Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The Pink Momento And Discovering The Truth About Tom, Dick And Harry

When I was fresh out of High School (and I mean a week after I threw my cardboard black nylon cap in the air and forgot about it) I was in that mode of life where I wasn’t sure where I fit in exactly.

OK, sure, I didn’t go around questioning my very existence- that thought never dawned on me in those days- but I was still not ANYONE yet and I wore my NOONE stature with all of the confidence and bravado of a rodeo clown caught between the bull and the barrel.

I mean, what can you do in those instances but paint on a fake grin and pull your pants up?

I did both.

There were many things I knew I liked already at that point, so I wasn’t totally faking it, but the big things, the things you expected to possess in your life as you went along (like your career identity, your “path”, your belief structure (as in your “faith”) and your “destiny”, were still unknowns to me and seemingly far off OUT THERE somewhere, awaiting my search and discovery- which, unfortunately, was awaiting some cash.

Don’t get me wrong. There were several things I already knew about me and these were things I could fall back on when on shaky ground with spindly legs.

I knew I loved sports and was a good athlete. Ping pong, tennis, soccer, football, baseball, basketball, motorcycling, shooting up stuff, climbing trees, smear the queer… You know, BOY stuff. I had all that stuff down. I had Punt Pass and Kick trophies. MVP thingies. I played on State championship teams in State championship games. That stuff I felt pretty good about. I felt solid there. That stuff was just fun stuff that I knew I could do and people enjoyed watching me do . That was stuff that felt like ‘playing” to me, and it came easily and came with some accolades, and it gave me an identity of sorts as a young man.

Only it wasn’t what I thought about.

No. Sports was a lot like vaginas in those days. And I don’t mean that disrespectfully to all of you wonderful people out there who are gloriously in possession of a vagina. I just mean that knocking around on the courts with a few guys and simply knocking around the bases with some girl, were things I loved back then, but not what truly possessed my mind. They were “recreational” at the age of eighteen, but not the main motivator in my young life.

No, fresh out of high school I wanted to know “the truth”, and I wanted to not only seek it, I wanted to find it.

Imagine that?! Wanting Truth at eighteen?

And of course, at twenty one, I had ALL the answers. Teehee!

God, I was such a young putz!

And the funny thing is, now all I think about is being able to knock around the courts with some guys, and knocking around the bases with some girl.

That’s it.

I’ve come full circle.

Years and years of filling my head with books and learning and reading, and for me it boiled down to having a good game out there somewhere and having a bit of game still left in here, nod nod, wink wink, if you know what I mean…

I find it maddeningly comforting to know I am riding the same bell curve as every other swinging doohicky out there. Just another schmuck with semen to offload and baskets to be made.

Sure I still got it. It’s just harder to pick up, is all…

With some ibuprofen and a bit of luck, we just might hit it off…

(Man, I don’t know how I got here from where I started, but here I am, so here you are if you followed me here. And I apologize. It must have been all the crying I did tonight watching American Idol that is making me so indignantly manly and obtuse What I set out to tell you about was the day I was gay. The day I went on a gay date. The day I wore a really pretty purple shirt that showed off my young arms, with a tight pair of grey pants that showed off my young butt, and a gold money clip and a bit of Calvin Klein fru fru smell good stuff. I wanted to tell you about the day I went and drank a glass of wine over at Tom’s place, and Tom had thoughts that were far different than mine. I wanted to tell you about how I got my butt patted- like a piece of meat- and how I had to hold my breath for thirty seconds and how this all came to be. That’s what I had in mind when I sat down here tonight. Let me start this whole thing again.)

I was a bagger at a grocery store right out of high school. It was a part-time job, and I owned two white shirts and three silly little ties, and I clocked in and I slammed cans in paper bags and helped ladies put groceries in their Isuzu’s and I collected carts and brought them back inside the store.

I drove a little red Datsun pick-up and I would arrive early everyday, sit in the truck and think about “the truth” and stuff with my shirt off and hanging on a hanger, and then I would dress and tie my tie and head on in to the time clock.

That was my routine.

And when I got off work, I would sometimes head on over to my brother’s apartment directly across the street, as he always had food around and somehow managed to get beer often (though he was only nineteen) and had a TV that worked.

One night I got off work and found a handwritten note in my truck. It had been slipped in through the cracked window and smelled of perfume and was written on wonderfully flowery purple stationary.

I was excited.

I mean, how cool is that? A letter from a secret admirer! I wondered who she was.





Hi beautiful.

I saw you sitting in your truck today with your shirt off and I thought you looked real nice. If you’d like to get together for a nice romantic evening, maybe drink some wine, share some of your luscious self with me, call me anytime. 545-3245

Tom--





Tom?

Tom?

What kind of a parent names their girl Tom?

What kind of a girl, keeps that name after their parents screwed up so badly?

Tom?

Holy Crap! Tom?!!!!!

I grabbed the note and headed for my brother’s apartment. I was one lost and confused seeker of truth, I tell you that.

On the way across the street, my friend Rolf happened to drive by. He honked and I waved him over.

Now if you’ve been following along, you would know that Rolf is one of those “special” men who make the rest of us look like little boys. Let’s just say, Rolf has a reason to be confident in the dangling dating game- at least the way it is normally played. Let’s just say, they call him Pony and it suits him. And Rolf was a bit of a seeker too, though what I think he sought, was a reason to show off his seeker...

He pulled over and followed me to my brother’s, where I went through what I thought was a comical tirade about getting a love letter from some guy named “Tom”.

Rolf got some other funny ideas in his head.

He called the number while I was taking a piss.

“Yes, is this Tom? Hi, this is Scott. Scott! You left me a note in my truck today? Yes, that’s my name. My friends call me Scotty, sometimes. Sure. You can call me Scotty. Oh I KNOW!! I was surprised too! …”

HOLY LOVER OF JESUS! What the hell was he DOING!!!???

I walked up to Rolf while he played me on the phone and shook my head. No man, this is not cool.

Rolf kept going with the charade.

“A date? At your place? Oh I don’t know… I hadn’t really thought about it. I have someone, you know… his name is Rolf… Yes, like puking… he’s heard that before…Yes. He’s very pliable and sweet…”

HOLY CRAP! ROLF!

Rolf shushed me good, and I giggled and giggled. This was actually pretty funny.

“Sure, I would love to come to your place and share a bottle of wine. Can I bring my friend Rolf? Yeah. The two of us. Think you can handle that?”

OMG!

Rolf got Tom’s address and directions and a time to be at his place, and I thought it was the funniest thing I’d seen in weeks, only Rolf had that look in his eye.

“We’re going,” he said.

“No way!” I said.

We arrived fifteen minutes early so we could strategize…

Rolf actually started having second thoughts, and my curiosity had gotten the best of me. I was eager to pull this off and Rolf was looking for assurances.

“What if he like, slips us something in that wine and we pass out and he buggers us?” Rolf asked.
“One of us shouldn’t drink.” I said logically.

“You. You don’t drink. If I pass out, you get me the hell out of there!”

I was the designated anti-buggerer. Rolf was to play the effeminate role. We tried to figure out what two young eighteen year old guys who were gay and dating would sound and act like.

We didn’t have a clue. All we could do was concoct a brief story and then it was time. Rolf talked me into going on a date with “Tom”, and now here we were.

(One thing to remember if you’ve been following along, this was my fop stage. This was the only time in my life I ironed creases into my shirt sleeves and wore stink-good perfume and anything other than white tube socks or wool ski socks. I looked good going to this guy’s door, and Rolf did too.)

We rang, Tom answered, and he invited us in.

Tom turned out to be a really good looking but shorter guy with an immaculate condo and brown eyes that never stopped looking into your eyes. It was pleasantly unnerving and hard not to mirror.

Rolf and I sat down on the couch next to each other, accepted wine from Tom, and kept up our end of the conversation via lies and imagined answers to basic gay questions.

It was all so very fun!

I put my hand on Rolf’s knee and gave him gentle, loving squeezes, while Tom eyed the both of us up and down and I DO NOT WANT TO KNOW OR TELL WHAT I THINK THE GUY was thinking.

Let’s just say he was trying to get into the second bottle of wine much faster than he would have if old Hershey rowboat had been around instead of us two. Tom had a twinkle going and he was obviously happy to see us.

An hour of conversation churned by. Rolf and I got into asking “gay” questions. “When did you “know”. Were you ever “straight”. Were you afraid of the outside world knowing of your gayness?”

Tom actually answered us quite earnestly and honestly. I must say, I learned a lot that night, and I eventually relaxed and started sipping wine and getting into the evening and our charade and the experience of learning unfolding before us.

Here was one of those “gay” men, and here was what he was all about…

I asked him at one point, if he was afraid of someone “kicking his ass” for leaving a note in their truck. I mean, I didn’t think of myself as a gay mark back then, more of a Punt Pass and Kick winner who loved ping pong.

“Yes,” he said. “Of course I worry about taking chances. But I saw you sitting in that truck, and when I looked into your eyes, I just knew you were not that kind of person…”

I nearly spit out my wine.

In the end, Tom got to talk to two young boys who listened to his every word. He got to pat me on the ass as I left the condo, and Rolf got to see it and remind me of it for weeks and weeks afterward.

I got to hold my breath until I got to Rolf’s F-100 pick-up, and we both got to have a belly laugh while rolling on the seat.

For months afterward, Tom would come into the store while I worked and I would have to go hide in the back until he was gone. Every one who worked there knew the story and knew who Tom was.

Three months after our date, I ran into Tom while walking with the love of my short life, and the look on his face made me feel bad for him, but I was too young and cowardly to stop and explain.

“Hi Tom.” is what I said.

“Uh… hi…” Tom said, and that was that.

17 comments:

JustCallMeJo said...

You tell a heckuva good story, Scott.

(When I clicked over, I almost had a heart attack with all that Barbie pink goin on...eyeballs weren't expecting that.)

But you do tell a heckuva story.

I had a gay date once. I didn't know it was a date. And she knew I was straight, and she was really tryin. I'm sorry to say it just didn't work. You may, perhaps, have been wishing for a steamier end to the story. But see, I really liked her and she had the same sense of humor as me and was really great to go hiking and doing stuff with. Just didn't want to have sex with her. I tried to call her and hang out again, but she never called me back after that. I tried.

I was dumped. So sad.
/jo

Lizza said...

First off, I nearly busted my gut laughing at your banner and colors. WTF is Scott up to now, I wondered.

That was some story. But my heart went out to poor, poor Tom.

Bernita said...

Geez, we can be cruel when we're young.

Hammer said...

I am always kind to gays. I figure they have it rough enough living the life of a bum diddler without people being mean to them too.

Scott from Oregon said...

yes, bernita, cruel and curious.

The whole experience taught me alot about acceptance and understanding, it just took another year or two for it all to sink in.

Our intention was not actually to be cruel but to "find out".

Rolf and I had a habit and a slew of learning escapades when we were growing up.

CapricornCringe said...

You look beautiful in pink.

Tammie Jean said...

Great story, Scott! I was a little surprised when I saw your new banner. I almost thought this was going to be your "coming out" blog.

Dogbait said...

Great story. How in the hell do you get the time to write all this stuff! Took me 3 months to write a post that long.

Cheesy said...

Ha I too thought I had clicked on the wrong "favorite" link... I admire the way you told this. Grand writing my friend!
A lesson learned and curiousity is most times a good thing. Thanks for sharing these thoughts.

You snowed in today??

Scott from Oregon said...

Hi cheesy, Cap, Dogbait, Tammie, all...

Yep. Snowed in. Not so much me, but everyone else. 4wd and all...

Can't stay on the computer 'cause the power is going off and on, though.

Karmyn said...

You are a heart-breaker - but good story!!!

Jeannie said...

Great story! I'm amazed you had the cajones at 18 to pull that one off. My big question at that age (because as a few of us were walking along the lakeshore in T.O. we passed a lesbian couple) was - How on earth do they find each other? We discussed this for some time without ever learning the answer.

CSL said...

Wow, that was some story. At first I was laughing hard, then I was afraid he plan was to beat the guy up (there are homophobic men who seem to see that as a sport), and then it turned out you learned soemthing about compassion. I loved it.

amusing said...

See, and just the other day I was wondering if guys who drive trucks find it difficult to talk about their "trannies" these days. It's got a whole new meaning.

Schmoopie said...

I liked the part in the story when Tom told you "when I looked into your eyes, I just knew you weren't that kind of person. " Turns out he was right. You are one of the good ones, and a great story teller!

it's the little things... said...

Wow. I've heard so many of these stories, and am always happy when they do not amount to violence.
As for me, I've always been completely oblivious to the women trying to hit on me. Completely.

gem said...

Certainly are a brave one. I was scared for a while that you and Rolf were going to roll this guy. Enjoyed visiting and had to leave a comment so you wouldn't think I was lurking. BTW, that's not exactly fair posting a younger picture of yourself in the hot or not. Smart. But not fair. Some of us were dumber.