Friday, July 29, 2005


Yesterday I went to the bathroom at work and made note of a consistent pattern at the urinals. Because there are two urinals side by side and two stalls in the men’s bathroom on my floor – if there are two men in the bathroom at the same time, one uses a urinal and the other person immediately goes to a stall. This may not be the case in every bathroom in every building but I don’t think it is too far from being commonplace. At first I thought it was just because I’m openly gay and men were afraid that I would see their private parts. That may still be the case with some, but after talking to another colleague who is the picture of perceived heterosexual male, I learned that such is the case when he visits the little boy’s room too.

I know men who don’t take showers at the gym for fear that someone will look at them. I know others that go to the gym and strip naked with the hopes that someone will look at them. It is all so interesting to me; the male body and body image. I for one am not comfortable with getting naked in front of people. I recall having to take a swimming class in high school and dreading the process of having to change in the locker room. I didn’t want anyone to see my naked self. Not until recently did I feel comfortable walking around even among friends without a shirt on. Part of that may be my conservative nature. The other part could just be me not feeling so boastful, with nothing to boast about really.

One of my best friends says he doesn’t even get naked to have sex. His body issues I think far outweigh my own. I have never been too thick, never too slender. I’ve always had a pretty average body. I once thought about joining a gym to give me more energy and just have a healthier body but what prevented me from going through with that was the fear that my body would blossom, I would get muscles and be a muscle queen. I’d rather be a slim one. Something about muscle queens has always kind of freaked me out. I suppose I have more issues than I thought.

Men love to work on our bodies and more often than not the more muscles you have, the stronger, more attractive and more masculine you are perceived as being. Aren’t those the three qualities that gay men admire most? That will be in part two of the epic I’m writing about why I am single. I’m not so visibly two of those three things. Read any personal ads lately – no fat, no fem, no fakes (weaklings and liars). I went out with a really muscular guy once. I ended up staying the night at his place. I couldn’t move my head the next morning. His bicep was on it. I had to wait until he rolled over before I could adjust myself and inhale air again. I never slept in a bed with him again. There would be no newspaper headline reading: MAN FOUND SUFFOCATED UNDER MAN. I wouldn’t want to go out like that. So I never went out with him again.

Body. Genitalia. Pecs. Arms. Chest. Legs. Body. Funny.