Nov. 11, 2020

Episode 9 (Nick Capra)

Episode 9 (Nick Capra)

We welcome gay icon and legend Nick Capra to The Q Lounge.  He was so open and honest as we discussed his life and his trials, tribulations and blessings.


We welcome gay icon and legend Nick Capra to The Q Lounge.  He was so open and honest as we discussed his life and his trials, tribulations and blessings.

 

For more information on Nick Capra, Please Click here

Transcript

Eric:

Hello and welcome to the Q lounge podcast. We are your hosts. I'm Eric

Gil:

I'm Gil.

Eric:

Join us as we discuss news stories and life situations. As they relate to the LGBTQIA plus experience, please visit us@theqloungepodcast.com and hit that subscribe button or listen wherever you get your podcasts. Hello and welcome to the Q lounge. I'm Eric and I'm Gil. And today we are so honored to be joined by gay icon and legend Nick Capra. Thank you, Nick, for joining us in ThE Q lounge. How are you today?

Nick:

I'm doing pretty well thanks I'm just chilling after a little workout at the gym.

Eric:

Oh, nice. How was your workout?

Nick:

It was good. That's good.

Eric:

That's good. And I'm glad to hear, I haven't been to the gym since February because of the whole pandemic and I really miss the gym. So I just do yoga daily or most days I should say,

Nick:

I would love to start doing yoga. So you're like at one step ahead of where I'd like to be, I don't bend. big boys don't bend.

Eric:

Yeah. I used to teach yoga and I used to be, I used to be a dancer, so I'm actually pretty flexible for being a bigger guy. Yeah. How are you dealing with the pandemic and everything?

Nick:

I'm in Southern California and, we got, it, things started getting good gyms. non-essential businesses reopened, and now we're moving up in a tier. I don't know if you've noticed on the news. I think 31 States have escalated and spiked

Eric:

again, I'm in one of those States. Me

Nick:

too. So any day now, nonessential businesses could get shut down. So no more gym, no more one barber shops,

Eric:

that's why I'm wearing a hat. Cause I haven't had my hair done in a minute.

Gil:

I was going to say, at least in the Bay area, we finally started opening up again. So I'm like, Oh my hair, the grays have all gone away a little bit more.

Nick:

I don't know if you guys can appreciate this, but my experience right now in the pandemic, it's given the. Plus is it's forced all of us to be very present. And what little thing had gotten taken away. We're so grateful to have them back like gym, barbershop. So it has taught us all, I think, to live in each day completely in the present.

Eric:

Totally agree with that. It makes me thankful for each day and each little step is like a success for me right now. So even when I get knocked down, like I just actually dealt with the whole week and a half of battling depression and everything. But each day that I was able to get up, I was like, that's a win, which I try to do anyways. But, like you said, being present in the day-to-day now and appreciating it even more. So I was like, that's a, win my eyes opened today, we are going forward. Yeah,

Nick:

exactly.

Gil:

Yeah. Cause I'm going to say, because I'm so used to being like, working in the city, I'm always on the, go on the go, Oh, I'll talk to them later. I'll see you the next week. And the reality is I won't see them for months, maybe years on end. And this really slowed me down where I'm like, Oh my God, how are you really doing what's going on in your life? And, valuing it a little bit more than normal, the set of, ah, yeah, there's always tomorrow.

Nick:

I liked that you brought that up because the relationships become more valuable too. Absolutely.

Eric:

Definitely. You got to appreciate those. Like when you don't see your friends for awhile or people that you're close to, and then you get to see them, you're like, Oh my gosh, I'm going to cherish this moment because everything is so scattered now. it gets crazy. How was being part of the LGBTQ community for you? I know you probably have a different perspective than some of us do and

Nick:

no, I'm just, I'm just one of the boys. I, I've been gay and out for so long. I think maybe I take that for granted too. I don't know. But, yeah. And I'm Proud. And this is a time in our lives, despite the setbacks of the pandemic, where you can really just take ownership of who you are, in your sexuality, but non-binary, and fluidity is become almost a part of the norm, not just for gays and lesbians, but trans. And so I think this is a great time to be gay.

Eric:

I agree anytime is a great time to be gay. how was it, for you coming out? Like how long have you been out for it?

Nick:

I knew I was gay pretty much coming out of the womb, but of course, I went through that whole, pre coming out thing with a lot of shame. This was the eighties. And it wasn't where we were involved with gender fluidity. And that was like a thing. It was not safe to be openly gay because this portrait of what a man was so prevalent. This is John Wayne, burly masculine. And so coming out when I was 18 years old was, It was a traumatizing, not for the personal acceptance part, but what I went through socially.

