself to a place of creativity, intimacy, and healing.  Learn about Tantra, the power of Kundalini energy, and how the second chakra can unlock the power of your creative centre.  This yoga video series is dedicated to helping you enhance intimacy, boost your creativity, and improve your health.

You can link to series here: http://myyoga.tv/v4Fc

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My Yoga Online Launches Get Lean Get Healthy Challenge

Below is a press release from My Yoga Online:

With stress levels higher than ever and time being increasingly stretched, My Yoga Online has the solution by combining the several thousand year old practice of yoga with a modern approach to overall health, diet and exercise. The Get Lean Get Healthy Challenge, is one of the many Whole Health Programs My Yoga Online has designed to meet critical needs that exist today. Guiding you with expert information, videos and tips to positively impact and enhance your life.

MyYogaOnlineMy Yoga Online builds and provides your own tool kit for a lifetime of wellness and your best body ever. Recognizing the need for a flexible approach, My Yoga Online designs programs based on personal needs and preferences. Members rave about the ease of access to world-class instruction for mind-body practices, viewable anytime, anywhere. MyYogaOnline.com combines physical fitness, advanced healing modalities, and the ancient science of yoga with the best of modern convenience.

Each, My Yoga Online, Whole Health Program is composed of eight stages delivered by email every 3 days, on the user’s chosen schedule, featuring 4 components, a series of top tips providing you with whole health tools, a tailored selection of useful videos based on user’s interest, energy and ability level, and articles on selected Whole Health subjects, written by experts in the My Yoga Online community. A generous incentive prize package will be distributed to one lucky participant at the end of the Challenge.

• Stage 1 – Begins with observing eating patterns by keeping a food journal for 7 days.
• Stage 2 – Brings focus to mindful eating
• Stage 3  – Examines the stress connection
• Stage 4  – Provides the lowdown on carbohydrates
• Stage 5  – Gives food for thought reviewing essentials for maintaining a healthy weight
• Stage 6  – Advises on healthy snacking
• Stage 7 – Shows you how to know your body, love your body
• Stage 8  – Provides useful information on the swapping solution, what to swap out, and in for better health and a happier body

my-yoga-boundWe created these Whole Health Programs as a user-friendly, modern inter-face for people to make positive changes in the areas where they are needed most, says Co-Founder, Michelle Trantina. We believe that knowing why and how we eat, eating the best quality foods, reducing stress levels, and practicing yoga and meditation are key to making lasting change and avoiding the pitfalls of fad diets and the frustration that so often ensues. I can’t even count how many people I have witnessed that start practicing yoga regularly, and suddenly their entire approach to body-self awareness, wellness, and food, changes for the better. It isn’t just about losing weight. It’s about being healthy – in both body, and mind.

MyYogaOnline.com is an online global resource, committed to promoting mind-body health, wellness and holistic living. Providing access to hundreds of online yoga, Pilates, and meditation videos and expert information on healthy living, workplace wellness, green living, expert health advice, a Q&A forum with professionals, and more. For more information visit www.MyYogaOnline.com or call Irene Zafiris at 1-888-488-3877

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Resolve To Overcome Your Sexual Shyness – Astroglide Giveaway

When you’re a gay man who came out at the age of 25, you look back and realize how abruptly you were faced with so many new things. Where most people experimented in their formidable years, I was sitting on the sidelines waiting for my day to shine. It’s a wonder I’m not curled up in the corner in the fetal position rocking back-and-forth. It took me some time to get comfortable in the sack, and once I felt comfortable in my own skin, there was no turning back. Or at least I thought so.

AstroglideDrYvonne_zpsc064a8f0Turns out experience can’t erase all your hangups, and when you need help, you need to turn to the sexperts. Astroglide’s Sexual Wellness Ambassador Dr. Yvonne Fulbright is came to my aid to help conquer my sexual shyness in the new year.

Astroglide’s asked me to share some of my experiences with my readers in this sponsored post.

