Tuesday, April 24, 2012

New Blog Location

I have moved my blog to its own domain, operated by WordPress. I'm done with Blogger.

Click on my blog name or one of my latest blog posts below:

Monday, April 23, 2012

Goodbye, Blogspot!

UPDATE: Moved blog is at bootedmanblog.com, here.

Blogger (or blogspot), the site on which this blog is posted, has recently changed its "GUI" -- Graphical User Interface and method of operation significantly. I hate it. The old way was working fine. Now there are a whole slew of changes that make it much more difficult to use, not better.

I embrace change when changes are made for a reason. I see no reason for these changes. It took me over an hour to figure out how to post the message about my recent biker conference, and 25 minutes for this one. The new GUI platform that Blogger introduced and forced upon its users is absolutely awful, non-intuitive, and very hard to use. Sheesh...

I guess the kids back in Google-land thought they'd like to play with the minds of us old farts. So easy to do. (LOL!)

I understand that this new GUI is here to stay and that they won't change it back to the more functional GUI that they had. Therefore, I regret that this change forced me to ABANDON BLOGGER and move to Wordpress.

I have installed Wordpress and am now working on configuring my new blog. When it is ready for its debut, I will make one last post here... then it's "goodbye blogger!"

Sorry if this change will inconvenience anyone. Blame it on the mega-Google-monolith. Google is not the monopoly it tries to be.

I really don't want to change platforms, but Google, the owner of Blogger, is forcing me to make that choice -- vote with my boots, and leave Blogger to play games with others. Not me. I don't have time for this b/s.

Life is short: realize that all good things come to an end. Blogger is one of them. Thanks, Google, for nothing but hassles and heartache.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Biker Conference

I attended a biker's leadership conference over the past few days.

I regret that the organization that sponsors the conference thinks that anything mentioning same-sex relationships or "things gay" is contrary to its "family friendly" position, so I cannot say exactly who sponsored it or where it was. Let's just say it was near the same town where my mother-in-law lives. I stayed at her home (saving the cost of a hotel room.)

I did not ride my motorcycle to the location where the conference was held because my partner went with me so he could visit his Mom. He cannot ride as a passenger on my bike due to an ongoing disability that has prevented him from riding with me for the past seven years. Man, I miss him (on the back of my bike)!

Anyway, the conference was interesting, and I learned a thing or two that will help me as I work with my motorcycle club. All good.

I will blog more about various issues that were brought to my mind about being a biker who happens to be gay in future blog posts.

Life is short: be open to learning!

Friday, April 20, 2012

New Blog Header

You may have noticed that I changed the header for this blog. Just making it reflective of my passions. I remain a guy into boots, leather, and Harleys (well, my Harley.)

Life is short: ride safe!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Not Leather Lately

Spring has arrived, and soon it will be summer. Hot, humid, summer.

I like four seasons, especially the warmer time of the year when I can ride my Harley.

Lately, I haven't been riding much. Time devoted to my partner and his ongoing treatments takes up a huge amount of my time. But I continue to have faith; he will be well again. Sometime....

I hear the Harleys roaring down the road, while transporting my partner in my truck to-and-fro, from visiting doctors to ordinary and mundane chores like grocery shopping. The good thing is that he is well enough to conduct some semblance of a normal routine.

Meanwhile, I remain in my work boots. That tile in the kitchen won't lay itself. Over my aching, sore body....
No leather, no Harley, but lots of smiles in seeing accomplishment on the tiling. I want my kitchen back!

Life is short: keep working toward your goals.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Not That Kind of Idiot

No, I'm not that kind of idiot. Really. Who would think an email is legitimate that asks me to adopt an orphan, supposedly from California but the email originated in Malaysia?

What email is legitimate that offers me millions of dollars for serving as a fiduciary conduit in the United States?

