2 Weeks Under The Texas Sun

I’m been meaning to post this for a month now, so I apologize for the delay. You’ll see why soon enough…

As many of y’all know, I made a recent trip home to visit family and friends in the Great State of Texas. I’d you’re new troop my lil corner of cyberspace, Welcome and Yes, I am originally from Texas. Not just Texas in general, but the part where they like to be called  South Texas. A lil history, grew up in a small town, then a population of a lil more than 21,000, with a family farm where I spent the majority of my life being about 15-20 mins out of town. We lived about a mile or 2 off the main highway and at least 10 mins to the nearest convenience store / gas station.

Ok now that you got a lil picture of my upbringing, I had originally planned to make a trip home for a family reunion over the 4th of July weekend,  A few months before I book my travel my mother informs me of a second reunion the following weekend.  So, I make the appropriate plans to stay in my hometown of Kingsville, TX from the 1st til the 17th. A llllllloooonnnng time since I haven’t made the trip home in nearly 3 years.  When I first moved to LA I tried to go home at least once a year, but for the past few years money has been really tight and simply couldn’t afford the trip. So ya, here I start to prepare myself for the boredom and not to mention the humid Texas summer heat. Well, a week or two after I booked the flight, and reserved my rental car, I get a call from mom to say that the second reunion was cancelled due to a tornado that came thru town. Needless to say I was mortified, first to hear about a tornado ripping thru my lil hometown, then the thought of my plans were now ruined. What was I going to do? Especially now that I had even more free time to steam under the Texas Sun in a town I had out grown many years ago.

I get on my phone and the fabulous social media websites we love such as Facebook, Skype and Google Chat and look up my old friends. I was relieved to be able to keep in touch over the years and with the help of my childhood friends plan to split the time between my hometown when a few trips into Corpus Christi and my previous home before LA, San Antonio. Corpus Christi is about 45 mins to and hour from mom’s house in Kingsville. (A lil side note, many know Corpus as the home of the famous Selena, or as the movie put it Selenas.) Living in LA that’s a normal daily commute for most, but back home people travel that far once a week or less. 
I’m in Corpus Christi / Kingsville reconnecting with family and friends I haven’t seen in years,  some since before I left to the Army, right after Highschool, while others I hadn’t seen in a few years, and some we stay in not so moderate communication. One thing I learned while home was mom still is seeing her “friend” and now lives with him and the guys father, has finally left being a slave for Wal-Mart, however recently became one for another giant corporation, McDonald’s. I’m sorry, but I simply am not happy about that, not one bit. She claims to be doing alright, but I’m worried beyond belief about her well-being.

Fast forward 10 days of spending it at mom’s house with her and the “roommates” and I’m off to spend the last week of my trip in San Antonio, catching up with a few long time friends from when I used to call the Alamo / River City home. I got to spend most of this time catching up with my besties Vanessa and Andres. Even talked briefly with Andres about the possibility of moving back home to TX some day. He even offered to let me stay on his ranch, just a few miles outside San Antonio, ’till I got established. One big perk is he also is a dog trainer, so I’ll have access to his pack of dogs which is a big plus since I loved spending time with them while he was at work. See my facebook page for their pictures.

The afternoon of the 17th, I started my travels back home to LA. On the plane, in the airport and for a few weeks I pondered this trip and evaluated it from nearly every angle I could think of. And I have come to the conclusion that I am going to have to return back to TX to help take care of mom. I really don’t have anything other than my volunteer work holding me here and I can still do that from there and commute every month or so for board meetings and events.  Definitely got to fulfill my obligations with LA Leather Pride.

