Saturday, July 28, 2007
Raindrops, Rose and Bombay Dreams
Raindrops, Rose and Bombay Dreams

This post was supposed to be written last night, but by the time I returned home from my white wine-and-telly farewell date with Guppie, I was a bit tired and decided to hit the sack since I had an early morning flight to catch (well, 10 am is early morning, isn't it?!). And here I am, back home in Calcutta, feeling a bit misty-eyed at my departure from Bombay - in case you missed the point, someone called this a 'ditsy bottom' blog many months ago.

In keeping the misty-ditsy mood, therefore, I thought I'd list some of the glorious events/ moments/ things I'm going to miss about Bombay... three years went by so terribly fast, it seems now, and here I am, aching to head back as soon as I can...! In no particular order then, either chronologically or emotionally, these are a few of my favourite things...

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  1. Chimneypot and I would sit at the Phoenix Mills Barista and talk for ages... she's bring her blind dates there, and I'd bring mine - and sometimes, we'd dump them and meet each other. :) The coffee-guy was very bewildered...!

  2. Gateway of India - anytime, with anyone. It's simply gorgeous. Ditto for the Taj Hotel - of course, I've only been in that second one for conferences and hotel room sex. (The hotel room sex was better, by far!) :)

  3. Driving down Marine Drive at topnotch speed, after watching a late-night movie show at the INOX theatre at Nariman Point - it was amazing when it started raining sheets this one time, I mean I know it wasn't the smartest thing in the world then to keep on speeding but it was so much funnnnnnnnn!

  4. Carter Road, Bandra - another Monsoon memory - I called up SnowWhite's Stepmother, and we went to catch the rains and the wet boys at the Cafe Coffee Day. It stopped raining as soon as we got there, but the weather (and the boys) was quite unbelievable. :)

  5. My first GB party - eventful only because it was my first party in Bombay, and marked the one and only time I picked up/ got picked up by a post-party stranger in the city. I don't remember his name now, but I do recall that he lived in Malad (I got dropped home, no worries!) and that I serviced him thrice (one that night, twice in the morning), and that I never saw him again. (grin)

  6. The first time I met Vivian - the Barista at Worli Seaface (O, it's shut down now), we sparred verbally, then made plans to have a sex-filled weekend at Lonavla, and then canceled the plans - instead, we became amazingly good friends. :) I remember I walked him to his clothes-iron-wallah, after the date. :)

  7. Another Monsoon vignette - driving past Worli Seaface and the waves crashed right onto the road - a gorgeous sight in beautiful Bombay.

  8. Buying the brass nameplate for my second home - I remember what a thrill it was, getting my name engraved up there.

  9. Setting up home has always been thrilling for me. So I remember buying those cane lamps and stools at Bandra, the cushion cover fabrics from Fabindia...

  10. Coming out to my first Bombay flatmate, the Punjabi one I used to have a crush on. I told him, while we having a drink at Toto's, and he responded with such a natural "And so?" that made me want to hug him then and there. :) He's no longer in the city now, but I wish him all the very best.

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  11. Mmm.... o, of course, my coming out to Chimneypot. Again, at the Phoenix Mills' Barista, over coffee and cigarettes.

  12. Chimneypot, me and another friend I will call the Mad Journo taking long and frequent afternoon breaks cuz we were all so fed up with the job - the three of us sitting side by side on the bench in the middle of the green space, and I was inevitably in the middle, not smoking, while the two of them puffed away to glory. We discussed our quarter-life crises then - or so we thought that was it then. :)

  13. My first meeting with SS, of which I have already posted.

  14. Riding pillion on the bike with Diamond Choker Baccha in Goa, singing "I believe in miracles" so loudly, while racing Guppie and SS who were on the other bike.

  15. Singing karaoke with SS at Goa - complete with head shaking and dramatic hand movements, we did Gloria Gaynor's I Will Survive so magnificently that the whole room full of drunken beach bums started applauding! :) O, and our only other karaoke session before that - at Jazz By the Bay, the two of us sang Pretty Woman quite horrendously, but Guppie and the Penguin still clapped for us, bless them! SS says, our real song is Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, and I agree. :)

  16. A candle-lit dinner with First Bombay Ex. He came over, lit some candles, and we sat on the window-ledge, eating cake and necking. Some of the next door neighbours were peeking out and wondering why we were sitting out there with all the candles, so I started singing Happy Birthday To Me very loudly. (grin)

