Posts Tagged abandon

The Next Chapter

Two years ago, I started this blog. I began writing because I felt alone. I knew there had to be other gay men out there who were looking for the same thing I was, and I wanted a way to connect with them.

grindrAt the time, I just ended my first gay relationship, and I found myself in very unchartered waters. I was already out to close friends, but not publicly. Because I had so few gay friends and a strong aversion to gay bars, I had to find a mate digitally. I began serial dating, at one point going on four dates in four days — And thus, One Gay At A Time was born.

Since the beginning, I have gone on MANY dates and put myself in many situations well outside my comfort zone. I have not only grown more comfortable in my own skin, but I’ve also grown up as a gay man. I got all the hookups out of my system and began searching for a meaningful, long-term relationship.

This blog began as an open forum diary of the daily occurrences I encountered navigating the gay world. I told my side of the story honestly in hopes that others out there would be able to relate, comment and most importantly, realize they are not alone.

The time has come for the next chapter of my life and for this blog. For quite some time I’ve been blogging about CK (aka Clark Kent or Superman). You’ve gotten to know him through my eyes in the early stages of our relationship. It’s been some time since I’ve blogged, and I apologize for leaving you, my readers in the lurch. I do not mean to abandon the small community I’ve worked so hard to foster, but I’ve been struggling with the next chapter of the blog.

When I first told CK about the blog, he was very open to and even grew excited about the idea of my writing our relationship. Over time, as you could probably understand, his excitement waned, and we began to argue about the content of the blog.

I had to make a choice between the blog and my man. It’s quite obvious which I chose. As a result, I will no longer be blogging about the specifics of my relationship with CK. However, in lieu of continuing to finish our story in a daily dairy format, let me catch you up on what has happened since July. Here are some of the highlights…

In July, CK joined my family for our annual beach vacation. While I went for the entire week, he only joined us for a few days. It was the first time we’d spent an extended period of time apart, and with my trust/cheating baggage, it was a true test of my sanity. I was thrilled and relieved when he finally arrived. It was also nice that he would finally get to spend some real-time getting to know my parents.

In early August, I traveled to Miami, CK’s birthplace to surprise his family with a visit to celebrate the birthdays of his two beautiful nephews (turning 1 and 2 only a week apart). I felt incredibly special taking this trip with CK. I was meeting his ENTIRE extended family. Before this point, I’d only met his mother. I was welcomed into the family with open arms and came to grow strong bonds with them over just a handful of days. This was unchartered territory for both of us, as I’d never been brought home to meet the family by anyone other than my high school girlfriend, and he’d never brought a man home to meet everyone before. It could not have worked out better!

Around Labor Day, CK and I went on week-long vacation to the Hamptons with 15 of my friends and family. While there, our relationship grew very strained. I felt he was trying too hard to impress my friends. I wanted him to be himself so all of them would come to love the man I knew, not the man I felt he was trying to be for them. By the end of the week, I reached my breaking point. I was so stressed out from organizing the vacation and ensuring everyone was happy that I made myself miserable, and I took it out on the person closest to me. In the penultimate moment of the trip, one night we not only exchanged words but also fists and shoves, as my closest friends and sister witnessed the lowest moment of our relationship.

It took a lot of time for CK and I to figure things out. This wasn’t the first time our relationship reached physicality, but I hoped it was the last. It also took a long time for things to return to normal between CK, me and my circle of friends. My sister wasn’t speaking to me for over a month and my friends had semi-ostracized me from typical gatherings. I burned a lot of bridges on that trip, and I am still working to rebuild them today. You can expect to read about my experiences and feelings dealing with issues such as physical violence in a relationship as one of the topics I will cover in coming posts.

In September, CK and I found an apartment in Hoboken to call our own. We moved in together in the midst of Hurricane Sandy’s wake on November 2. Although the experience of moving immediately following a hurricane is incredibly overwhelming, we are both stronger as a result of the experience. In my experience, moving in with a lover is unlike sharing a space with any other. You’ll certainly be reading about my experiences and the things I’ve learned from this experience as well.

