Monday, June 27, 2011

Gay Daze

Jacob and I walked home with a guy to his place in Chelsea last night. We had met him at the Gansevoort Hotel, the roof of which we had been hanging out on waiting for the fireworks show to commence over the Hudson River. During the fireworks show, hands grazed bodies and they were welcomed, and so grazing turned into something else, something more intentionally deliberate. Hands were stuck down pants. Kissing commenced. Diana Ross's "I'm Coming Out" was being played in the background. Of course it was.

He invited us back to his place and we walked the few blocks there, quickly undressed once in his bedroom. The sex was amazing and dirty. There is sex and then then there is the hungry kind. This was the latter. This man had appetites and his energy for sex brought out ours. He talked dirty and gave me a cocky smile as he fucked Jacob, locking eyes with me, wanting me to see him getting my boyfriend off, proud of his body and what he could do with it. He then fucked me for a brief bit, brief because I am sometimes a terrible bottom and it hurt and I was not entirely sure that if he continued pounding me that I would not shit all over his sheets. And so I fucked Jacob and the two of us took turns sucking this man's dick and making out with him. There was a tremendous energy to the situation that doesn't always occur in these settings and it was probably the most hot sex I have had in a very long time.

This threesome served in contrast to the one we had had the night before, or tried to have. We brought a cute boy home with us from Boiler Room. It was nice and friendly and we had smoked some weed before hopping into bed together, which the next morning we realized was a mistake, because soon after this guy got ill and ran to the bathroom. The sound of him retching for the next hour or so from across the apartment punctuated the sex Jacob and I continued to have. Our air-conditioning unit provided a white noise that my stoned brain focused on, drowning out the noises of vomit that would occasionally interrupt.

In between these two encounters was a beautiful day spent drinking at brunch in the West Village and then drinking on the sidelines of the parade on Christopher Street, watching a stream of sexy shirtless bodies march past me. I went to a few bars afterwards, hopscotching my way from one to the next, taking in the amazing scene of thousands and thousands of homosexuals sharing the streets with each other. There was a press and crush of bodies of all sizes, colors, ages, and genders. There were lots of garish pieces of clothing involving rainbows and it was okay in this setting, even beautiful. Everyone wished each other a happy pride and we whistled at boys and girls we liked, telling them to work it girl, the queeniness factor unchecked for a day, all of us sisters together.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

"the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true"

Last night, I met up with Jacob in Sheridan Square after he had gotten off work and after I had spent the last couple of hours watching an online feed on the New York Senate, waiting for a gay marriage vote, waiting to see how the vote turned out. Gay marriage passed the Senate by a vote of 33-29 with four heroic Republican Senators joining the yes votes. I couldn't believe that this day had come, how quickly things can change. There were hundreds, if not thousands, of people who had taken to the streets in front of Stonewall in the West Village to celebrate. It was a very beautiful moment, everyone screaming with joy, crying, and hugging each other.

This is a huge step forward that was unimaginable to me as a child. It was only ten years ago, in 2001, that the Netherlands became the first country to allow same-sex marriages. And it was only in 2003 that gay marriage became legal in Massachusetts. There are some queers that mourn and lament what this means for their marginalization. There are some that like being outsiders to the culture and that are frustrated that there are gays who push for things like same-sex marriage, that they are ruining their cool party. And, yes, something is being lost, but so much more is being gained, and the people who are most vocal about their contempt for gay marriage are those perched in comfortable enough positions because of their geography, class, and race that they cannot see how this is part of a larger changing of the culture, a queering of the culture, in which gay maybe is no longer the terribly isolating thing it is for some people, where with more and more speed it becomes more and more acceptable, more and more ingrained in mainstream culture. And so maybe this doesn't matter to Brooklyn homos who would like to pride themselves on their difference, who want desperately to hold on to one of the few signifiers of difference they possess, but this matters tremendously to gay-percieved children and teens in hostile school environments, that this is about being respected and recognized by our government, that it is hard to argue anyone else should treat you with respect when the government representing you fails to do so. This being signed into law will contribute tremendously to changing the culture. This is about gay teens surviving.

