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August 31, 2007

Tag body spray banned on school playground

Opening the newspaper this morning, I was almost thrown and overblown with bliss* when I read this:

Colo. School Bans Tag on Its Playground
"Finally," I thought, "that irritating stanky body spray is being banned...as it should be!"

But then I read the article and found out that it's a story about the increasing wussification of our children. Wussy peace-loving daisy-eating parents think that the game of tag harms their kids. These kids will then never be able to play rugby, because they'll grow up to be unaggressive flower children. I remember Homer mentioning that some younger guests at his annual Easter egg coloring and hunt did not want to participate in the egg hunt because it was 'too competitive'. That's pretty retarded, in my opinion. Sorry to sound like a crusty old grampaw, but I think recent generations have been so oversensitized, coddled, and their asses wiped for them so much that they won't be able to function in a real world. In my day we played 'dodge the shrapnel' and 'last one poked with a pitchfork gets gangrene' - and we liked it!

What's worse is they'll all be wearing Tag body spray so they won't be able to smell trouble coming either.

Anyway, I've been thinking a lot lately about how much time I spend flirting with or diverting energy towards guys who are partnered. It is my energy to divert as I choose, however wise or not. I'm not talking about hanging out with a partnered gay person (TJ, Martini, OMGDJTM, etc.) in a friendship capacity - I'm talking about reckless flirting or going further than that with partnered guys who are (or are not!) in open relationships. A friend told me I might be doing it because partnered people are safer to flirt with from an emotional perspective. They're probably not going to leave their partner for me, and I don't risk anything emotionally flirting with them. As long as no one gets hurt. But then I wonder if I'm spending more emotional energy than my buget allows on these endeavours. In other words, if I spend all of my limited spare time flirting with or having fuckbuddies who are partnered, where is the time for dating single, truly available people? That's assuming I want a relationship of my own, and assuming I don't consider partnered people in some way available. It's a time management issue where priorities must be made, I guess. But then again I haven't had many dates with single people lately, so it's not a very pressing issue at this time. And Gurl says that between work, rugby practice and matches every Saturday, and grad school, I'm too busy anyway. It also seems easier to ask partnered people out on a date than it is to ask single people - or at least my success rate is higher with the former. Isn't that fucked up? I try, I fail, I keep trying. Perhaps single people are more guarded, or I'm braver with partnered people. Then some asshole tells me "Oh, it will happen when you're not looking!!!" and I want to poke their eyes out with a dirty chopstick. STFU.

I don't have much planned for Labor Day weekend, and that's a good thing. I'm going to the Terps vs. Villanova football game with a work colleague, which should be fun. I'm not really a football fan, but I got a free ticket and I think the experience of going to a game is fun, if only once a year. The halftime field show featuring the marching band is fun.

* Name the song from which this phrase originates

Posted by jimbo at August 31, 2007 9:32 AM


Re: flirting with the partnered... aside from the issues is brings up for you (which you obviously understand) there's this reality: while you can't break up a good relationship & any couple figures out how to deal with flirting, there are too bad things that can happen.

First, any relationship has its time when its better or worse, and you could be a catalyst for some ugly stuff. While ultimately everyone is reponsible for their own actions, being the temptress is not good behavior.

Second, it can be social death. There are a couple of people who have crossed some flirting lines with either me or MWK and the simple fact is, they are as a result marked as creeps. I'm not talking casual innocent flirtiness, I mean some comments and actions that made it clear that they would indeed go farther than would be acceptable to us. (In one case I'm pretty sure one person, by saying something like "I'll have to break them up" in front of a group of people, has marked himself as a social leper to half a dozen people we know.

I have no idea what your definition of flirting is, and knowing you I am pretty sure there's a level of good behavior there that would not include this, but you can wind up playing with fire with these things. And, as you note, it's not likely to get you more than either some enemies, or a roll in the hay with some ugly fallout, with some couples. So, not really worth it.

When I was single I also found sometimes the whole issue could get you in the middle of somebody else's shit way more than any single person needs to be, even when the couple is officially open for playtime. (Without even having the playtime.)

Posted by: John Whiteside at August 31, 2007 10:50 AM

Good points Jon, all of them. But in many cases I'm not the initial temptress - the partnered guy is. I think in a lot of coupled cases, the initial rush of meeting someone is still desired by the partnered person, so they serially 'fall in love' again and again with new side dishes. Yeah, I think that's a better analogy - I'm more of a side dish than a temptress most of the time. I seem to be a safe alternative for guys who want that feeling of falling in love again, even though they have a partner at home. Compare me more to the Italian concept of 'the other woman' than to a succubus.

As for homewrecking temptresses, there would be no jimbo if somebody's mom wasn't a homewrecking temptress herself, so I don't percieve that as a bad thing either.
>; )

Posted by: jimbo at August 31, 2007 11:05 AM

That phrase comes from "There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart)" by the Eurythmics. Do I win something?

Oh, and if you hate Tag body spray (and I'm no fan) then how do you feel about English leather? 'Cause my men wear it or... You know the rest.

