The worst thing you'll ever hear me say about anybody is "I find him insufferable." Love that word "insufferable." As in, "I can suffer through quite a bit--in silence, with grace--but he is just way over the limit."
It used to be the case that whenever an Insufferable would crop up in my life, he would do me the favor of getting out of my life and moving to San Francisco. It was always San Francisco. I swear! Again and again and again! No sooner would the words, "Oh man, he is just insufferable," cross my lips than I would hear the news that he'd shipped off to the City By The Bay.
Hence, I spent a lot of my adult life sort of fearful of San Francisco. I imagined those fabled streets teeming with all of the people I found insufferable.
And then, I was collared by a man who lived in San Francisco, and before the two of us exhausted our frequent flyer miles, I spent some time there.
I can't say I fell in love with the city. Every time I've been in San Francisco, I've been cold. And I don't do cold very well.
But still, hanging out and watching men outside the Starbucks in the Castro is sure a pleasant time to spend an afternoon.
And regardless of how much time I spent there, not one Insufferable crossed my path. And what's more, I had several pleasant encounters.
And then it happened.
Last year, about this time, I was in San Francisco for a conference for work. The conference was actually across the Bay in Oakland, but I stayed with Special Guy and the man he replaced me with. (Ahem.) Whom I liked a lot. Disconcertingly.
And one night, coming back from the conference, I got off the trolley at the wrong stop and had to walk several blocks to get back to where I wanted to be. It was a beautiful, cool November night. I came over one of those hills, and there was the whole city spread out before me, shining like jewels.
And I got it.
I totally got it.
Did you know that once a month in San Francisco some members of the leather community gather on the beach for a bonfire?
How cool is that?
I get it I get it I get it. San Francisco rocks.
What about Insufferables? Where will they go?
I'm wondering if I haven't solved that mystery.
There's this... uh... other city. And there's this guy. Who is just totally insufferable. But no sooner had I started to think thoughts like, "Uh oh. What if I run into him at MAL?" then I get the news. He just moved to That Other City Not San Francisco.
And I've spent time in That Other City. And I know people there. I had some great raw oysters there. But if I never had to go there again, I wouldn't mind too much.
Could it be?
Could my life really be that charmed?
Will future insufferables now be doing me the favor of getting out of my life and moving off to That Other City Not San Francisco?
That could work well.