(2016.02.08) I wrote these missives for my friend who was editing Fleshbot, Nick Denton’s Gawker porno blog, back in 2005. The original articles may or may not still be onliné. Certainly very few of the “profiles” at BigMuscle or BigMuscleBears still are. I dug up the files and mildly edited them for publication here.
In our quest to
diversify Fleshbot’s range of editorial voices , we’re pumped and bearish to introduce a new guest columnist. Each Wednesday in April, Joe Clark, a previous contributor, quills the Consumer Guide to BigMuscle(Bears). He’s the only man to write about making porn accessible to people with disabilities (op. cit.) and tussle with Fleshbot’s owner and write a 4,600-word critique of BigMuscle(Bears).com’s nonstandard HTML.
It’s spring (though, sadly, not in Australia), and a young man’s fancy turns to... oh, I don’t know, tank tops and so on. Not on oneself, of course; that’s what we have the Internet for.
Herewith some links to notable (indeed bookmarkable) profiles at BigMuscle and BigMuscleBears, with an additional diamond and lump of coal also identified. I’ll tend to shy away from fellows who use BM(B) as a de facto blog with added nudism; real gay bloggers use BM(B) as an adjunct for “dating” (viz. BJ, Bald Sarcasm, Joe · My · God, LittleMinx).
BM(B) gives us more than a few options when it comes to the physical type describable as “old guy, in good shape, with beard and shaven head.” Hairy Stud here epitomizes just how gay this type is, with the ad copy’s emphasis on romantic settings. Really, how many straight guys go to the gym quite this much once they hit 40? And what kind of straight guy gladly models arseless chaps with his motorcycle or asks a kind friend to shoot loving close-ups of him reclining in a sling?
Bringin’ you a dream since... oh, “October 29, 2003,” according to the date he signed up. A square-shouldered, lean, translucent-haired, perhaps even lithe specimen. At 5′7″, Sandman qualifies as “compact and æsthetically appealing,” with that smooth–firm–fair look so treasured by complexion queens. Has a fine countenance even in snapshots, but where do I find the rest of the professional photos shot by Troy Dean?
Russ & Rusty:
I am man enough to admit you sometimes have to just give in and gawk at guys who lead apparently fabulous lives. A kind of SFCouple (see last week’s episode) but with massive slabs of meat rather than tattoos, these lads give a healthy gloss to adjectives like “masculine” and “all-American.” Disappointments? Their vanity site has no actual content and uses the despised Arial font; the actual cop took down photos of himself rather quite filling out his snug police uniform; and for all I know, this is a “See Tarzan, hear Jane” scenario, where guys built like brick shithouses let loose bolts of chiffon whenever their mouths pop open.
I try to like the Germans on BigMuscle. I try and try and try. But I find they look ever so slightly unbeautiful in their own special way – and that’s true even when they’re not cloning themselves. (Then there’s what they like to wear.) Seven – of, one hopes, Nine – gets a demerit for his placeholder ad copy, and the colour photos aren’t much. But he’s at least making an effort to depict a towering, square-faced Viking in a sensuous way. More nudes should involve texture contrasts; more shower photography should be done en noir et blanc.
Écossais: I’ve got a whole collection of ex-military BigMuscle(que)ers. Eric here is possibly Tucson’s only French-speaking ex-Navy and -Army greyhound rescuer with his own and his lover’s names tattooed on his deltoid in a dead alphabet.
TravelingHotJock: Another profile on BigHeadlessMuscle.com. Why can’t we see this guy’s face? “Let me explain something. I have a very high-profile career and a great career in the entertainment business. I value my privacy and need to and value the privacy of others. I do not want my face plastered all over the world for conversation for idle gossip chatter[er]s throughout – cannot afford to professionally. Thus, my motto is I will meet anywhere, anytime to prove my face matches body.” All right – see you over at Rock Hudson’s place, maybe 8:30? We can get Roy Cohn to play “Stardust” on the piano.
Another “personal trainer,” a job that is to the Aughties what “hairdresser” was to the ’70s, “aerobics instructor” to the ’80s, and “customer-service representative” to the ’90s. It’s to the point where, like U.S. passports, there are more trainers in circulation than persons. He’s at least openly Canadian and “also interested in doing health & fitness modeling as well as artistic photo work.” (It’s art when you’re naked, erotica with your boner in your hand, and porn with somebody else’s boner in your hand.) SteelGuy merits inclusion due to the contrast clashes so deliciously notable when a jet-black-haired model plunges his hands deep into his underwear (so it is erotica!) while surrounded by man-height flowering stalks.
Another common type (Cf. last week’s example) – the tall baldy with the wingspan of a condor. Yes, trite, really; check any leather bar, or, more likely, china shop. Anyway, if we overlook this guy’s depilation, which isn’t that easy to overlook, our subject here has the advantages of giant trapezii atop square, double-wide shoulders and Argentine heritage (always value-adding).
One would never kiss and tell in this Consumer Guide, but we’re talking about publicly-available profiles here. This inexplicable creature was sometimes seen about town of a Saturday night before he left for L.A. He was ever surrounded by a retinue of (inevitably) shorter and really very ordinary or even homely guys. And he didn’t talk much; I guess his mode of communication is like that of a squid or an octopus – the colours on the skin. That didn’t help this giant in running for the dubious title of Mr. Gay.com, where he didn’t even make the semifinals.
HungMucrBear: It’s nice to have some historical continuity in gay nudism: Yes, HungMucrBear (hold on – “Mucr”?) really was a Colt model some two decades ago. (Did Tom of Finland actually sketch him?) Frankly, this is one liquor that has improved with age. Unclear why he’s still single; please advise.