  17. New Year's Eve with the ex, Boy - I was waiting outside for Chimneypot to join us, when I got an sms from him inside, saying "I'm falling in love", so I went in and we locked lips for quite a long time. :) O, and there was this time, just before he was supposed to leave Bombay when I sms-ed him that I was missing him - and he showed up at my doorstep just twenty minutes later. Mmmm... and no, just because I'm counting these as my good Bombay memories, doesn't mean I don't think he's a losah. :)

  18. Dirty dancin' with SS. We do this every GB party - and we're just amazing at it. And yes, some people do think we're a couple because of that, but what-the-hell, it's too frikkin' great for us to care! hehehe

  19. Goa with the Straight Guy - it was fun, in a way quite different than with the gay boys. :) We took the bike across several beaches, and even down to Panjim and Old Goa, and the old church was breathtaking! Beef Chilli fry and Bibinca at Soussa Lobo's was awesome!

  20. Guppie's house parties - they're the best! And Guppie is Mr. Fixit - he's the one who dispenses all the important practical advice, Mr. Dependable. And yes, I love his new 42" TV.

  21. Parsi food at Fort. I'm quite an expert on all the Parsi and Irani restaurants in the area, and I'm an avowed afficiando of the mutton cutlets, the berry pulao, the chicken salli, the caramel custard and the lagan nu custard. And, my lunches with SS at Brittania at Ballard Estate - two gay boys admiring the old-world charm and hogging on the berry pulao. :)

  22. Chocolate tarts at Piccolo, also at Fort - Natureboy and I have bonded in a whole new way following our mutual discovery of the place.

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  23. This freaky movie called Madagascar which I saw with the Penguin - and the band of wily animated penguins there made us both split with laughter, so that's where the Penguin got his blog alias from.

  24. O, and I hafta say here: I L-O-V-E the salad spreads at Just Around The Corner - of course, as SS and Vivian will tell you, my 'salads' are anything but healthy here, heaped as they are with eggs, bacon, beef, mayo, potato, pineapple, corn, and everything else least connect with the concept of Fat Free Food.
  25. My Going Away Party - thanks, all you guys. :) Though, a hot Andheri hunk popping out of a wet cake would not have been unappreciated....! :)


Thursday, July 26, 2007
Testing Times
Testing Times

Some weeks ago, at a party at Guppie's place, I asked Famous Activist Guy (FAG) about places I could get an HIV test done. I'd been thinking about going in for one for ages, especially given my rampant sex life, and so here I was - thinking that with all the leaving etc, this was as good a time as any. Of course, I was quite the silly ninny, so I informed all my closest friends and begged them to accompany me. And then I asked FAG, "Don't really mean to make this sound like a Kitty Party thing, but the boys and I are interested in getting ourselves tested. Where do you suggest?"

God bless him, FAG immediately came up with a list of names, but his favourite was the PSI Centre at Cotton Green. Of course, SnowWhite's Stepmother heard the words "Cotton Green" and promptly declared that he was going nowhere near that (admittedly boondocks) part of town, and would only accompany me if we went to the posh Lilavati Hospital in Bandra.

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And while I was weighing the cons of paying through my nose for a HIV test at the Lilavati (it's more of a boutique hotel than a hospital, really), FAG confounded me further by saying that the PSI conducted 'rapid tests', which yielded the results the very same day - while the Lilavati didn't, and apparently, the wait for the results the next day can be quite a scary situation.

So, here I was, thoroughly confused and confounded, when Natureboy came to the rescue. And yesterday, the two of us went to this private clinic at Nariman Point (not too far from where I work) after lunch and bared our arms for the lady and her syringes. Natureboy squealed his outrage ("She doesn't need two bottles of my blood! A drop will do, the vampire!") and I was surprisingly stoic. By six thirty that evening, we had our reports in hand and went to catch the train back home.

OK, so it wasn't as easy as that.

Natureboy and I pondered, on our way to the clinic, how we would deal with the outcome of the test. We promised each other that we'd be there for each other even if one of us were 'positive'. Then he looked at me, and said, "We are going to tell each other our results, right?" I couldn't help laughing at that one.

But it's true, that for a lot of people, getting an HIV test done is one of supreme privacy. Some of my closest friends have had themselves tested without informing anyone else, and the rest of us only got to know of it much later. FAG was actually quite surprised that I was asking around for a companion as publicly as I was. And though I told everyone (and myself) that I was doing this just for the heck of it, to be politically correct or something, I must confess that I didn't quite regard it as a picnic either. I wanted a friend with me, possibly because I was *gasp* shy, possibly because I was *gasp* nervous, and possibly because I didn't want to think of how it would be if I did receive a 'positive'. Heaven knows, I haven't exactly been Bombay's safest gay man, and even though I value the use of a condom, one tends to get a little... carried away in the course of pleasure. The balance between sexual pleasure and sexual safety is never an easy one, and like most gay men, I had given in and indulged in what some may call risky/risque activities, telling myself, "O well, if you want to be 100% safe, you might as well just sit at home, watch porn on the computer and jack off!" - which is true, by the way. A lot of gay men do that, get stupid like me, and say that whatever they're doing is a justifiable gamble with minuscule odds of contracting anything, so... bombs away!

