My first blog focused on me as a closeted gay black male navigating my life during my 30's. Part two now finds me close to 40 and beyond as a somewhat out gay male still navigating myself through all the issues thrown my way and as always, handling it in true E fashion.
I didn't want my last post of 2007 to be about cock blocking. Today my mind's focused on another body part. That would be my toes. Can you believe I pulled a Bart Simpson and bumped my toes against the same set of weights that I had lying on the floor? The first time I did it was earlier Sunday as I settling in to watch the first half of Grosse Pointe on DVD. That show was so ahead of its time and it's a total shame it didn't make it to another season. The pain pretty much subsided right away. But later on in the day as I go back downstairs to finish off the rest of the DVD, I bumped my toes again (specifically my toe nearest the baby). This time, though, the pain is lingering. I don't think I broke it, though. So I've been doing a bit of the RICE (Rest Ice Compression Elevation) method to heal it. Hopefully the pain will be gone in a couple days if not sooner.
So I just wanted to send a message to wish everyone a safe New Year's whatever your plans are. And watch out for the toes...*LOL*.
Yes I can add the description "cockblocker" to my name. But to find out why, I must start the story from the very beginning. Well you could fast forward to the last few paragraphs of this entry but you'll be missing out on some other interesting tidbits. (*LOL*)
Yesterday afternoon I picked Eugene up at a nearby Metra station and we spent the rest of the day hanging out. We were both hungry so our first stop was this Sushi place. We went there around 2:30 that afternoon and there was only two other groups in the restaurant. The hostess/server seated us at a far end table by this one couple.
The restaurant choice turned out to be a mixed bag. Eugene liked his food, I somewhat liked mine, but we both hated the hostess/server. She seemed to be in a rush to get our orders, even though hardly anyone was in the restaurant. But then the order of food seemed to take forever. Basically she was downright rude. Eugene half-joked when the one guy making the food told the hostess/server something in Japanese and she gave a curt reply back that he was telling her that we were waiting for the check (that took almost 20 more minutes) and she was like, 'fuck them, I'll get to them when I get to them'. That probably wasn't far from the truth either. When Eugene got change from her, she didn't put it in his hand and placed it on the receipt holder, which annoyed him. I wound up only giving her a 10% tip.
Our next stop after lunch was the theater to catch The Great Debaters. Two words...excellent masterpiece. Quick synopsis: It's a drama based on the true story of Wiley College professor Melvin B. Tolson. It focused on how he inspired students to form the school's first debate team, which worked they way up to winning over 100 debates before being invited to face off to challenge Harvard in the national championship. One of the standout actors in the movie was this young man named Denzel Whitaker. Wildly enough, the movie's main stars were Denzel Washington and Forest Whitaker, neither of which is related to Denzel Whitaker. The other stand out for me was Jurnee Smollett. I remembered her role in Eve's Bayou years back where she played the title character. It was cool seeing her on the big screen again.
The movie of course wound up giving Eugene and I some things to debate about. The main one being the differences between how the young kids in the movie were hungry for knowledge versus a lot of today's kids. Eugene believes that there's a "knowledge crisis" going on that's only going to get worse. Basically at the worst, only a few select top folks will have most of the knowledge while the rest will only get spoon fed info from TV and the internet. Where the crisis falls in is that a lot of folks don't care to keep up with the news of today, instead constantly looking for instant gratification and not caring about the world around them. It resonates for Eugene more as a college professor where he is disappointed that foreign students know more about United States issues than American students do.
One of the lines that stood out for Eugene in the movie was how one of the characters wished he could spend all day just reading. I can't imagine hearing anyone saying that today.
So yeah, go see it on the big screen. Definitely worth the 9 bucks.
