Sunday, January 24, 2016

Success

But once you take it in
You'll be raking in
But one mistake my friend
Can tip you towards your end
Eons we can live
Neglecting to forgive
We're peons with a sieve
Discard the juice and keep the shit
But once you break it in
You'll be faking gifts
Exaggerating every hint
Lifting without a wince

It's not the task itself
It's how the task is sold
It's not how it was dealt
It's whether you were told

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Goliath Triangle

Few can pinpoint the precise moment when a man becomes emasculated, or far worse, loses the admiration of his girlfriend. Many times it happens between the loss of a job and the refusal to find a new one. Sometimes, it’s the general lack of sexual satisfaction accompanied by the unwillingness to perform oral sex. And in some cases, it’s the inability to make important decisions until after the PlayStation 3 is turned off. All of the prior situations indeed contributed to the demise of the lovable couple, Chad Stevens and Lana Gander, but it wasn't the main reason. They weren't the straw that rendered the camel lame.

One could say that maybe Chad shouldn't have drunk so many beer cocktails that night. The combination of beer and hard liquor back to back never provides a happy ending. Either you wake up with your face pasted with puke on the bathroom floor next to your toilet or end up having your wounds cleaned in the ER because your drunken mouth felt it needed to have the last word. Yes, both situations can occur, just ask Chad. But none of these inconveniences compared to the tragedy of losing his beloved Lana. Till this day you can find Chad in some slummy bar getting shitfaced, drink after drink. He turns to you and asks, “How could this happen to me?”

Somehow you become clairvoyant and respond, “It was your decision to go to that football game. She never even liked football. She let you drag her there but she secretly despised you for it.” Chad thinks for a moment and realizes that you're right. He remembers how he would change the channel to Monday Night Football on ABC without even asking if Lana was watching the television. She was. Her favorite documentary series came on at the same hour. But hey, having one television sucks. Also, the gift he gave her for their first anniversary comes to mind: season tickets for the Seattle Seahawks. Chad just assumed that since his girlfriend never complained about the obsessive following of football that it meant that she liked the sport. See, Chad is an idiot.

You don't need Chad to tell you what happened that ill-fated night because your powers haven't worn off, but let him have his moment. He's still somewhat coherent. He tells you that after the game his favorite football player, Lance Mitchell was signing autographs and Chad refused to leave until he had words with him. Lance had announced a few days prior that he was retiring from the sport simply because it wasn't fun for him anymore. At this point, I am going to advise that you don't listen to Chad because he won't tell you the truth.

Chad had an unhealthy obsession with Lance. He kept a scrapbook of newspaper clippings, football cards, pictures, and about anything he could find about Lance. One of the pictures was a shot that Lance did for Playgirl magazine while still attending the University of Washington. It wasn't a nude picture, but Lance appeared shirtless wearing a pair of extra tight underwear that left nothing to the imagination. Every once in a while, when conventional hetero porn didn't do the trick, Chad would use that picture to help release his tension. I'll let Chad take it from here.

Mister Lush himself, Chad tells you that when he saw Lance he began to run towards him, pushing poor Lana out of the way. She hit the floor hard. A group of boys rushed in front of Chad to meet with the legend. Sweeping push. The children hit the floor hard. Scantily-clad groupies slid in Chad's way, showing cleavage and mouthing the words of their hotel and room numbers. Sweeping kick. They hit the floor hard. Chad was merely a few feet away from having his confrontation with Lance, the athlete whose early retirement news was devastating. The only thing that separated Chad from his goal was a mountain range of burly bodyguards. The tequila and Corona beer told him that he could easily jump over the towering group of hired security. So, he jumped. Alcohol has a funny way of both lying to you and making you tell the truth.

Lana watched the jump as she got up from the floor. It looked promising at first, but was quickly interrupted by a two-handed catch by a walking monument of a man. The catch turned into a body slam. That time, Chad hit the floor hard. The other security men got ready to assist in the take down.

“Nah, I got this, men.” Goliath Everest said.

Goliath proceeded to bring Chad back to his feet. He then picked Chad up by the neck with one hand and used his abdomen as a punching bag with the other. Lana watched the look of pain in her boyfriend's eyes. A look like that would trouble an innocent bystander that had nothing to do with Chad. But the look had a different reaction in Lana. Her eyes moved over the thick bulky arms of Mr. Everest, his smooth dark skin, the collection of sweat beads on his forehead, and the bursts of air escaping from his full lips as he exhaled with every punch. She couldn't help but mutter the words “kick his ass” as the gladiator made mincemeat out of her boyfriend. It could have been the years of frustration that caused Lana to be disloyal to Chad, but I would say something else had to be the reason. While Chad lay in the hospital, recovering from his injuries, Lana hid herself in the hospital's public restroom, touching herself as she reminisced about the brutal attack. See, Lana is a sociopath.

“And she fucking left me! For the asshole who beat the shit out of me!” Chad tells you, for him it's the clincher, but for you it goes without saying. Your randomly acquired abilities forced you to watch Lana masturbate to the memory of the juggernaut pounding her boyfriend's internal organs into paste. You say while handing the bartender a 2-dollar bill, “Have another shot on me, Chad. And one for me too, please.”
“Dude, I don't know how they met. I don't know... but they sent me home from the hospital with strict instructions.... for Lana to keep an eye on me... and make sure I took my meds. SHEEEE left me in front of the TV with my meds on the coffee table with a cup of water! I could barely move to pick up the damn cup! But, she was too fucking busy running around with that guy. Yeah, I love you too, bitch.”

As Brad hiccups uncontrollably, your receive a vision of Lana's infidelity. Lana asked around the groupie circuit to find out where Lance Mitchell's security hung out. Finally, one of the ladies informed Lana that Goliath did some security work at Larry's, a seedy hip-hop club whose liquor license was soon to be revoked. When she entered the line, she saw Goliath do a dream-shattering kick to the balls of an all too anxious club-goer who didn't know when to shut up. With the victim curled up on the ground just a few feet in front of her, Lana fell in sick lust again. It doesn't matter what was said to whom but Lana and Goliath ended up having rough sex in the club's filthy restroom.

But really, why did she betray Chad so coldly? He wasn't that bad.

“Yeah, why did she fucking leave me? How could she do this to me? We were together since high school. HIGHHHH SCHOOOOL!”

The same question echoes through your mind. How could a seemingly content couple end in such an exaggerated fashion? It's important to consider who exactly we're talking about here. Brad is the hopeless dope who neglected his girlfriend for the love of pigskin and Lance Mitchell. Lana is the ticking time bomb of sexual destruction who left Chad for the man who severely beat him and sometimes works for the aforementioned athlete. It was the mundane nature of Lana and Chad's relationship that frustrated Lana but kept her psychotic tendencies at bay. She no longer wanted to be boring, incompetent, and normal anymore. Although ripe with passion, her new relationship with Goliath will put the lives of many in danger. Chad didn't want anything to do with murder; he was too busy killing himself with alcohol.

When you consider the causes of a breakup, it's almost more important to accept the fact that some relationships aren't meant to continue. It doesn't matter that what the other person wants isn't exactly the best for him or her, especially if they end up going for it anyway. They usually do. It is best to go through the emotions of a breakup and make sure that they lead you to a better place.

You finish listening to my narrative lecture and turn to your intoxicated buddy. “You got that, Chad?”

Chad is slumped over the bar counter, snoring and drooling.

“You'll get it one day, Chad. Soon enough.”

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Mortimer Part 2: High School Changes

(To read Part 1 of the story click here: Mortimer Part 1: Meeting )

In the year 1998, Mortimer and I entered high school. Being freshmen, we were on the bottom on the food chain. Not too many senior students messed with us because we were already bigger than the majority of them. Yes, me too. Puberty and fast food had given me the gift of obesity. It didn't help that I liked lifting weights with Mortimer because I enjoyed hearing him explain things to me. Mortimer was at best an average student. I knew that it made him feel inferior at times, but when it came to sport-related activities, I was the idiot. It was a pleasure to listen and watch him confidently teach me about proper lifting techniques, exercise, and diet.

By the time we entered our sophomore year, we began to resemble one another. Our deep set in eyes and full lips became our trademarks, although Mortimer's nose was wider than mine. My skin color darker than his. The main difference was that Mortimer was popular and I not so much. He quickly became a favored defense player of our high school football team. He was very popular with the ladies and envied by the boys. Our friendship seemed to trouble some students. It was to be expected because not too many popular male students would be caught dead speaking to the gay guy. Mortimer started to feel the peer pressure to completely reject our friendship weigh upon him. One day, he came up with a solution:

“I'm'a start telling people that we're cousins.” He proposed.
“Cousins?”
“Yeah, everybody asks why we're friends. They think that we mess around... and I'm tired of it. So for now on, we're family.”
“But I am not Latino and you don't want anybody to confuse you for a Black person.”
“Doesn't matter. Just tell people you're half Dominican but you speak English at home.”
“So you want me to lie to the entire school because you're ashamed of me. That's wonderful.”
“Shit, Marcus. No! I ain't ashamed of you. It's just that... you know how people are. They always have something to say. I mean... don't take it the wrong way.”

I realized that I wasn't the only person who had to bear the cross of my homosexuality. Those who chose to associate with me, in a way had to bear it as well. That realization caused me to put my pride aside for just a moment.

“Alright, we're cousins.”

This agreement made some significant changes in my social capital. The fact that I was now related to one of the most popular guys in the school somehow made me more approachable. People who had previously walked past me without even looking at me in the eye were now greeting me. Yet, the biggest boost in my popularity came from an unexpected turn of events.

Juan Fernandez was the star quarterback of the football team. His father was also an accomplished quarterback who in his day almost made it the NFL. Parents have the tendency to live vicariously through their children and Juan Sr. was no exception. Since age 3, Juan had been immersed in the world of football. Surprisingly, Juan hated the sport but played it for the love of his father. Soon enough, Juan had a minor breakdown a few days before the championship game. He closed himself in his bedroom and refused to come out. Mortimer begged me to speak with him. I agreed.

I arrived to the Fernandez residence and was greeted by his parents and Coach Winters. The coach was oddly happy to see me because he would normally cringe every time he saw me.

I went to Juan's bedroom door and simply opened it. I found him in his bed, curled up in a ball, covered with a blanket.

“Juan. What the hell is wrong with you?”
“What? How'd you get in here?”
“The door wasn't locked. What are you doing in here?”
“I don't want to play football anymore.”
“Why don't you want to play football?”
“'Cause I don't want to!”
“I bet your father wants you do. Am I right?”
“Well, fuck him. It's all about me now.”
“And it should be, Juan. But there's one problem. Despite of the real reason why you signed up to play this year, when you did it you accepted the responsibility of being a player.”
“Well, fuck the responsibility!”
“Juan, I will tell you something that my father has always told me. A part of being an adult is doing the things that we don't want to do. Your decision not to play doesn't only affect you. It affects the team, and in turn, the school. It's going to be a long rest of the school year if you decide not to play this game.”

My words made a difference. Juan played the championship game and it was ironically the best game of his career. Our team won the championship and everybody was at peace. Juan then focused his energy on his true passion; break-dancing. Sadly, years later he died due to a freak accident during a dance competition. But I'd say he died a happy man.

After helping Juan, I became the unofficial school psychiatrist. Numerous students would approach me with their issues. The answers were obvious but I suppose coming from me, they were a source of comfort. My illegal psychiatric practice and my imaginary family relation with Mortimer made me the most popular nerd in the school. But it didn't save me from being bothered by one of my classmates.

As I explained earlier, I was no longer the scrawny little boy back in elementary school. Everything on me was big, including my rear end. My change in body size seemed to come without any warning. I didn't even realize until I wore a pair of sweatpants that I assumed still fit me to school. There was a group of football players seated at the bench by the school office. All three were staring at me as I walked past and one of them said, “Damn.”

“I ain't goin say it, man.” One of them said.
“I will, homeboy gotta big ass booty!”

