Justin's Life...

~ December 2000 ~
~ December 1st - 8th ~

December 1, 2000 - Friday

It was bound to happen... as soon as I decided that I was ready to move from Los Angeles, to head out to San Diego and embark on my new adventures, I've realized that I'm starting to have a network of friends here in L.A.. Indeed, I've realized that were I to stay here, I would indubitably have that gaggle of gay friends that I've always wanted. Even right now I'm planning a Sunday afternoon trip to Disneyland with Mike from U.S.C. (who works there and can get us in for free). Mike, who I met on Sunday; Tom, a guy I met today for lunch; Alex, who I've mentioned before; and I would make a perfect foursome for hanging out and riding rides. With time, my collection of friends would no doubt grow... and, indeed, that elusive gaggle of friends would be mine.

So, now, who knows where I'll end up. David, too, had mentioned that he was thinking about moving out here with me, but he's subsequently decided to finish school in Kentucky. At first I was a little apprehensive about him as a roommate, as I didn't want he and I to turn out like Larry and I did, going from best friends to speaking once a month or so, but when David said he was no longer thinking about moving here, I really wanted to convince him otherwise.

So, who knows... I certainly do not... where I'll end up is anyone's guess.


December 2, 2000 - Saturday

Ironically, after thinking how that gaggle of friends was just within my grasp, I spent last night at my apartment alone. Mike had to work, Tom had a dinner he had to attend, Alex was hanging with some friends, Joe (a guy I met last week) wasn't at home, and Noam was out of town. So, like I said, who knows where I'll end up.


Last week, I mentioned a guy named Scott who was from Kentucky, had a thick accent, and seemed incredibly sweet. From the time before that, when we first started talking, until now, I've become somewhat smitten with him, yet the other night, we had the oddest of conversations.

I e-mailed him:

So, I was thinking 'bout something... can I ask you a candid question? When you wrote me, it was from that hotjock screen name and you said you were "HORNY!" and we could maybe "hook up". In California language, "hook up" means meet for sex, and a guy with a name like hotjock would be looking for sex. I guess, there's no way to ask it without it coming out "bad", but are you somewhat of a player (aka "ho")? I mean, besides that first e-mail, you've given me no indication of "slutdom" but that first one makes a boy wonder.

Anyway, just something I've been wondering about...

--- Edited For Clarity/Brevity/Identity ---

Indeed, had I not thought that his response to my personal ad was really David jerking my chain, I almost certainly wouldn't have responded back. Yet he replied with a blurry picture, and for the past few weeks, we've been e-mailing almost daily and talking on the phone on occasion.

Yet the tenor of his initial response left me curious. Other than that first contact, he'd been incredibly sweet, seemed to be genuinely interested in me, and made virtually no mention of sex. How could the first message really mean that he wanted to meet for sex, and yet otherwise, he seemed to be charming to the extreme? I had to ask. I sent that e-mail, and got the following response:

When i first emailed u, i didn't know what to write. I wanted to sound nice and interesting at the same time. I didn't know what else to say. I can say that "hook up" in cali and Kentucky means the same! LOL! I've only been with one guy (no dates, just hook-ups for hot sex). But that was back this summer, don't see him anymore. Trust me, i don't wanna sound like a HORN DOG, (wink) but..... when i see your pics, there's more that rises than my heart rate! It's throbbin right now!

And after I talked to u on the phone, and we've emailed and stuff, learnin more about each other, i realized it could lead to more than sex! Can i tell u somethin without u gettin mad? I hope it does lead to more than sex! I know the sex would be HOT AND GREAT!!! and i also know that i want to know u alot more than just how much u moan in bed, i'm kinda afraid to say it cause i don't want u to be mad at me....... I've never been this interested in ANYBODY before. There, i said it. I can't quit thinkin of u, you're on my mind all the time, some nights i can't sleep, what's that mean? The funny thing is, we ain't even met yet.

Talk to ya tonite? Please?


