Wednesday, June 27, 2012

WHY DO GAY GUYS USUALLY GET SHAFTED...AT WEDDINGS!!!




Yup.  It's true!  Since it is wedding season and since i have had the distinct pleasure of attending 4 weddings already this year, i thought it might be apropos to speak on a topic of which very few really take the time to consider.  Gay guys at weddings!!!  I have had several conversations with my gay friends over the past few weeks, as research, if you will.  We all agree that usually we get shafted at our gay bestie's weddings.  I mean, let's face it.  It's all about the wedding party.  So, where do you put us?  On the bridesmaid side?  On the groomsmen side?  Since i can safely say that most of the gay bffs out there would NOT feel comfortable wearing a bridesmaid dress, do you put them on the grooms side and call it a day?  I don't know.  I really just don't know.

If you think about it, it's where the unconventional meets the traditional.

One of my bffs has been planning her wedding for the past 6 months.  She has continuously called me an "honorary" bridesmaid, which to be honest, never bothered me.  I understood it was about her and not about me.  I have to hand it to her as I was invited to all of the events.  I know she did her absolute best to include me in everything she possibly could.  First, it was the shower, then it was the 4 fittings for the Vera Wang dress, and then it was the bachelorette weekend where I probably drank a little too much one afternoon (on the wine tasting trip) and spontaneously performed a little strip tease for the girls AND I will neither confirm nor deny that i may have used a couple of the poles around.  Oh well, it happens. Anyway...it has been a great ride.  I never asked for anything and was always pleasantly surprised by her actions and behavior.

My bf and I were invited to the Rehearsal Dinner, where there were some speeches made, and as you all know, that is where the bride and groom usually thank their wedding party.  Nothing was mentioned about me...and it made me a wee bit sad, but i can't expect them to think about me at every moment, especially when the wine and drinks were continuous and scrumptious.  It was an amazing dinner!  The next day, as customary, I spent the entire afternoon with the bride and bridesmaids.  It was so much fun, and I felt like one of the most special gay guys and was honored to be such a huge part of the activities.  When it was picture time, i positioned the dress, the people, and helped the incredible photographer get all of the money shots.  I didn't do any of it for recognition, rather, i did it because I wanted her to have the best wedding ever and have the most fabulous photos for the rest of her life.  It was just that important to me.  Oh and I may have even saved one of the bridesmaids and even the mother of the groom as i had intelligently stashed away some bobby pins and safety pins...because you never know when you might need them...especially at a wedding.

At the beautiful reception, the speeches started and i honestly had resigned myself from being publicly acknowledged as i truly had felt appreciated enough by the bride, groom, and their families.  I really did.  So, as i was saying, gay guys usually get shanked at weddings.  But not my Sonia.  Nope, she waited until the most poignant time in her most poignant speech and after she sincerely thanked all of her bridesmaids, she started saying, and we would like to extend a special thank you to...Seth!  My heart skipped a beat.  Oh. My. God.  Did she just say my name?  All i remember is that she continued to thank me for about 30 seconds and, when she finished, the whole room cheered...for me.  Boy, did she do me proud.  I looked around to the other bridesmaids and we were all crying and shedding tears.  That was mostly because we were not allowed all day to get mushy with each other as we didn't want to ruin anyone's make up or anyone's hair.  (There were some close calls!!!)  Even thinking about it now makes me all choked up.  She (they) honored me in such a special way and circumstance, that I will never ever forget how amazingly important and valued i felt at that moment.  Thank you, S&K.  It meant the world to me.

I don't really have a solution for this situation because it's all about the bride.  Perhaps take a lesson from Sonia above.  What happened above is a rarity!

Here's my invitation for all gay guys:  Don't take it too personally!  And if you do take major issue, share your sentiments with your soon-to-be-bride-friend ASAP.
Here's my invitation for all straight girls: Do the best you can to honor your friendship with your gay bestie.  It means a lot to them.  Fuck tradition.  Make a unique choice.
Here's my invitation for all straight guys:  It would be best for you to either stay out of it or be extremely supportive no matter what your fiancee decides.


FINAL THOUGHTS:
1) I appreciate the continued support and encouragement.  Bring it on!!!
2) I will be finishing up the final rough draft for my first book in the "Smile From The Inside" trilogy over the next week.  Wish me luck!!!
3) When was the last time you purposefully made someone smile???
4) If you like what you read, don't be afraid to re-tweet or share it with your pals!!!

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A Smile From The Inside production. :)


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

GUESS WHO'S COMING TO THE BABY SHOWER!!!


