William Estep

My journey to retire and sail. Writing, reading, technology, programming, photography, coffee, equality, sailing, and the oxford comma.

Common Questions

Category: Equality
Tags: writingvideo

People are funny. Most folks require a certain comfort level to ask certain questions. But coming out on your blog does encourage those close acquaintances or friends to ask questions. That’s cool. So here are the most common couple of questions.

By the way, I've noticed including certain words in a blog title, such as big, ass, gay, and party generates an interesting array of visitors to the site. I'm not sure what they are hoping to find :-) but I hope they are not too disappointed.

Probably the number one question I've been asked over the years is,

When did you know you were gay?

That's a tough question. That's like asking someone when did you know you was heterosexual. Maybe a better way to deal with the question is talk about when did I know there was a difference in the way I felt toward others and the way my peers did.

Probably around the same time that others started noticing girls. I can't say that I first started noticing the boys. What I did notice was how folks were dividing into distinct groups, the cool kids, the not-so-cool kids, the post- puberty kids, those too short, or too tall, and I didn't fit into any of these distinct groups.

One of the blog posts trying to respond to that preacher in North Carolina, had a funny and accurate explanation. I'm paraphrasing, but he encouraged any readers to think about what sets your private bits tingling. Did you learn to do that? Do your hormones respond because of a lecture you heard, or a book you read? Probably not. Silly, right? It is no different for me. We just find different people attractive.

The big challenge is dealing with these feelings alone, in the mid-80’s, in the mid-west where these sorts of things are just not discussed.

Do you think you was born that way?

Here's a fun video that talks about this question:

Personally, I do. But I also don't think the answer makes any difference one way or another. Seriously, what does the answer change? Nothing. It only serves to lend credence to the folks who think there is a deserved stigma or negativity associated with being gay.

Anyone who has seen Hedwig knows the 'Origin of Love' song.

The song is based on a story from Plato's Dialogs. Yes, Plato. That Plato, the one from 400 BC Athens who penned the words of Socrates. In Symposium, he wrote all these great stories, imagining what the greatest minds ever would say if they got together over dinner and drinks and tried to define love. When it is Aristophanes turn to talk about love, he spins a creation tale imagining a world of 4 legged creatures, and how the gods split them in half. Now these 2 legged creatures wander the earth looking for their other half.

That’s the pain
Cuts a straight line
Down through the heart
We called it love.

I like this story. It speaks of the hunger we feel for love and companionship, not just the carnal desire to procreate. And before anyone asks, no I don’t believe the story. Don’t be daft. It’s a story folks. Don’t believe everything you read.

That’s it for the common questions.


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