Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Reunion Weekend

When I arrived to New York on Friday night I had two immediate needs, a cocktail and a costume change. Within an hour both of those needs had been met and I was walking down Christopher Street with AQueer, Foxy Brown and Thirty Red. We stopped by our usual haunts and toasted to the weekend ahead. After catching a few eyes and finishing our round we hustled off to the Lobby. After hearing so many things about the Lobby since it opened up several months ago I knew that I had to make this lobby my official foyer into the weekend.

The line was longer than I expected but what it brought me was something that I have grown accustomed to seeing in NYC – good looking men. The eye candy was sweet and kept me pacified until I got in the club. To my left was my favorite NYC frat brother. To my right was one of my favorite and phyne blog buddies, Seriously. I ran into a few more familiar faces and gave the dance floor a fifteen minute set. I danced just enough to get my blood flowing but not long enough to have sweat flowing down forehead and back. My weekend was off to a great start.

Saturday brought culture and good company. I attended A Burst of Light, an event orchestrated by Frank Leon Roberts at the Nuyorican Café for NYC Black Pride. The event showcased four creative people whose chosen instrument is the written or spoken word. Alphonso Morgan did a good presentation. James Early Hardy was good, Staceyann Chin was great and Hanifah was wonderful. Her accolades were many and well deserved.

Following A Burst of Light as I was walking away from the café and my phone rang. TheLoveHater had decided to venture to NYC for the weekend. Oh, the fun we would have. He and I immediately linked up and headed to Brooklyn for
a bar-b-que. I’d been to the hosts’ house once a few moths ago. When I walked into the backyard I was not at all surprised. The music was right, the grill was smoking a beautiful brown group of folks had gathered to have a good time. He and his partner exude a positive and welcoming energy that is reflected in the people they surround themselves with. I made a couple of new friends and reconnected with a handsome young man I wouldn’t be opposed to seeing one-on-one at somewhere other than social affair.

Saturday night I did what I would end up doing again on Sunday, the Christopher Street stroll, seeing and being seen. I saw many faces I seldom get to see. In recent months I have begun referring to Pride as Reunion. I think more and more people have pride in their lives on a daily basis. Times have changed. As I observed the hoards of people much younger than even I on the Pier and throughout the weekend and I think about the kids I see in DC I am reminded of this. When Pride events first started there was certainly more of a reason to take it to the streets. Yell it loud, you are gay and proud. Today there are youth in middle school who have already come out to their family, teachers and peers. They don’t have the same need for a day or annual event to proclaim their orientation liberation. Granted I of course think the need is there, but definitely not in the same way. Additionally, I think that the generation after me has a better shot at seeing more long term healthy same sex relationships too. I have many theories on the evolution of my shared communities.

Although Pride in NYC was over on Sunday my weekend of Reunion was not over. I took another step closer to the City of Bones, washing myself new, on Monday. I met Aziza for lunch. Aziza and I have known each other since 8th grade. When we first met we instantly clicked. Our constant talking, loud laughter and sharp tongues drove many a teach throughout our jr.high and high school crazy. We were a dynamic duo and often insane duo who fed off each others crazy and creativeness. Throughout our college years we remained very close but as the case with many relationships and friendships there are rough patches. In December she and I hit a very rough patch and on Christmas Eve she and I had a positively negative encounter. It was not our exchange of words that communicated what was going on – it was the two of us in the room with most of our other high school friends and not speaking a word to each other that communicated to her, me and everyone else present that the waters were choppy and someone or our friendship just may drown.

There had been some words said by a third party that weren’t true. There were some words conveyed to both of us by a third party that were also misinterpreted. The third party is/was another friend of ours from school. Aziza and I didn’t speak again until May when she called me out of the blue. When picked up the phone our conversation picked up like we had talked to each other just the day before. We didn’t skip a beat. We updated each other on the past five months and she shared a hysterical story about what was going on with her cousin. We talked for nearly an hour and neither of us mentioned the fact we hadn’t spoken since December and we were used to talking to each other every other week. That is a real friendship. I love Aziza and I believe she loves me.

She and I have talked several times since May and yesterday we went to lunch and had a long conversation about what happened in December and she apologized for letting someone else attempt to step in the middle of our friendship and I apologized for not initiating this process of clear communication sooner. Lunch was fantastic.

I shopped for a few hours until it was time for me to meet friend of mine from undergrad for dinner. I haven’t seen her since she moved to Indiana last August to start work on her Ph.D. She is my sand. She crossed my semester and we were both chaplains of our respective organizations. Dinner was delicious and so was the conversation.

I love good reunions. Reunited and it feels so good.