Blags, as expected, The MailBLAG is off to a cracking start. This question comes from an anonymous source, whom I will creatively name at the bottom of the pasted letter below:
I am writing you today for advice for my friend. No I’m not writing you on my behalf, this is in fact an actual problem an actual friend of mine is facing. We will call said friend “Jason”. Here is the low-down: Jason recently received a dinner date proposition. Now, under normal circumstances both Jason and I would welcome opportunities that potentially allow love to flourish over a candle lit dinners. However, this particular proposal came from a one Ms. Joan Crawford. Sadly, not the real Joan Crawford. Instead, the fake-drag-queen version of Joan Crawford. She (he?) has asked him to accompany her (him?) to Harry Potter (drag queen) bingo and dinner. Clearly awesome activities under normal circumstances but unfortunately Jason does not want to go on a date with Joan Crawford. My question is this, how do you tell Ms. Crawford that you do not want to attend Harry Potter bingo and dinner without ruining the comical friendship you share with her (him?) Please help.
Girl whose gay friend isn’t into the drag queen version of Joan Crawford, from Jersey
Well, this certainly is a predicament, Girl whose gay friend isn’t into the drag queen version of Joan Crawford, from Jersey. I’ll do what I can. I’d also like to add that it’s actually fortunate that the real Joan Crawford didn’t ask Jason out, because Joan Crawford’s been dead for almost 35 years. That’s long enough to be a straight-up skeleton, even with modern embalming, I think. Unless she’s a mummy. But mummies are worse than skeletons. Flesh is one of those things where it’s got to be all in or all out. Anything in-between is really frightening. Moving on.
Firstly, I should explain that, as a result of some follow up correspondence with the question-asker, I know that Jason is gay. Normally that doesn’t matter to BLAG at all, but if he was straight, the whole “how do I turn down a drag queen’s proposition” would seem a hilarious, though easily solvable problem via the “I’m straight angle.” But, given that this is not the case, I’ll list some brilliant solutions to this problem. Starting with …
1. The “I’m straight” angle.
A lie? Yes. But I literally just said this works, if you can pull it off. Sometimes I have a hard time convincing people I’m straight (my paternal grandmother, for instance), so I imagine it’s got to be even harder when you’re lying about it. Plus, it counters the national, cultural and individual progress made by homosexuals across America to have to lie about sexual orientation, even after coming out in the first place. But getting out of a sticky situation like this often involves personal compromise and lies. If you can name any major life event that does not involve forcefully killing a part of who you thought you were in order to move forward, I’d like to hear it. I’m just saying it’s on the table. And a few more of these will probably involve lying, so quit reading now if you don’t have the stomach for it.
2. Ignore them until they give up.
Look, I’m not gay. But I’m incredibly insightful and empathetic. I’m adapting my own life experiences in an effort to aid you with yours. #2 is something that women do literally all of the time. At any given time, every single-woman worth her salt is ignoring the hell out of a guy that is interested in her until eventually his confidence is satisfactorily crushed and he simply gives up. There are women that are ignoring me right now. Sure, it makes me feel really bad. But it gets them the desired result, which is finding the path of absolute least resistance towards getting away from their problem. In their case, it’s me. In your case, it’s transvestite Joan Crawford. Is it cool to be using his real fake name in this? Whatever. Of course, this strategy is really only effective if you have no problem burning the bridge (or, rather, pulling an America and neglecting the bridge until it collapses into a river). If you want to stay friends, I don’t recommend #2, as it does breed resentment amongst ignorees, who would frankly much prefer a straightforward “no” so they can get on with their lives. Nothing feels worse than being ignored, but that only has to bother you if you give a shit about other people’s feelings. A lot of people do not, and it doesn’t appear to have any negative effect on their lives at all.
3. “I’m into dudes; you’re dressed like a lady.”
This, for me, is the most straightforward angle (so far), and it occurred to me most immediately. Jason, you’re gay, right? I’m assuming, therefore, that you are attracted to dudes. So, it seems all kinds of roundabout to be into dudes who are dressed like women. I don’t know you, maybe that’s a lie, but it doesn’t matter even if it is — I said there would be more lies. “It’s nothing personal, I’m more into guys that look like the Brawny Paper Towel mascot, you’re dressed like an actress from the 1920s.” Which brings me to my next strategy …
4. “You wear a costume all the time.”
This is a universally good reason to not want to date someone. If I hit on a girl while dressed like Boba Fett, she needs give me no special explanation as to why it’s not happening. That’s why I don’t dress like Boba Fett all the time, even if it’s what would really make me the most comfortable. Gay or straight, wearing a costume is a silly thing to do when it’s not Halloween, or if you don’t frequent high-class anonymous sex parties. Just say, “Dude, you’re a cool guy, but you’re dressed like Joan Crawford — and you’re not Joan Crawford.”
5. “Protecting” the “friendship”
This one is completely transparent, but it allows
the victim your friend to choose to believe the ruse that you don’t want to date them because you so value their friendship and would never risk it by complicating it with a way more awesome relationship that could involve sex. This one doesn’t really fool anybody, and the end result is that you’ll both pretend nothing’s changed for a little while and keep being “friends,” as you slowly drift away from one another. You, because it’s awkward, and he/she (not a tranny joke, I’m trying to open this advice up to everyone) because you existing makes them feel bad and because your inaccessibility has rendered you much less interesting to hang around with.
6. Being totally straightforward
Have a man to man (dressed like Joan Crawford) with this fellow. You’re flattered by his invite, but he’s just not your type. However, you respect him and would like to continue being pals and therefore do not want to dick him around with any bullshit. This is both the hardest and best option. Joan may react well, or very poorly. Either way, you can walk away knowing you handled the situation respectfully and like a grown up. And there’s a solid chance that, once Joan has had some time to cool down and process the information, he’ll accept your honesty and straightforwardness for what it is: honesty and straightforwardness.
Here’s the lesson: nobody likes rejection. But it’s coming one way or another. Not dealing with it head on is just procrastination and serves only to drag things out, and that’s not doing anybody any favors.
Or just go on the date, maybe bingo’s fun. I don’t fucking know.