Posted by: Bigg at August 31, 2007 11:22 AM

Avoid em. I always get emotionally attached to one in the couple and then get hurt when it never goes anywhere. It's not healthy for me. The boys in the couple love the attention, so of course they egg you on...

Posted by: Gay Canuck in the Capital at August 31, 2007 11:33 AM

The song is "There Must Be An Angel" by The Eurythmics of course...

Posted by: Barry at August 31, 2007 12:16 PM

Aren't side dishes the new entree? :)

Posted by: Jeffrey at August 31, 2007 12:23 PM

There Must be Angel - Annie Lennox

Posted by: Chris at August 31, 2007 12:25 PM

You know, "dating," "fucking," anything else that two (or more) people do ... it's all labels. Sometimes wondering too much about what you're doing when you're doing it takes the passion out of the actual doing.

And I don't mean solely sex. It can be a platonic outing, casual or light flirting, lying ("Let's get together next week when my husband's out of town" when you really don't intend to), dishing, playing a sport, going to a concert, being ladies who lunch. Just enjoy yourself.

Now I do think that if a couple has boundaries that you know you and your partnered friend are crossing -- even if no one else is the wiser and you two end up having a great time together -- you know fully well what you're doing, and it's up to your conscience to figure out whether or not you can accept that behavior.

It's not just about jilting someone else. It can be about letting someone else corrupt you or you and this partnered guy corrupting each other. Sometimes between the two of you, only one has a clear view, sometimes neither.

Just because you let something untoward happen and think you've gotten away with rapturous murder, that doesn't mean you won't come to regret it later on for your own, personal reasons, not necessarily because of how it affects the couple.

I don't believe that monogamy works for everyone, nor does coupling. Trying to find a boyfriend, as if you're contracting out your services, can be as self-destructive as not thinking at all about it and letting anything that breathes inside you. However, I do respect that each has his own way of dealing with things, and you're better off in knowing what you want and hunting it down if that's in your nature.

And remember: * when you think that you're alone, it seems there's more of you at home.

Posted by: Andrew at August 31, 2007 12:42 PM

...yeah and our playground equipment was made out of metal. We rode bikes without helmets and sat in the back of mom's station wagon without seat belts. We played Red Rover and Dog Pile on Cobban...I hated Dog Pile on Cobban.

Posted by: Cobban at August 31, 2007 1:40 PM

You know I would date you in a heartbeat. Hands down.

Posted by: ou812m2m at August 31, 2007 3:06 PM

I'm not sure Maryland OR Villanova have REAL marching bands. Maybe pseudo fake ones. Everyone knows that the best bands are in the Big 10. (and the trojans).

Posted by: cb at August 31, 2007 3:45 PM

I always liked playing dodge ball. Do they still allow that?

Posted by: homer at August 31, 2007 4:56 PM

Someday you need to write your memoirs and call them "A Side Dish of Jimbo."

Posted by: John at August 31, 2007 7:44 PM

I think married guys often seem more appealing as they are off the market so the appeal is they must be good. We also often want what we can't have.

In SF, a closed LTR is as rare as republicans so I think the bigger issue in that regard is honesty.

The older I get, I find I am less likely to play w/"married guys" whether it is open or not unless they are both together. It just saves so much confusion and drama later.

Posted by: moby at August 31, 2007 7:46 PM

You need also to turn the question around Jimbo. Could it be that all these married men want you to take their beloved for a quick run 'round the block and have them back before 9AM Monday fully washed and detailed?

Not many married couples have access to a highly ethical fuck machine that can be relied on not to throw a hissy fit when the punter has to go home.

You are providing a valuable service. (Or at least this is what I tell myself when I find myself feeling a little lonely between the friendships and the fuck-buddies.)

Posted by: scott at August 31, 2007 8:11 PM

And we wonder why the majority of Americans oppose the idea of same-sex "marriage" for gay couples? Please, we want the legal and monetary status that comes with the "contract" but not any of the social or moral expectations that it implies. We claim equality by law but our actions and attitudes are proof of our inferiority as a community. Gay men are not "man enough" to handle the consequences of equality under the law.

Posted by: pat at August 31, 2007 9:11 PM

I could give you the inside track on this, Jimbo, as a partnered gay man (23 years) who flirts with good looking guys like you.

Bottom line ... center your energy on the good guys.

Posted by: Ohio Tom at August 31, 2007 9:22 PM

uh Pat - I'm curious at how you arrived at such a conclusion?

I wonder if you are basing such a statement on the misguided belief that only monogamous couples (regardless of gender) should be afforded marriage. There are a variety of societal constructs referenced here. And while they are often intertwined, they are not the same thing.

Or, maybe you think as a gay man, I should hold myself to a higher standard than my straight counterparts just to attain the rights I so deserve under equality of law?

Considering 70% of marriages in this country end in divorce, I doubt we could do much worse.

Rather than banter back and forth on Jimbo's blog, maybe you could email me.

Posted by: moby at September 1, 2007 1:20 AM

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