Tuesday, February 14, 2012

For Whitney

 I'm not looking to jump on the bandwagon of publicity about the untimely passing of Whitney Houston or attempt to speculate on the cause, but I do want to take a moment and reflect on a supremely talented woman who created the soundtrack of the mid-eighties and early nineties.

 I was at work at General Motors in Flint one spring day in 1985 when I went to lunch with my friend Teri. As I slid across the red leather pillowed seat of her 1979 Oldsmobile Regency Diesel, she turned the key and the 8-Track player began playing Whitney's self titled debut album. Teri raved on and on about how talented she was. Everyone else seemed to agree, because shortly after that her music was everywhere.

Nowhere was her music more in evidence that in small town midwestern gay bars. It seems it wasn't possible to come out in the Midwest in the eighties without Whitney's videos as a backdrop. Her "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" was more to me than the first hit off her second album, the one that went to #1 on the charts the week the album was released- it the song playing at the Copa when I asked Dave to dance that summer of 1987. Thus began my first relationship, and "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" was our theme song. He had the steeliest blue eyes.

 Years go by and lives change, but those early memories are held tightly. Thanks to Whitney for being the musical accompaniment of that era in my life. May you find the peace that seemed to evade you on Earth.

Friday, February 10, 2012

blessed union

From June 2008. Reposted in honor of the GOP Presidental Candidates reaction to the invalidation of Prop 8.

I park my car on the side street, because the boulevard is too dusty. it's less than a five minute walk each evening from the showroom. I turn right at the mechanic's shop and go about half a block. If the motor home is on my side of the street, I'll cross over to avoid the noise. The motor home is always there. It never leaves the block.

Miguel is inside fucking his ugly mistress. His name might not really be Miguel, that might just be the name on his pocket. We exchange occasional pleasantries when I encounter him during the day. I'm not sure what her name is, we've never actually spoken. I only know her voice from her loud sighs as he fucks her. The motor home windows are open this time of year.

It's a small block, and everyone seems to know each others' business. Miguel is married to a short fat woman and has a six year old son by her. He's a handsome lad, and we see him occasionally on Saturdays. I don't know if the boy is aware of the secret life of the aging Winnebago or not. I am told that Miguel can't get a divorce, because he is Catholic. So this is his best solution. I don't know if she is Catholic or not. Perhaps she's a Mormon. I wonder to myself whether it is a greater sin to fuck one's ugly mistress with a condom, or without.

I really know very little about them. I can't imagine the path she wandered down that made her believe that being fucked by a married man in a deteriorating RV behind his workplace is as good as she is going to get. She sometimes shows up with a little girl about three years old, I don't know if the child is the product of this union, or was fathered by another Casanova with a camper.

But I do know that the Catholic Church and the Mormons pumped forty million dollars into my state to make sure that my relationship cannot have the acceptance that Miguel and his vile sham of a marriage have. And I know that these people, as fucked up as they are, had the legal right to vote on the status of MY life. And that is the most fucked up part of all.