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Monday, June 11, 2007

East Asia's Gay and Lesbian Life Revealed in Three New Travel Books Covering Japan, South Korea and Taiwan

The world's first guidebooks to gay and lesbian life in East Asia have just been updated and expanded to include contemporary attractions and entertainment for homosexuals in 46 cities including Tokyo, Seoul, and Taipei.

While Japan has had gay guidebooks circulating since the 18th century (and even a modern guidebook to gay life designed for Japanese heterosexuals), it is only recently that the English-speaking international traveler has gained access to the Japan's vibrant subculture.

he Utopia Guide to Japan (2nd Edition) blasts away popular misconceptions that Japan is prohibitively expensive and is unfriendly to foreigners. On the contrary, after suffering from more than a decade of economic flatlining, Japan is cheaper to visit than most major American cities. The current warm welcome for foreigners (and their loose change) is evidenced by English signage posted almost everywhere you go, including signs in Japanese saunas cautioning against "hair dyeing and gum chewing."

Where exactly is the shrine to the 2-ton wooden phallus? Do Love Motels allow same sex couples? Which lesbian bars welcome foreign women? The fascinating answers are to be found in the 128 page Utopia Guide to Japan, including photographs and maps.

South Korean men, with their natural machismo and easy-going metrosexuality, have recently become sex symbols around the region.

Their special brand of brotherly "skinship" appeals to both sexes.

Korea's younger generation has cast off the conservative mentality of their parent's generation.

There have never been laws proscribing homosexuality and any attempts to enact official discrimination have been overturned through the efforts of vocal gay and human rights activists.

"Korea is not a closed society as the world often imagines," says Ted Park, a passionate entrepreneur who opened Seoul's first publicly promoted gay bar.

"Koreans are very open minded and friendly, yet quite conservative sexually, whether straight or gay. Legally we are well protected.

Children are taught about homosexuality in elementary school and we have laws against discrimination based on sexuality."

How to find the Erotic Art Museum in Seoul? Just what goes on at a Jjimjilbang? Which gay saunas do "don't ask don't tell" G.I.s occasion? Find out in the new edition of the Utopia Guide to South Korea.

Taiwan may have Asia's most liberal society in spite of its Confucian underpinnings. It is also one of the most progressive Asian nations as far as LGBT rights are concerned. Not only does the government of Taipei print up its own free guide to the gay community, but children are taught about homosexuality and tolerance for sexual minorities in school.

Last year, Taipei's mayor helped to fly a gay rainbow flag over City Hall during the annual 2006 Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender festival.

The Utopia Guide to Taiwan celebrates the social advances being made and collects together all the varieties of Taiwan's gay and lesbian life in one handy directory to a dozen cities.

All of Utopia's guidebooks compile contact details for organizations and businesses that are popular with both local and visiting homosexuals, including accommodation, bars, discos, spas, and restaurants.

A special section of each book highlights groups, clubs, and spaces that are especially welcoming for women.

Best of all, each book contains dozens of tips and warnings from locals and travelers who, in their own words, provide first hand insights for both frequent visitors and armchair explorers.

The three books are available for sale now in print and E-book form at and in bookstores internationally and from popular online book resellers.

A pioneer on the Internet, Utopia has been Asia's most respected resource for gays and lesbians since 1994. Utopia's website is located at and more information about Utopia may be found at

"These fun pages dish out the spice on even the most buttoned-up spots in Asia." -- TIME Magazine TIME Traveler

"A really good place to start looking for information... excellent coverage of gay and lesbian events and activities across Asia." -- Lonely Planet

For more information please contact:

Book Information:

Utopia Guide to Japan (2nd Edition)

Retail prices: US$18.50 6" X 9" softcover, $8. E-book

128 pages

ISBN 978-1-4303-1447-9

2 maps and 32 photographs

Select addresses in Japanese language

link to cover image:

Utopia Guide to South Korea (2nd Edition) Retail prices: US$17.95 6" X 9" softcover, $8. E-book

