Wednesday, April 30, 2014


A sapiosexual is one who finds intelligence the most sexually attractive feature.

I want an incisive, inquisitive, insightful, irreverent mind. I want someone for whom philosophical discussion is foreplay. I want someone who sometimes makes me go ouch due to their wit and evil sense of humor. I want someone that I can reach out and touch randomly, and I want that someone to be somebody that I can cuddle with.   I have decided all that means that I must be a sapiosexual.

I also want someone that won't find me boring   I have a lot of trivial knowledge in my head and have been described as being very passionate about many topics.  Sometimes that knowledge comes pouring out and I want someone who eyes will not glaze over with utter boredom.

Occasionally, I come across a word that just fascinates me.  Sapiosexual came from the Urban Dictionary.  This particular word seemed to describe me pretty well.  The one ing I would add is that I would prefer that other person have  a penis.  I guess that makes me a "homo" sapiosexual.  How many of you would describe yourself as a "homo" sapiosexual.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Follow Your Arrow

"Follow Your Arrow"
Kacey Musgraves

If you save yourself for marriage
You're a bore
If you don't save yourself for marriage
You're a horr...ible person
If you won't have a drink
Then you're a prude
But they'll call you a drunk
As soon as you down the first one

If you can't lose the weight
Then you're just fat
But if you lose too much
Then you're on crack
You're damned if you do
And you're damned if you don't
So you might as well just do
Whatever you want

Make lots of noise
Kiss lots of boys
Or kiss lots of girls
If that's something you're into
When the straight and narrow
Gets a little too straight
Roll up a joint, or don't
Just follow your arrow
Wherever it points, yeah
Follow your arrow
Wherever it points

If you don't go to church
You'll go to hell
If you're the first one
On the front row
You're self-righteous
Son of a-
Can't win for losing
You'll just disappoint 'em
Just 'cause you can't beat 'em
Don't mean you should join 'em

So make lots of noise
Kiss lots of boys
Or kiss lots of girls
If that's something you're into
When the straight and narrow
Gets a little too straight
Roll up a joint, or don't
Just follow your arrow
Wherever it points, yeah
Follow your arrow
Wherever it points

Say what you think
Love who you love
'Cause you just get
So many trips 'round the sun
Yeah, you only
Only live once

So make lots of noise
Kiss lots of boys
Or kiss lots of girls
If that's what you're into
When the straight and narrow
Gets a little too straight
Roll up a joint, I would
And follow your arrow
Wherever it points, yeah
Follow your arrow
Wherever it points

Sometimes a song really resonates with me, and as I think music should be, it is also beautiful poetry. I came across this song as a free download from my Starbucks app.  One listen, and I was hooked.  After listening to "Follow Your Arrow" from Musgraves' Same Trailer Different Park!, the Nashville-based singer-songwriter's first album for Mercury Records, it's clear that this is a girl who has something to say. A true language artist, Kacey nimbly spins webs of words to create the quirky puns, shrewd metaphors, and steely ironies that fill the record.  She is also the recipient of the 2013 CMA New Artist of the Year award, the 2014 Grammy for Best Country Album and Best Countey Song for "Merry Go 'Round," and the 2014 ACM Album of the Year.

On "Follow Your Arrow," she points out the hypocrisies that society imposes on even the most conservative among us (If you save yourself for marriage you're a bore/If you don't save yourself for marriage you're a horr...ible person) which she balances with a chorus that preaches throwing caution and propriety to the wind: (Make lots of noise/Kiss lots of boys/Or kiss lots of girls if that's something your into/When the straight and narrow gets a little too straight/Roll up a joint/Or don't/Follow your arrow wherever it points.) Her message is clear: Be yourself and be happy.

Musgraves' first two singles, “Merry Go ‘Round” and “Blowin’ Smoke,” struck a chord with country fans because of Musgraves’ outspoken lyrics. Her third single, “Follow Your Arrow,” was released to radio this week and turns the real talk up to ten. In it she discusses a few controversial topics, including one mainstream country rarely — if ever — tackles: homosexuality. “Kiss lots of boys/Or kiss lots of girls if that’s something you’re into,” she sings.

“Well I hope it gets attention because I think it’s definitely time for those issues to be accepted in country music — I mean it’s 2013,” she said. “Regardless of your political beliefs, everybody should be able to love who they want to love and live how they want to live. We’re all driven by the same emotions; we all want to be loved and want to feel the same things. So, hopefully people will put aside their personal, political agenda and just agree with that fact.”