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Let's face it.  We all want to be happy and live gynormously, right?  I believe one of the keys to living that most amazing life is to LIVE FEARLESSLY!  I try to live fearlessly, but it is difficult, challenging, and down right impossible at times, right?  Wrong.  The definition of being fearless is to be scared, even terrified, but doing it anyway.  We all get frightened and we all have our issues.  Sometime this week, take a fear of yours, and live fearlessly, if only for 2 minutes, 5 minutes, or 24 hours.  Be afraid, but do it anyway!  The power that rises within will be overwhelming, incredible, and a little bit addictive.  I guarantee it.  It's just a little tip from the Smile From The Inside guy.  :)

Speaking of Living Fearlessly, this past weekend, i attended a wonderful baby shower for a dear friend of mine.  I am usually "the token gay" at these events, but at this particular event, there was another gay.  Sometimes i might feel a bit of jealousy or sadness that I am NOT the token gay (what?  i'm human!!!), but not this time.  Nope.  This time, with this particular gay, i felt no competition whatsoever, I only felt the utmost respect and admiration.   So much so, in fact, that i was intrigued and dumbfounded.

What i haven't told you was that this particular gay was an 11-year old boy.  Excuse me?  Yup.  His mother, in fact, told me that he had come out to her when he was 9 years old.  Are you kidding me?  9 years old!!!  (At 9 years old, i had just given up sucking my thumb and was still making odd animal noises, which lasted until I was about 12 or 13).  Talk about FEARLESS.  Him not me.  Can you imagine coming out at 9 years old?  The maturity level.  The trust.  The enormous fear.  The confusion.  I mean, honestly, how can anyone know at that age that this is who i am and/or who i want to be?  I mean, even yours truly came out at 14/15.  I had known since i was about 5, but i didn't start telling people until i was 14 or 15.  Knowing and Sharing are two totally different things.  Gay-ness aside, this kid had had quite the complicated and complex family life as well.  Translation, it wasn't easy!!!  Adding to this already complex situation, his family is predominantly African-American and a tiny little bit religious. :)  As if coming out isn't scary enough, i can't even imagine what was going through his mind and how exactly he came to this decision, which could only be classified as a frightening and terrifying...at any age, let alone 9 years old.

In a couple of words, i was inspired.  I was inspired by his truth, sincerity, and honesty at such a young age.  I kept asking him questions.  A LOT of questions.  Poor kid.  He was a bit reluctant at first to answer my 50 questions.  I probably was the first older gay "mentor" that he had been around... probably ever.  In all fairness, i did ask him if he felt comfortable talking to me and answering questions.  On one hand, he was a typical 11-year old kid prancing around and handing out all of the baby shower games.  On the other hand, he was an incredibly brave little boy and the first out 11-year old I have ever had the pleasure of meeting.

Toward my 100th question (literally), he got a bit annoyed and said, "Jeez."  I took the cue and stopped asking questions.  In speaking to him, I learned that he was out to his entire family and closest friends.    I learned that he thinks of it as no big deal...just a little part of him.  To be honest, he actually knows himself better than a good deal of people I know.  He did affirm to me that he would NOT come out in school until he was 13.  Perhaps a wise choice for this young gay boy.  I mean, it's pretty obvious, but honestly, who knows?  All i know is if he is our future, then I have hope.  And LOTS of it.

This 11-year old is being the example he wishes to see in the world.  This 11-year old is breaking down barriers and prejudices.  I can't even imagine he knows how incredible he is, unless he was deaf, because i must have told him at least 5 times that day.  Hehe.  If it takes a village to raise a child, this child is definitely raising the village around him.  This 11-year old child, essentially, is living life fearlessly and we can all take a huge lesson from him.  Never be afraid to Just BE YOURSELF.

MY FINAL THOUGHTS:
1) What would you like to hear about next in an upcoming blog?  I'm currently taking suggestions for a limited time only!
2) I have officially started Coaching again.  If you know anyone who might be interested, send them my way, please!
3) Have you helped someone Smile From The Inside today, please pass this on via fb or re-tweet on twitter.  The re-tweets and re-posts are working!!!
4) Don't forget to be Fearless this week on one thing...and tell me about it.

Love you all!
Seth(ie)

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A Smile From The Inside Production


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE INTERVIEW...


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Let's face it!  Looking for a job definitely sucks!  It's frustrating.  It's annoying.  It's emotional taxing.  And, it's even harder searching for that next big career move, if it's not what you want to do for the rest of your life.  I just thought it might help me to share one of the funniest and most awkward experiences with you, since it is exactly what i'm going through right now...