92 pages

ISBN 978-1-4303-1431-8

map and 16 photographs

Select addresses in Korean language

link to cover image:

Utopia Guide to Taiwan (2nd Edition)

Retail prices: US$17.95 6" X 9" softcover, $8. E-book

88 pages

ISBN 978-1-4303-1262-8

map and 21 photographs

Select addresses in Chinese language

link to cover image:

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Gay Cock Sucking Story

Tim never regretted his life; he looked back on his youth with fondness but never once wished to go back. Sure, those were the glory days, the days of the bathhouses, multiple tricks, and hard-ons that lasted all night. But life was still good for Tim.

He’d been successful in business, he was retired now, at age 52 and living on the beaches of Monterrey. He was over his tramping self and enjoying the fruits of his youth. Every afternoon, a group of 6 or 7 surfers would stop by for an hour or two of good waves. Most people along the beach chased the young men off, but Tim really didn’t mind them using his beach. Afterall, he thought, we’re all young once and far be it for him to ruin their fun. They were harmless, they didn’t dirty up his beach, and, well, let’s face it, they had fabulous bodies! Tim only occasionally went outside when the young men were out there, but mainly it was to enjoy the sun or to pick up trash floating in from the ocean.

On other days, he’d bring a sand chair out and sit in the shallow surf to watch the adept surfers do their thing. Sure, Tim fantasized about the guys, but that was always as far as it went. He’d never entertained the thought of approaching the presumably straight boys, and really, even if they were gay, they were just too young for Tim. They were in their late teens or early twenties, and Tim could have been any one of their fathers. Nonetheless, Tim would sit in the surf, close his eyes and remember his own youth. The days when old men looked at his body and fantasized having a piece of his ass.

Tim wore loose gym shorts; he liked the way the surf made his dick dance in the current. From one side, to the other and back again. It usually took about 15 minutes for him to get hard unless the water was painfully chilly. Today, the temperature was just right, so Tim sat back, watched the sun glisten off the young men’s bodies and smiled to himself. Eventually, Tim fell asleep in the warmth of the sun, dick still dangling out of his shorts.

Tim started to dream, he dreamt that someone was sucking his cock. A young muscular man whose face Tim could not see was bobbing his head over Tim’s bulging dick. Tim shifted in his chair, slumping down a little, letting his legs flop to the sides. As all dreams go, this young man sucked dick like no man before him, Tim could even feel his temperature rise. Now half-asleep in somewhat of an orgasmic haze, Tim’s hips gently moved with the motion of the young man’s blowjob action. Tim’s load started to surge and in his dream he started to blow jism into the young man’s mouth.

The man removed his mouth and jerked Tim’s spurting dick better than Tim ever did for himself! Every ounce of energy Tim had shot out of Tim’s pulsating cock and his head rolled gently to the side. Smiling, Tim lazily opened his eyes and was surprised to find his load floating in front of him. Sitting up now, Tim watched as a young man, surfboard under one arm slowly trotted away. No way, Tim thought. I’m just still asleep. Then the youth turned slightly and hollered over his shoulder, "Thanks for letting us use the beach!"

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Tokyo Naked

Describing itself as a blog "intended for adults who appreciate Japanese male beauty," Naked Tokyo delivers on its promise and much more.

The generous posts range in subject matter for bits of sexy Japanese pop cultural ephemera to screen captures of hot Asian twinks in action (refreshingly, the naughty bits aren't always blurred like they are in most Japanese porn we come across) to plenty of bondage and jockstrap-themed posts that would make even all-American fetish aficionados like Rick Castro beam with pride. And since the editor seems to have a special fondness for fundoshi, the traditional Japanese male loincloth, you might even discover a new fetish you never knew you had. Isn't cross-cultural exploration fun?

