Category Archives: New York City

C&C makes a comeback

It’s been a while since the Cub and the Cougar have been in action here.  Somehow, yet perfectly, as we near the 4-and-a-half-year mark together our lives continue in parallel – making it seem as though this arrangement was more than just happenstance. Nance has been plowing through her masters program with only a few weeks to go.  Meanwhile I have been engaged in a 3-pronged approach for figuring out the next step in life. Yes, my indecisiveness persists.

Our unwavering love of New York continues to unite us. The rhythm, heartbeat, and excitement don’t get old for people who get bored easily and can thrive just as well alone as with others. Our days are still littered with stories that color our present and surely resonate for the future.

For me, a persistent urgency to make a decision on what’s next has underscored this year. Often when I try to decide what’s next, the choices appear overwhelming. The decision is made harder from the fear of choosing the wrong, rigid path forward. To add to that, most of my friends seem to be swirling around in the same boat. Though, I don’t see this as floundering but exploring – picking up souvenirs from this exploration and broadening our horizons for what’s next.

Even though Nancy is in a different life stage with different concerns and burdens, she has remarkably been in a state of exploration herself. It really is remarkable. And inspirational. I truly believe that our time together fueled years of  a mutual introspection that will be difficult to recreate. These days, we’ve both become laser focused together – wonderfully in sync. The starting visual of our sitcom on a Sunday morning these days? The Cougar reading the Times and the Cub reading the Economist. Sorry. Less interesting than random men slinking past our doormen at 7 AM but life goes in phases and we’ve toned it down for the moment.

We know we won’t always be together. My path forward may take me from New York. However we have many months more of our wonderful time in life’s dazzling sun together.  As the years rush by I do have a sense that this is one of those times that will be cherished, but as we still live through it, this time must be capitalized upon while we have the pen in hand for this chapter.

And so that’s what we’ll do. The stories will persist and the parties will abound, albeit more intimately. Although the unforgettable antics that marked the start of our wonderful friendship remain, they have been somewhat tempered to stories that accompany long-term camaraderie. This blog was always a soapbox for our thoughts but also a snapshot of a truly remarkable time in two New Yorkers’ lives. Two unlikely, wonderfully perfect friends.

Stay tuned for surprises that await.

Troll Season: NYC

Apart from having to deal with gusty winds racing through the skyscraper canyons accentuating the already frigid temperatures, Manhattanites face a slim picking of man options in the winter. Let’s be honest, New York is pretty miserable in the height of winter.  It really is only fun when the Christmas lights are out and the infectious energy of NYE makes everything feel as though it’s in reach.  But let’s be real. After that: it’s cold – it’s dark all the time – it’s just not ideal.

Let’s get to the nitty gritty though. Advent of the cold = Abounding trolls. Now I’m not saying that there still aren’t a few cuties out on the town, but the resounding norm resembles a troll-fest. I guess it makes sense that the beautiful people stay in during the coldest months. Why frolic around in the slush (ruining my fashion boots) in the 15 degree weather when we live here year-round and it’s downright unpleasant outside? Girls still have to dress slutty, and in heels, to get into the top clubs so what’s the point? To meet a subpar option at a bar? You have to worry about coat checks and taking cabs everywhere. Ugh. I personally don’t see too much of a reward. Nance and I have not really been out on the town as of late which clearly adds backing to my argument.

Further validation: I was just at Equinox goggling at hottie upon hottie on a weekend evening, thinking Definitely no trolls here. You see? We’re all going to the gym, NOT scoping out trolls in sub-zero temperatures. Sorry. Real talk.

Sound logic? Mind you Ivanka and I have gone on two remarkably mature dates in the past week with rather illustrious creatures. I’d still say that the argument holds up though because I never said that beautiful people don’t date in the winter, did I?

