Friends


I thought I’d not touch this blog ever again but somehow I felt compelled to open it up tonight and that was just enough. I couldn’t resist making an entry.

I couldn’t even imagine where to begin. So much has evolved since summer 2008 passed. Of course you all knew about my breakup with Mr. Chicago. I hurt and ached for a couple of months but I learned and grew from that experience. I compromised on so many elements. Mr. Chicago and I are still good friends and communicate once a week. He’ll always be a part of what was special in my life. I was able to tell him that some three weeks after broke things off with me. Sometimes TIMING, amongst other issues, simply doesn’t img_00711cooperate in two individual’s lives as was the case for us. In any event, Bear411 has been a good matchmaker for me for meeting and making new friends. And some have turned out to be dates, and two in particular, boyfriends. The latest is Mr. Maryland. He makes me melt in so many ways. He’s a gentle soul, a gentleman, full of faith as I am (that’s Catholic faith boys!!), handsome as all hell, a wicked sense of humor and makes me laugh. And boy does his know how to talk “PIGGY” just at the right time! GRRRR! The distance never helps but we are taking it slowly and seeing how things play out. I was out to see him at the New Year and am going back out to catch up with him at Rehoboth Beach in July.

Funny how life throws us unique curveballs. See, if any of you started reading me back in 2006, you know one of my first articles talked about a guy online that hurt me incredibly when all I was looking for a means of making a gay friend. Well turns out that guy is the best friend of Mr. Maryland! Have I shared that with Mr. Maryland? Hell yes…I have nothing to hide. They happen to still be friends but as with all friendships where people move further away geographically, that relationship seems to be strained. Again, funny how things can come full circle.

As for the gay me…my journey continues. But oh how far I have come. About two months ago I said ‘f*ck it’ and told my business partner that I was gay. What response did I in essence get from her? “Tony, I already knew…in fact Tony, several people already know. We were all waiting for your to say something.” LOL Go figure. So know I am out to most people here in southern California where I live. As for family, that remains the one touchy area for me but I am close, close to wanting to say something to my mother (who already asked me two years ago if I thought I was gay – I just wasn’t ready to say yes but responded with a “I wonder sometimes.”) and to one of my sisters who I am really close with. We’ll see. I’d like to have accomplished that well in advance of my 5oth which is in April 2010. I want to be able to celebrate it with both family and FRIENDS, regardless of gay or straight.

While I have mentioned friends, I just want to say I am still very much in touch with SPIDER! Sure my old readers remember him. He has had a rough road these past two years…many ups and downs, emotionally and physically. But he is doing fine and hanging in there. We talk almost daily, sometimes twice. He is and will always be my dearest of friends. How can one let go of someone that was part of me for so long.

And really the last thing which many of my earliest readers may be wondering about…work. I started that business with my school mate finally back in June 2008. Obviously our year anniversary is fast approaching. We have experienced some pains, economically, professionally, etc. but we are moving along with the excitement that was there a year ago. We are in the midst of a design house and our space turned out exceptional I believe. We’ve gotten great feedback from previews and vendors. Now we just need to hope the public reacts and maybe comes to see us for business. I wish I could share my website with you but I am not ready for there to be a connection with this site. This one has been a very personal site and my work will remain professional. Perhaps one day I will simply shut off portions of this blog and maybe pick up writing about my work…one never knows.

SO THERE YOU HAVE THE LATEST AND GREATEST!

I wonder how many people will even see this post that were from my original readership. The blogging world can be a fickle one when someone doesn’t post or manage to bring readership to other linked blogs!

HUGS!

Forewarning: This post is a means for me to let go of some feelings and hurt. It is not intended to ‘attack’ the person described in it.

This past Wednesday night I returned from a business-pleasure trip to Chicago…a week’s worth. I stayed with a close friend. The business portion of my trip was mediocre at best. I did establish some resource information and contacts for my interior design business. What was lacking though in this arena was a VARIETY of buyer resources at the Merchandise Mart. Many of the resources in the building were already located out here on the West Coast. I had hope to find a good collection of accessory sources there but instead all I meandered through were miles of gift and trinket shops. Now if I could only find a means of being a pivot source to pull all the higher end accessory producers together…I’d have a nice hefty income. LOL!

As for the pleasure portion of my trip… it ‘kinda’ went south and made for an exceptionally agonizing final 36 hours. See that close friend I mentioned earlier… I had been seeing him for the past 15 months, just hoping our budding friendship would evolve further into a strong BF relationship. And going from there! BUT the relationship portion came to an adrupt end Tuesday at lunch. I was scheduled to leave his place/Chicago this past Wednesday night.

