I, Mother Gay

Adam Griffiths

When I met Jared at Chili’s this past summer, I don’t know if I was looking for much more than a summer fling. He was a friend of a friend at work, and even after that initial meeting, I didn’t think things would go much further than the bedroom.

Fast-forward to last week and my opening what’s become a weekly or bi-weekly update from one of my closest and favorite freshman friends. After a bunch of beating around the bush, he admitted something that made me read the whole thing over again.

“So I was thinking, and this may offend you, but at Kent, Adam, you’re like my mother,” Jared wrote. “I don’t know how else to put it, but that’s what I’ve concluded.”

Homo, say what? Me? A mother? Of all the roles and positions I’ve assumed in my life, becoming the go-to gay for my own little group of freshman gay ducklings was something I never expected. I’m more than sure it wasn’t my intention when I added them all on Facebook in the weeks and months before the start of the semester, but somehow, I’ve come to love them all and the lessons I’ve learned from being their mentor.

Through Jared, I started talking to Paul online this summer. Paul introduced Dan into the group. And I think that, while we were all friends on Facebook, Dan’s crush on Chris brought him into the midst of what is lovingly referred to as “The Circle,” loosely depicted by index cards tacked to the wall of my room. “Loosely” is the best way to describe it. After we all slept with each other, sexually or otherwise, we’ve all managed to settle down with someone just as winter break is around the corner.

Paul found Brad while country line dancing at the Dusty Armadillo. Dan met Dan through me after Jared and I met him at Chipotle a month or so ago. Chris started talking to Aaron after Aaron’s and my on-again, off-again relationship last month, and now they’re happily coupled. And, shocking as it is, even I have someone – who goes to OU.

But any good parent realizes that happiness is truly an impossible bliss, and it rarely lasts forever. Heap the raging hormones and flippant nature of being 18 to 20 years old on top of that estimation. What do you get? Our lives for the past four months.

When Dan and Jared decided it’d be wise to get into a car with a stranger they met at the Rec and proceed to let him drive them to Chipotle, I was the one who screamed at them later about their safety, and, according to Jared, the first person he thought to call as they sped away from Kent. Each time Paul broke up with someone this semester, he spent the weekend with me. And Dan – Dan’s spent more nights in my room than his own this semester.

When they’re all crowded on the floor in my dorm room watching movies with their boyfriends or boys of the week, I understand how the old woman who lived in the shoe must have felt. I sit back and wonder if they really do all care what I think about them and if they take my advice seriously. The idea of being apart for a month scares me, but they all know I’d drive across the state in a heartbeat if they needed me.

So when they start touching each other inappropriately after a night of drunken debauchery, and they obviously don’t want me involved, I just roll over and snicker, looking forward to the mistakes, hangovers and stiff necks that will bring us even closer on yet another morning after.

Adam Griffiths is a sophomore information design major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected]