Posts Tagged Long Island
I told him I was heading home for the night and was about to leave work. However, I was pleasantly surprised to get the text, “Meet me for a drink at Extra Virgin. I haven’t heard from [my friend] confirming dinner yet, so I’m guessing it will be closer to 8:00 or he will flake.” I wasn’t thrilled with being second choice/fall-back, but I knew this was a friend he hadn’t seen in years who was in the city from L.A., so I was understanding.
I agreed to meet him and texted him when I arrived at the restaurant. “Oh goodness. I’ll be there in 10. Btw, I forgot I have a call from 6:00 – 6:30. My life is a pain-in-the-ass sometimes,” was the response I received. It didn’t help I was already feeling like an afterthought. Now I was learning the little time I had to spend with him was going to be interrupted by a half hour phone call.
I’d already been waiting for him for 15 minutes before he arrived. We exchanged a quick peck and a hug, and he suggested I could go inside while he made the call. I told him I could occupy myself outside while he took care of business.
While he talked with his movie team about next steps with their film, I sat on my phone playing with every app I could think of to pass the time. I checked my WordPress stats. I answered emails. I read everyone’s Twitter post that day. Anything I could do to keep busy.
When he finished his call, we grabbed a seat at the bar. The bartender was struggling to harvest a pomegranate, so I offered to help her. Smiles pointed out my culinary experience and told her she was in for a real treat. She was all too happy to receive my advice, as this was one chore she abhorred. After running to the restroom to wash my hands, I demonstrated for her how she could save herself some time and energy. She was very appreciative of my advice and thanked me.
Smiles and I placed our drink orders. We chatted over drinks on the spinning stools. I made it a point to turn my stool so I was facing him and our legs were interlocked. I heard all about his holiday on Long Island and the craziness he went through upon his return with his client. I told him about my relaxing trip home, my dysfunctional family, my Black Friday adventures, and my slow day at work.
At one point he had my his arms extended with his hands on my thighs rubbing them. He flippantly made the comment, “I love your big manly legs.” This was the first time he’d ever complimented my physically, so I took notice. He continued to rub them and massage them, and I continued to melt inside.
At that moment, he checked his phone and learned his friend wouldn’t be able to do dinner that evening, so they agreed upon breakfast the following morning.
With that, he turned to me and asked if I’d like to get dinner somewhere. Surprised, I told him, “Well. We’re already here. Why don’t we just eat here.” I was expecting to get the boot at any moment throughout the course of the evening, but instead I was extended a dinner invitation. Once again, I was happy to get to spend time with him.
We quickly placed our dinner orders and continued our conversation. Our dinner was very pleasant, and our meals were excellent. After we finished eating, we split the bill and began to walk down the street.
As per usual, when we reached the crossroad between his place and the PATH, we said goodbye. And, as per usual, it was said with a simple kiss and a gentle squeeze. I pulled him back in for another kiss and made it more than a peck. He smiled, and we said goodbye.
When I got back to Hoboken, on my walk to my apartment, I texted, “Mmmmmmm. I like you. You make me happy… Just felt the need to say that…” He responded twenty minutes later, “Awwww. 🙂 Thank you.” Clearly, he didn’t feel confident to reciprocate the sentiment just yet, which stung slightly, but then again, I already knew I was ready to move faster than was…Follow @onegayatatime
Thanksgiving came and went, and I didn’t see Smiles. However, it was too early in the relationship to invite him home to meet my family.
On Thanksgiving, he called and left a message saying, “Heyyyy! What up? HAPPY THANKSGIVING! Call me later.” I didn’t get it until much later in the day because when I travel home, I am in a black hole of cell phone service.
I tried calling, but the phone rang unanswered. I decided I would try again later that evening. I was a little disappointed I couldn’t get ahold of him. I missed him.
On my way home from my aunt’s house, my sister and I decided to hit up Wal-Mart to get in early on the Black Friday deals. What a mistake! The one item I wanted was sold out in the first five minutes, and my sister needed non-Black Friday items. I stood in the front of the store witnessing the madness while she paid. I called Smiles once again, and this time he picked up.
He told me about his day and asked if I saw the pictures of the dogs on the beach he posted to Facebook. He told me everyone was relaxing and watching a movie after their turkey comas. I told him about my day with my family and my encounter with tryptophan. We talked about the insanity I was witnessing and about my shopping adventure coming the following day. He told me about his plans for the rest of the time he was out on Long Island.
