Posts Tagged Manhattan
Preparing to get ready for the Scissor Sisters concert was a sh*t show and a half. This was twice now CK and I fought before going to an event. I was beginning to wonder if we would ever be able to go to these kinds of events without it turning into a fight. I had finally grown more comfortable with the crowds at these events, but I was growing uncomfortable with the idea of going with CK to them. Living up to what I thought were CK’s expectations was a lot of pressure to deal with.
CK and Hip were ready, but the tickets were nowhere to be found. After quite some time, Hip managed to find the tickets behind the couch. It seemed like he happened to know where they were in a moment of clarity. At this point, we quickly made our way out of the apartment to see if we could salvage what was left of the concert. Like the flip of a switch, CK began apologizing to me and asked me to come along and be happy. His main concern was getting to the concert, not whether or not we were okay. It was incredibly selfish, and it hurt a lot. We quickly hustled the ten blocks to the venue, but I skulked behind a few paces every turn we made. I was really hurting deep inside. Things weren’t going very well between us the way it was, but this took things to a new level. I wasn’t saying anything. I was in shock about what had transpired. To be honest, I wasn’t quite sure what I was still doing there.
I’m not good at putting on a smile and bearing down. I may have been present physically, but mentally, I was in a whole other world.
When we got to the doors at Terminal 5, a large mass of people were walking out the door. CK cut through the crowds heading in the exit only to find the concert had ended. Everyone was leaving. I stood on the street with my arms crossed because I knew there was no hope. I also wasn’t about to chase CK through a mass of people. When CK finally realized all hope was lost, his anger returned. Hip continued to apologize over and over again, but CK wanted none of it. I wasn’t upset in the slightest because I was in no mood to go to a concert. The three of us managed to find each other, and we all agreed we were starving.
I was pretty wasted, and we stumbled back towards his apartment searching for somewhere to grab food. We didn’t pass anything along the way, and CK mentioned getting take-out delivered. When we got back to his place, I hopped into bed immediately. I was hungry, but more importantly, I was drunk and upset. I wanted to go to bed to escape what was going on around me. I fell asleep in CK’s bed still fully clothed.
I woke the next morning to the sound of Hip knocking on CK’s door. Originally, we planned to go to the cloisters in north Manhattan, but those plans would never come to fruition. For some ungodly reason, Hip was wide awake with lots of energy. I, on the other hand, was incredibly hung over. Everything was too bright, too loud and too real. I just wanted to go back to bed and sleep off my hangover. Hip sat on the foot of the bed talking about the night before and asking a lot of questions. Apparently, he had even more to drink than I did. He kept asking if we actually ever made it to the concert, and this was really the last thing CK wanted to hear. Every time he brought up the previous night, it made CK grow more and more frustrated.
At one point, Hip excused himself to use the restroom. CK and I took the opportunity to chat while he was absent. I was still quite upset, but I wasn’t going to make a scene. This was the perfect opportunity to talk. I brought up everything from the night before and explained how none of it was okay. I point blank asked him what Hip handed him the night before. He responded, “I have no clue what you’re even talking about.” When I pushed the issue, he denied any recollection of it emphatically. After my suspicions and insinuations, he detailed how the only substances he partook in the previous night was alcohol. Based on his reaction and emphatic response, I believed him. I was not okay with how he acted or how he treated my, but I did believe him. I put my worries aside and took his word for it. I had no reason not to believe him. After our previous conversations on the subject, I wondered if maybe I had finally gotten through to him.
I told him if he ever lays a hand on me like that again, we’re done. He didn’t hurt me physically, and I did loved him. But, this was not something I would tolerate. The next time, I was actually walking out the door, and I was never coming back. I made sure he understood how serious I was about this. I wasn’t afraid for my own safety. I was more afraid for both of us. I didn’t know what would happen if things escalated out of control because we both had short tempers. I stressed this point numerous times. Again, he apologized emphatically. I could see his apology was genuine, and I accepted it. He loved me, and I could see it pained him to know how much he hurt me. He apologized for everything and I forgave him for everything. “Forgiven, but not forgotten. We will not go through this again,” I added.
