December 29, 2006

Sweet Talker???

This is a quiz I took after reading Six Shooter's blog and followed the link. Kinda fun, try it out for yourself:

Your (my) Seduction Style:

Sweet Talker

Your seduction technique can be summed up with "charm"
You know that if you have the chance to talk to someone...
Well, you won't be talking for long! ;-)

You're great at telling potential lovers what they want to hear.
Partially, because you're a great reflective listener and good at complementing.
The other part of your formula? Focusing your conversation completely on the other person.

Your "sweet talking" ways have taken you far in romance - and in life.
You can finess your way through any difficult situation, with a smile on your face.
Speeding tickets, job interviews... bring it on! You truly live a *charmed life*

Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

December 26, 2006

Crybaby Christmas

These were the words on the card given to me by Jim:

The more our story unfolds,
the happier I am that I chose you
and you chose me
to spend forever with.

The love we share is my haven,
my quiet center,
the best part of my world.

And you are at the heart of it all,
bringing out the beauty
in our ordinary days
reminding me how good life can be.

The more our story unfolds,
the more deeply
and completely
I love you...

And I hope your Christmas
will be as beautiful
as you have made my life.
(Jeannie Hund)

The rest doesn't matter, I cried like a baby when I opened it.

Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas to all, and to all....

I have made a concerted effort (at work) to not say Happy Holidays, but instead to wish my customers a Merry Christmas...

I think it's just a little more personable and less PC... I have always prided myself (at least in my old life) of being politically correct, but I find that if the comment, greeting, salutation, whatever, comes from your heart, and is not hurtful, people respond positively regardless of their faith or beliefs.

MERRY CHRISTMAS to all that stumble into (and/or purposely visit) "My New Life", including my children and X...

I work today, 1-5pm then Jim and I are off to a friend's home up in Richmond for a "family" get together at 8pm. Jim is off for the next week, and I have Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday off, so we are planning on re-doing the half bath/laundry room downstairs... I talked him into a very hot pink (it worked in my laundry room in Richmond) I hope it works as well...

Not sure how Jim celebrates (read as: opens presents) Christmas, but I guess I will find out in the next 24 hours (I do love surprises and him)...

All of you traveling for the holidays be careful and safe, all of you staying at home with (or without) your significant other, enjoy the warmth and love they share and that of your blogging family...

Over and "Out" on Christmas Eve, from Toano, VA

December 21, 2006

Christmas Shoes

Adding to my favorite Christmas time music... This one makes me cry almost every time I hear it. Click it and turn it up!
Over and "Out" on the 9th day of Christmas, from Toano, VA

December 18, 2006

Picture Day

We went over to York River State Park yesterday and took some pictures with friends, for friends and family:

Sheila, Me, Jim, and Henry

Me and Jim

Just me, being a ham!

Over and "Out" on the 6th Day of Christmas, from Toano, VA

December 17, 2006

And the nominations are:

I don't think I have ever been nominated for anything before - except for maybe "best Dad" by my own children when they were younger and before I came out to them...

Yesterday morning, while reading my favorite blogs, I noticed my stat counter was approaching 3,000. I thought to myself how cool it was that, almost 3,000 times, someone had happened upon my stories and my escapades in "My New Life". Well, this morning I noticed that the same counter had jumped to over 3,200 hits. What in the world happened???

It seems I was nominated for "best personal blog" on the "Best Gay Blogs" website.

Steven, a daily favorite blogger over at "Human Nature" , added my name and blog to the list of nominations, with a very poinient comment. Thanks Steven, your words mean alot to me, and give me reason to visit your site every day...

Being nominated by someone I admire is a huge compliment (and winning would be even more awesome). Be sure to visit these sites and nominate your favorites on "Best Gay Blogs" ...

Off to get another cup of coffee, Over and "Out", for now, from Toano, VA

December 13, 2006

No Virginia, there is not a Santa Claus

I was shopping online today and ran across these items at CafePress . So, when you are out and about in the Williamsburg/Newport News (VA) area and see one of these on a gold convertible, wave, it's probably ME!


Over and "Out" for today, from foggy Toano, VA...

December 12, 2006

Romantic Holiday Sleighride

This is not a paid advertisement, I drink Miller Lite

I don't ever remember seeing this on TV... What a "gas"!!

December 11, 2006

Henrico Circuit Court

I went to court today. While I have been sending money every month to my wife, she felt it necessary to get a court order to ensure it doesn't stop. I don't think anyone won, but it was interesting that her attorney was trying to enter into evidence pages from my blog...
I had a conversation recently, with a friend about the potential downfalls of posting my feelings and happenings in my life out here for the world to see, for my friends and family to read.
After today, while I thought about it briefly, I have ultimately decided to... NOT CHANGE A THING!!!
I say nothing on here that isn't true
I say nothing on here that is incriminating
I say nothing on here that is hurtful
I say nothing on here that I wouldn't want my Mom to see
I say nothing on here that I am embarrassed of
I say nothing on here I wouldn't tell anyone face-to-face
If there are people offended by what I say, they should comment or email me, so that I at least know where I went wrong and try to correct it.
If there are people out there that don't like what I say, or the tone of my writing, I suggest they not visit, or click on the little "x" if they have happened on my blog in error.
Otherwise, enjoy and celebrate "My New Life" with me (oh yeah, and I like the good comments too)...
Over and "Out" for today, from beautiful, sunny Toano, VA

December 9, 2006

A Holiday Thought...

A friend of mine sent me this in an email. What a wonderful thing to reflect on this Holiday Season:
As we grow up..We learn that even the one person that wasn't supposed to ever let you down probably will.
You will have your heart broken probably more than once and it's harder every time. You'll break hearts too, so remember how it felt when yours was broken.
You'll fight with your best friend. You'll blame a new love for things an old one did. You'll cry because time is passing too fast, and you'll eventually lose someone you love.
So take too many pictures, laugh too much, and love like you've never been hurt because every sixty seconds you spend upset is a minute of happiness you'll never get back.
Too many opportunities, too little time...
Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

December 8, 2006

Life is a funny thing...

My newly found nephew and I have been emailing back and forth for the past few days and I realized today that I have not done a good job communicating with family I already have. Why is that? That the unknown is more intriguing than what we have? Is it just me?
I missed my brother's birthday on 12/4... I felt really bad even though I did follow up with an email... It's not the same... He has made some attempts to fix things between us, and I have been less than accommodating... I promised myself today I will do better.
I have some errands to run before my 3 day work weekend... So for now...
Over and "Out" from Toano, VA...

December 7, 2006

Where are you Christmas?

Ok, this is another of my Christmas favorites... Cindy-Lou-Whoo and Faith Hill...
Over and "Out" from chilly Toano, VA

States I have been to

I saw this map on Maddog's blog and decided to do my own (I know I am copying alot of other peoples' ideas, but hey... It's cool)...
The red states (including Puerto Rico) I have visited or traveled through.
Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

December 5, 2006

A Voice from the Past

Let me preface this post by telling you a little about my older brother Bill:

Bill was the "black sheep" of the family, he was the oldest of four boys and was constantly bucking the system and questioning the authority of our parents. He moved out when he was 17. The three other boys saw how our parents reacted to Bill's attitude and outlook and kept most of those adolescent urges to defy them, bottled up. Before Bill and I had a huge falling out (when I was about 23), I went to visit he and his wife in California. There are a few things that stand out in my memories of the visit. His wife was pregnant and very accommodating/friendly, they had a St. Bernard for a pet, and my brother seemed happy. About a year after that visit, Bill picked up and moved back to Florida, for whatever reasons, without his wife or son.

Fast forward - 20 years...

Bill has had a real problem with substance abuse for a number of years and calls me to let me know he has had a quadruple bi-pass, he is 42. I chalk it all up to years of abusing his body, and pay no mind. Three years later he dies of a heart attack, alone, in his place of work... He was 45.

Fast forward - 7 years (to present day)...

