Posts Tagged weekend

Typical Tuesday

It was the middle of July in NYC, and while many might find the thought of that heat taxing, I’ve always enjoyed the summertime. People are out during all hours of the day and night. The city comes alive because people are willing to spend more of their time outdoors.

PoolNYCSunsetTuesdays are never particularly good days. You’re still three days away from the weekend, and you don’t have the benefit of being refreshed from the pervious weekend. After a long Tuesday at work, I made my way to CK‘s apartment. He was wrapping up at his office, so I expected we would be arriving around the same time. I was looking forward to seeing him and relaxing. What better way to end a Tuesday than relaxing and watching the sunset from the rooftop of his New York high-rise on the banks of the Hudson River?

We dropped our bags and immediately took the elevator to the penthouse floor. A few others share the same thinking we did, and they were enjoying the days final rays with a few cocktails and some light-hearted conversation. CK and I made our way to the far side of the roof and swapped stories about our days. Through the course of our conversation, I learned he had some work left to do for the evening. It just so happened to be my expertise, so I offered to help when we finally made our way back downstairs. I told him this would have to wait until after we ate dinner of course because I was starving. As the last few beams of light disappeared behind the buildings on banks of the Hudson River in New Jersey, we exchanged a romantic kiss and made our way back downstairs.


SushiWe agreed upon ordering in instead of cooking, especially since CK still had work to do. “Sushi it is!” he exclaimed. While we waited, he worked on his presentation while I worked on a blog post in front of the TV. We paused when the food came so we could eat, but once we were properly fed, it was right back to work. I put a little work into his presentation while he proofread my post, pausing to show him a few tips I’d learned along the way myself.

It was a really nice night. We’d fallen into this routine finally, and I was really enjoying it. We were a couple, and there was no fighting. When the good times came, I genuinely appreciated them. I was beginning to wonder if we were a Ronnie and Sammi kind of couple for a little while there (Couldn’t resist the Jersey Shore reference there). That was a scary thought. I didn’t want to be the couple who constantly fought. We loved each other far more than that.

MSNBC-Rachel-MaddowWhen we’d done enough work for the night, CK asked if he could put on his beloved Rachel Maddow, and I begrudgingly agreed. I wasn’t thrilled with the thought, as I grew more and more tired of her nightly hour-long program. I follow politics pretty closely and follow the Nightly News religiously every night, but I didn’t think anyone needed that much politics in their life. That Tuesday night, it was irrelevant what I wanted because my body wanted to go to sleep. I quickly dozed off on the couch while CK drank in his liberal political commentary.

When I finally woke, it was much later, and I suggested we go to bed. I could see CK was tired, and it was obvious I’d had enough with the day. We made our way to his room and slid into bed. I didn’t even make the pit stop to brush my teeth. I’m not sure why I was so exhausted, but I’m pretty sure I was asleep before my head came to rest on the pillow.

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Things Heat Up

In the summer, my company offers half day Fridays. It’s an amazing perk, and I take full advantage.

GroceryShoppingI live for my weekends, so if there was anything I could do to make them better, I did. I utilized my free Friday afternoons to run my errands so Saturday and Sunday would be all mine. I tried to clean and do laundry, run to the grocery store, etc.

This Friday, I was very successful getting through my list. I stopped by my allergist for my weekly shot. Since I left work at 1:00, I decided to eat lunch at McDonalds (never a good decision). While sitting there, I noticed two men walking holding hands across the street. I was a bit surprised. I immediately thought, “We do that in Hoboken?!” In the six years I’d lived in Hoboken, only once before had I seen two men holding hands. I was thrilled to see the courage and the progress.

When I finished eating, I swung by the salon for a haircut and hit up the gym to lift and swim. After my swim, I called CK from the roof deck of the gym. Although we made tentative plans for Saturday night, we hadn’t discussed plans for that night. It was our anniversary. He automatically assumed I was spending the night in the city since he came to Hoboken the previous night. I was not under the same impression, so I explained I did not want to spend both Friday and Saturday night away from place. I told him to pick one. This of course turned into an argument. He complained about the trek to Hoboken, and I resented this. I’d made the trip back into the city to be with him many times after a long day at work, and I did it without complaint. He always made it seem like torture when he had to traverse the Hudson River. The argument grew more and more heated until he threatened not to come at all. I wasn’t having any more of this, so I hung up on him.

Rooftop Phone CallI was tired of this game we were playing. I didn’t want to argue anymore. In addition, my testosterone was already flowing after a solid workout, and my blood was beginning to boil with every complaint.

After I got home and a few minutes passed, he called back (He always was good at playing the role of peacemaker). He told me he’d come to Hoboken, but it wouldn’t be until later. We discussed the argument calmly, and both apologized for getting out of hand. He explained he had assumption I was coming there all day. The idea of him trekking out to Hoboken on a bus wasn’t all that thrilling to him after having those expectations all day. I explained how one of us would always have to make the trek to the other. There was nothing we could do about that, at least for now, so the more fair and balanced we could make it (and the less complaining), the less burdensome it would feel. He agreed.

Since I had a fair amount of time before his arrival, I continued with my to-do list and swung by Shop Rite and Target. When I finished and returned home, I was still a bit depressed from the bad news I’d received at work that week, so I plopped down on the couch and watched TV until CK arrived.

