thirty years of cock rings

A brunch to introduce friends to Lambda Literary was my excuse to make major changes to my flat in San Francisco. I bought the building with my partner in 1976. Floors in the front rooms and hall were sad affairs, and the wooden shutters in the dining room had been temporary for at least eighteen years. After considerable time and money were spent the floors now shimmer, and the dining room has monstrous windows you see and daylight. With that going on it seemed time to expunge. I’d kept clothing for Goodwill in a pile in a corner of the bedroom, and stored boxes hadn’t been edited in years. With new found passion out went the old clothes, out went the unfinished projects and out went thirty years of cock rings. 

Cock rings start as pure ornamentation on young men.  With their testosterone raging, their penis remains quite erect on its own, thank you. Cock rings and T-shirts are the two things gay men bring back from street fairs, new cities and fuck festivals.  Soon, you have an entire drawer of them.  Some are metal, some rubber, and the newest is jelly-like and pink. They all smell of rancid grease and cum.   O, ye, of limp dick! Ye may never see Mr. Uncut again. To avoid it you slip one around the base of your cock to keep your pride intact. Over thirty years I tried most styles and materials of cock rings, even ones with an added strap to wrap around my balls. Thirty years have passed. My sex life is richer than ever, and with thirty years of cock rings gone I have a seal-able canister I can use to store pasta.

The party was also the final step in ridding my soul of a relationship that went terribly wrong. It’s both our faults.  John arrived with no job and after it was clear we couldn’t sleep together, he made an arts & crafts style dining room a graduate dorm room. The sexual charges that brought us together (I’m the one with super-sized libido) burned out six months after he moved here from Chicago. He is a herpetologist with limited social skills, and rambunctious San Francisco was not the best place for him to start his first serious relationship. Eight years earlier my partner of 18 years died of AIDS, and I was attracted to John’s brains and stability, but by year two our sex life had shrunk to sitting next to each other on the bed watching Jeopardy. He had dark episodes that lasted days, all the while saying he’d never find a job as good as the one he had in Chicago that paid him to spend eight weeks a year in Madagascar doing research on its snakes and reptiles. After six years I’d had enough, and it showed in my blood pressure.

The point of this piece it that all the refinishing and reorganizing gave me my life back. The party is a chance to show off my “new” flat to old friends and new, and to show them the person I once was.

About Chuck

Ivy education, long-time San Franciscan with two dogs and two homes. Have traveled most of the world and spend my days writing.

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