And that is why I cried last night when watching the Senate vote on this, when it became clear that it was going to pass, because this is such a momentous change that has occurred in our culture, that I am filled with tremendous hope that the voices of intolerance and hate become more and more marginalized, more and more in the minority each time these things come up for votes. We can mock Ruben Diaz and Archbishop Dolan for their absurd comments, we can exaggerate them, make them more absurd, and make it harder to take anything these two say concerning gay marriage seriously. I could not have been more delighted to see their vigorous efforts to "preserve" marriage fail and fall flat. It was a huge and amazingly coordinated advance down the field that was made. So much political muscle was put into this by gay organizations and they were tremendously successful. It is amazing to see how change is possible with hard work and the loud voices of many. I am impressed and awed by the tenacity of our city and state politicians that continued to push and push this issue, among them Mario Cuomo and Mike Bloomberg, despite the odds sometimes seeming long. I am tremendously grateful to every Assembly member and Senate member that voted to support this, particularly to the four Republican Senators (Sens. Alesi, Grisanti, Saland, and McDonald) who bucked conservative religious elements of their party that warned them that they would vote them out of office if they supported this. These are very courageous men and I am so thankful to them. Thank you so so much!

Jacob and I took in the scene for a while in Sheridan Square, screamed and celebrated with all these other gays at the site where the modern gay rights movement kicked off. Everyone was aware of the site being an important space, was aware of its history, and was there to celebrate a huge milestone that had been achieved due to the efforts of generations of gay men and women who have fought for justice and freedom. The energy there last night was electric and I couldn't believe it, was so incredibly happy. We went across the street eventually to the Monster to have some drinks. On the main level, we went into a corner against the windows to look out on to the scene outside. The piano player started playing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow." The bar patrons started singing along. It could not have been a more perfect moment.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Father's Day

On Sunday, Father's Day, I got a tattoo of Walt Whitman on my arm. As I was walking to the place in Greenpoint where I had an appointment to get it done, I realized what day it was and saw an unintended beautiful symbolism in getting this tattoo on this particular date. This man is my spiritual father.

Later that night, I was at the bodega by my house, looking in the ice cream freezer, trying to decide between which Ben and Jerry's flavor I wanted, none of them looking particularly good. There was a particular flavor I wanted though I couldn't think of it, and maybe it never even actually existed, but all of these flavors looked so boring, so not the flavor I was hungering for. A drugged out and very tatted up man came into the bodega and asked me for a dollar to get on the subway. He had just been in a fight and had a freshly bruised and cut eye, a black eye forming. He looked beat up and looked like he might beat me up as well. I told him I'd give him a dollar. As I was getting out my wallet, he noticed my tattoo and complimented me on it, asked me where I got it done. I told him where. He, perhaps also aware of the day and it making sense to him to get a tattoo of an older man on this day, asked me if it was my father. No, I told him, it's Walt Whitman. Who is that, he asked. A writer I really like, I told him. I gave him the dollar and ended up getting Peach Cobbler flavor.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


I turned 30 in the Fire Island Pines while downing shots of tequila with my boyfriend and my ex-boyfriend at Sip N' Twirl. I had been looking forward to this weekend for a while, having booked a weekend at a place in Fire Island because I was turning 30, because I wanted to be on a sunny beach when the day came and not to be stuck in the city doing this or not doing that. I wanted to be away. I was away, and though the weather did not cooperate, seemed in fact to be working against my intention of washing over introspection and fear of aging with sunshine, I had a lovely time. I was sad, yes, at times, but also incredibly happy most of the time, and very grateful to be with these two people I love so much.

We had started our trip on Saturday a bit later than originally planned, it clearly not a beach day, rainy and gray, and thus there being no hurry to get to Fire Island. At Penn Station, Erica failed to meet us. Her dad was having heart problems and she potentially had to fly home. This news made me incredibly sad - one, because it was a close friend sad, and two, because it was also a reminder of the fragility of bodies, of what happens as we age, and of what a life actually consists of - that it's not all tight skin, good hearts, and lying in the sun on beaches smoking cigarettes and drinking concealed Coors Lights.