Who really believes that I would ever click on a link within an email from an airline confirming tickets I never purchased, or to cancel a huge pizza order I never made?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Work-Booted Work

This blog post is short because I have been very busy. These Timberland work boots are on my feet while I am laying Italian tile in our kitchen. All 460 square feet of it...

What you see in these photos is what the subfloor looks like after original old linoleum was removed from it. I am laying rectangular tile that has the appearance of wood on the floor, cutting it with a wetsaw as necessary to fit angles and edges.

Man, I'm sore...

But it is looking good!

Life is short: take pride in doing your own work!



Friday, April 13, 2012

Wesco and Chippewa Engineer Boots

My partner had a good day on Wednesday and was able to go to his office for a few hours, which gave me a few unexpected free hours. I decided to make a video during that time. I can't make videos when my partner is at home, as he has a low opinion about YouTube and videos in general.

In response to a request, on my new video, I discussed my opinions (based on experience) about the similarities and differences between Wesco "Boss" engineer boots and Chippewa engineer boots -- both the tall and short versions of each.

For your convenience, the video appears below. Watch, learn, and enjoy!


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Legendary Booted

Any guy seriously into boots has been seeing ads and promos in various media about Legendary Boots. Man oh man, what great-looking, high-quality cowboy boots!

Okay, I admit, I had been drooling over images I had seen of their boots. The price, though, was beyond what I was willing to pay. The boots are great quality, hand-made to custom sizing and all that, but even considering all those outstanding aspects, my inner-self kept saying, "really, you want a pair of boots that cost even more than custom Wescos?"

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

My partner understands... really understands me well. He heard me talk about these boots and I showed him some of the photos from their Facebook page from time to time.

Knowing that I've sacrificed a lot of my time and attention for him, working to get him well and past this horrible illness he has been dealing with... my wonderful, caring, thoughtful partner got me a gift.

They arrived the other day. These custom boots are 16 inches (40.6cm) tall, have a full quill black ostrich foot, and dark blue shafts with yellow stitching. Smooth leather soles with a 2.5 inch (6.35cm) cowboy heel complete them.

I haven't taken them off. Well, I have ... when I go to bed ... or when I ride my Harley ... but otherwise, these puppies have been worn and enjoyed, very much.

How lucky I am to be in love with my best friend, who knows my inner "boot soul" so well. More photos of these boots are here on my website.

Life is short: wear boots and be your own legend!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

What Do You Do With All That Leather?

Someone sent me an email recently asking what I thought was a legitimate and good question in this context, "since you have said on your blog that you don't go out to leather events like IML or MAL, what do you do with all that leather gear you own? Since you've got the gear, why don't you attend these events? I'd like to hang out with you."

Thanks for the questions. I like to meet new people, too, and based on our email "conversations," you sound like a guy who I would enjoy meeting and speaking with. You respect that I am in a closed monogamous relationship, and I respect that you like to hang out with guys in leather.

Well, first question first.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Is It Okay to Wear Cowboy Boots to Work?

You think I make this stuff up, but here's proof that even in the cowboy boot-wearing capital of the United States, there remains people who obsess about whether or not they can wear cowboy boots. In Texas of all places! Sheesh!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Odd Easter Weekend

For the past decade, my partner left on Good Friday to drive to Pittsburgh to visit his mother for Easter, returning on the next Monday. I would have a free "batchelor's weekend" where I would ride my Harley on Saturday and take some elderly friends to church for sunrise service on Sunday, then having some more free time before returning to work on Monday.

Not this year....

Friday, April 6, 2012

Can A Gay Man Wear Jeans and Boots?

Question entered into a search engine, and wound up on my website: "Can a gay man wear jeans and boots?"

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Passages

There was a book by the title of this blog post that I read many years ago, and decided to re-read this past weekend. I was amazed how relevant its words of wisdom are today as they were on the day I first read this book, though some of the content is a bit dated.

The book's subtitle is "predictable crises of adult life."