After Sandy exhausted my last modicum of energy, I decided I was too tired to shave my upper lip. CK and I both decided to raise awareness and funds to fight prostate cancer by growing mustaches for Movember. I proudly raised over $500 for charity as a result of my stache, and I was thrilled when we both shaved them off — We both looked like pedophiles.

For the first time in my life, I had someone to take home to meet my family for Thanksgiving. Before venturing home, I sent my extended maternal family an email to get the awkwardness out of the way. You’ll be pleased to know my family welcomed him with open arms. I imagine coming out to extended family creates a lot of anxiety for man, as it did for me, so I hope sharing my experiences will encourage more to share the truth with the ones they love.

When I returned to Hoboken after Thanksgiving, preparations began immediately for what would have been my Sixth Annual Holiday Bash. This year, it became Our First Annual Holiday Bash. I finally had someone to share the hosting duties with, making it extra special.

Although CK and I spent Christmas apart, after all the festivities with my family, I hopped on a flight down to Miami to spend the rest of the holiday season and New Years Eve with my man and his family. CK’s sister and brother-in-law planned a trip with their two boys to Disney World for two days. After a little persuading, I convinced CK we should join them. I preferred Disney to a raucous gay party any day, and it was truly magical to see Disney World through the eyes of a two-year-old.

In February, CK and I took a romantic trip to Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz, NY. Although it seems we can’t go anywhere without having some kind of quarrel like an old married couple, the trip was amazing and couldn’t have come at a better time. We went ice skating, snow shoeing, swimming, hiking, and much more. It was a perfect escape for both of us to get out of the city and away from the bustle of it all after the holidays.

In between, there have been countless brunches, parties, trips, nights out, Broadway shows, fights… Oh yea, and plenty of sex — Can’t forget the sex! Overall, things have been going well for us. You have good days and bad days, but you have to realize the bad days are just there so you appreciate the good ones all the more. I am thrilled to announce, this past Saturday, CK and I celebrated our one-year anniversary at the restaurant we went to on our first date, Frankies Spuntino 570. Although we waited nearly an hour, the evening was perfect, and I look forward to many more years together.

Although I won’t be detailing the specifics of my relationship going forward, I hope to share with you what I have learned along the way. It’s not easy being in a relationship, but then again, the things that are worth it never really are.

To my most dedicated readers who haven’t let me lack of posting stop them from commenting words of support on my blog, thank you. You are what has motivated me to get back into this once again. I feel like many of you have integrated my writing into your daily routines, and I have left you with your morning coffee in hand and no reading material. You will not see the frequency of posts you may have grown accustomed in the past, but I still hope you find time in your lives for One Gay At A Time.

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An Evening Matinee, Pt. 2

The party was in full swing. Matinee had a huge turnout, and some of my suspicions were already confirmed. I was in for a long night.

As the evening progressed, CK ran into a handful of people he knew. I was very leery of many of these people because I assumed the majority were previous hookups and fellow circuit party enthusiasts. My guard was up. No one was going to make a move on my man without me having more than a few words to say. One previous hookup in particular was starting to weird me out. I would catch him staring at CK across the crowd, which turned me into a guard dog. I wasn’t going to let CK out of my sight.

I still had a lot of anxiety after he told me he didn’t go to the last circuit party because he wasn’t sure what might happen. It was honest, but it didn’t exactly instill confidence in me. I wasn’t holding it against him, because after all, he was forthcoming. But, that didn’t mean I wasn’t going to be hypersensitive.

Speaking of infidelity, out of the corner of my eye, I caught a glimpse of one of the newlyweds I’d met earlier in the night with his tongue down another man’s throat. I scanned the crowd for his husband, and he too was sucking face. My heart sank a little. I was so thrilled to have met a gay married couple because it is something I long for. But, judgment aside, after witnessing their definition of marriage, it brought the idea I would never find a man who shared my own definition of marriage back to the surface.

