Posts Tagged introduce

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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One Giant Misstep for Mankind

Tuesday arrived, and that meant back to work after the holiday weekend. It’s always harder to get back into the groove when you’ve been away from the office for some time. Everything takes just a little bit more effort.

That morning, CK and I woke, and although we didn’t have sex, we certainly fooled around a bit. After showering together to conserve water 😉 we got out the door at a decent hour for once. This is quite an occasion for us. It’s normally tough balancing our responsibilities and our libidos, but at times, we manage to master the scale.

We both needed a bit of help getting through the day, so a Starbucks pit stop on the way to the office was essential. We hopped in the long line waiting to order a caffeinated beverages. I would have taken mine intravenously through a central line at the door if given the option. Alas, we filled the time with chatter amongst the two of us. That is, until one of my coworkers walked by.

This wasn’t just any coworker. This was a coworker I’d been on many pitches with. She is one of the biggest names in my agency, running a global piece of business across multiple agencies. Over time, she’d grown to be a fan of mine, but not without hiccups first. Days earlier, her husband entered the hospital with heart issues. This was the first time seeing her since we heard of the incident, so I wanted to giver her space. Anyway, enough back story.

She passed me with two coffees in hand, and we said hi to each other. She sat right next to where CK and I were standing in line. When her son came and joined her at the counter, she took a second to introduce me to him. We shook hands, and they went back to enjoying their morning. In the five seconds for all this to transpire, I panicked.

I am not “out” at work. A few coworkers know I’m gay, and I assume most/the rest suspect. But, in that moment, I didn’t know how to handle the introduction of CK. He was standing right next to me, and in my panic, I acted like he didn’t exist. I failed to mention him at all.

I didn’t want to say, “Oh hi! And this is my friend, [CK].” If he’d done that to me, I would have been quite offended. We were much more than friends. This was the man I was in love with, not simply a friend.

On the other hand, I didn’t want to say boyfriend. I didn’t think that was the moment I came out to her. When the time came for me to be courageous and stand up as who I am, I was a coward.

I try to be strong and proud of who I am, but sometimes I really disappoint myself. I have tried to keep some separation between my personal and work life, but standing there with CK next to me, I should have stood proud. It didn’t matter what I said. She knew who he was in the end anyway.

CK was very upset. We’d had a discussion about my poor introduction skills over the weekend, and then I pulled that stunt. I knew instantly he was upset, and I knew I failed. I started to talk to him about it, but I could tell he was fuming. We talked about it for the rest of the time we were in Starbucks, with the exception of the moments we stood in silence because of the tension. As we walked to the subway/my office, the conversation continued as I explained what happened and how I panicked. I also explained that I wasn’t making excuses for myself, and this was something I needed to get over. I am going to be gay for the rest of my life.

In the end, he understood and accepted my apology. I asked for his patience. I have only been out for two years. He, on the other hand, has many more years on me being openly gay. I even went as far as to publicly chastise myself in Twitter that day to show him how sorry I was. Earlier in the weekend, we discussed opening our relationship up publicly to Twitter. I’d admired how @AustinWilde and @AnthyRomero send each other messages and love across Twitter. I wanted to share that with CK. We started sending each other messages publicly expressing our love for each other. When he sent out the message, “@Onegayatatime baby, i love you,” I melted a bit. As a joke, I responded, “Who is this?” He didn’t appreciate the humor, and immediately deleted the tweet. From the other room, I discovered this and asked him about it. He was angry, and I began to cry. That message meant the world to me. It was the first time he expressed his love for me in a public forum, and it was gone. Or at least I thought so. I did, however, manage to save it by screen-grabbing my phone before it was gone forever. We both took a step back and realized what happened and how much we loved each other and moved on.

That day, CK met my old coworker who left to go work at his agency. After meeting him, she reached out to me to tell me how cute he is. I was thrilled. She’d heard me talk about him quite a bit when I first met him, and now she finally got to meet him. After messing up the morning, failing to share my joy and the love of my life with a current coworker, at least I could share it with a previous one.

That night, we discussed going to an event together, but in the end we didn’t go — I think possibly out of anger for the morning. We spent the night apart. I filled my free time with a late night run. As I ran along the waterfront in Hoboken, I wondered what he was up to in the city. Any time we were separated, I wondered what he was doing with a twinge of suspicion. It was hard not to. Guys in my past treated me poorly, so my self-esteem was very low. The thought of me not being enough for him was not so far-fetched, however, I just left these at suspicions. I never acted on them or accused him of anything. They were simply figments of my imagination…

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No Day at the Beach

Before going to bed Friday night, CK and I made plans to go to the beach the following day. The weather was supposed to be gorgeous, and I hadn’t made it to the beach yet this year. I was very excited to go, but I also knew it would be a bit up an uphill struggle to get CK and his friends coordinated for a train ride to the beach in a timely manner.

We spent the night at his place thinking it would cut down on commute time in the morning. I was already packed and ready to go the night before because I had to bring all my things into the city in anticipation of going. My plan was to wake up, shower and go. That plan would not come to fruition. It was very difficult not only getting CK out of bed, but also getting him to move once I got him up. We ended up leaving his apartment late and came to the realization we would not make the train we originally planned. It also didn’t help that I told his two friends to meet us on the wrong corner, but when we tried to reach both of them, neither picked up their phones.

When we finally all gathered, we realized we’d have to take the next train in 45 min. I felt bad because I knew how much of a stickler for time one of CK’s friends was. I bought our tickets, and we decided to find a nearby spot to grab breakfast. One of his friends offered to pay for mine since I bought the tickets. I found it ironic because he was normally he was also a stickler for numbers when it came to payments, and I didn’t see how he would be buying me $30 worth of breakfast. However, I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to make it a thing.

