brandon flowers


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Well I never shall wither
Well of course I forgive her
Oh please Lord deliver me
To love
I’m going to reach on up over that fear
I’m never alone won’t you please be near
I know that darkness before the dawn
Tomorrow’s coming and yesterday’s gone.. 
amos lee

i first became acquainted with amos lee about 2 years ago- i think the song was “colors”. i loved his easy rock style, his voice, and his look. he came out with a new cd recently titled “mission bell” and this has been no disappointment at all. i have come to love “with the windows rolled down” and “el camino”, but this week, i think that flower is my ambrosia. i am listening to the cd quite frequently… once an addict, ya know????
and on a very much more somber note, there is the sentencing of tim dechristopher today for interfering with the bureau of land management. he was given a pretty hefty sentence, especially given some of the horrific deeds some of our own city and state staff members have made in the name of the law. in colorado at least 6 deaths have been attributed to police brutality in the last 6 months, all of them inflicted upon persons of color. yet the severity of the punishment in most of those instances does not match the ire that has met mr. dechristopher. i find myself struggling with the concept of equity. please take a moment to read what tim dechristopher spoke just prior to his sentencing. it is more than just compelling.

Tim DeChristopher, who was sentenced Tuesday to two years in federal prison and a $10,000 fine for disrupting a Bureau of Land Management auction in 2008, had an opportunity to address the court and the judge today immediately before his sentence was announced. This is what he said
read the rest here..

Season’s Greetings

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Wrap Yourself In All The Holidays Have To Offer This Year. Here is the image on this year’s cards and the letter included.              Defnitely SWAK!!!!

I continue to work with private chefs at small dinner functions throughout the year as well. This pays well, and gives me a peek into a world that is both fantastic and ordinary. I am allowed to be around great food and some amazing ambiance, and find that much of this seems to come quite naturally.

After all these years living in Denver, this summer I started taking road trips around Colorado this year. Places like Salida, Buena Vista, Estes Park, Grand Lake, Trinidad, even Taos and Santa Fe, and the family-famous Idaho Springs have provided the backdrop for an incredibly beautiful summer in what so many refer to as God’s country. I hope to continue this trend in the coming years. Feel free to plan a trip with me in the spring, summer, or fall.

I  visited Chicago once again this autumn. Blue and I had dinner with Laura at a fantastic tapas restaurant in the newly remodeled Blackstone Hotel. Good call, Laura. She reports getting a delicious promotion at her workplace and seems more content and at peace with each year. I still love that city and get a warm and fuzzy feeling when there. I was able to catch up with about 15 or so cronies and definitely had a hoot. The new wing at Art Institute is amazing and is recommended for your next visit there.

I was introduced to a book this year written by a Canadian physician named Gabor Mate called ” In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts.” Since I work in the field of addiction, both this read and his philosophy have had a profound impact on my approach. I am reminded that our behaviors do not define us as human. Our souls do. People always have a reason for doing what they do- we just don’t always agree or like the reason. But that’s why we need to walk a mile in their shoes so to speak. This change of perspective is a work in progress for me. Every day I practice letting go of my judgments. Some days work better than others.

Many of the LGBT issues in the news this year have stirred some echoes in my heart and mind and I would ask you to indulge some thoughts I have around some of those. When I think of DADT, Gay marriage, Teen suicide, and Bullying, I feel very close to these issues. Growing up and feeling different can be extremely challenging, especially for young people. I don’t remember hearing so much that my “behaviors” were unacceptable, but more that I was less than acceptable. And growing up feeling that way causes a lot of invisible destruction. I find that I am still working through this internalized self- judgment started so many years ago, even after 6 years of being substance free.

Mind you, I am not complaining. 25 years of living with HIV, I know I am lucky to be here. 2010 was never part of my plan. 52 was never an age I expected to walk around. Yet here I find myself undeniably happy, inspired, and full of life. I write this in hopes that you will feast on just as much from your life’s banquet this holiday season. May joy be abundant and keep you warm. It’s the giving , not the getting that matters.

Happy Holidays….

seattle’s new hivster- a look back in silence

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Look back in silence; the cradle of your whole life.
There in the distance, loosing its greatest pride.
Nothing is easy, nothing is sacred. Why?
Where did the bow break?
It happened before your time.

a new hiv site has been borne from collaboration in seattle. has sponsored an hiv friendly site that brings cultural competence out in the open. it feels right. here is one of the articles i found posted. i am gently reminded yet again that being different has a dark side.

Today marks 12 years since Matthew Shepard’s tragic death. In 2001, my Mom wrote about his death and how it deepened her fears for about me being young and gay. Written almost ten years ago, her story still speaks directly to the violence and turmoil we endure. My mom passed away 7 years ago but I know wholeheartedly she’d be fighting with all her might to help the LGBTQ youth who are hurting today.

Judy Shepard, mother of murdered gay teen Matthew Shepard, is determined to use her grief over her son’s death to make a difference. She is now speaking to audiences nationwide about what they can do to prevent hate crimes in their schools and communities. To find when she might appear in your community or to sponsor her appearance, contact Keppler and Associates, at 703.516.4000 or visit –

Seeing it felt like a blow to my gut. My eyes immediately stung with tears, the kind that grip the corners of my eyes, refusing to fall. I came across it while researching the Internet for information on Matthew Shepard.

There wavering on my screen was an image of Matthew Shepard’s disembodied face frozen in a sad expression engulfed in animated flames. The words jumped off my monitor: “Matthew Shepard has been in hell for 838 days. Eternity — 838 days = Eternity.” Even the URL made me grimace —

On October 7, 1998, Judy Shepard’s world shattered. I can’t begin to imagine her pain at knowing how her son Matthew suffered, just because two sick young men hated gays, found a victim on which to unleash their rage, and left her son Matthew to die on a Wyoming fence.

I remember seeing Judy Shepard on TV. She said, “In a perfect world, because your child is gay, you don’t worry about their safety.” A chill ran through me. I couldn’t help but try to imagine Matthew Shepard’s terror, his parents receiving that awful call….. read the rest of this article at hivster