I then took Eugene to the same tapas place Rock and I (and Norris once) frequent. The restaurant as usual provided almost impeccable service. Even when the waiter slipped up on my drink order, he handled it with humor. The highlight of the evening was the busboy and I somewhat flirting with each other. It started out innocent enough. He poured water in our glasses and I gave him a nice smile thanking him. I saw him looking at me and when I told Eugene, he thought I was crazy. But then later on when Eugene purposely went to the bathroom, the busboy came back to clear our dishes. He could've came while Eugene was there but for some reason waited. Of course Eugene didn't let me hear the end of it. Another interesting point, after he poured water in my glass and I instinctively grabbed it, somehow I grabbed his hands. Neither of us made a comment about it. It made the dinner very enjoyable and the busboy even stood to the side and watched me walk out.
So the great debate happened on what nightlife activity we wanted to do. I wasn't really feeling the club scene and actually other than my Spin trip when Rock and I were "that couple", I hadn't really been in the club scene. So I was all for going to a bar. But of course Eugene wanted to go to a club to dance and boogie. So since Eugene was the visitor, the club it was. I wound up taking him to Jackhammer's.
I had to push a dude off me initially as Eugene and I made our way to the bar. He even bought me a drink, which I reluctantly accepted. Actually I had to push him away a couple times before he finally got the hint. I was kind of wishing Rock was there, this especially became apparent when I watched one of the hottest guys in the club dirty dancing with Eugene. I was starting to become extra horny and I swear if Rock were there that night, I so would've gave him some.
So Hemingway Eugene was dirty dancing with Brutus (very tight body, very strong features, actually one of the hottest guys in the club). As I watched with slight amusement and envy, I noticed a lot of other guys on the floor watching with envy. It was getting close to 4:15 AM (they were hot and bothered for almost 30 minutes) and I was ready to go, especially since I had to drop Eugene at the train station at 9:30AM.
So I went up to the pair after they wrapped up their dirty dancing and hot dude looked ready to eat Eugene up. I touched Eugene's neck and basically told him it was after 4 and I was ready to go. (Yeah yeah yeah...cockblocker E is what they call me...*LOL*) If looks could kill, I would've been TKO'ed from the dirty stares Eugene and Brutus gave me. Eugene wound up pushing me slightly telling me to leave him alone. A part of me wanted to just leave him but I'm not that type of guy. I watched as the pair walked up some stairs, still macking away. I saw the guy going towards the restrooms in the back and Eugene just parking himself in a nearby chair.
He got up after a few minutes and I asked if he was ready to go. Eugene was still pissy telling me to leave him be as he walked back to sit in the chair. Another five minutes went by and he came to me asking if I saw where Brutus went. I told him no. Eventually Brutus came out but was with another guy who was already all over him. Then as they walked up, yet another guy was on him as well with a third one waiting in the wings. I joked with Eugene to go up there and get his man. Eugene of course didn't.
Eugene finally was ready to go so he went up to say goodbye to Brutus, but he was too occupied with his other fresh meat to notice.
Of course Brutus was the talk of our trip home from Jackhammer's. Eugene went on and on about how strong his grip on him was and how he felt him get a hard on when Eugene touched his neck. I had to tell him to stop a few times (even though he really didn't...*LOL*) because I was still horny.
So we got home by 5:15 AM and I only had about three hours of sleep before waking up and eventually dropping Eugene off at the train station. It was a short visit by Eugene but certainly this was a memorable trip.
When I was breaking up Brutus and Eugene, I felt like Jem who was trying to save Kimber from Stormer and the guys who pounced on Brutus afterwards were Pizzazz saving Stormer from Kimber. Brutus definitely could've been a "bad influence"....*LOL*. Hence the YouTube video below. Enjoy!
I've been a bit lazy lately. But while I have a bit of energy, I thought I'd post an update on my holiday adventures.
Like I've done previous years, I've decided to Amtrak it. On the date of my departure, a derailment of several cars of a freight train occurred. The cars contained various UPS packages that had to be retrieved and rerouted. This caused a delay, of course, and Amtrak scrambled to get a bus to transfer passengers to the next Amtrak stop in Michigan City, Indiana.
On the bright side, I managed to have a row to myself both on the bus and on the remaining train trip. I wound up arriving in Detroit about three hours late.
Overall the visit was good. I didn't venture far from home except for either going to Church (both Sunday and Christmas day) or running errands with my parents.