I am particularly excited because I am going to see Kacey Misgrave in concert on Saturday.  She will be opening along with Kip Moore for Lady Antebellum.  Besides being a fan of Musgrave and being very excited to see her, I am also excited to see Lady Antebellum, because Charles Kelley is one of the sexiest men in country music.

Here's the song "Follow Your Arrow" if your interested in listening:

Monday, April 28, 2014

Sunday, April 27, 2014

His Steadfast Love Endures Forever

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever. 
Give thanks to the God of gods, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever. 
Give thanks to the Lord of lords, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
to him who alone does great wonders, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
to him who by understanding made the heavens, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
to him who spread out the earth above the waters, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
to him who made the great lights, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
the sun to rule over the day, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
the moon and stars to rule over the night, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
to him who struck down the firstborn of Egypt, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
and brought Israel out from among them, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
with a strong hand and an outstretched arm, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
to him who divided the Red Sea in two, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
and made Israel pass through the midst of it, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
but overthrew Pharaoh and his host in the Red Sea, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
to him who led his people through the wilderness, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
to him who struck down great kings, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
and killed mighty kings, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
Sihon, king of the Amorites, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
and Og, king of Bashan, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
and gave their land as a heritage, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
a heritage to Israel his servant, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever. 
It is he who remembered us in our low estate, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
and rescued us from our foes, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever; 
he who gives food to all flesh, 
     for his steadfast love endures forever. 
Give thanks to the God of heaven,
     for his steadfast love endures forever. 
Psalm 136

No less than 26 times the psalmist reiterates the same combination of words in Psalm 136, “for his steadfast love endures forever.”  He reflects on the glory of God, and marvels at the wisdom that stretched out the heavens and flung the great stars in the sky, yet more than anything else is blown away by God’s mercy.  He carefully turns the frayed pages of history, only to find each one drenched with the goodness of God.

In the process, he also reminds us that the road to life eternal is not a straight highway lined with shady green trees without any ascends or dips on the way. There will be occasional detours through the wilderness, times when you will be required to swap your frail walking stick for a steely sword and engage in combat with all your might and valor.  These are perhaps situations and circumstances that we don’t normally associate with goodness and love. But for the psalmist, every event that came to his mind from the nation’s history affirmed God’s unfailing love to His children.

I believe that the most used trick in Devil’s bag is creating doubt – Self doubt, but more importantly doubt about God’s goodness and His love towards us. We see this constantly with people who call themselves Christians and they teach only hate.  They hate the LGBT community, they hate the poor for not working hard enough, they hate anyone who needs God's steadfast love that endures forever.  These people want to place self doubt in our minds so that we think we are not good enough.  Only those who they deem spiritually acceptable because they can be scared into larger donations are accepted, but it is the work of the devil that teaches them the hate that they spew to all those that don't fit their narrow description of Christianity.  They don't want people to believe in God's steadfast love that endures forever, because if one believes what God teaches us about His love, then we cannot have self doubt.

It was the weak ones who were most attracted to Jesus. Lepers, blind men, sick and the lame formed the regular crowd. It is the people in the margins that Jesus went to and befriended.  They had nowhere to go and they knew that all too well. In Jesus’ parable, the righteous Pharisee who prayed long and loud had nothing right. Yet the tax-collector, sinful as he was, went home justified. It is in our weakness that we are closest to God, and when we acknowledge that we are weak, He lends his strong arm and lifts us up. The unknown Psalmist seems to agree: “It is he who remembered us in our low estate, for his steadfast love endures forever.”

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Moment of Zen: Athletic Shorts

As the temperature becomes warmer, men begin to wear shorts out in public more often.  I happen to find athletic shorts (and bathing suits/board shorts) very sexy.  All of the women I know, find them disgusting.  One even calls them "wiener shorts."  But what do women know?  It's gay men who create the aesthetics in this world, and I find athletic shorts aesthetically pleasing and often quite revealing.  And lets don't forget how well they show off a man's best ass-ets.

Friday, April 25, 2014

7 Careers "Christians" May No Longer Hold

Though his organization has become notorious for its anti-gay proclamations, American Family Association President Tim Wildmon has sparked the ire of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community once again after sending a bizarre email which claimed that the list of careers that Christians can hold is "shrinking" because of "homosexual aggression."

