I did it. I am now grown enough to admit that, even though I said I never would, I did it. I did a threesome.
Let your mind wander where it must, but you might get disappointed if you read on. This is a really sweet and innocent, decades-old relationship. It takes a hiatus now and again, lets life happen to us on our own, but the spark immediately lights back up when we’re in each other’s company.
We’ve been called freaks and geeks as individuals, and all the while, no one really knew how true (or untrue) those monikers were. We’re among the youngest of our peer group and leisurely talk amongst ourselves about stuff others might label as freaky. It’s geeky stuff, actually. We’re really goofy and that’s probably what’s bonded us the most. $2 buck Chuck or $2 milli ice, we interact the same in the presence of either. We talk about music. Travel. The past. And then there’s that awkward silence, the shared grin, and it’s on.
I consider them an undercover brother and sister as even most of my closest friends and family don’t know who they are or what we do when we do what we do. As individuals, we each yearned and learned, grabbed pieces of the pie not necessarily cooked for our consumption. As a unit, we just had some fun up in this piece.
Parked in an empty lot in high school, we turned a Coke can into a……..real thing. We recycled, went…..ummm………green before going green was cool. Seeds were planted that day and now that ground is sacred and holy. It is Cascade United Methodist Church.
I only remember cutting school once in my whole life and it was with him and her. He helped hook me up with my little Slick Rick-esque teenaged love at a house party and still refuses to let me live it down. A few years later, she was with me in Athens when I totaled a rental car and UGA’s TKE fraternity chapter happily hauled away to use as bonfire wood the baby peachtree I took out from the roots. We hitched a ride and got home safe and sound, no judgments levied.
I think we all double dated in some sense of the term. Then came college, jobs that morphed into careers and children. Folk moved away, came back and left again, refusing to accept that hard lesson that one can never truly go home but can always come back to where they “stayed at” if familiar “A” faces are missed. Meanwhile, I kept them home-fires burning anyway, awaiting their returns and accepting whatever came with them.
Our class reunion rolled around and with spouses in tow, we had our own after-party at Club Esso (the original). She hooked that one up. Good times. Since then, we’ve suffered a divorce, separations and various other problems in those and subsequent relationships, most recently our own. I kinda got out of pocket not too long ago, lost perspective on the whole arrangement. Actually (as I am prone to do), I went “a little psycho” (to quote her). This is my confession.
There are things I’ve known about both of them intrinsically and readily accepted. I bestowed nicknames to drop hints; used my peripheral visionary skills to track behavior and movements, later rewinding highlights in my mind to offer each some truthful post-game analysis. As every good threesome is fundamentally based on trust, it’s always felt peculiar when they each purged and revealed some hidden, dark secret that I already knew. I laughed. Probably not the proper response, huh? Then I probed deeper, wanting to know why it was so hard to just say it. It’s all just a part of loving and living, yearnin’ and learnin’, right? Not too long ago, I found out.
No one in a threesome can afford to judge. But, invariably, someone gets neglected, misunderstood, or straight up played when there are three in the room. Two of the minds start to meld a little tighter while the third is left to watch and wait. So, now it’s my turn to be exposed. “A” out and pouting in the corner, it’s my turn to come back to the fold, take the lead in the trust department and believe they will take my mea culpa to heart and this column as the love letter it is intended to be. I hope I live up to their examples, that I don’t end up being the one in the triangle to drop the hot potato and make the scene undigable. For if I was ever to do so, in the end, I’d mourn deeply. I’d want my friend(s) back. I’d just want to go back to being those casual yet irreplaceable friends we were before we were a “we.”
He recently coined a term for me: dormnation. As best I can figure, it is the act of being dormant, undercover, and then suddenly blossoming out in the world as the person you’ve always been inside. He’s an avid O.S.A.M. fan, having vivid “Before” and “After” memories of most of the topics. Meanwhile, I am one of hers. She knows the answers to some pretty heady secrets. Always has. Slowly but surely, I’m learning, too.
It’s a strange relationship to say the least. We are intimate, but we’ve never really touched each other skin to skin. We are close, but have never shared a whole lot of personal space or basic information. After reading this, there are those who probably either don’t understand the need for the metaphoric phraseology or who won’t believe we’ve never been physical in our threesome. This here is based on discourse, not intercourse. And three (being the magic number) is just enough to keep it poppin’, even after all of these years.
Dirty minds rarely see pure hearts, but that’s to be expected in this city. It’s easier to visibly focus on the sordid here than to viscerally feel all the love, but it’s what makes ATown unique and one of those traits that all three of us love about it. That dichotomy of looking like the hotness all around you but really just being cool and country (“chill” to use one of his favorite words) is a rare peach. Now ya’ll know why we have so many peachtrees. We use them for everything from keeping bonfires to home-fires burning.
Those of us who grew up here know and feel the truth, can probably all point to a secret alliance that is fundamentally harmless but if exposed or exploited would never be interpreted as such. Feel free to call it what you will, but most of us are just too busy loving and living to hate back. And that’s why I hope this threesome endures, because all it’s all really about is loving and living, yearnin’ and learnin’. Together.
That’s how it is. That’s how it’s gonna be. That’s how it was in the past……Back In The Day In The A.
Keep the Home Fires Burning,
While your hearts are yearning,
Though your lads are far away
They dream of home.
There’s a silver lining
Through the dark clouds shining,
Turn the dark cloud inside out
‘Till the boys come home.
– from “Keep The Home-Fires Burning” by Ivor Novello