Last Friday I went to a wine-tasting party. I had never been to an actual event where different wines were tasted and scored according to colors, aromas, consistency, etc, etc. Who knew that there were so many things to judge wine for? I tried to keeping up as the bottles were being passed and explanations were given, until about the 4th of 5th serving--then I don't know what happened to my score card...
I don't think I had met a lot of the folks who were at this party. I get chatty when I'm buzzed (well I'm chatty even if I'm sober), but this time there were more people to meet and I just naturally start asking questions from them to get to know them and find some common ground, so I tried my best to work my way around the room to get a chance to strike a conversation with other attendees.
I was talking to a guy that is just now starting to navigate through the coming out process and figuring out what is like to be an out-gay man. He had been telling me about his efforts to try groups that wouldn't necessarily have him change his orientation, but rather be comfortable in his own skin and basically stay celibate (I don't know if this is an LDS-oriented organization or not). Anyway he is finally in a place where he wants to be out, proud and live his life. I was telling him that it was eye-opening for me when I first came out and was told that people are flirty, some touching (like hugging) and like banter and such-- but it didn't mean anything serious, it was just that-- and now I get to share that with newly gays--yes, that's my small contribution to humanity--thank you very much!
As we were involved in our discussion a young guy that I had not had a chance to meet came by to refill his drink and I said: "See, so if I pinch this guy's butt, it is just for fun--nothing wrong with it" so the young guy turns around and lets me do it--he stays behind and starts chatting with us, turns out he is a BYU student who likes to get out of Utah County to breathe and find fun places to hang out that are not restrictive and suffocating. He is almost done with school so he only has to endure a few more months and then he said: "oh, by the way, I'm straight"---at which time I felt horribly embarrassed and apologized profusely for pinching his butt--he found this more amusing and he said it was alright, he didn't mind the attention, loves his gay friends and is used to it without feeling like his masculinity/orientation is being threatened--how refreshing is that?!?!?!
Anyway, my point here is that sometimes we assume things from people--we may be right, but sometimes we just never know and it is nice to be pleasantly surprised. Had a great time and left after the buzz wore off---oh yeah I still have no clue what happened to my score card, but I sure as heck know which wines I had seconds of and which ones I liked best; new friends, new experiences--love evenings like that!!