My sister wanted to be back in Hoboken Saturday morning, so after a visit to my childhood babysitter for dinner, we made our way back. It was a long boring ride which I slept through most of. When I woke, we were nearing Hoboken. I called Smiles to see how his day was going.
He was home alone in front of a fireplace. Apparently his friends were all going to his ex-boyfriend’s place of business, so he decided to have an easy night staying in. I felt bad for him he was all alone, but I also knew he’d enjoy the rest and the full night’s sleep.
Saturday, I was trying not to think about Smiles. It was no use. I texted him, “Thinkin’ boutchu… Miss ya ;)” He responded with a picture of a very nice living room including a fireplace. “Dinner shall be served shortly. It’s a rough life.” I, in turn, responded with a picture of all the boxes I was packing in my room and added, “Thanks for rubbing it in. I too have a similar view ;)” “I see the resemblance,” he retorted.
Later that evening, I went out to the bar with a full pack of friends. I was trying to distract myself from the fact that I missed Smiles. It was working because I hadn’t seen many of them in quite some time. That doesn’t mean I didn’t send him a picture of the bar with the caption, “My new view.”
He sent me a picture of a dwindling fireplace with the caption, “Night time fire. Falling asleep.” With that, my phone started ringing. I walked outside so I could hold a decent conversation with him. He was home alone again and simply wanted to say goodnight.
I asked him if I could see him the following evening, Sunday, but he told me he was already booked solid. I was very disappointed because I thought I’d be getting to see him when he returned to Manhattan. He did leave a glimmer of hope we could possibly find time to meet up, but when Sunday came, the glimmer would be snuffed.
I tried to find time on Monday to see him, but once again he was busy. “Sounds like you’re booked up tomorrow, but want you/to see you. Miss you 😦 When can I see you?” I asked. He told me, “Hi. Just back into city. I think Thursday is my first night free. Would that work? Sorry it’s so far out. :(” I reminded me about my Thursday night volleyball game and my parents’ arrival to help me move into my new apartment. He then proposed the possibility of Wednesday night, but he’d have to get a ticket for me from his friend. I too had a super busy week in front of me, especially with a move on Wednesday, so that wasn’t going to work. It was looking like I wasn’t going to get to see him for some time, but I did appreciate him making an effort to see me.
I suggested we do lunch on Tuesday instead, to which he responded, “Yes. Lunches are easy.”
I was content. I wanted to see him sooner, but I could survive until lunch on Monday or Tuesday. We both have lives to live, and his career was just getting off the ground, so I didn’t want to interfere with that.
I thought back to my thoughts about inviting him home for Thanksgiving, and I realized I made the right decision. While I would have liked spending the time with him, the timing and logistics would have been awful. Introducing him to my family would have been tough and emotional. My family was already on edge, as this would be the first time celebrating Thanksgiving since the passing of my grandfather.Furthermore, I’d have to introduce him to my uber-Christian babysitter from growing up, as I couldn’t just leave him home while we all went to dinner.
Lastly, I would have sent quite a message about my thoughts regarding our relationship if I put him in the position to decline my invitation. We weren’t at the meet the parents stage, let alone the come home for the holidays stage. I made the right decision overall and was proud of myself for showing restraint.Follow @onegayatatime
Monday passed by without me seeing Smiles again. I did speak to him however. We spoke while I walked home from work. He still had a migraine, and I tried to console him. I wished there was something I could do for him, but I was powerless.
He had a work event that evening, so he soldiered on. His migraine was lessened, but he still wasn’t 100%. I knew it was going to be a long night for him.
He called when the event was over to say hi and check in on me. I always relish his phone calls just to say hi and ask me about my day.
I explained to him I was watching the first Twilight movie. It happened to be on TV that night, so I made it a point to watch in an attempt to catch up to the current day release of Twilight: Breaking Dawn pt. 1. I was also able to find the second and third installments in the series on the guide over the next few days. Smiles seemed excited to see the movie, so I was putting in the effort to get onboard. I have to say, they’re certainly not amazing cinema, they’re not unbearable either.
I asked him to wait to see the movie together in the theater. He agreed. After talking about the series, he realized he’d never see the third installment, Twilight: Eclipse. I told him I would keep it on my DVR, and we could watch it together before hitting up the newest in the theater.
