Posts Tagged antisocial

Equilibrium

After our week in the “country” house, as CK liked to call it, it was time to utilize our city abode. It was in no shape, however, to be lived in. Sure, the new bed was delivered, the delivery of which was a bit of contention between us, but the bed was surrounded by towers of boxes.

The day the bed was delivered followed a week straight with CK. There were errands I needed to take care of I never got to do when we were together. Because of this, I dropped CK off for the bus and told him I would meet him in the city later. I was trying to be productive with my time, rather than waiting for the bed to be delivered with him. Looking back, we probably should have just done them together, but at the time, I didn’t want to subject him to my boring burdens.

We were both eating dinner when I cooked at my place, so there’s no reason I should feel guilty dragging him to the grocery store. Going forward, I learned to shed that guilt quite easily. But on the flip side, this meant I would be going to the grocery store with him on the other side of the river. That seemed like a much better arrangement. I was beginning to resent that I had to do the responsible duties while he had all the fun, but that wasn’t fair to him. He never turned me down when I asked him to help me, but in reality, I never asked him in the first place. I couldn’t resent him if I didn’t give him the chance to delight me. There were lots of not exciting things we would both need to do, like cleaning our apartments, that while not fun at all, they could be completed much faster with both our efforts in tandem. Our lives were blending together, and I loved it. It wasn’t smooth, but I loved it.

On the flip side, since we were spending so much time together, I was finding it hard to make the time to work out. My body was paying the price, and as a result, my self-esteem plummeted even lower. I needed to start running again. I needed to get back in the gym and start lifting again.

This posed the challenge of a delicate situation. CK proposed that we work out together. I knew I was a far better runner than CK was. That’s not a dig against him at all, but put simply, I ran cross-country in high school and swam in college. In order for me to get results from my workouts, I needed to push myself, and I needed to push myself hard! I wouldn’t be able to do that if I was holding back to run at CK’s pace. I didn’t want to insult him or his abilities, but I wasn’t sure this was something we’d be able to integrate.

Regardless of this, I decided to make an effort to give it a shot. When I told CK I wanted to go for a run one night, he wanted to join me. We both got ready and walked over to the west bank of the Hudson to run along the trail. As I predicted, we clocked a pace much less effective than I was hoping. I decided I needed to speak up. I was met with the response I had dreaded. He took insult to my comments that I needed to run faster. I didn’t know any way to navigate this without creating a conflict. He took it personally that I was insinuating he was holding me back.

As a result, he played the role of the martyr and told me to take off. The result of running at our own pace was what I was hoping for, but the hurt feelings and passive-aggressive response was exactly what I was hoping to avoid. I tried to talk to him about it to make it a discussion so there would be no hurt feelings, but he wanted none of it. He’d rather I just go, so that’s what I did.

While I ran, I thought about how to deal with the fallout of this. It made sense to me that we work out together, but we needed to do it in a way that benefited us both. I was going to resent it if I wasn’t getting the full potential out of the workout, and that benefits no one. That’s when I came up with a solution:

When we ran together, we would start out together at a warm-up pace. When I was sufficiently warmed up, I would pick up the pace and run ahead of him. When I felt I was half way through the workout, I would turn around and pick him up on the way back. When I overtook him, I would slow down to a cool down pace. I thought it the perfect solution.

It’s also basically what we were doing. When I turned around, I quickly came to find myself right behind him. As we ran, I proposed this new idea, but he still wasn’t having any part of it. I realized I was in a losing battle, and this would have to be addressed later when his ego healed.

Working out in the gym was also a whole other battle. When I go to the gym I like to be by myself. I do not treat it as a social excursion. I am there to work out and go home. I don’t even like spotting someone when they ask me for help. I resent it because I am there for my workout, not theirs. I don’t ask anyone else to spot me. I am not a trainer or an employee. Why should I be “working” at the gym? I know this sounds very antisocial, and that’s exactly what it is. I’m not the biggest fan of lifting. I see it as a necessary evil. I want to get in and out of there as quickly as possible.

When CK asked me to lift with him all the time, I was very hesitant. I loved him, but I was so used to lifting by myself. I knew if we did this together, I would get cranky, and it would start a fight. I was trying to save us from that. I also liked to go to the gym during my lunch break at work, so when he would ask me to hit the gym with him in the morning or the evening, I wouldn’t want to. I would want to use that time for far more fun things.

It was going to be a delicate balance, trying to integrate our lives, but eventually we would find equilibrium. Both sides would have to make sacrifices and concessions, but both sides would benefit from each other as well. Needless to say, CK was the first guy I’d gone to these steps with. It was new territory for me, but it was certainly exciting as well!

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No Day at the Beach

Before going to bed Friday night, CK and I made plans to go to the beach the following day. The weather was supposed to be gorgeous, and I hadn’t made it to the beach yet this year. I was very excited to go, but I also knew it would be a bit up an uphill struggle to get CK and his friends coordinated for a train ride to the beach in a timely manner.

We spent the night at his place thinking it would cut down on commute time in the morning. I was already packed and ready to go the night before because I had to bring all my things into the city in anticipation of going. My plan was to wake up, shower and go. That plan would not come to fruition. It was very difficult not only getting CK out of bed, but also getting him to move once I got him up. We ended up leaving his apartment late and came to the realization we would not make the train we originally planned. It also didn’t help that I told his two friends to meet us on the wrong corner, but when we tried to reach both of them, neither picked up their phones.

When we finally all gathered, we realized we’d have to take the next train in 45 min. I felt bad because I knew how much of a stickler for time one of CK’s friends was. I bought our tickets, and we decided to find a nearby spot to grab breakfast. One of his friends offered to pay for mine since I bought the tickets. I found it ironic because he was normally he was also a stickler for numbers when it came to payments, and I didn’t see how he would be buying me $30 worth of breakfast. However, I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to make it a thing.

We finished our breakfast and made our way to the train. The four of us found seats and relaxed for the ride out there. It was then I noticed, only by contrast, how affectionate CK and I were.

When we got to Long Beach, we made a pit stop at Starbucks and a drugstore to buy beach tickets before heading to the sand. We met up with my sister and one of my previous female roommates. I introduced everyone and we laid out in the sun. CK and one of his friends had square-cut suits on, and his other friend and I had on short board shorts. Because of this, I wonder if my sister was slightly uncomfortable. This wasn’t something she was used to. Periodically, I would wear my square-cut bathing suit from my days of college swimming, but I didn’t walk around in it. I only laid out in the sun in it, and this still brought comments from her. I bring this up because she basically didn’t talk to the four of us the entire day. She’s a little antisocial by nature, but never quite to this extent.

We had a nice relaxing day, taking pictures and making videos in the sun. When CK and I got bored, I decided to try to teach him paddle ball. I always liked playing because I get beach ADD. While we were playing, dark clouds started to roll in. We weren’t at the beach three hours when the other two guys were ready to go home. I don’t think they liked the scene because it wasn’t “gay enough” for them. On top of this, my sister wasn’t exactly chatting them up while CK and I played. We were summoned back to the blanket so we could pack up and head home. I felt it was a bit of a waste of a day, but I these were CK’s friends. I didn’t want to make a bad impression by disagreeing with their plans.

We found a bar so some of the group could use the facilities. While we waited, I ordered myself, CK and one of his friends a drink. When we finished, we made our way back to the train station. When we got back to the city, we split ways. I felt there was a bit of tension in the air, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. So, when the time came to split, it felt like a bit of relief. Had I done something wrong? Did his friend simply not like me? Who knew?

On the walk back to CK’s apartment, we stopped in the comic book store. Just then, the sky opened up and started pouring. At least we were indoors, so we poked around the comic book store until the storm lifted. We grabbed a slice of pizza to share to hold us over for dinner, we showered, and we had sex.

After laying in his bed most of the evening, the time came for us to head back to Hoboken to grab dinner. I had a Groupon I planned to use up. This was our new economical way of going out to dinner on a budget. It was around 10:30, so I called the place to make sure they were still serving dinner. We made our way back to the train to Hoboken to spend the rest of the night…

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His Mother’s Day

The day after my birthday, CK and I made plans for me to meet his mother while she was in town. I celebrated my birthday the day before without him, but I still managed to have fun. I was incredibly excited to see him. I was also incredibly honored to meet his mother. I couldn’t believe he felt comfortable introducing me to her exactly one month from the date we first met, however, we’d grown extremely close in that short period of time.

There was a plan for me to meet CK, his mother, and three of his friends at Essex and Beauty on the Lower East Side for brunch. It was Mother’s Day, so I knew wherever we were going was going to be a sh*tshow! I was slightly anxious. I was more nervous about meeting the one friend I’d never met before than I was about his mother. I’m not sure why, but I didn’t feel any pressure there. I was pretty relaxed about it. Either way, I was missing my Superman terribly.

I arrived a few minutes late for our reservation. CK and his mother were still in transport, but the three friends had already sat at the table. One of them came to the front to greet me and take me to the table. I’d met him before when we all went to see Avengers together. As we ascended the staircase to our table, he informed me of a problem in the kitchen. He mentioned something about a leak and having to shut the kitchen down. There was new immediacy to our plans.

Per usual, CK was running quite late. I learned they were in a cab, but they were on the other side of Manhattan, however, he shared the good news he finally found a new apartment. It wasn’t in Brooklyn. It wasn’t on the Lower East Side. It was in Hell’s Kitchen. I was thrilled!!

We learned they wouldn’t arrive in time for us to order, and one of the friends began to protest in uproar. He argued with the staff until he learned of the true nature of the problem. The maître d’ offered to walk us over to their sister restaurant, The Stanton Social to ensure we got a table and were served quickly.

