The lights were dim and the music was loud. People smelt of booze and smoke while their eyes oozed desire. On the dance floor were bodies touching and crotches rubbing. Near the toilet were people waiting with their hands held. From the toilet, nobody was getting out alone. Everybody had somebody to accompany them be it on the dance floor, on the bar table or in the toilet. The place was a gay bar. And it was the first time as a man that I was sensing predatory vibes from other men.
Two months back, after gulping on more beer than I usually drink, that night I agreed to go to a queer bar with my friend. She was into women and so was I. But out of sheer curiosity, we decided to explore this alternate world that exists around us, but we rarely dive into it. We entered the bar and several pairs of lustful eyes began undressing me. Adding to my insecurity was my long wavy hair that was somewhat misleading in that particular environment. No wonder guys were eagerly finding chances to rub their crotches against my ass. That made me realize what an average woman regularly faces when she goes in public transport, on road and in every other place where men are in her vicinity.
I went to the toilet and unapologetically a guy entered inside along with me. He asked me whether I was top or bottom and I answered that I was none of them and told him that I was not into guys. But he dismissively said I appeared to be a bottom. He understood that I was in there to pee for real; he left me alone after washing his face. And I then peacefully peed.
After a few more bottles of beer, my friend and I went to the dance floor. A guy joined us and another guy joined specifically to dance with me. His rear was touching my front but I didn’t hesitate. Alcohol lets you lose your inhibitions and do things that you would otherwise never do. After a few minutes, the party was joined by transgender folks who had cigarettes dangling in their mouths. They were the feminine energy that some guys were looking up to. ‘They were shemales,’ one guy whispered in my ear. Somewhere in my gut, I knew that this would be a memorable night.
I was being winked at. I received more hugs than I could count. The more I felt pecks on my cheeks, the more I was reminded of those guys’ innocence. Some guys were outright threatening while others were sweet and polite. I again went to pee and this time too, a guy joined me. After looking at my discomfort, he asked to hold my phallus. When I refused, he left after giving me a hug and making a failed attempt at kissing me.
I had known about the queer community and had been into their events before, but that day opened a new world in front of my eyes. The gay stereotypes that mainstream media portrays are an unclear and misleading picture of this community. There were guys who weren’t limp wristed or outlandishly effeminate. Most guys were just like every other guy. There are things that we are born with and there are some things that we choose. And being categorized as a criminal for loving the person of your same sex is inhuman and unjust.
In that bar on that night, there was no shame, no taboo and there were no boundaries to hold back one’s desires. The area of human sexuality is complicated and if some like-minded people get together and do what they find pleasurable and nobody is getting harmed in that process, it makes sense to leave them alone. I wish that day soon arrives when we love the way we do without the fear of being labelled and judged. That night was indeed a memorable night. Some guys thought I was playing hard to get but honestly speaking, I wasn’t there to play.
- My Experience as a Straight Man Attending a Gay Party for the First Time - October 31, 2017