The words of the bold one echoed in my head. That afternoon, I found myself in the Big and Tall section to shop for more suitable fitting clothing. From the moment on, the loudmouth that insulted me became obsessed with my ass. I worked as a teacher's assistant in his English class. He would spend the hours making jokes about my body. It got so bad that the teacher asked me if I wanted to file a sexual harassment complaint against him. I declined. I had bigger plans for Anthony Stevens.

I was changed to another physical education class after getting into a shouting match with Coach Winters when I refused to suit up for class for the third time. I ended up in Ms. Blaine's class and Anthony was also a student. The day before my transfer, Anthony had ran up behind me and gave my ass a hard slap in front of a huge group of students. I can still feel the sting today. I had about enough of him. If Anthony wanted ass, then that's what he was going to get.

In Ms. Blaine's class, my chronic refusal to suit-up was not an issue. I had bought several pairs of brightly colored spandex shorts and I wore them for every class. The first day I wore red, and Anthony had field day making jokes about it. The jokes didn't bother me anymore. I just wanted to get inside the boy's head. By the time the yellow shorts had made their debut, Anthony couldn't keep his eyes off my rear. Sometimes, I would make my cheeks twitch just to mess with him even more.

Ms. Blaine was ill one day and Coach Winters had to fill in for her. He didn't approve of my attire but at least I suited up. He told us we were going to do a mile run since it was nice outside. As soon as we started running, Anthony started up with his jokes. At this point, the students were no longer laughing and stopped paying attention. I ran at my own pace and Anthony kept up behind me. When I saw that it was pretty much he and I running in the park next to the school, I reached back and purposefully adjusted my shorts. I looked back at Anthony and smiled and then turned towards a wooded area. Anthony followed. I stopped behind several trees and Anthony stopped in front of me.

“Is your ass so big 'cause you're a faggot?” He asked, nearly out of breath.
“Could be. Why do you talk about it so much?”
“Because you show it off so much, it's like you want people to talk about it.”
“No, Anthony. I prefer that people look at it. But I really want somebody to touch it.”
Anthony gulped a little.
“Wa wa wa... why? Why you want that?”
“Because it feels good, Anthony. (moving closer to him) You wanna touch my ass?”

Anthony had the classic dumbfounded look of lust in his eyes. I took his hand and moved it closer to my ass. He strongly grabbed my buttocks and looked into my eyes, smiling.

“Damn... It feels... hella good. You got me on the hard, wanna see it?”
I was about to have my first sexual experience but...
“What the fuck are you two doing?!” Coach Winters barked. Anthony took off running and left me with the angry coach.
“I suggest that you cruise on your own time, boy.” The Coach coldly said to me.
“Cruise? Interesting vocabulary for a straight man. See you later.” I tried to take off running but the Coach grabbed my arm.
“You watch your mouth and stay in a child's place.”
“And I suggest you stay in an educator's place and unhand me. It's just you and I here, and I could be very convincing if I were to speak to the proper authorities.”

The Coach let me go and I took off running but not without looking back and giving him the appropriate smirk. Our battle had only begun. The important thing was that my plan worked, Anthony was so freaked out about the minor gay experience we shared that he never said a word about my body again. What I didn't expect was how much I was turned on by it all.

It's clear that I should explain what I had against Coach Winters. He had this overcompensating masculinity, speaking in a tone so low that I'm sure harmed his vocal cords. He would march around campus like a drill sargent wearing the classic shorts and t-shirt that once fit him perfectly in his high school days. If he moved too much, his round hairy belly would pop out and often he would neglect to lower his shirt. His small shorts did nothing to hide his huge rear and sizable package. Looking back, I probably had a physical crush on the Coach but his attitude made him a target for my insults.

The first day we met was during a workout session with Mortimer. Winters walked into the room and his eyes glowed upon seeing me.

“Hey Mortimer, who's your friend?” Winters asked.
“This is Marcus. Marcus, this is our coach.” Mortimer replied.
“Nice to meet you. You know, it's not too late to sign up for the team this year, big man.”
“Thanks, but I'm not keen on sports.” I answered while Mortimer began to laugh.
“Well, you just think about it. There's a lot of perks that come with being on our team. Aside from the attention you'll get from the ladies, I can also make sure that your teachers go easy on you. Easy C's. Your GPA will never look better.”

At this point, Mortimer returned to his weight-lifting. He knew that the Coach was basically asking for what happened next.

“I believe I have an even better idea. I'll just spend my afternoons slamming my body against the concrete in the school parking lot instead of studying. That way, I can develop life-long injuries while doing a worthless activity at a faster rate.”

From that moment on, Coach Winters hated my guts.

I found Mortimer during our lunch break and had to tell him all about the incident with Anthony and the Coach.

“Bullshit!”
“Mortimer, I swear to you it's true.”
“Wow, look at Mr. Hookup. Don't tell me you're going to start hanging out by the gloryhole in the boy's locker room.”
“Don't worry about that. Either way, that's the Coach's territory.”

Yes, there was a hole in the boy's locker room and according to legend, the Coach did the drilling. The hole was located in the wall near the main changing area. Nobody knew what laid on the other side of the wall and nobody had the nerve to ask. Every once in a while, the maintenance man would come around and sloppily apply putty over the hole. Of all the materials in the world, putty. My instinct told me that there was some storage area on the other side of the wall. The messy queen in me said that the Coach probably had a stool in that storage area to make viewing comfortable.

Surely, Coach Winters felt us talking about him because the devil himself came strutting around the corner smiling at Mortimer and grimacing at me. And I thought he was done playing with me. My move was next.
“I hear you like to look into holes.” I stated.


The Coach stopped in mid-march and turned in my direction. His manhood wouldn't allow him to express the feeling of utter shock that he had to be feeling. No student, not even the football players spoke to the Coach the way that I did, and nobody ever will. The Coach stood before me, a few inches away from my face, making eye-contact. I sort of wanted to kiss him and I wasn't sure if it was in a taunting way or not.

