Guest Blogger

The Greatest Gay Lie Ever Told?

Filed By Guest Blogger | February 10, 2009 2:30 PM | comments

Filed in: The Movement
Tags: casual sex, gay life, promiscuity, The New Gay, Zack Rosen

Editors' Note: Guest blogger Zack Rosen is a founder and Zack Rosen.jpgfirst full-time employee of The New Gay, an alternative queer resource based in Washington, DC. Bilerico is happy to have him back again as a guest blogger.

In a recent post for The New Gay, an online resource for alternative queer events and ideas, staff writer Ben Carver wrote a post called The Single Guy. He presented a fairly objective account of a single gay guy's foray into oodles of unemotional sex. The narrative withheld most judgments on the experience. Our readers did not. Commenter after commenter indicated that experience sounded "bleak" or "like looking into hell with the lid off."

This opinion is not just limited to some off-handed comments on a website. Most guys I know who are in serious relationships talk about their frivolous single phase as if it was a stint in a Cambodian jail. Like the strains and indignities of the unattached gay life were so miserable that their end is as relieving as a hemorrhoid removal.

I don't think I've had the traditional gay single life, a fact of which most longtime readers of The New Gay are aware. Because I bitch about it all the damn time. But still, even though it can be lonely or frustrating there are aspects of wanton sluttery that sound really appealing to me. It sounds like a part of one's life that, disgusting as it might be, needs to be gotten out of the way. I wouldn't even trade my boyfriend's little toe for a night of Manhunt fun or bar-cruising but I am curious what the experience was like for others. My friends that have done such things never speak of them fondly when I ask them to tell their stories.

Friday_CasualSexDay.jpg"I'm so glad those days are over." "It was the worst." "Trust me, you're lucky to have skipped all that."

I don't buy it.

It makes me imagine some guy meeting his friends for brunch one morning and saying "Uch, the worst thing happened to me last night. I met a guy at a bar and he gave me a blowjob. I'll never be the same."

As one friend rubs his back in consolation, his other buddy says "You think that's bad? I have three dates next week. Three dates! It's...It's...."

As he struggles to properly express his horror at the prospect, their fourth friend, heretofore quiet, begins to let out wrenching, shuddering sobs. As his chest shakes and the tears trickle down his cheeks, he manages to choke out "I fucked a guy last week. He had really nice arms. Then I fucked him again in the morning!" As the group wallows in their own misfortune, the waitress hurries back to the kitchen for a round of chocolate ice cream and xanax.

Does this sound accurate? It is really easy to say in retrospect that a lot of dating and random sex sucks. At the time, though, I think men get something out of it. They wouldn't do it if they didn't. They get sex or comfort or conquest or validation or any of the billion possible medallions that one hangs invisibly around their neck as they walk back home in the morning from a house they've never been to before and will never go to again.

There are very few instances where someone holds a gun to your head or a dick to your mouth. The "Queer as Folk" life isn't for everyone and I know many people that have skipped it all together. But for those that did make a choice to go out and sample the local fruits: Why are you so quick to turn your back on it?


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DanaRSullivan | February 10, 2009 4:36 PM

If most guys who've had the single life in the past talk badly about it, it'd be interesting to see the opinions of guys who've done the opposite, gone from exclusive relationships to casual sex. Do they mostly think LTRs suck and their present sex life is better? It might just be...it has a fancy name I don't remember, the effect where once you decide between two options, you look down even more on the one you didn't pick, since we want to think of ourselves as good decision-makers.

ItsNotAllThat | February 10, 2009 7:16 PM

The thing, for me, about trolling for some tail (or as some people have started calling it, 'trade') is that the success rate is pretty low. I define success as an enjoyable roll in the sack, one I'd repeat given the opportunity, or a date that leads to something more. 9 out of 10 times I won't find that looking around online and the club isn't much better (my own social awkwardness is a huge factor here though).

And those 9 out of 10 nights when I either (1) fail to find a reasonable date/hookup or (2) find one but it's bad feel like such a waste. I could've stayed at home, read, gone out with friends, or watched a movie.

People hate the dating scene because it's far more likely to go wrong than right. The guy might be terrible, he might be ok but nothing special, or he might like me a lot less than I like him. When it does go right and you have a warm body to snuggle up to and you don't have to waste hours in loud bars paying for expensive drinks, the relief is refreshing.

I'm in the middle of it right now. I'm 22 years old. I'm in grad school. One day, I'd (I think) like to have one primary mate and possibly even a kid or two. BUT NOT RIGHT NOW!

I am enjoying myself; but I don't want or need or think I could handle the responsibility of being in a mature, mutually respectful relationship right now. I am trying to support myself by working two jobs while furthering my education; I couldn't give a "boyfriend" the attention that he deserves right now.

The problem is this: I still like to have sex. So, I go online, I go out, and I find sex. Sure, sometimes I don't feel great about myself doing it; more often than not, however, I have a good time with a nice guy. Sometimes I have good conversation with him and expand my horizons. And, on occasion, I do go on more proper dates.

I always use protection. I know that there are many aspects of my sex life which are potentially hazardous, and I may one day reflect on the risks I'm taking now as stupid. For now, though, I believe that the risks I'm taking are a reasonable trade. I'm getting some great stories to tell my grandkids.

“Disgusting as it might be?” “Needs to be gotten out of the way?” You don't sound too hot on it yourself. I can't speak as a gay man, nor as someone currently in a monogamous relationship, but...some of us enjoy our wanton sluttery, and wouldn't be happy in our committed, fulfilling relationships without it. Granted if people find it that bleak and hellish they should stop doing it, but some of us really don't.