We finished our breakfast and made our way to the train. The four of us found seats and relaxed for the ride out there. It was then I noticed, only by contrast, how affectionate CK and I were.

When we got to Long Beach, we made a pit stop at Starbucks and a drugstore to buy beach tickets before heading to the sand. We met up with my sister and one of my previous female roommates. I introduced everyone and we laid out in the sun. CK and one of his friends had square-cut suits on, and his other friend and I had on short board shorts. Because of this, I wonder if my sister was slightly uncomfortable. This wasn’t something she was used to. Periodically, I would wear my square-cut bathing suit from my days of college swimming, but I didn’t walk around in it. I only laid out in the sun in it, and this still brought comments from her. I bring this up because she basically didn’t talk to the four of us the entire day. She’s a little antisocial by nature, but never quite to this extent.

We had a nice relaxing day, taking pictures and making videos in the sun. When CK and I got bored, I decided to try to teach him paddle ball. I always liked playing because I get beach ADD. While we were playing, dark clouds started to roll in. We weren’t at the beach three hours when the other two guys were ready to go home. I don’t think they liked the scene because it wasn’t “gay enough” for them. On top of this, my sister wasn’t exactly chatting them up while CK and I played. We were summoned back to the blanket so we could pack up and head home. I felt it was a bit of a waste of a day, but I these were CK’s friends. I didn’t want to make a bad impression by disagreeing with their plans.

We found a bar so some of the group could use the facilities. While we waited, I ordered myself, CK and one of his friends a drink. When we finished, we made our way back to the train station. When we got back to the city, we split ways. I felt there was a bit of tension in the air, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. So, when the time came to split, it felt like a bit of relief. Had I done something wrong? Did his friend simply not like me? Who knew?

On the walk back to CK’s apartment, we stopped in the comic book store. Just then, the sky opened up and started pouring. At least we were indoors, so we poked around the comic book store until the storm lifted. We grabbed a slice of pizza to share to hold us over for dinner, we showered, and we had sex.

After laying in his bed most of the evening, the time came for us to head back to Hoboken to grab dinner. I had a Groupon I planned to use up. This was our new economical way of going out to dinner on a budget. It was around 10:30, so I called the place to make sure they were still serving dinner. We made our way back to the train to Hoboken to spend the rest of the night…

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His Mother’s Day

The day after my birthday, CK and I made plans for me to meet his mother while she was in town. I celebrated my birthday the day before without him, but I still managed to have fun. I was incredibly excited to see him. I was also incredibly honored to meet his mother. I couldn’t believe he felt comfortable introducing me to her exactly one month from the date we first met, however, we’d grown extremely close in that short period of time.

There was a plan for me to meet CK, his mother, and three of his friends at Essex and Beauty on the Lower East Side for brunch. It was Mother’s Day, so I knew wherever we were going was going to be a sh*tshow! I was slightly anxious. I was more nervous about meeting the one friend I’d never met before than I was about his mother. I’m not sure why, but I didn’t feel any pressure there. I was pretty relaxed about it. Either way, I was missing my Superman terribly.

I arrived a few minutes late for our reservation. CK and his mother were still in transport, but the three friends had already sat at the table. One of them came to the front to greet me and take me to the table. I’d met him before when we all went to see Avengers together. As we ascended the staircase to our table, he informed me of a problem in the kitchen. He mentioned something about a leak and having to shut the kitchen down. There was new immediacy to our plans.

Per usual, CK was running quite late. I learned they were in a cab, but they were on the other side of Manhattan, however, he shared the good news he finally found a new apartment. It wasn’t in Brooklyn. It wasn’t on the Lower East Side. It was in Hell’s Kitchen. I was thrilled!!

We learned they wouldn’t arrive in time for us to order, and one of the friends began to protest in uproar. He argued with the staff until he learned of the true nature of the problem. The maître d’ offered to walk us over to their sister restaurant, The Stanton Social to ensure we got a table and were served quickly.

On the walk over, we happened upon CK and his mother getting out of their cab. He was in the process of calling me. I said hi to him and was introduced to his mother. She wasn’t what I expected at all. I’m not sure what my expectations were, but she certainly surpassed them. She was gorgeous and very lively. I immediately loved her spirit and energy.

We continued to the other restaurant. Not only did we get a table quickly, we were also served champagne to start. They more than made up for the inconvenience. On top of that, I feel we upgraded restaurants, not downgraded.

His mother took the time to hug all the other boys and say hi. She knew two of them from Miami, where CK grew up, so there was some catching up to do. CK was rather reserved in regards to PDA. We didn’t kiss, but I got a hefty hug. He whispered in my ear how much he missed me. We held hands under the table nearly the entire meal.

It was very nice being with everyone. The conversation flowed, and there was rarely an awkward moment. Our food was excellent, and we all enjoyed our meal. I was worried I’d feel like an outsider, not because his friends wouldn’t include me, but because they all already knew each other. I was the new guy. I didn’t know the stories. I didn’t know the inside jokes. That would take time. Generally, until I’m comfortable, I get quiet. I was worried they would think I was antisocial, which clearly isn’t the case.

If they hadn’t done enough to ensure we had a great experience, our lovely waitress brought us a plate of complimentary donuts to make up for what happened at Essex and Beauty.

I really loved watching CK and his mother interact. She had a nickname she called him, and I found it adorable. They shared a lot of the same mannerisms. I watched her keep him in line (and made sure I took mental notes). They were incredible together, even with the hell they went through over that weekend to find him a new apartment. It was obvious the copious amounts of love they shared.