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So yes, I was a bit nervous about the test. Not knees-knocking-knuckles-clenching nervous, no, but a bit too breezy perhaps. I had silly thoughts springing in my head on our way back in the evening to collect the report: stuff like, "O, if I'm 'positive' here, I shall have to call up that guy I've scheduled for kinky sex tonight, and tell him I can't be quite as naughty as I'd like to be, because I have HIV...!" Of course, I never told Natureboy any of this during the cab-ride. Wisely, I kept my mouth shut - perhaps, like I ought to have done, during some tightrope-walking activities I'd indulged in earlier, but we shall not go down that road now...

I survived the test, though. Both Natureboy and I got our 'negative's and we were happy. Grinning from ear to ear. We made fun of the clinic and cursed the blood-collecting doctor some more, and got on to our separate suburban trains for home. Before leaving the clinic, however, I'd gone in to take a leak, and in my usual ditsy behavior, stood at the urinal, looked up at the bright tubelight overhead and said aloud, "Thanks, God!"

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And yes, to celebrate, I kept my kinky date that night. :)

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Tuesday, July 24, 2007
The Object of My Eternal Affection
The Object of My Eternal Affection

Last night, I dropped SnowWhite's Stepmother to the airport, for his month-long Europe trip. Since I'll have left Bombay by the time he comes back, it was the last time we'd see each other for a long time. So, yes, it was hard. SS had refused to let me accompany him, because he was afraid the two of us would end up bawling at the airport, but we didn't. We went through the whole thing in a very non-bawling fashion, but on my way back home I did feel terribly alone and empty, knowing we wouldn't be having one of our loooong late-night phone chats for quite some time.

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I first met SS almost two and a half years ago... at a GB party. A common friend introduced us, but I was too hung up on Natureboy whom I was seeing at the time, and even though he wasn't in town at the time, I wasn't really interested in meeting strange new gay guys. Then, a couple of weeks later or so, I met him again - for coffee - this time, through a blog buddy of mine, who turned out to be his best friend (small world!). We sipped coffee, decided there were no mutual sparks of attraction at all, and parted ways on amicable terms. I don't remember our second meeting though, or how we kept on meeting regularly... such that we quickly became good friends.

It was strange, that our friendship really started blooming after Natureboy and I broke up. That was a hard time for me, and somehow SS was there at the right time. It was also such a weird coincidence, that SS was dating a college friend of Natureboy at the time. It seemed so funny to both of us, that his relationship with the college friend took a progressively downhill path, just as my thing with Natureboy had. We joked, it must be the fault of that particular college they attended, that breeds these strange gay boys, and I laughed that his love life seemed to be following mine exactly, albeit with a one-month lapse.

There were other men here and there, in between. We grew closer, and also realized how different we were, chalk and cheese. I was the guy who had sex with multiple guys, he was the one who believed in the "once a month is good enough" rule. He was the one with an exceptionally great eye and appreciation for style and beauty and elegance, whereas I was less inclined to the arts. I was the jabbermouth, while he valued softspoken people so highly. And yet, despite all that, we became the best of friends. We realized, despite all the differences, we were both silly gay men who longed for love and companionship. We each wanted that Mr. Right, and we joked that we managed to jeopardize our relationships faster than we could build them. And we each spouted such great relationship advice to the other, which was never followed - by either of us. :)

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O, we had our bad moments too. Somewhere along the way, we drifted into a horrible impasse where he thought I never listened to anything he said, and I thought he never gave me enough credit for what I did say. So there was this decision to part ways. We stayed apart for almost three months... and then, I decided to write him an email saying why I felt so hurt the way I had. He answered back immediately, saying he was sorry, and then I made my apologies in turn. We'd missed each other so terribly that we knew we wanted to resolve our differences, and I'm glad that we did. I told him, I'd try to be a bit less of the rattletrap egoistic prick that I am, and he promised to take me a bit more seriously. O yes, I cried on the phone when we made up. :)

