Phone

sammy7
Samsung S7 Edge – Silver

In other not tragedy and sad news, I got a new phone. I know, I know, color you surprised! Me with a new gadget?

I loved my Moto X PE, but I was overworking the poor thing. It just couldn’t keep up with me. I even tried a hard reset to see if that would make a difference.1  For a ‘mid-range’ phone it sure was a good phone though. I don’t regret forking over the cash one bit. I’d still have it if the chip had been stronger. The funny thing was the phone didn’t have much bloat to it. It came almost stock Android, but I use a lot of apps. I was going thru it to see what I could get rid of to maybe help keep it and I really didn’t find much to trim. It did make me realize just how much I use my phone for. Over 100 apps and 2/3’s of those get used at least monthly. That’s crazy!

Anyway, I had been hearing some good rumors the Samsung S7 was a leap over the S6 in regards to battery life. (I’ve realized a crappy battery is an absolute deal-breaker for me now, no matter how awesome the phone)  Critics were raving over it so I thought I’d give Sammy another whirl. To my surprise, it was good. It still isn’t Xperia Z3 good, but a good 2nd place runner up. Tangent/ That damn Sony phone is still the go to phone comparison for battery life. /tangent  Anyway, the battery was pretty good but I’ve gotten so used to having a bigger screen I wasn’t a fan. I went back and swapped it out for the S7 Edge. Even bigger battery and much nicer color palate (silver). And to be fair, the bloatware seems to be very manageable. It still has way more than is needed, but many of the apps can be disabled, even if you can’t uninstall them. Samsung just needs to stick to making quality phones and ditch all the bloatware that virtually no one uses.

I was originally against the Edge as I am very hard on my toys and the curved screen is a recipe for disaster when it comes to my clumsy ass. But, I missed the larger screen so I’m chancing it. And as much as I hate phone cases (read bulky and ugly), I broke down and bought one. And not only that, I actually leave it on the phone! hehehe It’s faux leather and only mildly bulky. The damn phone is covered by my Jump plans insurance so I figure if I break it, I can always get it replaced. My favorite feature so far is the new fingerprint reader and the incorporation of fingerprint security into Android. What a hassle-free function. I absolutely love it!

On a related topic, while I was considering the Moto way back when, I signed up for a Kickstarter phone, the Nextbit Robin. Well, I completely forgot about it until a year later when it arrived at my door!  Ooops!  I took it for a spin and it was nice. Very similar to the shape, size, and texture of the Experia Z3 actually. The battery was decent but still not at a level I needed. I was disappointed as I really wanted to like this phone. The cameras were the biggest let down after the battery. Both the front and back cameras are ok for everyday well-lit shots, but they simply don’t measure up to most other phones, even in the same price range. For folks that don’t take a lot of pics it would be stellar. It just isn’t a good fit for me.

I’m considering selling it or giving it to charity since I don’t use it. I’m only looking for the money invested. That said, I might also keep it as a dev phone to tinker with. I’m been slowly exploring the idea of teaching myself how to build apps for it. I need a device to practice on. As always, finding the free time to explore a new hobby is a challenge. ha! My schedule is already busy enough.

Ok enough rambling about gadgets. I could go on all day. Don’t even get me started on the whole idea on upgrading game consoles only a year after the new one came out.




  1. I keep everything in various clouds so never fear of really losing anything []

Games

People are losing their shit over the Pokemon game! OHMEGURD! Seriously.

Most seem to be in two camps. One camp is in love with the game and going happily insane playing. The other camp is overly grumpy that a game has overtaken all their social media platforms. The latter seem to imply that being adult means not liking games. Whatevs.  Overlooking the random sheer stupidity of people not paying attention, gaming is fun and more power to them. I’ve never been a Pokemon fan, but loving many video games I support my fellow nerds.

And if you seriously think deriding someone for playing a game makes you somehow more of an adult, well bless your heart is all I have to say to you.