WatchingTVHours passed, and I heard nothing from him. I felt he was dragging his feet and as every minute passed, I grew more and more annoyed. He told me he had to shower before coming over. He obviously wasn’t still showering. I was sure he was just lounging about, which is fine. But I wanted him to be lounging about with me.

This wasn’t just any night after all. We were supposed to be “celebrating” our three-month anniversary. I finally got so annoyed I sent him a text: “Maybe tonight would be better spent apart. I’m in a really cranky mood now.” It was already past 10:00. At this point he was coming over to sleep and not much else. He called and told me he was already in a cab on the way to the PATH. I encouraged him not to doddle before saying goodbye. I needed to cool off before he arrived, or it was a guaranteed fight the moment he arrived. It seemed all the smallest things so easily got under my skin. I was all wound up. Work was stressing me out. Life was stressing me out…

Finally, at 11:00, he arrived, flowers in hand to make up for the botched night. Honestly, I would have preferred he came three hours prior, but the gesture was utterly sweet. And, I forgave/thanked him immediately. I tried to be cool with everything and have a nice time with him since it was a special night. There was no use being miserable.

It wasn’t really his fault either. Work made me a miserable son-of-a-b*tch. He asked me how my day was. I further explained my new predicament and fretted over the possibility of being unemployed in the near future. I was very pessimistic about the whole situation.

DepressedI certainly will hand it to him. He remained positive and tried to assure me everything would be fine. This is why I loved him so much. NO matter how much of a Debbie Downer I can be, he always picks me up and dusts me off. In spite of my pessimism, he was always optimistic.

We also learned to collaborate professionally. We were helping each other bolster up our positions in the social media realm of our jobs. He taught me things I didn’t know about, and through my recent vigorous research, I taught him a thing or two as well.

When I’d had enough talk of my job situation, we agreed to order Chinese food for dinner. I was too tired to cook. While we waited for the food to arrive, we smoked to relax.

He told me about his day at work and the stellar presentation he delivered to the powers that be. He was proposing a new initiative that was well received by the decision-makers. I was happy for him, but also jealous. Sure, I realize how horrible that is to say, but I’m nothing if I’m not honest.

The rest of the night was much better than the evening had begun. Eventually, I forgot all about our fight and my emotions were back in check. We ate our food while watching TV in each other’s arms on the couch.

GeneralTsosI finished eating, but CK was still chowing down as he poured some of the General Tso’s sauce onto on his plate. After a few minutes, he started fretting. Apparently, he’d eaten something quite hot. After investigating, I realized he ate a whole chili pepper. Tears were streaming down his face as he rinsed his mouth over and over again in the sink. Next he tried a glass of milk and a few pieces of bread. That didn’t seem to be helping. He even took to wiping his tongue with a napkin. Nothing helped. It was all I could do to maintain my composure, but after a while I couldn’t hold back. His face wasn’t the only one wet from tears. I was hysterically laughing so hard I was crying.

After a good laugh, interspersed with failing advice, I consulted Google for a better solution. We’d tried everything in the book. When I told him someone suggested eating another one, he looked like he was going to throw me out the third-story window. I was still getting a chuckle out of all this but certainly at his expense. It was torture for him, but he had no idea the gift he was giving me. He delivered exactly what I needed that night — A good laugh.

Eventually the pain subsided, and he forgot all about the incident. As our eyelids grew heavier and heavier, we moved to my bedroom for the night. As tired as we were, our appetites weren’t quite satiated.

We were pinning each other down for the count before we counting sheep. As hot as things were for him during dinner, things in the bedroom were even hotter. We tired ourselves out between the sheets before he finally drifted off to slumber wrapped in my arms. That night taught me something very important. No matter how much we fought, this was the man I loved, and there was no changing that.

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Raw Chicken and Video Games

After a tumultuous weekend, it was back to work on Monday. Both CK and I had very busy days, and we didn’t find much time to chat. But, before we went to work that day, we decided to spend the night in Hoboken.

I finished work at a reasonable hour, so I decided to hit up the gym for some lifting and a quick swim. When I finished my swim, I called CK to find out what time he was expecting to leave work. I was about to head home and make us dinner for the night. Something seemed different. He hadn’t reached out to me all day, and it was now 8:00pm. When I finally got him on the phone, he seemed distant at best.

It was then I learned he had other ideas in mind. It almost seemed like he was looking for a night apart. I was wondering if he was beginning to have doubts about us. I couldn’t figure out his motives, but it felt like something was up. When I told him I wanted to see him, he asked if I would be willing to come into the city to spend the night at his place. I wasn’t thrilled with the idea. I had it in my head we would be spending the night in Hoboken all day. I hadn’t packed an overnight bag and had already traversed the Hudson twice. I had the ingredients for dinner sitting on my kitchen counter.

He pointed out how much of a pain it was for him to come to Hoboken, and I pointed out how it was just as difficult for me to make my way back into the city for the same reasons. We began arguing about the long-standing issue. Whenever it was my turn to come into the city, I did it without complaint. When it was his turn to travel, he often managed to slip in subtle complaints or excuses for why he couldn’t make it. I didn’t feel like he was meeting me half way, and I let him know it.

Although I wasn’t happy, and I didn’t quite agree with the situation, I decided to relent and come to him. I wanted to see him, and that was more important to me than the inconvenience of a short bus trip. This would allow him to continue to work while I made my way in. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have been able to see him that night.

