Because They Really Dug Each Other

Here's why I dig you all: you're funny, honest, and willing to be vulnerable. Check out this most excellent comment (!) left on this post.

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This post [caused] me to remember how I've had to re-filter some of my own attitudes. During my first marriage, after buying my first house (modest cape cod in an unpretentious white collar/blue collar neighborhood), I had some great next door neighbors-call them Liz and Celeste.

I first met Celeste, and did that instantaneous and involuntary male-brain "Man Trance" visual assessment based on looks (breasts) and testosterone-infused mental rating (the entire process of which takes a fraction of a second). Then I met Liz, and thought, oh, that's smart, get a roommate to help with expenses and stuff.

My first impression was of a couple of single women in their late 20's, but I mentally assigned them hetero status, and wondered idly whether they had active dating lives, or what they did when their boyfriends visited, and whatnot. Some few months later, I was puttering in my back yard and overheard/witnessed them having an unguarded, "huggy-snuggle-bunny-burger" moment - just some playful affection and banter, but obviously not just-roommate stuff.

For a minute I was like "OMG I'VE BEEN LIVING NEXT DOOR TO LESBIANS AND NEVER EVEN KNEW IT!" and my mind IMMEDIATELY went to stereotype-land: wondering about the mechanics of their sex life, wondering who "wore the pants", wondering if it was bad relationships with guys that "turned" them gay (I know! And I already did know...you don't even have to...), and how this thing could even be possible, because after all they didn't LOOK like...   

...and thus began my attitude re-filtering. They were my neighbors (and friends, by now). Their status was SO OBVIOUS, in hindsight, as it started dawning on me how many cues I had missed ("Oh yeah...no boyfriends, ever. Makes sense now"; etc.).

They had never called attention to, nor exactly hidden their relationship; but I did find out from them later that their other next door neighbors (Mr. and Mrs. K--, good catholics who raised 8 children in a 3 bedroom cape cod) were outraged by their very existence. So they had downplayed their pda's somewhat, after overhearing the passive-aggressive Mrs. K rant about them (presumably to someone in her family, but at a very loud volume and suspiciously close to an open window). Mr. and Mrs. K being (apparently) MUCH quicker on the uptake about such things than I ever was.

Roy and Germaine, across the street, were also "concerned". About their property values. You know, if "they" start taking over. (Note to Roy and Germaine: go back to the late 70's and check out the Short North some time. You will be pretty fuckin' amazed at the difference, after "they" went to live there. Seriously amazed--the place was a crime-infested shit hole).

As I rolled back my locked-in-place first impressions and assumptions, I could see that Liz and Celeste were not as preoccupied with the adjectives of their relationship as their neighbors had been: they were not having a "gay" or "lesbian" relationship, any more than they would go "gay" or "lesbian" grocery shopping, or sit down to "gay" or "lesbian" pay their bills.

Most obvious, finally, was that they just wanted to live their lives together, because they really dug each other.

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See? Awesome.