Trouble in Paradise

“I want your warm but it’ll only make me colder when it’s over. So I can’t tonight baby.”
– Fiona Apple: Love Ridden

I only do drugs when I’m trying to have sex with a guy.

It’s how its always been. DARE worked for me (just say no kids!), and I’d rather spend my hard earned money on electronics than nickel bags.

The first time I smoked weed was with a coworker. Oh he was beautiful. He would’ve gotten down too, but I was too young and inexperienced to seduce him and I think he was hesitant cause he was really good friends with my sister.

Ecstasy gave me a really bad headache. I think it was laced with something. Never again.

I’ve tried it all (at least once). But nothing seemed to live up to the hype…except cocaine. Cocaine is one hell of a drug. You feel all tingly, like you can conquer the world. So when he sat down and smiled I knew I was in trouble.

I was back down at the beach to see my last sunset in Waikiki. There’s this little walkway called “The Wall” where the skateboarders hang and the kids boogieboard. I sat down and looked around. He instantly caught my eye. A hint of crack led down to his board shorts; pelon, brown skin, just the right amount of muscle. He turned around for a second then continues to the end of the stroll with his friend. I continue watching the sunset.

I’m checking out the shots on my iPhone when he returns. He sits down and starts talking before I even know what’s going on.

“What’s up man, how are you doing?” (His smile could melt a tiki torch…sigh)
“I’m good man, enjoying my vacation. How are you doing tonight?”

He explains he has some issues: he just got out of jail and he thinks his girlfriend is cheating on him.

The first rule of trade (especially when you don’t have backup) is to find out what they’ve ever been locked up for so you know what the potential is for the night to get violent. He was in for unpaid skateboarding tickets (LMAO). At this point I know God is testing me.

We talk for another few minutes; he’s from Virginia, but has been here for ten years. Every so often he stops to say hello to someone. He seems to know everybody. I give him my phone and he pulls up a video of him jumping off The Wall when he was 18. He chastises me for spelling “nigga” wrong.

“Where are you from?”
“New York.”
“You ain’t from New York!”
(I laugh) “Cause I use proper English?”

A little more interrogation and it’s clear I’m from Long Island and not Bedstuy. I refuse to apologize for having a backyard growing up, but he’s proud of himself for being so insightful. I’m trying not to stare at his exposed chest when he drops the first hint.

“I use to escort…”
“Yeah? For men or for women?”
“For men. They used to take me all around the world.”

This happens more often than I like to admit. People tell me sexual stories even before I have a chance to tell them what I do.

All men who aren’t really gay but have gay sex have what I like to call the “trophy client.” It’s that one time they got so much money for something so random it’s the story they always tell first because the pride in making easy money beats the shame in having sex with another man. Patriarchy at its best really. His smile radiates as he reminisces.

“This guy gave me $200 just to pee on him.”
“No way! $200 bucks?!” (Even if you’re not surprised you have to act all excited like when a boy learns to tie his shoe laces for the first time)
“Yeah man, just to pee on him…”

He pauses for a minute to acknowledge how much he’s enjoying this conversation.

“You remind me of my best friend back home man. He was gay, but he wouldn’t tell me. My uncle would always tell me growing up, ‘You know that boy gay right?’ But he would never tell me. When he finally did years later I was like ‘Tell me something I don’t know man! I knew that already.’ He was afraid we wouldn’t be boys no more. Isn’t that crazy? I loved him man, I didn’t care. He would always help me out…”

“He give you advice, help you with your girlfriend?”
“Yeah man, all that stuff.” He smiles again, transported back to simpler times.

I, however wanted to cry. Ironically, I had just gotten the same speech the day before. In undergrad, I inadvertently became really close to this Hawaiian exchange student; really butch dude, MMA fighter, the masculine of the masculine.

We spent a year doing everything together, but right at the end he stopped talking to me when he accidently found me in bed with another man. No gay bashing, no “faggot this, faggot that,” he just stopped talking to me. I always knew he didn’t personally have a problem with homosexuality, but all these years with no closure and the damage was already done. It took eight years on this random vacation to get an apology.

I’m convinced most straight-identified men don’t have openly gay friends because they don’t know how to. We only teach men how to fuck and fight in this country, nothing in between. I digress.

Little does redbone know he reminds me of someone too. Trouble, this guy I met when I worked at that site (absolutely NSFW). I was smitten, we would flirt incessantly, but I couldn’t bring myself to take the plunge because I knew I couldn’t keep him. These kind of guys you have for while, but you don’t keep. That’s why I call them trouble. Only this time, it was trouble in paradise.

“You wanna have some fun tonight? Let’s go.”
He gets up and starts walking.
I’ve seen this movie, I know how it ends, but I’m not ready to say goodbye just yet. I follow him to the street. He puts his hands around my waist. I secretly melt inside.

“Let’s do a little coke man. Loosen me up and we’ll have a good time.”
“Na man I’m good.”
“Well, do you mind if I do some?”
“Na, do you man.”

Two things I don’t pay for any more: cocaine and abortions. But I don’t mind supporting other people in these ventures when it’s not my money.

We walk back down the stroll and pickup a lackey along the way. There’s always a lackey. White guy from Chicago. He’s only been in Hawaii for a month.

Trouble leans in to sweeten the deal. “He’s down too if you want man.”

As I contemplate my options I see lackey hand Trouble a pill. They argue over what it is. I know this can’t go anywhere good.

Truth is I had been looking for Trouble all week. There’s not really a gay scene here in Honolulu; the bars are smaller than my apartment and filled with random breeder tourists. Grindr and the other sites proved unhelpful. I was just looking to get to know someone and chill. Be careful what you wish for.

No more burn, but I did have a bottle of wine and one more night in paradise. Ten years ago I would’ve gotten him his drugs, invited them back to my timeshare and fun would be had indeed. He’d do a line off my belly, we’d fuck for hours…I’d look deep in his eyes as he came inside me. I could taste the cum on my tongue just thinking about it.

But truth is that Tony no longer exists (for various reasons). So when I saw Lackey duck into an ABC store and Trouble hitting on the Japanese girls I slipped into the crowd and made my exit.

I panicked for a second and almost went back. When did I get so boring? What’s the worse that could happen?

Then I remembered that drug-resistant gonorrhea that’s floating around Japan. Oh well.

At least I got a good picture of the sunset.


4 thoughts on “Trouble in Paradise

  1. “I’m convinced most straight-identified men don’t have openly gay friends because they don’t know how to. We only teach men how to fuck and fight in this country, nothing in between.”

    Amen to that. Thank you for sharing this story, Tony.

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