Arts & Entertainment
Parting Glances My 10 Minutes in Heaven (Pt. 4)
By Charles Alexander
Originally printed 5/29/2014 (Issue 2222 - Between The Lines News)
I'm not quiet sure if it was 12:06 or 12:07 a.m. in my heavenly sojourn. It seems like a century between these 60 seconds.
Believe it or not, two seemingly angelic things are happening to my earthly, cleverly planned obsolescent cellphone.
It chimes in with The Hills Are Alive With The Sound of Music - not my choice for caller ID - apologies to Julie Andrews - and at the same instant my cellphone turns to 14K gold in my hand. (Hope against heavenly hope I've recharged its battery.)
"Hi! It's your old friend Dan Stevens. Remember me? We last chatted in 1981 at Beaumont, almost 35 years ago. I just want you to know I'm fine. Your memory has kept me alive all these years. Remember Larry Gaynier, Jim Hohmann, Jim Profitt, Tom Bartley, Robert Cunningham? Friends from MCC-D. They're here too. If you like, I'll put them on."
Somehow suspecting that my minutes in Heaven are unfortunately about to run out, I regretfully decline, but suggest that leaving brief voicemails in turn for each sadly missed friend, along with a reborn Eternal Selfie of each, would be wonderful.
Concerned that my own gay life to date merits me, at most, a few heavenly minutes - eight have gone by - I briefly reflect that had I quit drinking earlier, attended church more regularly, voted consistently for all inclusive human rights, and against T-Party idiots, my allotted heavenly visit just might be 20 minutes or, dare I hope, a half hour in duration.
My reverie is interrupted by dancing, multi-flashes of silver and golden beams of light illuminating my modest, designer decorated apartment in the Seventh Heaven Condos. Outside, the sun is a gigantic disco ball, red spinning, blue spinning, orange spinning to a medley of ABBA tunes.
Staid, skeptical old timer that I am - my days of Twisting and Huckle Bucking long gone by - I'm moved by the Rainbow Spirit to kick up my spangled red Oz heels and join the rapidly gathering, dancing crowd lining the fabled streets of gold outside.
"What's happening?" I ask a guy wearing a slightly tilted neon-rainbow halo who looks a tad like myself as a teen. He carries a banner that glitters, "Our LGBT Pride March Is Heavenly! For Time and For Eternity!"
He smiles. He hugs me. "Hugging is prayer," he says. My cellphone beeps 12:10. Reluctantly, I leave. My first visit, memorable. However brief. Celebrate Pride 2014!Charles@pridesource.com