I am googling last week on my niece's name. She is the one I have referred to in the past, the one that founded One World Youth Project, and attends Georgetown University. There are always interesting articles about her when I google her name. Anyway, in addition to her name, an article from the Sacramento Business Journal comes up with a name I hadn't heard in years; Bill's son's name. Thinking it was probably a fluke, after I read the article, I did a quick white pages search on him, came up with nothing, and dismissed it. A couple days later I begin to wonder if this was really him. I mean surely his mom remarried and her new husband changed his surname? I went to the business website that the article referred to and searched for the location it said he had opened. I got an address and phone number and keep it in my pocket for a day. What if this wasn't him? What if it was? What if he wanted nothing to do with his fathers family? Do I really want to open up this can of worms? Too much thinking was going on (it's a scary thing when I think too much) so I called...

A voice came on and announced the name of the business, and the man asked how he could help me. I asked to speak with Adam. "This is Adam", he said. I introduced myself as Tom and asked if he was with a customer, so as not to really interrupt his business, he said he was. I then asked him if his Mom's name was Kim, and Father's Bill? He said yes to both. I then told him that I spelled my last name the same way that he did, and gave him my cell number if he was interested in calling me back and talking...

He called back about 15 minutes later, I told him who I was (his uncle). He was so receptive to hearing from me, so polite, and so respectful (things he must have gotten from his Mother). We talked a few times that day (in between his customers and mine) and vowed to keep in touch, which we have. His Mom has emailed me after she learned that I had made contact. They were unaware that Bill had passed away, and apparently Adam was upset by that.

Taking chances seems to be a common thread in the fabric of "My New Life". Meeting Jim, I took a chance, now finding a long lost nephew? Chances are a good thing if you take them now and then...

More to follow on this...

Over and "Out" for today, from Toano, VA

December 4, 2006

Thirty Five Questions Answered

Ok... ok... Kelly, over at "Rambling along in life" dared me (one of his two readers) to post answers to the following 35 questions, so here goes:
1. Ever punch someone in the face?
No, not in the face. Although I have hit someone in self defense, fighting is always my last choice.
2. How old are you?
38 with 13 years of experience (51).
3. Are you single or taken?
4. Eat with your hands or utensils?
Depends on what I am "eating" but I would say utensils normally.
5. Do you dream at night?
All the time, I even remember some of you from them.
6. Ever seen a corpse?
I have been to a few funerals (if that counts) and have been at the bedside of a few family members and friends as they passed, can we move on to the next question?
7. Have you ever wished someone dead?
8. Do You Like Bush?
I once voted for a Bush, I'll let you all try to figure out which one.
9. What's your philosophy on life?
I am with Kelly on this one "Live for the day and live like it was your last"...
10. If you could do anything with me (Kelly), and have no one know about it, what would it be? ??? hmmm, looking forward to seeing your answers on this one my dear readers
I wouldn't mind spending a "party" weekend with you, Jeff, your friends, and my love Jim.
11. Do you trust the police?
I have no reason not to.
12. Do you like country music?
Yeah, my wife turned me on to it, Jim is still on the fence, I think.
13. What is your fondest memory of me (Kelly)????
You were the first person to comment on my blog, and the first blogger I ever met in person, I'd say both.
14. If you could change anything about yourself would you?
Not a thing, I have lived a very rich fulfilling life so far (ok, maybe one or two things, but those are for me to know).
15. Would you date me (Kelly)???
Hmmm... We are both involved so I guess I don't need to answer that.
16. What do you wear to sleep?
My birthday suit, unless I have fallen asleep on the sofa (again).
17. Have you ever peed in a pool? While you were still in it?
Ok, yes and yes (I'm now officially embarrassed).
18. Would you hide evidence for me (Kelly) if I asked you to?
19. If I (Kelly) only had one day to live, what would we do together????
Party!!! (I'd hope you'd want to do the same if it were my last day).
20. What is your favorite thing about me (Kelly)?
I would agree with you Kelly, you have a great sense of humor.
21. Do you think I'm funny??? Gay funny or haha funny... hehehe
22. What's your favorite color?
23. If you could bring back anyone that has passed, who would it be?
My Dad.
24. Tell me one interesting/odd fact about you?
My left foot is larger than my right.
25. What's your bra size?
Let me go check.
26. How many guys/girls have you been with?
A few (of each).
27. Who was your first?
Guy = Gary, Girl = Michele.
28. How old were you when you lost it?
Guy = 12, Girl = 20.
29. Do you hate anyone?
30. Do you wish you could be with someone right now?
I am with someone, have no reason to rethink either.
31. Are you thinking of someone?
Yes, and he knows who he is, I tell him all the time!
32. Do you miss anybody?
Yes... (enough said).
33. Do you shave any body parts?
I too manscape on a regular basis (and what is it with hair on my ears?)...
34. Do you like kissing?
No, I LOVE to kiss and be kissed!
35. Will you post this so I can fill it out for you? Please answer and email it to me... (
Already emailed, will post when I hit "Publish Post"!
Over and "Out" for today, from Toano, VA!

December 1, 2006

My Birthday in Music

Ok, call me a copy-cat... Not that I remember all of these, but these are the #1 hits from September 18th through the ages (yes I am that old). Thanks for the idea my fellow bloggers (and no Kelly, I am not linking to the music):
1955 - Ain’t That A Shame - Pat Boone
1956 - Don’t Be Cruel/Hound Dog - Elvis Presley
1957 - That’ll Be The Day - Crickets
1958 - Bird Dog - Everly Brothers
1959 - Sleep Walk - Santo and Johnny
1960 - The Twist - Chubby Checker
1961 - Take Good Care Of My Baby - Bobby Vee
1962 - Sherry - The Four Seasons
1963 - Blue Velvet - Bobby Vinton
1964 - The House Of The Rising Sun - The The Animals
1965 - Help! - The Beatles
1966 - Cherish - The Association
1967 - The Letter - The Box Tops
1968 - Harper Valley P.T.A. - Jeannie C. Riley
1969 - Sugar Sugar - The Archies
1970 - Ain’t No Mountain High Enough - Diana Ross
1971 - Go Away Little Girl - Donny Osmond
1972 - Baby Don’t Get Hooked On Me - Mac Davis
1973 - Delta Dawn - Helen Reddy
1974 - Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love Babe -Barry White
1975 - Fame - David Bowie
1976 - Play That Funky Music - Wild Cherry
1977 - Best Of My Love - The Emotions
1978 - Boogie Oogie Oogie - Taste Of Honey
1979 - My Sharona - The Knack
1980 - Upside Down - Diana Ross
1981 - Endless Love - Diana Ross & Lionel Richie
1982 - Jack & Diane - John Cougar
1983 - Tell Her About It - Billy Joel
1984 - Missing You - John Waite
1985 - Money For Nothing - Dire Straits
1986 - Stuck With You - Huey Lewis and the News
1987 - I Just Cant Stop Loving You - M Jackson and Siedah Garrett
1988 - Dont Worry Be Happy - Bobby McFerrin
1989 - Girl I'm Gonna Miss You - Milli Vanilli
1990 - Release Me - Wilson Phillips
1991 - I Adore Mi Amor - Color Me Bad
1992 - End Of The Road - Boyz II Men
1993 - Can't Help Falling In Love - UB40
1994 - I'll Make Love To You - Boyz II Men
1995 - Gangstas Paradise - Coolio
1996 - Macarena - Los Del Rio
1997 - Honey - Mariah Carey
1998 - I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing - Aerosmith
1999 - Unpretty - TLC
2000 - Music - Madonna
2001 - Im Real - JLo
2002 - Dilemma - Nelly & Kelly Rowland
2003 - Skae Your Tailfeather - Nelly, P Diddy & Murphy
2004 - Goodies - Ciara
2005 - We Belong Together - Mariah Carey
and finally:
2006 - Information is not available (the story of my life!)
I do this thing 52 times and the most current information is the only one missing? I know a lot of you youngsters recognize a few of the songs (from before the year your were born) above.
BOY am I OLD...
Over and "Out" from Toano, VA (I need to take a nap)

November 29, 2006

The Magic of Christmas Day

This is one of my favorite Christmas songs. Rosie doesn't do a bad job and Celine is awesome as always!


Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

November 28, 2006

What a Weekend!

