Monday, June 29, 2015

How Blind Guys Handle Sausage Sightings

Dayton, March 2006

In gay communities, there is heavy competition for men who are disabled: blind, deaf, on crutches, in a wheelchair.    

Maybe being physically different makes you stand out in the crowd and seem more attractive.

Or guys fantasize about being your "knight in shining armor," protecting you from the bad things in the world.

Or they are hung up over their minor imperfection, such as belly fat or acne scars, and they believe that you will be more accepting. 

But however many guys clamor to go home with you, few are willing to stick around the next day, begin a romantic relationship, and participate in your daily struggles with accessibility and visibility.

So disabled guys tend to be a little leery of romantic overtures.  They may even try to scare you off by describing their daily maintenance routine on the first date.

That may have been a problem with my date with Tommy the Blind Guy.

I saw him at the Columbus Metropolitan Community Church one Sunday morning in March 2006:  In his 20s, shorter than me, pale, with short brown hair and a solid, muscular frame -- plus religious!  Three of the five traits I find attractive.  He walked arm-in-arm with a friend, so I assumed he was taken.  But during the coffee hour after church, the friend, Marcus, left him eating doughnuts by himself to cruise someone on the other side of the room.  Therefore, single!

How do you go about cruising someone who can't see you?  I went with a strong handshake and a deep voice, and it worked!

The next weekend, we saw The Libertine (yes, blind people go to movies), followed by dinner at a Mediterranean restaurant.

You would think that Tommy would be tired of being asked questions about "what it's like to be blind," but he told me in detail how he ate, how he shaved, how he found his way around a strange room.

It turned out to be less a date than a lecture from Blind 101 class.  The only interesting part was how he judged a guy's physical characteristics without having to reach out and touch them:

You had a strong handshake, so I knew you had nice biceps.
That doesn't really....

The angle of your voice when we're talking tells me your height and weight.
My height, maybe.  But my weight?
He guessed it within 10 pounds.

I can figure out how hung you are by listening to you in the bathroom.


Doesn't sound possible, but we went into the bathroom, and he did it!  Something to do with the force of the splash.

Other than the few magic tricks, I was a bit bored.

After dinner, we went back to the apartment he shared with Marcus.

Tommy was certainly passionate in the bedroom, but a romantic relationship requires more.  Did this guy have any interests, hobbies?

The gym?  There have been several blind bodybuilders, like Greg Rando  Not really.  I do a little jogging.

Pets?  Seeing eye dog?  No.  I get along fine with a cane.

Religion?  I go to MCC for the companionship, but I'm not really into it.  

Paranormal?  You believe in that nonsense?

Literature?  Dickens?  Stephen King?  I don't read a lot.

Um...politics?  Not really.

Music?

That got a rise out of him.  Oh, I love Cher, Madonna, Barbra Streisand...


Oh...I don't really listen to pop music.  It's so heterosexist, all about girl! girl! girl!

Rihanna, Gwen Stefani, Kelly Clarkson.

Any classical in that mix? A little Mozart here and there?

Jessica Simpson, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez...

Opera? Jazz?  I'll even take show tunes...

Christina Aguilera, Carrie Underwood, Beyonce...

Ok, how about a male performer?  At least somebody for me to look at -- Justin Timberlake, maybe?

The Pussycat Dolls, Ciara, Fergie...

We didn't have a second date.

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