I recently had a flashback to the fabulous 1980's. Back to those wonderful years of overindulgence, especially towards the end of the decade. Those were some great days for me as I grew into gayness, my twenties, and adulthood. I called myself being on the scene.

Here in Chicago, as a young same-gender-loving man of African decent, the place to go and be seen at the time was Club La Ray's. It was a place were you could hear some of the fiercest House Music, see the latest fashions and have access; watch the hottest female impersonator's; watch the boys that were on the down-low shoot pool and have access to almost any recreational drug that you wanted. At the time, powdered-cocaine or "Erica" (as in All My Children) and Gin was the thing to do.

It was at Club La Ray's where I had one of those life-changing moments. He was the closest I could have possibly come to making love to myself, if I had a twin. Have you ever wondered how it would be to make love to yourself? Many of us have probably had ourselves before. I know that I have. It's the safest sex there is, right?

Baby back in the day, I was out there. Looking for Mr. Goodbar, looking for Mr. Right as long as he was a MAN! Through it all I only found five that satisfied me, that is, that I could possibly say that we made love- to each other. Now, let me tell you about one of the five, Mr. Caramel. He filled a void in my life, and no dear, not just that void! Anyway, he was beyond just fine. He was 'beat me, fuck me, make me write bad checks phyine!' The one that you would think would be way out of your league? Baby, I thought he was out of mine!

I had seen him at La Ray's many times before. I didn't have nerve enough to introduce myself for a while so I admired him from a far. I gave him his name, Mr. Caramel, from the beautiful brown shade of his smooth skin. Some folks might have called him red-bone. He was very well groomed with a goatee and close-cropped hair. He was almost six feet with broad shoulders and gave you the brotha from the block look.

One night after several cocktail's, and lines of my good friend Erica, I found the nerve within myself for you, me, and all of us to go up and speak to him. I said in my best seductive voice with glass in hand "How you doing, my name is…" He just nodded and walked off. Damn! I said to myself. I remembered how I would just holler inside, which usually turned into a low growls and purrs as he would enter the club. I told my good brista that was out with me that I was going to have him.

One night my good brista and me decided to go to the club again on our weekend ritual. We hadn't been there long enough for me to finish my first drink and powder my nose when I saw Mr. Caramel go to the dance floor. My good brista and I were up in the balcony of the club where we would usually bring Erica and watch the brotha's work up a sweat on the dance floor listen to the DJ spin those fierce sounds. This time I put my glass down and made my way through the crowd to the dance floor and to him.

I was going to be sober this time. I stopped and just watched him. I loved the way he danced! The sensuality and sexuality of his movements as de danced on the floor by himself. He was the bomb, baby! He would move his pelvis in slow then quick fluid movements throwing his head back ever so slightly then looking right at you in the eye saying "You want some of this?" without saying a word. My answer was to move out where he was and we the danced together.

After what seemed like endless foreplay, we left the dance floor, both of us saturated. He asked if I wanted something to drink and I said yes and then gagged because he remembered my name. Mr. Caramel brought the water back and asked me if I was having a nice time. "Um, yes," I responded as I gazed into his eyes. He then asked me to leave the club so that we could find a place to talk without yelling in each other's ear. I agreed of course and trust that it took much control to not go skipping to the coatroom as I told my brista that I would be leaving the club early.

We left La Ray's and had a light breakfast at Golden Nugget; a local haunt after you went to La Ray's. It was there that I found out that he was not only beautiful outside but inside as well. The sound of this mans voice even worked me. See, with him, it wasn't the mindless conversations about fashions and drugs, which had started to become boring to me. Mr. Caramel wasn't into the drug scene. We talked about who we were and what goals and aspirations we had for our future lives. After the past life that I had lead, not leaving with a man from the club had become one of my golden rules especially in the height of the AIDS crisis. It was Mr. Caramel who became the exception to that rule.

At his apartment we had more conversation and spoke about sex and safer sex while listening to jazz. I found myself starring occasionally at those lips of his that he would lick in the most sensual way from time to time. Baby, before I knew it he had reached over with those beautiful full lips and kissed me. In that moment, I felt what I had always thought - soft yet firm, moist lips. Not many men start with a kiss. It's defiantly one of the things that can catch my attention in more than one way, if you know what I mean! I just had to have more of him.

He pulled me up from the floor where we were talking and just hugged me. His arms were strong as steel yet soft like leather. We hugged each other in what I call a real hug, almost a bear hug but with passion. He held me, caressing my body, kissing me the way that I had always wanted to be kissed. The way that I would usually kiss other men. I was over being the one that would usually send the other brotha up. I met my match with Mr. Caramel. That kiss from his lips opened the door to exploration for me and I went searching.

We undressed each other, continually kissing. He kissed me in places that I didn't know were spots. He cupped my ass, pulling me in closer to him and I melted into his mouth. It seemed as though we had become one! In our oral exploration of each other we found treasures that neither of us knew existed. My fantasy merged with my reality as my own emptiness pulled him inside of me.

With him I did things that I said I would never do with a man. I lost my usually cool demeanor. It started with light purrs and went to growls and strange animal like sounds. Mr. Caramel brought out the woman inside of me with the many positions that he had me in and in the midst of hot fierce sex, we modulated to making love. To my surprise, he brought out and showed me what a man I could be as I then brought out the woman in him. I was completely sober this time but I was having the best high of my life. We made love, to each other. Our bodies connected by our passions and primal need. I cried when I came, as I found, myself.

Club La Ray eventually was closed for various reasons. Erica and I weren't working out as friends and parted company after I woke up and smelled the coffee. Mr. Caramel and I continued to see each other when we could. I'll never forget those fabulous days Club La Ray or meeting him. They will be forever etched within my mind.

Sanford E. Gaylord
Copyright 2001 

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