It’s been a while since I penned Poll a Lesbian. It’s not that I ceased being the go to girl for all that is gay around my workplace and my socially conservative ‘burb, it’s just that most of the questions I’ve received have been of the everyday, mundane sort, like, “What do gay people eat?”
What’s changed you ask? Well, nothing, really…and that’s the problem. Regular readers and followers on social networks know that of late I have been pretty vocal regarding the lack of support by national media and advocacy groups given that Colorado was on the brink of making solid progress in the path toward full civil rights for its LGBT community. Without that revealing light of public scrutiny, shined at just the right time when the opposition was vulnerable, the cockroaches were able to remain viable in the dark and eat up the clock on equality.
Now, I roll with the punches pretty well at work as to maintain some semblance of professional decorum, but I was a bit exasperated at all the bully tactics being deployed by the moral majority, and when I heard a workplace acquaintance in our ascending elevator lament all the drama surrounding the civil unions bill, I found it increasingly difficult to remain silent. Then, she did it, she used the ever popular “I have gay friends” disclaimer to justify her continued denigration of my Constitutional rights. My next couple of sentences to my captive co-worker are summed up by the Tweet that followed:
I was asked several times by others in my office to explain the injustice that transpired in my state. As I began to explain Senate Bill 2, the more than two dozen rights my partner and I would have gained had it been passed, and the political grandstanding by the majority party of the House, I saw most of those who asked begin to glaze over. The glaze gave me an idea, so now, when asked, I describe the dishonesty of the GOP and the failure of civil unions in the straightest terms I can:
It’s like enviously watching a friend enjoy the deliciousness of a box of warm Krispy Kreme doughnuts, “Hot Now”, from the establishment. When I ask for one, my friend says, “No.”
Now, I have been a good friend, always with the supportive shoulder and always contributing to whatever lame holiday-wrapping-paper fundraiser that friend’s kid pushes on me from the local under-funded public school. So as you can imagine I am a little taken aback by the refusal. Maybe I heard wrong…again, I ask for a doughnut. “No.”
“What!” I exclaim. “You have 27 doughnuts in that box…can’t I have just one?”
“No,” says my friend, “you really don’t need it.”
“What?” I ask, “But you are enjoying the sweet goodness of that inalienable confection.”
“Yes, but I work out,” she says.
“Well, I work out, too,” I respond.
“But not like I do,” she says.
“Yes,” I say, “exactly like you do. I’m not a member of your club, but I do cardio like you, I lift weights like you; for God’s sake, I’m healthy and a size 4. I should be able to have a doughnut when I want one.”
“No, “ she says licking her fingers one by one.
“Fine, I’ll go buy my own.”
“No, that’s not possible,” she says. “I told the proprietors to refuse you service…doughnuts are a gateway food, and to someone with your choice of alternative workout regimes this could lead to all kinds of unhealthy doughnut alternatives…bear claws, crullers, or God forbid *looks around and lowers her voice*, cream filled holes.”
“This is crazy!” I yell.
“Oh, honey,” she patronizes. “You know I’m your friend…but I believe you shouldn’t be allowed to eat doughnuts without participating in a normal workout routine provided by an acceptable establishment. Just think about the future and the health of your family.” She smiles, closes the box, and walks away.
Now, I was reiterating this analogy in the conference room before my web meeting started. I’m sure I was a little more animated than I should have been, and yes, this voice carries. About an hour later, when my meeting concluded, I was walking back to my office. A gentlemen I know to be quite Conservative in his politics sticks his head out of the kitchen and calls my name. I turn back in his direction and he says matter-of-factly, “You know, you really should have been given that doughnut.” Without another word, he goes back to making another pot of coffee.
I walk back to my office, and sit down. I smile as I think of the man in the kitchen and what he just said to me. Yes, my freedom to enjoy all the sweetness of life could be right around the corner if only the leaders of the establishment will just stop closing the box. Until then, I’ll keep exercising…or I’ll do what they do, buy my own damn franchise.