On Saturday, I was a vampire at High Mass. Life-long Yankee fan that I am, I entered the hallowed ground of Fenway, home of the Red Sox. To my surprise, I did not burst into flames. I sat through a two-hour rain delay—when it wasn’t raining—and then through the game—when it was raining. I sat through it all on what may be the tiniest, most uncomfortable seats invented. There’s more leg room in coach with the seat in front of you pushed all the way back. I even—gulp—cheered for the Red Sox. (They weren’t playing the Yankees.)
I did it for love.
Many years ago I fell in love with a Red Sox fan. We’ve managed to keep the peace for over a score of baseball seasons, and on Saturday I presented the love of my life with the birthday gift of a trip to Fenway.
Actions speak louder than words. And that’s doubly true for the characters in our books. As men, they are creatures of action, much more so than words. What proves love more than doing something they never would have done at the beginning of their story?
The beau geste is often defined as a gesture noble in form but lacking in substance. I prefer the more literal translation of gracious gesture, what to me epitomizes a lover’s capitulation to the vulnerability of raw emotion. Or as one of my characters would put it, proof that he knows “I am so fucked.”
From taking a bullet meant for his lover to buying a mansion, from turning his back on his family to quitting his job, the beaux gestes of romance bring a lump to my throat. What’s your favorite?
I have a little poll going over at my live journal to name the dog Joey and Aaron got at the end of Collision Course. You don't have to be a member to vote or to weigh in.