“Oh yeah?” he asked in his lowest possible register.
“That's what I heard.” I said, looking right back into his eyes.
“Well, I don't look into holes. I plug 'em up. Alright?”
“Alright.” I replied. I was tempted to say, 'with your dick?' but it was clear that I was already pressing my luck.

After the Coach Winters walked away, Mortimer grabbed my shoulder.

“Man, what the hell?! Are you crazy?! He's going to get you suspended!”
“He won't. Relax. He likes the attention.” I knew the kind of of man with whom I was dealing. Although he would never admit it, he respected me for what I said.
“But still, you have to... wow...” 

Mortimer's statement was interrupted by a large presence walking by. I admit this being caught my eye too. Thick legs, round buttocks, broad shoulders, and long hair?

“Hey, Mort.” The strong woman said with an impressive baritone.
“What's up, Lua.” Mortimer said.

The feminine power lifter continued down the hall with her large rump following behind her. I looked back at Mortimer and the tiny pool of drool collecting near his feet.

“Marcus, I think I love that girl.”
“Pardon?”
“I mean, I really like her.”
“She's a lot of woman. Are you sure you can handle that?”
“I don't know. I think that's why I like her. You know, you have everything I want in a woman. But, you're a dude. If I can find the female version of you, I would be happy.”
“Let's walk home, Mortimer. And just so you know, I am not a fan of incest, cousin.”
“Shut the fuck up!” Mortimer replied, laughing.

The gentle giant and I walked home together for the first time in many months. During the walk it felt as if the outside interferences no longer mattered. I wasn't the fictitious cousin that he could use to deflect any comment questioning his sexual preference, I was just his friend. I relished in this experience with him knowing that it would be hard to come by in the future. We looked into each
others eyes, finished each others sentences, and sometimes his hand rested on my shoulder. Perhaps, Mortimer was right. If I didn't see him like a brother, we would be perfect for one another. Aside from the fact that I wasn't an amateur powerlifter with a vagina and he didn't like boys.   

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Hookup Culture: 101

The auditorium was filled with hopeful students. These students were mostly rejects, far-removed from a sometimes too-efficient community. Most were middle-aged men, recently released from their heterosexual couplings to find what they considered to be freedom. Gayness, easy sex, what could be better? Monogamous dating and roses are fine, but these men just wanted to get their rocks off and with as many guys as possible.
The room was filled with chatter, a husky baseline was like an anchor for the higher pitched rantings. This composition was interrupted by the entrance of the professor. I won't waste my time describing what he looked like. Just imagine your ideal and go with it.
“Good evening. This is the Introduction to Hookup Culture course. I will start right away... ahem (glitter flies from his mouth). There are three ways to ask a complete gay stranger for fellatio. One way is to ask for it, flat out. Another way is to pull your penis out and shake it in the direction of the potential sucker. Depending on the situation, the stranger might oblige. But a more formal and polite way is to invite the stranger for coffee.”
A collective “ohhhh” filled the room, accompanied by a couple of squeals. A breakthrough was made.
The poor baristas won't know what hit them in the upcoming weeks.  

