Covid Is Killing Me

I wasn't sure where to start, and this seemed like the most logical place. It's the record of my life for the past 20 years more or less - longer than that when you add in my journals from the 90s which were transcribed here.
September 13 was the 6 month mark for being off work and home-isolating because of Covid-19. Those six months have amplified the issues I've been struggling with for over a year but It's gotten worse as I've been isolating myself.
I really have started to wonder what I'm doing it all for.
I'm not suicidal, exactly, but I really don't see why I'm living. I don't see why I should bother. Read More...
Comments

New News for Now

Screen Shot 2018-08-26 at 7.33.25 AM
August 26, 2018
Now it can be told...
Three months ago, on May 24, I joined my friend Rick in a weight loss challenge. Well, not exactly. He was doing one at work and it inspired me to start my own journey. He was eating right and - more importantly - getting out of the house after work and walking in the park, or walking along the marina, or walking the trails at Morley Field. I started to join him and on May 24, I made the conscious choice to make this a thing. To seriously take control of my eating and exercise and try to lose weight. Read More...
Comments

October 1995

Empire_State_Building_(HDR)
October 20, 1995
I really suck at this thing. So much for chronicling a life in progress. More like a eulogy for a life that has died. I wanted to touch in here before bed tonight to start off the morning on the right track. I am fat. I am well on my way to being very fat and very unhappy. So before I get to that point I want to explore why I am hurting myself by letting myself get fat. Why do I allow myself to give in to the desire to go to 7-11 for ice cream every day? Why do I let myself be tempted by brownies and candy bars? Do I really hate myself that much? And if so, what can I do about it? Money is tight. No, not tight, non-existent. I quit my job a month ago and have made almost no money since. I have, however, spent over a thousand dollars on clothes and almost another three-thousand on trips to NYC . I must be fucking insane. Read More...
Comments

August 1995

August 10, 1995, sometime after midnight
Its been a while since I have written. One thing, more than any other prompted me to write at this time. I just ran my horoscope. Most of it is relatively mundane and not at all original. One section, however, has some very heavy insight (coincidence or irony?) -
CONFLICTS:
Saturn in the Seventh House brings an air of seriousness to all your dealings with partners. Also, you are concerned more about the future of business and romantic associates now than at any other time. This is the most ephemeral of transits, and depends greatly on other aspects in the daily chart.
Saturn opposite Pluto marks a time when you may have serious doubts about the direction your life is proceeding, either in relationships or career. This is the time for you either to set aside these doubts or initiate the necessary change. Read More...
Comments

July 1995, Part 2

July 9, 1995
A few days off from writing. And from reading my Miracles work. And from anything remotely social. The good news is that business seems back on track, for what that is worth. I am feeling a bit more secure that the money will keep rolling in and that I don't have to worry yet about homelessness and starvation. On the more personal front, I have a few feelings about which I wish to write. Something happened yesterday that really upset me. I was up on the roof with Scott most of the afternoon getting to know Michael and John a bit better through idle chit-chat poolside over cocktails. Then, as I had a 6:00 client in Toluca Lake, I had to leave, Scott appeared to be leaving on my heels, but said I should go and he would be fine. I later found out that he and Michael spent almost three hours chatting in Michael’s apartment. Read More...
Comments

July 1995

July 1, 1995
astrology
The Second Half Begins
So, six months down, six to go in the year. Time keeps on slipping, slipping, slipping into the future.... As a benchmark, or a milestone, or one of those “You Are Here” indicators, I am making new resolutions to improve my life. There is not much I can do about the job situation at present, but there is much I can do for my body and soul - things I have neglected or forgotten during the previous six months. I commit now, then, to healthy eating plan to be as low in fat and as low in calories as possible. At the same time, I must eat enough to maintain my gym workouts (at least one a day barring any major mishaps). I am going once in the day for aerobics and once in the afternoon for free weights. I will also do a second aerobic workout if time permits. Spiritually I have been remiss in my upkeep as well. I am therefore beginning my work in “A Course in Miracles” once again with today as day one. I will work on that each morning, and will write in here my goal for the day. I will also spend today coming up with some kind of budget for the month of July. I still maintain that I can survive with one client per day at $60 per client. Now I have to keep myself on track enough to get to the paper in time to make advertising deadlines so that I don't have another three week dry spell. All would be pretty good right now if I hadn’t missed that deadline last month. Obviously that was some sort of psychological sabotage on myself from my subconscious. I know that tricking isn’t the most glamorous life, but it IS at least a life. Better than a great deal of options open to me such as sharing this tiny apartment or living in the back of my truck. So, with positive attitude and improved mental and physical states, I begin this second half of 1995 refreshed, renewed and newly committed to self improvement. Read More...
Comments

