I just finished reading your article about crystal meth use among gay men. I am a 32-year-old gay man living in Atlanta with my husband of five-and-a-half years. We have, in the past, snorted cocaine, taken X, and smoked pot as well as consumed alcohol. We have had a few conversations about tina [crystal meth]. Prior to the relationship that I am in now, I was in a committed relationship with a man 12 years older than me. We had a great time together until he decided he was going to try tina one weekend.
We were out of town, in Tampa, with his best friend. I was very scared to try tina but ended up giving in. I snorted it because I was not about to slam a needle in my vein for fear of HIV transmission. I did not trust a drug user's word on being HIV-positive or negative for that matter.
I had the time of my life. I was so high. The world felt like it was mine and everyone knew it was mine and accepted that. Initially sex was frustrating because I could not get an erection, but I finally did and was taken to places further than heaven. After I came down, two days later, I already had a strong urge to do it again. I had to struggle with not doing tina again and I had only done three or four lines my first time.
My then-partner fell hook-line-and-sinker for tina. He was hooked from day one. We again went to Tampa to party for about a week. I stuck to my decision to stay away from tina, though it was very difficult because everyone around me was doing it. My partner and I finally went back home to Jacksonville. To make an already long story shorter, he continued his relationship with tina, lost his reconstruction business, his house and, more importantly, he lost himself. Yes, he lost me, too. I did try tina a second time before I left my partner for good. I tried so hard to get him to realize he was destroying himself. I can still remember how incredible I felt and how lonely I really was.
In my present relationship, I often reflect back to tina and explain to my spouse that there is no room in our life for it. He is HIV-positive and cannot afford to do anything like that.
So, I just want to commend everyone out there who is fighting tina with all they've got and to encourage the continued fight.
I want to thank you for personalizing the growing crystal meth problem in the gay community, rather than solely reporting on statistics. A former party boy myself, I have lost both love and friendship to the terrific terror that is particular to crystal meth use (and found myself in very compromising situations). The problem in New York City is equally frightening and is ignored, if not validated, by the party community here. I have no problem with drug use and think responsible partying is relatively harmless. The scourge of crystal, however, continues to eat away at our community.
Thank you for your insights.
--Benjamin N. Brust
New York City
IT'S WHAT WE DO
I just wanted to write you a letter telling you how much the younger generation likes your publication and how it has become the mandatory newspaper to read for those of us 18-30, for sure! My friends and I enjoy your publication because it has everything "to do" in the Bay area and it's really cool, but not cool like MTV cool where it's "pretend cool," y'know?
I mean, you guys are not just an image. The substance you put in your magazine has great info about everything in the Bay area for younger college kids my age, and I'm starting to notice your publication in area businesses also, which is great. Keep up the great work and don't change a thing.
Town N Country
CORRECTIONZebulon, N.C., is about 20 miles east of Raleigh. Our story on Christian Reconstructionists last week incorrectly placed it near Charlotte. Also, Mark Rushdoony is R.J. Rushdoony's son. The article misstated the relationship.
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