I have stopped seeing my dreamy gay dermatologist on a regular basis, partly because I wasn’t convinced that the corticosteroid injections were doing any good, and partly because one time he gave an injection into a persistent bald patch in my lower neck and struck a vein or artery or some sort of blood vessel, and my neck swelled up as if I had a goiter, and I was left with a slowly expanding bruise that spread all the way down to my chest. That seemed worse than a small patch of baldness.

Also, I was starting to feel comparatively inferior, seeing this dreamy gay dermatologist who was so successful, despite being slightly younger than I, once every month, as he reported newer levels of success to me as we “caught up” (my success to report was confined to hair regrowth). But this is something that one needs to get used to, since there is only more of it every year that one lives. “Just wait until the President is younger than you,” a family friend, who has since died of cancer, once said to me, after I had rototilled her yard and laid new sod, in a freak masculine episode in my early twenties.

Recently I was in a car driving to the Florida Keys with a young friend who had spent the night with an extremely good-looking guy who was roughly my age and who in those years had already had a career as a Navy SEAL and was now a medical doctor. I have really wasted my life, I remember thinking while staring out the car window at some bleak, mostly-abandoned housing development. I would never be a Navy SEAL or medical doctor, or even a nurse practitioner or physician’s assistant. […]

One night in a different bar a 22-year-old guy involved in the international diamond trade expressed interest in me, but I naturally assumed that it was some sort of prank.

Welcome back, Kotter.

The foregoing posting appeared on Joe Clark’s personal Weblog on 2008.05.16 12:54. This presentation was designed for printing and omits components that make sense only onscreen. (If you are seeing this on a screen, then the page stylesheet was not loaded or not loaded properly.) The permanent link is:

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None. I quit.

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