My actual name is Brian. I have been using Tonka as an online name since almost the beginning. People ask me where Tonka came from. It was a nickname given to me by some friends when I was in the Marine Corps. I was short and strong and drove 18 wheelers. Kinda fits I suppose.
This is my first kid, Ted.
He was with me for 12 years
This is Joey. He was my second.
Shared 13 great years with him.
This is my little girl, Shelby.
She's crazy sometimes, but full of life.
He often insists on being a lap dog. :)
This is Simon. He's my big baby.
This was my favorite bike
83 Suzuki XN85 (factory turbo)
This was my favorite car
72 Chevy Vega with a 327 V8
I'm a big kid at heart and always try to never be serious.
Love roughhousing at times too. :)
My Personal Stats
I'm about 5'7", husky build, short reddish blond hair, rusty mustache and beard, and furry in all the right places!!! :) I currently work in an auto parts store. Have been working around cars, trucks and machinery all of my life, which includes my duty in the United States Marine Corps, and US Navy Reserve as a SeaBee.
Along the Way...
I was born in a San Pedro California, which is also the port of Los Angeles. It's still one of my favorite places. From the time I was born until I moved out of the house after high school, I lived with my family (Dad John, mom Jean, brothers Randy and Kevin.) in Torrance CA. It's a fairly large beach type suburb of Los Angeles. As a teen, I could never be found at home. We had a dirt field behind the house where I would ride my mini bike until I ran out of gas. :) Then I'd get more gas. As an adult, I was always out in my car somewhere. Usually drag racing. Yes, I have the tickets to prove it. :(
I spent most of my years before I hit my thirties in the South Bay, which include San Pedro, and Lomita. I graduated from Narbonne High School in Harbor City, California in 1978 at the age of 17. After High School, I was on my own and worked as a mechanic at Carl's Brake and Tire in Lomita for a few years.
At the age of 20, I joined the United States Marine Corps Reserve. The Marines for me was a love/hate relationship. There were so many things I liked about it, but their bookkeeping and administrative departments were a nightmare. I had problems with my contract, enlistment, contract duty assignment and payroll. After my year of active duty for Boot Camp in San Diego and MOS training at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO., I returned to the South Bay and started working at M&B Auto Supply in Torrance, where I stayed for 8 years.
I spent the early years of my adulthood hanging out with friends, drag racing, accumulating traffic citations etc. There was one special girl I was head over heels in love with (Danna), and I'm sure she'd still make my heart skip a beat if I saw her today. She liked going racing and riding motorcycles with the guys. She may have been kind of a tomboy in some ways, but she was all female though. Beautiful fiery red hair, button nose and a sprinkling of freckles across her pretty face. I've never met another as beautiful as her. She's one of the special people in my life that I'll never forget.
I thought I was straight, or maybe bi-curious. Fact of the matter is that I was a complete virgin until I was 28. I'd never had any luck in romantic situations with women. Things just didn't click quite right. I always liked hanging out with the guys and doing guy things, but didn't think of guys sexually really. I thought that all gay guys liked wearing women's clothes, had limp wrists and spoke with lisps. Apparently I was mistaken!
When I was 28, I thought I had met the 'love of my life' (Ray) and moved to the Chino Hills in the Inland Empire of So Calif. Ray was the first guy I'd ever felt any kind of romantic inclinations towards. He's funny (maybe a bit nerdy) and I thought he was really cute. Very nice blue eyes and a smile that melted my heart. It was then that I knew I was gay and not straight. As much as I had loved Danna, this was a whole new world for me. Ray and I have remained friends and still see each other from time to time.
I stayed in the auto parts field and started working for Chief Auto Parts (a large South/Western auto parts chain). After a while because of different interests, things didn't work out with Ray, so I moved around the Inland Empire to exciting destinations such as Chino, Ontario and Rialto. Whenever I was offered the opportunity of moving to a new location and meeting a new challenge, I took it. One of my good customers was a Navy recruiter. He would always give me a hard time about being a Marine. In 1990, I let him talk me into joining the Navy Reserves as a SeaBee. That's the part of the Navy that puts up buildings, makes roads, bridges etc. The acronym SeaBee comes from the initials of Construction Battalion (CB=SeaBee) and gives the name a Navy feel of sorts I suppose.
