Monday, June 30, 2008

Happy Pride Month

Every year, Kelly posts a picture for pride. This year it is the one above. Pretty cool, huh?
Kelly also asked that we add a story with our post. Now I have been telling my coming out story here so I will not bore you with the whole thing all over again.

What's Up With This Concern About The Ice Age?

I was noticing that there have been a fairly large amount of hits on my site lately concerning a possible coming Ice Age. I made the post in jest, but over the last couple of days, people have been showing up through queries about who would survive the coming Ice Age.

Now, what I think is interesting is people are saying we are moving toward global warming. Now, I have heard theories that global warming would spark an ice age, but I consider those theories to be quite far fetched.

But, I just think it interesting that there is so much interest in a new Ice Age.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Weekend Recap

Well, I had my first Sunday at my new congregation. Well, it is not official yet, but it is looking like this will be my new spot. The people seem small but mighty. I hope that this will be a time of growth and discovery from both them and for me.

I did have a close call this morning. We were doing the service and ran across this part in the prayers...
L: For the people in their daily life and work;
P: For our families, friends, and neighbors, and for shoes who are alone.

All of those poor shoes who are all alone. Makes you want to cry, doesn't it?

I had been concerned about Madeline. Although she had not been throwing up, she still seemed to have a large "chunk" in her colon. We had been giving her a higher dose of medication and giving her pumpkin in hopes of getting the chunk to, uh, ...move. Well, this morning, Nick found a HUGE pile of cat droppings on the bedroom floor. And Madeline has been acting more frisky than ever! So even though we had cat manure on the floor, we now have a cat that is EMPTY!!

Otherwise, things have been going well. I have to work tomorrow and will probably have to deal with the asshole customer who railed on me last Friday. But hey, the poor man has to live himself all the time. How dreadful!

Well, now I am off to my gnoming!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Michigan Pride

Nick and I went to Michigan Pride today.

It started out cloudy and rainy this morning but by the time of the parade, it was warm and sunny.

It was a lot of fun. We saw a few people we knew and I saw a person whom I work with. I was shocked because he has black hair but as his alter-ego, she has big brown hair! It was fun. We looked at the booths and Amber our dog got a lot of attention. She was resplendent in her new pride collar and leash. In fact, the person who sold it to us at Motor City Pride recognized us and then got to see Amber all gussied up!

I do have to admit that the eye candy was much better at Motor City Pride. No underwear models today. (Bummer.)

I bought a rainbow hot air balloon spinner at a booth. It was cool because I had received a totally unexpected gift from some people that I had never met before. These guys had read my letter in the newsletter from the church I had just left. They were so moved by my story and the parallels with their own live that they gave me a card and a gift with the stipulation that the gift was to be used for something I wanted. I was not to spend it on bills!

Oh, I also bought some body jewelry, but you ain't gonna get any pictures of that!!

But all in all, it was a good time. I think I got a sun burn, but a fun time was had by all!

Friday, June 27, 2008

I Really Hate My Job

What is it about some people that make them think that they can just treat people like crap? What is it about some people that make them think that they are just so much more superior to those who work in the retail industry?

Today I had a new challenge.

I was preparing some coffee for a lady who comes in on a regular basis. She was asking me how my parents' anniversary party was and how things were in Iowa. As I made the drink, I was talking as we are supposed to do. (It is actually part of our training to make conversation with the customer.)

Suddenly, the person at the cash register (Venti bold coffee and a shot of espresso) started saying, very rudely, "Yack, yack, yack! Why can't you just get her her coffee and quit talking!" (This guy just drives me nuts. He has a way about him that oozes, "You have to think I am cool." I find him disgusting but I smile and talk to him like I do to our other customers. We (myself and the other workers) do him a little favor since he comes by every day. We give him the extra shot we have to pull for the espresso (by policy, we do not pull only one shot, we pull two at a time. We have the discretion to give the extra shot to the customer.) and only charge him for the shot as if we were putting it into the coffee, not in a separate cup. (Fifty cents vs. $1.59))

I just about dropped over. He then said, "I want my coffee! I don't care about your undergrad school or anything else."

So I started to get his coffee and he continued to bellow. "I come here everyday! I don't want to hear you talk! I want my shot!"

By this point, I was shaking with anger. I gave him the coffee and the shots (yes, both) and didn't charge him anything. He said he wanted to pay and I told him to take his coffee and leave.

I am NOT paid enough to have to put up with treatment like that. My coworkers have also decide that if he comes in again, he will get only what he orders and pay exactly for what he orders. If he wants his shot in a separate cup, then he will pay $1.59 for it!

