Archives for posts with tag: Kristian Digby

Phil and Duncan

Scroll down for the Patmos transcript.

Malibu!  Look at the view!  It’s a warm morning where I am.  The sky is pale pink, the sea is almost blue.  The rain this winter has caused every Ceanothus to bloom.  Almost blue.  Not like the one I planted in my Whitstable garden which bloomed purple, fleshy flowers.  The Malibu garden is Fire Safe.   They have cleared the brush and hoed the beds.   The trees are almost fully in leaf.  The tiny quail and their tinier babies search in the tilled soil for food.  I don’t know what they eat.

Stephen, Kristian’s one time boy friend, sent me a collection of his writings that I have not had time to read.  Kristian Digby.  Where are you?  I wish you were here.  I wish you were alive.

I think that it may be Jean’s memorial today.  I’m not going.  It would be hypocritical.  We were once friends.  I want to remember what it was like to be his friend.  Sit quietly with the memory.  Too many deaths recently.  Too many unnecessary deaths.  Each time they tell me that someone else is dead I have to look at my own fingers and imagine them bone and parchment.

I want to find you the page in my diary when we were on Patmos, Phil and I, and we looked into the charnel house and saw the desiccated remains of… people.  Tangled together, wearing their simple peasant garments.  I couldn’t sleep.  Phil splashed cologne around our bedroom.  It soothed me.

It’s a beautiful day today.  Best I concentrate on that?  I felt the shame.   Shame is like scraping meat off the bone.  I’m writing about one isolated man being saved by less isolated men.  Was this past year such a waste?  This was the year when obsession became my higher power.  Now I have a chance to know God once again.

Will I ever get home?

Here are the Patmos diary entries for August 1990.

I am with my darling Phillipa Heiman.  We are staying in her mother’s beautiful summer-house overlooking the Aegean.  We are lovers.

Wednesday August 15th 1990 PATMOS

The masseur said that I should wear something loose.  I opted for my frog boxers, Victoria Whitbread gave them to me, green frogs hopping all over my genitals.  She poked and prodded and soothed, she twisted my arms and legs, her breasts pushed into my face, “I hope I’m not suffocating you.”  She said.

Her fingers glanced over the end of my dick.

“Your lymphatic system is now working.”  she declared as my stomach rumbled for more cold chicken.  She told me that, like many people, I had been frightened as a child and had reacted with my right side.  This reaction has begun a slow deterioration of the tissue in the areas seized and now they were completely ‘blocked’.

After a fag break she told me that I shouldn’t drink, that I should do Tai Chi and should have six more sessions costing a further 3000 drachma per session.  Thank the lordy for new age medicine!  The alternative society has got it made.  I am rushing back to London to learn anything I can to lay a few letters after my name.  D.P. Roy Alternative money-maker.  A.M.M.

As a final booster she poked me with an electric prod.  Very nice.

Philippa returned from a walk around the village, she had been to a church service which, from her description, sounded delightful.  We ate what was to be my last unfettered meal.  We stepped, after lunch, into the hot afternoon.

Through the alleys, to the monastery.  My spirits were high.  We faced the wind together, holding her breasts through her thin silk dress, letting her feel my stiffy on her thigh, she said that the monks would be shocked.

We found a fig tree and picked fresh figs, they tasted of nothing.  We found a pear tree and the fruit tasted of nothing.  We saw an English couple removing their shorts under a very unshadeful tree on top of a windy promontory.  Like the middle of a motorway, next to the rubbish dump full of plastic – not rotting, away from Xora there were plastic bottles, scores of them, strewn over the brown grass.

The hot afternoon my spirits are still high.   I’m making a lot of jokes at everybody’s expense – mostly  Philippa’s.  She’s enjoying it, her period has started so she’s happy again, woe betide me if I’d mentioned this as a contributing factor to the tears.  The tears were so terrible to see.  I am a broken man when I see my lover cry.  I see my mother and grandmother and aunts Evelyn and Margaret in her tears and I am a broken man.

We walked on, she wanted to see the graveyard which you can see clearly from the window in the drawing-room.  I am sitting opposite that window, all I have to do is to stand up and I can see the graveyard walls, a couple of white crosses, the blue iron gate and some white box out-houses.

We went the long way round, over prickling grass and clumps of brown dry plants and plastic bottles rolling around on the parched earth by the Meltemi which is a wind, a wind called the Meltemi.

We found the gate.  Most of the graves were new, some had photographs of old people.  One old man sitting on his chair outside the front door.  He looked like a loved man.  A candle burnt in a tiny marble and glass casket.  An eternal flame.

The graves were made, in this concrete covered place, of tiny man holes.   A ring pull on top.  We looked inside an abandoned tomb.  These were obviously used over and over we concluded.  We thought that the bodies rested here for a bit, with the flame and the photographs and the plastic flowers and the crucifix.  We concluded that they would be cremated and scattered over the Aegean or the terraced island.

Our spirits high, we looked into one of the empty tombs.  Under the concrete.  A hollow waiting for its fill.  Maybe it would be Petula (our maid) with her twisted hair and apron.  Her bare, dead legs under the stone.  Petula, Petula compromised because we rearranged the cushions, the red, gold and orange ikat instead of pink delicate John Stefanidis print.  We’ve made the home ours now Petula.

Old Petula can rearrange the cushions under here.  Under the stone.

We made our way to another gate at the back of the graveyard.  We balked at an old coffin laid beneath a tree, we saw that it was laminated maple, birdseye maple effect.  A birdseye maple effect coffin to be transported from the village to the hole, there to be cremated and the little old man to be scattered into the Meltemi and over the sea.  Not a bad end.

“Wait a minute,” Philippa says, “Let’s look through here.”  I was on my way out, my spirits were high.  I looked past the evergreen where she stood ahead of me.  So beautiful!   Her large smile and eyes sparkling out to me – all radiant and all mine.  I don’t want her to go any further.  I want to leave there and then, our spirits high, home to a plate of cold chicken and potatoes.  Maybe our bed.

She turned into the other plot and I followed, ran ahead.  Past a small, stone, white building, to a shack stacked high with coffins.  Eww I said, how horrible, a shack full of coffins.  I wanted to get out.  I wanted to leave there and then.

“Look.”  She said gaily, “Bones.”

I ran ahead to where she was pointing, I ran right up to what was undeniably a thigh bone sticking out of the ground.

