Friday, November 30, 2007

Becoming a Warrior

Today I'm leaving for a New Warrior Training Adventure. It's a program of the ManKind Project. I am excited, and a bit nervous/apprehensive/anxious.

Several friends have recommended it to me, and they are people I really respect, whose judgment I trust. And, since I know little about the weekend, it will take a lot of trust. I can do that.

It's a weekend for men. All sorts of men. I have no idea if there will be any or many gay men there, but that's OK, as long as it is a safe place. I'm assured that it will be.

I'll let you know more on my return. Shalom & Cheers to all.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Ho Ho Ho (except in Australia)

I live in one of the major Christmas tree growing areas of the country. A tradition in our parish is to put up two really big trees in different (really big) rooms at church. Now, these are full, 12' to 14' trees! We travel up into the hills to a grower, select the trees, cut them and haul them back. With a lot of help (including me) we put them up. But we don't have any stands substantial enough for such trees as these, so we actually suspend them from the ceilings in the respective halls! This allows us to place large buckets of water underneath them to keep them fresh all through Advent.

It gets to be quite an engineering project involving steel cables, hooks in the rafters, pulleys, and two come-alongs. What an operation!

Many may say that we shouldn't be cutting live trees, but Christmas trees are a "crop" around here, plentiful and beautiful. And the scent is wondrous!

At home, in my new digs, I have opted for an artificial tree. For just $30 I was able to purchase a nice (used) one at the Habitat-for-Humanity thrift store. Even though live trees are much less expensive here than most places, I couldn't spring for it, don't have a stand, and am probably allergic to them anyway!

So, I need ideas for ornaments! UrSpo has suggested "pink flamingos and bright pink ribbons the colour of pepto bismol." What ideas do you have?


Thanksgiving visit with my father and stepmother was fun. My father is a bit curmudgeonly, but pleasant enough. My stepmother is great fun and a wonderful woman who prepared a fabulous meal.

There was some delightful irony in the other invited guests! I'm not out to my dad and stepmom, but I think she suspects. Nonetheless, they invited some neighbors from down the street, a lesbian couple! to share Thanksgiving dinner. They were great fun as well, and we had good food and lots of laughs. The older neighborhood where they live is a becoming a bit of a gayborhood! Fine by me.

I spent the night and went shopping with my stepmother on Friday, but NOT to the mall. She wanted to buy some things for me for my new digs. Very thoughtful! She's like that. Except for her taste in husbands, I can't fault her.

A random picture of some "art in the park."

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Surely, we begin again

Thanksgiving week. This will be the first of the "big" holidays since my wife and I separated, and it will be wierd. I'll see my girls for some of the time, but I won't be part of our decade-old family tradition of going away for Thanksgiving. I will really miss that but hope they won't miss me too much. I don't want it to be a downer for them. But, of course, I have no control over that.

I'll go visit my father and stepmother for turkey, and that will be a nice visit, if I don't stay too long. My stepmother is great! She is much closer to my age than to my father's (10 yrs. older than I, 20 yrs. younger than he). She's the best wife he's found yet (she's #3, but #2 didn't last long at all). She doesn't let him get away with any shenanigans. He starts his control stuff, and she lets him know right where to stop. Amazingly, he straightened right up! He is older now (84) and his health ain't what it used to be. And, my conversations with him won't have much depth to them. If he starts in on me about anything, I'll just cut if off and leave the room. All those years of therapy have counted for something!

Sexual Sobriety didn't last as long as I wanted. It got away from me this weekend. I got away from it, actually. And, I'm really feeling a sense of "hangover" from it. The powerful neuro-chemicals that surge through the brain have a profound effect. And, their absence can leave one feeling a bit strange.

But all is not lost. We begin again.
The picture is of my daughter and me looking into Bent Creek.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Still Hangin'

The struggle goes on. And so do I. It's lonely. I am sooooo horny, but refraining from anything, for a time. Not forever, but for today. Just for today. No promises for tomorrow. But today.

This is all very vexing and troubling. I so want to get things in my life in a good place so that I can be a healthy, happy, very gay man. I do not want to be enslaved by lust, but to give myself with passion and intimacy where it counts. I'm not ruling out anything at this point, except for acting out today.

I spent most of the weekend at a church-related meeting, a convention-like affair. So many woofy men! But I restrained myself, and am glad that I did.

And, on a lighter note. . . . here is a picture from my drive through the Great Smokey Mountains Nat'l Park.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007


Sex. Each of us must work out what works for him or her (I'm guessing my multitude of readers are him's, though). How to, when to, and with whom.

And, of course there is the old relationship debate: monogamous, open, play around, only togehter, only apart. I know that some may struggle with the whole issue of "if." "Should I have sex outside of marriage/commited relationship?

But queers are different. And we must develop new sets of moral behaviors and not simply apply those of the striaght world to our lives. That could be a rationalization, but I don't think it is, completely.

When all of this is in the abstract it is very interesting. But when it come to my very own self personally, I can but get into trouble. All too often, I have. My life is becoming unmanagible. I don't like being powerless, but I am. I can't stop.

Now, to many this may sound like a joke, or something of raunchy humor. But sex addiction is very real, very powerful, cunning, baffling.

This past summer, a friend and colleague of mine got arrested at the restroom in a public park in a nearby small town. He'd never come out to me, though I suspected (strongly). Actually, he'd not even really come out to himself. His arrest (yes, it was an entrapment) was part of that county's big summer-long "sting" operation. So, it was published on the front page of the newspaper. He has lost job, family, nearly everything. I've come so close.

I don't want my life to be made up of anonymous hook-ups or even one-night-stands. But there are times, when I get started cruising that I just cannot stop. Often, I take the initiative and push. Sometimes though, I am not looking and someone pushes to pick me up. And I can't say no.

I am not controlling it. The lust is controlling me. So, I'm back with my twelve-step group. I am powerless, and my life has become unmanageable. It sucks energy and life out of me. (That's not meant to be a pun).

I am sad and SOOOOO angry that this is where I am.


This is the retreat house to which I, well, retreated last week. Beautiful facility. Lovely setting. Very quiet.
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Monday, November 05, 2007


Greetings all. I have returned from my week away. But I knew when I left something wasn't quite right: a cold? or a sinus infection? I was a bit draggy the whole week, but OK. Now that I'm home, it's gone to full-blown bronchitis. Yuk. 24 hours on antibiotics will help.

So, I'll say more when I'm feeling up to it.