Noting that the LGBT community "pro-actively" seeks "opportunities to wreck the personal business and career" of Christians who don't support same-sex marriage and other rights, Wildmon cited examples of what he described as a "focused effort to ostracize and humiliate faith-based businesses and their owners," according to Right Wing Watch. The list of careers included photography, counseling, baking and teaching.

Among the cases Wildmon cited in the email, according to the report, was Sweet Cakes by Melissa, the Oregon bakery owned by Aaron and Melissa Klein which sparked controversy after citing their religious beliefs in their decision not to prep a cake for a same-sex couple's wedding ceremony. Also referenced were Vermont's Wildflower Inn, which no longer hosts weddings after being fined $30,000 for turning away a same-sex couple, and Washington florist Barronelle Stutzman, who is currently facing a lawsuit from her state's attorney general after refusing to create floral arrangements for a same-sex couple.

To see the full list of careers that Wildmon implied were off-limits to Christians, click here.

Wildmon's remarks echo those of his American Family Association co-hort Bryan Fischer, who recently claimed that Christians should "reclaim discrimination" against the LGBT community.

"There are times when discrimination is the right thing to do," Fischer, who compared the gay community to shoplifters, said at the time. "It is right to discriminate against people who engage in aberrant sexual behavior. We should discriminate against people like that."

People like Wildmon and Fischer and the so-called "Christians" like him should be banned from these jobs, especially teaching.  If you are a teacher and purposely inflict harm, emotionally or physically, then you should not be allowed to teach.  A teacher is meant to expand the minds of students, not narrow their minds.  It is utterly ridiculous for people like American Family Association and their ilk to be allowed to make perverse statements like these.  Why can these people not understand the loving nature of Christianity?  These people only strive on ignorance and hate because they feel that it is the only way to control the minds of others.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Wrestling Demons by Xavier Mayne

Last week, I reviewed Frat House Troopers by Xavier Mayne and I couldn't wait to read Wrestling Demons, the second book in the Brandt and Donnelly Capers by Xavier Mayne.  Last night, I finished Wrestling Demons, and though I expected a great and thought provoking read as I had with Frat House Troopers, I was surprised at how Wrestling Demons was even better.  The wrestlers, Jonah and Casey, are more the stars of this book than Brandt and Donnelly, but it isn't long before you are as smitten with the 18 year old high school wrestlers as you are for Brandt and Donnelly

In Wrestling Demons, Jonah Fischer's high school wrestling career has been stellar, but now he's the unwilling star of a series of videos that have hit the web. The whole world may have seen the evidence that his best friend turns him on. Jonah's conservative family wants him cured, and his conventional town and school want him normal. The only person who still wants him just the way he is is Casey Melville, the same best friend who turned him on for all the world to see. Meanwhile, Casey begins to wonder if there's more to his feelings for Jonah than he thought. 

Officers Brandt and Donnelly—lovers as well as partners on the job—have been assigned to find the culprit who posted the video. While investigating the case, they also help Jonah and Casey find their way through their feelings, and steer them toward refuge when Jonah's family turns against him. But the mystery remains: who wants to hurt Jonah badly enough to post those videos, and why? Thank goodness Jonah and Casey have found friends—they're going to need all the help and support they can get.

Xavier Mayne is well-versed in academic theories of sexual identity, and is passionate about writing stories in which men experience a love that pushes them beyond the boundaries they thought defined their sexuality. He believes that romance can be hot, funny, and sweet in equal measure.  Once again, he proves this in Wrestling Demons.  Mayne writes sex scenes they way they should be written in a book: organic so the sex play easily into the story and plays an integral part in the plot but not so overly done that the book becomes erotic fiction.  To me, the sex scenes written by Mayne are more erotic and sexually charged than any book I've ever read, and they don't come across as silly hyperboles.

As my readers know, I am a religious person, and so in many ways this book hit home on so many levels because of the religious questions that are brought up.  I don't want to give away too much of what happens in the book, but one of the characters attends a church that is very welcoming to everyone and is vastly different from the ultra-conservative church of his youth.  Instead of the character turning his back on religion, he sees what religion can truly be, a welcoming and accepting journey.  The struggles the character faces between the damning church of his youth and the welcoming church he finds, is a dichotomy that truly warmed my heart.  Instead of a maybe doing as many gay authors do and wrote how the character rejected religion, it instead showed not only how wrong these hate filled churches are but also shows what is right when Christians show compassion and acceptance.

