Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Love's on Your List of Things To Do

I'm just beaming right now. This morning was going as well as any other morning, if not better. I had a good night out, and still dragged myself out of bed and out of the house on time. I even got a seat on the subway!

And as I emerged from that underground thruway, coming into the light of the plaza up top, there were two gentlemen, my age, tall, attractive, and professional, who were just finishing up a conversation. Then one leaned in and the other followed, and they kissed goodbye before splitting. I did my best to not stare and yet take it in. I was instantly warmed, chocked up, elated.

I won't try and identify my obsession with a scene like this--of course there are the obvious reasons. But ever since I first came out I have been especially touched by the idea of two adult men, fresh in their careers and comfortable in their identity and their love, not hiding that comfort in public. Perhaps because I imagined it for myself. I even had this picture sitting around ever since college, in my virtual pile of stuff--my ePile--that I recently stumbled upon and even have available this morning.

This might have been the only time that I've actually witnessed an exchange like this in person, in the most unlikely of places. Nothing will go wrong today. Today is beautiful.

Hmm, many thoughts about this rush around my head. The first is that upfront, I am not a big PDA fan. (It's more open-mouthed kissing or the inability to not paw each other every 15 seconds that bothers me, not the quick loving reflex you witnessed.)

However, I'm totally for this solely on principle. Any homo has the right to be as publicly nauseating as any hetero. What surprises me is that it took you until 2006 to experience the all-male kiss up close and personal. You don't see it at every turn, but it happens in broad daylight fairly often. Not only have I seen it quite a few times (always with 35-ish or younger couples) but I have even done it myself. Long-distance relationships dictate nothing less at the airport metal detector, and when you're not looking forward to getting on the plane, you don't compromise. That just makes you less reticent compromise when you separate after getting off the subway together either. It's slightly addictive.

That isn't to say two guys kissing each other goodbye doesn't still have some provocative connotation. I remember the first time I held hands with a guy on the Metro--on a packed Saturday afternoon train, no less--and without warning I was blindsided by the euphoria of such a simple act being so major in personal scope.

My guess is that location is everything in this case. You are still relatively new to living in DC proper, and it is one of the gayest cities in the country (with a subtle but unmistakable surge during your NYC tenure). For my money, it's also the most grown-up gay city, without any of the campy qualities that haunt San Fran, NYC, L.A. and Miami. And you're not as likely to see it getting off the subway in, say, St. Louis. I am, however, impressed that you saw your first kiss getting off the Metro, not getting on it in the homo Mecca in which you reside. That is definitely a sign of progress. I'm waiting for the day I see it on Capitol Hill. There's no turning back from there.

In any case, here's to hoping you are not just an admirer but, soon, a doer as well. Remember though, no tongue.
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