Did I already use that blogpost title once? But anyway. So the bloke I've blogged about once, we'll call him Con Buddy--not because he's been to prison, but because he's great to buddy up with at a comics convention--is getting closer with me in terms of friendship. Handsome Italian guy who has made offers of companionship since the day he first said hello at my first Geektogether lo these two or so years ago.
Of course, his offers have mostly concerned conventions. He booked us in the same hotel room down to the next con, and we're driving down together, and then the plans evolved to include others in on the trip and the hotel room.
Then lately, at the start of the year he wanted me to come with him to Yoga. (Didn't work out because he said he'd hurt his back, but I was going to go, dang it. Was going to show my feet and everything.) Then he wanted to meet up with more geeks when I did, here and abouts in the city. "Don't forget me!" said he. Then last week he wanted me to take him to a gym for a trial membership since he knows I go. Which I did, and afterwards we went out to eat. Tomorrow, we're going out to a small and regular comicbook social venue that I've wanted to attend for ages.
So lemme ask you...in the mind of the average man, this is just what friendship between dudes is supoosed to be like, right? We laugh, we have things in common, we're physically butchy, we cuss, and we talk about girls.
Oh yeah, that's right did I mention that part? This is something we men seem to need to do. Talk about girls. Even when, as in my case, we're not actually sexually all that interested in them. So in the mind of my Con Buddy, I'm a single straight guy who makes a good and available friend.
And in MY mind, he's a single straight guy who is where I was when I was his age (just touching 40). He's had girlfriends like I have, (only in his case lived with one of them, and has had sex with more than one of them), and now has drifted back into singlehood by his own choice.
So of course, in my mind I've thought and hoped more than a little that all his overtures for friendship have been because he's attracted to me but doesn't want to be gay, but is just obeying his libido and not piling recriminations on himself. I want to believe he's going with his flow because life is too short, plus he's not learned how to live in the shadow of self-condemnation and fear religious judgment.
Even if all that were true, I rediscovered the other day just how fearful I am of This Homo Life. Even with all the above hopes and beliefs about Con Buddy fully in place, when I had the opportunity to come out to him over dinner, after the gym, I didn't do it. It's not for lack of ability--I had the same conversation going with him that I had had with my Podcast Mancrush(es) when I came out to them. I knew what conversational road to go down in order to lead to the Homo Destination. But with Con Buddy, I breezed right past my stop.
Why did I do that? And, you might ask, why do I not plan to revisit that stop at all? I accept that he could be just like me; attracted and looking to be swept off his feet with his first passionate butch-kiss but has never had any homosexual relationships and doesn't really want to cross that line into that world and that identification. Which, since I've chosen that same path for myself, I respect. But if there's ever any chance to even briefly experiment, much less have a full-on same sex romantic relationship, he would be the guy to try it with.
Yet, I just can't. It's like bungee-jumping (do they still do that anymore?) If the cord breaks, I'm dead. Dead dead dead. And I've done just fine without it. And people who have tried it say it's a rush, and life-affirming and yadda yadda yadda. But the shit is scary.
So I'm content to just have a friend to do stuff with and go places with instead of being alone all the time. Even if I think he's handsome, I don't need to be kissed (wants aside). It feels safer just to have the human connection without complicating it with The Love That Dare Not Speak Its Name. I mean, hell, straight guys do it all the time, don't they? Why can't I?
And that's what's going on.