I answered some of the match questions in the imaginary persona of being single and gained some enlightenment from them. Socrates said that a life unexamined isn't worth living.
Living in the sticks has it's drawbacks. The neighbors are forever dashing over with a helping hand and there's none of that lovely alone time waiting on the metering lights to allow getting on the freeway. At the same time I'm glad that "town" is only 10 miles away passing fields of California poppies and purple lupine. The display looks like amethyst and amber festooning the emerald green hills. The mid-summer blackberries glisten like black onyx. It's like living in a Tiffany's jewelry store.
Over the last nine years we've fostered over 60 kittens from the animal shelter. It's a lots of fun, a bit of work and sometimes heartbreaking, but I feel privileged to be permitted to do it. The hard part is taking them back. The 5 adult kitties in our home are not spoiled, they're spoiled rotten, there's a difference. We have no family and to some extent they fill that void. If you eat yogurt or ice cream on the couch, you'll have to share with them, that's just the way life is.
Being a S.F. Giants baseball fan I'll be glued to the tube for most of the games this year.
Though I'm not qualified to do so I'd like to be an advice columnist. That and my ego's a bit larger then my intellect.
My wife recently retired and we have long list of places to visit.
Cooking, as I do lots of it at home, going out is a welcome treat. I wish that there were more good restaurants here.
Giving a great massage having taken a few workshops way back when. A short essay at the bottom of this profile explains more about that.
Movies: Dances with Wolfs, Field of Dreams, Enemy Mine, Star Wars, Sound of Music, South Pacific, Mr. Holland's Opus, Forget Paris, Men in Black.
Music: folk, classical, show tunes.
Any kind food as long as it has good flavor and not too spicy hot.
S.F. Giants baseball (at least the highlights)
Cats (especially baby kittens)
A view of the mountains and/or a beach
There are lots of things that you could do without and only a few things in life that you'll never get over.
A great vacation takes great planning. The very idea of vacation is to un-stress your life even if for a short period of time. A good travel agent can do this for you, but I enjoy the process of doing it. Finding a bargain is appealing, but requires closer scrutiny. You usually don't get what you don't pay for. I'll spend the dime and tighten up the budget when I get home.
We did a 2010 Christmas & New Years cruise through the Panama Canal adding 4 countries visited. I want to visit the upper Amazon River and fish for piranha and other oddities.
Actually I'll be watching the ballgame with the TV muted while listening to an opera, snacking on caviar and cream cheese while sipping champagne.
I've never actually done that so if you have a better idea I'm open to suggestion.
My wife's breast cancer has been in her lymph system since 2003. Her estrogen suppressant injections keep tumors from growing but the side effects are problematic.
I dislike shopping and don't dance.
Sometimes I'm charming and witty other times I'm grumpy and occasionally a pain in the ass. Most of the time I'm mellow and cheerful.
The bottom line in this section is that there isn't anything I'm not willing to share outside of what I know about other people that they may want to be kept confidential. There are a number of things I'm not proud of, same as most I reckon.
If your homophobic, pro life conservative, heavy drinker, drug user, seriously religious, insolvent, racist, radical tree huger, tea party supporter or looking for a sugar daddy don't waste your time trying to connect with me.
Getting In Touch (a short essay)
In my early 30s I had sever back pain that a bottle of aspirin a week wasn't helping very much. A guy at work told me about his taking a massage workshop. Having read that it could help with back pain I was interested and went for a 2 weekend workshop. After the first weekend the pain went away. It was at the home of a couple in the Santa Cruz mountains. There was a wooden hot tub made from an old wine barrel wherein we all started. Having frequented the nude beaches of northern California I was at ease with that and the owners, Rita and Loren, would demonstrate on each other then we would pair off and practice. It was wonderfully relaxing and the relief from pain was fantastic.
A remarkable thing happened at the workshops with people new to the experience meeting in the large room furnished only with pillows. Everybody was clothed sitting as far away from anyone else as possible. Rita and Loren would explain what they would be doing and their philosophy of how as children we are touched and held without reservation, but as we mature touching is construed to be threatening thus depriving us of contact leading to emotional and physical problems. After the introduction we’d undress and get in the hot tub. Rita and Loren would demonstrate on each other then we’d pair off and practice. At the end of the session we’d meet the large room again without clothes, but now we’d all be sitting as close to each other as we could get. The transformation was amazing.
