Allright, let's get the big pink elephant out of the room by discussing it.
Of course, perhaps in a gentler age, talking about a person right in front of them might have led to them leaving the room. But now in this world of Snookies and Honey Boo Boo's, people seem to thrive on confrontation and have enshrined anger on the altar of their oh so overly exposed emotions. (Yes, I know I'm writing a blog about myself, but a story MUST have a narrator, n'est-ce pas?)
It's highly unlikely that a devout Christian would overlook Christmas. Orthodox Jews plan for Passover months in advance. The Muslims I know, and some of my best friends are Muslim, they know the cycles of the MOON to plan for Ramadan.
So how in the hell did I overlook the fact that it was National Coming Out Day. ME?
Let's give it context. Like all gay men who have a story to tell, I was born in a small Southern town. Mine was on a bayou in a marsh at the very edge of the continent where you can practically stand on your roof and view the Gulf of Mexico. I am the youngest of a family of five and was sort of a surprise when I came along. Little did my mother know that the marvels of me were just beginning. (Though she might have used the word 'jaw-dropping shockers' (thanks online thesaurus for that!).
I love standing on the edge and have spent much of my life in an undecided middle ground between one option and the next. Keep up with me for the next few weeks and you'll see what I mean. But in this case, as a young man I tried to play it straight while being gay.
Now, you have to remember that this is in the Eighties. Sure, I had the big ass Flock of Seagulls haircut and the multi zippered sweatshirt with the shiny pants that changed color based on my mood. But I was dating a girl. Never mind that she was dating a girl as well!
Close you eyes and remember if you can, the complete lack of characters in movies and television. You can't turn the television on these days without hitting some queen flitting around talking about canapes, distressed furniture or their adopted babies. But life in a small town, back then, was deep in the closet and quite fearful.
How did I come out? Some queens I knew spelled it out for all the town to see. They rearranged the letters on a billboard outside the restaurant I worked in (YES, I was a waiter and I know how stereotypical THAT is!) for everyone to see. It was on the Main Street downtown. I was outed.
But that's cool because I might have turned into one of those baseball cap wearing, camaflouge wearing, bearded hunter types that are so prevalant in South Louisiana. (Even as I write this I realize I have a disco tight camaflouge tank top in my closet and a beard).
So I forgot that yesterday was a day to come out for all to see. But I burst through that door a long time ago and walk around proudly every day. So I guess it's Gay Christmas everyday with me and I don't need one 24 hour period to remind myself of that which is so precious.
Be Yourself and don't fight who You'll become.
Now if you excuse me, I have some tinsel to hang....