Icy Gays and Super Powers

This Sunday Justin and I actually canceled plans to watch our DVR’d Doctor Who episode and instead accepted an invitation to watch the VMAs with a group of gays down the block. I have loved music award shows for many years after I realized that I almost always have a stake (that is to say favorites) for this type of award show, compared to the Academy Awards or the Emmys (where I usually have seen nothing).

The other reason we were excited about this invitation is that the party was in the super-fancy building on the corner of our block- luxury living for sure, and we wanted to get a peek at that! 🙂

It was a very beautiful apartment, and a very beautiful group. Everyone was young, toned, fashionable. Probably all of them were younger than me. They were not, however, outgoing. When we walked in one of the pretty guys who we knew best came over and hugged us, but the other 8 people in the room stayed firmly planted in their seats and merely glanced at us before directing their attention back to an announcer who I didn’t recognize on the screen.

We floated toward the TV and after a few moments when two got up to get more drinks I made the first step and introduced myself. Conversation didn’t really flow from there.

After settling into the circle I tried starting some conversation up again. “Hi, I’m Joe” I offered a handshake to one of the guys. “Hi” is all I got back. I decided that I was definitely going to make each of them shake my hand. “What’s ~your~ name?” I pressed with what I hoped sounded like super-friendly interest, but it kind of sounded like I was 1st grade teacher.

After each of them accepted my introduction- including one wearing a black caftan, which he described as “just something simple” when I asked about his outfit- we returned to watching the show.  There were general exclamations of “yas, gurl!” and “get it!”, everyone was making A Lot of noise, but I still felt like nobody was getting to know each other. This went on for about 15 minutes.

Now I’m am fresh off a trip to Provincetown where the week’s theme was Comic Books, so I’ve had 7 recent days of super heroes wandering around drunk and making jokes. Perhaps the most perfect, true joke I heard the entire week was someone saying that their super-power was breaking the ice. And even now when I think about that (pickup) line, I laugh because actually Ice-breaking is a great super power!

So I pressed on, asking each boy about themselves, remarking about the performances. It took a lot of work but I think I was slowly melting down these icy guys into conversation.  But it wasn’t until I pulled out the mother of all music conversation bombs (Ariana Grande as the next Mariah Carey?) that I truly got big full responses from the group. There was discussion, and argument, and sharing, and reminiscing, and everyone just ended up talking about how Mariah Carey is one of a kind. It was everything that I needed. So thank you Mariah, a hero does lie in you, and your power in any gay group is breaking the ice.

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Putting on my yarmulke

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A Different Sort of Morning

A Thursday out of the office.  A different sort of morning.

For me, a new test. Ground-breaking.

With hot sun on our faces we planted you there in an orchard of stones.

Our eyes released their sorrows, and we let you down easy.  Death absolves many sins.

He took his turn with the shovel and I held him afterword. He has always prayed to his grandmother, but now he can pray to you as well.

Was it already time for this type of worry? How old we suddenly seem. How married, even if we’re not.

I think: can there really be 3 more of these ahead?

The ride home leaves family reaching for the precious take-away, or perhaps a take-back in the face of what they’ve lost.  Stories and jokes are easiest to find, but perhaps there’s a lesson as well.  All agree:  Even in death you went gently, and without rage.

Farewell father, farewell fighter. 

Thank you, man who made the man I stand by.

Farewell father, farewell fighter.

Enjoy your rest. Amen.