This evening, at work, I ran into a childhood neighbor. I hadn’t seen her since like 1982 (back during the time when Toto’s “Africa” ruled the radio airwaves). She was always (and still appeared to be) very religious. Hell, there ain’t nothing wrong with being a holy-roller. Except that back when I last encountered her, I was a closeted gay guy. Her beliefs didn’t mesh well with the person I was born to be. So, I kept that part of my life a secret (to her). Well, tonight she says to me, “I heard a rumor that you were gay! That isn’t true, is it?!” And (just like that) all this ‘old shame’ came to the surface. I found myself lying to her, telling her that it was just a rumor. Well, for the rest of the night, I was so pissed at myself. It’s been a good 20 years since I felt a need to lie about my orientation. Why did this woman matter so much? I mean, I don’t give a rat’s ass what she thinks of me. And yet, I went on the down low just for her. Oh, well! It ain’t that big of a deal. I guess?! I mean, she’s pushing 80-years-old. So, I should let her think/feel what she wants. Right?