This summer marks the first warm
weather season for Double Trouble's new outdoor patio. The simple
and attractive brick patio extends the bar's reach right up to the
sidewalk. Passersby mingle with customers at the edge of the patio,
blurring the line between bar and city.
The weather gods were giving it their
best this day, sunny and seventy-five with a gentle breeze.
Blurring ourselves on the edge of the
patio we sit waiting for
Slim. Which is not like Slim at all.
Dan has monopolized the conversation
with his concerns about Paris Hilton's recent incarceration.
“...and after all that Paris has been
through it seems crazy that it turned out for the best, she really
seems to have found herself in that jail. Did you watch her Larry
King interview? I would think Barbara Walters would have been elated
to interview her,” Dan questions.
Frustrated, I look directly at Dan,
bring my open right hand up to eye level and slowly close it, then
with my left hand I grab an invisible zipper and quickly move it from
one end to the other.
“Oh-no you did not?!” Dan jumps.
“Nobody shuts and zips...me!”
“If you do not get off the subject of
idle celebrity gossip, I'm going to shut, zip, and move you!” I say
using my closed right hand to point to another table.
“This,” Dan begins, then
reconsiders, adding, “This attitude is exactly why you are alone
with no one to caress your receding hairline and expanding love
“The reason I don't have a boyfriend
is because of my condition,” I respond.
“Come on, what...condition?”
“I suffer from AF: Asshole Fatigue.
And before you start, it's not what you're thinking.”
“We need to simply move on to a new
subject,” I say, pause a moment then add, “How about Jerry
“So sad, Jerry Falwell...one day he's
going to work, alive, and
then...” Dan begins.
“What?” I quickly interrupt. “What
I meant was, how about Jerry Falwell as in ding-dong the bitch is
“Everyone liked Jerry Falwell, I read
he was a really nice guy”
“Nice guy?” I ask, then add, “What
have you been reading The Repressed Gay Times?”
“I read Rev. Jesse Jackson and even
Larry Flynt called him a great friend upon his death,” Dan proudly
“Jerry Falwell was Satan disguising
himself as a human being.”
“Sometimes you need to put behind
your differences with people, especially once they have departed”,
Dan says. Then, genuinely, “You may have disagreed with Jerry
Falwell, but don't we live in a society that values differences in
“You're a mess!” I stammer,
briefly considering throwing my bubble-gum martini in Dan's face.
“I killed Jerry Falwell,” I
declare, pointing at my chest. Dan looks up, slightly raises his
left eyebrow, looking sufficiently bewildered. “Jerry Falwell
blamed me for 9/11 and Jerry Falwell blamed me for Katrina, I'm
certain he's sitting in hell right now blaming me for a premature
death, so why not take the blame and glory of killing Jerry Falwell.”
Dan squirms uncomfortably forward a bit
from his white plastic chair, takes a swig of his bubble-gum martini.
“Why would you believe that Jerry Falwell blamed you for 9/11 and
Katrina?” he finally asks.
“After 9/11 Jerry Falwell attempted
to explain to America why it had happened. He blamed gays. Jerry
Falwell asserted that God had stopped protecting America because he
was angry at the acceptance of gays.”
“Jerry Falwell was more than just a
differing opinion. No sir,” I continue. “Jerry Falwell once
said of a gay inclusive church, 'One day they will be utterly
annihilated and there'll be a celebration in heaven'.”
No Doubt is in the CD player of a
passing marine blue Mercedes C-Class coupe and Dan air-strums along
with, “BA-NA-NAS,” and then, “Bananas!”
“There was nothing nice about Jerry
Falwell, he was not interested in comparing notes or bridging
differences with us, he wanted us gone – it's that simple.”
Dan looks around as a handsome six foot
one man in tight Seven For All Mankind jeans, bootcut in Tijuana, as
he brushes past us. “Jerry Falwell was a man of God and like it or
not the church does not accept being gay, that does not mean that
every Christian is a bad person,” he says softly when his eyes
return to me.
“Jerry Falwell did not stop at a
simple rejection of homosexuality, he was first to promote the idea
that it was a Christian obligation
to hate gays. He did not want to be seen as a hate monger, instead
he blamed gays for catastrophic disasters, citing them as God's
punishment for acceptance of homosexuality. By doing so he created a
justification for the annihilation of all gay people and unleashed an
army of foot soldiers to do his bidding. If terrorism is merely a
consequence of low moral standards and if America wants to stop
terrorism then it would need to destroy gays first,” I explain
“When someone outright hates you with
the blessing of God, how exactly do you counter that?” I ask.
Three bubble-gum martinis and the hot
summer sun had dulled Dan's reflexes. He slowly leans back into his
chair, a vacant look comes over him and his eyes well up a bit.
“Are you OK?” I ask. He nods yes
and then adds, “I'm OK.”
“I'm sorry,” I say.
The sidewalk talk stirs up a bit and I
turn to see Slim has arrived. “What's the deal?” he asks.
“Jerry Falwell,” I respond.
“Oh, I hated that bitch!” Slim