Tuesday, March 22, 2016


So I'm sitting by a window, drinking coffee, reading the paper. A guy sidles up to me and taps my foot with his toe. He says "Hey there," and I look up, more than a little puzzled. He realizes he's got the wrong guy. When he leaves I have to laugh a little. That's not a gesture you use with just anyone.

It always surprises me when I'm mistaken for gay, because I think of gay men as being impeccably put together. Of course there are exceptions to every rule.

I look like my style icons could be Larry Fine, Bernie Sanders, and Harvey Pekar, so it's less surprising when I'm mistaken for Jewish.


susan said...

Being mistaken for someone else is always a bit unnerving. Many years ago a guy ran up to me when I was crossing a street in Toronto and lifted me off my feet while calling me 'Diana'. Then he took a better look, put me down and ran away. I was kind of sorry.

Maybe the guy at the coffee shop was hoping you were gay.. and Jewish.

Ben said...

I've been on both sides of this one. Sometimes I'll see someone I'm sure I know and approach them. But then they have no idea who I am. Now I may see a difference that I can pick out and I may not. But some subtle difference, mixed with the blank stare, tells me I was barking up the wrong tree. Can be embarrassing.

Well, I'm sure there's a market, so to speak, for gay Jews. Ginsberg seems to have done all right for himself.