Friday, 29 February 2008
Thursday, 28 February 2008
Wednesday, 27 February 2008
Sydney's cool and wet summer continued yesterday with a severe storm described as a one in twenty years storm. This photo shows the storm approaching the CBD yesterday. Summer ends officially this Friday and so far in Sydney we have had only two 30c days whereas our summer average is nine.
Storms are forecast for Saturday, the first day of Autumn and Sydney's Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade day.
Tuesday, 26 February 2008
No, No, No! Not at the moment, anyway.
Last night I awoke with a thought in my head. I had a recollection of this rhyme that I first came across over 45 years ago. A mildly bawdy rhyme, it appeared on public toilet walls at the time and I suspect still does on older toilet blocks.
Why was a 12 years old gay boy familiar with bawdy rhymes found on the walls of euphemistically named public conveniences? Well, let's not go there, sufficient to say I was responding to strong feelings arising from puberty that at the time I little understood.
But that rhyme intrigued and shocked the naive boy I was then.
There was no shortage of public conveniences in Sydney in those days. Every main street shopping centre, beach, public park, railway station and the like had it's conveniences. They were often left open 24 hours a day.
At the time, not only was homosexual activity illegal but it was also illegal to loiter or even to solicit for a consenting partner. There were no sex on premises venues in those days either nor, of course, the internet with it's dating services. So public conveniences were a meeting location for men seeking men. Their walls were the noticeboard for bawdy messages as well as for messages of availability for sex.
This led inevitably to complaints from those innocently using the conveniences for their intended purposes only to be exposed to men in various stages of sexual innuendo or behaviour. Operators of the conveniences responded by closing the conveniences, firstly in the evenings and eventually altogether. They made public conveniences inconvenient.
In subsequent years, homosexual activity was decriminalised, sex on venue premises legalised and other avenues for meeting same sex partners evolved. Those inconvenient public conveniences began to reappear but not in their old form. Now they appear as sterile, stainless steel futuristic time machines designed to discourage sexual and multiple use.
The walls no longer accept the bawdy rhyme and invitation but graffiti artists manage to overcome impediments to leave their distinctive marks.
Now, when one needs to spend a penny, this is what confronts you.
Here I sit brokenhearted,
Paid a penny and only farted.
Monday, 25 February 2008
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis, There Will Be Blood.
Best Actress: Marion Cotilliard, La Vie En Rose
Best Supporting Actor: Javier Bardem, No Country For Old Men
Best Supporting Actress: Tilda Swinton, Michael Clayton
Sunday, 24 February 2008
The arrangements were provided by Mm but she was distraught that this latest one was vandalised in a severe manner. This follows minor tampering with earlier arrangements. It is a pity that people show such little regard for the generous contributions of others.
Nn, who seems to know everything going on in the building - but not who the vandal was - tells me Mm was a Professor of Ikebana in Hong Kong. I know that Mm hails from Hong Kong but I wonder how it is she became involved in this Japanese skill.
Saturday, 23 February 2008
Nicole Kidman has appeared in many quirky movies and this is yet another. The film begins and ends in motion, a moving train to start with and a moving bus to conclude. In between is mostly static. People sitting and talking, people standing and talking and occasionally people walking and talking. Lots of talking.
Friday, 22 February 2008
There are programs I enjoy and try not to miss either watching them at broadcast time or recorded through my Foxtel IQ (a misnomer if ever I knew one).
Thinking about my favourite programs I realise that they spring a red flag that screams out GAY. My sexuality is defined by my television viewing. Just think about it. The following are my current favourite programs with favourite features listed too;
Brothers and Sisters - cute guys and gay themes
Desperate Housewives - cute guys and gay themes
Huff - cute guy (the schizophrenic brother who appeared impressively full frontal in one episode)
The Tudors - cute guys and loads of sexual themes
Skins - cute guys and gay themes
Unit One - cute Danish guys, occasional sexual themes
Dalziel and Pascoe - cute sidekick (Pascoe)
Gossip Girl - despite puerile storylines, cute guys
SBS Friday night documentary - sexual themes and nudity
SBS Friday night movie - sexual themes often with nudity
Out and About - GLBT travel show
The L Word - will even watch an hour of Lesbian angst to glimpse the occasional cute guy extra
How lowbrow gay am I?