I moved on and was promoted to store manager with Chief Auto (They finally talked me into it). With the promotion came a transfer and I somehow I ended up in the worthless town of Hemet California. It's a small retirement community about 40 miles from nowhere. Once you find nowhere, continue on another 40 miles and you should be in Hemet. Why did I move there, you might ask? I'm still trying to figure that one out.
After spending an eternity (5 years) in Hemet, I started dating someone who had been a friend for five years previous. I had been chatting on a few computer bulletin boards for several years, and Kevin was one of the first I had chatted with. I met him in person and thought he was a really great guy. He told me I was too, but told me I was 'GUD'. When I asked him what that was, he told me "Geographically Undesirable". I took that with the humor it was intended. We saw each other over the following years when we went out to bars, parties and such. It wasn't until Halloween of 1998 that we became serious about each other.
For the first several months of dating, I made the 2 hour (when there was no traffic) commute back and forth from Hemet to be with him. After that I moved in with him at his house which he affectionately calls a ranch, in the North San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles. (I'd call it a house in a neighborhood where you can have horses and other animals rather than a ranch, but maybe that's just me.) I liked living there except for all of the dust that settles on everything and the lack of privacy, as his mother, stepfather, sister and grandmother are all on the same property as well. I found that it's impossible to get along with in-laws who live in the same house. One asset was his grandmother Nanna. She's sweet as can be and is really good people.
Chief Auto Parts was taken over by AutoZone in 1998. I stuck around for about 8 months under the new regime, but after I got fed up with the new bureaucracy, I left for greener pastures. I went to work for Valencia Auto Parts in Newhall CA. I really liked the area and most of the people there. No more headaches from being a store manager. I tried working under AutoZone for months, but they are a bunch of "Parts Nazis" who think it's cool to make you spell out the word AutoZone by contorting your body into the shapes of the letters. AutoZone is run by a bunch of pricks who have their heads up their asses. I'm not bitter though. :)
At the age of 40, I was back on my own again, living in Sunland, CA (Los Angeles). I lived in an apartment building that felt like a trailer park without wheels. This was the first time I'd ever lived in an apartment building. Life there is OK, but missing the company of that special someone in my life. I'm not really a big fan of living alone. At least I wasn't completely alone. I did have my dog Joey here with me. :)
10-15-2002 I've met someone I care very much about. His name is Reggie and he's a really great guy who treats me better than anyone I've ever been with. The only problem was that he lived a couple thousand miles away. It looks like things have worked out well enough for me to leave the warm sunny climate of Southern California for the first time in my life. I'm now living in Atlanta, Georgia. I really love it here so far. Everything is so green. Not something you ever see in Southern California. I love LA for many things, but Atlanta is now our home. Oh.. And I'm also working for the Parts Nazis again. I'm not working in regular retail this time though. I have my own department in my store. I'm the Commercial Manager and liking the job so far.
7-28-2003 I've finally gotten tired of renting and we bought our first house here in the Atlanta suburbs. It's a pretty nice 2 story house with 3 bedrooms and a basement. I guess I'm as settled in as I'm going to get. At least there won't be any more moving on a whim. Life is good.
11-27-03 Reggie and I have met someone very special and have added him to our family. He's our cub and his name is Dave and he adds a good balance to our household and always enjoy his company. It's different having a third person in the relationship, but it's also very nice. He adds that something that was missing in our lives.
11-1-06 Dave has decided that things are not working for him and has chosen to leave the relationship in search of greener pastures. We miss him very much and things are just not the same without him here.
2-26-07 After much debate, I've decided to end the relationship as it's been with Reggie. I still love him very much, but have had a very hard time dealing with things since Dave left the relationship. Reggie and I still love each other and are still living in the same house. We are probably the best friends that either of us have ever had. I'm not sure whether we'll get back together or not, but it is an option. Either way, he means the world to me and can't imagine my life without him in it.
4-10-09 After several years of having problems with my right shoulder, I'm having surgery on it today to fix a damaged rotator cuff. It appears that I've got a spur in my shoulder that is digging into my cuff. They are going to remove the spur and some additional bone from my collar bone and repair the damage to the cuff. The initial pain from the surgery was pretty tough, but has been gradually reducing every day. Just need to work on the range of motion now to make everything all better.