Has this ever happened to you: You start a new job and conduct yourself respectfully and confidently for the first few weeks. You are always well turned out and looking your very best, flirting politely with the girls and and joking around with everyone. Then after a few weeks of this, someone asks you point blank during the middle of your shift if you’re gay…
Now, far from being an insult, this can still be disconcerting for the straight male who conceives of himself as being a good-natured philanderer and good breeding stock to boot. When you can only respond with a confused “um, no…,” they may further ask you this incredibly stupid question: “Are you sure?” If you read between the lines you can see that far from trying to gain clarification on the matter, asking if you’re sure that you’re not gay implies that they feel you are a lying homophobic closet case who is ashamed of his attraction towards men
Then it hits you, the whole image you have cultivated for yourself has had the opposite effect it was intended to and everyone is fairly certain that you like…well, whatever it is they think you like (PENIS!). The reality however, is that you may not have been acting gay. In the three instances where I was assumed to be a “confirmed bachelor,” the circumstances were all very different. The first time was a military posting a cadet corps summer camp for kids. I worked in conjunction with a lot of civilian instructors, and more than a few were
flamboyantly gay (That’s right, gay and camping with your kids, joke’s on you lol). This didn’t really confront me none, and I was amicable with most of them (some were just obnoxious jerks and being gay did little to redeem them in my eyes). Now because I got on well enough with the gays in the immediate circle I worked with, the girls in said immediate circle, maddened by the realization that I was way out of their league, started to invent crazy explanations for why they had no chance with me. Instead of being honest with themselves that they were ugly, rude and self-centered, they chose to project on me. I am like 98.3% certain this is what led one of them to ask me, in front of some of the summer camp kids no less, “are you gay?” I think this first time was the only time I was angered by the question, but more because of the fact that she was undermining me with questions about my sexuality in front of kids I was in charge of. She could have asked me about what my favourite female breast shape was and I still would have been annoyed. Its called tact, learn it.
The second instance was when I was hired as a server at a restaurant where the majority of servers were female and one of the male servers was
disgustingly gay. When finally someone did approach me and ask me about my sexual preference (as it was so germane to the job-related task I was performing at the time) they were a lot more tactful about it. When I calmly and amusedly responded that I was not in fact homosex (sic
), they took it upon themselves to reassure me that they never thought I was gay themselves and had been defending my heteroship (sic
) the whole time when it had been under attack by the gossip of coworkers. I thanked her for not allowing them to slander my good name but assured her it was wholly unncessary, as people are gonna think what they’re gonna think. As I later found out, the aforementioned gay male server had been spreading rumours that I was gay. I reasoned that it was part of some insidious plot in which, if I heard from enough people that I was gay I might actually start to believe it and put out (Note: you may notice a recurring theme that I strongly believe a person’s desire to get in my pants causes them to act reckless). This may sound delusional, but it should be mentioned that he offered me at a later date $100 to perform fellatio on me
. Although not tempted, I was flattered, until I heard that he offered some of the teenage boys working in the kitchen $200 for the same service. “I thought we had something special…”
The last case is kind of ongoing and probably somewhat my fault. Its a warehouse I work at during the summer and I suppose because I wear tight wife- beaters, women’s sunglasses (in my defense, they’re fly as hell) and any of the following bandanas,
that I perpetuate an image of fruitiness. These factors, as well as the fact that I sing along to all the songs on the radio, hitting the necessary high notes, doesn’t jive with their blue collar sensibilities I suppose. While no one has asked me point blank, some have had their suspicions and they good-naturedly bust my balls about it daily. For example, when the new payroll chick got hired, a no-nonsense Jamaican lady, my foreman insisted that me and him traipse through the office holding hands in front of her desk. I thought it would be
a gay old time funny, and we had her convinced I was a batty boy…. a bloodclot batty boy even. But then, when you do goofy shit like that, you can’t blame people for casting an awkward eye at you.
At this point I feel that if people don’t question where I stick my penis I am doing something wrong. After all, I am suspicious of anyone who comes off as completely hetero: the biggest secrets are the best hidden I figure. In the end though I can’t really be vexed about the assumption that Im gay: most people are just going by the popular conception of homosexuals as good-looking, well-dressed and shameless flirts, and that ain’t a half-bad rep to catch.