While I do not intend to add a "book reviews" column to this blog, I want to relate how I am feeling about the passages that my life, and the life of my beloved partner, have been going through.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Leather Gear Guide for Bikers

As readers of this blog know, I am a biker -- I ride a Harley-Davidson motorcycle. I've been riding for some 30 years.

I also enjoy wearing leather. The motorcycle was the inspiration for getting a lot of my gear, and as I have aged and settled down, most of my leather these days is worn for protection and style while riding, not for fetish interests.

I have received inquiries about my recommendations about various items of leather gear for bikers. I decided to take my "Guide to (fetish) Leather Gear" and create one specifically for (straight) bikers. I left the fetish stuff out and wrote more about the design and function of leather that bikers may choose to buy and wear.

The full Guide to Biker Leather Gear is here.

I cover topics including:

Sunday, April 1, 2012

While Sipping a Latte, Surfing With My Smartphone

Whiling away the hours here at the local hot-spot coffee destination, sipping a Venti-Trenti Latte (with soy milk, of course), I was surfing on my new smartphone, and what did I see? Such a fantastically stylish find in men's dress footwear!

Aren't these boots from Allen Edmonds cool? Notice the ventilation in the stylish design? Smooth leather sole, lace-up, dress-shoe appearance. Who would know these are boots?

Friday, March 30, 2012

More Amusing Searches

I cannot help but to laugh sometimes at what people search for on the internet, and they get directed to this blog or my website. Here are some of the latest...

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Persistence for the Partner

It seems as if every day presents a new challenge for my partner. His health condition remains difficult, but let me assure you, he is fairing as best as he can. He is working part-time, resting and eating well. However, his medical condition remains fragile, and messes with his head. Literally. He can't think logically and easily gets overwhelmed, which results in confusion, agitation, and bouts of emotion.

We are in it for the long-haul. I am as committed to him as ever....

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Replacement Wesco Boots?

Last week, I sold a pair of tall black Wesco harness boots. Those boots were very good-looking, and I liked them a lot. I received a lot of compliments on them when I wore them. However, they did not fit me any more and I agreed with my partner's assessment that keeping them would not be a good idea, as they would collect dust and make me feel sad because I couldn't wear them.

The boots sold at auction for a great price -- more than I paid for them originally. A couple people noticed that and sent me a message asking if I would replace them with a new pair, especially since the prices for Wesco boots are going up on April 1.

My reply?

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Justin Brands is Like General Motors? What?

Someone sent me an email recently that said:
First, let me say I love your reviews and videos on the various boots. Keep up the good work! I wanted to get your opinion on Chippewa's harness boots.

I was in a store today and almost bought a pair, but couldn't decide between the black or the bison.

The quality seemed to be good, but I notice on the box that they are now a division of Justin boots. Do you think they are still a good choice, or would Wesco be better in the long run?
I understand his concern. Within the last decade, we have seen some major boot brands leave the United States and source bootmaking by whatever methods and companies can do it cheaper, while simultaneously increasing the profit margin for the label owner.

Here is what I said in my reply...

Friday, March 23, 2012

Amusing Internet Searches

Every now and then, I look at internet searches that bring visitors to my website. Here are some of the more recent and amusing searches. Some I can answer, some I cannot, and one -- I haven't a clue. Here goes:

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Evidence: Harley Riders' Footwear

The following images were taken from a photo that I took of a group of men and women who I went on a motorcycle ride with recently. These guys ride regularly and belong to the same group that I do. We ride together often (as often as my schedule permits, anyway.)

This proves beyond doubt that real bikers wear boots. See any sneakers? No? End of story.

Life is short: wear motorcycle boots when you operate a motorcycle.








What boots did I wear? I wore my Wesco combat boots for a little different style. Too bad the leather BDUs inflated with air and look kinda puffy. But the BDUs bloused into the boots looked and felt great while riding.

Monday, March 19, 2012

What To Wear When Riding a Harley Part III

To continue with this short series of posts about what to wear when riding a Harley (or any other brand of motorcycle), let me continue a little bit more about the boots part of the rider's attire.