May 1995

May 21, 1995
The Real World
So, I am sitting here watching the MTV Real World Marathon - you know, when people stop acting polite and start being real. And I am about to do the same thing. This whole week has been a situation where I have allowed myself to be repeatedly hurt by Scott and I am really sick of it. All week long, he has said “Let’s go out tonight” and then, after I turn down clients or turn down hookups with BBS guys, I get a phone call saying “I am too tired” or some similar story. And I fell for it time and again. On the one hand, I have filled the time with clients and whatnot, but when push came to shove and he Changed His Mind on Friday about going out for coffee, then decided that he didn’t want to tackle traffic and meet me on Saturday night, when he kept me waiting in a bar for an hour and a half, and then today, knowing that I wanted to LEAVE for the Long Beach Gay Pride Festival by noon - he calls today at 1:00 to say that he hasn’t had a shower, hasn’t had lunch and he doesn’t know how he feels about going to the festival. Its like I am not important enough to be on time or not important enough to keep an agreement, date, whatever. I don't care for that feeling at all. So, how to bring it up? Read More...
Comments

February 1995, Part 2

February 28, 1995
Mardi Gras Night
Yes, I’m back.
With yet another get rich quick scheme.
No, wait, that’s not right...with another weight loss/lifestyle improvement course, yeah, THAT’s it.
I, Mathew James Anthony Watkins, do hereby solemnly swear to do an aerobics class tomorrow morning. I will also eat a balanced meal plan for the day. I will also either do an aerobics class in the evening or a workout. This is, after all, the beginning of Lent. And, being a good Catholic (sorry to the gods for that one) I am going to make the above pledge daily. I mean, here it is - Mardi Gras - and I can’t fit into my skirt!
I really do need to do something to keep me focused. I have lost my job due to my own negligence and lack of concern for it. I am in a relatively unhappy relationship with Dorian and am doing nothing to really change that. I need to get back on track so that I can be in shape for the pride season (not THAT song again!) I also have an ad to be run in mid-March for a masseur and need to be presentable for my clients, what? So, at 9:24 as I drink my vodka & coffee and prepare myself for streetwalking, I write my hopes here. Help me to keep them and to mean them - one day at a time for the next 40 days at least. After all, I might be tempted to go to that White Party in the desert after all... Read More...
Comments

February 1995, Part 1

February 1, 1995
EVER WONDER HOW THINGS GET DONE?
I sometimes wonder how I have managed to do anything in my life. Ah, but that sounds awfully self-deprecating. Perhaps I should instead wonder why I let the little things in life get me down. I refer, of course, to whatever little thing is bothering me at the moment. I do not as yet even have a name for it. It remains “that thing”.... it has caused me to avoid work, avoid calling all but the closest of friends, avoid even eating the right foods at the right times, avoid doing those things that I “should” be doing on a day off since I have decided not to work. I have quite literally spent three days doing nothing. I have no progress to show for it, short of one load of laundry that I did at Scott’s house one night to save two bucks in change. The crazy thing is that I feel not unlike some sort of demented vampyre. I do nothing - literally nothing - all day long. At 4:30 I wake from the sleep of the undead to go to the gym, progress along with my day, groceries, laundry, renting videos, that sort of thing. I then stay awake masturbating until all hours only to sleep through the following day. I did go to the doctor to check on a cut on my thumb that I have had for quite some time - 7 weeks by my count - and that can count for half a day off, maybe one full day if the clinic was exceptionally busy. But to make three days out of it...what is wrong with me? I talk about it and say that if I was in a more structured job I wouldn't be getting away with this. I should say that I wouldn’t be trying to get away with it. After all, my major in school really was all about getting by on the minimum input of effort. And that backfired to a certain degree. It is perversely funny but I do find myself wishing in some corner of my mind that my HIV results had come back differently. Somehow, wishing that I could derive the courage from a positive result to go out and DO something that I want to do. Is that what this is about? Feeling guilty because I am not dying? Feeling guilty because I live, paycheck to paycheck, with so little inconvenience in my life that I have to cause some drama to make up for that which nature deprives me? Richard calls and complains, but the reality is that he has given each employee 5 sick days. No one else is “on call” during their sick time. I am not doing anything technically wrong. Will that technicality hold? Why do I insist on testing it? I saw Dorian tonight. It was either a judgment on his part or else a projection of my own judgment onto him, but I swear I felt disappointment from him at my rather cavalier attitude toward work. In my mind’s games, I saw him rescinding any potential offer of the two of us going back to Michigan to open that little antique mall together living blissfully at home on the range. Would I be happier if I did chuck it all and head to Paris for an indefinite period of time? Would that be running to something or just running? Read More...
Comments

January 1995, Part 3

January 15, 1995
FACING THE BITTER TRUTH
What a day. How many days of new beginnings can one have? I suppose that philosophically speaking one can have 365 a year. I sit before you, a tremendous hypocrite: as I down Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and Chocolate Brownies and vow to stick to Quick Trim. I really need a boost of self confidence. I need to get that feeling back that led me to feel good about myself. I need to do the work to make it happen. I am perched upon a major change in my life. I have the Course in Miracles book yet to start, a diet to begin, an exercise regimen to resume, and a man to woo. Do I have my work cut out for me or what? And why, pray tell, have I waited so long? Why do I have to wait for a Monday, or a First of the Month, or a New Year to do things to make myself feel good? Do I not deserve the good feelings that go along with the feeling of success? Do I not deserve the spoils of victory over losing weight, or the muscles derived from working out? Read More...
Comments

January 1995, Part 2

jangel3
January 10, 1995
FUCKUPS AND OTHER MYSTERIES
So, I have a man in my life, a clean bill of health and good friends. Who could want anything more? A pervert. A psychotic. Me. Here I am with a lot of good things going for me and I keep giving in to the sexual compulsivity. I skip the gym (though I want a great body so I can get me a man) in order to sleep because I was up till 4 am having sex with someone whose name eludes me. Not even that GREAT looking of a guy, but a willing bottom. And so I give in. I ignore what I say I want to do and do that which I say I do not wish to do. Is there logic or sense at all in the world? Maybe I just miss it but everyone else sees it? So, last night a little Asian boy who wanted to get fucked, tonight was another Asian boy who wanted to be my slave. THAT seems to be the problem, actually, all those bottoms out there enabling me to fall into my addiction. I blame them. They should be punished for tempting me away from my plan. Oh, there I go again. Read More...
Comments

January 1995

I recently discovered the missing year of 1995 in an old Word document. It seems I tried to do my journal electronically for a bit before returning to the old book format. Here, then, are my memories of 1995.

cc12-wilson-cruz-head-shot
January 1, 1995
Is Dear Diary too corny a beginning? It is 10:39 pm on the first day of a new year. I have a lot to think about. Love, sex, money.... career, goals, desires.... what is it all about? Too lofty a subject, I think. Let’s start with something more “graspable” to the average reader. I had the best birthday in a number of years last night. Went out to Revolver with Scott S——, got reasonably tipsy and met an actual celebrity, Wilson Cruiz from "My So-Called Life." He was at the bar with Jared Leto. And yes, I took Wilson home. Crazy, right? It was totally corny - I asked him to pretend to be Ricky for a bit, and we got weird with it. We had some great sex and then we got into a great political discussion about Puerto Rico and human rights and being gay and open in the world today. I will totally never see him again, but it's a night for the books. Read More...
Comments

December 1998

wtlv
December 27, 1998
Sunday again. I am in Las Vegas with Jim for a few days. I know it doesn't make sense. In fact, I went to Karen's house today to get her to do a reading for me just to see what he is thinking regarding this trip. She tells me that the cards show this is all about him - he is testing something out in himself. Something about our relationship. As for me, I think nothing can be done. He doesn't love me enough to love me fat - and so, for now, I am unprepared for this strange turn of events. I've dropped enough of my feelings on him in the past 5 years, if there is going to be anything here, he has to make the move. And, I already said, I am far too fat for him to make a move on. He looks great - probably 160-165, lean, tight, smooth. If he can do it at 34, I can do it at 31. So, we are in Vegas. I am writing from the hotel room at 4 am - he is still down in the casino playing blackjack. I was up $185 from a $100 bet and in 4 minutes lost it all. So here I am, down my first $100. Two days left to get it back. Read More...
Comments

October 1996

October 18, 1996
(a sunny fall day in the park)
89123074
Again, clearly much has happened. I see patterns everywhere and am actually taking some big steps to stop their repeating. First, I have a handle on my diet again - 20 pounds lost in 6 weeks putting me just over 200 pounds, but losing. Jim is in my life though I don't know how that is working - is being comfortable the same as being happy? The same as being loved and respected? Need to work on that some more. I am also in a Witchcraft class again. Again, not sure if it is the right one for me but I am at least continuing with something; I enjoy the study even if not the students. I have made some changes in my friendships with Anna and Teresa: I told Teresa that she isn't someone I like very much since the wedding and began to tell Anna how I felt let down by her lack of interest in being my close friend. She feels better if she doesn't have to be anyone's foundation - and I can accept that; it means I no longer put up with her need to control everything. I am finally talking about my fear of confrontation. I explained to Anna that by standing her up on plans isn't really just me being a flake, it is me fearing any sort of conflict over my want to change plans. I admitted that I don't trust our friendship enough to risk such an episode. Better I should disappear for a day or two and let it slide than to admit I find something else more interesting than any plans with her. I think by talking about it I may be getting stronger and more secure in my own self and needs to assert my will. One sick pattern on its way down. Work is at least pleasant. I find myself thinking about the easy money of tricking again often. One of my goals for losing weight is to be able to expect to get paid for my body again. I miss the freedom of sleeping in, weekends away, late nights partying. Actually, I want to be young again. Read More...
Comments

A Break from the Past

fullsizeoutput_b0cf
I'm taking a break from the journals of the 90s to reflect on the now.
It isn't good.
I turned 50 a few months ago, and I have realized some pretty depressing things since then. I don't have a life. I am slowly losing the passion for photography that I once had. Part of that is a difficulty in finding guys to pose for me (now that Craigslist and Backpage have been shut down by the government) and part of that is lacking any energy or desire to go out and do anything that would be worth photographing.
And I started peeling at that onion. I'm not just losing my passion for photography - my one and only hobby - I've lost my passion for life. This became extremely evident during the two weeks I had off for spring break. I did nothing. Nothing. I barely left the house. I napped for hours each day to pass the time. I went to bed early each night. There were days I literally did not open my front door at all, sometimes two or three of them in a row. Other days I only opened it for the pizza delivery. Read More...
Comments

April 1994

April 2, 1994
A word about Tony. He is a 37-year-old CPA. Meets me last November for kinky BDSM sex with another guy chez-moi and three months later we go on a date. Bodybuilder, nice guy. But something is strange. He is a wanna-be rich guy and it seems to piss him off that he isn't REALLY rich. I've seen anger at the strangest things. Then, there is also the fact that we haven't fucked on a date even once, though I spend the night once a week. I thought he was getting more personal - he invited me to a gala AIDS benefit post-Oscar party hosted by Elton John, and then to a Passover Seder later that same week. But no such luck - back pain or fatty gas or something gets in the way. He did take me to see Sunset Blvd with Glenn Close - great fucking show! But the money doesn't really impress me unless it gets me things I need; entertainment can be had cheaply; car repairs, clothing, and rent - these things can not. Read More...
Comments

March 1994

March 27, 1994
Day one (again) for my health regime. I refuse to believe that my ideal weight is 185. Let's shoot for 165, shall we? Fat-free & workouts are my goals. Let the rest take care of itself. Two men in my life, yet neither of them makes me as happy as a fun day with Thom. Roommates in our house for one month now. Been topsy-turvey. Working in LA now and am the golden boy. Still must work on building friendships and building a support network. I will call the gay center and explain my feelings of a stranger in paradise. Ha. Movies with Alex tonight. It's very nice to have an ex- as a friend. Note: he and I broke up after my Las Vegas trip indiscretion ("Thank you for coming out of my dreams and into my life.") Want to get back into computers and photography. I need a hobby to be more interesting I think. Therefore I am. Read More...
Comments

