Saturday, December 5, 2015

Barry and the Creepy Old Guy

You remember Barry, the shy, slim boy growing up in a conservative household in Colonial Williamsburg, who sought escape by getting drunk and experimenting with drugs?

How did he get from there to the health-conscious gym rat I knew in New York, who didn't drink or use drugs, who would never even set foot in a bar?

After his first sexual experience, when he was 16, Barry was angry and bitter over the Big Lie, the conspiracy to keep him from knowing that gay people exist, as well as the everyday heterosexism of "what girl do you like"?  So he continued his smoking and drinking, and moved from marijuana to prescription drugs.

He spent the next two years driving into Norfolk and using a fake id to get into the bars, where he would drink, dance, and hook up, usually for money.  Often with two or three guys in a night.

"Norfolk is 50% black," he said.  "Can't get much better odds than that."

"How did you find the time to go home with so many guys on the same night?"

"I didn't usually go home with them.  We did it in a parked car, or in an alley off Stockley Gardens."

By some miracle Barry managed to graduate from high school with a 3.5 GPA.  His search for black men led him to 80% black Howard University in Washington, DC, as a pre-law major.  Again, he spent most nights going to the bars on Dupont Circle with his fake id., dancing, drinking, trying Ecstasy, tricking, and hustling.

He was arrested twice, once for propositioning an undercover cop (DC had sodomy laws until 1995) and once for "indecent exposure" in a public restroom.

"I'm all for exploring masculinity in all its variety," I said, "But it sounds like you were obsessed."

"I thought that's what gay life was about.  Drinking, dancing, drugs, and hooking up."

He felt very guilty after his hookups, especially the anonymous encounters where a guy would go down on him without even a kiss first.  How degrading!  This wasn't what sex was supposed to be about.  What happened to the affection, the caring?  Sometimes he prayed afterwards to turn straight, so he could have a "normal," caring relationship.

"Did you date?"

"Just once."  During the summer of 1992, he fell in love with a tourist from St. Lucia -- his first romantic relationship, four years after coming out!  After a courtship of only a few days, he returned to St. Lucia with his new boyfriend.  But he soon grew bored, returned to DC, and resumed his life of drinking, dancing, tricking, and hustling (See A Boy, A Man, and a Caribbean Island for what really happened).

"Did you use condoms with your tricks?" I asked.

"Not usually. I didn't really care about HIV or hepatitis.  It's a miracle that I'm negative now."

He graduated from Howard University, with a C+ average.  Not good enough to get into a reputable law school.

So he moved to West Hollywood, got a clerical job, and spent his nights at Mickey's and the Rage, dancing, hooking up, drinking, and using drugs. He graduated from Ecstasy to cocaine and crystal meth.

The demon at his exorcism happened to disapprove of an evening where one of his tricks went down on him at the notorious hustler hangout, a donut shop on the corner of Highland and Santa Monica.

(It's under new management and not a hustler hangout anymore.)

"I loved West Hollywood," I said.  "The gym, the bookstores, the restaurants.  Did you go to the French Quarter?"

"Not really."

"Lots of spiritual activities, too.  The Metropolitan Community Church, Beth Chaim Chadashim Synagogue, Evangelicals Together."

"I didn't really join any groups."

"Not even gay Catholic groups?"

"ESPECIALLY not gay Catholic groups.  I wouldn't even trick with a guy if I knew he was Catholic.  Once a guy took off his shirt, and I saw a crucifix around his neck.  I ran away like a vampire."  He paused.  "Maybe I was a vampire."

Then, in the summer of 1998, a trick took him to a very nasty apartment complex near downtown.

Sagging, peeling wallpaper, threadbare carpets damp with mysterious stains, dim light from sickly yellow lamps, stultifying heat,  It was insufferably hot and damp.

As they were walking down the hallway, they passed a couple on the way out.

One was a creepy old guy in a business suit.

"What's wrong with old guys?  I'm 14 years older than you."

