Last night my friend hosted a party, and I had a lot of fun*…this is a friend I don’t see very often, so I was happy to see her and other friends who I don’t see a lot due to various scheduling conflicts and so forth, and of course I met some cool new people. Anyway, there were two conversations that were really interesting to me.
My friend (who happens to be gay) mentioned to me that he thought the other gay guys who were present thought he was straight. So he asked me to tell him honestly whether in my opinion he came across as gay or straight. And I told him that while I have always known he is gay, it’s not something that immediately jumps out about him…I mean it’s not like he has short shorts, roller skates and a pride t-shirt….which most people usually don’t have…I don’t want to insult the reader by explaining stereotypes that I think we’re all aware of. So that kind of changed into a conversation about well, how are people able to tell if someone’s gay or not? That thought occurred to me after seeing the movie Milk** with another friend, and she asked me after the movie how in the very beginning Harvey knows that Scott (James Franco) is gay when they walk past each other in the subway. We weren’t able to reach a conclusion (neither friend nor I)…maybe it’s just an innate thing that people can sort of sense? I don’t know…but my friend and I (the one at the party, not the one I saw Milk with) did have a good conversation about that and also about identity…like how people may think that being gay is the only thing that defines that person when people are defined by so many things all at once…I mean I am not gay myself, so I clearly have no idea what it’s like or what people go through in terms of coming out/people being assholes/that sort of thing, but nobody would ever think that being straight is what totally defines a straight person so why would you think that about someone who’s gay? Regardless of what group we are describing, gay people, black people, Jewish people…the operative word is PEOPLE and people are complicated.
Meanwhile, we also had a discussion and race and evolution. This girl was first talking about some experiment done with genetic mutations on flies and from this experiment (can’t remember the details of it, sorry) it was concluded that it would take over 1 billion years for a genetic mutation such as different skin colors in humans to evolve into a trait, but humans as they are today have only existed for approximately 1 million years. So then she was talking about that show about what would happen to the Earth if people just vanished and nothing was maintained, and that after however many million years (possibly hundred thousand- don’t feel like looking it up) there would literally be no trace of us. So she was thinking, that maybe there had been humans just like us that lived billions of years ago and had technology, and infrastructure, yadda yadda, and they disappeared for whatever reason, leaving the “cavemen” as stragglers, who then regrouped and became what people are now, and therefore that explains the different races existing (as in allowing enough time for those traits to develop). All I have to say is she must have been confused about something…I am not a scientist, but I don’t think experiments on flies necessarily correspond to humans…and I don’t think people just like us lived billions of years ago because there would be fossils and other evidence…plus the Earth wasn’t like it is now back then…it would have been uninhabitable.
Anyway, cool party and those two discussions stood out to me.
*Taking 5 Tylenol before the party, then guzzling 3 beers and smoking will end your fun after a few hours…I think it was the Tylenol that really did me in.
**Excellent movie that I think everyone should go see.