Three Pre-Flight Coming Out Fantasies

I.

You have to do it right now. You turn down the 5 AM noise about the weather and immigration blaring out of the radio and softly say that you have something to tell her. You pause for a breath while resting your hand on the gearstick next to hers and say it in a hurried, single sentence. The silence is gaping except for regular punctures made by the wipers, which are squeaking feebly. It’s okay that she’s not looking at you because she really should keep her eyes on the road. Her mouth opens and closes as her eyes mist up, and she wraps her hand around yours. Slowly she turns towards you, and when your eyes lock her grip constricts. “You’re WHAT?” Her eyes are dry. They are projecting crosshairs onto yours. Silence. “I…” You begin to panic because your internal awareness of time has snapped but you’re fairly certain she hasn’t looked at the road for at least a minute and a half. As the motorway tapers into two lanes, your vehicle plows into the side-barrier and your skulls crack against the windshield. You are both killed instantly.

II.

You’re sitting at an airport coffee shop drinking coffee that tastes like a stale muffin and eating a muffin, the chocolate chips of which taste like the burnt dregs in a cup of instant coffee. The suggestion that you arrive three hours early for international flights even though it’s never taken you more than twenty minutes to check-in and clear security really pisses you off. You have the same last name as a known terrorist and it still only takes twenty minutes, but they insist on it. You invariably end up poisoning yourself with non-edibles dressed as edibles while you wait for your flight. She looks at you and asks what’s wrong because the conversation has been limp. She says that you haven’t said anything in five minutes. You look up, and then lower your eyes and scrunch up your face like you’re trying to burn a hole in the imposter muffin. The words wince out. You imagine being able to actually burn a hole in the muffin and the welcome the distraction it would provide. When you look up and give a weak smile, you see that she is mentally igniting her slice of carrot cake. The ginger slivers of what seem to be leftover carrot shavings from yesterday’s salad are smoking ever so slightly. Turning toward the counter you say you need to ask where the bathroom is. When you get back to the table after sitting in a stall on a closed lid for five minutes, the bill is paid and she is gone.

III.

You’ve finished your poison muffin and your stomach hurts. It’s only an hour and forty-five minutes until your flight so she’s bustling you toward the gates. The airport doesn’t have much furniture in its central section so it looks like the two of you are standing alone on a giant salt flat. You embrace tightly and squeeze your eyes shut, only opening them after you’ve pulled apart. You can feel her warm gaze on you as you stare at her feet. You notice that you’re beginning to cry. Your eyes remain firmly fixed on your feet as you whisper it. It’s embarrassing crying in public but there’s almost no one around. Hopefully there are just enough people that she can’t slap you. You’ve forgotten that she has no boundaries of social acceptability. She slaps you, turns around and walks away. You wait, knowing she won’t look back, before turning to the man and woman at the security desk. The man looks at you like an idiot for crying while the woman looks at you sympathetically. When you accidentally touch as you hand her your passport, she pulls away like your hand were a mousetrap. TC mark

image – Alan Levine

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=653090575 Karma Chahine

    This really struck a chord with me. Thank you for writing this.

  • Ceqli

    And THAT, ladies and gentlemen, Is why being bisexual is awesome. I have never had to deal with ‘coming out,’  and I never will.

    If you don’t make a big deal out of your sexuality, people are cool with it. My parents are deeply religious, but they were accepting and supporting of me when I told them my sexual orientation. So were all of my friends when I told them.

    Stop having panic attacks about it, and realize that this is ONE PART of your life. If you let it define you, fine, but don’t expect people to see you as anything BUT a gay man.

    • Stefan

      Don’t belittle people’s experiences/feelings just because your experience was peachy keen.

      Also, I know bisexual people who have had to deal with their fair amount of shit, so I’m going to call BS on your implying that bisexuals don’t need to “come out.” (If you feel that you didn’t/don’t have to, good for you! But sometimes it’s not so simple.)

      And that last line seems like a criticism that would make more sense leveled against someone like, say, Ryan O’Connell (who seems to peddle almost exclusively in Gay Male stereotypes.)

      • Ceqli

        Ok, i’ll have to agree with you about my last criticism: It actually WAS in reponse (sub-consciously, as he’s the most prominent gay writer on this blog) to Ryan O’Connell.

        Actually, the entire reason this article rubbed me the wrong way was b/c of that guy’s posts.

        (j’suis desolee)

      • Stefan

        I guess I just reacted in the opposite direction: I thought it was refreshing to read something by a gay writer that wasn’t him. I felt that this was genuinely and honestly addressing the issue rather than exploiting it via gay minstrel posturing. (maybe I’m being too harsh towards Ryan? am I being too harsh? I don’t think I’m being too harsh.)

      • Ceqli

        t.b.h, you’re not. Ryan is a GREAT writer, and he always will be. I think that what you’re getting at, and what i’d absolutely agree with, is that he needs to make the subject matter a little deeper.

        Example: I can’t seem to find much literature on long-term gay relationships and the dynamics associated with them. THAT is something i’ve wondered about for some time, because most of the ‘pulp’ out there tends to focus on anything BUT gay relationships. Gay sex? Let’s talk about it. Gay best friends? Hell yes, let’s talk about it. Gay fashion, rights, and pride? Absolutely.

        But gay relationships? As far as major news sources are concerned, they don’t exist.

        Caveat to that: a recent New Yorker short story that focused on the breakup of a long-term gay relationship. BEAUTIFUL piece, truly moving.

      • Stefan

        Maybe because they can’t be sensationalized in the same way? Like a sameness/difference dynamic, in which it’s newsworthy and “interesting” to report on how gay individuals/couples are different (which allows for the construction of “gay identities” which serve to, whether directly or indirectly, affirm a “straight identity” (us v. them sort of dynamics)) but once it becomes a matter of the workings of (long-term) relationships the ease of differentiating lessens and it becomes boring if “they” (gay couples) resemble too closely “us” (straight couples) (and I’m framing the categories of “us” and “them” from the POV of the general media.)

        Also, resistance to gay relationships is based on the sex part (and the “lifestyle” some people believe comes with it), so those are most interesting parts of the “identity.” (ugh I’m also reading queer theory right now and I think my brain is becoming a puddle and there’s a lot going on.)

      • Ceqli

        Ugh.. I hate the public’s thirst for sensationalism. Jung’s ‘mask’ theory was absolutely right.

        Well, if you ever find lit on the matter, I’d really appreciate if you could link me it =)  my aol is the same as my post-name. You seem smart – we should keep in touch.

      • Stefan

        of course! now I just have to dust off my AIM account, but really, I’ll see if I have anything really good bookmarked (right now I’m reading PDFs.)

      • Stefan

        Maybe because they can’t be sensationalized in the same way? Like a sameness/difference dynamic, in which it’s newsworthy and “interesting” to report on how gay individuals/couples are different (which allows for the construction of “gay identities” which serve to, whether directly or indirectly, affirm a “straight identity” (us v. them sort of dynamics)) but once it becomes a matter of the workings of (long-term) relationships the ease of differentiating lessens and it becomes boring if “they” (gay couples) resemble too closely “us” (straight couples) (and I’m framing the categories of “us” and “them” from the POV of the general media.)

        Also, resistance to gay relationships is the sex part (and the “lifestyle” some people believe comes with it), so those are most interesting parts of the “identity.” (ugh I’m also reading queer theory right now and I think my brain is becoming a puddle and there’s a lot going on.)

  • Zaike Airey

    jolly good!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1363230138 Michael Koh

    For some reason, I thought all three would happen in an airport. 

  • Stefan

    really enjoyed this. refreshing to read after trying to ignore how bad most of what I read here is.

  • Annwyn

    He states that his soon to be ex-gf has no social boundaries because she slaps him in the face in a crowded airport.  Meanwhile,  he comes out to her right b4 flying away into the sunset. 
    Ouch!    

    • Anonymous

      mom.

      • Annwyn

        Yes?

    • Anonymous

      mom.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=504951716 Tau Zaman

    Ouch. This really hit home. Down to the name thing. Beautiful piece. <3

  • CarmenOhio

    Well, maybe if you didn’t choose to be gay then you wouldn’t have to do with these kinds of hypothetical situations.  I am absolutely kidding, so keep the responses to yourselves.  I feel for you all that have to encounter this situation.  However, I feel terrible for the people whose closed minds make this conversation so difficult.   

  • G. Buckley

    This hit a bit too close to home for me, but I was on the receiving end. We’re still friends though :) 

  • G. Buckley

    This hit a bit too close to home for me, but I was on the receiving end. We’re still friends though :) 

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