And....we're back! From Bear Week 2010 in Provincetown. A week in an old house with ten good friends and no bad apples this time around. An excellent relaxing week without drama or attitude or babysitting. If you've ever been to P-Town, you'll know that it is one of America's most gay meccas. Filled with "those people." This time around, however, it was a bit of a different mix -- containing far more straight people, cute girls in short dresses, and tons of children and strollers. I thought I was getting away from my work on the airplane and was going to be able to enjoy a week without strollers and yelling children -- but, alas, it was not entirely to be. There was definitely a strikingly different group of people in the town this year....in addition to the thousands of big old handsome hairy bears. And, for the first time, I encountered "that look." You know that look, don't you? The look by an overweight older straight guy who has been living in the parking lot at Wal Mart for a while and who has good Christian values....who looks like he would just as soon shoot you as look at you. I mean, here's the deal...the town is filled with same-sex couples holding hands, kissing, enjoying, relaxing....in an environment where we are actually able to do that sort of normal thing without fearing for our lives and getting bashed for who we are. But this time around, it was a bit different. And I did encounter "that look" -- the look that wanted to know what in the world two men were doing holding hands. And I didn't like it.
Don't you get tired of supposed adults who can't quite give up thinking they are victims in this world? Those who renege on their responsibilities and promises. Those who think that because someone else may happen to be more well off than they are that the other guy can be the one to pay for things "because they have it and I don't." I'm getting increasingly cranky when I encounter those who take advantage of friends, family and others and decide that "You can afford it, I can't" when it comes time to keeping up with responsibilities. Shirking off to others what is your responsibility is not something I call pretty or smacking of adult behavior. My buttons are getting pushed and this boy ain't enjoying it one little bit.
I can plainly see that this is, yet, one more summer that will be passing without us going camping. We've got a full compliment of camping gear in a storage shed that sits unused year after year. We used to go fairly regularly and loved it. But now, responsibilities and work seems to keep the lid on those sorts of things. And I'm not asking for sympathy. I'm simply stating facts and wish that our schedules and things that keep us close to home were different.
In case you didn't know already (yeah, right...), I have this way about me. I call it the "Church boy who had the lid kept on the kettle for far too long" syndrome. You see, that's what happens. You tell someone, anyone!, "No, no no" for long enough and they are bound to turn it into "Yes, yes yes!" sooner or later. I grew up covered, sheltered, in church, and without the ability to be myself in some ways. No regrets, just the facts. Nowadays, I'm a brassy and sassy dude. Mouthy, without filters on my mouth sometimes, don't put up with BS, and call people on their little games. If I see a good looking dude, you'll see my head turn....and possibly, even, a gutteral utterance. I keep my mouth shut until I can't any longer -- and then you'd better look out. I make sexual innuendos. I make comments that I shouldn't sometimes. People take me seriously sometimes when I'm not. And vice versa. But, hey now, that's life. It's led me into trouble more than once. It's caused mixed reviews when it comes to people actually liking me or not. It's created rifts in friendships and I've had myself removed from more than one friend's Facebook lineup because of it. I'm a nice guy. I'm not a sweet guy. But I'm me. I don't apologize for me, for who I am. If you want to get the job done, you'll call me. If you want to chat about how mean people are to you in this world, you won't call me. I love my friends. And most of them even love me. And that's enough.
We are in the middle of a lot of work after our vacation in Provincetown. But as many nights as we can, we go to one of Portland's free Summer Concerts in the Parks. We take a picnic, our lawn chairs, Mason many times, and head to the park. The music is all different, it typically draws in the local neighborhood of wherever the park is located, and it is nothing but a great way to spend one of Portland's warm summer evenings. We've been doing it for more than ten years now. We invite friends, anybody is welcome. There are food vendors, children, pets and bicycles. It makes us feel good.