Friday, July 21, 2006

Gay Games: The Ripple Effect

Chicago is hosting the Gay Games this week, and I've been meaning to post a big hey-ho! to all the participants. Welcome!

At our house, my six-year-old listens to the radio with an uncanny awareness -- as if he realizes it is a sure way to divine the secrets of adulthood. When a Gay Games commercial came on XRT, it prompted his first inquiry on the topic of homosexuality: "What are the Gay Games?"

So, I explained, and let me tell you, when you explain homosexuality in its most basic, uncharged terms -- sometimes men and women love one another, sometimes women and women love one another, sometimes men and men love one another -- children reveal how little of a big deal it is. He had more questions about the events than the idea that love transcends just about everything.

So this morning, we were traveling west behind a North Avenue bus that featured the Gay Games logo. "Mom?" Zack asked from the back seat. "Why are there Gay Games?"

So, I explained about the atheletics and gay people probably wanting to be together in a happy and welcoming environment. I said that there is a lot of hatred toward gay people around the country, but not in our city so much, so they probably are enjoying feeling welcomed and at peace while they compete.

So he thought about that for a few minutes, and then he asked, "Does Uncle Joe who lives on that farm like the Gay Games?"

To which I answered honestly, "I don't know if he does or not."

More thinking time. "I think he probably does because he really likes sports."

Meanwhile, Natalie, my 18-month old, is in her car seat proudly sporting her newly-acquired vocabulary word: "Gay! Gay! Gay!"

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