Friday, April 30, 2004

The Truth about being Single

I usually throw out the Style section if I buy the Sunday Times, but I was delighted to read a gutsy cover article by Shane (she) Watson called The Truth about being Single.

In addition to numerous references to Sex and The City and what to do next, I particularly like this:

According to the myth, there is the real world and then there is the world occupied by single girls and gay men. In S&G world, you spend all your money on cashmere and candles and white furniture. You eat salad for lunch and buy fresh flowers every day. It’s the latte lifestyle — me and my laptop in my local designer cafe

As mentioned before, women face a harsher ticking sound from their biological clock. On the other hand, some ageing men actually believe they're still as gorgeous as David Beckham. What delights me about Shane's article is that she demonstrates that women are at least thinking, while men are only just still wanking.

It is particularly amusing that Shane's article is in the Style section, because like in the Reagan years, the Millenium era has been all about Style with little substance.

Where this meant aspiring to the Lifestyle, it means you were also achieving a life without substance.

The gay lifestyle is at endemic proportions still, eg. young men in Manchester still pushing the limits of following their "Queer as Folk" models. In London, the gay scene has long been hijacked by fatuous publications such as BOYZ and QX, which address very little about anything other than sex and music. I've had the Boyz editor, David Hudson at my dinner table in the past, and I think it's about time you used your brain, David, you great big lunk...

The first thing you should know is that being single makes you unbelievably selfish. , says Shane Watson, and what she hasn't followed up on is that, even when you end up in a relationship, you haven't a foggy clue about how to conduct one. Look at the number of struggling couples there are out there, even the ones with young children.

I used to loathe being single, but now I'm sad to say I'm learning to be selfish. In 15 continuous years of being "partnered", what perturbed me the most was that too often I was confronted by single gay men who would either be secretly envious or uncomprehendingly bewildered or both, of what it must be like to be in a partnership where existed some elements of Love and Duty. The non-existence of environmental support for a relationship is probably worse than that endured by straights, but not one that will be solved by mere legitimisation of Gay Marriage. What was even worse was witnessing the constant denial by single gay men that their lives were anything other than FAB, GREAT, and in today's kiddie parlance, HAPPY, SANE and SORTED.

In this case of social truth, once again, gay men have needed the women to lead the way.

While women are needed to have children, and they know it, I wonder how long it will take for gay men to wonder what they are needed for, and how the hell will they ever learn it?

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