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Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Queer Lesbian Gay Style

Even if you're the type who knows his way around hammers and wrenches, you may not know the difference between a rotary hair trimmer and a straight-edged clipper. If you do, congrats on being a well-rounded fellow. If not, here's the lowdown on the implements you need to become a grooming gearhead.

Clip (and don't save)
Fingernail clippers are smaller than toenail clippers. Clip fingernails with two cuts per nail, aiming for an oval shape. Clip toenails with one cut, straight across, leaving them long enough to avoid ingrown nails. Scrub under your nails with a brush before clipping, and cut while they're still wet -- both tactics give a cleaner edge. If you clip correctly, you can minimize or avoid the need for much smoothing with a file. A good set of clippers will include an under-the-nail cleaning edge and a usable file -- it'll also be chrome-plated to reduce rust.

Brushing up
Especially necessary is the right brush. Those with thick, coarse or longer hair should go for a natural-bristle brush. Boar-bristle brushes (like Mason Pearson) are costly, but they gently maneuver through your tresses, making hair manageable, shiny and fuller-looking, so you'll save on product in the long run. A shortcut for short cuts is a hard-bristled, plastic-tipped brush -- not only will your hair fall exactly where you want it to, but those stimulating tips also help your scalp's circulation, encouraging shine and vigor.

"Pull gently and smoothly, making sure not to yank."
Tweezers can be painful, but if you suffer the heartbreak of unibrow or ear hair, a little pain is preferable to extreme embarrassment or a lifetime of dating the myopic. Spend a few dollars more on your tweezers -- this is one of the few cases where you're actually getting what you pay for. Good tweezers will be precision-edged (even hand-filed) and made of stainless steel to stay sharp longer. A slant-edged pair is good for brow maintenance, while pointy edges work for ingrown hairs and orifices.

One good bet is Tweezerman, which comes with a lifelong promise to sharpen any instrument they've ever sold (just mail it to their factory). While you're checking it out on their site,, also look up its "Five Steps to Accurate Tweezing," including the no-yanking directive above.

Fine pruning
Larger hair-removal problems require even more torturous-looking implements. Scissors usually come with safety blades -- still, they're meant to trim only visible (i.e., protruding) ear and nose hair. Electric trimmers for orifice hair go a little further, but they can seriously hurt if blades are dull. By no means should you ever purchase anything with plastic blades. Instead, go for stainless steel (or sharper) rotary blades, which cut shorter hair without nicking. Try one like the Turbo-Groomer 5.0 from ShaperImage -- a magnificent machine with titanium rotary blades that twirl at 6,000 rpm, which allegedly trims unsightly hair down to 1/16th of an inch. Wonder if it does lawns.

Stubble trouble
The closest shave, especially for tougher beards, comes from a twin-blade razor. If you get ingrown hairs or razor burn, go for a single blade instead -- it's less irritating. Blades with a platinum chrome finish stay sharp longer. Pivoting heads let the blade follow your face, shaving more closely and helping you stay nick-free. Safety wires over the blades and lubricating strips also minimize cuts and nicks. So does a sharp blade, so change it as soon as you feel it dragging on your skin.

If you're just not a morning person, use an electric shaver. Your beard will grow back more quickly, but hey, it's gone in a flash the next day. Shavers reduce the risk of skin trauma (unless you use them repeatedly on the same spot, or if you don't keep them clean, in which case they're more irritating). Tougher beards need double or triple heads; temperamental skin needs fewer blades (single or double). Some shavers are "wet," requiring preshave lotion or gel; others are "dry" and others are both. Your best bet is to buy a wet/dry shaver, then always use a gel or lotion (it gives a closer shave and is better for your skin), unless you're in a pinch. Rechargeable shavers are a good investment, too. Change your heads as soon as you feel them dragging -- every year or so.

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Invigorating urban getaways: New York, Miami, L.A.

Take a cue from your younger days and use summer's start for recharging your batteries. You might not be in school any longer, but you still deserve a break from the rat race. Why not tap into the energy of a great American city like New York, Miami or Los Angeles and let its urban rhythms provide the inspiration to carry you through the long, hot summer?

