Gay websites · Grindr · London · Social Commentary · Tolerance

Man In The Mirror

It has been a while.

It has been a year.

I am not sure why it has taken me so long to update the blog with a new post, but I think I will put down to the global COVID pandemic situation and the ensuing lockdowns.

I think it has impacted me mentally more than I would care to admit. I don’t want to use the word “Depression”, as I think how I felt diminishes the true definition of the word. So, I will say I had a prolonged funk.

Behind the gratuitous social media updates, we are human and occasionally we do go through periods when we are in low spirits. Mine usually lasts anything from a few minutes to a few hours. Could be work related or something to do with relationships with family/friends. But whatever the situation, I would know the reason and take steps to snap out of it.

However, in this case I didn’t even know I was in a funk. The UK went into its initial lockdown in late March and I was fortunate enough to be able to carry on working from home. It was fun the first few weeks, but the novelty of working from home soon wore off. The line between work time and leisure time became blurred and both sides merged into one. 

I struggled to get out of bed most mornings – my work laptop was in bed beside me so there was practically no need to and I would attend zoom meetings while in bed. Gyms were shut so no exercise, and I wasn’t driven to do any home workouts or go outdoors for a run.

Strictly no hook ups during lockdown and despite the freebies Pornhub gave out, my libido was very low. (I mean seriously, how many scenarios and positions can you have gay sex?)🤷🏾‍♂️

No trips to the barber for a haircut. I soon grew a salt and pepper beard and looked unkempt as I didn’t bother grooming and called it a Covid beard. As for my unkempt nether region I will spare you the details.  Taking a shower was optional and the rest of the apartment when I did walk through to the kitchen to get some sustenance and walk back again to the bedroom, looked a mess.

In hindsight, alarm bells should have gone off when on the odd occasions I pulled myself away from work and checked the news and social media feeds, I lacked the desire to join the dissenting voices when Grindr decided to remove the ethnicity filter from the app because it encouraged racism. If we ignore the timing of their decision, which was at best appeared performative as the decision was made at the height of the BLM protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd and it took them about four weeks after their announcement to actually remove the filters, it means now I don’t have the option of narrowing my search down to a demographic where I am more likely to find a bubble butt.

Or maybe I just wasn’t bothered because I had given up Grindr for lent and then lockdown happened, and I didn’t see the point of going back on. But still, where was my moral outrage for when I eventually reload the app?

Speaking of BLM protests, did other black people anyone else have fun using words like “Privilege” and “lives” during work zoom meetings at the height of the protests? Well I did.😄

I would weave such words into conversations that had nothing to do with the protests and smile blissfully with glee – inwardly of course, when like the dog in Pavlov’s experiment reacting to certain stimulus, I’d get a reaction from white other participants in the meeting, in the form of a sharp intake of breath, momentary facial paralysis and a change in facial complexion – sometimes to crimson and other times to Holy Ghost white. When did “Privilege” become a swear word?😉

But through it all I had a couple of old friends who would could call/facetime and we’d just ramble about everything and nothing and sometimes something. We would just listen to each other without pretence and judgement and we would reassure each other that it was ok to feel the way we were feeling in that moment. Those were and still are God sent calls. 🙏🏾🙏🏾🙏🏾

So last September, when lockdown and international travel restrictions were somewhat eased, they coaxed me out the funk and encouraged me to take a week out of tormenting my white colleagues. So I cleaned up, shaved my pubes and booked a holiday to the Greek Island of Corfu, where I spent a lot of time on nudist beaches and discovered that I could still hook up without using an app. More on that later.😉

I know I have tried to make light (rather abysmally too) of the impact the lockdown has had on my well-being, but I do know of people who this has impacted a lot worse than it has on mine.  Some have lost their source of livelihood – I only lost one income stream on account of the restriction on body contact and I am too old fashioned to move the business online to Onlyfans. Some need human interaction on a regular basis and being cooped up indoors alone doesn’t bode well for them – I am quite comfortable with my own company. Some who, pre lockdown appeared empathic and tolerant have become less so during the lockdown and vice-verse.  (I think we all know where my empathy/tolerance levels where Pre lockdown, otherwise I wouldn’t be writing this drivel)

But all in all, I think there has been a difference in behavioural patterns pre/post COVID in most people and we should all recognise that, not least in those we truly call friends and make allowances for the behavioural change.

Check in with them, not just by commenting and liking their social media posts for we all know how those really reflect a person’s true state of mind, and not even via text but with a good old fashioned phone call. And to shamelessly echo Megan Markle ask the question “Are you ok”? If they are not receptive then at least you’ve asked, right?

Before I start singing Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror” I want to wish you all a Happy New Year, filled with Prosperity, Hope, Faith and most of all Love.

Also thanks for indulging me thus far.

Remember 2020 didn’t kill you, it only made you stronger. ❤️❤️❤️

7 thoughts on “Man In The Mirror

  1. First of all, let me just say that poking fun at your colleagues’ white guilt is such a you-thing to do. Lol. The devil truly is using you.

    Secondly, thank you for allowing yourself to be this vulnerable. To share what a struggle you went through, however minimal it may seem in the big picture. I’m also glad you’re okay. Continue to be well, my brother, and Happy New Year.

    1. There was a time when it seemed like this wouldn’t be a reality, both of you wishing each other well.

      Thank God for COVID ooo.

  2. All praises be to Covid-19 oh! A vulnerable Keredim. Who would have thought it? 😂🤣😂 I once wondered how you were coping without Grindr and your “overseas business” 🤭 and assumed you’d be fine (or you gave the impression you were fine). Thank God you made it through!

    This year was the year for true loners sha. Na we survive am without major impact.

    I was quite fond of the word privilege for a few months sha. White, Male, Straight, Wealth privilege…… all of them. I didn’t torture people with it sha as the Holy Spirit still lives in me 🤪😜

    I still don’t get that posting on social media while depressed or in a funk. Doesn’t make sense to me at all as I’d rather go offline, deal with it and come back to give una update when I’m fine.

    Anyhow Happy New Year🎉🎊 and may 2021 not get messier.🙏🏾

    1. Regarding posting on social media while “depressed” I don’t get it either. But at the end of the day, maybe because social media is how they get validation and reassurance this is their way of dealing with it, rather than calling a trusted friend.🤷🏾‍♂️

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