Today we welcome R.P. Andrews with
The Czar Of Wilton Drive
The Czar of Wilton Drive, the story of Jonathan Antonucci, a 21 year old, barely-out-the-closet gay man from suburban New York who overnight finds himself a multi-millionaire, thanks to a bequest by his late gay great uncle.
Uncle Charlie has unexpectedly died of a heart attack, leaving him the sole owner of several of the most successful bars in Wilton Manors, Fort Lauderdale’s gay ghetto, making Jonathan the Czar of Wilton Drive, Wilton Manors’ main drag.
Flying down to Lauderdale to claim his bequest, Jon encounters Uncle Charlie’s dubious friends and business associates, and is immediately submerged in Lauderdale’s scene of unbridled sex and heavy drugs. He also discovers his great uncle’s memoirs which reveal truths not only about Jon’s own past but also what may have really happened to his uncle. In the end, Jon is torn between avenging Uncle Charlie’s death or loving the man responsible for it.
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Male Plastic Surgery, Testosterone Therapy:
Anything To Look Good, Buddy!
by R.P. Andrews
I moved down to Fort Lauderdale in 2002 after the hospital system in New York City I had worked at for decades as its PR director merged with somebody bigger. While I survived, I didn’t like what was happening, and since I had stowed enough away to retire early, I did just that, picking up some part time work as an adjunct professor at a local university where I taught college writing.
But as my very str8 Florida neighbor, a former Midwestern, once quipped to me, “Down here, my basic wardrobe’s my bikini.” And when you’re gay, scoring was all about looking hot.
While I had worked out in my basement each morning before going to work back home, my routine barely kept pace with the jelly donuts at the office coffee machine, and when you’re working stress-filled 60 hour work weeks in PR, who has time for the gym. Now, however, with my workload drastically reduced and the biggest decision of my day was whether to hit Sebastian Beach, Lauderdale’s gay sandbox, or the local very gay gym first, Main Street Gym became my second home. But even hitting those machines of self-torture faithfully three or four times a week, in between using my new Bowflex at home wasn’t enough, and I started getting frustrated busting my hump while watching some built-like-a-brick shithouse guy who you knew was juicing sit down on the same machine, lower the weight to half what you just pressed, do twenty wimpy reps and move on, muscles bulging like some gay God.
Yea, I thought of taking steroids myself, which either one of the personal trainers at the gym or my new body builder/financial planner could sell me, but I just couldn’t stomach sticking a needle in my butt every day. So, after skipping those ads in the weekly bar rags for rejuvenation centers (not legal in most places except for the Wild Wild East known as South Florida), I decided to give them a second look. It sounded like testosterone, Mr. T, was the fountain of youth that would max my results in the gym and give me the lean mean look I coveted.
Among other benefits.
My financial guy confirmed that most guys’ T levels drop after 30, obviously a major problem in America, eclipsed only by the federal deficit; thus the need to find it elsewhere. So I figured it was time to trot my ass up to the northern fringes of Palm Beach County to see what all the voodoo was about.
Now, I’m sure I wasn’t the first or five hundredth gay boy to visit the Life Enhancement Center and I know Josh, my “consultant,” a handsome, humpy, thirty something, breezy, fast talking surfer type who was a Center client himself, knew exactly why I wanted the stuff – to beef up. But that wasn’t a legitimate enough medical reason for the Center docs to write a script. So, first came the survey for which Josh practically set up the answers. Not sleeping well? Yep. Lacking energy? Sure. Libido weak? You betcha. Next I paid three hundred bucks for blood work at a nearby lab which the Center either owned or got a kick-back from. It confirmed what I knew from the last physical with my gay M.D. in Lauderdale: I was as healthy as a horse (no cholesterol, sugar, blood pressure issues, negative for HIV, etc., etc.). But, surprise, surprise, my testosterone levels were in the sewer. Thank you, Gay God! I think.
The stuff was a topical that came in a pump dispenser like skin cream ($90 bought you a two month supply), and once a day, after you showered, since it took 3 to 5 hours for the shit to enter your bloodstream, you were supposed to squirt a dose on the back of your forearm and rub your forearms together till it was gone. Again, since Josh read my real agenda – wanting to look hot for whatever sexual animal I wanted to snare – he also got the Center doc to prescribe a kosher dose of Stanozolol, (a steroid, by God!) you took just before working out to give you more stamina and endurance and which the guys at the gym told me would give me that wet dream “cut” look. At five bucks a dose, it was the most expensive sugar cubes I’d ever sucked on – but hey, what’s money? As long as my Visa card didn’t self-implode.
