September 1998

What's On Your Mind? or (one of the almighty cliches) "The Dog Days of Summer"

Welcome to Joe's Column, Notice There Is No "P" In It. Let's Keep It That Way.

Well, I'm sorry to everyone that was looking forward to my column last month, there was a lot of stuff going on and I didn't get the column done on time. So sue me.

I was going to write about one of my favorite U2 songs for my second column, but after thinking about it for a while I decided that that wasn't really what I wanted to talk about and communicate to all the young gays out there. I might write about it another month, at a better time. Maybe when U2 releases their next album...This month I felt that I should just write about what's on my mind.

In the time between my last column and this one, I've told another friend I was gay, become depressed, made a friend, finished summer school, gained another full year of life, gotten an issue of XY, and become increasingly aware and intolerant of people who don't like gays. Somehow I'm going to have to talk about all these topics and show how they relate to being gay. Here it goes...

My summer has been somewhat of a social life disaster. This, I thought, would be the best summer to come along in quite a while. I would hang out with my friends, make some new ones, get used to my new school, and just generally have a good time. But instead this summer has been rather boring and uneventful. Just another summer of sitting around, crying about not having good friends, and being shit on.

First, I took an inventory of my friends. George, who I talked about in the last column, Bill, who is really cute, and a nice guy at heart but can really piss me off, and well that's really it. Those are the two people that I would like to be around at any given moment in time. But as it turned out, my perception of both of them is that they can easily just forget to care about their friends.

George has been away, or unavailable, or just in a goddamn bad mood most of the summer. Bill has been the same. Vacation for a month, here for a while but doesn't call me, vacation, not call me for the week he's back, vacation. And freaking on and on.

By the way, I love both George and Bill dearly. I don't think either one of them means to be so inconsiderate, and I don't think they know how much it hurts me, but I just get a LITTLE upset at them sometimes...

Another by the way: I told Bill I was gay a while ago, near the beginning of July before he started making me sad. At first he didn't believe me. But after a week he was COMPLETELY cool with it. Now I can't see a difference between our relationship and any other friendship he has. After he saw "Saving Private Ryan", I remarked that I hoped Matt Damon looked good in the movie, or else I wasn't going to see it. He replied, "yeah, he looked pretty good. But he was only in it for like the last 45 minutes. Ben Affleck looked pretty good though..." Bill's sexuality is up for grabs now. I'm leaning towards thinking he's bisexual but doesn't fully understand it yet. I'll try to help him...

Back to my point: And because of George and Bill being away and other obvious problems that lots of 14 year old guys have, I have been really depressed. Sometimes I just feel like I am so weighted down I literally fall down and just lie on the ground and think. It's not like I'm going to kill myself or anything (not something to joke about...just check out Chad's World at www.den.net) but I just generally feel bad about myself. Either it's the fact that I'm slightly overweight, feel friendless, gay, or whatever that's causing it, I am usually depressed.

Because of being depressed and acting gay, the people in my summer school class mostly shunned me. Except for the people who are generally regarded as being "not cool". An interesting fact though, is that in most situations I am the only person who is welcome in all cliques, I consider myself quite a diplomat. Anyway, my summer school experience was alright, but it wasn't very confidence-building considering that it was an algebra review math class with mostly eighth graders-to-be in it who seemed to know more that I did and seemed to think and give me the impression I would not "fit in" at the school next year. Fuck them. Fuck them all. I don't need this you fucking morons!!!! *sigh* "Breath in, breath out. It's OK Joe, calm down..."

By the way, if you hadn't noticed, I am no longer 13, I am now 14. Update your bookmarks.

After I wrote my last column I got a great amount of email, most of it good, in regards to my column. (If you emailed me please be patient, I'll email you all back soon, I was a little shaken by a guy posing as a 16 year old, that I found out ran a porno site, and then THREATENED me.)

GUESS WHAT? Right after I finished that last paragraph George called me! Yippee! He just got back from Wyoming, and he called ME, and he was really nice on the phone too! Yay. Maybe he's not such a dickhead after all...

Anyway, yet again, back to my point. I got a really cool email from this guy named Chris (name changed to protect the friendless) who is the same age as I am and is facing the same sorts of problems and stuff. It makes me really happy that we have the Internet. Chris' emails mean a lot to me. Sort of like when you know someone is having the same problems you are, you feel better.

Guess what else? The other day I walked into a Borders bookstore by myself and found myself slapped in the face with the fictitious-sounding XY magazine. Could it be real? A magazine for young gay guys such as myself? Well, a whole lot of nerve and $5.95 of my hard earned (not really...) cash later I found out that yes, there was such a magazine.

Straight girls with your teeny-bopper 'zines eat your hearts out! I have a magazine that has guys ten times cuter than any from your mag (except my fav. Matt Damon...) and they're GAY. Hehe. It also has articles about real stuff, not just homemade zit removers.

Attention all gay teens: Head to your nearest Borders and buy this magazine, you'll be glad you did. No one's going to belittle you for buying it, just stand tall and give 'em your best "Yea, I'm gay, wanna make something of it?" look and buy the f**king magazine.

In fact, the woman at the register gave me a feeling that she was somehow proud of me for buying this magazine. Or maybe it was just the adrenaline pumping through my veins...

Now that I've gotten all of "Joe's Summer Story" out of the way, here's some real gay content, minus the soap opera stuff. Well, most of it anyway...


I'm tired of all the people out there who think that homosexuality is "something sick" to use the words of my dear little cousin Kevin who at 5 years old, when asked (not by me) what "gay" means he responds: "It means happy, or something sick."

I'm sitting here sobbing thinking that my little cousin, who loves me so much, could think that I'm sick because I like guys. I'm sitting here sobbing because Bob Dole hates me, because "Personally," he thinks "homosexuality is morally wrong." I'm sitting here sobbing because when I make a joke about the way straight people try to act gay, one of the people I know (not a friend anymore) says, in a joking manner, "Noooo Joe, come back from the dark side!!!!" FUCK YOU. And I get this from a person who thinks that people are anti-feminists if they say that something is "bitchin'". Someone who pretends to be for human rights. The last time I checked, I was human, but since I'm gay, I'm on the dark side? WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT ALL ABOUT?

What's on *your* mind? There's nothing I enjoy more that listening to people like me, so fire off an email to joe728@hotmail.com if you want. "This is Joe, I'm Listening."

This has been a Gay Teen Production.. This is Generic Joe sayin' "Mahalo!"

'Till Next Month my friends...


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