My most recent blog post described why wearing boots is important, and talked about various kinds of motorcycle boots out there. The post before that discussed gear like jackets.

What I did not communicate much about is why boots are so much better than sneakers (trainers).

Saturday, March 17, 2012

What To Wear When Riding a Harley Part II

A couple days ago, I began this short series of posts on this blog with a posting on "what to wear when riding a Harley." I shared my observations that most guys who ride Harley-Davidson motorcycles dress the same way that other motorcycle riders do (for the most part... there are a few exceptions for motorcycle racers, dirt-bike riders, and kids who ride sport bikes), but I was referring to clothing and gear worn while operating a motorcycle on the street.

As promised, this post is about what to wear on your feet when riding a Harley (or any other motorcycle.)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

What To Wear When Riding a Harley

Someone from Vermont, USA, searched, "What to wear when riding a Harley" and landed on this blog, but in a post that did not answer that question. This post will.

I ride a Harley, and I ride with other Harley riders and observe what they wear, too. So let me give you some suggestions from the point of view of a regular Harley rider who appreciates clothing that gives him freedom of movement as well as provides comfort and protection when he rides.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

How My Heart Breaks

My partner's health condition remains a mess. You would think that since we have a good idea what is causing his symptoms, he could receive appropriate treatment. Nope. Such is his life being caught between having a diagnosis with a condition that our Government considers "real" vs. a condition that our Government thinks does not exist. If a condition does not exist, then doctors are not allowed to provide a treatment. Bullshit!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Parting with a Pair of Wesco Harness Boots

Wesco boots are the toughest, baddest boots on the planet. Guys who wear them know that these boots are durable, rugged, and good-looking. The boots attract attention from lots of people, straight and gay -- the knowing stares from people who recognize quality when they see it.

I have owned this pair of tall black Wesco harness boots for about six years. Relatively speaking, they are rather young in my boot collection.

Regretfully, though, I have to part with them. Why?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Wesco Boots -- Differences Between Harness and Engineer Styles?

I received the following inquiry about Wesco boots, requesting to know if there is any difference between the harness or engineer style of Wesco boots. I thought this was interesting, so I posted the question and my answer here.
You have informative videos regarding boots. There are two things I don't skimp on; firearms and footwear. I am new to the sport of motorcycling and decided on Wesco boots and so I am wondering for riding comfort, would you recommend the engineer or harness? For the costs, I would like to know if there are any differences or not.

My reply?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Easing Into Riding Routine

The weather forecast for yesterday was spot-on. It was 55ºF (13ºC) at oh-dark-30 when I leave my home to drive to the downtown of my hometown where I work. Time to get the Harley out and ride!

But preparation for a safe ride is the key to a pleasurable commute.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Tracing Roots

I thought I was a genealogist, amateur at best, but nonetheless, I thought I was doing pretty well keeping up with my father's side of the family. I swear, they drop kids (on Facebook) faster than Italians change governments ... which is rather often! (LOL!)

Unfortunately, my father's family records only go back to when his parents arrived in the United States from Italy (still single, but married soon after arrival) in the early 1900s. Now that's not to say that we don't have a lot of records moving forward! 503 family members (including spouses, children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren) have come forth from my paternal grandparents -- and I know who all of them are, and who is related to whom. That's a rather big feat. I do, however, need to make a trip to Italy in one of my spare lives to do some more research.

As I began this post, I *thought* that I was doing pretty well, until...

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Troubled Soul

I do not receive messages like this often, because most people who disagree or do not understand my website do not take the time to send me a message. They usually surf on, which is normal behavior among educated and civil adults. But it happens sometimes. Thus is the risk of having a public website.

"Steve" from Kent, Washington, writes:
Name: steve
EmailAddr: stevebesc@xyz...
Location: here
Message: Just finished a quick peruse of your site, and haven't stopped laughing. I hope you're joking with all that decades-too-late Village People crap.

