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stephen james gay model

This is for all the gay misfits. The queers, the fags, the queens, the tattooed nerds, the freaks and geeks, the quiet types. This is for all of the homosexuals who don’t fit into mainstream gay culture (because what even is mainstream gay culture?). This is for the guys that are too modest to take shirtless selfies, too alternate to attend circuit parties or too private to share the details of their sex lives.  This is for the gaymers, the ravers, the early night-into-bed tamers. Boys who like boys but don’t work out their bubble butts. The pooftas and fairies who don’t brunch over Bloody Marys or want to take drugs and kiki until Tuesday.

This is for all the gay misfits. You’re alright too.

You feel that you’re the only one who doesn’t fit into the gay stereotype? Well rest assured that you are not. There are others out there that feel the same, who aren’t comfortable in large social…

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Posted by on October 16, 2015 in Uncategorized


FOMO doesn’t live here


I’m still thinking about the conversation I had yesterday with my buddy Bonginkosi Siphesihle Mthembu about growing up, success, aspirations and life in general. Its true, one decides how he wants to live his life, what he wants to achieve and what are his priorities.

My success and the next person’s will never be the same, we all want different things. So don’t define your success based on what society says. If you want to sit at home and read, take the taxi or train to work, have a job that doesn’t pay much but you are passionate about because it fulfils your every desire. Hey that’s your success.

Not everyone wants to be all glam in a mansion driving the latest model. To some people success is the simple things we tend to overlook. A lot of people have found themselves battling mental problems and financial ruin as a result of pursuing what society defines as success. As if this was lesson enough; more and more people find themselves battling FOMO because if it is not expensive, glamorous and super cool it is not a measure of success and your life sucks.

I find it quite ironic in a world where almost everyone is on about how unique they are, that its common for people to actually define success as having all the same same things and achievements that the next person has. Why ca’t success be defined by the individual, and in defining your own success why can’t you do that without being judged or being looked down upon because what you define as success is not what is the ” norm”?

So what is success to me? Give me love, a pile of books, music, a roof over my head, food in my stomach, clothes on my back, a healthy body and having made a difference in at least one person’s life. That’s all I want in life. It may come across as unambitious, but I am successful according to my own standards because I have all these things.

FOMO doesn’t live here

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Posted by on January 11, 2015 in Uncategorized


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Got a bag, will travel


So how is it like being a trainer/facilitator who is almost always on the road. 

1. Having the ability to travel extensively and still maintain a monogamous and serious relationship.

2. Being able to speak several languages so much that I always find myself thinking in a hybrid of every language, dialect or slang I have been exposed to in my travels other than my mother toungue.

3. Freaking out  everytime I wake up in a new room and not having any memory where the hell I am.

4. Realizing I have mastered packing an overnight bag with enough clothes for a week in 15 minutes and still have room for non-essential items.

5. Faking a smile and not freeking out  everytime airport staff and cabin crew greet me like an old friend and ask where am I off to this time because I don’t remember seeing then ever before.

6. Having the convenience of being asked if I would like the same room you had at the hotel/guest house front office.

7. Catching up with people back home via social networks because I talk so much during the day my voice shuts down at night.   

8. Not knowing what day it is because eventually everything becomes a blurr and yet I can do my powerpoint presentations with the laptop off.

9. Social life is a rumour unless you count watching stuff on my laptop because I don’t really know whats on tv lately.

10. Seeing the world and yet not seeing anything, I would kill for a day of doing “touristy” stuff.

11. Missing milestones like my boy’s first word and steps.

12.  Always posting some random blog like this one because I can’t sleeo yet I am tired beyond compare.

13. Having two of everything because  there is no way I am going to get time for shopping until I go on leave. So one item for home and the other for the road.

14. Loving my job so much that I can complain about it with a smile on my face.

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Posted by on November 22, 2014 in Uncategorized


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My 20 truths


“It takes strength and courage to admit the truth”-Rick Riodan

1. I am a quirky person and have come to accept that as a fact. Why change what is my true self, many will not understand my “strange” ways but that will not make me change who I am.

2. I have come to realise that I will never be the cutest, funniest, sexiest, smartest, richest or even coolest person even if I sold my soul (which is something I am not even considering doing), but I have special qualities that are unique only to me.

3. I am growing old and that scares me sometimes; more especially the fact that I am way behind what my peers have accomplished. Its not a race and even if it was; the turtle won the race remember.

4. The challenges in my life will never stop me from dreaming and finding ways to make those dreams come true.

5. I am a better person today because I found someone who loves me in the same way that I love him. Love is a lifesaver. I found my strength in this twin soul of mine. He centers and grounds me. Honestly I am calmer since I met him and people have said they see the difference.

6. I believe every soul was placed on earth for a purpose. Mine might be a little fuzzy and unclear but I am doing my best to make sense and  fulfil it.

7. I have touched and made a difference in at least one life.

8. Chocolate, books and music has saved me from a lot of misery. Two friends who never let me down.

9. I am forever grateful for God’s blessings in my life. Sometimes we overlook the good and dwell on all the negatives,  forgetting that there is always a balance. No matter how small the blessings seem, they are actually worth a lot more than all the pain.

10.   I am proud of who I am. I was raised by a strong woman who taught me that giving is much better than receiving and has led by example. Yes I am my mama’s son and nothing will ever change that.

11. I am not the strongest person in the world, yes contrary to popular belief I sometimes need a shoulder to cry on and unfortunately those are few and far between.

12. My faith in God will never wane.

13. I live life one day at a time, there is no rush and I do my best to enjoy each moment (reffer to #3)

14. I still believe in the goodness of humanity. Not all is lost.

15. The suffering I have seen in my travels have made me learn to appreciate the little that I have.

16. Living with a chronic condition has taught me how to appreciate every breath that I take.

17. My mistakes and wrong choices serve as lessons for the journey ahead.

18. There is nothing that can replace the beauty of a child’s smile. I live my kids with my whole heart and sometimes wish I had their innocence.

19. To me beauty is not limited to aesthetics.  Beauty can ooze from within and is more attractive than what is on the surface.

20. I don’t know where this road leads, but yet I soldier on building bridges and paving ways as I go.

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Posted by on October 3, 2014 in Uncategorized


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My 10 at 38 (so far)


28 January 2014, I turned 38 years old. Okay 38 is not really a significant age, but what the heck; my 10 things I know at 38 are:

1. At some point of your life you will have grays. I’ve had grays since I was young but they have increased so much that my barber coerced me into colouring them.

2. There are some things in life that will make you feel “ancient”. For me, that is bars and clubs. Like seriously who am I kidding, I’m at the verge of 40, what the hell am I doing in a room full of kids and like seriously I can’t even think because of this loud music. As if I’ve never done that before.

3. Money, money, money. At this age how much I am worth is more important than how much I can spend, retirement is looming and chances of getting another job get slimmer by the day, saving is the order of the day.

4. Who cares what am I wearing. Quality, comfort and durability comes first now instead of whats in and whats hot. I’m over the point of trying to fit in.

5. I do want to have fun, but at this age it always turns into long lunches with friends talking about life and stuff. We are over dancing all night long and getting sloshed, we are grown ups now. Not bad at all (refer to 2)

6. I know more about life than I ever thought possible. That’s one of the things that come with age.

7. Laughing at all the “stupid” things I’ve done in my youth. Well, those are my lessons and without them I wouldn’t be any wiser.

8. Appreciating my body (flaws and all), and being thankful that it still carries me well without any troubles.

9. No matter how old you grow, mother still knows best and she will always look at you like her baby. I will never be too old to be chastised by mommy dearest no matter how hard I try to tell her I’m not a child anymore. (I know I’m not the only one experiencing this).

10. Turning a year older should be looked at as an accomplishment, the mere fact that I am still here is a reason to be celebrated. A lot of people would have liked to reach this age, but they couldn’t.

I am thankful that I am still here and the learning hasn’t stopped and the journey still continues. Without my friends and family to give me support, advice, laugh with and at me and sometimes use tough love and harsh words to get me back on track; I guess my life would suck. A toast to 38 years of life and anticipation to the big 40.



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Posted by on October 3, 2014 in Uncategorized


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HI who? Oh you mean that uninvited guest I’m living with.


It has been a little over a decade since an uninvited guest decided to come into my life (well I had a role in this), he has never left and will be here till I take my last breath.

A conversation at the office made me realise that actually I even forget that this “guest” is with me every day. Ironic isn’t it because for the past decade every day I have to take antiretrovirals in order to suppress it.

How can this be possible? I was 26 when I was diagnosed with HIV and today I’m 38 and still the same crazy, strange, skinny gay guy I’ve always been. It all comes down to the decision I made on that June afternoon years ago; that I am not going to allow HIV to be a determining factor in my life. Like come on, this is my show and I am the solo star “geddit”. There is no way I am going to allow something that needs me in order to live to take control and steal my spotlight.

Its not like I don’t think of HIV, come on I hear the bugger mentioned every day of my life because I work in the Health and Human Rights field, do trainings and workshops on this. But still it is not one of the things I obsess over. Its a virus, I am human, it has killed people and very real. But there is no way I am allowing that to happen to me.

My life is my life HIV or not, I am in control. Some people have said they find it strange that I am able to separate my HIV related work, living with HIV and  my existence on earth. I wish I knew how I am capable of doing this. Honestly there is no secret or fomular to this; I just decided to live my life.

Before my diagnosis I was into fashion, media and the arts, what has changed? The answer is NOTHING. Okay I might spend the whole day reasearching, talking, giving advice and training on HIV. Thats the only time this virus is in my mind. Come knockoff time; I’m listening to music, reading fashion blogs and magazines or “plotting” as to how I am going to change and improve my living space, wardrobe and hair or what gadget I would like to add to my ever growing collection. Come on, this is who I am. I not HIV, so why must it be the main thing in my life.

I’m no Super Hero. I am Luckyboy Phoenix Edison Mkhondwane, well I happen to live with HIV but it is not the most important thing in my life. I live, I breathe and I am proud of who I am and I approve this message as I “keep on swimming” 😉

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Posted by on April 12, 2014 in Uncategorized


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Double Double


This has been on my mind lately and its giving me headaches: my brothers who are closeted and having to live a double life just to please society.

Of course, we all can’t be out of the closet.  But how do we strike the balance between being who you really are and at the same time having to live your life in a way that society expects you to. This includes being partaking in organised religion and having a wife and kids.

It is tough being gay in this day and age;  but imagine how challenging it is when you have to duck and dive, pretending you are heterosexual whereas you know very well that you are not being true to yourself and are actually lying to the people who think they know you.

This is a result of how society expects us as men to behave and live our live. I am a 38 years old man who by now according to societal expectations is supposed to be married to a woman and having two or more children )depending on personal choice of course). I really can’t imagine how my life would have been if I wasn’t open about my sexuality; I bet I would have been the most miserable person in the world.

Living your life according to what others expect of you must be very physically and mentally draining. Hiding things and constantly living in fear of being “discovered”, means you always have to be on alert.  That is not the way life was supposed to be live. I wish there was a way of making things easier. In an ideal world, no one would be judged by their sexual orientation nor expected to “come” out. We would all just live our lives and date whoever we are attracted to.

Honestly, my heart bleeds when I think of the people who are not in the same situation as I am where they can just be free to be who they are and live their lives as they please.

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Posted by on February 24, 2014 in Uncategorized


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