“He likes you too”. It only takes four words, just those four words and before you know it your mind is flooded with expectation, hopes, dreams and you’re hit with feelings you never thought possible as you accumulate the courage to put yourself out there again. It’s like a fairy tale, maybe fate had our paths cross for a reason? Maybe this is that special person I hadn’t even been looking for? Then again…maybe not.
Most of us have lady friends who just want us to be happy, they mean well and they think they know what it’s like to be gay and how hard it can be to meet guys who aren’t just looking for sex. Let’s face it, the odds are already stacked against us so any help can only be a good thing, right? Well, the potential pitfalls of that mean you can sometimes fall into the trap of becoming a project and feeling like some kind of social experiment or mathematical equation: “if I put Gay X with Gay Y then we’ll get Z and everyone will live happily ever after!”. Um, yeah, but no.
The problem is, when girls get involved everything gets way too complicated. There’s mind games, gossip and sometimes the little white lies really aren’t that little at all. Really, all you want to do is cut through the bullshit and sit down and have a conversation with the person it’s about, but then when you do manage that it’s too late. You’ve already gone too far, you’ve done and said enough to create the weirdness after acting on false information. At the time that can be incredibly embarrassing and painful, but eventually it just becomes funny and morphs into four other words instead: “What was I thinking?!”.
When it comes to attraction, I always use the Oprah method; “never allow yourself to want those who don’t want you”. Once you know someone doesn’t want you, or more importantly – they don’t even really want to know you, there’s no point wasting time trying to make them change their mind and see how awesome you are. You already know that and so do your friends. It’s like running after a moving train; eventually the platform will end and you’re not going to catch it, you’ll just fall off and end up on your face.
The disclosure of mutual attraction is a dangerous thing, it should be approached with caution. If it’s not true or the people saying it aren’t 100% sure, then it’s deadly. It’s the poisoned apple of the mind and at some point someone will act on that information and things will never be the same between those people again. It’s very hard to have a normal friendship once that revelation has been made, I wonder if even a reboot would be possible and that’s really a far more upsetting and painful thing than them not being “into you”, it will always be a lost opportunity. When you’re brave enough to make the first move in the first place, finding out you’ve been duped is a bit like being locked out of the house naked when a group of school kids are walking past laughing. When this happened to me (metaphorically speaking), I thought about it.
I thought and thought and then I asked myself, while I’m left out here naked in the cold like this, why not let everyone walk past and have a laugh too? If I do that, maybe some of them will relate to it? Maybe it’s happened to them too and they’ll start to laugh with me instead? Maybe I’ll feel better about it then? That will mean it isn’t allowed to be pointless anymore.
So, I wrote a play. It’s a play about love. It’s a play about being gay and it’s a play about all of the above. Oh yes, and now I’m speaking in rhyme. FML!
“Laugh at yourself first, before anyone else can” ~ Elsa Maxwell
“Someone Like You” by Chaz Harris is on at BATS Theatre 2-11 August. Tickets are available here.