Eric:

yeah. we've talked about that a little bit. Like I went to a very religious high school and so I actually didn't. Even accept it or know that I even questioned it until I was like 22. But even if I had back in high school, I probably would have been terrified. So maybe that was part of the reason why I stayed so sheltered. because high school was

Nick:

I'm sorry, go ahead.

Eric:

I was just gonna say, cause high school was pretty traumatic in that regard.

Nick:

Yeah, absolutely. Were you feminine?

Eric:

No, I wasn't. but I did like to dance. So I had like my little traits, but I kept those all on the down low as well. So yeah,

Nick:

I had a vision of you just not like showgirl sake.

Eric:

I love Showgirls. I was a huge Saved By the Bell fan. So Elizabeth Berkley, I was like, yes, I'm watching that movie.

Nick:

Oh, you were team Nomi, see I was team Crystal. I was always rooting for the evil queen.

Eric:

Crystal was amazing. Gina Gershon is awesome. So

Nick:

they were both tremendous Gil. Did you have problems like in high school, did you get picked on or were you out yet?

Gil:

I wasn't out in high school. Like I knew. And, I was crushing on, like my best friend and that kind of thing, but I wasn't out, it was just one of those things, like never felt the need to, and I just came out in college kind of thing I wasn't picked on necessarily. I think the more, it was just, I don't know, it was very neutral. No one really asked, but no one really is. I don't know. I was just there with

Nick:

it. So like a don't ask, don't tell kind of situation.

Gil:

I think people knew before me, even when I was a kid and I knew since I was a kid, you're like, Oh, my diva is, I had all that. I was like, Oh, I'll go as boy George for Halloween for God's sake.

Nick:

I was 11. how old were you for Boy, George. See, I,

Gil:

cause I was born in the eighties, but of course I always look back. I was like, I love eighties music. And I'm like that one kid in the late nineties talking about it. Yeah. So that was me. I would, all the signs were there. It's okay.

Nick:

Oh, go ahead.

Gil:

I was thinking, but just like being in the Bay area, like I said, it was, it's not as taboo. So that's why but I just always felt scared about it just in case. Cause the culturally, being, half, half halfway through the Spanish side of me, The macho side, it's more of a family kind of thing. So that's, I think why I kept it in a little bit longer.

Nick:

Yeah. Yeah. Is that your dad's side? That was

Gil:

the dad's side.

Nick:

I get it.

Eric:

The whole machismo attitude. Yeah. I grew up with that as well, although it was on my mom's side, but I had uncles that not very kind.

Nick:

were they hot? So it wasn't a secret my, between uncles and nephews kind of situation.

Gil:

Not at all.

Eric:

I could hope, but no, not at all. I actually just had that conversation with another friend of mine about hot uncles.

Nick:

Absolutely. Did you guys have that situation in high school? Cause I'll tell you what I was going through. Like I think it was, eighth grade, so maybe I was like 13 and cause you just start having, you have PE class and everybody's stripping down and it's it was like, I was looking forward to PE class every day because it was like a candy store and guys were splitting into like sprout bushes. Did you guys have that experience?

Gil:

I did. I don't know. Did you Eric

Eric:

or he did not, but I think I was like, so self-conscious of people might think I was looking at them that I was like that kid who just got dressed really quick or only undressed as far as I absolutely had to, and then dressed up really quick. And I was out of there because I didn't want anyone to see me looking at anybody. Cause I was. It's really, I guess again, terrified because like I said, being in a heavily Christian school and they were extremely homophobic and made it known how evil they thought it was. I was just like, I don't want anyone to think that I'm looking at them, so get dressed and just get

Nick:

out. I'll tell you something I got busted because I was a little bit opposite. I was lingering. Remember his name? His name was Brad. And he was like a ninth grader. He was a year older and he was really overdeveloped. Like it just went fomp, like when he took out his cock and he had this big Bush and I remember looking and he said to me, stop staring at my cock you faggot. Oh, wow. Like in the middle with all the boys looking. And I was just like, Oh, I went home and jerked off thinking about him, but the shame of, cause that was like the inclination that like what I, who I was at my core was wrong. There was something defective about me. So that starts at an early age. And I think some, like what you just described wanting to get the fuck out of there.

Eric:

Yeah. All right. And that's why, I have issues when people say, Oh, what's your preference? And I'm like, no, this is who I am. Like, I was born this way. We were born this way. don't tell me that I'm making this choice to get myself beat up and get myself bullied or whatever else.