"Some of them are hot, but this guy was the worst: smelly, sweaty, with warts and claw-hands, slicked-back hair, and that creepy leer, you know, that they get when they won't take 'no' for an answer."

His companion was a blond guy in his 30s, but very worn and craggy, with bloodshot eyes and a scraggly beard, sweating in an old-fashioned leisure suit and gold chains.

As they passed, the blond guy locked eyes with Barry and mouthed the words "Help me!"

Barry noticed a crucifix around his neck.

"Do you think it was a kidnapping?  Or a hustler changing his mind about a trick?"

"I think it was a glimpse into my future.  I was seeing myself in ten years."

Barry was too freaked out to follow through with his own trick.  He ran back to his car and zoomed home, and said the Rosary for the first time since high school.

"I felt the presence of the Blessed Virgin, as if she had been watching over me all along, waiting for me to come home again." 

A week later, he was back in his parents' house in Williamsburg.

He gave up the bars, went to drug counseling, joined a gym, began practicing Zen meditation, and started going to Dignity, the gay Catholic group.

For the first time in his life, he had gay friends.

Maybe the Blessed Virgin had watched over him for a purpose.  He should become a monk.  But it had to be a pro-gay monastery.

Asking around Dignity, he discovered Andre's Traditional Catholic Community, and applied to join as a postulant.  That's when I met him, on the night of his exorcism.

Barry decided that he didn't have a monastic vocation, but he continued to go to Mass, say the rosary daily, and live a clean, almost monastic lifestyle. An hour of meditation and two hours at the gym every day.  No drinking, no smoking, no drugs, no bars.  No hookups, just dating and sharing with friends.

Today, thanks to the Blessed Virgin and a Creepy Old Guy, Barry is still DDF, still going to the gym and meditating daily.  He and his partner Daniel run a gay bed and breakfast on Long Island, near the Hamptons.

Daniel, by the way, is twenty years older than Barry.

See also: The Colonial Williamsburg Boy Finds Out What Gay Means; The Catholic Priest in my Bed; and The Homophobic Demon.

Friday, December 4, 2015

The Colonial Williamsburg Boy Finds Out What Gay Means

My friend Barry in New York, the short, blondish muscle guy who was exorcized from a homophobic demon, grew up in Colonial Williamsburg, the historical park in Virginia where people live full-time in 18th century houses, wear historic costumes, and pretend that they're living in the 18th century.

He went to a regular school, but had to sneak into his house through the back door afterwards.  The front of the house had to maintain the illusion in detail.  No modern appliances.  No window decals.  No air conditioners.

 And, whenever they went out onto Duke of Gloucester Street, he and his family had to put on wigs and tricorner hats and say "Aye" a lot while thousands of tourists gawked at them.

All heterosexual husbands and wives towing dozens of kids.

He never saw a same-sex couple.  This was his destiny.  No hope for the future.

To make matters worse, his parents were conservative Catholics who didn't want him to know that same-sex desire existed.  He was not permitted the minimal gay content on tv and in movies in the 1980s.  He never heard about gay people at school, at church, or among his friends, either.

"Wait -- you never heard about gay people, at the height of the AIDS crisis?  Not even in homophobic diatribes?"
"I heard that AIDS was God's punishment on 'bad people" for having sex outside of marriage.  I thought it meant heterosexuals."

No gay people existed.  Instead, he was told, over and over again, a hundred times a day,  "You will grow up, meet the Girl of Your Dreams, get married, and have kids.  Every boy does.  It is universal human experience."

His destiny.  No hope for the future.

Sounds like my childhood, only 14 years later.

I survived through the orchestra, running, and paradoxically, the church.

Barry played music, too, but he was too shy and awkward for sports (he bulked up later), and he hated church.  So he turned inside.

By the time he was 15, he was smoking cigarettes and getting drunk once or twice a week.  He was soon experimenting with marijuana and other drugs.  He got high while listening to Madonna and Duran Duran in the darkness of his room.