SS saw me through my relationship with the Boy - both while it was waxing and while it was waning. He helped me through a very bad phase when I didn't know what was happening in the relationship, and helped me to not let myself completely break down. Finally, towards the end, he helped me realize that I was so desperate to hold onto a relationship - any relationship - that I was letting myself get flattened emotionally by someone who had obviously lost interest in me a long time ago. And he gave me the strength, however indirectly, to let go. A month after the break-up, SS sms-ed me, "I never thought he was right for you. You deserve much better." I sent him back a smiley, and a retort, saying that if people got wind of his being so nice to me, he'd lose his reputation. *grin*

And that's the great thing about my best friend, SnowWhite's Stepmother. Despite all the remarks about fat people and poor people and tacky people and his fickle fickle nature, he is so clearly the softy in the gang. I gave him his blog-name here, because, as I explained to him, "You have everything - you're young, successful, talented, good-looking - everything! And yet, you stand in front of your imaginary mirror and do the whole 'Mirror, Mirror, on the wall...' bit, imagining there's some wily Snow White afoot, who will ensnare what you want and deserve, and I don't understand at all why you do that...!" I don't think he does, either. We sit back and watch Sex and The City dvds together and sigh for Carrie, and he tells me how he hates Mr. Big, but I know he's in love with his own Mr. Big and is waiting for him to show up. Both of us believe in that "all-consuming, can't-live-without-you" love Carrie clings onto, despite our cynical protests to the contrary, and both of us wait, knowing it'll come by, albeit a bit later than the 'sooner' we'd expected at first...

Because we are, without doubt, the Finest and Nicest Young Men in the City!

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(Take a bow, baccha - they're clapping for us.)

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Sunday, July 22, 2007
Harry Potter and the Treasure Trail
Harry Potter and the Treasure Trail

Even as Friday night drew to a close, I finished reading Harry Potter Version 6.0, "HP and the Half Blood Prince". Satisfying end, and Madame Rowling really does know how to hook her readers, even though the entire 'Harry gives up Ginny to save her from his Mission' thing seemed very Spiderman, and yes, I'm keenly anxious to see whether Dumbledore does resurface and whether Snape (SO cool!) really is a good guy if wolf's clothing... But I haven't booked my copy of HP Version 7.0, "HP and the Deathly Hallows". O no, I'm actually even more anxious to see the film avatar of HP Version 6.0, rather than Book 7.0.

And, o, of course you know why. Daniel Radcliffe is quite simply... yummy.

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I am tempted to make a "wand joke" here, but I'll pant it out instead. The fact is, good li'l 'arry has turned into quite a Brit stud muffin as of late, and I for one would looooove to get some private lessons in 'Charms' class from him. *snigger* So there we were, sitting in the theatre, watching the newly released "HP and The Order of the Phoenix" movie, and Vivian and I were gushing each time Daniel turned his gorgeous butt/face/crotch here and there. We like our men of action to be in action, Vivian and I, and we're quite vocal in our appreciation of the same.... much to the chagrin of the poor Penguin, who was seated between us, simply mortified by our ooohs and aahs.

CT: I wonder what it would be like to get a blowjob under an Invisibility Cloak.

Vivian, squeals: OMG, that Draco Malfoy is soooo hottttttt!!!!

CT nods head: Quite the Bad Boy attraction. I can easily see myself in detention with him! *wicked giggle*But OMG, even Ron is quite nice, na? The gangly Brit boy type, isn't he?!

Vivian: O shush, look, Harry's bending over now -

CT, after a couple of moment's deliberation: You know, I think, after losing some pounds here and there, even Neville Longbottom would be quite the -

Penguin, growling: O, for goodness' sake, is there anyone in the movie the two of you wouldn't like to have sex with?! You're making more noise than the giggly pack of girls behind us!

CT and Vivian , looking back sharply at the said competition of giggly girls: Bitches!

Penguin's discomfiture notwithstanding, it was quite clear that Vivian and I were going to go on lusting (loudly) after Daniel. I'd seen a pic of him on the cover of DETAILS magazine, in his new scruffy look, shirt unbuttoned down the front, and of course it was very clear that he was trying to steer clear from his goody-goody image. And then, everyone knows about Daniel stripping for 'Equus', and that's hardly prescribed behaviour for Goody-Goody Boy Wizard, is it?

(Unless he's got the kind of Wand we boys like...)

Nopes, the fact is, Daniel is enjoying doing a Britney here. When Britney came out with her slutty look post the first album, she got the attention she wanted - the li'l girl meets hot whore cross. And here you have Daniel doing his thing - shirtless, with obvious attention paid to the pecs and biceps, and in a gorgeous pair of fitted jeans (which do come off!)... he's making pedophiles of us Sensible Gay Men who swore we'd never lust after anyone younger than 20...

