FLAWLESS - JULY 2006 - CLARENCE
1. You have a unique look that looks like you might be from an island. Where are you from? I was born in the states, while my mother and her side of the family is from Panama (hablo espanol muy poquito) by way of Barbados, and my father's from Jamaica. So lots of Caribbean roots, but I gotta say I find the general African Diaspora pretty interesting .
2. What would you consider to be your most valuable asset? Yowza! Hard question. Uhm, I have many, but the one I'll choose right now would have to be my creativity, my willingness to explore new ideas, have new experiences and push myself to think outside of the box when it comes to work, writing, musical tastes, spirituality, dating, sex and sensuality, etc., even when it scares me. And hopefully helping others to do the same. Change can be beautiful, yet it's something that frightens a lot of folks.
3. Tell me a little about your background. where did you grow up? do you have siblings? what's your relationship like with your family? I was born and raised in the Northeast Bronx, primarily by my mom and grandma. My dad decided not to be around. I grew up as an only child. Still, I do have half-brothers and sisters who I've never met. I also have three female cousins who I grew up with who were like big sisters to me.
Family's a hard subject. I'd say my chosen family, my friends, know me better at this point than my blood relatives. I'm very out about being gay to practically everybody and I'm treated with love and care when I spend time with family; still, I think my fam has a hard time just talking openly about sexuality because of their religious beliefs and social mores and such. And some of my artsy interests and views on the world tend to be different from what some people in my fam are into as well.
4. What do you do for a living? What do you see yourself doing in 5 years? I work as a book editor for a major publishing house, doing both fiction and nonfiction. I decide which manuscripts we can eventually turn into a book and then work closely with writers to help develop their story, figure out what's working, what's not working, and hopefully make their baby shine when it's released to the public. Think of me as a literary midwife with a penis.
I also write on the side, doing cultural journalism/essays and fiction. Five years from now, I'm not sure what I'll be doing, but right now I'll say I'd like to have published one of my novels by then, maybe be modeling, continuing to edit interesting books, and exploring other talents.
5. You seem to be very comfortable with your body. How do you stay in shape? Which part of the body do you consider to be the sexiest? Thanks Nathan. Actually, enjoying and being comfy with my body is a process. I use to have tons of hang ups about showing skin to the point that when I was younger I couldn't even stand to wear sandals. It was just showing too much, too much! (Yes, I had issues.) Thankfully, my perspective changed, yet I still work on being cool in my skin and not comparing myself to others.
To stay in shape, I lift weights and do yoga, doing each about two to three times a week, while trying to make sure I shake the booty on the dancefloor when I can. Eating lots of fruits and veggies, drinking water, and making sure I get enough protein also helps.
As for the favorite part of the body--tee hee. I don't know when it comes to me. On other guys, I like faces and naked bodies, period, but I sometimes seem to be particularly turned on by juiciness in terms of builds and butts, and feet. I have a bit of a fetish. (Scandal.) Really though, I find joy in it all.
6. So tell me how you balance work, play and love. Hmmm... well, while work can be stressful, I love literature, so constantly reading books is pretty pleasurable. And I generally make sure I find time to do dinner/drinks, parties, movies, occasional concerts, and art exhibitions with friends. My pals are a pretty important part of my life; I get a lot from human connections. As for love of the romantic sort, well, even after saying how much I value people, that's been kinda elusive.
7. What has new york's dating scene been like for you? It's been... interesting. It's cool that you can meet different types of dudes in so many places in the city. There's a challenge for many of us, though, to slow down and take time to make an authentic connection with someone else. It certainly hasn't been easy for me. Even though there's been lots of guys to connect with, I haven't chosen the most emotionally available guys to try and date because I've been distant and protective of myself. But that wall's coming down. So stay tuned...