How can someone think that they can treat someone like that and then expect special treatment?

I really need a new job.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008



Sometimes I really hate working with the public! I especially hate "Free Iced Coffee Wednesday"!

On Wednesdays through the end of July, we will give people a free tall iced coffee with a card that people got from the newspaper. As I said, people are supposed to get ONE iced coffee with the card.

Now, you may have noticed the green lines on the cold cups. Those lines are for measuring the amount of coffee that is put into the cup. On an iced coffee, we fill it to the top green line and then put ice in the rest of the cup.

I can't believe the people who get so pushy about "no ice." What they mean is, "I want more coffee that I am not paying for." In general I try to give the people a little more, but sometimes people just get annoying.

One time, I had a woman who got angry with me because I would not give here more when she ordered the iced coffee without ice. The unfortunate part was I didn't have any more coffee made. I asked if she wanted to wait. Se got all angry and said that the other Starbucks gave her more coffee. I tried to explain that she was getting the proper amount of coffee and that I could not give her any more BECAUSE I DIDN'T HAVE IT! She then grabbed her coffee and walked away.

Another man came in last week and presented his card for a free iced coffee and asked if he could also get a coffee for his wife. We said, "Sure, no problem." Then he wanted mocha. Then he wanted syrup. So I made the drinks for him and he left. About a half hour later, the same guy came back and wanted a coffee for his mother-in-law who "felt left out." We felt a bit used, but we made the coffee for him. (I also noticed he was wearing a "Jesus Shirt".)

The same guy came in today and wanted a coffee for himself and his wife. I asked if he was going to come in a half hour later and want one for his mother-in-law. He looked at me like I was nuts and said that I must be thinking of someone else. I commented that there should be something about one coffee per card and he said, "But there isn't!" (I later checked and there is a thing that says only one per card.) So I made the coffee and gave it to the guy. Then about 30 min. later I went to lunch. When I came back, I saw the guy with a new iced coffee! I asked my coworkers and they said he came back to get one for his WIFE!

He not only lied, but looked me straight in the face and lied.

These people are getting this stuff for free! Why do they have to be such idiots about it too?

Six Shopping Months 'til Christmas

Monday, June 23, 2008

Kitty Update

Well, after a night of dreaming of kittens and baby goats (?!), we awoke to a cat that appears to have taken a dump in the night. (Things that go dump in the night!!)

I didn't mean to send her to Kitty Jesus before her time, but it was looking mighty grave. But today she is moving much better and appears to be doing better.

So we continue to give her medication and pumpkin.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Requiem for a Cat

Well, I think this is it for Madeline. Not even a month later and she is again plugged up.

I would like to continue to be able to take her to the vet and have her opened, but money is just too tight. I think the last time prepared me for this eventuality. It just has to be uncomfortable for her too. She is unable to take a crap and then it oozes out of her butt. And she also throws up everything she eats. I can't justify putting her through this anymore. If I knew that she would go for a year without being plugged, I might consider it, but it has only been a month since her last "cleaning."

I love my cat, but I can't stand to see her like this.

Friday, June 20, 2008

The Gays Are Getting Married!

I posted this before, but I though it deserved to be posted again in honor of all those tying the knot in California!


Thoughts on the Neighbor

I have been thinking more about the situation with the neighbor. I think one of the hardest things to admit is that the guy scares me! I don't want to be near him. I don't want to have anything to do with him. I don't want him coming into the store.

Oh well.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Big Time Passive Aggressive

I really feel like a fool. I let my passive-aggressiveness get the better of me. I really acted like a child.

It all started when the idiot neighbor came into the store. I hate how he still just pisses the hell out of me! I hate how he digs up things about being bullied that still really hit a nerve.

Well, I decided to give him a cup of coffee just to be "nice." (Yeah, right. I wanted him to wonder what I had put into his coffee and make him paranoid. I did not put ANYTHING into it. I wouldn't do that.)

I found him in the bottle return section of the store and said that I had a cup of coffee just for him and put it in the cup holder on the cart. Suddenly he came bursting out of the bottle return yelling at me for (what sounded like) "saying coffee in front of his baby!" He also then called me a few other words which I will not repeat here.

He then proceeded to complain to a supervisor that I was trying to burn his kid by placing coffee near him. Finally, he took a complaint form from 'bucks and I guess is going to complain that someone tried to give him a free cup of coffee.

