Sunday, May 11, 2008


It was the best of weekends, it was the worst of weekends...

It was a wonderful weekend. "Good to the very last drop." Toward the end there was a drop that came pretty close to bitter, but the "last drop" itself was bittersweet... ...but I'm getting ahead of myself.

Himself was indeed here when I got home.

We got stoned and did the deed; in fact, I got really stoned and, once I had dinner thrown together, could not stop eating. If the Goat had not asked me to slow down, I would probably eventually have eaten the tablecloth and the plates along with the food on them. Then a few friends showed up to watch a movie. We watched a French TV film ["Times Have Been Better"] about the effect of a young man's coming out on his family: nothing too deep, but moving in all its small [very real] details. It really makes you wonder why TV movies on this side of the pond are so ghastly...

Up late Saturday... I didn't call my boss as planned to get last minute directions before her departure on a well-deserved vacation [oops]... we drove up to my mother's for lunch, and got her to play cards, which always brings out the beast in her. The Lesbian Real Estate League was out in force (husband, wife, son) but were all remarkably civil to the Goat, which was nice.

Another brother was passing through with his wife and Oh-So-Teenage daughter (a very nice person, really, who at the moment talks like a parody of teenage girlhood, which is a little hard on grown-ups who aren't her parents), so that was another family connection made. The "girls" went into "town" to go shopping, the locals [LREL, see above] headed home because they don't like games, and my mother, brother, the Goat and I got down and dirty. I love playing cards with my mother: she has no filter at all, and whatever crosses her mind comes right out her mouth -- and I actually used to wonder where I got that from...

Then the Goat and I headed "home," had cold chicken with hot everything else, and tried to watch a movie. On a friend's recommendation, we had "I Think I Do" ["a gay version of a 1930's screwball comedy"-- not], which we watched for a while before bailing out. [Why are so many American movies with gay themes so bad? If it weren't for "Brokeback," I might want to give up altogether...] Then we tried "Love in the Time of Cholera," because we had both loved the book: total disaster. After about five minutes we looked at each other, agreed it was all wrong, and we couldn't stand to continue. That got us down to "The Kite Runner," which we watched and loved, though we were both in tears during various parts of it.

Somewhere in the course of it, the Goat got depressed enough that he decided he needed a piece of pie, so we had a piece of pie. Then we finished the movie, cleaned up [most] of the dinner dishes, and went up to bed...

Sunday: a long, leisurely breakfast, in the course of which the Goat got in touch with a couple of his Leather Buddies who live in the Big City, and we agreed to meet them and a dozen of their closest friends for a late brunch.

, by the time we got there, it was a late lunch, but we went to their favorite [expensive] restaurant, and ordered food. Our Eggs Benedict arrived cold; we didn't say anything. It also turned out to be one of those lunches where everyone chips in an equal amount, which I wish I had been told ahead of time; as it was, the Goat and I, who had not had anything alcoholic to drink, wound up standing his friends a round or two, which I don't mind, but I wish I had known I was likely to: I might have had a drink or two, myself. I didn't say anything.

The real problem was my more-than-residual "internalized homophobia."

Or so I'm told.

One of the guys [the one I get along with best, who is also hotter than hell, which I find completely intimidating] started groping up a former lover to my right. It was all in good fun, but it was also all in pretty much full view of the rest of the restaurant, including the "garden" tables outside our window. His partner, to my left, seemed unfazed -- it's a famously "open" relationship, and some of the current sometime third parties were also present -- but I wasn't. There were other tables all around us, some quite close, and I had already wondered how appropriate it was to discuss loudly [not to say shout out] the advantages of whipping Crisco into J-Lube.

I was sitting there with my Leatherman lover, myself, so I was ready for a certain amount of what he terms "gay life." But I frankly thought this was a bit much.

I would have had no problem with any of it if we had been in their house, or even -- I think -- in mine, but it seemed unseemly in a public place where other people were paying [a LOT] for lunch. One table of lunch guests did get up and leave, but it didn't slow things down any. I -- well, I wore beige and smiled a lot.

What was I going to do: tell the Octopus to take it down a notch? Not when I'm the outsider in a group of old friends. Not when the Octopus is the ex-lover of most of the other men at the table [to the extent that he isn't "seeing" them currently]. Not when we are looking at pretty much the entire leather crowd within a 50-to 100-mile radius, which is to say, a large part of the Goat's [and now my] social network. After I admitted to the Goat that I had not been entirely comfortable at lunch, he told me that everyone there had slept with everyone else over the years, and that I had to start thinking of them as "family." [Still chewing on that one...] This came, mind you, after he had gotten into a conversation with the Octopus out on the sidewalk, which featured the assurance that, yes, he was getting plenty of it, I was a real animal, etc., etc.

I felt a little like he was reporting to his commanding officer about conditions in the trenches... and I was the trenches. Am I nuts? Am I just hypersensitive after having been described earlier to some of those attending as being "like having a car alarm in bed"? Maybe.

However that may be, on the drive back we waded back into the old two-step.
when I have finished coming out, I will come around to seeing all this as not only normal, but commendable; I can't now because of my residual "internalized homophobia."
he can't presume to know what I will think in three or four years, or assume that I will follow in his footsteps simply because I have also left a marriage and children. (He left in his twenties; I left in my fifties. To my mind, that almost guarantees that our experiences before and after leaving are going to be Very Different.)

It got close to ugly. Neither of us likes being lectured or judged, and we both had reason to accuse the other of stepping over the line, I guess.

@#$% it. The important thing is that we parted company on good terms.

We are going to have to put "all of that" on a shelf to be dealt with sometime when I am less touchy and he is less sure of my future thought patterns.


Well, as I said, it was one hell of a weekend.
Hang in there, all.

1 comment:

  1. And what about that J-lube? ... Pretty slick stuff.

    Am I correct that you knew little about it a few years ago?