My Life: Vignettes Over Time – Chapter I


It is hard to know where to begin when writing a personal history.  Do I start as a small child already feeling different than my peers, or do I begin later when I first began to understand my attraction to men?  Let me tell this story through a series of vignettes over time. Continue reading


Now, “different” is nice, but it sure isn’t pretty
“Pretty” is what it’s about
I never met anyone who was “different”
Who couldn’t figure that out

– At The Ballet from A Chorus Line

I knew I was different from a very young age, even though my mother, grandmother, and aunt tried to turn it into being special. As the character Bebe sings in A Chorus Line, I figured out that I was not like the other boys, and it was not a good thing. I did not engage in baseball on the playground, I was utterly disinterested in sports and could not get my head around the rules or players’ role in different games. Continue reading

Nantucket Reds


Walking around Nantucket yesterday brought up emotions in me that date back to my childhood. My reaction to seeing a certain type of well to do men and women, dressed in elite preppy styles, full of self-confidence and sureness, implying a closed exclusive world, is not good. It makes me cringe inside and feel uncomfortable. It also encourages my contempt.  Continue reading

Hardwired Gay


Based on my earliest memories, I knew I was different from other boys. It was not simply learned behavior, but from the very beginning, it was something at the core of who I was. Continue reading

Me and Football

Photo 20150731074332006

The men stood around the large 36-inch color TV, encased in the fine wood finish of an expensive 1960’s television. They spoke a language that was indecipherable to me. Grunts and cheers. Screaming at the TV. “Ah, Christ, that was a terrible call.” “Go! Go! What’s the matter with you?” They spoke a raw angry tribal language I did not understand. The violence of their shouting frightened me. I was probably five or six years old. Continue reading

Real Boys Are…


I am fascinated by the subject of transgender men and women and their stories. Earlier this year I read Janet Mock’s new book, Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More. It was a wonderful book that I could not put it down. I am now reading another autobiography by a transgender woman, A Queer and Pleasant Danger: A Memoir by Kate Bornstein. This is a very different kind of book, but also quite enjoyable. Continue reading

Is The Gay Showing?


As I went from teenager to adult, from student to white collar worker, I began to actively compartmentalize the gay man within. I walled off a corner of myself that was gay and it became my own private landscape. I would be attracted to a man on the street but it never took physical form. The attraction was walled off in my mind and emotions. While I went on to get married, have a child, and continued to experience professional growth and some success, I was on constant guard. Was the gay showing? Continue reading

Not My Father’s Son: The Power of Coming Out


I never knew why my parents transferred me from public school to a private all boys’ Episcopal school in third grade, while my sister was sent across town to a co-ed Quaker school.
Continue reading

The Boys of Summer


In the early 1960s, my parents discovered Nantucket, long before the island became the popular upscale resort it is today. Each summer for a month, we would pack up the station wagon, tie the sailfish (a surfboard-like sailboat) to the roof, stuff the station wagon with clothes, diapers, a crib, my little sister and baby brother.  My father and mother would drive us to Woods Hole for the ferry ride to the island. We stayed in a small furnished cottage near the center of town that was part of a property of three cottages. The cottage we most often rented had a plaque above the door that named our summer home, After Cabin.
Continue reading