I grew up in Central NY. Very rural. Think pig farms, corn fields, and cow barns. Pre internet days; so if it wasn’t in the library and your friends didn’t know about it, then it didn’t exist. A fairly conservative upbringing. All within reason of course. My parents were either fairly open-minded, or at least they were willing to let me do things even if they thought those things were stupid.
But my life since then gets progressively weirder. College is obliged to be weird. But while I never even considered it at the time, you might have expected a move to DC to involve fairly conservative lifestyle. But, well, yeah, no.
Between DC, and various offshoots of my life here, I find myself exposed to, and living in, a life that is full of variety, flavor, and thank gawd, the occasional vice. My friends are a wonderfully eclectic group. As a whole, they do everything, they love everything, they try everything. And if they don’t, someone they’re about to introduce me to probably does. In the language of my rural upbringing, I’m surrounded by freaks. And I love them all. But I have a special place in my heart for the truly non-linear. The people who’ve moved whole-heartedly away from the existing social conventions. Sex, drugs, love, art, body, and home. They don’t experiment with alternative ideas; they are living them. And the extreme end of those people; the ‘strangest’ ones; the one’s who never would have existed in the small world I grew up in… those are the most amazingly sweet, caring , wonderful people. They’re the most mature, about these strange lifestyles. And they’ve never failed to smile when they see me, talk to me when needed, and watch out for me at all times. My friends are all awesome, but the freaks are truly the best.