We literally kissed and made up, but things didn’t stop there. He was very sweet in his remorse. Apparently, he was feeling a bit frisky. Warning: The following may be too graphic for some. We started to make out, and when I pointed out Hip just on the other side of the bathroom door, he didn’t stop. As per usual, I woke in the morning raring to go, and CK took advantage of this. We were making out and my hands were exploring his entire body under the comforter. He was straddling me, and he reached down with his hand and sat on top of me. It was incredibly hot, but I was still a little self-conscious about the whole thing.
Just as I predicted, Hip emerged from the bathroom with CK still straddling me. I didn’t know what to do, but we didn’t immediately separate either. We both turned our gazes to meet his with a guilty look upon our faces. He knew exactly what was happening, but he went about his business accordingly. We all laughed at the situation as I slowly removed myself from CK. It was necessary to break the tension in the room.
We continued to lay around for a majority of the morning chatting and relaxing. Before Hip got back into the previous night, CK pleaded, “Can we talk about anything other than last night please?” After some time, we were finally able to motivate ourselves to get out of bed and face the day…
CK and I had a fun afternoon promoting the circuit party we were attending that evening. When we got back to CK’s apartment, CK, Hip and I relaxed listening to music and chatting before getting ready, however we didn’t have all that much time before we needed to go to Governor’s Island for Matinee.
I watched from the sidelines while CK and Hip played dress up. My work in that arena was done. I had to decide what I was wearing the day before when I packed my bag for the weekend. I witnessed CK try on roughly 30 different permutations of outfits before he finally got every detail just the way he wanted. Meanwhile, I was stressing about how I could make my outfit gay enough so I wouldn’t stand out but normal enough to feel comfortable in my own skin. Hip didn’t have much work to do either. Originally, he wasn’t planning to go, so he pretty much had the clothes on his back with a few embellishments from CK.
I wasn’t thrilled with the shirt I originally chose, and the shirt I got from promoting seemed like it would work out well for me. Apparently, CK had the same thought. We were worried we’d look like twins, but Hip assured us it was cute. After carving up his own t-shirt, he insisted on taking a scissor to mine, but I asked him not to. He surmised that he had better judgment than I did, but I stood my ground. I wanted to go to this thing feeling like myself. I wasn’t going to change that just for some event.
Sure, I was trying to fit in, but I wanted to maintain some level of individuality. Of course, since I was already on edge, this started an unnecessary argument. I was shutting down. He was making me feel even more anxious about the night, and that was the last thing I needed. Things got pretty heated until he realized what was going on. I was going to add a few more cuts in my shirt, but I wasn’t going to wear the strands of fabric he turned his into.
We finally settled on attire and were headed to the bar knowing drinks would be expensive at Matinee. I wasn’t thrilled with POSH, the location choice, as Broadway always called it Poor Old Sad Homos. I didn’t want to hang out with a bunch of creepy old ‘mos, but I’d never been so I didn’t really protest. We had a quick round of drinks before venturing to Governor’s island.
We walked across the island of Manhattan until we found the right subway stop to get us downtown to the ferry. My anxiety was getting to me, and on the way to get cash from the ATM, CK and I had a small breakdown. He pulled me aside to make sure we were cool before we got on the ferry while Hip made himself scarce. He managed to reassure me everything was going to be all right, and we were going to have a great time. I kinda needed that to snap me out of it. I was getting into my head once again, causing all kinds of problems. Sometimes a vivid imagination can be a curse. After that, things were better, and CK and I were actually talking to Hip about how we discussed what a marriage between the two of us might be like, such as the wedding party. Hip was thrilled to hear he would be included in this.
After a quick ferry ride, we were there. We made our way through the line and posed for a picture as we entered the party. When I noticed a Grindr Pride sign, I insisted CK and I snap a picture in front of it. We’d been joking about contacting them to do a testimonial like eHarmony commercials.
This was it. I was making my circuit party debut. As we came around the bend, the festivities came into view. It was a sea of shirtless men. I may sound stupid for saying this (and I wasn’t the only one to think this), but when CK told me it was a “water park,” I was expecting a lot more water. I wasn’t expecting water slides or anything, but I wasn’t expecting the entire party to be on sand and dry land.