"Good choices -- Hungry Like a Wolf.,,"

But eventually he had to go downstairs again, to Prince George Street, where he wore a tricorner hat and got gawked at by the tourists, husbands, wives, and kids.

His destiny.  No hope for the future.

The story of how Barry got his life back on track begins with his first sexual experience.

One day in high school he was "on," marching down the Duke of Gloucester Street with the Fife and Drum Corps, when he noticed a tourist outside the Courthouse, watching him intently.

Older, probably in his 30s, dark haired, bearded, his yellow t-shirt revealing a muscular physique and a hairy chest.

Hot!  Barry smiled at him.

Why did he seem so out of place?  Suddenly Barry figured it out -- he was alone.  Tourists always came in groups of husbands, wives, and a bunch of kids.

Was his wife somewhere else, with the kids in tow?  Or was there a possibility that some men avoided the wife-and-kids trap, lived free?

They marched down three blocks, turned in formation, and marched back.  The older man was still there, watching him.  Barry smiled again.

When they finished their performance, the other guys scattered, to put on their street clothes and hit Rick's Diner, their hangout, but Barry walked back toward the Courthouse.  The tourist was walking east, toward the Raleigh Tavern.

Not really understanding why, Barry ran to catch up with him.

"Good morrow, sir," he said politely, tipping his hat.  "Did you enjoy our performance?"

The tourist turned and flashed a smile that made Barry melt inside.  "I liked it, but I'm not sure you did.  You looked kind of uncomfortable."

Stay in character!  "Perhaps I'm not accustomed to such a throng of spectators.  Although this is the capital of Virginia Colony, it has only about 1,000 residents."

"Do you want to study music in college?"

"Well, there are no music faculties in colonial universities, but indeed one day when I am married, I hope to play for my supper and thereby support my wife and children." 

The tourist frowned.  "You don't have to talk like that," he said, staring intently as if he could see into Barry's soul.  "You don't have to pretend."  

Surely he meant "You don't have to pretend to be a Colonial," but Barry heard "The adults are lying.  You can be who you are."

His whole world came crashing down around him.  His whole life was a lie, as empty as the Colonial facades, with nothing behind  it but darkness.

Horrified, Barry ran away -- not home, but to a secret place he knew, a little copse of trees behind the Public Gaol, where he went to hide from the world, from his heterosexual destiny.

He stopped, breathing heavily, overcome by sadness and rage.  He saw that the tourist had followed.

"What's wrong, kid?  You ok?"

Barry was most definitely not ok. 

"I'm...I'm..." he stammered.  Then he started to cry.

The tourist put his arms around him.  Barry had never been embraced by a man before, not even by his father.  He had never known that a chest could be so hard.

He clung to the tourist, running his hands over his chest and shoulders. Then they were kissing.

Men could kiss each other?

 They fell onto the soft summer ground, and the tourist undid the buttons of Barry's colonial breeches and went down on him.

He had never felt such an explosion of desire.

Afterwards they walked down Francis Street together.

"I didn't know there were other guys in the world know...wanted to kiss."

The tourist laughed.  "Oh, there are thousands of gay people.   Maybe millions."

He had never heard the word "gay" before.

"There are bars for us down in Norfolk.  And whole neighborhoods where we can hold hands and kiss in public."

"I don't believe it!" Barry exclaimed.  "Where?"

"New York.  There's the East Village, Chelsea, Fire Island...."

They said goodbye somewhere around the campus of William and Mary.

It would take years, and a lot of work, to overcome his childhood of silence and despair.

But now, at least, he had a name.  And he had a future.

See also: A Hookup with Barry and the Poz Boy; David's First Sexual Experience.

Teen Hunk #10: Jean, the Violinist

I played the violin in junior high, but I didn't have the dedication to put in hours of practice every day -- or to face the bullies who disapproved of the existence of boys carrying violin cases -- so I didn't get very proficient, and in high school I switched to the viola:

A bigger, bolder instrument responsible mainly for harmonies.

The viola turned out to be my forte, the Rocky High Orchestra my home.