Nick:

yeah. It's really, I think it's entertaining almost when people say that kind of thing. I think that's a lot of religious people still are living in that kind of delusion, but it's would you tell someone that was Latino or Italian or African-American, just stop behaving like that, or you can have a different you were born into and what sexuality are born into. It just is.

Eric:

Absolutely. So did you, face any, issues socially or culturally when you were coming out?

Nick:

Absolutely. Like I said, I was shamed obviously, cause I was. Visually staring at people. And, but I'll tell you something. I finished high school in adult school with all the pregnant teenage girls. I was attacked by three guys. I was a little goth kid and this was, the late eighties, early nineties. So this was before goth was cool. And, they called me Edward Scissorhands cause I used to rat my hair out all big. And I think I said something back in defense and they waited until lunch and a little goth kid. I would go up and we were all standing across the street from high school and smoke cigarettes and they attacked me. And they'd brutal. Beat the shit out of me face up they tore I remember they tore up my shirt and they threw me down on ice plant Hill. And, so from that moment forward, that was the end of my junior year in high school. I finished my senior year in adult school going to night classes because it was no, it was not a safe place.

Eric:

Crazy

Nick:

unique goth. It was like, so all these little things were showing me at such an early age. It is not safe to be who you are in your skin.

Eric:

yeah. That's wow. That's a lot. Did that lead you to any personal struggles or like having to hide yourself or being aware that you weren't accepted by society? Did it. Trigger any demons or anything else that

Nick:

you would. And that was when I began to experience, and experiment with, recreational drugs. But, it was about 16 years old and I, started smoking pot and I took LSD for the first time. And there was a sense of ease and comfort that came when I would start to get that euphoria because it was like I was in another world, what drugs do to everybody. And in that false kind of feeling that drugs were producing, I was safe. So yeah. Yeah, that was my

Eric:

outlet. I know, that's an outlet for many, because it helps you just escape or gives you that moment to where you feel like you can actually just breathe and there's nothing else coming at you.

Nick:

absolutely.

Eric:

Have you had any struggles recently, or I know you're coming on 71 days sober. So congratulations on that. That's awesome. Super happy for you. Yeah.

Nick:

So this is, so now we're talking about what 35 years later, this outlet that I started going to out of shame for who I was, Became my comfort and became it's a relationship you start to have with the drugs. That's becomes your partner becomes your best friend, your confident, but then that best friend and lover, starts to turn on you. And then I started having consequences and, I started losing my money. I started losing my mind and losing my relationships, but you can't tell the truth from the false, so you keep going back, like someone would to an abusive lover. here I am 35 years later with 71 days sober trying, fighting for, to figure out how it is to live in this world. Sober without that coping mechanism. It is a struggle.

Eric:

Yeah. how do you deal with that? Or do you have any triggers that you need to avoid or,

Nick:

I don't go into crack houses anymore.

Eric:

that's good.

Nick:

That's a good one. Yeah, honestly, I had to do things differently cause I've done this a couple of times and obviously if I don't change in this sobriety, something really, Sufficient then I'm going to go back the way I did last time. So this time I made a commitment to live in a sober living home. what that looks like is myself and, 10 other men that are either gay or straight they're allies. So they're very accepting and I've never done that before. So I have that as support and I do the 12 steps. It's not for everybody. That's what helps me avoid triggers. So I go to AA, NA meeting, CMA meetings, crystal meth anonymous, and I have a sponsor taking me through the steps, but life is a trigger.

Gil:

Very true.

Eric:

Very much And how often do you go to meetings?

Nick:

Outside meetings? I do about three a week. and that's just for now because. You never know when outside meeting are going to get shut down, like the rest of the world. or, and if not, then I'll go to zoom. So I do three a week, and I've got set meetings. I go to, that's

Eric:

great. Yeah. And you were saying that like you've had, you've lost a lot and stuff like that due to addiction. What were some of the greatest losses you had.

Nick:

So many, the greatest losses, my partner, Tony, I was, that was the long, that was, he was, we were together almost three years and, we had, like any relationship issues and I was almost four years sober. I met him when I was one year sober and, he took his life. And it was right after a relapse that I had. And, there was a lot, it wasn't because of me, but of course I always wonder if I had stayed sober would he still be alive. Could I have been present for him? so when I look back on my life at all the things I lost in the midst of an addiction, Tony was the biggest,

Eric:

yeah. Are there any other demons that come from your addiction that you still are struggling with daily? I know a lot of it is probably still a daily struggle because addiction is a daily struggle, but

Nick:

no, I don't. I'm good with the daily stuff. Like it's these really big things that happen to you and I'm sure you Gil, health issues. loss of a partner loss of a job there's really big curve balls. Those are the ones that have always took me at taking out. I did not have the, I've never had the tools. And I think that addicts, not just myself, all feel things a little bit deeper than most people. So things become very intense.