Since Hip was still recovering from hip replacement surgery, he needed periodic breaks from all the dancing. I can’t tell you how happy I was to have him there. Every time he took a break from the dance floor, I joined him. I needed a break as much as he did. While we stood on the sidelines, I complained, “When is this lozenge going to kick in!?” We chuckled a bit while watching CK search the crowd to try to find us until I finally got his attention.

Hip wasn’t the only other guy I knew there. I’d been texting with my ex, Broadway, who I am still friendly with. We rarely see each other anymore, but when we do, it’s completely platonic. I learned he’d be attending, so I suggested we at least take a minute to say hi. I also wanted to introduce him to CK so they could both put a face to the name. We managed to find each other in the crowd over the phone and exchanged a hug. He introduced me to the guy he was there with, and I introduced him to CK. It felt a little forced for some reason, so I didn’t dwell on the conversation, and we said goodbye.

As the night continued, I began to feel the effects of my lozenge. I was very happy because I mellowed me out. I was in a good state from there on out. That is until others in the group pulled out some of the stronger vices. It was my first time witnessing this. I don’t feel I’ve lead a sheltered life, but my friends and I just never put ourselves in those situations. I felt quite uncomfortable. A big part of that is the unknown — I knew very little about it. Another part of it stems from resentment. I feel a sense of, “Am I not enough that you feel the need to heighten the experience?”

I tried to turn a blind eye to it and get on with my night. CK really wanted to be there, and he really wanted me to have a good time. I wanted to give him that. I wanted him to see me enjoying myself, so that’s what I did. I worried about the things I could control and tried to forget the rest.

We danced and danced and danced. We had a really great time dancing. Natasha Bedingfield performed, and I even saw my favorite Twitter couple, @AustinWilde and @AnthyRomero. I pointed them out to CK, and he suggested I go say hi. I put myself in their shoes and refrained. They were there to have a good time, just as I was, and I didn’t want to bother them.

Another round of substances made a pass through the group, and once again, I was feeling on edge. This time I wasn’t as good at hiding my lack of comfort. CK was really good about checking in with me to make sure I was alright and having a good time. When I told him how my lozenge made me feel great, he chuckled and gave me a kiss.

The night was coming to a close. Sure, it was stressful as all hell, and when it was over, I felt incredibly relieved. Relieved and exhausted. It takes so much out of you to be so anxious for so long. But, looking back, I did have fun. After experiencing that and XL the night before, the next go around would be far less stressful. I would a least know what to expect. People began making their way back to the ferry to hit up more club parties in Manhattan. Before we left, CK and I snapped a few romantic pictures with the city skyline in the background. This part was easy. I could stop worrying and finally let myself be engulfed by the love I shared with CK. In the end, that was what mattered. When he was happy, I was happy. This was something he’d been looking forward to for months, and I hoped I delivered.

While we were away from the crowd, CK pulled me in to discuss our plans for the remainder of the night. Originally, we discussed going to Work (Peter Rauhofer was spinning) at Roseland, but to my surprise, he suggested another plan. “Baby, tonight’s been amazing! And I know Work’s gonna be off the hook, but if you’re game, I think we should go to a really exclusive after-party. Getting on the guest list is nearly impossible, but we’re on it.” Without another beat, he said, “Let’s go back to my place and make love till the sun rises. Words cannot express how welcome those words were.

When pointed out how I felt bad abandoning Hip, I suggested we get back to him. Of course, I was thrilled to learn he met an aussieMan on the dance floor who took quite a shining to him. They were having a great time together, and I couldn’t have been happier. While I loved having Hip there, I worried he felt like a third wheel with CK and I. That doesn’t go to say he should have. I loved having him there. To be honest, I don’t think I would have made it through the night without him. He is an amazing guy, and he really deserves an amazing man to make him happy. It also just so happened the aussieMan had an extra ticket to Work, so Hip became his plus one.

We all rode the ferry and the subway together until we reached Hell’s Kitchen. After an exchange of hugs, we parted ways. CK and I walked home blissfully hand-in-hand. CK may get a little bent out of shape when I say this, but that was my favorite part of the night. I was always happiest when it was just the two of us. True, we are both social beings and love being surrounded by people, but there’s nothing quite like some quality time with my man! I really did love him!

