Sixty-two-year-old Julius has had a fascination with balloons since he was four. At some point, it turned sexual, which distinguishes him from the other more childlike inflatable enthusiasts we've seen on reality TV in recent months. During Julius' segments on (what else) last night's My Strange Addiction, he didn't get too specific about what goes down (and got agitated when pressed, and in the process became that much more of a character — I was waiting for steam to erupt from his ears at any moment), but he did say, "I'll take a 12-inch, and I'll inflate it to 11-inch. That way it can take a lot of abuse." So maybe it's better that he didn't get much more specific than that.
Twenty-year-old Mark is the Bill Henrickson of a polyamorous compound of inflatable pool toys. One of them, Leila the Dragon is "like a wife" to him, with some of the sweetest eyes and smile that, quite frankly, Mark has ever seen. Like his fellow looner, Dave who was profiled last year on Nat Geo's Taboo, Mark keeps a pure, non-sexual relationship with the inanimate objects he loves.
Twenty-seven-year-old Dave, who lives near Little Rock, Arkansas, is a dedicated "looner." That doesn't mean he's crazy (although he might be that, too — judge for yourself) — "looner" describes a person who has romantic relationships with balloons. Dave blows them up, but he will have you know that he isn't blowing them, per se: "I am pure in my life," he explains regarding the suggestion that he may be doing "something else" with his beloved blimps. His lack of sexual passion is a little bit disappointing as I kind of wanted to get to the bottom of all those Xtube balloon videos I'm too scared/otherwise occupied to click on, but Dave makes up for all of this in this segment from last night's Taboo by saying off-the-wall stuff like, "When you think about it in a real, true love sense, it really isn't a toy." He also describes his "balloon rescues," and mourns a popped one. He's really extreme, as only a man who is having polyamorous relationships with rubber bladders can be.