Thursday, 21 February 2008
It was my six monthly checkup and there was little for the dentist to do but to scale and polish my teeth. He took x-rays to check for cavities and thankfully all was fine. I often gag when he x-rays my teeth which makes me wonder how it is that I can engage in a certain other oral entertainment without gagging.
Following the dentist I went to the CBD for my next chore. The next photo is a clue.
As you can see, a lot of bacon this morning. No wonder my weight keeps ballooning. The orange juice is fresh and healthy though. My weekly celebrity magazine is on display too. I like perving the magazine for the cute guys they photograph although those photos generally are greatly outnumbered by photos of Britney, Lindsay, Paris and the like.
Wednesday, 20 February 2008
The eulogy was a fitting statement of RK's life and interests mentioning his enjoyment of the Arts, Cinema and Theatre as well as his sporting interests. I didn't realise that he played rugby and was amused to hear that his nickname on the field was 'Bomber'. I'm sure that he would have been tickled pink to be given that label.
Tuesday, 19 February 2008
Monday, 18 February 2008
Sunday, 17 February 2008
It is the Mardi Gras Fair Day at Victoria Park on the southern edge of the Sydney CBD and later today Tropfest, the world's largest short film festival, is being held in the Sydney Domain on the eastern edge of Sydney's CBD.
But I decided to bypass both and go to the NSW Art Gallery, adjacent to the Domain, to see Art Express the artwork of High School students. The work I enjoyed most was the time lapse video by Lochlan Macpherson who produced interesting black and white images all to a catchy soundtrack.
A series of blurred photographs taken at a Sydney underground railway station also caught my eye as did two simple but effective spheres constructed with corks and plastic cups respectively.
After viewing the Art Express display I wandered through several adjacent galleries where, as usual, anything containing nude images immediately attracted my attention.
Walking back through the Domain I took some snaps of the preparations for tonight's Tropfest. It usually attracts an attendance of up to 100,000 and as I passed through six hours or so before it was to get underway early arrivals were setting up in their preferred positions.
The short films are displayed on three screens set up in a triangle formation in the middle of the Domain with the crowd viewing them from all sides. You can see one side of the three sided screen in the distance.
The old Woolloomooloo Finger Wharf sits on Sydney Harbour down the other side of the hill from the Art Gallery. It has been turned into a hotel, restaurants and apartments. The apartments are at the far left end of the old wharf and are the Sydney home of a number of local celebrities the most internationally famous being the actor Russell Crowe.
Saturday, 16 February 2008
Rt called this afternoon to tell me that RK had died. By rang the police after RK hadn't turned up for work on Wednesday and Thursday and they found him dead in his chair in front of a turned-off television. There is to be an autopsy but the police said it looked like he suffered a heart attack. He was only one year older than Rt and I and we had known each other since university days.
Truly shocking news.
I daydream sometimes about meeting my perfect partner and the ways in which I meet him in those dreams seem limitless.
One daydream that recurs is where the perfect partner moves into my building. I have lived in my apartment building for 18 years. You would think the law of averages would ensure that over a period of 18 years a 36 apartment building would contain more than one gay resident. But unless my gaydar has failed me spectacularly it seems that I am the only one. Well there may have been one gay couple in the building for several months about a year ago but I was never entirely sure about them.
There are two other apartments on my floor. In all the time that I have lived here, the apartment immediately next to mine has never been occupied by anyone younger than 80 and all those occupants have been hetero couples.
The other apartment, conversely, has only ever been occupied by women living alone. Two were widows in their 80s and the other two, including the current occupant, single women in their 30s/40s. The first of these single women had a friend who was a Qantas pilot but he was around rarely and wasn't ever in contention for man of my dreams. The current woman has a male acquaintance who I have heard several times and who I have seen only from the back. Nothing there for me.
Now an apartment on a higher floor is on the market and on display. I've wondered whether this time a gay owner/occupant might snap it up. That would be good but I'm not holding my breath in hope.
When I arrived home this afternoon at 12.30 I noticed four '50 year somethings' inspecting the outside of the building this afternoon just after today's display period. I assume they are interested in the apartment. When I happened to look out my window at about 2.30 they were there again (or was it still) inspecting the building. Two men and two women but neither of the men had looks or character to stir my loins.
I must dream on.
Friday, 15 February 2008
I saw a patient admitted today whose condition for admission was stated as necrotic testes. I wondered what that condition was and thought I should look that up when I get home. I have just checked Google and I find that necrotic is defined as synonymous with dead.
I know that it is dangerous to draw conclusions from the internet but does that mean that the poor man, albeit elderly, has dead balls?
Thursday, 14 February 2008
I started off in the lounge watching the movie they were screening rather than the many porn videos on show around the place. The movie was a curious Italian language piece about two brothers whose impoverished aristocratic father has passed away. The older brother has come to Rome to check on his younger brother and has learned for the first time that he is a gay porn star. I watched for about an hour without seeing either the beginning or the end of it. It was B grade nonsense without any hardcore in it.
I wasn't too bothered to see it through to the end and when I'd seen enough I moved on to prowling the club stopping to take in bits of the porn videos and eyeing one of the few younger men around as a possible encounter. He seemed interested without making any moves on me. A while later we found ourselves together in the wet sauna and he proved to be my Valentine's Day present. Twenty minutes of nooky and we were both satisfied.
After showering, then resting and dressing I took myself off to the movies to see There Will Be Blood. Yes I know, my third movie in less than a week but I enjoy them and there are plenty of good ones about.
This movie was not exactly what I was expecting. I had thought it was a straight out story but in fact it is a morality/metaphoric tale dominated, as I had read, by a towering performance from Daniel Day-Lewis. He is riveting and just as well because he appears in virtually every scene. All the performances are effective and the cast is expertly made up to be reminiscent of the folk we see in those sepia photographs of old. The photography presents many striking images and I really enjoyed the soundtrack which ranges from classical through the sounds of machinery to the muffled world of a deaf child.
This movie would not be to everyone's taste but I found it fascinating.
Today is Valentine's Day.
That great song My Funny Valentine will probably get an airing today. It was written by Lorenz Hart (above), a closeted gay man, who was full of self-loathing over his sexuality, small stature, looks and drinking problems. That is a tragedy as he was a brilliant lyricist and is famous for his extensive work in collaboration with Richard Rodgers.
Although My Funny Valentine is always sung as a heterosexual lament in reality Hart secretly wrote it as a gay love song. In that light it's lyrics are especially poignant.
I hope my readers have the day that they wish for themselves.
"My funny valentine
Sweet comic valentine
You make me smile with my heart
Your looks are laughable
Yet youre my favourite work of art
Is your figure less than greek
Is your mouth a little weak
When you open it to speak
Are you smart?
But dont change a hair for me
Not if you care for me
Stay little valentine stay
Each day is valentines day
Is your figure less than greek
Is your mouth a little weak
When you open it to speak
Are you smart?
But dont you change one hair for me
Not if you care for me
Stay little valentine stay
Each day is valentines day"
Wednesday, 13 February 2008
(Photo: Sydney Morning Herald)
This morning the Australian Prime Minister delivered the long debated 'sorry statement' in the form of a motion put to Parliament. The motion stated
That today we honour the Indigenous peoples of this land, the oldest continuing cultures in human history.
