Nov 6th is always significant date for me.
This Nov 6 marks the ninth anniversary of the most profound date of my life with my now wife, Revel Wolf. It’s a long story how we met, which I’m happy to share over drinks sometime. It was pouring rain that night and she showed up in a biggest cowboy hat I had ever seen and I’ve spent time in Texas. Before speaking a word, we wrapped our arms around each other, touched foreheads, then noses and lips, which stayed locked the entire evening. It’s a bit shameless looking back. We made-out all night long in a public place, gee gawds. Each time we came up for air, there was a new group of people seated next to us. Three days prior to our date, Referendum 71 was on the ballot, the-everything-but-marriage law. I remember praying love was stronger than fear. It absolutely was that year. Ref. 71 paved the way to Gay Marriage. Gay Marriage and that first date changed my life.
November 6 is also my brother Marc's birthday. Marc has been MIA for eight years. We believe he's still alive, we just don't know where he is.
Marc came out to me at 17. I'll never forget it. We were lying on my bed and cuddling, which we did a lot as he is seven years older than me and I idolized him. I said, “Eric (our other brother) told me you’re a fag.” He said, “I prefer to call myself Gay.” He then said, “I’ll leave you alone to think about this.” I remember being in my room for about 30 seconds. I went across the hall to his room and said, “What is there to think about?” as I plopped down on his bed and was wrapped in his embrace.
In 1979 when Marc came out, my parents and the world were not supportive. People were cruel. He was tormented. He spent a lot of time away from the house or locked in his room reading. He and I took dance classes in North Hollywood. He’d then take me Hollywood Blvd where we’d walk the street hand and hand and I’d pretend he was my boyfriend. Like I said, I idolized him. I remember the Scientology building with L Ron Hubbard Dianetics plastered in the windows. We’d talk about music and movies and look at all the freaky people.
When I was applying to college, my essay was about Marc as he was the person I admired most. I wanted to do everything he did. He went to school back East so I did too. He worked in the Music Industry so did I too. He loved the Talking Heads. I loved the Talking Heads. He was Gay, I was Gay.
His absence is impossible to reconcile. I never quite know what to do with the pain my Mother carries, the pain I carry. Mostly, I will never be able to reconcile the pain Marc carries. The pain and the shame of being Gay, of watching his community die, of not becoming the icon he so dreamed of being. At least that’s what I place on his absence as I can’t ask him what happened. I do remember him being in pain. And his genius. He was always fifteen steps ahead of everybody else and knew what was coming. I bet he saw this rise of tyranny way before anybody else did.
And so, today, this Nov 6, it's Election Day, my first date anniversary and Marc’s 57th birthday. There is so much beauty and so much loss and so much love and hope and so much hurt. For me and The Wolf, Love is always stronger than Fear, even when fear is doing everything in its power to strangle love. For Marc, my dear brother, I’m not certain love is stronger. Fear seems to have gripped him awfully hard and ripped him away from all of us.
Perhaps Marc, The Wolf and I not so dissimilar to today's America. The America where so many of us believe Love is Everything and others want to smother it in Fear and Hate. Just like I do with my missing brother, I will always always always believe that Love Wins and spread that love to him and all those in pain.
If you haven’t already, VOTE for LOVE and PROGRESS and VOTE for those whose pain scares them and keeps them from reaching out to feel our light. And encourage everybody you know to do the same.
In love and gratitude -