Monday, October 17, 2011

It Was All About The Sex

 he said “I’ll Call you”.
As I turned over in my queen size bed partially covered with the scent of him, I knew that call would not come. I can still hear the echo of his footsteps followed by the creak in the door swing shut all these years later. 
And why?

Because I felt like a god damn fool, an idiot, a used piece of chewing gum spit out for a new flavor. I thought his smooth words and attractive eyes were sincere; I thought the way he touched me was for me and not just to get me. He said the right things, made all the right moves, even pretended to listen to my heart. But you see, he was a playa in a game that I never read the instructions to. All these years later I now realize how easy it should’ve all been to figure out. 


I was a piece of ass and it didn’t feel good when you didn’t sign up for a one night stand. I’m not even going to say it’s a gay thing or man thing because I’m sure we’ve all experienced it. It was all about that sex that night. He called me and politely asked me to dinner. We met, caught a movie and I cringed as his hand touched mine because I wasn’t use to the affection in public. But at the same time I melted because it was a moment I wanted.
The movie ended and there we were back at my place. I was shy and he made me feel comfortable with just his smile. A kiss led to more and although in my head I knew it wasn’t smart to go further, my body did the talking that night. And you know what? I thought the night would lead to many even though deep inside I felt I was probably one of many that he romanced and seduced and left laying in a half made bed of sweat.

And I turned out to be right. He was the first that I experienced that within the gay world and he sure wasn’t the last. You really can’t see it coming no matter how much you shield yourself. But I’ve learned that if it’s going to be just about sex, then I will get mine too. The gay world is lonely enough without being left behind.

“Tee, Is that you”, he said years later in a dark club.

I looked and said “Yes”. He looked at the muscles on my body and the new confidence I had and said “You look great”. I nodded and walked past. He tried the rest of the night to get my attention. But I pretended not to notice and ignored him like he ignored my heart. A friend asked me who he was and as he walked behind me, I said in a loud voice.

“Oh just some guy who was lousy in bed, it was just about the sex”.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Some Say Love...

"Written Before I Found Love Again"

I still remember…love.

I remember all the possible feelings of being cuddled in another’s arms; the soft caress of eyes interlocked for moments of eternity. I remember the aroma that lingers when love fills the air like the breath of a warm rain ready to shower the earth with radiance. There was once a time I thought love was a myth. I was a young teenager waltzing in a maze of my own imagination just feeling like I would never find that feeling of magic. I learned love was like a dream but no one ever taught me the many personalities of love. As I’ve grown and continue to grow I’ve learned that love is not just that magical feeling two lovers orchestrate on mountains of passion, love is also inhaling the tears and moments of sickness. Love is standing by someone when they are at their weakness and love is about letting go. Some say love creates those moments of healing and self-renewal and I say love is the lead vocal in this song called life.
One night I stood in a crowded club watching like I tend to do. I saw two younger men who found each other in that same club. They were introduced by circumstance and took a chance by allowing their hearts to dance. I thought to myself how happy they looked and I was happy for them. Every time their smile gazed into each other’s eyes, there was electricity that filled the air. They were creating a music that symphonized throughout the night. I remembered that moment as my own, right there, in that very club and it made me once again yearn for the warmth of just having another soul think about you that way. I missed the comfort of another’s heartbeat vibrating throughout my own body and that night as I watched these two lovers I wondered about their journey and if they would be able to survive the obstacles and if they would still look at each other with that mesmerism once flaws were exposed. Some say love is limitless when it is unconditional. I watched love grow that night.

On the same night I continued to voyeur this new connection. I watched them hold each other and interact with friends. They were like magnets always finding their way back to one another. This was something refreshing in the gay community; it was a magnetism I once had but had given up on because a lot of men just want that one night stand or that one time claim to your heart. As the night went on I took my eyes off the couple and focused on my own enjoyment which just led me to get drunk off of memories of what I had and I leaned against the bar just wondering why so quickly did love yank its claws out of me without warning. Some say love strikes you when you least expect so I guess it can go both ways. Some say love can only exist between a man and a woman but everyday someone is proving that wrong. Somewhere two women are laying on a couch dozing off in to each other’s minds and somewhere two men are sitting on a porch watching the stars align in the shape of their hearts. Somewhere the love I once had is thinking about me as I think about him and before me that night two young lovers were exercising their love into a new strength. Some say this love is a sin but how can it be wrong when it is so beautiful when it just feels right.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan
Diary Of A Gay Black Man

Saturday, May 14, 2011


There are many fears in the world and everyone is afraid of something. Sometimes we don’t realize our own fears until we are faced with them. A co-worker screams suddenly and intensely every time she spots a spider; this is her arachnophobia: a phobia that many people besides her have, but a phobia that can be overcome through more exposure to spiders and that can be the case for many of our fears. As a child and into my early adulthood I was afraid of my own image in the mirror which is something they call Eisoptrophobia; something I never heard of but after realizing what exactly it was I understood my own fear. Time has healed me, seeing myself and loving myself more has healed me although there are still times I don’t like seeing images of myself. And I’ve heard of fear of heights, animals, the outdoors but I never thought or realized there were people with a fear of me.
Homophobia: The fear of homosexuality or fear of being homosexual.

Where do I begin here but to say I use to have the fear of being gay myself. When I started to realize the possibility, I decided I wanted to hide it or hoped it was just a phrase. Overtime I realized I was hiding who I was out of fear of society’s view on me. Not sure what they would call that kind of phobia. But I and so many others suffered from it. In fact I know many who still do. Homophobia is indeed a fear but it more is defined as hatred or is it cowardice? To an extent I can understand how hard it can be to accept difference, especially when there is a lack of knowledge or exposure to that difference. Isn’t that where we get many of these phobias? Times are getting better though as people are becoming more open minded and accepting but of course the more things change the more things stay the same. Homophobia isn’t cool these days so I find that it’s hidden as is racism or any other prejudice out there. But there is still small mindedness rampant out there.

Some people have a fear of thinking…(for themselves) called phronemophobia and a fear of knowledge called gnogiophobia. Yes, there’s a name for all kinds of fear. And I actually think homophobia contains both of those fears. An openness to think and openness to knowledge when it comes to those we see as difference. And when there are differences even within that subgroup we really have to open ourselves up to understanding or attempting to. Homophobia is something that more pisses me off than hurts me as an individual because if your content with yourself then there is no need to try to make someone else feel small or “Queer” for not being like you. And I’m going to say this as I know some are homophobic when it comes to my blogs (this one in particular). There is no worst phobia out there than the fear of yourself. Think about that.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


Hidden no longer, I now know the path constructed for my being. I’ve grown to define myself for who I am and not what I am. I use to wake up every day with one challenge awaiting me and that was my blackness. I was a little boy often wondering if my skin color would put me at a disadvantage until the day I said to the world “deal with it.” Then I use to wake up with two challenges ahead of me, one being not to be seen for my skin color and the other one being my homosexuality. I couldn’t escape my blackness because it was there for the world to see, but I could hide my homosexuality because I simply didn’t look, act or even talk like what most believed was gay. I hid it well and in fact would’ve easily settled on staying hidden if indeed I wanted to live myself for everyone else. So I walk many streets with my head held high showing closed minded eyes that what they think and believe is not written in the concrete I walk upon. I walk showing them that it is I who create footprints of pride and self-confidence. So go ahead, call me a HOMO.
Oppressed no longer, I have found my voice. No longer am I afraid to tell the story of me. I use to sit on park benches and hear racial slurs yelled my way, and as a child I was afraid to speak back. I sat quiet in crowds of homophobic attitudes, afraid to feel their wrath. But I realized it was my actions that did all the talking. Not allowing others to break me with words made me invincible. I am still showing the world that I am not a nigger or faggot but an influence that will lead by example and flourish with intelligence. So go ahead, call me a HOMO.

Mocked no longer, I am proud to be me. I’ve sat on curbs of defeat afraid to life my head to the world. I didn’t want everyone around me to see me as different or a disappointment. I can still hear laughter echoing in shallow halls of uneducated minds and for so long I allowed those echoes to vibrate through my soul. But one day I decided that laughter was music to my ears and my motivation to be all I was meant to be including my homosexuality. I was told I lived the life of sin, but I often wondered what was so sinful about loving another. If people shall judge me without knowing the many qualities of me, then I don’t need those individuals centered in my world. I will articulate and express with self content. So go right ahead, call me a HOMO.
Ostracized no longer, I stand among many men and women who were told who they are were shameful. I’ve marched through oceans of hatred, never drowning and never sinking. Everyone is different in their own way and everyone is disliked by someone for a reason outside of their control. Never allow who you are be influenced by another’s opinion of who you should be. I was dealt the cards of being black and gay in the game of life and I don’t plan on leaving the poker table as have many in other situations. Stand tall and believe in you, because that’s how high I’m standing. If I offend you by being me, then the problem lies within you. Shout it loud, call me a HOMO.

© 2008
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Sometimes, I

Sometimes I look for balance.

I look for balance in a world that doesn’t want to hear my heart…completely. There are times where I feel like I’m falling with no support and no one to reach out their hands to catch me. I hear the hatred, I feel the stares, I smell the fear and although it’s not all intended for me as an individual, I still experience the pain. Each man and woman who lives this experience and celebration called Homosexuality share that renewal of feeling alone in a crowded room. Yes, I did call it a celebration because those of us who embrace who we are pave a path full of new views in the minds of those who don’t understand or not willing to sacrifice a piece of their hearts to accept. But, you know, sometimes I wonder if I didn’t embrace the wholeness of me; I wonder where I would be in this world if I stayed hidden behind layers of shame and hidden deep in a closet of emotional suffocation. Would I find that balance?

Overall, I’ve been lucky. I’ve had co-workers, friends and family accept who I am. Even those who chose not to acknowledge it show me a respect by not turning their backs and hearts on me. I’ve always told myself that it would be their loss if they did and it would be, but it would hurt inside and I can honestly tell you that I don’t know how I would be able to handle it. There is no amount of strength that can cure the disappointment of having the ties of natural love unknotted. There is no amount of pride that can withhold being looked at through familiar eyes with disgust. Yet, there are many out there who have to live with this emptiness and unfortunately many who have taken their own lives because of this same emptiness. Why can’t life give them that same balance to stand strong and tall on a tightrope constantly in the vibration of non-acceptance. Sometimes I wish this world was different but most of the time I know it needs to stay this way we can all grew stronger in some way. I guess what I’m trying to say is that if the world was perfect we wouldn’t need a reason for healing and growing.

Sometimes I think, when the world is not breathing, why life plays tic-tac-toe with many of us. The X’s and O’s don’t always balance out because those X’s are the challenges thrown our way consecutively and those who are not strong enough lose instantly or feel like giving up. There was an eleven year old from my town who couldn’t take it anymore because he was teased for being gay and feminine and there was a college student from Rutgers University who couldn’t take it anymore because he couldn’t live with the embarrassment present and orchestrated by others. They were already born with an X and so was I. Sometimes I just wonder if we’d ever be equal participants in this game called life.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Stages Of Attraction

“You are Hot! Are you kidding me” said an older gentleman not so long ago at a club.

 It was from a man who followed me around and complimented me all night long. It wasn’t that I didn’t appreciate the compliments; it was that I didn’t know how to react to them other than to point out what I believed were my physical flaws. The sixteen year old boy in me wouldn’t let this thirty-two year old man he became recognize his own attraction. Bald head, goatee, loop gold earrings on each ear, tight tee shirt exposing the results of working out four to five days a week was what this older man was seeing, but my own eyes only saw that lanky, curly haired boy in the reflection of my own memory. I wasn’t a poster boy of confidence, hell didn’t even come close. Girls didn’t show me any attention; I was too shy and hidden in my own ugliness to even recognize if they tried. But I realized as I hit my twenties that my own view of attraction played a large part in finding myself unattractive. Society plays a big role in our stages of attraction.

