Feed a cold, starve a fever; feed a heart, flout a virus: That's the idea behind these hot POZ personals in this c-c-c-cold season. We shouted out to HIVers far and yon, and you'll find a full deck (plus one) here -- 53 from all corners of the country (and beyond!), of all sexes, ages, races, persuasions and pastimes, from HIV newbies to fearless figures of viral survival -- and all just an e-mail or envelope away.
Amidst this crazy quilt of bold 'n' brassy bravehearts lurks a message we all need to hear in this 22nd year of epidemic loss: No retrovirus can kill my capacity to love and be loved in return. And whether you're coasting carefree with tons of T cells or scavenging on salvage-therapy street, love has healing powers the FDA has yet to categorize.
We've got tips for turning a first date into a success story (see "Date Bait" ) and tips for making it into more than a one-night stand (see "Make It Last Forever"). And even if you don't end up sharing a bed, you can share a friendship -- for better or for worse, in sickness and in health. There's more than one way to make a love connection, and when it comes to the rough-and-tumble world of HIV, we all need connections. So wherever it leads, let us know (firstname.lastname@example.org). And hey, desperado -- let somebody love you, OK? Now let's play 53 pickup!
MSM: Man Seeking Man
WSW: Woman Seeking Woman
MSW: Man Seeking Woman
WSM: Woman Seeking Man
TSM: Transgender (TG) Seeking Man
53, Chicago; Diagnosed: '91
GOING PLACES AIDS educator, ex-Greyhound bus driver. I love traveling, fishing, art, drama. Let's take a walk in the cool, chilly weather and listen to each other without judging. Pretty good cook, great listener. I want a man who's more interested in me than in materialistic things -- wouldn't hurt if he's halfway decent looking, too.
41, Huntington Beach, CA; Diagnosed: '91
DISC GOLF/CUDDLING CHAMP I'm athletic (passionate disc golfer), a very sensuous gentleman, a romantic cuddler. You don't have to be Barbie, but please don't be a couch potato. I hope you'll enjoy watching me kick butt on the golf course. HIV has taught me that cheap sex is just that. I'm looking for a lasting bond, knowing that if you're there tomorrow, life will be perfect.
Mark Allen Wilson
39, Minneapolis; Diagnosed: '96
SEEKING A "GOLDEN GUY" Sensual, versatile, brown-eyed with a swimmer's build, Native American active with local Indigenous Peoples Task Force, Golden Girls fan. I love romantic at-home dinners with candles and Kenny G backdrop. I'm a good conversationalist, always try to be honest and kind. HIV has taught me patience -- I've been celibate since my diagnosis and I'm still holding out for Mr. Right!
30, Miramar, CA; Diagnosed: '94
ROYAL PLEASURE Submissive queen seeks aggressive king for a lifetime of royal pleasure. I want to open my front door and see you butt naked on a white horse, ready for a fun day at the beach. I love my kids, my support group and my Christian singles meeting, and I'm ready to try anything at least once.
Jamie Unicorn Escobedo
38, San Francisco; Diagnosed: '85
FURRY AND FIERY Once worked in finances, now I'm proud of success as an AIDS project volunteer. Furry, romantic, honest, adventurous, spiritual, giving, stable, hard-headed Capricorn, ready for long-term love. My Latin blood can reach the boiling point in sexy passion or anger -- either way, you'll have a hot time.
37, Los Angeles; Diagnosed: '84
BIG JONI M. FAN HERE Creative-minded, darkly erotic, deeply caring arts-lover ("I live in a box of paints") starting cosmetology career, seeks man as happy out on the town ("I wanna wreck my stockings in some jukebox dive") as having quiet evening at home. HIV has taught me how important friends are, TG can be a lonely road sometimes. Be my blue sky -- I might be good for your soul!
Robert John Pioli
42, Minneapolis; Diagnosed: '84
LONG-TERM SPARKLE Passionate, adventurous, with goatee, earrings, sense of humor. You and I should have a sparkle in our eyes and be emotionally available. Having HIV for over half my life has taught me the pivotal and healing role of love in survival.
44, Hiram, GA; Diagnosed: '94
HEADY LOVE, NOT HEAD GAMES Tall, dark, slender, outdoorsy, great father and animal-lover. Haven't dated much since my divorce last year. Not into head games, seeking a woman who sees the glass half full. Let's fly down to San Antonio, Texas, for our first date, which will end with me kissing you gently all over. Your smile will tell me you're for me.
