I know November is practically over, but please don’t shave your beard. Why lose the attractive scruff? you worked too hard. Please just think about what your doing. Keep the world beautiful. Love, Allie.
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Four members of a sect that broke away from the mainstream Amish will remain in a federal detention facility until their trial for hate crimes, a judge ruled Wednesday.
The four are part of seven charged with hate crimes, conspiracy to commit hate crimes and aiding and abetting for beard-shearing incidents. Armed with scissors, the group would arrive at the homes of Amish families in rural Ohio after dark and attack the men inside, holding them down as they sheared their beards, which carry religious significance to the Amish.
Forced beard shearing = hate crime. Strangely, I agree with this.
Last night, after spending a really amazing day with my new friends here, I was taken out to the Denver Eagle. It was Underwear night, and though I wasn’t about to shuck off my jeans in favor of my Calvins, I did do something I’ve never done before.
I put on the harness I was given by a leather boy in NYC on my way to Denver. I wore it under a hoodie. As the night progressed, I eventually took the hoodie off, with the support of the guys with whom I’d been chatting with and hanging out with. It took some time and a little cajoling, but I did it. I was shirtless and in a harness in a public place.
I know, it sounds like a tired cliche thing to do, but this was a big deal for me. I’m still getting used to being comfy in the skin I’m in. I’m still getting used to fellas not putting me down for being furry, for being slightly soft around the edges, or for being average. There are no outstanding features about me. I’m simply average.
This was a baby step in the right direction. This was another movement forward into becoming the man I’m supposed to be, rather than remaining in this suspended adolescence I’ve been in for far too long. The fact is, it felt really, really good. And I did it all without the false bravery of alcohol, but with the support and affection of some really great fellas that I’ve been making friends with here in Denver.
I wish I didn’t have to work today, but I do. And I have tomorrow off. I want to spend the day writing, though.
I can tell you one thing. This retail gig of mine is for the birds. Sure, it is a job, and sure, being jobless is worse. I get that. But this is not my life. Teaching is my life. I live to be in a classroom, doing all I can to inspire my students to find their voices, to be strong communicators, and to better understand the world around them. That’s my calling, my vocation, my reason for being here.
Not being able to do my life’s work is eating away at me.
I just spent a number of hours crafting a piece that will go at the end of my thesis/memoir for school. It details how far I haven’t come emotionally since my first boyfriend (the topic of my thesis, generally speaking). I’ve spent most of the day in a dark spot in my head. It’s this spot, though, that I’m usually doing all that I can to avoid, even if it means putting my entire writing life on hold.
I’m grateful to have the ability to sift through my stuff, though. This is a day that needed to come, and at this moment, it couldn’t have been better timed.
I had a bit of a realization over the weekend that alters how I approach future relationships and interactions I have with the gay men I meet. The fact is, I’m done with hunting and seeking my next possible significant other. I’ve spent the better part of a year trying to fill a void that simply can not be filled by anyone else other than myself. I need to make myself complete. I need to be the man I’m capable of being, and not require the support of another to fill in the gaps.
Today’s writing was all about repeating those mistakes, and being that needy person from a young child till now. Constantly seeking approval, constantly needing reassurance, constantly worried about the impression I give to others, and being constantly told I’m too much to handle or too intense (either through words or deeds) has tired me out. I’m done with all of that.
If you want me, you know where to find me. Come say hello. I don’t bite. It’s not my job to be the only active participant in an interaction. Chase me a bit. Desire me a bit. Let me know you want to know more about me. But don’t expect me to be the guy who fills your desires on a one-night fling. I’m deeper and stronger and more worthy than that.