I went home, showered and packed the ingredients for dinner to take into the city. Hauling raw chicken into the city didn’t make the most sense, but it was economical and faster than many other options. I was also taking raw pork ribs with me, as I was planning to make myself lunch for the following day.

I slung a heavy bag over my shoulder and hopped on the bus headed for Hell’s Kitchen. When I arrived, I received a warm welcome from CK at his door. He flung his arms around me and gave me a giant hug. I was truly happy to see him. We had a rough patch only a few days earlier, but I put all that behind me. I wanted to get back to us — Back to happiness.

He took my bags from me and brought them into the kitchen. I began prepping dinner and my lunch for the following day while he sat at the counter digging into work.

When one of his two roommates came home, we all began chatting about the third roommate in his absence. There was always a plethora of things to chat about when it came to him. He was like a walking carnival. Every day was a new adventure with that one. He didn’t lead a double life. It was more like a quintuple life. He was one shady mo-fo, and every day was a new shocking story of what new ruse he was trying to pull.

When dinner was ready, we sat and ate together in front of the TV. CK was very appreciative that I made dinner so he could continue to finish his work. I was happy to be sharing a meal and a nice night with him. I liked taking care of my man every once in a while, especially when it was so apparently appreciated.

When we finished eating, CK finished his work. We had about an hour before bedtime, so CK suggested we play some video games. This isn’t something I’d done in six years at best. I wasn’t very good at video games because I never played them, so it was always a frustrating situation. I don’t like things I’m not good at. I warned CK of this before we got started because I didn’t want the night to result in an argument.

We began playing, but CK wasn’t giving me any directions on what I needed to be doing. As long as someone gives me the tools necessary to do something, I can usually manage, but if I’m going in blind, it won’t end well.

It didn’t take long before I got frustrated, so I sat there with the controller in my lap while CK continued to play. When he realized I wasn’t playing, he paused the game to question me. I explained how I didn’t know what I was doing, and I think he finally understood. He took me through a short tutorial, and I was back to being happy again. Now that I knew what I was doing, I was even able to beat him at his own game.

When 11:30 rolled around, I made my way to the bedroom. I asked CK to join me, but he wanted to continue playing. So, I left him to his own devices while I brushed me teeth and got ready to go to bed.

When I was ready to climb between the sheets, CK was still in the living room playing video games. I came into the room and was very blunt. “Can you please come to bed? I didn’t trek into the city so you could play video games all night. If I knew that was what was going to happen, I would have stayed in Hoboken,” I declared. I know it was a bit heavy-handed and melodramatic, but I was very put off by his actions. He got the picture and joined me in bed.

I was happy he came to join me and thrilled to be falling asleep in the arms of the man I loved.

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Highlights From My Trip

CK and I were about to hit our two-month mark. It was two of the best months of my life, and I wouldn’t trade them for the world. I learned I could truly find love in a man, and slowly but surely, I started to give more and more of myself to him. The wall I built up around my heart was not only cracking but also crumbling. There were a handful of guys in my past I had come to enjoy the extended company of beyond a hookup, but CK was the first man I ever really came to love.

My life was no longer my life. There was no longer a me. It became our life and us. I stopped making plans for one. CK was front and center in my thoughts at all times. We were living together in two homes. We were dining together, drinking together, taking trips together, etc.

CK’s move to an apartment with roommates allowed him a new cashflow he hadn’t had before, however, I was trying to prevent us from blowing that on going out to dinner in the New York City. It’s not cheap, and if we were going to build a life together, he needed to start saving. I wasn’t thrilled with spending all that money going out to eat either. It wasn’t that we couldn’t afford it, but we felt it was a bit of a waste. When I was living on my own, I made dinner for myself almost every night. Going out to dinner felt like a luxury and a treat. I wanted to get back to that. We both agreed to live more economically wherever possible. Since CK isn’t the biggest cook, I even started making food and taking it to his apartment so we could have convenient meals prepared. For instance, one night after work, we grabbed some groceries and thawed the frozen spaghetti sauce I made for dinner. We cooked together in the kitchen and ate in front of his TV. It was nice, it was cheap and it was delicious. That meal cost us pennies compared to what we’d spend going out to an Italian restaurant. We were also taking advantage of Groupons and Living Socials whenever possible so on the nights we didn’t feel like cooking, we could grab a nice dinner out and not pay full price.

As a gay man, I’m not quite as mirror conscious as some, but I am a bit vain in some aspects. I love how I look with a great tan, and I love it even more when my hair has a bit of depth and volume. Sadly, a few years ago, my hairline started receding. There was little I could do to prevent it, so I did what I could to mask it. That meant getting my haircut in a certain style, but it also meant highlighting it so it wasn’t one solid color against my scalp. This is one of my few gay vices.

Since I was in junior high, I stopped going to my father’s barber and started going to my mother’s hair stylist. Granted, since moving away from home, I didn’t go home every time I needed a haircut, but I did make it a point to go home and get it highlighted periodically throughout the year.

My hair got naturally lighter in the summer, so before the sun worked its magic, I would always try to trek home for some carmel colored highlights. My hair stylist was a magician. He never measured, but he always got my color just right. The one time I was left under the heat too long, everything slid to the back of the cap, bleaching the back of my head. He managed to dye my hair back to it’s natural color. You couldn’t tell anything went wrong.

