ITs a dogs life

Today I got the shock of my life. I was at the gym and on this rare occasion I had my I Phone with me. My jeep Wrangler needed new connectors for the battery so I was waiting to get the call from the shop to come pick it up. Kudos to Andersons Auto on Andrews Ave. The place is gay owned and operated and I like to keep my money in the family, but I digress..

I got a call from my SIR, Paul who informed me that his three former dogs are all alive and well. Tuffy, Ruffy, and the long lost name I couldn’t remember, GEM. I sat on one of the benches in a state of total shock, amazement and profound joy. I honestly thought they were all dead like my brother boys but lo and behold they are all alive and well.

Those two big built bruiser wrestling dogs were together after almost 30 years. Gem is still on his own but the three of them have been basically never out of touch with each other. I feel SO revitalized and comforted to know that AIDS didn’t get them. They knew I was around but SIR never said a word until I asked about them. Odd thing with what I know of Old Guard. Information on someones personal life wasn’t put out there like it is now. IT was personal not public. You always felt protected not exploited.

Within 25 minutes I was on the phone with ALL THREE OF THEM.. There’s talk of a family reunion at some point over the summer. I had a million questions for them as they did for me…again I cant share some of what we spoke of. The Personal thing. They said they were very proud of me and the way I turned out and I needed to hear that from them because I was always the trouble maker, the Tazmanian devil, the pain in the ass youngest boy and lately I seem to be the whipping post for everyone down here in South Florida, not because I did anything malicious or mean, because to be mean and malicious you need forethought and in my case there wasn’t any,  but because when you make a mistake and you are considered to be an icon, there are always people who take unbelievable pleasure in tearing you down when you fuck up, being  malicious toward you, and that’s ok, because in their rage they justify their malice, (the do as I say not as I do syndrome) so this call couldn’t have come at a better time.

I will go into more detail in my next blog when I get to talk to all three of them more at length.

New Decade New Beginnings

Welcome to my blog.  I am in St. Petersburg, Florida this weekend for the Tampa Leather Club’s Leather SIR/boy contest which will be taking place in a little over 2 hours. My Leather wolfdog, Spike, gave me the idea to start an interactive weblog. The reason that I decided to begin this new adventure is my personal feeling that there are so many out there who throw around the words “Old Guard” without any of them ever being IN that lifestyle, or from stories they have heard from others who weren’t there either.  There was NO Old Guard.

IT was leather. PERIOD.

The term emerged as that first wave of men were dying of AIDS VERY quickly. At First it was called the Saint Disease (taken from the mega disco in NYC) since everyone who got sick and died went there (including myself, though I remain HIV-). Then the name changed to Gay Related Immune Deficiency (GRID) and then to AIDS/HIV. This was the dividing line between what is now known as New Guard (or No Guard, from all I hear out there), and what was.

There seems to be miscommunication, misinformation and downright lies about what it was and wasn’t. Principles have been slanted to reflect personal points of view rather than the realities of what it was. As much as the families had different rules and protocols, there was much that we shared in common. The differences were not stark in comparison to today, where guys make up their own names and labels then claim it was Old Guard or similar to it.

I want this to be an interactive blog. I want it to be about your questions and comments — your ideas and your input.  I can only give you my insights and perceptions as to what I have seen and experienced AS a leather boy in NYC in the 70s and 80s. I don’t qualify myself as an expert: just as an observer who WAS there and lived it on a day-to-day basis. I want to add a ton of content, videos and comments, and share this as far as I can reach so that I can affect those coming into this, those who are curious about it and those who are already involved and wish to know more.