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No Strings Attached

Grindr Tinder no strings attached gay sex dating

Are Grindr and Tinder ruining good sex and preventing gay men from meaningful relationships? 

Online dating has transformed romance into yet another product of the digital age in which we live. Just like ordering a pizza or looking for shoes to match the season, people can now find a customizable lover through online dating apps like Tinder, Grindr, and Bumble. These quick taps on our phone screens have created a new etiquette in dating where the individual connection has been replaced with a single swipe to the right and a nonchalant “what’s up” sort of intro. With instant connections on the rise, it seems as though the lengths of traditional relationships have shortened, as well. With many people bypassing the work of a relationship, they’ve now sped straight into an expedited sexual connection. This creates different types of connections that occur within this new era of social media speed-dating, whether people are out looking for Mr. Right, Mr. Free Booze, or Mr. Right Now. The latter has become the most common, due to our newly-adopted, quick, digital attention span. Hook-up culture has made it possible for people who are only exclusively looking for no strings attached sex to enjoy sexual satisfaction without the connection of another human being’s emotional attachment. As the idea of monogamy dies away, this placeholder has become a common trend. Soon, will everyone be left single? Is it possible that these unemotional and pure lustful relations could be deteriorating the traditional relationship titles of boyfriend, husband, wife, girlfriend?

Grindr is one of the largest hook-up apps. Most of these hookups are strictly “no strings attached.” User’s profiles can be straight to the point, announcing that they are looking for a right now rendezvous. Terms like hosting, travel, DDF, blow-n-go, and many others have generated a brand new language in gay dating. It breeds an aberrance not before experienced in dating: people giving out their addresses, sending genital photos, and looking for gratification without attachment. Instant connections are something that our current generation of gay men use as a means of courting. Yet, no matter how much of a connection there may be through our cell phones or online, is it as good as meeting someone new in person? With marriage equality being only a few years old, the definitions of gay relationships are just being reconstructed as society is now accepting them, especially as we enter a renaissance of relationship titles and gender roles.

Furthering this hindrance in our community is the unveiling of racism in online dating. Pride parades give the illusion that gay culture is open and inclusive. Yet profiles on Grindr show a population of those who maintain prejudices and subdued racism. Profiles which identify as discreet want to make a connection, but would rather nobody know of their orientation. Chappy, which fancies itself the “anti-Grindr,” introduces profiles that are combative of prejudicial taglines: masc only, no fats, no femmes, no [insert various racial prejudices]—which has the least to do with human connection—and rather allows users to only seek sex. Is this our old-world, subliminal heteronormative thinking? Are we still existing under the subconscious belief that homosexuality shouldn’t be placed on display in a heterosexual world? There are many reasons men want to remain discreet while looking for sex, such as the thrill of anonymity, being married or in the closet, or perhaps coming from a culture where homosexuality is still looked down upon. Perhaps being gay still is still not completely normalized, and these individuals do not feel comfortable showing their sexuality as a relationship to society. It extends beyond aps, though. Some married gay couples still remain in the closet. As much as being gay no longer seems to be a big deal, Main Street USA would still be uncomfortable with two guys holding hands or showing affection in the public, as has been made clear by the uprising in disapproving opinions during the current presidential administration. Gay stigmatization still exists, even in the dawning of 2018.

This type of atmosphere is inducing a population of men who are seeking male sexual attractions, but removing it from the forefront of a greater portrait, keeping everything out of society and into the bedroom. The down-low Casanovas typically are looking for someone who is masculine and doesn’t fit the stereotype of gay identification. But there are many people who find these kinds of interactions to be a fantasywanting to meet an individual for anonymous sex where  identity plays no importance, often even when one of the individuals is found in a scandalous situation like being blindfolded, handcuffed, face-down on the bed without ever looking up, etc. Conversely, it would seem that the act of no strings attached encounters provides an easy way to bypass societal stigmatization while being able to fulfill sexual gratification. But there are many people who find these kinds of interactions to be a fantasywanting to meet an individual for anonymous sex where  identity plays no importance, often even when one of the individuals is found in a scandalous situation like being blindfolded, handcuffed, face-down on the bed without ever looking up, etc. When a person has multiple partners without an emotional attachment, most bypass safety screening and are open to believe a person’s status for only knowing them within minutes, jaded by their own lustful desire. This alone begets sexual irresponsibility, especially when people fail to disclose their status with disease, drug use, and preventative drug use (i.e. PrEP).