My hair stylist also charges me a measly $30 for the highlights and the cut. Granted it’s in the middle of nowhere in Pennsylvania, but it would cost more over $100 to have this done in New York City. Whenever I get my hair cut by someone in the metro area, they ask about the highlights. They compliment them, and I get a big kick out of telling them how much I paid for them — Their jaws hit the floor.

It was particularly difficult to get home before the summer sun this year. My sister wasn’t being cooperative about trips home, so I had to plan something on my own. That meant hopping on the motorcycle and making the two-hour trek home (costing me $10 in gas). I didn’t want to give up my weekend because that was when I went to the beach with my boyfriend, but it was nearly impossible to get away during the week. On top of this, it had to be planned around nice weather. I couldn’t make the trip home if rain was in the forecast.

Summer was passing by, so I decided to take off a half day from work to get it done. After work Wednesday evening, I sped home trying to avoid traffic and made it to my parents’ house just before the sun went down. I found it very sweet that CK was worried about me. He was very concerned with my safety, even after riding with me on the bike many times. I was truly touched. I told him when I was heading home, and I texted him as soon as I got to my parents’ place. I told him it would take roughly two hours, and he was texting me worried after about an hour and a half. It showed me how much he truly cared about me and how much he loved me. “I don’t know what I would do if I lost you babe!” he said.

CK was against the trip from the onset. He didn’t like the idea of me getting highlights, but I told him to have faith. He’d seen pictures of me in the summer and commented how good I looked. I promised him I wouldn’t come back looking like an a$$hole. I think he thought I was getting my tips frosted.

It was also nice to catch up with my parents and have a relaxing night in front of the TV with a home-cooked meal. The next morning, I woke at the crack of dawn to hit up the salon. In an hours time, I looked like a new man, and I was back on the road. I had to get back to work by mid-afternoon.

That night, CK saw me for the first time in person, after asking me to send pictures to his phone. He commented on how good I looked. “Babe, I was really worried. I thought you were going to look ridiculous,” he added. I gave him a big kiss and reminded him how I knew what I was doing, cheekily.

Even if I came back looking ridiculous, I’m sure he would have played along and told me I looked fine. We were in love, and my hair wasn’t going to change that. On the flip-side, I think the highlights worked a little magic and made me more attractive to him because, after being away from each other for a night, we had some great passionate sex before dozing off.

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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…

Saturday had arrived, and it was St. Patty’s Day. I was out early in the morning to hit up the gym. I wasn’t going to find myself wasting another day lying around my apartment looking for sex. It was the true start to my staycation and to the new me. It was gorgeous outside, and I was motivated.

As I left the gym, I ran into K and one of my other friends. They were heading into the city to drink, but I wasn’t interested. I’d just come from the gym. I’m not a fan of day drinking to begin with. I said goodbye and continued on my way home. D’s girlfriend was up from Philly that weekend, so I texted them to see what they were up to. They were grabbing brunch and had no plans for the rest of the day. I told them I was bored and lonely, and if they thought of anything, I’d be game. I also called my old roommate to see what he was up to. He was studying for yet another test he had to take for work. I knew it was useless to try to convince him to do anything else.

Finally, D and his girlfriend decided to swing by. They came up, and we just lounged around chatting. She’d never been to my apartment before, so I showed her around. After some time, we decided to go for a drive and check some new cars for D to possibly lease. I was game, so we made our way uptown in the great weather to D’s car.

We decided to drive around Jersey City since there were a few nice neighborhoods I’d never explored. I was a bit curious, and the other two were as well. I also wanted to scope out a spot I had in mind for dinner that night with the guy I spoke to on the phone for two hours, Travel Agent. We drove by the cute cafe on the corner in an upscale neighborhood of Jersey City, The Hamilton Inn. I’d seen it a few times before and had been curious how it was. I pulled up the menu on my phone and suggested the idea to T.A.

He was still working, but he said it sounded like a good idea. We planned to work out the rest of the logistics later.

We drove around for quite a bit more before finally returning to Hoboken. They dropped me off at home. I hopped in the shower and began to get ready for the evening with T.A. I’d been texting him a bit and made a reservation at the restaurant for 7:00. When he told me it’d have to be later, I called and changed the reservation for 8:30. When the time came, he picked me up in his nice Audi. He was a good-looking guy. He wasn’t someone you’d stop on the street and say, “Damn!” but he was good-looking. We jumped right into conversation. It was fairly relaxed. I feel he may have been slightly uptight, but I tried to remain candid and relaxed.

The Hamilton was exactly what I was hoping for. It had a decent crowd, the food looked and smelled amazing, and we got a nice table to sit and chat with each other. The obvious and easy thing to decide was to order a bottle of Malbec to share. I still couldn’t help feeling he was uneasy about things. He just didn’t seem to relax. I tried to lighten things up and asked if he wanted to split an appetizer. He agreed, but it wasn’t terribly easy to pick something. He defaulted to me, and after discussing it, I finally decided on the pierogies with goat cheese appetizer.

We began by talking about where we grew up in more detail than we discussed on the phone. The conversation shifted to our jobs. I got to learn in greater detail what he does. I told him about my job, and slowly I began to realize I was monopolizing the conversation. He’d ask me a question, and I’d answer in detail. When I’d ask him questions, his answers would be short. I wanted to get to know him. He seemed like a decent guy.