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There's little hope of staying true to that resolve, as I imagine some brand new adventures involving Harry Potter's Treasure Trail...

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Friday, July 20, 2007

Clearin' this house out of joy
that I borrowed
from back in the day...
Threw away my old clothes,
Got myself a better wardrobe...
I got something to say!
I'm through with the past,
Ain't no point in looking back...
The future will be...
And did I forget to mention that
I found a new direction,
And it leads back to me!

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I'm spinning around,
Move out of my way...
I know you're feelin' me 'cuz you like it like this!

I'm breakin' it down...
I'm not the same...
I know you're feelin' me 'cuz you like it like this!


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Commenting on the last post, dear Iz was kind enough to say that I have the required spirit for a 'bomgay' of sorts. And yet, the other day, over a bowl of chicken khichdi and a dvd of "The Object of my Affection" (word of advice: read the book instead), SnowWhite's Stepmother and I were discussing how there seems to be a role reversal of sorts between us: how, all of a sudden, I was the one shying away from multiple sexual encounters and orgies, and he was the one getting drunk and humping Andheri hunks.

This evening, I was listening to some classic Madonna, and there was this one track where she reaffirms "You think you destroyed my faith in love... you'll see!", and I thought to myself, I used to be like that. I used to be this guy who would bounce back from heart ache, fully confident of finding the right guy at the right time. And yet, this time around, it's just not there - the expectation. Somehow, I realize, I've become this cynic that I always thought I'd never be. Somehow, I just don't see much of love happening... and all those jokes about never finding the right guy suddenly don't appear funny anymore. They're not funny, but they're not depressingly sad either - they're just... numb.

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The thing is, the cynic in me thinks that all the guys these days are dolts or dimwits or disturbingly yucky. So, none of them are Mr. Right. That's ok - I used to have a convenient Mr Right-Now theory for that, but the cynic in me is now on high gear and reasoning, you've seen all the One Night Stand options out there and it's clear they're crappy too, or it's the same old thing, so aren't you just bored?

And, yes, I am.

So, even though I go online practically every day, chat and exchange numbers with some semi-cute random guys, I never call them or store their numbers. I'm more interested in chatting online with the guy I can fix up a date with for next week, rather than go out and meet the guy I'd fixed up a date with for this week. And when they call/ sms me and go "Remember? We met on so-and-so date on such-and-such chatroom?", I go, "O, yea, hi dude, am at work now, can I call you back?" And of course, I don't.

The other day, one of these random guys calls me, and informs me he's arranging a threesome at some Bangalore guy's hotel, and he wants me to come. So, I think about it, and tell my cynical self to get lost, that I haven't done a threesome in a while, and I call this guy back to confirm. That's when he tells me, he now has 8 guys coming to the hotel, and I'd be a welcome 9th. I panicked. I made my apologies and hung up on him so fast you'd think this was Closetalk the Novice Gay Boy in Bombay.

And, of course there are exceptions. Which usually happen when I'm traveling, and shagging a guy from wherever I'm going is just part-and-parcel of the trip, like packing, so no real thrills, per se. Like, on my day trip to small Gujarati town today, I brought back this absolutely ripped hunky Gujju boy to my hotel room for some fun and games. Totally sweet, totally lacking in taste, totally hunky, totally delicious, and I'm so totally never going to see/ sms/ talk to him again.

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I'm not sure which one is Dr Jeckyll and which one is Mr. Hyde.

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Friday, July 13, 2007
Occupational Hazard
Occupational Hazard

The other day, on my way to work, I sent an sms to SnowWhite's Stepmother (SS) and Vivian: Whiny msg from first class local - y cant the hot investment banker in the divine shirt and great fitted trousers fall madly in lust with me and spirit me away to his private office for a day-long appointment?

Well, of course, the responses I got from both of them were not very encouraging - more of the been there, heard you whine that before variety - but then, I thought about doing a post about the men we fantasize about and the professions we seem to favour. Sort of... occupational hazards, really.

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OK, so yea, everyone wants to be pulled up for speeding and given a (ahem ahem) *ticket*, but that doesn't really happen in amchi Maharashtra here, with its potbellied cops and their greasy palms. And besides, those things are so often than not the product of a diet of porno flicks, rather than a real occupation one is likely to come into contact with during the course of a regular dating life - all the policemen, firemen, soldiers, trucker-types and pizza delivery guys. Sure, on now and then, you may come across a guy who's made himself a reputation for shagging autorickshaw guys, but those are really far and in between. As SS would argue exasperatedly, "... but Decent Boys don't do that sort of thing!"