When we exited the restaurant, his mother returned to go to the bathroom. He took the opportunity to pull me in and give me the biggest kiss. It was quite a scene, but we didn’t care. His friends made comments, and he pointed out how he wouldn’t kiss me in front of his mother. Apparently, it made her slightly uncomfortable when he “flaunted his homosexuality.” I thought this was funny, because it’s the kind of thing I could hear coming out of my mother’s mouth.

I also learned that when I went to the restroom while we were eating, his mother expressed her approval to him. “He’s really cute,” he told me she added.

When she came back outside, we made plans to go back to his place and spend the rest of the evening on his roof watching the sunset. We stopped for a bottle of wine and some beers and went up to the roof with the batch of cookies I baked for his mother. Before heading up to the roof, CK and one of his friends were talking in the kitchen. That left myself and his mother in his living room to chat. I learned about all her dogs, as well as CK’s dog all living under her care. She told me how early she had to get up to take care of them the morning she flew out. We talked about what it takes to raise a dog and discussed CK’s desire to get a dog. He was constantly trying to take me shopping for a dog, but I couldn’t take care of one on my own. I wouldn’t have a dog until I lived with someone who would help me raise it. Maybe CK could fill that roll one day.

We spent a lot of time talking about cooking. CK’s friend was an avid cook, so we had a lot to chat about. I showed him my massive digital cookbook I created. I learned where CK inherited his lack of cooking skills. Apparently, his mother was a self-admitted non-chef. She barely cooked, so the two of them discussed their lack of skill in the kitchen, however, each had their specialty they could cook. I expressed my plan to teach CK how to cook, but ensure he wouldn’t cut his finger off again under my supervision.

After a while, a guy CK used to hook up with who lived in the building joined us. CK privately made a comment to me when we were downstairs how he may have seen us all through the window. He mentioned inviting him to join us, and I didn’t protest. My guard was up however. I had no idea how he’d treat me. After all, I was the one who got the man he had a crush on. They were almost roommates until it came to light he had a crush on CK, who told me he did not share the same feelings.

In the end, this guy was pretty cool. He wasn’t combative toward me in the slightest, and we actually got along. The conversation continued through the night. When this guy left, CK made an attempt to set him up with the friend who joined us from brunch. I really liked this guy. He seemed to get it. He was very realistic and had a great sense of humor. Of the friends I’d met so far, he was the one I felt I would get along with the best. When the old hookup left, CK’s friend called him to set up a date. This also killed two birds with one bullet. The old hookup would be tied up and would stay away from my man. Yes, I was getting territorial.

CK’s mother told us stories about him when he was a child, and I was really enjoying getting to know him, his mother and his friends. It was starting to get late, and CK and his mother still needed to get dinner. I needed to get home and get ready for work the next day. I too needed to eat something other than cookies. I said goodbye to CK’s mother with a big hug and CK walked me to the door.

We talked about how much we couldn’t wait until his mother left, not because either of us were tired of her, but because we were hungry for each other. We hadn’t slept together in days, and our animal instincts were growling. I said goodbye to him with a big kiss and made my way to the PATH to head home.

It was a very successful weekend. I had a great birthday, and apparently, I was a hit with CK’s mother. The whole day was a big success. I was all the more excited to be a bigger part of CK’s life, and I couldn’t wait for the next moment.

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Ladies and Gentleman, My Boyfriend

The morning after my “wild night,” I woke early. I was happy to realize I didn’t have a hangover, but I had a lot to do. I sat at my desk and went through circulars to make a grocery list, I went over my to-do list, I cleaned my bedroom, did two loads of laundry and sorted through my clothes to get rid of some of them. It was a very productive morning. The only thing I didn’t get done was to make it to the gym.

Around 11:00am, CK called. I didn’t want to call him because I was afraid of waking him. I knew he wasn’t a morning person. I was happy to hear his voice. He told me he needed to do laundry and wouldn’t come to Hoboken until about 2:00. I was fine with that. It allowed me to finish what I needed to get done for the morning.

I planned to head over to the Hoboken Arts and Music Festival around 2:00. That’s what I told P and my sister. As I was walking out the door, he called to apologize for running late. He was just walking out the door to hop on the PATH. Obviously he wasn’t going to arrive at 2:00. I told him I’d be at the festival, and I would make my way to him when he arrived.

I managed to find P, my sister and her friend without much effort. P had her dog, Baby, with her and needed to find her water. I told them I needed to make my way to the PATH to get CK, and they were welcome to join me. They all followed. We waited at the PATH for some time before he finally arrived. It was close to 3:45 before he finally arrived. He was running late as usual. I happily introduced him to the three of them, and we made our way back to the festival to find lunch.

Before he arrived, I had a worry in the back of my head. We were used to showing affection openly, but not in Hoboken. I still wasn’t out to everyone I knew around town, and I had my reservations about PDA. I was trying to get over it. There was no reason I shouldn’t feel comfortable being myself. But, I can’t lie. I was very nervous.

That being said, I greeted him with a hug, and we spent a large portion of the day holding hands and our arms around each other. This was a first for me. I did relax a bit and began to let my guard down.

We found the steak sandwiches I’ve gotten many years in the past and hopped in line. My old roommate (also my favorite roommate) was making his way toward us, so I told him where we were. I introduce him to CK, and he reminded me I’d met the girl he was with in the past.

As we ate, we walked uptown chatting. He mentioned wanting to do something special for my birthday that Friday. He asked if I’d be able to get out of work early, and I told him it shouldn’t be a problem. All I knew about this surprise was that it would cater to my adventurous side. I thought it was incredibly sweet of him to plan something special for me.

When we reached the north end of the festival, I was ready for dessert. I hadn’t passed anything along the way I really wanted, so I decided to hit up Ralph’s for some cream ice. I ordered the peanut butter cookie dough, and we shared it. It was utterly amazing.

P, my sister, her friend, CK and I were all heading to City Bistro to grab a drink on the rooftop bar since it was such a nice day. We found a seat and relaxed. I could tell one of the guys on the roof was making comments about CK and I, but I didn’t care. I continued resting my hand on his leg or putting my arm around him. I noticed two guy I thought might be gay and informed CK of the “Pickle game” I’d learned from Boston in Miami. We agreed they were gay.

The time came for us to head out. CK wanted to go for a ride on the motorcycle, and I needed to start dinner. We had to stop at ShopRite on the way home for supplies, and it was a bit of a walk home. CK wasn’t happy, but he did it — Not without complaining most of the way.

When we got home, we cuddled in bed for a few minutes before I told him I wanted him to help me with dinner. As I put the beef roast in the oven, I asked him to slice the potatoes for the scalloped potatoes on the mandolin. I warned him quite pointedly to be careful since the blade was so sharp, and I’d already cut myself pretty severely on it once, as did my mother. When he was cutting the last potato, he sliced his finger pretty badly.

I immediately ran to his rescue. He was bleeding pretty bad, but not enough for stitches. He sliced off a small piece of the tip of his thumb. He was now the third person to cut themselves on that mandolin (Him, my mother, and myself). He couldn’t believe how well I was handling the blood. I told him I was a lifeguard for seven years and had my own share of accidents involving a lot of blood. “Awww. Baby, you’re my lifeguard,” he said. I bandaged him up, told him to hold his arm above his head, gave him some painkillers and told him to sit on the couch. Maybe asking him to help was not a good idea. I thought it would be romantic, but it turned out tragic.

When dinner was ready, we ate in front of the TV. He raved about how good dinner was. We watched the shows I normally record on a Sunday night. It was really nice to have him fit so nicely into my routine. That was a sign our relationship had a solid foundation.

When we got tired, we made our way to my bedroom. He must have been really tired, and he kept dozing off. I wanted sex, but it was quite obvious that wasn’t going to happen. It’d been quite some time since we had sex, but I would have to settle for some cuddling instead.

He was out cold, so I brushed my teeth and came back to bed. I must have roused him, because he too got out of bed to brush his teeth. We turned out the light and fell asleep in each other’s arms.

It’s rare to find me happier than when I wake up next to him. It’s impossible not to have a smile from ear-to-ear. Warning: The following may be too graphic for some. As per usual, he began to give me a bl*wjob. It was one of his favorite morning activities. He told me he wanted me to finish for him. This is an immediate killer for me. I begin to concentrate on that alone. (I really need to see someone about this!) After a while, I told him it was time to shower. I scooped him up and carried him to the shower. He began bl*wing me outside the shower as well. I was too distracted in the bathroom, so I grabbed his hand and led him back to the bed. He felt amazing, and when he began teasing my boys with his tongue, I used my hand to get me over the edge.

“Baby. You taste so sweet today!” he told me. I was a bit shocked to hear this considering N told me I tasted awful. This made me like CK so much more in that moment. Seconds later, he exploded all over his own abdomen. It was incredibly hot to watch.

We went back to the shower and cleaned up. That morning, we joked about water sports. He threatened to pee on me in the shower. I told him if he did, I would certainly be returning the favor. When I saw his warm stream hitting my feet, I delivered on my promise. Both of us immediately got weirded out, and that ended immediately. “Yea. That’s definitely not going to be a thing!” I exclaimed. He nodded his head in sever agreement. Afterwards, I bandaged his finger once again and gave him a band-aid for the road.

We got ready and made our way to the PATH. I had to say goodbye to him in Hoboken to get my allergy shot, and he hopped on the PATH.

Monday, he called me as I was picking out a wedding card at CVS. He wanted to know if I was still in the city so we could meet up for a bit. I’d just gotten off the PATH five minutes prior. He was hopping elevator, so he told me he’d call me when he got up to his apartment, but I didn’t hear back from him.

I sent him a picture message of a t-shirt saying “I would cuddle you so hard.” He didn’t acknowledge the message. When I called later that evening, he seemed weird. He told me he was reading Hunger Games and sounded like I woke him up. The conversation was very short and awkward, so I just said goodnight and went to bed.

We made plans for Tuesday, but work got in the way for him. I proposed getting together Wednesday night at my place for Revenge again instead. I also left work early to pick up my new custom-made bed. I was so excited! I brought it home and assembled it. It was amazing. I sent him pictures, and he responded, “Can’t wait to break it in!” He also asked me if I would be interested in a show at the Upright Citizen’s Brigade. I told him that sounded great. Later Tuesday night, I texted him, but got no response until 12:30, just after I dozed off.

The question of fidelity did cross my mind for a hot second. I wondered if we needed to have the exclusivity conversation or was that covered under the can I be your boyfriend conversation? It wasn’t that I didn’t trust him, but my mind can run wild at times. I was just going to keep it in the back of my mind until I decided whether it was necessary to bring it up…

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Boyfriend Material

From early on, I learned of CK’s affinity for comic books. When I started seeing more and more trailers for the new Avengers movie, I knew it would be a big event for him. I was curious to see if he’d want to go with a group of his friends or would this be something special he’d want to share with me.

I’m pleased to say it was the latter. He asked me if I was interested in seeing it, so we made plans for Friday’s premier. I was also pleased to learn I would be meeting two of his close friends who would be joining us. We bought our tickets early in the morning, as they were already beginning to sell out.

After work, I went home and packed an overnight bag to take with me back into the city. I met CK at his apartment an hour before the movie. We cuddled and chatted a bit before making our way to the theater. As we got into the elevator, I noticed a sprig of hair dangling in front of his face. He really looked like Superman, and I loved it. This is where the Superman nickname came from. Just as I was noticing this, he ran his hands through his hair, messing up the sprig. That’s when he called me out for not commenting on his haircut. He had it cut after work that evening and was legitimately mad I didn’t comment on it, and he let me know it. I told him how I noticed the sprig of hair, but apparently that wasn’t enough. I needed to verbalize. I apologized profusely. I felt really bad. He eventually forgave me, but he was still a little putout.

I thought we had plenty of time, but he seemed worried about timing. He was trying to flag down a cab to cut across town, but none were available. When he spotted a pedi-cab, we hopped in and shot across town. He was like a little kid in a candy store. He was shouting at passersby and snapping pictures left and right. He took a lot of pictures of us kissing each other, in which I always look AWFUL!

We met his friends in line for the movie. CK introduced me, and I tried to make small talk. They weren’t the friendliest of characters, but they were far from cold. CK was still hyper.

CK and I split off to grab drinks for all of us at Dunkin Donuts. We grabbed donuts as well. While putting a straw in one of the large iced teas, I spilled it everywhere on the counter. The whole store came to a halt for about 5 minutes while the cleaned it up.

When we got back to the line, his mother called. While talking to her, he mentioned how the day of her arrival is my birthday. He also mentioned wanting for the three of us to try to do dinner.

Finally, we got into the theater. We got great seats, and I peeled off to get popcorn, candy and soda. But first I needed to relieve myself. I didn’t want to have to go in the middle of the show. One of CK’s friends came out to concessions with me. After using the restrooms, we stood next to each other not speaking more than ten words. It was a bit awkward.

I thoroughly enjoyed the movie. It was awesome, and I really enjoyed seeing CK so excited. The cuddling the accompanied the movie was also a nice addition.

As we were leaving the theater, CK ran toward the mini arcade. He wanted to play the two-person Terminator game. We put in our money and began shooting. It wasn’t long before one of his friends mentioned their desire to go. CK shouted at them encouraging them to play a game. He wasn’t having any of it. “I think we’re just gonna go,” he responded. CK convinced them to wait until the game was over. We left with them and said goodbye at the curb. They were tired and ready to go home. CK and I hadn’t eaten yet, so we were trying to figure out dinner.

As we walked to grab food, CK pulled my arm around him over his shoulder. People were commenting left and right. I was surprised. This wasn’t my first sign of gay PDA in NYC. I never experienced this before. Some of the comments were negative or simply mocking. Others were actually positive. Hell. We’re two good-looking guys. Why not?

We stopped at Charley’s Grilled Subs for cheesesteaks before heading back to his place to eat them in front of his iPad (aka, TV). When we got back to his place, we smoked a little, stuffed our faces, and watched the first episode of Smash. I’d seen it already, but I wanted to share it with him since I knew he’d like it. I fell asleep about three quarters through the show. Eventually, he too fell asleep. When he woke, he turned off the lights, and we pulled up the covers and dozed off.

Sadly, I couldn’t sleep in. My parents were coming into town to see War Horse and grab lunch. I needed to leave his apartment at 10:00am. I still needed to get them a parking pass in Hoboken. We woke to my alarm. I set it early to allow for ample cuddling.

While we were lying there, he said to me, “I know this is completely unnecessary and not something I need, but I’m going to ask you anyway. I want to know if I could be your boyfriend?”

I have no idea the look that must have been on my face. I was shocked. I did not see that coming, but I immediately said yes through an enormous grin. “Bet you didn’t see that coming!” he added. “No. No I did not,” I responded. I told him how utterly happy he makes me. I told him I thought it was a great idea!

I really don’t think he realizes how happy he makes me. I was beaming for the rest of the morning. He asked if he should order us breakfast, but I told him he didn’t need to do that. I told him I’d rather spend the time cuddling than eating since I didn’t have much time before I needed to leave. We began to fool around, which led to grinding. When he turned around and asked if I wanted to f*ck him, I told him I want nothing more, but I couldn’t. I needed to walk out the door in fifteen minutes. I could tell he was disappointed, but so was I. We cuddled some more before I had to say goodbye.

As I walked to the PATH, I had a smile from ear-to-ear. He made me so happy. I started texting friends to inform them of my new status.

I began to wonder a little if it bothered him my parents were coming into town and I wasn’t introducing them to him since he was so keen to introduce me to his mother. His mother lived much further away, so it somewhat made sense, even if it was early in the relationship. My parents would be back by at least June. I could introduce him then. I just hoped he wasn’t hurt I never mentioned it.

Either way, I wasn’t going to worry about that. I was too happy to car. For the first time in my life, I had a boyfriend!

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Meeting the Hatfields

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!

Back to your special edition of One Gay At A Time…

Southern Drawl was very anxious to see me. Before our last date ended, he asked me, “So, when do you get to see me again?” It was a bit egotistical, but it was also a little cute.

I had plans with other guys for the rest of the week with the exception of my volleyball game on Thursday. We agreed to do happy hour after work on Friday to get the weekend started off right. He was going to the Frying Pan, a permanently parked barge on the Hudson River that doubles as a restaurant/outdoor bar, with a group of his coworkers. Apparently, he was comfortable enough to introduce me to them.

He was already there when I made my way across town to meet him. He worked right across the street, so there was a solid crowd present from work. I found them in the crowd and pulled up a chair to the table. Everyone was very welcoming and nice. They immediately offered me a cup of sangria, and I settled in. I joined the big conversation, and Southern Drawl and I had a few side conversations not meant for the table.

I wasn’t sure to what extent he was out to his coworkers, so I played a vague roll. I didn’t show any signs of affection or do anything that would be a severe tell. I had a good time.