One of the reason I have so enjoyed reading Xavier Mayne's books is that not only is ere a great story, but also but their are deeper meaning and lessons contained within.  Thank you Xavier Mayne for such a delightful read.  I look forward to more capers from Brandt and Donnelly's case files. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Fell asleep

I fell asleep last night as I was getting ready to write my post for today, and I could barely keep my eyes open to type this.  Have a wonderful day.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

From "I Sing the Body Electric" by Walt Whitman

I knew a man, a common farmer, the father of five sons,
And in them the fathers of sons, and in them the fathers of sons.

This man was a wonderful vigor, calmness, beauty of person,
The shape of his head, the pale yellow and white of his hair and
     beard, the immeasurable meaning of his black eyes, the richness
     and breadth of his manners,
These I used to go and visit him to see, he was wise also,
He was six feet tall, he was over eighty years old, his sons were
     massive, clean, bearded, tan-faced, handsome,
They and his daughters loved him, all who saw him loved him,
They did not love him by allowance, they loved him with personal
He drank water only, the blood show'd like scarlet through the
     clear-brown skin of his face,
He was a frequent gunner and fisher, he sail'd his boat himself, he
     had a fine one presented to him by a ship-joiner, he had
     fowling-pieces presented to him by men that loved him,
When he went with his five sons and many grand-sons to hunt or fish,
     you would pick him out as the most beautiful and vigorous of
     the gang,
You would wish long and long to be with him, you would wish to sit
     by him in the boat that you and he might touch each other.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Country Boys

There is just something about the rough and rugged country boy.  Someone who's worked hard and is dirty and sweaty with the musculature only hard manual labor can provide and the gym can't.  These men are the men of fantasies and can make a man like me weak in the knees.  Some might be classified as a cowboy, others as a farmer, and some might even be called a good ol' boy or redneck, but those are loaded terms.

The term redneck has expanded in meaning beyond the poor Southerner to refer to "a bigoted and conventional person, a loutish ultra-conservative." It is often used to attack white Southern conservative. And while as a general rule this may be true, I've known many a Southern man who had a rough and rugged exterior, but a heart of gold.  Not all of them are quite so conservative either.  As the world changes, so do the rednecks.  The younger generation is more accepting of gays men and especially gay women (not for the lesbian fantasy but because they are often very hard workers and can out man a lot of men).  Religion sometimes gets in the way of this progress, but I think we will see that change as well.  Religion used to be one of the factors behind racism, but that is disappearing as well, and is in fact, almost non existent.  I think the same will happen with homophobia.

The term redneck and good ol' boy is also used broadly to degrade working class and rural whites that are perceived by urban progressives to be insufficiently liberal.  Living in a rural area myself, I can attest to some of the small changes.  It's slow progress, but the South has always been slow with progress.  Even the Progressive Movement in America itself came to the South twenty to thirty years after the rest of the country.  And though they are still catching up, they will.  Progress comes slow, but I have the hope and faith that it will continue to come to the South.

At the same time, some white Southerners have reclaimed these words, using it with pride and defiance as a self-identifier.  If you come to the South from a more liberal area, you won't see it.  You have to see the more subtle changes, but it will happen, if you get to know the people and don't judge them.  If you want to see the real change, look at the profiles on Manhunt, Grindr, or any other gay hook-up site in the South and you will see more of redneck gay culture than you'd expect.  These gay men are men you'd never suspect to be gay, but they love the country life.  They love their rural surroundings, and they love a sexy man in a pair of Wrangler jeans.

Don't dismiss the South or other rural areas. They will come around.  It may just take a while.  Those sweaty, dirty, calloused handed, country boys are the stuff of legend.  Save a horse, ride a cowboy.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter!

     Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him." So Peter went out with the other disciple, and they were going toward the tomb. Both of them were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. And stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen cloths lying there, and the face cloth, which had been on Jesus' head, not lying with the linen cloths but folded up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that he must rise from the dead. Then the disciples went back to their homes.
     But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb. And she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had lain, one at the head and one at the feet. They said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?" She said to them, "They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him." Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?" Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away." Jesus said to her, "Mary." She turned and said to him in Aramaic, "Rabboni!" (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, "Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brothers and say to them, 'I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'" Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord"-and that he had said these things to her.
John 20:1-18

Easter, which celebrates Jesus Christ's resurrection from the dead, is Christianity's most important holiday. It has been called a moveable feast because it doesn't fall on a set date every year, as most holidays do. Instead, Christian churches in the West celebrate Easter on the first Sunday following the full moon after the vernal equinox on March 21. Therefore, Easter is observed anywhere between March 22 and April 25 every year. Orthodox Christians use the Julian calendar to calculate when Easter will occur and typically celebrate the holiday a week or two after the Western churches, which follow the Gregorian calendar.

For Jesus' mother, his disciples and his followers, Jesus' death was a tragedy. You can imagine that all hope was naturally gone. We today can face the same feeling. Many times in life, with homophobic politicians, the increasing rise of anti-gay homophobic groups, and everything that is going on in the world — war, famine, disease, natural disasters, discrimination, and hate — there can be a loss of hope and faith. Yet the resurrection gives us hope that no matter what has happened in our lives, no matter how much faith and hope we have lost, we can experience hope, we can overcome and regain whatever we have lost in our lives.

Our hope includes the knowledge that evil does not win. – Sometimes today, it seems that the bad guy often wins. Sometimes it seems that the one who cheats, the one who lies, the one who steps on others to get ahead, is the one who prospers. Far too often, I read of this person cheating or that one (or catching a student cheating) or another kid, gay or otherwise, who has been bullied, lost hope, and committed suicide. How often do we read of politicians cheating, or working to make sure their businesses get the good contract? It seems that there is no hope for the little guy, the one who lives right, to ever get ahead.

With a positive attitude that through God we can accomplish anything, we truly can make the world a better place. With hope that springs eternal, just as the flowers in spring show the rebirth of the earth, we can be assured that God's promises will deliver a better day, a rebirth our faith. The promise that Jesus would rise from the grave on the third day is remembered every Easter Sunday, it is the greatest sacrifice God could give for our sins. When we are baptized, it is done in symbolic reverence as our old body dies in its watery grave to be reborn and rise from the dead as Christ did for our sins.

I realize that some Churches of Christ may not celebrate Easter, but it has always been the major religious holiday at my church.  It is a day which has a date for us to celebrate, and it has the most meaning for Christians.  It is the day when the Old Testament prophesies of the Messiah were ultimately fulfilled.  It is he day that Christ rose from the dead.  The resurrection is the most important of the miracles.  When I was a child, our church had dinner on the grounds, and everyone brought a dish and the kids had an Easter egg hunt.  It was always a wonderful day of fellowship.  We no longer have dinner on the grounds because we once had a preacher (he didn't last long with us) who was extremely hardcore and did not believe in having dinner on the grounds.  I think he believed the only meal that should be taken at church was communion.  Though he is long gone, we never revived the tradition of dinner on the grounds.  I find it quite sad, since early Christian services were often centered around the dinner table where fellowship, worship, and food were part of the gathering.  Our church did have a gathering and Easter egg hunt last Sunday at the home of one of our members.

My family and I will have a big Easter dinner (or lunch as the Yankees say) today.  It will be a big meal with a ham, a roast chicken, dumplings (with no chicken, just the flavor because my niece requested them that way), green beans, butter beans, macaroni and cheese, deviled eggs, potato salad, congealed salad, a cake and a pie.  All of that should be enough food.  I'm sure it will be more than enough, but some of the people from church may come too, so we want to have plenty, and I love to cook.

I hope that all of you have a wonderful Easter.  Does your family have any traditions for Easter? I, also, hope that each of you feels the hope of the rebirth that Easter brings to us today. May God's love eternally bless you.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

I Was Torn

I was torn on what to write about today, but not as bad as these guy's pants.  Honestly, I had no idea what to write about today, so I decided on a pun instead.  I love puns.  By the way, the picture below is of actor Matt Lanter, who it appears does not wear underwear.  I find that pretty sexy.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Lament on Shaving

First of all, I love a man who keeps his body hair natural, or at least trimmed.  A hairless man can be very sexy, but I prefer a little fur.  I can handle, and actually quite prefer, a shaved scrotum, but please leave the bush alone, except maybe for a minor trim if it looks like a jungle down there.  The only men who look remotely okay like that are muscular men without any body fat at all.  The truth is though I find pubic hair very sexy.  I find chest hair very sexy.  I even find a furry butt to be sexy.  My thought is that manscaping can be okay in moderation, but too much can just end up looking silly.