It just makes me angry that throughout this whole thing, he was the bully and the asshole and we are the ones who ended up moving and having to pay to have all our utilities moved. I thought that when I became an adult that I would be free from bullies. And it makes me mad to think that he might assume that since we moved, he "won."

I find that this tends to be a pattern of behavior of mine when I feel like I have lost all control: I try to do something to show that I do have control of something. I don't want some ox of a person thinking that he has some kind of control. And what ever happened to "be kind to your elders" anyway? That may also explain the "personal adornment." I just need to do something that says that I can make a difference in the world.

I feel like I am totally stagnating at good ol' 'bucks. My view of the world has become mighty small. All I do is stand and look out at people shopping for (and eating) fruit all day.

Maybe I am trying to get fired. Who knows. I NEED a new job!!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

"why do gays talk that way"

In my continuing series of posts on ways people find my blog, I stumbled across this one.
Someone found my blog by typing. "why do gays talk that way" into a search engine.


What way does the person mean? The question assumes that there is a "way" all gay people talk. Is the person assuming that "that way" means with a lisp? Or does "that way" mean using "mahvelous" or "faaaabulous" every other word? Or maybe "that way" means combatently.

I would hope "that way" means "with understanding for those who have been oppressed." I would hope "that way" means tolerant of others opinions but not willing to be bowled over by blowhards. I would hope "that way" means we talk with an openness that is not usually found in our society.
What this says to me is that this person sees "gays" as a monolithic block. This person sees us all as the same. This person seems to assume if one gay person does something, then all gay people do that. This person seems to assume that we do not have variations.
However, we are not all Neil Patrick Harris. We are not all Ellen DeGeneres. We are not all Sean Hayes or Harvey Fierstein. We are as varied as people come.

Unfortunately, I think this view, that we are a HOMOgeneous block is more prevalent than we care to think. But thank God we are varied! I would hate to think that the whole of gaydom would have to be represented by me!

Sunday, June 15, 2008


I saw something today that just made me angry.

A family was in the restaurant where we were eating. They were obviously taking Dad out for Father's Day so the whole family was there. Then I noticed that "Junior" (who was very cute) was walking around with a bluetooth stuck in his ear. All through the meal, "Junior" had the bluetooth on and later "Junior" pulled out his Blackberry.

How rude! Didn't "Junior" realize he was telling all the people at the table that he considered anyone calling him to be more important than the people at the table? It seemed to me that he was telling them that they were good enough until something better came along.

Why do we tolerate such rudeness? Are we afraid of looking "uncool" if we say anything? Are we just in so much awe of the gadgets that we let people go?


Saturday, June 14, 2008

The Flickr Meme

I stole this from Pax Romano. I thought it sounded like a lot of fun so I tried it.

The concept:

1. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
2. Using only the first page of results, pick one image.
3. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into Big Huge Lab’s Mosaic Maker to create a mosaic of the picture answers.

The questions:

1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food? right now?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. What is your favorite drink?
7. What is your dream vacation?
8. What is your favorite dessert?
9. What do you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. What is one word that describes you?
12. What is your Flickr name?

Friday, June 13, 2008

Happy Friday the 13th

Happy Friday the 13th!

Some folks get weirded out by Friday the 13th but I always say that at least we have Friday going for it. I find Monday the 13th to be scarier!

Well Said!

I stole this from Curtis at Let Me Tell You All About It, Sweetie. Why try to reinvent the wheel.

Please tell me why so many homophobic people refer to my "life style".

I'm offended by this term.

I mean, what the hell do they think I do with my free time?

I am no different than anyone else.

I work my ass off at an unfulfilling job. I pay my bills. I pay my taxes. I do my best to keep my house in order. I try to be a good citizen. I try to be a good neighbor. I worry about the future of the planet. I recycle. I'm usually in bed by 10:00 PM. I give to charity. I help others in need. I just want to have a comforting home. I feed the cat. I visit with the elderly. I go to Mass. I work in my garden. I argue with my spouse. I support high school sports. I just want to have a few good friends who understand and appreciate me. And on the weekend, I watch a film, drink a few beers, and go to bed.

I don't have a "life style".

I have a life.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Vacation Day 3

These are my parents. They are responsible for the genetic experiment that has become Benton Quest. I would have to say I am thankful for that. They have been married for 50 years and in this society, that is something to be proud of. I think they are great parents!

Here is the whole Quest clan. I am the youngest of the kids. We start with my sister and brother in the middle and then my other sister and me. Girl-Boy-Girl-Boy.

Nick and I with my folks. My folks are very accepting of Nick and have welcomed him with open arms.

