Sometimes things that unnerve you a little bit also provide a lift for your self-esteem.
Today while I was working my customary eleven-hour Saturday shift at Western City Movie Theater, two men who looked to be in their mid to late forties walked into the lobby and approached my lectern with their tickets. The men had thin builds that bespoke an uncommon health consciousness and a dress and manner that indicated a comfortable life. They were also obviously gay.
As they prepared to hand me their tickets, one of them started blatantly hitting on me in open view of his boyfriend.
"Wait a minute," he said, reaching his hands out so that they rested on my collar bones. This startled me very much, until I realized he was straightening my bow-tie.
Unaccustomed as I am to strangers placing their hands on my neck, I froze, and by the time I'd thought to do or say anything he was done.
"That was driving me crazy," he said.
His companion seemed to have no problem with this.
A little flustered, I directed them to their theater.
About half an hour, the man who'd come onto me emerged to get some popcorn, and on his way to the concessions stand stopped and peeked over my shoulder.
"What're you reading?" he asked.
He caught sight of the cover: The Rise and Fall of the British Empire.
"Cool," he noted.
As he returned from purchasing his food, he asked with a smile, "Why do you look like you'd be easy to pick on?"
"Oh, I don't know," I laughed nervously and looked away.
"Want some popcorn?" he asked, extending the bag in my direction. "Yum yum."
"No thanks," I said.
He went back into his movie.
I really did not know what to make of any of this. First of all, to be clear, I would never even consider doing anything with someone so much older than me, but I have to admit that, in a dry spell during which it seems like all the gay guys are either non-existent or uninterested, any attention is good attention.
As I told Sacagawea a while back: "Even if I'd never get with you in a million years, I still want you to look."
What upset me the most about the situation was my reaction to it, which is the same as the reaction I always have when hit on: I become flustered, quiet, nervous, and bashful. I will sometimes blush and get this scared look in my eyes that seems to advertise my helplessness.
I hate this, because it so perfectly matches my physical appearances and only enhances the perception of me as being an innocent little boy.
"You know who would like you?" a friend of mine once asked.
"Who?" I laughed.
"A priest," she answered.
I would love to be the confident one, the one who winds everyone else around his fingers. By all rights I should be able to drive a middle aged man crazy, and yet somehow I got all shaken up. And I wasn't even attracted to him. He just wasn't repulsive.
I think that after I've had my first this will go away, because I won't be so intimidated by the very idea of sex. As it is, I'm confused, horny, lonely, and unsure what I'm capable of.