With that being said, I despise shaving my face every morning.  I don't look good with scruff and it feels so weird to me.  Now I will admit there are a lot of men that look very good with a beard or scruff.  I know one friend of mine who looks pretty damn sexy with some scruff.  Since I don't, I shave everyday, unless I am not planning to go anywhere or do anything.  Very rarely do I leave the house without shaving.  I've also never liked using an electric razor, so I shave the old fashioned way like in the picture above.  And as much as I hate shaving, I shave every day.  Sometimes I'm in the shower and think, "Do I have to?"  The answer is always yes.  I could never go to school without shaving.  It would be unthinkable to me.  So as much as I hate it, I still shave every day.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Hope Springs Eternal

       Heav'n from all creatures hides the book of fate,
All but the page prescrib'd, their present state:
From brutes what men, from men what spirits know:
Or who could suffer being here below?
The lamb thy riot dooms to bleed today,
Had he thy reason, would he skip and play?
Pleas'd to the last, he crops the flow'ry food,
And licks the hand just rais'd to shed his blood.
Oh blindness to the future! kindly giv'n,
That each may fill the circle mark'd by Heav'n:
Who sees with equal eye, as God of all,
A hero perish, or a sparrow fall,
Atoms or systems into ruin hurl'd,
And now a bubble burst, and now a world.

       Hope humbly then; with trembling pinions soar;
Wait the great teacher Death; and God adore!
What future bliss, he gives not thee to know,
But gives that hope to be thy blessing now.
Hope springs eternal in the human breast:
Man never is, but always to be blest:
The soul, uneasy and confin'd from home,
Rests and expatiates in a life to come.

       Lo! the poor Indian, whose untutor'd mind
Sees God in clouds, or hears him in the wind;
His soul, proud science never taught to stray
Far as the solar walk, or milky way;
Yet simple nature to his hope has giv'n,
Behind the cloud-topt hill, an humbler heav'n;
Some safer world in depth of woods embrac'd,
Some happier island in the wat'ry waste,
Where slaves once more their native land behold,
No fiends torment, no Christians thirst for gold.
To be, contents his natural desire,
He asks no angel's wing, no seraph's fire;
But thinks, admitted to that equal sky,
His faithful dog shall bear him company.

The above poem is merely a section of a much longer poem, "An Essay on Man" by Alexander Pope.  Line 19 is probably the most famous and oft quoted piece of Pope's writing, "Hope springs eternal in the human breast."  

The phrase "Hope springs eternal" is what drew me to this poem.  I think it is a great illustration of the sheer tenacity of the human spirit.  It tells us that it is human nature to always find fresh cause for optimism.  Yes, there are those who are always pessimistic, or often pessimistic, but for those who choose optimism there are many more opportunities.  As long as you have faith that you will persevere and and hope for a better tomorrow, hope will spring eternal.  Pope’s “Hope springs eternal in the human breast” does not just encompass one single individual but instead is a concise treatise on the human condition.

The essence of hope itself is that wonderful blessing/curse that truly makes human beings the most intelligent and emotional creature that we are.  Its existence provides us with the very basis of living.  What does our existence amount to without the hope for a better tomorrow or expectation of things to come?

Hope is a wonderful thing.  Each morning we are filled with hope for the day.  But then also at the end of the day, hope can be a devastating thing.  For example, you spent all day hoping that your beloved would phone as he promised you but as you lay your head on your pillow, you are left with the emptiness of an unrealized hope.  However, we merely need to renew our hope for the next day and the day after.  We should never lose hope.

I was speaking to a friend last night of the hope of finding a man in my life.  I refuse to give up on that hope.  I believe that someday it will happen.  It is that hope/expectations that truly differentiates humans from the animal world around us.  For what is a life without hope?

About the Poem
The Essay on Man is a philosophical poem, written, characteristically, in heroic couplets, and published between 1732 and 1734. Pope intended it as the centerpiece of a proposed system of ethics to be put forth in poetic form: it is in fact a fragment of a larger work which Pope planned but did not live to complete. It is an attempt to justify, as Milton had attempted to vindicate, the ways of God to Man, and a warning that man himself is not, as, in his pride, he seems to believe, the center of all things. Though not explicitly Christian, the Essay makes the implicit assumption that man is fallen and unregenerate, and that he must seek his own salvation.