And speaking of games, I’ve finally put down Destiny for two seconds. I’m replaying Darksiders II (The definitive edition) on XOne. The game is a bit buggy for the Xone version but I seem to be getting into it more. I don’t remember why but I hated the 2nd one when it first came out. I think it was some of the odd or flawed game mechanics. Anyway, I reordered it thru GameFly and I’m having much more fun with it this time. My queue was sitting for so long I’m sure GameFly thought I must have died. hehehe  I think we had the same 3 games out for almost 6 months.1  Well, I also had the new Ratchet & Clank that distracted me for awhile too. I finished it a couple times. Not a fan of the hoverboard racing but loved the rest of the game.

And speaking of Destiny, the last DLC for this disc comes out soon. I’m eagerly awaiting it.

Till then, game on nerds!




  1. Hint, we weren’t playing them, they were sitting on the coffee table gathering dust []

Busy

I have been busier than a one-legged man at a butt-kicking contest! Oh lawd baby jeebus.

So yeah, my new admin gig keeps me pretty busy. It didn’t help my coworker went on vacation. (I’m not complaining at all. Vacation is good)  On the flip-side my paycheck should be phat this next payday. haha  I do like it overall, but I’m still struggling with the hours. Being up at 5:00 am is painful. To be more accurate, it isn’t the getting up part, it’s the going to bed part I struggle with. For the life of me, I am still struggling to get to bed in time to get a full 8-hours. It’s been easily a month now. It doesn’t help Shawn has become so accustomed to my late schedule that he is totally out of sync w/me now. I barely see him weeknights.1  I’ve also been rather sad over all the recent tragedies going on. I just can’t bear to dive into it for awhile. So many wrongs on all sides and it is only getting worse. But I digress…

It doesn’t help that my ‘quick’ naps end up being 2 hour naps usually.  I mean what gives with that? I used to be the king of power naps. I could close my eyes and get a 15-20 min power nap and feel refreshed. Now, I’m down for the count. haha  Damn getting old.  Being on a 10-hour day means hitting the ground running or I miss something. So far it seems to be a toss-up between sleep and gym time. Arrgh. The struggle is real.

Cooper has adjusted fine. He is awake and ready as soon as he hears my alarm kick on. It’s a routine fight not to trip and fall over him hovering under my feet in the dark. All he knows is daddy gets up in the dark to feed him and he gets to go back to sleep when daddy leaves. Rude!

Anyway, I haven’t mentioned any of my traveling plans as of late. Shawn and I have been on a tear these last few weekends. I’ll get to it as I figure out my new rhythms. At least the new gig is going well. I enjoy my coworker (we’ve always gotten along well) and the work keeps me busy. I’m learning different aspects of the legal and criminal systems, which is always good. I just need to get the schedule under control.

And speaking of, the next batch of work just arrived.

 

 




  1. I’m sure he likes the down time. []

GHHD

The first GHHD1 of the season is just around the corner and I’m still grappling with the Pulse massacre. How do I even begin to describe my feelings? It affected me deeper than I thought it would. In many ways, I’m leery now even here in SF. I find myself more watchful of strangers and I’m more mindful of people around me. It makes me angry that I’ve been affected this way. It also made me realize the fight for equality is not over. As long as fanatics think they can go around hurting others in the name of [insert stupid religious extremism here], our fight is not over.

Because of my job I tend to disassociate from big public events, even in the gay world. It isn’t that I don’t care; in my line of work it’s mostly a protection mechanism. But this awful tragedy cut me to my core. I couldn’t ignore it, I couldn’t put it out of my mind and forget about it. I was in tears pretty much the whole week after. I didn’t know a single soul but these are my people. They grew up fighting the way I fought, just to survive and be. Our straight brethren can sympathize but they can never truly understand what we go thru. And that isn’t to bash them. It’s a testament to how we as humans are wired. We tune into ideals and actions that resonate in our own lives. Well this resonated in mine. And worst of all, not in a good way.