Although I generally try to stay in shape, this holiday season, I morphed into a different kind of shape — Round. I would never let myself go so far as to let my gut get in the way of sex physically, but mentally, that’s another story. It’s hard to feel sexy and intimate between the sheets (even with the lights out) when you don’t feel sexy in the mirror. Even with my boyfriend’s advances and reassurances, I wasn’t feeling sexy. Dr. Yvonne suggests a tip:  “Boost your body image. For some, the biggest challenge to getting in a sexy state of mind and letting that be known is how you feel about your body. This also goes for those who seemingly have the “best” bodies. You can start feeling better about your form with regular exercise (as this has mental health perks as well), eating healthy meals, avoiding toxins, and shutting down negative self-talk. Do things that make you feel good about the skin you’re in.” I am already experiencing results physically and mentally through following this new prescription.

 

BloatedBellyI also came across some good advice I feel I’ve absorbed along the way but never put into practice. Dr. Yvonne advises: “Get to know yourself. It’s hard to express yourself or let a lover know your likes and what you want unless you take the time for self-exploration first. So take the time to masturbate. Experiment with different sexual enhancements. Read erotica for inspiration re: scenarios. Flirt with different ways to get turned on, to seduce, and begin the process of foreplay. You will feel more self-assured in providing instruction, even if it’s non-verbal.” I’m not sure I need to explore myself more often, but I should probably explore more of myself to increase the pleasure when I’m not alone.

Looking for advice for your own sexual shyness? You can submit your questions to Dr. Yvonne via the form on Astroglide’s site. And, ensure better sex in 2013 with Astroglide’s free samples! Your sex-life will thank you come next New Year’s.

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Toys Will Be Toys

Recently, the fine people at Mangasm brand of male sex toys reached out to me recently offering a free Mangasm Edge in return for a review on my blog.

I have to tell you, my immediate gut reaction was to say no. I have never used toys before. I’ve always been a bit intimidated by them and never really felt a strong need for them. My body and the men in my life had always been enough toys for me. No need to bring electronics into the bedroom.

That being said, after reading Dr. Sadie’s Tickle My Tush book, I learned to have more of an open mind. I reached out to them and agreed to give it a shot.

I informed my boyfriend, CK about my new toy and anxiously awaited its arrival. This toy in particular intrigued me because I thought it might be geared just for me. Many times, in order to climax, I need my prostate stimulated manually. I’d been with a lot of men, but CK was the first to finally crack this code. It was an immense relief on my own self-esteem as a man, and it did wonders for our sex life. So, in a way, a prostate stimulator was right up my alley (pun intended).

When my Mangasm Edge arrived, I was both excited and a little apprehensive. Few things have been in my backside over the years — A few fingers and a few man parts, but never anything other than that. I wasn’t quite ready to relinquish all control, so on the first test run, I didn’t engage with CK. On a night we spent apart, I broke out a pack of batteries, and after giving it a shot I was pleasantly surprised.

I took things very slow, and there was a small bit of discomfort at first, but that quickly passed once I relaxed. I just wasn’t used to it yet. With a little maneuvering, I was able to find my “he-spot” with ease. And boy did it hit the spot!

I have to admit, I was worried about the vibration aspect of the Edge. I wasn’t sure that was something I wanted, but I figured I’d decide that after feeling it first. When I got the vibration to the perfect amount, the pleasure increased dramatically. The good news is, the vibration is not just one setting. It is easily adjustable by the user. There certainly is a learning curve on the vibration aspect of this toy, but once you get it, you get it!

With the help of the Mangasm Edge, when I finally reached orgasm, it was amazing. It was different from any other time I’d reached orgasm, and this new sensation was very much welcomed. I was one happy camper. I would highly recommend this toy for anyone who needs that extra little help to get him to climax. And, even if that’s not the case, it’s an overall fun toy to bring into the bedroom.

The next step for me is to use it with my boyfriend. Rather than being a replacement for those steamy nights together, I imagine this is something that will bring us closer together.

So, if you’re interested in any of these products, roboticblowjob.com is offering 20% off if you use the code: OGAAT.

Christmas is right around the corner too. Perhaps that special man in your life could use a little more stimulation this holiday season. Gift the gift of orgasm this holiday season, cause who couldn’t use more of those!?

