28 December, 2005

Boyfriend of the week/month...

Yesterday I went with FBF (Flatmate/Best Friend) and CSL (Crazy Spanish Lady) to see a movie double of 'Narnia - Lion, Witch & Wardrobe' and 'King Kong'. It wasn't actually a double bill - we just decided we wanted to see both films. Quite the movie marathon - nearly 7 hours of viewing pleasure.

I loved both films wholeheartedly - but more importantly, came out of the films with a new boyfriend of the week (in fact, possibly month, as I really like this one. I think he may be a keeper.)

Adrien Brody makes me melt. Literally. He is charming, gorgeous, quirky, tall and has a fantastic voice. So congratulations Adrien. You are my new boyfriend of the week. Or possibly month. Depending on who else comes along.

27 December, 2005

Orphan Christmas

So, yesterday we had our annual "Orphan Christmas", which is basically just for anyone who has no family here in London or the UK to go back to for Christmas. When I first arrived in London all those years ago, I found Christmas really difficult, being so far away from my family. And of course, I still miss them dreadfully at this time of year.

However, our 'Orphan' Christmas is always a hoot. And yesterday I got messages from 3 separate friends who were all at their respective families, saying 'oh I wish I was there for the Orphan Christmas'. The thing is, that Christmas obviously can also be a bit stressful for some people with their families.

By about 10pm last night, there was a hall full of empty champagne bottles, and we were dancing around the flat to Madonna. Perhaps not that traditional - but who cares? We had fucking fabulous festivities.

Highlight of the day:

OBF (Other Best Friend) re-enacting Tracy Ullman's infamous 'hokey pokey' scene from John Waters' "A Dirty Shame". (Faces have been changed to protect the perverted).

21 December, 2005

Is you Madonna?

A friend sent me this link to this new version of Madonna's single Hung Up.

It really is rather fabulous.

19 December, 2005

Spanking, Anyone?

On Friday I went to drinks with a guy who has provided our IT support over the telephone for the last 3 years. He and I had dealt with one another mostly by email, and a little over the phone. Recently he had been fishing out more information about me and once he established I was gay, asked me out. I agreed, and subsequently we exchanged photos.

Upon seeing his photo, I was pretty sure I wasn't going to find him sexually attractive, but thought it would be fine to meet up anyway. I suggested we go to the Tate Modern and do the Henri Rousseau exhibition, and have a drink in the members bar afterwards. It is my typical suggestion if I am meeting someone I don't know very well as it is a gorgeous venue and very familiar to me, so I feel 'safe'.

Anyway - upon seeing him, I was struck by how much of a 'geek' he was. And I don't mean 'geek chic' - he was a geek in the true sense of the word. Now I find geeks quite attractive, so this was a plus for him. It was also possible he was on the autistic spectrum - his hands kept being sent outwards from his body in an awkward fashion, and he walked with a strange gait. He was obviously quite nervous - and definitely shy.

We did the exhibition (pretty average, as an aside) and then went to the bar. After a couple of glasses of wine and some (very, very) small talk - mostly about Macintosh computers and vintage Commodore 64s (this boy works in IT afterall); he suddenly mentioned his partner. I clarified that he was talking about his 'boyfriend' and he confirmed this. Obviously I was comforted considerably by this, as I assumed that this meant I was 'safe' from the "I'm not interested" conversation.

I decided to ask more about his partner, thinking this a safe line for me to take. How wrong I was. It transpired they had met online (which is fine, I have no problem with that), so I asked which website. He told me it was a 'dodgy' one, and when I pushed for the answer, he told me that it was a site for Bondage/S&M.


At this point I probably looked (and certainly felt) completely confused. Here was this shy, autistic, geeky 25 year old telling me he was in to Bondage and S&M. Which again, is no problem - I try not to judge anyone's sexual proclivities; I just didn't expect it. The conversation obviously then took quite a different route... and soon he was telling me that he'd been on an 'Introduction to S&M' course. I kid you not. Here I was telling him about my pyschometric training and he had been on Sadomasochism 101.

Stupidly, my assumption that I was 'safe' (given the fact he had a partner) was not the case. After several more glasses of wine, he said to me: "so, when are we going back to your place to fuck?"

um... NO was my short answer.

17 December, 2005

Tag, I'm IT

Right. Much like playing chasey in school, Blog Crack has tagged me, and therefore I'm IT.

Apparently me being 'IT' means that I have to reveal 5 things my fellow bloggers don't know about me. Here they are:

1. I was a professional ballroom dancer. Yes, in the style of 'Strictly Come Dancing' I started competing in Ballroom and Latin American dancing competitions from the age of 4 (no, really). I now only do the occasional class for fun in London and my muscles scream in agony as a result.

2. I'm starting a degree in psychology in February next year. It will be my second degree, as I made stupid choices the first time around. I'm very excited about it and will start psycho-analysing all of you in the process.

3. I once went to a clairvoyant who mentioned 29 names during the course of the 'reading', and the context in which I either knew these people, or would do. I knew 26 of them, and the other 3 I met the following week.

4. I used to tell all my childhood/adolescent secrets to my cat, who was given to me on my 7th birthday and died when I was 24. I used to whisper the secrets in his ear and then feel better because I had told him. He never told anyone else my secrets.

5. I once snubbed Kylie Minogue in a nightclub, when a friend introduced her as 'a fellow antipodean'.

He has never let me forget this.

16 December, 2005

Promotion, Promotion, (Self) Promotion

Well, I'm pleased to say I am now an accredited user of 'the test' I referred to in my last post. I'm also prepared to say that my cynicism was largely unfounded. The pyschometric test was probably the best I've come across.

That's not to say I still don't have my hesitations around these type of tests - or more the point, those who are implementing them. The major problem (in my opinion) is in the interpretation of the test - for example, the person who was 'feeding back' my test to me, wanted to concentrate on my 'risks' versus my 'strengths'.

Whatever ... just in case any of you are interested... my 'profile' came out as a 'PROMOTER'. A word picture to describe me follows:

* Very outgoing and forthright style
* Quick to speak out and give views
* Goal-oriented and self-promoting
* Thinks imaginatively and broadly
* Can intimidate quieter, less 'up front' people
* May be overwhelming and too rapid

So there you go... I'm basically a pushy, outspoken, overwhelming sales person. Joy.

15 December, 2005

The day I went psycho

As of tomorrow, I am going on a two day training course to become accredited in providing feedback on a particular type of psychometric test. It is a tool we have decided to utilise at work.

To be honest, I am not entirely sure how I feel about psychometric tests. I have actually had to complete this one myself before the training course; and although the tests themselves have been tested and retested to account for variability and reliability - I am still a bit of a doubting Thomas.

For instance... on the day I completed the test myself, I was feeling particularly pissed about the fact that I was having to manage a complete moron (yes, the very same who told me I should be getting myself a gaydar profile) and therefore have no doubt that my responses on the test reflect this.

A statement released by the people who created the test had the following to say about this:

"A person's mood at the time of responding should not have a major effect. The items in (the test) tend to be either historical, behavioural or attitudinal and therefore we would expect such items to be more stable across mood states than items which were, for example, asking for preferences. However, as always, if a respondent reports a major mood problem you should ask if they would prefer to retake the test. Note of course that the tendency to react to mood changes is one of the things that (the test) is measuring through Emotionality." So what constitutes a 'major mood problem'? I seem to have those on a daily basis.

Perhaps I will be more a believer once I get my results? I'll keep you posted.

10 December, 2005

gay 30 something

My new colleague at work told me yesterday that I should get myself a Gaydar profile. Apparently it is 'the only way to find yourself a boyfriend'. It took a lot of restraint not to hit him.

I hate Gaydar. I have tried it (some years ago), and found that most of the guys on there are just looking for sex. I mean, if a guy's main photo is a shot of his cock, you kind of know that he is not looking for a long term relationship. Which is fine, if that is all you want. I don't.

But something in what my colleague said struck a chord. Here I am, at 32 years of age, and at the moment am happily single (for now at least). But what about when that changes? I hardly go out on the gay scene now, preferring to frequent bars that are not 'sexuality' specific but rather, just good fun.

Part of me was angered by his comment and thought that if I'm over the hill in 'gay' years then that is just a reflection of his own insecurities. But there was another *small* part of me somewhere deep down that felt a little bit concerned.

08 December, 2005

Cosmetic Concern

Last night I had organised to meet a friend for dinner, but due to the fact he couldn't meet me until later in the evening, I decided to do some Christmas shopping (for my sins) while I waited.

On my way to Forbidden Planet (who am I buying pressies from there for I hear you ask? ME, of course) I happened to bump in to a friend I haven't seen for ages, and we went for a quick drink.

