Out of the Past

Ten years ago. I was 19.

I was at a summer math research program many states away from home. I fell in love (or what I thought was love) with another student in the program (let’s call him Guy). I didn’t know he was gay until there were only three weeks left in our program.

We had some fun together for a couple weeks. The long hugs and cuddling for a couple hours in the afternoon were the best. But Guy didn’t want a relationship. We went to school in different cities, and he was against long distance relationships (he had been cheated on in the past). I tried to convince him to try (I certainly wasn’t going to cheat on him) but it’s hard to argue logic with a math major. We reverted to being “just friends” for a while.

July 26, 2002. We both got a little drunk at a party (there was a lot of drinking that summer), and things heated up again. We ended up alone in his room. Here is an excerpt from something I wrote the next day, in an old journal I used to keep:

So I asked Guy if he liked me and he said he did. But I think when he’s sober, he likes me as a friend. When he’s drunk, he likes my body. Nowhere in there does he like me for me in a more romantic sense. I finally began to realize that as we were making out last night.

Guy wanted to take things a little further but my body and my mind were telling me not to. Like, my body refused to feel what was going on, and my mind was thinking about our relationship and how it could never work. So I wasn’t feeling sexual, and Guy was getting frustrated at me. I wanted to make Guy happy, but my body didn’t let me. He called me a 13 year old child and said that I’m not a man. He also said I’m not gay, because being gay means I want to have sex with men and all that stuff.

I thought I had buried this experience a long time ago, but the ten year anniversary of that summer somehow stirred up a lot of old feelings. I think a big reason why I still consider myself a boy and not a man stems from that night.

I started seeing a campus therapist last week. I think seeking counseling has been long overdue. It’s been good to talk through a lot of my feelings, both past and present. I hope I can finally move forward.

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The Great Photo Project

My brother and I have been trying to find a way to digitize all of our family’s old photos (pre-digital age). With paper being so easily ruined by sun, moisture, heat, etc., we figure that keeping a digital copy will help ensure that we never lose our childhood memories.

After a long time of trying to figure out what is the best method of digitizing our pictures, we settled on trying out the Canon CanoScan 8800F, a mostly typical flatbed scanner with the added feature of being able to scan negatives as well.

The scanner is bulky (much bulkier than I was expecting), but it seems to work quite well. There is a digital dust removal setting that is very handy; I scanned the same picture with and without the dust removal setting, and there is a world of difference between them.

The last few days, I’ve been tinkering with different settings and resolutions. I had a lot of fun rummaging through old photos to find some good test pictures. Oh, the memories. Now that I am familiar with how the scanner works and have an idea of what resolution I want, I think I’m ready to start scanning all of my family’s pictures from the beginning (probably from when my brother was born).

I think I finally have a hobby!