Thanksgiving is over, Black Friday and the weekend that followed was as busy as the management team at Value City Furniture, in Newport News, VA promised. The store had an all time record day on Friday, and yours truly was the #1 writer (written sales) for the day!

There was an article in the Virginian Pilot about the 1,500 people waiting to get into the Best Buy store (at 5:00am) that is adjacent to ours. 1,500 people? The line wrapped around the building and the walkways were all covered with remnants of their chilly wait; Coffee and hot chocolate splattered, chunks of foreign debris (that I don't want to know what it actually was), cups, gum, and other tracks of smeared substances unknown to mortal men. When I arrived at 7:30am there was no one in line, just the mess they left behind... Yuck...

Saturday was not as busy, but we remained steady through Sunday. Yesterday things eased up quite a bit and we (on my sales team) were all counting down the hours until 3:00pm.

I am off for the next two days and have a few things to accomplish that Jim wasn't able to get done on his days off. I hate not having time off together, but we do seem to get more things done in tandem than we do when we are both home.

While reading my favorite blogs, I ran across a post in one of them that referred to a new show on ABC called "Ugly Betty". I went to the ABC website and watched the last episode and totally agree that this show has the potential to become the next "Will and Grace". While the lead character is not a gay man, the supporting cast includes a "Jack-like" assistant and a young gay nephew, not to mention an awesome ensemble of regular faces. I will definitely be tuning in to see the next one...

I guess I should have posted this in chapters, as I have not maintained any semblance of order, sorry folks... I still have a lot on my mind, and 3 cups of coffee in me (I promise not to leave any trash on the sidewalk)...

Over and "Out" for now, from leafless Toano, VA

November 24, 2006

Black Friday

I have been in and around retail for most of my professional life and have always wondered why it was called that... Yesterday morning on the Today show it was explained that the Friday after Thanksgiving is when most retailers' ledgers/books go from the red into the black. It's kind of like that day of the year when your salary starts being yours, you know, the day where up to that point all you have earned is enough to pay all the taxes you will owe by the end of the year and all you want to do is go to Banana Republic or Target and celebrate!!

Thanksgiving was wonderful. Jim got up early (6ish) and started baking. By the time I woke up the house smelled wonderful. He made pumpkin rolls, buck-eyes, and devil-dogs for the Thanksgiving deserts... We watched the Macy's parade in HiDef and then headed over to our friends home for a scrumptious meal. I made spinach and artichoke dip and the green bean casserole. This was only the second year in the past 20 or so that I wasn't cooking "the bird". It was very nice, thanks Leah and Patrick, for including Jim and me.

Today I work 8:00am to 9:00pm, tomorrow 9:00am to 9:00pm, Sunday 11:00am to 6:00pm, and Monday 10:00am to 3:00pm. I hope the projections our store management have been ranting about do come true, even though the commissions for them won't be paid to me until January '07, I can use a good month or two, to get myself into the "black".

I hope everyone reading this had a terrific Turkey Day... Now get your butts out there and spend some money at your favorite retailer (or furniture store)...

Over and "Out" from Toano, Virginia

November 22, 2006

Thanksgiving Eve Day

I have been remiss in my timely posts...

My life has been a little stressful these days, trying to sell enough to make ends meet when business has been really slow... Having to deal with my pending hearing (divorce) in December... Trying to find a new job... And dealing with family...

Yet I am very grateful for my family, friends (bloggers and real life), and my Love. I have so much to be thankful for, on this Thanksgiving Eve...

I was reminded the other day, by my friend Philip, of the first Thanksgiving in "My New Life", last year. I was renting a room from another good friend (Lee) and he decided to have Thanksgiving dinner at the house. He invited me, which he did not have to do, and about eight other men (all "family"). We had a wonderful time, we ate well, we drank well, and we had some great conversations and some marvelous stories were told by all. We remembered our Sky Diving adventure and watched the video that Lee had purchased of his jump. Four gay men jumping from a perfectly good airplane? What a blast that was... Thank you all.

Life in Toano has been good. I can't believe it's been three months since my exodus from city life in Richmond. The bar and club scene, the traffic, the men... I am so content here (personally) and Jim is the best thing to happen to me in years. He makes all the stress, pain, and remnants of my old life seem less hurtful... He does so much for me, I only wish I had the means to do for him, what he does for me... Thank you Baby... I can't imagine life without you.

My children, two in Miami (28 and 26) and two in Richmond (20 and 18), are my legacy. They are each challenging in their own way. Some talk to me regularly, some don't. I am thankful that they are mine, and hope that they all know how much I love them...

My Mother and two brothers (and their respective families) who I don't speak to enough, are always in my thoughts. My Mom has been through alot this year after she lost her husband, but she is my inspiration and more than likely is where I got my optimism from. Thanks Mom, I love you! Thank you Skip and Pat, I know you have had to deal with alot from your older brother this past year, I love you guys, your wives, and my nieces and nephew...

To my blogging friends: You all have made my journey this past year so enlightening. It is so nice to know that complete strangers can connect and impact the lives of each other in such a positive way sometimes... What a lucky man I am to know all of you! Thank you for your input, your comments and your support of "My New Life" and me personally...

There are many others in my life that have supported me and continued to care for me through all my ups and downs. To all of you: Thank You!

I will be thinking and thanking everyone for a wonderful year and life, as Jim and I spend our first (of many) Thanksgiving together...

Happy Thanksgiving!

Over and "Out" from Toano, Virginia, USA

November 16, 2006

Who thinks of this stuff?

November 12, 2006


Well, it took about three days to re-adjust to the east coast time zone... We got back Tuesday night, I worked a 12 hour shift Wednesday, then was off Thursday and Friday... Thank God!!!

I didn't realize until Friday morning that I was still somewhat sleep deprived. I usually get up with Jim around 5am and spend time with him before he heads out to work. I couldn't get my lazy ass out of bed on Friday, and ended up sleeping until about 8.30... Never even heard him leave... What a sloth I am.

Yesterday I was supposed to work an 8 hour stint, but went in for the full 12... I was astonished to see and hear that Christmas was installed while I was gone. I forget sometimes that I work retail and that "the season" accounts for so much of most retailers profits. With the Veterans Day holiday mixed in, we were pretty busy, which is also a good thing...

I know I promised some Vegas stories, and I will deliver them, I swear! But for now I am going to just get something on here, as many of you must think I went AWOL after my return...

I did follow the election results, and like most of you am pleased to see that Congress will be shifting aisles... I was thrilled for those in AZ that managed to defeat a proposal to amend their constitution defining marriage, while we here in VA just reinforced our already provincial ways by adding one to our constitution (written originally by Thomas Jefferson). That's in case we didn't already know it was against the law for same sex couples to marry. In doing so, we have also created a legal mine field of new questions for the straight couples of our commonwealth that prefer not to marry, for what ever reason. It will be interesting to see how this all plays out over the next few years.

Otherwise life is good in Toano. While I have not been posting all that much, I have been reading my favorite blogs. Keep up the posts guys and gals!!

Over and "Out" from Toano, Virginia

November 8, 2006

What Happens in Vegas...

All I can say is WOW!!!

It had been almost 18 years since I had been to Las Vegas. While a few things there were the same, there were many things that have changed dramatically. Here are a couple of photos for now, I will post some Vegas stories after my body gets used to Eastern Standard Time again:
This is the Stratosphere Hotel, Casino and Tower
where I had to try the 3 Thrill Rides
at the top!

This is where we stayed, the MGM Grand.
The picture was taken from New York, New York
right across the street.

Finally, for today...
Jim and I in front of the pirate ship
at Treasure Island.

Over and "Out" (for now) from Toano, VA...

November 3, 2006

100th Post TGIF!

It's Friday, and this is my 100th post! I can't believe I have that much to say...

Tomorrow morning we (Jim, his business partner, her husband, and I) get up and out at "O:dark:30" and head up to RIC for our flight through Dallas to Las Vegas!

What a surprise...

I am looking forward to the time away from Virginia (and yes we have already mailed our absentee ballots), work, and everything. We have tickets to see a few shows while we are there including Celine (yahoooo)!