So who do Decent Boys do? Speaking for myself, and I wouldn't call myself terribly decent, I have a penchant for investment bankers. My career proximity to the financial world of Bombay has ensured that I get weak knees whenever I see a cute i-banker/ stockbroker/ mutual fund manager/ banker type in great-fitting formals. Who would I not do, in any circumstance? Definitely, the trucker/ autorickshaw driver/ cabbie/ menial worker types. I may be into rough men, but not penury.

I asked around a couple of friends to see where their occupational tastes lie, and as expected, the white collar job format fits in very well with most of them. The Penguin is partial to the financial sector like me, thinks people from the media and ad world can be quite cute, and is quite OK with the Old Career Brigade aka Doctors/ Engineers/ Lawyers. For his part, SS would appreciate his man more if he had some sort of artistic career, like that of a designer/ architect/ theatre personality, but is also fine with both the financial services and the OCB, and of course both the boys share my revulsion of the menial types.

As for the 'No Entry' candidates;
  1. Both SS and the Penguin expressed a mild distaste about dating an aspiring actor/ model, and we all know how many of this kind there are in Bombay. The thought of sharing bed-space with an Ekta Kapoor-aspirant however was not too awful - so, while we don't mind sleeping with them, showing them off as Possible Love Interests is a bit dicey.

  2. Despite Bombay's status as one of Call Centre India's bastions, the doyen of gay call centre employees finds little from either SS or the Penguin. However, while the Penguin admitted, he wouldn't debar someone from middle-to-upper management, SS remained steadfast to his "No Call Centre PLEASE!" rule.

  3. OK, so this one was a mild surprise. SS also rules out journalists and media people. I'm not exactly sure why, but the relatively low pay packets and the comparatively high ego sizes could be some of the factors... The Penguin had no such bias however.
While it may seem we're being excessively harsh, we're still hoping there are quite a fair number of people we haven't ruled out summarily. And while I thought I'd point out that I seem to have the least hang-ups among the three of us, I refrained from doing so, because I realized that they'd point out I was also the sluttiest among the three of us.

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That's the occupational hazard of being CT...

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Monday, July 09, 2007
Bombay, Adieu :)
Bombay, Adieu :)

It's strange that I've never really thought of this as a 'city' blog, but it kinda is. I mean, the tag 'bombay boy' is just one of 11 other tags I employ to classify the posts here, and even though I do mention in the header of the blog , "This is me, Closetalk, your guide to the small, small, small world of gay Bombay", I never really took that very literally. Mentions of Bombay Life happened so naturally that I rarely gave them a second thought. So, when it's time to leave Bombay - at least, for the time being - after almost three years, I'm wondering whether that will involve TalkingClosets losing some of its sheen as well.

I do hope not.

Yep, things have actually turned out the way they were supposed to. Behind the scenes, while I never really blogged about them, I kept on with the study plans, then the applications, then the mailing part, then the waiting, the visa applications, and finally last week, I got my visa to the US approved. This morning, I got my flight tickets tentatively booked. And it all seems somehow terribly near. I will be leaving Bombay the end of this month.

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For at least a year, I will don the part of terribly quintessential NRI on US shores. What a completely absurd thought. My brother has already started pulling my leg, saying that when I come back after a year or so, I shall be putting on all sorts of airs and hating the pollution and the muddy Monsoon roads and only wanting bottles of Evian and doing all my shopping at the Cottage Centre in Colaba. Urks. I threatened to hit him with my umbrella in retaliation, but that didn't really stop his jibes. :) A part of me has been looking forward to this trip for a long time - I think it's going to provide me with an excellent opportunity to study, and open up some really great windows for my career as well. The other day, I got a sort-of offer at one of the country's largest ad firms, and I had to turn it down because of my US plans - but then, my contact there smiled at me, and said I had a ready job with her when I came back from my year-long sojourn, so that sort of reaction does reassure me.

O, but I have to admit, I hate the idea of leaving Bombay. I never felt this way while leaving the other cities I lived in. Maybe it's because I never forged the kind of strong relationships there that I did here. I suppose one says that about every place when they leave and they hate leaving, but I'm glad I was here, and I'm glad that I met the amazing people that I did. And I daresay this sounds like some sort of silly sentimental leave-taking speech, but it's really not meant to be. Or maybe it is.

