Change of Priorities

Yesterday was bright, sunny, and the humidity which is prevalent in the DC/Maryland area was non-existent. My mother-in-law is on her way home. The week’s visit wasn’t that bad. I’ll miss my partner, though, as he drove her back to her home and will spend the weekend and return Monday.

The “honey-do” chores are all done, and I have the whole weekend to myself! Woo-hoo! Time for this biker to pull on his boots, leathers, and get out for a ride!

But wait… my heart strings were pulled when I visited my aunt in the morning. There she is, confined indoors when it’s so nice outside. Instead of riding to nowhere just for me, instead, I gently got my aunt into her wheelchair and took her for a walk. Well, let’s say I did the walking, but she enjoyed the outing! There I am in leather jeans, biker boots, and a leather shirt, smiling as I stroll along with my aunt. She’s so sweet. I think the fresh air did her good, and her smile is all I need to warm my heart.

By the time I got back home, I had to do some consulting work and before I knew it, time had flown and it was too late to go for a ride. My priorities changed, but for the good of my aunt’s health, and my own happiness.

Tomorrow, though, this tall-booted leather-wearing guy is definitely going for a ride! It’s about damn time!

Life is short: show those you love that you love them.


Regretfully, I took a page off my website that was being linked to from a forum that shall remain nameless. However, since I can’t see what they’re saying about me because it’s a password-protected site, and with the huge number of hits on my website coming from it, the safest thing to do was to take the page down and redirect visitors to another website which may suit their interests (or at least take their interests off me).

That’s a bummer, but such is life on the internet. Thanks to my web stats program, which revealed the source of this unwanted link.

Okay, whoever you are, go away.


I really like my new Retro Biker Chaps that I received recently, which were custom-made by 665 Leather of West Hollywood, California, USA.

The chaps came with four types of closures: a belt with a “665” buckle, a belt with a traditional D-ring buckle, a plain black band, and four snap-on D-rings that are closed with a long leather lace. Each of these closures snap onto the inside of each side of the upper part of the chaps at the waist onto two small snaps.

I guess that type of variable closure system is great for guys who wear the chaps to pose in. However, if you will wear them which actually riding a motorcycle, then the snaps that hold the front closures on are poorly made. The closure unsnaps much too easily. Swing your leg over the saddle of the bike, and you hear, “click,” which is a snap unsnapping. Walk 20 paces and hear “click” again. Sit down or stand up… “click” … “click”. Before you know it, the front closure has come undone and the chaps open up/fall down.

I thought of returning the chaps to request better quality snaps. However, it took so long to get them in the first place, I was worried that it would take months again to get them fixed right. I thought of taking them to my favorite leather repair guy to request better snaps, but re-thought the whole matter.

How will I wear these chaps? With a belt. Will I wear any other of the closure options? No, not really. So I fixed the problem myself.

I permanently attached the belt closure ends onto each side of the front of the chaps with rivets. Yes: plain, ordinary, rivets. They work great. I rode my Harley with the chaps on and closed with the riveted belt, and they felt fine. Better yet, they didn’t open as I swung my leg over the saddle, while I was riding, or when I dismounted.

Life is short: make adjustments that work for you and your style.

Gay "Lifestyle" vs. Sexual Orientation

I do not hide the fact that I am a man and am in love with a man. That is my sexual orientation: male-male. I was born that way. Of course, I didn’t know my sexual orientation as a child, but as I grew older and explored my sexuality, I realized that I liked men for more things than just being buddies. I liked women, too, but kept the relationships as friends, but had no sexual interest in them.

Recently, I received and read an email from someone I know who is going through a tough time in his life. In that message, he said that he was going to “live conservatively and be straight.” He said that years ago, he “crossed to the other side” when he lived with a man as his partner. But now he has “nothing against the gay lifestyle (for me) BUT he is now going to live straight.”

Oh criminey. This guy is confusing issues which probably has to do with what he reads and hears from media reporting about sexual identify, sexuality, and sex. In my opinion, he was saying things that confuse two basic human characteristics: one’s sexual orientation and one’s choice of how to live — one’s lifestyle.

My lifestyle, as I described it to him, is that I am “a fairly conservative living, politically liberal-leaning, community-oriented, faithful family-oriented caregiver who happens to enjoy riding a Harley and likes to wear boots and leather.” This has nothing to do with my sexual orientation and that a man is my mate, and I choose to have sex only with him (that choice is called monogamy).

