Our lady friends have been hittin’ summer hard for a couple years now. Megan Thee Stallion made sure of that. But thanks to Instagram and TikTok, our brethren – yes, even them straight boys – have been showin’ up and showin’ out in shorter shorts and croppier crop tops. With Covid restrictions coming to an end, there’s no rest for the weary in 2021. Peak hot boi summer starts now. Here’s how.
Stimulate your body and mind
I’m not the only one who’s put on the Covid 19. Many of us are softer around the middle after a year of isolation. But donuts be damned, I’m getting back into shape if it kills me (and it just might). I’ve cut out sugar completely, I force myself to hit the gym daily, and I’ve started an intermittent fasting regimen with only eight hours of feeding per day. Don’t follow my lead, though. Get back to the body you love however you see fit. What matters most is that you get moving again – and finally put the past 14 months behind you.
Keep your wits about you, too. Pick up a few good vacay (or any day) reads to pack in your bags this summer. I’m concentrating on nonfiction adventure stories and witty memoirs this season – like The Wild Truth by Carine McCandless (a companion book to Jon Krakauer’s Into the Wild – but anything that keeps your synapses firing is fair game, including this magazine.
Sign up for a social sports league
One of my favorite ways to make new friends and break a sweat simultaneously is by participating in social sports leagues. Most cities have an organization or two based on the concept of mixing intramural sports with post-game barhopping. Over the years, I’ve joined dodgeball, kickball, cornhole, bowling, and trivia leagues. Not all of them were LGBTQ+ focused, but I’ve never minded watching beefy breeders toss balls around, and I’m guessing you won’t either.
Pick up a pair of killer shades
Clothing and accessories don’t make the man, but they can make the man more confident. Like a great pair of sunglasses, for instance – preferably ones with mirrored lenses made to scope out eye candy more stealthily. My higher-end collection includes polarized pairs from Persol, Ray-Ban, and Versace, but I’m also a fan of more accessible styles, like the playful new Shark Week shades from Knockaround that retail for a digestible $35.
Strut your stuff in shorter shorts
Queer men are no strangers to short shorts, but this summer we’re going even shorter. Five-and-a-half inches is the standard for “short” shorts, but this year sky’s-out-thighs-out outfitters like Chubbies are taking the hems higher to a better-wear-briefs-underneath length of just four inches. No free-ballin’ in these bad boys unless you want a summons for indecent dick-posure.
Pierce your ears and paint your nails
Stick a few crystals in your lobes and gloss up your digits. I recently had a few of my nails painted for my 40th birthday. Am I having a midlife crisis? Maybe. But do my fingers look fire? Absolutely. Life’s too short not to pop haters the bird in a hot-pink hue.
Volunteer your time somewhere outdoors
There are plenty of local organizations looking for free help. Do a little digging – literally – by investigating a neighborhood beautification committee. I spent time planting flowers, erecting greenhouses, and designing parks for a group that dedicates itself to improving dilapidated spots around town when I lived in New Jersey. Most communities have something similar and they’re all eager to accept your altruism.
Travel by train, plane and automobile
Traveling outside the confines of the four walls you’ve been staring at for the past year is feasible now that mass vaccinations are underway. Schedule a road trip to a national park, hop on a plane to somewhere you’ve never been, or book a ticket for a once-in-a-lifetime cross-country Amtrak adventure. I’ve done the latter several times, and it’s never cost more than $500 to ride the rails from sea to shining sea. If that stimulus and unemployment money is still burning a hole in your pocket, now’s the time to treat yourself.