Today was the day before the first day of the Fall semester at UT-Austin, so, after a summer of working around a sparsely populated campus, everyone was BACK!
After my lunch break, I was sitting outside on a low building ledge having a cig when two very young-looking punk chicks (shaved heads, torn Ts) walked by me holding hands... and then one of them turned around and gave me the biggest smile! (What for, honey?! I'm 48! But thank you!) :)
And then as I was getting off work and walking to my bus, I stopped by my favorite ancient oak tree for a smoke...And two very young-looking nerdy boys walked by me holding hands. Neither of this pair smiled at me, but I was grinning inside at THEM! I wanted to run after them and shake them and say, "You guys are so CUTE! And so lucky to be able to be sweet and young together."
When I first came to campus 30 years ago in the fall of 1983, I was deeply in love with a girl back home, whom I'd spend the majority of the past summer with; but she quickly found a new "best friend" once I'd left for college. I couldn't talk to anyone about my very-great loss. In the meantime, on campus, there was the touring AIDS quilt: When I looked at the guest-book, one entry (representative of many) said, "Die, faggots." When I stood on the Drag watching the annual student-group parade, I felt a thrill when the gay-student float went by. And then a frat-boy standing in the crowd next to me yelled out toward the gay float: "Fuck off, stupid faggots." I slunk home.
So much sadness and hate in the '80s when I was a young person trying to come out.
I am so happy for the cute kids I saw today holding hands. So happy that they have the chance to be "young and in love." And forever deeply sad/warped that I missed out on that.