Saturday, January 24, 2009



I am disappointed.

My blind date for this evening cancelled this morning.

He has a terrible stomach bug that has kept him in bed, this, the second day. So we are going to have to reschedule for this week.

The neat thing is that he has been in contact with me pretty steady today...expressing his frustration at feeling so lousy....and how anxious he is to finally meet.

So, this still looks positive.

I just need patience.

Stay tuned.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Frank Has A Date!

Well, it has finally happened!

Frank has a date scheduled for Saturday evening!

This is kind of a first. I've been out with a number of gentlemen, but it was more on a friendship level. Nothing substantive, and it wasn't something that we looked at as a possible long-term, fulltime relationship.

So, about 3 weeks ago, I decided to place an ad on one of those dating sites. It wasn't one of those looking for sex now sites, but rather, it was one of those sites where the people are looking for something more than a quick hookup. So my ad gave the most basic of stats. (Not an emphasis on body part dimensions....or unique body features.) I also gave my true age, a list of my interests, and an invitation to contact me if it piqued anyone's interest.

I didn't expect to get a lot of responses...and I wasn't disappointed. But of the two serious responses I received, the man bared his soul. He is 43 years old and my same height and weight. He had been married for a long time and has one daughter.

He's a mortgage banker, lives in the metro area of where I live. He has never had a serious male relationship and feels that the time is right for him to begin moving in that direction.

His definition of monogamy matches mine.

We've been talking on the telephone and through email and to be honest, I've grown kind of fond of him.

We have not traded pictures and that has not been an issue.

So, on Saturday Evening at 5:00 p.m., he and I are meeting for dinner at a restaurant in downtown Washington, D.C.

Wouldn't it be neat if this works out?

We'll see!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Joy of Friendship

I am still learning about the joy of friendship!

I have written about friendship a number of times here. A few days ago I wrote on FACEBOOK about how amazed I was that I had reach the 50 friend marker. You see, it wasn't long ago that I felt I had no friends at all. My self-esteem was shattered and I honestly had no idea how to make true and honest friends.

All I knew was that I needed and wanted them desperately.

Well, I have found out through the miracle of FACEBOOK that not only do I have friends, but the numbers keep escalating. For this I am very thankful. In just two short weeks, the number of friends that I have has swollen to 110.

Now, just to set the record straight, I am not what is known as a FRIEND COLLECTOR. These are people that just sign up friends so that their numbers are impressive. The people on my FACEBOOK page are all listed as my friends because I know them all and they have each, somehow contributed to my life in some way....and that I have a continued relationship with each of them.

Years ago I heard it said that a friend was someone who knew all about you but still loved you anyway. I used to think that this was a neat concept....but that it would be something that I would never experience. In fact, I spent much time wondering just what such a friendship would be like.

I thought this would never happen to me because I spent so much time compartmentalizing myself and erecting walls. I intentionally kept work friends in one compartment; I kept church friends in another compartment; and regular acquaintances in another area.

Now I have comingled everyone....and all my friends are in one big pot of people.

I hadn't really thought about it before, but my friends are from all different walks of life....from different back grounds....different faith traditions.....different heritages. These differences have totally enriched my life so much, it is hard to describe.

I am just so thankful for all of them.

There is, however, a special group within this pot of friends that I will refer to as my gang. They are a group of guys that latched onto me early on when I started going to the church that I am now a member of. I can honestly say that I love each of them more than words can say. Each of them has brought a wonderful unique flavor to my life that is hard to explain. It's sort of like my life is like a boring garden salad with lettuce. These guys are the croutons, the tomatoes, the onion, the mushrooms, the green and red peppers, the dressing, the cheese -- they are what makes the salad so unique and so zesty.

Such are the things they have done for my life.

Aw...I just wish everyone could experience this joy of friendship that I have. These men, all sizes....shapes....ages......backgrounds....heritages.....all love me.....fiercely..... They know everything there is to know about Frank Vance....warts and all....and you know something? They love me. They care for me.

And when I'm sick....or when I'm down.....they want to know. They are there for me.

I just hope that I am that kind of friend to each of them.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

What Spark Can You Get From a Photograph?

Oh well.

It's happened yet again.

I decided to post some ads out in cyber space attempting to locate a kindred spirit. Someone who was not looking for a quick hookup, or who was looking for Mr. Right Now.

Nope, I was trying to find someone that was looking for something more. In my own words, "someone open to life's possibilities."

I have been honest with my age.

I have been honest with the fact that I have grown kids.

I have been honest about the fact that I am a pretty regular guy: good job, own home, a dog, etc.

I've had tons of responses. But when I send face pics, one of two things happens:

1. They never respond again or follow through with a picture of themselves.

2. They write back somethhing like: Thank you for your email and picture. Unfortunately the spark is not there for me, but I do appreciate you taking the time to answer my response and send your picture. I want to wish you good luck in finding someone special, and I hope your ad does just that.

The only responses that ever show promise are the ones that are either a minimum of five states away....or they are a little on the "different" side. For example, one guy was into me....but as we continues to correspond he wanted to know what kind of dresses and women's clothes I would buy for him to wear.

So, I guess I will just go back into the holding pattern of not looking.

At least I'm consistent in that the photographs of myself never seem to elicit any of those mystical "sparks".



Yesterday I received something very special in the mail.

My mom who is quietly battling lung and bone cancer, has a best friend namede Barbara who has always seemed like a second mom to me. She's a nurse, and has worked in many exciting locations and has always kept in touch with our family. I call her Bobbie....and she has been a very dear presence in my life.....especially now with mother's illness.

She now lives in El Paso, TX and calls mom every day and in her words, is like "Chatty Cathy". She has also made several visits and spent significant quality time with my parents as they shuttle back and forth to a variety of chemo and radiation treatments.