Here's a little power boost to get your creative juices flowing -- a mini primer of city highlights to help you plan your great summer escape:


Just to be in Manhattan is to feel overwhelmingly, astonishingly alive. It's hard not to be re-energized with the island's infectious beat pulsating around you day and night.

Wake up refreshed
Lap of luxury: For one hundred years plus, the St. Regis (2 E. 55th St., at Fifth Ave.; 212-753-4500 or 800-759-7550;; $595+) has catered to a well-heeled, aristocratic clientele. The classic, ornate décor oozes Old World elegance and refinement.

Sleep in style: With its fast up-and-coming NoHo location, its unobstructed floor to ceiling views from all sides, and a lot of buzz, The Bowery (335 Bowery, at 3rd St.; 212-505-9100;; $325+) is a hot contender for hipster hangout of the year.

A restful value: Visit The Pod (230 E. 51st St., btwn Second & Third Aves.; 800-742-5945;; singles $89+, doubles $99+), where accommodations are simple but stylish and savvy. Rooms feature a hip bounty of things you'd never expect to find in this price class: LCD TVs, iPod docking stations, free WiFi access, and waterfall showerheads.

Eat well
Sleekly serving up sushi, sashimi, soups, salads and saketinis, Bamboo 52 (344 W. 52nd St.; 212-315-2777; is a new Hell's Kitchen gay fave, with a great bamboo garden in back. Napa Valley super-chef Thomas Keller (The French Laundry) brings his elegant California flair to Per Se (10 Columbus Circle, at 60th St.; 212-823-9335;; fixed price menus $250), an exquisite and intimate nine-course culinary extravaganza blending New American and French cuisines, with fabulous views of Central Park. District (130 W. 46th St., btwn Sixth & Seventh Aves.; 212-485-2999,; $16-24, fixed price menu $45) is a great pre-theater choice. The interior subtly replicates a stage, and the three-course pre-theater menu includes items like blue cheese pear beignet, charred lamb sirloin, and bananas flambé -- and they'll get it done in time so you don't miss your show.

Energizing evenings
Spend the day taking in the city's iconic buildings (don't miss the views from the top of Rockefeller Center, and then spend the night exploring its smorgasbord of gay bars to suit every taste. Small East Village coolspot Eastern Bloc (505 E. 6th St., btwn Aves. A & B; 212-777-2555; gets crammed on weekends and has some of the city's cutest go-go boys. Still a Hell's Kitchen staple, Therapy (348 W 52nd St., btwn Eighth & Ninth Aves.; 212-397-1700; has two sleekly styled levels and a delish bar menu. Now that the Roxy's no more, promoter John Blair holds court for the circuit crowd at Saturdays @ Avalon (47 W 20th St., at Sixth Ave.; 212-807-7780;

Recharge the next day
Run by top lesbian chef Gabrielle Hamilton, Prune (54 E. 1st St., btwn First and Second Aves.; 212-677-6221;; brunch $11-19) is upscale East Village bohemia at its finest: fantastic food, understated art-hipster clientele, and enough Bloody Mary variations to turn the already magical weekend brunch into a serious party. Then cruise some Greek gods?by visiting the largest art collection in the Western hemisphere. The Metropolitan Museum of Art (1000 Fifth Ave., at 82nd St.; 212-535-7710;; $20; closed Mondays) just opened its stunning Greek and Roman galleries.

Soak up the sights and sounds of this international oceanside playground, a city infused with every possible Latin flavor imaginable. You'll emerge rejuvenated from a dip into its sun-drenched splendor.

Wake up refreshed
Lap of luxury: There are plenty of chic boutique stops in South Beach, but The Setai (2001 Collins Ave; 305-520-6000;; rates: if you have to ask?) consistently drops the jaws of even the most jaded queens. A seductive Asian palate brings Zen-calm splendor to a 1930s deco landmark.

