“Mira este pájaro. ¿Cómo se dice en inglés?”

I looked up from shelling juandules at my neighbor’s house. An openly gay and extremely effeminate character from the soap opera we were watching was on screen. I was a little bit wary.

“Um, dicen homosexual o gay.

“Es un maricon.” Note: This essentially means fagot. And that’s why I was wary. I knew it was going there.

“Yo no uso esa palabra porque tengo amigos y amigas que son gay.”

“Ohhh.” It was uncomfortable. (Or was it? Did I just expect it to be?)

Then I asked, “Where is this set? Mexico?”

The night went on.

Change takes time.