After leaving the cinema, on my way to get some more cocktails, my friend whom I’ll call F.H. told me that I, and it stopped me in my tracks, wasn’t gay enough. I turned around, baffled. All because I didn’t cry when Carrie (Bradshaw from Sex and the City – the movie) received a Vivienne Westwood dress from Vivienne Westwood herself. True, I don’t care about fashion. True, I know nothing of that Westwood woman and her contemporary friends such as a certain Wang and another McQueen. True, I’m as aware of fashion as a heterosexual football lover is aware of the latest novel from Armistead Maupin (I mean tome 7 of Tales of the City, It should surely be a bigger deal than it is). True, I only found out about a week ago that Cameron Diaz was not spooning with Justin anymore. I do live in quite a different world from my kinds. I do not read Heat magazine. I don’t even watch TV. Does that make me a bad homosexual? I’ve always considered myself one of the good fags. In the mid-nineties, I did my bit to spread awareness about AIDS and condoms. I marched in more Gay and Euro Pride that I can remember. I’m out, proud and have the support of a loving family. But in the stereotypical world we live in, it’s apparently not good enough. I should learn to accessorize. Wearing, as F.H. told me, rubber bands on my wrist is not exactly what one does. I should be more definable. (Time to get your gay glossary out) After all I’m just a post-gay older twink-looking homophile friend of Dorothy who’s afraid of becoming a femme daddy. I should know Chueca inside out even though I’ve only been here for about 6 months. I should want to party all night long and never show that my “spirit” might be tired and that I would rather spend the night in bed with a good book than going club hopping in search of a nice piece of arse. I should love going shopping and trying on outfits. I should be more out there. So many shoulds, so many requirements, so many why-aren’t-yous… F.H. is not the only to think this, if only.
I recently went out on what I naively thought was not a date. The guy was nice enough. We met as one does nowadays through the Internet. Bakala, so far, had proved to be, as gay.com was in the early years of the millennium, filled with polvo looking, sleazy liars that were only there under false pretences. Nonetheless, once in a while you can find someone that doesn’t ask you straight away to turn on your cam or come over within the first 5 seconds. So SC as he should be known, looked cute (turned out he was just really photogenic). We met, in what to me was an unknown part of Madrid, and had drinks with his mates, a bunch of bear-looking early thirties Spaniards. We drank. We laughed. It was all going well. But (isn’t there always a but?), after our 5th or 6th pint he said this: “No me haces caso!”. I gave him a big hug and ignored it. After it had repeated it about 3 times and tried to caress my calves (I was wearing shorts). I decided that it was time to be frank and kindly told him I was only looking for mates. The cold shoulder treatment came as soon as I finished my sentence and I realized that all I had been in his eyes was his next piece of meat. Once again, I hadn’t been “gay enough”. A good homosexual would have taken him home and done the dirty. Instead, I left the bar, switched on my MP3 and danced my way home to the soundtrack of the Dreamgirls. Surely that’s gay enough, don’t you think?