==================================

REMOTE_ADDR=67.168.50.8
My response?

Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Legacy of Resilience

Today, March 4, marks the date when my father was born -- 101 years ago. Wow... while his brothers and sisters were known for living long, extraordinary lives, my Dad had to pack an extraordinary life into 58 years. He passed away almost 42 years ago, when I was a little guy of 11 years.

Of the memories that I have of him, the strongest is how resilient he was. Let me explain, and how his legacy of resiliency carries me forward today.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Marriage? Not So Fast

Yesterday, the Governor of the U.S. state where my partner and I live signed legislation that was passed by our state's General Assembly to make it legal for same-sex couples to marry in a civil procedure, such as by a Justice of the Peace or by a Judge in a county courthouse.

When will my partner and I marry?

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Lern 2 rite

I received the following message via the hotboots website:
how many pairs of boots do u onw, i own about 7, i wonder if u can send me some pics of ur favs to my email?
How did I respond?

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Happy Leap Day

A quick note and update for my regular blog visitors.

First: Happy Leap Day! Read on to understand why I am celebrating today.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Should I Wear Boots on a Motorcycle

These questions persist, and bring visitors to this blog and to the motorcycle boot section of my website.

Here goes, courtesy of google again:

"Should I Wear Boots on a Motorcycle?"
Answer?

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Do Gay Men Want To Be Masculine?

Here is another take on this age-old conundrum about gay men and masculinity:

Someone from New Jersey searched "do gay men want to be masculine?" See the search here:
Let me point out one quick fallacy of logic in that question -- it assumes that all gay men are not masculine, but perhaps some or all of them want to be.

What is masculinity in this context?

Saturday, February 25, 2012

No Python for You!

Someone from France sent an email message to me the other day complimenting me on my website, and then explained that he saw a pair of python (snake) cowboy boots in a store one time, and fell in love with them. He was unhappy about the price -- over €300 -- so he wanted to know if I could recommend a source of the boots that was less expensive.

My answer?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Detective Work Finds Treatment for my Partner

Last Friday, I had to bring my partner to the hospital because his condition had gotten to be so bad, he needed treatment -- at least to get him to be able to sleep, which he had not been able to do. During that day-long hospitalization, he was anesthetized and given many more tests, including an MRI, CT, and a spinal tap. They took more blood than I thought he had.

Tuesday evening, his primary care physician called and said that he wanted to see my partner -- at home! Imagine: a house call in 2012.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Lucchese Classic Handmade Boots

I have admired and have worn Lucchese boots for decades. They are comfortable and very well-made.

Let me share a little bit about what I have learned about Lucchese boots from my own experience, and share some happiness with a new pair of Lucchese Classic handmade boots.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

How to Wear Boots Untied

While I prefer boots that pull on or zip closed, I have some boots in my collection that have laces, and require tying. Boots with laces have a very rugged, masculine appearance -- provided they are worn correctly (that is, laced up and tied.)

But there goes Google again, directing a visitor to my website. The visitor entered the question, "how to wear boots untied for men."

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Weird Winter

I am not complaining... we have had such an unusually warm winter, it's been "riding season" all year long. Yesterday, it reached 57°F (14°C)... again, quite unusual for mid-February in the DC area. Just imagine, two years ago we were under mountains of snow!

After catching up on some much-needed rest yesterday, I put on my retro biker chaps, an old leather jacket, Chippewa ostrich motorcycle boots, and motored over to Mary's home.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Back Home

I am happy to say that as of 7:30am this morning, I brought my partner back home. He was poked and prodded and interviewed and examined by 14 doctors -- yep, 14 of them -- all day yesterday. Another MRI and a spinal tap and other invasive, painful tests. Fortunately, he was under anesthesia for the worst of it.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Beyond Pain...