I had a crush on Mr. Hart, the orchestra director, slim, red-haired, horn-rimmed glasses, with an amazing bulge shifting as he conducted.  He signed me up for contests and competitions, and taught a special class in music theory in the predawn hours.

My first sexual experience was with a violinist named Todd at music camp, during the summer after 10th grade.

Another violinist was unbearably cute.

Two of the cellists were inseparable partners, perhaps a gay couple.

Other orchestra boys were surprisingly uninterested in girls.


But in college I had too many other interests and activities to pursue music further, so I put my viola back in its case,  It came along when I moved to Omaha with Fred, and stayed there when I left.  He said it was in his parents' attic, waiting for me to come and pick up.  It might still be there.

But I still listen to classical music, go to the symphony, and crush on musicians, especially those who remind me of those halcyon days.

In the spring of 2004, I went to Europe for my usual Paris-Brussels-Amsterdam circuit, and dropped in to the Bains d'Odessa, near the Luxembourg Gardens.

There wasn't much activity going on in the late afternoon hours, but as I was dressing to leave, I saw a very cute guy in the locker room, also getting dressed: in his 20s, tall, broad shouldered, with pale, smooth skin, tight muscles, nice bulge.  We made eye contact, but didn't interact: I followed the rule that younger guys must always approach older.

He put on a white shirt and blue jeans, and then pulled a violin case out of his locker.

A violinist!  I wasn't going to let this one get away!

I walked over to him.  "I played the viola in high school."

He glared at me.  "Très fascinant."

Well, that was rather a lame pick-up line.

He headed for the door.  I followed.   " first guy I had sex with played the violin."

"Vous devriez lui téléphoner."  Then you should call him.

I was sinking fast!  He paused to pick up his valuables from the lock box.  " high school music teacher had an enormous penis.  Almost as big as mine."

"Vraiment?"  He turned and smiled.  "Je m'appelle Jean."

When all else fails, go for the penis.

Over coffee, Jean told me that he only went into the sauna to work out and use the steam room.  "Sex in a bath house is disgusting, don't you think?"

"Oh, yes, I hate it," I lied, "So uncomfortable."

He was 22 years old, a student at the École Normale de Musique, working toward his diplôme supérieur d'exécution, a performance degree.  "They have degrees in teaching, too, for students with abysmal talent, perhaps those who went to a provincial lycee."

What an elitist!  "I studied at the University of Southern California and Setauket University...." I began.

"Sorry, I don't know them.  The only true universities in America are Harvard and Yale, don't you think?"

"Well, Setauket has an excellent program in history"

"History!  How can you stand it?  It is the most dull of all subjects."

Ok, I was working really hard to get this jerk into my bed.  He'd better be spectacular!

I was too embarrassed to invite him back to my one-star tourist hotel, so I said I had a roommate.  Jean offered to take me home -- his parents and younger brother were away on holiday.

He lived in a small but elegantly furnished apartment in the 14th Arrondissement, about 20 minutes away by Metro.

When we arrived, Jean sat me down on the couch and opened his violin case.  "Now I will play for you, and you will tell me if I am as good as the violinist who was your first boyfriend."

He pulled out a cake of rosin for his bow.  Memories came rushing back.  " you mind if I try?"  I asked, reaching across the couch.  I gingerly lifted the violin from its case.

He snatched it out of my hand and sprang to his feet.  "No!  Are you crazy!  You must never touch another man's instrument!"

Elitist and crazy! "Je suis désolé...I didn't know."

"How can you not know?" Jean yelled, his eyes flashing.  "Did they not teach you anything in your second rate lycee in the provinces?"

"Ok, ok, I will not touch your instrument.  Is it ok if I touch your penis?"

The bedroom activities turned out to be very nice -- Jean was passionate, versatile, and not at all demanding.  He even insisted on cuddling all night.

But in the morning he started up again: "Next August I will visit you in America.  I want to see this second rate lycee where you teach stupid people about sociology.  How do you ensure that they do not sleep during your lectures?"

I ran.