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2 Year Old Yoga Instructor

Here’s a cute video update I’d love to share with you from My Yoga Online:

Two-year-old Lincoln James began practicing yoga at 6 months Pre-Birth.  His first poses in the womb were Warrior 1 and Shoulder Stand. Needless to say, it was not very comfortable for his mother, the co-founder of My Yoga Online.  A year after his birth, Lincoln completed his 200-hour teacher training and is now sharing the Buddha’s teachings with his students. But please, no shoes or cellphones in his class.

Check out his video on YouTube:

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Yoga from the Privacy and Comfort of Your Living Room

When Hoboken offered free yoga classes on the pier, I couldn’t turn down the chance to introduce myself to the practice. If you’ve read my blog, you are aware that I have come to enjoy yoga over the past few years. But, the free classes only last so long. Fall arrives, and classes move back inside. I have a very busy schedule, and I find it very difficult to make it to yoga classes. On top of this, traveling for work always throws off my workout schedule. And then there’s the cost of all those classes. I already pay for a gym and sometimes pay to swim. All these costs add up.

I needed to find an inexpensive and time-efficient way to continue practicing yoga on my own time. My Yoga Online offered just that. They bring the benefits of yoga, Pilates, meditation, dance, nutrition and holistic living to my fingertips.

When I went to My Yoga Online I was thrilled to find their endless library of yoga, and a variety beyond compare. With over hundreds of high-definition videos, you’ll get lost for hours in premium yoga content.

On top of that, I’m certainly no yoga expert. I’d hardly even consider myself intermediate, but they have videos for every level or proficiency. You can browse and sort by style, studio, teacher, level and length. M.Y.O. even has a word cloud to search videos. Not just looking for yoga videos? They’ve got many other holistic health videos to boot, such as meditation.

While I went to M.Y.O. for the videos, the community they’ve also built pleasantly surprised me. There are many ways to interact with other members, meet teachers, check out studios and read the latest blog posts. M.Y.O. even has a Twitter-like feed for its members to share with and learn from other members, even extending to Facebook.

Hate getting overwhelmed when you visit a service like this? The site is very customizable. After building your profile, you can set up a cache of your favorite videos and even share your great find with friends. You pick and choose what to focus on. If you’re like me, and you’re not fully versed in all the poses, you can concentrate on getting up to steam so your poses will stand out the next time you join a class.

M.Y.O. allows you to share your insights, ask questions and get answers, and learn and grow while keeping your Wellness Diary. You can keep track of your fitness and wellness goals, upload images and share with others, comment on blogs, track others’ progress, join forum discussions, ask experts and so much more. This site truly offers it all.

Trying to give your body a full overhaul? M.Y.O. has an entire health program you can gain unlimited access to with a premium membership. When you choose the perfect 8-stage program tailored to your needs, you’ll receive essential tips, expert insights, Q&As and yoga, wellness, and fitness videos. Or, perhaps you’ll want to check out the healthy living section to gain insight into a more wholesome lifestyle.

I was afraid I would miss the rest of the class, but that wasn’t the case at all. I never felt like I was practicing alone. Periodically, CK and I pull out our yoga mats together and take a class after a long day of work. It’s actually brought us closer together. Not only is the site customizable, but so too is your own personal yoga studio. Now, we rush home to unroll our mats, light a soothing candle, dim the lights and begin class. If we’re feeling like hot yoga, we turn up the thermostat. If we’re not feeling entirely motivated, we pull up a short class. Sometimes we just want some relaxing music to listen to while making a healthy meal. Everything is customizable to our mood and motivation level.

And, if you were hoping this works on your iPad, I’ve got good news. The next time you go on a business trip, take your yoga instructor with you. All you need is an Internet connection.

I love being able to fire up M.Y.O. whenever I want in the comfort of my own home. As they say on Game of Thrones, “Winter is coming.” As I’m writing this, I’m watching the snow fall outside my window so thankful I don’t have to trudge to a yoga studio all winter to keep up with my workouts. And, the best part is, you can try it out here, FREE TRIAL, for two weeks before paying a single cent. I encourage you to check it out and see all My Yoga Online has to offer.

My Yoga Online was not only nice enough to hook me up, but they are also allowing me to offer ONE FREE YEAR OF PREMIUM SERVICE at My Yoga Online to the lucky reader of my choice. Submit a comment or send me an email telling me why you think you deserve to win the one-year free membership. Good luck!

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