I had my younger sister Trina's name for Secret Santa and I gave her a new Pulsar watch as well as some fashions from Venus's new line at Steve & Barry's. My Dad had my name and I was pleasantly surprised to get a gift from him instead of cash. He got me a Charging Station Organizer that basically is a central location that you can charge all your electronic tools.
For my godmother, I chose the sentimental gift approach. I found an old picture of us together and decided to blow it up and put it on a frame. To cap it off, I also gave her a Target gift card.
Trina shocked us all by bringing food over. She cooked chitterlings and aside from burning them a bit, they weren't half bad. I guess her guy is making a domestic out of her yet.
I returned to Chicago late Wednesday night and decided to take the rest of the week off from work. Eugene was planning on hanging out with me Friday and today. But his plans changed when an old friend of his mentioned being in Chicago for a brother's wedding. So we're just hanging out Saturday afternoon, assuming he doesn't blow me off again. Yeah I was a tad pissed. But I'm over it pretty much.
My plans for New Year's Eve is similar to last year's. Rock and I will exchange belated Christmas gifts and will simply enjoy each other's company. I'm still amazed (for me) that I've spent the entire 2007 with one guy.
Hemingway I hope everyone that reads my blog had a great holiday.
I used to think Eugene was in need of some tact. Actually I still do. But even Eugene knows there are times when it's not always wise to say the first thing that's on your mind. With that said, I've managed to find someone that needs it even more. Unfortunately I've been working with this person for the last six months on the project from hell (that's still going on).
Ling was transferred to our group as part of the reorganization of the company(Translation: layoffs). She was originally slated to go to another group but came in ours when we lost a member of our team due to the same reorganization.
First off in the grand scheme of things, Ling is not the worst person I've had to work with. That distinction goes to this bitch I nicknamed Pickaninny who actually finally retired. Ling if you want seems like a decent person. Every now and then, she'll ask me what certain words or phrases that she encounters in emails mean. She's even been relatively helpful at times.
But Ling's mouth and actions border on annoying at times. I remember when she first started, she told Dan and I that a couple other guys that sat not too far from us used to work with her but they really don't talk to her much these days. Then she mentioned how another ugly, the same ugly who reported that I was singing in my desk, complained how loud Ling was. I was automatically sympathetic with her after that.
But over the next few months, I would begin to understand why some of the other folks complained about or avoided her. Project wise there were times when I felt like Ling tried to throw me under the bus. Basically she would blame certain processes that I maintain for causing present day issues. These processes she blamed were ones that have been running for over 15 years with minor problems. When she did this, others would jump on the bandwagon and that wound up putting me on the offensive defending my processes. In the end, it wound up being the new process that was the issue. And I had to investigate to get to that point.
She would borderline sexually harass her male counterparts. This one was kind of tough to call but if I did some of the things she did, I'd probably be slapped with a suit. A couple times I've worn my new Polo shirts. I've been working out so naturally my biceps and triceps would be sticking out. She touched my biceps and would go 'ooooh sexy'. It irked me a bit but I just backed away and laughed it off. She would hug me when I least expect it as well. I've seen her do the same thing to our offshore resources. Like I said, if I did that stuff to her, I'd immediately be hearing from H.R. I've told her in front of some people that I don't like her hugging me and then she still does it.
When I got my brand new baby, I became the unlucky person to drive her to lunch almost a month after that blessed event. You would swear she was a little kid. She went about pushing every little compartment in my car trying to find out "what I have hidden". She decided to play around with the radio. I had it off since usually I know my musical tastes differ from everybody else's. Dan happened to be in the back seat and we both tried to tell her to stop with the craziness with no avail.
She then made the comment that she hates people who drive certain brands of cars and luckily for me, she approved of my car since she drives a Nissan product herself. One of the brands she hated happened to belong to someone else on our team. This is where her mouth can get her in trouble.
