You know, I've had conversations with my other gay friends about how, because we've repressed our sexuality until pretty late in our teens or early twenties, we're experiencing things that we should have experienced long, long ago.
What do I mean? Well, take my first crush. I wrote about it last month. Usually someone's first all-out crush happens at the beginning of puberty -- what, fifth, sixth grade? I didn't have mine until my senior year. My sexual awareness has been delayed at least six years, so I'm experiencing all these different things related to it, and in most cases I'm just delighted -- because I've heard straight people talk about these things, I've read about them in books, I've even seen them on TV and in movies -- but I've never experienced them.
Well, this column is about yet another new thing that has happened to me. I have, for the first time, realized that I like someone. Not a crush. Not an online "thing." I just like someone. I'd like to get to know him better, but I will survive if it doesn't happen. This is new and novel to me.
Two weeks or so ago, I went to Tower Records to preorder Tori Amos' new album, from the choirgirl hotel (available on May 5 in the US - visit www.tori.com for more info). I went to Tower because they have a promotional thing going with Atlantic Records in which you can download an extra, unreleased track from the Internet if you preorder choirgirl from Tower. I arrived something like 15 minutes before they closed, so I did a quick look-see in the Tori Amos section to see if they had anything I didn't already have. They didn't.
I went up to the cash register, and asked the girl if I could preorder choirgirl. It was then I noticed him. Standing behind her, he had been talking to her. And he was so cute! She went to go see how to do the preorder, and he and I just bantered back and forth about Tori, making jokes about how much I like her. It ended up that they didn't have the right materials to preorder the album for me, so I had to come back later. But then I saw the Tori poster on the wall. I half begged, half joked that I should have it, because it was in such an inconspicuous place and I'd give it such a great home. He thought it was funny. The girl, his supervisor, let me take it.
Now, I know that there isn't anything completely and super-wonderful about him in the above description. Nothing that says he would be great boyfriend material, or even if he's gay. But the fact is, he was cute, he was funny, and I simply like him. And that makes me happy.
So I went back a couple days later. He was there again. And he remembered me. Called me "memorable." Warmed my heart.
And I went back last night, because I was in the neighborhood and wanted to buy a Prokofiev CD. He remembered me again. He remembered what we talked about the last time I was there too.
See how this goes? This is all stuff that I should be familiar with, that shouldn't be such a big deal, because it's all little stuff. But I've never experienced little stuff before, so I think it's wonderful. And maybe, just maybe, I'll get the courage to actually hit on him one day soon. But for now, I'll be content to go back to Tower on May 5 and talk to him again. Am I making a big deal out of nothing? Oh yes. But if you look back into your past, you'll see that it's something everyone does --- and the fact that finally I'm able to do this without feeling shame, guilt, or embarrassment is something I'm happy and proud of.
And now, for the monthly miscellaneous updates:
from the choirgirl hotel, as mentioned above, will be released May 5. Go buy it.
I saw The Object Of My Affection.. Incredibly sad, and it hit way too close to home - unrequited love and all that. But it was beautifully shot, and is really a great movie. And you got to see Paul Rudd in almost every scene! Woohoo!
I still have an email address. firstname.lastname@example.org. Or you can use my new one, email@example.com. Just use it, because I don't ever get any email about my columns, and it saddens me.
I also still have a web page. http://members.aol.com/agelfling is the address. Go learn about me. And sign my guestbook.
See you all next month.