When I announced my leaving plans to Mizfit last week during my Delhi trip, she sent me a rather sweet sms saying she just wasn't getting used to the idea of me moving out of the country, and she hoped that it didn't mean I'd stop writing the blog. At the time, I was toying with the idea of doing a sort of Goodbye Bombay, So Long TalkingClosets kind of swan song and perhaps start a new anonymous blog from scratch, with invites sent out to a select few who knew about me and with whom I was comfortable knowing about me, to sort-of reclaim the anonymity I've clearly lost a bit here. But I changed my mind in the end, because being the egoistic prick that I am, I'm kinda proud of this silly blog here, and I don't want to end its innings prematurely. I'm already looking at a Prodigal Son Returns post, once my course is done.

So don't write me off yet, dahlings: we'll just treat this as an extended Closetalk Does the Cowboy post!

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Friday, July 06, 2007
Time to get a New Umbrella
Time to get a New Umbrella

Every year, come June, Bombay collectively waits with bated breath for its monsoon - and takes a fierce protective pride at it. So when the monsoon came a tad late this year, owing to some gusty weather over Oman, the Bombay brigade hurled quite a few grumbles at the desert country, for delaying 'our' monsoon. No matter that we all knew, when it finally did come, later rather than never, we would find ourselves clutching hard onto our umbrellas, praying that our lanes and houses would not flood, and cursing the Municipal Corporation. In Bombay, Monsoon Mayhem is quite the annual thing, something like your Winter Antique Car Rally or Autumnal Diwali. :)

So while I got quite a few barbs from my Dilli dosts upon returning to Bombay, about how great it was to enjoy the rains without drowning in them, I sms-ed back, Rains in Delhi? Where? You mean the dewdrops you guys get there?

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Bombay's rains don't do much to dampen the sexual fervor of its gay residents, however. Natureboy told me over coffee the other day that he actually feels even more ardent than ever - in addition to the usual "I don't want to wake up in the morning"feeling. And as for me, well, sometime back, I braved the rains to go over to Andheri East for some weekend nookie - and anyone who's lived in Bombay will know that crossing from the West to the East is like Asia to the States. Long distance fcuk.

The rains also give you some insight into the style of a prospective date. Let's lay down the Umbrella Rules here:

1. 'Folded' is passe.
2. The longer, the better.
3. Rainbow is soooo out, it's not even gay anymore.
4. Curved handles are the only way to go.
5. Bright solid colours are safest, but if you wanna have fun, you can play with prints.

The cute guy with the great dimples, getting wet by Carter Road is the only choice if he scores on all those points. You can practically visualize walking by the ocean, getting soaked in the sea-spray and the rain, munching on corn, laughing about something undoubtedly funny, wearing something impracticably elegant, looking so genteel...

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It's another matter altogether that the cute guy with the great dimples and the perfect umbrella is never there by Carter Road.


Monday, July 02, 2007
Delhi Diary: Day 3
Delhi Diary: Day 3 - Back in Bombay's Rains

Dear Diary,

So I'm back in Bombay, and yes it's raining here. :) Not the puny droplets that were coming down, five minutes interval between each droplet, this afternoon at CP in Delhi. :) There are some times I really love this city...!

I'm glad I came back home after the wedding/ party, cuz otherwise I'd have missed seeing Chimneypot this morning: she left for work at eleven, but not before we had a nice looong chat about careers and love lives. :) She rustled up some great omelette, which we mopped up with good ole Bambaiyya pav bread and strong tea.

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Really didn't have much to do today. My flight was scheduled for 8 p.m., so I didn't want to go too far. Finally decided on a jaunt to CP, some trawling through old haunts, and maybe a boy in bed. :) That was actually pretty much how it happened. Milkshake at Keventer's, window-shopping at Fabindia, peering through the CCD where I used to hang out a lot, detour through Palika, and a metro ride to Karol Bagh to meet this guy I'd been chatting with online for quite some time. He turned out to be as great between the sheets as he'd been telling me, but then I had to dash right back home to pick up my bags and run for the airport.

Ummm.. so, ok, the stoooopid flight only took off around 9.30 p.m.