When everyone was ready to go, we started walking. We were heading to his apartment, but we walked with the others until they peeled off to head in separate directions. It was then I was informed that this was a big deal. None of the other guys he dated had met his coworkers. Only one or two of them knew he was gay, so this was somewhat of a public coming out. I’m sure his coworkers would put two and two together if he was inviting a man to join them for drinks. It was flattering he was willing to do that with me.

Since before I met S.D. in person, I’d learned of his incredibly flamboyant and promiscuous roommate. We talked about him to quite an extent on the walk.

I could not have been prepared for his apartment when I walked in there. It was an utter dump! His roommate was lounging on the couch when we arrived. S.D. needed to change before we went out for the rest of the evening. I chatted a bit with his roommate, and he certainly had a strong unwarranted air of superiority. We didn’t get along, but we didn’t clash either. He was a non-entity to me.

Meanwhile, I made a comment about S.D.’s shoes, and I was ripped a new one. He went off on me how expensive they were and how dare I downplay them. I was dying to get out of that apartment, and S.D. was dragging his feet.

He told me his friends from back home in the south were going to be out on the Lower East Side since one of them worked at Brother Jimmy’s. We decided to pick a place in the neighborhood to grab dinner before drinking our faces off. We found a nice Italian restaurant, Pete’s Tavern and shared a delicious pleasant meal. Things were starting to feel comfortable with him. All the awkwardness melted away. We had great conversation and kept each other on our toes. The conversation was great, but I began to wonder if I was sexually attracted to him. When he sent pictures to me, I found him to be quite attractive, but since being with him, I didn’t get excited or aroused by him. We hadn’t crossed that bridge yet, but I wondered if when I came to that bridge, would I even want to cross it. On top of that, we hadn’t discussed positions since we first spoke on the phone. He told me he didn’t have much experience in the bedroom originally. He said he never really bottomed, but he may be willing to experience it. Since then, I got a different picture learning about the long-term relationships he’d been in. I wondered if they were sexless, or was he lying. We were two tops, and that was going to pose a problem as some point.

After we finished dinner, we walked to Brother Jimmy’s to meet his friends. He was excited to introduce me to them. They’d already seen pictures of me and predicted I was a far better man for him to date than the one he just let go. They already loved me before even meeting them, so it was my game to lose.

S.D. introduced me to them, and we hit it off pretty swimmingly. His best friend, a female, pulled me aside to talk and gossip. We chatted, and she expressed how much she liked me. “You’re just the right amount of gay,” I was told. I’d always thought that about myself, but it was still interesting hearing someone say this to me. Even the friend, the girl who was working behind the bar planted a kiss on me, right on the lips. It was a pleasant surprise. I was a hit!

S.D. also told me his friend from work, “his little buddy,” was joining us. This kid was gay and even lived with S.D. on the couch for a period. They were very close and best friends of sorts. When this kid arrived, I was introduced to him. He seemed very nice, and we exchanged small talk. Almost immediately, S.D. and he separated from the group and began chatting the night away. It was obvious to me S.D. had a crush on him. I wondered if the little guy just wasn’t interested in S.D. and that was the hangup for why they weren’t together. I felt incredibly neglected. I was getting quite drunk, and that usually peaks my emotional state. I was very close to walking out the door and going home without a word but better judgment kicked in.

After we watched someone who looked like Snookie do an amazing rendition of Adele for karaoke, I was ready to go home. I was drunk, and I was trying to see past how he ignored me. Even after all I drank, the bartender charged me seven dollars.  I’m still not 100% sure why, but I asked S.D. if he wanted to come back to my place and spend the night. I think I wanted to test our sexual chemistry. I wasn’t looking for sex. Clearly that wasn’t possible in the state I was in. I just wanted to get somewhat physical with him.

We made out way back to my place and quietly made our way to my room. We climbed into bed to spoon, and I passed out quickly.

Warning: The following may be too graphic for some. When we woke up in the morning, we started spooning and fooling around. There was a lot of heavy petting and oral pleasuring. It wasn’t long before he was straddling my chest fondling himself. It also wasn’t long before he excited himself so much he finished right on my chest. He asked for my permission, but I wasn’t expecting it to happen almost immediately.

We lounged in bed for some time before I made us breakfast. There was a bit of a schedule for the morning, however. My parents were coming into town for Easter weekend. I needed to get him out of there before they arrived. Just as we finished eating, I got a call from my parents. They were downstairs. I told S.D. to quickly get dressed and make his way down the back stairwell. He was fine with this, and we agreed we’d chat later on the phone. I hustled him out the door and kissed him goodbye.

One minute later, I threw on flip-flops and went down to greet my parents. They didn’t make a single comment about the guy leaving my building. I had yet another celibate weekend in front of me, and this was a good thing.

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A Colombian Night

After a very nice date Wednesday, I was pretty happy. It had been a while since I had a good first date. I spent a lot of time having strings of bad first dates or finding guys to simply have fun with and send on their way. Nothing was fulfilling, but for the first time since PR, I was hopeful.

Thursday nights are always my volleyball nights. It’s the one night of the week I get to fulfill my competitive edge and work out some of the frustrations that have built up over the week. I always look forward to it, and I almost always commence the night at my favorite watering hole, McSwiggans.

Before riding home on the motorcycle from volleyball, I checked Grindr to see if I had any messages. A few started flowing in as soon as I opened the application. Where I play volleyball is a hotbed for Hispanic Grindrs and it seems they flock to me like a moth to the flame.

When I got home, I started chatting with one guy who seemed nice enough. When I told him where I lived, he was confused why I showed up so much closer. I explained to him why I was in his neighborhood. He was disappointed to hear I’d already left the area. “We could have grabbed a drink or something.” I told him it wouldn’t have worked out since I had the motorcycle and was disgusting from playing three games.

