A few years ago, Dan Savage did this great NPR piece slamming gay men who hate sissy guys. Sissy guys are great, Dan said, they kicked ass at Stonewall and offer a nice alternative to Abercrombie & Fitch hegemony. It cemented my opinion of him as someone who Gets It. Now he’s devoted a column to advice for queer teens from queer grownups (http://www.theonionavclub.com/savagelove/index.php?issue=4125). Because I was too much of a slacker to write in myself, here’s my own short list of Things I Know Now That I Wish I Knew Then:
- If you are a girl who spends most of her time pining for sissy guys, you might not just be a fag hag. You might be a lesbian. That slightly masculine, slightly feminine blurriness that’s so hot in your musical theater-lovin’ R.A. might be just as attractive in a chick.
- Someday there will be a sitcom called Will & Grace. It will be funny for a couple of years, then it will suffocate in its own schtick for the next four or five seasons. But it will prove that that comforting sitcom shininess—that bigness, that confident coolness—are not off limits to gay folk. You may want to shun those qualities later, but it’s nice to have access first.
- That girl on drill team who said she’d do Madonna was not hyperbolizing in order to make a point about her fandom. She’s bi, and she would do Madonna. That popular girl who wears funky hats and is really, really close to that other popular girl is a dyke. When you see her on the street in West Hollywood years later, she will still be more beautiful and popular than you.
- Following the rules only gets you so far.