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Broken Man

Deep into the pocket of his dusty dungarees laid an unforgettable memory. Better yet, a broken promise or a betrayal. Its presence caused him so much pain both physically and emotionally. Emotional because the memory of his wife was crippling, physical because his pants were so tight that the ring in his pocket dug into his skin.
       He drove in his dirty pickup truck over a bumpy, neglected road. Each bang of the road caused a vibration in all parts of the truck, including its driver. His travels shook his inadequate regions, the wallet that was never full enough for her, the heart that didn’t care enough for her, and the selfish crotch that couldn’t satisfy her. His head also moved with the dips in the road, allowing the tears that he was holding back to spill out like the glass of whisky on the dashboard. If the truck shook enough, the glass would fall and shatter into a million pieces. An outcome like this would ironically match the broken man driving to nowhere.
       His left hand was oddly immaculate and wrapped around the steering wheel. His right was swollen with bits of drywall powder embedded in the cuts of his knuckles. He had spent the evening testing their durability by punching holes into the wall after he heard the news.
       “I am selfish, I want too much, and I cannot be made happy by you. I need time to try to change that. Try to change me. And I cannot do that while we are together. That is why I have to leave.” His wife confessed.
       The urge to fall to his knees and weep was overtaken by the instinct to attack. He wouldn’t dream of ever physically hurting her, but he never made any promises to the walls. Each strike delivered surges of pulsing pain throughout his body that was quickly replaced by surges of adrenaline and brief euphoria. His blood smeared on the wall after three hits, but after that he found the way to break through the wall leaving an ample sized hole. Once the process was mastered, he broke holes into the walls with each hit. He breathed rapidly to supply oxygen to his over-worked muscles while teetering between giddiness and tears.
       ‘You bitch! He thought. I ain’t even gonna tell you how I feel ‘cause you can’t take that shit. But I’ll show you. Work hard and this is the thanks I get?! Watch me destroy this damn house I built for you. Let me see the look on her face.’ He turned to her and saw an open door. She left before he could even react.   She heard the crashing noises from the outside as she entered her vehicle. But it didn’t matter to her because she rehearsed this night a thousand times before the opening act; his breakdown wasn’t at all a surprise. She knew him very well, and sadly he didn’t know her at all. He and his damaged hand walked to the door left ajar. On the table next to the door, lay her
wedding ring. He snatched the ring and stuffed into the pocket of his snug jeans. He grabbed his keys from the key holder and slammed the door behind him. He intended to follow her but she was already long gone.
       That incident left him driving in his truck into the wee hours of the night. A sudden pothole caused left tire to go flat. He wasn’t aware of this and continued on. His crying blinded him slightly and he tried to wipe his eyes. Once his vision was cleared, he saw the sparks coming from the right side of his truck. He stopped the truck and got out of it. He studied the remains of the tire, spat and sat down on the ground.
       He thought about the contents of his truck, it was overly full. Supplies, equipment and such seemed to be thrown about in its bed. To the uniformed eye, its presentation would appear devoid of organization. But for Texidor the broken man, everything was in its right place. He knew the paintbrush belonged tangled under the mass of dirty blankets that seemed to be miles away from the rusty cans of paint. When working with friends, he would refer specific tools as ‘the thing, by the thing, under the thing.’ If the right “thing” wasn’t brought to him, he would be baffled at the misunderstanding.
       This time the “thing” in particular was supposed to be alongside the “other thing.” But it wasn’t there. He remembered checking the truck bed weeks before the unexpected confrontation with his wife. “Damn it, somebody stole my spare tire.” Nobody actually did, the spare was the sudden flat that has now left him in the middle of nowhere. Perhaps a more organized man would have replaced the spare a long time ago, or better yet buy a new set of tires. But sound practices like these weren't common place for Texidor Williamson.
       It was just him and his wounded vehicle. He laid his head against the cold metal of the truck as he sat down, legs stretched against the dusty ground. Hypothetical thoughts permeated into the thinning layers of common sense. He wondered many things that had nothing to do to help his situation: What if I punched the couch instead of the wall? Probably hurt less. When was the last time I spoke with my mother? Three months ago. If I lay down in the street, how long would it take for a car to hit me? One would have to try to find out.
       A polyphonic melody whispered its way out of the rusty truck. For a brief moment, Texidor didn’t know what it was and just hummed along: Silent Night, Holy Night. The music almost brought him out of his self-destructive mindset. He quickly realized that it was his cellular phone ringing loudly in his glove box. He got up on his feet, opened the door, and grabbed the electronic device. The LCD screen simply read: 1 missed call. He scrolled to the recent calls menu and read the most recent entry: Tanya Williamson (MUM.)
       “What the hell does she want?” he said to himself. “Forget it, she’ll hear from me through my obituary. I am so sick of this fucked-up world and its fucked-up people!” With that, he shoved the phone in his back pocket and sprawled out into the quiet street. The pavement was cold, providing an odd benefit to his overheated skin. He kicked his boots off, thinking that without them; being struck would cause more damage, therefore killing more efficiently. Perfect.
       The dark sky above put a dismal show of sparse clouds, and dimming stars. Nature didn’t even care enough to impress Texidor with its wonders in his final moments. ‘If I close my eyes, he thought, they wouldn’t be much difference. He grunted at the sight before him: Might as well keep ‘em open, so I can see the car coming.’ He moved the back of his head against the rough concrete, scratching an itch. He continued to move his head from side to side to the point of dizziness, laughing along the way. ‘Dead man on the road, he was inebriated without a drop of liquor. This is sweet, so sweet!’
       In the distant horizon, he could see two headlights slowly inching towards his direction. He was still tossing his head, sloshing the fluid in between his ears vigorously. Around the same time nausea presented itself, the fear of dying left as well. He was moaning loudly, simply because it felt right. You have to make some kind of noise when you leave this world. But the following noise, wasn’t a noise he expected, although he heard it before.
       Computerized chimes of silent night played from his back pocket. I’ll answer it. Make one final fuck you to whoever is calling. He answered the phone with a “yeah.”
          “Hello Baby, its mum.” A kind voice spoke.
          “Oh yeah mum!? It’s funny that you called ‘cause guess what your baby boy is gonna do right now?” Texidor began.
          “Honey I’m sorry this medication is making me sleepy, I really don’t have much energy to speak. I just wanna let you know somethin’.”
          “Meds?” Texidor said. He looked to his right and saw the headlights a lot closer than before, but far enough for him to still have more time. But it was his mother who had even less time to speak.
          “Well two months ago, I fell down the stairs, broke a good number of bones, and I have been in the hospital since then. Messed up my back too. They have me on this vicodin, it helps some. I wanna go home but I can’t because I am still all bandaged up. But the nurse lady said I can go if I have somebody to see about me.”
          Texidor couldn’t believe what he was hearing. That’s why he hadn’t heard a word from his mother is such a time, because she got hurt. ‘What a jackass of me not to be there! But I can fix this’. “Why didn’t you tell me that you were hurt?” he asked.
          “Well last time we spoke you were mad because I told you my friend saw your wife having dinner with another man. That’s why. I thought you didn’t want to speak to me anymore.”
          Texidor raised himself up, stumbled a bit and casually missed the oncoming car. Horns blared loudly at him, as it sped even faster away down the street. Where he was and how he got there didn’t make a difference to him anymore: he was not a broken man, he was now a man with purpose.
          “Listen mum, I can take care of you. How about I’ll be there tomorrow morning to see if I can get you released? Which hospital is it?”
          “The same one you were born in honey, Madigan. I love you. And thanks.”
          “No problem, I love you too.” He hung up the phone. Suddenly, he knew the only time those three magic words meant anything was when his mother said it. He raised himself up, put on his shoes, walked back to his truck, and hopped onto its hood. He scrolled through the numbers on his phone. ‘I think I still have that taxi number in here somewhere, right?’

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Every Treasure Hunt -Chapter 1

Every Treasure Hunt Has it's End

Demetrius walked into a run-down mini-mart outside of Tillicum. A older gentleman gazed at him from the counter. Like a stone, he didn't have the most inviting expression on his face.
“You lost or somethin'?” The man sharply asked.
”No, sir. Some friends told me that I needed to be here.” The man's face softened just a little bit. But remained rigid.
“Oh... is that right?”
Demetrius looked down at the counter, it was a dusty mess of random knick-knacks and such. He took a deep breath and began to speak.
“Yeah I have been sick for the longest time. I am sick of suffering, I don't want this disease to take me. I'd rather go on my own terms.”
The man sighed loudly.
“What the fuck are you trying to get me arrested? Get the hell outta here!”
Demetrius thought about leaving but firmly stood his ground.
“I came here for a reason, and I am not leaving until I get what I want.”
The older gentleman continued to gaze at Demetrius. He knew with the line of products that he sold, he needed to take some precautionary measures.
“I guess you won't take no for an answer. You must be serious. Wait one minute, ok?”
“Alright, but don't keep me waitin' too long, I've got kids in Yakima, you know.” Demetrius replied while smiling slightly.
The man smiled at Demetrius's successful elocution of the secret phrase. Had he not said it right, he would have just given Demetrius a bag of flour. The older gentleman went into the back room for a few minutes, loudly moving things about. He returned to the counter with a bottle in his right hand.
“Three hundred.” He said flatly.
Demetrius placed three one-hundred dollar bills on the counter. The man took each one and slowly rubbed his counterfeit detector over it.
“Well you're legit, brother. Here you go.”
The man handed the bottle to Demetrius. The bottle was small, the size of a eye drop bottle. Upon it was the word “heaven” written in permanent black marker.
“Heaven?” Demetrius asked, puzzled.
“Oh yes son. This bottle will take you there. Real smooth like, you won't feel a thing. They say to run a nice warm bath, get into the tub, and drink the bottle. But you have to drink the whole thing. 'Till the last drop... drink this bottle and you will have eternal life.”

