Friday, September 29, 2006

Surfing YouTube So You Don't Have To

Lilies - Cranes

Monday, September 25, 2006

An Anniversary

Yesterday my first friend told me he’s HIV+. I am very lucky in the fact that were about one generation after the one that was most devastated by AIDS.

He has been positive for almost five years and has only been sick once. Like most people who are positive and don’t know it he found out he had HIV after getting sick. At the time he was so sick his doctor told him he should make some “arrangements”. That was around Christmas 2001.

He and I used to date when I live in LA. Our relationship didn’t last more than seven months. He had been tested so he knows he wasn’t positive when we were dating and thinks he knows how he got infected. Over the years we have remained friends, even tough we only see each other every other year we talk regularly.

After he told me and assured me he has only been sick that once in 2001 I didn’t know what to say. Selfishly I felt a little hurt that he didn’t tell me when this happened almost five years ago, but he reminded that I was keeping my distance from him at the time. He had lied to me about the death of a guy he was dating that lived out of state, when he finally came clean about it I didn’t take it so well. He tried to tell me while he was here in the spring but it just didn’t happen. With the five-year anniversary coming up he wanted to tell more people.

Looking back on it the things he said to me when we started talking again take on a different meaning. I was training for the 2002 AIDS Ride and got stuck at Zuma Beach in Malibu 25 miles form my car that was parked in Santa Monica. A spoke on my back wheel broke warping the tired making it impossible to ride the bike that far. I called him to ask him if he would come and me pick me up and take me back to my car. When he got there we loaded my car back into the back of this Trooper.

“I am glad we’re still friends and help each other out,” he told me.

“Yeah me too.”

Fortune Cookie

"Every exit is an entrance to new experiences."

I couldn't have said it better myself.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Know Your Rights - The Clash

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Something for Both of Us

My father's proudest moment.

My proudest moment.

Jesus really does love me.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Anyone Else Need to Feel Better?

Recently I was talking to a coworker about love and potential love. She is the self-professed quintessential fag hag, gay men flock to her. Much like my friend Kate her mind works more like a man’s. She isn’t emotionally manipulative if aren’t working out she is moving on and not thinking twice about it. She is dating a new guy. He was a chef at a gay restaurant, but isn’t the least bit gay she assured me. He’s 30 (she is 25) and has gone back to school for a film degree.

I told her about a guy I’ve been hooking up this guy off and on for a few years and how I would like to transition our relationship into a dating one and not just sex.

“It’s not just that I don’t know how to make the transmission, I’m a bit intimidated by him”

“What do you mean? Why?”

“He’s an attorney. He’s really smart, successful and the bedroom in his loft is larger then my whole apartment. It makes me feel like a dork.”

“Oh my god well you have to try. I mean do you like him?”

“Yeah I do, but I don’t really know him all that well.”

5 minutes of laughter.
“I love talking to you. I don’t feel like so much of a slut.”

Friday, September 15, 2006

Massive Attack - Protection

This song reminds me of a former coworker I had a crush on about ten years ago, in so many life as changed since then and in other ways it hasn't.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Queer Eye for the Old Guy

A month and a half before my father's ordination we had to have a chat that I knew was going be difficult for both of us. We don't often have these types of heart to heart conversations but I knew something could go horribly wrong if I didn't step in to stage an intervention that only a gay son could.

I was a little gun shy from failing at this in the past, I decided to test the waters with my mother. I was hoping she could give me some guidance or to at least give me some support for what may need to be double-pronged attack. Even before all the words were out of my mouth she got tense.

"What is Dad planning on wearing to his ordination?"

"Scott, things have been so stressful I haven't been able to go down that road with him nor do I want to, we had to may fights with him about what he's wearing. I think he is going to wear the suit he bought for Grandpa's funeral. If you want to talk to him about it, be my guest. I'm not ready for it."

"What about shoes?"

"He has black shoes."

"If they're the shoes he wore to Aunt Sis's funeral. He's they're to casual."

The suit in question was bought in 1999 the year my grandfather died. When it had become clear my grandfather wouldn't be coming out of the hospital my mother forced my father to buy a new suit. I lived on the west coast and was spared the thrill of this event.

"Grandpa wouldn't dyinging if he knew what he was putting me through," was what he said in the store. He meant this with no irony. None of the men in my family know what is appropriate to wear to a formal event or how to wear it. They'd rather have gum surgery than go to the men's section of Macy's.

