It’s 11:30, the club is bumpin’ bumpin’, and I’m contemplating a hate crime.
Wednesday night is ladies night (as is ladies who like ladies night, not a night celebrating everyone’s vulva with half-priced vodka tonics), and I’ve wormed into a sliver of much-coveted bathroom mirror space to painstakingly reapply my signature (in my head) shade of Yves St. Laurent lippy.
To my left, a pack of women monopolizing 75 percent of counter space is conducting a conversation so irritating my jaw has locked into a strikingly unbecoming grimace.
“OK, ladies,” chirps the loudest, signaling for the attention of her fellow primpers by raising aloft an oversized Coach clutch, “We have to brace ourselves to be hit on by girls.”
Like I would ever fuck a girl in Coach.
I’m gay. I go through life accepting that as a minority, I will spend most of my time in majority (straight) dominated spaces. The movies I watch, music I listen to, and books I read overwhelmingly focus on straight relationships. I’m often needled by pangs of overwhelming "otherness."
I get it: Straight people don’t come to gay bars because they want to hate on gay people. They come because as the empowered majority, they feel entitled to access every space in the world.
I’m not here to argue for a ban on straight people in gay clubs; that’s discrimination, and clearly wrong. However I will ask you to a) rethink the entitlement you feel to occupy every space and b) respect that no matter how much you "love the gays," sometimes gay people need to be amongst their peers and therefore apart from you.
Below are 3 types of straight women I meet in gay clubs. Almost all of those women should not be there. Let’s refresh, K, ladies? K.
1. The Twirly Twit
Catchphrase: “But I just want to danceeeeeeeeeeeeeee.”
Dance in your room, boo. This is a gay bar, ergo a bar for gay people. Are you a gay person? No? Then your grotesque attempt at krumping is basically a stomp on the very foundations of this establishment. Sidenote -- if you feel stupid dancing you almost certainly look stupid dancing and, contrary to popular belief, gay people are actually very judgmental, at least when it comes to the arts.
I know what’s going to happen now.
“My girls and I just want to dance without being bothered by lame guys dancing up on us,” you’ll cry incredulously, eyes a’ flashin’ and gum a’ snappin’ with (what you think to be) righteous indignation, “Why is that so wrong?”
The devil isn’t in the sentiment, dear, it’s in the execution. Somewhere along the line -- and I’m not blaming you for this -- straight people got it in their heads that gays are super nice beams of sunshine unicorns and home décor sent to add color, acceptance, and unconditional love into their otherwise bland, khaki-hued lives.
This is not strictly true; we mostly put on that façade so you, our occasionally benevolent overlords, will give us things. Namely equal rights and maybe less in the way of beatings.
We don’t actually love all of you. We don’t even know you. We’re just ordinary people, who never get accidentally knocked up but have lots of sex and money. You wouldn’t attend a soccer club meeting only to mill about the field without actually playing, would you? Of course not, because even if you wanted to, it would be an odious inconvenience for those trying to get one in (HA) and no one, short of North Korean dictators, works that poorly with others.
So why are you in our gay drinking clubhouse dropping it like it’s revolting? If you aren’t playing the game (same-sex fucking) then get off the field/court. (Note: Please excuse the sports metaphor; I haven’t worn athletic footwear since learning how to forge my mother’s signature at age 11.)
I dream to be hit on so many women I have to plot an escape for it. That sounds amazing. But here I am at this wretched establishment, mostly to see friends but also maybe to dance up on a boo. And you (straight person) are in my way.
2. The Dreary Dilettante
Catchphrase: “It’ll be something new for the gang to do!”
You can hear her coming from a mile away: ankles curling in Jessica Simpson wedges, Forever 21 bandage dress tight that would make Herve Leger weep, followed by a sallow mob of valley girls and blue collar boys. She’s bored of the local jive and wants someplace cool, someplace quirky, someplace that’ll make her ladiesss squeal in glittery joy and the boysss roll their eYes in faux-macho discomfort.
So she brought the whole crew to a gay bar, and now they’re dominating the dance floor, boozing, laughing, and generally having a bomb-ass time at the expense of everyone else’s bomb-ass time.
Gay bars are not your gilded menageries. Gay people don’t go to gay bars for straight people to gawk and laugh and be shocked over. We go to gay bars to have a moment or hour or night away from never ending waves of straight cultural dominance pitching harshly in the world at large. Underneath the glitter and the go-go dancers lies a purpose, a need for unity, a desire for respite from a culture that is not ours -- the straight culture that dominates every culture in every city in every state in every country.
Why are you taking that from us? Why must you colonize a rare part of the world that do not belong to you? Is it really so terrible, so discriminatory, of me to ask you not go certain places designated for use by a group that does not include you? Is any separation from you (a majority) by us (a minority) to be perceived as an insult? Can’t it be just a simple truth: the truth that everyone needs a place of their own, and not every place can or should be owned by you?
3. The Acceptable Infidel
Catchphrase: “But my gay friend wants to go.”
You are permitted to enter. Be grateful, and do try to make yourself presentable. Feather earrings are beyond over. Beanies are good.