The first thing we did was head to the bar to get a drink, and boy did I need it. Of course, as we predicted, the drinks were not cheap. I immediately wished I brought more cash. While I knew there were be an abundance of illicit substances, I wasn’t planning to participate. (I’m probably going to come across like a complete goodie-two-shoes here). I was, however, planning to get pretty hammered to loosen me up. I wasn’t going to be closed-minded, and if I felt comfortable partaking, I would. That being said, I’d never done anything other than pot before, and I was already out of my element. I thought one anxiety-causing experience at a time was plenty.
Alcohol wasn’t going to be the only thing to get me through the night. My friend D supplied me with a lozenge from a medical facility in San Francisco after his last trip there. I didn’t quite have any use for it until that night. I thought it would be the perfect thing to mellow me out. He told me all the hang-ups, but the benefits seriously outweighed any of the possible negative effects.
I unwrapped my lozenge and waited for it to kick in. D told me to suck on half, and save the other half for later, especially since it was my first time, but half way through, I wasn’t feeling a thing. I kept sucking on it until there was nothing left.
In the meantime, I was dancing and trying to have a good time with Hip and CK. We met a lot of new people, including one couple that recently wed. I was thrilled to hear that, as they were the first married gay couple I’d met in person, but I’ll circle back to them later.
While CK and I were dancing, a cute young blond boy came up and started dancing with us. It was plain to see he was feeling some sort of high. CK was facing me, and the boy came up and started dancing up on his backside. I wasn’t thrilled with this, and my heart started pounding out of my chest. I tried to be cool and remain calm. I don’t know why I get so worked up about these things, but it’s like a trigger. CK wanted to open my mind and suggested I get in the center. I would later learn, he thought I might enjoy being the center of attention like that, however I explained to him that was the last thing I wanted. It started off innocent enough, but then the guy began thrusting himself against CK’s backside, and I nearly lost it. I wasn’t going to go off on the kid or anything, however, I wanted it to stop. I wanted it to stop NOW! I think CK got the hint from my face and gently shuffled the kid away. Minutes later, the kid came up behind me and started dancing against my backside, but I turned around and politely shook my head no and said, “Sorry.” I could see it in his eyes — This kid was in another world.
It was then I knew I was in for a long night. I wasn’t necessarily worried what CK would do. I was more worried what others would do with him. I had a feeling our definitions of what was acceptable differed. I was petrified of witnessing something he thought was innocent, and I thought unacceptable. Everyone was in an altered state, just as I suspected, and I wasn’t exactly from the “anything goes” camp many of the other attendees were a part of. I needed to find a way to calm down, or I was going to drive myself clinically insane…
Thanksgiving came and went, and I didn’t see Smiles. However, it was too early in the relationship to invite him home to meet my family.
On Thanksgiving, he called and left a message saying, “Heyyyy! What up? HAPPY THANKSGIVING! Call me later.” I didn’t get it until much later in the day because when I travel home, I am in a black hole of cell phone service.
I tried calling, but the phone rang unanswered. I decided I would try again later that evening. I was a little disappointed I couldn’t get ahold of him. I missed him.
On my way home from my aunt’s house, my sister and I decided to hit up Wal-Mart to get in early on the Black Friday deals. What a mistake! The one item I wanted was sold out in the first five minutes, and my sister needed non-Black Friday items. I stood in the front of the store witnessing the madness while she paid. I called Smiles once again, and this time he picked up.
He told me about his day and asked if I saw the pictures of the dogs on the beach he posted to Facebook. He told me everyone was relaxing and watching a movie after their turkey comas. I told him about my day with my family and my encounter with tryptophan. We talked about the insanity I was witnessing and about my shopping adventure coming the following day. He told me about his plans for the rest of the time he was out on Long Island.
My sister wanted to be back in Hoboken Saturday morning, so after a visit to my childhood babysitter for dinner, we made our way back. It was a long boring ride which I slept through most of. When I woke, we were nearing Hoboken. I called Smiles to see how his day was going.
