It's a dangerous business, as Bilbo Baggins reminded his nephew, going out your front door. The lane outside is a tributary of that great road, and before you know it, you've lost your footing, lost your way.
You've ended up going where everybody else is going, whether that's where you need to be or not. And then this road, like many modern roads, divided in the middle, loses the divider, and you find that the other side is not for people going the other way, because nobody does go the other way. There's someone over there, going your way, to your destination.
And it's the easiest thing in the world; it's the hardest thing in the world, it's just the only thing in your world, going where you're going with this other, this significant other, who's going your way.
A digression. A day or two ago ni forwarded to me an e-mail sent to him by mistake, about a Singles Life class at a church somewhere. Here it is, expurgated slightly:
I talked to most of you during Sunday service last week. I just wanted to remind you about our class on Sunday mornings at 1000.
K---- (my wife) and I usually buy doughnuts for the class, so come hungry! We are going through the book of Romans right now, having a great time learning about what Christ has done and is currently doing for us.
We'd love to have you come attend.
Hope to see you tomorrow!
Singles Life Class Teacher.
Cute, isn't it? The subliminal message is: Singles Life is led by a married couple, and the guy finds it necessary to allude to his status in the most gratuitous way. I got over it! And you can too!
Anyway. There are people in this world who are, by choice or necessity, going other directions, in other ways. Unconnected, it may be. And the herding of people toward the One True Life Narrative is really beyond not helpful.
There are other True Life Narratives one can choose. Today (miserable wet cold day for June) Boston had their annual Pride Parade. I went down for it, for the first time. Found a place that wasn't too crowded, watched a Boston Cop keep a would-be motorist stopped at a side street for half an hour, just because he's a cop and there's a parade coming, sometime. Anyway. After a while the parade arrived. Motorcycle clubs, high schools, clinics, other businesses strutting their Alternative True Life Narratives. Including, (makes the heard glad, as one religious publication used to put it; anybody know if Hillspeak is still in business?) a float containing Tom Shaw, the Episcopal Bishop of Massachusetts, with a lot of walkers around it. Followed by walkers including Bishop Gene Robinson (first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal church) from New Hampshire.
And then, partly because of the wet, and partly because... Well, why? Maybe that's the point of what I'm writing. I turned away, came home, changed out of my wet things, and had a nap with my kitty in my lap.
You see, I'm not going your way. I'm not going anybody else's way, either. Been there, tried that, hit the barrier. If I'm going anywhere, it's backing down the driveway, very quietly, with the tail lights off, in the wee hours of a very dark night. In the rain. Absolutely alone.
One thing the internet is good for, with its social networking and its search engines, is firmly denying the I'm the only one narrative. Alas, my google-foo fails me. I don't know if the Venn diagram of the various constraints and attributes allows of any intersection. Even for me.
So I think I walked through the Common in the rain, alone, past the abandoned carousel, with the sounds of distant revelry in my ears, because my search for a tribe, for my people, has fallen short. Again. As it always has. As, I suppose, it always must. Except the once, and while I'm grateful for that, it's not... what, exactly? It's just not.
"Happy Pride!" the kids called out to any and all.
No. But thanks for the wish.
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