A couple days ago, I wrote a post about how Chuck and I first met and befriended each other. Chuck felt my version wasn’t very accurate and has sent me a rebuttal, which I’ve posted below:
Dear Noodles and Beef,
Hi, this is your best friend, Chuck - long-time reader, first-time writer. I couldn’t help but notice that you posted a response to a recent question asking how we met. Naturally, I’m always honored to be included in some way on your blog. However, I feel like you may have inadvertently missed a few key details about our meeting and subsequent torrid friendship that I’d like to clear up.
(Cue swirling mist and digital time-travel music)
Now for what really happened….
I first met Dylan at the 440 bar in late 2007 or early 2008. He was gogo dancing that night for the first time (though, at 20, he technically wasn’t old enough to be in the bar). I could tell Dylan wasn’t a typical gogo dancer - he wasn’t being cheesy and working the crowd for tips, but just seemed to have a good time dancing. During one of his breaks, we started chatting and hit it off - enough for him to eventually scribble down his number and give it to me.
Now even though I was in an open relationship, I’ve made a personal rule about not calling guys who give me their numbers in bars. Given the context of the situation, Dylan’s age, and him being way out of my league, it never occurred to me that he’d actually want to just hang out as friends. That’s an error that I’ve regretted ever since.
Luckily, we NEXT met at our mutual friend’s party a few months later. I was overjoyed to reconnect with him, though my own insecurity still told me that there was no way a guy like Dylan would want to hang out with a dorky fat guy like me. (At the time, I drank like a fish and had the belly of a Beluga whale.) I don’t remember the alleged “beefy Asian guys” who were surrounding me, but I do remember Dylan.
We would continue to see each other through mutual friends here and there over the next couple of years. He was close friends with another mutual friend of ours, so I’d see them hanging out together or sometimes with one of his boyfriends. He always seemed to be living an awesome life, and I didn’t want to intrude on it, though I loved seeing him whenever I could. For example, I first encouraged Dylan to join our current gym, even though he thought he’d never be able to get any working out done because he’d be too “distracted” by the men around him.
Going to Provincetown for Bear Week had become a frequent destination for me, and one year I found out that Dylan would be going, too. We talked about it in advance, and he told me that he was going to be staying at a hostel. So I made sure that I gave him my number and invited him over to the house I was sharing with friends. I had asked some housemates if it would be okay if Dylan stayed on our couch instead of the hostel, but they weren’t comfortable with the idea. It wasn’t until one of the roommates left abruptly that I was able to offer an open room to Dylan. We hung out a lot that week and became better friends. At the end of the trip, I asked Dylan if we could hang out more in SF.
We stayed in contact during the next year, though we still didn’t hang out. Dylan had started dating an ex who didn’t really want Dylan having outside friends, and I decided to respect that. But that didn’t stop us from making plans for Provincetown the following year, where we shared a room and hung out pretty much the entire week. We became really good friends during this period, though we still didn’t get to hang out that much post-Ptown due to his ex.
When they broke up a few months before Dylan’s birthday trip to Cancun, Dylan invited me to join him. I had recently been laid off work and jumped at the chance to have a big friend-bonding experience in Mexico. One amazing time later and we’ve been best friends ever since.