What prompted me to blog about Ling finally was some comments I heard her make today. There's this guy that sits across from her that's heavyset. We recently had our holiday party and she got to meet his wife. I overheard her say to this guy that his wife is "so tall and skinny". Then she remarked that his son is "so tall and skinny". (He has a picture of his son on his desk.) She repeated the comments about his wife again. So it seemed to imply that she couldn't believe that a fat guy like himself could land such a skinny spouse. The guy was like 'yeah..and?' I turned around and looked at Dan and he looked at me and both of us had our jaws dropped shaking our heads in disbelief.
Ling says she wants to become a manager. All I could think of is if she's my manager, I'm so looking for a new group to work in. Just another reason I need to get out of this company.
[Verse 1] I gave you all the love I got I gave you more than I could give I gave you love I gave you all that I have inside And you took my love You took my love
Didn't I tell you What I believe Somebody say that A love like that won't last Didn't I give you All that I've got to give baby
I gave you all the love I got I gave you more than I could give I gave you love I gave you all that I have inside And you took my love You took my love
[Chorus] I keep crying I keep trying for you There's nothing like you and I baby
This is no ordinary love No ordinary love This is no ordinary love No ordinary love
[Verse 2] When you came my way You brightened every day With your sweet smile
Didn't I tell you What I believe Did somebody say that A love like that won't last Didn't I give you All that I've got to give baby
[Bridge] Keep trying for you Keep crying for you Keep flying for you Keep flying
I'm falling I'm falling
Keep trying for you Keep crying for you Keep flying for you Keep flying and I'm falling
and I'm falling
Whatever did happen to Sade? She sorta disappeared for a minute there. I know if I'm feeling depressed, next to Phyllis Hyman, I typically pop a Sade CD.
This post is work related so you know I'm depressed. First of all, I'm still there. *LOL* As if that's not depressing enough, headquarters is moving further away. As much as the current building grated, I'll admit to missing it. If nothing else, I'll miss the 35 minute commute, which was not too long but not too short.
I was reminded today of another thing I'll miss. There's this particular Subway that I frequent more than any others. The funny thing about Subway's is that no two locations are ever alike. One location I liked the staff but the sub's were average. Another location the staff was bad but the prices of subs were a little cheaper. Yet another location the prices were higher but the sub's tasted great. But this location I'm blogging about has it all. Great staff, fair prices, delicious subs.
In the couple years I've gone there (and actually I should buy a franchise as often as I go there), I've taken a liking to the tuna sub. It just tastes so fresh and good. I usually include the same toppings on my subs too. Cucumbers, carrots, green peppers, onions, gardenaria (at least that's how I think it's spelled), a dash of honey mustard, oil, and vinegar on a honey oat bun. I match it with Baked Lays.
In fact I order the same sub so much that they even get my sub started before I walk into the restaurant. Now how's that for service. One of the ladies there gets it down exactly right, the others almost get it right but I have to tell them to hold the cheese. They do all this and I barely have to utter a word.
Today in particular was wild. I was parking my car and this one lady in a big ass truck parks and is about to get out of her truck. She gives me this look as she steps out of her truck and then sets the alarm. I see her racing to get in as I get out of my car. So she gets in first and I follow momentarily later. So Hemingway the lady who always wants to include the cheese gets started on my sub. Needless to say I get ahead of the other lady.
All she could do was look with envy as I completed my order before another person half way started hers. I thanked my server, pumped my head up in the air, smirked, and walked with an air of confidence back to my ride. "See ya wouldn't want to be ya!!!!!"
I'm so going to miss that Subway when our company moves. I'm thinking of writing a thank you letter to the owner of this Subway telling them how much I appreciate their workers going the extra mile for me. Of course it's easier when I order the same thing but the fact that they can even remember what I order considering the hundreds of people that come in there daily makes me feel good. It actually is one of the highlights of my workday.
In light of all the bad service I've received from time to time that seems to be the rule, they have been the true exceptions. They give new meaning to the word 'customer service'.
Bet noone thought I'd be blogging about Subway...title aside:-)
I was a victim of an attempted robbery this past weekend. The incident left me feeling upset, vulnerable, and violated. Thankfully the attempt didn't involve an attack on me but rather an invasion of privacy. Once again my locker was tampered with at the Bally's I go to.
