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Walter Crasshole empties his fag bag and vents on the issues of the day. This month: will sleeping with a friend’s ex make him a gay cliché?
Want to meet?” The words forced a soft vibration into my pants pocket and I read them off my phone. They didn’t come from Gay Romeo or Grindr, but from Facebook. Let me back up a bit. The weekend before, my best friend, the guy who broke his heart and I had all been furiously dancing in the gritty, tightly packed halls of Tuntenhaus. I may or may not have kissed Heartbreaker in a haze of god-knows-what. The next day, my best friend gently reminded me that this happened, and not-so-subtly urged me to refrain from making it happen again. Then came the message from his ex. “Want to meet?” may sound ambiguous to some, but in gay talk, it never means “Let’s discuss future business opportunities” or even just “Let’s grab a beer.” It means: “Let’s fuck.” I had a crisis of conscience. Do I screw my best friend’s ex? And would that make me nothing but a gay cliché, living out the myth that everyone’s just sticking it to everyone else all the time, regardless of the consequences?
That got me thinking about how many clichés there are about gay sex and dating. But is it actually true what everyone says about us? I had to look back on my own history...
True or false: We’ve all basically slept with each other. I’ve slept with Billy, who’s slept with Georg, who’s slept with Lars (and so have I), who’s slept with Stan, who had a thing with Johnny, who dated Caspar, Alexander and Edward – all three of which I hooked up with in the summer of 2015. So, yeah, true.
True or false: Gays and relationships don’t mix, especially in Berlin. Monogamy is monotonous, goes the saying. But are we all actively avoiding finding boyfriends? Go into Möbel Olfe on any given night and hear Prince Charming prattling on about how he just wants someone to cuddle and love and watch Netflix with. Until he finds the night’s conquest. And the next. And the next. We all say we want it, but distractions make it hard to focus in Berlin. So, half-true.
True or false: It just takes one look. My punk rock friend Julia once told me she envied gay men for how seemingly easy it is for them to hook up with each other. It can happen in a matter of seconds – like my last hookup, which took place with zero dialogue beforehand. Our eyes locked on the dancefloor at Postbahnhof, and 20 seconds later we were locking the bathroom stall door behind us. So, true.
True or false: Gays are narcissistic, especially when it comes to dating. The trope of the narcissistic gay man primping in front of the vanity is nothing new. But in gay reality, narcissism doesn’t (always) play out in the mirror, but in the guys we date, who tend to look an awful lot like us. Bears date bears, jocks date jocks, you get the picture. When’s the last time you saw a five-foot hairy dude with a two-metre-tall German twink? So true, darling.
And what of my dilemma?
True or false: Gays have no code of ethics when it comes to whom they fuck. I’m no saint, that’s for sure. And Heartbreaker had definitely fired up my imagination, so to speak. But in the end, I guess I do have a heart. So... not true. I do need someone to tell all my other exploits to. One less hookup isn’t going to matter.