So far in the past 3 months, Bobbie has given two treasures that I will cherish until I croak.

One was left at my mother's house for me to pick up this past fall. It was a framed 5X7 b/w picture of me with my mother that was taken during the summer of 1959. (Yes, I had a belly back then too!) I had never seen it before, but it was something! I see my resemblance to my daughters at that age. When one considers resemblances, it can get kind of creepy!

The second treasure arrived yesterday. It was a photograph of both my parents that was taken back in October -- just after one of mother's earliest chemo treatments.... She had just announced that if her hair was gonna fall out as a result of the treatment, it was gonna fall out in style! So she had just returned from the beauty parlor.

It's an awesome picture that will hold a special place in my heart along with the picture from August 1959.

Life is about change. Nothing ever remains the same.

Sometimes it's all so scary.

Monday, January 05, 2009

On One Cold Winter Night

It's cold here tonight.

I just got in from having a wonderful dinner with friends at one of my gay pals' house.

There were a total of six of us: two long term male couples, the host and me. It was a time of great food and lots of laughter.

At one point during the meal, the discussion turned to monogamy. Both couples have been committed and monogamously coupled for many years. Our host said that he was told by a number of gay men, that it is impossible for gay males to have such relationships.

This troubled me....and I think it's why I'm feeling a bit sad this evening now that I've returned home.

If you've read my ramblings here for any great length of time, then you know that one of my main desires...or to be in such a committed, loving, monogamous relationship. But I really am beginning to honestly wonder if this will ever happen for me. Sometimes I feel so out of touch. I feel like that I live in some kind of dream world...that just doesn't seem to exist.

I told the couples tonight that they are my role models and that they give me hope. But my exploration of the gay world indicates that this seems more the exception than the rule.

This troubles me.

Am I that off base?

Am I hoping for something that just doesn't exist normally?

Am I being unrealistic?

I am beginning to wonder if maybe I should just concentrate on being alone. Kill the desire to be partnered. Kill the desire to be "in love". Kill the desire for intimacy and concentrate on me being the best person I can be. Focus more on my spiritual journey. Focus on my children.

Focus on my parents.

Several weeks ago I wrote of a man that I work with that I had a big crush on. He was the king of mixed signals...and I could never seem to figure out what his true motives were.

I've since learned that in his short life.....he has has 15 "long-term" relationships. He just entered into some type of a relationship with was a shocker to me....but he did it anyway and since I never declared my feelings for him, it really isn't about me. Over the holidays, I did have a chance to catch up with him. He proceeded to tell me about the hookups he's made through Craig's List. This was after he began this relationship with this new person and they had been seeing each other for close to two months!

I don't think he was the one for me after all. Thankfully I didn't pursue it.

So, I remain single......

Will it ever happen for me?

A New Year Has Begun!

It has been a very long while since I wrote consistently here. I apologize for this...but I have been so very, very busy. Beginning in November, it seemed that I had nonstop company. Mostly my kids arrived...and then I had other friends to crash here at the Manse. It's good to have people in....but I am finding that it is even better to finally be alone again.

I have been very amused and amazed at how things are working out for me. I mean after all the drama of the past 3-4 years, it is so refreshing to have a somewhat boring life...and to have lots of friends....and to just go about the business of day-to-day living.

I spent exceedingly quality time with all the kids. Each one of them went with me to church...I church. I didn't make a big deal of it. I didn't beg...or plead or even ask -- come to think of it. I just found that when Sunday morning rolled around, I got up and while I was drinking my coffee, I heard the sound of water running as they took their shower....and before I knew it they came bounding down the stairs to say, "Dad, I'm ready for church."

One thing bothered me during this holiday season....and I guess on some levels it is really none of my business. Still I'm troubled. The kids had very little to do with Lovey. There was great pressure put upon each of them by the O'Lovey's to spend more quality time with their mother, to which they all responded by saying that they were not driving the 90 miles or so to visit her. She would have to come to them. She said that coming to my house made her uncomfortable. Again, that's not my problem. Still in speaking with the kids one on one..I detect a lot of issues....a lot of sadness.....and in one case, total disillusionment with their mom. You see, one of them found out that Lovey was not entirely truthful about her financial standings during the separation and divorce. Approximately 6 months she received a sizeable payment from her dad's estate, and didn't tell anyone about it. Even during the settlement of our divorce, she never disclosed this.

So I got quizzed very thoroughly about the money.....and the child telling me this was shocked to find that I knew nothing about it. Further, that child then apologized for telling me all that and it was not her goal to "hurt me."

My response pretty much sums up the way things are going for me at this point in my life.

I said, "Your mother hurt me really badly during the separation and divorce by her many hostile actions that made no sense. She cannot hurt me anymore. This neither hurts me, nor surprises me."

So, as in most of the actions concerning Lovey...I pledge to take the high road. I have no desire to open old wounds and trying to achieve parity with the sum of money she got...and the fact that she never disclosed any of it...well....she can keep it.

My children also voiced their fears that their mother and I might reconcile. It's a sad state of affairs when your children tell a divorced spouse that they are afraid of and do not want you to reconcile with the other parent! Again, my response was very revealing about where I am now in terms of how I'm handling things. I said, "I have no desire to enter into any relationship with your mother or to remarry her. The only reason I have any contact with her now is because I have to as a result of the fact we had children together. So on family occasions I have to deal with it. But, I don't desire any friendship or anything."

Is this spectacular growth or what?

I am excited about the prospects of a new year. I am no longer worried about whether or not I will have a special person to share it with. Oh, I'd love to spend time with someone, but with my friends and my children's lives....I am quite content.

Happy New Year to each of you! And thanks for taking time out to read my blog.