Monday, February 7, 2011

Blessings of Brotherhood

A couple of weeks ago I had a wonderful experience that I wanted to share with you. I was buying some stuff at a store and noticed that the cashier who was about to ring up my purchases looked like a friend of mine, which gave me warm feelings toward him even though we'd never met. But I decided to treat him as a friend and not a stranger. Our eyes locked as I walked up to the counter and said "How are you?" as if we were old friends.

We both smiled. His facial expression matched my hopes. He looked back into my eyes as if we did know each other.  Debit or credit, he asked. I said debit and, as if I had seen him in a variety of different shirts and ties over the years, I said, "You know that shirt and tie really look great on you. You ought to wear that combination more often." Our eyes again locked and he said, "Well thanks, bud, I will." He handed me my stuff and I said "Have a good one" and he said "You, too." It was probably over in less than a minute, but it was one of those sweet moments I hope I'll always remember.

Today when I saw the real friend that this guy reminded me of, I wanted to give him a big hug and say, "I love you so much." But he doesn't like hugs and I don't usually tell straight guys I love them, so we just talked about our weekends.

Later today I saw another friend. This time he was the one who kept making eye contact. As we talked I noticed his white teeth, his full lips, his neatly trimmed beard, the way his shirt hung on his shoulders, and then right in the middle of the conversation a kind of miracle happened. He put his hand on my shoulder and gave it a little squeeze.  I've always felt affection toward this man--another happily married fellow--but today he was the one who physically touched me. What a blessing.

I'm curious about the experiences you, my moho friends, have with your straight friends. Do you also restrain yourself? Do you also find that sometimes a friend's touch is like a gift from God himself?