My poor partner... his frightful medical situation is worse -- so bad that I had to carry him, literally, to see his doctor yesterday. The doc wants him admitted to the hospital. No explanation for the intense, body-wide pain.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Sialkot Must Be a Crazy Place

Name: [Pakistani Peddler]
Location: Sialkot, Pakistan

Dear Sir/Madam,

We would like to introduce you to our company. We are one great company with very good reputation in Pakistan and in the international market. This is due to our excellent quality products and economical rates. Our main object is to provide excellent quality products at reasonable prices every time when we deal our customers.

We are presently manufacturing all kinds of leather Jackets, Motorbike suits, Cordura jackets, Trousers, Gloves, Saddle bags and Vests. The Company has highly qualified staff at its back having vast experience in the manufacturing process and is maintaining quality tools to the International standards and specifications. Our main objectives are customer confidence, satisfaction, and to provide....
[cutoff as the message hit my max 1000 character limit]
Oh my goodness, this barrage from desperate Pakistani leather vendors continues.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Frosted

I rarely talk about politics on this blog. I feel that there is no topic that causes more controversy than politics ... well, perhaps organized religion. Anyway, I am absolutely frosted by a two-faced lying jerk who convinced me to support his 2010 election for a first term in our State's House of Delegates from the district in which my partner and I live.

Yesterday, a vote came up in a joint committee of our House of Delegates on marriage equality. How did this guy vote?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

For My Valentine

Enjoy "our song" with us.

We heard JMM sing this tune (see video below) for us just a couple months after we met, and soon after the song was introduced. We were at Wolf Trap Farm Park, a national park music venue in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, DC, where he performed in June, 1993.

There we were, right in front, and he sang with such a soulful, melodic voice. My partner and I held each other, danced (a little bit) and vowed that whenever we marry, legally, this song will be played.

Share our joy today, our love, with a spirit of thanksgiving for the man who makes me whole.


Life is short: show those you love how you love them. Happy Valentines Day!

Monday, February 13, 2012

My Valentine Makes Our Kitchen Hot!

Valentine's Day hype and hoopla aside, I still get mushy about this day and the relationship with my man, my hunky Valentine.

Each day of the year I find at least one way to show my partner how much I love him. Not only sharing words, but through deeds which demonstrate my love for the man who is my best half, best friend, and who means the world to me. From the day we met almost 19 years ago until this very moment, I love him deeply.

What am I doing on Valentine's Day for my man?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Yucky Weather Rules Out Cowboy Boots

Yesterday, Saturday, the weather was particularly "yucky" -- cold rain, with a little bit of heavy, wet snow. Not a real good day for a wedding, dress clothes, and leather-soled cowboy boots, so I made a last-minute boot change....

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Family Wedding Without Reception

For the past two days, I have had the pleasure of visiting with family who have come to town to attend a niece's wedding. Because my partner is not feeling well, we did not have anyone stay with us as a houseguest. (My twin brother wasn't able to come, either. Bummer.)

The wedding is today. I will (reluctantly) put on a pair of dress pants, shirt & tie, dress cowboy boots, and a sport coat, then drive to my sister's home for a pre-wedding brunch. This sister is the bride's aunt and Godmother. Then I will drive to the church, 15 miles away, to be there for the wedding ceremony.

When the wedding is over, I will politely make my exit and come home.

Why?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Boots and Normative Masculinity

I wrote a post on February 6 titled, "Normative Masculinity" which provided my comments about an academic research study about Western male "hegemonic" masculinity. I invited comments or questions.

I received two interesting email messages about that post, both of which asked, "do guys wear boots to appear more masculine, especially gay guys?"

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

My Hero Saves Lives

I am honored to know a man who is my hero, and call him not only my best friend, but my brother. My twin brother. My alter-ego in life, in heart, and in action.