Don’t fret betches. As Naisha said last year, spring has a way of bringing the hotties out of hiding. The streets begin to bloom with relevant options mirroring the beautiful weather that lasts only a few weeks until swinging to the opposite extreme (Why do we love this city so much again?). Literally one day it all hits you… where were all these beautiful options hiding all winter?

Strategies for Summer/Fall? Find a snuggle buddy AKA Sex friend.  Just keep one in the lineup because otherwise winter can seem especially bleak and wretched.  I tried this tactic this year but unfortunately all relevant options strangely fell away just as the hardest part of winter hit. Dommage. Alas don’t worry about me – I have Nance, Ivanka, and Downton Abbey to keep me occupied.

Anyway that’s my reflection on this especially frigid Friday. Take it for what you will but if you’re out this weekend, happy trolling 🙂

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Manhattan vs BK

I admit it, I’m a Manhattanite elitist.

Last weekend I spent my Saturday night in Williamsburg with my friend Gigi. I always joke that when I go to BK, I’m about re-live some form of a GIRLS episode. Mind you, a prior visit to a Bushwick warehouse for a blacklight paint party was pretty reminiscent of GIRLS season 1. (Alas I digress. 😉 ) For the record I’d like to say I love Brooklyn and its proximity to Manhattan makes a short underwater subway ride feel like a trip to a new city. The view is beautiful, the food is high quality but laid back, and statement pieces abound in BK boutiques. Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens and Park Slope are trop charmant.

But I’d like to focus on Williamsburg. It’s the new hotspot. Hipster central. Some areas are more expensive than the EV and LES. Mind you I love Bedford Ave and Smorgasbord  on a Saturday is the cutest. I feel like people are slightly warmer in the burg. The vibe is grittier but more real.

But there’s something about Williamsburg that escapes me and makes me slightly unsettled. I find it hard to describe but I feel like I’m perpetually out of place. I do love the edginess but maybe I feel somewhat uncomfortable because I’m just too mainstream. LES edgy is enough for me. Don’t judge me Williamsburg. I like getting my GQ catalog and shopping at my favorite stores in Soho for NEW clothes. Am I just a prissy betch or does anyone else share this view?

Williamsburg at night just exudes a grungy, somewhat melancholic aura.  We were at Glasslands last Saturday and I literally had an out of body moment and thought to myself where am I? We were all just watching a DJ perform, no one was really dancing, and I was living in the epitome of a sausage fest. Not to mention BK just has more trolls. Oops, real talk.

Maybe I’m also slightly self-conscious because of the hipster factor. Although I’m far from being a counterculture hipster, I always tell my friends that I’d love to date a hipster. He should have a few artsy tattoos, could play in a band and serenade me better than Dan Smith, and could even have a beard. I don’t think it would work out long-term but maybe a year-long tryst would be ideal. Maybe I react to the fact that I don’t think a hipster would ever go for me since I’m just a different breed of gay. Damn you Williamsburg hipsters, just love me!

Feel free to dispute my POV, I am a hopeless narcissist after all, but I’m a firmly established Manhattan boy. Whenever I frolic over across the East River I always enjoy returning home (even if the L at night makes me die inside).  It’s true. Manhattan can be bitchy, lavish, and pretentious… oh wait we’re not describing me are we?

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Do You Know Who I Am?

Betches in lineLet’s turn up the sass factor, shall we? NYC is a city like no other but I think for me, its nightlife stands out as remarkable. Glittering, Extravagant, Excessive. NYC boasts numerous mega clubs spread out across Meatpacking, Midtown, and Chelsea, with clubs in the East Village, LES, Soho, and Chinatown having a slightly more laid back feel but often no less exclusive.

In New York, it doesn’t matter who you are but it matters who you project yourself to be. At some clubs, it is much easier knowing a promoter, yes, however I’ve found that if you own it, exude confidence, and channel enough of a betchiness, you’ll gain easy access. I’ve actually said before Do you know who I am?  Doormen stop and think… Maybe you are someone important.

