I was quoted in the local paper again today. I am turning into my Uncle Leo. Not that I have become gay and half-Hispanic, although both of those are clearly right around the corner. Oh, and vegetarian. My Uncle Leo is also vegetarian now. Stay tuned for Latina June, your favorite celery-chewing lesbian, coming to this blog soon!
No. I was quoted in the paper today, and my Uncle Leo is FOREVER being quoted and photographed back in my hometown newspaper. Is what I am throwing down to you. He's politically active and he's interesting, and besides, who can get enough of hearing about vegetarianism? And now I've been in the paper twice this summer.
This time it was to recommend good books, which is coincidental, seeing as I asked you all to recommend good books to me just yesterday. I will definitely check out Gone Girl, seeing as 9394050500 of you suggested it. And I am intrigued by the one Cupcake Murphy suggested, about the funny gay Southern man. Since I'm about to become one. Maybe I will comPLETEly turn into my Uncle Leo and become a gay man. I will be my own best friend.
Have I ever told you the fascinating story about my Uncle Leo and how he turned gay? And yes, I absolutely cringe when someone says, "He turned gay" or "He decided to be gay." Bugs me to death. But really, my Uncle Leo started dating my Aunt Kathy when they were in 10th grade, and they got married (not in 10th grade. Hello, Ozarks) and were married till they were in their 30s. They had two kids.
And I mean, he liked him the Aunt Kathy.
Then they got divorced, and I lived at his house the summers between college, because my mother wasn't living in my hometown at the time and besides, it's more fun to live with Uncle Leo. And trust me. He was a dating fool. He liked.him.the.ladies. This I know. I wish I could go into detail but I had no idea I was gonna go off on an Uncle Leo tangent today and haven't asked him permission, and he is in Alaska right now, being gay and Hispanic and vegetarian, and it's like six hours earlier there or something.
My point is, starting from when he was 19, he had this...condition in his brain. Not a tumor (will not insert tired "It's not a tumor" joke here), but something that required surgery, and the condition came back twice more after he got divorced.
After the third brain operation? He started feeling attracted to men.
He spoke to his doctor about it, and I really think they should study him. It worries me a little, though, because what if there's something you can tweak in your brain to make you gay or not gay, and homophobic parents will be stampeding out to get their son, who wants to take ballet, in for brain surgery.
I have no idea how I got off on this tangent today.
Anyway, Uncle Leo would have been the kind of person to never be closeted, so I saw this phenomenon firsthand. And you should see him now! He could not be more out and proud. It's kind of exciting for the rest of us, because he USED to be all into his Hispanic heritage, and we had to hear about that, and watch him wear a sombrero and say things like, "burrrrreeeetho" instead of burrito even though he grew up in Saginaw, Michigan like the rest of us.
"Thaaaaacoo!" Oh, you just wanted to smack him. But now we hear less about his proud heritage and more about his proud gayness. Which is way interestinger.
"Callloraaaatho!" That's how he said, "Colorado." I mean, he still does. He still whips out the accent where none exists and you still want to throw a burro at him. When he'd come to LA, we'd pass Hispanic-sounding streets and he'd SAY them all in that phony accent. "Oh! Loz Feeeeleeez!" "Palllllos Verrrrrrrdeeeese!"
Anyway. I've been quoted in the paper today. Is my point. And Dick Whitman's mom has answered many many many of your questions, so look for that tomorrow. And thanks for your book suggestions yesterday! I will be kept amused on that plane. Say, shouldn't the Greensboro News & Record be flying me on a private plane, since I'm the toast of the town now and all?