Daddy has died. No, I am not talking about the archetypical idea but about a bones and flesh human being.
A sad ending
His last post in Daddy’s Reviews has the headline “The Nurse Says I have a cold”. He was found unconscious at his home one week after, taken by the local police to the hospital, diagnosed Covid-19, and intubated. He never recovered consciousness. Last weekend, we learned that Daddy has died.
To start, the role he played during the transition triggered by legendary Hoboy’s death, has been questioned by many contemporaries. Then, once he secured control of the reviews website and its attached discussion forum, his management style generated as many fans as detractors.
Finally, his politics jeopardized his legacy. Quite a conventional Libertarian, his ideas were just a pile of incoherent nonsense that managed to piss folks in all sides, but not too much. It was not until last year, amidst the Black Lives Matter demonstrations, that he took a stand intolerable for many. Indeed, it was too much for us.
Despite the many things that moved us apart, he has just as many that make me remember him with fondness. However, we are not fond of eulogies. That is why now that Daddy has died we choose to remember him in all his beautiful human complexity.
Beyond all our differences, Daddy’s legacy is a major contribution to contemporaneous gay American popular culture. Clearly, the major focus of his websites is male prostitution and escorting. However, the discussion forums are an immense treasure where decades of Male Homosexual Life are extensively and exhaustively documented. This information should be priceless for any Academic institution centered on Queer Studies or Urban Culture.
For a couple of decades until his passing, Daddy successfully curated the escorts reviews. Not only he would follow up to make sure the reports were authentic. Additionally, he would offer the chance to respond to a negative review. Furthermore, he would mentor and protect newbie and veteran escorts. Although the websites often struggled financially during his tenure, they were indeed successful at providing a continuous valuable service to both, clients and providers of the trade.
Daddy also led the M4M discussion forums. Originally just a subsidiary for the reviews, the forums were slowly but consistently growing in popularity. When the SESTA/FOSTA crisis effected the separation into two different websites as well as the degradation of the reviews, the M4M forums became the life of the party. Right now, as Daddy has died, the reviews website is frozen while the M4M forums are still very active.
To close, we want to celebrate his political tolerance. Although Daddy could be tyrannical, his beefs were mostly because of personal chemistry rather than ideological dogmatism. The political array present in the forums is representative of the whole American politics spectrum. Living in a progressive and liberal city like DC, Daddy’s forums were the place where I would find exposition to Trump supporters or crazy White Conservative Christians. They still are, even after his passing. It is impossible to overstate the importance of exposure to opposing views.
Ending an era
Daddy has died in the middle of a pandemic that is landmarking historical changes. Although his passing triggers a crisis that could end in the demise of both websites, it also opens the gates for new opportunities. Daddy’s contribution was considerable, but limited by the man’s circumstances. Perhaps his views on sex work were still progressive, but his views about sexuality were rooted in a time gone long ago. Even his vision for the websites was just Hoboy’s, despite the social media revolution that took place in the last decade.
Daddy has died, and as we mourn him, we hope that his legacy will continue. Our hope is for a new generation taking over. Our hope is for a discussion forum community that continues growing and mirroring the switch to a USA less White, less Religious, and less Individualist.
We do not want to close this article without a personal note. Daddy’s passing arrived when we were distanced. This blogger is sad because the last words we exchanged were not friendly. Even when it is too late now, I want to express my personal gratitude. The M4M forums and Daddy schooled me on the ropes of virtual networking and production. When this blog started, he allowed me to share the link in all my posts. During the whole first year of I LIKE PINGA, almost all our traffic was coming from Daddy’s websites. Without them, I do not know whether Jose Soplanucas would have never been born, or I LIKE PINGA existed.
Hasta la próxima pinga, amig@s!