Dream-Marriage.com

During this post, at the proper moment, i will ask you to check out the above website.  So, about 2 months ago, i was driving in my car when i received a phone call from a very professional sounding man.  His demeanor was confident, attractive, and determined to find an amazing COO for his company.  I was thrilled. When i asked him the name or website of the company, i thought he said Green-Marriage.com.  It was over the car phone loudspeaker, ok!  Truth be told, i always do my due diligence when it comes to an interview.  I visit the website, read through the "who's who" and am always prepared with at least one or two questions from the information ascertained on the website.  Well...this time, 12 hours prior to my interview (which i was very excited for!!!), i started to do research on "Green Marriage" and found very little.  I was discouraged and then figured i would try again the following morning.  Sad to say, i did not have time the next morning.  

The interview was definitely set for 12pm and when i called to tell the gentlemen, i was running about 5 minutes behind, he assured me that i had made a mistake and the interview was at 1pm.  I was overjoyed actually because i was two blocks away from hands down the best deli in all of Los Angeles, Judy's Deli in Beverly Hills.  (For those of you who do NOT live in LA, we have very few delis, and they are in no way, shape or form, even close to that dive delis in NYC that are scrumptious!)  Anyway...that was the first sign that perhaps this was not the best fit for me.  The building was extremely posh and in downtown Beverly Hills, so i figured it must be a well-funded non-profit, right?  Wrong. 

When I arrived, i went to the top floor of this posh building only to find out that it was one of those shared office spaces with about 5 other business on that floor.  How did i notice?  I listened to the Receptionist answer about 5 different phone lines over the span of literally 5 minutes.  When i checked in early, i inquired as to the name of the Company once again.  The receptionist informed me that it was called Dream Marriage.  I quickly took advantage of the 15 minutes remaining prior to my interview to research and review the website.  Check it out for yourself.  Dream-Marriage.  It just happens to be the #1 site for Hot Russian Brides (Georgian and Ukranian women too).  Um...yeah.  So, i can't even tell you my surprise.  It takes a lot to shock me...and i was shocked, embarrassed, and above all, so disappointed that this could have been a great opportunity.  I immediately texted my bf and a bff to ask for their opinion and forwarded them the website address.  I mean, come on...how was i actually going to be serious in this interview???  They both were in stitches laughing...but that didn't help me.  I had about 10 minutes before I had to be the best me in an interview for this company.  Both were extremely encouraging and thought it would be a good experience for me either way because we don't really know what it is.  My bf asked me to film the entire experience.  I was tempted, let me tell you.  But that's the last time i ask them for interview advice.  JK.

When the interviewer came to collect me from the odd receptionist area, I was intrigued by the fact that he was a middle-aged, professional, father of two college-aged children, and the CFO-type.  He was dressed well, spoke very well, was extremely confident, and seemed to be 100% proud of where he worked.  Now, don't get me wrong, I like to think of myself as a pretty open guy, but this, even for me, was pushing the limits of even my moral/ethic compass.  All i could think of was Lisa Ling's expose on Our America talking about Mail Order Brides and how it was not only a legitimate business but it was also apparently a win-win-win situation for all parties involved.  I kept an open mind.  We started the interview and I just had to say something.  I told him that i had misheard him on the phone and had only recently (as in 10 minutes ago) been to the website and it was a little surprising to me.  I didn't really finish my question or thought when he interrupted with the best line of the day, "Dream Marriage is what i like to consider to be an international marriage agency.  We bring people together!...and there's no nudity on the website!"  I thought, this guy is a bit off his rocker, but okay, i'll continue regardless.  It was beyond.

To be honest, the interview, i thought went very well, and was even more exciting and fun given the provocative nature of the position and organization at hand.  He was an incredible guy with great experience in various industries.  He spoke about the company with great pride and fondness, advised me that it was a multi-multi million dollar enterprise, and that they were expanding into some luxurious markets as he relayed to me their plans of expansion into the Latina and Asian markets.  (Are you for real?)  Of course, I responded the only way i knew how..."That sounds excellent, and my fluency in Spanish would be a great asset to that endeavor".  Was I on drugs???  No.  Did i want the job???  A very small part of actually contemplated considering an interest in this "lucrative" business, as he described it various times...because the money was excellent, well into the six figures.  I managed not to laugh for the majority of the interview.  I mean, there were times when i just couldn't hold it in.  Perhaps that's why i didn't get a call back.  Oh well...

You know, even after that hilarious experience, i must say, i was a little disappointed when i didn't ear back!  I know that sounds crazy...but i would have enjoyed weighing the pros and cons of accepting a position like that.  Alas...I am going to keep my head high, and continue to envision the perfect role for me, with an amazing office overlooking the view of Beverly Hills, Century City, or Downtown Los Angeles.