Bundled in sweatshirts, we rode on the lower inside deck of the ferry with everyone else, no one on top. We checked into our hotel, set our stuff down, unsure at first what to do in the weather, in the early day. We poured some cocktails and everything, as often occurs with such help, became easier - conversation, decisions, plans for what to do, desires. We talked about aging and shared friends and shared memories. We then went to a drag show at the Ice Palace starring Logan Hardcore and Dallas Dubois. It was your average drag show for the early part of it, mildly absurd and mildly funny. Everyone was inside, sheltered from the rain outside, cradling their cocktails, smoking cigarettes. During one number, Dallas Dubois circled outside along the patio and did a big dance around the pool. Some people went outside underneath the cover of a balcony to watch this, and soon everyone else followed. Inspired and egged on by the crowd's enjoyment of her dancing in the rain, she continued her performance out there, eventually diving into the water, wig on and all. Logan Hardcore followed that number with one of his own, also outside in the rain, and he pushed it even further, went for it, did insane dances in huge heels on a wet pool deck. It was beautiful and entrancing, a rare moment. We all ate it up and were screaming loudly, all aware that this was an amazing performance we were witness to, something we would talk about to others we had seen it with long down the road, saying remember when. The two of them eventually did a duet to "It's Raining Men," dancing with pool umbrellas underneath the rain, spraying the pool hose up into the air, and then diving into the pool in sync together with their make-up and outfits on, wigs lost to the pool by this point.

This really cheered me up and did so for everyone else as well. The weather became less of an obstacle. The lesson was learned. You have to do what you can with the things you are given. So it's raining and you're a drag queen? Do a dance in the rain to "It's Raining Men," while diving into a pool. Fucking amazing. I no longer had any crabbiness about the weather, seeing how stupid and uptight such a thing was, that you have to embrace these things as they are and not get upset when the world does not work as you had hoped. We are faggots. It never does. We should know this. We should not be so easily upset by things out of our control. We should have made peace with these things long ago.

We went back to the house, had a couple more cocktails, and then hiked through the Meat Rack to the Pines. We went to the tea dance, drank a lot, danced a lot. At ten o'clock, the dance bars closed after tea, not reopening again until 12. The three of us wandered down some boardwalks, ostensibly in search of someone with a hot tub. At some point, we came across a guy on his knees sucking off another guy. We stopped to watch, joined in, sniffed some poppers offered to us. The ocean was in the background, waves crashing. We left after a little while, leaving the two again to themselves, us three heading to Sip N' Twirl, the bar still open during this interim when the gays were cleared off the dance floor.

We drank and as midnight approached, I knew I needed to ring it in with a shot, maybe because I wanted to think I was actually turning 21 and partying with sorority sisters. And maybe because I actually was doing so. We drank tequila, sucked on limes, and I talked about being 30 and what it meant, it all seeming full of import, a little wise, and all certainly very histrionic I am sure in retrospect. Jacob soon threw up on the table. I told him to drink water and not get so wasted, that I wanted to party all night long. We danced more at this bar and the other one. At some point, we left Diego, deciding to go home.

Walking back toward Cherry Grove, through the night, through the woods, through the fog brought about alcohol, nostalgia, and thoughts about what it means to be alive and age in this world, we walked through the sand near the beach. At some point, we walked over to the beach, wanting to see the ocean. There was probably some making out, details hazy, but I do remember getting a blowjob from Jacob and that leading to sex, us stripping off all our clothes and fucking on the beach. It felt really amazing. Throughout I was aware of the act, yes, of the physical sensations brought about by it, but also its setting in nature, this communion with the world, and the harmony of waves crashing nearby us and us fucking in sand a few feet away. I was thinking of Whitman and nature. This revery was interrupted by the sight of headlights coming fast down the beach toward us. "Cops!" I yelled to Jacob, telling him we had to run, to grab his clothes, that we had to go now.

