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3 Degrees of Lesbian Separation
by Margie Palmer
TheSyndicatedNews columnist

Margie Palmer has written for a number of magazines including the San Diego Magazine, In Los Angeles, and PULP Magazine.

3 Degrees of Lesbian Separation
Margie M. Palmer

Sooner or later we all have to face the fact that the gay community is pretty damn small, and in terms of the dating pool it's all but impossible to meet someone whom you're not connected to via three degrees of separation. Chances are always better then not your new love interest can be romantically (or sexually) linked to at least one person you know. Even with our most diligent efforts to try to keep ourselves removed from that situation, it can be a lot easier said then done.

A little over a year ago I met a girl at a San Diego nightclub. After a night of flirting and bantering back and forth, we exchanged numbers. Several days later we decided to go out for drinks. Monica had moved here the previous year from New York to be with her girlfriend but they'd recently broken up- and was thus just starting to hang out in “the scene”. “Perfect”, I thought to myself. She doesn't know anyone I know, hasn't dated anyone I know... this works. But then- she told me the name of her ex. “Oh no”. As it turned out, several years prior, I dated Catherine- who had also been from New York (and had since moved back). When I met Catherine she had just broken up with the girl she'd moved to California to be with. Monica's now ex-girlfriend, as it turns out, was also Catherine's ex. A few minutes later I come to find out that Monica and Catherine had once worked together in NYC at a bar called Henrietta Hudson's, and once upon a time, way back in the day, had a brief romantic entanglement of their own.

I then started joking about “outsourcing” to Orange County so as to meet someone removed from the circle. That didn't work either. The girl I met was not only the ex of the first girl I dated when I moved to California- but she'd also dated someone else I knew shortly after the two broke up. Par for the course, right? At least I still had one foot in the heterosexual dating pool. And there was no way that any guy I'd meet would be linked to my three degrees of lesbian separation. Or at least that's what I thought.

Last November I received a random myspace cold call from a very attractive guy who had recently moved to SoCal from somewhere in Washington. Although I'm hardly one to pursue anything with someone who approaches me on line, I was impressed with his writing, and thus chose to continue the correspondence. Justin was several years older then me, extremely intelligent, and painfully hot. He was a navy boy- and had relocated to San Diego several months ago after his wife of ten years informed him she was leaving him- for a woman.

On our second date the subject came up once again, except this time I got a few additional details that I wasn't necessarily prepared for. He shared that his wife had been living in Spokane, and that woman she left him for was a girl named Kate. “Hmm...” I thought to myself. “I know a girl in Spokane named Kate”. I reached for my soda. Justin then told me Kate had once lived in San Diego. I choked, mid sip, and practically sprayed a mouthful of diet coke all over the table. “You've got to be kidding me”, I said. Oh no. There was no kidding. As luck would have it- his wife left him for the only lesbian I know who lives in the state of Washington. And this girl and I had been very very close friends when she lived in town. My world got really small really fast. I had to send Kate an email: “You are never in a million years going to believe who I'm dating. And now that I think about it- does this mean we've slept together indirectly? Because that would just be weird”. Her reaction was similar to mine- and it was decided that there just aren't enough lesbians in the world.

Several months ago I wound up meeting a girl at a coffee shop and we got to talking. She was totally cute, totally sweet, and five minutes into the conversation I learned that she totally had a one night stand with one of my friends three years ago. When I left to walk to my car I looked up into the sky and began to laugh. “I officially give up”.

Friends have also shared similar stories, which leads me to wonder, will it ever be possible to meet someone who is completely and totally removed from our immediate orbit? Or do we just need to resign ourselves to the fact that this is a Utopian idea? A big part of the reason we make such an attempt to avoid dating within “the circle” is so as to try to keep the drama to a minimum, yet I couldn't help but wonder- is there really such a thing as “out of the circle”?

As far as I'm concerned- it's all a myth. Everyone is connected. It's all “in the circle”. And the reason these “out of the circle” girls are so hard to find because they're busy playing poker with the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny... at Santa's workshop.

Published: Aug 28,2008 13:58
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