In some ways I had expected to this to come about. As I got to know him, I saw some things in him that bothered me. But for what ever reason, I chose to look the other way, hoping those things would change. I compromised too much and looked the other way too long. And well…he caught me off guard. The relationship possibilities are over. He told me that he thought we had a very good friendship and wanted to retain it. He simply felt we did not have enough in common on certain key issues – family, religion, and politics. Lets just say that when he uttered those words, the ‘wind was taken from my sails.’ I could say nothing for almost fifteen minutes. Then he said,, “Well I guess you aren’t going to say anything, ” as if we were suppose to be having a normal conversation. All I managed to say was, “What more can I say. If your feelings are what they are, I can’t change that. Yes I have cared for you and hoped something would come of all this (dating time).” That was everything I managed to get out. Then I went almost silent on him for the rest of the trip. It was the bizarrest feeling. Perhaps some guys would have lashed out, but I simply could say nothing.

A portion of me had fallen for him a long time ago. So knowing it was over hurt like hell. Hearing he still wanted to be friends was no consolation. Especially since with him I some how think the friendship will fade away, not for my lack of trying to retain it but his. See my idea of friendship is staying in contact on a fairly routine basis and knowing that he will make as much effort to call me impromptu as I would him.  I view visiting a friend in the same manner.  The whole time I saw him over the past 15 months,  I flew out to visit him 7 times which cost-wise added up quickly.  He made one trip.  Perhaps that should have been my signal to part, at least with respect to the relationship, even though he never had expressed a disinterest in me.

Hard dealing with the loss of a relationship of intimacy.  Well that’s enough!  It’s over with.  As much as I feel ripped apart and exposed, I need to move forward.  I know now that if someone is going to love me, they are going to need to be “accepting” of the family and faith that are part of my life.  I make no mention of politics because, in my humble opinion, the moral component that evolves from those two elements is what in part dictates politics.

I am at a place now, trying to figure out where the next short chapter of my life is going.  I just have come to one major realization (for me)…the gay world is just like any other world.  Though there are inequities, it is no different than what has existed throughout history. For all that our society chooses to blame government, churches, etc., it really gets down to the INDIVIDUAL and his or her ability to see beyond HIS OR HER WORLD.  When we get to that state, I think the world will be filled with much peace, compassion, and more importantly LOVE.

I know, I know…I went a little off tangent on the last two paragraphs but you will have to trust me that there is a distinct tie between the two items discussed.  I need to spare placing all the blame on the man I was falling for.  LOL!

I don’t know what is possessing me to write tonight at nearly 12:45am but guess I am not ready to sleep.  I have been perusing some of my old favorite blog sites to in part, get caught up with the news of some of my friends.  For some, things have changed dramatically…new homes, weight loss, moving in together, etc.  For others, it was obvious all was status quo from where I had left off reading in April of this year (2008).

But I did learn something…seems like many forget you once blogged and simply pull you from their blogroll.  Laughing out loud!  I shouldn’t be nor am I surprised really not to see my little ‘ol blog listed on some of my fellow bloggers’ sites.  Guess when you are gone for several months like I have been without even making comments in others’ blogs, one doesn’t know what to expect.  “Is he merely taking a break?”  “Is he gone for good?”  “Oh well, I need to do a bit of housecleaning so I’ll just eliminate this blogroll!”

Well I am alive!  And I haven’t completely shut this blog down.  Gonna write on the spur of the moment and gonna do so only when I have time and feel I can devote some here.  To those of you who have held on to my link…thanks.  I hope you are all still popping in to see if there is any activity here.

News to report:

– My new partnership business dealing with high-end residential and commercial design is rolling along fine.

– My business partner and I are going to be published in a local magazine with something we designed for a charity event (to be auctioned to highest bidder).

– I continue to meet more guys than I could ever imagine on Bear411.  All I can say is GRRRRRRRR!  Quite flattering and many are such nice guys.  Some friendships have evolved.

– I am wondering if there isn’t one guy in particular (off Bear411) that might be capturing my attention…maybe my heart?!?!