We quickly grabbed the clothes around us and ran back up to the boardwalk that led over the dunes. There at the top of these stairs was a man who had been apparently watching us have sex on the beach. The two of us ignored him and got dressed, laughing about the close call as we walked home. Jacob mentioned that his foot hurt and that it felt like he broke it somehow. We were tired, drunk, and now injured. We could not wait to be able to pass out in bed. Reaching in my pocket, I felt for the keys as I usually do when walking home, instinctual. They were not there. I asked Jacob to make sure he didn't have them in his pocket. Fuck, I yelled, realizing that I had lost the key somehow in the sand when we were having sex. Jacob stayed put on the trail, his foot hurting too much to come back and help look for the key. There were men cruising in the bushes. My drunk and paranoid brain imagined them as killers as I ran through the woods alone. I was afraid of all these men, sure they were going to kill me, that it would have been so easy out there in the middle of the woods. I searched around in the sand, using my cell phone as a flashlight, trying to hurry because I was scared for my life in a less metaphorical sense than I had been earlier in the evening when I contemplated turning thirty.

The key was nowhere to be found. I caught back up with Jacob. He cried during the walk home, his foot hurting so bad. We were hoping Diego would be home even though he wasn't picking up his calls and my increasingly crazed cell phone messages I kept leaving on his machine, begging him for the love of God to please come home, that Jacob had broken his foot, that it was raining, that it was freezing, and that we had lost our key in the sand while running away from the cops because we had been having sex on the beach.

He was not there at the house and did pick up any of my many phone calls to him, me sure that he was getting laid somewhere in the Pines. After trying to break into the house, and then after failing that and waiting too long in front of the house in the rain, we decided we had to go back and search again for the key. We walked back to that spot, Jacob crying the whole way in pain, both of us miserable, cold, and tired. We found our imprint of bodies on the sand and searched around with our cellphones, illuminating the sand, trying to, feeling around with our hands for anything that looked like it might be a key. After a good ten minutes of this, ready to give up, as we're walking back to the boardwalk, I spotted what I was sure was garbage, felt for it anyways, and pulled up our key! We were so happy. A golden ticket. We were overjoyed, our night now not going to take the nightmarish turns we were imagining of having to sleep outside somewhere in the cold rain as we were already so miserable, instead that we were going to be able to sleep inside in an actual bed.

The next day, Diego came home, told us about his night, and asked us about ours, having just heard all my insane and desperate voicemails that morning. We drank mimosas, smoked cigarettes, talked shit, and then went to the Pines for a drunk drag brunch hosted by Bianca del Rio. She is one of my favorite drag queens. She is so fearless on stage, so offensive. She says the most racist stuff I've ever heard a comic say and yet gets away with it because she is in drag and it's already defined as a character she's playing. I can't decide if I love her or hate her, and that inability to decide has me convinced that it's probably love and that there is something nearing genius in her performance. She pulled Jacob on stage to rip him to shreds verbally, called him a polio case, a Jew with a big nose (though he's not Jewish), made numerous other jokes about his big nose, and left him even more wounded. I thought it was brilliant and hilarious. Jacob's pride, however, was hurt and he took it very personally, remaining very upset for the next hour or so and trying to pick fights with other people because of this. Diego left back for the city and Jacob and I hung out near the harbor.

We chatted with some man, a Cory, petted his cute dog. He mentioned going back to his hot tub. I said Let's Go, having wanted to be in a hot tub since I got there. We got naked at his house and plunged into his hot tub. He roommates watched from their table next to the hot tub as we started to suck each other off and make out. He had a pool that we plunged into. It was dyed this very unnatural green color, perhaps because they thought it was a natural color. The three of us had sex in a bedroom upstairs and then continued to play naked in his hot tub, pool, and deck chairs, chatting about what we did, drinking rose, playing with each other's dicks, jumping into the pool, and getting pissed on. It was a very sexy and beautiful day. I had submit myself to the weather, quit trying to have an itinerary, and just let things happen, enjoyed the weather and the life I was given. It was a beautiful time.