The funny part about my experience in that club was that it was the very club I used to go to a few years ago when I wasn’t so muscular or gave any sign of confidence. I was often left standing there while my friends go all the attention. The tall muscular Italian stud in Bob was attraction, the light skinned Jason who had the distinct Latin features was attraction. Attraction wasn’t me. Sure I had many of the “your cutes” but I had no one drooling over me. I found myself standing in a familiar position when I first started going out to gay clubs, the position of being in the background rarely recognized. I don’t believe that’s simply a gay thing, it’s pretty much all of society. But it was so much more evident as I begin to see the type of men guys would flock to and trip over their feet for. I couldn’t even imagine how it felt to stand in my friends shoes.

I refused to change for anyone except myself. One day I sat in my apartment after a night out with echoes of a guy telling me that I needed to lose my belly as if I didn’t know that myself. It wasn’t as much hurtful as it was a reminder to myself that I wasn’t taking care of myself and fulfilling my own happiness. That guy became my motivation of dedication in becoming that person I kept hidden. I exhorted a shyness when I went out or around certain people that made me seem like a bore or uninterested. I wore baggy clothes and layers and stood with my arms closed which made me seem unapproachable. And I didn’t exhibit any confidence making me an easy target for ridicule. I knew there had to be a change in myself and those changes begin to happen the more I felt good about myself.

Now I can enter a club or any environment and be the focus of attention from both men and women. It feels good but it’s not really an attention I welcome. Just like I wasn’t seen for who I was on the inside as a teen and in my twenties, I wasn’t being seen for who I was as a thirty something year old guy considered to be hot. It was all the about looks and attraction that determined who talked to you but it was all really the same, there was still a loneliness. I became too cautious in wondering why people talked to me that I still wasn’t social until someone pointed out to me one day that I seemed to exert more confidence and seemed way more approachable. Now I go out and I actually talk to people and the confidence shows which make me more attractive. People get to see that I’m not a bore, but a funny person; they see my heart and enjoy conversation although I’m very soft spoken. I made quite the transformation in just a few years but it feels good because I did it for myself. Attraction is going to vary from person to person but no one is going to love you until and unless you love yourself.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Half Sip Of Cognac

I never liked the taste of lies,

like a half sip of cognac they are tough to swallow.

So I should’ve known better than to trust a man who couldn’t look me in the eyes. I should’ve known better than to believe in him after my intuition told me that he wasn’t any good. We meet on a warm summer night about six years ago and hit it off right away even enough to share some beers and a couple shots of Hennessy over a few games of pool. I didn’t even like Hennessey but this guy had a smooth way of talking people into things. He had a convincing way about his actions but one thing I quickly noticed was his eyes would never meet mine. But I was new to the scene and vulnerable at that time because I was in search of friends in this new world and I wanted to take a sip of perhaps something more; I wanted to taste what intimacy was like on a deeper level. Despite the lack of eye contact we became quick close friends and even explored romance until the warning from others came. I was told not to trust that damn fool but once again he was convincing enough for me to take his words over people I barely knew. And what he convinced me of was that “fags” were envious and just a bunch of gossip queens. I had just enough experience during that time to buy into it.
Sometimes you have to take in a little of the false to get a whole lot of the truth.

Over time he became my roommate and the true colors started to show. I instantly knew I made a mistake but still wanted to believe in him. He lost his job so he said but claimed as a Car dealer he could find another job whenever he wanted. He was a quick talker and a master of bullshit if you tell me and he played the role with an Oscar winning performance. Enough that mutual friends begin believing that I was the one treating him like a pair of raggedy ole sneakers tossed over a telephone line. They started to believe I was making his world miserable. Seriously that’s how good he was. And all the while I had received bad rent checks and bills unpaid to go along with a whole bunch of stress I thought I was too young to die from but it was killing me. Living in my own apartment for that period of time with someone I bonded with over shots of cognac because a miserable time for me. And to think I never liked the taste of lies but I was taking sips of it daily until one day I came home and all of his stuff along with his deceit was gone and never heard from again. And then after all the stories and signs I should’ve seen stood clear in my mind. It definitely was a learning experience for me at a young age of independence. It was a defining period in my maturity level and a reason why a half sip of cognac goes down much smoother than a full shot of lies.

© 2010

Tarringo T. Vaughan

Diary Of A Gay Black Man