Yes, if you have not figured it out already, I am “different.” And proudly so. What makes me different? Read on.
There are a number of things that make me different from most other men (and women). These things include:
* I am the only one in the world without a smartphone. Seriously… I just returned from a business trip. Everyone, I mean everyone everywhere — waiting in airport gate areas, walking to and from (anywhere), in restaurants, at meetings — everywhere, everyone had his (or her) face planted in one of those things. Yep, I was the ONLY one without one. I looked at people in the face and actually asked, “How are you?” with a caring expression. Like I really wanted to know and have a — get this — voice conversation with another human! Wow! Who woulda thunk? Sorry… a bit of a rant… but it really bothers me that people use their sillyphones so much and avoid actually speaking with one another.
* I wear boots. Always. Well, at least when I am clothed and out in public. Yeah, I admit that when I am at home cuddling with the Spouse, I do not wear boots — just socks (and other clothes; don’t get any ideas.) I wear dress boots to work, cowboy boots included; I wear motorcycle boots when I ride my Harley OR just any time I want, particularly when pavement is wet. I wear work boots when I do construction projects and work around the house and yard. You will never catch me wearing dorky dress shoes, sneakers, or the absolute nightmare: flip-flops.
* I wear leather garments often, even when not riding my Harley. I like how leather looks, feels, and wears. I like how leather keeps me warm in cool/cold weather. I like how leather provides a protective shell against the elements. I like how durable leather is. I like how well-fitted, made-to-measure leather jeans or shirts fit. Leather projects a more confident, secure side of me that also works in reverse — wearing leather boosts my confidence too. I am puzzled by men who always worry about what other people may say or think about them wearing leather garments and/or boots. But I have blogged about those matters a lot here and will leave that for you to read at your convenience.
* I am gay, but the only flag I fly is Old Glory on the front of my house and back of my Harley. I behave and act like most other secure, confident men. There is a broad range of how gay men act and behave, just like there is a range of how straight men act and behave. I am definitely on the masculine side of the range and eschew effeminate behavior. It really bothers me that some TV shows that feature gay characters make those characters act effeminate and use clichés attributed to “gay speech.” Portraying gay men that way in public media furthers misconceptions and stereotypes about gay men to the point where most straight people think all gay men behave that way. What makes me who I am is that I am a masculine man who is comfortable in his own skin, but who also was born gay.
* I am in love with one man who even after knowing and living with me for twenty years agreed to marry me! Me! I am in love with my best friend who completes me. What a treasure I have with my man; my hunk; my snuggle-dude; my one-and-only. I know that I am not the only man who married another man and is happy. I just wanted to say that being married to the best guy-for-me on the planet makes me different (in a way), but only that my happiness shows in all I do when I interact with others anywhere.
* I do not like or enjoy: opera, Madonna, Cher, Lady Goo-goo GaGa, Rap or hip-hop music, drag shows, theater, gyms, sports (especially football and basketball), drinking wine or any form of alcohol, going out to eat, guns, hunting, dressing up, suits, dancing, or wedding receptions. So this blows all stereotypes out of the water both for gay men as well as straight men. I cannot be stereotyped. So there.
I could probably rattle on more and more, but I figure that this is enough. Yes indeed, I am different. Thanks to my Mom and Dad for raising me to be the secure, confident, and proud “different” man that I am.
Life is short: enjoy what makes you “you.”