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Archive for January, 2008

A new, highly drug-resistant strain of the “flesh-eating” MRSA bacteria is being spread among gay men in San Francisco and Boston, researchers reported on Monday.

In a study published online by the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, the bacteria seemed to be spread most easily through anal intercourse but also through casual skin-to-skin contact and touching contaminated surfaces.

The authors warned that unless microbiology laboratories were able to identify the strain and doctors prescribed the proper antibiotic therapy, the infection could soon spread among other groups and become a wider threat.

The new strain seems to have “spread rapidly” in gay populations in San Francisco and Boston, the researchers wrote, and “has the potential for rapid, nationwide dissemination” among gay men.

The study was based on a review of medical records from outpatient clinics in San Francisco and Boston and nine medical centers in San Francisco.

The Castro district in San Francisco has the highest number of gay residents in the country, according to the University of California, San Francisco. One in 588 residents is infected with the new multidrug-resistant MRSA strain, the study found. That compares with 1 in 3,800 people in San Francisco, according to statistical analyses based on ZIP codes.

A separate part of the study found that gay men in San Francisco were about 13 times more likely to be infected than other people in the city.

The San Francisco researchers suggested that scrubbing with soap and water might be the most effective way to stop skin-to-skin transmission, particularly after sexual activities.

MRSA, for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, was once spread chiefly in hospitals. But in recent years, a number of healthy people have acquired it outside hospitals.

Nearly 19,000 people died in the United States from MRSA infections in 2005, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported.

The infection can cause unusually severe problems, including abscesses and skin ulcers. The bacteria can invade through the skin to produce necrotizing fasciitis, giving them the popular name of flesh-eating bacteria. They can also cause pneumonia, damage the heart and produce widespread infection through the blood.

Among gay men in the study, MRSA was spread by skin contact, causing abscesses and infection in the buttocks and genital area.

The new strain is closely related to earlier ones. Both are known as MRSA USA300.

The strain is much more difficult to treat because it is resistant not just to methicillin, but also many more of the antibiotics used to treat the earlier strains, said Dr. Henry F. Chambers, an author of the new study.

The new strain contains a plasmid called pUSA03.

“This particular clone is resistant to at least three other drugs, clindamycin, tetracycline and mupirocin,” Dr. Chambers said in a telephone interview.

Of the alternatives recommended by the C.D.C. and the Infectious Diseases Society of America, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim), clindamycin and a tetracycline, “this strain is resistant to two of those three,” he added. “In addition, the new strain is resistant to mupirocin, which has been advocated for eradicating the strain from carriers.”

source: nytimes.com

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I’m not giving up my MacBook Pro, but I thought this new MacBook was pretty sweet.

From apple.com:

It measures an unprecedented 0.16 inches at its thinnest point while its maximum height of 0.76 inches is less than the thinnest point on competing notebooks. In addition to a stunning 13.3-inch LED-backlit widescreen display, MacBook Air offers a full-size and backlit keyboard, a built-in iSight video camera for video conferencing, and a spacious trackpad with multi-touch gesture support, letting users pinch, rotate and swipe. The new notebook is powered by a 1.6 GHz or 1.8 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor with 4MB L2 cache, and it includes as standard features 2GB of memory, an 80GB 1.8-inch hard drive, and the latest 802.11n Wi-Fi technology and Bluetooth 2.1. Starting at just $1,799, MacBook Air begins shipping in two weeks.

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Gay Bar

I went to my first gay bar this weekend.

After having a decent dinner Friday night, myself, Bell Guy and two of his friends went to a nice, low-key gay bar, JR’s. Although I am not a bar or club person, I liked it. There was a wide mix of guys there, from hot young guys to older guys. I actually had a lot of fun people watching. Bell Guy and his friends kept asking me what I thought about the place. Since I really didn’t have any expectations, it was difficult to answer their question. JR’s was pretty chill and I’d go back. (I think I probably will be going back, too, because it is Bell Guy’s favorite bar.)

After that bar, we went to another bar/club, Cobalt. Unfortunately, the old bear bar has closed so all of the bears had migrated over to Cobalt. (No offense to any of you readers that are bears lol.) I was expecting a pretty young crowd and it was not at all. We only stayed a few minutes before heading home.

On Saturday, we drove past the SUV below. I insisted that Bell Guy turn around so I could take a picture for Justin. I know how much he loves stuffed animals on or in cars.

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A-Rod

 No, not the Yankee. The hot tennis player, Andy Roddick. I think he has the greatest ass.

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Yum-o.

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Still trying to catch up on Bell Guy posts…this is a condensed version of a great night.

A few Fridays ago, Bell Guy and I made plans to go downtown for dinner and then look at the National and Capitol Christmas trees. I was also to stay at his place for the first time that night. Traffic was so terrible I arrived an hour later than planned.

For some reason, although he is rather sophisticated, Bell Guy did not have enough sheet sets for his bed. As in, he only had one set. I found this unacceptable, so I bought him another set. He was surprised at the funny gift and liked them.

We headed to a steakhouse downtown and the food was yummy.  After dinner, we walked towards the national tree and he wanted to hold my arm. I didn’t like doing that in public and I acted like a jerk and pushed him away. That was the first big (and only) mistake I’ve made with him so far. I could have handled it better and I really hurt him by acting the way I did. I have told myself a hundred times that I cannot mess this up and disappoint him. We continued walking and he was clearly aggravated and I tried to apologize. I said that I never see guys holding one another in public. Ten minutes later, when we arrived at the tree, there were two guys holding hands (Aren’t I brilliant?). We talked about it and I told him that I would try to do better, but I also said that I have only been out for four months and he was my first real boyfriend so, overall, I’m doing pretty well and this process is made of steps, not all accomplished at once.

Things between us ended up fine and we walked to the Capitol tree. I had never seen that tree and it was so much better than the national tree. And there were only a few people there, compared to the hordes at the national tree.

Once back at Bell Guy’s place we went to bed and had sex for the first time. So, that was the first time I had sex with him or any guy for that matter. (I told myself that I wouldn’t get into details about that on here so I won’t. It was great though.)

Afterwards, right before we fell asleep, I told him I loved him. He popped his head up, looked over, and said “what.” I repeated it, he said he loved me and started kissing me like crazy.

Now, earlier that week, I had told a couple of you that I was considering telling him that I loved him. Fact is, we had only been going out a couple of weeks and the consensus was I should keep my mouth shut. However, I was positive how I felt and I really thought the feeling was mutual. I decided that I was not going to hold back my feelings. Life is too short for that and here we are, two weeks or so later, and I am so glad I told him how I felt. If anything bad were to ever happen to me, he will know forever how I feel.

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Today is the one month anniversary for me and Bell Guy. Yay!

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This pic was taken New Year’s Eve in Central Park. I’m on the left, he’s on the right.

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A Kiss

Back to catching up on Bell Guy…

A couple weeks ago I had to attend an afternoon office Christmas party downtown. I decided that I would park at Bell Guy’s apartment and take the subway down.

Bell Guy worked from home that day so after visiting with him for a few minutes, we walked to the subway. He kissed me goodbye, which was kind of a milestone for me. It was my first very public gay kiss. Public displays of affection are still a challenge for me, which I will blog about in future posts. Nobody heckled or threw anything at us so I survived.

After the uneventful party, when I got back to Bell Guy’s place, he cooked a nice baked chicken dinner with green beans and potatoes for us. He is a good cook and specifically cooked those foods because he knows I like them. He really is a thoughtful guy.

Later that night, I went further sexually with him (he gives magnificent blow jobs) but had to leave after to go home. I hate leaving him. I wish I could spend all of my free time with him.

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