Best Date Ever: True Stories that Celebrate Gay Relationships
Edited by Lawrence Schimel
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Excerpt from “Moose!”
“I tried to steal a look at Alan as we passed underneath a streetlamp. The boyish charm that I first noticed seemed to have shifted to a more natural setting and I noticed adult grey flecks at his temples. His eyes were green and when he looked directly into mine, I felt color touching my cheeks. I hoped he’d think it was the air’s chill. We came to the crosswalk where I would I turn towards my apartment. Without comment we continued past.
“Capote’s short stories are a different animal from his novels.” I felt the need to defend one of my favorite authors. “He’s a pompous writer who uses words to show off his intelligence, but he tells a good tale. With the short stories he doesn’t have time to display his great French vocabulary as much.” I smiled conjuring the author’s image in my mind. “He was an ego-centric queen; gossipy and demanding.” I let out a heavy sigh dismissing the spirit. “We would have been such good friends.”
Alan let out a small chuckle. “Have you ever seen that movie by Neil Simon, Murder By Death? Where Truman plays the host of a murder mystery?”
“That’s the one with the take-offs of all the famous detectives?”
“Right!” Alan’s face lit up becoming animated. His boyish delight gave way to handsome features with a playful sparkle. “I love the scene where he’s talking behind the mounted moose’s head on the wall.”
I stopped walking, caught up in the excited shared memory. “And the ‘Charlie Chan’ character says, ‘Cow on wall speak’. Then the head screams out…”
Our voices squealed in unscripted unison, each of us doing our best impersonation of the high toned, nasally elfish voice of Truman Capote.
“‘Moose! It’s a Moose, damn it’!”
The impressions turned into laughter as our normal voices returned. The sounds of our joy rolled down the street. Neither of us cared if the passersby heard us or and what they must have thought. Neither of us seemed to notice if they were there at all. There was something different about him that I began to notice. His affection for reading and knowledge for movies ignited a kindred flame between us. I undid the top of my coat’s zipper feeling the refreshing cold night brushing around my throat. I stood still, staring at him, trying to decide whether I should kiss him. Another orange cab pulled around the corner and I made up my mind.”