We were also coming up on Thanksgiving. I struggled with the thought of inviting him to come home with me. He is from and his family is still in Florida. I knew he wasn’t planning to go home, but I wasn’t sure if he’d have other plans. The thought of inviting him came from numerous places. I felt we were comfortable with each other, and I knew he would stand well with my family. He was very good at getting along with strangers, and I knew he could win them over, especially since this would be the first time they’d learn about my homosexuality. I knew it would have been a little early in our relationship to ask him to come home with me, and this is the main reason why I didn’t. I didn’t want him to think I was a little psycho.
In the meantime, I learned he finally did make plans for Thanksgiving. He was going to a few friends’ homes out on Long Island in the Hamptons and on Fire Island. I was happy he found some special people to spend the holiday with, but was a little disappointed I wouldn’t be spending it with him.
Before I went home, and he split for Long Island, I wanted to see him again. I suggested we grab coffee or something quick because I knew he would be quite busy with work leading up to our departures on Wednesday. He told me we’d have to play it by ear, but he would make a concerted effort to work it out.
I was worried I wasn’t going to see him before the long holiday weekend. We’d spent other weekends apart, so this shouldn’t be that big of a deal, but to me it was. I wasn’t spending the holiday with him, so I wanted the next best thing.
Tuesday evening I had a dermatologist appointment to have an ingrown hair taken care of. We were going to attempt to meet after as long as time allowed for it in his schedule.
This was the first time I’d see him following a workday in which he interacted with clients. He looked very smart and super cute. It was all I could do to keep my hands off him. He was happy to see me, but I could tell he was pretty exhausted from a long day. We ordered some small dishes because I was ready for dinner, and his dinner wasn’t until 10:00 or 11:00. The conversation was nice, and we discussed our plans for the weekend. He also expressed concern for the incision on my abdomen from the dermatologist. When we finished, we paid the bill and began to walk towards the PATH/his subway.
We popped into a fun travel amenities shop to check out some of the cool things we noticed in the front window.
We walked a little further and reached his subway. He began to descend the staircase, and I called after him to explain I wouldn’t be joining him since it didn’t take me near the PATH. He walked back up a few steps and gave me a quick kiss as he said goodbye.
It was very unceremonious and not very romantic, but I decided to concentrate on the fact that I got to spend time with him at all before he left.Follow @onegayatatime
I had been scheming for weeks, ever since I found out Smiles was screening his movie in the Hamptons in conjunction with the annual film festival. I finally had my answer – He wanted me there.
I had a wedding on Long Island the following day, so it was convenient for me to head out there early to catch his film. I hadn’t seen it yet, so I was very curious.
Since I already booked a hotel for the wedding, I wasn’t exactly thrilled about dropping more money on another hotel room (if I could even get one with the festival). Then I had a brilliant idea. My great-aunt has a house out in the Hamptons. I emailed my cousin and asked her if she thought I could use her mother’s house for a night. I wasn’t looking to make a whole weekend of it. We literally just needed beds to sleep in and showers in to use in the morning. Luckily, my great-aunt obliged. I asked Smiles if he’d like to stay with us, but I didn’t get a straight answer. He was trying to find something closer to the screening.
My roommate was my date for the wedding (sad, I know, but this is the life you lead when you’re gay and single). I ran my plan by her, and she was down for it all. I left work early Friday, went to Hoboken to picked up her car and our bags, drove back into the city, and pick her up when she finished work. After that, we headed up to Mount Vernon to hit up my great-aunt’s house to get the keys.
Of course, this took forever! We got turned around twice and had to deal with Friday evening city traffic. I was starting to fear missing the beginning of the screening. When we finally arrived at the house to get the keys, I couldn’t just grab the keys and run. I hadn’t seen my great aunt since the funeral of my grandmother, and it had been years before that since we last saw each other. I knew I would have to sit and chat a bit. She was thrilled someone was getting use of the house and gave me long instructions on everything. Luckily, she is still sharp as a tack and after a short chat, she suggested we get on the road quickly so we didn’t have to sit in too much traffic.
We made our way across almost the entire length of Long Island before finally arriving at the bowling alley the film was screened at. We didn’t even stop to grab dinner, so I was praying this place had some decent food.