See also: 12 Teacher Hookups; 20 Teenagers and Twinks; and Spending the Night with Todd.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Edward's Hookup with an Angel or Demon

This story happened to my roommate Edward, the art appraiser I lived with in the East Village.  When I knew him, from 1998 to 2001, he was in his late 50s and early 60s, tall, husky, tanned, white-haired, slightly feminine, and eccentric.

But back in 1958, he was Eddie, a 18-year old high school boy growing up in Houghton, on the isolated Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  Not aware that he was gay yet -- not even aware that same-sex desire existed.

But he knew that he was different: he was in the drama club and the musicale, he loved painting and sculpture, and he especially loved looking at the semi-naked men in muscle magazines like Physique Pictorial.

He tried to get intimate with girls, twice.  The spirit was willing, but the flesh was weak.

When he graduated from high school, his father insisted that he join the military Maybe the all-male environment would make a man out of him.

He was fluent in German -- his parents fled Nazi-occupied Austria when he was four years old -- so he was stationed at an air force base near Kaiserslautern, West Germany, and given a job as a translator.

One evening his friends talked him into walking to a popular tavern on Kindsbacher Street, where they would meet some hübsche Mädchen.  He was less than enthusiastic about the prospect of Mädchen, hübsche or not, so after about an hour, he wandered off into the night.

He was not drunk -- I repeat, not drunk.

He started walking north and west, until he was on a country road, now the L363, on the way to Steinwenden.  Open fields broken by an occasional groves of trees.  There were no streetlights, but it was a clear night, with a very bright full moon.

Suddenly a shape burst up from a new field and flew across the night sky.  It swooped down so close that Edward instinctively threw himself to the ground and rolled into a ditch.

A bomb?  No.  A bird?  Maybe -- but enormous -- he estimated the wing span at ten feet.

A condor?  A hawk?  How big did hawks get in Germany?

It swooped down again, this time more slowly, its wings fanning the air.  It hovered over his prostrate body.

It was a human!  A man, about 5'5" tall, Caucasian, hairless, very muscular. His wings were like eagle wings, with feathers. They were vibrating but not flapping -- apparently he didn't need them to fly.

"How did you see such detail in the dark?"  I asked.

"The moon was very bright. But still, I couldn't see everything.  I couldn't make out a facial expression."

Edward tried to scream in terror, but no sound came out of his mouth.  The winged man hovered only a few feet over him.  His gigantic penis -- easily 10" soft -- hung down.  It was uncircumcized.

"You could tell that it wasn't circumcized, in the dark?"

Lower, lower.  Edward tried to scramble out of the way, but he couldn't move.  The fanning wings -- had they paralyzed him?  He had just seen The Horror of Dracula (1958) with Christopher Lane.  Was this a vampire, getting ready to feed?

Lower, lower. The winged man had beautifully sculpted muscles and a Kovbasa+++++.   Edward was terrified, but also aroused.  He unzipped, pushed down his pants, and displayed his own erect penis.  It was big by human standards -- all the guys at the base admired it -- but tiny compared to the winged man's.

" said you couldn't move!"

"Who's telling this story, me or you?"

Lower, lower.  They were only inches apart.  Edward still couldn't make out a face, but he felt the winged man's penis, now erect, a rod of iron, brushing  against his legs, then pushing against him, between his thighs.  He thrust over and over and over, wordless, savage.

Edward tried to scream.  The pressure was tremendous.  But he was also elated, hot with passion for the muscles, for the penis.  He wished he could move his hands to hold the winged man, draw him close.

The winged man shuddered with an explosive orgasm.

Then, without a sound, he flew off.

Edward lay there, drenched, waiting to see if he would return.  After awhile, he finished off himself, cleaned up, and walked home.

He returned to the spot where he saw the winged man many times over the years, most recently in 1990.  But he never saw it again.

He kept the handkerchief that he used to clean himself off with, a memento of the moment he realized that he was gay.

"Wow, quite a dream!"

"It wasn't a dream.  I was wide awake.  I remember every moment."

