Posts Tagged honest
FraI already started my morning off with a little frisky visit and some well appreciated service. It was time to join the real festivities.
I walked out into my kitchen to find my roommate with all her college friends and my other roommate with his girlfriend. I thought I pulled a fast one on all of them sneaking my visitor in the back door, but I was wrong. My male roommate saw him come in. He and his girlfriend questioned me on it, and I was completely honest with what happened. They were fascinated by how transactional it was. They couldn’t believe it, and his girl gave me a high-five.
I celebrated myself with a nice cold beer from the fridge. It was already 1:00 and I was well behind the rest of Hoboken. Before I finished my shower, I had four down. That would be enough to scratch the surface.
I got dressed and convinced my roommate and his girlfriend to come with me to a friend’s apartment. She was having her annual St. Patty’s Day bash. I was meeting D and K there as well. I was happy D was going to be in town. Since his car got a flat, he wouldn’t be visiting his girlfriend in Philly.
When I got there, the party was already well underway. I sat on the arm of the couch and conversed with my friends. I just took in the scene. For some reason, I wasn’t really feeling St. Patty’s Day this year like years passed. I didn’t feel the need to get sloppy drunk.
Of course, since my bladder has shrunk since college, I had to go to the bathroom. Since I was somewhat bored at the party, I was chatting with a sexy man I’d been chatting with for some time on Grindr. We’d talked about getting together so many times, but never did. Things were getting very flirtatious and leading toward an afternoon hookup. When I went to the bathroom, he suggested I come over. I took the opportunity to sneak out the door when I finished in the restroom instead of returning to the party. I’m sure it was just a matter of time before my friends realized I’d gone, but it wouldn’t be immediate.
I wasn’t even slightly drunk. I’d been anxious to see this guy for some time. I wasn’t about to let the opportunity pass. I quickly walked home, grabbed my helmet, hopped on my motorcycle and sped off uptown. Before I left the party, my Grindr friend asked me how I felt about glory holes. I told him I’d never used one before. When he sent me a picture of a sheet with a hole cut in it and a caption reading, “How would you feel about this?” I became excited. He told me he’d leave the door unlocked. I was to walk in, come to the sheet, unzip and let him take care of the rest.
Warning: The following may be too graphic for some. As I entered, I noticed how nice his place was. I was a little shocked. I walked straight to the sheet hanging in the bathroom door. I hadn’t even fully unzipped before he reached his hand around the sheet and began. It felt amazing! He continued for some time before I reached my hand around the sheet and began to stroke the back of his head. I could feel him, but I couldn’t see him. Finally, my curiosity got the best of me, and I just pushed the sheet to the side. I wanted to see him. He was very attractive in his pictures and even more so in person. On top of that, the only thing he was wearing was work boots.
After a little more time, he turned around and I began grinding myself against his backside. He was extremely hot and he knew how to use his body. I reached around and used my hand to pleasure him as well. He was VERY gifted. I hadn’t felt one like that since my friend in San Francisco.
He then requested we move things to the couch. I sat down, and he straddled my lap. It didn’t take long before he finished all over my chest and without warning. I had no idea it was coming. I tried to finish as well, but it was no use. Between my morning visit and the few beers I had, I sat there for quite some time without climaxing. He was so hot and he tried everything to help me finish, but it was no use. I gave up and apologized. I could tell he was very disappointed. He blamed the drinking, and I concurred that was to fault.
As he stood in front of me, I took all of him in. He had a spectacular body, and I let him know it. I asked him about his workout routine, and he told me he didn’t since his heart attack. He elaborated and told me it was no big deal, but I was a little worried. I could only think of him keeling over in front of me.
We chatted a little bit more while I got dressed and looked around a bit. He told me he had a roommate, but he wasn’t home. Something didn’t quite line up, but for some reason, I was buying the story. While we chatted, he stood in front of me in just his boots with his large gifts swinging back and forth. He was very proud of them as well. He put sweatpants on so he could walk the dog, and I could see his large bulge. I commented on it, and he commented how he loved how people would check it out, especially the guys with their girlfriends. I was so turned on. I also learned he managed a bar in the city, and he told me I should hit it up sometime.