“They’re human.”  I said, my spirits no longer high, as high.  Not hit rock bottom.  Just a bone.  We looked into a pit.  An open hatch, like a cellar door straight into the ground.  It was not just a bone, it was a whole man or woman with clothes on, maybe two men or two women or three, with their nylons still sticking to bits of dead flesh.  With the sun on the white bone, the flesh torn away.

Fascinated, I looked into this death-bed, this corpse mine.  Looked at the big bones, no sculls and it was occurring to us what the godforsaken truth was.  There was no scattered ashes over the Aegean but this ossuary.  We stepped back from the pit stuffed with bones and slippers and old nylons pulled over what was once a plump thigh.  I retreated past the small white, stone building with steps that lead up to an open window.

“Look that room up there is full with these.”

I ran ahead, up the steps, my tee-shirt over my mouth.  I didn’t even think about it, it was natural that I shouldn’t breathe the same air as the dead.  I looked into my own hell.  Through the open window into a huge room crammed with rubber shoes, cheap by any standard, the paper liners eaten by maggots.  More arms and legs and ribs, all forked into this place.

Strewn into this terrible room.

I couldn’t leave it alone, I couldn’t leave it.  I couldn’t pull down the tee-shirt over my face and run away.  I couldn’t be sure that these weren’t donkeys or dogs somehow tangled up with jumble, that my eyes didn’t deceive me I needed to see a skull.

I stepped up higher so I could see past the mound of bones and clothes and shoes full of maggots.  I looked past all this and into the face that confirmed exactly what we already knew, what I had to see and wish I had never seen.  My spirits drained out of me, my anal sphincter winking in fear, my feet wanting to run as fast as they could from this Byzantine holocaust.

Phillipa, still smiling and flirting and dancing around.  Her belly just about to empty its bloody dead contents into her knickers.  The old man sitting by his front door, Petula the maid, her hair all snaked up around her head with her old, thin fingers.  Forked into that room.  This heaving room, where flies and rats can come and live off of the dead.

We walked out of the graveyard, past the blue, wrought iron gate and into the hot alleys and the afternoon sun.  We trailed back home, my spirits drained away.  My mind working on the image of death.  We could hear the bells calling the faithful to their pews, to the holy water, to the Festival of the Virgin whilst the tangled remains of granddad, children, motorbike accident victims all hugged one another unwittingly in that terrible room.

Back at the house I fell asleep on Phillipa’s stomach.  When I woke up I tried to make light of what we had seen.  We couldn’t.  My mind working on that image of death.  We had a rather bright dinner with the French.  I couldn’t eat much, the meat festered in my mouth.

I could see the grave candles burning from the night terrace, comets burning over our heads, my feet burning inside my silk slippers.  The twins arrived, showed us photographs, we drove into Skala.

Phillipa went to church, I went to the bar so I might forget.

I drank.  Sprayed with champagne.  It was our table that drank the most booze, our friends who danced the hardest, our friends who fell into the sea drunk and all the time my mind is working out that image of death.

Into the eyes of death, a death’s-head, not facing me.  Leading me into further horrors.

Olivier the sickly twin and I had a long talk about his girlfriend, what he felt for her.  How he became her.  I gave him a big hug because he seemed to need it.  He stroked my face, he told me that he didn’t need to be ‘superficial’ with me.  He told me that I was a friend.  Sometimes I didn’t understand him because he used a language that only a twin can understand.  A description of one life as two people.  They are an extra-ordinary couple.

I went home to Phillipa.  We drank tea and then they left.

I got into bed and great waves of fear passed through me, my mind working on that image so that the bones started moving.  The dead sat waiting beside the front door, sat in the fridge disguised as roast chicken, the maggots danced inside the rubber slippers, the nylons gnawed by fat rats.

Phillipa felt me cold sweating there in bed, listened to my fitful cries and sprinkled perfume on the mat and offered me kind conversation and squeezed into my back.  I fell, finally into an unfettered sleep.

PS We met the rich Greeks who are building their ‘luxury’ home next to the graveyard.

“Fantastic views.” said she. 

Can you imagine who empties those graves? The man we see in the street?  Maybe the tall, mad man we see in Vagelis – the restaurant with the garden.   Can you imagine seeing the graves being exhumed?  The contents pitchforked into that place?  The man couldn’t sell the plot. 

“Fantastic views.”

Phillipa returns yearly to Patmos but I never did.   The beautiful house was sold.   Phillipa and I split up on the way home from Greece and when we arrived in London Amoury Blow picked us up from the airport.  I was all over the press.  Again.  Front page of the Evening Standard.


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Samia

Samia, my ex lover, would describe the people she had least respect as ‘limited’.  It’s a jolly good word to describe those we cannot be bothered with.

I love writing my blog.  Just as I loved writing my diary.

Some blog posts get particular public attention.  The most popular being listed to the right of this page.  Kristian Digby‘s Funeral in particular gets as many hits per day than any other post on this blog and cumulatively is the most read post on this site.  It heartens me that so many people leave messages for him there.  Sweet, kind, sad messages from people whose lives he touched.

I am so lucky to have been his bf for a few months.  I am so happy that it didn’t end in recrimination or bitterness.  I am just lucky that I have had the opportunity to know so many wonderful people.

I wish I could pick up the phone and call you Kristian.  I needed you these past few months.   I really did.

Kristian Digby

I am in a sparkling good mood this morning.

Oh my God!!!  Such dark days!  Such misery!  Such a BORE!  Coming to an end.  Well, I still have to deal with my balls.

My balls ache.  My back aches.  Let’s get this testicular party started.  I am sure that by the end of this surgery episode you will get tired of listening to me bleating on about the operation.  Apparently the penis gets quite bruised when they operate.  Black, blue and yellow bruising in the groin department.

Perhaps I should have it inverted and become the ugliest transsexual ever.  I am not likely to be using it recreationally any time soon.

I feel free to leave now.  What has been holding me back is finally resolved.  Perhaps having a vagina would solve my problems.  Maybe I wouldn’t be such a cunt.  Ha ha ha.

My poor doctor in the UK despairs of my hanging around here.  She thinks time is of the essence.  She tells me that I am risking my life.  She will be pleased to know that I am leaving soon.

Back to wintery London.   I wonder where I will stay?

Listening to really loud music.  Elsie de Witt is here, she’s singing along with Simon and Garfunkel.  The Bad Baby is sleeping soundly.  I hope she doesn’t wake him.

