This is a place for stories. I tried my hand at social commentary and I didn’t care much for it. I’d rather be petty, than deep. So back to the tales, some have been told often, and others will be new to you, all are true. Either way I write these out to make you smile. This story is no exception.
When I was in college and I joined the speech team. It was a great experience and it helped me learn how to talk to a room full of people. I didn’t do any formal speeches, but rather did Readers Theater, Duo, Dramatic Interpretation, and Poetry performances. It in no way helped me with my one on one speaking skills. But I’m not afraid to speak in front of a room people, as long as I have a sheet of paper.
So we are at the nationals in Minnesota, great pop, lousy weather. I was snowed on in May, and we almost had to stay in Minneapolis due to the amount of rain at the airport. All in all it was a good trip. I got to see the Mississippi, read some Mark Twain, and ride a roller coaster in a mall. The Mall of America is easily the best place to blow every cent you own. If you can think of it, there’s a store that sells it in the Mall of America.
The meet went pretty well for me. I placed third in one category and got to the finals in another. I made a lot of friends. This is also the time in my life when I finally understood when you order something "Californian Style" from a restaurant, all they do is put avocado on it.
Near the end of the tournament, I’m in the audience for “Speech to Entertain” finals. I was done with my rounds and this was a much better choice than “Speech to Inform” finals. The speakers had a full house. This was as close to stand up as a speech tournament comes. After a number of good speakers this guy gets up.
“I wear gel in my hair,” he starts “only wear clothes from Structure and The Gap. I have all my CD alphabetically chronologically organized.”
“I’m a SMAG. A Straight Male Appearing Gay.”
He went on to say he loved show tunes, and musicals, and had been picked up on by men numerous times. It fit me to a tee, and I thought I was hysterical. Mostly because I was wearing Structure clothes at the time, and had just shown someone my very well oraginized CD binder. All my fellow team members labeled me a SMAG from then on. And I wore the badge with pride. At least it meant I liked girls, which was better than most people who first met me thought.
I remember when I found out that the only reason I got my job at the music store was because my boss though I was gay. He was actually blown away when I got engaged. I’ve shed the title since I’ve been married. I can’t recall being propositioned since I started wearing my wedding ring.