Before this month ends, I should mention that this February marked four years since the last time my lung collapsed. Also, it’s been four years since I last smoked a cigarette. I’m quite proud of this, especially since I find myself still wanting one at least once a week. I still feel short of breath a lot, and still have odd pains that make me fear my lung will collapse again, but, like my cravings for a cigarette, I think those are things I’ll probably have to live with for a long time yet. Regardless, I feel healthier now than I ever have in my life, which is why I’m bothering to type this post. Yay me.
I tried on a pair of jeans at Banana Republic today. They fit in all the right places, looked great on me, and were on sale. Hanley said they were cute, so I took them to the counter to buy them. As the cashier was scanning the price tag, she said, “These are a final sale.”
“Why is that?” I asked.
She seemed caught off guard and said, “Because they’re older stock we need to clear out.”
I knew that. I worked retail. I hadn’t planned on returning the jeans, but as soon as the option was taken away I felt slighted.
“That’s a dumbass policy and outdated business model that I can’t support. Have a good day,” I said and left without the jeans.
Hey, that’s not Pixie. It’s Calvin. Calvin is a Hanley, Inc. dog who recently turned 9. Happy belated birthday, Calvin! I wasn’t able to get a decent picture of Pixie today, because I had to leave early to take H to her swim class, and all Pixie was doing before I left was snoozing in her crate. We’ve all seen that before. So, instead, you get Calvin, waiting at the back door to come inside. Exciting, no?
Hey, that’s not Pixie. It’s Lloyd, Director of Security at Hanley, Inc. The powers that be were being powerful out of town, so I spent one night with The Big H, took her to school, and brought Lloyd to The Compound for one night. Sometimes he takes his job too seriously and protects H from her other dogs, so I brought him home to make sure there would be no accidents, because I’m a good egg.
Every year the child within compels me to buy a Cadbury Creme Egg, and every year I’m reminded how disgusting they are.
It looks as though Pixie is happy I’m home and wants to give me a bone, but she runs away with it when I get too close. She’s fickle.
Deadline: April 2, 2013.
Editors: Timothy J. Lambert and R.D. Cochrane. Publisher: Cleis Press.
For the anthology BEST GAY ROMANCE 2014, we’re looking for short stories (maximum 6,500 words) about men falling in love, being in love, having loved. The wooing and the winning, the blush of a crush, the details of a date, the rush of romance, as long as the emphasis is on romance.
Original stories, please. Payment $50 to $75 plus two contributor copies. Multiple submissions are okay in .doc or .rtf; include real name, pseudonym, address, and a 50-word bio, to email@example.com
Becky Cochrane and I have edited a second anthology for Cleis Press: Foolish Hearts: New Gay Fiction. We don’t have an exact publication date yet, but we’re too excited not to share the table of contents. The collection includes seventeen stories by some of our favorite voices writing fiction today. We hope you’ll find some of your favorites, too, and enjoy, as we did, stories from new voices. As soon as we have cover art and a release date, we’ll share.
And for those of you who’ve wished for more from Timothy James Beck, there are a couple of stories in this collection from two of the TJB writers.
Introduction • Timothy J. Lambert
Hello Aloha • Tony Calvert
How to Be Single at a Wedding • David Puterbaugh
Three Things I Pray • Trebor Healey
On These Sheets • Steven Reigns
Victoria • Erik Orrantia
Nude Beach • Paul Lisicky
Tea • Jeffrey Ricker
A Royal Mess • Taylor McGrath
Struck • ‘Nathan Burgoine
Touch Me in the Morning • Greg Herren
Foundations • Timothy Forry
New Kid in Town: 1977 • Felice Picano
The Green Sweater • Mark G. Harris
Rochester Summers • Craig Cotter
Bothered, Bewildered • Rob Williams
Meditation • Timothy J. Lambert
Symposium • Andrew Holleran
Afterword • R.D. Cochrane
Recreating a classic pose.
Sent this email to Hanley’s mother today and have nothing better to post, so I thought I’d share it.
Even before the recent school shooting it would bother me when parents, teachers, nannies, etc would hold the door open for me when I go to pick up H from school. The lock on the door is there to keep them safe, right? Most of these people don’t know me, so why do they assume it’s safe to let me in?
Today a bus was dropping off a group of afternoon session kids and a woman was holding the door open for them. Some parents were slipping by her and she said to one of them, “I don’t know how I got roped into this.” I think she works in the office. I approached and she smiled and I didn’t. I tried to look unfriendly, because I suddenly wanted the door slammed in my face. I stopped and waited. She finally said, “Oh, hi, did you have a–uh–are you picking someone up here?” I said, “Yes, and I’d feel better about her being here if you wouldn’t hold the door open for people you don’t know.” She said, “Oh!” and the door finally slammed in my face.
And H’s mom wrote back:
I. Love. You.