The incident happened sometime this past Saturday afternoon. I went to my local Bally's to get a lower body workout. I spent a total of two hours working out. Afterwards I headed to the men's locker room to get my stuff. I was shocked to find another lock in place of mine.
I looked around in shock not believing that I was experiencing the same bullshit again. A couple things about the experience were the same. I used the same locker as last time. It was the same damn Bally's. But there was one major difference this time.
You see, experience is a very good teacher. What I lacked in my dealings with men, I made up for (somewhat) in my dealings with Bally's. Other than my coat and my Bally's ID, I had nothing else of value in my locker.
It was freaking cold, though, and the thought of leaving without my coat was upsetting. I quickly went to the stalls to see if my coat was there. I recalled in the last incident my bag being found there. Of course there was nothing.
I went to the front desk and like last time, they weren't helpful at all. One of the ladies working there made me explain the situation to another guy. He went with me to the locker to see the other lock there. I was adamant that I had used that particular locker (I should know since it pretty much is the one I usually use).
The initial lady at the front desk than gave me a lock breaker to bust the lock. In retrospect, she probably misunderstood and assumed I forgot my combination. Did I mention that the Bally's staff wasn't really all that helpful. Not thinking of the risk I was taking (in the sense that whoever had the lock could come back at the moment I'm breaking the lock), I broke the lock. Once I opened it, I discovered a whole other set of clothing inside.
So not only did I not find my stuff, I inadvertently risked someone else's property being robbed. Not that it mattered anyway, seeing how whoever was able to take my stuff pretty much busted my lock.
So I decide to look through some lockers to see if maybe it was dumped somewhere else. No luck. I'm at a loss for what to do next. A snippet of time passes and I overhear another guy talking about his stuff missing.
Misery loves company so I immediately gravitate towards him. (If I were a more suspicious person, I'd say his talking about missing stuff seemed a mite bit convenient. But that thought didn't cross my mind until much later.) He mentioned that he came up to his locker, opened it, and found his bag missing.
We start looking through lockers again and he finds my coat in one locker and my broken lock in yet another. He eventually finds his pants with his phone but still claims to be missing a bag.
At some point, the helpful Bally's staff directs Vic2 and myself to a back room. She fills out two separate reports with our information. Before she's done, the local police are called in to take our report. The one thing that I wish I didn't do was give out my information loudly when asked. If Vic2 was putting on an act about his stuff being missing (and I have to admit some of his recollection on times was off), then all he had to do was get my information and maybe he'd use it for ill purposes.
So after all reports are filed, Vic2 eventually leaves. I wind up sticking around since I busted someone else's locker. But after waiting another thirty minutes (which in actuality was in addition to the hour since I had finished my initial workout...so actually 90 minutes) with the owner not showing up, I finally left.
My company was having its annual holiday party that evening as well. Unfortunately by the time I got home, I pretty much had to get ready for it. I didn't have my time to rest and later bitch and moan how I really didn't want to go. So I got ready and decided to bitch and moan in the car....*LOL*.
I told my guys about the incident and Eugene scared me when mentioning that I might've been targeted. Perhaps they may have even been looking for my car keys in hopes of stealing my ride. That kind of made me suspicious that Vic2 may have been an accomplice.
Rock was concerned if I had my house keys, wallet, and other personal stuff in my locker. But as I mentioned earlier, I fortunately didn't have anything else in the locker.
One thing I did do tonight. I decided to open an account to monitor my credit. I figure it's a good idea to do this in general just to be safe. You really never know when identity theft (heh...I was a victim of that once or twice too) will rear its ugly head.
At least I got to see my man Rock for a bit Sunday. Our last time seeing each other was just before Thanksgiving. So I was able to salvage an otherwise sucky weekend.
No it's not some spam email saying if you forward a message to 1000 people that you'll get $1000 from Microsoft. But I saw some funny spoofs of the infamous Mac vs PC commercials from a user named LatinoComedyProject. Since they're both Latino, one is named "BC" (Born Citizen), the other is called Mex. BC I'm assuming represents the PC and Mex represents Apple. They spoof about different topics such as health care, jobs, and travel.