--- Edited For Clarity/Brevity ---

He was actually apologizing for thinking of me as something other than a sex object. On one hand I was flattered, but on the other, I was mystified. I wrote:


Me mad because you want to know me for something other than sex? Never... actually, I'm pretty much a slow mover in that department. In fact, if I hadn't thought that you were David or someone jerking my chain, I probably wouldn't have even responded as meeting for sex just isn't my thing. Not to sound conceited, but I've got enough really nice cute guys that want to date me that I have no reason to meet someone just for sex... As you may be able to imagine, near perfect bodies are a dime a dozen here in L.A., you can literally order them like pizza for whatever you want to do, but I've always been the old fashioned boy at heart. I need to connect with the guy both mentally and physically... I mean, if I don't think someone's a worthwhile person, even if he has a bod of a god or whatever, it's not going to happen. I've had dates, too many to count, where I could have had sex with the guy, but I knew it wasn't going to go anywhere or where I thought his physical body was attractive but didn't like really respect him. All those times I've passed. It's not the easiest thing, mind you, as sometimes you're just really horny, but I have to keep myself respectable in my mind, and I have to respect him as a whole, and I guess in that regard, I am a little self-righteous. I could easily take the skank road, but I don't... and I hold my friends to the same level. So, if you're interested in me, you're gonna have to take me on a nice respectable date; you know, dinner and a movie. And you're liable to get nothing more than a quick kiss the first night.

Don't get me wrong... you writing about how more than your heart rate was rising caused more than my heart rate to rise, if you get my drift, but it's just important that you know that I ain't gonna put out on the first date. *grin*

Now, don't feel bad... being gay in Kentucky is rough. As opposed to the straight kids who just get to date and have it progress normally, a gay boy's faced with all kinds of more subversive options; like meeting for sex. It's just part of not liking the fact that you're gay. You'll get over it; I promise. I was lucky in that regard. I came out to my folks when I was still in high school, and they took it fine... they took it GREAT! So, for as long as I can remember, I've always liked myself, at least in regards to being gay. Indeed, now, if someone offered me a magic pill to make me straight, I wouldn't take it. You'll get to that point... I've just got a bit of a head start on ya... about six years. ;-)

OK, now I'm slightly worried that you'll take all this badly, that you'll think that I think you're a bad person, but I don't. If I did, I surely wouldn't be writing you this big ass e-mail, now would I? And I'm still VERY MUCH looking forward to talking to you later tonight and meeting you when I get back to Kentucky.

Talk to you soon,

It was such an odd concept to me. Apologizing for liking me, for wanting to know me more than just a body. I consider my body one of my weaker points, so I was baffled; flattered, yet baffled. And when I was talking to David on the phone and told him what had happened, he was sure that I was somehow misreading Scott's e-mail.

Yet later when Scott and I were talking on IM, I confirmed that he had indeed been worried about telling me that he liked me for something more than a "fuck buddy."

Scott: i was afraid
Scott: that
Scott: if i said i was lookin for more than sex, you'd get mad
Scott: i was scared to say anything

Scott: i'd been thinkin........
Scott: i thought, if he thinks
Scott: that we're gonna fuck as soon as we meet,
Scott: i don't wanna let him down if he wants it,
Scott: but if knew what i wanted, he won't speak to me

Justin: but, all I can tell you is that two guys dating can be EXACTLY like a heterosexual couple dating
Scott: i know about the dating
Scott: i picture..........
Scott: christmas comin up,
Scott: i'd like to spoil somebody
Scott: u know, get presents for him
Justin: well... I didn't want to tell you as I don't want you to feel the need to reciprocate, but I just got back from the mall... where I picked up a couple goodies for you
Scott: u didn't have to do that
Scott: really man
Justin: yeah, I know... the point is that it's just like boys and girls dating
Scott: ahhhhhhhhhaa
Justin: there's really no difference
Scott: then i gotta do some shoppin for u saturday
Justin: no, that's why I wasn't gonna tell ya
Justin: I wasn't buying you anything just so you'd get me something
Scott: i want to
Scott: i know man
Justin: I was just buying it as a little, I don't know, present
Scott: but you are such a nice guy
Scott: just let me, ok?
Scott: please?
Justin: ok
Justin: but nothing big
Justin: no more than $30 AT MOST!