As I was ready to head back onto I-95, my wonder drugs tucked away in a paper bag like a McDonald’s burger, Josh pronounced his final two caveats:
The stuff needs time to kick in, and I wouldn’t see any visible changes in my physique or demeanor for a good month; and because of the higher doses of Mr. T and especially Mr. S, I needed to take hefty daily handfuls of fish oil, calcium and zinc supplements, along with a good multi-vitamin so my kidneys or liver didn’t turn to mush.
Three months after I started my testosterone therapy plus, I definitely saw a difference in how much I was pressing at the gym (I was able to up the ante every time I went) and, most importantly, in my bathroom mirror. I had always had a good build but now I saw broader shoulders, bigger arms, a bigger neck, broader back and – shit – for the very first time in my life as a 5 foot six kinda stocky guy, a six pack! Mr. T also helped with weight control, and while I certainly didn’t need it, I think my hairy body was even getting, well, hairier.(Anybody need a transplant out there?)
On the negative side, I really felt no dramatic change in my energy level (except when I was at the gym and had just popped one of my five buck sugar cubes), and my libido was about the same. (I mean how horny can one horny guy get?)
I also found that my Russian temper, that I definitely inherited from my mother’s side, and which I was able to control most of the time, now tripped into overdrive at the slightest provocation. Like the time, just after the earthquake in Haiti, I was strolling out of a local Walgreens, and sitting at the exit was a table of gussy-upped Haitian women looking for a donation. My response was to yell on the top of my lungs, “How about practicing some birth control down there first, huh?”
Or the time I nearly got into a fist fight with some old guy (I know, look who’s talking) who was ahead of me in the 20 items or less aisle at Wal-Mart because he had 21 items – yep I started counting them as he took them out of his basket.
Eventually I switched to a local doc and testosterone pellets that are inserted just beneath the skin above one of the cheeks of your butt. Unlike the cream which you need to administer daily and must be absorbed into the skin, or shots in the ass I didn’t have the stomach to do myself, the pellets last about six months and give you a continuous feed of the hormone right into the bloodstream. All without thinking about it.
Meanwhile in the looks department, I was blessed with good genes and a perpetually boyish face that belied by true calendar years. But falling again to the South Florida spell, I decided why settle for looking five or ten years younger when there were tricks out there that could do even more?
I had tried collagen years before while still working in New York but was not impressed by the results, but now decided to give cosmetic surgery another try and get my face in sync with my new, hard earned body. Plus, the local cosmetic surgery center was running a blue light special: “second vial of Botox half off.” I had some extra interest income I could use to pay off one of my credit cards or shoot up my face. I decided on the latter. And just to dispel the notion that this is mostly a gay boy thing, one out of five cosmetic procedures are now being done on men, many of whom need to look good to compete in a work-a-day world where more and more fifty- plus guys are being thrown on the garbage heap.
The offices were just off the beach in one of those sleek, all glass professional buildings. My “consultant,” no spring chicken and proud of all the work she had had done on herself, stared at my face intently as I rattled off for her all my petty, childish “needs.” Ah, we’re so honest with people we’ll never meet again. The fine lines around the eyes, the deepening crevices on the forehead, the sagging skin under my eyes. I told her I didn’t want to go under the knife. Could any of these new injectables I kept hearing about, “juva” this and “refresha” that, do the trick?
She was equally honest with a smile. She explained that Botox was still the gold standard and would do wonders for the fine lines and the brow. (Ironic, huh, how something that could kill you could also make you look young.) But there wasn’t much they could do for the bags (which are fat pockets) under the eyes without surgery, though the filler, Juvaderm, could lift everything up and, at least, lessen the sag. All for $1500 after the discount. The price was right (even if the shit only lasts 6 months to a year), and I was pleasantly surprised to hear there was at least something they could do for those bags. So I scheduled my appointment for the following Thursday.
I didn’t think much about my upcoming encounter with Ponce de Leon’s Fountain of Youth until the day before my appointment for my procedure when, suddenly, visions of all those B horror movies from the thirties rushed into my brain. What if something went wrong and I ended up worse than I started? Shouldn’t I thank my lucky stars I looked younger than my years and not tempt fate? No matter what they did, I’d never look 25 again. Nor did I want to.
