Mark Lim, left, with author Joel Engardio in 2000.

The Birthday Closet

By Joel P. Engardio

On my 28th birthday, my boyfriend Mark took me to see his parents and childhood home. We flew from San Francisco to Chicago and Mark’s younger brother drove us 20 miles to a subdivision of ranch houses. The oak trees were turning color.

Mark’s mom was in the driveway, waving. Mark’s dad was in the front yard, tending to the low wall he had been building next to the shrubs since…

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Joel Engardio

Joel Engardio

Forward-thinking + pragmatic Democrat, civil liberties advocate, award-winning journalist, Westside SF homeowner. My local views at www.engardio.com/issues