When my youngest uncle still lived at home he and my grandfather shared the same tie. It was as system that worked for years until they were both expected to attend the same wedding.

"Can you believe we had to buy a new tie for this?"

While formulating my plan of attack I decided to start small then work my way up, first the shoes then the suit. Day one of operation "neatly dressed" was planned for the day my parents were leaving for their summer vacation. I knew he'd be in a good mood and wouldn't expect it, then if he complained to my mother she would only reinforce what'd told him for two weeks they were away.

I fired my first shot, "Do you have shoes to wear to the ordination?"

"Oh right, Mom told me I was supposed to show you the shoes," It was going to take more then sarcasm to deter me.

He went left the kitchen and brought back the shoes. They looked even worse than I remember. These are the type of shoes your see little boys and old men wear, soft leather that doesn't hold a shape with thick laces so they're easy to tie. They had a black rubber sole, the kind that marks up a wood floor, wears in the corner when you drive after the first time you drive with them on, and are always dirty.

"Dad these aren't dress shoes."

"What do you mean they aren't dress shoes they're black?"

"I mean they're to casual for you to wear with a suit."


"What about a suit? Do you have a suit to wear?"

"Yeah I have a suit. I'm gonna wear the suit I have the tan and black checked one."

"You should really think about getting a nice black suit. One that's really conservative, that way if you have to do a wedding or a funeral you'll be able to wear it. If you take care of it you'll have it for years."

"Ugh." He was as exasperated as old man Costanza from Seinfeld.

"When I was an alter boy Fr. Mullen's always told us it was black pants and black shoes, not brown or blue pants, black pants with black shoes."

When my parents got back from vacation I stopped by to drop off their keys. It was time for phase two. I brought up the clothes again. It worked he gave in with out much resistance. But not before I told him his old suit was just ugly, but hey this is war right?

We, or I decided a single breasted, two button, single vented suit would be best for him. Five times he asked me why, five times I gave him the reasons. He would have it and not have to worry about being under dressed for anything. We made a date for shopping.

The Sunday before we went to the store he and my mother did some pre-shopping, she found a dress for herself. She and my father just looked for him; she wouldn't let him buy anything with out my approval. She did let him know what she liked.

When my father and I got to the store I headed straight back to the suits.

"46 regular?"

"Were you in my closet?"

"Yes, 46 regular right?"

Sigh. "Yes"

We went thought the suits. I picked one out he said no, he picked one out he I said you are going to a Deacon not a pimp. That didn't go over so well, but I laughed. He showed me the one my mother liked. It was a no it was cotton and would fade. Actually he got into the spirit of what we were doing it made it fun. After trying on 5 or 6 jackets we nothing was right. I was willing to settle on something a bit different, but there was no changing plans for my father he was getting what I suggested nothing less would do. The next one he tried on was it.

I sent him over to the tailor, "Oh this fits you nice." The tailor was from West Africa. Actually he wasn't American and that's all I cared about, I don't trust American born tailors, it's not rational I know a foreign makes me feel he was taught his trade from men who had been tailors for generations. The tailor marked the suit and looked in the mirror as I nodded my approval.

"Why did they take sleeves up?"

"Your shirt cuff is supposed to show."

"What if I'm wearing short sleeves?"

"Short sleeve dress shirts are for 5 year olds and copier repairmen since you're neither you don't have to worry about it."

He had his suit in his hand and started to head for the door, I made a left toward shirts.

"17. 34-35"


I picked up two blue shirts one darker the other. He chose the lighter one, but was kind of the size.

"Should I ask Kenny to measure me to make sure we get the right one?"

He wanted to do it righ and I loved that he called the tailor by his name. He didn't call him the guy, the black guy or the tailor he gave him the respect of learning his name.

The size was correct he chose the lighter of the two shirts.

Next we were on to ties. He didn't like anything I held up and went to the other side of the rack to see more. The tie he brought over matched the shirt. I didn't like it, but I figured he should be able to choose one thing on his own. We got him a belt as well.

In a little more than an hour he was almost completely outfitted. We stopped for a bite to eat and to regroup. Just one pair of shoes stood between me and completing my mission.

The shoes turned out to be a bit of a nightmare. All of his enthusiasm was gone when he parked his pick-up in the parking lot. I practically had to drag him into the store. He stomped his feet and whined. Reassuringly I put my hand on his should and pulled out the big guns. I didn't want to do it, I have him an extra little shove. I played the guilt card.

"You know this has nothing to do with you. I am doing this for Mom she wants you to look your best. It's one less thing for her to worry about. She has done a lot for you to get to the ordination you can do this for her."

He cut his eyes at me, but made not more protests.

Walking up and down the isles I explained to him what we were needed, "We are looking for a shoe with a leather sole and wood heal not a rubber one. That way you can have the soles replaced if you really like the shoes. If you buy rubber soled ones they'll wear out quicker."

I found a pair of lace ups oxfords that I liked and had him sit down on a bench to try them on. My father has a high arch so he can only wear shoes with laces. It makes buying shoes a major pain for him and why he hates it.

"What do you mean they wear out to quickly? These are fine."

I picked up the shoe he had just taken off to show him were it was starting to fall apart and were the dirt was caked on it. He sighed at me again.

The shoe shopping was a failure nothing fit him properly. We made a date to do it another night. Much to my surprised on the second shopping night he bought the first pair of shoes he tired on. I'd prepared myself for the worst, but it was painless.

He told all of my relatives how I lectured him on the shoes and how they were supposed to be. They all thought it was hilarious, and that I was clearly out of my mind. However I won in the end.

Two days before the actual ordination he started to understand. The Deacon in charge of the program told all the candidates that they could only wear back pants and black shoes to the ordination and nothing else. Before we went shopping he didn't have black pants.

During the ordination he had to kneel and lay on the alter with the soles of his shoes facing the congregation. The day after the ordination when he celebrated his first mass my Uncle and Aunt said to me, "Gee his shoes looked so nice. You don't realize you're gonna see them when he's standing so much higher then everything on the altar".

Monday, September 11, 2006


I started to write what happened to me on 9/11, where I was, what I was doing, how I felt. It all felt more self indulgent than I'd like to be on a day that so many people are mourning the lost of loved ones.

In short on 9/11 I lived in West Hollywood, CA I didn't think that something that happened 3,000 miles from my adopted home with have touched me the way it did, but the planes did take of from the place I've lived most of my life.

When you remember today please remember Jay Corcoran. He was a passenger United Airlines flight 175. Jay was a merchant marine traveling to Los Angeles for work. He is survived by his wife and two teenage children. He was only 44.

Jay is my aunt's (my mother's sister-in-law) brother-in-law. I had met him a couple of times at parties that were held by our relatives that connected us. Though I didn't know him well he is the person that think of most today.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Deacon Dad

Today (not the Monday that I find myself rewriting this.) my father was ordained as a Catholic Deacon. I had started to compose a post about him the way I know him, but I was afraid it sounded a bit to angry, I just want this post to be about the snapshot of his moment not film archive of my life.

In a ceremony that lasted three hours, in the Cathedral of the Holy Cross that has no air conditioning, on an humid 83 degree day. My father walked into the building a regular man and walked out a certified servant of God with the title Deacon. This process has taken over four years.

Being a Deacon means he can do everything a priest does with the exception of three things, consecrating, this is the part of mass where the bread and wine are transformed into the flesh and blood of Christ. Formally this process is called transubstantiation (also one my friend Nicole’s favorite words). Secondly he can’t give absolution which is good because if I am feeling the need to confess anything it would probably be to much for him to handle. Lastly he can’t give last rites or the anointing of the sick as it’s called now. I am sure this is tied to absolution, they don’t want any one lower then a priest hading out the special Get Out of Hell Free cards.

The ceremony was presided over by the least favorite Catholic in the world, Cardinal Sean O’Malley who I served me communion (I think he cruised me). Out side of that the ceremony was beautiful. No one does pageantry like the Catholics do it. The procession to start the mass had about 200 people in it. The cathedral holds 3,000 people and from where I sat it looked full. 14 other men where ordained as well.

I am extremely happy for him for finally facing his fear and doing something I think he would have done sooner if he wasn’t so afraid of it. In a surprise to myself my pride came out in tears, I cried from the moment I saw him walk in his alb to the end when he left the church in his dalmatic. I actually cried more than my mother did.

As a Deacon he will be working out the his home parish Our Lady of the Assumption in Lynnfield, MA. You can see him give a homily any time you like. Much to my grandmother’s chagrin they tend to be a bit long winded. She told him she would prefer it if he kept it short.

