By any other name

By any other nameIt was two weeks ago, late Friday afternoon and I was just putting the finishing touches on a spreadsheet or some such when my phone buzzed angrily. I don’t know why I hate the sound of my phone no matter what the ringtone is. I guess I just don’t look forward to phone calls. “Ally” it announced in bright white letters. I’d better take this.

“Hi Ally” I said in my most cheerful voice.

“Hi” the voice on the other end was quiet, small and unassuming. The voice of a person who is used to slouching just a little to avoid looking conspicuously tall. The voice of someone used to being in the background, trying not to rock the boat, used to barely being seen.

“I got a letter from my father”

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Vinegar Hill 2010

DSC_4906I had been in two minds about going to Vinegar Hill for a few weeks. Vinegar Hill, for the uninitiated, is a great big gay camping event that’s held here in New Zealand every year and every year I seem to be able to come up with an excuse: too far away, too busy, don’t have a tent. It was still 50/50 when I popped into the car in Hamilton to begin the journey down, but just like all journeys, once you get started it’s hard to stop.

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One night stand

“Do what makes you happy, Stephen, but don’t do those…. one night stand things… that just makes me frightened” My grandmother’s sound advice. Now, though I have been figuring out how relationships work for quite some time, and though I often go to gay bars. I have never, ever, ever “met” anyone at a bar, let alone experienced that all-to-common “one night stand” phenomenon. That is, until last Thursday. Please don’t read the rest if you don’t want to!

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