echeblog

Friday, March 31, 2006

Amen!


Thanks, Queer Click!

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Narcissism Is So Gay.

Only The French!

In the middle of the Christian Fundamentalist power grab that we've been experiencing in this country, its easy to forget that other countries have a much more liberal attitude toward sex. Most of Europe, in particular, seems to avoid the puritanical hangups we have here. While the religious right complains about our "sex-crazed" media, the media in most European nations take a much more upfront, relaxed attitude toward sexuality. Its an advertising truth that sex sells. Leave it to the French, however, to take it to the extreme. A French clothing company, Shai Wear, has come out with an "interactive video catalog" that makes the homoerotic A&F Quarterly look tame. Sexpacking.com features explicit gay, lesbian and straight video catalogs featuring their clothing. While the video scene plays you can mouse over various articles of clothing and it will pull up information on the product. Think of Bananarepublic.com and add porn. I haven't watched the straight or lesbian scenes, but the gay scene is hot (as you can tell from the screen shots) and it doesn't pull any punches. Obviously NOT SAFE FOR WORK, but definitely worth checking out if your tastes are broad enough.

Legalize It!

Its not every day that one of your friends gets appointed to the state Legislature. Congrats, Eddie!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Godspeed For A Difficult Journey

There's been a good bit of attention lately in the media on the issue of crystal meth. I'm not the type to judge people when it comes to drug use -- I don't really draw much of a distinction between alcohol or prescription drugs or street drugs. In the end, each individual has to make their own choices about how they treat themselves and their bodies.

That said, I've had plenty of exposure to the type of harm people can do to themselves, especially when it comes to crystal. I've had to watch a few roommates and several friends slowly tear themselves apart (not to mention relationships and friendships) with every line and hit off a glass pipe. I've experienced their personal hell expanding to engulf those around them. With the best of intentions I've made the mistake of trying to save them and I've also had to finally step back and let them go. Its broken my heart every time.

In the past few years, however, I've also seen people manage to claw their way back out of the abyss and put their lives back together. Perhaps I'll never know just how difficult a journey it is (I give thanks for that, I confess) but I've seen shaky first steps from people most would wager were too far gone become stronger and stronger until they were the ones mentoring those trying to climb their way back out. So the dark times have been lined with hope for the lost and pride for the brave ones who have found their way again.

--

Ron was one of the first people I met when I started going out in Phoenix. I was still in the closet back then and felt so out of place when he swooped down and saved me from the creepy guy hitting on me at Trax. He was really the first person that made me feel safe enough to talk and the first friend I made... He put his arms around me and held me as I sobbed with fear the night before I came out to my parents. He was there when I got my heart stomped on in my first few relationships.

At the same time, Ron had his own demons and the drugs became his means to escape. Call after call detailed crystal-fueled orgies, HIV scares and a notable car accident... Of course, lectures never help, though I tried. His doctors and therapists did their best as well. As anyone in recovery can tell you, you have to want to be helped. He's known its a problem for a long time - its not as though he's in denial and he's aware of the kinds of changes he needs to make in his life in order to finally free himself. Up until now it was much easier to fantasize that he could move far away where the drugs will never find him. Of course, somehow they'd find him -- they always have and its been easy to blame everyone else than to put up too much resistance.

I had basically resigned myself that at some point I would get a phone call that something had happened and that he'd be gone. I've had calls late at night that I was sure were that fateful call.

Instead, I recieved an e-mail of a different sort. It seems that he's finally had enough and he's ready to take that first step. While I wish I could make the journey easier for him, I know that, for now, all I can do is pray.

Marc's Midweek Motorcycle Beef Haiku


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The smell of leather
And such a menacing sneer.
Can I ride your hog?

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Do You?

Not Safe For Work!



I have to say that this is the funniest video I've seen in quite a while!

Thanks, Starrfucker!

Monday, March 27, 2006

Bodybuilding Is So Gay.


Any questions?

Ejector





Mainline churches should be silent while Religious Right political leaders get to speak their mind?

Do you care?


The United Church of Christ has just released a new ad, which the networks have already rejected because it is "too controversial." In addition to creating an ad that is incredibly clever with a message of inclusiveness, the UCC has highlighted the fact that the media highlights the views of conservative religious leaders while virtually ignoring progressive groups. While I won't rant about some sort of massive conservative media bias -- I think its more of a function that religious conservatives have simply been organizing and raising money for the past couple of decades, it does make clear the reality that the religious left, as with the political left, have a lot of catching up to do.

