LOS ANGELES -- For his high school prom in 1942, Robert Clement bought a white orchid corsage in a fancy plastic box.
He gave it to a female staff member who organized the dance. Others would think it was a kind gesture, that he was just a considerate young man. In truth, Clement didn't have anyone else to give it to.
He liked boys. And he couldn't take a boy to the prom. Especially not seven decades ago in a small town in Pennsylvania.
"Proms are a rite of passage," Clement said. "A heterosexual rite of passage. ... But it wasn't mine."
Last weekend, just one day after gay marriage became legal once more in California, Clement found himself getting dressed up for the prom again — the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center's senior prom.