On the walk over, we happened upon CK and his mother getting out of their cab. He was in the process of calling me. I said hi to him and was introduced to his mother. She wasn’t what I expected at all. I’m not sure what my expectations were, but she certainly surpassed them. She was gorgeous and very lively. I immediately loved her spirit and energy.

We continued to the other restaurant. Not only did we get a table quickly, we were also served champagne to start. They more than made up for the inconvenience. On top of that, I feel we upgraded restaurants, not downgraded.

His mother took the time to hug all the other boys and say hi. She knew two of them from Miami, where CK grew up, so there was some catching up to do. CK was rather reserved in regards to PDA. We didn’t kiss, but I got a hefty hug. He whispered in my ear how much he missed me. We held hands under the table nearly the entire meal.

It was very nice being with everyone. The conversation flowed, and there was rarely an awkward moment. Our food was excellent, and we all enjoyed our meal. I was worried I’d feel like an outsider, not because his friends wouldn’t include me, but because they all already knew each other. I was the new guy. I didn’t know the stories. I didn’t know the inside jokes. That would take time. Generally, until I’m comfortable, I get quiet. I was worried they would think I was antisocial, which clearly isn’t the case.

If they hadn’t done enough to ensure we had a great experience, our lovely waitress brought us a plate of complimentary donuts to make up for what happened at Essex and Beauty.

I really loved watching CK and his mother interact. She had a nickname she called him, and I found it adorable. They shared a lot of the same mannerisms. I watched her keep him in line (and made sure I took mental notes). They were incredible together, even with the hell they went through over that weekend to find him a new apartment. It was obvious the copious amounts of love they shared.

When we exited the restaurant, his mother returned to go to the bathroom. He took the opportunity to pull me in and give me the biggest kiss. It was quite a scene, but we didn’t care. His friends made comments, and he pointed out how he wouldn’t kiss me in front of his mother. Apparently, it made her slightly uncomfortable when he “flaunted his homosexuality.” I thought this was funny, because it’s the kind of thing I could hear coming out of my mother’s mouth.

I also learned that when I went to the restroom while we were eating, his mother expressed her approval to him. “He’s really cute,” he told me she added.

When she came back outside, we made plans to go back to his place and spend the rest of the evening on his roof watching the sunset. We stopped for a bottle of wine and some beers and went up to the roof with the batch of cookies I baked for his mother. Before heading up to the roof, CK and one of his friends were talking in the kitchen. That left myself and his mother in his living room to chat. I learned about all her dogs, as well as CK’s dog all living under her care. She told me how early she had to get up to take care of them the morning she flew out. We talked about what it takes to raise a dog and discussed CK’s desire to get a dog. He was constantly trying to take me shopping for a dog, but I couldn’t take care of one on my own. I wouldn’t have a dog until I lived with someone who would help me raise it. Maybe CK could fill that roll one day.

We spent a lot of time talking about cooking. CK’s friend was an avid cook, so we had a lot to chat about. I showed him my massive digital cookbook I created. I learned where CK inherited his lack of cooking skills. Apparently, his mother was a self-admitted non-chef. She barely cooked, so the two of them discussed their lack of skill in the kitchen, however, each had their specialty they could cook. I expressed my plan to teach CK how to cook, but ensure he wouldn’t cut his finger off again under my supervision.

After a while, a guy CK used to hook up with who lived in the building joined us. CK privately made a comment to me when we were downstairs how he may have seen us all through the window. He mentioned inviting him to join us, and I didn’t protest. My guard was up however. I had no idea how he’d treat me. After all, I was the one who got the man he had a crush on. They were almost roommates until it came to light he had a crush on CK, who told me he did not share the same feelings.

In the end, this guy was pretty cool. He wasn’t combative toward me in the slightest, and we actually got along. The conversation continued through the night. When this guy left, CK made an attempt to set him up with the friend who joined us from brunch. I really liked this guy. He seemed to get it. He was very realistic and had a great sense of humor. Of the friends I’d met so far, he was the one I felt I would get along with the best. When the old hookup left, CK’s friend called him to set up a date. This also killed two birds with one bullet. The old hookup would be tied up and would stay away from my man. Yes, I was getting territorial.

CK’s mother told us stories about him when he was a child, and I was really enjoying getting to know him, his mother and his friends. It was starting to get late, and CK and his mother still needed to get dinner. I needed to get home and get ready for work the next day. I too needed to eat something other than cookies. I said goodbye to CK’s mother with a big hug and CK walked me to the door.

We talked about how much we couldn’t wait until his mother left, not because either of us were tired of her, but because we were hungry for each other. We hadn’t slept together in days, and our animal instincts were growling. I said goodbye to him with a big kiss and made my way to the PATH to head home.

It was a very successful weekend. I had a great birthday, and apparently, I was a hit with CK’s mother. The whole day was a big success. I was all the more excited to be a bigger part of CK’s life, and I couldn’t wait for the next moment.

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