I try not to lead with that
At the base of the mountain at a ski resort, a woman sees two other women share a kiss. She raises a beer to their love and cheers, “yeah!”. The two women laugh at her theatrics and verify, “so you’re cool with the gays, eh?” She responds. “BITCH, I AM the gays!” She invites the two girls to sit down with her friends-- all presenting as conversative cis gender males. The woman continues her enthusiastic warmth but these strangers are still under review with her friends. They give off a protective aura. The woman explains her forward excitement towards the strangers:
Woman: There isn’t much a gay community in Saginaw
Girls: There are so many great liberal cities in Michigan-- Detroit, Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor...you should move!
Woman: I work for the municipality, it wouldn’t be a good idea for me to move cities.
Girls: Working for the city seems like a perfectly transferable career. Same gig, new city! Do you work for parks 'n rec?
The girls could see her hesitancy to share further and regret the direction they took the conversation. The woman sees now that she halted their budding camaraderie and decides to relieve their confusion. Her energy shifts and she looks down at her drink.
Woman: I’m a...I’m a cop.
Girls: I’m sorry you didn’t feel like you could share that with us.
Woman: I just..I try not to lead with that. It’s better to play it safe. You just don’t know how people will see you. Being who I am in the job I’m in makes it hard to find community.
But she goes on to explain that she really isn’t dying to get out of her town. She gestures to her friends whose camo-everything and neck-beards read like minds closed to anything but the ideals of a good ole boy. But their vigilant eyes towards the strangers read like This is our person. Don’t shame her.
Woman: "These guys are the best friends out there. They go to the only gay bar in town with me. They never let me feel alone."
Boyne Mountain Resort
Boyne Falls, MI
Jacket is listed as a size 12
Lead With That
Launder on gentle cycle and air dry.