How I Met My Tom Daley: A Yank’s Tale

The Media

Daley and Black Smooching, June 2014
Daley and Black Smooching, June 2014

On 22 March 2015, Tom Daley and Dustin Lance Black celebrated their 2 year anniversary of meeting.

Dustin Lance Black was born in Sacramento, California. Being quite aware of his sexuality in an early age, he had a rough time coming to terms about it with his upbringing. During his senior year of college, he officially ‘came out’ and have been piercing through Hollywood since. Beginning his career with The Journey of Jared Price in 2000, he came to be involved with many homosexual-themed (as well as Mormon-themed) projects. Despite his many works, his screenplay Milk in 2008 is best known, having won Best Original Screenplay at the Academy Awards.

Perez HIlton’s Tweet On The News, Dated 12 June 2009

Black had a well-mannered (from his side) feud with gossip queen Perez Hilton when Hilton released photos of Black in compromising positions (NSFW), in context of the campaign for ‘safe sex’. However, Hilton has since deleted it from his website. This stirred up continual press as his Alma Mater disinvited him as a commencement speaker.

Already competing in 2 Olympics, Tom Daley began his Olympic diving career at the youthful age of 14. Born in Plymouth, Devon, England, he represented England in the Olympics, having great success in the 2012 London Olympics with a Bronze for 10m platform (American Boudia, taking the Gold). Maintaining a strong facade through hardships (in particular, the passing of his father to cancer in 2011) as well as his outgoing well-natured personality, he’s became a national an international sweetheart.

Despite previous gawking at the fit diver, on 2 December 2013, Daley rose to ultimate gay fame when he ‘came out’ on his YouTube channel. He stated in the video:

Come Spring this year, my life changed massively when I met someone and they make me feel so happy — so safe, and everything just feels great and that someone is a guy. And it did take me by surprise a little bit. Um, I mean, it was always in the back of my head that something could happen, but it wasn’t until Spring this year that it just clicked. It felt right and I was like, hm… okay. And, like I said, my whole world just changed right there and then.

Speculation of whom it might be came at a sudden halt at the realisation of Daley’s relationship with Dustin Lance Black, which became absolute truth with their first Instagram photo together #MillenialProbs

Daley and Black's first Instagram, January 2014
Daley and Black’s first Instagram, 4 January 2014

Since then, the two have had many interactions via social media, social events, charity campaigns and paparazzi ambushes. A very notable charity event was through Omaze in support of The Brain Tumour Charity and the Human Rights Campaign. Other mentions would be supporting each other at the other’s events, travelling together, and spending holidays together, photographed below:

Daley and Black, Halloween 2014
Daley and Black, Halloween 2014

On their 2 year Meet-Aversary (since, we really don’t know when the actual relationship started), they both Instagrammed their introductory photo and said the following:

Daley and Black's 2-Year Meet-Aversary
Daley and Black’s 2-Year Meet-Aversary

@tomdaley1994: 2 years ago I met my 🐸 and my life changed forever! Thank you for making these past 2 years so special ❤️

@dlanceblack: Two years ago we took a selfie just after meeting… the very moment my life changed forever. Happy Anniversary my love. ❤️

Sounds like keepers. ❤ ❤

 My Life

** Note: Perseus and I aren’t certain of dates, but only approximates. We disagree on some of the dates, but obviously mine are right.

Scene from First Kid, 1996
Scene from First Kid, 1996

In 2009, during a nostalgic time in my life, I was getting the college sophomore blues and started to think of the days when I was an internet troll in my youth. I would get on AOL Instant Messenger (AIM), find a random chatroom and chatted  up people, maybe even become friends with them. I started to use messenger around age 9, but remember perfecting it at age 12 when my friends had me impersonate a girl to stand up a jerk guy at the movie theatre. #SorryNotSorry

So wondering, in the day of Facebook and Twitter, if there was such places to troll, I went to Google and searched ‘free chat rooms.’ To my amusement, there were a few websites and I chose a particular one that had Teen, Gay Teen, Gay, 65+ and other random demographic that you could choose. Obviously, I chose to go into the Gay chat, where I spent many nights pissing people off.

