My Friend Gilbert

February 21, 2009
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I am a grown man that plays with dolls. I am an avid collector of them. Whatever the case, porcelain, Raggedy Ann, I collected them all. Some may call me abnormal, but aren?t we all abnormal in our own way. And who are you to judge me anyway? This is only one of my many ?quirks?. There are many more. So many, in fact I fear that when you are reading this your opinion of me will start to drift away from lovable eccentric to slightly psychotic loner. Like many other eccentrics, people wish to know how we became the way we are now.
Confidence has never been my strength. I have lived the majority of my life either dreadfully unconfident or in a nonchalant state of mind where I am at peace with the world, mostly the former though. This has caused deprivation for me that a normal, ?happy? person would never come across. Hence, my doll collection. You, as the reader, may be wondering, why I do harbor this strange hobby? Well, it is not strange for me. In fact it is quite normal. Dolls for me are my friends. They are not inanimate playthings built in stuffy factories by stuffy unclean employees in third world countries. They are who I look for when I need comfort; who I turn to in my time of need. I am especially fond of one my dolls. It is a male doll by the name of Gilbert Blythe.

For those of you especially simple-minded people, Gilbert Blythe is actually the name of Anne?s on and off gentlemen caller in the marvelous book series by L.M. Montgomery entitled Anne of Green Gables, which is one of my personal favorites. One of my good friends, Blaine happened to gift me this doll. He came across it in a gift shop in the town of Cavendish, in Prince Edward Island. I can?t say that Blaine shares my odd characteristics, but he is certainly very understanding and open about my oddities and for that I am grateful. And, he sure knows how to gift someone a lovely doll! The doll itself isn?t a work of art but I consider it very precious. It is small three inch thing miniature replica of a nineteenth century boy wearing a brown corduroy hat that matches his trousers, a brown and white striped shirt with a plaid vest of the same colors. It is certainly a very handsome little boy. In a way, it resembles Blaine. They both have light brown hair, large dark eyes and I?m sure if the doll could smile it would have a very fetching smile, not unlike Blaine?s. Blaine was also the one who encouraged me to write down how I feel. So, this is why I have decided to write down short entries about how I am currently feeling. Blaine reckoned that it would help me find out more about myself.

Looking back at what I have written, I have realized that I sound fairly immature for my thirty four years. Not to worry, mentally I am mature. But in my heart, I am still younger. High school was utter hell for me, so I suppose now that life is falling into place, my teenage life is just starting for me. In high school I was completely without friends, but now I have Blaine and he has filled all the empty spaces that loneliness has left me with. I also have Gil to help me through those tough times. In a way, I would say that Gil is like another version of myself. If I am feeling blue, I dress Gil in dark clothes, whereas if I?m feeling perky he dressed as he opposite. In this way, he reflects my emotions and he grows with me. I remember mentioning this to Blaine and him just laughing at me. When I asked him what the joke was, he said that that?s the way lovers were supposed to behave with one another. I remember frowning at him, not only because I did not want to be thought of as a freak who thought of having sexual encounters with his dolls but simply because I didn?t approve of such things. Love and relationships were simply just another ploy for attention. If I were to classify my sexual orientation, I would consider myself an asexual. I would not be caught alive being in love with someone. It simply represents everything that I am against: conformity and pointless waste of emotion. Sometimes when Blaine and I would go for strolls in the park, I couldn?t help laughing out loud at the idiotic couples who French kiss on park benches. It just seemed so incredibly inane. Blaine didn?t think that however. I think it was because he had had several girlfriends in the past. I wondered why he had. What is the point of a girlfriend? You are forced to love her, to obey her every command, and show disgusting public displays of affection every minute. It all just seems incredibly stupid. I didn?t mind Blaine?s past though. As long as it didn?t affect his present or future. Sadly, it did. A few days ago I saw him enjoying a cappuccino in a local restaurant with a rather buxom brunette. This was trouble. Blaine was a man?s man and normally never enjoyed cappuccinos in public for fear it would disrupt his manly exterior. Yet, here he was, sipping the devil?s drink with a woman who looked like a mix of a cheaper brand of street walker and a particularly stoned Amy Winehouse.

Following the tramp?s departure from the restaurant, I accosted Blaine and started to pester him with questions of all sorts on who she was. His dark eyes narrowed and the familiar dimple appeared in his right cheek, a sign that he was deeply annoyed. He explained to me that it was none of my business and that he had a meeting to attend. After his departure, I was properly pissed off.
I decided to quench my anger with a fine sized tub of Ben & Jerry?s that I had lying at home. My daily commute home consisted of a fairly long bus ride and a fairly long walk home through the accursed park I mentioned earlier. Sure enough, a few minutes into my walk, I glimpsed what seemed to be a raunchy looking Asian girl lip-locking with a mature looking black boy. I use the word ?seemed? because they were so closely intertwined on the park bench that it was difficult to tell. When I reached my house, I began completing a variety of activities to keep my mind of Blaine. I was furious at him for not telling me. I hated him, and I would probably never talk to him again; or so I thought.
However, after finding the real reason for his meeting my heart cracked. Blaine was transferring to Germany for a year. I received the email from him as soon as I got home. It shook me. I trembled violently, and tears filled up in my eyes. I had never felt so helpless. Could I survive a year without him? Without my best friend, my mentor, my everything? It was the truth of the answer that hurt the most. I couldn?t. I couldn?t bear to live without him. All the while, I was against these emotions, but it was all there. I loved Blaine. I had always loved Blaine. And I always hid it from myself. And now I had to hide it from another person. Blaine could never know. Blaine will never know of my hypocritical ways. I want to tell him but I know I can?t. It would mean giving myself up to someone completely, something I can never do. I never really realized it but I am too much of a childish person. Aspects of my childhood were preserved in me. And, I wonder if they will be damaging to my growth; damaging to my ability to love.

I was a grown man that plays with dolls. But, I will never be the same man again. I am hung with emotion; hung with love. And of course, that means Gilbert is hung too.





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