Delhi Diary: Day 2
Delhi Diary: Day 2 - Backache, Sex, Wedding, Party, Sex

Dear Diary,

Delhi is a H-O-T city. And not just in terms of the men. The temperature is hiiiiigh - even when it's supposed to be the rainy season here. SnowWhite's StepMother called up and told me that Bombay was drowning in the rain on Saturday, and I replied, I was sweating bullets all night - could hardly sleep. Chimneypot's boyfriend was going out out of town though, so she said I could sleep with her on the bed that night - frankly, I had other ideas about where/how to spend my Sunday night! *grin*

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But apart from my wanton plans of sleeping around, it was kinda sweet, watching the hetero couple in action. The boyfriend had a backache, and Chimneypot fussed over him, snapped at him for being careless, mollycoddled him - all in one instant. :) Eggs Benedict for him, and leftover vindaloo too, and then we called the cab to take him to the airport. Chimneypot had to work, and I was alone now. Was supposed to meet Mizfit and Soul in the evening, so I decided to take a nap before that. As it turns out, I oversleep and miss meeting them again! *damn* Decide, it's time to make myself feel better, so I try some Delhi Diversion - half an hour later, I'm in an auto rickshaw to Connaught Place for some much-needed Punjabi nookie! :)

But of course, Sunday night is the Big Night, so that had to be cut short. It's Diamond Choker Baccha's sistah's shaadi, and Flyboy and I have come all the way from Bombay to ogle at the Punju baraat. *grin* So it's time to take out the kurta, swish out the dupatta, and hail a cab for the wedding. Not too bad really, we picked out about 4 cute guys in all, and decided that the pasta was yummy. Cute snaps, great socializing, and it was time for me to run again. I had another party to attend.

So it's past 1 a.m., and I find myself in a South Delhi neighbourhood, hunting for the apartment where the party's happening. I'm here to meet Ponytail Boy, and when I finally do see him, I grin at his dimples. He's looking uttery gorgeous in a shiny Benetton tee, and he doesn't make fun of my flouncy kurta-dupatta thing. :)

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It's a fun party, with some very cool Delhi gay people, and soon Ponytail Boy and I are necking on the couch. We decide to be a bit polite for the other guests after a while - and shift to the john. Maybe not as romantic as in the sleepover last trip to Delhi, but then this one was more of "I-need-to-tear-your-clothes-off-now" lust happening here.

And while that felt sexy and exciting, I felt... cheated about that while going home. I know he was sad - and preoccupied. I know and can understand why he was. And while the sex felt fabulous, I somehow felt like I was a diversion at the end of it all. And no, that I don't like. Thought I'd speak to him, tell him how I felt - especially since I consider him way more than just the Delhi f&ck-buddy - but I didn't. I came back home - again, waking up poor Chimneypot... and slept.

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Sunday, July 01, 2007
Delhi Diary: Day 1
Delhi Diary: Day 1 - 'No Monsoon Here, But It Does Rain...!'

Dear Diary,

The weekend holiday didn't exactly get off to a 'flying start' as intended - and that sorry pun was unintended. My flight was delayed three hours, so by the time I reach Delhi, it's 4 a.m. in the frikkin' morning. So I hail a cabbie, and knock on Chimneypot's door in the wee hours of the morning. A quick hug, and it's off to bed. *yawn*

The next day was all about Bonding with Chimneypot. :) I might not see her in a while, so we decided to spend all day doing fun stuff. Of course, Fun Stuff was delayed, cuz ma'amselle took ages at the beauty parlour *grumble* but then we were off to the American Diner at the India Habitat Centre - one of my favourite-est places in Delhi! :) Soaked on Peanut Butter Malt, Hogged on French Toast and Eggs and Bacon, and splurged on Brownies. *burp* Ok, fine, so yes, the 'phat plan' isn't going very well, sue me!

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Brunch was followed by shopping at Dilli Haat - another old favourite of mine. Bought silver earrings for mum and something nice for brother dah-ling. There had been grand plans to do the Saturday night gay party at Concorde with Mizfit and Soul, but then those plans fell through as Concorde decided not to have a party that night, since there was some rain-dance thingy happening at some seedy farmhouse on the outskirts of Delhi - and apparently, all my friends are too shareef to go there. *damn* Anyhow, Chimneypot, her boyfriend and I decide to have a fun stay-at-home night, and we shopped for groceries. Soon, we're downing glasses of chilled red wine, watching Helen Mirren in The Queen (awesome!) and smacking our lips at the great vindaloo Chimneypot rustled up!

Aaaa... but that was till the phone rang.

First Love on the phone. I'd sms-ed him earlier, and here he was, asking me out for a walk. I smiled to myself, remembering what the walk on my last Delhi trip had led to, and rushed out after finishing dinner. He was there, waiting at the appointed spot, looking as cute as ever, and we strolled over to the ole park again, talking and laughing and flirting. And yes, we went back to his apartment building and had sex in the dark, on the stairwell again. :) This time, it was kinda expected - is that why the thrill wasn't really there? Aaa, but he's cute, all the same - exactly what you would expect from a gay Delhi boy. I walked back home, a little light on my feet, and woke up Chimneypot from her slumber again. :)

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