We reflect on their past mistreatment. We reflect in particular on the mistreatment of those who were Stolen Generations - this blemished chapter in our nation's history. The time has now
come for the nation to turn a new page in Australia's history by righting the wrongs of the past and so moving forward with confidence to the future. We apologise for the laws and policies of successive Parliaments and governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow Australians.
We apologise especially for the removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families, their communities and their country. For the pain, suffering and hurt of these Stolen Generations, their descendants and for their families left behind, we say sorry.
To the mothers and the fathers, the brothers and the sisters, for the breaking up of families and communities, we say sorry. And for the indignity and degradation thus inflicted on a proud people and a proud culture, we say sorry.
We the Parliament of Australia respectfully request that this apology be received in the spirit in which it is offered as part of the healing of the nation. For the future we take heart; resolving that this new page in the history of our great continent can now be written.
We today take this first step by acknowledging the past and laying claim to a future that embraces all Australians. A future where this Parliament resolves that the injustices of the past must never, never happen again. A future where we harness the determination of all Australians, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, to close the gap that lies between us in life expectancy, educational achievement and economic opportunity.
A future where we embrace the possibility of new solutions to enduring problems where old approaches have failed. A future based on mutual respect, mutual resolve and mutual responsibility. A future where all Australians, whatever their origins, are truly equal partners, with equal opportunities and with an equal stake in shaping the next chapter in the history of this great country, Australia."
I'm glad that it's done regardless of whether, as the doomsayers worry, compensation claims come rushing in. The sky hasn't fallen in following the statement and hopefully we all can move on for the betterment of the country and all its inhabitants. Listening to the Parliamentary Network on my way home this afternoon I heard part of Question Time and the politicians were back to what they do most naturally, political point scoring.
What is it they say about the more things change?......
Tuesday, 12 February 2008
It was a brief chat. He seems very keen on a relationship and flattered me with comments about how attractive I am but this type of compliment has always embarrassed me.
Anyway, my interest in him started to wane from the moment he told me his marital status. I don't want to be his bit of fluff on the side.
When they finally did cover the opening it was heartwarming to see bits of the Aboriginal welcoming ceremony and hear excerpts from speeches by Kevin Rudd and Brendan Nelson.
I'm hoping this new spirit continues and builds.
The long discussed 'sorry' statement is on the agenda for Parliament tomorrow and according to 10's report the Opposition has decided to endorse the motion. It will be good if the motion is passed unanimously.
It was 1975 and a cold and wet Sunday morning in Leicester Square. I was sitting in a Wimpy Bar (I think that was the name) eating a Wimpy Burger, food that was as unsavoury as the name. Sitting across from me was a man who I suppose was aged in his 60s. He looked like a lost soul not in the best of health. But what drew my attention was that he quite unashamedly had his penis out and was masturbating in a mechanical way as though he was in a trance.
This man was not attempting to conceal what he was doing and it must have been obvious to others at the restaurant including the staff. Noone spoke to him about it. At the time I thought to myself 'I hope when I am his age that I'm not in that sad state'.
I can't think what triggered the memory. Thirty-three years later I am closing in on 60 myself and thankfully I am in a reasonable mental state. But the image of this sad man lingers and makes me feel for those who battle mental health issues, especially if they are homeless to boot.
Monday, 11 February 2008
Cs seemed to be in a good mood until he decided to get stuck into Ca for not yet having arranged a replacement for when he is away the next two weeks. He was quite rude to Ca, a fact not missed by Ge. I tried quietly to calm him down but he wouldn't let it drop. Not suprisingly Ca didn't hang around with us at lunch and left fairly quickly.
I suspect Cs realised what he had done as he later told me Ai had spoken to him previously urging restraint in his communication.
Sunday, 10 February 2008
It seemed when I awoke this morning that we were in for a second unusually cool and bleak February day. The temperature was only 16c and conditions looked dark and rainy.