It wasn’t that I was lonely, or needed someone to talk to, or that I’m a COMPLETE prick, but it was my downtime. It’s like how people say 8 hours work, 8 hours sleep and 8 hours for yourself — this was my ‘myself’ time. It’s not like I had to prove to any of these people if I was really me (I never lied, though, swear) but it was almost a getaway. Until shit got real.

The Dreamers, 2003
The Dreamers, 2003

Perseus was obviously a veteran to these sorts of rooms. It was like Cheers, and he was Norm. Everyone wanted him, and me especially. We started talking in November 2009, and started ‘internet dating’ in February 2010. For us, internet dating almost meant like a VERY open relationship, where we may still flirt (or more) online, we could blow off some obligations and we could find physical comfort where we pleased.

For the first year, Perseus and I chatted mainly in the chatroom, but we moved to MSN Messenger towards the end. For part of the year, Perseus had a boyfriend and I still had a working relationship with Phoenix (previously mentioned in How I Met Your Mother: I Deleted My Exes). However, in 2011, we decided to be in a committed relationship, utilising Facebook for daily messaging and Skype for nightly camming. #LoveInTheModernAge

We were in love already, despite only having online interaction with each other. All obligations must be obliged, all exes were to be deleted and all porn had to be shared. (Again, #LoveInTheModernAge) It was rough to really believe that I could be in love with someone an ocean away without seeing them in person before, but I had. And I was about to prove it.

At first it started off as an interest — almost a joke, but with a pinch of seriousness. But then, I actually got into it program. I was accepted to study abroad in London for the summer of 2012 to fulfil an internship that’s needed in my major Health and Fitness. Perseus was excited that I’d be so close, but I could sense his nervousness, because I was nervous as well.

Mansion Lock in Camden, Sample Studio
Mansion Lock in Camden, Sample Studio

I flew to London in May 2012 to intern at King’s College Hospital under the Occupational Therapist. I loved my little student studio apartment in Camden Town, ABSOLUTELY LOVED. But I digress. Between time I spent in class, at the office and discovering London, I still spent my nights on my MacBook Pro Skyping with Perseus.

In July, I was relieved from my internship and I had planned to spend an extra month in the UK to spend with Perseus; however, I had to leave the country and reenter in accordance with the visa. I left to Rome for a week before reentering to Perseus.

Queens Hotel, Newport, Wales
Queens Hotel, Newport, Wales

Perseus lives in Cwmbran, South Wales with his parents. Not knowing is parents well enough, I rented a room at The Queens Hotel in nearby Newport and travelled via train to Cwmbran when I was to meet Perseus, which happened on my second day in Wales. I planned out which train I’d take (I’m a meticulous planner) and told Perseus when I’d make it to the station in Cwmbran, to meet me there. I finished my travels only to not see him at the other end.

I was panicking. Perseus had told me how nervous he was to meet me, that his parents don’t approve, that he was only 17 years old. I thought he stood me up. I waited in the enclosed ticket booth, keeping an eye out when I saw a boy walking across the large parking lot, ending up on some concrete stairs and sitting with two cans of Coca-Cola. That’s my boy.

I walked to him with a stupid grin on my mouth. We said our awkward “Hi”s as he handed me a can and walked up the concrete stairs. We walked a distance until he turned to me and interlocked my hand with his. We continued to walk up a hill and I couldn’t help but to give him a peck on the cheek, which he returned on my lips.

Perseus and I Holding Hands, Summer 2012
Perseus and I Holding Hands, Summer 2012

That started 2 amazing weeks with him. After the second time coming around, I was invited by his parents to stay at their’s. They didn’t think it proper for me to stay in Perseus’ room, but gave me the couch in the living room (until the early mornings when Perseus would lead me up to his room to sleep). We had instant physical chemistry and fell in even more love through that brief time together. But it had to end, as I had to go back to London for my flight to America, where I had 8 hours until my flight to Aruba for my sister’s destination wedding.

Since then, I had finished with my schooling in 2013 and have been working part-time for my parents. I had graduated with two Bachelors and a Minor after five marvellous years of university. Obviously, Perseus and I have continued our relationship with daily Facebook communication and nightly Skype camming, since we know for sure we’re in love emotionally and physically. I have yet to make my way back to him.

