Eugene Weekly : Living Out : 9.27.07

Tearoom for Two
Not, NOT, NOT, NOT!! gay. Sort of.

Sen. Larry Craig is NOT GAY.

That NOT GAY man proves that you can solicit sex from people who use the same gender-segregated restroom you do, and still publicly affirm you’re NOT GAY. It’s your prerogative. Lots of NOT GAY men use men’s rooms to have sex with men. Whom does it hurt?

I understand the urge. I had anonymous restroom sex. Once. Sort of.

Years ago at the old Riv Room, our local gay bar, I confessed to my then-girlfriend my bathroom sex fantasy. I’d developed said fantasy before I’d acknowledged who and what I am and came out, which, unlike Sen. Craig, I and millions of LGBTQ people have found the guts to do. While my lesbian identity was still incubating, I frequented the bar with the man I was dating back then. I’d dance with him, check out the women and feign an overactive bladder. I’d dash to the women’s room, totally turned on imagining some big burly babe would barge in and seduce me.

It never happened. But I kept the fantasy alive. After my departure from Het-World, I spilled my desire to my girlfriend and, bless her accommodating soul, she agreed to play it out at that very bar.

Too bad I didn’t know then about Sen. Craig and the foot-tapping code. Think how much more thrilling the scene could have been. My girlfriend could’ve played the anonymous gal in the next stall. I’d tap. She’d tap. I’d swipe my hand under the divider. She’d flash me her cop badge. Wow. How hot would that be!

Things could’ve steamed up even more if I’d known to show her my card and say, “What do you think of this?” Imagine the added erotic crescendo if she’d cuffed me and carted me off to the pretend police station with me protesting, “But I’m a lesbian humor columnist!”

My bathroom sex fantasy enactment happened decades before the Idaho senator’s scandal exposed the secret how-to-get-sex-in-a-public-toilet code. But without lying to the media, I can assure you I only did it that one time. And it wasn’t for real. No cops, no guilty plea, no barrage of late-night TV jokes.

Poor Sen. Craig. He’s in the hot seat now. And for the wrong reason. It’s nobody’s business what he does when he’s doing his business. But it definitely is our business that he’s endorsed by the anti-gay American Family Association, Concerned Women for America and Family Research Council. He deserves our outrage for telling his colleagues that it’s “important for us to stand up now and protect traditional marriage, which is under attack by a few unelected judges and litigious activists.”

Larry Craig’s bathroom behavior is no biggie; it’s his U.S. Senate voting record that’s the real scandal. He voted in favor of the Defense of Marriage Act to deny federal recognition to same-sex marriages and permit states to refuse to recognize marriages of gay and lesbian couples legally performed in other states. He opposed expanding the federal hate crimes law to cover offenses motivated by anti-gay bias, and he voted against the bill that would have outlawed employment discrimination based on sexual orientation — which, by the way, failed by a single Senate vote.

Craig acted out his toilet fantasy god knows how many times and with a straight face still asserts he’s NOT GAY. Big deal.

But take note, people. He doesn’t deny he lied — to the police, the press, the good people of Idaho and to his wife. He doesn’t deny attempting bribery, and he certainly doesn’t deny he’s voted a kajillion times to strip away the civil rights of millions of Americans. He may be a screaming hypocrite, but he’s no screaming queen.

So Craig does T-room sex and claims he’s NOT GAY. If I wanted to hide in a closet, I could claim the same thing — how you gonna prove it on me? Maybe I just happen to have a wide stance.

Award-winning writer Sally Sheklow lives out her fantasies in Eugene.