Yet, unprotected sex is on the rise. And with that, these factors make such preventions even more necessary.  Taking the precaution allows a person to feel safe, even when taken without the availability of a condom., Still, PrEP is only used to deter HIV, and leaves gay men open for other diseases. Other health risks are involved with attachment-free sex. For instance, online dating now serves as a digital bathhouse, connecting men who are only looking for no strings attached sex. Like bathhouses online hookup apps help users who are seeking anonymous sex with more than one person to frequent, perhaps to fulfill some form of fantasy. These environments are often free of supervision or provide little only for the purposes of preventing drug use. Therefore, they serve as a breeding ground to spread virus and disease for individuals who do not use protection. Which the president of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Michael Weinstein has noted “Because these are closed pools of people in limited geographies [using dating apps], it means that infections can spread more easily.”

Hopefully, as society continues to wrap its hivemind around the acceptance of gay culture, the need for discretion and unsafe practices will dwindle. Maybe some day people will even be able to express their sexual orientation without the stigmas that come along with being gay, eradicating the need to hide your face behind your phone screen. Still, bathhouses, hook-up apps, bar meet-cutes are often seen as gay rites of passage. While clinically discourageable if not practiced erring on the side of caution, many gay men look at them as a part of the lifestyle, something their friends have all done that they wish to experience, or even just a good story to tell. After all, apps like Grindr have also made it increasingly easy for people to meet for sex. It’s the intention of the app, with many men just have chest pics as their profile picture, whether that be to remain anonymous or simply to attract sexual partners. And yet, while there are people who claim they are looking for a relationship on these apps, for the most part, it would appear that most are only looking for sextheir Mr. Right Now rather than their Mr. Right.


Firsts Travis Crockett

They gave me a navy folder with
a packet of information twenty pages thick,
the first page titled “Day One.”
But there wasn’t a first day. A first month perhaps,
a memory salad of molding dread and sharp panic.

There was the first cut,
in public of course,
my hands fumbling a sharp piece of junk in a Good Will.
The high school clerk did not
appreciate my urgency for a Band-Aid
while blood—horror movie red
ballooned—from the tiny wound.
I bought the trash and took it home.
My first trophy.
There was the first education,
a confiding one-sided script.
People will say anything
in safe company.
He had put his
“health at risk, you know?”.
Truth shared under the assumption of a common status.
That was the first silence as well.
I was still learning how to speak; I could not yet teach.

There was the first rejection, but that only deserves one line.

There was the first doctors appointment.
The first blood draw.
The first results.
The first time they took my blood pressure
they had to take it again,
and again,
telling me I had to calm down,
that this was not
the first time someone had been in my position.
That was the first time I heard white coat syndrome.

Your new obsession becomes the first of many.
A refreshed interest in books,
things you said you would learn some other day,
or perhaps movies, foreign films,
you devour them, amass so many of these titles
you must buy a new book shelf,
you start looking at new TVs with better resolution,
you find a new couch to better hold you in these
delicate moments of escape.

I bought plants.
I bought so many,
willed my thumb turn from black to green,
surrounded myself with as much life as
I could fit on my south-facing patio.
To see the humble arc of beginning,
flourishing beautiful middle, and
graceful, lingering end, was my first recovery.
The next year I only bought five.

The first plant I bought lived
all through summer and into fall.
I buried it in wet November mud
next to a creek and
did not think of myself.

