Adult homosexuals from the internet were just as eager to meet as peers I interacted more with adults, but their eagerness to meet only reinforced my Jodie Dallas induced greatest fears of being queer. Still, though, I more quickly accepted an adult’s invitation to meet than a peers’. In adult companionship, I saw a greater possibility of the exciting homosexual adventures, like those in Queer as Folk; their adventures seemed like the safe juvenile antics I should be participating in. I had wanted big city Sex & the City adventures with Mr. Big, who’d take me to theatre and art openings. What I found instead was sneaking off to the backwoods of Upstate New York and trailer parks, where their own inauthenticity funhouse mirrored my own. They were adults trapped in adolescence, attempting to stay past their prime by hanging with the freshly prime. I was an adolescent playing adult, attempting to stay out past bedtime by hanging with those without a bedtime. The very nature of my game necessitated duplicity as I navigated the two worlds that I had begun inhabiting, as I tried on various masks and identities.
For my undergrad I attended SUNY @ Purchase, where perfect was the antithesis of high school, evolving to be the artistic and eccentric. In college perfect was chased by girls and boys, and perfect boys were more likely to chase boys back. Perfect was still not the quietly humorous one who liked school and read in his dorm. He was cool though, which afforded me the opportunity to be entertained by a peer as a possible date. Refreshed by a sudden gust of attention, I set my sights on who was deemed the most desired boy on campus: Daniel. He wasn’t actually a student, but was the friend of the students on the floor below me, and visited every weekend. Luckily, the friends I had made on my floor knew the people down stairs through a mutual friend from Long Island; guess New York City isn’t that big of a city. Continue reading “Undergrad Dating”
I learned early that existence was being in a state of constant heartbreak, longing to be within a cozy weekend bubble with another. In the past I sunk under the weight of pursing others like a puppy only to not be selected. The superficiality of idolized physicality in homosexuality was not me. Perfect was the Abercrombie & Fitch model or Justin Timberlake; the pop-idol and the porn star got all the attention. Not me, the queerly geek whose authenticity – the interests, experiences, and beliefs –existed on the peripheral of popular. How could they not see how cool I was?
I didn’t go to local gay youth groups to meet peers because I wasn’t ready for an identity label, which was rooted in the denial that was needed in high school to survive. The homosexual teenagers I conversed with through the internet seemed so much braver than myself because they had found and proclaimed their inner authenticity. Their assured identity gave them the bravery to ask to meet immediately. To me they had already labeled themselves and claimed to have said as much to their parents. Being exceedingly reluctant of labels, I was intimidated, fearing their permanence. I wasn’t ready to be placed in any box, let alone the wrong one; and then go through the embarrassment of changing labels. I was incapable of reading other homosexual teenagers’ eagerness to meet as a shared isolation, and so made excuses as to why that couldn’t happen.
There were homosexual adults whom I interacted with through the internet, and their eagerness to meet only reinforced my Jodie Dallas induced greatest fears of being queer. Still, though, I more quickly accepted an adult’s invitation to meet than a peers’. In adult companionship I saw a greater possibility of the exciting homosexual adventures, like those in Queer as Folk; their adventures seemed like the safe juvenile antics I should be participating in. I entertained ideas of big city adventures like Sex & the City, and meeting Mr. Big, who’d take me to the theatre and art openings. What I instead found was sneaking off to the backwoods of Upstate New York and trailer parks, where their own inauthenticity funhouse mirrored my own.
I was in college by that time and finally saw healthier homosexual relationships, through Will Graham, Will & Grace, was single through the majority of the show’s run, having serious relationships after the show found success. The domesticity on Will & Grace was not perfection, but the characters created a bubble of playing house. I wanted to emulate the relationships by running errands, sharing chores, and cooking together. Our existence would be dictated by shared calendars and outings. It would be teamwork and comradery.
I crafted doctored acceptable variations of myself, believing my exposed self would not be good enough. The knowledge my authenticity was deferred to others in an effort to avoid insult and derision. Receding behind partners’ goals I built up their hopes, while exploring how to play with the truth, creating chaos that would ultimately result in implosion.