The aftershocks of gay marriage in California continue to ripple throughout America, altering society in dramatic new ways. While those supporting the decision have claimed it a victory – it's a personal triumph for San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, foes are strategizing their next move. They have quickly moved to place a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage on the November ballot – which, if passed, would void the Supreme Court decision. Coincidentally, they wish to delay enactment of gay marriage until after everyone has had a chance to vote on gay civil rights in that November referendum. Nice.

Amid all this turmoil, Pope Benedict, the spiritual leader of Roman Catholics worldwide, has condemned the decision. “The union of love, based on matrimony between a man and a woman, which makes up the family, represents a good for all society that can not be substituted by, confused with, or compared to other types of unions,” he said.

Documenting every last detail of this fight will be Charlotte Robinson. The Emmy-winning director/producer has been hard at work documenting gay marriage in Massachusetts. She says of the California decision, “Even after our decision [in Massachusetts], we had to continue fighting. Californians who wish for marriage equality are not done fighting.” You can visit Robinson's website, interact with her on her blog, and view a short on gay marriage at

Here's a picture representative of California's first time. It gets easier...maybe, even boring.

In another apparent victory for gays & lesbians, groups are hailing a federal court decision on Don't Ask, Don't Tell as the beginning of the end for the policy. A three judge panel from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals did not strike down the policy, but it said the military must prove homosexuals in the ranks harm morale – for each individual dismissed, placing the burden of proof on the military. As it should be, right?

Further evidence that society is evolving in its view of what being gay or lesbian means, Portland, Oregon has just elected a gay mayor. Sam Adams won by a huge majority – 59%, in a field of twelve. The race managed to remain about the issues and leadership, not the mayor-elect's sexual orientation. Again, as it should be, right?

Yet, gay rights activists around the world continue to fight for basic civil rights. This week a gay Iranian teen, who fears execution if forced to return to Iran, won the right to asylum in Britain. Mehdi Kazemi, 19, traveled to London in 2005 to study English and while there learned that his lover in Iran had been charged with sodomy and hanged.

And it was our own Gay Entertainment Report that brought me news that RuPaul had thrown down the checkered flag in a race to find the fiercest drag queen in America. Watch out!

[Editor's note: Walter continues to pick-up the pieces of his life after entering a rehab clinic. ]

I'm running late to meet Simon for lunch. I almost canceled our lunch due to the fact that Michelle had scheduled a conflicting meeting for me with Todd Stevens.

I call Michelle again and ask if she's been able to reach Todd Stevens to reschedule; she tells me no. I simply thank her as I enter the restaurant where I have agreed to meet Simon.

Simon is seated at the end of a row of tables near the back of the room. He's wearing a 'British khaki' colored Baird McNutt linen suit from J.Crew, an indigo blue, smiling, spouting whale tie rests easily on a solid white button-down shirt.

“Hi,” I say as I approach him.

“Hey, how you doing?” Simon answers, happy to see me. “Are you growing a beard for summer?”

“Just lazy,” I answer, then quickly add, “Busy, I've been so busy.” I sit down at the maple finish table across from Simon and say, “You look great in my favorite suit.”

This morning during my jog I stumbled upon an elderly couple sitting on a park bench. The men were holding hands and they failed to notice me as I stopped to stare. One of the men was caressing the other on the head and they were both crying. The couple was lost in each other's gaze as they reminisced on the life they had shared. And something, I'm not sure what, maybe death, was pulling them apart. They kept saying, “I'm going to miss you.”

As I jogged back home my heart broke thinking about the men sitting on the park bench, realizing that they truly loved each other and had probably been around when being gay was totally unacceptable. Had they cared then who knew? Did they sit on that park bench when they were young holding hands? Or was it only after decades of love and support that they gained the strength to tell the world this was theirs?

And would I wait decades to say: This is mine?

“You always look great,” Simon responds. “Since you said you were pressed for time, I went ahead and ordered your favorite: Spinach and feta omelet, fresh fruit and a Mimosa.”

“A Mimosa?” I ask.

“Yeah, your favorite.”

“Simon, I stopped drinking,” I say.

“You stopped drinking? When did this happen?”

“About eight weeks ago when I went to California to a rehab clinic. I mentioned this to you,” I say.

“I don't think we were talking eight weeks ago, were we?”

“No. This happened during the four months when you were working on your conference and did not call me,” I say, adding air quotes around the word 'working'.

“Walter, I was working.”

“And did you stop seeing Elizabeth while you were working?” I ask, surprised at my own resentment.

He looks at me, arranging his tie which does not need arranging, but remains silent.

“I think It's over, Simon,” I slowly say.

Noticing I'm serious, he says, “She's a woman, you're a man. You understand the idea of getting ahead.”

At this moment our waitress arrives with our food and says, “He wasn't sure you were gonna show.”

I smile politely, then say pointing to the Mimosa, “I'm just going to have coffee. Cream and sugar. Sorry.” The waitress nods and leaves.

“OK, I get it,” Simon starts saying, “I've been a bad boyfriend,” then in a whisper adds, “But I love you.”

My heart races upon hearing this. Up to this moment we had managed a three-year relationship without commitment or love interfering in any way.

“I love you too,” I say, “But we need to share our lives. We're always on the backburner. Our relationship twists and turns, goes away, then starts again – always at the beginning...”

“I can change. I don't want to loose you,” he interrupts.

I look down at my omelet and swallow hard, but remain motionless, quiet.

“You know I've got a crush on you,” he says.

“Don't,” I say, my eyes beginning to fill with tears.

“I've got a crush on you,” he says, serious.

I look at him for a moment, then say, “That's nice to hear.”

“Tell me you have a crush on me, too.”

I gaze into his eyes, they show me someone new – perhaps he does love me. My heart is sad, but looking at him I want to share everything with him. I want to feel freedom with him.

“I do. I do have a crush on you,” I finally answer, reaching for his hand. But, noticing the waitress returning with my coffee, he does not give it to me. “But that's just not enough anymore.”

And as the words form in my mouth, who would have guessed I would have the strength to say goodbye.

Later, at home, I'm channel-surfing. Madonna is gyrating to a 'sticky & sweet' lyrical hook, gay marriage pops-out of California, and Katie Couric is reporting that possibly millions have been made homeless by a powerful earthquake in China. Footage of the disaster shows dead people lying in the streets, buildings in ruins, livestock decaying by the side of a road. In a makeshift camp, a little girl sits on a pile of rubble, clutching a small bowl of rice. She's wearing a blue striped dress and her black straw-like hair has been pinned up with a pink bow. She looks directly at me – her eyes are enormous – and we stare at each other for a long time. I choke up and try to hold back my tears, then she walks away. She passes campfires and old people in blankets, young people with broken limbs and animals walking around aimlessly, then finally disappears into one of the tents. Madonna is still dancing.

I'm shaving before going to bed and I barely recognize the man in the mirror. I don't know if I'm moving forward or backwards, but I sleep soundly this night.

Walter Weeks is a writer for On Top Magazine and can be reached at The Gay Slant pops-in most Saturdays at On Top Magazine.

Photo credit Charlotte Robinson