When we got home, we were both quite exhausted, however, we weren’t too exhausted to take advantage of each other before dozing off. But, that’s another story for another day…

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The One I’ve Been Waiting For

Today is another Fast Forward Friday!!!  

Hope you are enjoying these. It will help bring the blog a little closer to real-time. If you’re keeping up with the stories chronologically, please skip down to this morning’s post first, then read this one. I think it’s a good one! Enjoy!

Never before have I prefaced an entry by giving away some of the details of what’s to follow, however, I’ve received numerous comments from readers tired of reading my “sex journal.”

“Your blog used to be interesting when it was about your relationship with your ex bfs, but it turned me off when it became a sex journal,” wrote one reader.

We’re both on the same page here. I dislike writing about these trysts as much as you dislike reading about them. It’s bad enough I’ve lived them once, let alone having to live them all over again when I write them.

So, without further ado, I am pleased to present you a love story…

On a Wednesday morning in April, while on my way to work, I happened to poke around on Grindr a bit. There was a message from an interesting guy on there. We began to chat a bit while I walked. He seemed pretty cool. I was about to head underground, so I quickly asked him for his phone number so we could continue the conversation on the other side.

We chatted a bit over text, and I came to learn a few things about him. I explained to him I wasn’t looking for sex, so if this was his motive, he should move on now. I was there purely for dates and friends. He seemed okay with that sentiment, and the conversation continued for a bit. I tried to check his spontaneity and asked if he would be interested in drinks that evening. He couldn’t because he had to work late. That’s when I learned he worked in advertising. I explained to him, if anyone understood working late for a pitch, it was I. I explained I too worked in advertising. When he told me he worked downtown, I started guessing what agency. Ironically enough, he worked for my previous agency. He worked closely with one of my favorite ex-coworkers. We were really hitting it off and I was excited to meet him. We agreed to make plans in the near future.

Wednesday evening, I was on my way home from a mediocre date. I fired up Grindr on the bus ride home and noticed he was on. I messaged him to say hi. He and asked what I was up to. When I told him I was on my way home from work, he responded, “You’re kidding me! Let’s f*ck.” My heart sank immediately. I had such high hopes for him. I was crushed. “You don’t know who you’re talking to do you? This is [O.G.A.A.T.],” I shot back. He admitted to confusing me with someone else and began damage control. I think he immediately realized he lost any shot of anything with me, however, he still took the time to apologize profusely.

If you know me at all, you know I give second chances out fairly often. I decided to lay on the guilt a little bit, but also give him the opportunity to redeem himself. As I got off the bus, I picked up the phone and called him. His timing caught me at a vulnerable moment. I was turning my dating life around. I told him what he did wasn’t cool. Again he apologized. I told him I would turn a blind eye this once for one reason; a few days prior, I probably would have said the same thing on Grindr. I couldn’t hold it against him when I too had treated Grindr in this way. He fully comprehended what I was saying and promised not to let me down.

The following day, I asked him if he would be interested in drinks Friday for happy hour. He immediately agreed that would be a great idea. When Friday arrived, we made more definitive plans. Since I was done work before he was, I offered to come down to his neighborhood. I just told him to text me when I should start walking down there, and he did. I texted him when I got the bar, but he was still working. I told him I’d hang out by the bar for a bit. I walked a block to Starbucks, got a coffee and wrote a blog post. I needed a kick in the a$$, considering it was a Friday night after a long week. When nearly an hour passed, my patience was at its end. This guy was not winning me over by any means. I was a block away from the PATH and very tempted to just leave. Just as I was closing my laptop, I got a text from him. He was on his way.

