3 min

The little animal

The day the prostate kicked

Credit: Xtra West files

Dear Diary;Where exactly is the prostate and how can I get there?

Didn’t really care before. But, now, there is a reason. Its name is Jamie.

Tonight, went to my first Pride UBC beer garden. Begged Ryan to come with, but says he doesn’t go out ’till after 10. Said it would be good for me to go be gay on my own for once. Hate Ryan.

Am v. proud of self, though. Am taking big steps into queer community, etc. Clearly, am progressive and growing. Tried to look cool and disaffected at beer garden, so as not to arouse suspicion of newbie status.

V. cheap beer, and massive flock of gorgeous student-types. Even a bearded lady. Didn’t know anyone, so kept on going outside and pretending to be smoker.

Looked round the room, nodded to self in approval. Felt like had learned some secret knock.

And then, like an alarm clock, there he was. Apron-Wearing Boy from UBC Quick-Shop. Was leaning against a wall, talking to a pair of girls dressed up like GI Joe’s. Went all gaggy, looking side to side, desperate to also be talking with someone. But was alone in the crowd.

Apron-Wearing Boy was not wearing his apron. Was wearing cords and a navy dress shirt, hair all tussled and Scottish highland looking.

“Hey, I know you,” he smiled. “You always buy organic apples at the Quick-Shop.” He pointed his cup of beer at me as he spoke. Should have replied but I just stared at the little crinkle in his grin.

One of the GI Joe girls leaned toward his ear and giggled something. He smiled at her and stuck out his hand. “My name’s Jamie Arnstein,” he laughed.

Jamie Arnstein, Jamie Arnstein, what a beautiful, beautiful name.

We talked about school and life on campus. The GI Joe girls drifted away and started making out in a corner. Jamie made astute comments on election politics and told apple-pie jokes.

After the beer garden ended, Jamie said he was going to smoke up at the Rose Garden. “Do you smoke?” he asked. But I heard, “Do you want me to put my penis in your mouth?”

I said yes.

At the Rose Garden, after the blare of the party, everything was hushed and midnight green.

Jamie crouched down behind me, his legs either side of my hips. His cords on my jeans. He put a flat hand on my stomach, just beneath my belly-button. That’s when I felt it. I think it was the prostate. I think, maybe, it moved.

I have a small animal inside me. This is my new and pumping organ. Should I name it? Do people name them?

Anyway. The Rose Garden. Jamie with his arms around me. Holding the joint to my lips, and then to his own. Was crazy lovely. Dangling legs over stone wall much in style of a Stephen Walker greeting card from Little Sister’s.

Have to write it down. Have to try and remember it all.

We were talking about the currency of love. I said I had never gained anything by it.

Sky was turning all November red. Jamie pressed his shoulder against mine.

He said, “I don’t think love is something you get.”

The red in the sky was getting darker around the corners. His face turned into shadow. And I guess knowing my eyes were in shadow too made me brave enough to talk. “If it’s not something you get, then what is it?”

There was a bit of quiet before he put his hand on my knee. Guess I froze because he gave a little laugh. “You’re pretty clueless, eh? Well I’ll tell you the big thing I figured out: You’ll never get anything from love. You lose, and you lose, and you lose.”

I burped. “Sounds like a blast.”

Jamie must have leaned in then, but I didn’t notice. Was looking at the moon.

“It is,” he said. “You should try it some time.”

And then he kissed me.

I grabbed his hand at my belly. Pushed his fingers into the knit of the sweater. There was a rush of heat between the two of us and then, and then. . .

There is was again. The little animal. It was kicking. It was a second, thumping, heart.