We eventually left to go back home and nap for a bit. The alcohol of the past couple days caught up with us on the walk back to Cherry Grove. We passed out after getting home and slept the night away. Jacob woke up with a much more swollen and bruised foot. We hung out on the beach for a short while before leaving in the early afternoon so Jacob could get his foot looked at in the emergency room. It turns out that he did in fact break one of his toes.

Before he found this out though, on the ferry ride back from Cherry Grove to Sayville, the sun was out and the weather was so that I could wear a tank top. We sat on the top deck of the ferry, outside this time, enjoying the sea breeze and the warm weather. Everyone sat on the top deck.

fire island

Friday, June 10, 2011

One Day

There are less than 24 hours left to go in this, my twenties, and I am listening to the Beth Orton Pandora station, feeling sorry for myself and drinking beer, packing a bag for Fire Island this weekend, and being upset by Jacob, wondering about him, not what I want to be starting this weekend with. But I was listening to this Beth Orton station before I got upset and maybe I knew I was going to need this beautiful and sad music tonight. I want to bring a radio to the beach with me somehow but I don't have battery-powered speakers.

I don't have battery-powered speakers.

I am dreaming of ferris wheels, though Fire Island is not that type of beach.

There was a lot that I really wanted to write tonight, wanted to tell you, wanted to tell a future self of mine, a thirtysomething, perhaps fortysomething, self of mine - that this what this time was like, these waning days of your twenties.

And, yes, I am perhaps being dramatic, but I am turning fucking thirty okay and it has me freaked out, though I know it shouldn't, that I can logically approach this and realize that this is just one more day than the day before and that the world does not significantly shift in any way, that this is a long stream of baby steps that has been happening. I don't know. Hanna today told me she had figured out what has been wrong with me lately. She said, "It's your birthday soon. That's why you're acting this way," she understanding that I had been behaving like a nutcase lately and also being aware that upcoming birthdays will make one a nutcase.

I went shopping today after work with money my mom gave me for my birthday, her card insisting to me to spend the money on myself, to "splurge" as she put it, to not put it toward bills or anything sensible like savings. So I went to the Opening Ceremony sample sale today, waited in line for about fifteen minutes, and then left the sale empty-handed after only about five minutes, not seeing any interesting men's clothing. I then went to Top Shop, looking for these shorts I had been pining over for a month or so but which I had been refraining from buying because I have been trying to save money and not spend large amounts of money on shorts, which I already have plenty of. The store no longer carried these shorts. From there, I went to Oak, was charmed by all the gay sales clerks, talked to them about candles and drop-crotch shorts. I bought myself a tank top there. I bought myself some Pinkberry on St. Marks. I bought a lot of booze for Fire Island at the wonderful Warehouse Wine and Spirits on Broadway. I then headed home.

I looked at porn and then looked at Grindr, hoping I could find someone to come over. Horny, I texted this guy I fucked a couple times off Grindr and asked if he wanted to hook up. He told me he would be over in thirty minutes. We had really hot sex, the two of us physically in sync with each other, he loving getting fucked as much as I loved fucking him. I came in his mouth. He wanted to continue kissing me after but it was both that I didn't want to taste my own cum and also that I didn't want to kiss him anymore, that it was fine during sex, but otherwise it was weird, that it was a little too affectionate for what this was supposed to be, plus he kind of grosses me out when I am not under the fog of horniness. The spell had been broken and I was ready for this man to get out of my apartment.