Worst of all, it brought back survival fears from my early years of growing up gay. East Texas wasn’t the friendliest place to be gay, let’s face it. I got bashed a few times and witnessed others get bashed as well. It’s funny because I used to tell myself that the hate crimes against me were “minor” because I came away with a few bruises. The sadness in that statement does not escape me now. This tragedy brought back the fear of not only being attacked but also just daring to live openly. I had put that fear away and now it’s come back. I don’t know for how long honestly, but I feel it again. Fears I thought long dead and forgotten. I’m sad, ashamed, and angry all at the same time.

GHHD #1 approaches this weekend and I volunteered to work. I normally make sure I’m off so I can attend the parade or fair. This year I thought I’d do one better and work. It’s not much but I feel like I’m contributing to keeping everyone safe. (I’ll be working remotely from the medical command booth)

I refuse to be afraid to live my life. I refuse to fear being out in public. And I sure as hell refuse to be intimidated into avoiding my own safe places. More of us may die. And I certainly hope it is never me, but I won’t go back in the closet. I won’t pretend to be something I’m not. I can’t think of a better cause to die for honestly. I’m probably being a little dramatic but I’m all worked up right now.

I hope that you celebrate Pride this week. Not because you have to, not because you feel obligated, but because you want to. You want to show that we are united in this. No matter how diverse, we are united in this fight. We will not be intimidated with fear. For my generation, we grew up living/breathing fear and we won’t go back. For the new generation, this might be their first taste of it. We all need to make sure it is their last.

No matter what you do, be safe and know you are loved. If your in big cities or small towns, know that you are not alone and your voice is one of many. I wish you all the safest and happiest Pride. Celebrate in whatever way brings you joy.

Hope springs eternal…




  1. Gay High Holy Day []

Clueless

I just can’t bear to discuss the recent tragedy in Orlando yet so I’m posting some light humor instead for now.

I’ve switched to my new schedule at work and now have Friday’s instead of Monday’s off. My dept is incredibly short staffed1 and I’m headed in for some overtime. I’m dressed, Cooper is settled, and got my biker gear on. One problem, I can’t find my damn keys. I race around the house looking and tearing everything apart. I spend the better part of 10 minutes looking and I’m out of time. I can’t find my damn keys!

I finally give up and order Lyft. I have a spare door key to lock the front door. I’m walking out the front door to get in the Lyft and I turn, out of sheer habit, to double lock the outside main door… wait for it….. wait for it…. with my damn keys!

They were in my hand the whole time!

Needless to say, I can be a bit clueless at times. I giggled all the way to work.

Go forth and be merry.




  1. as usual []

Games

image
Ratchet & Clank

I was all set to ramble on about Destiny the game eating up on my attention in gaming until I came home last night to a surprise from Shawn. He got me the new Ratchet & Clank! I didn’t even know it was out yet! What can I say? He gets me!

R&C is one of my all time favorite games. So far the new one is a mixture of new content and homages to the original story line. It’s quite funny and enjoyable to play. It doesn’t seem overly difficult but it could just be I’ve steadily been playing Destiny so my skills are still ‘up’. I had to force myself to go to bed last night otherwise,I’d still be playing it. heehee

I’m sure you are just dying to know my game habits. Yes, I’m still playing Destiny. I stopped for awhile but it pulled me back in. I’ve exhausted all the content but for some reason I still enjoy the Strikes , the POE1 and even the occasional side mission. There is one more DLC2 due out this year before Game 2 drops in 2017. Game 2 is expected to be a whole new group of planets with all new content. I switched back to the XOne for most of my game play. (I have it on both consoles, don’t ask! lol) Many of my buds play are on PS4 but I just seem to enjoy the XOne version better.