TravisCrockett-300x300 FirstsTRAVIS CROCKETT considers poetry to be a fourth alternative to Albert Camus’ options for dealing with the absurdity of life. Instead of willful denial through religion, suicide, or a total embrace of absurdity, poetry permits his desire for something greaterthan himself, acknowledges the terrors of being alive, and shakes hands with l’absurde. Travis considers poetry to be a way to wink back when the abyss get awkward and stares too long. He lives in Texas with his boyfriend and his dog.

Halloween Magic Promises 2016 Fundraiser To Be Outrageously Funny

Halloween Magic Promises 2016 Fundraiser To Be Outrageously Funny

Houston’s Halloween Magic Roars Back To The Stage This Year Celebrating 25 Years With Honorary Chairs Annise Parker And Kathy Hubbard.

HOUSTON Oct. 2 — This is one of those Halloween parties you do not want to skip. The hilarious election-year satire, mixing risqué Montrose humor with Broadway show tunes, gears up at the Resurrection Metropolitan Community Church on Saturday, October 22 at 8:00 pm and Sunday, October 23 at 4:00 pm.

Roaring to the stage for its 25th anniversary production, Rand Paul’s Drag Race: Destination 1600 Avenue, directed by Dennis Draper of The Alley Theatre. Maria Todd will host the show.

“We set out to do the most outrageous send up of a political race, set against the backdrop of the antics of a real beauty pageant,” Gary Rodd, veteran Halloween Magic writer and cast member stated.

Some of Houston’s theater luminaries have been cast in honor of its silver anniversary. Mary Hooper plays Melania Trump, Deborah Hope appears as Sarah Palin, and Mark Ivy impersonates Rand Paul.

“We watched Smile, a 1976 beauty pageant movie, and Miss Congeniality for source material. Youtube is an immense help as was the Ru Paul show. We knew we would have five finalists: Rubio, Cruz, Trump, Hillary and Bernie. And we’re going to have a Charlie’s Angels trio of Melania Trump, Sarah Palin, and Bill Clinton,” Rodd added.

Founded in 1988, Halloween Magic has raised over $1 million for Houston HIV/AIDS service organizations. This years beneficiaries include Lazarus House, Legacy, Pet Patrol, Resurrection Metropolitan Community Church, and Omega House.

Tickets are $50, and may be purchased at, or by calling 713-256-3880.


TRUTH Project Kicks Off ‘We Are Gold’ Annual Fundraiser In Houston

TRUTH Project Kicks Off ‘We Are Gold’ Annual Fundraiser In Houston


The 2nd Annual T.R.U.T.H. Project Kicks Off Annual Fundraiser In Montrose In October.

HOUSTON Oct 5 — The time for TRUTH has come to Houston. The T.R.U.T.H Project kicks off its annual fundraiser In Houston on Oct. 22, 12016 in Montrose. Entitled We Are Gold will be held at Zimm’s Martini & Wine Bar.

The T.R.U.T.H. Project (Telling Real Unapologetic Truths through Healing) is a 501c3 charitable organization that educates and mobilizes LGBTQ communities of color and their allies through social arts that promote mental, emotional and sexual health. The impact on the community is very surreal said Founder Kevin Anderson.

“It’s humbling to have the support of artists and healthcare providers who understand the vision for using the arts as a tool for healing through information, education, and access to resources,” Anderson said.

This year’s fundraiser will include a montage of video clips from previous installments and live demonstrations of spoken word, live music, and visual art to showcase how the T.R.U.T.H. Project connects art and health.

Since its inception, The T.R.U.T.H Project has reached more than 5,000 attendees and continues to grow. Performances are held quarterly and have addressed issues such as bullying, domestic violence, and depression. The Texas State Department of Health recognized the efforts of the T.R.U.T.H. Project and its founder, Kevin Anderson, to use the arts as a vehicle for information, awareness, and access to resources, and awarded a grant that allowed him to extend his outreach by partnering with national recording artist such as Marsha Ambrosius and Chisette Michele. He has also served as a consultant in other cities interested in starting similar initiatives.

For additional information visit: