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Matador Meggings will be your new obsession

Are you ready for the latest innovation in men’s sportswear and athleisure fashion?

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Are you ready for the latest innovation in men’s sportswear and athleisure fashion? Today we got to catch up with Valentine Aseyo, the founder of Matador Meggings –  the latest men’s fashion sensation. Valentine set out to conquer one problem – the battle of the bulge in men’s tights and sportswear – and he’s delivered magnificently. Curious about his contribution to humanity? Keep reading!

Matador Meggings? Say what?

Fitness enthusiasts (gym goers, Crossfitters, runners, yogis) have been wearing compression tights for years now. They have so many benefits from improving your performance and endurance to muscle recovery. However, most men wear this piece of garment under their flappy shorts. For a good reason; actually two! Firstly, all men’s leggings on the market are designed as an undergarment rather than a standalone piece. They don’t come with cool designs or practical pockets. Secondly, they’re not designed for the male anatomy; they either give you a flat groin (the scientific term is a mangina) or they totally expose the dick print. 

But let’s not ignore the elephant in the room; or the eggplant in this case. Most guys who aren’t being paid to perform on the track are scared to bare it all in a pair of leggings because they’re not up for public consumption. No one should have to sacrifice their workout just to stay neat and socially acceptable. Layers are baggy and impractical. They hamper you while concentrating on your workout. They chafe and irritate. And let’s face it, they look atrocious.

Valentine Aseyo saw a problem and he fixed it! Time for No-VPL Technology (visible penis line) and total confidence for guys! Meggings is a cute portmanteau of men’s leggings. It’s playful and rolls off the tongue well. Though some may perceive this naming as fragile masculinity, they actually have a solid stance against it. They’re just having fun with the name; so should you!

The Company

Why Matador? What springs to mind when you think of the Spanish bullfighters? They’re sexy, powerful sportsmen, but they’re also elegant and well-dressed. They ooze masculinity, but with emotion, grace, and power. They’re performers who like what they see in the mirror. And they need the best gear to support them.

That’s the spirit behind Matador Meggings. Comfortable and practical, work hard and play hard, and look great all the way- the perfect gear to help you find your true matador within.

The Solution

With Matador Meggings, your family jewels are nearly placed in a slim, socially acceptable modesty cup that any superhero would be proud of. Enough to strut your stuff, not enough to leave you bluffing. Not only have they especially shaped and designed the men’s legging with the male anatomy in mind, but they’ve also included a soft pad so you have full discretion when you want to be discreet and rather not show off what your mama gave you. Hoisted, packed, and ready to roll. Now add in the very latest compression technology for maximum sports performance, and you have a match made in heaven. Did we mention the fun with fashion, too?

The Man

Who is the mind behind the Matador? Valentine Aseyo describes himself as a “first-time entrepreneur. Executive coach. Ex-Facebooker. 200-hour certified yoga teacher. Burner. Spanish & Turkish. And of course, a meggings aficionado.” That’s a hell of an introduction.

Taking the bull by the horns, this entrepreneur leverages his experience from roles at Facebook, IBM, and Colgate-Palmolive, as well as the SVP of product at Bandsintown. Being used to wearing all the hats in a company, he now runs Matador Meggings full time, yet still manages to teach and practice yoga, too!

Why try Meggings?

So, there’s a product that makes your butt and legs look great, keeps your package under control so you can focus on your biceps, not your bulge, and allows you to have fun too? What more do you need? Let’s take a look!

Reason #1 – No VPL.

So, Matador Meggings have solved the battle of the bulge once and for all. What more could you ask for? These pants will give you a perfectly-rounded superhero crotch. No matter what size or shape your pocket rocket is, it will look super juicy and generous.

Reason #2 – Clever Design

Men’s tights don’t need to be impractical. Think smart pockets, some zipped, some unzipped, so all the modern tech goodies can work out with you. A towel/shirt loop to keep it out the way while you work without getting lost. A no-slip waistband and an inner drawstring allow you to fit them to your waist perfectly, making sure you have no more fear of plumber’s crack when your in a deep squat. Smart design through and through.

Reason #3 – Athletic Performance

But design isn’t always enough to give you that extra boost to your workout. Sweat-wicking fabric keeps odor at bay no matter how hard you go, while compression sports technology helps boost blood flow, warm your muscles, and provide extra support so you can be your best. Plus the special design is robust and flexible, moving with you like a second skin.

Are Meggings Just Sportswear?