My friend raises his glass in a toast.  "You win!  That's the best coming out story I've ever heard!"

It certainly beats my coming out over John Travolta in Grease.

"Next I'll tell you about me and the Romanian vampire-hunter...."

See also: The Football Player Who Got Unstuck In Time.

16 Naked New Yorkers

Of all the gay neighborhoods I've lived in, the East Village in Manhattan is my least favorite --  better than anyplace in the straight world, but still lacking.

It has some of the iconic sites of gay culture, including the Stonewall Inn, where Gay Liberation began.  Plenty of gay bars, bookstores, organizations, and cultural events.  Plus the best museums, art galleries, and bookstores in the world were a brief subway ride away.

Still, there was something cold about the City, something distant, something...well, almost grim.  West Hollywood felt like home from the moment I arrived, but in the City I was always a stranger.

During my three years living with Edward in the East Village, I only had one real boyfriend: Joe the Regular Guy, who moved back to Pennsylvania after a year.

But I had a series of crazy hookups, dates, and sausage sightings.

1. A hookup with Yuri and the hippie, who talked a never-ending stream of trivia and gibberish, and turned out to be deficient beneath the belt.

2. Back in L.A. for a visit, a celebrity date with Nate Richert, who played Harvey on Sabrina the Teenage Witch.  I didn't know who he was at the time.  

3. The Harvard boy I picked up in the Rare Book room of the Widener Library.  That was in Boston, not New York.

4. Tomor the Mongolian Shaman.  Ok, he was from Paris, not New York, but how often do you meet Mongolians?  Who are shamans?  Who are gay?  And gifted beneath the belt?

5. Barry, an acolyte at a traditional but pro-gay Catholic community, who got exorcised from a homophobic demon.  I think I just wanted to date him because of the exorcism.

6. The HIV Positive bondage boy: he had just gotten his positive status, and he wanted to go to the New York Bondage Club for his birthday.  He had never tried BDSM before, but he figured it was safe sex.

7. Another celebrity date, with Broadway songster Andrew Lloyd Webber.  Again, I didn't have the slightest idea who he was at the time.  But we had tacos in a limousine.

8. Matt the Bartender, who convinced me to spend the night with him because it was the night of December 31, 1999, and the Y2K bug was making everything go crazy.  At least, that's what he claimed.  That was in Indianapolis, not New York.

9. The Man in Black who just appeared one day, walking next to me on Christopher Street.  Maybe he was a Catholic monk.  Maybe he was an alien.

10, Mario the Teen Model, who took me on a crazy roller-coaster ride of a date involving a movie, tacos, a dance club, a bath house, and 4:00 am macaroni and cheese.

11. The Bushman.  Where I answer the question: "Are Bushmen always semi-tumescent?"  In South Africa, not New York.

12. Liam, who waited until the exact moment of his 18th birthday before initiating the romantic activity.

13. Jorge, a bar pickup.  I was depressed, so I broke every rule of gay cruising with him.  Turns out he lived with his parents, who didn't know he was gay.  He had to sneak me out the back door while they were all having breakfast.

14. The Football Player Who Got Unstuck in Time.  Was he really a University of Alabama undergrad from 1938 who somehow took a "jump to the left" and ended up on 2000s Christopher Street?

15. My Nephew Josh.  My brother's kid.  At Christmastime in 2000, he asked me to teach him "about gay sex."  You can't get any weirder than that.

16. The Amish Boy. I take that back.  Nothing is weirder than seeing an Amish boy at the urinal in a highway rest stop, wearing red bikini briefs.  A fitting end to three years of strange dates, hookups, and sausage sightings.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

The Beach Boy and the Giant, Part 2

Wilton Manors, September 2002

This is Part 2 of the story of the Beach Boy and the Giant.

We left everyone asleep on the night of September 22nd, 2002:

Barney is in bed with Brent, the the 6'10", broad-shouldered giant who he met at the bathhouse.

Across the hall, my other housemate Yuri is in bed with Wade.

