Thank You Ptown

About a thousand years ago, I first experienced Provincetown at the very tip of Cape Cod when my husband brought me to visit his childhood music teachers.  These teachers were a couple, two men who my husband refers to as “why I teach” and “how I teach,” respectively, who owned a house in Ptown where they would spend every school vacation until they moved here upon retirement.

I must have been barely twenty years old when I first came here, and as a young gay man, I found tremendous possibility in the acceptance and equity of this beautiful town by the sea.  I think it was a combination of seeing men walking down the street hand in hand without fear and the opportunity of getting to know these two influential teachers from my husband’s past that showed me the potential for happiness that lay in my future as a fledgling Gaysian.

Nearly two decades later, my husband and I were married with children, and we visited Provincetown during Family Week, a week-long celebration of LGBT-parented families.  Before that, Ptown was a place of sanctuary from our regular lives where living openly as gay men felt like constant work; now with kids, it still represented that and it took on additional meaning.  The town embraced our kids as lovingly as it had us so many times before.

At the end of that first Family Week, my husband and I were looking at property, trying to figure out how we might swing a second home in town so that our kids could get to know this wonderful place more intimately as they grew older.  When we walk down the street in Ptown, there are other families that look just like ours; when we go to the playground, there are other kids of color with two dads, and nobody awkwardly asks where their mother is.

For the past fours years, we’ve enjoyed getting to know the town in a new way, this time with kids in tow, and it’s been incredible.  Our kids smile from ear to ear when we pack the car up and make the circuitous drive to the end of Cape Cod, and as they walk through town, they love waving hello to the people they know.

Tonight, we bundled up in our heaviest winter gear and headed into town for the lighting of the lobster trap Christmas Tree.  As I stood in the crowd, fighting a potential hernia to hoist my daughter into the air so she could watch a crane lower the giant tree topper made of tinseled fishing buoys, I glanced up at her face.  She was beaming with joy.  She was so excited to be experiencing this moment with the crowds, and she was probably thinking ahead to dinner at her favorite restaurant where one of the bartenders is a black woman that shares her name who always gives her the biggest hug when she comes in.  In spite of the freezing cold and the pain creeping into my muscles from holding aloft our ninety pound daughter and our hyperactive son doing cartwheels around us with snot running down his face, it was a moment I wanted to savor and one that I look forward to repeating in many ways as our kids grow older.

Hateful Pasta

Serving up pasta with hatred since 2013

My friend over at The Larsens Live Here alerted me to some disturbing pasta-related news.  Apparently CEO Guido Barilla took a little break from churning out his namesake pasta to express his personal feelings of apathetic homophobia with a dash of misogyny to Italian radio.  Here are a few highlights:

I would never do (a commercial) with a homosexual family, not for lack of respect but because we don’t agree with them. Ours is a classic family where the woman plays a fundamental role.

[If gays] like our pasta and our advertising, they’ll eat our pasta, if they don’t like it then they will not eat it and they will eat another brand.

Everyone has the right to do what they want without disturbing those around them.

I have no respect for adoption by gay families because this concerns a person who is not able to choose.

Thank you Mr. Barilla!  I never thought about it that way.  Children of heterosexual families, especially adopted ones, always get to choose who their parents are, and it’s simply unfair that my children didn’t have that opportunity!

Come to think of it, maybe Jewish parents shouldn’t be allowed to adopt.  After all, the potential adoptee might opt for a more mainstream Christian existence.  Single women shouldn’t adopt either; it’s not fair that the little tykes can’t choose a life of sexism.  And why stop there?  Black people should be prohibited from adopting non-black children because the child might decide to be a racist.

The world needs more forward-thinking altruists like Mr. Barilla.  Since my husband and I are pure evil for helping prohibit the democratic choice of infants to select their parents, for now we’ll have to bide our time by purchasing De Cecco or Ronzoni pasta at the supermarket.

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