Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Hetero Today, Gay Tomorrow

News item: U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard, R-Colo., reintroduced legislation on Monday that would amend the Constitution to ban same-sex couples from marrying.

Ever since Our President declared that homosexuality is a matter of personal choice and not merely an accident of genetics, I’ve woken up every morning facing a difficult decision: Is today the day I turn gay?

Though a practicing heterosexual for more than 40 years, I could see immediate advantages to going gay. For example: My wife might appreciate having someone to go shopping with. Never again would she have to endure my pained expression and mournful sighs as we strolled from store to store. We could spend the evenings sipping fumé blanc and paging through Pottery Barn catalogs. Hey honey, let’s redecorate!

But the prospect of switching teams raised a host of questions I had never before contemplated. Nelly or Butch? Bottom or Top? Would I really have to grow one of those droopy mustaches? Are the Village People so far out they’re back in, or have they gone back out again? If this meant wearing chaps, I would definitely have to lose some weight.

When I lived in San Francisco, this would have been easy. Hardly a day passed when I wasn’t approached by someone recruiting me to enlist in the Gay Corps. Visitors would ring my doorbell to hand me tastefully designed brochures extolling the benefits of the gay lifestyle. Telemarketers called to sell me ‘homo away from home’ timeshares, where I could be gay for two weeks every year in a new and exciting resort. Friends urged me to join GayWay and earn points for every straight male I managed to recruit. In a few short weeks I’d rack up enough to get a food processor.

Now that I live in a Red State, where the prevailing image of man-on-man love is the rape scene in Deliverance, it’s a little harder. Hallmark doesn’t make an “I’m here and I’m queer” card. My best hope would be to adopt a bison frise, open a bed and breakfast, and wait for the rumors to spread.

What we need is a National Registry of Sexual Preferences, where every citizen can specify the types of people with whom they’re willing to swap fluids. Potential romantic partners could look up your record before agreeing to that casual lunch invitation. It could be a boon for employers, church congregations, or any organization where your lesiure activities require careful vetting. I’m sure the Department of Homo Security would be happy to set something up.

In the meantime, it’s comforting to know that when it comes to my sexual preferences I do have a choice. Unlike hatred or intolerance, which it seems you’re born with and can never escape.


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