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April 10, 2005

NYT Exclusive: Men Can't Hang Out With Each Other Without Feeling "Gay"

News to me. Also coins a new term for two guys hanging out together -- a "man-date." Replacing the previous term, "hanging out with a friend," which has been dismissed by the times as both passe and "not gay enough."

They're just not going to be happy until homosexuality is tolerated via universal practice.

Men can't hang out together one-on-one? We only feel comfortable in groups? I've never heard such idiocy. I do begin to wonder if the NYT has retained a single straight male on its payroll. Maybe they could talk to someone in the shipping warehouse.

Nah. They wouldn't want to lower themselves.

The only evidence I have that remotely supports this moronic thesis is a time I went to see a movie with Son of Nixon. He sat down where I like to sit -- middle of the theater, about halfway back, and I promptly sat down next to him.

"What are you doing?" he wanted to know.

"What?" I said. "I'm sitting down."

"Not next to me," he said. "We have to have a 'homo seat.'"

"A what?"

"A buffer seat between us."

"How are we going to talk during the movie?"

"You can lean over," he said. "Or you can just keep quiet until the end. But any way you slice it, we need a homo seat, and goddamnit we're going to have ourselves one."

"I don't understand," I said. "Why do we need a 'buffer'? We're both straight. Do you actually not trust me to sit next to you in a movie theater without suddenly reaching into your pants?"

"I suppose I trust you well enough," he said. "But why take any unnecessary risks? Trust-- but verify."*

Trust but verify indeed. Words to live by.

We were in our early twenties when this occurred, bear in mind.

But, apart from this newly-discovered prerequisite of a "homo seat," I've never once felt "gay" hanging out with another guy.

You know when straight guys feel gay? When they're hanging out with women. Including their girlfriends and/or wives.

I realize this makes no kind of sense whatsoever, but there you go.

* Yes, this actually is a true story. Well, I had to reconstruct the dialogue, but the general outline is true.

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posted by Ace at 06:06 PM

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