Friday, June 23, 2017

Glimpses of Gay, part 4

Since June is widely considered Pride month, I was thinking about how I might celebrate on my blog.  My coming out story is easily accessible here on my blog using the 'coming out' tag.  But I came up with the concept I'm calling Glimpses of Gay.  This is where I will share occasions that occurred before I came out where I had a glimpse of gay life or an interaction with someone I understood to be gay.  Here's part 4:

Between 1986 - 1989 (I was 22-25 years old) I lived in a terrific 2-bedroom apartment.  It had big rooms, lots of closet space, a shaded terrace, and a convenient location.  I had 3 different roommates during those 3 years but I can easily say that my favorite was David.  I met David through a mutual acquaintance and immediately thought he was very handsome.  He had broad shoulders, nicely muscular arms, and later I would find he had a hairy chest.  

But what made David even more irresistible was that he was so incredibly nice!  He had a brother about 2 years younger, and a 1/2 sister from his mom's 2nd marriage who was considerably younger.  He was kind and respectful to his brother and sweet and helpful to his little sister.  David's mother had a chronic health condition and he was always mindful to try to ease her daily chores if possible.  Understandably, I fell in love with him. While I wondered if David might possibly be gay, I knew it was ridiculous to speculate about it.  He and I were both Jehovah's Witnesses (JWs), and as such you are not allowed to be gay.  

We got along well and shared many interests.  I assisted him when he'd agreed to help a friend move to a different home, and he'd come with me for dinner at my folks' house.  I tried to think of as many things as possible I could do to spend time with him.  

I eventually invited him to move into my apartment.  The only problem was that it was a 2-bedroom place and I already had a roommate, at least on paper.  My current roommate was rarely there.  Sometimes weeks would go by without me seeing him.  He was behind on his rent so sometimes he would come and get clothes etc when he knew I was at work so he wouldn't have to face me.  I knew it was just a matter of time before he would have to give up his room, so I convinced David to move into my room until that happened.  My room was huge so there was plenty of room for both our beds and I cleared some space for his stuff in my walk-in closet.  

I remember a night that seemed magical.  He liked to read in bed before going to sleep, and one night he asked if I'd like him to read out loud.  I said sure, so he quickly told me the jist of the story so far, then read aloud to me.  I'll never forget that.

Another memory that is clear in my mind after all these years is when we had a crazy heat wave.  In the DC metro area where we lived our hot summers were often accompanied by extreme humidity.  At that time I worked in a non-air conditioned warehouse and David did construction work.  One day we both came home from work hot and exhausted and joked that we should hang our clothes up to dry before tossing them into the clothes hamper.  As we both stripped down to our underwear David suggested we have a cold beer.  He left the bedroom in his underwear so I followed suit.  We sat on the dining room chairs (not fabric) in our underwear, drank our beers, and talked.

In hindsight, I'm surprised no one ever questioned our friendship.  I was so in love with David I'm surprised it wasn't noticeable to others.  Or, maybe it was noticeable but since JWs can't be gay they simply didn't understand.  I eventually moved out when I bought my 1-bedroom condo and David kept the apartment for awhile.  Years later I heard he was married, and just recently I heard he was divorced; his wife left him for another guy.


anne marie in philly said...

you have led an interesting life, dear. and you continue to lead one with spouse.

Fearsome Beard said...

He sounds hot. I remember I had a couple of those unresolved bromances in my younger years, vivid memories.