March 18, 2011


Mike, age 8
Houston, Texas (1991)

One of these boys is not like the other...

"And the Rainbow Badge Goes To...."
With my red hair, pale skin, and delicate features, there's some rage detected in my face. Juxtaposed against these smiling, eager-eyed, young Scouts, it was due to the fact that I didn't want sun damage to cause wrinkles for me later in life.

I obviously took the time to make sure that I had socks to match my kerchief. And my shirt was nice and starched, and I was also well aware that the fashion trend of acid-washed jeans was headed out the door.

While the other boys slouched and sat in poor posture, I sat demure. It's as if I were a Victorian lady, awaiting a parasol and lace gloves to cover my dainty hands. I took the time to be fabulous, while no one else had. For this, I was not having being a Boy Scout.

The irony that a young gay boy wouldn't find Boy Scout meetings to be a safe haven from the outside world seems funny to me now. Themed outfits, arts and crafts, and plenty of opportunities to work out with other guys? All of these STILL being my favorite things to do now.

I looked at The Boy Scouts of America website, and looked at reasons why you should enroll your kid into the Scouts. It states this:

"Scouting provides youth with a sense that they are important as individuals.
It is communicated to them that those in the Scouting family care about what happens to them, regardless of whether a game is won or lost"

For the young and old gays alike out there, that feel as if they have lost this game of life? My message is: Don't give up.

For those who are stuck in Scouts because their parents feel like they should be doing what the "other boys" do, I would ask that they stick it out. But always make sure you stay fabulous doing so.

It sounds cliche' saying that time heals all wounds, but it does.... Scouts honor.


Mark said...

I was a scout too but it wasn't my cup of tea. And then my obviously straight son joined for a year and he didn't care for it either. Maybe it was that individual troop leader that put him off, I don't know. But my daughter seems to love love love Brownies.
Great Post. Love the pale skin. And I've always been a sucker for a cute redhead.

James Brittain said...

Wow its too bad you weren't in my scout group, I totally would have been crushing all over you. though who knows maybe you wouldn't have dug sensitive pudgy (then) devoutly catholic boy two years younger you, who has been crazy for red heads since day one making gaga eyes at you. Its interesting to me now, I went to a boy scout troop that was through my catholic elementary school and I loved it, but I'd always been "a wild nature spirit" as a child. Day one I was a total reborn hippy, that saw all of nature as god's love reflected at us in the physical world. I'm not sure I see that little kid I used to be anymore.

Hey you're not single are you? :)