Happening in Kansas City
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When I write about gay dating in Kansas City—or mating, depending on your ultimate point of view—I find myself regularly expounding on the games we men play to identify, woo, or bed Mr. Right….or Mr. Right-Now.
Sometimes the game is all too obvious. I’m not talking about the longing glances across the Dixie Belle on a Sunday beer bust or the string of IM’s that lead to an Internet encounter. I’m talking about The Dating Game. Yes, the cheesy ‘60s game show that is rearing its ugly head in Kansas City—that Dating Game.
I really wasn’t sure what to expect when I got the call from Rose at Business Casual LLC, the upscale Overland Park dating service that is making the bold move into gay matchmaking. Rose seemed like a fun party girl and she has lots of gay clients, so what could I lose by giving it a whirl?
As I walked the few short blocks to Bar Natasha, the scene for the Tuesday happy hour game, I recalled that I undoubtedly had a leg up on the competition. Sure, I write a column on dating, but I’m certainly no expert. But I am a veteran of The Dating Game—well, sort of.
How can that be, you ask? In 1991, I was living in Auckland, New Zealand, in graduate school at the University of Auckland. By some twist of fate, several American graduate students were all assigned adjoining rooms in the university housing. I don’t think we had been drinking, but when we saw the advertisement on the “telly” looking for contestants, what were we to do?
The following Tuesday we marched down to the Television New Zealand building to audition. Honestly, I really wasn’t sure how I’d do, but when we entered the waiting room, my prospects changed. You see, New Zealand is a pretty small country (more sheep than men) and the people are more British than the British (read “reserved”).
When you have to come up with two contestants and six bachelors/bachelorettes each day, you’re going to run through quite a few people. Needless to say, the producers were thrilled with the prospect of padding their numbers with five educated, upwardly mobile American singles and we were all booked for the show. The following week, we all took our turns on the stage as the producers taped a week’s worth of shows at a time.
I watched from the audience as each of my friends “won” a date and then it was my turn to approach the stage. Even though the show was called “Blind Date,” the format was essentially the same as our classic show—a contestant sits on one side of the wall and asks questions of three anonymous bachelors on the other.
The producer had prepped us well and we had a bit of time to consider answers for our questions before taping began, but I knew I had the whole thing wrapped up the first time I opened my mouth. The contestant, also a lady named Rose (I wasn’t quite out at the time), immediately responded, “God, I love that accent!” Well, the rest of the game was a formality, at best.
One of the nice features of New Zealand’s show was that the couples were flown all over the country for their dates and then a lucky few were chosen to return to the couch in the middle segment (ala “Love Connection) to recount the highlights. We went to the Hawke’s Bay region for wine tasting and jet boating. It was a great trip—even if I really didn’t feel comfortable with my date.
I’m not sure why the producers selected us to come back to the couch, but the following week, we did. Something didn’t feel quite right and I soon realized why. The producers decided they needed to boost ratings, so they coaxed Rose to lean over and lay a big, wet French kiss on me. Of course, I turned beet red (that doesn’t sound anything like me today).
The kicker came that Sunday night when they aired the weekly promo spot for the show. Lo and behold, the showed that sloppy kiss over and over and over—in one 30-second spot! I looked like a total “ho”! It really hit home the following morning when I passed by the dorm office and the secretary came running out and exclaimed, “I saw you kissing that girl on the telly!” Anyway, what’s passed is past. Ancient history. Done. Rose, I’ve moved on to boys.
So what lay in store at Bar Natasha? There was the “wall” and two other bachelors. No questions, but how hard could they really be? And then there’s the contestant—I really had no clue. I’m still a newbie to Kansas City, but I get around on the social circuit. A small, but enthusiastic audience gathered as the game got underway.
I’m not quite sure what was on his mind, but our contestant was definitely looking for someone with brains or at least a couple of opinions. “If you were elected President, which policy of George W. Bush would you change?“ They kept coming—questions about world peace, public policy….this is one serious guy! I did everything to keep him off guard. When my competitors told him they would get us out of Iraq or cut tax breaks to the wealthy, I replied that I would end abstinence-only sex ed programs.
Finally, we got to the substantive questions that would ultimately guide his choice—boxers or briefs or commando? If you were a food, what would you be? What song title best describes you? I really was on a roll now as I whipped out every sexual innuendo in my arsenal.
Yes, once again I was the lucky bachelor picked for the date. As I walked around the divider and met my date, “John” (names are always changed to protect the innocent…or not-so-innocent), I found myself pleasantly surprised. If this is the type of guy Business Casual LLC is working with, they may be the answer to many a Kansas City guy’s woes meeting men at the bars or on gay.com.
Alas, we weren’t being flown to a glamorous mystery location for our date, but we were treated to drinks and dinner at Bar Natasha (try the beef tenderloin). I’m not sure lightning struck, but “John” and I did enjoy a lovely evening, drinks, dinner, and entertainment by the effervescent Marilyn Wood.
Kudos to Cathy, Steve and Rose at Business Casual LLC (www.businesscasualllc.com) for a memorable evening. They just held a second Dating Game on June 8 at Bar Natasha and will be hosting the Dating Game at The Fox on June 24. Check out their website to find dates and locations for future Dating Games. Better yet, why not be a contestant? You may be the next lucky Bachelor #3.
After the last 2 years of dealing with the pandemic and packing on those COVID pounds here are some motivational quotes that can be the spark plugs to our wellness engines. You can have a full tank of gas, a clean carburetor, all the fluids topped off, and 300 horsepower of Detroit’s finest under the hood, but you’re going nowhere without that initial spark. In your quest for well-being, you need a catalyst to move you from idle to ideal. Here are some motivational jolts to inspire you to get your health and fitness vehicle moving.