Scott: thanks for lettin me do this
Justin: do what?
Scott: this messenger thing
Justin: definitely... just glad you finally got it installed and working
Scott: we only got email, this, and occasional calls
Scott: wish i could do more
Justin: you're so sweet in a sorta backwards way
Scott: backwards?
Justin: I mean, I've never had anyone apologize because he wanted me for something more than a sex object.
Justin: or worry that I'd get mad if he liked me as more than just a fuck buddy
Scott: that's just me
Scott: if u want me, that's what you'll get
Justin: so, it's sorta flattering that you thought of me as a sex object
Scott: ahhhhhhhh
Justin: but at the same time, backwards 'cause most are worried that I'll perceive them as being too interested in sex and not me
Scott: oh, i thought u mean i was retarded
Scott: or too much of a hick
Justin: no... just that it's the reverse of how it's gone every other time in my life
Justin: that's the backwards part
Scott: oh, i got it now
Scott: i'm just slow
Justin: no prob.
Scott: LOL

So, on some backwards level, hearing that he was ready to "fuck me as soon as we meet if I wanted it" was a compliment, but it was damn unusual.

A big consideration in my mind is the fact that he's only been with one guy, so his meeting someone for sex is far less of a attraction diminisher than if he had been with several guys. As is, I consider it that he just didn't know better... if he had known better, if he had known that there was an alternative, why in the world would he be apologizing and worried about being attracted to me as a person?


December 5, 2000 - Tuesday

The trip to Disneyland on Sunday didn't quite go as expected. On Friday night, I found out that Alex couldn't come with us because of previous plans, and on Saturday, I disinvited Tom. I'm not one for disinviting, as one of my major faults is a disproportionate fear of confrontations, but I saw no purpose in spending the day with Tom when his comments on the phone showed a complete misunderstanding of who I am and an unwillingness to change those misperceptions. You're either able to understand how my relationship with Larry worked or you're only able to pigeon hole it into the gay subculture's older rich guy and the young play thing archetype. Tom could only see the latter.

So, anyway, Mike and I went and had a nice time. It was especially koool since he worked there... it's amazing how knowing the right people will get you right to the front of the line.

Mike In Line At DisneylandMike And Justin At Disneyland - Self PortraitJustin And Mike In Ice Cream Store At DisneylandJustin At Disneyland With Mickey Balloon


December 6, 2000 - Wednesday

Last night I was so lonely I could barely stand it: I poured myself a couple glasses of rum and Pepsi... or more accurately, I poured myself a couple full sized glasses of rum, topped off with a ounce or two of Pepsi.

I hate the feeling I have most of the time, but indeed, most of the time I have no feeling whatsoever. For the most part, I've shut off emotions. Sometimes, like last night, they come over me and I just can't stop them, but even then, they're still quite muted from where they once were.

And as emotional as moving out after five years and having no friends to just "hang" with and feel comfortable around would seem to be, I haven't cried a day since I left. Jeremy said a while back that he cries about every two weeks at the desperation of his life, but I've cried none in several months. And David's talked about crying, too... but even when David got mad the other night and hung up on me, I thought to myself, "Oh well, if he doesn't talk to me anymore, he doesn't talk to me anymore." I've stopped the emotions, and as much as I seem to be genuinely interacting with the world, there's a wall between me and everyone else that never existed before. I'm not quite sure how to get rid of it: I don't think I can get rid of it until I'm in a more comfortable place. But I hate feeling like this. I hate not being able to feel. I so want to interact again. I so want to feel comfortable, feel elation, feel pain. Instead, I'm simply callused and alone.


