We went to the Youth Pride Dance this past Saturday night and had a ball!
I don't know if people remember us mentioning something about our next door neighbor. I think we said something about this in the comment section of one of our posts (see, you have to read all the comments to get the full news of what's happening!).
These are the neighbors we spend a good bit of time with and they are so cool. Brad and the wife/mother have really bonded around cooking, and the husband/father and I play pickup basketball with some of the other guys in the neighborhood. He's also the one who's been teaching me all about woodcarving (I'm going to be posting a pic of this penguin family I finally finished... and one has a red bow tie and I've named him B-boy, since Brad wore a red bow tie for our Valentine's Day dinner!).
Anyway, get to the point, Matt! Okay, I will.
So, if you read the comments from the post I just mentioned, you may remember they have a son named Jake who's in high school and he came out to them toward the end of last year. His parents have been very accepting and supportive of him, which didn't surprise us at all. Jake was extremely nervous about telling them even though he knew their reaction would probably be positive. That's something I can certainly relate to. No matter how well you know the people you're coming out to, you never, ever know for certain what they might say or how they might react initially.
Anyway, back to the story.
We told Jake about the dance to see if he might be interested in going with us. We showed him the Boston Pride site where they advertised the dance (which you can see two posts down) and he said he'd like to go. He definitely didn't want to go dressed in some Super Hero outfit, which was the theme of the dance, and we assured him neither of us wanted to either.
I don't know if they had any people our age planning the event, but seriously! Maybe other people our age are a little more ballsy than us, but I'm not going into downtown Boston dressed as Captain America or Spider Man! Sorry. Just not gonna happen! ;-)
(is that a bulge
he's got going there?)
On our way to the dance, Jake tells us his mom wanted to take his picture before he left. We're going, "Your picture? Why?" He said he thought she was looking at this as similar to him going to the Prom or something. We told him that was sweet but he just rolled his eyes. I told him he should have told her that big orgies usually break out at things like this, and he got a kick out of that! He said if he had told her that, she probably would have grounded him until he turned 18!
Since Jake has never been to anything like a gay event before, we told him a little about the one time we went to a gay bar. He said he probably wouldn't be dancing but just wanted to hang out with us. We could tell he was a little nervous about the whole thing and we told him we would stick together, but if he wanted to, we could all three dance together, which is what we ended up doing.
Well... Jake was doing a little more than just hanging out and dancing with us. He and this other guy had apparently been eyeing each other and a little before we left for the night, they chatted each other up for a while. Just the two of them.
He brought Brady over to meet us, and being the proud Big Brothers we are, we had a fun conversation with him. He was a little shy and we tried not to make it seem like we were doing a "pre-date screening" in case they decided to see each other at a later time.
They exchanged phone numbers and we left. On the way home, all Jake could talk about was Brady and how cute he was and how nice he seemed. Brad and I just beamed hearing all the information Jake was able to gather about this guy in the short time they chatted.
He knew what school the guy went to, his favorite music, some of his hobbies (which included taking care of and riding his grandfather's horses), a little bit about his family, who he's out to (his mom and step-dad and just a few very close friends), what kind of things he likes to do on the weekend, where he wants to go to college, his favorite color (!), how he's thinking about some body piercings, how he likes to experiment with different ways to style his hair, and, oh, by the way, "Would you like to exchange phone numbers and maybe we can talk more?"
I have to say it was so much fun to listen to him and hear him so excited. Jake has only been out for a really short time and hasn't had a boyfriend yet. Plus, he's also a little on the shy side and it was fun to see him bubbling with all this interest.
There was a little lull in our conversation on the way back home. Brad turned around and asked him what he was thinking about.
"He has gray eyes. The boy has gray eyes!"
"You got close enough in that lighting to see the color of his eyes?" Brad asked.
"Yeah. I told him I liked the color of his eyes."
I couldn't resist telling him, "Oh God. Jake, you know what that means in the gay world, right?"
Before Brad could kick me, I said, "It means you're now engaged."
Well, Jake knows I sometimes say some pretty outrageous things, so he was on to me.
"Cool. Will you guys be my Best Men?"
So, we'll see where this goes. They've already texted each other a bunch and talked on the cell I don't know how many times. I saw him yesterday and asked him if they're registered anywhere so we can get them a wedding gift. He just looked at me with a straight face and with a seriousness I've never heard from him before and said, "Nope. We're still trying to decide on the wedding announcement. He wants something formal and I just want something a little more on the cas side."
My mouth fell open and I'm just staring at him. Like I say, Jake has always been on the shy side, but it looks like he's losing some of that now. It's been really nice to see Jake so excited. If they hit it off, this will be his first boyfriend. And Brady already passed our "pre-date screening." I don't know if they're going to date yet, but my guess is they will.
Our "no-longer shy" Little Brother and the Boy with the Gray Eyes. Ah, I remember so well the first time Brad and I met. Is this first love? Too soon to tell, I guess. But there's nothing in the world like finding out.