Hopefully Progressives can make up some ground in a hurry.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Bottoms Up!


One of the things about being back at work this week is I can appreciate Friday properly again. So, let's celebrate the weekend!

Positive Steps

Thursday filling in at my friend's company was uneventful, for the most part, as you can probably surmise from the multiple entries. While I'll be glad when this is over, filling in this week has been a very good thing -- while I've enjoyed the time off, its felt good getting moving again and getting things flowing. In that vein, I've tried to focus on small things I can do to improve things.

Yesterday, a couple of things came up that I was rather pleased with: A recruiter in town had spotted my updated resume online and called me to set up an interview. I've worked with other recruiters before, though they had all been strictly law-related. This one appeared to be more business oriented. My initial reaction was to tell them that they weren't really the direction I wanted to go. Fortunately, I stopped myself -- I've really been working on trying to be open to new directions and new opportunities, realizing that there are a lot of possibilities out there that would be great for me that are outside of my preconceived notions. So, I decided to set up an appointment to hear them out. Even though I don't know if this will amount to anything, this is a step in the right direction -- being willing to open myself to the unknown possibilities.

Second, while I mentioned my interest in a particular guy who I'm enjoying getting to know, I've been wary of focusing too much on him -- that just increases the chances of me trying to push things and screwing them up and drives me crazy in the process. So, I've been recognizing a few other people in my life whom I've known for a while but haven't had the chance to spend much time. I've made plans with a couple of people for this weekend and next. This is exactly what I need.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Boybands and Bondage

Ok, I've largely ignored movement in the whole boy-band scene, but I can't resist this little tidbit. Two members of the european boy-band O-Zone, Dan B─âlan and Arsenium, are apparently master and slave, according to their profiles on slave4master.com.

I think there are a lot of gay men that have speculated on what REALLY goes on behind the scenes in a boy-band. Now we finally have an idea. Of course, its possible that these are fake, but in the end, that doesn't have to stop us from believing that a couple of boybanders have finally found some leather-daddy love.

My last question is this: When do I finally get to stumble upon Nick Lachey's secret profile now that he's single?

Thanks, Queerty!

More Gay For Pay

In my last entry I mentioned gay-for-pay porn star Mark Dalton, which basically whet my appetite on the subject. Last month the Dallas Voice reported that another porn icon, Tom Katt, had renounced the porn industry and had found religion. The kicker was that he also announced that he was straight.

The Voice interviewed Katt, now known by his given name -- David Papaleo, who is still in the bodybuilding world and hopes to become a preacher.

I suppose the whole turn of events could have rubbed me the wrong way -- I mean, isn't "Kirk Cameron, Televangelist" bad enough? Reading his interview though, its difficult not to come away with some sympathy for Papaleo's experiences.

That said, what's next? Chi Chi LaRue turns to Kabbalah? Wait, that's already been covered, by Jason Sechrest.

Don't Be A Mess In Texas!

We all know that the state of Texas is rather peculiar. Home of W and Tom DeLay as well as gay-for-pay porn star Mark Dalton, how could you imagine otherwise? Every once in a while, however, you get a sense of how bizarre the place is. Today's winner: Texas is now targeting drunks... in bars. A recent sting operation was conducted in 36 bars in a Dallas suburb resulting in 30 arrests for public intoxication.

Drunk people in bars? How could such a thing happen?

A spokeswoman for the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission explained that this is a pre-emptive move to combat DUI. I'm curious as to whether Texas adopted Bush's premption strategy or vice versa. Nonetheless, while reducing DUI is a good thing, I'd wager there are better ways to go about it.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Shameless Mansploitation


Things are REALLY slow today... so in honor of Jon, who has much love for the "mansploitation" films, here's another video with little or no substance, but some good flesh... he's much too young to be considered "beef" so perhaps we'll label this one as "veal."

Blame the Gays

File this one under "Pat Robertson."

A prominent Israeli Kabbalahist, Rabbi David Basri, is blaming a recent outbreak of bird flu in Israel on the Gays. Apparently, in a prelude to elections, some left-wing parties have been campaigning to legalize gay marriage in Israel. Basri has reportedly claimed that the bird flu outbreak is divine retribution for the parties' "strengthening and encouraging [of] homosexuality." Rather than having any connection to say, deforestation or pollution, it is in actuality "God punish[ing] depravity first through plagues against animals and then in people." Of course, the greed, corruption, violence and other assorted depravity of heterosexuals is apparently A-OK.