Throughout our lives, both my brother and I have had a special place in our hearts to help those in need, who were picked on, bullied, and treated terribly because of some difference they had. We each acted in our own ways of trying to save and protect people who were unable to defend themselves, and today, my brother is doing it, saving lives, and bringing peace. Literally. I am so proud of him. (This photo is so characteristic of my brother -- leading through a dark tunnel into the broad sunlight of day.)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Normative Masculinity

I found a very interesting academic research article titled, "Searching for the Gay Masculinity" (Full text here) which says, in part:

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Game, Shmame

Today is the day when the Super Bowl, the championship of American Football, is played. This game is hyped up so much. So many promotions from all sorts of retailers who are trying to capitalize on making money from game-related activities -- including grocery stores, big box retailers that sell hi-def televisions, furniture stores, and many more. Phooey. I don't buy into the hype and commercialization related to one football game. Really.

What will I be doing instead of shopping, attending parties, or watching the game?

Friday, February 3, 2012

Distracting Attention From Colorful Cowboy Boots

Fridays are known where I work as "casual Friday." Most guys wear jeans, polo shirts, and sneakers. I take advantage of the unwritten rule that it is okay to wear jeans to work on Fridays, but along with the jeans, I decided to wear my Lucchese Classic "blue jeans" cowboy boots to work. I work in a professional office. Most other men wear drab, dull, dress shoes on most days, and sneakers on Fridays. Not me--always booted.

These boots, though, are noticeable because of their predominant blue color, with white inlays and black overlays. Not that I would care if anyone said anything, but I conducted an experiment.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Advocating for My Partner: Patience, Trial and Error

My partner has had an onslaught of various medical problems that began last November, and persist today.  However, things are getting a little bit better. He is not fully recovered, nor may he ever be. But we are taking it one day at a time.

I shan't bore you with all the details. But I do want to share some lessons that we learned that may help you, or someone you care about, in the future.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Be Seen!

My partner is so very thoughtful. He followed me on my Harley one night, and said, "man, I couldn't see you that well."

He fixed it -- as he always does, the solver of problems. He bought me a new light bar for the back of my Harley. Gave it to me for Christmas. I just had it installed.
Now I can be seen!

I sure enjoyed taking the long way home yesterday from the place where I had the lights installed. The weather was unusually warm (65F, 18C) for January 31! Woo-hoo, I'm riding to work today, February 1! Who woulda thunk?

Life is short: Ride Safe!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Must the Color of Your Boots Match the Color of Your Pants and Belt?

Men are sometimes concerned with fashion considerations, such as the color of boots to wear with certain colors of clothing, particularly for office wear.

In my opinion, such color-matching considerations do not matter when a guy is wearing denim jeans since boots and jeans go well together in any combination. However, the color-matching concerns could be an issue, albeit more of a personal one, with dress clothes.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Going Retro in Leather and Boots

Even 28 years ago when I had my second bike, I wore boots and leather LOL!

In this photo, I am wearing my first pair of tall engineer boots made by Chippewa with the Sears label. I am seated on a Kawasaki 750, which was my second motorcycle after my first, a Kawasaki 440, crapped out after only three years.

The leather you see?

Friday, January 27, 2012

Not Being One of the Kool Kids

Most everyone wants to be accepted among "the in group" -- "the cool crowd" -- those who are admired and lead the pack. In straight male culture, the "kool kids" are the Alpha Males. In gay culture, these are the "A-Gays." If you get an alpha male or a-gay to like you and accept you among his friends, invite you to his events -- anything from "lunch with the gang" or a "pick up motorcycle ride among us friends" or a "night out on the town" -- then "you've made it."

Or have you?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

One Year Ago Today

I can hardly believe it has been a whole year. One year ago today, I held the hand of my 96-year-old aunt as she lay bewildered, uncomfortable, and miserable in a hospital bed. She briefly opened her eyes, and asked where she was and what happened.

... a brief interlude of lucidity among the deep clouds that Alzheimer's Disease wrought on her brain.

I explained that she had a heart attack, and that she was being treated in a hospital.

"A hospital? I don't want to be here...".

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Frye or Wesco Boots?