In his bedroom off the kitchen, Boomer is in bed alone.

Just another Sunday night in the gay ghetto.

Wade lies awake, trying to think of a way to hook up with the Giant without offending Barney.

He tried for a midnight sausage sighting in the bathroom, and got Barney instead.

Maybe he could get up and "accidentally" get into the wrong bed?

No -- he has been here many times.  He knows the house too well.

He gets up, goes into the kitchen, and helps himself to some leftover rhubarb crisp.

He hears footsteps -- Barney again?  Yuri?

It's the Giant, naked except for his bikini briefs.  Wade's heart begins to beat fast, but he plays it cool and tries not to stare at the Giant's basket.

 "Want some rhubarb crisp?" he asks nonchalantly.

"Sure."  He sits at the kitchen table and grabs a plate. His gigantic hand dwarfs his fork.  "So, are you and Yuri a couple?"

"No, dude, just friends...I'm totally single," Wade says, overjoyed.  The Giant is into him!

"What about Boomer?  Is he single?"

"Um...yes.  Why?"

"Well, I shouldn't say this, right in the middle of a date, but he's totally hot, exactly my type!  Barney is nice, but -- well, I think I'm going to ask Boomer out."

Boomer?  Wade repeats, hurt, offended.

But then he comes up with a plan.  "You know, Boomer and I used to be boyfriends.  He's only into young, slim, twink types.  If you're over 30, forget it.  He was with Yuri for years, but when Yuri gets too old, he dumped him.  That's why he dumped me, too."

These are all lies, but they have the intended effect.  The Giant stares at his plate. "So I guess a guy in his 50s has no chance with him."

"Not of romancing him, no.  But there's always hooking up."

"But...if he's not into older guys, why would he want to hook up with me?"

"Ex-boyfriends always get invited into your bed."

The Giant grins.  "So if we were dating, I could spend the night with him.  But would you mind going out with me just so I could get Boomer into bed?"

"I'm willing to make the sacrifice."

"I see -- you still have a thing for Boomer yourself, right?"

So, with Wade's telephone number in hand, the Giant returns to his bed.

The Giant waits until he and Barney have settled into a friendship before calling Wade.  Then, during the next two weeks, they date four or five times, mostly to go swimming or boating, or to walk along the beach.  Everyone thinks it's an instant romance, like the ones we used to have in West Hollywood.

No one knows that the couple isn't actually getting intimate, that they end the evening with a hug-on-the-doorstep and then return to their separate apartments.

Wade doesn't mind.  He's biding his time.

Then he calls me.  "Are you free on Saturday?  I want you to come over and share the Giant."

I  hesitate -- he's not at all my type. But it's only polite, and besides, sharing the Giant would mean time with Wade, too.

Saturday, October 19th.

I drive to the Giant's small garden apartment (the front door opens directly onto the yard).

The Giant doesn't cook -- when you work in a supermarket, you can't stand the sight of food -- so we order a pizza and watch a DVD.

We are all sitting on the couch, on either side of the Giant.  He puts his massive arms around both of us.

Not at all attractive, but I'm sure he'll be enormous beneath the belt.

Suddenly the Giant envelops me in a hug and shoves his massive tongue down my throat.  I grope him. Average beneath-the-belt gifts.

We move into the bedroom.  Wade tries to go down on the Giant, but he pushes him away and grabs my head instead.

I assume that they are kissing and fondling as I work, but when I look up, Wade is lying on the bed alone.

"Is anything wrong?" I ask.

"No, no.  I just like to watch."

I move to the bed and start kissing Wade, expecting the Giant to go down on him, or to reach for a condom.  Instead he goes down on me.

And so on for the whole night.

A few days later, Barney tells me that they have broken up.

"The Giant is pretty upset.  I'm going over later to try to cheer him up.  You should come, too."

"Why me?"

"Apparently you made quite an impression the other night.  He can't stop talking about you."

It takes a few weeks for me to get the story out of Wade.

See also: The Beach Boy at the Bear Party