TO BE GAY, CLOSETED AND A HOMOPHOBE

TO BE GAY, CLOSETED AND A HOMOPHOBE

At fourteen years of age, I graduated from Primary School about four years ago, and since then, I have lost contact with most of my classmates.

However, word eventually got to me a few weeks ago that my set would be having a reunion of sorts at a park. I received my invitation with some reluctance, because I hate crowded spaces – except of course I am the object of attraction. Anyway, I eventually set aside my reservations and went for the reunion, but after four years, I was not about to let those children see me the same way they last saw me. I pulled up looking like I was attending a red carpet event, in my full palm angels joggers lined with a rainbow-coloured strip of cloth and white Nike Air Force One. I also took along with me my Pomeranian dog, the adorable little fluff-ball wearing a bling collar. I felt fabulous and we looked fabulous.

Now, because of my struggles growing up gay, I adopted something of a snobbish personality, which really is a wall to keep people out and my vulnerabilities in. As the years have passed, I have become unapologetic about my walls, and at the get-together, I stayed very aloof, saying little and ensuring those who came to ooh and aah over my dog didn’t tarry for too long. She is after all a very expensive breed.

At some point in the afternoon, I settled down at the far end of the park, some distance from the rest of the crowd of rowdy teenagers, put on my airpods and began listening to music while I watched my dog as he played in the grass nearby.

Then I felt a tap on my back, and I turned around to see who had dared interrupt my concert with Nicki Minaj. And behold, it was the disarming smile that I set my eyes on first. I quickly recognized the owner of the smile; I’ll call him Emmanuel, one of the hottest boys in my class.

“Diego, how far?” he enthused. “Long time o! You’ve forgotten me na.”

“When last did you remember me?” The retort came out from my mouth before I could stop it. I really do not like when people say things that make a separation seem like one person’s fault; communication is a two-way street.

“Ah, sorry o, no be fight,” he said with comic contrition.

I was supposed to laugh, no doubt. But I didn’t. And I didn’t say anything. I didn’t have anything to say.

So, an awkward moment descended between us, and then I made to plug my airpods back into my ears.

“So, um,” he said then, “I just came to tell you that we are playing truth or dare, and we want you to join in.”

“OK, I’ll be there shortly,” I said.

As he walked away, I put my dog back in his doggy carrier and walked over to where the rest of the set was. They were seated on mats spread out on the grass, and soon the game began. There were truths and there were dares, and it was actually fun.

Until it was my turn and upon choosing truth, the girl who was facing me asked if I was in a relationship; I said no.

And just then, Emmanuel interjected out of nowhere, “He is homo na. Can’t you see that he does like a girl?”

I was shocked. My entire body froze and both heat and cold blew through me. The rest of my classmates had burst out into laughter, while I located Emmanuel with a furious stare that shot many arrows into his soul.

“First of all, I don’t know what me being effeminate has to do with being in a relationship. Secondly, why should I be in a relationship when I can’t even take care of myself financially,” I found myself defending. “Besides, I believe relationships are something to be taken seriously, and I am not at all in the frame of mind. And effeminacy” – I turned to say icily at Emmanuel – “is not always a sign that someone is gay.”

“Don’t mind me joor,” he said with a smirk. “It was just a joke.”

“A joke?” I scoffed. “Please, never try for a career in comedy.”

“Someone cannot play with you again?” he asked jocularly.

But I was not assuaged. I had gotten really irritated by what he said and by the fact that the others had laughed (at me). I got up and returned to my former position, all the while silently fuming about why I bothered to come to this event.

At about 4pm, the party was winding down and people were starting to leave. I was checking for a ride on my uber app when Emmanuel walked over to me and asked how I intended to go home. I told him and he asked if he could tag along. I very briefly considered saying no. But hey, I’m snobbish not wicked. I told him okay.

Thirty minutes later, my ride called me and soon, we located him. Emmanuel and I got into the back and I placed the doggy carrier between us. Then I took out my phone and began reading the day’s updates on Kito Diaries.

“What are you reading?” Emmanuel asked.

I started saying, “Kito –” And then, I stopped and said, “Nothing, never mind.”

But the devil in him wouldn’t let him rest; he snatched my phone from my hand, and as I protested, he glanced at the screen.

He saw something and then said it out loud. “LGBT…” He turned a frown to me. “LGBT… Isn’t that a thing for these homo people?”

I immediately got defensive. “Yes? So?” I spat.

“So you are gay, abi?” He gave me an appraising look. “You are even wearing that their sign…” He nodded at the rainbow-coloured strip of cloth that lined my sleeves and the side of my trousers.

I felt riled. I was also very conscious of the driver seated in front, looking suspiciously quiet, like he was suddenly paying attention to our conversation.

“You’ve started with your foolishness again, eh?” I snapped at Emmanuel. “First, it was me being effeminate, now this. Since when did reading an LGBT article make anyone gay? And so, I’m supposed to reject a fine piece of designer brand just because of what you think?”

“I don’t know for you o,” he said. “All I know is that being homo is sin.”

“And what is sin?” I queried.

“The thing people do that is offensive to God,” he replied.

And I proceeded to lecture him on how sin is a choice people make, while homosexuality is not. “God made the homosexuals the way they are and we are all created differently,” I told him. “And as you judge, remember that Jesus loves us all.”

“Hmmm, okay o,” he said in that manner that showed that he’d barely heard anything I said.

I didn’t care. I was so done with his presence. I just wanted the day to end, so I could go back to existing without Emmanuel in my universe. Maybe we would see in another reunion another four years from now. That is, if I even go for it.

And then, Emmanuel did something very unexpected.

He stealthily placed his hand on my thigh, while casting a furtive glance at the driver, and ran his fingers caressingly over my lap.

When I directed a look of shock at him, it was to see him smirking at me. By God, he was seriously fine as fuck.

“I have always liked you, you know,” he said in a very low tone. “Even back in school, I have always been attracted to you.”

And that was why he had sought to embarrass me all day today? I thought with some annoyance.

Immediately after that thought came another one, more sinister. What if this was a trick? What if he was employing another means to further embarrass me?

I very calmly picked up his hand from my thigh and returned it to him.

Then I looked coldly at him and said, “Listen to me carefully, Emmanuel. I don’t know what your game has been with me today, but if you try what you just did – if you try any of this nonsense with me again – I will ask the driver to stop this car and have him throw you out of my ride. Am I clear?”

He looked at me.

I looked at him.

He nodded, apologized and then stayed quiet for the rest of the ride until we got to his place. We stopped before his gate and he came down, mumbled a good night to me, which I graciously returned. And then, we were off. And only then did I permit myself to wonder if he was truly gay. And if he was, what sort of struggle was this when someone is gay, closeted and a homophobe?

Is life not too short to be all three?

Written by Mitch’s Biggest Fan

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  1. Ken
    September 13, 07:57 Reply

    He’s very gay. Well, gay and stupid. They come in plenty numbers. Even the ones that used to secretly beg for sex back in school will now be pretending they are against homosexuality. God punish all of una.
    Surprisingly, for someone who claims to be snobbish, diego is quite decent and accommodating. Some of us would have left a palm print on his face in that car.

  2. Mitch
    September 13, 08:17 Reply

    ??????????
    Ohmaighod!
    Child, you have seen things.
    And, I must applaud you on your composure. It’s a hard thing to have, especially around people who are intent on fully being jackasses.

  3. Black Dynasty
    September 13, 08:24 Reply

    You handled yourself well tbh, at that age I’m not even sure what I’d have done.

  4. Eric
    September 13, 08:33 Reply

    Had a similar experience with a guy at Uni few years ago. He kept on preaching to me about how homosexuality is a sind and against God’s ways. Long story short, I met him again this year and we’ve been having sex occasionally. Lol. He still doesn’t agree he’s gay or bisexual. He just wouldn’t accept it.

  5. Dillish
    September 13, 08:41 Reply

    Sorry to digress a bit

    Have you all noticed the recent updates in susan-ade coker’s rant Facebook group concerning homosexuality?

    She really is shaking tables.

    Dear Mitch biggest fan, I love the way you handled the situation you found yourself in. Dude is gay no doubt but do be careful

  6. Sadiq
    September 13, 08:47 Reply

    I just can’t fathom why some people will not just mind their business. Imagine, the guts he had to snatch your phone and then making those derogatory comments before proceeding to want to seduce you. He’s lucky I wasn’t the one.

  7. God Queen of DRAGONS
    September 13, 18:28 Reply

    Dear friend.
    I must applaud your composure,if I was the one, hmmm I would have scratched his stupid mouth.
    He even have the liver to touch u! Hmmm MAD OH!

  8. Malik
    September 14, 07:50 Reply

    “Is life not too short to be all three?”

  9. Jinchuriki
    September 14, 08:14 Reply

    This wasn’t easy to read. I almost slapped Emmanuel 22 times.

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