Saturday, February 27, 2010

Le Gars de Chocolat Chaud, Part 3

The Waiting Game

So whatever was going on with Toni wasn’t what I’d prepared to deal with at that point. Another crush hadn’t panned out. Dating wasn’t really a possibility (although he probably initially had that same desire), and I had somehow consigned myself to moral support as he got over Ash.

It was a torturous position, really, because I had essentially volunteered to listen to him pine over another man. Over the course of several weeks, he opened up more and more about the breakup and life in general. He invited me to lunch with friends and introduced me to two new and distinct sets of friends: the Multicultural Student Union and the local gay crowd.


Picking him up from his place for the first time (to go on a Jamba Juice run), I realized something I should have pieced together earlier. Toni lived with not one but two of the guys I’d been out with in town. He belonged to that elite fraternity of gay boys living in The Wood House. He didn’t talk much about his roommates, but it sounded like they were gay.

As I pulled up and walked to the door I wondered what would happen if I ran into Kevin or Jack, guys I’d dated and lived there. Toni and I weren’t dating, but that’s what I wanted. How would all of that affect the situation? Toni opened the door and invited me in for a moment. Sure enough Kevin and one of the other roommates were there in the kitchen having a discussion about school.

“…I’ll be glad when it’s all over. I can’t wait to just get out there and do something even if it’s not web design,” Kevin said. He then passed a flirty look.

“You are graduating, Kevin. You should feel like that,” the other roommate said. Turning to me he introduced himself. “I’m Alberto. What is your name?”

“GMB. Nice to meet you.”

“Kevin, have you found someone to take your room yet?” Toni chimed in.

He shook his head. “Not yet.”

“He should move in,” Alberto suggested, indicating me.

“I don’t know about that.”

The conversation pretty much stifled there. “Are you ready to go to Jamba?” I asked.

“Definitely. You guys wanna come?”

“I’ve got work to do,” Kevin said perhaps a bit upset that I didn’t ask him myself.

“I’ll come,” said Alberto, running off to grab his wallet.

Deep down, I still hoped that somehow things would work, but I was nothing more than one of the guys. The trip to Jamba only proved that was the case as the conversation in the car quickly turned to his dating problems. The hopes that he might get over Ash continued, however.

The following Saturday, he invited me to a party at The Wood House. These parties took place with regularity and involved much of the gay crowd. In a way, it was like arriving. The atmosphere wasn’t so much exciting as interesting. I suppose I approached it much as Jane Goodall would her noble gorillas. I observed social behaviors: hugging upon entry and exit, somewhat scandalous dancing in the breakfast nook, compliments on clothing and hair, tennis games of innuendo-laden exchanges.

I stuck with the people I knew. Certainly, my caution came off to some as arrogance, but I remained polite and cool-headed as I figured things out. Toni, as host, made the rounds and remained distant throughout the night, so I stuck with his friend Lila. We remained the lone sober guests at the party.

couch liza gmb

Although our conversation began as we made fun of the immature behavior going on around us including our own Gilmore Girls-esque jabs, we ended up talking about something more serious by the end of the night.

“I have a confession to make,” I said.

She smiled, nodded, and turned her ear towards me. “Go on… Anna Freud’s here and listening.”

“I’m kind of hung up on Toni. He’s just so nice. He brought me hot chocolate. Who does that?! And now, all I can think about is going over there and dancing with him, but I know it won’t mean anything to him.”

“You’re right. It won’t. I’m Toni’s best friend and I know for a fact it won’t mean a thing. He’s not over Ash and he doesn’t really want to be.”

“How so?”

“He doesn’t accept the fact that it’s over because he thinks that it’ll start up again. He’s been texting Ash all night, if you didn’t notice and just now I bet he’s going into his room to call him.”

“How do you know this?”

“You forget,” she said smugly and honestly as Toni passed us on the way to his room with his phone up to his ear. “I’m in psychology. I don’t know everything, but I know my best friend better than most people know their own family.”

I marveled at what she said. If I came close to knowing that much about a person it would certainly be Cole, but even then I wondered. Moments later, angry shouts pounded against the door.

Lila then turned to me with a sternly comforting look: Let go. I knew that it had come to a point where the only sane thing to do was let go. I would be there for him, but not as some sort of knight in shining armor.

End, Part 3.

Note that in the previous post “My First Fruit Fly” falls within this post, and should this blog ever be transformed into a book-length memoir will be incorporated into this series.


C.J. said...

I think we all have a blind spot when it comes to ourselves. It's easier to *know* all the answers when its our friends' dating lives. Observing two people from a distance is one thing; observing them interacting with you is quite another. Anyway, I seem to always know more about my friends' lives than I do about my own...still pretty clueless there.

A Gay Mormon Boy said...

@C.J.: I know what you mean about being clueless about like. I think I've done well lately and writing the blog this way allows me to step back and show myself the lessons other people taught me in this time.

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