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September 24th, 2005

Pride 2005...


Today, in our area, it's Gay Pride 2005. Not everyone in the world is proud though:

PostSecret is an ongoing community art project where people mail-in their secrets anonymously on one side of a homemade postcard: Each secret can be a regret, hope, funny experience, unseen kindness, fantasy, belief, fear, betrayal, erotic desire, feeling, confession, or childhood humiliation. Reveal anything - as long as it is true and you have never shared it with anyone before.

This one is compelling. Clicking on it takes you to the blog for more of them:


I like this blog a lot, and have added it to my RSS feed reader.



Joe came over at a little after 10 this morning, bringing bagels from Paneras. We each had an asiago cheese one, and an oat-grain or multi-grain one.

I had cream cheese on my first one, and butter on my second one. He also brought coffee.



We left for Durham at about 10:35, and our first stop was to see Will's new house. It's very cute, and he's become a full-fledged homeowner by buying a dog, too. He's a black lab named Bodie.

Brian Green was there, too, and the four of us rode over to Sirens Lounge in Will's SUV, and from there we walked over to the vending booths on East Campus.

We walked through the area, stopped to renew our Flex memberships for 2006, with a $5.00 special. Jaysin filled out mine. Rob filled out Joe's. Jaysin was surprised to learn that Joe's was not a renewal, but a "new" membership. Larry would not have been surprised.

I saw Robert M. at the NC Museum of Art booth, Wayne at the TCW booth, and Jan hanging out in front of the Equality NC booth. Quality people. Loved seeing them.

I signed a petition for Equality NC, but to be honest, don't even remember what it was for. Something to get rights that I as an American deserve, but don't get because I'm a gay American, I'm guessing.

Joe and I both stopped and took a 10-15 minute National Men's Health Survey, which had incredibly personal questions in it. At the beginning of one section, she defined the terms she would be using: main partner, casual partner, and exchange partner.

A main partner is someone you've had sex with who means more to you than anyone else. A causal partner was someone you've had sex with who doesn't mean as much to you as your main partner. And an exchange partner is someone you've had sex with in exchange for money, drugs, or a place to live.

There was a whole section about drug use while having sex, and a short section on having sex with women.

The very first question on the survey was, "What sex were you when you were born?"



At a little after noon, we walked back to Sirens Lounge, which had become packed.

I think they underestimated the size of the crowd today for the parade, which started at 1:00, and passed right by their place. They had a "Parade Watchers' Special" of mimosas for $2.00, and it was so wildly popular that they were constantly having to wash and restock the glasses they were using to sell them.

It took a little too long to get a drink before the parade started, but eased up after it did. You could sneak back inside and get a drink fairly easily once everyone was out front watching the parade. A scene:



We had several drinks here, and before it was all over, I was among these folks: Joe, Will, Brian G., Jace, Kevin, Glenn, Zeh, his two straight lady friends, Crystal, and I can't remember the other one's name, Kent, and Joe's neighbor Mark.



After the parade Jace et.al. left for Joe & Jo's, which turned out to be closed, and through a voice mail I received from Kevin later, ended up at the Mad Hatter, which actually was the location of the "official review stand" for the parade.

Somewhere along the way Brian G. had left. Not too much later, Will drove Joe and I back to his house, where my car was, and we said our good-byes.



Joe and I stopped at the Quiznos near the Prime Outlets Mall at the Airport exit, where we each had a small sandwich.

I forgot that, in this very public place away from the "Gay Pride actvities," I had on my TCW shirt:

(Click on either image to order yourself one.)

I remembered that I had on this shirt well after we'd left and were back on I-40 to Raleigh.



At home, I took a 1.5-hour nap before heading out to Bill's party in Apex.

I called both Steve and Joe on the way, neither of whom had yet left their respective houses.



Bill's place was absolutely beautiful. I'm thinking that he has a big hat and a lot of cattle. The scene off his back deck was so much like mine and Rob's off ours on Azalea Drive -- heavily wooded, and straight down.

Bill has a cool, cool collection of frogs, and he showed me his latest one, which was one that hangs off the side of his coffee table, on which the rest of the collection is housed.

He owns more in picture frames than I probably have invested in total decorating in my house -- which isn't saying much, I guess. Just a massive quantity of framed items.

He had a killer open bar, from which I drank Wild Turkey and Diet Coke.

When I first arrived, I mingled with Rick E. and Robert F., the only two people I really knew there.

I was re-introduced to Randy, who is a guy I lusted after back when I first came out. He used to bowl on the leauge I was on, and he had the finest body (just average, though, not a muscleman), and gray hair even back then.

I remember saying to a guy who knew him, indicating Randy, "I want to age just like him. He's beautiful." The friend said, "He does look great for 35." I was 38.

After a while more people I knew arrived, including Joe, Ben, Dale, Steve M., Shawn, Josh, Adam, and Van.

Dinner was served, which included hush puppies, potato salad, baked beans, coleslaw, green beans, BBQ chicken, and chopped BBQ. Delicious.

For dessert, there was what looked like a peach upside-down cake, and banana pudding. I, of course, had the banana pudding.

It was a very nice time.



Though Joe had come with Ben and Dale, he left with me -- at around 9:00, when Ben and Dale left as well.

Joe and I stopped for cash at the SECU on Hillsborough St., and then went to Helios for a cup of coffee.

It was quite pleasant outside, and they had Ethiopian coffee, which we usually really like, but we both felt that it was "not up to snuff." I drank maybe a fourth of mine.

From there, we went to Flex, where it was way crowded, and neither of us "got into it."

We left after, probably, about 30 minutes -- after one drink. I drove Joe home, and then myself home.

I was in the bed at about 11:15, where I listened to CD #2 of the 3-CD set of Comfort of a Quilt.

As much as I love Reba, I'm disappointed in this audio book -- even though she's reading it. I can understand why it only has a 2 out of a 5-star rating at the SimplyAudio books site.

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