No word yet whether the Gays are responsible for Bjork's fabled swan outfit.

Marc's Midweek Rugby Redux Haiku


Dripping with man-sweat
We pile upon each other
Grabbing for the ball

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

A LONG Day...

I'm filling in at a friend's company for a couple of days, as I have plenty of time on my hands. It gives me something to do and while I'm not making much money, it beats not making money. While I've enjoyed (and needed) the time off, it feels good to be back in a more productive mode. Another big plus is that I've filled in here before and the people like me, which makes me feel good.

That said, I'm at the receptionist desk and things are generally very slow. It makes for a VERY long day. Its now 4:30 PM and I'm struggling to find things to keep me interested... I run across an article entitled: "Fake Muscles Work Like Real Thing" with the accompanying picture... Oooh, exciting! Kinda like my recent "steroided beef" haiku, right? Nothing quite like some beef to liven up my day, right.

Sadly, its a Discovery Channel article on artificial muscle tissues created for potential mechanical uses. SO not exciting.

Would You?

Yesterday I read one of Ethan's recent entries on dating that I really enjoyed and found quite insightful. Between that and comments from a couple of friends who read the blog have raised a question: I've been rather tight-lipped when it comes to my love life. One of the big reasons is because for most of the time, I really haven't had much to tell. In the past few months, however, I have met someone that I've really connected with and we've been spending time together and getting to know each other. That said, while I really like him, I don't think either of us is treating this as if we're dating at this point. We're just getting to know each other and as Ethan rightfully observed, who knows how long that will take, right? There's certainly no guarantee that we'll become more than friends.

So the question is: If it was you, would you be making more of a deal about it?

From my perspective, on one hand, I've rushed into relationships before and been burned badly for it. So, my focus has been on trying to be patient and just letting things develop at their own pace. On the other hand, if I can't be honest about where I am in my life on my own blog, then I need to reevaluate what my blogging is all about.

Monday, March 20, 2006

A Dose of Good News

Its easy to figure that the world around us is going crazy - after all, its easy to focus on everything that's going wrong. While we can try to blame the media, the deeper truth is that we all contribute to it. Its part of human nature. Specifically, in the gay community, we constantly hear about how one state or another is going to amend their constitution to prevent gay marriage or to prevent gays from adopting. I confess that sometimes I get caught up in the mindset that we're under attack.

An article by Deb Price in the Detroit News tells the rest of the story, though -- that while we may be losing some battles, we're winning the war, so to speak. She explains that "despite all the shouting about how America is being torn apart by culture wars, each new generation is more progressive than the one before -- more accepting of human differences, more willing to tear down walls that needlessly divide people." Looking back at the issue of interracial marriage, we can see this same struggle come to a head and then subside. Younger generations come to accept what would be considered unthinkable to their elders. Of course, its easy to lose that perspective when you're caught up in the middle of things. Thanks to Ms. Price for the reminder.

In other areas, I noticed an article about a young, reformist Islamic preacher, Amr Khaled. Despite the
recent furor over anti-Islamic cartoons and scores of voices preaching hate and intolerance, the reality is that there are other voices out there: voices that preach understanding, compassion, dialogue and co-existance. Not only are they out there, they are starting to resonate. You need only tune out the static of bad news to understand that we're moving in the right direction.

Come On and Ride

I had an odd dream last night that stuck in my head, so I decided to go ahead and record it, in the spirit of Adam. I had entered a bike race in downtown Tempe. Apparently, I had been participating in it in previous years. As I was making my way through the course, I discovered that the route of the course had changed from years past, leaving many unexpected turns and paths. At one point, I encountered one of these course changes and went the wrong way, taking me off course. As soon as I realized it, I turned to make my way back, which ended up taking me by several race officials. As I passed by, one of the called out that I had been disqualified. I asked the woman who had made the ruling to please explain what had happened. She became quite defensive and remarked that her decision was final and that I shouldn't try to get her to change her mind. I explained that I wasn't trying to change her decision, rather, I simply wanted an explanation of what had happened. One of the other officials overheard what was going on and agreed that I deserved an explanation. Finally, they told me that I had been disqualified for leaving the designated course. While I couldn't argue with that, I was rather upset because they had changed the course at the last minute without informing any of us and without any way to anticipate the changes. I then made my way back to my friends who were all downtown and bitched.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Gimme That Old Time Religion...

With all talk of religion in the media these days, I've been feeling rather adrift. I mean, I was raised Catholic but being gay and all has pretty much fixed that. Having my parish priest arrested for several counts of molestation was just the icing on the cake. I think I've found the new religion for me -- The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster! Basically, it teaches that the universe was created by the Flying Spaghetti Monster. What's more, pirate regalia is the official clothing of the FSM Church. I think its time to become a Pastafarian!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Gym Motivation



For those of you who've been reading recently, you know I've been searching for something to keep me motivated to get my ass to the gym. If I could me find me a hot guy who wants me to rub him down frequently, I think that would probably do it.

Marc's Gay.Com Midweek Beef Haiku

My online profile:
"Sure I'm made from plastic, but
abs are all that count."

Monday, March 13, 2006

Spring Cleaning

I have to admit that I've never been big into the whole spring cleaning phenomenon. Maybe its because it rained all day Saturday or that I've been feeling a little stuck lately... Maybe its something else. Whatever it is, I have a strange craving for a fresh pine scent.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

What If

What if there was no light
Nothing wrong, nothing right.
What if there was no time?
And no reason or rhyme.

What if you should decide
That you don't want me there by your side.
That you don't want me there in your life.

What if I got it wrong, and no poem or song
Could put right what I got wrong
Or make you feel I belong

What if you should decide
That you don't want me there by your side
That you don't want me there in your life.

"What If"
-Coldplay

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Marc's Back to the Gym Widweek Beef Haiku

Don't ask if I'm juiced
Please ignore the acne scars
All-natural beef?

Only In Alabama!

No matter how bad things may be in your life, just remember that things could always get worse: you could live in Alabama. Today's gem out of Alabama -- a recent string of mysterious fires in baptist churches appears to have been solved with the arrest of two students at Birmingham-Southern College and another at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. The students claim that they intended the first five fires as "a joke." Four subsequent fires were intended as a diversion to throw off investigators.

"A federal source said the apparent motive was that the three students just liked to set and watch fires."

The things you have to do in Alabama for a little entertainment.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

How to tell if you're gay...


I'm sorry, it makes no difference if you listen to rap. If you shave all your body hair, lube yourself up with baby oil and then stick your dick in a shoe... you're gay.

Thanks to Steve at Penguin Food for finding this.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Turn, Turn, Turn

I had my first weekend off from DJing this weekend -- the club opened back in August, so its been over 6 months since I had a free weekend. Fortunately, I was able to have one of my good friends, who has been DJing for 10+ years fill in for me. She hadn't played in over a year so it was a good opportunity for her to get back in the booth. Getting out of the booth and back into normal socializing took a little adjustment. Usually I have a couple of minutes to say hello to people before I have to run back to the booth. It was great to be able to actually spend some time talking with people.

I received a call from a friend that I hadn't seen in a couple of years. I've known him since I came out 7 years ago. He was having a farewell cocktail party at his house - he had met someone a couple of years ago and they finally decided that they were going to move to Mexico. So, he was in the process of packing and selling a lot of his stuff before he made the final trip south of the border. It gave me a chance to say goodbye and remember all the good times we shared. I was also able to spend some time with friends who I hadn't seen together in quite a while. Another friend who had moved to New York was in town, so it was a rare treat to have this group together.

At the party I also heard that a couple that I know is splitting up. I remember being at their wedding a few years back. The whole night was a chance to look back and remember our time together and realize that time marches on -- you have to appreciate things while you can because inevitably, things change. And while I miss the "good old days" to some extent, I also realize that things change for a reason and ultimately, things have gotten better. Still, sometimes you need to step back and look at where you've come from in order to appreciate where you are.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Very Abercrombie


I don't watch much TV, so I missed Mad TV's take on Abercrombie. I have to admit that they've captured the smugness and homoeroticism quite well. To boot, one of the guys kinda looks like my friend Adam.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Bunnies


If you haven't already seen the 30 Second Bunny Theatre, its time to check it out -- essentially they take popular movies, redo them in just 30 seconds and all parts are played by bunnies. My personal favorite is their reenactment of The Shining. As you can see from the picture, they've just come out with their Brokeback Mountain version. Its definitely worth checking out.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Marc's Sweaty Midweek Beef Haiku

Glistening manflesh:
A shower is not required.
Sweaty beef tastes good!