Rugged Fox is a gay blogger living in Vancouver, B.C. His interests include red wine, men, Netflix and spaghetti bolognese.

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    rugged fox and the burning bush

    UPDATE: Watch Rugged Fox read "Rugged Fox and the Burning Bush." Clink the video below!


    part four of "the grindr monologues"

    Fasten your seatbelts folks because this is part four of “The Grindr Monologues.” For those of you who are just taking a seat, allow me to bring you up to speed. After compromising his credit card in a virtual threesome on Grindr, the Fox is terrified he might have to fly high and a dry on a Westjet flight to Ottawa. When the sassy gay flight attendant rejects his prepaid credit card, Rugged Fox is forced to pull his pant leg up and show some skin. Exchanging his humiliating story for sips of gin with the beautiful woman seated next to him, the Fox begins to spill how this entire mess began.

    biceps drawn to scale“So did you go to his or did he come to yours?” inquired Erin, the beautiful lady in the middle seat, also known as my new best friend with gin.

    “None of the above,” I replied. “It was eleven o`clock in the morning, and while I should have been up writing, instead I found myself in bed, listening to Q and wondering why I did not have more likes on Instagram. If I was looking to hook-up with someone on their lunch break, I would have been searching Craigslist instead.”

    “But you said you accepted his request to jerk!”

    I would love to tell you that this last line of Erin’s was whispered into the private depths of my pierced ear, except sadly that was not the case. Her scream echoed into the back of the cabin and, in total, attracted six dirty looks, two scoffs and one baby’s cry. It became readily apparent that not only had she grown impatient with my propensity to dilly dally; but she also crushed several double gins before the flight. For safekeeping, I transferred the gin and tonic from her tray table to mine.

    “I did acquiesce his invitation!” I decrescendo-ed in attempt to bring her volume back to an appropriate level. “I just didn’t meet him in person. I hadn’t even brushed my teeth yet.”

    “So what did you do?”

    “Well at first I tried to negotiate the logistics of the situation. It had been years since I last stripped down in a chat room and I wanted to make sure I had set the mood right. At first, I considered typing out my favourite Shakespearean sonnet from 10 Things I Hate About You; but I was too afraid the iambic pentameter might get lost in translation. I was just about to quote Keats when an image lit up the screen before me.

    Seven inches tall, shaved and cut like a slice of prosciutto, it was clear that rose petals were not going to be necessary in this sexual encounter.

    Now, before we move forward, I must take pause to note that, although I do appreciate the rhythmic nature of the term “dick pic,” given the fact there is a six-year-old boy sitting across the aisle from me, I shall proceed henceforth to use the term “head shot” instead.

    ‘It is nice to make your acquaintance,’ I typed into a blue message bubble. It does not take much to cross the line between nobility and vulgarity when responding to a picture of a penis.

    ‘And u?’ he replied.

    Blast! I squealed. Unlike other men, who keep a collection of head shots stored on their phone, I prefer to live in the moment, delete the moment, and then cross my fingers that same moment doesn’t end up on the internet.

    I knew if I was going to keep the blood flowing I was going to have send a picture in return. Even though I consider myself to be quite the skilled wordsmith, no one likes to zoom in to a dirty adjective. And so, with gazelle-like motion, I sprung out of bed and swapped my Joe Fresh boxers for the only pair of black CK briefs I had left. Meryl knows, it does not take long for a man to lose his entire lingerie collection when the only person he ever beds is himself.

    Jumping back into bed, I adjusted my IKEA reading lamp on the night stand before adjusting myself and then snapped the perfect shot. 

    What followed could best be described as a typical exchange between two single gay men in the twenty-first century. Both sitting at home alone, the two of us held on to our cell phones in one hand and ourselves in the other. While I polished my grammar and continued to firm up my sentence structure, he remained rigid in his use of abbreviated text and questionable emoji’s. Ten minutes passed and just as our conversation was about to reach its climax, I came to a full stop when another photo arrived.

    Unlike the previous head shots that he had sent, there was a major difference with this one: a full head of hair. My bush is always burning bright so continuity is not an issue I would have in this situation.

    Sitting up in my bed, I felt as if the fourth wall had collapsed on the imaginary encounter I had just created for myself. How could I be so foolish? Somehow, I had bought into the illusion that this alternative universe of profile photos, head lines and measurements was actually real. The air began leaking from my tires as I began to question everything I thought I knew about this gentleman caller. Was he even at home? Was that even his head shot? Did he even like Bruce Springsteen?

    The phone rang at that second and I screamed.

    I then proceeded to scream again once a picture of Mama Bear popped up on the phone!

    There was no use ignoring her call. The phone would just keep ringing.

    RF: Mom! Hi.

    MB: Oh, Rugged I am so glad I reached you.

    RF: Mother dearest I must confide to you that I currently find myself in the throes of an existential crisis and must implore you to call me back at a later time. Like in six minutes.

    MB: Did you forget to eat breakfast again?

    RF: No, what? My hands are just tied up at the moment.

    Pulling a blanket over myself, I returned to my previous conversation on Grindr and texted a very simple question in a language this man was certainly able to understand,

    “where r u?”

    “at werk,” he replied. 

    Dear Meryl.

    “Where do you work?” I asked.

    “DQ” he wrote back, a three-minute walk away from my basement apartment.

    Returning to my aisle seat on the Westjet flight I noticed the plastic cup in my right hand was empty and Erin was sound asleep on my shoulder. I had still yet to secure a mini-bottle of red wine.

    to be continued.


    if you upload it, they will come

    part three of "the grindr monologues"

    I can smell a gin and tonic from a patio six blocks away. The instant my nose picks up on the juniper scent, it is only a matter of seconds before I am squeezing a lime wedge and ordering another.

    “Would you like a sip?” came a female voice from the middle seat next to mine. With one swift motion, I observed out of the corner of my eye as she slid her plastic G&T to the right side of the tray table.  

    “If the seatbelt sign was off I would get down on my knees right now and kiss your feet," I said.

    I took the cocktail in my hand and raising it to my lips felt my ears drums explode with the bursting of each tonic bubble. With a single sip, my shoulders put their feet up on the couch while my liver crawled out of bed to get to work.

    “I don’t know how to thank you,” I returned the cup to its purchased place on her tray.

     “Well you can start by telling me what happens next.”

    For the first time on the flight, I noticed there was a beautiful woman sitting right next to me. I must admit that I am quite useless when it comes to spotting attractive members of the female sex. I have always considered them my “gay blindspot.” When I managed the restaurant, the cooks always used to call out “Line One” whenever a gorgeous woman walked past the kitchen. It took me months of running to pick up the phone before I realized what they actually meant.

    “What is your name?” I asked, scrolling my eyes from the top of her head to the bottom of her feet. Her outfit - classic beige flats, white-washed jeans, and a charcoal tee that dropped low over the right shoulder -suggested that she lived on Main Street somewhere between 19th and 23rd. Her lips were painted Amarone red, her eyes the most delicious toffee brown.

    "Erin, and you?” 

    “My name is Fox, Rugged Fox.”

    “You make me feel like ordering a dirty martini.”

    “You know I would not stop you.”

    “Well Mr. Fox,” she took another sip of gin before passing the cup back to me, “let’s hear it. This Prince sounds like a bit of a douche, but tell me more about Grindr.”

    I reveled at how well she was versed in my dialect. No quesiton this was a down girl.

    “Alright, well first I think it’s paramount to preface you with the fact that it was never my intention to end up on Grindr. The last time I searched for a husband using a hook-up site all I found was a 3:15 appointment at the STI clinic. You see Erin, ever since I was a little boy on the prairies, I have always considered myself to be somewhat of a lady. I dreamed that, one day, I would grow up to meet a man the old fashioned way, with courtship and chivalry... not dick pics and bathroom selfies.”

    “Real talk," said Erin. "So why did you sign up then? You held out for so long.”

    “Meryl Streep!” I exclaimed, using such grandiose hand gestures that I almost smacked the apple juice out from the hands of a six-year-old boy seated across the aisle from me. It was clear the gin had begun to take hold, and so I had to remind myself to lower my voice as well as my arms.

    Leaning in closer to Erin, I whispered with conviction, “I signed up because I had a demitasse of hope that, even if I had to compromise my integrity and sweep my standards underneath the carpet, there was still a chance that I might find the one within two-hundred feet of me.”

    “And did you?”

    “Well,” I leaned back in my seat, “in short, the answer is yes and no. After that first day I logged on, I watched as a myriad of faceless bodies shuffled on my phone like a deck of cards in Solitary. At first, I played the waiting game. "If you upload it, they will come," whispered a strange voice in my ear. However, after eight hours passed without a single message, I took it upon myself to make the first move.

    The object of my affection had a penchant for Bruce Springsteen quotes and a profile picture with a face and a shirt on which I believed to be a promising start. The back of his green lit playing card listed him as thirty-two years old, six feet tall and only a three minute walk away. 

    ‘Hi,’ I typed. ‘If you would like to grab a coffee or a glass of wine sometime please let me know.’

    “Wanna jerk?” he replied.

    Shocked and downright appalled, I took a moment to be offended and then accepted his request."

     to be continued.

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