December 8, 2000 - Friday

I'm so tired of closet cases fucking with my life. It's like because they're in the closet, they get carte blanche and the rest of us just get screwed over however they feel like it. I mean, their life is rough and we don't know what it's like and well, it just wouldn't be right to treat them like they treat us.

Well, ya know what, I'm damn fucking tired of it... and I'm not gonna take. I'm sick of closet cases messing with my heart and my head. I'm sick of hearing stuff like, "I've never been this interested in ANYBODY before. There, i said it. I can't quit thinkin of u, you're on my mind all the time, some nights i can't sleep, what's that mean?" only to have the fuckwad disappear. To have some unexplained occurence happen in his life that makes him go from that to no communication entirely. I'm sick of hearing about it happen to my friends. I'm sick of experiencing it... and ya know, for once, I'm not going to take the "closet" excuse. I was in the closet, but I came out. It was something I knew I had to do. Bryce had only told a couple of his friends when we met, but now he's at the point where I could put his picture here if I wanted. Jeremy's life is still ruled by the closet, and I took my share of shit for that, too. But I absolutely refuse to let Scott off with the closet excuse.

I tried playing nice. I've still yet to even attack, but to simply stop talking to me is completely unacceptable. Scott went from one or two e-mails a day to nothing, with no explanation whatsoever. Indeed, the last e-mail said that he'd send me another picture of himself (as he bought a webcam last week just to send me pictures) and that I should e-mail him back. That was Sunday afternoon.

Needless to say, I e-mailed him back. And when I hadn't heard back from him by Tuesday, I e-mailed him again:

Subject: What's the story?


Hey... what's the story? I haven't heard from ya since Sunday, when I was guilt-tripping ya into sending me some more pictures, and I know you're busy and all, but you ain't even got five minutes to drop me an e-mail? Like I said before, I'm a prefer-lots-of-attention type of guy, but I know you're busy, so I'm cutting ya some slack. ;-) But still, I need SOMETHING! *grin*

So, tell me to fuck off. Tell me you're back in the closet so far that you can't even e-mail me a little "hey" every day. Tell me something, so I know what's going on, k?


P.S. 2 weeks from today I'll be in Kentucky!

I tried to make it as playful as possible, using words he usually used like ain't and fuck, and I tried to make sure he knew it was ok to say, "yeah, I'm having closet issues." I just wanted to know what was going on: anything.

Tuesday passed, Wednesday morning passed. I sent another e-mail Wednesday afternoon. It simply read, "Here's a photo of me at Disneyland... for some reason, I was really happy with my balloon. Maybe balloon-deprivation as a kid. ;-)" If somehow he had been busy and his cell phone had magically been turned off nonstop since Sunday, I just wanted to make sure that he didn't think I was angry and that the door was open for him to e-mail me back.

Then, after no response, last night, at 2AM Pacific Time (5AM in Kentucky), I sent the I-know-you're-having-closet-issues-and-I-want-to-yell-but-I'll-play-it-cool e-mail:

Subject: E-mail/Cell Phone Working? Alternative communication...


Hey there... let me know if you're getting this, 'cause it's been a while since I heard back from you and your cell phone's not responding either. Maybe the snow back there is playing havoc with communications. I know David talks all the time about how the Internet is down at school.

Anyway, if you can read this but can't respond back, I just wanted to let you know that I found your address on ##### #### Road in ##########, Mr. #### Scott ########. (Everybody goes by their middle name in Kentucky; me, too: in Kentucky, everyone calls me "Clay") ;-)

So, anyway, like I was saying, I found your address so I'll just head on over your way I guess Wednesday or Thursday, the 20th or 21st, and pick you up to go to Lexington shopping or something. I've got your home number, too, so if the cell phone doesn't work before then, I'll try to give ya a call at the house. You said you were going to tell your mom that you'd be hanging out with your friend Justin over the holiday, so I don't think it'll be a problem if I call or show up.

