Author: Mark Bittlestone
Mark Bittlestone is a stand-up comedian and a very gay man, doing a lot of straight-up gay stuff.
So pride month is technically nearly over. Although, here in the UK, July is pretty much pride as well – Pride in London us July 2, Brighton (the UK’s gaytown) Pride is in August… so I think I can *just about* still get away with this as a blog topic.
Pride is an amazing time to celebrate but also a time when queer people can be feeling pretty vulnerable soooooooooo, in short, don’t be a dick.
1) Don’t ask why there isn’t a Straight Pride.
This shit is so dumb. Pride exists to celebrate people who, historically, have been consistently told they don’t deserve to exist. That label does not apply to straight people whose existence is affirmed everywhere, at all times, by everything. And also it would be so shit. Like floats of men doing DIY listening to Bon Jovi. Tbf that actually sounds quite hot, I would go??
2) Don’t tell us it’s inappropriate for children.
Children are exposed to straight nudity/sexualised language/relationships from day one: cheerleaders, dolls/Action Men figurines, innuendos in kids’ movies, their straight parents/caregivers/family members and how they act in front of them. I don’t think that seeing some old men wearing leather is going to scar them if they aren’t already. Unless it turns out it’s their grandpa in the S&M gear. Which it probably is tbf.
3) Pride is for everyone.
Be body positive this pride. The vast majority of us don’t have a six-pack’s but can still wear whatever we want and it’s not your place to judge. For example, I would have a six-pack if I didn’t get smashed up every Saturday night and then spend Sunday eating halloumi and drinking to get over my hangover.
4) Gays aren’t promiscuous.
I’m so sick and tired of hearing this. Even my close female friends wheel this out as if it’s gospel. Sure, there’s a subset of gay male society that is promiscuous. And maybe they shout loudly enough that a lot of people believe they represent the (w)hole community. But there are also many gay men who are in the closet, who are frightened by the stigma around gay sex, who have feelings of shame towards their sexuality or body, or who find it incredibly difficult to meet other gay people. In short, don’t be a cu*t, which includes not judging me, personally, when I AM really promiscuous.
5) Straight people should go too!
I really like it when my straight friends engage in queer stuff, whether it’s RPDR or coming to a queer comedy night where I’m performing. It would be amazing if one year they like got glittered up and headed into Soho (the gay heart of London) and danced and sang and fuc*ed at least one guy. Me?
For more from Mark follow him on Instagram here and check out some of his videos below!
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