Kid you not, this was a question that landed a visitor to this blog. Unfortunately, it was directed to a post where I discussed differences between Chippewa and Wesco boots, not Frye. Oh well, here goes... what are the major comparisons between Frye and Wesco boots?

Hmmm... like what's the difference between a Yugo and a Harley?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Mail Bounces

I enjoy receiving messages from people all over the world who visit this blog and my website.

Unfortunately, there are times when I receive an email bounce, which reads like this:

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Dress Shoes and Cowboy Hat?

Another search that landed a visitor to my "Cowboy Boots Tutorial" on my website. The searcher asks, "can I wear dress shoes with a cowboy hat?"

... and the searcher is from McKinney, Texas?

Really? ... the state with the most cowboy boot-wearing men in the U.S.? Really?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Observations from First Timer at MAL

Note from BHD: The following guest blog post was written by my friend Kevin who has written guest blog pieces before and comments frequently on this blog. He was invited by a friend who lives in Washington, DC, to visit and drop by to see what Mid-Atlantic Leather (MAL) weekend was all about. Here are his observations. (Sorry, no photos, but I learned a few years ago that there are some closet cases who get very upset if their image of them at MAL appears anywhere, so for respect of those who don't want to be seen there, I have no photos to post with this message).

My weekend trip to DC was fantastic and I was quite pleased and pleasantly surprised to discover that my friend planned for me to visit this past weekend because MAL was happening and he knew that I wouldn't venture there by myself. My preconceived ideas would have gotten the better of me and I would have missed out on a truly important growth experience. I am indeed fortunate that I can be myself with them and they love me unconditionally. As a result, I'm learning to strip away the barriers I've built over a lifetime. I'm thankful to have supportive and loving friends who allow me to do so.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Men's Confusion on Masculinity Today

The following guest blog was written by someone from Belgium who visited this blog, read many of my previous posts, and sent me an email. He brings to light interesting points about views of masculinity, women's roles in today's society, influence on choices of clothing, and more specifically, boots as a choice of male footwear.

In honor and respect of privacy, I will not reveal the writer's name or contact information, but if you have comments, please leave them on this post or write to me and I will forward your comments to him.

Guest Blog from a Straight Man in Belgium

For me, a man's sexual orientation is not important. But as a straight man (married, with 3 kids) I notice how many straight guys are in fact very insecure and confused.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Dehner Patrol Booted

Today, Monday, marks a holiday in the United States. I have the day off from work. It also marks the end of "leather weekend." While I did not attend any of the Mid-Atlantic Leather Weekend events, I did have some time yesterday to take some photos of me in a new-to-me pair of Dehner patrol boots that arrived on Friday.

I was going to take a short ride on my Harley yesterday to break these boots in, but it was too darn cold, so I just leathered up, posted photos to my website, and enjoyed my partner's company.

What's special about these boots, and don't I have enough Dehner Boots already?

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Tom of Finland Smoker

I have always found this image hot... the man's striking blue eyes, Muir Cap, dangling cig... woof.


I guess that image is an influence on why I wear my Muir Cap when I smoke.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Leather Weekend in the 'Burbs

Welcome to leather weekend in the 'burbs. That is, the suburbs of Washington DC where Mid-Atlantic Leather Weekend -- aka "the leather weekend" -- is being held. Been there, done that, got the boots shined, smoked the cigar, ate the greasy chow....

So what is "Leather Weekend" like for an old-guard (alt. "old fart") leather dude who is not going to MAL and hanging out in the 'burbs?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Travelling To MAL in Washington, DC?

Well, it's just about here -- as I call it -- the "second-largest gathering of the Leather Clan in the USA" (largest gathering still being International Mr. Leather in Chicago on the last weekend of May). I have had a few guys contact me to ask if I am going to MAL, but as I said in my previous post, I am not. There are other things going on in my life that make MAL a no-go for me this year.

For those of you who ARE traveling to DC to attend MAL, especially those traveling by air, let me share some quick tips, based on my "Air Travel with Leather Gear" tutorial.