We talked about meeting up again sometime soon. We both thought the other was thoroughly sexy and wanted a repeat. He was particularly looking for a sequel since he didn’t get a happy ending from our first encounter.
I said goodbye and made my way back downtown to my apartment…Follow @onegayatatime
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???Follow @onegayatatime
I needed to be honest and upfront with PR. He deserved that at the very least. However, this was going to be a very delicate situation. I wanted to make sure I didn’t hurt his feelings. I really did like him and wanted to be his friend — I just didn’t think we’d be a good match to date each other. I gathered up a little courage (if I was truly courageous, I would have called him on the phone), and I we had the following exchange:
Me: After you left yesterday, I gave our compatibility a lot of thought. I have bigger doubts now. You and your friends are into the scene, and that’s not really my thing. Then there’s the sexual compatibility issue was well… And we’re in very different places right now. I can see you’re still recovering from your breakup. I don’t want to seem callous, but I don’t want to lead you on. I’d rather take a step back from this now, rather than when we get deep into things and serious feelings develop. You’re a great guy. I think very highly of you, and I hope we can remain friends. I’m sorry if this comes as a shock, but again I thought it better to speak up now.
PR: Okay. I just saw this. I understand your concerns. But I would like to say I’m not all about the “scene.” I do enjoy going out with my friends, and that is exactly all it is to me. Regarding our sexual compatibility, I thought I was making it clear that I am willing to be versatile for you. I get the sense that this is more about my moving back home and where I am in my life right now. Obviously I recognize I’m not in the most stable position in terms of my job, but I’m working to change that. As for my emotions, I can honestly say that I’m over my previous relationship. Yes, this is a bit of a shock. I know we were moving quickly. And I am willing to slow down, but as I understand it, you are asking to just be friends. Is this correct?
Me: I know you’re willing to be vers, but I’ve been down this road. With my last relationship, I put sex on the back burner for things I thought could make up for it. I learned my lesson. I told myself I would find someone with great sexual chemistry with me. I told myself I wouldn’t settle. As far as the scene things, Griffin doesn’t sound like fun to me, and I know how much you enjoy it. We’d end up constantly making sacrifices for each other. I have no desire to put on a wig and dress up. I’m not judging. It’s just not my idea of fun.
Me: You’re moving home and the job search thing are factors, but not the main obstacles I foresee us running into going forward. I just think we lead different lifestyles. We have a lot in common, but we also have a lot of different priorities. I don’t think slower is going to change things.
PR: As far as the dressing up thing, I did that for the first time in my life for a couple of hours! I never said or expected you to do so. I understand the sexual aspect. And, I agree it’s a big concern. But I thought it was workable. I felt our chemistry was worth exploring and being versatile. My priorities and getting myself in a stable position in my work and home and to one day be able to share all I have to give with someone and build a home and life together. Listen, I thought we had great chemistry. I’m not trying to argue or beg. I just feel like maybe you have some misconceptions about what I value and look for in a person.
Me: I think I have an understanding of what you’re looking for, but I don’t want to sacrifice who we are to make the other happy. It never works. Been there, done that.
PR: I just don’t understand what sacrifices you’re talking about. I don’t believe you were faking the whole time. I feel like something spooked you and you’re not telling me. It sounds like you’re saying I’m too gay for you. But you have never voiced anything like this when I spoke of things like Griffin. I mean this is a drastic reversal from when I last saw you yesterday.
Me: I wasn’t faking it, but we only spent time together. We weren’t out with your friends or mine all that much. It is a reversal because I took a step back and looked at the week and what I learned about you. I didn’t say anything about Griffin because I try to have an open mind, but I need to make changes or I’ll keep repeating old mistakes.