We met on the street in front of Employees Only. He’d never been before, so I led us inside to order a round of drinks and find a wall to lean against. He apologized for taking so long and explained what was going through his head. He was working on something late and told the editor they’d need to pick it up again on Monday. He’d already used up one of his chances with me. If he messed this one up, there’d be no redemption. I thought it was cute, and I loved his honesty. We talked about our jobs and our shared favorite coworker. I told him about my coworkers and how we’d be excellent fodder for a reality show. (I really work with a circus of a crew, but I love them!)

We were really hitting it off. Everything just felt so easy. He was also incredibly easy on the eyes. I felt I was a bit out of my league here. He was five years my senior, gorgeous, smart, witty, well spoken, had a solid job, etc. Basically, he was the full package. I already knew he had a healthy libido as well, so we’d probably be fine there.

After two rounds of drinks, he took the opportunity to kiss me. I can’t tell you how much I loved that kiss. He was a real man, and he kissed me. I was crazy swooning. We decided to make moves. In our conversation, I was talking about what I do in my free time and mentioned the pier I lounge on directly across from the Christopher Street pier. He suggested we take a walk out there before grabbing a bite to eat somewhere.

We walked holding hands to the end of the pier. He took my bag, set it on the ground with his own, and we walked to the railing. He stood facing the water and pulled me in, wrapping my arms around him. It was incredibly romantic. While we talked, I nuzzled his neck. Things were so easy with him. There was no drama. There were no games. There was just us. I couldn’t believe an hour earlier I was ready to abandon our date and go home.

He turned around and hiked himself up so he was sitting on the railing dangling over the river. I was between his legs with my arms wrapped around him while we chatted. I decided to tell him how new to the game I was and tell him my coming out story. I figured I might as well get that out of the way, because if it was going to scare him off, I figured it was better sooner rather than later since I’d already grown so attached to him. He was totally cool about it. This is also when I learned our age difference of five years. Obviously I was fine with that considering Smiles was nine years my senior. He was cool with that as well.

As we walked to find dinner, he told me about his coming out story. It was interesting and not all that different from mine. I learned he was bisexual through college, which actually was reassuring to me. I liked men that had experience with women as well. It wasn’t a necessary skill I needed to see them utilize. I just liked knowing they’d experienced women as well and realized they were more attracted to men. It also generally proved to produce more masculine men, which I’m far more attracted to. I also learned in that conversation he was a cancer survivor. I didn’t know how this guy could get any better. He was like Superman.

The date was off to an amazing start. We were walking hand-in-hand to find dinner somewhere, and I didn’t want the date to end. I was on cloud nine. I think I floated the whole way. We finally arrived at a spot I was quite familiar with, Frankies 570. So familiar, in fact, I’d been there a few days prior. The date was just beginning. I couldn’t wait for the next course…

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Disappointment

The idea that I was in LA for work completely faded from my mind, as did the trysts I’d met since my arrival. After meeting The Navigator, I was on cloud 9 since we hung out on the beach. He was an amazing guy, and I knew if we lived in the same city, we’d be dating.

Before going to bed, we exchanged a few messages around 2:00am. “Hiya handsome. Sorry for texting you so late. Just wanted to say hello,” he texted. I texted back, “Miss you lots. Can’t wait to see you again!” I didn’t care if I was being a bit aggressive; I was being honest. I had nothing to lose here, and I needed to get back to being more honest with myself and the guys I date.

The next morning, I woke up to my early alarm alone in my bed and immediately missed his presence. I quickly looked to my phone to see if I had a message. I did! “The pix of you on the hike turned out great! You look so handsome!” The previous night, we became Facebook friends. This wasn’t the text I was looking for, but it still made me happy.

I had a plan to go for a run that morning, and should I still have the energy, I would take a dip in the pool. I’d gone to the weight room and the pool the night before from 10:30-11:30. Even with all the guys I was spending time with, I was finding time for myself. I needed to get myself in line on this trip as well. I’d been floundering for far too long.

When I finished my run, I checked my phone, and I still didn’t have a message from The Navigator. I decided to take a dip in the hot tub to relax my muscles and take my mind off the excitement I anticipated all day. Finally, my phone lit up: “Morning! We have a call out for the next shift, so if there are no volunteers we draw straws. Keep your fingers crossed for me pal!”

