Patrick, age 11
Niagara Falls, NY (1968)
I loved school photo day and the opportunity that it brought to break out of the uniform white or blue shirt with navy tie. Looking back, this year seemed to be a turning point - in all the school pix previous to this, my hair was full of cowlicks. During high school, I used to go to the men's salon for a wash and blow-dry before all the big events, like semi-formals & proms. How gay is that?
|"God, I wish I still had that hair"|
Growing up, many of my friends were girls. At a birthday party - Ooh, another chance to dress up! - where the boys and girls were expected to sit at same-sex tables for cake. The hostess suggested several times that I sit at the boys' table. It didn't happen.
How gay is that?
I recently played the When/What Was Your First Concert? game with some colleagues.
Mine? Liza Minnelli, 9th grade. OMG! How gay is that? I also saw Bette Midler in 10th grade, but Elton John had to wait ‘til I was a freshman in college.
It wasn't until I moved to a large East Coast city after college that I started my coming out. And you know what? It turns out that just about everyone knew I was gay! Why didn't someone say something sooner?
I always felt different from the rest and muddled through as best I could. While I learned that self-imposed isolation could protect me from some types of harassment, I don't recommend it as an effective tool for the long haul, especially these days.
Talk about it. Somebody will listen.
Patrick's first, famous-person same sex crushes:
Luke Halpin (Sandy on “Flipper”)
Race Bannon (on "Jonny Quest")
I guess I had a thing for blonds. But crushing on a male cartoon character? OMG! How gay is THAT?