Sean Bugg

A brief moment of effortless being

Filed By Sean Bugg | September 30, 2009 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment, Living, Living

Before being introduced to Provincetown, I considered myself to be an anti-beach type of person. Beach towns were all annoying tourists, garish boardwalks and gym-sculpted, sun-kissed bodies that give pale white boys like me severe complexes. Double all that for gay beaches.

Thumbnail image for Effortless flight.jpgAnd, although I've lived in the D.C. area for two decades now, my trips to the nearest gay oceanic mecca, Rehoboth have been few, though enough to leave me with the feeling that the gay aspect of the town is more of an addendum than anything else -- pockets of queerdom carved out in fine style, but still separate in many ways.

P'town, on the other hand, feels like a fully woven fabric, a place where everything comes together in one big whole -- some bears over there, straight couples with kids over here, drag queens prancing down the street, lesbians laughing on restaurant patios, twinks giggling on their outdoor decks, and middle-aged gay guys like myself relaxing with the sudden effortlessness of simply being.

I'm so conditioned to titrate my gayness according to my surroundings that it took me ages to realize that the simplicity of P'town came from being in an environment that to my eyes looks like non-urban, almost-small-town America while at the same time being about the gayest damn place I've ever seen in my life. It's the liberation of living, even just for two weeks, exactly the way we should: openly, honestly and fully.

Now I'm back in my Falls Church neighborhood of single-family cottages where the subtle cues and messages start to kick back in, like the standoffish neighbors a couple houses up who've erected prominent McDonnell for Governor signs, and nothing says welcome home to the neighborhood like signs promoting a politician who believes I'm a cancer on society. And, poof, that feeling of effortlessness is gone.

But not forgotten.

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