Upon moving into our Toronto apartment two weeks ago, we were surprised to discover that the previous tenants had not moved out, but in fact stayed around. This was in spite of attempts on the part of the building management to use deadly force to evict them. And now it seems that, despite four different kinds of product we've placed around the house, we may be having these unwanted roommates living with us for the remainder of our lease here on the corner of Crack Avenue and Whore Street.
Yes folks, we have roaches.
Now mind you, I haven't seen any of them or evidence of them (ie dead bodies) this week but I'm ever mindful that if you've seen one than there are thirty just lurking around that you don't see. So I'm going a little crazy. I'm opening drawers and cabinets suddenly and forcefully. My peripheral vision is accutely aware of any quick, tiny movements. I'm hunting in the corners of the apartment, putting poisons down everywhere, thankful we have no children or pets.
I have always found cockroaches to be the most vile, disgusting, repulsive and revolting creatures on the face of this planet. I don't see what purpose they serve in the circle of life and wonder why God made them at all. I'm not certain, but I think they carry diseases, or at least some of them do. Or maybe they've been known to. Somewhere. I don't care. At any rate, I don't like them and certainly don't want to live with them in the same space!
A couple of days ago I was on the towleroad website watching a YouTube clip of Reverend Fred Phelps. It occurred to me that he was using the same adjectives to describe me and people like me as I have used to describe cockroaches! And thinking about that, I sort of can finally see Reverend Phelp's point of view about gay people. He doesn't see what purpose gay people serve in the circle of life and doesn't believe God made us this way. He's pretty certain that we carry diseases, or at least some of us do. But he doesn't care because he'll just generalize about us all. At any rate, he doesn't like us and certainly doesn't want to live with us in the same country!
Like roaches, gay people have been around forever, perhaps since the dawn of time. And, despite people's efforts to frighten, discourage, imprison or even kill them, gay people will continue to exist, even if it is in the shadows or edges of society. As we've discovered, learning is what that brings about understanding. And with understanding comes tolerance. And with tolerance comes acceptance.
Now I'm not saying there will be any Roach Pride Marches in this apartment any time soon! Far from it! But perhaps I can learn something about their tenacity to survive and begrugingly admire them for it. After all, they are God's creatures just like me!