I find myself asking, “Why am I bothering to even make this entry?”  The whole blogging element seems like a lifetime ago.  And some of the friends that I met here in Blogland and in person seem to be fading away.  Phone calls and emails go unanswered.  The occasional post on my blog seems to draw minimal readers, most likely because people have pulled my blog from their blogrolls.  I guess it’s understandable.  But to me, good friends stay in touch continually, and they remain loyal, even to the extent that they retain one on their roll.  Guess to me, it’s just common courtesy…not an issue of popularity or ‘having to clean house” on the blogroll.

In any event, I see my last posting was back in June of this summer.  Hard to believe that Summer 2009 is over and that I’ve managed to walk through the first day of Fall.  Time rages by faster these days.  It was an interesting summer indeed…probably one that I would classify as a major ROLLER COASTER RIDE.

First there has been that on-going downward plunge with the economy which has simply kept business flat for me.  My business partner and I find ourselves having to supplement our business income with our own personal income, but we are trying to weather the storm and slip into 2010 with hopes that signs will show improvement in the first quarter.  But I do find myself having to do a reassessment of the business come late November, early December.  I am praying that we don’t have to fold.  At this juncture, I have no idea where I will go next with respect to work should we have to close our interior design business.

In any event, I believe I mentioned the rollercoaster ride took a jolt back in June when I sprained my left ankle severely.  I ended up with some swelling complications that had me limited in activity for nearly 10 weeks. At one point I was even tested for blood clotting.  I was experiencing sudden pain and tenderness in my left calf about 4 weeks after the sprain.  Of course, all the flying mixed with the swelling, sent bells and whistles off for the doctors.  Fortunately, my test results were negative for any clotting.

I also think I mentioned that I had a Hawaiian vacation scheduled at that time.  All fun of course.  I came back from Hawaii, the ankle improving at that time.  About four weeks later my ride was on a fun upswing.  I was off to Rehoboth Beach to meet up with the boyfriend (mind you it’s dating but a bit more beyond that).  I couldn’t have asked for better weather…not a lick of humidity, just good ‘ol hot weather.  The only sad thing was that all the ‘bears’ were up in Provincetown for Bear Week.  Ah the things we give up for love.  LMAO!!  Let’s just say my time was WELL SPENT with the BF.  😉  We still had plenty of eye-candy to behold, bears included.  Evenings always started with at least drinks downtown at the Aqua or other nearby bars, even if dinner was at home.  You know…we had to get those flirtatious moments in!  While the rollercoaster kept chugging along, it did hit a slight dip again.  My left ankle started to swell again and bruise slightly, mind you some six weeks after the initial accident.  Of course that led me to see the orthopod when I got home and to the subsequent clotting test that I referenced earlier.

Two weeks out, about the first week of August by this time, the rollercoaster ride is back on the upswing.  I headed off to Lake Tahoe for a week with family, our annual family get-together that I have written about here in my blog on occasion.  It started out being a blast.  I was taking in little nieces and nephews that I hadn’t seen in months!!!  Just the thought of all their smiles and the “Uncle Tony” ‘s that they laid on me.  They sent my spirits soaring.  And of course, we hit an all-time record with the number of family, cousins, second cousins, etc., that were present on the vacation and at joint dinners…seventy-five (75)!!!!!  You should have seen the beach.  We literally took up one third of the beach with seven cabana tents, beach chairs, floaties, bodies, etc.  People didn’t know what to make of us.  However, with summer starting to wrap up, there was another downhill run on the rollercoaster ride.  Yes, another injury.  About Thursday of my Tahoe-week trip, I was simply sitting in bed, went to stand, and instantly dropped to the floor with stabbing back pain.  I tried to stand.  No luck…dropped to the floor again.  Tried to sit, and had to collapse into a reclining position.  Even laying on my back was painful.  I ended up spending two days on the floor, literally.  Couldn’t get up into the bed and any attempt to lift me, sent me into excruciating pain.  I even had to crawl to the restroom. I won’t elaborate here anymore.  Don’t know how I did it but managed to pull myself together by Sunday to make the 9 hour drive home to Southern California (by the way, the Ibuprofen and the Vicodin that I managed to get – did nothing to alleviate the pain).  I did ok with the drive but paid for it the next morning in major stiffness and mild pain.  It kept me away from returning to work for two more days.

My back improved by the following weekend…just in time for moving my major pieces to my new living quarters.  I somehow managed to pack everything that needed it, and then on that Sunday, went to move.  Guess what happened…I reinjured my back.  And it was really hurting.  I had to be out of the apartment on Thursday, 8/20. I was completing my move on Wednesday…let’s say I don’t know how I pulled it off.  PAIN, PAIN, PAIN, PAIN!!!

So as I finish my summer I am no longer in south Orange County  but rather in north Orange County out in the eastern quadrant, and oh, about 10-15 minutes from that magical place called Disneyland!  LOL  I am now renting a room from a gay couple.  The room is bigger than my “cell” at the apartment and I have 3800 square feet of house to roam rather than 700 square feet of a 900 square foot apartment.  I have access to a private pool rather than an apartment complex’s pool.  SCORE!!  And lastly, with the owners being gay, I have a bit more freedom to have guests over without feeling awkward like I was in my former ‘straight’ apartment environment.  For those that didn’t know, my former room mates were a straight married couple.  I have to say though, I miss them terribly.  They were easy to get along with, even thought they had no clue I was gay (or at least they never asked…LOL).

Phewwwww!  Now you are all caught up.  I sure hope Fall is better.  And I hope those of you who read this, friends included, are all doing well. Hugs!


Well I suppose that this post will probably appeal most to those with foot fetishes, at least from the perspective of the photos.  <CHUCKLE> The last three weeks have been rather adventurous – some of it good and some of it bad.

Let’s start with the ‘big’ bad news.  About three weekends ago I was up in the SF Bay Area helping my little sister and brother-in-law with arranging some existing furniture and accessories in there recently-finished new house.  It was Sunday and nearly time for them to take me out for dinner and then off to the airport.  I was outside with my niece and nephew waiting for the sis and hubby to come out with ‘junior,’ the littlest of the three kids.  While waiting, I said to my nephew, “I’ll race you down the drive way on the RAZOR (one of those sleek steel scooters with the racing skate wheels).”  Naturally this particular RAZOR was smaller in length than others I had ridden so I had to do a one-foot balance on it. I went zipping down the slope of the driveway side-by-side with my nephew.  As I hit the dip in the driveway, where the gutter meets the street, you might say that the RAZOR did an unexpected ‘wheelie.’  I felt myself initially falling back and all I could think of was cracking my skull open against the pavement.  So I lurched my body forward.   The RAZOR came out from underneath my footing, and as I came down to try to catch my footing, I landed on the outside edge of my left foot, causing it to buckle under with all my body weight.

YIKES!!!!  IMG_0113Did it heart like hell.  I went hobbling up to the Chevy Surburban and opened the door so I could gain a ledge to sit down on.  Guess what my ankle looked like?  I literally had a bump the size of a lemon on the outside ankle bone!!  And the foot was almost instantly swelling up like a balloon.  Over the course of the week, the foot remained swollen but seemed under control.  Amazingly, for the first five days I felt almost no pain and could weight-bare without any problem.

Move-up to Friday….  I am dealing with all this knowing that in another day I was heading off to KAUAI for eight glorious days – the good news in this article.  LOL!  I had been waiting for this for months and there was nothing that was going to prevent me from taking the trip.  However, for the first time in five days, my foot and ankle were increasingly starting to throb and hurt.  I had myself all packed and had gone over to my sister’s house to spend the night – she was driving me and my nephew to the L.A. airport the next morning to catch our flight.  Well this particular sis and her mother-in-law, who happened to be over at her house, saw my foot and said, “Have you been to see the doctor yet?”  “No,” was my response.  My foot at this time was hideous.  Every inch of my left foot, and ankle up to about 1/3 of my calf was BLACK.  I looked like some diseased creature.  LOL!  With their coercing, I went off to the doctors – spent two hours in urgent care but the doctor informed me that I had no broken bones, just a moderate-to-moderate severe sprain. Of course he made his recommendations, knowing full well where I was off to the next day.

Saturday came and I was off to Kauai!  IMG_0114Let’s say that four the next four days I was in utter misery, even as I laid by the poolside taking in the Hawaiian sun.  My foot was HUGE!!  The flight over had sent the swelling to the moon and the humidity did not help either, even with icing and foot elevation.  But alas Wednesday came and for the first time the majority of the pain was gone and man did I take in the sun and the pool.  I actually found that swimming (no kicking) was the best anecdote for relief of pain.  Got myself out the following day to snorkel over on the north side of Kauai, past Hanalei Bay.  I had to walk the beach to get to our destination – and I did it!!  My point here was that I ultimately had a blast on the island, spending time with my two brothers, my 18-year old nephew, and my sister, her husband, and their three children.  I so did not want to leave last Saturday evening (6/20/09)!

And so what did I come back to this past week?  A bunch of chaos and some bad news.  Some of the news pertained to finances in the business – essentially having to fork out additional money for repairs on the earlier design house space I had done (see at the end of the show, the room has to be put back to near original state).  And some of the other marvelous news <sarcasm> had to deal with personal life issues.  Let me say, the gay community really consists of a lot of prima donnas and guys that just are not ‘adult’ men.  Sorry if that offends anyone, but it flat out is the truth!

So there you have it, my past three weeks.  Are all you guys with foot fetishes just drooling over those feet of mine.  LMAO!!  And you aren’t even seeing the left foot in its worst state!

Ok…let’s do something fun. I haven’t done a blasted silly post in ‘forever’ it seems. So without further adieu…

If time were ever on your side and you could preserve one element of your physical being, what part would that be and why?

And of course we all have that one item we just have to dispose of, that just knocks us down a notch. If you could part with one feature of your being, what would it be and why?

