When you’re gay, there are several things that you get for free; you always look ten years younger than you are, you travel a lot more than the average human to fabulous locales, and you are absolutely having the craziest sex of everyone you know.
It’s just what you know, and how things are. These unalienable truths are what keep the planets aligned and the earth spinning on its axis. And I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy regaling stories of wild abandon and open relationships with my straight male friends who look on with 10,000 yard stares, wondering how it might be to have the freedom of us seven percenters.
The other thing you also have is lots of wonderous friends who live in far-flung places. Like Tokyo, Paris and New York. And San Diego.
Some very good couple friends of ours live down in the SD and we like to make a trip down there at least a couple of times a year to say hi and see their two lovely toddler children.
As we were lining up the trip, Paul and I were talking with San Diego Jay in the car one day, sorting some details.
Jay: Great, so we’ll see you Saturday round lunch.
Me: Excellent, can’t wait to see you.
Paul: Been too long.
Jay: Oh, this is great! Yeah, you’ll be able to meet my girlfriend.
Paul and I laugh.
Paul: Uh, yeah. Looking forward to it.
Jay: I’ll let her know. OK, see you Saturday.
We hang up.
A quarter mile goes by.
Me: He said Girlfriend right?
Me: That’s a joke right?
Paul: Must be.
Me: I mean, Amy? She’d be totally down with that.
We laugh. That Jay, what a kidder.
Amy, Jay’s wife, is something of a force of nature. She loves hard and fiercely. When you are on the in, you bask in the glow of her smile and hugs. When you are trying to make your way into that light, you discover it’s protected by machine gun turrets, minefields and the odd rocket launcher.
When Paul and I first started dating, once I had entered the “Introducible To Friends” stage, Paul and I took a spin down to SD to meet Jay and Amy for the first time. I’m pretty good in a room. The accent, the stories, the jokes… I generally don’t find it hard to win people over. But Amy took a little more convincing than most.
At one point we were both alone in their kitchen and that’s when Amy decided to level me the question she had been waiting to ask all day.
Amy: So Karl, what are you’re intentions with Paul?
Me: Oh, you know. 50% lewd, 30% untoward, 15% selfish and about 5% good.
Oh God, I’m hilarious. The numbers even added up to 100. Genius.
Amy smiled politely as I beamed back at her. Hmm, that’s strange. My powers don’t seem to be working…
Amy: I’m being serious.
She shot me a look that ripped my vaudeville act in two, reached deep inside and pulled out my damaged soul so she could inspect it first hand.
Me: Oh, um, ok. I really like Paul. Uh, I’m not dating anyone else.
She waited patiently, arms crossed. I could see more was required. I was sweating.
Me: He makes me laugh a lot.
That seemed to be what she wanted to hear. And wow, I really wanted to say the right thing.
Amy: Ok. Good.
It was clear from this conversation that I was being watched, assessed and a decision would come later. As Paul and I got more serious, I prayed that good reports were being dispatched to Amy.
That’s how she is when she’s evaluating you as a friend. For an enemy, and you might think she’d have motive with Michelle… well, I can’t even fathom.
So Paul and I are winding our way down to SD. Something about the nuclear reactors we pass remind me about our conversation with Jay. It has to be a joke.
We arrive at their house and come on inside. For years, the two of them have sponsored German au pairs to come and stay with them. We knew they had a new one who we hadn’t met yet.
Yet, we were still surprised to see a dark-haired woman, covered in tattoos sitting with their two kids. Wow, they breed them cool in Germany. And hot. This girl had dangerous curves and a cheeky smile.
She looks up and sees us.
Michelle: Oh hi guys, I’m Michelle.
Weird. No German accent.
Michelle: You must be Paul and Karl. Jay is out the back. (yelling) JAY! (back to us) Do you guys want a drink or something?
She plays the perfect host and clearly knows her way around the kitchen. Jay then arrives in the room. Hugs all round. Curious glances on half the faces here, namely ours.
Jay: So I see you met my girlfriend, Michelle.
This is the point where I feel like I’m in some science fiction film where everyone’s had their memories wiped and the aliens are swapping us all around.
I can see Paul thinking the same thing as we blink like goldfish at each other, scrambling for what to say next. Michelle then puts her arms around Jay and they kiss a little kiss.
Weird just left the building and something much weirder came in its place. I wonder if this is a practical joke. Is there a camera crew behind us?
Jay: Yeah, about…
Michelle: Um,… 4 months I guess.