I will update upon return...

Over and "Out" from Toano

November 1, 2006

Autumn in Toano

Ok... Ok... We'll get to the answer in a minute (some people are so damned impatient)...

Just a word or two on my favorite season though, this is what I see right now from the deck as I type this entry:

My Weatherbug says it's 65 degrees, the sky has a few poofy clouds in it and the fall sun is brightly warming the air around me. I sit here with a cup of coffee, in my bare feet, wearing a pair of jeans and a tee shirt... Those of you in colder/warmer climates... Eat your hearts out!
LIFE IS GOOD, today in Toano Virginia!
Now on to the revealing of the frightening sight we witnessed on the Ghost Tour Saturday night.
As I remember, I mentioned I had seen a blue glow coming from a window on the side of one of the "most haunted" houses in Colonial Williamsburg. After Jim and I fell back from the crowd to investigate, we could see as we got closer that the light was pulsing. The old structures are raised up quite a bit from street level (I suppose to avoid flood damage in the low lying area), so it was difficult to determine at first where this mysterious light was emanating from... As we got closer and closer, the glow got brighter and brighter. Just as we got to a small rise in the landscape we witnessed the most ghastly, horrifying spectacle...
A clip of G.W. BUSH making some type of speech, on a wide screen TV inside this 18th century home!!! HOW FRIGHTENING IS THAT?
That's all there is for now kiddies!!
Over and "Out" from Toano, VA!

October 31, 2006

Halloween Hauntings in Williamsburg


And Happy Halloween to all you "trickses" or treaters!

I have been a busy bee... While I haven't posted in a few days I have been reading my favorite blogs every day. Sometimes even leaving my two cent comments on them. Speaking of two cents, what is it with people shopping for furniture in October? Is there a constitutional amendment against it too? It was by far one of the slowest months I have ever experienced, and not just in Newport News, my old store in Richmond was slow too. Oh well, November is another month, and another opportunity to make the budget (my own and the stores')...

My daughter came down for a short visit over the weekend, and a small group of us went into Colonial Williamsburg for the "Ghost Tour". It's an hour and a half walk through CW with a guide that shares stories about the hauntings and history of the old city. I kept looking for the blue glows and lights that our guide referred to several times, to no avail... The stories were very entertaining and informative, and it was nice to hear tales of the history of Williamsburg (and the surrounding areas) that were not Civil War related... My friends in Richmond certainly know what I am talking about... I have always been a history buff, and always had a hard time with the focus on civil war history that abounds in the capitol city... I mean, I know it's filled with it, but come on folks, there is a lot more history to be touted and proud of in Richmond and the surrounding towns... Anyway, so we are strolling through the town, listening to our leader, when out of the corner of my eye, in one of the "most haunted" buildings I catch a blue glow out of one of the windows on the side of the old structure. I tap Jim on the shoulder and point over to the darkened home - just to make sure I am not imagining. He verifies my observation and we fall back from the group a little - which we had been doing some anyway, as Jims back was bothering him a little - to check it out. We work our way down the street a little so we can see more clearly into the side window... and... you won't believe what we witnessed....

We didn't take any pictures and have no proof, but coming from the inside of this historically preserved, and reconstructed home, was the most amazing thing...

Tune in tomorrow for the revealing and horrifying answer...

Over on "Out" for today, from Haunted Williamsburg (Toano), VA!!!
and Happy Halloween again to all!

October 27, 2006


This is the exact wording you will see on your ballot, Tuesday, November 7th (in the Commonwealth of Virginia):
Question: Shall Article I (the Bill of Rights) of the Constitution of Virginia be amended to state

"That only a union between one man and one woman may be a marriage valid in or recognized by this Commonwealth and its political subdivisions.
This Commonwealth and its political subdivisions shall not create or recognize a legal status for relationships of unmarried individuals that intends to approximate the design, qualities, significance, or effects of marriage. Nor shall this Commonwealth or its political subdivisions create or recognize another union, partnership, or other legal status to which is assigned the rights, benefits, obligations, qualities, or effects of marriage."?
Why on earth do we need an amendment to our constitution that is so ambiguous? Check out the following videos if you would like to see some of the answers/questions this amendment might raise...
Vote NO Virginia!
Stepping off soapbox now!
Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

October 26, 2006


This is the most current ad by the Commonwealth Coalition for educating Virginia voters about the Marshall/Newman proposed Virginia Marriage Amendment. On ballot question #1 VOTE NO!


This is the first ad used by the Commonwealth Coalition to educate Virginia voters about ballot question #1 the Virginia Marriage Amendment.

Ok it's Official, I'm Gay!

Remember the line in "Steel Magnolias" about all gay men having "Track Light'n"? Well, I must be gay then... I installed track lighting in the kitchen yesterday. Not the boxy square flat tracks, but a curvy piece of modern art with brushed metal fixtures that meanders it's way across the ceiling. Oh yeah, I even added a dimmer so as to make sure my "gay card" never gets revoked.

Meanwhile, Jim and I spent an hour or so moving some art around in the entry hall and living room to finish off the look we were trying for. It turned out great. The final result is the living room has some very traditional elements, with some very contemporary pieces in it. It's done for now!

While at the grocery yesterday, I found a cute little yard sign for Halloween. It is a scarecrow with small signs with arrows that says "Welcome to our Patch". Since my schedule at work changes on Monday, I will be home on the 31st, so I thought it appropriate to decorate a little for the trick-or-treaters. I thought about doing this:

But rethought it after I realized how many $4.99 pumpkins I would need to buy to fill the bodies. Still, a very cute idea, maybe next year? I am working the next few days so expect a small delay in posts, unless something really exciting happens.

Over and "Out" for now, from Toano, VA!

October 23, 2006

Complaint Department

OK... I am now the complaint department of my blog... Yes, it appears there are some that rely on "this here thing", to keep up with me... You know who you are... Of course I am too cool and well mannered to mention any names (Bryan, Crystal, Philip, Sean, et al...) so I will only type (not mention) a few of them...

Life has been good... I got the RED living room painted (the color is called radish). The ceiling is a "wet sand" color like the hall and kitchen, and the trim is bright white. The photo below is after the new sectional arrived Friday, but before I re-stained and re-hung the mantle and a really cool mirror, Jim had hidden in a upstairs closet, over it. The accent colors in the room all revolve and reflect the colors in the area rug you can see on the floor. The carpet in the room is an "off white" almost beige tone, while the sofa and window treatments are cobblestone (grey).

What you can't see in the picture (since I am standing in the doorway from the kitchen, right next to it) is the new 42" LCD HiDef television that Jim bought last week... He has been glued to it all weekend while I worked and after I got home. Fortunately there is now a comfy sofa that will accommodate the two of us (laying down even) and the dogs - Yes Kelly, our dogs like the new (Value City) sofa as much as yours do your new sofa/loveseat...

So, between work and my projects at home I hope you all understand why my blog entries have been slow in coming... I am off the next two days and will try to fill everyone in!

But for now I am:

Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

October 19, 2006

Busch Gardens Williamsburg

Ok.... I know.... Too many days between posts.

Jim and I received two complimentary passes to Busch Gardens (this past Sunday). I had never been, so we spent most of the afternoon/evening walking, window shopping, exploring, and people - one of my favorite past-times - watching. Oh yeah, we rode a few coasters too, starting with Apollo's Chariot, first in the front car - then in the rear. We did the same for Alpengeist, including one time in the dark, and finally the original Loch Ness Monster.

In between we met up with the couple that got us the passes and joined them for a private beer tasting - She works for Busch at their resort and spa in Williamsburg. We learned how to prepare a glass properly for beer, how to pour it correctly (not that I pour beer into anything other than my mouth). Additionally, we got to taste a few new concoctions coming out soon to a grocery or ABC store near you. Seems Mr. Busch was down last week and wanted the hostess at our sampling to give him some direct feedback on the new stout "Bare Knuckle" when it is layered in a glass with a more traditional ale (like Michelob Amber or Budweiser Select) in "black and tan" fashion. We were all happy to oblige...

I will be painting the living room today, RED... I have all the prep work done, and Jim started on the trim work last night while I was working.