Sleep in style:
the hotel (801 Collins Ave.; 305-531-2222 or 877-THE-HOTEL;; $150+) delivers on its stylish promise as the collaboration between famous gay fashionista Todd Oldham and well-known historical preservationist Tony Goldman. The rooftop pool and Spire Bar offer an exquisite view of the beach, and the whimsical room décor lends a sense of serenity.

A restful value:
The Greenview Hotel (1671 Washington Ave; 305/531-6588;; $110+) offers a super-convenient Lincoln Road location, refurbished rooms that are IKEA-cute in basic blonde wood and white, and friendly staff. Complimentary breakfast is provided.

Eat well
Slip into casually sophisticated Santo (430 Lincoln Road; 305-532-2882;; $23-30) for exquisite Asian and Latin-influenced dishes and stay late to watch its metamorphosis into a hip nightclub. Reservations are recommended to join the local movers and shakers who flock to Joe Allen (1787 Purdy Ave; 305-531-7007;; $10-$28) on the west side of South Beach for consistently great pasta and seafood. Keep an eye on the muscle-bound parade at 12th Street Beach from a sidewalk table at the gay Palace Food Bar (1200 Ocean Drive; 305-531-7234), a longtime beachfront hangout. Get a taste of the beach's best Cuban cuisine on the cheap at Puerto Sagua (700 Collins; 305-673-1115; $5-$12).

Energizing evenings
Daytime is all about the surf and sand, but when night falls, Miami kicks it up a notch. Brace yourself for festivities that start late and end early (in the morning). In a scene that's very fickle, a pair of gay bars have kept the crowds coming for the long haul: Twist (1057 Washington Ave; 305/53-TWIST; is a mainstay during the week, with an expanded cruise bar, a small dance floor, and open-air porch upstairs; Score's (727 Lincoln Rd; 305/535-1111) outside tables are perfect for Lincoln Road people-watching. For the latest gay happenings around Miami Beach, visit

Recharge the next day
Start your day at the Front Porch (1418 Ocean Drive; 305-531-8300; $6-$11), attracting a very gay crowd for solid breakfast fare on the porch and sidewalk in front of the Penguin hotel. Spend an afternoon browsing the shops of Lincoln Road, stopping by Art Center South Florida (800 Lincoln Rd; 305-674-8278; along the way, an artists' colony with working studio spaces and exhibitions open to the public.

Take a twirl through the scene in celebrity-studded Los Angeles, a heady mix of glamour and style sure to get the pulse racing. Invigoration should be guaranteed, because the City of Angels would never have to give money back.

Wake up refreshed
Lap of luxury: The Sunset Tower Hotel (8358 Sunset Blvd; 323-654-7100 or 800-225-2637;; $260+) is West Hollywood's splashiest property, with its Art Deco design, luxurious rooms, and private-club atmosphere. Guests enjoy stunning views, Kiehl's bath products, and the services of a resident butler.

Sleep in style: Located in the heart of gay WeHo, Chamberlain West Hollywood (1000 Westmount Dr; 800-201-9652 or 310-657-7400;; $159+) offers spacious suites, top-notch service, secure parking, and a rooftop-lounge pool area with 360-degree views. A great choice if you want to be able to walk (or take a short cab) to the nearby gay-popular venues.

A restful value: The San Vicente Inn and Resort (845 N. San Vicente Blvd; 310-854-6915 or 800-577-6915;; $79+) is West Hollywood's only gay men's guesthouse, offering tasteful, comfortable accommodations one block from the heart of the action on Santa Monica Boulevard.