Now, now fair if you don’t tell us why!!

And I suppose if I don’t share my answers, I’ll never hear the end of it. So here goes. The one physical feature I want preserved. Hmmm! I can I say this tactfully…the head of my SCHTICK!!! LOL! I guess for the pure and simple reason that guys just seem enamored by it. As for the one item I’d gladly part with…my gut, however small it may be. I want a rock solid abdomen and I just don’t seem to be getting it there. Then again I “ain’t” 20-something anymore!

There you have it. Hope you are all in good spirits these days!

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!

Well…I got through Thanksgiving.  I’ve survived another day of over-indulgence in food.  I think they call that GLUTTONY!  While the smells and the tastes were intoxicating, I think age is finally catching up with me.  I simply can’t eat the amount I used to and in reality, I think my stomach is shrinking.  I really don’t enjoy eating all that much anymore.  Heck…I even crave bland foods more these days.

In any event, I had a blast over the Thanksgiving holiday break.  It was spent amidst good company, visiting, doing a little shopping, getting in movies (Beowulf, Mist, etc.).  I was  extremely sad that it all came to an end.  So I am back home, as of last night (Sunday) at 11:30pm, and it’s off to another rip-roaring work week.  Guess we have 4 more weeks until Christmas and I suspect I will have just about that time left as to work.  I’ll probably know by then if my commercial design firm is holding onto me beyond the new year.  And that’s likely when I need to consider strongly if I make a move to work in residential with my two friends or if I consider other options, such as a move to Chicago.

Anyhoooo!  You all have a great week!  Hug.

Last week at work was a total drain on me. Deadlines, some dumb mistakes that ate away at money and valuable time (the boss’s issue…not mine, though I felt I tad bit idiotic too). I was plain wiped out and needed something that was a total distraction. And dare I say, ALL ABOUT MOI!

What did I do? Saturday I went shopping. What more can be both a distraction and ultimately about “YOU?!” LOL. I headed on up to “SC” Mall, the largest in the Los Angeles/Orange County area and probably in California that I know of. As I was telling Spider this weekend during our phone conversation, the mall serves the most diverse crowd, socially and economically, ranging from bargain stores equivalent to Target up to high-end stores such as Tiffany’s, Christian Dior, Gucci, etc., covering items from clothing, to home accessories, to art, to electronics, to furniture. It’s a shopper’s dream. And needless to say, the mall was PACKED to the hilt. We haven’t even stepped into the official holiday shopping season yet.

In any event, what did I go shopping for? STUFF!!! LOL. I popped into the Apple Store to pick up the new Mac OSX Leopard software operating system for my MacPro. Then I came oh so close to purchasing an iPod Touch. I backed down though because part of me was disappointed that the maximum storage on the unit was only 16G, a far cry from the 160G on the iPod Classic. So I am still contemplating the purchase though I may opt to wait a year in hope that next year Apple introduces a larger storage capacity on the iPod Touch. I also managed to get into Banana Republic to purchase an assorted color of solid T-shirts. Gots’ta enhance the chest asset (LMAO – the eyes rolling to the back of my head. That’s something BrettCajun would say. Just in jest, bud – you know that!).

Ok, ok…I need to get back on track here. Think theme of post, theme of post. My primary reason for heading out shopping this weekend was to look for a pair of lace-up boots that I could wear booth in casual dress but still get away with wearing if I were to dress-up a bit more. I had seen about three variations of boot in the Johnston & Murphy’s catalog that interested me, so that was the first store in the mall that I entered. I found all three but either did not like the color variation and or the style once I saw the actual shoe, live. The saleslady was nice enough to direct me to Cole Hahn and Timberland. Hit Cole Hahn first. Nothing of interest.

coleman_shoes.jpgI next strolled on over to Timberland, a shoe store that I honestly have never entered or purchased from. Well…did I score. My eyes were going buggy on quite a few options. And then the real fun began. Up comes this absolutely handsome, woofy bear-type shoe salesman. I mean I could have planted a huge kiss on those lips of his instantly. He was about 6’-2”, not overly muscular but definitely defined in the upper torso, thick in body. He had a shaved head, with a jet-black goatee, dark-brown eyes, nice thick, full, eyebrows, and an olive complexion. Mr. Salesman was sportin’ a nice copper-colored camp shirt with a white t-shirt underneath it, designer jeans – the antiqued, worn-finish variety, and a pair of Timberland nubuck lace-up boots. *sigh* Then came the words, “May I help you Sir?” Music to my ears – deep masculine voice, upbeat, actually able to articulate intelligently.  I immediately said, “Yes…I need to try on some boots.” (while my mind was saying “And a few other things.” *evil grin*) Let’s just say I had him run back for four pairs of different style boots. I had to hoard him to myself for a little bit. Right?

Alas, I know Mr. Shoe Saleman was straight. Just not enough eye contact to send off those other signals. But man did he make my day. I heart my shoe salesman. I walked out of that store with a little step behind my walk…and two pairs of boots.

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