We are doing great! While we are getting more comfortable with each other, we still have a honeymoon atmosphere that feels wonderful... We spend most of our free time together and still haven't gotten too much of each other... A good sign, since I plan on being near him for a long time!!

More soon!!!

Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

October 12, 2006

From a Sow's Ear...

Ever have something in your yard that you just don't know what to do with? Well we did... The back yard used to be mostly trees and over the past couple of years Jim has had them cleared to about 50-60 feet from the house. He planted (and replanted) grass in the cleared space after having a couple of dumptruck loads of topsoil delivered and spread on the hilly terrain. After all that, there was one spot that still had a couple of tree stumps showing... Right in the middle of the yard... He tried accenting them by placing a small bird bath on top of the stump, but quite frankly... it looked very much like... well... a small bird bath sitting on top of a tree stump...

So yesterday... while shopping at the Home Depot... I got an idea. I know, Jim gets scared when I get ideas... but he does recognize my ability to "accessorize". He worked all day yesterday and I came up with the following as a solution to the "hide the stump" dilemma..

The yard statue is actually a pair of cherubs with very cute faces. When I saw it, I was not particularly drawn to it. As a matter of fact, I kind of gave up on finding anything that "did it for me". As I got ready to leave the garden section, I glanced back at the yard art one more time. Behind the statue of what looked like the little Morton Salt Girl - umbrella and all - I spotted two little butts... From the back, the sexless cherubs were actually more interesting than they were from the front. Well, the rest is his-tory! The statue sits on top of an upside down cement planter (hiding the stump) and the cherubs are facing the woods, with their little fannies mooning the house. It is much smaller than it looks in the photo. The total height is about 3 feet, as is the diameter of the stone border. Discrete, but purposeful with some meaning...

Who woulda thunk you could get a gay(ish) piece of yard sculpture from Home Depot? I was quite proud of my find, and the final creation.

My two days off have been dedicated to the beautification of our outdoor spaces... Now it's time to go back to work and help others work on their indoor spaces - selling furniture. I work Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and I think Jim and I are going to Busch Gardens on Sunday. It will be another first for me. I look forward to the adventure and the coasters!

Over and "Out" from Toano, VA once more!

ps: I was reminded last night that it was One Year ago that I moved "out" and totally came "out" . Was October 11, 2005 "National Coming Out Day" too? I never knew, nor planned it that way...

October 11, 2006

Always a Good Reason!

It's been a few days since my last post and I have good reasons... I've been a very busy guy!

This past weekend was "MY" work weekend - every other one I work the whole weekend - which includes Monday. It was pretty busy considering all the rain we got. I - and others I'm sure - was preparing to build an ark and start gathering animals two-by-two. I think shoppers were willing to brave the elements in hopes of finding a bargain over the Columbus Day "SALE". I got my fair share of them.

Jim spent his long weekend painting the kitchen walls, trim and ceiling. I felt bad that I wasn't helpful but made up for it yesterday... It is Fall, and what does any self-respecting Virginian do in the Fall? Why, over-seed and fertilize the lawn, of course!!! The house here in Toano sits on about an acre. Half of that area is lawn. Not a rectangular, easy to mow and service lawn, but one with curves, hills, fences, trees, and numerous other obstacles. After visiting the local "Homo Depot" for advice, and purchasing the necessary seed and fertilizer, I began mowing, raking, and shoveling - evening out the dog paths along the edges of the fence and beds - before spreading the 100 pounds of seed, then following that up with 50 pounds of starter fertilizer... Whew... I am sore and tired again just thinking about the walking, pushing and pulling I did... It was 6:45pm by the time I finished. This better be the best damned looking lawn in the "gayborhood"!!!

Otherwise I have been following, with interest, the unfolding events over at Brent's Blog: "A Journey by Myself". I realized yesterday that it was a year ago that I left my home and exited the relationship I had been in for almost 20 years. Brent has so much to discover about himself and the real "Gay" world... Take it slow and enjoy yourself Brent, you have the rest of your life to figure out who you are and your purpose in the grand scheme of things!!!

I added a "StatCounter" to my blog, and find the visitor details, maps, and to/from links quite interesting... It's fun to track those that visit, how they got there, how long they stay, which posts they read, and where they were when they left... HOW DO THEY DO THAT!!!

Today I have some grocery shopping to do, then I am going to go out in the yard with a cold Miller Lite, and watch the grass grow... I've always got a good reason!!!

Over and "Out" from foggy Toano, VA

October 6, 2006

Taking the Hobbits to Isengard

Can you tell I am off today and it's raining outside? Of course you can, because I spent my morning looking at YouTube videos. This one has me now humming the "Lord of the Rings" theme... Over and over!!! You will be doing the same if you decide to play it!
Otherwise, things are wonderful in Toano... I am going to try to paint the kitchen today, if I can get off of this computer. Hopefully the weekend (Columbus Day) will provide for some brisk sales at Value City Furniture in Newport News, VA. Last month was kind of slow, which September seems to be every year. October has a tendency to start out slow and pick up, I certainly hope it does just that!
Be good, Be true to yourself, Watch the above video, and turn it UP!
Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

October 2, 2006

The Outer Banks of NC

All I have to say is WOW! I had never been to the outer banks before this past weekend. I had been up the Intercoastal Waterway before, delivering yachts up and down the east coast, but had never actually spent time on the spit of land just east of Arbermarle Sound.

Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills, Nags Head, and the other resort towns along the sandy swatch of land known as the outer banks were beautiful. The home we stayed in was 3 floors. The ground floor had a pool table, bar, carport, and swimming pool in the back yard. The 2nd floor had 2 master bedrooms off the deck with a hot tub, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, a guest room with another queen bed, and a bunk room with 2 sets of bunkbeds. The 3rd floor is where all the action was, a huge kitchen, dining area and livingroom, with sliding glass doors out to the deck with breathtaking views of the area and the ocean.

We arrived late Friday, settled in and headed out for dinner at a nearby restaurant. The majority of us spent the day Saturday lounging by the pool consuming large quantities of assorted lagers, and soaking up the remnants of the Summer sun (albeit Fall)... We all did a relatively fair job of turning our fading tans into something closer to the color of a scarlet rose... ouch... It felt so good though. Sunday started a bit slower, as you might imagine. After packing things up and reloading them into our respective vehicles, Jim, Mark, and I headed down to the Wright Brothers Memorial. I had no idea, that this was the actual place where those first flights back in 1903 actually took place. The memorial itself, sitting high atop Kill Devil Hill (The Big Hill) was awesome. It wasn't until I saw an aerial photo of it that I realized the base was in the shape of a star. The tower itself looked like the tail of a 747, except five or six times the size. After reading and listening to the stories of the trials of the brothers Wright, I was amazed to find out several facts that I had no clue could be attributed to these first flights. While the walk around the memorial and grassy national park was quite long, it was well worth the time and energy.

I now see why so many Virginians vacation in the Outer Banks, and why I see so many OBX stickers on cars in our area. I'll go back, there are many more things to see and places to go!

More to come on our escapades...