BamaBoy in Hollywood:
You couldn’t make this shit up: U.S. Marine, still not fully discharged, writes an autobiographical one-man stageplay. OK, great – but is he hot? Well, yeah, pretty much, when he’s not wearing goofy hats. BamaBoy’s desert (combat) photos aren’t the sort of thing you see every day; the “Dear Diary” shot borders on the touching. And surely that would be every gay Marine’s choice of pin-up.
Flatly the best-written profile on BigMuscle. “I’ve already fucked the few hot guys in town long ago and the rest are good friends of mine, so the thrill is gone.... [Other guys are] all on those goddamned sex hook-up sites [like, I dunno, BigMuscle?] that have taken the place of good old-fashioned tire-kicking.... I was a varsity jock in high school, screwed chicks through college, change my own oil and prefer dogs to cats. I nevertheless have zero confusion about who I am or how much I appreciate having my BEEFY ASS NAILED IN HALF by big-dicked musclemen.... [N]or do I hide my contempt for that particularly repugnant fraternity of fellas who are in the best shape of their lives yet nevertheless can still be found with their Jack Russell terriers... Lest we forget, beauty is temporary; stupid is forever.” Even I tried to line up a date with this guy in Austin. Tried.
It’s not enough to be queer, limiting you to a steady 3% of the population and an unreliable subset of Italianate construction laborers with wedding bands hidden in their coverall pockets. Of course you must also desperately hanker for the rarest phenotype save for albinism, the redhead. (It could be worse: You could fancy the black redhead, giving you a de facto fetish for Malcolm X [Denzel Washington, shurely?!].)
Anyway, as the author of the conversation-piece Web page documenting the Redhead Cluster Phenomenon, it goes without saying that I maintain an inventory of BigMuscleGingers. (By the way, the Phenomenon isn’t mystical; it can be explained by a Poisson or a quadratic distribution, but none of the mathematicians or physicists I’ve polled has been able to explain it understandably. Fleshbot readers with Ph.D.s in applicable fields are hereby recruited for that job.)
I present, then, a firecrotch hit parade. If homosexualism-plus-redheadedness weren’t already a cruel Venn diagram of overlapping circles, consider that, for mutual satisfaction, any redhead I deal with pretty much has to be an hair fetishist. Needless to say, not a lot of those saunter up to me at the Steamworks. This is my tragedy.
He’s not joking when he says he’s “not a very good photographer,” and like many bears and chasers, his weight visibly varies. Still, you’ve got a compact, stocky Englishman who’s nearly covered in orange fur. To paraphrase Joe Orton in Prick Up Your Ears, what are you waiting for – a singing telegram?
SexyRedhead: Jeez, man, get out of the sun! (You are evolutionarily unpredisposed. Do you want to end up like a tangerine Karl Lagerfeld or something?) This ivory-tinkling bartender (alternate ad) gives the aficionado lots to look at, with his vulnerable pinkish skin and insanely low bodyfat for a guy in his mid-40s. I don’t know what the hell else one would really need, except maybe a foreskin and an attentive dermatologist just in case.
A challenging and even disturbing specimen. Since there are few scenarios more drool-inducing than a strapping ginger giant forcefully reciting the sagas by heart in ancient (also modern) Icelandic, any use of the word “Viking” commands instant attention. Sadly, the term is used merely aspirationally here. Our subject is a 20-year positoid and one of those barebackers we keep hearing so much about but never actually get infected by. You need to consult his other profile to find proof that the curves in his hereditary Photoshop have indeed been boosted. I don’t know if I could keep up with him. Probably not, actually.
A fit, broad-shouldered, handsome man with red hair and freckles. A dime a dozen, you say, if only in some parts of Ireland and Scotland? Well, in three mere lines of ad copy he seems to suggest he’s trouble: “Living and working in Nashville... [w]orking on getting back home to San Francisco.... Any help is greatly appreciated!” What’s really going on here?
Goldenlocks & HairyRedhd:
Gingers are already statistical anomalies, but even the outliers have outliers. We prefer not to talk about the subgenre known as the funny-looking redhead. (If you need a mental image, think of the ice-bowl-brandishing dance instructor in Showgirls.) We prefer to envision a more pleasant kind of exceptional case. Redheads can be so glabrous and alabastery they look vampiric – e.g., Goldenlocks. Also, hairs in the genital region can be so fiery orange that they’re actually shocking – and HairyRedhd seems to know it.
How do you ask for a refill of your water glass at a restaurant in L.A.? Hold up your finger and call “Actor/model/waiter! Actor/model/waiter!” Or, in Joshua Paul’s case, “Actor/performer/model/trainer!” Personally, I like the tough/rugged/Irish look. I really do like it. So sue me, and let me peel off that sweaty rugby shirt for you.
SFHairyMuscle & RustyWheeler:
It writes itself, really: BigMuscle(Bears)’s double-ginger power couple. Why are they not doing their own porn? (Well, with their plethora of personal ads, I guess they are.) We’d be worried for, or excited over, their alien ginger offspring, were it biologically possible. (Red-headed stepchildren, perhaps?) These men knew of me by reputation from the Redhead Cluster Phenomenon. I met them on the patio of the Black Eagle; they were curiously guarded, but I can confirm, from an arm’s-length distance, the duo’s overweening interest in “[r]ipe sweaty pits.”
Thus brings to a conclusion a gruelling month of trawling through profiles on the gay Web sites with the worst HTML in the world – all to unearth diamonds (and, this week, topazes) for you, dear reader. If I may quote “the Canadian minister of movies” in South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut, “Thanks for having me, buddy.”
To end, a factoid: We do not have an ad on BigMuscle(Bears), being none of those morphemes save perhaps for the plural.
Originally published 2005 ¶ Updated here 2016.02.08 14:58