I have had several life changing people in my life that I will never forget.
One was an employer I had during my four years at college. I had no official job title, but
today I would be called a personal assistant. I took him to doctor, lawyer, accountant visits. I scheduled his caregivers, housekeepers and cook. I did the banking as well as the quarterly withholding for his employees. I wrote checks, he signed them, including my own.
He was an highly opinionated and racist man. Every other word out of his mouth was a swear word. It probably took me a year before I got the nerve to speak back to him.
He also had a good side. He was interested in my life and met all my friends, including my bf, although he didn't know about the bf part at the time. When he first met Tomas he asked "Where are you from, boy?". Tomas had an accent at the time. He took a real liking to Tomas.
My boss would always ask me about my girlfriends. On Fridays, I would write my own paycheck and he would sign it. Then he would reach into his wallet and give me cash with the advice to take out some cute girl. This went on every week for 3 years.
In my third year with him, I notice his health begin to fail. He was over 90, so I thought it time to tell him I was gay, since he showed so much interest in my personal life.
One Friday after he signed my check, I slowly brought up the subject. When he asked me if I had a date, I told him I did, but not with a girl. I blurted out that I was gay. His response was "Oh, hell!" He sounded like John Wayne. I asked him if he hated me now.
He then told me that he had a male secretary for 30 years in NYC. He added "he was a fairy, too". Ha!
This man, my boss, the bigot had a gay male secretary and he was OK with it!! He said everyone knew that the man was gay and I asked him why he didn't have a problem with it. He simply said he was the best secretary he ever had.
He went on to tell me how he found about the man's sexuality. He said he had bailed his secretary out of jail numerous times. At that time, police raided bars where gays frequented. They were arrested just for being gay. His secretary actually died from injuries from a beating at the hands of homophobes. I still have his secretary's attache case with his initials on it. I keep it so I never forget who has gone before me.
My boss told his friends and family that I was gay and that they should not use the word "fairy" because it "offended Dan". He also told them that is anyone mistreated me, they would be disinherited. He was my protector, I guess.
So, do you have an unforgettable character?