Now I will answer the question: Oh my God it must be so hard for you, blagh blagh blagh. The answer is I don’t know if it’s hard or not, I don’t know anything else life has always been like this for me. Furthermore he and I aren’t the same person. I have my own mind I think for myself and as does he. And there is nothing in the church that says being gay is a sin it’s all the sex I’m having that’s a problem for them. We don’t talk about my sex life so we are fine.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Humming - Portishead

I have decided to share some of my favorite music once a week. This week I have decided on Portishead. Although this is my not my favorite of their songs the video is beautiful.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Off Point

Hey everybody Pat Buchanan has a new book out titled State of Emergency: The Third World Invasion and Conquest of America. Now before you run to your local Borders or Barns and Noble to buy the book I must warn you it’s a bit racist. You’re shocked, right?

Yesterday on WBUR’s program On Point ol’ Pat was interviewed and discussed his new book. Now I must admit I had turn it off half way through the conversation because my throat was sore from yelling at the radio. Below I have pasted in some his quotes from the program that are posted on WBUR’s site and I will only discuss what I was able to make it t.

It seems Pat has been kept awake nights thinking about the counties “immigration crisis”. The problem isn’t just people coming into the country illegally the problem is people coming into the country and simply refusing to assimilate to American culture. He argued that a new wave of immigrants have come to the US who are not interested in being American nor do they want their children to be American, they just came here for all the great things we have here like say free health care and our amazingly generous welfare system. Oh right we don’t have those to things, maybe they are actually coming here because the US offers them something they couldn’t hope to attain in their home countries like free speech and a chance for economic freedom, just like Buchanan’s may have.

He is afraid we have let so may Mexican’s into the country who wont assimilate that we are in danger of loosing the whole southwest to become part of Mexico again. You see all of these Mexicans are doing things like speaking Spanish in public and eating far too much paella, things you just shouldn’t do as an American. There are just so many of them they don’t have a need to learn to speak English, which of course means they will eventually want to takeover all forms of Government secede from the Union and become part of Mexico. I hope that gave you the laugh I got from it.

He also seen immigrants marching or demonstrating while flying the flags of their national origin and they shouldn’t be. He feels the melting pot is broken and assimilation is what is needed more then anything to preserve our great way of life.

Of course he didn’t mention having a problem with St. Patrick’s Day or Columbus Day when the Irish and Italians Americans respectively come out in droves to celebrate their ethnic pride with parades flying flags of the foreign countries of their heritage. Guess what Pat, most of these people are 4th and 5th generation American and have never stepped counties they are claiming an affiliation with, and do you think they pose a threat for the same reasons? Should they be deported too?

In my part of the US when you ask someone what their nationality is they don’t answer American. It doesn’t matter how when their ancestors to the US, when asked they will invariably give you a list of their ethnic background or the one they most identify with culturally. Should we deport all of these people as well to fully assimilate?

He went on to suggest that our country needs to stop all immigration now to give the people already here time to properly assimilate to US customs. After their assimilation is complete we should only take in people from countries that mirror our own in culture, ethnic make up, and religion. Loosely translated Pat only wants white Christians coming here. One would argue that we should be open to the countries neighboring our south but the there is a race problem. Apparently because most of South and Central America is made of Mestizo people they are simply incapable of understanding how we do things here in the US even though they meet the qualifications he had already set for immigration.

It seems the Spanish weren’t as successful getting rid of the native peoples in rest of the Americas as the English were. As a consequence of a poor policy toward ethnic cleansing they won’t be allowed to immigrate into the US.

Another point about why we should keep the Mexicans out is they are taking jobs from mostly Black Americans who are lined up in some unknown location waiting for jobs working in the fields picking crops. He likened these immigrants to union busters and scabs crossing picket lines. You heard it right he is a pro-labor pro-black Republican. This is about where I had to turn it off.

I don’t know why WBUR would give platform to this horrible hatemonger. I would agree that it’s important to hear both sides of an argument but having to listen to Pat Buchanan talk about immigration is as useful as asking KKK for advice to help improve American race relations.

Quotes from the program:

"The immediate threat is the spanishization of the American Southwest." Pat Buchanan

"I see increasingly a bifurcated [American] nation." Pat Buchanan

"Millions of these people [today's immigrants] are not coming to be Americans but to work." Pat Buchanan

"Any troublemaker including those leading a political demonstration who is not an American citizen I would deport." Pat Buchanan

Friday, September 01, 2006


Have great Labor Day weekend.