1

Demetrius had the cutest, friendliest face you could ever see. But he could be mean as Hell at times. At his finest, he would elevate bluntness to historic levels. But he loved very hard. He was cruel to his mother at times, but he loved her madly. There was Hell to pay if anybody laid a finger on her; and yes, one man had to learn the hard way.
At age 28, Demetrius had graduated from the nearby university but hadn't been able to find work in the field of Social Work. For the past year, the State had put hiring freezes which made successful job hunting damn near impossible. When the freezes were lifted, Demetrius and the entire city had to compete for a few positions. This situation depressed him, and Demetrius didn't show his pain through tears. He showed it through malice.
He had a few other good excuses to be angry, he was gay and infected with HIV. A double whammy, he called it. This situation did not necessarily give him the right to be as cross as he was, but it was good enough. Demetrius never worried about being accosted on the street because he was stereotypically masculine: he played sports and dated a few girls in high school, he was crass, and he was a thick guy. Despite his upper-middle class upbringing, he could speak street slang with the best of them.
He knew he was gay since age 16, when his then-best friend, Mateo invited him over to watch porn. An explicit-adult film and two horny teenage boys made the perfect concoction for exploratory behavior.
“Damn, dude. The bitch's got some nice tits!” Mateo exclaimed. “Makes my dick so hard.”
Demetrius gazed at the tent in Mateo's shorts.
“... Yeah, mine too.”
Mateo glanced over to his friend and saw his dick fully exposed out of the open zipper. He looked at Demetrius, surprised at his boldness.
“My bad, it was getting uncomfortable in my jeans.”
“Nah, it's cool... Hey, sometimes my cousin... well my second-cousin comes over and we watch porn... and sometimes... umm... we help each other out, you know? I mean, no gay shit like kissing but it feels so bomb when someone else touches your dick.”
Demetrius tried to keep his breath under control. To keep his cool. He didn't know what to say next.
“Well, nobody has ever touched it before... except for me.”
Mateo reached over to his good friend and made contact. Their desires overrode any inhibition that previously existed. They didn't stop until their virginity was lost, unfortunately, the friendship ended not soon after. Mateo didn't come to terms with his sexuality as easily as Demetrius. Demetrius was blamed for introducing Mateo to “weird, gay shit” like kissing and sucking dick. It didn't take long for Mateo to forget that it was he that made the first move.
What Mateo didn't know was that Demetrius was madly in love with him. The moment they first made love was like a dream come true. When Mateo rejected Demetrius, he was totally devastated. He locked himself in his room for days, playing rap music, and crying. His mother would try to check on him and he would let her in after multiple attempts, but only when his face was dry. He wouldn't tell her much details about what was going on. In fact, he lied. He told his mother that he and Mateo were fighting over a girl. She believed him, she had no reason not to.
The rejection affected Demetrius for the rest of his life. Since then, he only dated guys who resembled Mateo. But he didn't want to ever feel rejected again, ever. Therefore, he made sure he was the one who ended the relationships first. It didn't matter how well the relationship was going. He started to develop a reputation, but it didn't harm his success with men. It is odd how some people are drawn to trouble, and trouble was Demetrius.
Eventually, trouble found Demetrius. By chance, while leaving the gay bookstore where many would go for cruising, Demetrius ran into Mateo. Literally. Mateo was entering the entrance at the same time that Demetrius was leaving. Mateo fell back onto the sidewalk.
“What the fuck?!” Mateo said, while getting up quickly, about ready to fight. Then they recognized each other.
“Mateo?”
“Demetrius?”
“Oh shit... damn. It's been a minute. A long ass time...”
“Yeah, it's been a minute.”
“Sure has, well... what's up man?” Mateo extended his hand.
“Not much... just started classes at the university.” Demetrius finally accepted the handshake. A quick, yet powerful charge went through both of their bodies from the contact.
“That's good, man. I knew you would do somethin' good with your life.”
Mateo found himself staring at his former friend. In fact, they were staring at each other. Demetrius found himself falling back into the past, as much as he wanted to avoid it.
“So what you been up to?”
“Shit... well I got married.”
“Married?! To a chick?!”
“Yep, one year.”
“What you doin' here then, man?”
“I dunno... I guess I like to creep every once in a while.”
“DL?”
“Nah, fuck that. I hate that term. I just do what I do. You feel me?”
Simple as that, Demetrius was back in love. It was the simplicity of Mateo that Demetrius loved the most. Demetrius constantly had to battle intense thoughts and emotions, but Mateo was peaceful. Mellow.
“Mateo, let me show you a book that I helped write.”
“Alright.”
Demetrius walked Mateo to a section of shelves in the back. He pulled a book from the shelve that was entitled, Memoirs of Urban Gay Youth. Demetrius hated the title, but still he decided to contribute an essay he wrote about his first gay experience and life since then. Demetrius wanted Mateo to read the book, badly.
“This is what I wrote. It was about... my first relationship.”
“Your first relationship. What? Did the motherfucker break your heart?” Mateo asked, not knowing that he was the motherfucker.
“Yeah... he did.” Demetrius's voice cracked slightly. He could not conceal the sadness in his face. Mateo thought that Demetrius was irresistibly cute when sad.
“He had to be a damn fool to leave a sexy ass man like you.” Mateo touched Demetrius face, rubbed his ears and neck. They began to kiss. The desire that they had for each other in their early teenage years never left. They explored each other bodies with their hands, breathing heavily in between kisses.
“Alright men, go on and find yourselves a room.” The bookstore owner interrupted.
Demetrius and Mateo left the bookstore and checked into the nearest hotel. They made love several times. Making a lot a noise. They went outside for a bit to buy some marijuana. They went back to the hotel, got high, and made love some more. Demetrius didn't want Mateo to ever leave his arms. But he did. After the night they spent together, Mateo asked for Demetrius's number, but he never called. Demetrius was hurt but at least Mateo gave him another memory. Mateo also gave him HIV.
Since the acquisition of HIV, Demetrius love life slowed down significantly. He would meet potential mates but as soon as he told them his status, they were no longer interested. He did eventually meet somebody. During the past two years, he has been seeing a husky gentleman named Gustavo who worked as a HIV counselor. Like Demetrius, Gustavo was also HIV positive. However, Gustavo insisted that they have protected sex because of the risk of infecting each other with different strains. Gustavo was short, sweet, and long-suffering. He put up with a lot of strife from Demetrius. In the good days and bad, Gustavo stayed by his side. Every time Demetrius ended the relationship, Gustavo took him back. Demetrius did care deeply for Gustavo, and in his own way, loved him. But he didn't want to admit it because he feared being rejected again. As long as he didn't really love him, losing him wouldn't hurt as much.
Demetrius wished he knew how to at least hide his dissatisfaction with life. He spent many sleepless nights, looking outside at the sky. He sometimes wished he could fly to another planet, somewhere where a society advanced enough existed that could easily cure him of the disease. He would dream about the people of this planet. About the all the knowledge they had. All the problems of society that they already resolved centuries ago. They would teach him how to make his planet Earth a better place. Towards the end of the dream, Demetrius would feel inspired, ready to make change happen. Sadly, he would eventually wake up. All the advice shared in the dream would be forgotten, and Demetrius would still have HIV. No matter how many times he had this dream, he still cried when he woke up with reality in his face.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Ivan the Terrible