He was home alone in front of a fireplace. Apparently his friends were all going to his ex-boyfriend’s place of business, so he decided to have an easy night staying in. I felt bad for him he was all alone, but I also knew he’d enjoy the rest and the full night’s sleep.
Saturday, I was trying not to think about Smiles. It was no use. I texted him, “Thinkin’ boutchu… Miss ya ;)” He responded with a picture of a very nice living room including a fireplace. “Dinner shall be served shortly. It’s a rough life.” I, in turn, responded with a picture of all the boxes I was packing in my room and added, “Thanks for rubbing it in. I too have a similar view ;)” “I see the resemblance,” he retorted.
Later that evening, I went out to the bar with a full pack of friends. I was trying to distract myself from the fact that I missed Smiles. It was working because I hadn’t seen many of them in quite some time. That doesn’t mean I didn’t send him a picture of the bar with the caption, “My new view.”
He sent me a picture of a dwindling fireplace with the caption, “Night time fire. Falling asleep.” With that, my phone started ringing. I walked outside so I could hold a decent conversation with him. He was home alone again and simply wanted to say goodnight.
I asked him if I could see him the following evening, Sunday, but he told me he was already booked solid. I was very disappointed because I thought I’d be getting to see him when he returned to Manhattan. He did leave a glimmer of hope we could possibly find time to meet up, but when Sunday came, the glimmer would be snuffed.
I tried to find time on Monday to see him, but once again he was busy. “Sounds like you’re booked up tomorrow, but want you/to see you. Miss you 😦 When can I see you?” I asked. He told me, “Hi. Just back into city. I think Thursday is my first night free. Would that work? Sorry it’s so far out. :(” I reminded me about my Thursday night volleyball game and my parents’ arrival to help me move into my new apartment. He then proposed the possibility of Wednesday night, but he’d have to get a ticket for me from his friend. I too had a super busy week in front of me, especially with a move on Wednesday, so that wasn’t going to work. It was looking like I wasn’t going to get to see him for some time, but I did appreciate him making an effort to see me.
I suggested we do lunch on Tuesday instead, to which he responded, “Yes. Lunches are easy.”
I was content. I wanted to see him sooner, but I could survive until lunch on Monday or Tuesday. We both have lives to live, and his career was just getting off the ground, so I didn’t want to interfere with that.
I thought back to my thoughts about inviting him home for Thanksgiving, and I realized I made the right decision. While I would have liked spending the time with him, the timing and logistics would have been awful. Introducing him to my family would have been tough and emotional. My family was already on edge, as this would be the first time celebrating Thanksgiving since the passing of my grandfather.Furthermore, I’d have to introduce him to my uber-Christian babysitter from growing up, as I couldn’t just leave him home while we all went to dinner.
Lastly, I would have sent quite a message about my thoughts regarding our relationship if I put him in the position to decline my invitation. We weren’t at the meet the parents stage, let alone the come home for the holidays stage. I made the right decision overall and was proud of myself for showing restraint.Follow @onegayatatime
Smiles has a ’68 Ford Mustang parked in a garage out there, and it hadn’t been run in a few months. He wanted to make sure it would still start and take it around the block. I was thrilled because I was finally going to get to see the car! I had a crush on that car from the moment I learned of its existence, and Smiles knew this. I thought it made him sexier, and it turned me on.
Smiles rode on the back of my motorcycle clutching onto me as we rode over the Williamsburg Bridge and around Brooklyn. It was the first time had gone for a ride longer than a few blocks. I really enjoy riding with him on the bike.
We arrived at the garage and removed the cover from the car. I immediately took my phone out and began snapping pictures with my phone. I put my bike in his parking spot while he pulled the car out of the garage. I tossed my helmet in the back seat and hopped in. I immediately reached over and gave his thigh a squeeze to show him my appreciation and excitement.
As we drove down the street, every single person we passed by was enamored by the car. A kid stopped in the middle of the street with his mouth gaping as he watched the car come closer until he realized he was in the middle of the street. One man even took out his camera and snapped pictures while we sat at a stoplight. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one with a crush on this car.