My heart sank. There was no possibility he wouldn’t be joining me on the PCH until now. Now, I had to prepare myself for the idea this drive would be solo. If you recall, I HATE being alone. I don’t do well alone. I get depressed. This was one of the fears I had booking this trip, but I wanted to force myself to get used to it if I had to. I quickly responded, “Tell your boy to take one for the team. You have a hot date 🙂 Fingers crossed.”

I hopped out of the hot tub and made my way back to my room to shower and get ready for my road trip. I tried not to think about an empty passenger seat until I got another text: “:( Looks like there may be a surgery… If the owner approves the estimate, then it’s no longer a choice. I’m [Dr.’s] surgery tech. Still a slim chance :(“

I was now facing the fact I would be driving alone. It was supposed to be a nice day, so I convinced myself I would be fine. It was going to be an exciting drive up the coast. I was going to go all the way up to Santa Barbara and check things out along the way. I still wanted to see him, so I asked, “What time would you be done ish?”

He didn’t answer me immediately. After I packed my bags, I got another text: “I’m gonna stop dragging my heels. Everyone is looking to me. UGH!!! It’s another full shift, but then I have the next day and a half off. So, I’ll be off at 5:30.” I could accept that, but I asked, “Can I see you then?” He immediately responded, “I’ll hurry home as soon as I can… yes!”

I told him I was packing up the car and about to hit the road. “I’ll aim to be back in the area around 5:30. Let me know closer to then what’s up… Maybe we’ll just meet somewhere since I don’t have to come back to the hotel. Sad I’m not spending the day with you, but I understand completely… Looking forward to this evening!” I added. With that, I hopped in the car and made my way to Porto’s Bakery for an amazing Cuban Medianoche sandwich that was incredibly difficult to eat in the car, a chocolate croissant and an iced mocha latte. If you even happen to be in Glendale, check this place out. It’s amazing!

I drove all the way up the coast taking in all the sights. At one point, Highway 1 cuts inland. I wasn’t paying attention, and I ended up in the middle of the orange groves and strawberry patches. I watched the motorcycle gangs as I passed them with envy. I would have killed to have my motorcycle out there. I get out of the care until I reached Santa Barbara. I pulled up to the beach and stood up for the first time in a few hours. I stretched out and broke out my camera to snap some pictures. It was a gorgeous area, and all I could think about was living there. I could move to LA, marry an amazing man, and we could retire to Santa Barbara. That’s when my thoughts jumped right back to The Navigator.

“Santa Barbara misses you,” I texted him. I was still disappointed he wasn’t with me, but I wasn’t going to let it ruin my drive. I had a sick convertible, no real timetable, and the freedom to do whatever I wanted. The ride up did allow me some clarity. I cleared my head of all the thoughts of the past. Everything was forward-looking.

After I had my fill of Santa Barbara, I made my way inland to Ojai. I’d always wanted to check it out since I seen Brothers and Sisters. The family business was there and it always looked gorgeous on-screen. I climbed up one side of winding mountains and down the other. I pulled off the side of the road a few times to take in the beauty of it all and snap some pictures for posterity.

When I arrived down into Ojai proper, I was shocked by how small town it was. I was out in rural farmland. It didn’t quite feel like home because the geography was very different from home, but it was very nice to see this side of the West Coast. I called my parents to tell them I was searching for Nora (a character on Brothers and Sisters), and they both laughed at me. They’d forgotten I was out there for work/vacation, and they expressed their jealousy. I thought about my new friend as well, texting, “Ojai misses you too.” Finally, he responded. I knew he was busy working, so I was surprised to get a response. “What’s Ojai? Pic?” he asked. When I told him, he added, “I miss you :)” I was swooning a little bit.

I told him I was on my way back to LA and asked where he worked. He told me the name of the street, and I added, “Maybe I should meet you there. Then I’m not venturing that far from the airport.” He’d forgotten I had to catch a flight. I told him it would just mean more time we would get to spend together.