After the brunch for my folks, we hooked up with a friend of mine from high school. Betty and I have been in plays together and have a long history. The town she was singing in was New Diggings, WI, this is an old mining town in SW Wisconsin and is a party mecca. (Becoming a gay mecca too!)

We drooled over met some of the local family members and even got a photo of David.

Oh, you wanted a picture of his FACE! Sorry!

We headed home and on the way saw some dinosaurs out in the fields. I guess Juraissic Park is alive and well in Wisconsin.

We got home just before the storms broke. We saw them brewing on the horizion and as we pulled into my parents' driveway, the sirens began to blow. It was quite the storm cell, the emergency radio wouldn't finish one warning before another warning would break in. Luckily nothing was damaged.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Day Two of the Travel

We made it to Illinois and went to Galena. It is a quint little town.

Of course, there are restroom.

This is (arguably) the largest letter "M"in the world. It is 241 feet high by 214 feet wide.

This is the view off the top of the "M". In some ways this also qualifies as a rest room photo. (LOL!)

And now, what you all have been waiting for.......
Ben's Butt!
Granted, I was only two at the time.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

The Trip So Far

Here is Nick outside of the restroom at the rest area on I-69

Nick was wondering if it wouldn't be better if we used another restroom. But if they wanted us to pee on the other side of the lobby, who were we to argue...

Here is Nick outside of the restroom at the rest area just inside Indiana going south on I-94. We actually got to use the restroom here, we didn't have to pee in the lobby. ;)

Nick is standing outside the lodge at Starved Rock State Park in Utica, IL. We found the restrooms and then we went out and climbed up to the top of Starved Rock.

You can see the lodge here. This is taken from the top of Starved Rock looking back at the lodge. There is a large series of steps down, and then another large series of steps back up. But it was a nice day for a walk.

Now we have Nick outside the restroom at the Ronald Reagan Home in Dixon, IL. Actually, the home is next door. We went to the gift shop where Nick bought a shirt, but we did not go through the home. Actually, I was the one who used the restroom here, but since I had the camera, Nick had to be in the pircutre.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

I'm Goin' Home

Well, not in that way.

Nick and I are heading to my homelands for my parents' 50th wedding anniversary.

Nick has met my immediate family before and all went well. This time he gets to meet the EXTENDED FAMILY!! It should still be ok, maybe a little weird.

We will be hit or miss on Internet access for the next week, so to all of our Internet friends, take care and be good to each other!!

123 Meme

Ur-Spo over at Spo Reflections tagged me for a meme.

Here are the rules:

Step One – pull out a book on the book shelf.
Step Two – go to page 123.
Step Three – read and write out the 5th sentence.
Step Four – tag 5 more people.

So, here we go!

The book is A Failure of Nerve: Leadership in the Age of the Quick Fix by Edwin Friedman.

Rejecting Decarte's famous dictum, "I think therefore I am," which is basically a philosophical understanding of existence.

So there you go.

Now, onto the tag part. Being a slow runner, I was never good at tag, it took more stealth than speed.

Lemuel at The Greedy Maelstrom

Wayne at Wayne's World

Nick (of course) at Nick's Musings

The ball is in your courts, gents!

Monday, June 02, 2008

Adolescence Revisited

What I have been finding interesting lately is the experience of going through what feels like a second adolescence. I find myself in situations where I feel like a hormonal teen. It is actually more than kind of uncomfortable.

Nick is wonderful and is patient with me, but still, I feel at times like my sexuality is out of control.

This whole thing is weird; I am an adult. I should have gone through all of this stuff and now here I am at 43 years old feeling like a horny teenager.

What I wonder is how do we help gay kids to go through this at the appropriate time? I know that I am experiencing it now is because it had been so buried for so long. I had been the "good boy" and put all of my feelings to the side.

Kind of a disjointed post. I am not sure why I am typing this. Maybe there are others who have felt this way. I know that the feelings are exciting, but they are also scary.

Brother, I Feel Your Pain

(H/T to lolcats)

Sunday, June 01, 2008

No More Christmas Lights!!!!

Thanks to Nick, the flashing Christmas lights are gone from the header for now. I have been trying for the past five months and could not get them to go away. Now, FINALLY, they are gone.

And there was much rejoicing.

Motor City Pride

Well, I hoped to have all kinds of pictures of the sights of Pride, but as fate would have it, the card from my camera was left at home plugged into the card reader.

There were some great twinks in underwear. There were some very attractive daddies. And there were even some folks in kilts and wrestling singlets.

It was a beautiful sunny day and it was wonderful to spend time with my sweetie surrounded by family.