What does a Hooters full of lesbians, a bus full of Princeton University alumni, and a beach full of dads have in common? Answer: me, stuck inside each anecdote, trying to figure out of the core of my cultural being, which is not simply a layer of heterocentricity.
What I said was simpler In one of my Bergamot Ink columns, “Why All Men Hate the Beach,” I was accused by some readers of being too narrowly heterocentric in my approach, and this has lead me to some militant introspection. In my small niche of being a dad with fair skin and too much to do (and a busy mind), my dream of a day-off isn’t laying in the hot sun for 12 hours.
I could have titled the essay “Why Many Men In Their 20s-90s Who Are Dads and Would Rather Spend the Day Not Baking in the Sun Hate the Beach” but it wouldn’t have been as funny. But as a over-educated, tall, blonde-haired, blue-eyed, straight American W.A.S.P. (half-A.S. and former P., actually), I was handed the keys to the late, great Western Kingdom simply by being born and turning out a heterosexual. I am the demographic that the world sees, goes after, and rebels against in popular movies and culture. The Avengers, the whole American Pie franchise, Good Will Hunting, Fight Club, anything starring Ryan Reynolds or Bradley Cooper all have circles around the privileged, warm, Venn Diagram center that is, well—me.
PHOTO: The Happy Rower