Hemingway I thought I'd share a couple. At least until I'm up for talking about me again...*LOL*.
[Intro] There are times when I look above and beyond There are times when I feel your love around me baby I'll never forget ma' baby (I'll never forget you)
[Verse 1] There are times when I look above and beyond There are times when I feel your love around me baby I'll never forget ma' baby
When I feel that I don't belong Draw my strength from the words that you said Hey, it's about you baby Look deeper instead you baby
Dream about us together again When I want us together again baby I know we'll be together again 'cause
[Chorus] Everywhere I go Everywhere I see I know you are there Smilin' back at me
Dancin' in moonlight I know you are free 'Cuz I see your star Shining down at me
(Together again, ooh) Good time we'll share again (Together again, ooh) That makes me wanna dance
(Together again, ooh) Say it loud and proud (Together again, ooh) All my love's for you
[Verse 2] Always been a true angel to me Now above, I can't wait for you To wrap your wings around me baby Wrap them around me baby
Sometimes hear you whispering No more pain No worries will you ever see now baby I'm so happy for ma baby
I dream about us together again When I want us together again baby I know we'll be together again 'cause
I'm together again. I always loved this song when it came out. The inspiration for this song came from a friend of Janet's who died from AIDS. The up-tempo song became a dance anthem of sorts for speaking out about AIDS. It seemed a fitting title for today's entry since December 1st is World AIDS Day and I'm finally together again.
Eugene inadvertently admitted to crying when watching on demand this movie called 'The Cure' last night. The movie no doubt was available in anticipation of World AIDS Day. The story is about a friendship that blossomed between two young boys, one of whom got the AIDS virus from a blood transfusion. The other boy in the equation was caught up in an abusive relationship with his mother. I may have to rent this one day as well.
It's just so sad seeing the devastation AIDS has caused for many. Even though AIDS is labeled as a gay disease, it can happen to both gay and straight folks. I really hope a cure is found soon, though the conspiracy theorist in me don't see the manufacturers of the current "treatments" for AIDS giving up their milk cow. That's the big problem with medicine. It always a masker of symptoms but never a cure. But that's another debate.
Hemingway my holiday was pretty cool. Sally and I decided to drive together to Detroit. It was my first time driving to Detroit in my brand new baby Altima. She's been a bit down after being unfairly fired from her recent job. In a nutshell, her boss unfortunately was quite the asshole and she was finding it increasingly difficult to work with him. She mentioned how other folks in the company were afraid of him and would come to her instead for different issues encountered. But she wouldn't kiss his butt or tell him how great he was, which would irk him. But that's enough about that.
My time in Detroit itself was pretty mundane. It was actually cool Thanksgiving night, though, since the entire family was together again for dinner. We haven't had that for a while, mainly cause Trina usually wouldn't visit until later in the evening. But her last few visits have been without her guy. I'm wondering if there's trouble in paradise there. But Hemingway she even bought her new cat over to interact with the other cats. That went really well as you can imagine...*LOL*.
The rest of the weekend I did my usual running errands with my parents deal. Both of them enjoyed riding in my Altima.
Before leaving for Chicago, Trina came over for a bit and we all decided to do Secret Santa again. This time I wound up picking Trina's name. It seemed fitting that I got her name this time considering I came out to her last visit. So I'll have to think of something good to get her.
So today I'm heading over to Rock's place to help him put together his Christmas tree. It's actually my second time helping him with the tree. One of my first visits (if not my first visit) involved helping him with the tree. He's a bit under the weather so he's a bit moody but otherwise it should be fun. I even bought some Sesame Street character ornaments to put on his tree. Sadly I found the Ernie ornament but couldn't find Bert. You know to complete the set...:-)
The weather is supposed to be sucky later today so I'll defiintely have to leave a little earlier to avoid the brunt of the storm. Bah....I hate winter. *LOL*.
On a happier note, let's end this entry the way it started.