A PanAfricanist Queer Womanist Collective
Apparently I have worse gaydar than the homophobes in my family.
This is not something I am willing to take very lightly.
Twice in one holiday I have been sitting in my cocoon of self knowledge only to be told by two separate family members that they have known for ages that I am not straight. And this is not counting the great ‘twitter outing of 2012’.
The conversations went a little something like this:
Family Member: So I have a question
Family Member: So are you…*thinks hard*…a lesbian?
Me: *Blink Blink*…
Family Member: (whips out phone to google terms) are you a lesbian or a bisexual? Cause it says here girl can be both.
Family Member: (googles more information on bisexuals) I thought so. Ok. Just needed to confirm.
All return to previous activities.
How? Who? What??
I have met many a gay person who was surprised by the fact that I had a girlfriend. Said things like ‘never would have guessed’
But not my family. They have known. Like soothsayers hailing from the island of Lesbos they have always known.
No signs were given. None of my friends that they know in this country are gay. I don’t have a particularly dykey way of dressing. I don’t even have the customary dreadlocks which is my own personal go to when it comes to gay-dar. I am a little strange but strange a gay person does not make.
Maybe it was the arguments about homosexuality that made them figure out that I was bisexual…
But if we are to go on that idea then I must also be Muslim, Somali, homeless and a little bit Canadian. And Buddhist on Thursdays.
I am perplexed. I have no idea how they beat me to my grand unveiling but it is all very unnerving. Especially as this is Kenya where being gay is merely a scary bad myth spread by white people who come to the country for ‘good times’.
Some of my fellow country men cant even say the word gay (my uncle refers to anyone in the LGBT community as ‘them’. As if we are creatures from the deep.)
We stumble into the few gay bars we have and are shocked time and time again of the existence of gay people.
We mumble incoherently about the ills of being a *shudder* homosexual.
We shake our heads with utmost sadness when we find out someone has become ‘a gay’.
We say some other shocking things that shall not be typed here.
Yet we seem to have stunning gay-dar. Skills a Homosexual CIA (She-IA is what I would call such an organisation) would be jealous of. We can spot a homosexual at 1000 paces.
Scientists have proven that gaydar does really exist and apparently in Kenya we can bottle it and sell it.
Forget the oil we just found, we must sell our home grown gaydar. Who needs to sell tea when we can simply export the ability to spot a gay person from space. We could start some sort of university and research facility.
I think it is time we re-thought this homophobia thing. We are clearly very in touch with our inner homosexual as a nation to be able to spot them so easily. And we do have a good history of homosexuality. We are clearly channelling something from long ago.
So all together now let us breath in… breath out and…embrace.