We walked inside and were greeted by Smiles. He and his crew were getting set for a round of bowling. My roommate and I took over the lane next to them to bowl a game or two before the film. Apparently, we made excellent time and even had some to spare (Get it? Bowling… Spare…).
Smiles looked very smart and was being decently affectionate. I wasn’t sure how the night was going to play out. I had a feeling it may be slightly awkward, but I wanted to be supportive. I talked to him before heading out there to see what the situation would be. I asked, “Will you be working the whole time, or is it more relaxed than that.” He explained he would get to spend time with me, and it would be worth it for me to come since I was already heading out in that direction.
While we were bowling, the alley owner’s teenage boy was hanging out with Smiles and his crew. He’d been with them all day hanging flyers around town. At one point, he made a comment to Smiles about his wife coming to the screening. Smiles told him he wasn’t married, and the kid immediately questioned himself and said, “Or girlfriend?” When Smiles shook his head, the kid replied, “Oh, or boyfriend or whatever.” Smiles simply replied, “Well… Him,” and pointed at me. I didn’t notice this happening, but Smiles made it a point to come over and recount the story for me.
The time came for the crew to start getting set up for the movie. My roommate and I finished our game and hit up the bar to grab some drinks and grub. From across the room, I watched Smiles greet some of his friends and chat with them a bit. When he finished, he came over to check on me and grab a beverage. He mentioned his friends and their names. When he said one name in particular, my ears perked up. It was his ex. I was very curious how that would play out since I know they are still close, but rarely get to see each other. He told us to grab seats since the movie would be starting soon, so we made our way over to the chairs and grabbed a spot.
When he sat down, he sat with his other friends. I wasn’t jealous. I knew he didn’t get to see them much, so I would take a backseat on this one (however, a small part of me was very disappointed after driving over four hours to see this). I watched the movie intently, but I have to say, I did glance at Smiles and his ex in front of me to see the body language happening. Again, we weren’t in a relationship yet. We weren’t even dating yet. We were just seeing each other, or at least in my mind that’s how it was defined.
Part of the way into the film, I was shocked to see Smiles on the screen. I knew he was a producer of the film, but I had no idea he was acting in it as well. I was very proud of him and the great job he did. The film was great and surpassed my expectations — Totally an indie film I’d rent at Blockbuster, not some NYU student project.
After the film, my roommate and I made our way back to a spot at the bar to grab another drink. After chatting with his friends some more, he came over to me, apologized to my roommate and asked for permission to steal me away to introduce me to them. I’m sure my face lit up like a Christmas tree. He was acknowledging me to his friends. FINALLY! It was the validation I was looking for after the birthday party.
However, when one of the friends asked how we met, Smiles turned to me. My head immediately went to Grindr and how I didn’t want to say that. I could have said we met through a mutual friend, but I said, “I’m going to default to you on this one,” and turned to Smiles. He paused a minute and replied, “We’ve gone out to dinner a few times back in the city.” It was interesting to see him struggle with the answer as much as I had. After a short while, the friends had to be on their way. A band was beginning to play, so I called my roommate over and stood by her with Smiles and some of his crew. Later in the night, I learned the man I thought was his ex simply share the same name as his true ex. I felt a little more relaxed for some reason.
Periodically we showed signs of affection towards each other, such as a subtle hand hold or a glance. It was nice. It was still nerve-wracking because I didn’t know what he was comfortable with yet. We weren’t defined, so I wanted to make sure I didn’t overwhelm. That happened in the past, and I didn’t want it to happen again.
Smiles directed me to speak with the director of the film. She and her friend wanted to know if they could crash at the house for the night as well. This was the first conformation I received of Smiles coming as well. Until then, he hadn’t given me a definitive answer. I explained to the two girls, I hadn’t been to the house before and wasn’t sure of the bed situation. However, they were more than welcome to join the adventure. When the band finished, we made our way to my great aunt’s house.
The drive was nice and cut through some cute towns. When we arrived, Smiles said, “Do the Bouviers live here?” in a reference to Grey Gardens. The exterior of the house didn’t look to be in great shape. I was a little worried. When we got inside, I was pleasantly surprised to find the house in more than decent shape. It was very large and slept about sixteen comfortably. All the girls got their own rooms if they so chose. Smiles and I would be taking the master downstairs of course.