As I passed through Santa Monica, I reached out to him once again: “What’s the plan Stan? At Venice Beach. Was gonna drive down to Marina Del Ray… Could come out there and let me take you out to dinner.” I waited a long time to hear from him again. I even stopped at a Starbucks so I could park the car and walk around a bit. I ordered a coffee and walked out onto the pier in Venice Beach to take some pictures of the ocean. I still had a lot of time to kill, so I sat in the Starbucks charging my laptop while I wrote a blog entry.

Then I got a text from him I wish I’d never read: “Hey pal. I think I’m gonna have to skip hanging out. I’m exhausted. I just want to sleep. I hate to do that to you. I know you’ve been waiting. I’m not even gonna drive home. Gonna sleep at a coworkers place a couple blocks away. Didn’t really get to sleep before the shifts started. I had an amazing time with you and would love it if we stayed in touch. Hope you have a safe flight home and maybe I can come visit you in Jersey (hint hint) Muah handsome… Thanks for everything :)” I was heartbroken. All I could think to respond was, “Wish I at least got to say goodbye.” He quickly shot back, “I know. Me too… I’m just very tired.”

This wasn’t good enough for me. “Let me know if I can at least come and say goodbye. If not, it’s cool…” I sent in an attempt to strike and emotional chord. When I got no response, I called him – No answer.

He texted back, “Still at work. Can text, but not talk. I’ll call you at 5:30 handsome.” I would have to be patient. I know my usual aggressive style, so I tried to curb that bad habit. When the clock reached 5:45, I called him again — No answer. I texted him again, “I have the time to kill. I could come and say bye and you go to sleep. I get it if you’re too tired to hang.” More time passed, and I still didn’t hear from him. I was emotionally beginning to panic. I knew the time to say goodbye was going to come, and I tried to prepare myself for it. But, to not have that at all rocked me a little.

Now, I was grasping at straws. I changed course and sped back to downtown LA. I called him over and over again while I weaved in and out of cars. Maybe if I wasn’t so locked in on one thing, I would have realized I could actually deal with LA traffic with the skills I was exercising.

In a last stitch effort, I texted, “In the middle of LA hoping I can come say goodbye before I go to the airport. Please call.” Silence. He’d gone dark on me. I was so disappointed in him. I thought we shared something special. I wanted him as a friend, and he was abandoning me. I was being very selfish, but so was he. I admitted defeat and gave up:

“Heading to airport. Sorry. I wasn’t trying to make a big deal about it. Just wanted to give a proper goodbye, even if just for two minutes.  Get some rest. Def stay in touch. Hope I made a good friend on this trip! You’re a great guy! You have a place to stay any time you want to visit New Jersey/New York! Would love it if you called tomorrow when you wake up! 🙂 Stay sexy!”

He never called. When I got home, he never Facebook messaged me either. I was very disappointed. I wasn’t giving in that easily though. I texted him days later to see if he’d truly cut me off completely: “Hey stud. How’s it going? Just wanted to say hi.” I was happy to see a response some time later: “Hey 🙂 Sorry I didn’t say goodbye. I’m not very good at that type of thing. I know it wasn’t very nice. I had a wonderful time with you though. How is everything?”

We continued to text each other periodically over time. He even called me one day, but I missed his call. I hope I have a true friend in him. He really is a great guy, and if I can’t have him as my own, I’ll take him as a friend. I look forward to the day I can see him again. Maybe work will send me out there again. Maybe he’ll come to New Jersey for a visit. Maybe I’ll make a true pleasure trip out there and see him on my own. Who knows???

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Great Story, No Climax

Things weren’t exactly progressing smoothly in my mind between Smiles and I. In fact, things weren’t progressing at all when I come to think of it.

Instead of abandoning my relationship with him, I decided to put forth greater effort to ensuring its success. I’m not one to quit without a fight, so when Smiles texted me to ask how my day was going, I was quite elated. I told him it was going well and was anxious for work to be over. We made plans to go to dinner that evening after work. I was looking forward to it and was ready to make sure it wasn’t a repeat of our last date.