The new Gears of War is out very soon. I played the beta, which was focused on multi-player. The graphics were stellar as always. Then there is the new version of Doom finally being released after what feels like an eternity of promises. Again, the beta focused exclusively on the multi-player. It’s getting really frustrating that many of my favorite games are all shifting away from single player or campaign modes to multi-player. I get it, there is more money in multi-player but don’t forget the players that made you famous in the first place. Many of the top developers are practically falling all over each other to churn out the multi-player versions of their respective games. They end up being the same story with different graphics. Ugh. Don’t get me wrong, I like multi-player games, but I don’t play for ego or competition. I play for fun and don’t mind a little competition. I think Destiny holds my attention so much because it captures the best of both.

Anyway, Ratchet & clank is calling my name so gotta go. . .




  1. Prison of Elders []
  2. Downloadable Content []

Funny

**Thru a random keystroke I accidentally posted this before it was complete. It’s what I get for mutil-tasking and watching the Sharks game. For you subscribers, sorry for the double emails…**

I ran into a random blog reader a couple weeks back at Starbucks. He was very excited to meet me. I was a taken aback just a little bit by his anxiety though. He seemed absolutely terrified! I say it as a declarative, not to poke fun. Tommy was so timid and I could tell it really took a lot to come say hi. We sat around for a bit chatting and killing time. Apparently, he lives in LA but happened to be in SF for a weekend and just happened to bump into me. He has been reading my blog as a lurker1 since 2005! I know, right!

Anyway, after we had chatted for a bit I guess he realized he didn’t have to be nervous. He confessed he was surprised 1) I was so friendly, and 2) I was so funny. This always gives me pause because if you know me in person, you know what a nutball I can be. And this isn’t the first time someone has mentioned it to me. I guess I just don’t do a good enough job bringing my sense of humor out in the blog very often.2

I blame the lack of humor on why and how I blog. In an effort to train myself to be objective about my behaviors and triggers, I somehow managed to filter out my humor. I also tend to be speak very directly. In person, this is softened up with my inflection but online I’m sure it can come across more terse. I think my humor does peak thru from time to time, but I admit I think I do a poor job of really letting it shine.

I do plan to work on it. I hate the idea that folks would come away thinking I’m too serious or ‘no fun.’ Lawd, if you only knew! On a side rant, I’m headed back to Texas for the first time in like forever around the end of the month. I’ll be reuniting with both of my besties which should be the final test of Shawn and I’s relationship. If he can survive a whole weekend with the three of us terrors together, it is definitely love! hehehe




  1. Affectionate term given to those who read but never comment []
  2. I’m not sure I convinced him to start commenting though. []

Ride

While clearing the backlog of emails from the blog, I got asked if I still ride my motorcycle. The answer is yes. I ride it pretty much every week back and forth to work. I haven’t been doing many long rides due to my continuing diplopia and I "still" haven’t fixed the cracked fin on the left side.1

You’ll remember I had the two eye surgeries to fix some ongoing issues over a year ago. All the structural issues were fixed and doing well. However, the right eye muscles never adjusted back to normal. The eye had adjusted for so long the muscles are now out of alignment. Luckily, it only affects my vision at up-right and direct-up angles. However, these are the very angles used while riding a sport bike. hehehe I see well enough I can drive day to day commutes and short rides just fine. However, I’m not sure how well I’d do on longer rides. I do exercises to try and bring the eyes in line but if I do to many or I strain against the double vision too much the eyes actually get fatigued and the diplopia increases until I let my eyes rest. I’m planning to go back this year for the extra (and hopefully last) surgery.

This last surgery should be interesting. Basically, they numb you up but you are still awake. They go in, snip the muscle loose from the base, and put a suture on it. They adjust the suture as you describe improvements to your vision. When it reaches normal (or almost normal) vision, they tie it off and let it heal. Bam! The caveat is if the adjustment is too severe I may not go back to a full 100%. That is ok with me. I just need a modular improvement. The latter being why I put it off this long. I was hoping over time my eyes would adjust on their own. Sadly, they haven’t.