So it was off to Bondi Junction again to the movies, this time to see Juno. Being the 10am session the audience was small (eleven people) the majority looking barely older then the sixteen year olds' depicted in the movie. But it was an appreciative audience with the younger members sniggering at the sexual innuendo and laughing heartily at the genuinely amusing moments.
I enjoyed the movie. The Juno character is both streetwise and naive as well as being irritating at times; all of which I imagine is typical of today's sixteen year olds. I particularly liked that almost all the characters looked so ordinary and normal and that they all had their strengths and weaknesses. This was not a film populated entirely with impossibly good looking folk a la the current television sensation Gossip Girl.
After the movie, I again purchased a sandwich from the deli counter in the food court but learning from last week had one made up that was a more manageable amount to eat.
By the time I left the centre the weather had cleared completely and I was far too warm in my jumper and jeans. Feeling a bit frisky I drove down to Centennial Park in the hope of meeting another cruiser but the leisure areas adjacent to the cruising area were too populated with straight picnickers and social cricketers for there to be any obvious action. Two good lookers, both wearing lycra bicycle shorts and displaying tempting bulges, wandered by but they seemed more interested in each other than in collecting a third.
So after hanging around only a few minutes I drove home alone picking up lamingtons on the way for afternoon tea thereby completely undoing whatever benefits I derived from my healthy lunch sandwich.
Saturday, 9 February 2008
Today's visit to the movies was to see The Jane Austen Fan Club which attempts to provide the synopses of her six books through the meetings of the club and the story lines of the film's characters. It is a pleasant enough film without breaking any new ground. Maria Bello and Emily Blunt appealed to me most of the mainly female actors with Hugh Dancy, Kevin Zegers and Marc Blucas providing a pleasing range of eye candy for the gay viewer. Jimmy Smits has gained weight and it seems is past his best looks.
Next week the Australian Parliament is expected to express sorrow to Indigenous Australians regarding what is referred to as 'the stolen generation'. This video shows our original Australians having a lot of fun with a western favourite.
Friday, 8 February 2008
I read where Ginger Meggs has been a cartoon tradition since 1921 and he has been 12 years old for all those 87 years. The fourth cartoonist to draw him was James Kemsley who drew the cartoon from 1984 but he died last December. The replacement is Jason Chatfield and at 23 years he is by far the youngest to draw Ginger. Jason's first Ginger Meggs cartoon will appear tomorrow. Looks like Ginger will be moving into the 21st century.
For some reason I was reminded of that store today when I drove into my local shopping centre in Edgecliff (underground in the picture above). I was on my way home from work and wanted to buy a loaf of bread. The centre is a modestly sized affair compared to some but still has this cavernous underground parking station that holds hundreds of cars.
Parking there can be a very irritating business. Cars can only progress single file through the station. At every point you are delayed whilst other drivers block the passage as they wait for that perfect parking space which is about to become vacant for them even though already vacant spaces are clearly visible further down the station.
If not the arriving/departing car tango then it is the trolley man who is blocking everyone's way. He slowly drives his trolley carrying vehicle around the car park stopping, as at The Stations of the Cross, to collect numerous abandoned trolleys.
Why do I fall for this stress inducing treatment so often? I would be much calmer and healthier if I walked to and from the centre.
Thursday, 7 February 2008
I noticed 'the man' logged into Yahoo messenger so I messaged him to say hello and as it was within business hours I enquired if he was busy.
The music playing - lah de dah de dah.
The man: "Just a minute, I'm finishing chatting with a mate"
Me: "That's OK"
lah de dah de dah.
The man: "Sorry about that, how are you?"
Me: "Fine thanks, and you?"
lah de dah de dah - pleasantries exchanged.
The man: "Do you have webcam?"
The man: "Would you like to go to that?"
Me: (thinks - are we moving to cybersex already? says "ok")
lah de dah de dah - webcams connected and viewing.
