Friday, December 02, 2005

Shopping with a Str8 Boy

Experience is a wonderful teacher. And if you are a logical, rational individual, you would think that I would learn from past experiences.

You would be wrong.

Last evening I agreed to go Christmas shopping with HSNB. I guess at some point last week in the throes of Thanksgiving revelry I had offered to help the poor boy out with the task. Of course who do the straight people turn to when it comes to matters like these but their friendly neighborhood gay person. We have that extra gene that they lack. You know, the shopping gene. The one that's linked to that other gene. The innate sense of fashion gene. Which is similarly linked to the "We can't understand why straight men can't buy gifts for their wives/mothers/girlfriends, so of course we help them" gene.

I should have seen the signs right up front. The premise was that we were there to purchase a gift for HSNB's mother. Why it didn't click when he steered me directly into the men's section, I don't know. After about five minutes of watching him look at the clothing with a pained expression on his face, I finally asked him why we were looking in the Men's Clothing section for a Mom gift. "Oh," he says, "I need something to wear for the company Christmas party too." Lawd, have mercy on me.

"Well, is it formal or casual?" I asked.

"Well, I uh, well, I’m not sure," he replies.

"Did you go to it last year," I ask.


"Well how was everyone dressed," I didn't even dare ask what he wore!

"The guys had, I guess, like suits." he says. Great command of description this boy.

"Okay, then." And I start pulling things from the racks. I have to admit my hands are magnetically drawn to cashmere. Hmm, I wonder if there is a cashmere gene. So I send him to the fitting room with an armful while I browse the racks. After quite some time has passed and he hasn't reappeared, I decide I should find out what is going on. I go over to the fitting room, knock, and gently ask how he is doing. He doesn't answer. I ask again. Again no answer.

Okay, at this point, what would you have done, being the logical rational individual that you are? You would walk away right?

You would be wrong. The door wasn't locked so I opened it. There he is, sitting on the floor in just his boxers and socks. The most heart-wrenching look on his face like a lost little boy who has just fallen off of his bike. You could see the moisture welling up in his eyes. In that moment, I knew that if he was gay, I would have asked him to marry me.

"What's wrong," I asked.

"I was putting on a shirt, and...," he says softly, "I got a pin stuck in my shoulder."

And all I can think, all that is going through my mind is, what the hell did I do when I was younger that makes me get into these situations.