– Spider thus far has been given a clean bill of health on his colorectal cancer though they continue to monitor him due to a spot seen on his lungs.  The good news there is that he was in Orlando the past two weeks for follow-up tests after 3 months of not seeing the doctors and they say that the undetermined dark mass has not changed in size.  Keep him in your prayers.  He does have some on-going heart problems that most likely will remain but nothing serious.  He simply may feel tired indefinitely.  Otherwise he is in good spirits.  We’ve talked nearly twice a day for the past two weeks, much like we used to when he was in Orlando.  Obviously the ability to have these conversations has occurred since he has been in Orlando. If you didn’t already know, when he is in Virginia, it’s exceptionally hard to get through to him and him to call out due to cell coverage in his area (or lack of that is).

Anyhow, that is about a wrap up for me.  Just some food for thought and a bit of news.  Now can a guy get some loving around here and his name back up in ‘lights’ around the blogosphere?!

Hard to believe that it will be four months next Monday, July 28th, since my last blog post. I am not necessarily saying I am back but just felt this uncontrolled urge to update my close buds that care enough about me on where life has taken me. Hell I don’t even know how many people will even have me linked to even receive notice that I’ve posted

So what I have I been up to? Well, I’ve gone from being a hired free lance designer in my own business (don’t even begin to ask me what I mean about that last comment) to seeing a supposedly three-way partnership business venture collapse nearly two months into the gig to starting up a two-person partnership with one of the remaining threesome. The later has been in place for about two months. I’d share the name of my company but for now I desire to keep that private. We are doing high-end residential interior design and light commercial interior design. In fact, one of our very first residential jobs under the new company has lead us off into a commercial tenant improvement project for a small financial consulting firm. It’s providing me with an avenue to try out the skills which I acquired at my paying commercial interior design. Oh, one bit of other news with respect to work…I finally tendered my resignation of my commercial interior design job last Tuesday, July 15, effective Wednesday, July 16. That notice was not intended to be as short as it appears. It should have been a week’s notice but I had a series of misfortunes evolve the week prior that postponed my capability to submit my resignation sooner.

In any event, we are slowly building up momentum as a firm. We just need to keep it going. We are working on marketing material as well as our website. We are also getting published little by little. We have a charity that we are participating in for the first time this year. The proceeds will benefit a large local children’s hospital. Our item that we are designing for the event was among 6 to be chosen for auctioning out of 25-30 submittals. Keep your fingers crossed!

About my only other news is this past weekend. I attended San Diego Pride both late Saturday and into Sunday. I had an absolute blast. It blew away any pride festivities I have been to, including L.A.’s Pride last year, 2007 (never made it to it’s 2008 celebration). Saturday I hit the Top of the Park (Park Hotel at Balboa Park). The whole top of the hotel’s roof bar was one big GAY celebration. After a nice Mexican dinner and some rest, I hit LL Bear Dance at Rich’s. Let’s just day we got there early enough, even at 10:15pm to miss any large lines outside. The dance just kept building momentum, and by 11:45pm, it was roaring at the bar/dance floor. So much so, that the crowd got too big. At about 1:30am in the middle of the DJ’s set, the power was pulled and then security came in from the rear saying the club was closing. When the group got outside, there were 4 squad cars and one fire engine. It appears that the Fire Marshall opted to pay a surprise visit and ordered the bar closed. The event finished shy of it’s originally ending of 2;00am.

Sunday morning I awoke on the later side and had a simple brunch at a local bakery. I hit the Pride festival for about two hours, eventually leaving and arriving at THE HOLE, a bear bar, around 2:30pm. Can you say SAAAA-WEET!! GRRRR! At about 5:00pm if was off to fight for some parking again around the festival grounds for the 6:30 pm Kathy Griffin show. Ms. Griffin closed out the Pride festival with a bang. A huge crowd had gathered for the show. And she had everyone laughing throughout the event. I think she must have slandered at least 6-8 celebrities of sort during her repetoire! Laughing hysterically!

So there you have it. A bit of where I stand in my life. It’s been truly an emotional rollercoaster ride. It wears on you when you are trying to get a business to gell and finances are on the shallower side. So let me all here from you on what is evolving in your lives. Hugs!

Hey you all! How have you been? Life has been busy for me at both ends of the design spectrum – commercial and my own residential venture.  While I may have things to share and or write about, I simply do not have time to blog.  I want you to know that I think about all my blog friends quite frequently.  Each of you gave me something at times over the past three years when I was struggling or in a bit of turmoil.  Thank you all.  The other element these days is that I am working on establishing a more local group of gay friends.  And I am succeeding, in part thanks to BEAR411, LOL.  Let’s just say my head has been spinning these days and I can’t seem to find time to meet with all the people inquiring.  Quite flattering but awkward to me at times.

