How was everyone’s Halloween? I am completely too late to ask what you’re going to dress up as, but did anyone come up with an awesome supergay costume?
I was running around getting my car fixed and visiting my parents (I know, super lame), and I didn’t have time to come up with a costume, so I was Tegan and Sara. (That is to say, I wear what I normally wear. No one batted an eye.) 😛
For future reference, here’s a more creative, handy guide on how to make a Tegan and Sara reference out of your costume:
Sorry for that lame intro. Now for the main story.
A couple weeks after I moved into my new apartment, my aunt who lives in the city came to visit me and see my place. We had a nice time – she brought me a bottle of wine (which I shamelessly almost demolished in one sitting) and a bouquet of cheery yellow tulips, and I took her to dinner at one of the many wonderful restaurants on my street.
I’m not sure if I explained before where I live – it’s in the most lesbian of all Chicago neighborhoods, historically speaking, and my cross streets are at the heart of the most popular stretch of bars, restaurants, cute little shops, feminist bookstores… So basically I have no excuse for not being social. (More on that later!) My plan is to try at least one new restaurant a week, but not break the bank. Ha.
When my aunt arrived, I realized that this was the first time she’d hung out with me alone since my mom informed everyone in our “close family” that I was gay. Yay.
Here’s the thing – my aunt is pretty open-minded. She spent many years of her post-college life in California hanging out with very diverse groups of people, loving them, understanding them. Some of her best friends are gay men. In the last few years, she’s started going to church, gotten serious about religion, moved back to Chicago, gotten married. She’s never been a judgy person, it’s just not her personality. But I still wonder, because she’s extended many invitations to me to visit her church. I’m just not interested. I’ve served my time, you know?
Anyway, we’re sitting at this Italian restaurant and the two women at the table next to us are on a date. They’re both attractive. I can’t help but check them out. One of them (with short blonde hair) starts speaking Spanish to the waiter.
“Oh, stop it,” says the other one, laughing, smitten (shit, I’m smitten too). “She’s just showing off, aren’t you, baby?”
The waiter smiles.
My aunt notices the conversation and smiles a little, watches me. I look away quickly.
“So have you found anyone you’d like to date?” she asks.
I almost spit out my water.
“Not exactly,” I say, picking up a fork and playing with the salad on my plate. “I’m just hoping to make new friends first and then if I happen to meet someone, great. If not, I like being single.”
She’s so proud of me. “That’s awesome!” she says, beaming. “Good plan.” (I’ve always been one to rush into relationships. When one ends, another one begins. I’m doing things differently this time around. For now. I can’t tell you how tempted I am sometimes to get online. But I’m still barely toe-deep in the friendship-building phase, so I’m not letting myself go there. We’ll see how long my resolve lasts.)
The Spanish-speaking blonde gets up from the table and comes back after a few minutes, comes up behind her date, kisses her cheek. Mmmf. Within seconds they’re making out and practically sitting on each have other’s laps. I’m trying not to look too hard, trying not to blush, trying not to giggle nervously. Hot. Awkward. Hot.
Where was I? Oh. So my aunt is still talking about dating and friendship. “Bottom line,” she says, “is that you want […] to like you for who you are.”
Wait. What was that? She said “he” or “she,” but I couldn’t tell which. Fuck! I desperately wished our conversation had been recorded so I could go back and check, because so much depends on that word. Does she accept me or not? I’ll never know. 😩
While we were walking back to my apartment, she said to me, “So I know this neighborhood is a lesbian area…”
“Yeah…” I said.
“But I feel like I’ve seen a lot of gay men here too…like couples.” Oh. LOL.
I explained that many gay couples come here to settle down and raise families. Even one of my managers at work lives a few blocks down with his boyfriend.
The traffic light changed, and we walked. She changed the subject. The feeling of the whole thing was as if she was trying to tell me, I know you like girls, and it’s OK to talk about it if you want.
At least, I hope so.