Sunday, November 12, 2006

Please, No Gifts

So I'm coming up on the anniversary of my coming out. I wish I'd been thinking about it last year at this time, because that would have been exactly twenty years. Coming out is of course a long, often protracted experience, but the first time I actually allowed the words "I am gay" to pass my lips with another person in the room occured a week or two before Thanksgiving (can't recall the actual date, unfortunately), in the dorm room of David K. who ended up becoming a good friend, though I barely knew him at the time. He was a flirty guy, and had been definitely sending me signals that confused the hell out of me, but were probably as much wishful thinking as anything else; he was hot, but at the time was just coming to the end of his 'questioning' period and his answer was different from mine. Still, he ended up being a good person to come out to, very emotionally supportive. The next night I sat four of my closest friends down to tell them, then about a month later, on the day after Christmas I came out to my family. Well, Mom had actually asked me herself on Christmas Day, undoubtedly tapping into her special Mom magic for picking up on such things, but I told the rest of my family the next day, and felt like all the hardest hurdles were now behind me.

There were a few more friends I felt warranted being told face to face, but after that I just expected the rumor mill at my tiny (1100 students) college to take care of the rest. That didn't happen so much, and I don't know why. I was almost offended at the time that no one seemed interested enough in my life to speculate, but maybe I just had good friends, who didn't see any need to turn it into juicy scuttlebut.

This did not usher in a wonderful new world of dating, however. There were hardly any out gay men at my school, and most of them were annoying as hell. The one gay adonis on campus (also a nice guy) never took any interest in me, unfortunately. It was another full year before I had any gay male friends, and it was well after college before I had much of a social group in that sense. (New York has seen a reverting back to college for some reason.) But that time of my life involved a blossoming in all sorts of ways. I first learned how to make and perform in masks that fall (and it is NO coincidence that I came out later that same term), I declared myself a theatre major that Spring, and went off to Ireland (my first overseas trip alone) that Fall, to have a whole lot more life-changing experiences. So I've been thinking about my nineteeth and twentieth year a lot of late. Seems like I should have some sort of celebration, doesn't it? Come to think of it, 95-96 was a pretty eventful time as well. Hmmm.

Anyway. Any thoughts on how this auspicious occasion should be observed? I'm pretty sure there ought to be cake. There should always be cake. Other than that though, I'm at a loss. As always, I welcome suggestions from my gentle readers.


Anonymous said...

Sweet Patrick -
since I have not been up on my blog reading - I missed the cake making declarative celebration.
I am always willing to make cake and declare things.
However, though I am excellent at eating cake, I am not excellent at following through with any of my sexual orientation declarations (I have found I am so very unreliable in that category)
but I am totally willing to declare whatever and eat cake...(however, none of the lovely ladies I have crushes on should expect any action)
Just wanted you to know.

Patrick said...

Yes, well as you know, I sometimes wonder just how rigid (sorry, I meant firm, uh, I mean set in stone, uh... unchanging) my sexuality is too. But my lovely ladies probably shouldn't expect any action either. I've resisted accosting Julianne Moore TWICE now, so if she's safe, then probably all of them are. But then there's Angelina, Catherine Zeta, Gwen especially with dark hair... okay who knows? Bottom line, we need cake.

Greg said...

There should ALWAYS be cake...the only real question is what shape should it be? ; )