Here is an Excerpt from Reconnection!
Every once in a while, the average looking guy scores!
Robert McIntyre is a closeted, average looking sports columnist for the Daily Read. Unfortunately, his desire to stay in has cost him the chance at love more than once. However, now it seems his luck will change since his editor has asked him to interview, Jake Valenta. Jake and Robert knew one another in college and when he heard from a mutual friend that Jake might be bisexual, Robert didn’t believe him.
Before Robert’s trip, they discover a mutual affection for one another. Jake shares his desire to stay behind closed doors because he can’t stand being called a fag, but desperately wants Robert to be his man.
Robert and Jake want a chance to reconnect on a more personal level, but will this budding relationship ruin their careers?
* * * *
Today was a sad day for baseball fans. Instead of gearing up for an exciting season, fans like me would be subjected to yet another lockout by major league baseball’s greedy owners. As I listened to WSPT on my radio at work, I’d heard many opinions from experts, players and other Joes’ arguing about the state of the game.
“Players make too much money anyway! The owners ruined the game I love.”
As they say, opinions are like assholes, everyone has one and really I couldn’t care less about anyone’s point of view on baseball. And why should I? I had the greatest job in the world covering sports for the Daily Read; this town’s best newspaper even in an era where people rarely read newspapers.
I got paid to write my own opinions, but in all honesty, I didn’t have the energy to express my own on this work stoppage. Like many, I was tired of hearing excuses from both sides; millionaires complaining about losing their livelihood when all of them would make more money than most of us would see in three lifetimes. And as a fan, we’ve seen them do it before, owners saying they’re broke and players saying something about having money to feed their kids. Who the heck considers seventeen million a year not enough to feed their rugrats?
Only in America my friends, only in America.
Furthermore, what different spin could I put on this sorry ass story?
Everyone had heard it all before so I wouldn’t waste good words or breath harping on it.
Disgruntled, I flipped the radio off and leaned back in my chair. My editorial column was due in three hours and I had no idea what to write.
An exclusive about the team’s owner? An expose on one of the small fries in the organization? No one would want to read it. People looked to my column to have a good angle on baseball and today I had nothing of importance to offer.
“Robert, hey Rob, Larry wants to see you.” Jacob’s voice brought me out of my disillusioned haze.
I spun around in my swivel chair to get a good look at him. Six feet, slim, with blue eyes and brown spikey hair, he was definitely my type, but he liked women. Even more disappointing, he was married with a baby on the way. I swear if he were gay, I’d hit that so fast it would make both our heads spin.
“Thanks Jacob, and how’s the wife by the way?” Despite the fact he wasn’t attracted to me, the balding and closeted sports reporter, I asked just to make conversation.
“She’s good but I wish she’d have the baby. Her mood swings and late night cravings are killing me. I had to run to Baskin Robbins at four a.m. to get her some pralines and cream,” he laughed.
“Yeah I get it. You haven’t been sleeping much I take it?”
“Nope. Anyways, I gotta get back to my desk. The Spears are having a press conference at three and I gotta be there on time.”
Hearing that, I sighed inwardly. I hated basketball but it was the only sports show in town right now. “Well at least one sport is actually some action here, right?” I rose from my chair and nodded in agreement. “Have a good one kid, and make sure to ask Billy Sneed about that last shot choice before the second quarter.”
“Will do and thanks Robert.” Jacob whizzed by me but not fast enough for me to ogle his cute butt moving in those tight black jeans.
Jacob’s rear looked delicious in those hip huggers. I wish I had the chance to rim him until he couldn’t take anymore. Having no boyfriend was really turning me into a horn dog as of late, but what could I do when my last man didn’t want to stay in the closet?
Dave broke up with me over the phone about a month ago, citing his desire to spread his wings. In the beginning, Dave seemed to understand why I couldn’t be openly gay and cover sports for a mainstream publication. I explained how I didn’t want to deal with homophobic owners, managers, and or players talking about a gay man in the locker room.
The taunts and the insults they casually threw at one another used to make me run and hide, but after being in the business about three years I’d grown thicker skin.
As I rounded the corner to Larry’s office, I whistled the tune that always made me forget my problems. I may not have Dave in my bed anymore, but I still had my career and a roof over my head. Truthfully, that’s what mattered most. See I’m a simple person and I’m grateful for everything I got. And I’m not throwing it all away to be out the closet. I just can’t, and I won’t. Not in this lifetime.
When I arrived, I took a deep breath, preparing myself for what Larry wanted to tell me. I gripped the doorknob so tight, my knuckles went white. Larry could be an ass sometimes but I enjoyed working at the Daily Read. Though a hard nose, he was a great editor to work for and I wouldn’t trade my job for anyone else’s.
“Hey Larry, Jacob said you wanted to see me?”
Larry looked up from his laptop. “Yeah Robert, come on in.”
I closed the door and waltzed in, worried about what he’d say. Would he hound me about the deadline or force me to write about the lockout? I hoped neither because I seriously wasn’t in the mood to argue.
“So, Robert. I know you have a deadline in a couple of hours but I’m willing to let that go if you’d make a trip to the minors. Since the overpriced sissies don’t wanna play, we’ll make our own story. Besides, Jake Valenta might come up and play for the Sox this year if they reach an agreement and we want to be the first to cover him.”
I ignored Larry’s comment and focused on the topic at hand.
Instantly my mind went to mush upon hearing that name. Jake and I attended Oklahoma State with two years between us. Though we never dated, we did hang around the same circles, mostly involving sports. Baseball was his passion and mine, though I wasn’t as talented as he was on the field. Since my expertise was behind the pen and or microphone, I called a couple of games he played in and before I graduated, I interviewed him for the school paper. That same article was later published in the town’s local newspaper.
Now, Jake plays for the Sox triple A affiliate, Carolina Dukes of the southern league. Though we haven’t talked in years, I’ve followed the guy’s career and took a greater interest when he was selected with the fifteenth pick in June 2011. The experts raved about his speed, accurate throwing arm, and hitting ability as well as his baseball acumen and stamina. Unfortunately his transition wasn’t as easy as many predicted but now, he was tearing up minor league pitching and set to make the move to the pros.
“I’m sorry, Larry. I…I was just thinking about something.”