Elsie de Witt

The sun is shining.  I spent more time yesterday fixing the spa.  The light is working.  The air jets are fixed.  It’s a real spa!  I think I might heat it today and sit in it with my friend.  Under the stars.

A huge weight lifted from my shoulders.

Tim had his triple by-pass.  He’s only a few years older than me.  My old drinking companion Tim Willis.  His book is doing good business back at home.

Elsie is singing Midnight Train to Georgia.   Hush Elsie!  The Bad Baby is Sleeping.

HLN again tonight.  4pm my time.  Fantasia follow-up and more sex tape discussion, this time about Heidi and Spencer Pratt and my FAVE topic..Tiger Woods.  I love going into CNN with my button down and coat to trash talk celebrity.  It’s so much fun.

Let me know if you watch it.

Everyday I see who and why people are visiting this blog.  Not individually of course but how many people and what they typed into the search engine to get to my blog.  Every day people look for Kristian Digby, hundreds of people.   It’s lovely that people come to this blog to find the facts about his funeral and where he is buried etc.  I feel as if, in some small way, I am being of service.

Which brings me to my next topic.  Being of service.  One of my commentators very rightly pointed out that I have been less than kind recently on these pages.  Very unforgiving.  This was an accurate criticism and one that I am going to take care of addressing.

Of course I have forgiven Irene and Jake.  Irene because she is so like me and Jake because, poor little lamb, he didn’t have a clue what he was getting involved with.  Mostly I have forgiven myself.  I loathe being angry Duncan.

I am having a great time NOT having to worry about Jake.   He’s going to be just fine.  He’ll meet a lovely man (one day) and settle down and do whatever he has to do to make life exciting.  He’s good-looking, intelligent,  funny..a perfect combination.  The other gays seem to get where he is coming from so he’ll get on with his gay life with aplomb.

So, I am sorry for being a knob about you JB but you kinda deserved it.

I have a great deal to be happy about. I forget regularly this very important fact.  I don’t have to think about all the shitty times I can remember the good times.  The sweet times.  What I learned.

Relationships are very confusing.  It’s best that I don’t have them or think about them.  I lose my balance when I am in a relationship.  As for sex?  Well, this weekend I am invited to a ‘sex party’ in Long Beach…hahhahaha..yeah right…that sounds like HELL.   I would rather have Saudi’s gauge out my eyes.

Spent a lovely evening with a bunch of gay men last night.  I have always wanted a group of gay men around me who I like and trust and am inspired by.  Last night I kinda found that rather than hanker after a bunch of cool gay friends..I already had them.  After dinner we watched The Graduate and then a two-hour long Q&A with Dustin Hoffman.  It really was a magical evening.

Read in the Observer yesterday that the Editor of Attitude magazine, a British gay glossy, had written a lively piece about gay men’s mental health and how toxic shame can destroy our lives.

He quoted Alan Downs The Velvet Rage which any self-respecting gay has read a million times since it was published 5 years ago.   The editor was concerned that his readers would consider it controversial.  It’s about bloody time that we looked at how shame has shaped our lives.

“Yes, we have more sexual partners in a lifetime than other groups of people,” Downs writes. “At the same time, we also have among the highest rates of depression and suicide, not to mention sexually transmitted diseases. As a group, we tend to be more emotionally expressive than other men, yet our relationships are far shorter on average than those of straight men.

“We have more expendable income, more expensive houses, more fashionable cars, clothes, furniture than just about any other cultural group. But are we truly happier?”

Exactly, why bother taking ourselves seriously when there’s stuff to buy?

The reason why so few editors of Gay magazines write about gay mental health is that they are all BONKERS and terrible drinkers and drug takers.  A sober gay man is still an anomaly.

Cancer update:  Toby Mott just suggested that I ebay my balls.

I found a book of photography called Chaos by Josef Koudelka at my house in Malibu that Kristian gave me for my birthday some years ago.  In it he wrote:

“I thought this book was very apt.  Life is never black and white yet always flowing with chaos.  I feel this book goes some small way to prove that even in chaos there is beauty.”

It was lovely to find his note.   A message from Kristian, from the past.  The past, where we must leave him.

I had to make some huge and grown up decisions today.   Decisions and about romance and finance.  The two are unconnected yet have been hideously intertwined as I grappled with one or the other for the past few months.

As my fear of financial ruin overwhelmed me I turned to him to deliver me from the truth.   Today, I just had to face my unfortunate situation head on.

My financial insecurity is undoubtedly connected to uncomfortable feelings of self-worth, prestige and power.  The romance I want but cannot have.   Some things are just not meant to be.  It is challenging to come to terms with these sorts of truths but as I have written here in this blog on many occasions when I do make decisions they are swift and sure.  Something, actually, Drew Pinsky taught me whilst I was on the sex rehab show.

I have deliberately avoided talking about either the romance or the finance on this blog but more importantly I have kept it secret to those who love me best.  Fuck, it is exhausting keeping secrets.  I really hate it.  I have no intention of going into any specific detail about the romance or the finance right now.  All you need to know is that I sat with John after the cake was cut and the presents were opened and told him everything I had been hiding for the past few months.  Phew.

As we all know: the truth will set you free.

I let go of a secret I was determined to keep.  Everything I have ever let go of has been relinquished unwillingly.  With claw marks all over what ever was finally gone.

Deep down I am as sure as I ever was that everything will turn out just the way it was meant to be.   I believe in my fate.

My relationships burn like super novae in the cosmos then shrink and die.  I have an opportunity right now to make a different set of choices: taking contrary action, living in acceptance and handing over what ever gives me pain to my higher power.

Just a few days away from my trip to Europe where I will celebrate a hefty milestone.   I have chosen to travel with a close friend.  Someone I love but not a lover.   We (and The Little Dog) will explore London and Paris.  For the sake of The Little Dog we will once again visit the wallabies in the Jardin des Plantes that my darling, loyal pet found utterly spell binding when we visited Paris last Autumn.   I am sure he must have thought that they were the biggest squirrels he had ever seen.

Am I prepared to walk away with dignity?  From people, places and things?

What I own is not who I am.  Who I love cannot define me.  Of course I would love to be in love with a man who loved me as much as I loved him.

I have come a very long way this past year.  The road to serenity, self-love, sexual sobriety is littered with the corpses of those who could not.

I must have buried 30 people during the last 12 years, killed by addiction.  Overdose, suicide, etc.  Every one my hero for keeping me sober.   Each and every one.