While Valentine has designed his leggings to support the needs of men in sport, that’s not the only venue to wear them! While you can take them anywhere from yoga class to gym to hiking trails and even scuba diving, you can also toss on your favorite duds and strut your stuff. These leggings will take you from the weight rack to Burning Man, no fuss, no problem.

Our favorite meggings

Honestly, with such a broad, fun range to pick from, you can find something to make you sparkle, whether you like sleek and elegant or avante-garde. If you’re looking to start your men’s compression leggings collection off with a bang, however, why not try our top two picks? As Valentine says: “Name one superhero who doesn’t wear spandex. I’ll wait.”

Black Thunder Meggings

C’mon, one look at these bad boys and you’ll be in love! There’s just enough cockiness (pun kinda intended) to attract attention, but not too much to overwhelm. The color is practical, the style whimsical, and they make your lower body look great. 

Sky Meggings

As a cool contrast, try this softly hypnotic pair of bright blue meggings. They’re fun, without sacrificing cohesion or appeal. Brighten up a summer workout, or take them snorkeling. They’ll go anywhere, and bring a bit of sunshine along.

Looking for a fun athleisure range with sparkle and personality? One that will banish your VPL, enhance your performance, and keep your legs (and butt) looking great all the way? Try Matador Meggings today, you won’t be sorry.

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Real Estate

Alternative ways to deal with high interest rates

Rental units, house hacks, and more

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Some row homes have English basements that you can rent out for extra income.

Amid all the news this week about whether or not the movie “Bros” was a blockbuster, we still hear about fluctuating mortgage rates. This is obviously detrimental for my business. I have a dog to feed and I like to eat. So let’s look at some alternative methods of combating the higher mortgage rates. If you have read my previous columns (I hope you have) then you will know I am a huge fan of sass and more importantly, controlling your controllables! Let’s outsmart these interest rates, hunny.

ENGLISH RENTAL UNITS

Obviously we cannot change the interest rates, we don’t set those. But we do set and control our destiny. If you have been in the market for a row house in D.C. but don’t truly NEED all of that space – perhaps shift your search to include row houses that have an English basement. This means that it’s a basement that has means of egress from the front and the back. Here in D.C. there are requirements in order to make it a legal rental and have a certificate of occupancy, which include, but are not limited to, means of egress and ceiling height. That ceiling height aspect is truly a very important part.

By shifting your search to include a full basement with a front and back entrance and adequate ceiling height you also might notice that you have increased your budget a bit more. However with these units you are able to charge more in terms of monthly rent than you would for just having a roommate. The market is shifting and buyers are able to be a bit more methodical with their purchases and with that comes some negotiation power as well. 

That means that you likely can find a row home with an English basement for around what your budget (as long as it is realistic) is and now you have the ability to rent out the basement and you can use those funds to offset the higher interest rate – until the rates drop again and you can refinance. At the end of the day please remember that in this market we are “Marrying the house and dating the rate” meaning that if you find THE house for you — buy it, don’t wait. It will cost you more in the long run if you wait. In a few months or a year you will be able to refinance and lower your loan – and if you’ve bought this row home with a rental basement unit then you can just pocket a bit more money since you now have a lower rate. Or turn one bedroom into the walk-in-closet of your dreams.

HOUSE HACK

Let me start by saying this option is NOT for everyone, including me. But I would be remiss if I did not mention it. Think of having roommates but on steroids. House hacking is the idea of buying a home with the sole intention of renting the bedrooms out. For example, this means that your buying criteria would be looking for a bathroom for each bedroom in order to make this work. Ideally a three-bedroom, three-bathroom is the minimum for this to be a lucrative method. In addition to reading everywhere that mortgage rates are increasing I am sure that you have also seen that rents are on the rise as well, which is good for this house hack option. If we look at numbers – say your mortgage is $5,000/mo for a three-bedroom, three-and-a-half bath home. The upstairs has three bedrooms and two baths and the basement has a full bath and open space. You can assume that you would likely be able to rent one upstairs bedroom + bath for about $1,000 and then I would estimate the basement space, which is similar in space to a studio apartment, for around $2,000. This means you would receive about $3,000 in rent without renting out that third bedroom and even thinking through possibly renting out your two parking spaces behind the row home. Looking at your mortgage of $5,000/mo and subtracting the $3,000 in rent you receive that means you are paying $2,000/mo for your home. Again, this is NOT the right choice for everyone, however, it is a great option for those that are looking for a great investment and might not need the extra space now but are looking to grow into a space. (These figures are estimates, and are on the lower end of what rent amounts could be expected, and it also depends on which area of D.C. you are living.)

