What They Call Me in Canada

We entered Target, and immediately Joe said, “I’ve got to go pee.” We’re old men and this is a constant theme throughout our day. I didn’t have to go so I wandered around the entrance to the store. Two fellows came in, maybe in their 50’s, saw me there, smiled, and said, “Waiting on the wife?”

Now I had a choice.

I could just let it go, I could say that I was waiting for a friend, or I could be truthful. They seemed friendly, but gay people know how quickly friendly can change into hostility. I decided to just be truthful, “No, I’m waiting on my husband.”

I had called wrong.

They immediately flared up and I knew I was in a dangerous situation. “Where you from?” I was asked and I said that I was from Canada, that gave them fuel. “You are a country full of faggots up there from your faggoty president right down to you.”

“You are right,” I said, surprised that I felt less fear than I used to and more courage than I thought I had, “we are a country full of people like me, and you know what they call us, ‘citizens’ man, ‘citizens.'”

A short glaring match.

Joe comes out to their retreating backs. “Do I want to know?” he asked. “No,” I said, “you don’t.”

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