47, Oklahoma City; Diagnosed: '99
AT EASE -- BUT IN A TUX Sales manager (a bit conservative, but I love spontaneity) hoping to manage some massages, humor and great bedtimes. Our first date includes tuxedos and dancing. I'll know you're Mr. Right when a heart-to-heart puts us both completely at ease.
Thomas Francis Jones
44, San Francisco; Diagnosed: '90
DEBONAIR BEAR Mature but young-at-heart bear (stocky build, goatee and sideburns) in quest of slim athletic type. I'll be more interested in you than telling you about me; you'll make me feel handsome, confident, brave, sexy and debonair. Now my love goes to myself and my cat (Astro the Astronomical), but I'm looking to change that (not the cat). HIV wisdom: Love yourself first so you have the strength to care for others.
Kurt Scott Pawlak
40, St. Paul, MN; Diagnosed: '85
IMAGINISTA Professional magician (imaginista) and backstage techie, pagan, into metaphysics, massage, spicy food. I love playful wrestling that leads to passion, excitement and a romp around the house. HIV has taught me to distinguish want from need. And I give good neck-rub.
43, Victoria, BC, Canada; Diagnosed: '83
YOU SEXY THONG -- IN PRIVATE ONLY Great listener, music lover, into motorcycles but not a grease gorilla. We'll share walks on the beach and popcorn; you'll have hair of any color (mostly on top of your head) and not insist I wear a thong in public (not a pretty sight: grown men running and screaming). Got three eyes and goat horns? Don't apply...well, unless you're otherwise perfect. I'll know you are when lightning strikes me, frying my sanity and making my heart skip every other beat.
Bobbie J. Salinas
34, Hillsborough, NC; Diagnosed: '93
TELLING IT LIKE IT IS I've got my own house-cleaning business, two wonderful kids, a dog and two cats, and now I want to find an honest working man (foreigners intrigue me). I'm sweet, caring, outgoing, an avid reader and regular church-goer -- and a sizzling cook.
34, Las Vegas; Diagnosed: '88
BE MY SWEETIE PIE Exciting and creative artist (friends call me gay-man-trapped-in-lesbo-body for my home-decorating skills), never a dull moment with me. Our first date will include eating lemon meringue pie, long walks and talks, then a passionate kiss. I love to loll with a lover in a bubble bath, sharing hopes and dreams. HIV has taught me that love is the stuff that counts. Five minutes before I die, I'll be reflecting on the high quality of friends I've had in my life.
47, Philadelphia and the Bronx, NY; Diagnosed: '93
SPIRIT-LED AND SPIRITED Candidate for ordination, spirit-led Christian woman looking for a spirit-led Christian man. Pamper me a little and love me a lot. Love is but a fleeting moment in time -- we grasp it when we find it, and never let it go.
45, Beaumont, TX; Diagnosed: '01
LOCKED IN MY HEART Multitalented auto mechanic, personal trainer, nurse, now attending college classes while behind bars. Ms. Right will be a businesswoman, honest, open-minded, spontaneous, an exotic lover. According to Mr. Bush, there's nothing to learn from HIV -- but I do my own medical research.
#3060 FM 3514, Stiles #629797,
Beaumont, TX 77705
Sharon K. Wagner
41, Houston; Diagnosed: '87
PROUD "OMIE" (THAT'S GERMAN FOR GRANDMA) Legal assistant/teacher (retired) coordinates BHIVE (Be HIV Empowered), a heterosexual social/educational group. Conservative, low-maintenance homebody, six-foot-tall redhead, seeking Christian man with morals and values. Mr. Right will be at my door after a year of dating, carrying flowers (not roses), asking me to marry him.
Gene Thomas Stocks
41, Honolulu; Diagnosed: '83
HUNGRY SOUL Insurance agent, confident, self-reliant, positive outlook ISO honest, positive man, so we can face the challenges together and not be scared. Love comes from my kitchen -- I have a hungry soul, less to give but more to share.
32, Providence, RI; Diagnosed: '95
BE MY PET Pet-shop manager (I do what I love and get paid for it). Cute guy-next-door type, slim (but there's a muscle-boy yearning to break out). Dating should be fun, a goofy exploration and discovery, then hot sex and spooning till dawn. I'm honest, loyal, and I give a great you-know-what.
36, San Francisco; Diagnosed: '90
SISTER MARYMAE HIMM A Sister of Perpetual Indulgence, I'm spiritual, devoted, irreverent, childlike, good cook (great wife), clean and tidy, housebroken. I don't come with a lot of baggage, but can pack some if you really want me to.
35, Milan, Italy; Diagnosed: '97
VIGILANT LOVER Sexy, easygoing Italian looking for a woman to share what life has to offer. I teach martial arts to vigilantes and private policemen. Very fit, expert masseur who can also serve up some great Italian-style cooking. I'm kind, caring, witty, charming -- and, most of all, romantic.
40, Washington, DC; Diagnosed: '86
ARIES IN ALL AREAS Independent Living Council manager (and proud uncle, as you can see) deals disco-poker every Saturday night. I am the Ram: Adventurous, Resourceful, Independent, Exciting, Sensual -- and soooo much more. With Pachelbel's Canon in D softly playing, we gaze into each other's eyes...
44, Phillipsburg, NJ; Diagnosed: '87
CINDERELLA SEEKS PRINCE Down-to-earth, simple girl with old-time values. I run my own cleaning business, love my two daughters and await that one-woman man who will make me think time is standing still. I'll feel I've known him all my life when it's really been a few hours. Love comes in many different ways, but it always leaves too soon.
43, Leesburg, NJ; Diagnosed: '85
COMING HOME TO YOU Auto detailer, currently locked away but due for release soon. I seek a woman with a lust for life and love, and the courage to seek happiness stripped of pretensions. When I walk into a room where Ms. Right sits, I'll feel an overwhelming sense of gratitude. A great body wouldn't hurt, either!
Bayside State Prison, POB F-2, 4293
Route 47, Leesburg, NJ 08327
The Men of GMAD
Gay Men of African Descent, New York City
SEEKING MAD LOVE GMAD is a safe space to vent and be heard while sharing our hopes and dreams. We seek unconditional love in the arms of a man like...your name here??? Greg will know Mr. Right when "I can't eat or sleep without thinking of him." Ron plays "a mean violin" and tennis -- those with too much attitude need not apply. We show our GMAD love by volunteering, and as Joseph says, we're all learning "to take time and get down and know our brothers," valuing life more after diagnosis.
1. Gregory Holmes
46, Diagnosed: '98
1505 Park Ave., 16-F
New York, NY 10029
2. Rufus Milliam
22, Diagnosed: '00
3. Joseph Palmer
35, Diagnosed: '86
4. Ron Howard
36, Diagnosed: '87
5. Edward Williams
49, Diagnosed: '00
2640 Marion Ave., 6L
Bronx, NY 10458
6. Reginald Watson
41, Diagnosed: '98
The Men of Stop AIDS Project
WANTED: HUSBANDS The men of San Francisco's Stop AIDS Positive Force program need strong, supportive lovers to back us in our acclaimed HIV prevention work. We're fun-loving and committed to keeping our community healthy and happy. "It's harder than it seems to find a good man in this city," says Richard. "Everybody wants the newest flavor in the candy store. But we want real love." Make us happy husbands and we'll send Bush a bushel of condoms as a Valentine's gift.
1. Alvin Bennett
42, Diagnosed: '84
2. Richard Broussard
41, Diagnosed: '85
3. Duane Russell
38, Diagnosed: '86
4. Jon Sebastian
41, Diagnosed: '84
5. Jay Dwyer
37, Diagnosed: '00
6. Newton Butler
44, Diagnosed: '84
7. David Ellard*
38, Diagnosed: '97
*the cutie behind the camera, a.k.a. Stop AIDS photographer
Richard James Downey
37, Boston; Diagnosed: '98
WORTHY PRINCE Dancing teacher/coach, I mean to fall in love and be treated like the prince among men that I am. You will be, too, of course -- there will be no unworthy gentlemen trifling with my affections. I'll recognize you as my prince when I wake up to you shoveling snow or calling me for advice, because we trust each other.
37, Minneapolis; Diagnosed: '02
SEXY REDHEAD PRE-OP FOR SECURE GUY Be comfortable with your sexuality and treat me like your queen. I'll treat you like a king. Loves: my Black Lab mix Kirby, close friends and a nice-dressed guy, 'cuz I always try to look good. Great listener, always there for you, love to cook (best way to a man's heart). My Mr. Right will be focused on living life to the fullest with me, doesn't care what the world thinks of us.
45, Edison, NJ; Diagnosed: '90
VIVACIOUS JERSEY GIRL Single mom, website designer, member of women's group LIGHT (Living in Good Health Together). Loves laughter, music, dancing, the Yankees, fabulous sex -- and seeks to love the daylights out of the right man. On our first date, I'll wear my favorite red shoes ('cuz clicking the heels three times will take us anywhere we want to go). I can't seem to find the definition of the word inhibited, and I know that chemistry is more than sharing the same virus. Smile, people -- if I can, you can.
Alberto Perez Bermudez
32, Miami; Diagnosed: '90
FIGHTING FOR LOVE National and local AIDS activist, enjoy sports and movies. Yo hablo español. I'm a great guy. So honest and sincere. Looking for new love in my life -- a sexy lady, Latina, white or black, who doesn't do any drugs or smoke. I'll be active until there's a cure for AIDS.
52, Wilton Manors, FL; Diagnosed: '96
BE MY SPECIAL EVENT Coordinator of special events for gay and lesbian library and cofacilitator of support group for newly diagnosed HIVers. Passionate, athletic, I love to cook, read, laugh. My hands are uncalloused, for a great massage. Love is a gift that presents itself each day -- how we receive it reflects our capacity for happiness.
39, Chicago; Diagnosed: '92
ALL ABOUT COMMUNICATION I shuffle paper with a phone glued to the side of my face, busy in business law and administration and volunteer activities. Will happily sing, take nature walks or discuss photography in my spare time. You're Mr. Right if my heart flutters, I smile so hard my face begins to hurt and you soothe it with your gentle touch. Race isn't an issue, but communication is.
Saint St. Paul
40, West Hollywood, CA; Diagnosed: '85
NEW TASTE DELIGHTS Writer, concert producer, moved to West Hollywood from Denver. Love trying new foods and sunbathing in a thong (thin tan line is a must). ISO sexy man, maybe foreign...I do love new tastes.
37, Towson, MD; Diagnosed: '90
ACTIVE AND ATTRACTIVE Inspirational public speaker, AA devotee, yoga 'n' aerobics freak, animal-lover (my dog, Marty, is my only child!) seeks Mr. Right I can be honest and supportive with, listen to and bake great banana bread for! HIV's taught me love needs to be unconditional and consistent!
35, Minneapolis; Diagnosed: '92
PASSIONATE AND PRETTY Systems analyst, meals-on-wheels vol, laidback but passionate, smart and pretty, generous with time and love. It's all about the chemistry: We can have fun anywhere if you're my dream lover.
Eric Jason Steinberg
47, Tarzana, CA; Diagnosed: '88
BE THE KITTY IN MY LIFE Creative photographic artist. I'm loyal -- and I want you to be, too. We'll go to a romantic restaurant on the ocean, you'll be wearing something casual but sexy, and we'll both be swept away. HIV teaches me that you have to work at love so it will never die. I love my family (especially Mom) and all my cats, but I need you to be the new kitty in my life.
Anthony J. Rodriguez
42, Miami, FL; Diagnosed: '94
A LITTLE ROMANCE, PLEASE Cook by profession, I'm quiet and decent, not rich but not poor, searching for some companionship and a little romance. I'll know my dream lover if she answers my question -- "Who sent you?" -- right. Having HIV has shown me that love hasn't gone anywhere -- it's always present in all of my life.
43, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada; Diagnosed: '95
NONSTOP LOVE TRAIN Medical marijuana exemptee, I spend my days fighting for others to get their meds. Not rich, but I'm blessed with passion and a heart of gold. Looks mean nothing to me -- I'm not that shallow. I'm yearning to meet a woman and make love for a whole year.
47, Ft. Lauderdale, FL; Diagnosed: '90
I WANT A GENTLEMAN TIGER Brooklyn-born working mom (building manager/karaoke DJ), loves music, theater, flicks, the beach and more, seeks self-sufficient, educated nonsmoker who doesn't need me to be his mother (I already have a 15-year-old daughter). You be a gentleman in public and a tiger behind closed doors!
24, Vancouver, BC, Canada; Diagnosed: '00
ROUGH AND CUDDLE I'm a waiter. But one day, I'll be a lawyer. Passionate sportsman and passionate about integrity. Stanley Cup finals by candlelight, with a side of violin serenade? Cuddling on the couch is one of my favorite sports.
28, Oklahoma City; Diagnosed: '00
IT'S IN HIS KISS Down-to-earth country boy works days as an auditor, seeks passionate, romantic gentleman to explore the hidden treasures of life. I've got a heart that doesn't know when to quit, and my kisses will have us hitting Rocky Mountain highs.
53, Vancouver, WA; Diagnosed: '87
SEX AND MORE OF IT Short shrink, retired, love theater and traveling. I trade stock online, but I'm in the market for an adventurous, nurturing, liberal, fit, sexually proficient white-collar professional with blue-collar skills who doesn't need more shrinking. Our first date: sex, bike ride, more sex, dinner and dancing, more sex, sleeping in each other's arms. Mr. Right will encourage me to be my best, appreciate me for my weaknesses -- and strengths.
Didn't make it into POZ Personals? Here are some websites to cruise and use:
2. This one's for gay and straight -- searchable by city or state: