If you’re on Facebook, you’ve likely been “tagged” with this Internet meme, in which you’re supposed to share 25 things, facts, habits or goals that your friends don’t know about you.
Here’s my list:
- I moved to Los Angeles 15 years ago, and while I’ve found so much success and happiness here, I miss living in a smaller town.
- I’m trying on the idea of a life without shame.
- A quote that’s really stuck with me:
“Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.” (Eleanor Roosevelt).
- I’m planning to uncover what’s physically possible if I honestly cleaned up my nutrition. I’m using a great website to track my nutrition (thanks, Eric).
- At 6-foot-3-inches I’m somewhat clumsy and struggle with spatial awareness. Like, this week while training a client, I nearly tipped over backwards when I tripped over my own foot. Luckily, I caught myself.
- After eight years bleaching my hair, I’m making a conscious choice to embrace the gray, a la Anderson Cooper.
- Sex, sunsets, Bronson, and licorice. What more does a guy need?
- I love film scores, and they’ve formed the soundtracks to many periods of my life. A few of my favorites: Brokeback Mountain, Moulin Rouge, and Run Lola Run.
- I eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich pretty much every day.
- My favorite food used to be chicken fajitas, but it’sbeen replaced by my mother-in-law’s slum gullion, which is sublime.
- I consider myself a Zen Christian, a term coined by my college journalism professor Michael Kirkhorn (R.I.P.) On that note, I believe that a historical person named Jesus existed, but I don’t believe he was the only manifestation of the divine. I believe there are many names for what we call “God” and that no one religious sect has a corner on the truth.
- Speaking of college, I attended Gonzaga University in Spokane, known for its basketball team. After graduating with a double major in speech and journalism, I made ends meet working as a funeral singer.
- I’ve performed in the following operas: Die Fledermaus, the Ballad of Baby Doe, and La Boheme. I’ve auditioned for both the Metropolitan and Los Angeles Opera companies.
- The habit I’d most like to break is biting my cuticles.
- I found a copy of Playgirl when I was 5, and shoplifted a red Speedo at age 13. Seven years later, at age 22, I came out as a gay man. I was diagnosed HIV+ at 29, after a year of performing in adult films. I’m not implying any kind of cause and effect—that’s just the timeline. I have no regrets.
- For the last eight years, I’ve been working full time as a personal trainer. My decision to become a trainer was directly informed by my desire to take my health and fitness more seriously in the wake of the above diagnosis. But, I’m not perfect and I’m always trying to find balance and get out of my own way.
- If I forget my headphones in the gym, I’m screwed. I work out almost every weekday, but I don’t do enough cardio. As a way to keep me accountable, I started posting photographs of the LED screen from my time on the cardio machines to my Facebook profile.
- I’m rethinking how I feel about the terms “fag” and “queer.” I get the whole “reclaiming the word” thing, but I reject that the words ever belonged to the gay community in the first place. How can a pejorative term ever be reconstituted as positive?
- The physical accomplishment of which I’m the proudest is completing the 2000 AIDSRide from San Francisco to Los Angeles, which took 7 days and a whole lot of Gatorade.
- The first book I remember reading is Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, but I don’t really like fiction. I have a tattoo of the main character, “wild” Max, on my right shoulder. My second tattoo (the word “Discipline” across my back) took four hours. The tattoos taken together represent for me the dynamic tension of my life experience.
- The last book I read was Where’s My Fifteen Minutes by Howard Bragman—a really great read.
- My favorite sound are “I’m home,” which is tied with the sound of a rainstorm pounding against the roof. The two together? Heaven.
- My favorite quote of all time:
“I want to beg you, as much as I can, be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves—they are like locked rooms or books written in a foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you now because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live some distant day into the answer.” (Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet).
- I don’t agree with Rush Limbaugh or Dr. Laura, but I listen to both of them. Show me an absolutist and I’ll show you a hypocrite.
- Everyone should work in a bar or wait tables at least once. It’s a microcosm for the whole world. Also, there’s no place on Earth more humbling than a porn set.