At first glance, you’d think he was a monster.  At six foot four, dark hair, coffee colored skin and a permanent five o’clock shadow, all the stereotypes flood your mind when you see him, overwhelm your synapses, and you would give him a wide berth.  But you need to take a closer look.  Look past his height, his weight, his face.  Look into his eyes, and you will see what I see.  Inside that embodiment of all those stereotypes likes my best friend.  The kindest, most gentle, most caring soul any of us would ever meet.

His name is…well, if you know the real me, he needs no introduction.  Born and raised right here in Mississauga, Ontario Canada.  Twenty eight years old, and a few months older than me, a fact I don’t often let him forget, he’s the son of a full blooded Italian father and Armenian mother.  He’s traveled to both sides of this country, to the States, Cuba, and even as far as Australia for family and friends.  He’s a gamer, a geek, a writer, a reader, and a manga freak.  I met him seven years ago.

What first drew me to him was his personality.  He has one of those intelligent, funny, vibrant personalities that generally draw people for one reason or another, despite his shyness at times.  For me, it was his sense of humor that attracted me to him.

We met in university, my first year, his last.  The first time I saw him he was more on the periphery of my vision rather than front and center, listening in on a conversation I was having about condoms with teeth.  Long story, I’ll get back to it later.  So the first time we met, we didn’t really talk.

The second time however was more memorable, that’s what cemented our friendship, and is the story I prefer to tell of the first time we met.  I was coming off a very hard, emotional time of my life, and while I was getting better, I was still very bitter and very much into shocking the hell out of people, and I had found a particular phrase to help me do just that.

You know how people tell you to bite them, screw off and such like that?  Even your friends when you’re horsing around?  Well my particular phrase of the day was ‘suck my dick’, and it worked quite well to shock people.  See, normally when I say that, people look a little cross eyed at me.  They’re confused that I would say that, amused, and just a little bit curious as to if I did have one.  And fyi: I do.  His name is Pinky and he runs on batteries.

But he didn’t react the way people normally did when I first said this to him, the second time we met.  Instead, he says to me “Well the clitoris is the female equivalent, so drop your pants let’s do this.”

Well, wasn’t I the one cross eyed.  I was surprised, amused, and very impressed.  Things went uphill from there for us, and soon enough we were spending a lot of time together and became fast, close friends.

But if it wasn’t for his compassionate nature, and his way of accepting people as they are, we would never have become as close as we are.

One night, while we were working late on campus, we talked.  And some how I told him things I had never told anyone else before, things I was too afraid or ashamed to speak of to anyone.  But I told him.  And he didn’t judge me.  He didn’t condemn me, or look at me differently, he just accepted me for everything that I was, something I learned as time passed that he does for everyone.

It’s been seven years since I met my friend.  Seven years since I made a best friend.  Four years ago we took that next step that seemed so natural, and he became my lover too.  But I know no matter what, even if things crash and burn between us in terms of a relationship, I know that he will still be there for me.  Yes, he is my boyfriend now, but he was my friend first, and my best friend forever more.