Ivan the Terrible

The place was disgusting. The gray floor was accented with a layer of piss. Behind me there was a tweaker (a drug addict would be a softer term but I don't think he deserves such careful wording). Next to me, stood a man, 30-something, dressed in a way that conflicted with the surroundings. He looked like he'd just walked out of a business meeting. But that this very moment, he wasn't at all formal. How could one be formal with their dick hanging out? I could help but watch his instrument flip and flop about like a dying fish out of water. It excited me. Much like the atmosphere, the dick clashed with its owner, it was large and brutish. My own piece began to grow and stiffen as well, it was its way of saying “I'm not so bad either.” The man watched intently at my penis. He reached over and caressed it with his soft, well moisturized hand that knew not manual labor. Maybe it was the same hand he used to caress his wife's cheek. I looked at his face. He was handsome with features that teetered between delicate and masculine. He didn't look at me for one second. He remained fixated on my penis. If he were a straight man, I might as well could have had a pair of breasts hanging out of my pants. 'You just want my dick,' I thought to myself. Just like Ivan. I had to go, something made me feel uneasy. Maybe it was the junkie behind us who was acting a little too happy that there was finally some action going on in the public toilet. 'He'll probably rob me if I get too caught in the moment', I thought. Either way, I knew leaving was the best choice. Ivan was waiting for me at home.

…................
His nickname was Ivan the Terrible, yes he was also Russian. It may seem to be culturally insensitive to give a man like him such a title, considering his birthplace, but he gave himself the name and he earned it.
“I'm an asshole.” he would tell me. “I know it.”

I told him that knowing you have an intense flaw doesn't make it any less valid. In fact, it makes it worse because you're dreadful and have no qualms about it. He would only laugh and say that I was right.
He loved rap music and hip-hop culture in general. He even quoted rapper 50-Cent in a birthday card he made for me once: “I love you like a fat kid loves cake.” Maybe he was telling me that he loved me too much, more like an obsession, a vice. That's how I felt sometimes when we made love. So deep inside of me that it felt like he wanted to crawl inside of me and wear my skin like an animal pelt. Outside, I felt more chinchilla than partner, like the final touch to his baggy jeans, sports jersey, and skinny platinum chain.

He was very confident, at least he acted the part. He was 5 years older than me, lived on his own since he was 14 years old, and had no issues with his sexuality. For a 19 year old who has never had a boyfriend prior this was very impressive. I remember the first time we held hands in public. He just grabbed my hand and didn't let go. He didn't ask permission which shocked me but made me respect him. He had presence and if my memory serves me well, only one guy had the guts to say something about our public displays of affection. Ivan made him physically regret ever opening his mouth.

Unfortunately, the assumed confidence and boldness had a negative aspect. He was very controlling. He didn't like me having friends male or female. He told me that my friends were against him and wanted to break us up. I was especially forbid to have black men as friends. It was clear that he felt that his duplication couldn't compete with authenticity.

I remember eating at KFC one day. We had just received our order and sat down at one of the tables. In the table behind Ivan, sat a man who with my luck, happened to be Black. I admit he was good-looking but I respected Ivan by trying to not pay attention to the gentleman. Ivan was running his mouth about his new workout routine and I could feel the gentleman's eyes burning into me.

“You want some sauce, babe?” Ivan asked.
“Uh, sure.” I replied.
“Be right back.”

He got up and left me with the staring gentleman. He smiled at me and I was reduced to an inexperienced schoolgirl. He motioned towards where Ivan was seated to ask if we were together. I shook my head yes. The stranger gave me a disappointed look and mouthed the words, “You can do much better” and pointed to himself. I laughed and shook my head.

Ivan returned with the sauce and looked me with a curious expression on his face.
“You OK, babe?”
“Yeah, I'm fine.”