I did, however, invite him to come to Hoboken and join my friends and I at the bar. I had already texted a few friends and told them to meet me there. Two of my friends were already in the process of getting ready to meet me.

He entertained the idea for a few minutes before finally accepting my offer and dragging his roommate along for the ride. I was going into this arrangement mainly thinking this would be a friendly drink. I made it clear I had friends with me so he wouldn’t think I was asking him out on a date.

I arrived at the bar at the same time my friends did. We grabbed beers and sat at one of the tables. I informed both my friends a guy and his roommate would be coming by to hang out. My male friend looked very leery, but I told him this was just a friendly drink thing. I think he was worried he was basically going to sit through one of my dates. After some time passed, my Hispanic Grindr friend and I started texting. He arrived and was sitting at the bar. I had walked up and ordered right next to him without noticing him there.

I immediately walked over and said hi to him and his roommate and introduced myself. I called my two friends over to introduce them as well.

It wasn’t long before my male friend’s comfort level dropped, and he decided to meet other friends at another bar. My female friend, P, was hitting it off with the guy I met through Grindr. They are both Colombian and were sharing a few stories. The other guys seemed very nice and decently cool. We started with the small talk and then got into more of a discussion. It was nice, but I wasn’t really attracted to this guy at all. This was purely going to be a friendly drink. We talked for at least another hour, and more than a few rounds later, we decided to head out.

He was a really nice guy, and we all left at the same time. P lived uptown and in the direction they were heading to go home, so they offered to give her a ride home. They were parked in the direction of my apartment, so I agreed to walk them to their car at the least before heading home. As we got closer, the convinced me to hop in and let them drop me off. I finally agreed.

When we got to my apartment, it was slightly awkward because I could tell this guy wanted a moment alone with me. Maybe he wanted a kiss out of the night. I don’t know. I reached up and tapped his shoulder and said, “Thanks for coming down here. It was fun. We should connect again sometime soon.” He smiled and agreed. It was my subtle way of letting him down easy without getting his hopes up for a “date.”

Finally, I was making gay friends without overcomplicating things with hookups or sex. I needed to do more of this. I had one local gay friend, and he was all but married with a serious boyfriend, an apartment, a shared dog and a shared car. This was something I looked forward to, but maybe I needed to find a wingman to help me find the right guy first.

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Testing Boundaries

Once again, today is another double post to make up for lost time. If you are just visiting for the first time today, scroll down to the previous story to keep up with the timeline. Enjoy!

It had been a long work trip. I didn’t have any spare time for anything fun other than work. The one hour I had free, I spent on the treadmill trying to get back in shape for the rapidly approaching warm weather.

After my meeting, I sped to the airport. I wanted to get home so I could start my weekend off right. I began texting everyone back home to see what they were up to so I could be efficient with my time when I landed. I sent out a flurry of texts and received a few responses before taking off. I knew at least a few people were up for drinks at the bar. I also decided to take care of my pre-game at 30,000 feet. I ordered two scotch on the rocks to help get me started.

When I landed, I got more responses to my texts. Some people were too lazy to go out. They received harassing phone calls from me urging them to sack up and join the able-bodied and willing. It was no use. I also texted my Grindr friend who recently moved to Hoboken from the city — Much closer to me. I asked him if he wanted to check out the Hoboken scene. I warned him it would be all straight bars, but he was down.

I picked up some food at the airport I could eat in the car on the way home. When I arrived, I quickly showered and got dressed. My friend took a little longer to get ready, so I had to wait for him a bit. I was getting messages from my sister and friend who were at the bar waiting for my arrival. I told them to keep their pants on… I was en route.

I met my friend on the corner and walked with him to my local watering hole, McSwiggans. I told him about the bar as we walked. He asked how my trip was, and we continued the small talk.

I hadn’t told anyone I was bringing a guy with me. They were a bit surprised. But, I wasn’t bringing him as a love interest. I was bringing him as a new neighbor and friend. He didn’t know Hoboken, so I thought I could show him around a bit. I also knew he was normal enough he would fit in. I introduced him to everyone, and we got beers. I spent a lot of the night chatting with him, but mixed in with my friends/sister as well. As the night progressed, my sister grew more and more intoxicated. She started rubbing her a$s on me like she does with people when she’s drunk. It took a lot to get her to stop.

After some time, I got a text from one of my teammates from college. He was in town at another bar, so I gathered everyone up, and we made our way to Black Bear. He was there with his new girlfriend and her friends. When we arrived, I needed to relieve myself immediately. He came down the stairs and joined me standing in line to hit up the bathroom. After we all finished using the facilities, we made our way upstairs. My group grabbed a table, and my friend dragged me over to meet his group. He introduced me while my Grindr friend followed me. His girlfriend was already three sheets to the wind and shouted into my ear, “Is this your boyfriend?” I explained he was just a friend, and we all continued chatting. When I realized I was neglecting my other friends, we made our way back to the other table.

By then my sister was wasted, and she needed to go home. Luckily, one of the guys in the group who is utterly chivalrous, volunteered to escort her home since they both lived uptown. I said goodbye to both and was left with P and my Grindr friend. When my Grindr friend went to the bathroom, I explained my predicament to her. Until this point, we were just friends, but I wasn’t sure if maybe we could be more. I asked her if I should make a move.

“Why not!? What do you have to lose?” she asked. I told her I liked having him as a friend, and if I crossed that line, I wouldn’t have a friend anymore. I wasn’t sure which I would rather have. A new friend or a new guy to date. She still suggested I go for it. I decided I would make a game time decision later.

I felt like it was mine for the taking. He always seemed interested but who could really tell? I was purposely putting out the friend vibe, but I think if I escalated things, he would be interested.