He had no idea how offensive it was to me for him to refer to someone’s sexual orientation as a “lifestyle” as if I could have chosen to “be” gay or “be” straight. I am who I am and my sexual orientation is what it is.

I think this is the fundamental core of the ongoing debate and rage in society, where Bible-thumping conservatives think that one can choose his sexual orientation, or that someone who has a same-sex sexual orientation can have it changed to an opposite-sex orientation. I truly do not believe that is possible (or healthy) — at least with me (and my partner.)

I do make the choice to be in love with one man, and to have sex only with him. There are other gay men who play in wider circles. That’s not for me to judge, as I request that they not judge me for the fact that my partner and I keep our sex lives to ourselves.

Life is short: don’t refer to something that someone is born with as a choice, when it is not.

Are You Alive?

The doctor quickly felt my forehead, and re-read the blood pressure results … 91/54. “Are you alive?” She looked at me with grave concern.

This happened actually while on a visit to the doctor with my aunt. I have had to take her to weekly follow-up visits with her regular physician. It’s quite an ordeal, as my aunt can barely walk, yet we have to navigate six steps to get her out of her building and into a wheelchair. Once in the chair, then we take her to a car, then transfer her into it, then go to the doctor’s office on the other side of her complex.

Yesterday, the doctor wanted to know my aunt’s blood pressure. As the tech was preparing to wrap the blood pressure cuff around my aunt’s arm, my aunt reacted with alarm, “what’s that???” I reassured her that it’s nothing new, nothing strange, and wouldn’t hurt. My aunt was still dubious. (Damn Alzheimer’s… my aunt forgot what is done to measure blood pressure.)

So I stuck out my arm and asked the tech to take my blood pressure, so I could show my aunt that it doesn’t hurt. The tech complied, and the result showed on the screen of the blood pressure device just as the doctor walked into the room. I explained what I had done. The doctor glanced at the results, and then asked, “are you alive?”

For men of my height, age, and size, such a blood pressure reading is considered to be borderline “low.” I do not quite know why my BP is so low, but it’s better that way than being high, which requires medical attention, medication, and can lead to a variety of other problems.

I guess having a low BP enables me to remain calm when others get upset and angry. It takes quite a bit to get me upset. I have been angry, but when I am upset, I do not yell, scream, or throw temper tantrums. I write. I write and write and write. I direct my anger to its source. That seems to keep me calm. I do not know why.

Nonetheless, the doctor advised me to see my regular physician as a follow-up. I may — or may not — as my last full physical was just a couple months ago and I’m okay, including my BP. My doc knows that I have borderline low BP and hasn’t asked me to change anything, but to keep an eye on potential symptoms. I only have one of those symptoms, which I won’t mention, but is manageable.

Anyway, I got a big laugh when the doctor asked me about how I was feeling, and if I were alive, as an outcome of reading my blood pressure. Yeah, I affirm, I’m fine. Calm, cool, collected….

Life is short: what’s your B.P.?

Do you BLUF?

BLUF, the Breeches and Leather Uniform Fanclub, has been around for quite a while. It is based in Europe, where guys seem to be more freely out and open in their leather gear. Most of them post pictures in their toughest, roughest leather. Grrrrr….

I have been a fan of breeches, leather, uniforms (and boots) for longer than the Internet has been around. I wear leather regularly when the weather is suitable, and not always when I am on my motorcycle.

BLUF has some of events and gatherings in Europe, which from what I read are rather, ahem… (not “G” rated!) While I have never attended nor plan to attend any of these events, they are interesting to read about. Heck, I will not attend any similar events here in the United States, but that is not because anything is wrong with the events or the guys who attend them. It’s me… just old, settled, monogamously partnered me with a partner who cannot travel due to a disability, and the fact that I do not go anywhere without him (thus, we’re bound to home). Further, I do not have the energy or stamina to attend such events which start late at night and last until dawn. I just can’t handle it. In addition, I am “fiscally frugal,” and don’t want to shell out the bucks for a trip to Europe.

However, there’s nothing quite like a good-lookin’ guy decked out from boots to Muir Cap in full leather, featuring breeches and a leather jacket. This captivating image is of Leatherman Paul of Toronto, Canada, (BLUF member 211) whose image completely bespeaks what I am describing, and moreso. He’s a hunk, isn’t he? I am honoured to call him a friend. (Photo used with permission.)