Now this friend of mine (let's call him UT for Ultra Trendy) is what I would call a beautiful looking man. And I mean beautiful in the true sense of the word. He has one of those faces that is perfectly structured - high, scuptured cheek bones, flawless skin, perfectly formed features. (Me? Jealous? Never...) I wouldn't describe him as handsome - he is most definitely beautiful. He was born here in the UK, however, his parents are both Chinese.

UT had been 'dating' a guy for a couple of weeks and wanted to talk about it. Basically, this guy had seemed really keen at first but on Friday UT saw this guy at Popstarz 'smutting' someone else. UT was understandably very upset about it.

What interested (and upset) me was UT's response to this situation. Instead of reacting as I would have done (the guy's a prick, I deserve better, he can go *&$£ himself), UT did the exact opposite. The entire time I was with him, he spoke about the fact that he was obviously unattractive; that he had decided this guy must have had a problem with the fact that UT was 'Oriental'; that all UT saw when he looked in the mirror was the shape of his eyes.

Now, I recognise that many people have self image issues, but what upset me most was the fact that UT's seemed to revolve around his ethnicity.

Who or what has given him the sense that being 'Oriental' made him a lesser/uglier person?

07 December, 2005

For today I am a child

I went to see Antony & The Johnsons last night. I'm not sure what I was expecting, due to the fact that some have said he's incredibly fragile and appears vulnerable on stage; while others have said he's just a fat old poof.

The gig was absolutely amazing. And Antony is everything (and nothing) that people say about him. He is fragile (that much is obvious from any of his song lyrics); but he seems equally strong and while he sung he seemed to be celebrating everything he was singing about.

A few interesting things about the gig included: during the songs, the audience was completely silent. And I mean completely. I have never been to a gig where the audience made NO noise whatsoever; also, that due to Antony's request, no-one smoked. At all.

However, what I found most interesting about Antony had to do with his physicality.

I think there are two (extremely broad) types of people with regards to the space they consume. Perhaps there is a continuum between the two broad definitions, I've not really thought about that in detail. However, the two broad groups are:

1: Those people who take up as much space as possible - these type of people seem to be on the number 13 bus every morning on my way to work. Standing in the aisle and taking up us much space as possible, having no consideration for others around them. These people don't have to be big - it is more to do with the way they place themselves.

2: These people try and take up as little space as possible. They are (overly) conscious of others around them and at the extreme end of the spectrum, probably wish they were invisible. I'm probably closer to this end of the continuum than the other.

Antony is 6'4 and said that during the gig that he weighs "200 and something pounds". He is a big, big man (... lady? bird? who knows) and one would think that his presence would be overwhelming. But it isn't. Just the opposite. He seems to take up as little space as possible (clearly a number 2 person) and instead... allows his voice to *completely* fill the space. And what a voice it is.

04 December, 2005

Yet another boyfriend

I've decided it is time to dump Victor Everglot, my previous boyfriend of the week. I may of course decide at some point to get back with him though, as he's been a good boyfriend and is just my type to look at.

Problem being, I was in my 'local', The Washington (which in fact isn't local to me at all, it's about a 20 minute walk away in Belsize Park... but I love it so much that I've decided to adopt it) and who was there but none other than Jeremy Edwards. (I think he is in Holby City or another of those hideous TV shows).

I've never seen him act, and really only knew of him because he used to date Rachel Stevens, whom OBF (Other Best Friend) did a photo shoot of once.

Jeremy is not particulary my type to look at, although being 'classically good looking'; but what clinched the deal for me was his dog Molly. A Boston Terrier no less.

So yes, Jeremy. Congratulations. You are my boyfriend of the week.

01 December, 2005

High Fashion

So today at lunch, after having purchased my salad and walking back down Bond Street to the office with my new colleague at work (a whole other story... I've refrained from blogging about him just yet... don't fear... it won't be long) - I was stopped by two Japanese girls who promptly informed me that they were working for a Japanese men's fashion magazine; and wanted to photograph me.

My new colleague instantly got very excited and agreed on my behalf. Thanks. Consequently I stood looking very uncomfortable in front of a red London telephone box on Bond Street while getting photographed and simultaneously being asked where I had bought my clothes. Several passerbys stopped to watch. And snigger. (Fair enough. I would have done the same if I had have been passing by.)

Of course, when I got back to the office I quickly googled the name of the magazine "Gentry" and after a bit of research, found the following:

"Shinro Hayashi, editor in chief of Gentry, a fashion magazine targeting men age 40 and over..."

Great. I'm so pleased I'm inspiring fashion for Japanese men over the age of 40.

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