Years ago my mother asked me if her working so hard when we were young was worth it. It was a very unusual question because she isn’t someone who doubts herself very often and when she did, she generally wouldn’t come to me. I told her then that her sacrifice was worth it but I was lying. The truth is that back then I didn’t know. Growing up, both my parents worked super hard to take care of my siblings and I. A lot of the things they had to do wasn’t apparent back then but with the eyes of an adult, I see how hard it must have been for them and I love them even more. One of the reasons I couldn’t give her an honest response was because I went through an experience as a child that no one should ever go through. Read the rest of this entry »
Category Archives: Mind, Body and Soul
I spent sometime in DC recently and had quite a bit of fun. My friends took me to the clubs which were nothing short of phenomenal, filled with some of the most beautiful men I’d ever seen. And the gogo dancers! They were packing some of the biggest meat I’d ever seen up close. My mind kept screaming “they are naked men in the club!” as my eyes bulged at the never. I tried to chat up a couple of good-looking men but was shot down every time. I decided to concentrate on having a good time with the friends I came with. To complete my DC experience, one of the guys took me to an old, nondescript building with a big parking lot which was so full that we eventually had to park on the street after going round a few times and fighting for spots with a couple of other cars. I kept wondering what exactly was going on inside and making the place so busy. I repeatedly questioned my friend but all he gave me was a very secretive smile and three words: just be patient. When we finally got in (after standing in line for fifteen minutes mind you), I found myself in a seedy house filled with small dark rooms, winding corridors and glory holes. What really surprised me was that the building was filled with the guys I’d seen in the club who had acted like they weren’t interested in talking to anyone. Now they were all smiles and touchy-feely, patrolling this joint like police men on red alert. I’m not sure why this bothered me so much. It’s almost like these guys felt too proud/ashamed/insecure to talk to themselves in public (public here meaning gay bar) but would go to such dark places where they could have sex without knowing/caring who they were having it with and forget about it tomorrow along with the fact that they may not have used condoms. I kept wondering why such places exist, after all being gay is legal already. What is it that is so attractive about mindless hookups? Was HIV eradicated while I was sleeping? Am I really that vanilla that I don’t get it? Is being gay still a problem for gay black men in the US? Why would anyone choose this over something more meaningful? Even with all the problems I have had with my relationship, I would still choose it over this.
Different strokes for different people. Then again, what do I know, I’m not African-American and I don’t know the struggles they face. I’m glad I had this experience though.
A few months ago, someone started thread in an web-based group with this question. He then followed by stating that he did not think any GLBT should be allowed to raise children. When questioned further, he said he didn’t have any reasons, this was his “gut” feeling even though there is existing evidence contrary to what he believes. On a regular day, I wouldn’t have cared about this sort of nonsense but what angered me the most was that this was a gay group and this guy was very gay.
On one of my YouTube days (where I set out to watch one video and end up watching 50+), I came across this video about the science of pornography addiction. I’m not one to believe in ‘pop’ science explanations but there was this odd ring of truth in the video, especially when it talked about porn addiction being detrimental to regular sexual relations. I have been watching porn for years and occasionally I find that I think about scenes I’ve seen at a time I should be concentrating on the person in front of me. I’m not sure if I really have a problem with porn but when a friend asked me if I feel guilty about the amount of porn I watch or if I have ever blown off something important to watch porn and I answered yes to both, she said I definitely do. The idea that this pastime could lead to permanent brain changes was pretty alarming.
For some reason, I remembered a sermon I heard years ago during Lent. The reverend basically said that that if anyone ever wanted to give up an activity/habit that was not furthering his/her life goals and they could avoid engaging in that activity for forty days (the entire period of Lent), they would be capable to giving up that habit for good. Again I’m not sure if 40 days is all it takes but here I find myself with an addiction and it is Lent, so I decided to keep away from porn for forty days.
So far it’s been a few weeks already and it’s been a challenge. I had no idea that sexually suggestive themes were everywhere. Even food seasoning commercials on TV seem so sexual. I don’t know if I can make it to the end but time will tell.
Years ago I read a science fiction short story about a wildlife reserve that one could experience in two ways – as a tribesman who is a full participant in all the activities of the habitat or as a spectator who could observe every event that took place but not engage in any of it. Reading posts often gives me similar sensation to the latter experience: of being an observer and witnessing the experiences of another person without actually being a part of the event. Other times I feel like I’m reading a constantly evolving autobiography in small parts as opposed to reading a summary of someone’s life that has been whittled down and prettied up for public consumption. Read the rest of this entry »
There was a time that I was very much involved with church and its many activities. Some of these churches literally take up every single day of the week with meetings, prayer sessions and so on. One of the churches I was attending at the time (I would often go to two churches at the same period and actively participate in both) had a very charismatic pastor who had just started a week-long series on sin and temptation. A major talking point in his message(s) was that to be holy and keep ourselves that way, we should cut out/off anything that may predispose us to sin and an important “doorway to sin” was music. Read the rest of this entry »
I must confess, though I find some TEDx programs and talks enlightening, a lot of them I don’t identify with. I do have the app and will occasionally check it out to see what’s new. This video I got to see via a friend’s recommendation and is one of the more interesting ones. It involves actor/writer/photographer iO Tillett Wright who is on a mission to photograph 10,000 faces across different cities in the US in her project entitled Self-Evident Truths as a way to bring people to see the modern day face of “gay” and challenge them to deny the LGBTQ family rights that are common to all human beings. Read the rest of this entry »