In turn, I asked him about his day, and he responded with an explanation. I explained I wouldn’t be done work until a little later, and I wasn’t sure exactly what time that would be. One of my coworkers was dragging his feet, and my day was beginning to drag on. It was a Friday, and I wanted nothing more than to see Smiles after a long day.

Smiles was running errands in my neighborhood and called when he was finished. I had a feeling I would be done shortly, but there really was no telling when I’d finish. Smiles occupied himself for some time. When he called again to check in on me, I was able to tell him I was about to be walking out the door. He was about to hit up Barracuda to have a drink with his bartender friends, but instead, we picked a place to meet.

I snuck up on him on the street and startled him with a big hug. We exchanged a kiss and started to walk towards Chelsea. We quickly found a spot to grab dinner. Smiles wasn’t drinking, but I certainly needed a drink. I ordered a glass of wine and took a big swig. I’d been talking up a storm from the time we kissed on the street. I was going to make sure the conversation flowed like a waterfall. He was well engaged all throughout dinner at Bar Baresco. I really felt very comfortable with him and was appreciating his company greater. It was night and day difference from the last date we had. I was realizing why I fell for him in the first place. No awkward pauses. No blank stares.

During my workday, I began drafting plans to build my new closet since I was moving. Smiles had much experience in this sort of thing, so I asked him for advice and to look over my plans. He gave his suggestions, and I appreciated his advice.

When we finished dinner, we hit up Barracuda. Smiles suggested it because he figured we’d say hi to his friends. When we arrived there, we found they weren’t working. Smiles ordered us two drinks. After relieving myself, we found a quiet corner to tuck ourselves in to sit and chat.

We discussed age and the ability to hang. He talked about how he used to be able to go out all the time all night long. We talked about growing older and looking forward to staying in and sitting on the couch on a Friday night.

We were growing even closer. As time progressed, I realized he was growing weary. I asked if he would like to get out of there, and he gladly obliged, but not before we played around with his scarf in about 20 different permutations around his neck and head.

As we walked outside, I proposed coming back to his place with him. He agreed. I thought I was sending a pretty clear signal of my intentions. We walked over to Seventh Avenue to hail a cab to no avail. I was not properly dressed for the weather. I was freezing. The Smiles did one of the sweetest things. He came up behind me and wrapped his arms around me to keep me warm. I reached up and grabbed his arms and brought him in closer. It was extremely romantic, and I wasn’t about to let this moment run away from me. It took a long time to get a cab, but I was relishing every second.

When we finally hailed one, we hopped in. He extended his hand beckoning for mine. He was winning me over big time! It was a complete 180. I was thrilled with his new-found affections. It painted a clearer picture of his true feelings for me. He was still interested in me. I was thrilled.

When we arrived at his place, he started cleaning. I kept yelling at him to stop. I didn’t care about the condition of his apartment. I would have liked to think of myself no longer as company, and more as companion. He sat on the couch, and I sat on his computer chair facing him while we chatted. After a while, I realized how ridiculous this setup was. I aimed to remedy it. I got up, walked over to the couch, moved the pile of papers from it, and sat next to him. He looked slightly uncomfortable by this, and I couldn’t fathom why.

He suggested we move to the bed. My goal was being accomplished. I was all too happy to move things to the bedroom. We climbed onto his bed. We talked and then began hugging each other. This morphed into spooning.

I was happy and hoping this would progress to sex, but I was sorely mistaken. After spooning for about ten seconds, he had his fill. He was ready to go to bed, and apparently I wasn’t part of that scenario. He went to brush his teeth, and was giving me all the signals it was time for me to go.

We said goodnight and exchanged a kiss at the door. Yet another night without sex. It was an enigma to me. I couldn’t figure him out. He spent the earlier portion of the night being utterly sweet and affectionate, but when it came time to end the night, the sparks were quickly doused.

I wished the night ended on a more positive note. I would have liked to go home a happy satisfied man, but yet again, I was debating in my head Smiles’ attraction to me…

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