Over and "Out" for now, from home in Toano, VA

September 27, 2006

Our own version of the "Gayborhood"

My fellow blogger and friend Kelly Stern has a beautiful photo of a rainbow flag on the front of his home in Richmond, and on his blog page. I tried something similar and came up with the picture above. Our little slice of the gayborhood in Toano...
I will be missing the first Pride event in this area since coming "totally" out last year. I feel bad in a way, well.... Maybe not that bad... Jim, some (straight) gayborhood friends, and I are all heading down to Nags Head this weekend for some R-and-R. We rented a house for the weekend and since none of us (except Jim) have been there before, we are all looking forward to discovering the area on our own.
It's a little early to think and have too much to say here. I have a dentist appointment later, then car inspection after that. I am looking forward to neither... I work Thursday, a 12 hour stint, then Friday I will try to get off early so we can head down to NC. My daughter has agreed to watch the dogs for us while we are gone... I think they will all three enjoy the time together.
I will post what I can when we return... But you know what they say... "What happens in the OBX, stays in the OBX" hehehe...
Over and "Out" from Toano

September 25, 2006

Down on his knees

Jim and I got home from a fantastic dinner last night at a neighbor's house, and he seemed a little "odd". I couldn't put my finger on what it was that was different or out of sync until I joined him as he had a cigarette on the deck off our master bedroom... I sat in a chair next to him as we started to talk some, he finished his smoke and come over to me and got down on his knees and started to hug me and put his head on my filled tummy. He was obviously struggling for words, which he does not do often, and said something like: "You still haven't gotten your last birthday present". My mind went a-wondering and ended up in the gutter (as usual). I mean make a mental picture for yourself, two gay guys, in love, both decent looking, one in a chair and the other on his knees... Didn't take me long to think I had this prelude all figured out... Or did I?
I worked my hand down lower, and Jim said "What are you doing"? I said I thought I knew what my final birthday present was, and why didn't we go get comfy rather that get rug burned on the deck. As I said that he reached into his pocket and pulled out a little white jewelry box... This is getting interesting I thought, as he said that we had not shared with each other anything to signify our commitment to each other. He opened the box and showed me a beautiful white gold and diamond ring, and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him...
I was so overwhelmed I had no words (a total oddity for those that know me well). We hugged, kissed and played with each others' rings until falling to sleep in the others' arms.
More to come... Over and "Out" for now from Toano, VA

September 23, 2006

Friday Nights

Another (retail) weekend draws to an end... I was off Thursday and Friday and had a couple of productive yet relaxing days off. Last night (Jim's Birthday) we went out to dinner with some neighbors and friends to celebrate his and mine, which was Monday... Yes the Mexican restaurant made us wear the silly sombreros while they (the waiter and owner) sang, first a Portuguese version, then a Mexican solo of a birthday song. Texas margueritas abounded... A good time was had by all. Thank you Sheila, Henry and Adam...

I did my own text message last night to my son... He got it, and knows what it said...

Now on to a busy weekend of selling furniture. I work today, tomorrow and Monday. Hopefully business will pick up some. It's been really slow since Labor Day (it does that every year) but usually bounces back by the end of the month. I like the customers in Newport News, and I am getting used to my fellow sales associates. I hope they are getting used to me!

Not much else happening in my neck of the woods...

Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

September 20, 2006

McGreevey's got nothin...

After reading about and listening to Jim McGreevey's woes over the past several days, I tried comparing what he went through to what I am still going through... Hard to do, but I think I still win.

McGreevey would still be in the closet (on the old DL) if it wasn't for the extortion attempt. I made a cognizant decision to: 1) Tell my wife before we were married, and: 2) To "out" myself to the rest of the world on my own terms, without a relationship (ie: lover) in the wings, or someone trying to ruin my name by blackmailing me.

I certainly can't imagine how his wife or children feel about him, but I do have a pretty good idea how mine do... After almost a year there is so much anger and hate still that it is like a poison. Contaminating people around us like the E. coli spinach scare.

My youngest son (19) has taken it (the hate) to new limits over the past few days... He has text messaged me 3 times, twice on my birthday (Monday) to tell me what a "piece of worthless sh*t" and "mother-f**ker" I was, and to tell me that he "hopes I die in a fire". Tonight, after getting home from work, I get a message on my cell that says: "Every time you think of me I want you to know how much I hate you, and wish death on you every day" or something along those lines...

He suspected I was gay probably 2-3 years ago after finding a chat window up on the family computer. He went to his Mom with the information, and after discussing it with her I made a choice to lie to my son. Now, mind you, the only offense that ever warranted a "spanking" for my children, was if they lied, and here Daddy was telling the biggest lie of all. I never forgave myself or my wife for talking me into that. I wanted to come out then and there and have it done, I think she thought she could buy a few more years in hopes they may be more tolerant. Either way, it was MY decision to manufacture the lie and deliver it to my son, something I will always regret and be forever sorry...

So Mr. McGreevey, I salute your coming out... I hope your family accepts your new station in life with more grace than mine.

I would not change anything about my past (with exception of the lie described above)... I love my children and never regret having them... I wish sometimes they would realize, that if I had made a decision to come out earlier in my life... They wouldn't even exist...

And that's all I have to say about that (for now)...

Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

September 18, 2006

Fifty-one and Counting

I made it to 51...

My daughter came down and spent the weekend with us. We had a grand time, although she was hurting from an accident of sorts, a few scrapes and a really sore body.

I woke up this morning to... well... nothing... nothing other than a regular Monday morning when I am not working, just another day really (other than the fact that I woke up laying next to the man I love). I went downstairs and got some coffee, let the dogs out, fed them, then walked back upstairs to check my email. There were a couple of shoeboxes and a card laying on top of my waiting laptop. Jim got me a beautiful dress shirt and tie, and a pair of casual khakkis from Banana Republic, one of my newest favorite places to (window) shop. I opened and read the card and started to cry. He knew exactly what to say, or more so... Exactly what I needed to hear. I met him at the bottom of the stairs and was crying as I hugged him... I think his words went something like "You're not gonna get all choked up on me now? are you?"... Oppps too late...

My brother, from Atlanta, emailed me and wished me a happy Birthday. As did my insurance agent... My brother followed his email up with a phone call though which was very nice. Then I heard from our neighbor and my cousin, the weatherman, as he drove up to Lake Anna for a day on the boat... Ahhhhhhh that is the life...

Worked 2.30 til 9pm and felt blessed that I made it through another birthday unscathed..

Lots more to think about, little else to say but Over and "Out" from Toano, VA

September 17, 2006

Countdown to 51

My 50th year on this planet has been a wild ride... Moving out, Coming out, and Jumping out... Not to mention the people I have met along the way, a few of which were instrumental in helping me find the "me" hiding inside.
Thanks to all of them, I could not have made it this far without...
As a treat to myself and some of my fellow bloggers I am reposting my Skydiving adventure post from this past year:
For my 50th birthday this past year I decided to not only come-out, but also chose to jump-out of a perfectly good airplane. Thanks to the staff down at West Point Skydiving Adventures, about an hour from westend Richmond) it was one of the most awesome experiences of my life.
After arriving early Sunday morning, we sat down and, in triplicate, signed and initialed our lives away on the company release waiver (I have not signed that many documents since my last home closing). I perfectly understand why the releases are necessary however, to the faint at heart, they may have been somewhat intimidating.
Since my friends and I had chosen to do tandem jumps, where we would be strapped tightly to the front of our instructor (A few of us felt there was nothing wrong with that picture), the training was somewhat abbreviated. We were shown the proper way to walk while strapped together, the correct way to exit the aircraft and arch our backs once in free-fall (again this back arching thing came naturally and more easily to a few of us). The instructor then gave us an idea of what we would encounter during the free-fall, the deployment of the chute, the rest of the ride, and finally the landing. None of us chickened out through this process so it appeared we were good to go.
The plane used that day was the size and shape of a Henrico County school bus. Not as air-worthy appearing a I thought it should be, but then, I had made the choice to leave it in mid flight, regardless of it's flying abilities. Picture that school bus with benches running it's length on each side, then picture the entire senior class at Hermitage High School climbing aboard all with their 40lb book bags strapped to their backs. As tandem jumpers, we got to board first and sat on a bench in what we later referred to as first class. The rest of the plane filled up very quickly. By the time we were ready to take off there were bodies everywhere. Oh and just an FYI, since we all had parachutes, I assumed the seat belt laws did not apply, so I didn't expect myself to be not only strapped onto my instructor but strapped into my seat too.
We reached our jumping altitude of 14,000 feet after about 15 minutes. The climb up was very noisy as the ramp on the back of the plane was partially opened. The experienced skydivers used this time to practice their mid-air version of pilotes and periodically glance over and make frightening gestures our way (I guess it's always fun to tease the new kids). Once we got to the right altitude the pilot lowered the ramp so that we could start our deplaning. The experienced jumpers wasted no time as they exited in groups, I imagine to execute some difficult formations using their arms, legs and heads while falling at 120 miles per hour. The tandem jumpers go last, I suppose so as not to get in the way of those wanting to go 125-130 mph. Before deplaning, our instructors cinched up all the straps holding us together, we then spend an awkward 5 minutes trying to stand from a very uncomfortable sitting position. Once on our feet, we aim for the rear of the plane and the ramp leading to nowhere.
That last step was interesting. As we fell, legs first, into the baby blue Central Virginia sky, the air flowing under the plane caught our legs and flipped us end over end. The instructor levels us out and taps me on the side to signal me that it was time to arch, which I promptly did. Now let me try to describe what you hear while all this is going on. When you have a chance, go over to your TV, tune it to channel 3, turn off your cable box and VCR/DVD, and turn up the volume on your 500watt surround sound system, with your head between the front two speakers. There is absolutely no vocal communication while free-falling, everything is done with pre-determined hand gestures. After what seemed like about 10 minutes, our 30 second free fall came to an end as the instructor tapped the altimeter on my wrist and I pulled the cord on our chute. You can feel the fabric start unfurling from the case on the instructors back, but until it opens and catches the sky, you have no idea what it feels like to be stopped in mid-air. You also rethank your instructor for checking and tightening those straps one last time before exiting the plane. What started out as a blur accompanied by a mind deafening noise, suddenly became the most tranquil, heavenly experience. The instructor tells me (yes you can hear at this point) that he is going to loosen the straps now, and that it may feel like he's letting me go (he actually said that to me) but it would be more comfortable for the remainder of the jump if the straps were loosened. The balance of our ride was like nothing I can describe. It had all the thrills of an "E" ticket ride at Disneyland (which by the way also turned 50 last year) and all the serenity of sailing in Biscayne Bay on a clear cool Miami autumn day. The flight after deployment of the chute probably didn't take more than 5-10 minutes but it seemed (in a very good way) to last 3-4 times that. As we got closer to the ground the instructor reminded me to lift and hold up my legs as we land (once again some men do this easier than others) so as not to get in his way as he tries to soften the landing. I held them up as we came down and in for our landing, which started out as a 2 point, on his feet, landing and ended up with both of us on our bums.
I could not have asked for a more enjoyable 50th/coming out experience. Thank you Lee, Philip, Tim, Andre, and the wonderful staff at West Point Skydiving Adventures, you guys all ROCK!
If you ever thought you'd like to try skydiving, JUST DO IT, you won't be sorry!