The waiter returned and we ordered. I was debating between he risotto and chicken. I decided on the chicken, and he decided on the risotto.

We talked some more until our food arrived. Or should I say, I talked some more. I would never say it was a bad date, but I would also not say it was a great one either. We shared some of our meals with the other. It was a nice time. I was enjoying his company, and the food was delicious. I was looking forward to a second date so we could think of something more relaxed to do. Hopefully that would break him out of his shell.

We declined dessert since he had to get home because he had a big work project the following day. He expressed to me how much he enjoyed the date. I was happy to hear it. We split the tab and made our way back to his car. On the way back to my apartment, we passed another restaurant I was interested in trying. I mentioned it to him, and he said, “Maybe next time we should try there.” That was a very hopeful statement. If he was already thinking about next time, maybe he really did enjoy it too.

We stopped in front of my apartment, and he put the car in park. He leaned over and gave me a kiss. I pulled back and went in for a second. It was nice, and I wanted him to know I was interested. I told him, “Call me when you’re back from Mexico. Or, you can text/call whenever you like,” with a smile as I exited the car. He told me we’d be in touch.

After that, I heard nothing from him. He clearly stated his enjoyment and mentioned a second date. How was I not supposed to think he was interested? I sent him a text to tell him of my good time with him, but I got no response. I checked Grindr, and sure enough, he was online. Clearly he was ignoring me. I messaged him on Grindr as well. When a day passed and I heard nothing back, I decided he would either deny this or the “relationship” would be dead before it began. “I hope you’re not ignoring me. I thought you were a classier guy than that.” He had given me two different phone numbers, so I asked if I was texting the wrong number. Finally, he responds explaining he was busy and apologized. He told me he was interested in seeing me again as well.

However, after that, I didn’t hear from him again. I know when I’m not particularly interested in a guy, I don’t outright tell him that. However, I don’t talk to him about future dates to lead him on. It was very disappointing, but I wasn’t going to let one guy get me down. My Grindr diet was slowly working. I was back to concentrating on dates and not sex. Hopefully, with enough time, I’d find a good guy to settle down with — Someone to be the reason I delete Grindr forever…

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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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Gym Hottie

Since my breakup with Smiles, I’ve been making greater efforts to spend more time with friends. I didn’t neglect them while I was dating him, but I certainly didn’t shower them with attention either. They’re very important to me, and I wanted to make sure they knew they were appreciated. Of course, I also just loved hanging out with them, otherwise they wouldn’t be my friends.

One of my old roommates asked me if I wanted to go out to the bar. It’d been a long time since he’d done this. It came quite out of the blue, but I was very happy for the invitation. Since we don’t live together, we get along much better. It wasn’t that we fought all the time while we lived together or anything. It’s just much simpler now. I look forward to bar nights with him.

At the same time, one of the girls who I know from my annual Martha’s Vineyard trips was planning a birthday gathering the same night a block from my office. I asked my old roommate if he minded going there for happy hour. I thought it would make things convenient so I could spend time with both. It’d been a long time since I caught up with both friends.

My old roommate and I arrived at the bar early. We made our way through the crowd at Gingerman to the bar to order some beers. I offered to pick up the first round, as I generally do. I handed him his beer and we cheersed. It was at that moment I learned it was his birthday. I had no idea until he said something. I felt like such a sh*t. He was a close friend, and I was usually up on that sort of thing. I have everyone’s birthday in my phone, so I checked to see how I missed the date. It turned out I didn’t have his birthday in there, but with more investigation, I had scheduled it a month later on the same date. I told him how bad I felt, but also added, “At least I offered to buy the round! Haha.” He laughed and quickly forgave my mistake. I thought about it for a second, and realized I was the only one meeting him for drinks. I was the one he wanted to spend his birthday with. I was touched and happy.

We stood by the door because it was the only place we could stand, drink and have a discussion. He told me his plans to go to Atlantic City that weekend for his birthday with a busload of people. I wished him luck since it sounded like such a complicated situation.

After some time, the birthday girl arrived. She came in and gave me a big hug. I introduced her to my old roommate, and we quickly caught up. She decided to make her way to the back of the bar to see if she could grab a table when the bouncer chased us away from the front door. My old roommate and I had already been back there and knew there were no tables, so I let her find out for herself after telling her that. He and I made our way to the front corner of the bar. Just as we did, a couch opened up. I texted the birthday girl to come join us. About ten minutes later, she finally did and brought the rest of her group over.

I talked with my old roommate as more and more people filtered in. It was becoming an intimate little circle. I introduced him to everyone that joined that I knew. When the evening was dragging on, I decided I was read to head home. I had to take equipment home from work, so I was going to book a car service from my office. I invited my old roommate to join me since he still lives in Hoboken as well, and he accepted. I pointed out how I bought all his drinks and provided him a ride home, proving I wasn’t a bad friend who forgot his birthday after all.

We said goodbye to the birthday girl and the rest of the group. She pulled me aside and told me how cute he was. I explained to her he wasn’t a love interest. I pointed out how she’d met him at my Christmas parties, as well as his girlfriend. She was so confused, but I realized what happened. He was guilty by association. Because he was sitting on the couch with me, and because of my status as a gay man, everyone who knew this bit of information also assumed he was gay as well.