Jacob told me that he didn't get me anything for my birthday, but that he did get himself a jock strap. As he was pulling out his jock strap out of the shopping bag, I threw him the necklace I bought for him today, wished him a Happy Birthday. His birthday, by the way, is in January and is also, by the way, something I did get him a present for. I am thinking back to this older muscle dude today and fucking him and being free of the sadness I feel now. I miss that freedom from these emotions. I used to enjoy sex and having crushes and them not noticing me or me not noticing them. This was simple stuff, light, fun. I remembered this today when I flirted with the various sales clerks in Oak that wanted to help me. There is only one more day of this, of being a twentysomething. I should be doing something other than listening to sad music and writing in my online diary, but maybe we'll save that change for my thirties, since in truth a very large part of my twenties was spent doing this same thing, as is easily evidenced by scanning through this diary, it starting a little over ten years ago in May. My twenties are all here for you to see, or at least these moments when I listened to these things - now, the Beth Orton Pandora station; then, Belle and Sebastian's If You're Feeling Sinister - and tried to even the score, tried to write my way out of pits I dug for myself.

I am so excited to go to the beach tomorrow. I'll transition from one age bracket to another on Fire Island. I should bring some Frank O'Hara but I know I won't read him, though I know I should. I'll be do busy drinking I'm sure. But maybe, hopefully, the sun will talk to me too.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Seven Days

The countdown continues apace. The desire to stay in my twenties or prolong the start of my thirties, or really have more time on this earth - this desire, this wish, falls on deaf ears. The calendar keeps on switching days in a forward fashion every twenty-four hours. I thought about my life for quite a while yesterday. I spent most of my day on a bus, again going down to DC to see this man who likes being choked and smothered.

The way down there, I slept on and off, occasionally waking from my Benadryl-induced nap to look at the passing scenery, the side of I-95 one of the most comforting sights in the world to me, seeing it pass by in a brief blur, this trip up and down 95 done so many times throughout my life, my family driving north from the DC suburbs to see relatives, and all of these sights seeming full of import at the time.

After smothering this guy, him red-faced, struggling for breath, and jerking him off at the same time until he came, I hopped in a cab and got straight back on the next bus leaving our nation's capital. The Benadryl had worn off by this point and by the time we reached Baltimore, the day was ending, the sun slowly setting over the landscape. From my bus seat on the upper deck of a Megabus, I had large panorama windows from which to marvel at this beautiful sky, so pink.

Right before we entered the tunnel that goes underneath the Baltimore Harbor, I was presented with a sketch of urban decay and industrial landscapes that struck me as insanely beautiful, a sight I used to see far more often prior to moving to New York. Living in New York City, amazing a place as it is, has really narrowed my world to a few square miles that I rarely venture outside of. This drive awoke in me memories of my past, of driving these roads to this concert or that relative, or taking the Chinatown bus home for Christmas. There was a baseball field, empty, and next to it a hulking concrete factory, and behind that, water.

Each approach of an overhead highway ramp brought an anticipation, driving underneath it an exhale, having just been briefly amazed at the engineering feats of our national highway system. Regal concrete structures, ascending and descending, overlapping each other, a poetry in it, lines written in a nonverbal language showing the continual and varied movement of the people living here.

Skinny trees lined the road. Signs announced "Right Lane Must Turn Right."

Today, back in this town, there was a loud parade that passed near my house, a Puerto Rican parade. After it ended, I walked down Graham street, Puerto Rican flags for sale in front of all the bodegas, people walking in one direction, away from an ending.


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Eleven Days

The countdown is on. There are now only eleven days remaining of my twenties, eleven days remaining until I turn thirty. It has arrived so quickly, this age that I am about to turn in less than two weeks. When I ponder this age and think about how very soon I will be a thirty year old and think about what, if anything, that means, and though it surely means something culturally to many people, I wonder whether it will mean those same things for me and what exactly those things are. I remember being a kid and daydreaming about how far away the age of thirty was and what adult life I would probably be living then. The feelings I am going through are an alternate mixture of nostalgia for my twenties, anxiety that I perhaps wasted them, a just as quick thought squashing that one, thinking that I really lived my twenties in perhaps the best way I could, lived it wildly and often recklessly, and then also a bit of sadness that I am about to turn thirty and not anywhere where I imagined I would be at this age, and then also there is the fear of death, that this age, thirty, is not close to death, but that it seemed just as far away at one point in my life, and that the next decade mark will come just as soon and abruptly, and then so will the next, and soon youth, what remains of it, will be gone. And then coming not far beyond that, what remains of life will also be gone, all these things happening with a swiftness that never ceases to surprise me. Things just move so fucking fast on this planet and it's only in big moments like this, the beginning of a new year, a milestone in age, or the reappearance on YouTube of some cartoon from my childhood that I had totally forgotten, that I really grasp how quickly time passes by and realize that I need to put it to better use. There are eleven more days of this.