So,  it’s official. I know what some of you are saying…  “Didn’t you say a few months ago that, LA is home and you will never leave.” Yes, that statement is still true and I do consider LA my second home. However, I am Momma’s baby boy, and I feel I have some business to take care of back home in Texas. When will this all happen? Not sure to say, but sometime within the next few months. One thing’s for sure I want to be home by the early part of 2017, at the latest. First, I have some obligations and responsibilities that I would like to complete and/or pass on to a capable person. At least during my tenure with the LA Leather Coalition, I will be commuting to LA to remain an active member of the Board and to remain active with the planning for LA Leather Pride. This will also allow me to keep some participation with other groups such as ONYX, the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and AVER. I will of course be stepping down at the end of this year as President of the AVER’s Greater LA Chapter, only completing one year of the current term, sadly I feel it is only fair. The President is a extremely active role and I can’t do that from Texas, commuting or remotely. It wouldn’t be right, so sadly I informed their Board of my intentions to step down, effective Dec 31,2016. I’m wishing them well and will be a phone call away if they need my help, while they use this time to revitalize and restructure the group. I definitely don’t see them going away with my departure. LA has many LGBT Veterans and AVER is the only organization to represent them in the region, and currently the only active chapter on the West Coast. I’m not going to transfer to the Texas Chapter for AVER or the San Antonio Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence right away as I’m going to try and stay active from afar as long as possible. Eventually I will transfer to their respective local Chapters. 

So there you have it, my Two Weeks Under The Texas Sun has changed my life. You can say it is for the best, since I’m going to be closer to mom in this tough time. You can say it face me the fever. How long will this move be for? Not sure, could be for a few years to get mom in a comfortable place, or could be permanent. I’m leaving that to the universe. To be quite honest, I’m terrified. I know it will be some getting used to, especially since I’m accustomed to the luxuries and perks of living in a big metropolitan, like LA. But, I’m sure all will be fine and I’m get accustomed to living amongst gun toting Republicans in no time.

Now that children is something I’ll leave for another time. I grew up around guns however then have new “open carry” laws in Texas. Come back for story time, and we’ll discuss that topic there. Until next time, peace & love to you all!

Thoughts on the Metro – 10 Sept 2015

Now that I’m using the Metro again to get around I can’t help but use the time to sit in somewhat quiet, especially if I’m using my headphones, and ponder the great many questions about life.  This morning was nothing different, given I was half asleep and we got stuck in the tunnel on the East LA extension of the Gold Line.

With the upcoming LGBT Veteran Event I’m producing at Patriotic Hall, I have many things going on upstairs and have difficulty concentrating on anything for any extended period with out my mind drifting over to the planning and coordination of the event. If you have no clue what ever I’m referring to,  please visit http://op-dadt.aver-gla.org and educate yourself.

Any who,  between thinking about if certain political leaders have confirmed attendance and where I will be placing the many service providers,  I took a moment to enjoy the scenery. And did I ever…. There was this stocky Latino standing across from me, and this guy was a looker. I found myself studying him,  the way he was dressed,  how his head was freshly shaved, the artwork and possible meaning behind his tatts, how he carried himself,  how he walked across the platform,  how he shifted his weight when standing. OK,  I’ll admit I was starring, but I tried not to make it overtly obvious that I was.  I tried to camflauge my stares by looking down at my phone.  And, I ask you what would you be doing in my shoes?

I bring this up cause I finally came to the realization that this is the “type” of guy that gets my attention and I find the most attractive.  I know, how cliche…  Listen up,  I have dated many “types” and races, even sexes… And no not just a typical man and woman,  I’ll let that fester for a min………… When I’m asked what is my “type” I always say,  I don’t have one and that I like all kinds of guys, but at times Latin guys get my attention most of all.

So,  this morning while being stuck in the tunnel I came to realize that I truly have a infatuation, you can say with Latinos. Not just any Latinos, I like the “type” of guy that looks unapproachable, but is a giant teddy bear,  the guy with a shaved head or a very tight fade,  dark brown skin and tattoos. Tattoos and modest body jewelry make any man extra attractive in my book. For the most part, it has to be tasteful and public friendly. Sometimes the gang tatts make me wanna sit on the guy’s face…  OMG, did that just come out? Sorry Mom, I know you’re probably reading this. I’m just being candid and honest. Hell, this my personal blog, and if you’re a new reader thanks for checking me out. Consider yourself warned that there will be times were I throw caution to the wind and let you have it!

Well there you have it,  that’s what I like,  and upon  reflection has been the “type” of guy I have dated or even been with the past few years…  If you find this type to be scary or is a trouble maker, that is not always the case.  I have found that every “type” has its problems, you have to be willing to give everyone at least a chance, you never know what may be right in front of you. I will close on this thought, my “type” of man has proven to have been the best provider and caretaker, and one hell of a lover! 😜

#LoveWins

Today will definitely be a day I will remember. I witnessed the decision of the US Supreme Court that Marriage Equality is now legal in all 50 States. Since moving to California in 2007 I have seen much change that impact my community. I first witnessed Marriage Equality in CA, only to have it taken away by the electorate a few months later. Then came the Repeal of DADT, then Marriage Equality again in CA along with the finding of DOMA as unconstitutional. I even witnessed my home State of Texas, fight a legal battle to limit my rights if i ever chose to move back home, all because I am an openly gay man. I put my live on the line by going to war for this country to be kicked out of the Military for loving a man, and then to be told I am a second-class citizen for the same reason. However, today I am overwhelmed with joy that my rights and freedoms are restored. That someday, hopefully soon, I can share in the happiness of marrying the man I love, just like every other citizen. That in the eyes of the Federal Government and each of the 50 States, I am to never be seen as a second-class citizen.

The fight in not over! Until my fellow LGBT Brothers and Sisters are afforded full and equal status, and treatment by the VA, DOD and other government agencies & communities, the work for Equality must go on. Today is a day of celebration on this victory. AVER and myself will keep watch to make sure that full equality comes and is never taken away.

Earlier today i wrote the official Statement for AVER-GLA congratulating my fellow Brothers and Sisters on our Marriage Equality Victory. The full text can be found here.


marriage-equality-constitutionThis morning marked a monumentous milestone in the history of LGBT Equality. The US Supreme Court issued a landmark decision on Marriage Equality yet again in the OBERGEFELL v HODGES (No. 14-556)  stating that it is unconstitutional to ban marriage to same-sex couples and cited the Fourteenth Amendment that no State shall “deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” This 5-4 decision in affect enforces the 2014 U.S v Windsor (No. 12–307) which declared that the Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was unconstitutional. Around the Country, civil liberty groups are celebrating years of fighting to be considered as everyday citizens and not a sub-set of the population. Before today, 37 States had Full Marriage Equality,  leaving 13 with it either banned or had some form of partial recognition. Today’s decision affirmed two important issues, 1. “The Fourteenth Amendment requires a State to license a marriage between two people of the same sex”  and 2. “to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-State.”  Meaning just that, anyone who wishes to marry the person they love can do so in any of the 50 States, and the marriage must be recognized by another state if the couple happens to move around the country. This freedom and right has been afford to opposite-sex couples going back to the start of our Great Country.

Rally GraphicAVER-GLA is proud to be on the forefront of history and witness Marriage Equality not only in our home State of California, but the entire United States of America. Please join us this evening as we gather as a community in West Hollywood, for the Marriage Equality: Decision Day Rally at West Hollywood Park, 647 N San Vicente Blvd, West Hollywood, California 90069 from 6p-10p. Similar Celebrations will be held around Southern California, in Pasadena SCOTUS Decision Day Rally at the Metro Gold Line Lake Station at 340 N Lake Ave, Pasadena, California 91101 from 6p-? and in Long Beach Day of Decision Long Beach at the Long Beach Civic Center from 5:30p-7:30p. Other Locations around the Country can be found by visiting www.uniteformarriage.org.

As you can see the earth did not swallow the County whole, the skies did not rain hell fire, the world did not end, the sanctity of marriage was not ruined, the lives of children were not threatened, none of the things that the opposition cited occurred. What did happen is couples who truly loved each other were told that their union is not recognized by the Federal Government as well as each and every state in the US. Very shortly we will see benefits and legal rights that were denied to same-sex couples by various States and Government Agencies be afford to each and every citizen of the United States of America.

Follow the discussion on-line by using these trending hashtags:

#LoveWins | #LoveIsLove | #MarriageEquality

#Equality4All | #EqualityWins | #EqualIsEqual

love_wins

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