The night was dragging on, and I was tired. We closed our tab and made our way for the door. P lived in the opposite direction of my new neighbor and I. Furthermore, we decided to stop at Cluck U and get a late night snack before heading home. When he asked if we were eating there or somewhere else, I volunteered to go back to my place.

When we walked into my apartment, we sat at the counter eating and talking. When we finished, he needed to use the bathroom. I moved over to the couch in hopes he would as well when he came back into the room. He didn’t get the hint. He sat back down at the counter until I suggested he join me in the living room. When he did, he sat in the chair next to the couch. This was going to take some work.

We talked some more before I finally moved to the chair and said, “I hope this isn’t out of line, but…” and I laid a big kiss on him. He totally kissed me back. It was great. Taking the risk paid off. When I pulled back, I asked him, “Did I surprise you?” “Well… YEAH! Of course I was surprised. I just thought we were going to be friends,” he replied. “I know. I was putting out that vibe on purpose. I wasn’t sure what would come between us,” I told him. He just smiled, and we kissed again…

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Boston Therapy

My relationship with Smiles had come to a close. We met. We discussed. I guess you could say we had closure.

I’d already moved on to other men and began rebuilding my roster. It’d been a while since I was in the game, and I was a little intimidated. Over the three months I dated Smiles I lost my edge. It was my sister who pointed out to me, “I didn’t like you with him. You weren’t yourself. You were much more reserved around him.” I didn’t like the sound of that. I pride myself on being open and myself all the time. Apparently, I lost that somewhere along the way. I needed to find it again.

I would do so with the help of my therapist, Boston. I really lucked out in my timing. Boston was on a break from his final year of school, which meant his services were available. I was going to take full advantage. He was a good friend, and I missed him. I was really disappointed we didn’t get to meet up when he came to visit New York for New Years. It really made me look forward to the day when he graduates, and I convince he to come to New York or Hoboken so I can have him around more often.

Monday night when I got home from work, I called Boston. I wanted to give him an update on how everything with Smiles went since we’d been chatting about it a bit. I told him how everything ended and how I was moving on.

Ironically enough, Boston had a few tales of his own. Apparently, a little of me was rubbing off on him. I was very happy to hear this news. Sometimes I think he puts his love life on the back burner too much. I think he loses hope at times and engulfs himself in other ventures. I want to see him happy. He’s a great guy and he deserves this.

So, when he told me about a straight friend of a friend coming to visit and the sub sequential hookup that ensued, I was downright proud. He managed to attract a “straight” man enough that this man took the opportunity to make out in the bathroom of a club.

I was so happy to have my friend back. I loved swapping stories with him!

I also took the time to explain to him how LES wouldn’t talk to me. For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out what I could have done to him to make him stop talking to me all of a sudden. We were building a strong friendship. I had the feeling he developed feelings for me, especially since he asked me, “So what’s the deal with [Smiles]?” He invited me to his birthday, and I missed it. I apologized, and he told me it was okay. I invited him to my holiday party, but he dropped off the face of the earth and never showed. Following, I attempted to reach out to him on numerous occasions. Okay, so maybe I’m under exaggerating. I tried to text or call almost every day for a while there. I thought I was being funny, but now looking back, I could easily see my actions being misconstrued. Maybe he thought I had stalker tendancies.

In the end, things got very suspicious. He would never respond to my Facebook messages, and he never showed up as online. However, he never unfriended me. As long as that didn’t happen, I didn’t think he was all the annoyed by me. I sent him another long apologetic message on Facebook asking him to please reach out to me. When I finished writing it, I thought I’d give him a call to see if I could get through. It’d been about a month since I last texted or called. When I did, I was shocked to find out the number was no longer in service. He either blocked my number or changed his.

I couldn’t believe it. Had I really taken it that far. Maybe he wasn’t mad at me. Maybe he was afraid of me. I hung up the phone and immediately sent another Facebook message: “I’m sorry if I’ve been bothering you. Don’t worry. It won’t happen anymore.” I was mortified. Did he really think I was that insane, or was he really that mad at me. I was really hurt that someone would ever be that mad or upset with me that they’d simply cut me off. My ego was seriously bruised.I also happened to be perusing my old messages on OKCupid, and it told me LES deleted his account. When I made a new OKCupid account shedding an identity I’d used since college, I came to realize he was still on there and had an updated and active account. He’d blocked me on there as well. He really wanted nothing to do with me, and there was nothing I could do about it.

“You can be a bit aggressive,” Boston told me. That really resonated with me. I did tend to be agressive. I’m a tenacious man. When I see something I want, I don’t give up until I attain it — This goes for everything.

The interesting part was that I simply wanted a good friend back. He was a really fun guy to be around, and I wanted to introduce him to Boston. I thought they’d make a GREAT pair. I would have loved to see the two of them together. But, I don’t think that will ever happen. New York is a big city, and I don’t know that we’ll ever cross paths again.

Boston and I talked more over the course of the week. We almost had a nightly check in for a while there. We’d chat on the phone for about an hour about our dating lives and the mistakes I made with Smiles. He told me more stories about another guy he was helping to introduce to the gay world. I hope I’m not blowing up Boston’s spot, but once again I was proud of him. He was facing new challenges and having new experiences. I was happy to see my friend experiencing more of life these days. I understood how busy school made him, but at least he was taking advantage of his time off.

I was building my roster and had a friend to gossip about all the new things going on in my life. Things were getting better, but I still wasn’t happy to be back out in the dating pool. I was anxious to land another man, but this time around, I wasn’t going to just settle for a guy who was willing to date me. I needed to “find a man who will worship you like you worship him,” as my friend A so eloquently put it. I needed a real man, not another little boy. A man who could express himself verbally, emotionally and physically. I was going to find a triple threat, and once again I had one of my closest friends in my corner.

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