On the 24th of October at 12:58 while syncing my phone with the computer two texts came in. The first you’ll note was actually sent the night before.
1. Simon had pulled out via Facebook. Changed his mind a few times saying he wanted to take part, only to pull out again.
2. A few weeks ago some 3rd Party took it upon themselves to share gossip with Brian on what they perceived to be Simons past. They shared things that should be the private business of Simon, his family & close friends.
I’ve tried contacting Simon by phone & Facebook, I did get through to a mutual friend who gave me Simons sisters number. Neither Simon nor his family have answered my calls over the last few days.
I spoke to Brian again after the Wexford Festival Opera Opening fireworks. With exhibition openings, pubs & resturants participating it’s a highlight of the Wexford calendar.
I have no doubt that the 3rd Parties words fueled Brians fears, his reaction to Simons dithering and the heated conversation between Simon and himself. I spoke to Brian & I read a little of Simons response to their coversation on Facebook.
In any case Simon made a choice & Brian made a decision.
I did receive two calls to my WiMax line from Simons mobile phone, the first at 2:09 pm 10/25: there was a garbled voice trying to sift through the electronic sounds of a poor reception area. It lasted about 30 seconds then ceased. The second came 18 minutes later at 2:27 pm. Simon said ‘I’m on my way, I’ll be there, I’m 5 minutes out.’ Abruptly the sound ceased. I was answering air. I phoned back, the call went to the answer machine each time. No Simon didn’t show up.
Thank you Simon for standing up and becoming Mr Gay Wexford 2012/ 13. I am sad you won’t be representing County Wexford in Dublin. As Mr Gay Wexford you are enthusiastic, persistent and believe in yourself, you put your self out there being ‘who you are’.
You & your team worked hard to raise money for the St James Hospital, New-fill HIV clinic because you recognise there is a necessity for their work, awareness raising and research. (Partly due to your friends experiences in the UK living with HIV & your shock at how casual Irish men are around HIV and protection against it.)
Though your actions/ behaviour this week have shown a nastier side of cruelty, cowardice & indeed foolishness.
Some may ask what of the money Simon raised? It has gone to St James Foundation & will be designated to the St James New-fill clinic fund. The purpose of Mr Gay Ireland is to raise awareness, find role models for young gay men also fundraise for the clinic. Monies raised online at Simon Landons charity.ie will go directly to the St James foundation for the New-fill HIV Clinic too.
“This conclusion to the Mr Gay Wexford 2012/ 13 reach for the Mr Gay Ireland title has taken me by surprise. Most of the work was done. Simon dropped out so close to reaping the rewards. For example the speech & interview training, meeting the other guys and the competition. I’ve been told it’s a great weekend by many guys who’ve taken part previously.
Totally bizarre. I have yet to hear from Simon”
An educational experience all round, what each individuals learns from the lessons is their choice.
Deirdre ní Dhubhghaill