I took another workshop and eventually joined the membership program there. They had a pool next to the tub a lounge and massage rooms with 2 tables in each room for the members to use. There were only 2 rules: no sex and take responsibility for yourself.
At that time there were about 100 members which were closely even men to women. At that time divorce was very common during the sexual revolution of the 70s and I think that most of us were seeking an alternative lifestyle because the prior one had failed to fulfill us. About half the members were married or coupled. The premise of GIT was that as children touching was a common occurrence but as we grew older it was something to be avoided. Thus the loving and caring was not a commonly shared thing. We did a lot of hugging and touching. The membership grew to nearly 200 and many people coupled there as the members came and went.
One evening a few of us were relaxing by the fireplace when a member came in with a friend who had never been naked in public before. The evening continued with hot tubing and popcorn and the newbie guest remarked that she was more at ease in a roomful of naked people then she had been in a bar with everyone fully clothed. We laughed and her gave a hug. A few times I brought a female guest that wasn't at all comfortable. That kind of visual intimacy isn't tolerable to everyone.
A lot of people coupled from meeting there and more then a few marriages, mine included. The #1 rule was "no sex" but of course there was but rarely on the premises which was grounds for eviction The body responds to being touched and genitals are part of the body. When giving or receiving a massage I didn't feel it was complete without genitalia being included. Often this caused sexual arousal for everyone taking part. What can I say, stuff happens.
Once a month there was a Friday night mini workshop. Everything from Sufi dancing to dieting, and sexuality. The ones on sex were always well attended. On the Friday before Halloween we had the annual body painting party. Imagine 50+ naked people with paint and ink in a crazy quilt, madcap extravaganza of color with an absence of pattern and inhibitions. Then the group shower...need I say more?
The only time I saw a guy with an erection was during a sexually workshop and sometimes during a massage. As I previously said the body responds to being touched, that was acceptable, just not being acted upon. A few times when I traded a massage with someone we got together at home. We even had a name for it 'the zip-less fuck' meaning no expectations expressed or implied. We did talk about sex a lot. I attribute much of my sexual edification to these discussions.
They bought a larger property during those years. It had a much larger building but no pool or hot tub. The hot tub was the first project. It was about 15 feet in diameter. Not long after we had to see how many people could get in it at the same time, about 70 as I recall. When we got out there wasn't much water left and we had to wait for it to fill and heat up. Back to the lodge and the fireplace!
One summer day the power company came by to work on the pole near the lodge. Some of the women went over and teased the linemen. What do you say to a naked lady?
The caretakers had a cat named Killer who was the GIT mascot. He brought home snakes, birds and rabbits and once a baby skunk showing his new friend where the food and water were. We just backed away slowly.
During one massage workshop people paired off to practice and Popcorn Bob and I were the only two left. I was the first receiver and Bob started in. He was very un-relaxed and stiff. Obviously it was not OK for him to touch another man. Then we switched and I gave him a massage just as I would with anyone. After a break and another demonstration he and I paired again. This time he was much more relaxed and I got a great massage. He got the nickname Popcorn Bob from bringing popcorn up to share. He had an upstairs neighbor who was recently divorced and having back problems so her brought up to have a massage. Several years later this woman became my wife. We sent each other Christmas cards every year since until he passed away a couple years ago. His widow still sends us annual shout outs. I miss him greatly.
They taught several types and levels of massage, Esalen, Trager and Shiatsu, etc. The Certified Massage Therapist program was very active with many folks having successful careers of it.
I miss those magical days. A lot of growth came from it for all of us. I honestly believe that worldwide peace could be achieved if the leaders of nations could share a relaxation massage and an evening by the fire. There's something about leaving your clothing aside that lowers the barriers to communications. Within that community there were people who were wealthy and some on welfare. It didn't matter what kind of car or house you had. We had loving acceptance of each other. It was kind of like Camelot.