Could you fall in love with this face?

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My fellow Americans… In my American Dream, anyone can achieve their ultimate golden dream come true.

No matter who you are, where you came from, the color of your skin, your religion, your background, no matter any of the things that enslaved the dreams of peoples of the past … no matter any of that, as an American, you can achieve your dream. Right?

My American Dream is a simple one. True love. As defined by every American that’s ever dreamed of having a romantic partner, a husband, a wife, a spousal equivalent, a civil unionist, let’s not get bogged down by the terms. A boo.

“I want what the Obamas got.”

What good is any American Dream without an American dreamer to live the dream with you, mind, body and soul? Would the first black president’s story be as compelling without a first black president’s soul mate? Heavens, no.

I want what the Obamas got. No, not the presidency. The bond. The partner in peril and triumph. The boo. But I’ve never had a boo, just meat. All the flesh you can eat but rarely breakfast.

So far, I’ve been single for life, a co-creation of nightmarish dreams by myself and the world. But I no longer believe in nightmares. I believe that dreams come true. Black men can be president of the USA. Surely, a black man can find true love, at least for a little while, right? Don’t I deserve a taste of Happily Ever After with an Asterisk like every American?

Thing is, the first half of my life, I was a closeted basket case who pretty much felt like an unlovable nigger faggot. The world was pretty good at confirming my suspicions, too. Yep, y’all played along real good, give yourselves a hand!

“I’m available to both HIV-positive and HIV-negative people, right?”

The second half of my life, however, has been quite different. It started out kinda rocky. There was the AIDS baby I got preggers with in 1985, a month after graduating UCLA (where I was a cheerleader). That was a pretty big hit. But here I am, miracle of miracles, alive in the two oh, oh, ohs! And I’m happy to be living with AIDS! I even write novels where the main characters are black and HIV poz like me; and my boys have been nominated for five Lambda Literary Awards!

But, world, there’s just this one thing … I still ain’t found no true love, and I don’t know if I still believe my American Dream can come true. Can I be loved for all that I am? Can I be loved no matter the color of my skin or what lies underneath?

The world has come a long way since the AIDS Panic of the last century. People with AIDS have babies now, oftentimes with people without AIDS. Science has gotten a good handle on what is and what isn’t safe sex. HIV-negative folk can get all the safe nut they want with HIV-positive folks.

So I’m back on the American Meet Market, right? I’m available to both HIV-positive and HIV-negative people, right? Whether or not I find true love is all about who I am, how I took, how I take care of myself, my ambitions, my goals, my values, my beliefs, my ability to be a great lover, the content of my character, stuff like that, right? We all have an equal opportunity to be loved in America, right?

Is my American Dream possible? Am I living in the same America as my fellow Americans? Is there anybody in America who could fall in love with this face and make my American Dream come true?

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