Kyle’s Corner: June 2018
As I’m sitting here looking out my window 37,000 feet in the air, flying over the southern Atlantic Ocean; I have no idea what time zone I am in more less trying to sleep. My mind is racing with the thoughts of the exciting month that is just ending. As I’m returning from the Mr. Gay World international competition held in South Africa, I cannot begin to tell you about this life experience. The month of May 2018 was truly a world wind of activities. Outside of going to the gym six days a week preparing for interview competition and organizing my wardrobe I still have to maintain my job as Mr. Gay America. It started with my appearance at the Mr. Gay United States contest held in New Jersey. It warmed my heart to see my son Jay Cruz give up his first national title. What was just as exciting as I had the opportunity to serve on the judge's panel to pick their new national winner. As the weather was cold, dark and damp the competition on stage was red hot with excitement. The Americana Fashion category was trendy, the talent was entertaining, and the gentleman looks stunning in creative formal wear. At the end of the competition, the range of performance was so tight, I had no idea who would be crowned. When the evening was completed, big congratulations goes out to Rey Sky Sinister of New Jersey for capturing the title. Also, much love and respect for my son Jay for having a successful year of service to the United States contest system and for an amazing show and give up. I love you with all of my heart and very proud of you.
After crowning with only a few hours sleep I had to jump in my car and head back home to prepare for my next major appearance; Mr. Gay Ohio America. My final state preliminary competition for the 2018 season of Mr. Gay America. As I am excited to attend this event I also feel sad that it will be my last state preliminary competition before my eventual retirement when I give up my national crown. I must say the two days of events of the Ohio weekend was stellar. The review show on night one featured outstanding talent and amazing personalities. It was an honor to be featured. And then the next day, the night of competition was a true representation of excellence of the system. The gentleman that competed truly brought their “A” game. It was very obvious that they would be prepared for nationals if they qualified. The theme of the state competition was the best of comics. The creativity and attention to detail was obvious in their presentation. The wide range of talent was highly entertaining however technical skill level did prevail. The level of debonair and handsome in red carpet fashion was truly a sight to see. When the evening was said and done congratulations to Simba R. Hall your new Mr. Gay Ohio America and his first alternate Vincent Debeaute. Both of whom will be competing at the national finals in St. Louis, Missouri July 1, 2018. Thank you to the promoter David Robin for a job well done.
One would think that I would need a few days of rest after the Ohio state competition. However, no such luck. I do not get to go home. I have to drive my car to the airport switch out my luggage and get on a 23-hour trip to South Africa for Mr. Gay World. As Mr. Gay America is a job, I did not have a choice but to literally leave this event to go represent our country at this international competition. To say that this experience would be a once in a lifetime opportunity is an understatement. It was truly life-changing for me. Not just the competition but the experience. The competition was very competitive, and I competed at the highest skill level of my life. I worked for nine months to have the best swimsuit body I’ve ever had, interview ready, clothing ready, and truly ready to compete against the world. I am proud to say that I reached my goal of representing us to the fullest. Unfortunately, the international judges did not deem it possible to place me in the top 10. I did learn from this experience that International politics plays a role in everything. I am confident in saying that my lack of top 10 placement was not based on my lack of performance level and excellence. As I feel disappointed, I have to realize that those around the world do things differently than we do in the United States. I feel that the Mr. Gay World organization is worthwhile, has purpose, and relevant. But it seems obvious to me that they were looking for a different kind of person, and I am OK with that. As I truly did my best and represented the United States of America with a high level of execution; outside of competition the events, appearances, and community service was worth the trip. I’ve had the opportunity to make many lifetime friends from around the world and to impact the lives of people that I never would’ve met. And for this I feel truly blessed. The advice I would give to my successor is to go to this international competition for the opportunity of a lifetime and for the experience not just for the win. As many decisions are made off the stage not on the stage. A special thanks goes to Mad Angel Entertainment and all of my sponsors for this life-changing experience. I feel blessed and highly favored to have had this opportunity. I am truly grateful and thankful.
As this is my last blog as your Mr. Gay America, I just want to say thank you to all of my family, friends, and fans that have supported me through my year. I never thought at the age of 50 I would be reigning in such a prestigious system and having the opportunity to tour the country and the world representing all of us, especially in the gay community. As I step down; I will continue to make an impact on the lives of those that I touch, and I will pray to God each day for me to continue to grow from this ultimate journey that I’ve taken this past year. It is with some sadness, but much excitement as this is my final edition of Kyle's Korner. May you continue to strive for love, peace, happiness, and equality in our community. I will always be there to be at the forefront of excellence.
Signing off... but never goodbye I am,
Your Mr. Gay America 2018