This evening I celebrated my friend’s daughter’s 5th birthday.  I sat with his family and watched his happy little girl blow out the candles on her cake.   After supper I wandered into Soho House on my own and found people I knew to take my mind off of the grueling aloneness.  I am not lonely, I just can’t be bothered to make the effort to accept the invitation nor get in the car and drive to people who genuinely love me.

On my way home, as if by magic, friends called me.  Emails arrived, text messages appeared on the screen of the iPhone and I was wrenched away from the promise of a night of self-pity.  I can be such a pig at that particular trough.

I said to him the other night that what I found so hard to let go of was the promise of enduring love.  The door had been opened then slammed shut.  I am the wise uncle, asexual, decrepit yet ultimately willing to be of service to those who need me.

Without the crutches of objectification, intrigue and seduction I can some times flounder.  I can sometimes fall.  Late at night, when all hope is gone I wonder who will catch me?  Who will catch me when I fall?

For a moment back then, I thought it might be you. I thought, foolishly, that it might be YOU.  I thought it was you when I was 20, 30, 40 and now.   Being in love with Richard in my twenties.  I was heartbroken when he would flirt with girls.  At my birthday party on Island Wall, Whitstable my Mother saw the pain I was in and tried to reach out to me but shame got in the way.

The legacy of shame.

Love has always been my goal.  To be loved.  I crave love the way most men crave sex.

I told him:  I’m really scared that I will never love again.   That I will never be loved.  How could I have got this so wrong?    To believe that love was possible, enduring and could be one day mine?

From out of the chaos comes beauty.  It will give me succour when all else fails.  I am going to Europe to fill my heart and soul with art and architecture.  To walk the streets and parks of two great cities.  To explore what it might have been like to be loved.   I know that when I get back he will be gone.  It is our swan song, our last hurrah.  But before I write the end I must enjoy the journey.  I must not fear the future nor have unrealistic expectations, I must set aside my shame and feel the sun on my face, in my heart.

I thought about Whitstable today.   I miss you so much!  The shallow lazy sea, the honey coloured shingle, buying espresso from Dave’s deli, walking the little dog on Duncan Downs.  I wondered, like I do occasionally, if I could ever live there again.

Part of me wants to be there but most of me is perfectly as ease with where I am right now.

If I went back what would I be returning to?

It’s a great place to visit but maybe it’s never going to be my home.   Maybe it never was.

Taking that bloody, stinky train to London.  I never had the money for a ticket.  Hiding in the toilet.  One hour and fifteen minutes.  Faverham, Sittingbourne, Rainham, Graveney, Bromley SouthVictoria Station!

Walking to Mayfair.  Sweet-scented drawing rooms, thick carpet and polished silver.  Oh God. I know why I am thinking about this!  I am dreading being left on my own on Tuesday evening when the man/boy leaves for Italy.

I want to travel too!  Paris, Sydney, Whitstable or New York where do I go next?  If I go what am I running away from?  I’ll tell you what:  a great,  gaping God shaped hole.

18th Century boy/man was up until 2.30 last night pottering around, tidying, making a mother’s day card and finally fell into bed exhausted.   We had dinner at Axe on Abbott Kinney.  I ate the farmer’s plate with prosciutto.   This morning we toured the Santa Monica Farmers Market and bought fresh almonds and pale pink hydrangea and delicate budded peonies.

He reminds me of Patrick Kinmonth, the same sensibilities and creativity.  He is so tall and elegant, so curious about everything, which can all at once excite and tire.   It is good to live again with someone on my arm that has such an extraordinary zest for life.  He wants me to teach him how to sew.  I would love to do that, pass on a few of the many skills I have that were meant for some unborn child in an imaginary family.

I wish that I hadn’t killed the snake but I was scared that it would bite the little dog then where would I be?   John watched the video of me killing it and looked delighted at the very manliness of my snake murder.  I should have been more proud but I wasn’t.  I value life, even the life of a dangerous snake or the rat I killed the previous week.

Josh, my sober A gay friend and I toured Barney’s yesterday.  Trying on expensive clothing neither of us would ever buy.  Bumped into a friend of Charlies who was wearing cut off denim shorts, a sleeveless tee, a man bag and Jackie O sunglasses.  What a fucking STATE.  Also bumped into my friend Jody who has recently had two surrogate daughters-the $250,000 a pop kind.  I asked, like I would my straight friends, if he is signing them up for pre-school.  He spat back that he had no intention of sending them to pre-school as their nanny had them on the Einstein system for infant learning.  He said that he wanted to control who came into their lives as he had no intention of letting them socialize with other kids as they might pick up bad habits.  Now tell me if that doesn’t sound unhealthy?   Child as project.  Lot’s of my gay friends have chosen this route when they become parents.  However, this is not peculiar to gay men, I know straight parents who do this too.  In my opinion it can only lead to disappointment and resentment.

I thought about my mother and where she might be this overcast mother’s day.  I wondered if my brothers had brought her flowers or sent her a card.  I did not.  Then I thought about Kristian’s mother who seems to loathe the idea of his friends getting together to celebrate his life and I wondered how she could be so bitter about this simple act of remembrance?

I pay scant regard to my creative life.  My desire to create comes in huge waves that crash inconsequentially and leave me feeling tired and unfinished.  Why can’t I seem to finish anything?  My novel remains unfinished, my film too-as for everything else?  I don’t know.

As his departure looms so do the morbid thoughts.

I find myself thinking about the NYC man and grieve for what was and what is lost, broken or as dead as the headless rattlesnake.   I am all at once in celebration for what I have and desolation for what was and how that affected me.  Man/Boy asked if I was on the rebound last night which I strenuously denied.  But, of course, there is some truth to his accusation.  John cautioned me yesterday about euphoric recall, the yearning for an acting out partner rather than the fully fledged, present young man who I now have.

I have no reason or right to have wanted more from NYC man.   As I have said before I was an inconsequential blip in his life.   It’s hard to own that.  Yet, in a way, it has made me a stronger man for what I have now.    I look at this new man and love him and care about him with new eyes.  The eyes of a man who has loved and lost but is lucky to have loved at all.

As for my sobriety, I am sober!  I have that to be grateful for.   Gratitude is key!

Have to write for the Good Men Project.  I am going to write about how to be a man when other men don’t recognize the sort of man you were born to be:  A quest for validation.

Paula Dubois,  Kristian Digby‘s Mother,  outrageously threatened to disrupt the Memorial Service to be held for hundreds of her wonderful son’s friends and family next week at Southwark Cathedral.

As a result the cathedral will no longer hold the service.

The indignity of it all, that the love he had for so many and they for him could not be felt by his own mother.

The news infuriated me.  It totally ruined my day.   That this so called ‘mother’ who bore such a beautiful, kind-hearted boy seems so determined to destroy any attempt his friends have of getting together and remembering him.

I am confused.  I am sad.  Mostly I am angry.

I killed a snake this week, a five foot rattle snake in my garden.  I chopped it’s head off with a shovel.  I felt bad doing it.  Terrible.  This beautiful serpent that had as much right as I did to live in my garden.  In my canyon.

I will write more about it tomorrow but in the mean time here is a picture to whet your appetite.

The beautiful boy/man remains sleeping in my bed but he is off to Italy on Tuesday for two weeks and so that I might not feel any pain (the pain of separation is the worst) my head is already elsewhere.  We had dinner with his best friend last night which I always hankered to do with NYC man but never did.

I was so nervous.

The Spanish restaurant where we had dinner was expensive and ghastly.

Serpent in the Garden

I woke up in acceptance.  I went to bed with a strange man sleeping on the sofa.

Yesterday morning I found myself explaining what made me happy to a large group of men.   I said, “I know when I’m happy because I don’t want to change anything.   I don’t want to change the way I feel with drugs or sex or shopping.  I don’t want to change where I live or rearrange my apartment.   I am just happy with things the way they are right now.”

Lunch with Eric at the Mercantile on Sunset where we ran into Bryan and his friend Carly Chaikin who is the second lead in the film The Last Song starring Miley Cyrus.  A very sweet girl.   Delicious lunch, lots of fun, I ate duck.

After lunch Eric and I drove to Soho House where we sat on the terrace overlooking Beverly Hills drinking latte-yes I was in a latte state o’mind.

As the day progressed I felt more uncomfortable.    There were practical irritations like: HSBC in the UK had closed my bank account for no apparent reason (apparently my crime was dormancy) with money still in it.   I cannot pay bills, transfer money, now I expect long conversations with random, computer generated Indian customer service advisors that must take place before I get to the bottom of this.

I received another nasty email from a woman claiming that she was at Kristian’s funeral and that my blogged account of it is all lies.  The Mother and Father must be furious that I continue to report how they disrespect our friend in death.   I have spoken to many, many people about the funeral and how Kristian’s boyfriend of SEVEN years was told to stay away, how he is now having to fight the family for what is rightfully his-his share of the property that he and Kristian owned in France and his part of the London property.

By the time I took my nap I was feeling decidedly testy.

Had brief chat with NYC friend who seems eager to go bar hopping/hooking up.  Whatever he has in mind for himself who am I to judge?  He wants to be like all the other gay men with penis privileges.

I tried explaining to him the 12 steps, which was as satisfying as trying to teach a baboon how to knit.

Felt WORSE.

So, a friend of Kristian’s came and took me to dinner-once again at the Mercantile. (I am trying to work my way through their delicious menu.)  We talked about Kristian and I shed a tear.  This was the first person I had actually sat down with since his death rather that being on the phone or random conversations on Face Book with people who had been denied entry to the funeral and had watched in amazement as Kristian’s coffin was dragged into the church, as Kristian’s mother laughed at the funeral, as she made Kristian’s boy friend of SEVEN years feel so uncomfortable at the wake he had organized he left rather than them.

As we left the restaurant I bumped into a good-looking strawberry blonde man with huge arms.   He introduced himself and we exchanged numbers.  Later that night the strawberry blond man came over and we talked until 3am.  It turns out that he is a porn performer who wants to get out of the porn performer business.  I told him that I would introduce him to Jennie.  I looked at his work on-line.  Getting fucked by men with names like Xavier and Brett.   Eagerly blowing other men with huge arms.  I thought that maybe my NYC friend would like to hook up with him at a bar.

It was good to talk to him about my own relationship with pornography.

I felt comfortable with him.  We were not about to have a conversation about God, he did not have a complicated story.  He told me about the men he had dated.  The life he has.  He looked tired so I told him he could stay over.  I hid my gold watch.  He slept on the sofa.

Earthquake the following day.  I lay in bed as it rumbled through town.  Dinner with Anna at Canele on Glendale Blvd.  Excellent roast lamb and equally delicious roast vegetables.   Met delightful Amanda and delightful Daniel.

 

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Having a blast here-so far away from the trials of Los Angeles.  No car, no worries, just me and a small suitcase and whole lot of hope.

Now, deliciously, I also have a pair of pink and black leather shoes that only I and a handful of truly stylish, brave friends could wear.

Thank you Comme des Garçons, thank you Rei Kawakubo. Thank you style Gods.

How many of you look at charlieissocoollike on You Tube?  Real name Charlie Mc Donnell.  I love him-no, not like that.  He’s only 19, fresh, funny and talented.  My friend Mr S Fry made a charming end credit for him.  I will write more about Mr Mc Donnall soon but do check out Charlie’s Duet with Myself.

Did I tell you that I had TERRIBLE food poisoning after our delicious lunch at The Standard Grill?  The rabbit ragu served with the ‘home made’ pasta and chanterells did me in.  I have not vomited for YEARS.  I mean, hanging over the pan and violently chucking up the entire contents of my belly whilst simultaneously shitting my white comme des garcons under pants.

I love NYC.

I don’t expect much from life.  I really don’t.  But I get so little in LA.  Like so many people I may end up being one of it’s finest victims but…I doubt it.  I am heading east.  I’ll tell you all sooner or later why.

The goat project has been put on hold until I have some more spare cash.  The film I want to make is ready to be born so I will just make it.  I may just be in it.  I am all a quiver about making a new film.  Can’t get it out of my head.

My friend Joan thinks that I am all over the place but that’s how it has always been-all over the place.

I tweeted today about being grateful.  It’s easy to complain about life, then when it gets better forget to be grateful. I am sitting in a warm, well decorated room overlooking the Hudson River, my belly full and friends to see.  What more could I want?

I am really glad that I came to the USA for as long as I have.  I have learned so much from you people.  Good and Bad.

More facts emerging from the Kristian Digby funeral fiasco.  Kristian’s mad mother apparently very dismissive about KD at funeral to his visibly upset father.  Friends and some family members and work colleagues unable to attend the funeral-asked to stay away.   Real friends got together at tree in Torquay and buried box of memories.  One friend reporting that Kristian’s coffin was dragged into church rather than carried respectfully.    I will repeat my earlier assertions:  Kristian’s mother is an insensitive hag who ruined great portions of her son’s life.  The truth will out Mrs Digby.

Met some PR type gay in Soho House the other night.  Single. attractive but after ten minutes of conversation..really ought to have stayed in the closet.  BACK IN THE CLOSET for you young man.  He told me I needed to filter what I was saying-we were talking about politics.  What a fucking boooooar.

Finally, did I mention to you how much I loathe Sophie Dahl?  How she went out of her way to ruin my experience of LA?  That poor sweet crooner husband of hers will see straight through her conniving ways sooner or later.  You can’t marry a woman 8 inches taller than you-why?  Because you never get to look her directly in the eye.

There’s nothing more exhilarating that an unresolved resentment don’t you think?  One day I will recount the entire sordid story for your delectation.

Jake and the Virgin Jake and Duncan Jake Jake Jake butt Jake in bed Jake in Bed 2 Jake Bauman Soho House

I really need to update this post as so many people read it. 

Sadly, after the disgraceful way Kristian was buried (please see below) with friends and family excluded from the church by Kristian’s mother Paula Dubois I receive word that this woman continues her shameful and destructive antics. 

Stephen, Kristian’s long time partner, very kindly organised a memorial for us all at Southwark Cathedral but was forced by Kristian’s mother to cancel the event.  

Paula drove from Devon, stormed into Southwark Cathedral and threatened to disrupt the Memorial Service to be held for hundreds of Kristian’s friends and Family. 

I know that Kristian would have been appalled and saddened that this has happened.   I am confused as to why Paula continues to behave like this toward the friends of her  sweet heart son who in death surely deserves her love and not her bile.

Paula, when she is not in Devon, lives in the house Kristian built with Stephen in East London.   The house she is now trying to steal entirely for herself.

Paula Dubois is not a well woman.  A diagnosed personality disorder.  Alienated from most of her family. Fighting tooth and nail to keep Stephen from keeping his half of the property that he owned with Kristian.  

This woman will not keep any of Kristian’s friends from remembering him, loving him and wishing Stephen well at this difficult time.

THE ORIGINAL POST March 22nd 2010

Kristian Digby‘s funeral will take place tomorrow in Torquay Devon at Midday.

A great friend of Kristian’s let me know this morning that Kristian’s ex-boyfriend Stephen has been told to stay away from the funeral by Kristian’s parents.  In the end he missed the service and stood at a respectful distance at the burial.

I am saddened by their decision.

Both his Mother and Father, who he worked so tirelessly to include in his adult life, cut him out of theirs when he came out to them as a young gay man.

In his own words to me and others: Their betrayal scarred him irrevocably.

I loathe that the man who loved him and shared his life might not be at the funeral.  It’s like a scene from a bad gay movie.  I wouldn’t even think it was true unless I had heard it from a reputable source.

Gay men depend upon their parents, first and foremost, when they come out.  When we speak the truth we need to heard, respected and loved.  Whilst I understand that nothing can prepare a parent for the news, one would think that it should not be a ‘shock’ to the enlightened.

When gay men reveal themselves at what ever age it is a humbling experience but it needn’t be a negative one.

I encourage my closeted friends to let their family know the truth in the most joyful way possible.  Our lives as gay men and women are extraordinary and should be viewed so by our loved ones.  We should live without fear of judgement, without fear of rejection and it is up to our friends and family to make sure that our second birth as gay men and women is made as comfortable as possible.

I am perfectly sure that Kristian’s parents, like many parents, wanted what they saw as a normal life for their son: marriage to a woman, children and the ease that they perceive being straight affords them.

We who are ‘out’ have chosen to tell the truth, even though we continue to be excluded from the most basic and fundamental human rights-marriage, equality, and even the right to attend our loved ones funerals.

Our lives are so often blighted with lies,  forced to lie to those who love us most for fear of rejection.  Encouraged to lie by our own government so we can serve our country unencumbered and remain in the shadows.  Never underestimate the lengths some gay men will go to hide their true nature.   We must always understand that living a lie is never easy.   It is like living in perpetual darkness.

All too often young, devoutly religious gay men, crippled by shame, take their own lives rather than reveal who they are.  Suicide, an option my friend’s parents offered him when he came out.  Religious bigotry continues to be responsible for the deaths of so many of us-mostly by our own hand.  After all, why bother killing the gays like they do in Iran when you can get self hating Christian homosexuals to kill themselves?

So, my gay brothers and sisters, be resolute and fearless and joyful when you tell your family who you are.  Be swift and sure.  Be kind and considerate to those who are disappointed but have no truck with those who seek to rain on your parade.

Remember that you have a legion of us who support you and love you and want the very best for your gay lives.

Kristian paid a huge price for telling the truth to his parents.

Unsurprisingly I bludgeoned mine and gave them no recourse for negativity.  Indeed I was thrilled at the prospect of becoming the next generation of a remarkable tribe of men and women who have shaped the modern world, from Alexander the Great to Elton John, through Carravaggio and Alan Turing.

28 March 2010

Addendum

More facts emerging from the Kristian Digby funeral fiasco.  Kristian’s mad mother apparently very dismissive about KD at funeral to his visibly upset father.  Friends and some family members and work colleagues unable to attend the funeral-asked to stay away.   Real friends got together at tree in Torquay and buried box of memories.  One friend reporting that Kristian’s coffin was dragged into church rather than carried respectfully.    I will repeat my earlier assertions:  Kristian’s mother Paula Dubois is an insensitive hag who ruined great portions of her son’s life.  The truth will out.

Kristian’s Facebook page was almost immediately deleted and his name changed to John Smith. I recently found all of his many emails to me and hand written notes and the photographs of us when we were briefly together.

After my stint on TV here in the USA he wrote:

“I think your one of life great creations thats brings much-needed colour to the world – I am cynical about media but not you.”

The storm is well and truly passing.  The stack of unopened mail on my dining room table can be opened.  The Malibu house is now rented for the time that we were going to be there.  The bathroom floor can be mopped.  The thick LA dust over the marble side tables can be washed away.

I can now turn my attention to Kristian once again.  So many beautiful tributes to him on the internet.  I like that they have recast him as a film director who also made TV.  He would be liked to remembered like that.  I have not yet scanned the pictures of Kristian and I.   They are very sweet.

I will bake another walnut and banana cake in his honor.

I have a few really important decisions to make which may very well mean that I have to go home, my tail between my legs.  Home to London.   I don’t feel bad about that.  I have had a total blast in LA and as this blog is proof life seldom gets boring.

There was a time before I met Richard, Jamie, Joe, Him, Matt-a moment before we met and that moment has to be reclaimed.  Before the note arrives, the stare across the busy club, the man at the top of the ladder, (I can’t remember how I met Jamie) the men who I have been most moved by.  I showed Him pictures of Matty and could not remember what it was to love Matty.   I can just remember driving in the pea green sports car down the M2 motorway to Whitstable and wondering if I could let him go without damaging him.  Like letting a fish go after you have caught it, removing the hook from its delicate mouth and setting it free.

I still remember Richard of course.  Richard Green,  the great love of my life.   Twenty five years ago he was at the top of a ladder outside the Oyster Company in Whitstable.  He was wearing tight white shorts and for five exquisite years we explored the world.  Tempestuous, glorious years.  Of course I never slept with him.  Even my mother knew that I loved him and was disappointed for me when he would flirt with girls in front of me.

He would drag girls into the bushes at country dances and return with stains all over his dinner jacket!

Sometimes I would arrive back at my darling cottage and he would be asleep on the sofa.  A window broken.  I didn’t care.

You know I have 50 intimate pictures of Him and Matty and  Jamie but I don’t have one picture of Richard Green.  Not one.  He is middle-aged now-like me-older and fat and by all accounts a miserable bastard.  But if we walked in through that door right now I know that we would begin where we left off.  We would have a huge amount to say and do.  He was utterly fascinated by the world and I was his willing side kick.  He was a perfect love because I had no interest in sex or relationships with other men-I had him and he was enough.  He was enough.

Isn’t it funny that I would include Him in the list of those who meant most to me.  I think that might change as time passes.  I would never have been able to trust him.  The next man he meets will not know his story will trust him and love him.

It is a perfect spring day in LA.  I am seeing Michelle later and hanging with Frank.  I like Frank.  Not like that!  Not so soon after the last fiasco.   Now, it’s Runyon time with the little dog.

Listening to Joni Mitchell.

I miss thinking about a future that includes someone.  I am so sick of facing every trial on my own.

If I had to write a description of a perfect man he would have almost fitted the bill.  Almost.   A little taller maybe, ten years older, not just out of a long relationship.

He was kind.   He wanted me.   He missed her.  He was brave.

Thank you-all of you.   You have all been so kind.   The kind words, the suggestions, the solution.  I tried explaining to him how important this blog is to me.   Not only do I get validation and feed back but I get to write my most troubling thoughts and when written down they vanish-as if by magic.

So, it turned out to be a strangely productive day.    I had to file a police report-the policeman had seen me on the sex rehab show.   I spent a little time up at the house making sure that the tenants are ok.   I saw two friends for lunch and I have a conference call regarding my app at 3pm.  God knows what will happen next.  It’s really not in my hands.

Michelle and Frank for coffee at the café on the corner.  Ate lemon bunt cake.

Of course I think about him.  He flitters like a moth through my head all the time.  I want the best for him-the best does not include me.  He has been central to my thoughts for the past few months.  He will not simply vanish.  I know that he will have time and space to think about his own grief.  The end of his long relationship and start afresh.

I do feel sorry for him.

Gay men have hugely intense relationships and an entire lifetime of emotion is often squeezed into just a few weeks.   He and I were no exception.

We gays are well aware of this phenomenon, most of us make morbid jokes about ‘gay years’-like dog years, and say “They were together for a year which is like a decade in gay years…”

Sadly, he was not the great love.  The truth is: if we had lived in the same city we would have scarcely lasted a month.  If I had met him as an out gay man I would have scarcely noticed him at all.

Fuck.  I need moth balls.

Off to have dinner now with Jamie and Anna.  They are waiting at a table on the sidewalk this balmy St Patrick’s day.  I am bleeding from the war.

Kristian will be buried this Sunday in Dorset.

Kristian’s death has affected me more than I might admit.   Rather foolishly I had a picture of him on my phone that lit up every time somebody called.  I deleted it today-I was making myself sadder than I needed to be.

Found myself looking at pornography last night-late-trying to soothe myself-trying to throw a warm blanket over my feelings.   It didn’t work.  I still woke up this morning overwhelmed with fear.  I wrote to John:

5am.  Waking up in huge amounts of fear.  Crushing, overwhelming fear. Think I may have come to the end of the line. Cannot go on.  Making bad decisions.  Can’t face anything.  Financial ruin facing me.  Nowhere to run to.   Don’t trust anyone. Obsessed.  Looked at porn this morning to try to sooth me-did not work.  Nothing works.  Do not see any more life ahead of me.

As dawn broke over the mountain I expected those particular ghouls to vanish, yet, those pesky demons lingered all day-like they were waiting patiently to claim me.

My father died when he was 53.

Found myself looking at pornography..

Now, that sounds like it happened to me rather than me searching around for that perfect porn moment.  Porn is like research, it’s scholarly, frustrating, intense.

Feeling desperately sad.  Not sobbing like when the Darling Big Dog was killed.

Cannot listen to Kate Bush or Soft Cell (remember listening with him) but rather strangely listening to the Spice Girls, which softens the edges-like having a wank.

Throwing the towel in.  “Goodbye my friend.”  Remember when we were best friends with Matt Rowe who wrote all those huge number one hits?    “Goodbye my friend.”   Remember New Years Eve at The Mercer Hotel in NYC with Melanie Sporty Spice and Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman?  Odd mixture that night?  What a night.

So I’m chatting with a friend about his childhood and he tells me that his father was sent to prison when he was 11 years old.  The only way he knew how to deal with the shame was to lie to his classmates.  He knew where his father was but told his friends that his father was on a business trip-he told lies because the truth was far too complicated.  Gosh, I related to that.  Lying to make life easier:  My father is on a business trip.  Telling palatable childish lies leading to a life of fantasy, pornography, disconnection.

It took me so long to let the truth set me free.  Now I try so hard to tell the truth.  Lyle brought word from England that I had a terrible temper.  Oh yes, I remember that.  My temper was a daily occurrence for so long.  Before I went to Sex Rehab I really had no idea why I was so angry-after sex rehab I fully understood why I was angry and the mechanism that controlled it.  So, to all that I shouted at and screamed at and made cry-I was wrong, I was wrong, I was wrong.