Jay: That sounds right.
It all looks like the first throws of lust and hormones. Then I have another thought… AMY COULD COME HOME ANY SECOND!!!!!
Jay: We haven’t talked in a while, have we?
Jay then proceeds to tell us that he and Amy have opened up their relationship. Amy is exploring a few things with another guy that she met. By things, I mean corsets, S&M, Sub/Dom, groups… you know. Things.
Jay on the other hand is more into the one guy/two girl philosophy and is just looking for a steady girlfriend. Covered in tatts. Who likes kids. The ones, he and his wife are raising together.
In the gay world, opening up your relationship means you get to bang on the side. You might allow regulars. But you sure as hell aren’t up for “boyfriends”.
And Amy has gone, by the sounds of it, from spreadsheets in her 9 to 5, to spreading it on any sheets 5 to 9. I believe the term “whoring out my wife” came up a few times.
People who know me well, know that I’m seldom lost for words. But my mind could barely keep up, let alone crack a one liner.
Then Paul and I hear a car pull up in the drive. Amy gets out and we watch her walk to the porch. As she cracks open the front door, everything goes slo-mo. I wonder exactly how I’ll explain to the police officer what transpired in the Tarantino’ed living room of their house.
The slo-mo continued as Amy walks in, sees Michelle, makes a b-line for her, puts up her fists, and pulls Michelle in for a hug. I’m pretty sure that’s what happened, I was peeking through the gaps between my fingers.
They give each other a big hug and kiss hello, the kids run over to say hi to Mom, and then Amy turns to us.
Amy: Hi boys. So you’ve met everyone then?
You know those moments where you’ve nearly been hit by a car? Or almost fallen off a cliff? In the time immediately after, you have this heightened awareness that these normal things you’re doing now, seem surreal.
Like all of us drinking sodas and talking about the Poly Amorous Community that Amy and Jay have got involved in.
The conversations weave from how they talked about opening up their relationship, how they talked about what they wanted were into. Then what they were “Craigslist” into. Then that they both thought that was pretty hot.
Then his seduction of Michelle online, her reluctance to get involved with a married man, then her eventual interest when she found out the whole scenario with Jay and Amy.
Amy meanwhile has taken subterranean dives into the sexual abyss; whippings, fetish wear, subbing out to Dominant role playing men, group explorations etc etc and a long list of etc.
I’ve even seen photos of what her ass looked like after a particularly brutal spanking session. She proudly displayed them off her iPhone.
Me: Um, yeah. That’s pretty awesome.
And it kind of is. Those are some impressive marks. Easter’s coming, there’s a hot cross bun joke in here somewhere. Meanwhile the kids ran around, none the wiser to the extremely adult conversation.
Me: So the whole girlfriend thing…?
Amy: Oh yeah, that. Well, we just decided to put all that jealousy stuff away and just enjoy ourselves.
Not even a whiff of jealousy. Wow. This is apparently, is the new normal.
Now, I take my hat off to anyone willing to fess up to what they really want and go after it. Times ten when it’s a couple. But there was one thought that just crept over me during the day and that is…
WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED, GAY MEN! I MEAN REALLY, WTF!!!
While we had our eyes on that marriage prize, straight people took over our entire turf. WE are the ones who have crazy monkey sex, WE are the ones that chat about it with our straight friends like we’re talking about the price of lettuce, and WE are the ones that make everyone else question how much freedom they have tossed away.
By the time the day was over, I felt J Crew catalog dull. No, LL Bean. No wait… fucking Sears. I’m fairly sure I blushed more than once.
So gay men, it’s time to throw down the gauntlet. Either we one up this shit and get into gas masks, bunkers and animal sex or go for Plan B. I vote Plan B, by the way.
We get marriage legalized all over America and we set to task to have every single one of these immoral heterosexual lifestyle people thrown out of it. The International Homosexual Conspiracy needs a new mandate: it’s no longer cocktails for breakfast and recruitment drives. No, my friends, it’s fucking war.
We start the day with Folgers, fruit and prayers and then get straight into the Supreme Court to get the Constitution amended.
How am I supposed to marry my same-sex partner when the very sanctity of marriage is being destroyed by these heterosexual hordes who want us to believe that marriage is between a man and a woman and his girlfriend and her Dom and these randy guys on Craigslist and that dude in the rubber suit and this foot fetishist and this role play group sex collective and this poly house party and these masters looking for a female servant and and and….?