My Thoughts

Like Tom Daley and Dustin Lance Black, I would love to go back to London and live there with my Perseus. It’s a bit odd, having loved someone so far away from where I am. It’s even more odd that Made of Honor is on, where Michelle Monaghan falls in love with Scottish Kevin McKidd despite Patrick Dempsey‘s deepest affection.

Maybe it’s his so-called sing-song Welshie accent, how he pronounces ‘hygienic‘ or how he debates that it’s “XYZed” and not “XYZee“. Maybe it’s his pale white skin, his blue-green hypnotic eyes, his nearly-brown blond faux hawk or his button nose. Maybe it’s the way he walks stiff, the way the eats loads of food and not get fat, or the way he becomes inappropriately obsessed with certain things. But I really do love my British beauty.

But it’s difficult to love so far away. It’s not so much the distance that bothers us. Well, not for me, anyways. Perseus is always upset at how we can’t touch each other, that we aren’t physically together and can’t show how we love each other. I get that, and I really have that distress in my mind too but what pillages my heart is our future.

Ideally for me, Perseus and I would live in London, where I would have a somewhat satisfying job to eventually make enough to raise children with Perseus. For Perseus, it’s the same but he’d rather live someplace like Midwest America (the irony), because he’s not into big cities. But there are a couple of obstacles to have this happen.

Black's Response to Indiana's Religious Freedom Bill
Black’s Response to Indiana’s Religious Freedom Bill

As much as Perseus would love to, my home state of Indiana doesn’t seem the best fit for us. For a state that’s named to ‘honor the people to whom the land originally belonged and from whom it had been obtained,’ it’s quite distressing that Indiana is the first to legalize discrimination in this modern age. 
** Maybe more on this topic on another post

As for me to move to London, it’s not as simple for me to simply move. As I’m a logical man, I want to obtain a job in London prior to picking up and heading there for perhaps my full 90 days under my American Passport without finding one whilst there. I lack the experience to obtain a management job, as well as a degree that would allow me to work freely in the UK under any obtainable work visa.

The only ‘loophole,’ which is actually considerable between Perseus and I, is if Perseus and I got married. Neither of us are opposed to this idea, and his parents would be thrilled, but would I be able to obtain dual citizenship? There’s too many questions, which makes me queasy.

In addition to my worries — leaving my parents’ home would be like the scene from Harry Potter, when he leaves Privet Drive for the last time. As quoted from JK Rowling‘s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Chapter 4, pages 43-44, 55:

Long ago, when he had been left alone while the Dursleys went out to enjoy themselves, the hours of solitude had been a rare treat… It gave him an odd, empty feeling to remember those times: it was like remembering a younger brother whom he had lost.

“Don’t you want to take a last look at the place?” (Harry) asked Hedwig. “We’ll never be here again. Don’t you remember the good times?… And under here, Hedwig, is where I use to sleep!”

… So great was his discomfort that he almost forgot to take a last glimpse of number four, Privet Drive; by the time he looked over the edge of the sidecar he could no longer tell which one it was.

JK Rowling In Response To Dumbledore's Sexuality, 24 March 2015
JK Rowling Isn’t Unfamiliar With Her Subtle Stances, In Response To Dumbledore’s Sexuality, 24 March 2015

Even though earlier tonight, my mother said, “That’s great!” to the news of Governor Pence’s signing (to pile onto the many other anti-homosexual opinions given in the past), nobody that came from a decent home can avoid this feeling for the place or the people in it. Though 18 years of domestic suffering, Harry still felt a tinge of love for his only living relatives, despite them hating him for being gay a wizard.

I want to think that all these concerns are meaningless, unsubstantial, that the jury in my head would find me not guilty in wrongfully loving. Don’t misunderstand me– I’m not doubting the love Perseus and I have, but the struggle to get where we want will be great, no doubt.

Hopefully soon, Perseus and I will be like Tom and Dustin. 

The Brit and The Yank.

The Pinky and The Brain.



P.S. We’ve just celebrated our 4 years of getting rings, 15 March 2015.


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