Just say you’re on the list with such conviction that the silly girl with the clipboard will think you’re crazy not to be (like at the Darby). Or hop out of the cab at Le Baron and say “I’m here” to the doorman, who can’t help think you’re someone important. I still don’t understand why so many celebrities frequent Avenue but just go up to the doormen with a beautiful party, skipping the line, and gain quick access to the cramped hallway they call a club.

Mind you, don’t expect to dress like a troll and gain easy entrance into the swankiest venues on the east coast. Your outfit needs to be on point. For ladies, height can sometimes get you farther than good looks. Often young financiers drop thousands at the door to get a table and feel “IN”. As I refuse to ever pay covers, I always smile at these silly ex-frat stars as I skip the line.

OK. I get it. These clubs are over the top. And from the outside looking in a promoter can be seen as some form of a pimp. However, it’s part of the NYC scene. People die to have status here, and that feeling of feeling exclusive, jumping a line or having a table at one of the hottest nightclubs, it’s how these mega clubs stay in business.

An anecdote? Le Bain. Easily my favorite club in NYC. A slice of Paris in NYC. You can always hear French in the air at Le Bain. Two floors, a pool, a crepe bar, beautiful views of the Hudson  from its rooftop terrace, potentially one of the best views of the ESB from its bathroom, and a bathing suit vending machine. Need I say more? I love Le Bain because there are no promoters, and getting past the doorman is validation that you look good. One time my friends and I were at the door and the usual doormen was not directly near the line so some betch was overseeing. She asked me are you on the list? I proceeded to say with great conviction, Yes, it’s Brian. Nothing else. Clearly I’m comparable to Madonna or Cher. The betch just kind of stared at me before the usual doormen came over, shooed her away, and smiled as we frolicked upstairs.

Now mind you alcohol is surely liquid courage when channeling power bitch at the door, but at the end of the day, who are YOU doorman? I look great, my friends look great, so let me in already. It’s all about owning it.

NYC gay night life? That’s quite a different animal, and a musing for a different day.

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A Dual-lensed Introduction

The Cub

I think you’ll find my life interesting. To start, I’m in my 20s living in Manhattan as a young, gay professional. I also live with Nancy who is the best. Why? She’s simply a fabulously-cultured, uptown cougar. Interested yet? In a city where nothing is out of the question, setting new standards for “conventional” is the norm.

So I’m the cub.

I moved to the city after graduation, on a mission to attain what I never found at my small liberal arts college. Don’t get me wrong, I got a lot out of college, but not the life experiences I needed. That being said,  for the rest of my 20s I want to create a mental album of memories brimming with lavish anecdotes and absolutely no regrets.

As a forward, stories of my lovely friends will sprinkle these posts because without them my life would not be nearly as interesting. They get me through the days and add to the always eventful nights. As a young gay guy it’s no shocker that girls flock to my company, but I lovingly have my betches, and they have me. Trust

New York is my glittering city.

I believe that loving the place you live is the foundation of happiness. When strolling through Manhattan on a beautiful day can make me smile wider than any silly boy could ever could, it’s validation that NYC fits the here and now perfectly.  I’m where I want to be and making the most of it.

In serendipitous NYC fashion, 2 weeks after graduation I moved into Nancy’s beautiful 2 bedroom apartment in a building well-equipped with doormen, a gym, and a pool. I liken my situation to one of those talked-about NYC myths; something you hear about in stories but never actually believe as real. Perfect timing, and the connection of a friend who lives down the hall, were on my side. The apartment is a godsend, but let’s be real, none of this would be bloggable or as perfect without Nancy.

Nancy: She embodies cougar.

I’ll say it again, Nance is the best. She is an inspiration, who sets the bar for my friends and me to work toward. Is legend too much? I don’t think so. Recently divorced a few years ago, she embodies a standard for revamping your life, and making it better.  She and I both subscribe to the school of thought that your prime is whenever you make it.

She may be one of the classiest betches you’ll ever meet. She eats with Hermes silverware and often can’t decide which of her Chanel bags to wear. However, that said she is down-to-earth, an effortless conversationalist and not jaded from the extravagant lifestyle she leads. You may find her raging on a rooftop but rest-assured she’ll get up to make that 6 AM spin class.

Most importantly though, she’s young at heart. Armed with a treasure chest of life advice, only attainable from living through the good and the bad, she truly has a joie de vivre that I aspire to one day personify. She pulls off the looks of a 40-year old, and has the swagger that rivals that of most of my friends.

A Perfectly-Odd couple

I may be young but I’ve always been an old soul. I’m a rationalist and constantly introspective. My pensive bouts keep me very centered and I seem to be often solicited for my “sage” wisdom.

But this is why Nance and I work so well together. Generation, gender, sexual orientation? Yes all mismatched. But on accounts of our thoughts on life, our driving principles, our tastes, etc… we connect. Her young spirit and my old soul comprise a fitting match in the city we both love. We meet at the intersection which couldn’t be more perfect.

So why are we doing this?

There are so many times when we’re sitting on the terrace, sharing advice, validating our self-worth and laughing about the events that color our wonderful lives and we stop and say, these conversations should be shared. Between the two of us, sprinkled with the stories of our friends, we possess a thread of stories beckoning for a soapbox.  I hope that you find our posts entertaining, pick up a few new options for a swank night out, or simply glean a piece of advice from our thoughts on life. Who knows where I’ll be in 10 years, but for me this blog is a chance to immortalize the here and now: My life shared with remarkable Nancy.

The Cougar

Brian is fond of saying “Nancy and I are good for each other” and this is the absolute truth.  Brian, as you will come to see, is an uncommonly mature, composed, accomplished and exotically handsome young man.  His qualities not only align with mine but enhance them.  I am an uncommonly swagalicious cougar babe who has a life story you’d like to know. Brian brings out the best in me.  I do the same for him. ALL relationships should be this good!

But as we know….they are not.  Which is why we rejoice in what serendipity has brought us.

At my age life has already presented its share of challenges but Brian, a twenty-something, is just starting that learning curve, that delicious time when graduates leave the cocoon of college and enter the “real” world. Manhattan can be a tough place to rise up the corporate ladder, find an apartment or a date.  (Thanks to Brian I know the difference between Tinder & Grinder). Fortunately it also provides a magnificent place to be starting over as I am or starting out as is Brian.

Having a hole in my life after my divorce, it was ready to be filled with someone. Fate, in the form of a wonderful neighbor, brought Brian to me.  What is interesting is that our relationship has been perfect from the start! Yes, you heard me say perfect. We acknowledged each eachother’s space by creating healthy boundaries, and honored them. Over time and without pressure we learned more about each other and became closer. It seems as if we opened our eyes one day and noticed how great the other person was. And so a great friendship was born.

I want to write this blog and chronicle my life with Brian because we have succeeded – without even trying – in creating a great relationship. We are modeling for each other what we want in our future. That might be a hot hook up, a stable boyfriend, a lover for life, a husband, or a partner. What we are living today with each other is the basis for our future great relationships with fabulous other people.  Because we were accepting of our obvious differences such as age, we let ourselves find what connected us. We have fun through life’s ups & downs. We let life happen and, when needed resort to jello shots or a good Bordeaux to get us through.  As one of Brian’s beautiful and brainy posse said recently “I am in love with my life” and I can say – “me too!”  The young and the old(er) meet in that place where life is still viewed with enthusiasm, new experiences add at times comic and always interesting spice to life.

If you are wondering what will happen to us tomorrow, stay tuned. Together we are living life as it’s meant to be lived – as a wild and crazy adventure – runnin’ down our dream in the Manhattan canyons. Together.  How sweet it is.

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