It was just after the New Year's holiday in 2006, our migration plan toward building our life together had taken its next step the year earlier, and Boomer was now living in my town, Evanston. No more 36-mile, 2-hour (on weekends especially) travel times; we were now only four blocks apart.
Boomer's sons had been visiting him a few days over the holiday. After they headed back east, he called me to check-in late afternoon on a Sunday. With his calm, moderately deep voice, he said those four crucial words that almost never bring good news, "We need to talk." You can imagine my brain is reeling with the thought of, "Oh dear God, what on earth have I done?" "What's going on?", I ask in an attempted, yet failed cool tone. "Can you come over?", was all he offered. I told him I'd be there within the hour, then spent the next half-hour just pacing my vintage condo trying to figure what possibly could be up.
Bundled up for the cold, snowy trek to the New Biscuit Loft building (a former Nabisco baking machine repair factory), I headed over. It's not the layers of clothes keeping me warm, nervous anticipation and fear-filled sweat did. Using my own keys that Boomer had given me shortly after he moved in, I let myself into the lobby. Of course the elevator can't arrive fast enough to take me to the top floor where our north-east corner unit was located. I slide my tropical-print tripped out key into the door, turned the knob, as I begin pushing the door open I get quick side profile glimpse of Boomer's body doing a mad leaping dash out-of-sight down the hall.
"Hi, SMO, I'll be right there. Go ahead and hang up your coat," he warmly shouts from the other end of the loft. "Maybe it's not so bad after all," I'm thinking as I open the closet door, now blocking the complete view of the kitchen and hall where Boomer had dashed. I close the door, turn to my right, and leaped out of my skin so high from surprise I could have hit my head on the 14-foot ceiling. Boomer had sneaked back behind the door without my hearing. He was simply standing there, a big smile on his face, in all his 6'3" tallness...NAKED!.
His face was naked. Gone was the mustache that occupied his upper lip since his college days of the mid-late '70s (read It's Not Illegal). I couldn't shut-up my exuberance , "Oh my gosh Boomer! Your mustache is gone! Oh my gosh, you look fantastic! I love it!" I kept going, "Oh my gosh, oh my gosh! I love it, I love it, I love it! You look 10 years younger!" He didn't get a word in for 10-minutes.
Then it dawned on me...this was the talk. He got me. He knew got me. He never said a word as I figured out his little "we need to talk" prank. Boy he got me good and he never looked better. Of course we had to immediately test his new smoochability - - that was better than ever too.
He'd thought about doing it for a while - - shaving off his mustache. Since he was turning 50 in two months, it seemed the ideal mid-life crisis change. That's what he said anyway, "It was time." It was time for his hairy friend to depart; it had thinned out a bit, was starting to look dated, aging his appearance. He wasn't pulling off the Tom Selleck look-a-like as he did so naturally in the 80's and 90's.
|Prepped to shave '06|