While the topic of the "10 year mark" is fresh on my brain, another something from my past is nagging if not tugging at me, my 10 year High School reunion, July 17, 2010. As much as i attempt not to live in the past, we kinda have to revisit it to make a mends, especially so we can break pattern and not continue to live out the tarnished past in the present. I think the day i graduated from high school I said, "I can't wait until the 10 year reunion." Well it's staring me in the face and so is this $400+ plane ticket I have to buy to fly across country to make my appearance.
I vividly remember being around my sisters age, 8 or so and my mother was going to her 10 year reunion. And since that day I've looked forward to the upcoming date, except there is one thing that I am really anxious about...of course it's some boy. But not just any boy, I actually liked him a lot. He was one of a few guys that I actually befriended in High School, which was big for me. I didn't have a lot of male friends - and the fact that I was gay almost guaranteed that I wouldn't have any male friends.
10 years ago, it was not okay to be gay in school. In my own short lifetime, I've seen being gay go from being unacceptable, to having Logo created...go figure. I definitely have jumped over and cleared a lot of hurtles pertaining to my sexuality as a black gay man...but it's far from over, especially with the D.L. topic still being at the forefront of the Black Gay identity.
I remember it like yesterday. It was the end of my Jr. Year in high school. I thought he was a very handsome guy and I knew that he hated me. I remember walking in the hallway and him just eyeing me. He would sometimes, just laugh at me when he saw me, I never knew what that meant. We didn't have any classes together, we didn't kick it with the same crowd - we had mutual associates, but nothing to link us in the same crowd.
One day I was either cutting class or something or another, I was in the Lab building and i saw him. LMAO. Out of nowhere, I just started chasing him, this was my way of getting back at him for laughing at me at staring me down without a cause. He, like most, underestimated me...just because I carry a little weight, people don't think I can run fast. LMAO....i picked up a trash can and threw it at him. LMAO. You'd had to have been there to see it, but that's the thing no one else was around to see it. LMFAO...We some how became friends after that day.
Anyway, he was a really cool guy. Like. I don't think that I've met anyone as cool as him ever in my whole life. And just remembering his cool factor pisses me off all over again, because I expected to be friends with him my entire life. :-/
When we first started hanging out that summer, I remember specifically telling him, to not let a people know that we were friends. I didn't want anyone to know that we were hanging out because I didn't want people to think that he was gay. I was very protective of our friendship, because again, for a a gay guy to have a straight friend was uncommon then just as it's slightly uncommon now.
I don't know how it happened, but we ended up going to CPK one night with mutual friends. The questions began: Is he gay? Why is he hanging out with you? Do you like him? Have you been to his house? BLAH BLAH BLAH. Anyway, needless to say the street comittee started talking.
Anyway - we both went to different schools our senior year of high school. But we kept in touch and hung out, still. But things soon changed...for the worse.
My last night in L.A. before attending Southern, I had a going away dinner at Acapulco. It was fun, one of the best dinner parties I've had ever! I dropped him off at home that night and I thanked him for being a friend - and told him that he'd better keep in touch with me. Even though he did, like most of my friends, he was a bit weird that I moved out of Cali.
A year later, I left Southern and I had called him a few times, with no return phone call. So of course when I got back to L.A. I put the word out that I was back. Apart of my plan, I went to enroll at a local school so I could stay on track and as I was making my rounds on campus, GUESS WHO I RUN INTO?? Right...
I was happy to see him, but he looked at me with this rage in his eye.
"You know, it's taking everything within me not to sock the fuck outta you right now."
"What did I do?"
"You told ---------- we had sex."
I had to stop for a second and process the information. The same people that we had went to CPK with a year earlier, went around telling people something that never happened. My worst fear had come true and there wasn't anything I could do about it.
My first reaction of course was to talk it out, to maybe make some since of everything and come to a solution, but as he went on in detail telling me how i had ruined his life, there was something more going on here. Not only did this person cost him his girlfriend, but it also cost him his job as a musician, with a very popular gospel act. SHADY right...
I was devastated - and I was livid. I got on the phone with my friend to tell her what happened, but she had already "heard" the rumor but never told me about it, :-/
To this day, this is one of the things from my past that bothers me the most, primarily because it's still an open file on my desk. I've had closure on pretty much everything else, except for this. But with the 10 year reunion coming...so many emotions are going on. Will he be there? What will happen if he shows up? Will I be able to talk to him? Will we be civil? What should I do? Should I say something if i see him?
Over the years we've kinda asked about each other through other people. About 5 years ago, he asked about me to my best-friend, she told him that I wrote books...he asked "about what?" lol...a glimmer of hope maybe? I'm almost going to this reunion just to see him, just to bury this ax and to make amends with my past...so my future can open up a little bit more.
I miss him as a friend. And I've always felt bad for what happened to him ex post facto. That had to be a lot for him to deal with and i know it definitely took a toll on his trust issues and it probably made him not interact with any other gay people afterward.
All in all, I want to catch him off guard, walk up to him and say "Remember when I threw that trash can at you?"
In my mind, that's all I'll need to say to break the ice and get my friend back.