Friday, August 30, 2019

My Romance with Wade the Beach Boy

Wilton Manors, June 2002

You're probably thinking that life in Florida was like Seinfeld, where Jerry, George, and Elaine have a constant parade of boyfriends and girlfriends with annoying quirks that prompt a quick breakup: talks too low; laughs too loud; won't taste your dessert; wears the same outfit every day.

Late in the series, they didn't even bother with introductions, knowing that there would be a new one next week.

In Florida, we typically dated guys for a month or less, too, but the relationships rarely ended due to annoying quirks.  Nor were there many heart-to-heart discussions of "are we right for each other?" or "where is this relationship going?"

It was just that, after three dates, or five, or ten, things just kind of fizzled out.

1. You were putting more into the relationship than you were getting.

2. The logistics of time and travel were impossible to maintain.

3. You didn't fit in with each other's friends.

4. He didn't share enough of your interests, and you didn't want to pursue his.

Like the beach.

Granted, I went to the beach more in Florida than I had in West Hollywood.  We lived only about 10 blocks away.

Dates often ended with a walk on the beach.

We held picnics and parties there.

But I have very fair skin, so I rarely took my shirt off, and even more rarely went into the water.

When I did, it was just to splash around.

Then Wade appeared at the Filling Station: tall, curly haired, solid physique, smooth chest, very pale skin, a recent graduate of McGill University in Montreal, who was now working the front desk at a resort.

Our first date was the standard dinner-and-a-movie, with conversation involving our coming out stories, fundamentalist Christians, bodybuilding, my date with Richard Dreyfuss, and the gay-subtext romance between Harry Potter and Ron Weasley.  We spent the night at my house, where he proved to be a little small beneath the belt, but very energetic.

I was swooning with infatuation.

Until I discovered why a business major from Montreal would take a job as a front desk clerk at a resort in Florida.

The beach. Every day before and after work.

On our second date, Wade talked me into going swimming -- not just splashing around, but actual breast strokes, out into the deep water of the Atlantic Ocean, halfway to the Bahamas.

On our third date, I talked him into an afternoon at the museum, followed by a walk on the beach and dinner at the house.

It went on like that.

Scuba diving.
Stay in and watch a DVD?
Midnight swim.

Wade started browning, with definite tan lines.

I started burning.

Ok, Wade was attractive, intelligent, interesting to talk to, and memorable in the bedroom, but the sun and sand routine was a bit much.

But by this point, he and Yuri had bonded, and were hanging out nearly every day, making a breakup awkward.

Cruising at the bars?
A movie?

How about a reverse roommate switch, pawning Wade off onto Yuri?

Nope, they weren't attracted to each other.  Yuri liked guys who were more muscular, and bigger beneath the belt, and Wade was into older guys.


Nope, nothing in common.  Barney never dipped a toe in the water, and Wade wasn't much of a gym rat.

Bear party?
Cruising at the bars?

Finally I tried the only thing I could think of: just say no.  

"Sorry, I'm a little tired, not up for the beach today.  But we can go out to dinner."

"I have a little headache, I shouldn't go into the water.  But how about a movie?"

"It's too cold outside today.  But we can go to a nice heated shopping mall."

Until eventually Wade faded away.  Neither of us had done anything wrong, really.  We just came from different sides of the beach.

See also: The Shy Boy in the Third Row; Wade and the Giant.


  1. I enjoyed your story. I live in Florida, and love it here. Thanks

    1. I lived in Florida for 4 years, from 2001 to 2005. I loved the daily rain shower, the little lizards scampering on the sidewalk, the beach, and the endless parade of hot guys. I didn't like the traffic.

    2. I love your story & being able 2 C your playmates is off the hook !! Thanks man



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