I was ready to whip out my cell phone and cancel the appointment driving that morning to my “touch-up” with my plastic surgeon but walked into my role as if it were all happening to someone else. I actually waited in the private room longer than it took to do the whole procedure which, unlike my collagen episode back in new York, was performed by a real live doctor. He was a pleasant sort of a guy, very patient and understanding, explaining every step of the way as he poked at my face. How with men, killing too much brow line looks ridiculous, so only half strength Botox was used there. After that, he moved on with the Juvaderm for those sags. Just a few more pinches and it was over.
Both my consultant and the doctor explained that the Botox would take a week or so to show its full effect, but that the results of the Juvaderm were immediate. So was the slight bruising and swelling on my face from all that prodding which took a few days to disappear. (Thank God for large framed glasses.) But I have to admit, I was pleased with the results the moment I walked into the bathroom at home and stared at myself coldly for the first time since leaving the surgeon. I had fought off looking into my car’s rear view mirror the whole way. Those fine lines were almost gone and my eyes definitely looked refreshed and without all that “Sudden Change” topical collagen I had been using by the quart the last few years.
Since I didn’t know many people in Lauderdale well, there was no one to give me some indication that all this had been worth it. Nor was I snaring any better quality tricks than I had had before my little procedure. No, the validation of sorts came a few months later when I flew back to New York for my nephew’s wedding, and my sister, five years my junior, upon seeing me for the first time in almost a year, exclaimed, “Shit, you don’t look a day over 50!”
Since my first baptism of fire, I’ve had just about every filler on the market shot up into my face, the last being Artefill that’s supposed to have a “shelf life” of years, not months, like many of the others.
But the cost of these procedures was small potatoes when it came to burning a few holes in my Visa credit card compared to the megabucks – like five with three zeros after it - that I spent to rid myself of something that had bugged me since my twenties and haunt a lot of guys, even guys who do the gym beat and keep their weight down – those nasty love handles.
Up to just a few years ago the only way to get rid of them was liposuction about which I had heard and read a lot of horror stories like infection, disfigurement or just a long, painful post-surgical recovery period. No, if that were the only way, I was resigned to taking those ugly globs of fat to my grave.
Ah, then one day I was gleaning through one of our weekly gay rags which, after all the bar ads, ran promos for the local docs, including cosmetic surgeons and dermatologists. “Cool sculpting” was a non-invasive way to rid myself of those love handles forever and my M.D. who administered my testosterone therapy confirmed the procedure was worth pursuing and gave me the name of a doc who maintained a practice near the beach.
Well, if there was a gay dictionary and you looked up the word “twink,” my doc’s pic would be there. A multi-millionaire though he be, he was not just a twink but a twink’s twink even if he was balding and north of 40. Pulling and prodding and squeezing the fat pockets around my hips and lower back, he proclaimed me a perfect candidate for this high tech elixir. Not only was it non-invasive, meaning no cutting, once the fat cells were gone, they were gone FOREVER! Plus there was no post-procedure recovery time. I could go to the gym, fuck like a bunny or go skydiving if I wanted to, straight out of his office.
Dr. Twink identified eight problem spots including my tummy (which stopped that hard earned six pack from showing), each of which would take an hour to treat, but he could block out the entire day if I liked which meant getting the whole damn thing done in one swoop.
By the time he got to the price – five thousand dollars – I was too hooked to even hesitate, let alone say no. Sure, vanity don’t come cheap but, after all, why have a twenty thousand dollar credit line if you don’t blow some of it?
That Thursday I showed up early at his office, stripped down to some hospital shorts, and after a “before” picture session with some “cub” photographer who I recognized from one of the hook-up sites, I was whisked into the room where the cool sculpting machine whose arm resembled some alien extremity out of “War of the Worlds” awaited me. The principle behind cool sculpting was devilishly elemental. The tech, named Jan, a retired nurse who had overseen dozens of these procedures, would target an area by placing this suction-like device the size of a small loaf of bread over the fat pocket which it sucked up like a vacuum cleaner. During the hour I lay awkwardly there, barely breathing so not to disturb things, the machine was pooling all those naughty fat cells into one place and freeze-killing them. About the only truly painful part of the procedure was, when at the end of hour, Jan released the device and, for a minute or so, deep-massaged the pool of fat, resembling a bar of margarine, so that it dissipated and would eventually be excreted by the body.
This went on for eight long hours, uninterrupted except for a half hour lunch break where Jan brought me a sandwich and soda the front desk had ordered from a local deli. During most of the time, I watched some public television station on the big screen TV that faced my treatment cot where I was passively educated in the intricate arts of woodworking, quilting and canning fruits, not exactly hotoldermale.com material.
In between, when Jan would stop in to check how I was doing – a hospital-like call button was always right at my side just in case – the two of us would commiserate about the messy state of health care in the U.S., she the retired hospital OR nursing supervisor with the neurosurgeon hubby, and me the retired health care executive. But I think the two most exciting words she uttered, at least for me, were when at the end of each hour as she released the device’s hold on me and took a look at the lump of fat it had collected under my skin, she exclaimed with childish glee, “Looks great!”
Now, remember, I was lying there all day shirtless with only those flimsy hospital shorts between me and total nakedness, and here was this still very attractive and in-shape older woman grabbing me in all sorts of private places. But I think the one that created the most sexual innuendos was the last one, my belly, when she had to place the device an inch from my pubes. She kept insisting, jokingly, that she wasn’t getting fresh, but all I was hoping at that moment as I exchanged flirtatious banter with her was that my dick wouldn’t wake up. As my femmy Jackie Gleason look-alike department store boss from my Jersey college days once said, “Even a cow can get you aroused if he touches you in the right place.”
We were there till 5:30 that afternoon, Jan, me and the machine. By then just about everybody, including Dr. Twink, was gone. Again I could do anything I liked and I was lucky I had not even suffered some minor bruising which is only natural when your flesh is being held in a vise for an hour. Jan explained numbness in the treated areas was to be expected for a few weeks, and she also cautioned me not to take anything for pain except Tylenol, since inflammation, which was something most other analgesics treated, was a desired side effect of the treatment. It was the inflammation that was the agent that was responsible for the disappearance within two to three months of all those fat pockets. True, no instantaneous results but also no down time and no knife either.
Just six weeks later, I was already seeing some pleasant changes in my body’s contours and finding my tight jeans getting looser, even though I hadn’t lost any significant weight. Interestingly, all that stubborn fat actually adds very little to your overall body mass – and you need to watch your weight from here on in or you might end up with fat sprouting up in the strangest places – like your shoulder!
Meanwhile, a friend of mine is saving his pennies to fly to Costa Rica or Brazil where you can get a complete facelift for a fraction of what it costs here in the states, all while “vacationing” at some resort while you recover.
All I want to know is have they got some Latin hotties on payroll to take care of clients while we’re all bandaged up?
About the author:
RP Andrews spent most of his life in New York City as a public relations executive before relocating to Fort Lauderdale in 2002, where he enjoyed a brief, second career teaching writing at a local university.
All his works of erotic gay fiction and non-fiction are available on amazon.com and Barnes and Noble; and other select publishers’ sites.
His first work of erotic gay fiction, a collection of edgy short stories called Basic Butch, was originally published by San Francisco-based GLBT Publishers in 2008. Basic Butch features characters who go down life paths that, in the end, they wish they had never explored.
His latest works of serious gay fiction include:
The Czar of Wilton Drive, is the story of Jonathan Antonucci, a 21 year old, barely-out-the-closet gay man from suburban New York who overnight finds himself a multi-millionaire, thanks to a bequest by his late gay great uncle.From Kokoro Press.
Not In it For The Love, set at the turn of the new millennium. Josh, a young street-smart Florida drifter is snatched from his dead-end existence as a male hustler in a cheap Key Largo motel by Bishop, a Wall Street power broker who sets him up as his trophy boy in Manhattan society.
Buy Guys, RP Andrews’ newest novella scheduled for release late spring, 2015, is the story of Blaze and Pete, two young, gay handsome drifters with nothing, and nothing to lose. Blaze convinces Pete, who is falling in love with him, to leave dreary New Jersey and lead free and easy lives as male prostitutes in sunny Fort Lauderdale. Blaze, however, soon pulls Pete into a much larger, more dangerous scheme, a scheme that eventually threatens to destroy them both.
RP Andrews’ daily social commentary blog on gay life in America has been running since 2010 at str8gayconfessions.com, and a second edition collection of these commentaries is available as an e-book on amazon.com.
Confessions of a Str8Gay Man is RP Andrews’ unvarnished, unorthodox views of Modern Gay America which are often counter to today’s political correct gay media. In addition, there is Furry Man’s Journal, his erotic memoirs as a hirsute gay man as told through his experiences with the dozen iconic men in his life.
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