He proposed we grab lunch somewhere fun, so we scoped out the neighborhood as we drove. We found a parking space and decided to walk around a bit until we found a pub to grab food in, Spike Hill. We settled in, and as per usual, Smiles started chatting up the waitress. After we ordered, unbeknownst to me, he asked her, “Do you know anywhere in the neighborhood where he could get his haircut fixed.” I wasn’t thrilled with paying to have my hair fixed. I was complacent to just let it grow out, but Smiles was pretty persistent.
She gave us directions to a barber up the street, Brooklyn General Barber Emporium, and I begrudgingly agreed to partake in the hair repair excursion.
We got to the barber shop, and from the looks of it, I was a little worried. They weren’t exactly welcoming either. There was a long wait, so we decided to go for a walk around the neighborhood to kill time.
Smiles was interested in opening a bar in the area, so we scoped out some possible locations and realtors. We also popped into some cool hipster shops.
While in one of them, there were two gay men working together making a hysterical fuss. “You got to open one, so I want to open one too. It’s only fair.” “Is this the hunter green one?” “No, stupid! That one is just green.” “Well what about this one?” “That one is celery.” I couldn’t stop laughing at their commentary. I also noticed a poster on the wall I found very humorous. I was very close to buying it, if only I had someone I could give it to who would actually display it.
The time came to go back to the barber. It was getting dark, so I told Smiles we didn’t have to do it that evening. But once again, he was pretty insistent.
Finally it was my turn in the chair. I ended up with the female stylist who asked what I wanted done. She was extremely nice and full of energy. However, I use the term she loosely. I couldn’t be sure 100%, but I had my suspicions she wasn’t always a she. Regardless, she was a doll. Smiles stood in the wings while I explained what happened and what I wanted done. “Oh honey! What happened to you!? I could have done a better job drunk! You want me to butch you up?” she said. “YES!” Smiles said from behind me.
Once she started, Smiles returned to his seat intently watching her cut my hair. I found it extremely cute and adorable how he took an interest in my appearance. She asked me, “Is that your boyfriend?” I simply replied, “Yes.” Then she excused herself for the question on the off-chance I wasn’t actually gay. I told her, “No harm, no foul.”
In the end, Smiles and I were both very happy with my new haircut. I thought I was going to be very uncomfortable with it since it was so much shorter than I usually cut my hair, but I was thrilled and shocked. She really did a great job fixing my cut.
We also took the walk back to the car as an opportunity to discuss the status of my barber. He agreed that miss used to be a mister.
On the way to the garage, Smiles proposed going to see the new Twilight movie. I was surprised, because usually at this point, I get the boot. I thought I was going home after I dropped him off because he’d have plans with a friend, but that wasn’t the case. I explained to him I’d never seen any of the Twilight movies, so I was worried I’d be a little lost, but I told him I was willing if he got me caught up. He took the time to explain what I’d missed. We rode back to the garage, swapped the car for the bike and made our way back to Manhattan…Follow @onegayatatime
Just as I was whittling the roster down, I felt the need to continue to build it up. Out of all the candidates, I only found one worth revisiting, Pillow. After what started as a bad date, I was happy with how it ended.
I started talking to a very attractive man. He was very responsive, and we got into a great conversation. He’s a 34 year-old trainer in Manhattan who lives in Hell’s Kitchen — All pluses in my book. I also noticed his distinctive tattoos and found them very attractive. Strangely enough, he reminds me a lot of the first guy I dated, Broadway. And, in another twist of irony, his gym was a block from Broadway’s apartment. I walked past it hundreds of times. He mentioned his workout regime and how intimidated most guys were by it. I said, “They’re just weak!” He replied, “Oh. I like you! And, you’re my just type!” We talked about meeting after we were comfortable with each other.
Earlier that day, my boss had a meeting with my department and told us he wanted us to meet a new hire at 2:30. This was right about the time I was talking to the trainer about meeting for coffee. I suggested we meet at Starbucks to say hi, but it would have to wait until I met the new guy. When 3:30 rolled around, and he was still in my boss’s office, I decided I wasn’t going to wait around any longer. It was pouring that day, so we picked a Starbucks half way between us. I grabbed my umbrella and made my way towards him after postponing coffee almost an hour and a half. When I arrived, it was a packed house. It was a small Starbucks to begin with, but everyone was trying to escape the rain, customer or not.