Eric:

was any of it due to self-acceptance? Cause I know we talked about how society viewed you and, or being gay and how a lot of that was, indoctrinated into you are into all of us. was self-acceptance any part, a trigger for you?

Nick:

that's a good question. I can't even tell you maybe. And there's gotta be some truth, to that, The gay part? No, I've had the privilege of working in the adult industry now for what, 19 years. So it's such a celebration of my sexuality and I'm like having sex with the whole world to see. So just, not being able to accept life on life's terms. Okay. Cancer diagnosis, my mother's stroke. Tony's death, those things, each one of them separately. I could have been relapses.

Eric:

Okay. And how is your mom doing right now?

Nick:

Madeline's it's a new normal she's healthy. in terms of physically, she has a little she has COPD, but the stroke was, Cruel and it's permanently affected her cognitive, her speech, her memory. So it's, I'm learning how to accept her now in a different light.

Eric:

Okay. Cause I know you guys are really close, so what are you see on social media? So yeah, I'm the same way with

Gil:

mine. We're all the same way.

Nick:

Are you guys with your moms too? Like

Eric:

very close to my mom.

Nick:

Their mothers and then all of our fathers, daddy issues.

Eric:

Pretty much all the stuff I have a stepfather, yeah.

Gil:

yeah.

Eric:

And you are a cancer survivor. Can you talk to us about that a little bit?

Nick:

Yeah. I was one of the lucky ones, Because statistics show us about cancer. A lot of not been able to live through it, but yeah, cancer was, it'll be three years ago, November. So next month. But I got the diagnosis. it happened suddenly. my testicle had enlarged four times.

Eric:

Oh, wow.

Nick:

Normal. And, it was painless. So when I say this and I tell you this, I cannot express how important it is to have a healthy relationship with your nuts and do self tests. cause I never did until this happened, that was a very, radical surgery. They had to remove. The testicle, but in it, and it's just a terrible recovery. you imagine. And so many things went through my mind, not just with cancer, but it's my career over, it was numb down there for a long time because of the incision and yeah. But cancer is really scary and I'm still technically in remission because just coming up on three years.

Eric:

Yeah. Cause it's it's a five-year cutoff, right? Yes, sir.

Nick:

That's

Gil:

excellent.

Eric:

What

Gil:

keeps you motivated daily? Because you've gone through a lot of struggle and a lot of people midway would probably be just like give up altogether. this happened done with life and what keeps it going? Because I think under it all, you're very strong-willed even though yes, you might have a little knockdowns, but immediately you get right back up. So what is that driving force in you? do

Nick:

you know what it is Gil? I think that as sensitive and delicate as I am, as I have, like in instances, I think that on the opposite side, I'm that resilient as well. Yeah. And There's just something inside of me that I have to keep getting back up, no matter how many times I've been knocked down. And I think that also having fallen on my face so many times publicly and being transparent about it. yeah. Has helped me, get back up.

Gil:

Yes. It's great. Yeah. It's like I said, especially for people who always feel like, Oh, everything's against me, but I'm like everyone, every day still keeps fighting. There's something always there. And I think people forget to look inside sometimes where. You're worth it. You're, there's something there. Otherwise everyone would be dying left and right. I would throw myself off the building.

Nick:

Me too. I think that there's something inside of all of us. And I can't even tell you what that is energy that moves us, Keeps us all going.

Eric:

Yeah, definitely. And I've always appreciated how transparent you are and I've always applauded your openness with the public and with your fans and everything else. And you're like, I'm struggling just as much as you are. Or right now I might be having a really. Bad moment, but you also show your great moments, but you show that you are very much a human and I've always really appreciated that. And that's one reason why I've always been a strong follower you, because I think that's awesome. And it, it humanizes you and I've always just related yeah. To that on a personal level, on a human level.

Nick:

Thank you for saying,

Eric:

you're welcome. where do you find strength and solace? to piggyback off of what Gil was asking.

Nick:

a lot of my strength and solace comes from, the people that are in the fellowship of AA and NA. So I have a sponsor who has eight years sober and there's a lot I get from him. I have a lot of people in my support group who have a lot more sober time than I do and experience. So there's a lot of strength that comes from that. I find a lot of strength also in the fan because. As I relate my story, they relate theirs back to me. So their stories become my story. And I think vice versa. So we have this little relationship going and there's a lot of strengths that they don't even realize what they do for me. their stories

Eric:

gives me a

Nick:

daily basis.

