Thursday, September 22, 2005

New broom misses the old dirt

  • These clouds contain rain.

  • Unmasked, this is Benedict's effort to rid the American church of pedophile leadership. It shows the usual ignorance about these issues, but its side effects are chilling. The American church will shrink, becoming a relic. The priests ( synonym for gay priests) who are safely "grandfathered" by this witch hunt will reach a new level of disgust with their church and a heightened feeling of shame among their gay friends. This is what it must have felt like to live in Germany in the 1940's. The progressive clarification of where you stood, and the step-by-step clarification about what group could claim you as a member, would finally force you to choose one thing or another. No more ambiguity, no more toleration for a double standard, no more no-asking-no-telling. Either you wear the armband or not. There are consequences to this kind of clarification.

    On the brighter side, most of my gay priest friends won't feel any of this anxiety. They won't be reading this article, won't know what's going on in the seminaries and won't hear about the ban on gay priests until next they visit us. They are too busy assembling new gear for the next Folsom Street.

    Wednesday, September 21, 2005

    The Times cruises a parking lot

    I like
  • this story
  • .

    The reporter got some things right and some things wrong, but he captures the experience in a wistful, almost sweet way, with only a residual hint of desire to "expose" the underbelly of gay cruising.

    He got right:

    a) The fact that the kids who are arriving with Mom for their games in the park are not being menaced by the gay men in their cars.

    b) The fact that this activity has been going on for decades, often with the same group of attendees, some of whom even admit to having spent their entire youth trolling the same parking lot (that is a distressing topic for another time).

    c) The fact that married men are the major benefactors of the lot.

    d) The fact that these places provide socialization for older lonely gay men who form a sort of Greek chorus as they watch the desire under the elms.

    He got wrong:

    a) a missed opportunity to complete his report without once adopting the tone of someone seeking to expose something shocking. He is overly deliberate in his specificity about the exact location of the parking lot. It seems he wants the locals to go there and to upset the long-term peace between the various communities of the park and its lot.

    b) the clear presentation of the married men as recipients of oral sex because they are not getting any at home or because they are bored. I am here to tell you that the married men (happy or otherwise) who are having sex at rest stops, public parks or gym shower rooms are giving as much oral sex as they are getting, and they are doing it because they like it.

    Thursday, September 15, 2005


  • The New York Times
  • is reporting that the Pope has mandated (a great word for him) a search of American seminaries for "evidence of homosexuality".

    Hmmm. Statues of Mary? Check.
    Long flowing brightly colored silk brocade garments? Check.
    No girls? Check. Check . Check.

    Actually, this witch hunt would be horrendous and distressing if it had been mandated decades ago when the seminaries were full and fully gay. Today, they are largely empty, and the inquisitors will have no more success than they had when their clipboards read "Weapons of Mass Destruction".

    Further sad hilarity can be had when one realizes that any inspection team assembled by the Vatican or by the American Catholic clergy at the request of the Vatican will consist largely of gay men (i.e., those lazy fat old queens who never got out while they were young enough to do something else with their lives).


    I may have left an empty bottle of poppers and an early issue of Details in the loo of a Benedictine seminary in southern Indiana.

    Wednesday, September 14, 2005

    Light for the last rose

    les rayons ultimes, originally uploaded by farmboyz.

    C took this photo of my regret about the passing of summer, while we waited for the elevator in our building.
    Because I think "derniers" carries the sense of "next" sometimes, I don't want to refer to this as "Les derniers rayons de l'ete", or even "Les rayons derniers de l'ete". I suppose "Les rayons finals de l'ete" would be clear, but I really like "Les rayons ultimes de l'ete". Anyway, the summer sun has left milky white chevrons on top of my feet where it could not penetrate the skin shielded by the straps of my flip flops. I dread the entombment of my feet into winter shoes. Any French scholars with opinions?

    Monday, September 12, 2005

    Self Sabotage

  • He
  • said:

    It's a monday morning and i am overwhelmed with doubts. I know doubts come with relationships, all of them - whether "mere" friendships, or the kind that involve sex, and shared secrets, and hopes for a life together. I know this, I have experienced it, and yet, now, right now, for the moment anyway, I doubt I am right for him. This is no time for "hey guy, you're cool, you're a great guy" etc. I am not writing this to get that reaction. I think I am writing this to flesh these jumbled up thoughts for myself, and the structure of making it semi-coherant here in 'public' might help. Friends can't answer the question of whether I am a nice guy, am i a smart-ass, am I too biting and sarcastic and downright rude sometimes. They don't have so much invested, they don't experience the worries and doubts that, well, lovers do. Perhaps ex-boyfriends can help me understand what it is about me that gives mixed signals - "i love you" vs. "leave me alone I'm not even awake yet" - OK, those are poor examples. But apparently somethings i do or say, or the manner in which i say or do them, are rude and hurtful. And it is vague, and I don't quite see it, and that there is the problem. It is not OK for me to conclude that it is his problem. That is never the right answer, no matter what the relationship is - if indeed you want it to continue and in fact get even better. But I am genuinely perplexed, and saddened by this dilemna. I want to fix it, yet i don't, honestly, know what I am doing wrong, and so can't begin to be better. I am overwhelmed and frankly, a bit frozen - worried about making more, and bigger mistakes. Doubting even the little nicenesses that I want to do on a whim because they may seem contrived, or calculated. This is not what he has said, but more my anxiety getting the better of me and just doubting everything for now (I hope it is just for now).

    My comment:

    When I met C, I had to clear the house in order to enter the relationship.

    I had to move my closest friends, who arrived like clockwork every friday at 6PM and stayed for the weekend, out. I had to get through to them that the thing I really wanted had arrived, and that it would take their place. I handled this poorly, and those two people were hurt very deeply. (We are all three on speaking terms, but no longer close. They soon found love, and they are both in relationships that are just as long as mine.)

    When C and I first moved in together, I was rude and irritable about a number of things. I guess I was nervous, more about myself than about him. I would mentally replay the tapes of things I said to him, and be mortified. He didn't seem to feel them half as much as I did. This was a surprise and a relief to me. When he behaved badly, I made so much noise about it, you'd think I had been crucified.

    And then, luckily, time passed, and we were able to correct the foolishness in order to save the goodness of being together.

    Time passed! So wonderfully, we survived ourselves.

    Something in your words reminded me of me. I hope you will have also some of my other qualities - the redeeming ones - that will see you through this moment.

    Thursday, September 08, 2005

    The problem with blogging

    The problem with blogging is the allure of speed.
    We are tempted to post without previewing our words.
    We are tempted to comment everywhere and about everything, like drunken bees, like cocktail-fueled dilettanti, like shoppers who caress but do not buy.
    Addicted to the sugar of any strong headline, we begin to stop conjuring, and opt for reacting to the spark of other fires.
    We sell our own furniture and begin to reside in the rooms of others.