This morning, before going to Thanksgiving dinner, my brother and his girlfriend and I watched the college cheerleading championships on TV.
It was a revelation.
It was like Bring It On, except real. These people were amazing. They would hurl each other fifty feet in the air and do all kinds of flips while they were high up. I loved them all, even the guys who weren’t as cute.
The thing is, I almost went out for the cheerleading squad at my college, but then I decided not to. After seeing this morning’s championships, I regretted that decision more than I have ever regretted anything in my entire life, including the time I went to a junior high school dance with my hair sprayed pink, wearing a bow tie and a bicycle chain.
But from the depths of that regret came a voice that said, “Come, now. You’re a gay man living in New York City. There must be a cheerleading squad here for you.” Trembling, I did a google search and, when I found the New York Spirit Project, I almost didn’t believe the world could be so kind to me. Giddier and more alive with joy than I have been since I saw my first opera at age six, I called the number listed on the web site and left a message saying I was interested in joining the squad. Then we all went to Thanksgiving dinner, on the way to which I demonstrated my round off and my front handspring (the only remnants of the gymnastics I did at summer camp when I was seven). I could barely concentrate on the dinner conversation, so wrapped up was I in fantasies of getting thrown high up in the air and doing flips and falling madly in love with a fellow cheerleader and moving in together and being blissfully happy for the rest of my life.
Then I came back and looked at the web site again and saw that every single member of the squad is either a professional dancer or a former college cheerleader and now I am going to go buy ten gallons of Ben & Jerry’s Peanut Butter Truffle ice cream and cry while I eat every single fucking spoonful and get enormously fat so I don’t have to go try out and get totally rejected and lose the best dream I ever had.