Saturday, July 19, 2014

We Need Mentors - Bama Boi Blues

We Need Mentors - Bama Boi Blues

I still think of myself as a youngin with a lot to learn about marketing myself to the masses as a decent writer, thinker, speaker, and partner. I know I have the skills to pull whatever needs to be done on the Internet and beyond, but as much as I'd like to think I know everything, I'm missing a few key pieces to my life goal puzzle. But, it's just not business I'm looking to be better acquainted and possibly coached in doing. My young, gay, black self would like to be mentored into being a better person.

From what I've seen over time, young black men are rarely mentored in the first place, and that in itself is a lot to handle in this screwed up society. To add the homosexual scope of things into the mix is to add another plate viddles of to digest when you're still working on your first meal. Not everything that is homosexuality can be switched out as an alternative to the heteronormative gaze, and I think a lot of same gender lovers don't want it be anyway. We're not a modified version of an exercise done in your living room to meet your comfort level.

More sex talk

I look over my most popular post, then the second most popular post to follow, and I realize that if I put the words "gay sex" and "penis". However, I've also talked about sexual revolutions and porn hoarding with no luck of getting reads, so maybe sex talk isn't the problem. It's consistency.

So, instead of waiting for well-thought post to show up, I'll just keep blogging whatever the hell comes to mind. Shouldn't even be a need to search for pics to put up for posts like this. A few good things:

  1. Haven't had a case of insomnia for about 2 weeks.
  2. My bills and rent are paid.
  3. My relationship is pretty steady, but we need more sex.
  4. Depression has let up quite a bit
Not much, but it's something. I still need to get out and network more, but I'm an introvert; however, I really need to network so people will know what I'm all about. My hustler mentality is not up to par with the other ATLiens constantly trying to make a connection and a dollar. 

I did hit up Freshalina over from her site to see if she could coach me up...she put it out on Twitter that she offers blog coaching, something I wish I didn't need, but apparently I do. I've been working this blog for 4 years, and I'd like to have a better platform for the things I write. Anyways, I'm sure money will be involved. I just hope I don't regret it, feeling like it's a complete waste.

We honestly both started blogging around the same time, about 9 years ago. I could have been a part of that group of bloggers, but I chose school and work, while trying to figure out my sexuality. So, now, as time has passed, I'm now trying to make this blog and my other blog out of something. Corporate American isn't for me at all. Don't want to go back, but where am I heading now?

Bama Boi Blues, the journey for penis, posts, money, hustling, sex talks, African American LGBT outreach, and cheesecake continues. 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Sierra Mannie's article got me thinking

So, I was sitting here working on an article for my other blog - I desperately need followers and revenue, so I'm trying to do the best I can with content.

The article is about Sierra Mannie's now infamous Time Mag entry about white gay men appropriating black women culture. The opinions and counter critiques to her original piece are too much to handle and read in one sitting, but I tried my best giving some a quick scan. To me, it just seems like a good chunk of white gay men felt attacked because they were called out for behavior that is and can be seen as offensive to black women. I also so a lot of derailment to her original subject, claiming that her hetero-normative, cisgender views are detrimental to trans-women; however, I didn't see it that way.

Sierra Mannie's article got me thinking
Read Sierra's Mannie's article here
What I'm learning about my culture as a gay African American cisgender male is that every aspect of my culture is pieced together and clashes like a mother-fucker. At the end of it all, a few things still whole true - I'm male and I'm black. I will never have the privileges of my white counterparts, whether my counterparts choose to acknowledge it or not. I also will never face half the issues black women face on a day to day basis because of my sex. Even as a gay male, not only will I face homophobia, but I will also face racism. Black women have to face sexism and racism (both systematic), misogyny, homophobia if a lesbian, and transphobia if an African American trans woman.

We do not know what Sierra Mannie has truly experienced when it comes to this subject, but we can only assume she has had experience. We cannot invalidate her opinion if the majority of it is factual because we (and I speak predominantly from my experience, and that of my friends, and family) have seen it and been through it. Cultural Appropriation is a pain in the ass, especially if  the culture being appropriated was stitched, invented, established, raped, and then reclaimed to form some sort of identity in a society that didn't want to acknowledge us as human in the first place. But no one's checking for me. Our language and culture is still coded, it seems.

Obviously, there is an identifiable culture for African American women; however, that culture is often stereo-typed, caricatured, and bastardized by men, straight and gay, black or white, for laughs. But out of the two, one can at least identify with the black experience, the other can only take what it sees, doing it's best impression to further play into Mannie's essay. Either way, the dialogue is needed.

Monday, July 14, 2014

The low down on the down low

Man, I miss the Holla Back Message board from that housed such valuable information and discussion. I discussed it a while back in this post. As mentioned in the previous post, the Holla back message board was used as a means for me to introduce myself to what was called the "lifestyle" at the time. There was valuable information to be learned, and one of the things I learned early on about myself was that I was not "down low" as I first thought. From there, I knew I was just a closeted gay male. However, that doesn't stop a lot of these kats from using the term in different ways. So, let me "learns" ya right quick.

via Way Back Machine

I'm afraid that the term "Down Low" is being used quite loosely nowadays with many, especially my young dudes, not understanding what it means.

As I've matured, I've seen and heard the term used in place of actual terms to rationalize one's sexual preference. I was 17 when I first heard of men being on the "DL." Until then, from what I read prior to hearing "down low", "MSM" (men who have sex with men) was the simplest way of describing straight identifying men who slept with other men discretely. Due to a popular book written by J.L. King coining the term "down low" in his 2004 book,  On the Down Low: A Journey Into the Lives of Straight Black Men Who Sleep with Men, and his infamous appearance on Oprah, the "DL lifestyle expose'" phenomenon caught on through media. Then the term's use began to rotate heavily on gay social networking sites.

Looking over how the term is used nowadays, I just shake my head; however, maybe the term itself has evolved just like any term apart of our lexicon. It's still heavily used within the African American male community, straight or gay. For straight guys, it's just means to keep things quiet while you're creeping on your partner, but in this case, creeping on your woman with another woman, and in the other case with straight identifying bisexual men, creeping on your woman with another dude, and the list goes on. It's even popularized in R. Kelly songs and E. Lynn Harris novels.

Several, several blogs ago, I discussed my early research and development in understanding my attraction to other men. For a sexually confused, awkward 17 year old, I had nowhere to turn for guidance and understanding of why I felt the way I felt. Compared to the vast amount info currently out there for struggling sexually confused youths to gain knowledge about their feelings, all I had was porno sites and forums to help me get an idea of what to expect with my hidden desires. One thing I knew for myself is that I could pretend that I was interested in women, but deep down, my interests lied solely for the male gaze. I could choose to live with lies and disillusion, or I could embrace what made me feel right. I wasn't on the down low in the way J. L. King described it in his books, and the Holla Back Message Board helped me with that. Their information was extensive with breakdowns and personal stories, which I read religiously late at night, every night as a youth.

I wish I could just link you all to those discussions, but the entire site no longer exists, and unfortunately, the Way Back Machine can only work so much magic to past websites. It's not much, but I've made a crappy breakdown of what it means to identify as one of the following:

Male Body Shaming: Prince Fielder

Male Body Shaming: Prince Fielder

I'm so sick of assholes who try to body shame someone just because they don't fit a certain physical profile. Not every person is meant to be a certain size. As long as that person is healthy, why the fuck do you care if a guy has a little extra love around the middle? Baseball player, Prince Fielder, has come under attack because he was featured in ESPN's 2014 Body Issue, and apparently, some folk had issues with Fielder's body.

You can check out some of those dumb comments in Huff Post's article below:

Twitter Rallies Against Critics Body Shaming Prince Fielder's ESPN Cover

What's also interesting about the article is that it also points out other athletes who have had their bodies criticized, and they all have something in common - they are people of color; however, for the sake of this piece not being long, I'll focus on the criticism of Fielder's strong body. A very nice body. Check the pic below:

Male Body Shaming: Prince Fielder
He's in good physical condition, otherwise he probably wouldn't be the professional athlete that he is. He has a stomach, and more than likely, it's solid as a rock, and even if it wasn't, it doesn't make him less of a baseball player. Yet if a white, middle-aged wrestler were to be featured, it'd be different? Males face body image issues as well, especially gay men because apparently, a lot of homosexuals live in a fantasy realm where the porn star image is key to being accepted and thought of as sexy.

I was once that dude who didn't like to wear tanks outside without wearing a t-shirt over it. I was once that dude who didn't like for people to sit to close to me, where their hands might accidentally touch my stomach. It wasn't until I got older and realized  how incredibly attractive I was as a stocky dude, and that there are many people out there that want a total package and not just body-oddy-oddy. 

I blame porn and hookup sites where racial and body discrimination reign supreme. This is why you have guys who spend so many hours in the gym, not because they love it, which many do, but low-key, it's because we are told muscles are manly and a swimmer's build is what makes us sexy. I don't buy it. As long as I'm healthy, and I'm good. I love Prince Fielder's body. He loves his body. He's worked hard on it, and it shows. 

ESPN, Thank you!