Eat well
Mark's (861 N. La Cienega at Santa Monica boulevards, WeHo; 310-652-5252;; $12-30) is West Hollywood's long-standing gay restaurant of choice, and the atmosphere and eye candy are exceptional. Request a booth up front or a table on the patio for the best people-watching. Cool blue accents and a fire-lit nighttime garden make O-Bar Restaurant (8279 Santa Monica Blvd; 323-822-3300;; $12-$29) a glistening dining experience; upscale twists on home-style faves (lobster mac & cheese), fresh fish, and decadent desserts are menu staples. Toi on Sunset (7505 1/2 Sunset Blvd; 323-874-8062;; $7-$14) promises "rockin' Thai food" and delivers: the excellent, inexpensive dishes are served up against a backdrop of music memorabilia.

Energizing evenings
After giving your wallet a workout in the shops of Wilshire and Rodeo and strolling down Hollywood's starry Walk of Fame, head for an oversize martini or mojito at The Abbey (692 N. Robertson Blvd; 310-289-8410; The West Hollywood bar, restaurant, coffeehouse hybrid is a gay weekend hotspot in any category. Sashay over to East/West 8851 Santa Monica Blvd; 310-360-6186 or 877-EWLounge; for a loungey night out, adding a touch of class to gay evening cocktails in WeHo. There's always trouble to found at veteran gay club Rage (8911 Santa Monica Blvd; 310-652-7055;, where drink specials are plentiful throughout the week.

Recharge the next day
The Griddle Café; (7916 Sunset Blvd at Fairfax Avenue; 323-874-0377;; $5-$12), located on Sunset about two miles from West Hollywood near Crunch Gym, is one of the best breakfast/brunch/lunch spots in town. Try Mom's French toast and enjoy the organic maple syrup -- it's on every table at no extra charge. The J. Paul Getty Museum's Getty Center (1200 Getty Center Drive, Brentwood; 310-440-7300; spectacularly overlooks the city and the Pacific Ocean, making for a lovely, art-filled recovery in one of L.A. most iconic cultural spots.

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Trendy Gay Hairstyles

There was a time when "gay hair" was the lowest watermark of style. That Flock of Seagulls flounce and the peroxided Jimmy Somerville flattop were au courant for the '80s underground -- but for the rest of us, they were an embarrassing walk down the boulevard of broken haircuts. But guess what, boys?

In a retro-revivalist society where nostalgia means obsessing over the decades just passed, it's all coming back. Check out right now's trendy gay haircuts, with some timeless staples thrown in for good measure!

1. The Caesar
While many boys think this Roman style is a surefire winner, the short-short fringe can leave one looking like an extra from "Mars Attacks." To pull this off, you need a perfectly proportioned forehead and that Greco-Roman facial structure many long for. Plus, your head can't be shaped like a sideways egg. Proceed with caution.

2. The "I'm gay and here to stay" cut
This style encompasses a wide range of shags -- anything goes, as long as you're out and visible. From cyber-inspired silver spikes to the old faithful bleached-blond tips, these hairstyles can usually be found on boys in the 18-to-22-year-old bracket. Fashion accoutrements include studded dog collars, moon boots and Hello Kitty backpacks. If you're any older than the aforementioned age range, you need to take a long, hard look at your hair, preferably with scissors in hand.

3. The gay shag
What differentiates this look from the straight shag is that the straight boys woke up and left the house immediately. The gay ones spent 20 minutes in front of the bathroom mirror. Nevertheless, a shag is a shag, though if you have to go through half a tub of Bumble and bumble to achieve the right results, so be it. Very popular among the Britpop crowd, this style tends to be spotted in mixed circles and often goes with retro wrestling sneakers and drinking in dive bars. For a truly faithful tribute to the original, hearken back to a '70s handlebar mustache.

4. The fauxhawk
Aren't these words enough? While the straights appropriated the mullet from the Midwesterners, gay boys grabbed a pared-back Mohawk. The most popular gay haircut in 10 years can be sighted in every corner of the queer globe.

5. The buzz cut
Sported by bears, leathermen and regular gay boys alike, this generic-yet-sexy look is the mainstay queer hairstyle. Perfect for boys with olive skin, strong jaws and dark, brooding eyes, there's nothing like those bristles rubbing right where it tickles!

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