Friday, October 2, 2009


I have a gay friend in Vancouver who is perfectly content being single for life. He says it and I think he means it. He claims that nothing matches the sex from the first hookup (or two). Basically, he doesn’t want to be stuck with the baggage when he’s done with the balls.

Maybe that would be okay. Trouble is, I’m getting nothing. If you’d ask me when I was eight years old what I wanted to be when I grow up, I’m sure nun wouldn’t have been on the list. Not in the top ten anyway. And yet, if it lives like a nun,…

I’m not just drawing the nun link based on my involuntary celibacy. I worked with nuns for three years when I was a teacher in Texas. It used to bother me when they would handle problems by sitting back, praying and waiting for divine guidance. Am I doing the same thing—just without the religion?

Last Saturday, I drove into Ottawa to do a few errands and then I went to a Bridgehead cafĂ© which I’m told is a lesbian-owned chain in the city. I went to the one on Elgin Street, figuring it would have the best chance for gay traffic. As I walked in, a dreamy guy in his late thirties was heading out. We did that “After you” door dance thing, my heart went pitter and that was that. I was so taken by surprise, I think I managed to smile instead of putting my head down.

I took my massive mug of joe out to the shaded patio area and there he was, sitting at a table with a thin pretty boy who bounced an infant in a sling against his chest. Were they poster boys for Hot Gay Dads? Despite that nice little thought, my pitter went plunk. Taken. I sat, read the paper and waited passively. Here I am, single gay men of Ottawa. Sitting having a coffee in a public place. Waiting. It was the typical movie moment when a hunky guy is supposed to ask if he can read the Style section or sit at the empty table beside me and make smart conversation about the bushy-tailed squirrel mounting the tree on the other side of me. Or spill scalding hot coffee on me. Something to start a budding romance.

Divine intervention? It wasn’t to be. I waited. Sipped, read about Matt Damon at the Toronto Film Festival, and that was that. I’d dumped a load of quarters in my parking meter, giving me sixty minutes for love to bloom. I think my odds would have been better on the slot machines in Vegas.

Next time I head to the city for a solo coffee, I may even wear black. Sure, it’s slimming. It’s also my next step in emulating a nun’s life. I pray that I won’t take things beyond that.

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