BUY DOWN RATES

This trend has picked up traction in the past few months. You can effectively “buy down” your interest rate by purchasing points. One point equals 1% of your total mortgage amount. If you buy down a point then this means that if your interest rate was 6% it will now be 5%. Please keep in mind that you do NOT have to buy down one full point but instead can buy down a half point etc. Fees and figures depend on your lender, so keep that in mind as well. The most important part of this equation is to take into consideration how long you will be in the home. If you are only planning to live in this home for five years then it might not make sense to buy down your rate if you are not in the home long enough to recoup the cost associated with the buy down. For example, if you are buying your “forever home” then I would suggest buying down a point or so in order to lessen your monthly mortgage payment. Alternatively, if you are buying a one-bedroom condo but know this will only suit your lifestyle for a short period of time, less than 10 years, I would suggest “Marrying the home and dating the rate” with the mindset that you can refinance at a later date.

Please keep in mind – that the house hacking and English basement options rely heavily on RENTAL INCOME and that is NOT always a guarantee – so there is innate risk with these methods. Also, my lawyer wanted me to mention that I am not a mortgage broker and you should always speak with a lender to see if these options would work for you. Regarding the actual market and what is out there and currently happening on the streets in D.C., Maryland, and Delaware, you should reach out to me.

Justin Noble is a Realtor with Sotheby’s International Realty licensed in D.C., Maryland, and Delaware for your DMV and Delaware Beach needs. Specializing in first-time homebuyers, development and new construction as well as estate sales, Justin is a well-versed agent, highly regarded, and provides white glove service at every price point. Reach him at 202-503-4243,  [email protected] or BurnsandNoble.com.

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Dining

Wharf celebrates fifth anniversary on Oct. 12

Live music, sidewalk sales, food, and drink on Southwest waterfront

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The Wharf in Southwest, home to Pride on the Pier in June, is celebrating its fifth anniversary this month. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

Five years in, the sweeping Wharf is only growing. On Oct. 12, the city’s glittering renewal project that established the Southwest neighborhood as a waterfront destination, is celebrating a two-fold event: its fifth anniversary and the substantial near-completion of the entire development. With Phase 1 built out and Phase 2 tantalizingly close, this mile-long stretch along the Potomac River has come to life with restaurants, retailers, residences, hotels, shops, and businesses, surrounded by monumental views and a vibrant culture.

The celebration on Oct. 12 runs from 5-8 p.m., with activities, live music, sidewalk sales, outdoor vendors, and food and drink specials along the entire strip. Jarreau Williams will take the stage for live music on the Transit Pier floating stage, followed by The JoGo Project at 6:45 p.m. The event concludes with a fireworks finale just before 8 p.m. Meanwhile, an indoor ceremony kicks off at the new Pendry Hotel at 5:30 p.m., featuring remarks by Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton and Mayor Muriel Bowser.

The Killers headline at The Anthem at 8 p.m. for that venue’s fifth anniversary show.

Phase 1 of The Wharf opened in 2017, with more than two million square feet of residences, offices, hotels, shops, restaurants, and a marina. It also featured intentional public areas, including parks, promenades, piers, and docks. Phase 1 also saw the establishment of a new water taxi system, the Southwest Neighborhood Shuttle, and a new bike lane. Some of the city’s most popular restaurants kicked off during Phase 1, like Del Mar, Grazie Grazie, ilili, Kaliwa, and Mi Vida.

Phase 2 will include a robust roster of chef-driven restaurant concepts, and 1.25 million square feet of development, including offices, hotels, restaurants, and shopping, in its own section of redeveloped waterfront. It will also include 225 boat slips and a 1.5-acre green space. New restaurants planned include:

• Flora Flora (655 Water St., S.W., 2nd Floor): Latin-influenced poolside restaurant combining the cuisines of Mexico, Peru, and Argentina.

• Gordon Ramsay Fish & Chips (665 Wharf St., S.W.): Michelin-starred chef Gordon Ramsay’s British-themed counter offering elevated fish & chips.

• Gordon Ramsay Hell’s Kitchen (652 Wharf St. SW): Ramsay’s surf-and-turf restaurant, which pays tribute to his hit “Hell’s Kitchen” TV show, with steak and seafood offerings, including its famous Beef Wellington and lobster risotto. Located in a two-story building directly on the water.

• Kinfolk Southern Kitchen (685 Wharf St., S.W.): Americana bourbon and barbecue restaurant featuring spirits and smoky flavors.

• Philippe by Philippe Chow (635 Wharf St.): Iconic New York City restaurant for almost two decades. Philippe Chow has become a staple with a world-renowned menu of Beijing-style dishes that has pioneered the way for elevated Chinese cuisine in the U.S.

• Slice of Match Box (664 Maine Ave SW): Wood-fired pizza eatery taking the best of regional brand Matchbox in a fast-casual setting with table service and a full bar.

At full build-out, the mixed-use neighborhood will feature more than 3.2 million square feet of development along a mile of Washington, stretching from the Municipal Fish Market at the north end to Fort McNair in the south. In total, the Wharf will have 300,000 square feet of retail space, featuring more than 85 restaurants and retail shops. And beyond the boats, there is also a free kayak and paddleboard launch.

This event kicks off The Wharf’s “Season of Celebration,” featuring nine months of community events and experiences commemorating the completion of The Wharf. This includes everything to a Dia de Los Muertos celebration, a holiday boat parade, Mardi Gras, and, of course, Pride on the Pier in June.

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Real Estate

Make the most of the market and keep a positive perspective

Home sales are slowing and interest rates are rising

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Home sales are slowing as interest rates rise, but there are silver linings.

Over the course of the last year, what was once a red-hot housing market has experienced a cool-down. Home sales have been slowing, and interest rates are rising as the Federal Reserve continues to try and tame inflation and soaring prices. Rates are currently sitting at their highest point since late 2008, and are more than double their level a year ago. 

Any time interest rates rise and the market slows down, concern is understandable – but there are always silver linings, and viewing the market from a broader historical perspective is important. A few of those silver linings include:

• Interest rates remain historically low: Since the end of 2021, mortgage interest rates have jumped by more than 2 percentage points, climbing above 6% as of September 2022. As a result, mortgage payment amounts have also risen. It’s easy to look at rising interest rates and higher mortgage payments and worry – but when viewed in perspective over the course of the last several decades, rates are still very low. According to Freddie Mac, over the past half-century, rates have averaged nearly 8 percent, and in the early 1980s, even reached as high as 18 percent. When considered in that context, today’s housing market is still far healthier than at other points in recent history.

• Inventory is up: Another benefit of the current market is that inventory is up. For those interested in purchasing a home, this means that there is a wider variety to choose from, and time can be devoted to truly finding a home that checks all of the boxes, rather than simply rushing to make an offer on one of the few that are available.

• Offers are more likely to be accepted: The fact that more inventory exists in the current market allows buyers to potentially place a reasonable offer on a home and have it accepted. This is a stark contrast to the situation of a year ago, where buyers frequently had to rather worry about engaging in an ongoing bidding war where prices became inflated and offers were less likely to be accepted. 

Ultimately, conditions are much better in the real estate market now, even with slightly rising interest rates, than they were the last time the housing market went through a major correction. In fact, following the subprime mortgage crash of 2007 and the subsequent recession, home values dropped by nearly half in some markets. Millions of borrowers found themselves underwater on their mortgages, and many buyers were hesitant to make purchases in such a difficult and unpredictable market.  Currently, many expect that while home appreciation may decline slightly, it will likely remain above the historical average.

While the market may not be as robust as it was a year ago, there are still plenty of positives. A key aspect of making the most of any market is finding a real estate agent who can guide you through the process and help you reach your goals. This can make all the difference between a smooth and successful experience, and a stressful one. At GayRealEstate.com, we’re here to help you find the perfect agent for your needs.

At GayRealEstate.com – We’re Here for You

One thing is certain about the real estate market – over time, it will change and fluctuate. There will be ups and downs. At times it may be ideal for sellers, at other times, more ideal for buyers. Regardless of how the market shifts, however, one thing is constant – at GayRealEstate.com, we’re here for you. It is our passion to connect LGBTQ home buyers and sellers across the country with excellent and experienced LGBTQ-friendly realtors who know and love their communities. We are committed to helping you achieve your real estate goals, whatever they may be. If we can help you, visit us at GayRealEstate.com today to get connected and get started. 

Jeff Hammerberg is founding CEO of Hammerberg & Associates, Inc. Reach him at 303-378-5526 or [email protected].

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