September 13, 2006

Kelly's Whadda Ya Want Wednesday

I posted a question on a friend's blog today (for which he asks we answer ourselves first), and felt it was something I wanted to include in my own post:
"Ok Kelly, looks like I am the first today...
Here's my question: Have you ever (with persons from your past or with Jeff) fallen in love (not lust) at first sight or rather on your first meeting?
Here's my answer: Yes, twice.
1) I was married in my "Old" life. I met my soon to be wife when I interviewed with her for a part time position at Burdines Department Stores (now Macy's) in Miami. I knew the moment I laid eyes on her and talked with her that she was my soul mate. She was married (as was I at the time) and I kept my feelings to myself. Five years later, we ran into each other again (and were both single), I found out that she had the same feelings about me from day one... We were married for almost 20 years (even after I told her of my sexual preference prior to getting married)..
2) After my totally coming out, and leaving my soul mate, I thought I could never love like that again... I was online one evening (yes, and got a private message from this guy that lived in Williamsburg. We started a chat (which I normally do not do with people without a picture). He invited me to dinner a few days later, we met, and well... The rest is history. I moved down a few weeks ago and plan on spending the rest of my life with this guy.
It's reassuring to know it can happen twice in a lifetime. And for those skeptics my only advice is: TAKE A CHANCE every now and then... Jim took a chance by sending me a private message, and I took a chance by driving 50 miles to have dinner with a guy without knowing what he looked like..."
Life is a generous thing if you be true to yourself and the people you love...
Over and "Out" from Toano, Virginia and "My New Life"...

September 12, 2006

Another Missed Opportunity

President G.W. Bush missed another opportunity last night to humanize the tragedies of September 11, 2001. Instead, he chose to try to resell his pack of lies to the American people and the world. I do not have deep political convictions, but I do think what we needed last night was re-assurance that we are safe, and for our elected leader to share our grief and condolences for the citizens that truly lost something and/or someone as a result of our government's ineptness (not that I expected him to ask for forgiveness, although that might have been a better strategy) on that horrible day, and since.

My friend and fellow blogger Kelly Stern, has a post today that I whole heartedly agree with. There is a time and place for everything, and I just don't think last night was appropriate for his reiteration of lame excuses for our being in Iraq or the middle-east at all, for that matter.

Disney/ABC put their political necks on the line by airing their dramatization of the events leading up to 9/11. While covering their behinds by insisting it was based only loosely on facts, they made me wonder how loosely? There seemed to be alot of indisputable realities and events, so how many of the disputed events and facts could be real as well? Seems that most affected negatively are doing major "backpaddles" up their respective creeks.

Elections are a wonderful thing, aren't they? We'll see how the American people feel about things in a couple of years, if it's not already too late.

Another missed opportunity? Not for me... and not for you to speak out and let your voice (and vote) be heard.

Over and "Totally Out" spoken, from Toano, Virginia

September 10, 2006

Five years later...

It seems like just yesterday that I was watching "Good Morning America", at my comfortable home in Richmond, and chatting online with a friend of mine from Miami on September 11, 2001. My friend asked if I had seen the news on the fire at the World Trade Center, which I had. As he typed the next message Charlie and Diane were commenting as video of the fire filled my TV screen. The pair of newscasters was superimposed on the tube with the video of the smoldering tower as the 2nd plane ripped into the twin of the burning building. I actually jumped when I saw what happened behind the news team. It took them a moment to realize what had transpired.
Five years later? No way...
So much has happened in my life, yet it pales in comparison to the events that began for tens (maybe hundreds) of thousands of people on that day, that continue today: The occupants of the towers and other buildings (including the pentagon) and their surviving families and friends, the Fire and Police professionals (and other unknown heroes) that risked their lives trying to save complete strangers, the brave souls on flight 93 and their spouses, children, parents and friends... and that's just the start. Every soldier sent to the mid-east that lost his or her life has a family and friends too... Just how many people did this affect???
Five years later? No possible way...
I plan to watch the fictional production of the events leading up to 9/11 on ABC tonight and tomorrow, using it only for supplemental color. Based on what I understand to be the findings of the 9/11 Commission, someone (some politician) needs to take responsibility for not doing their job. We, as taxpayers and voters, pay their salary and selected them to protect us. Someone failed... Was it the elected officials? or was it the low voter turnout? or was it??? I suppose we will never really know...
Five years later? And no-one to blame, or is there?
"And that's all I have to say about that"...
Over and "Out" from America, God Bless everyone touched by 9/11/2001

September 7, 2006

Can you say "OH SHIT"?

OH SHIT it is... I got home from work last night - after a grueling 12 hour shift - to find my bank account frozen (I do my banking stuff online, as I'm sure most do these days). It appears there is some kind of judgment against me (personally) for a business/corporate credit account with Capital One from like 2 years ago, that I thought was all resolved back in June... What a disaster... I called CapOne and got the "gee we're sorry but there's nothing we can do until the garnishment expires on October 2nd". What a line of crap that is... Someone can always do something, but after being on the phone with them for almost an hour, talking to several "account specialists" that hadn't a clue what I was talking about, to a person in the "fraud" department - that was also unsure of my plight, to someone in the legal department that, while pleasant and courteous, was also quite short and abrupt, like she was reading from a script. Finally asking for a manager, I was told that there was nothing they could (rather than would) do until the expiration date on the court order. I never could figure out why some people do not have bank accounts, now I know why... I have a couple of weeks before the mortgage/family payment is due, and I am not quite sure how it's going to happen... I guess there's always a way... I just haven't thought of it yet.

