Perhaps the saddest thing about being sedentary–that is, not traveling–is the fact that you cease writing all together. It’s like an E-brake gets thrown on the vehicle of transient life. This was (is), after all, a travel blog–not a diary.
…and yet you feel as though you should start using it as one.
After all, the travel blog had little to do with the places you saw, and more to do with the weirdos you met, the adventures you had, and the sex propositions you received.
And don’t you still get that in San Francisco?
When you moved here, you were aware of only one thing: that SF was going to be liberal. Very liberal. And while you thought you were liberal, you found that you had a lot to learn. Your new roommates, Gabe and Alex, had asked you if you wanted to go to a street fair. A street fair? Heck yes, you did!
“It’s kind of like a costume party,” they added.
Okay, you were down to dress up. You were okay with a top hat and a red corset, and some REAL makeup. What they did not tell you was that it was the Folsom street fair–the annual BDSM street fair where men ran amok in assless chaps and fellated one another in public. It is legal to be naked in San Francisco.
Never before had you seen people tied up in public, swung and flogged in harnesses, locked in humiliating cages, and being led on leashes. It was a street fair, indeed. But in SF, it was also common.
“Polyamorous” is practically a household term. “Pansexual” gets dropped every now and then. Everyone knows about kink.com, the SF-based porn production company. You say the words “power exchange,” and people immediately think about a sex club, where women get in free and men liberally masturbate at the sight of others copulating.
You took a big deep breath and jumped right in.
There’s always something to do in San Francisco, no matter what your fetish. You name it, you can find it.
You will not forget the hard times: building a new clientele from the ground up, the death of your father, the theft of your bicycle, the hepatitis scare, the relationship issues, the flying dildo on Valentine’s day, the loss of your phone, the loss of your best friend, the loss of your job…
BAM. You were suddenly hit hard by a series of unfortunate events, and you had to cut some ties to keep your head above water. The blow really came when, after 5 solid months of work, you suddenly lost your job due to allegations of sexual harassment. Yes, that’s right. You were fired. You are a sexual harasser.
If you were being a creeper, it would have made more sense, but as you neither harassed anyone, nor intended to offend, you were dismayed when it happened, but not the least bit surprised that a large corporation didn’t want to deal with that kind of issue. And why should it? Oh well, your fire had burned out anyway. So there you were, on your ass with no job, almost no friends, and no plan.
Fuck corporations. You’d worked for three of them and you’d had enough. Where was the care? The loyalty? Nowhere. All you found was the love of money.
Fast forward to two weeks later: you have a new job, working for Gold’s gym, San Francisco’s infamous gay gym. You mean it, a gay gym.
At Gold’s, you are gay until proven straight. It is so gay, in fact, that upon signing up one of your (straight) friends, the sales rep says, “You understand that this is a gay gym. When you go into the locker room, think ‘Lions, tigers, and bears…’ Keep your back to a corner, and stay on guard.” Naturally, the guy was trying to wind your friend up a bit, but it may not be far from the truth.
On your fourth day a work, a lesbian flashed you in the locker room. Waved at you, and pointed to her nether regions: a smiley face shaved into her pubic hair. On your fifth day, a 60+ year old dyke proclaimed she would like to take you home. But the gay women at this gym–with their steroid-saturated musculature, shaved heads, piercings, tattoos, implants, and cut off jeans–are far out-numbered by the gay men.
Men everywhere! So many, so many muscular bodies. So many body builders, bears, and beefcakes. You walk up to a giant man, expecting a deep resonating, formidable voice, and what you hear is a small, higher-pitched, adorable lisp accompanied with a broken wrist. Every conceivable gay stereotype is lived out in this gym. Sex in the steam rooms. Men blow-drying their genitals with hair dryers. Men sauntering about in banana hammocks. Leotards. Making out on the floor. Ass grabbing. Cruising by the drinking fountain. Flexing pectorals in front of mirrors.
When prospecting the floor, trying to drum up business, you learned within 45 seconds that one man was a child porn star. The information, the over-sharing, the sexual liberation.
“Someone left a gym bag in the office! Do you know whose it is?”
“No, but it’s filled with…”
…leather straps, leather pants, floggers, and more… that’s some gym bag!
You’ve been told by Katie, your new heart throb, “I feel as though you have achieved some kind of homosexual Nirvana, working at Gold’s.”
It’s like Gay Disneyland.
Sudden loss can be opportunity. You’re happy as a pig in shit.