Do you BLUF? I’m member #188 … been a member for a long time. I just recently updated my profile and photos on that site, which has been long overdue.

Life is short: get in gear. Say, “woof!”

She’s Heeeere….

Every summer, my partner drives to his old hometown where his mother lives, picks her up, and brings her back to our home to visit for a week. There they are, Mom & Partner.

I’ll be quite busy this week keeping her fed, entertained, fed, informed, fed, and fed. Did I mention that she eats a lot? Noisily? Three meals a day, plus snacks… and she still weighs less than 90lbs (41kg).

Oh well, life is short. This week will be long, but life itself is short. I keep reminding myself of that.

Sneakers Against the Law?

I saw another google search that landed on this blog. The question entered was, “is it against the law to wear sneakers on a motorcycle?” I presume the person meant, “while operating a motorcycle.”

Well, unfortunately, it is not illegal to wear sneakers while operating a motorcycle. However, in my opinion, wearing sneakers, “tennies,” sandals, flip-flops, or bare feet while operating a motorcycle is just stupid.

I have blogged about this here, here, and here, so I won’t repeat.

While I think that motorcycle operators should wear long pants and boots at all times while riding, I don’t think government should pass a law requiring that. There are a number of laws on the books that address “stupid.” Unfortunately, outlawing sneakers and motorcycle riding isn’t one of them.

For gosh sakes, use your common sense. Repeat after me: “sneakers are for the gym. Boots are for motorcycles.” Period.

Life is short: wear boots while riding. Always.

Way Too Friggin’ Hot

Yesterday, the heat index where I live was 105°F (40.5°C). Today, it is projected to be as high as 115°F (46°C). This is just ridiculous. Who says there’s no global warming? Oh yeah, right, you read my posts during our relentless, patience-wearing, Snowpocalypse II and its earlier brother, the Blizzard of ’09.

I had to go see my aunt yesterday, and did something that I rarely do: I drove my truck and kept the AC on. I rarely use the AC in my truck, and when it’s dry and sunny, I prefer to ride my motorcycle. But it was just way too hot to sit on a heat-producing bike in jeans and boots.

I did wear boots yesterday when I went out, but wore short Chip Bombers that are loose and lightweight. I have to be honest, though, as soon as I got home, I got naked. Yep, I stripped off all of my sweaty clothes, put them in the wash, and didn’t put any other clothing (or boots) on for the rest of the day.

Yeah, I have AC in my house, but I chose not to turn it on. I stayed in the basement most of the time where it is naturally very cool. I also prepared some home-cooked meals that keep well. This was in advance of our annual summer visit by the mother-in-law, who arrives later today. Oh, joy… but that’s another story.

I relented and turned the AC on about 7pm so it would be cool enough to sleep on the bedroom level (upper floor) by the time I went to bed at 8:30pm.

BTW, in case you were wondering, my partner left yesterday morning to drive to his mother’s home in da’ ‘burgh, and bring her back today. Oh, joy.

Meanwhile, it was kinda fun being alone… naked… and working at the computer, catching up on some reading of professional journals on-line, answering backlogged email, and not having to do anything other than what I wanted to do.

Well, I wanted to make a video as I had some time, but I am totally out of video ideas, and it was too hot to make one outside, anyway. Oh well, perhaps someone will give me an idea for a video that isn’t too strange, impossible, or difficult to do alone. My partner will take his mother back home at the end of next week, so I’ll have another day to myself when she’s gone to do some video work, if I can think of something, and hopefully, the weather will be more cooperative.

Life is short: it’s also too hot, sometimes.

Back Support

Okay, I admit it, I’m not getting any younger. And as bikers age, they need more support when the ride.

Shown above is a new back rest that I installed on my Harley. I got a Harley gift card from my former employer as a going-away gift, so I used it to buy this back rest. It was easy to install once I stopped trying to decipher the pictographic directions.

I am wearing my Retro Chaps that I recently received. It’s too hot to wear leather (other than boots) while riding, but I put them on for some photos for my website.

The new back rest feels great. My back definitely feels more supported as I ride.

Now… if I can only find the time to go on a ride!

Life is short: make accommodations!