I have been living this past week. The warm weather has really made this farewell to my twenties a joyous, celebratory affair. The weekend was a blur of dancing here or there, various bars on both sides of the East River. I wore tank tops that showed too much skin and I smoked too many cigarettes and I drank too much. In other words, I had a really great time. The wind was on my skin, the sidewalks glistened with shards of something, and on these glittery surfaces I walked past many other people in this city intent on living their lives, going out, getting done up, looking pretty for perhaps someone, more so for themselves, and everyone living. There are often times when going out on weekend nights can be terribly depressing, the crush of people all done up and trying for something can have the air of tragedy, but that of course is not on days when your twenties are coming to an end, and when you read that end as a smaller scale version of your life coming to an end, an awareness of the temporal dimensions of our existence, and on those days, the scene on the street in the East Village on a Friday night is something fantastically beautiful, something gorgeous, so many bodies outside in front of bars - drinking not even the thing, dancing not even the thing, just the company of other bodies, this chorus of life happening.

I washed ashore from all these nights out on the town at Jacob Riis Beach, clothes gone, bodies of friends around me, sun and saltwater on my skin. I dived underneath the waves and stayed below water twisting my body this way and that, shimmying like a seal, in love with the cold of the water and its contact with my body, me both losing myself, weight gone and flowing freely through space, an astronaut, and also allowing my body to become more clearly delineated, the spot at which the cold starts the end of my body and its warmth. I had had a lot of vodka, clearly since Diego was there on the beach, and given my drunk state and horny state, I took my swimsuit off and lay there naked talking to people about sex, Drag Race, and aging.

The immense pleasure I get from lying underneath the sun on sand, sometimes naked - this is a pleasure that will still be available to me in twelve days. So will staying out late at night dancing. So will pretty much every thing other than some signs of aging that have already been present and perhaps will just become more pronounced in my own mind given a new numerical age, a double-digit one beginning with a 3.

From the beach, I headed home, showered off the salt and sand on my body, and headed off to Metropolitan for its BBQ with my beautiful boyfriend, who I get giddy about lately when I think of him, now for instance. At the BBQ, a sign of aging perhaps, there were very few faces I recognized. New cute gay faces everywhere on the packed patio, many of them quite young. We split a couple pitchers of beer and were joined by more and more friends. The drunken state perhaps bringing into being more and more friends, a more prononced socialness a result of the beer and no qualms had about talking to kinda friends, acquaintances, and even total strangers should they be cute and strike one's fancy. One of these familiar faces, Daniel, we started chatting up. Jacob and I had hooked up with him a year or so ago, and we invited him home with us again. We got high, started to watch a movie, and soon, starting to nod off, all went off to bed together and had fun sex.

There was a hangover that followed these days that lasted almost two days, my body, again this subject of aging, telling me that perhaps I am not as young as I think I am, that I cannot party for three days straight and wake up like nothing happened anymore - that now my body feels these things, their aftereffects.

Last night with some friends from work, I saw The Normal Heart, Larry Kramer's devasting play about the beginning of the AIDS crisis. It was a beautiful play, full of polemics toward those who ignored the crisis, and a rousing call to action. There were a couple of moments where I rolled my eyes, Kramer's judgemental views toward promiscious gay sex coming through too clearly. Aside from those couple of moments though, this play had me for every moment enthralled, alive, and again aware of the shortness of things, the quickness with which things end, and the beauty that they hold during those brief stretches of being, a beauty brought about by its shortness. A Wallace Stevens line comes to my mind: "Death is the mother of beauty." It is because I am turning thirty and a little scared of that fact that I am living so hard right now, trying to take in all of these moments, live.