2 min

Abtastic 2009 – Week 2 … Reader Feedback … and Charlie the Unicorn

Uh oh! My editors at xtra.ca and Xtra! West forwarded me some feedback about my ab challenge…and my friends, it's not positive. So, before dealing with "the unpleasantness", let's all take a moment to bolster our resolve with Charlie the Unicorn and his magical trip to Candy Mountain:

Charlie's voice makes me feel weird…like rope climbing did in gym class. This may mean that I am sexually attracted to unicorns. Especially unicorns from the Long Island area. Quit judging me already.
Now to the matter at hand. Here's an excerpt from the email we received (titled: Shame on YOU!!!)
Sean Horlor's ab article is such a travesty to gay men.  It is a shame.  Here is a guy who is doing an ab challenge to get wash board abs and is very fit to begin with.  And to make it worse he is complaining about his before pictures.  I am insulted by your article.  Anyone with body image problems seeing this will be further horrified because they don't even measure up to someone doing a challenge.  What the hell were you thinking???

First, I'd like to thank this reader for taking the time to write us.

Second, I'd like to make the following clear: outside of this blog, I have a real life (cavorting with unicorns…no no I jest), run my own business, involving respectable and, more often than not, conservative clients who probably have considered, or will consider in the near future, selecting other contractors instead of me due to what I post here…what I post under my own name, I might add. This includes photos of me because I believe that my being gay should equal me being visible, that I shouldn't have to hide what I am, what I look like or what I think. In doing this, I hope I am encouraging queer people of all ages to come out and be themselves.

There are my high-horse politics, dear UYA reader. I'm sure you just threw up a little in your mouth, but hear me out. There will be amateur photos at the end of all this.

Now onto the abs: I know many men and women who exercise every day yet can't achieve a defined, flat stomach. I have never had one, despite working out in gyms for over ten years now — Ten Years — TEN YEARS of work and I've never had a six pack. Are washboard stomachs the result of a genetic jackpot? Or are they the result of hard work, a healthy diet and a Grade A exercise plan?

I am not using a personal trainer. I am not using a dietician. I am not using steroids. I am using a $25 book, a $20 per month gym membership and my own will power.

Since I got some unsolicited advice today, I'm going to give some back: please don't send me and the fine, hardworking editors at Xtra emails intended to make us feel ashamed of ourselves. We've all had enough shame in our lives already and I, for one, am done with feeling that way.

Here are this weeks photos, I had no one to help take them this week so they are self-shots…on a postive note, I am feeling really good, way more energy than I've had in years (which is what the book said would happen). I will have a supplimentary story for you next Friday about why I am doing this online journal, so check back for some lighter fare then. Enjoy your weekend!

And lastly here's what all this hoopla makes me feel like: