Saturday, July 3, 2010

The Life and Times of Boyfriend #2, Part 4

“Do You Think You’re Happy?”

The sounds
Of fiber against fiber
Of purpose and
Of pieces pulled
In Divine construct
Stand solid

“So how was your weekend, GMB?” my friend Savannah chimed as I took my usual seat next to her in US-Latin American Relations. 

“Great,” I responded with glowing face and uncontrolled smile. 

“You had a good date, didn’t you?”

“Yeah.  Finally got around to seeing Slumdog Millionaire.  It was amazing.”


“That is my favorite movie of all time!  A gameshow, a fairytale, and Bollywood—the perfect combination!” she declared. 

With that enthusiasm, I saw an opportunity to fill up the rest of the few minutes before class with a discussion of the movie rather than my sexuality.  Savannah wasn’t one of my closest friends.  We’d had several classes together and even exchanged numbers so that we knew when to take more intensive notes on those days which the other wasn’t going to show up.  Her husband was also a friend of mine, and because I knew both of them relatively well, I had no fear of getting close to her with possible repercussions of jealousy.  Genuinely friendly, Mormon and in love with each other. 

“So who did you take to the movie?” she asked, breaking through my first closeted defense just as the professor called for the classes attention.  “If you’ll take a seat, I’ll pass back your last quiz.”

To close the matter, I quickly blurted, “Well, I’m dating a manager of Radio Shack in Salt Lake…”

It was a weak, unprepared response.  Not quite good enough.  I had to cover with something more without lying. 

“…Andre,” I said following an imperceptible pause and just enough of an uncertain intonation to sound like “Andrea” were someone expecting that answer.

I was safe.  The matter seemed closed  along with the closet door, when suddenly a buzz came from the phone I’d forgotten to turn off.  Although I normally didn’t check my phone in such instances, I glanced and noticed the message was from Savannah. 


“I just thought you should know that I am your friend no matter what.”

I looked over to the most casual and sincere of smiles.  And as a single salty tear trickled down my cheek, I replied, “You are a true friend.”

Over the course of that week, we became a lot closer.  After class, I confided in her and she assured me, “Some people in the Church don’t judge you for being you,” and our conversations turned to how she had people in her life who’d undergone similar experiences to my own and how I’d felt comfortable enough to make out with Andre during the movie in a small Utah theater.   

“Are you excited for tomorrow,” she asked.  “Introducing the boyfriend to the best friend is a pretty important step.  I could tell you stories.”

“Well, they have been talking for a little while now.  I’m not too worried.   It’ll be Cole’s first time in the club and I’m just as interested in that aspect of the night.”


The weekend became an extensive experiment of sorts.  Not only would Andre meet Cole.  He’d also meet Lila (my best fruit fly) and Ianto (the one who got away” but remained friends nonetheless).   I also decided I felt comfortable staying the weekend at his place. 


It all began at the Babylon, one of many SLC gay club nights to come and go.  Although I wouldn’t consider myself a veteran of the club scene, I’d become an active participant on the dance floor and stopped being an observer, except in the case of Cole who was visibly out of place in our dancing circle.

“Let me show you how it’s done,” Ianto said, gyrating to the beat then placing his right arm around Lila’s waist moments later. 

Cole was exasperated, but quickly learning the finer points of club dancing.  The art of not caring, and looking confident would only come with time, though.  As Lila and I smirked over this exasperation, I felt a warmth embrace me from behind. 

“How have you been, babe?” Andre asked before pecking me on the cheek. 

“Fabulously.  I don’t have a  worry in the world tonight.”

I turned around, gave him a hug, and introduced him to everyone.  Although he was more accustomed to the clubbing scene and the Salt Lake crowd, he seemed oddly out of place. 

“Nice to meet you,” he said softly (in terms of club volume).  His demeanor was cautious.  He wasn’t sure what to make of meeting my friends.  Conversation pretty much stifled at that point for Andre, although I tried to engage with everyone. 

After a few minutes of awkwardness, I decided it would be best to relieve some of Andre’s stress by putting some distance between us and my other friends.  “I need to go to the bathroom.  Why don’t you go ahead and grab something to drink and we’ll dance some more when I get out.”

Visibly calmer, I commented, “Feeling better, eh?  Did you get something to settle your nerves?” 

“No, I just don’t think I’d be comfortable drinking around you,”  he said.  It was flattering that he was so worried about the impression he would make that night, but it still concerned me that he was under so much stress.

I looked him in the face and smiled. 

“What?” he asked nervously. 

“Nothing.  I’m just happy.”

The rest of the night was spent intermittently dancing together and chatting on a couch somewhat removed from the noise of the dance floor.  Hours later, we found ourselves completely removed from the rest of the world, cuddling and chatting on his bed.

Men in Bed

“So, any regrets about tonight?” Andre asked in a more serious tone than I’d anticipated from him.

I’d thought long and hard about the boundaries I’d set for myself.  Nothing I could regret could or would happen that night, so I sighed and responded with a grin, “Absolutely no regrets here.”

An expression of doubt filled his face as I grinned.  “Do you think you’re happy?” he asked.

I signed and grinned again, “Of course.  I’ve been over this with Cole several times.  "I’m just not the best about being totally vocal with my emotions, okay?”


“Don’t worry about it.  I’m doing better lately.  You’re helping me become a better person,” I assured him as I looked him sternly and sincerely in the eyes.  We kissed and turned out the lights.

This is perfect, I thought to myself as I held his back to my chest and took in the static smell of his black hair.

End, Part 4.


Joned Rahadian said...

Cool story. You are lucky to have such a good friend.

Joned ^_^

robert said...

I just had this thought that you are telling a tale of sorts rarely told in the gay community...a tale of innocence, integrity, feelings and thoughtfulness in refreshing.

The underlying care, faithfulness and innocence portrayed in the Twilight series has grabbed the attention of many otherwise jaded individuals...
GMB: You may well have this gift of delivering love expressed as word through your own very authentic journey.

A Gay Mormon Boy said...

Thank you, Joned. I think this has been one of my favorite series of posts to write.

A Gay Mormon Boy said...

@robert: Thanks for that. I guess I hadn't really thought about it in those terms. I've seen it more as a journey from A to B or a diagram of my commitment neuroses.

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