Ivan didn't seem convinced, but continued on about his workout routine and how he swore his calves doubled in size in one week. I tried my best to stay with the conversation but it was totally boring. I felt the stranger's eyes on me again. I tried to sneak quick glances at the man while trying to engage in Ivan's vanity. Insecure men have an automatic infidelity detector built-into themselves. At any sign of disloyalty, it not only goes off, it explodes.

“What the fuck?!” he shouted, standing up. “If you wanna have lunch with dude over there, go right ahead and I'll leave your ass here!”

All eyes were on us. He knew that I hated when people around me made a scene and that was one of the many weapons he used against me. The stranger looked in the other direction, feeling totally uncomfortable. I was in a state of shock.

“Hey, dummy (snaps fingers in my face) you going to sit over there or not?! Go head and fuck him I am sure his dick is bigger than mine! Don't forget I was the only man who gave you the time of day when everybody else was ignoring your ass on CubChat! Oh now that you're getting play you think your too good for me?!”

I looked at my tray. I thought about how good it would look going across Ivan's face. Instead, I got up and exited the restaurant. As I walked out, I heard Ivan and the restaurant manager arguing back and forth.
I didn't speak with him for nearly a week after. It was difficult for me to understand what kind of environment would someone have to grow up in in order to feel justified in behaving in such a manner. He sensed my refusal to speak with him because of my one-word answers. At first he reacted with anger. “Oh so you check out another guy right in front of me and now I'm the bad guy?” When he realized that wasn't going to work, he approached me with kindness.

He knew I was a sucker for a sweetheart so eventually the flowers, chocolates, and poorly-pitched serenades in public won me over. I invited him to a family cookout and he managed to get along with even my most homophobic extended family. Although, I was always a low key sort of guy, my family could notice some slightly effeminate ways about me. But Ivan was what you would call butch and the men in my family liked that. It hurt me to see that some of the men in my family that I have known all my life felt more comfortable making conversation with a guy they've just met because he liked sports and rap music. One of my uncles even tried to fix Ivan up with one of his female co-workers. I set my own jealousy aside to appreciate that my family approved of Ivan. Things seemed to be so perfect. Seemed.

Ivan's way of suggesting something is imposing his decision on the both of us. The following is an example of this:

(Over dinner)
“You know what, babe? I was thinkin' once you graduate university. We can married, you know? Domestic partnership. I mean, my job don't offer health care and I'm sure once you finish studying, you'll get a good ass job that would offer good health care. And let's face it, we've been together for two years and I'm the best you've ever had. So it's settled, we'll get married. What do you think?
“Well...”
“What we'll do is make your graduation party into a commitment celebration so your family doesn't have to make two separate trips. Also, the ones who don't like the gay thing can pay attention to the graduation part of it. So we will go shopping for rings next week. I need you to be careful 'cause you know your weight goes up and down, I don't wanna go through the drama of having your ring re-sized if your fingers get too fat.”
“Ivan, I... don't know. I mean I am not sure if I'm ready for marriage.”
“What you mean you don't know? We've been together, you and I, for two years. For all I know you ain't been with anybody else. I mean, I get guys who wanna talk to me all the time and I stay with you. They look way better than you too, but that's called sacrifice. Maybe you're too immature to understand that. You still wanna be a little slut and fuck every guy who feels like giving you some mercy dick. Is that it? Or maybe you don't love me. You're just glad I'm dumb enough to fuck with your ungrateful ass! You selfish son of a bitch you never fucking loved me!”
“Whoa, Ivan. I do love you. I am just saying marriage is a big step and you didn't ask me to marry you, you told me it was going to happen!”
“Only cause your too damn slow. You can't make decisions for yourself. If you was running this relationship, we wouldn't be anywhere today!

Flashbacks of our relationship history ran through my head. It was Ivan who first sent me a message on Cubchat after I spent weeks visiting his profile without sending a single text. It was his idea that we started dating. He decided that we were going to move in together and found the apartment. He had a point, our relationship was based on his dominance and my compliance. I simply didn't get it. I used to be the outspoken brain back in high school and now look at me. I knew I had to defy him just this once.

“I need to go for a walk.” I told him.
“You're not going anywhere! We gotta talk about this!” He demanded.

He continued shouting and as his shouts got louder I began to drown him completely out. I rose from the table and grabbed my keys and walked out of the door. I expected him to grab me from behind, but he didn't. Whatever he did while I made my exit is anybody's guess because I didn't look back.

While walking, I realized what a subservient fool I had been. For this man, I had turned my back on all of my friends, ran away from any other man who even bothered to look at me, and followed every command he spoke. My insecurities were staring me in my face and something had to be done. But, what would a seemingly secure man profit by dating and thereby taking over the life of an inexperienced younger man? The answer was plain to see. Ivan was not only terrible, but terribly more insecure than I.

My feet carried me to a park with a public restroom. The high traffic of men standing outside of the restrooms told me this place meant trouble. After two years of being the perfect and long-suffering boyfriend, I figured that I had a right to be bad.

I left the restroom, still semi-erect. I started to run a little bit with the excitement of knowing that I kind of cheated on Ivan. Or did I? I didn't even come close to climaxing and the place totally turned me off. But the guy did touch my dick, so close enough.

I was too busy relishing in my mischievousness to notice that I was very close to our apartment. I saw Ivan sitting on the stairs of the patio with his head down, buried in his arms. He seemed to be crying. I felt that old feeling again. Guilt. And yes, love. I felt the responsibility to take care of my teddy bear and assure him that I would never leave him. I just had to make it all better. I began to blame myself for this whole ordeal, I mean why not marry the man that loves you even if the relationship is a little abusive? Maybe if I loved him a little harder, he'll change? I was kidding myself. The only way the relationship was going to have a future is if we both made some serious changes. He was not going to control me, he was not going to tell me with whom I can hang out, and he was not going to mistreat me no longer.

I stood before him, face to face. His baby blues floated in a red sea of tear-stained eyes. I was going to tell him everything that I wanted to say. But I had to hug him first, let him cry on my shoulder, take him inside our apartment, make love to him once more, and then sleep in each others arms. At the right moment, I would tell him how I really feel.

But when will that moment come?