Make time for exercise each dayPhoto by Victor Freitas on Unsplash
Thomas Paine said, “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” You will have conflicts with making time for exercise each day. The treadmill will conflict with your enjoyment of the living-room couch and its fluffy pillows. Your body will engage in conflict with dumbbells and exercise balls as it seeks better health. Embrace these conflicts with excitement, and walk through the smoke and fire. Triumph is waiting on the other side.
Marathon runnersPhoto by Miguel A. Amutio on Unsplash
John F. Kennedy said, “Things do not happen. Things are made to happen.” The firefighter’s 55-pound weight loss did not just happen one day on a call. The computer programmer’s success in the Chicago Marathon did not just happen on a Sunday in October. The 4th grade teacher’s significant drop in cholesterol level did not just happen the day before spring break. These people made things happen…and it took time.
Ralph Marston of The Daily Motivator website, wrote, “What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.” Let today be the first day in 28 years without a cigarette. Stay an extra five minutes on the recumbent bike at the gym today. Start training today for the three-day breast cancer walk that is scheduled for the fall. Tomorrow is always waiting to see what you put in your piggy bank today. Invest wisely and watch the dividends grow.
Full MoonPhoto by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash
Jill McLemore once said, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you will land amongst the stars.” Set that goal to trim 75 pounds from your body. Only losing 42 pounds puts you way out there with the North Star. Aim to run 750 miles this year. Coming up 68 miles short will still put you past that former planet Pluto and on your way to the Orion constellation. Dropping eight waist sizes by Christmas instead of the projected 10 will let you glow with the luminescence of several brilliant wonders in the sky. By the way, I think there’s a full moon tonight!
Zig Ziglar stated, “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” Tom Cruise was another aspiring pretty face in Hollywood about 30 years ago before starting to audition for parts in TV shows. Jared Fogle was a morbidly obese college student at Indiana University in the 1990s before beginning his Subway diet. Mark Zuckerberg was just another starry-eyed Ivy Leaguer until he began to implement a social network idea. They all have that common bond: They started something.
These motivational quotes should help get your wellness engine running and once your car is started there’s no telling where your health and fitness can go. Don't forget to end me a postcard when you get there!
This health and fitness article is brought to you by that guy who’s sneaky like a black hole and bright like a nebula. My name is Ron Blake and I can be found playing with my telescope at email@example.com.
Curative has announced that it is currently providing COVID-19 no-cost testing in your area at Metropolitan Community College.
Stay safe and get tested!
You can schedule COVID-19 Test at curative.com, and receive results in 24-48 hours.
Curative is the leading provider of COVID-19 testing in the United States. Curative’s mission is to end the COVID-19 pandemic by providing simple-to-use and painless testing at scale to produce reliable data for patients and health officials. We know that broad access to testing, robust contact tracing, and a vaccine are necessary to end the pandemic.
Is there any cost?
Regarding the tests, there is no out of pocket cost to the individual. Through the CARES act, all individuals with health insurance will be covered for a COVID-19 test. No one is ever charged a copay or deductible.
For uninsured individuals, they are covered under the HRSA fund under the CARES act. Curative will never send a bill to any individual getting a COVID-19 test through any of our testing sites.
How soon do I get the results?
Curative provides results within 24 hours of arrival at our lab (if not sooner). We pride ourselves on our ability to distribute tests rapidly, test patients easily, and send them their results quickly. Other highlights include:
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Please visit curative.com to schedule your no-cost appointment TODAY at a site nearest to you. Together we can end this pandemic!
Curative believes that communal well-being is fundamental to individual health.
Curative is building infrastructure to make essential health services easier to access for everyone. Their infrastructure is designed to change as the world does—offering nearby access, affordable services, and science-based guidance.
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“I wish I could work out, too, but I just don’t have the motivation!”
Give me a dollar for every time I’ve heard that and I’d be in Cabo San Lucas with an umbrella drink right now. Let’s identify a few of your motivations to get you on the right path. They are there … you just need to realize them so you can make it a great 2022.
How about getting healthy so you can be at that Christmas celebration in 30 years with all the family gathered around and exchanging presents? There will be nieces, nephews, brothers, sisters, children and maybe some grandchildren, all enjoying the sounds and sights of the season. That would be amazing!
How about being healthy so you can watch the first man land on Mars in 2030? You hear all the talk about preparing for a mission to Mars, but it will be a long time in coming. Just think if you were alive and well to see it happen!
How about being healthy so you can attend that 60-year class reunion? It might even be nice to walk into the function with a spring in your step and a glow of health about you! Many of your classmates will have walked past St. Peter and those pearly gates by that time, but you can give yourself a chance to stay here with some proactive measures.
How about being healthy so you can spend more time being relaxed and retired? It would be awesome to just not have to do anything you didn’t want to do! Get up every day and use that watch they gave you as a fashion accessory only. With a healthy body, you can spend ample time in the lap of leisure well into your 90s.
How about being healthy so you can walk your dog with your grandkids or great-nephews after that Thanksgiving meal many years down the road? It will be so cool to have that turkey dinner with all the relatives, but it’ll be even more fun to be able to move around without having to catch your breath between steps.
How about being healthy so you can continue to enjoy vibrant sunsets, thrilling football games, colorful leaves in the fall, summer barbecues, or birthday cards in the mail?
Everyone can find the motivation to work out! You just have to identify which motivation will get you to your starting line each day and which will help you get to your daily finish line.
There are plenty of great things to enjoy in life. Find your motivation and start earning your frequent flyer miles for your healthy life. Then soar into the future with excitement about what will be!
This article of motivation is brought to you by a guy who knows a good thing when he sees it. That guy of good vision is Ron Blake, and he can be spotted on that bright horizon at firstname.lastname@example.org.