As we walked to the car, I pointed out to him what happened. Even though there was nothing I could have done to prevent it, I apologized to him for it. He was oblivious to it, and he laughed it off.

That night, I also had to say goodbye to another ex-roommate. He was still a good friend and tennis partner. He was moving to San Francisco for work, which meant I would probably see him once a year like my other San Francisco friends. I was very sad to see another friend go. Slowly but surely, all my friends were moving away or pairing up and falling off the face of the earth. I know this is part of getting older, but that doesn’t make it any less painful.

My sister and I went to the bar where he and his friends were gathering. It was nice to get to see him since it had been so long. He’d been quite busy with his new job, but now I’d see even less of him. After I got to chat with him for a bit, I texted my other friends, D and his girlfriend and asked what they were up to. They wanted to meet up for drinks, so we decided to go to Cooper’s Union, where I know the owner and bartender.

We met them there, and the whole lot of us wasn’t charged for a single drink the entire night. He always took great care of me and my friends when he worked at my usual watering hole. Now that he branched off and opened his own bar, the attention only got better.

I had a great time with everyone that night. I got to see so many of my friends. Normally I’m too lazy to do any of these things. I always bail last minute out of selfishness, but I was trying to be better about it. It was already paying off. I had a really great time.

In the middle of all this, a gorgeous man walked into the bar. I’d seen him many times before. I’d actually seen quite a bit of him as well. He was a usual at my favorite bar, and he was a usual at my gym in the city. Apparently we both lived in Hoboken, and we both worked in the same neighborhood. I’d had a crush on him for a looonnnggg time, but had a very strong feeling he was straight. He was still gorgeous and fun to look at.

At the same time, I noticed he caught my sister’s eye as well. It’s ironic, but we have the same taste in men periodically. We both acknowledged shared interest in him, but I pointed out to her it wasn’t even worth a battle. She’d already won. There was almost no question in my mind he was straight “How do you know?” she asked. “I can just tell. But, I can also tell you he looks great with no clothes on — At least from the backside anyway,” I added. We both laughed and she continued to ogle him from afar. I did as well, but I was much more discreet about it.

When I was tired and it was time to go home, I gathered everyone to make our way home. Of course I wasn’t going to walk out without paying. I gathered cash from everyone and handed him a wad of cash before walking out the door.

I had a great night. I saw a lot of my friends in one night, I got to scope out a hottie I’ve had my eye on, and I had cheap drinks. Maybe single life was working out well for me. Maybe it was time I tried that for a while… Maybe not…

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Late Night Rendezvous

I nailed down plans to meet Connecticut Cutie after work that Tuesday night. He told me he’d be in my neighborhood, so it would work out well.

He ended up running late from dinner with friends, so I stayed in the office and did a little blogging until he was ready. When I go the call that he was on the corner, I went down to meet him.

My favorite date spot in the city lately has been The Breslin, so I suggested we go there. It’s a short walk from my office, and we had great flirtatious conversation on the walk there. He joked about going to a psychologist for mother issues, and I made more than a few Oedipal comments in jest. I told him I don’t go to a therapist nor need one because I have free therapy sessions all the time. I use my friends for that service. I’m sure they all just love to hear all about my problems and issues, but hell. What are friends for?

We also talked about our days at work. I had a very easy day involving a lot of personal work with just a little professional work.

When we got to The Breslin, it was very crowded. I couldn’t believe how many people were there on a Tuesday night. We had a hard time finding a seat, so he ordered drinks at the bar while I tried to hold some ground in the corner. I was standing next to some of the most obnoxious men I’d ever met. You could tell they were a real “boys’ club” type, making lewd comments. I knew it was only a matter of time before I heard the f@ggot term thrown out. I decided to move away from the group before they p*ssed me off more.

I ordered my usual dark and stormy, and he followed my lead. He’d never had it before, and I told him it was a good winter drink. He tasted it, and was happy with his selection.

FInally a table opened up, so we jumped on it. Space was limited, so we sat with our legs intertwined. This was good body language once again and made it easy for a little leg touching. Our conversation was going very well. We were both telling stories and laughing a lot. I told him about how much I get into Halloween and started showing him pictures from Facebook. He was shocked because he never got into the holiday. It was always something haphazard and last-minute for him.

Throughout the course of the night, there was a lot of leg touching. It was nice because we could flirt in this way without making a spectacle of ourselves. The only people who had a view of this were the bartenders, and I didn’t care if they noticed. It was mutual. As much as I was rubbing his legs, he was rubbing mine.

When he needed to use the facilities, I told him how to get there. I joked about the long journey he’d have to make through the basement of the hotel. He looked at me like I was insane. I equated it to backlot Disney. When he returned, he detailed his journey through the underground labyrinth he encountered. He detailed the myriad of characters he passed on his journey and joked about how strenuous it was. I liked his sense of humor. It was all something I would say. We were meshing well.

However, I was still having a hard time getting past the flamboyance. I had a feeling he was holding back some as well. I liked the guy quite a bit, but I also wanted a real man, not a man who acted in a feminine manner. The distance thing was still in the back of my mind. The vetting process was far from over. I’d have to continue to see where things went and evaluate if it was worth the extra effort.

I hadn’t eaten any dinner, so I ordered some fries from the bar. We joked about working out and my being fat as of late. I know I’m far from fat, but there is a certain level that is fat for me. I don’t like it, and it makes me want to eat better and work out more.

After three dark and stormies, when I brought it to his attention, he realized he needed to make his way to the train. If he missed it, he’d have to wait another hour for the next. I told him I’d walk him half way — Basically back to my office. He needed to stop at the bank along the way, but we also really needed to hustle. When we got to my office, I told him I’d walk him one more avenue before heading home. When we got to Fifth Avenue, we embraced on the corner. We started kissing, and this quickly turned into a bit of a makeout session. He was a great kisser, so I didn’t mind one bit. I was starting to worry he’d miss his train. We’d already joked about how his parents extended his curfew for the evening. I knew they’d be royally p*ssed if he made them pick him up at midnight.

It was comical as we both acknowledged the other’s hardon as we pulled back. We were both really enjoying each other’s company. I said goodbye, and he sped off to Grand Central Station.

I made my way home, and made it a point to text him and tell him how much I enjoyed myself that evening. I learned he did in fact make the train and would get home at a decent hour. He responded, and I could tell he was really into me. I needed to make a decision fast, or I would risk really hurting him. But, I still wasn’t sure. I had a lot to think about. I would be traveling to Chicago for work, so this would allow me time apart and time to think about what I really want.

We talked about possibly getting together over the weekend, possibly in Hoboken. I knew once that happened, things were going to escalate fast. I already knew he had a great body from his revealing pictures on a4a. I knew he had a healthy sex drive, so that wouldn’t be an issue. I just needed to decide if the flamboyance thing was something I could get over — Something I could either look past or fully embrace. It wasn’t my style, but after all, I was constantly expanding my horizons…

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Let’s Do Lunch

A few days after my date with Connecticut Cutie, we made plans to grab lunch.

Apparently, he had a very laxed work schedule, and he was able to come down to my neighborhood to meet me for a bite. It was nice to have a lunch date. Most days, I eat my lunch at my desk so I can go to the gym in the afternoon. It’d been some time since my last lunch date was well.

I rearranged my day so I could make this happen. I did not want to cancel on him last minute. Of course right when I was getting ready to walk out the door, people started coming to me with work. I told them I had a meeting to run to, and I snuck out of the office.

He had chosen to meet me at Cafe Rustico. It’s a small pizza place around the corner. Since I was a little late, he went to scope the place out.

When I met him on the corner by my office, he told me he wasn’t thrilled with it and asked if I knew of any good places in the neighborhood we could go. I picked a spot, Lena, and ran it by him. He was fine with it, so we decided on that. We ordered our food, and I picked up the tab. We found a small table to eat and chat. He told me more about his getting locked in the bathroom on the train going home after leaving me from our last date. He was quite a goofball. I loved it.

This time, we spent a lot of time talking about my roommates and his. Mine being my current lot, and his being his parents. Both had their positives, but they also had some big negatives as well. We also talked about our coworkers and bosses and our different situations at work. It was nice learning about his job. Last we spoke, it was left a little vague. However, overall, I think I monopolized most of the conversation.

I was enjoying spending time with him. I wasn’t completely sold on him yet. Only time would tell. But, he was certainly a nice guy and was winning me over slowly. My main hesitation was that maybe he was a little “too gay” for me. I wondered if he’d get along with my friends. My other hesitation was that he was living in Connecticut. How often were we going to be able to see each other?

We talked about what each of us had planned for the weekend. I had nothing special going on, and he was helping his dad remodel their bathroom at home. He joked about his “manly DIY project.”

After we each finished, we made our way to the door. I had to get back to work, and he needed to visit one of his stores and check on the merchandising.

We stood outside the restaurant to say our goodbyes. We exchanged a very nice hug, and then he went in for the big kiss. We pulled back, and he went in again for another, like he just couldn’t get enough. He was a good kisser. I liked it. It was a good sign for him.

I was slightly uncomfortable knowing any one of my coworkers could walk by at any second, but another part of me just didn’t care. Let them see. I’m not hiding anymore. I’m not going to walk around the office broadcasting my sexuality, but I also am not going to hide it.

I walked in the other direction with a smile from ear to ear. It’d been a while since a man kissed me like that. Lately, I’d been the one to initiate. Smiles was never particularly affectionate either.

I was heading to Chicago again for work, and I wanted to see him again before I left. When I got back to my desk, I texted him to thank him for meeting me and told him we’d get together again soon…

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It’s About Time

Today is a Fast Forward Monday!!!  

My apologies to those who have come to expect Fast Forward Fridays. I have been traveling for work/pleasure, and I got caught up in things. I haven’t had a chance to write the second post, so I’m making up for it today. 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…

After missing the opportunity to finally meet my online friend after almost a years time chasing each other around, the day finally arrived when I was scheduled to finally meet him in the flesh. This was well overdue, and I was quite excited. I wasn’t about to get ahead of myself, but the suspense had been building up for quite some time.

We discussed where we would go for drinks or dinner and finally settled on Charritos, a Mexican restaurant I’ve been to on numerous occasions. In fact, this wasn’t the first date I took there. We planned to meet at 7:30. I knew the place didn’t take reservations, but it was a Monday night on a holiday weekend. I figured everyone was home getting ready for the coming workweek. It also wasn’t the nicest night, as snow was in the forecast, so I thought we’d be alright.

When I arrived, I was immediately proved wrong. I stood in front waiting for him to arrive noticing every table (all 8 of them) filled with diners. Finally, he arrived, and we attempted to go inside out of the cold. Even this proved difficult since there was nowhere to go once we were in there. While we waited for a table to clear, we awkwardly chatted.

This was surprisingly difficult. He seemed so incredibly flirty online and charismatic, and the man standing in front of me was a very shy reserved individual. I couldn’t get over it. Where was the guy I’d been chatting about my body and sexual interests in detail? Where was the flirt?

We talked about work and the weather. It was a struggle to find a topic to discuss. Everything felt forced. It wasn’t awful, but it certainly wasn’t what I expected.

Finally we got a table and sat. After we ordered, we started to chat a bit more. I asked most of the questions. He always responded in detail, but he never asked a question in turn. That may have helped the conversation flow much more freely, but it wasn’t there. I had to volunteer all my information. I feel awkward talking about myself when I wasn’t asked to. It was as if I was interviewing him for a job.

One topic we got on was siblings. I don’t know why, but that topic has been coming up more and more frequently on my dates. I’ve actually noticed it and tried curbing it. I learned about his siblings as well. It was nice to hear he came from such a similar family dynamic.

We talked about his job as well. I was very intrigued by it. He told me all about his schooling, his specialty in the field relevant to the gay community, his boss, the clinical work he does… This was really shaping up to be quite the catch of a man. He was very sweet and thoughtful. However, our chemistry was not mixing AT ALL! It was so disappointing. On paper he looked so good. Online, he seemed a sexual match for my libido. In person, he was a mouse. Night and day from my expectations.

After quite a while, the waiter basically asked us to leave. There were people waiting for a table, so they kicked us out. I was more than a little p*ssed, because I thought it was very unprofessional and rude, however, it was time for the date to conclude.

We’d already talked about him coming over to my apartment before the date. I was still very sexually attracted to him. I wondered if he’d relax when he was out of the public eye. As we walked outside, I asked him where he parked and told him I’d walk him to his car. I was hoping for a signal along the way to show his interest. I thought he’d drive me to my apartment and come up.

When we got to the car, it was the complete opposite. I hope you can understand my explanation without a diagram:

I thought we’d at least say a proper goodbye. I was hoping for a kiss considering all I could think about during the meal was how good his lips would feel. When we got to the car, I stood on the sidewalk, and he walked to the front passengers panel in front of the rearview mirror. That would have been fine. I may have even used the car as a backboard for a strong kiss, BUT there was also a chopped off parking meter between him and myself. Yes. A metal pole about four feet tall was between the two of us. I don’t think he could have strategically showed his lack of interest any more other than to simply get in the car and drive away.

We said goodbye, and I told him it was nice meeting him. He said, “Likewise.” That’s when I grew some balls and took what I wanted. I moved forward, reached my long arm over the pole, hooked it under his arm around his back, and pulled him in for a kiss. It wasn’t a long kiss or a makeout session, but I certainly wasn’t going to be satisfied with a peck.

And with that, I turned and walked home in the flurries falling from the sky. I was still a little blown away by the lack of spark during the date. I wasn’t even ready to go home. I decided to stop by my friends’ place on the way home and say hi.

I came in and we caught up on what’s going on with each other before I told he and his wife about my awkward date. He was a little baffled by it as well. He couldn’t understand what was going on. He really loved the parking meter pole story as well. I was so nonplussed.

I sulked home after saying goodnight to my friends. When I got home, I was curious to see if he was back on a4a. Surprise! I was right. I wasn’t going to get past this immediately. I needed to ask him about what happened.

“Surprise, surprise. Look who’s on here,” I messaged him. We chatted a bit awkwardly about the date. He messaged me back: “I was waiting for you to ask me to come back.” He wanted to come back to my apartment. He even brought his c*ck ring and poppers with him. I was so confused, and I made that clear to him. He wasn’t aware of his mixed signals, nor was he aware of the pole. He just thought I wasn’t interested since I walked him to his car. It was all a big misunderstanding. “I had a good time. I thought the conversation was nice,” he added. That doesn’t make up for the awkward date however. That just cleared up the mixed signals at its close.

Just to satiate my curiosity, I told him we would have to try to fix what went wrong when I got back from my work trip to San Francisco. He agreed, so we kept in touch over the next week.

I decided to see what was going on with the southern guy. He texted me to see how my weekend was, so I picked up the phone and called him. Again, we talked for almost an hour while I packed. This completely made up for my awkward date. I was really looking forward to getting back so I could finally meet him. Hopefully this one wouldn’t be as big a disappointment.

In the morning, I had a message from my new southern gentleman caller. He was asking for a picture of my “morning excitement” we’d discussed previously. I denied his request and told him he’d have to wait to see the real thing. This was my way of getting him on the ball about meeting up with me.

I also got a text message from my friend and recent neighbor. It was very sweet of him to do so. I needed to make it a priority to hang out with him when I got back to New York.

All that would have to wait on the backburner… The following day, I was headed to San Francisco for the week for work. Waiting for me were two men. One I attempted a long distance relationship with whom I would meet for a cocktail. The other, a great confident and online friend whom I was extremely excited to meet in person, especially in the bedroom…

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