Sorry to repeat myself but..

When Kristian died suddenly a door opened into a world I considered closed to me.   I had considered suicide for as long as I can remember but never seriously.  Death, after all, is a very long time.  Suddenly there are enough fun people in the after life that I might have a good time.  Giggle with.   I am not scared of death-I was just scared of being bored when I got there-now with Kristian dead-death seems like a realistic option.  Holding the door open for me.

I am looking for clues for what might keep me alive?  What can I believe in?

This morning I heard John talking about being asleep and how much of the time I have been asleep.  I fall asleep when I first meet some one-a deep sleep.  I always thought that it was because I felt comfortable but now I see that it was to escape intimacy or worse that something might happen to me.

Moths in my clothes, little dog pawing at me…home sick for Whitstable, for Battersea Park..can we walk there together you and I?

Selling art-legitimate source of misery?  My friends didn’t want to buy my art.  They want to buy art from a legitimate source.  Funny.

Lying.  It’s a choice.  To tell the truth or lie?  It seems obvious doesn’t it?   Well, these muddled days, as Michael Moore reminded us when he picked up his Oscar, are ‘Lying times’.  Within a relationship there are all kinds of lies but I don’t want to tell HIM lies.  I just want him to know the truth.

The silence in the Malibu Mountains, the thudding base from the music playing in the apartment above my Hollywood apartment.   Both the silence and the interminable base making my head ache.   My head aches.

The questions that haunt me:  How could he have taken such a risk?   How can he be calling me to join him there and why am I listening?

One day I will write about FULL DISCLOSURE-a most unsavory practice.

I love you MR DARLING NYC-you are keeping me alive,  your love and your perfect smile are keeping the worst of these terrible demons from driving me to the gates of hell.

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I needed to stay in home alone tonight.  I feel sad.  Sad about Kristian, sad about my friends who died this year and sad that once again I am on my own:  the vacuum left behind after a wonderful weekend with a great friend.

I have always had and certainly will continue to have a serious problem with goodbye.  Saying goodbye permanently or even temporarily brings up huge feelings of loss, vulnerability and then the anger-the anger overwhelms me.

The genesis of these feelings: I was ripped from my mother’s breast and put up for adoption.  These are primal fears of life and death.   The most profoundly affecting goodbye after my mother’s abandonment was the death of my Darling Big Dog.

When my dog was violently killed the resulting anguish unleashed a torrent of sadness, a great wave of misery that may have resulted from not ever having said goodbye-ever to anyone I loved.  I did not go to my grandfather’s funeral nor my grandmother’s.   I have rigorously avoided any ritual goodbye and for that I am a lesser man.

Whenever I leave a party I just slip away as if saying goodbye will somehow humiliate me.

The same feelings overcome me now after the deaths of three friends in as many months.  Yet the very act of writing about them lends me immediate solace.

The end of relationships causes me unrelenting heartache.

Stoically accepting the end of a relationship?  No, not for me.  Nearly all of the relationships I have had have ended badly.  I never, it seems, get to write that scene in the movie of my life where two people say a dignified goodbye.

The end of my relationship with Joe ended thus:  I knew that I was going to leave but it took me 2 years to end it and when I finally did I tried to do it with tenderness and compassion but he was so angry that he made my life miserable for a full year after I left him-ending up in court fighting over property.

In my mad head I forget that I have choices, the choice to remember that the past no longer runs the show, choices to say goodbye without the reenactment of traumatic and ruinous scenarios.

Today I waved goodbye to a new friend who has come to mean a great deal to me.  Whether there is any romantic future between us is really not up to me-unless I behave in such a way that he would never want to see me again.   This morning I began to get angry, angry that he was leaving but knew that it was for the best.

Even though I was only momentarily angry-until I could identify what was going on in my mad head and break the cycle of abandonment and despair by telling him that I would miss him, that I was feeling sad, that I had no mechanism for making those feelings go away…and by telling him the truth I was freed from behaviors that would alienate him from me forever.

I will say goodbye to Kristian this week, say my heartfelt adieu.   His death has brought up all sorts of STUFF.   I sorted out pictures of us today and will post them as soon as I can.

IMG_1988 IMG_1964 IMG_1963

My friend (briefly my lover) Kristian Digby died yesterday; apparently of auto asphyxiation.

Kristian was a sweet, thoughtful intelligent man.  Not intelligent enough, he would have scoffed, to think twice about pulling a bag over his head, a belt around his neck and deprive his wonderful brain of oxygen.

By inducing a lucid, semi-hallucinogenic state called hypoxia-combined with orgasm, the rush is said to be no less powerful than cocaine, and highly addictive.

Kristian and I met in 2001 at the International Cannes film festival waiting in line for the Soho House annual Cannes party-bonding over the sight of Andi McDowell being pushed and shouted at by her surly, over weight publicist.  After becoming immediate friends-later that night, very drunk and having gate crashed a very grand yacht party, Kristian told actor Ray Winstone that he had always fancied him and tried, much to my horror, to kiss him.  Like most of his antics it was very, very funny but realizing how inappropriate trying to kiss Ray was we ran like mad children into the night and had a very romantic time walking bare foot back to his hotel room along the deserted beach at dawn.

I introduced Kristian to one of his many and varied heroes, the glorious Marianne Faithful. We were at Will Self’s house.   He sat at her feet.  She spilt red wine on his white linen trousers.  Whilst she fussed over the stain he was delighted that Marianne Faithful had spilled red wine on him.  Delighted.

He did not have one bad bone in his gorgeous body.

Creative, funny, erudite.  He had so much further to travel.

Kristian loved the films and books of Dereck Jarman-his true hero.  We had great fun exploring the dead filmmakers garden at Dungerness.  We ate a very high tea (english expression not drug induced) at a local hotel over looking the bleak gray sea.

I was always in awe of Kristian and those of us who knew him very well knew that there was much to be in awe of.

During the time that we knew each other best (when I moved to LA permanently we saw each other less often) we explored ideas, cites and over coffee in Old Compton Street the state of our gay lives.

He was a regular visitor to my house in Whitstable.  Everyone that met him there loved Kristian-I have been overwhelmed by sad emails from friends he met from my old home town.

He was not without his dark side-a troubled childhood and un-accepting parents blighted his early years as a gay man.

Lastly, let us not forget how much enjoyment he gave to those who never knew him personally: his loyal TV audience.

Oh Kristian, you silly billy, what did you do that for?  I will really miss you.