FINAL THOUGHTS:

1) "Tomorrow is just more of God's Today..."  Dr. Michael Bernard Beckwith

2) If you are part of my Google Groups Distribution, be careful when you reply...as i have since discovered that all of your replies get circulated to the entire 150-person group.  I am working on changing that over the next few weeks.  Now, everyone calls me Farmer Joe and know that I have a very supportive aunt in New Haven that loves and adores me.  Hehe!

3) I am making a proclamation for myself.  I wish to have my first book in the Smile From The Inside trilogy completed and self-published by August 14, 2012 (my mother's birthday).  The book is entitled, "How I Learned To Smile From The Inside Out"!

4)  I would greatly appreciate it, if you like my blog, honestly, to SHARE it on FB or Twitter.  It would definitely help my following to grow.  I am averaging 800-1000 hits per month...but i want more!  So, please pass it along!

Love,
Seth(ie)
A Smile From The Inside blog...

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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Why Every Girl Needs a GAY BFF!!!


Dear Readers - 

Hello.  Howdy.  Namaste...and all that crap.  I cannot tell you how much your continued support and encouragement means to me.  I am feeling oodles better this week, with much more hope and appreciation in my heart.  I am very grateful for all of you.  Really...I am.

Now, Every Girl Needs a Gay BFF.  Let's face it, we're much more fun that straight guys.  Bottom line.

Truth be told.  There's not much we can't do together.  We can shop together, watch sappy chick-flicks, and eat healthy meals while we maintain our girlish figures together.  Don't forget about sharing the latest gossip, sharing our boyfriend issues, and re-capping the latest US Weekly to each other...hemming and hawing about the trials and tribulations of Britney, Lindsay Lohan, and J-Lo. 

Gay guys are always up for a good time, always on your side, and ALWAYS tell you the truth.  You will get never get a "You look Fine" from us.  We take the word "fine" to be just as insulting as ALL straight girls do.  We tell it like it is and not necessarily how you want to hear it.  We will listen for hours and hours as you talk endlessly about your old boyfriend that you just can't seem to get over OR the new boy that hasn't called you yet.  Listening is so important.  Knowing the difference between the right time to just listen or the right time to start giving advice and recommendations.  I'm telling you, gay BFFs are the best!!!

You might even say we are more special than the straight girl to straight girl BFFs.  Let me explain.  There will never be fights over guys...duh!  And never ever be jealousy over fabulous outfits, crazy jobs, or lame-ass dudes.  Gay guys definitely and secretly love when their Straight besties have HAWT boyfriends, fiances, or husbands.  Wink!  Wink!  And we champion girls and their lives 100%.  

We got style.  We got spunk.  We got pizazz and a whole lot more!!!  What's not to love!  I will expound much much more in my third book...i don't want to give it all away now.  

We are safe.  We are healthy.  We are good for the mind, body, and soul.  We understand women from a place where straight men just absolutely could never penetrate.  Pun definitely intended.  Meaning, most gay guys get women on a molecular level.  We see lives through their POV - point of view.  And we are just as perplexed by stupid guys and their poor choices, no offense to the straight men in the audience...but you are confusing.  Even the gay guys who characteristically run closer to straight guys.  If you think that could be you, it probably is.

And straight guys...Never underestimate the power of a gay BFF.  We can touch and feel without consequences and much quicker than you and for some strange reason, women LOVE to show their boobs to us.  (This one...i still don't understand).  Later this year, we are gonna talk about how straight men can learn a great deal from gay guys...especially how going to a Gay Bar infinitely multiplies your chances to score an amazing and hawt girl.

How exactly do some straight girls not know this...or attempt to live without one???  Don't they know that every Grace needs their Will...and every Karen needs their Just Jack for sure!!!

Keeping it simple today, folks!  As i'm hard-core working to finish my trilogy series of "Smiling From The Inside," I am reminded that being happy and Smiling From The Inside takes a lot of work sometimes.

As another week passes, remember the following:

1) No job, yet!  Keep saying your thoughts and prayers for me!!!
2) My parents were gracious enough to give me a very generous loan.  Yay!
3) If you don't have a gay BFF, you better find one.  
4) If you find yourself down and sad, remember that to feel emotions is human...and you will heal.
5) And the same old, same old...if you love the BLOG, tell EVERYBODY.  if you don't, shut the hell up about it.

Thanks for listening.  Love you all, bitches!
Seth(ie) -

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