Interviewing Mr. Eagle (2012)

Photo by Clecio Lora

A.C. Demidont, Mr. Eagle 2012, is a 38-year old HIV Medicine physician here in NYC.  He’s an active member of the HIV medicine community in both New York and Philadelphia and has a passion for working in the field.

While recovering from a ball stretcher injury (his nuts were HUGE), I sat down with A.C. in his Hell’s Kitchen apartment to get an overview of who is and what he’s doing as a titleholder.

What are your hanky colors?
Well, anybody who knows me knows that.  Navy blue on the right is my primary hanky color; baby blue on the right, yellow on the right, mustard on the right—everything is on the right.  Everything is on the right, every tattoo, every piece of artwork on my body is on the right.  It defines me as who I am.  I use to have the hunter green on the right, but I think I’m getting a little old for that now.

What are some of your favorite pieces of gear?
My favorite on me is my red leather jockstrap with a zip in front.  When I wear it, people are surprised at how great my ass is.  And yes, there are some people in New York who haven’t seen my ass.  Another favorite is my leather surgical mask I got at the Leather Man.  It’s very dark and what I wore to the Black Party this year.

Why did you decide to run for Mr. Eagle?
Because I thought it would be a perfect combination of the things I’m interested in right now.  Mr. Eagle is a very good platform for being able to change things in the leather community and change things in the larger gay community.  I really believe in the HIV prevention messages I’m trying to put out in the world today and being Mr. Eagle gives me a greater ability to spread this message.  Plus I have a lot of gear and the Eagle is basically the only place I go out in the city, so it’s a great combination.

What is your message?
My message about HIV prevention is, if you’re not going to use condoms, figure out some other way to prevent yourself from getting HIV.  And there are other ways to do that.  Many medical professionals don’t discuss with patients all the other ways to prevent HIV infection.  The CDC has had guidelines for using anti-retrovirals to prevent HIV for over a year now and many gay men don’t know anything about these methods.  Doctors tell men to use condoms and a lot of men are saying “I’m not going to use condoms”, so there needs to be something else.  I’m not promoting barebacking and I know condoms are effective, but here in NYC men are having unprotected sex—between 2009 and 2010, the percentage of HIV infections in Manhattan went from 49% in gay men to 53%.  And it’s gone up the past 2 years.  Clearly there needs to be an alternative way to prevent HIV infections—and this is a proven method to do that.

How has your year been so far?
It’s awesome, basically.  A bit hectic and busy, but great.  People see I’m from New York and they get excited…and that’s a bit weird cause I’m not use to that kind of attention.  It’s certainly changed my sex life a lot, I can tell you that.  The events have been great and all the other Mr. Eagles before me have been very helpful…the Eagle itself has been very helpful.  I’ve had some amazing experiences and it feels great to be doing some good work for the community and for the Ali Forney Center.

How are you feeling about IML next month?
I’m feeling pretty excited about it, maybe a little nervous too.  I feel like I’m bringing my own unique perspective to the event and I have some great things going on in the community.  I’m also excited to spend more time with the other titleholders and get to know them more.  The sense of togetherness between the titleholders is great and everyone is super friendly with each other.  Everyone has stuff going on around the country and it’s great to see all that the leather community is doing for charities.  It makes me proud to be a part of that family.

What are your thoughts about the future of the leather community?
I think it’s great how many young people are coming out to bars and events these days.  I love to see all the young guys in their sports gear and representing their own fetishes.  As time goes by, Leather changes—it’s all a variation on a theme and that theme is “Leather isn’t mainstream”…so the specifics of that change over time.  Guys can express who that are and what they want and that’s hot.

Dr. Eagle is in!
Photo by Aldefino Corino

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