We immediately settled in. We talked a bit, and I came to find out he wouldn’t be able to grab brunch with us in the morning. He had to get the rental car back to the city by noon. I was very disappointed. Everything I planned so far had worked out perfectly. The screening. The house. My plan to make it a quick little getaway with him was failing. After brushing our teeth, we climbed into bed and cuddled a bit until we dozed off.
When we woke around 9am, I tried to get a little frisky. I reached my hand down and gently began to try to excite him until I was gently pushed away and told he was exhausted. I admitted defeat and disappointingly went back to just laying next to him. Me ego was a little bruised.
Shortly following, we both got out of bed, and he got dressed and packed up to go. I said goodbye to the bunch and tried to find something to entertain myself until my roommate woke up…Follow @onegayatatime
After all the drama of the week and the mindless hookup, I was ready for change. I wanted to be more present. I accumulated over 60 phone numbers of men in my phone, but had only met 9 of them at that point. I needed to fix this ratio. I needed to go on more dates and have less hookups. I also needed to find myself again.
My roommates and I decided to hit up our favorite bar. We were going to put their new connections with my favorite bartenders to good use. Once again, we had a blast, and on the way home we had a very interesting conversation.
I got into a debate with my male roommate about the perils of unprotected sex. He insisted the worry was greater for straight couples, as a baby could be the end result. I begged to differ. While bringing an unplanned child into the world can be very stressful, it certainly isn’t the end of the world. HIV can be just that if not detected and treated. It can be a life sentence just from a few minutes of pleasure. Regardless, we both agreed the perils of unprotected sex were not worth it, but we agreed to disagree about which was worse.
The conversation switched to Grindr. Both roommates couldn’t believe how easy it was for me to “meet” a guy and turn it into something more. My male roommate was jealous how easy it was to find sex, and my female roommate was jealous because of the sexy men I was talking to. I explained how both were a double-edged sword. While I had no problem finding a hot man to come over for sex, I had a very difficult time finding a man who was interested in a monogamous relationship. It is nearly impossible. I still have hope for upstanding men out there who are interested in other men, but they are becoming somewhat of a unicorn.
The next morning, while passing through the city on the way to the beach, I pulled up Grindr. Much to my surprise, my old college roommate popped up. I remembered him telling me he lived in that neighborhood, and I did know he was gay. But, I never thought about him popping up on my Grindr. When I first came out to friends, I contemplated coming out to him. He respected me enough in college to tell me early on about his homosexuality. Since I was comfortable with myself then, I thought it was only proper I told him. We talked about meeting up for drinks to catch up, but it never came to fruition.
I decided to have a little fun. I messaged him and told him I knew him. He started asking a lot of questions, and I answered them all truthfully. It was taking him a LONG time to figure out who I was. I even told him I lived with him in college. I got very specific, and he still wasn’t getting it. He started guessing names, but still wasn’t getting it. FINALLY, he figured out it was me.
We both had a good laugh. It took him from Midtown Manhattan all the way through Queens to Long Island before he figured it out. We talked about his suspicions and our interactions living together. Sophomore year we shared a room. I told him I even looked at porn with him sleeping in the bed a few feet away. He asked questions about the logistics of that, and I explained the bathroom was right next to our room, so he would have never caught me “in the act.” Also, he always slept facing the wall, which turned out to be very convenient for me! “If I only slept on my right side!” he responded.
We chatted about it some more and he joked, “I’m not gonna lie. With those big hands and your huge feet, I definitely snuck a peek here and there when you were in your boxers back then.” He was embarrassed, but I thought it was hilarious. I was also very flattered. I referred him to my blog to catch up on my gay life so far. He said he was going to read it and then realized, “This conversation is going to end up on there, isn’t it?” I told him of course it would. He suggested I leave out some parts, such as him checking me out, but I explained those were the best ones.
I was happy to reconnect with him and we chatted a bit more. We joke about the gay resident director for our living quarters. He had a crush on my roommate, while I suspect his boyfriend had a crush on me. His boyfriend is a police officer in the local city and followed me home on more than one occasion just to say hi. We had some more good laughs and agreed we need to grab a drink together soon.
I was happy to be fostering better relationships on Grindr, as opposed to the unsubstantial ones I currently had. I needed to work harder at it, but I still had hope of finding the right guy. I will have to date half the city, but in time, Prince Charming will find me…Follow @onegayatatime