Breaking Out

I've done more on my own in the past three weeks in San Diego than I did all year in Hollywood. This city and I get each other.
Earlier this week I went out to a
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Gay Men's Art Group and met about 25 other gay artists and photographers for a 3-hour studio session. It was great. I can't post photos of the models, at their request, but I did get this artist's permission to share his work, and you can see what I got to photograph. It was hot.
And then last night, I went out to two events (well, they were two events held in the same location back-to-back so really… one long event) with a gay men's group I found online: first, a happy hour and then Bearracuda, both at Urban Mo's Bar and Grill, a former-Hamburger Mary's in Hillcrest.
I forgot how fun it is to go out and talk and laugh and drink. And drink. When you can get a double-tall vodka for $5 that's a good happy hour! And this group of guys meets up every Friday for happy hour at a different location, so it sounds like my weekends just started earlier. I met a couple interesting characters - some that stepped out of very stereotypical low=budget gay independent movies, you know the type I mean: exceedingly flamboyant, wearing 11 rings on ten fingers, diamond broaches on the lapels of the black velvet blazer worn over a deep V-neck tight-fitting shirt. The mamasan of the group. One introduced himself as the Queen of the Prom. I'm not mocking, not judging, just describing. He was lovely, and very welcoming, and I felt like I had walked right into that scene where the sort-of-younger guy confides in the older gay role model, and then the older gay role model character gives advice like, "Fuck them, do what you want. Life is short." That was my happy hour.
The night continued with double-tall vodkas
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and the evening club for Bearracuda. I remember when Bearracuda was in the Deco Lounge in San Francisco. I remember one Easter long ago, finding the downstairs dark room at a Bearracuda event and watching a furry costumed rabbit giving blowjobs in the basement.
I took a few pictures and talked with a DJ about shooting one of his future events. That was cool. I also flirted with a few guys, and they flirted back, so that was good and new.
And I made some connections and potential new friends. I was recognized by some of the photographers and artists from the Tuesday night session. It felt good.
Thank goodness for Lyft, because after 3 drinks, I was in no shape to drive home. Yes, it was $7 to go less than a mile, but worth every penny.
I was supposed to wake up early and go on a hike this morning, but I overslept. The vodka may have been a factor.
Instead, my apartment manager invited me to brunch at the golf course clubhouse. It was random, but he's such a nice guy. He'll be 68 next month, and has lived in this building for over 30 years. Watching him, he's like a male version of Anna Madrigal from Tales of the City. He knows everyone's business, and keeps tabs on us all. When he pops by, he doesn't wait at the door, he walks right in and sits down. It was disconcerting at first, but I'm used to it now. It makes this place feel more like home.
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