So to answer your question (Tony), yes I still ride just not as often. I do kinda miss it. Especially on sunny warm days.




  1. It isn’t that expensive but I just have other priorities []

Stuff

I haven’t really talked about my ‘stuff’ lately, or not in the sense I used to here. And that is totally a good thing! For over a decade, I’ve used my blog to air out my doubts, fears, demons, and general thoughts on life. I started out blogging for fun. It was new, exciting, and totally inline with a desire to chronicle my life. It quickly turned into an outlet to work on my failings. I felt adrift in so many ways for so long and finding an outlet that gave me an opportunity to focus on myself was a life-saver. I don’t say that casually. Thru my struggles here I have become a better person. And as I age and move thru life, the new habits are becoming set and I am stronger than I’ve ever been.1

*Note – This started as a quick update and Jesus, Mary, Joseph, & John it turned into a long winded rant! Grab some coffee*

Lately, in almost a weekly occurrence I’ve observed or experienced small happenings that I would have reacted to in a completely different (read ‘bad’) manner in the past. And I am continually grateful that I can see past things that would have also hurt me in the past.2 If anything, I’m feeling a little sad at how many people I encounter who are so adrift in life like I was for so many years.

I used to think what I did wasn’t really that unique. I’m discovering it really isn’t that common at all. And I’m not sure what made me unique. Was it the resilience I developed from years of mental abuse as a child? Was it learning how to be introspective? Was it blind fate? All of the above? I don’t know. It is hard to express outwardly how far I’ve come. I’ve gone on and on here ad-nauseam about it I’m sure. I struggle to put into words how my mental framework has shifted over the years. And to see me in person, you would notice some differences but you probably would never know otherwise.

I’ve always been good at hiding my personal demons. Call it an unexpected gift from childhood. Not many folks, even my closest friends, really knew how hard it was for me to get by at times. On a related tangent, as hard as my early life was, I was so rarely depressed. The brush with suicide gave me a renewed energy and to this day I can’t help but wonder if that one moment saved me continuously over and over. Now that I think about it, not being depressed made it quite easy to hide everything else. Back on topic, my crippled little id hopped along adapting or borrowing coping-mechanisms as fast as I could find them. The best and simplest exampled involved crossing the street. Yeah, you read it right. I would develop so much conflict in the act of crossing the street at an intersection when cars and people were present. There was this prevailing idea that every person in their fancy cars could see how worthless I was. And they were judging me for my failures and inadequacies. Inadequacy was at the heart of my existence then. I felt unworthy of the simple act of existing. And lest you think me joking, yes I felt that every time I crossed a f**king street alone!

Now imagine the conflict that ensued when my logical and not too terribly unintelligent mind ran into that every time I engaged in life events. Going to a bar was an experiment in how well I could hide the pain while desperately seeking someone to fill the void of loneliness, thru sex or companionship. Picture me trying to reconcile that I’d rather be a top in bed but felt so unworthy of the act I made myself bottom for others. Oh yeah, shit just got real! lolol I made myself into a stereotype (on varying levels) just so I could feel accepted. Most people would kill to avoid being a stereotype and there I was molding myself into one.

It easy for me to laugh now. And even though words fail me at times, these are the examples that really demonstrate the degree of dysfunction inflicted upon me. And to have successfully dragged myself out of that will always be my biggest life’s achievement. One might think it a low bar but such a simple change in focus radiates thru everything I do and am now.

Now I find myself struggling with a way to share this with others and help them grow. Trying to explain it doesn’t seem to do the trick. I’ve tried a few times and it didn’t work. How do you help someone see something they aren’t yet ready to see? I don’t have the answer for that one….yet! *scratches head*

Hope springs eternal…




  1. Who says a bitch can’t work on the outside AND the inside?! heehee []
  2. Hurt is such a simple word but covers a whole host of sins we inflict on ourselves or allow others to inflict upon us []