Otherwise, life is grand. Today is "honey do day" a list (I love lists) of things to do around the old homestead. It should keep me busy and my mind off the financial woes for the time being, at least until I have a brainstorm, or a stroke!!!
Over and "Out" for now, from Toano VA

September 6, 2006

New Faces - New Challenges

Well... I managed through the first day at the new store in Newport News. It's a 35 minute drive from our house in Toano - compared to the 10 minute commute I had in Richmond - to Newport News. I guess I took it for granted that I was accepted for who I am at my old store, not that my new team-mates don't like me, it's just I have to "come out" all over again to a new group of people. I don't want to hit them over the head with it, but I do want them to know that being gay is part of who I am. The sales staff - at least on my team - are a little more mature than the group I worked with in Richmond. Their tolerance/acceptance seems a little more hesitant in coming. Oh well...
Otherwise the store is very nice. I need to get used to the "operational" differences, but that shouldn't be that difficult. My feet hurt like heck after 12 hours yesterday. The floors are tiled over concrete, versus the floating hardwood at the Richmond store. It makes for some very hard stepping over a full day of chasing customers.
I would post some pictures I took this past week, but for some reason I can't get any photos to upload on to If anyone has a suggestion or work around, leave me a comment. I am using IE6.0 and would prefer to stay with it and blogger, but I miss being able to put pictures up here every now and then.
From Toano, VA ... Over and "Out" for now!

September 5, 2006

The First Day of...

Today is the first day after Labor Day, the first day of school for most in our area, and the first day for me, at my new job in Newport News. This past week has been a whirlwind of sorts, with my move, family visits, and the remnants of Ernesto moving through. I suppose if JD and I can manage through something like - three days without electricity - and your parents visiting, we can weather any storm... And we did!! The first day through the last...
It will be good to get back to the rhythm of our everyday lives... I start this week with two 12 hour shifts, then off Thursday and Friday. I ended up on the same schedule as I had at the VCF in Richmond, so when things get slow, at least my old team-mates will be working and I can call and get the "scoop" on things in the old neighborhood.
JD and I went out shopping for a spa this weekend. He has some back problems and has always wanted to add to our deck and include a hot-tub when he did. The adventure begins... We will build a platform for the tub about 4-5 feet below the existing deck, install and use the new tub, then build a 600 square foot deck around the tub, in the spring - I built a similar sized deck at my old house around a swimming pool, so we should be able to manage a relatively simple, square deck...
Not much else happening in this neck of the woods... I will write more on our families visits on future posts...
Over and "Out" from Toano, Virginia...

August 30, 2006

The Simpsons vs Star Trek?

Click on the arrow and turn up your volume!
This was too funny to not include on a post. Can you tell I am on vacation this week? Filling my time with important tasks - like watching U Tube... hehehe
I have never been a Simpsons fan, but the combination is quite entertaining, and this guy is kind of cute in a silly way!
Back to the grind now... Over and "Out" from Toano

August 29, 2006

Home Sweet Home, Sweet Home...

Well... It's done! I am now an official resident of Toano, and James City County. My drivers license says so, and so does my car registration (oh yeah, I finally got the Sebring back last week after fighting with State Farm about replacing my windshield and winning). I even got my new tags and UM sticker the convertible in celebration! I am trying to get JD to allow me to add a UM decal to his jeep, but he is still "iffy" on the idea...

The move up was uneventful. I picked up the 14 foot U-haul at 7:30 Saturday morning, and started loading boxes and clothes and "stuff". BJ showed up (right on schedule) at 9:30 to help me move the bedroom furniture from my first floor room, out to the truck. We were both sweating like whores in church, by the time we finished. Is it possible to be 85 degrees with 110% humidity? It's pretty scary when ALL of one's worldly belongings fit into less than half of a 14 foot box truck. None the less, the van/truck was brand new and the A/C worked like a charm. We sailed down I-64 to exit 227 and my new place in the "burbs" of the "burg". Then the real work began. My furniture was all going up a slight hill, up the front steps of the house, around a real tight bend at the top of the porch, then up to the second floor. I think by then it was 95 degrees and about 150% humidity... YUCK! We got it all done in record time, and I got the U-haul returned to Richmond by the promised time of 1:30.

My new neighbors invited JD and me over for a "Welcome to the neighborhood" get together on Saturday night, which included many, many, gallons of liquid refreshments, dinner, and a yummy lemon cake for desert (which I am still enjoying for breakfast). Sunday was spent recovering from Saturday night, with a trip to the Prime Outlet mall mixed in for good measure. How could I possibly pass up an opportunity to go "outlet" shopping, even with blurry eyes and a pounding head? Ahhhhhhh, the life of a self-respecting gay man...

Yesterday, (oh yeah, I am on vacation this week) was pretty quiet. JD and I went down to Newport News in the morning to run a couple of errands, then came back up and lounged poolside at the neighbor's all afternoon. A great way to start what is leading up to be a pretty wild week with family visits.

More to come... from Toano, VA... Over and "Out"

August 22, 2006

One World Youth Project

The youth of today never ceases to amaze me. I was online this morning looking at one of the Ambassador's entries on my Niece's website: and was enlightened to see what today's young adults are capable of. Although the event was in May, I was in awe of the insightfulness of these young people. I hope the AIDS awareness event went well for them and other adults (politicians and government officials especially) were as taken aback as I was.
HIV/AIDS (awareness) and my other pet peeve BREAST CANCER (awareness), will always be on a front burner for my energies...
Acceptance (not just tolerance) of GLBT equality is another topic that is close to me. Unacceptance is not a social or moral issue, it's a disease of those who are afflicted by it...
All are issues that can not be ignored any longer. All (or at least one) that each of us should have some interest in. Whether it be by donating our time, our professional skills, or our monetary resources, we need to think about some aspect, one or more, of these ailments as a part of our lives...
Ok, enough said, I got that off of my chest early today...
Otherwise, "My New Life" is going quite well. I am getting ready for my move to Williamsburg, and already am expecting guests. My brother and family, from Cape Cod, are planning a visit next week after they deliver my niece back to her dorm at Georgetown. I haven't seen them in over a year and it will be nice to catch up in person. Then, JD's parents are coming for the Labor Day weekend. I have not met them yet, and look forward to that as well (although I do have a small knot in my stomach, as I have not had to endure a "meet my folks" event in a number of years). These and my move are keeping me very busy, which is a good thing!
Over and "Out" once again from Williamsburg!

August 18, 2006

Did you know? Queer GAY facts...

Ok, after my gut wrenching drama yesterday - at least to me - I've decided to follow a friend's format and do something different (thanks Kelly every now and then. I encourage all to leave some "Queer GAY Facts" after reading mine, in my comments.

Here we go!


The gay pride flag, which made it's debut at the 1978 San Francisco Gay and Lesbian Freedom Day Parade, was designed by Gilbert Baker. It's inspiration came from the black civil rights and hippie movements.

Each color on the gay pride flag (also known as the rainbow flag) has a different meaning. Test your knowledge below.

RED = Life
ORANGE = Healing

GREEN = Nature
ROYAL BLUE = Harmony
VIOLET = Spirit

Adding a black stripe to the bottom of the flag represents victory over AIDS. It can also signify leather daddy pride.

How did you do?

Now it's your turn. Let's see what you know about your heritage...

Over and "Out" from Williamsburg (today)...

August 17, 2006

I Love "My New Life"!!!

It's hard to put into words, the way I feel. I am content, and very pleased to be me... How can one say that without dismissing one's past? I have no regrets about how I got to this place, I am just very happy to be here. I have children I love, I have friends and family I love, and I have a man that I love AND am in love with. Who could ask for anything more?
I still have obstacles every day, I have disappointments as well. I just refuse to let them govern who I am or where I am at this place in time. I fell to sleep last night in the arms of someone I care so much about, yet I can't forget the times I have done that in my previous life. I hope reading this does not cause anymore hurt to that person. Love is not something that can be discarded like an old shirt, it lasts forever if you let it.
I read a Blog from a friend of mine today and realized regardless of your intentions, the pain you create by your actions can sometimes never be forgiven. Unless they let it... I cannot focus on that, but rather concentrate on being true. To myself and to others. The feelings one has about things that have happened are their own. I have my feelings too, I just try not to have others' affect who I am or what I am.
Enough of the babbling... I am Happy, I hope they can be as well...
Over and "Out" from Williamsburg