Eric:

Oh, that's great. That's wonderful. I'm sure that your fans will be happy to know that as well. Absolutely.

Nick:

Yeah.

Eric:

And to take things back a little bit, what has rock bottom been like for you?

Nick:

this was a pretty, this was rock bottom. So coming back into this, sobriety restraining order against me from my mother. Oh, wow. With the potential so that I might never speak to my mother again. because. And it wasn't. And my sponsor said this to me, this is not against you. It's against your addiction. No, it's who you become this monster. It's not who you really are. But of course that was rock bottom. the most important person in my life had a restraining order against me.

Eric:

Okay. Yeah. that would be hard. I can see that. what advice do you have for other people who are struggling with addiction?

Nick:

first, save your money because it's going to cost you a whole lot to go to rehab. you're gonna, you could die, but for those people that are really feeling like there's no way out. I think the hardest thing for every addict to do is just to reach out and ask for help or so. And this isn't just for addicts. I'm sure you guys can relate when we're going through shit. It's you got to figure out a way to handle it, handle

Eric:

your shit, for sure.

Nick:

With this disease in particular, you can't do it alone. So I want to reach out for help.

Eric:

I'm super guilty of this. I am always there to lend a hand and I want to help everybody, but I never, I rarely ask for help myself. And I think part of it is because I have trust issues and everything else, but intellectually, at least I know that asking for help is actually a strength and it's something that is very necessary, especially when it's needed. So I think that's some good advice to not be afraid to ask for help when. You see yourself

Gil:

as well, is that people we don't like to be vulnerable to anyone. And we always want to show, we got everything wrapped up. Everything's fine here. And the fact of the matter is by the time you do reach out, you're practically, or like your last string of life. It is Oh, I need some help. It's yeah, you probably needed to nine years ago kind of thing. And I know I'm, pride gets in my way where I'm like, I'm fine underwater. It's

Nick:

funny. It was, it's like this whole thing, they're going to cut off my hand and they're like, Oh my God. Finally, when you reach out and people actually help, you're just like, what the fuck was he so afraid about it in the first place? Exactly. But asking for help. So that's a form of humility, right? So it's almost like humility can feel humiliating. It's really?

Eric:

Yeah, it can be. I had a friend who, told me one time to not let my humility become my weakness,

Nick:

I love that.

Eric:

if you were to look back now, like what advice would you give a younger you

Nick:

hang on

Eric:

and it'd be a bumpy ride.

Nick:

Yeah, I would have told myself, just be a little kinder to yourself. and I would have said, don't be afraid to ask them

Eric:

for help.

Nick:

They are. Absolutely. I probably would have saved myself a lot of heartache if I'd asked for help sooner.

Eric:

do you still find it hard to ask for help even now that you're back here? Yes.

Nick:

Yeah, absolutely. but I just think that we're ingrained with that when we're young men, like you got to figure it out and what a real man is makes it on his own, but it's, just those little things, the big things it's you have to, when you have to, but yeah, these daily things calling my sponsor, and tell them my I'm going through this, that, or the other thing is difficult for me. Lots of things. Did

Eric:

you have issues with, I'm sure you did just being as being that you are gay, the masculine culture, cause we've talked a lot about how like toxic masculinity, forms, a lot of how we see ourselves and our reactions to the world where we want to react this way, but we don't because they're supposed to react this way and we get confused within our lives.

Nick:

Oh, yeah. And I was very feminine and flamboyant as a not, and not even when I was gay yet. It was just who I was. Yes, definitely. And then, there was just a level of acceptance now. Like I, my pearls come out all over, or you just let it be,

Gil:

I agree. I think if my dad wasn't, as like Gil what's going on here, what's going on. I probably would have been a lot more flamboyant. I think it was natural. I didn't even know what was going on. It was just, it is

Eric:

what it is.

Nick:

My dad was really terrible to me about that. He used to call me a fagella. yeah, and my dad was like six foot four Guido with the big gold chain. Oh, she had an, Yeah. he terrorized me and shamed me a lot, but he couldn't stop me either. I was like choreographing to the Virgin tour with Madonna in my bedroom with props. I was playing action figures and roll his eyes and slam the door.

Eric:

I used to do that too. But with Janet music, that would always like do choreography I would order the songs in the order. I wanted to perform them in. And then I would pretend like I was performing in a concert for two or three hours.

Nick:

Awesome.

Eric:

Yeah. That was always fun time for me.

Gil:

Did you have a music diva? Like growing up. It's every stereotype, every gay male, like what was your favorite?

Nick:

Madonna. So Madonna was the first female. Okay. And I was 11 and I even asked, I have a picture, a Polaroid. So that's how that from the eighties. But I insisted on having a Madonna birthday cake for my 11th birthday, and my mom, don't you want a soccer or a race car cake, she was the other boy. And the little boys at my birthday party would make fun. Then I was like, no, I want Madonna. Yeah. are they also, my grandparents paid for me to come to New York cause we moved by the time I was 11 from White Plains, New York to San Diego. And my grandparents flew me back when I was 13 to see Speed the Plow that was the play Madonna was in on Broadway. Oh, full on Madonna. I was a Madonna gay.

Gil:

I think

Eric:

many were in many, still are. she revolutionized the music scene and did so much. Or

Nick:

who was your queen?

Gil:

mine's Annie Lennox. I love the androgynous look, I loved her voice. Even as a kid, I was like, Oh my God, I'm wearing a suit now wearing a dress. And I'm like, it's Annie. I was singing off key, but I still loved her. That was mine in the shower. You're like, you're, you think you're here deep in the shower.

Nick:

Eric

Eric:

Janet Jackson fan. Like I love me some Janet Jackson, I ride or die for Janet. I've seen her numerous times in concert. I can't say enough good things about this. Cause that's who I love. I said I used to put on quote-unquote concerts to her music. I would come up with some of my best choreography or practice my choreography in the shower and to be in the shower for 45 minutes to an hour, just like practicing the If breakdown or the Rhythm Nation breakdown or anything like that. So

Nick:

I just had the vision.

Eric:

that was actually probably the first choreography I truly learned that I taught myself was that if breakdown,

Nick:

so fuck. Yeah, I'll tell you really quick. I was just on that subject. So my mom took me to see the Virgin tour, when I was 11 also. And I actually, and she had snuck in her Polaroid at her big old purse and. She had gotten a few pictures, which I still have. And last year I got to take my mom thirty-five years later to see Madame X. And so it was such a great moment. Like from the time I was like, do you remember? And she was like, Oh, I remember. The Madonna cake and the Virgin Tour, and then later at Madame X together. It was really cool.

Eric:

That's beautiful. That's a wonderful full circle. That's brings a tear to my eye. That's beautiful. I'm that super sensitive. Emotional gay.

Nick:

I'll tell you a little secret too. So I am going to, I don't, I'm not a big believer in tattoos. This was a mistake from the nineties when all the gays were doing this, my only tattoo, but at the Madam X show there, Madonna, she does a Frozen, she did a piano ballad and daughter Lourdes is on a big projection screen doing an interpretive dance. But at the end, Lourdes just closes. her hands and she has mom tattooed on her knuckles if a moment like a mother daughter between them and my mom and I were holding hands, watching, crying because of that. And so for my six months, God willing, we get to six months. I'm getting that same tattoo. My mom does, but I'm getting it and get my mom tattooed on my knuckles. Oh,

Eric:

that's beautiful. That's wonderful. I can't wait to see, I can't wait to see that.

Gil:

We'll get it. Yes.

Nick:

she's going to freak out. She hates that. she freaked out on this, so freak out and then. She'll love it.

Eric:

I only have one tattoo as well, so

Nick:

no

Gil:

tattoos yet eventually. Oh, we say that every year. Like eventually you'll get

Nick:

there. if there's a time and a place for it, and some people look great, I have this feeling of don't put a bumper sticker on the bat line. Yeah,

Gil:

that's true.

Eric:

Yeah. Very much. any stereotypes that you think that you've been pigeonholed into or anything that you. Okay.

Nick:

The fact that I've been being Nick Capra and in what I do, I think I read in a blog about me, like maybe 10 years ago, someone referred to me as a mouth breather. And I was like, fair enough. when you sign up to be a walking penis and you're selling skin, people don't really think you have anything to say about yourself or the world. Yeah,

Eric:

that's really unfair. I actually completely despise the way people look at sex work and sex workers. That's. Something that I think is wrong with our society

Nick:

and you can't change it. So there's people that really believe that. And then there's the people who don't want you to say anything, just sit there and look pretty.

Eric:

Yeah, that bothers me. That was one reason why I reached out to you to do this interview because I know you have a lot to say. And like I said, you're so transparent and people need to hear that. It's not, yes, you're a pretty face, but you are so much more than that. And I think people need to understand that and listen. You have a lot to offer intellectually.

Nick:

Yeah. And the way I look at it too, is there's not a lot of gay men in my industry who do what I do. and that's not so blow myself up that way, but I already am very aware of it. Cause I see on social media, what my work associates and what they do, that's great. And you can, if that's what you want a pretty face that does the splits, or, just shows pictures of their insides. I think it's great. And there's a place for it, but. You're not. Or if you can come to me, if you want a little bit more or something a little bit different,

Gil:

you're definitely using your platform, use your platform for what it is. And I think a lot of people get scared and they're like, Oh no, my career. But I'm like, you're more than just a career, given a chance. So we have a couple of hundred followers. We're not huge, but we're still using what we do to, get the word out.

Nick:

I love that you guys do what you do. And we talk a lot about cultural and social struggles because it's, that's real shit. that's the stuff that we need to cause we all face it as gay men.

Eric:

Yeah, definitely. It's a vicious cycle that we have to break that cycle. And I always say being a cycle breaker is like one of the hardest things to do, but it's also a very necessary step to take. So

Nick:

yeah, I've agreed. I'm sorry. I was gonna just, I would have a lot more followers on social media and I probably would have a lot more money in my bank account if I, was just pretty. Because I think that there's your numbers go up because you're a porn star, but I also would, rather, when I die, I don't believe that my, how many social media followers I had or how much money I make is going to matter. It's really comes down to who did I help?

Eric:

Yeah, I think that's great. I love what you're

Nick:

doing here.

Eric:

thank you very much. That means a lot. yeah I think your point of view on that is very valid and very true like I said, I appreciate the fact that you use your position to educate people. And like said you could just be another pretty face, but. There's substance there. And not saying that no one else has substance, but you authentically want to share that part of you. And I'm all about authenticity. That's like my big thing. So I love people who are genuine and sincere and who they are and in their lives. So

Nick:

thank you

Eric:

for that.

Nick:

I can't help, but believe also, so I celebrate 19 years in this industry next February 3rd. There'll be 19 years since I filmed my first movie. For Ch Chi. And,

Eric:

congrats on that.

Nick:

Thank you. But I'm not the prettiest. I'm not the best performer. I can't help, but believe what's why so many stars, huge superstars, bigger than myself are gone now. And I'm still here and why the fans and the studios keep bringing me back is that humanity.

Eric:

There's that connection

Nick:

all in so many times. And it's almost like a. It keeps them coming back, I think.

Eric:

Okay. Yeah. I was introduced to your work. I think it was Return to Fire Island was the first thing that I saw you in. yeah. And there was just something about you that like drew me in and then, cause I like once I started following you and everything else, it was that human connection. And I was like, yeah, like that's why you have the longevity that you have. I believe.

Nick:

Thank you and Return to Fire Island. You've been wow, that ages us both.

Eric:

Yeah. I could have looked at it when I was three, but no, I wasn't three. What stuff do you have going on now? What's going on? Yeah,

Nick:

I was asked, of course I was asked to come back and do a new movie and, I turned it down. That's the one thing I'm doing differently. Usually at 90 days, sober, I'm traveling around the country. My gigs and working. I think that I started doing the new movie. So Secrets Between Uncles and Nephews, just

Eric:

dropped I think I just saw the preview for that today. Like for me, like an hour before this started. So

Nick:

yeah. we did that in February in Puerto Vallarta, so it's just dropping and this was the first movie that I got to write direct and star in and it was such a brilliant privilege to, I cast it. So it's and I just got the promo copies two days ago to give her a couple of way on social media. So it was like my baby was born.

Eric:

Oh, that's awesome. Congratulations. That's wonderful. That must have felt good.

Nick:

It feels really good, but where I'm at presently, of course I'll come back and I'm not, I used to go running back cause relevance, you have to stay relevant. The fans aren't going anywhere and my career's not going anywhere. So right now it's a time to really focus on stabilizing and building my sobriety. I

Eric:

think that's good. I think you got to take care of yourself first. That way you are still there and your fans are definitely not going anywhere. They've, you've been, like you said, you've been in this game for 19 years. I think that your fans are pretty loyal. I know, looking at, even if you look at pop stars, as they're coming up, they like release albums, like every four months to stay relevant. And I think you probably get a lot of that. I'm assuming in your industry, especially with the up-and-comers, like we have to stay relevant when you have to do new scenes all the time, blah, blah, blah. And then, like you said, you get to your point where you're like, I can just breathe a second and focus on myself and my inward self and making myself a better person making these connections with people. And yeah, your fans are going to support you, I think, regardless.

Nick:

I've been blessed with a really loyal fan base. And, I wanna, I wish if some of these boys came and asked me like what the secret was, but they don't because I get we're all coming from a really self centered. I know what I'm doing kind of place, especially in my industry, but they don't realize that running around every four months is that every movie is one step closer to saturation. So then they're wondering three years into their careers. Why it's over.

Eric:

Yeah, no. And that's true. I know, like when I was a dancer, one of my dance instructors always told me, you always want them leaving more. So instead of doing like a five minute routine, you do a three and a half minute routine because they see all this great stuff you're doing and then you pull it back. So

Nick:

I like that. Yeah, that's true.

Eric:

Most of everything I've learned in life, I learned through dancing.

Nick:

Yeah. To work. We'll teach you a lot, especially as a performer.

Gil:

so why do you do what you do and the sharing, the stories and stuff like that?

Nick:

it was 2014 and I had done an interview with the Fight magazine and it had circulated pretty heavily in Southern California. it focused mainly on my addiction and surviving the suicide of my ex Tony and I was walking from the grocery store to my car. And, I got approached by this guy. I assumed it was for a selfie cause that happens a lot. And he asked me if I could talk. And he proceeded to tell me the story of his seven year marriage to his husband and how he had walked into their home one day and found his husband had hung himself in the kitchen. Oh my God. And when I heard this, there's you're, I was so taken aback and I just sat and listened. And he told me that consequently, after his husband's suicide, he had really got heavily involved with crystal meth. And he said to me, I didn't feel like there was a way out and I read your story in the fight. And now I'm several eight months sober. I get emotional because it was literally in that moment that I realized where my career needed to go. And why I started doing the sober day count, why I started talking about my life, because I already had seen what this little story in the fight. One of my little stories had inspired someone else to become a better person.

Eric:

That's definitely goes back to, like you were talking about, or we were talking about with you making those connections and just relating to your fans and the public in general on a human

Nick:

level. Yeah. Yeah. It's a powerful connection and I don't take it for granted and selflessly. I just tell my stories to get it off of my chest. But when you realize that it's I know you guys are out there. I see it. It's wow, you're really out there. No

Gil:

people are listening

Nick:

and we're making this connection. So it's been really a great, it's been a great ride, but that one moment altered the trajectory of my entire career and why I do what I do now.

Eric:

Oh, that's wonderful. Have you, had any of those other connections I've had other people come up to you since then?

Nick:

Yeah. When I was filming Secrets Two for Lucas in Puerto Vallarta I went to, there were there's English speaking AA meetings there. This is was in my last sobriety, I was coming up on six months and I came up to me after the meeting. Here's another one. And he told me the story I had, my first sexual experience was nonconsensual. and, I've talked about the rape and he told me a story about his own survival. And for him, it was an incest surviving. I'll tell you something. So I get a lot of these stories now and each one, I can't relate to all of them because there haven't been, I've not been an incest survivor, but realizing though, cause when someone tells you that you want to fix them and you want to say, this is what, but sometimes what I realized some of the fans, when they write to me that a lot of DMS get a lot of stories through emails, more than in person, they just want to be witnessed. So they just want to be heard.

Eric:

Yeah. And that's true.

Nick:

Yeah. And this guy, I just was like, just breathe it just as like intake, outtake, listen to what he has to say. He DMS me all the time on Instagram still, we still talk. So it's been, it's so great.

Eric:

Yeah, no, that's wonderful. I'm a survivor of molestation and sexual assault myself. And it's taken a lot for me to reclaim myself as a person and I'm still do it every day, struggle with it. So to be able to hear those stories and those connections, like just really. It gets, it makes me feel more connected. Oh yeah. It makes me feel more heard. And it's another reason why I wanted to do something like this with this podcast is to get these kinds of stories out there. So people know that they're not alone. So

Nick:

yeah, during this now, really that touches me and I'm sure it's going to touch your audience because there's someone else out there who's been silenced by what you've been through that can know that they're not alone.

Eric:

So thank you for that. Thank you for being so open. Thank you for being so open and honest with everything and thank you for joining us in the Q lounge. I hope to keep in contact with you further, and I hope you enjoyed your time.

Nick:

Thank you guys.

Gil:

Thank you so much.

Eric:

Thank you. Bye.

Since the initial recording of this episode, Nick has celebrated an additional 20 days of sobriety. Bringing him to a total of 91 days sober. If you or anyone, you know, or love is suffering from substance abuse. Or has any mental health issues? Please call the substance abuse and mental health service administration. SAMHSA at +1 800-662-4357 that's 1 800-662-HELP

Gil:

Thank you for joining us. We hope you enjoyed your time in the Q lounge. If you have any questions, comments, suggestions on topics, or you would like to be a guest or contributor, please email us at info.TheQlounge@gmail.Com or through our contact page at theqloungepodcast.com while you're there hit that subscribe button or listen wherever you get your podcast. If you would like to further support us, hit that donation button

Eric:

until next time live in your authenticity.