A Natty Dresser

My grandfather was, what they used to call, a natty dresser. Natty is an old fashioned term for someone who is smart and fashionably dressed. My grandfather was always beautifully groomed. There are movies and photographs of him and my grandmother visiting our home for birthdays, holidays, and other events. He was usually dressed in a dark suit, white shirt and bow tie. He was a tall, thin man, who was mostly bald when I knew him, with gold wire rimmed glasses and a cane to help him walk. 
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Minority Stress

 

Four times a year I board a plan to attend a board meeting as a board member of a company that my employer is part owner of. While I came out last year to about half people who attend this meeting, I have not come out to everyone, and because of that each meeting has a certain level of stress. 
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Nantucket Reds

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. 
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Almost Infected

Sometime after December of 1992 I got a call from Sharon, an old girlfriend of mine. Our friend Ken had died of AIDS and she was pulling together a memorial service. I had not known Ken was sick. Sharon told me how she had taken care of Ken and nursed him in the final months of his life. I remember her telling me how horrendous Ken’s final days were in the hospital and how he suffered. I had not known until her phone call that Sharon and Ken were even close.

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Meeting The Parents

I came out at work last year. As the day I planned to start coming out drew closer, my mind was besieged with all kinds of thoughts about why I should not come out. The smoke screen of messages, driven by what I began to see as internalized homophobia, almost stopped me cold. But as I began to fight these random thoughts, I saw the thoughts for what they were: old messages about being gay which I had grown up with that were long outdated and wrong. I was able to move forward and come out at work because I could see the crazy thoughts as false roadblocks. Continue reading

Me and Football

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