But hey, do let me know if you get this. My number again is 213-###-#### or you could always just e-mail me back here. ;)

Hope to talk to you soon... and I'll see ya in less than 2 weeks!

--- Edited For Identity ---

I so wanted to yell. To express my anger at having him mess with my emotions then just disappear, but I bit my tongue and figured that I could very passively make him piss his pants... while still simultaneously NOT screwing everything up if, by some incredibly unlikely stroke of fate, he decided he was ready to be honest. I am angry and even a bit hurt, and in all candidness, I figured that at the very least, he was going to respond, even if I had to force it out of him.

Amazingly, 5 days had passed without communication, yet less than twelve hours after I sent that I'll-come-on-over e-mail, I got a response. It read:

Hey, i've been sick lately. I don't know how the hell u got my address adn phone number here at the house, BUT THAT'S PERSONAL IFORMATION. I DON'T APPRECIATE THAT! DO NOT EVER CALL THIS HOUSE! I NEVER GAVE MY HOME PHONE, AND NOW YOU'RE FREAKIN ME OUT! JUST BACK OFF.

"Hey, i've been sick lately." Do I look THAT stupid? I am not the folks he's used to pretending to. I know how the closet thing works, and as MUCH as I wanted to write back a letter tearing into him, I took the "nice" road once more, figuring that while still highly (err... HIGHLY) unlikely, he might come around.

Feigning ignorance and lying more in this whole fiasco more than I ever remember lying about anything in total, I wrote:

Subject: I'm lost...


Sorry I freaked you out. I hadn't heard from ya in like a week. I thought maybe all communication in ########## had gone down or something. I mean, you said in your last e-mail that I should e-mail ya back and that you'd send picts, but then you just disappeared. Nearly a week later, still no responses to my e-mails and your cell phone never was answered. The guy that was saying that he found me more attractive than anybody ever just up and disappeared. I thought about how I could meet ya if you couldn't respond and decided to look at four11.com to see if your address/phone number were listed. They were, so I figured I'd just call you at your house, or show up and we could take it from there. I wasn't trying to freak you out. I'm sorry.


I'm lost... why don't you appreciate it? I was just trying to meet YOU. (duh! *grin*) And you did say that you were going to tell your mom that you'd be hanging with your friend Justin over the holiday break.


I'm not obsessing over you, which is what I think you think now. I've been hanging out with friends and all, but I really liked getting your e-mails, and playful picts, and everything. I just wanna know what's been going through your head. ;-)

So it's a little rough hearing "back off" after I haven't heard anything out of ya for a week. Tell me, honestly, what's been going through your head for the last week.

E-mail me,

--- Edited For Identity ---

I felt guilty, I feel guilty, for writing that I was sorry for freaking him out. I'm not sorry. That was the main point. The other part was that while I knew the odds were infinitely small, I still wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt. Yet at the same time, I wanted him to know that he simply couldn't stop communicating with me and I'd go away.

Now, of course, I'm cerebral enough to realize what possible relationship could be built from so many lies in the beginning; none, with any realness to it. Yet he seemed so promising... and the illogical part of me thinks, "if only I could get him to accept himself, then all this would be moot." I know better... but I'm tired of playing nice. Closet cases don't deserve carte blanche. They don't deserve to be able to come into people's lives and leave whenever they feel like it, with no explanation whatsoever. If all things were equal, if both players were like minded in right versus wrong, the closet case should be the one at the mercy of the other. What's to stop me from showing up at his doorstep? From calling his house? Decency... but damn it, he shouldn't get off without a hitch. And yeah, I've heard that bull about how the closet is its own torture, and that's fine. A closet case by himself is fine, but when he comes into my life and messes with my emotions and my thoughts, then it becomes my life that his closet is effecting as well.

I don't know what I'm going to do. I didn't feel good about myself when he stopped talking to me, but now I think I feel worse, angry, but worse.

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© 2000 Justin Clouse
Justin's Life...Justin's