Kenny Bodanis is tired of being asked if he’s “that way” or just seems that way.
In a recent post I wrote:
“Three things I will never do:
1. Spend an evening of intimacy with Ronnie Wood.
2. Share a bowl of chocolate-covered pomegranate seeds with Barack Obama.
3. Work myself into the Lotus Position without dislocation.”
Upon reading #1 on the list, my wife called me from work: “An evening with Ronnie Wood?! People really are going to think you’re gay.”
The comment was nothing new. Sarcasm and quips related to my sexuality have followed me since I was 7 years-old like crane flies under street lights.
I did myself no favors:
– I figure skated for seventeen years. For two of those I was a competitive ice dancer; for the final three I taught the discipline professionally.
– I love cooking, and keep an online recipe book.
– I share true feelings with others.
– One of my go-to dress shirts is hot pink.
People are most intrigued about the figure skating. When asked why I first took up the sport, I make the mistake of answering honestly: At the age of 6, I saw my older (male) cousin perform a solo routine to Kermit the Frog’s “Rainbow Connection.” His outfit was green lycra, with a sequins rainbow travelling from left shoulder to right hip. I was agog.
Though I was never physically assaulted by the hockey teams brushing past me and my various practice and show gear on their way to the locker room; “fag” and “nice outfit, homo” were phrases I heard as often as “If you’re afraid of falling, you’ll never complete the rotation on your double Lutz.”
If anything, snide remarks over the past thirty-three years have only helped develop a healthy sarcastic sense of humor.
I would usually either ignore questions about my sexuality, or laugh them off, or simply answer “no” and continue with my day.
I finally asked myself: why do I need to defend my heterosexuality or deny to anyone that I’m gay?
It is clearly implied in their question, and therefore in my answer, that gay is something to be avoided.
It’s not. It is just a state of being.
It is actually a lewd curiosity: there’s Kenny, I wonder which gender he prefers having sex with. Does he find an erect penis attractive? Or naked breasts? Who does he fantasize about, Jessica Simpson or George Hamilton?
These are really the questions people are curious about when they broach the topic of an individual’s sexuality.
No one questions whether I’m a member of the NRA, or the Tea Party, or whether I’m a racist. Somehow, though, my sexuality is fair game – even if it is in jest. It is of no importance to people which memberships tickle my fancy, but they sure wonder who I fancy to tickle with my member.
Shamefully, I allow my metrosexuality to prevent my defense of homosexuality. While people jest openly to me about what they perceive as my more feminine inclinations, the room really quiets down when I don’t join the chorus of laughter following a “fag” joke.
Maybe he really is gay…
Maybe I am? What happens now?
Are you imagining me doing weird things with strange people? Are you dismayed the immature jokes have to stop when I’m in the room? Am I not invited to the company golf tournament?
As it is, I already choose the “spa” option on the company form, so I’m never on the course anyway.
As Montgomery MacNeil said in “Fame” (The original 1980 version. The remake?…Don’t even go there, sister.): “Gay used to be such a happy word.”
Am I gay?
Have you ever wondering why you’re asking such a manifestly creepy queston?
Why don’t I answer?
Because it’s none of your damn business.
Photo—Man with glasses from Shutterstock