PR: Okay. I wish you the best of luck.
Me: Please don’t be that way. We obviously have a lot in common, so we should be friends.
PR: I would like to be friends. But, I am hurt.
Me: I’m sorry. That’s not my intention at all. That’s what I’m trying to avoid!
PR: I know. It’s better you told me now. I’m not angry or anything towards you. Just sad. I was really looking forward to seeing you tomorrow and had something special planned.
Me: I’m very sorry. I didn’t want to get into tomorrow under false pretenses. That wouldn’t be fair to you. I knew you’d do something utterly sweet.
And with that, our week-long intense relationship came to a close…
Today, I am bringing you a tag team post created for you by myself and another one of my faithful Australian readers, J. Argenta. I hope you enjoy.
Recently, I posted about Bonobos. As a result, one of my readers, J. visited the site and did a little shopping.
“I’m one of his avid readers and couldn’t help but check out the Bonobos site after he spoke so highly of it! I found some great stuff on there, but when I got to the checkout and it was $91 to get stuff shipped to Australia! — More than the pair of pants I was going to get. I was basically a stranger and hoped what I was about to ask wasn’t too strange, but I asked if he wouldn’t mind placing the order for me and sending it over for me? I offered to transfer you the money to cover it all and do so before he placed the order. I just don’t happen to know anyone in America and figured the shipping would be cheaper this way. I knew it was a long shot, but I hoped he would be comfortable with this.” – J. Argenta
This posed many challenges. I wanted to help him out. I was totally game to do whatever I needed to do, but this would certainly force me to give up anonymity. He would need to know my name and address to mail me payment. I didn’t feel comfortable breaking down the fourth wall.
I thought about how else I could help. I knew as a blogger, I had a certain level of power. I could reach out to the Bonobos PR team and see if there was anything they could do. I sent them an email:
Hey there Bonobos PR team.
I am one of your biggest fans (I bought the Shortboards – Lapis Lazuli and ABSOLUTELY love them! and have since bought some pants and hats because I love how everything fits me well. I digress) I have an odd request to make. I am a blogger. My blog mainly (but not limited to) attracts a specific audience, but one that fits well with the Bonobos brand — the gay community. You can check out my daily blog at onegayatatime.com. That being said, I love Bonobos products and am not shy about telling my readers about this. In one of my posts, I mentioned your brand and how much I enjoy it. Afterwards, I received an odd email from one of my readers in regards to your products.
[I attached his original email].
I’m not 100% comfortable making this transaction for him, but I was hoping maybe by reaching out to him I could help him solve his high-priced shipping problem. I told him I would reach out to you and see what you could do for him. I work in media, so I know the value of word-of-mouth. You can expect me to continue to speak positively about your products in my blog and can be assured I will make special note if you find a viable solution for my reader. Thanks for your assistance with this issue.
I look forward to hearing from you!
I was CC’d on an email to the Ninjas who take care of this, and they replied back, “Done. Thanks.” I was surprised how brief the response was, but I decided to wait and see what they sent to J. Argenta. I also asked them to keep me up-to-date with what they were doing so I could share the positive story. I got an email in response:
Sure no problem. Sorry about the curt email. Your message was forwarded to us from the PR team so I though I was giving her a direct reply. My apologies if that came off as short. I can definitely keep you updated. I didn’t know your friend/fan’s name but I shot him an email outlining our international shipment options (we actually pay for outgoing shipments but have to do it manually due to shipping negotiations and site shortcomings).
Thanks for reaching out on this.