February 1994

February 14, 1994
Made a commitment to myself today: To count and consider my blessings. I have been abusing my body for two weeks, since the breakup with Alex, and it is time to stop. I am my own Valentine. Exercise and nutrition are key in my life. Sex is no longer the focus. As of today, I worship in the temple that is me. Corny? Perhaps, but it seems to work. My goal is to begin Quick Trim again on Wednesday for two weeks, then maintain a good exercise & eating plan. Then, the last two weeks before Easter, Quick Trim again. Tanning & exercise daily. Giving up masturbation and alcohol. Beginning rap group and other support. Building friends and deciding where my life is going. And what to do with Thom? Move with him or move him out? The healthier choice I hope. Mental and physical health are my new goals. They are done!
Comments

November 1993

9809281
November 22, 1993
Time heals everything - so give me more time. Fucked up at work again. Hid from Clay all weekend and now he wants to know where I was when he needed me. I don't want the responsibility but I somehow want the perks. We have a meeting scheduled for after work on Tuesday to discuss "my future with the company." I have a date tonight with a guy who is seeing someone else in a "committed relationship." What am I doing?! Watched Oprah today - a show about her 35 year battle with fat. She was reading journal entries, that is what made me dig this up again. There are almost three years of history in this tome. Anyway, more on fat later. Read More...
Comments

March 1993

March 2, 1993
Hey, kids, what time is it? It's psycho killer mystery theater time; the time when I tell a story so when I become a gun-wielding maniac they can read this and understand. Tonight's episode: Jason. You remember, from 6 February. So the whole time I am in Hawaii he is thinking how I treat him so well and how he can see a future with me and how he missed me greatly. He even got upset that I didn't call him the minute I got home. So we made a date for tonight. Nothing. No sparks, no passion, no romance, not even much conversation. He couldn't tell me in person what he said on the phone. Makes one wonder, does it not? Here is this guy I find very interesting and extremely attractive laying with his legs across my lap, all the while me stroking his chest and legs and he does not make the slightest move toward me. And talking about it only makes it worse. I even went so far as to tell him that he should call me when he can talk and I will see him again then. At least he is honest enough to tell me that I hurt his feelings with that comment. More later. Read More...
Comments

January 1993

livewire
January 12, 1993
Ack-centuate the Positive!
My motto for today. Two years I have had this book, and it finally has a purpose. I am grateful for that. In defining its purpose I am discovering my own. So many people tell me how wonderful I am. I intend to prove it. I took steps today - calling Rich after 2 months, calling Charles to say hello, calling John to apologize, calling Pete for lunch, and forgave myself for all my carelessness in handling these relationships in the past. See, "Everyday, in every way, I am getting better and better." I finished reading a book on focusing on the positive and now will go back and USE it! School started for me today - yet another way I am improving myself. Short but to the point today. I am thankful for the chance to do it right, right now! Read More...
Comments

November 1992

November 24, 1992
The longest journey begins with the tiniest step forward. And for a change, I am not prompted to write due to a new man in my life. No, this time I am looking for a new me in my life. Thanksgiving is just around the corner and it really frightened me that I couldn't find much to be thankful for. It isn't a good feeling to wake up each day and have nothing to look forward to. No goals. No dreams. No love. No life. I need a change. I watched Shirley MacLaine's movie "Out on a Limb" and realized that a long time ago I began a journey that I aborted and never looked for a final answer. Now it is my time to find my answer. Exercise and diet are my first tools, study and research will be next tools in my quest. I begin now. Only good food for my body. In the morning I am gonna skate down to the beach. I think it would be healthy for me to get a start before the sun sets. Read More...
Comments

January 1992

89123073
January 13, 1992
Over a year since I began - look how far I have gone!
I wish to capture a few thoughts here and make a commitment to check in here at least weekly. So much history can be captured herein. I weigh 166 today. A long way from 260, yes? Short hair instead of the hippie long I sported 12 months ago. Seeing a nice boy (Jesse) rather than being married to Carolyn - how much more opposite can I get?
Though only a waiter again, life looks pretty good. More on Jesse and such events in another entry. I just felt like making some comparisons and stressing my enjoyment of my life RIGHT NOW! Read More...
Comments

Looking Back to Move Forward

IMG_0574
I'm no Anne Frank. Let's begin there. I'm not trying to be famous after I die (what's the value in that?)
I'm not exactly sure why I keep these in the first place.
But what I do believe is that the diaries of my youth have no value if I never go back and read them. And since I'm going back to read them, I may as well share them here as weekly-ish blog posts.
Let's begin where I can begin: January 1, 1991… literally half my life ago. Read More...
Comments