OMG... so I wore my "I *heart* Irish Boys" t-shirt to the celtic festival yesterday... what an experience! It was great... so many people do this double-take when they see it.
I had (at-least) four people take my picture -- two of which I saw them taking with their cell phones (without asking, but I was OK with it)... another one of them, this really cute college-aged(?) guy came up to me and asked if he could take my picture with his friend. I was a bit uncomfortable, but of-course I said yes. I was uncomfortable because about five minutes earlier I had this guy come up to me and make a point to read the shirt and then mean-spirited & loudly yell back to his friends, "OMG, it does say 'Boys'... ugh!" whatever asshole. So anyway, this other guy that wanted to take my picture seemed nice -- assumedly completely straight, but obviously not narrow, or at least good-natured about it. He introduces me to his friend Shane(?) who was this ADORABLE Irish-looking guy... and said put your arm around him... I have to remember this tomorrow... They were drunk, and good natured about it, and they were cute... I'm such a sucker for a cutie... But what I think I want to remember most about them was as I was walking away from them, they said (without intentions of me hearing I don't think), "That's one brave man" and then they laughed -- but in a really fun way, not a "laugh-at-me" way. That made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside... and totally counteracted the asshole from a few minutes earlier. It's interesting how life can do that...
Anyway... wearing the shirt all day was a blast... I just kept a smile on my face and I think that's what made it OK to so many people... If I was prissy and mean, I bet I could have gotten into a fight or something about it. But because I just smiled and laughed at it (at myself) it was a really fun time. I loved just stopping and standing in the crowd while I would wait for my friends (in line for food or beer or something) and watching the people do little double takes or smile or sometimes even point... LOL! I guess I do have to admit that I like the attention... *sigh* am I an attention whore? Oh well, so be it... That shirt is definitely being worn again next year!
I do have to admit though that I only really enjoyed it when my friends were around. When I walked away once to use the porta-pottie, I felt "alone" and a little afraid of "what if"... being in a crowd, or even with just one friend, made me feel comfortable and accepted... but being alone was really a little frightening for me. And at the end of the night when I was tired and considering walking home alone because I just wanted to go home, I thought about the shirt and the dark alleys I would be walking through to get home, and I reconsidered and decided that I wouldn't. Sad that I have to feel that way... practical I guess, but sad none-the-less. Times like that when I wish gay bashing wasn't a reality. ... Well, I hope, that my little shirt may have helped "spread the love" a bit around Bethlehem yesterday.
PS: I'm waiting on a picture from my friend of me in the shirt... I'll post when I get it... :)