So in any event, I happen to come across an old peer of mine from my last job before heading off to design school.   I found him on Bear411 of all places.  I had no idea he was gay and partnered.  Well, I sent him a chat message and then received a phone call. A long phone conversation ensued, probably an hour’s worth.  I found out that he and his partner were coming down to Palm Springs this week and I was invited to join them. So this morning early, I head out to PS, a place I haven’t visited in over 17 years.  I am sure I won’t recognize it.  Heading out to meet them at a clothing optional resort.  So yes, I am going to be butt-naked, sunning and swimming at the pool, while subtly taking in the ‘sexy scenery.’  Might be a tad odd to see a former fellow co-worker prancing freely about but at least he’s a tall, hot, hunky, thickly-built guy.  YUM!  OK Tony, he’s a friend, remember that.  LOL.   Expecting we will have a blast getting caught up and laughing about the past.

Spo…I’ll have you know, I am having a rendezvous with JACK on the side.  Don’t you wish?!

Leave word you all with what you have been up to.  Cheers!

Hi everyone or at least hi to those of of you still passing through what surely must have looked like an abandoned blog.  I am doing fine. My commercial interior design job continues to roll along thankfully.  I thought there might be a chance it would be over this month since my status has always been “phase out” since turning down the full-time salaried position to purse working a day a week on my own business.  The intern we had finished up last week and the boss wanted her real bad.  But the intern turned down work for now to explore other options with larger firms.  They plan on following up with her in a month.  So thus the reprieve.

The new business venture (residential design firm) is moving along slowly but we are picking up some good high-end residential projects.  Hopefully they will lead to other referral high-ends or comebacks.

Outside that, I have been busy attempting to make more friends, but this time with an emphasis on local.  I miss all my new-found friends and the places I have seen but with funds a bit tighter now, I can’t get out on as many trips.  And if you have met me, you know that I am a bit of a social person.  I have found that just sitting back and hoping to run into local people doesn’t work.  So I am stepping out.  Joined Bear411 and boy am I getting bombarded with messages.  Meeting the gamet of guys but damn, some of them are hunks.  *drool, slobber, growl, slurp*  LOL!  And I am off to the races meeting them.  I had a delectable massage two weeks ago by one hunky bear.  I will see him and a few other Bear411 acquaintances in San Diego this Saturday for a LLBear Dance at Rich’s.  I think there is a Mr. Leather SD that night at Rich’s too.  Hold me down.  LOL  Sunday I am off to meet my friend Mark in North Hollywood.   He is the author/teacher/ex-priest that I wrote about a couple of articles back.  And I may still be meeting another Bear411 acquaintance Sunday afternoon who lives in the L.A. area as well.

So all is reasonably well.  Spider is doing fine.  He’s attempting to pick up his life after the year from hell.  He’s actively searching for part-time consulting work, part-time because he’s still nursing the heart along.  We won’t know about a clean bill of health on the cancer front until sometime in late April.  But for now he is done with Chemo.  He so needs the break.

Anyhow, again hope all is well with you.  Leave word here on how each of you have been doing.  I apologize for not being able to visit blogs as frequently, if at all.  Hugs to all.

To anybody that may still be reading and care, my dear friend, Spider, received the necessary fixes to some (heart) arteries that should have been repaired three weeks ago. Of course, if you have been following my occasional posts on him, you know that he suffered an initially severe stroke at that time.

At 8am East Coast time, yesterday, Spider underwent a catheterization
procedure where they inserted a stint in one valve (which remains behind to help the blood flow through the specific artery) and also put a balloon in another artery to stretch it, allow it to clear, and then remove it. At about 11:00am West Coast time, 2pm East Coast, Spidie texted me to say that he was ok and that the procedure went fine. What a relief…especially based on the fact that the doctors had warned him that his chances of another stroke were higher this go-around.

I actually spoke to him directly at about 7:15pm East Coast time last night. Dummy me had awoken him from a nap. But he sure sounded in good spirits. He had a bit of chest pain for which they had run some tests. I don’t know if they showed anything of concern. The main thing is he pulled through the procedure without any complications.

So with a little luck, his nightmare is behind him. He is done with his cancer treatment for now. The colon cancer is gone though recent, poor MRI scans showed some clouding in the lungs (sometimes typical after chemo treatment). He’ll have a follow-up visit on that issue in two months and hopefully all will have subsided for good. The procedure yesterday should help with the shortness of breath, lethargy, and tightness he had in his chest. I’d like to believe that within a few weeks, Spider will be able to begin looking for work and gain back some of his life. Keep him in your thoughts.

BIG HUGS SPIDIE!

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