The man is in a bare room evidently fully dressed, I'm at home in my underwear....well that's what I had on at the time. I wasn't expecting webcam company!
More pleasantries exchanged. The man, it turns out, is in his office.
The man's webcam freezes.
Me: (thinks has he switched his cam off, does he not like what he sees?)
Me: "your cam has frozen" (echoes of Puccini, "your tiny hand is frozen")
The man: "Sorry, let me reconnect"
Me: (thinks - OK so my image hasn't scared him off yet)
lah de dah de dah - cams reconnected.
More pleasantries exchanged before his cam fails again.
Me: "your cam has frozen again"
The man: "do you have MSN?"
The man: "Can we move there?"
lah de dah de dah - we connect to MSN and cam through it.
Pleasantries turn to exploration of each other.
The man: "Have you always been gay?"
Me: "Yes....and you?"
The man: "Yes.....but I sublimated my feelings and married the first woman who came along....and we have three children aged 17, 15 and 13....and when I turned 45 my sexuality came to the fore....but my wife and kids don't know"
THUD - the music stops.
Me: (thinks WHOA! - says nothing)
The man: "Is that a problem for you?"
Me: (still thinks WHOA and then thinks that little detail wasn't in your profile.) Says lamely "well that's not my preference"
The man: "I'm not looking for a long term relationship and if we're not into each other sexually well at least we can be good friends"
THUD, THUD, THUD - music starts again lah de dah de dah only this time I recognise the tune as 'Play it again Sam'.
Yes, the same old same old - a married man and my dreams of growing old with my gay partner in a loving and sexual heaven have drained away.
We chat on very pleasantly for another 15 minutes. Then being the softy that I am when it is time to end our chat I agree to chat with him again.
He may become a new friend in time but in reality he is the latest cyber and real dating non-goer.
Wednesday, 6 February 2008
Haven't yet heard whether he medalled (terrible verb) in sex games as well but no doubt he'll tell me when he is ready. Knowing Kn's 'pulling' power, I have little doubt he scored more than a medal.
Tuesday, 5 February 2008
I have danced the dance numerous times.
Well, I can hear the music again. I no longer routinely visit those sites hoping for a message but once in a while my email account tells me one has been received. And so it was yesterday. I cautiously checked the intray half expecting some generic promotional material of no interest. Instead I found a real person expressing an interest in my profile. His message was short but to my liking. Next step was to check out his profile. Mmmmm, not bad - some similarities of interest (social and sexual). What about his photo? Mmmmm, not bad either. Must be something to worry about. Checked his height and weight, maybe we are completely out of kilter there. Amazingly very similar stats to mine, so can't complain there.
Ok, took a deep breath and sent him a reply. Maybe he won't respond to that.......I've had non responses before from guys who had initiated the approach in the first place. But he did reply, fairly promptly too and with a bit more detail that also pushed the right buttons for me.
So next step in the modern courting ritual, we added each other as contacts on Yahoo messenger. Now we are in the "lets chat and see what develops" phase. The music is louder and the dance is about to begin.
Naturally there is one teeny weeny hurdle. I live in Sydney and he lives in Townsville. For those who are unfamiliar with Australian geography that's a distance of, let's say, about 2100kms. A 26 hours' drive! He says he visits Sydney 6 times a year.
Maybe I have nothing to gain but I have nothing to lose either. Let's dance.
I'll keep you informed.
Monday, 4 February 2008
With nothing appealing on televison last night and the rain falling I decided to view a recording of The Devil Wears Prada. I'm sure I enjoyed it more last night than when I saw it in it's release at the movies. What struck me when I watched last night, that I never noticed the first time, is how much Stanley Tucci's portrayal of the gay Art Editor resembles Cs at the hospital. I meant to mention this to Cs at lunch today but forgot and will try to remember to tell him tomorrow. I'm sure Cs won't be offended as he is quite the drama queen and he knows it.