The "Essay" consists of four epistles, addressed to Lord Bolingbroke, and derived, to some extent, from some of Bolingbroke's own fragmentary philosophical writings, as well as from ideas expressed by the deistic third Earl of Shaftsbury. Pope sets out to demonstrate that no matter how imperfect, complex, inscrutable, and disturbingly full of evil the Universe may appear to be, it does function in a rational fashion, according to natural laws; and is, in fact, considered as a whole, a perfect work of God. It appears imperfect to us only because our perceptions are limited by our feeble moral and intellectual capacity.

Epistle I, which the above poem is from, concerns itself with the nature of man and with his place in the universe; Epistle II, with man as an individual; Epistle III, with man in relation to human society, to the political and social hierarchies; and Epistle IV, with man's pursuit of happiness in this world.  Considered as a whole, the Essay on Man is an affirmative poem of faith: life seems chaotic and patternless to man when he is in the midst of it, but is in fact a coherent portion of a divinely ordered plan. In Pope's world God exists, and he is beneficent: his universe is an ordered place. The limited intellect of man can perceive only a tiny portion of this order, and can experience only partial truths, and hence must rely on hope, which leads to faith. Man must be cognizant of his rather insignificant position in the grand scheme of things: those things which he covets most — riches, power, fame — prove to be worthless in the greater context of which he is only dimly aware. In his place, it is man's duty to strive to be good, even if he is doomed, because of his inherent frailty, to fail in his attempt.

Monday, April 14, 2014


I have come to believe that a great teacher is a great artist and that there are as few as there are any other great artists. Teaching might even be the greatest of the arts since the medium is the human mind and spirit.
John Steinbeck

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Do Not Be Anxious

    "Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

   "Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."

Matthew 6:25-34

Sadly, life is filled with anxiousness.  No matter how much we try to avoid it, there is always something to worry about.  For me the week before last, it was our drama club production and would everything go well.  This last week brought a whole new set of worries.  Would I ever figure out how to make this DVD of the play?  Would my friend forgive me for the miscommunication we had?  But those were trivial worries.  I had a bad week, but it turned out well in the end.  My friend forgave me; I figured out how to make he DVD; and the play was a success.  I had faith that all would be okay and things would work out, but yet I was still anxious over these things.

Truthfully, my worries are trivial in comparison to many of the issues that friends of mine face.  I have a friend that was laid off from his job unexpectedly.  I also have a friend who's boyfriend suddenly wanted a break, but won't explain why.  I have another friend who began dialysis a few weeks ago and is expecting to go back to work tomorrow, and I hope he has recovered from his surgery and is doing well with his dialysis treatments.  I have another who recently lost her best friend.  I am anxious about them and want to do all that I can to help, but there is not much I can do right now but lend my support and prayers.

I have another friend who has pancreatic cancer and is going through another round of chemotherapy. She has survived longer than anyone had ever expected her to, and yet she still comes to work and teaches each day.  She is the most inspirational person I have ever known.  She never complains, and most people don't know just how sick she really is.  Some don't know she is sick at all.  She takes life in stride, and she has put her faith in God and carries on.  Through her, God rewards all who know her, because to know her is to be inspired by her.

When I think of all these worries and all the problems my friends have, and I could name a myriad of other problems, I realize that those who are truly good people, even those who are either not devout Christians or are not Christians at all, will have their reward and be taken care of.  I believe in a universal good, for me that is God, for others it is something else, and for others it does not have a name, but it's that force of universal good that provides for us.  There is the saying that good guys come in last, but truthfully, though the good guys may have hard times, they always come in first, because it is the reward in the hereafter that is the true reward.

My mother is often a miserable person. (I love her dearly so let me explain what I mean by that.). She suffers from depression and fibromyalgia.  She's in constant pain and she worries about everything, including the state of her gay son's soul.  It weighs heavily on her mind, and she can't let it go.  She's known for ten years now but cannot reconcile the thought.  I'm not sure she ever will.  We keep our "don't ask, don't tell, don't bring it up" policy and it works as a weary peace, yet it still bothers her on a daily basis.  With her problems and worries, and like I said, she's always worried about something, she would be so much better off of she just put her faith in God and let him sort out the mess.

For most of my life, I have been a worrier like she is, but I made a change in my life.  I realized that some things you just can't prevent happening.  They are going to happen, and there is nothing you can do about it.  Some of those things will be wonderful, some won't be.  However, I put my faith in God that things would work out for the best, that it would work out the way God intended. As long as I had faith that God had a plan for me, and that sometimes that plan included bumps along the way, I would not worry so much.  I simply put my faith in God.  The same thing happened when I came out to myself as a gay man.  I prayed and I meditated on the issue, and I firmly believe that God let me know that it was okay, that he loves me no matter what, and that it was all part of his plan. I firmly believe that being a gay man is part of God's plan for me.  Though it may sound cliche in the gay community now, it does get better.  If God had wanted to give up on me, he would have when I attempted suicide at age 16, but he had greater plans. I do my best to live up to His expectations.

So whatever your worries may be, whatever bumps in the road of life you may be facing, please remember that God has a plan for each of us.  We need to pray that we follow his plan, and have faith that all will work out the way that God intended.  I have had hard times in my life, but God has never failed to get me through them.  He won't fail to get you through the tough times either. 

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Moment of Zen: Forgiveness

My friend did find it in his heart to forgive me.  All of the things I was stressing about on Thursday turned out pretty well Friday. So, even though it's been a rather crappy week, the weekend is shaping up to be much better.

Friday, April 11, 2014

I'd Rather...

I'd rather just stay in bed and not have to face the world today, but hopefully, it will be a better day today.  I have some hope that I may be forgiven.  That's what great friends do, they support each other and forgive one another when one messes up.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

F***ing Tired

Nothing, not one damn thing seemed to go right today.  The most important thing was that I hurt a friend by accident.  I was an insensitive ass, and I didn't even realize it until it was too late.  It's one of my great character flaws.  For the past few weeks, I have been pulled in a dozen different directions and trying to juggling so many things at once.  And I'm just fucking tired of it.  I'm tired of being angry at people for not doing things like they are supposed to (or the way I think hey should be done--I can be a bit of a control freak at times).  I'm tired of being angry at the world and accidentally taking it out on others.  I'm tired of not being sensitive enough for my friends because I can't juggle everything at once, when there are certain people who I want to be my sole focus, even if they live so far away. And when one of those people really needed me today, I wasn't there for him and it tears me up inside.

I think I was too focused on other things that were going wrong with my day, which is not an excuse.  I'm trying to teach my classes and create a DVD of the recording of the play we did, but when I tried to purchase the software to make the DVD, they won't accept my payment.  First my bank rejected it thinking it was a fraudulent purchase, and after I got that straightened out, now the software company won't take a payment from me at all.  The thing is that I really liked this software.  I have looked at several different programs to use, but all of them are either very difficult for me the figure out, or I'm unable to purchase the software, or they are a crappy software that won't work with the videos, or it's one of the numerous other problems I've run into trying to make this DVD.  (If anyone has a suggestion for a DVD creator, please let me know.  I'd greatly appreciate it.)

Then after staying after school late to figure the DVD shit out (after dealing with uncaring students all day), I get home to find out three other bad pieces of news.  First, I'd hurt my friend more than I thought, and I can only beg for forgiveness.  Second, I was supposed to go to a concert on Saturday, but it's been cancelled because the large amounts of rain we've received recently has flooded the amphitheater.  The concert has been postponed until May 3.  Not that bad of a problem but the person I was going with will be out of state and can't go on the rescheduled date.  Then I find out that I'm being told since I'm not going to the concert that I have to attend a wedding shower, and my family is mad at me because I said that I would not go.  I've had so much going on the last few weeks, that if I'm not going to the concert, I refuse to do a damn thing on Saturday.

I apologize for the harsher tone and language of this post, but I'm just so angry and frustrated and tired right now, I can either scream or cry or both.  So I needed a ranting post.  I feel like such a shitty person right now, and I feel sorry for anyone who gets in my way.  I tend to get angry and lash out when I am so frustrated.  Therefore,  I am going to post this now, get it off my chest, stay in my bedroom, and try to relax.  I hope tomorrow is a better day.  If I calm down enough to write a post for tomorrow, then I will do so, but one of two things are going to happen, if I don't wrote a post, I may just post a picture.

I just hope things get better and my friend finds it in his heart to forgive me, not to mention the friends I need to email that I haven't in the last few weeks because I have been so busy.  I also hope that my frustration level decreases.  It really needs to, and I just need to calm down and quit being frustrated with myself.