“I told O.G.A.A.T. they offer free international shipping, but because of ‘how the young program is and various logistic negotiations/planning/tweaking,’ Bonobos covers the cost of shipping manually in the form of store credit. Nick also said I would have to cover customs charges, but I’ve never had to do this with other international orders from other sites. I’m not sure if other sites maybe cover this cost or just include it in their selling price.” — J. Argenta
I emailed the Ninjas again and told them the issue:
Because of this, I think you may be losing a sale and a customer, and I am disappointed in how this problem is being handled. I was hoping to report a viable solution on my blog with a happy story of great customer service to match a great product, but as of now I can’t do that. A store credit of $91 doesn’t sound like a viable solution to me. The problem would just represent itself when he attempts to apply said store credit. I would hope you would further investigate this issue or possibly escalate it to a higher level. I look forward to hearing a happy ending to this story.
Thanks for your help!
This is when Nick really went above and beyond to clarify the situation and make sure he had a satisfied customer. He quickly sent me a reply:
Let me start off by saying that I don’t think your friend will have to pay duties. Sorry about the confusion here. I think maybe there was a miscommunication on our part. Basically the deal with customs is that we (or any company/site/vendor) have no control over duties and customs charges. These are determined solely by the host countries and reimbursing recipients for customs/duties is a legal ‘iffy’ area.
[He then went into detail on international shipping and customs policies, as well as breaking out costs and examples].So basically our feeling was since we lack the ability to predict or control customs costs in other countries we would make it up to the customer by not charging them for international shipping a la the store credit option. I think the confusion here might have been due to when and how the store credit is applied.
The idea was that the most viable way of compensating for our systems/logistics shortfall was to offer a free shipping service until we could finalize a partnership with an international shipper.
Sorry for the long-winded email, I just wanted to make sure I was specifically answering your concerns in regards to, “The problem would just represent itself when he attempts to apply said store credit,” since the store credit actually resolves the problem of shipping costs, not make it worse.
I know it’s a bit of hassle if you’re an international customer which is why we really do try to do as much as we can at the moment given the resources available to us. It’s a big headache on our end as well as we would love to develop an international customer base (pants = the universal language). It’s just proven to be a much bigger bag of worms than anticipated and therefore has been much slower going in terms of negotiating with a shipping agent.
The short answer for your friend is that he will only pay for his clothes, we will cover shipping, and as far as I can tell he won’t have to pay for duties (though again, my knowledge of Australian customs law is cursory at best). The only catch is that he has to shoot us a quick email or give us a call so that we can drop the credit to cover shipping into his account.
If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to shoot us another email or give us any feedback. I always love talking shop.
All the best.
I was duly impressed, and I let him know:
Hey dude. Thanks for the explanation. I indeed appreciate the long-winded email. You know your sh*t. I also appreciate the time it took to write and explain. I’ve passed along the info to my reader. I will continue to give nothing but rave reviews going forward of Bonobos and will not the extra effort you made to make a customer (and myself) happy.
He replied once more:
No problem dude. I just wanted to make sure we were on the same page. We’re definitely a little behind the eight ball when it comes to international shipping so your (and your friend’s concerns) were well founded and we appreciate you keeping us honest. We’ll be in touch and feel free to give us a holler any time you have a question.
I relayed this information to J. Argenta to make sure he knew how this would go down.
“I finally understood what they were talking about. It all sounded good! All this for a pair of pants! But, I thanked O.G.A.A.T. for being so persistent and placed my order. It’s nice to know there are people out there willing to help out a stranger in need (of some new pants).” — J. Argenta
I was happy to hear the transaction come to a positive outcome. I am happy to bring the story to you and highlight Bonobos customer service on this issue. They once again proved they are a company with not only top notch products but also top notch service. They really went above and beyond to help an Ozzy out who needed a pair of pants…
I’m Jason by the way. I live in Australia, obviously! Hello! I’ve got a blog as well — Not one that I advertise much at all, but I’ve sort of been branching out a bit with it lately. Not sure if it would be your type of thing — It’s a bit random really, just about everyday goings-on, and things that I find interesting like racism and gay-related things. I wrote my own little gay life story a few posts ago after coming across so many gay-related blogs. Anywho, check it out if you like — jaargenta.blogspot.com – and I’ll look forward to hearing from you!Follow @onegayatatime