I managed to find him in the crowd. We chatted while waiting for our coffees. I liked him. I felt very relaxed around him. We talked about work, family, what we did for fun, vacation, travel, etc. He was going skydiving in a week, so we had an interesting conversation about that. I told him about all the traveling I’d done so far this year, and he told me about his trip to Fire Island that coming weekend.
The only snag in the whole conversation was age. He wasn’t thrilled I was only 27. “I find myself being attracted to younger men lately though,” he said. He kinda shrugged it off as if to say, “I’ll give you a chance.”
The time came when I needed to head back to the office. He was disappointed I had to cut it short, but I promised him we’d hang out when he got back from Fire Island. With that, I gave him a hug and said goodbye. He said he’d text later that evening. I was thrilled.
He seemed like a really great guy. On top of that, he was very masculine and very sexy. I was looking forward to seeing him again. I had two dates in a week’s time that ended in success! This may have made all the bad dates worth it. That evening, we texted each other. It was a fun and playful conversation — All progress towards a real date.
The next evening, when I was heading home earlier than expected (see Friday’s post), I called to see if he wanted to grab dinner. When he picked up the phone, he said, “Hey, I’m about to grab dinner with some friends.” Can I call you back later?” And, like a true man, he called me that night. We had a great conversation, and once again, we talked about a second date upon his return to Manhattan…Follow @onegayatatime
Day three of my dating marathon arrived and I still had no prospects for second dates. I was definitely widdling down the roster, but I wasn’t finding the quality I was hoping to find. That Tuesday, I planned a date with one of the guys who was particularly interested in me when I was texting him from Ocean City, Maryland. We started chatting on Grindr before I left for vacation, and we continued to do so when I returned.
We agreed to meet up for a bite following work. He worked as a concierge at a hotel near my office, so we picked something somewhat local to both of us. When work ran over for me, he decided to run a few errands. He hit up the gym and then moved onto a manicure. Already I was worried he was going to be yet another flamboyant ‘mo, but I would give him the benefit of a doubt.
After chasing him around to different locations, we finally met on the street corner. He was not what I was expecting. His pictures on Grindr portrayed him as a mysterious and sexy tattooed guy, but in reality, he looked kinda dorky. I knew immediately this was not going anywhere. If I was smart, I would have suggested a pub right then and there and made it a one drink date, but I wasn’t quick enough. I let him decide on the location. He chose Bare Burger on the East Side.
We sat at a table in the restaurant and ordered our beers while we decided what we wanted to eat. The conversation mainly started with work and ended with work. It was all he knew to talk about. I learned about all the hotels he’s worked at and all the perks he gets. I heard about the free Broadway shows he left half way through because Broadway wasn’t quite his thing. Once again, someone was sitting in front of me trying to impress me instead of just being real. I don’t just want to know what your job can do for my social life. He also talked about people getting starstruck in his line of business, but then proceeded to name all the famous people he’s hung out with. He was a walking contradiction. On top of this, he lived on the opposite side of the island we like to call Manhattan. Astoria, Queens would be a very long ride from Hoboken, NJ.
I couldn’t wait for the date to be over. When he excused himself to go to the bathroom, I flagged down the waitress and asked her to bring us the check. I gazed out the window people watching hoping for this date to end like the ripping off of a band aid. The only saving grace was how tasty the food was.
When he came back, we split the bill and started to walk towards the PATH/his subway. When we got to a crossroads in which we were heading in different directions, I said goodbye with a hug. He suggested we go out again. I blankly said, “Yea. We could do that.”
Just before getting to the PATH, I received a text from him saying, “Get home safe! It was nice meeting you!… shorty ;)” He was taller than me by a few inches, but did he really just call me shorty? “I just responded back with a “likewise.” The next day, I received the followup text: “How’s it going?” Of course, I didn’t respond. And that was the end of the concierge. NEXT!…Follow @onegayatatime