From time to time, T and I have met people using CraigsList. We have placed a variety of ads, but they span a pretty narrow range, generally communicating a bit about who and how we are, and a bit about who and what we tend to like. While CL is hit or miss, we’ve had better luck there than anywhere else in meeting people whom we like and whom we want to have sex with or near (far better than either SLS, which is populated by people who seem to be looking primarily for body parts, or OKCupid, which is populated primarily, but not exclusively, by very single people).

Recently, we got a response from a “former burlesque dancer,” and her husband. Her reply was generally well written, but was a bit unclear. Did they want just a man? A couple? I couldn’t tell. She described her husband as bi, and concluded, “If this is interesting to you, write back a little more about yourself and we will send a photo, arrange a meeting, ect. [sic]”

My concern was that, in this particular world, I’ve learned that men who describe themselves as “bi” tend to mean, “… I want to suck cock or have my cock sucked or both,” rather than, “I’m bisexual.” In the past, I had described myself as “bi,” or “bi-curious” and had scared off a number of straight men who feared I was going to swallow their cocks if I got near them. In this instance, I wanted to be clear that I wasn’t a solution to her husband’s cock-hunger. Although almost two years ago, I wrote that I wanted to “revisit my experience of gay sex,” a year after that, I revisited that resolution, and confessed my ultimate straight-ness. Turns out, I’m pretty sure I’m just straight. I suppose that, in the right circumstances, I might be interested in sucking a cock, but those circumstances haven’t presented themselves in over 25 years. SO… I just didn’t want to lead anyone on.

I replied:

I’m not sure I understand: you responded to our ad for a … couple, but you seem to be proposing me alone to join you and your husband. In principle, I’m not opposed (it’s not inconsistent with my marriage), but I want to know more. I’m not particularly bi (I don’t mind incidental contact, but when push comes to shove, I’m straight), so if you’re looking for a playmate for the two of you, I’m definitely not your guy. N.”

I was trying to be considerate, to be clear about what we, what I, have to offer.

She replied:

Interested in playmates- plural- as in both of you, I should have said “write more about yourselves” as well, was not suggesting any homo behavior, just telling you who we are. However, if you are skittish about homosexuality, we’re probably not the couple for you. Hetero-normative values bore us to tears. I hope you get to suck a cock someday, it’s great.

“Bore us to tears”? I thought. Ick. And that last wish? I’m just not a big enough man to have let it go unanswered. I wrote:

Um, I’ve sucked a number of cocks, and I’m grateful for those who think it’s great. But in the end, I don’t really like it much. As I said, same-sex contact doesn’t squick me out. It is with utter familiarity with cock-sucking that I came to know myself as straight. My point wasn’t that I don’t want to be near a cock – it was that if you’re looking for someone who gets off on same-sex sex between men, I’m not your guy.

Minutes later, I read: “Ok, got it. You’re not the guy.”

I should’ve just moved on. Instead, I wrote, “Right. And you’re not the couple for us.” AND, I had gotten my back up, so I added, “People invested in their own superiority to others, whoever they may be, bore us to tears.”

Her reply would be unprintable if this were a family blog. But it’s not. She told me to “go fuck off.”

I’ve reproduced a lot of the exchange just because I think it raised a bunch of (to me) interesting questions.

I’ve written a little about this before, about the rampant homophobia/heteronormativity, the general presumption that women are bi, that men are STRAIGHT DAMMIT, and how this all really doesn’t do anything for me. I’ve also written that while I’ve sucked a few cocks, I’m straight. Not STRAIGHT DAMMIT. I don’t worry that sucking a cock will make me gay (nor do I imagine it would, free of worry), and bi men don’t scare me. If I had my druthers, I’d be more bi. I think cock-sucking is cool. It just doesn’t turn me on to do it. Or to have it done to me by a man.

What I was doing was attempting to be sensitive to the norm that exists in this (odd) world that, when a man describes himself as “bi,” generally what that means is, “I want to suck a man’s cock, and/or I’d like a man to suck my cock. And maybe to fuck him/be fucked by him as well.” This is all well and good, but I was crystal clear that this isn’t me. And it seemed considerate to let them know this, to avoid a circumstance in which a guy is hoping to suck a cock that he won’t get to suck.

None of this is because I’m “heteronormative.” It’s because I’m straight. Defining straightness down into homophobia or heteronormativity seems to me wrong. It’s actually one of my pet peeves about the current crop of pan-sexual hipsters: in the guise of tolerance, I frequently encounter its exact opposite.

In her final e-mail, in addition to telling me to fuck off, she wrote, “Trying be superior to someone you think is being superior, is hilarious.” And it got me thinking. Was I trying to be superior? I was definitely trying to be just a little clever, to turn her own snootiness around on her. But I don’t know if I thought myself (think myself) superior. What I thought, what I think, is that the world of burlesque pan-sexual hipsterdom is a) not my world, and b) not particularly appealing to me.

I don’t think this is superiority. If I were 22, I suspect I’d be all over that shit. I hope I’d be all over that shit. It sounds/seems fun. And it might be that had I developed my pan-sexual muscles at a younger age, rather than simply, um, experimenting, I might have developed differently. There was no peer pressure in my crowd to be bi; in the successor crowd to my crowd today? I suspect there is. And I don’t (exactly) think that’s a bad thing.

But that “heteronormative values bore us to tears” bit? I don’t exactly think myself superior to it. I just think it’s supremely unappealing.

To me.

It, um, bores me to tears.

To each her own.

To this (eminently Google-able) former burlesque dancer (whose identity I won’t reveal, because I’m a gentleman): I wish you well, and good luck in finding your quarry.


  1. This is a post I will have to come back and read a couple of times, as there is so much in here to consider. However, your exchange with the woman did bring a smile to my face. What kind of smile… I’ll let you guess 😉

    Rebel xox

  2. Food for thought. I think you did the right thing in asking for clarification – and I also feel that she was showing her assumptions in her response (in that she assumed you were straight because you hadn’t experimented; not that you were straight because you had and figured out exactly where you were most comfortable on the sexuality spectrum). I can definitely see why you got your back up!

    xx Dee

  3. If I received a response that said “Hetero-normative values bore us to tears” when I was politely clarifying, I might have been the one to tell ’em to shove it. I think that is supreme arrogance and superiority – as you say “to each their own”. Well done for your restraint for that long 🙂

  4. From what I have read I think you took the time at the beginning to communicate properly and be clear, sadly she did not do the same and jumped to a conclusion without investigating further. Her toe does appear to ‘snotty’ for want of a better word. However I guess finding out that you don’t click at this stage is much better than when you are all naked together


  5. I rather enjoyed reading this. As most of us older people know (like older than the hipster generation) being bi was not always a welcomed thing. The strait community fear it and the gay community hated it. I got flamed a lot for walking in the middle of the road.
    As for the whole modern homophobic issue, each person knows what they like and don’t like. Strait, gay or bi is a personal choice and shouldn’t be driven by peer pressure but by what feels right and good.
    Thank you for sharing this, its a lot to think on

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