I've always had trouble with that awkward male bonding moment when I'm asked an opinion or forced to discuss football. I wouldn't consider myself your stereotypical overtly camp gay man (I can have my moments), I mean I am masculine, I like boy things, I can drone on for hours about movies, music, technology and video games with my straight male friends but alas the subject of the beautiful game usually has me searching desperately for the remote.
My mates know this about me after all these years and they don't care (and I think after I came out they care even less) but in the initial courtship I occasionally feigned interest to fit in and find solidarity with my male comrades. Even still I occasionally fall into the trap with Dublin taxi drivers. In their quest to bridge the gap of silence whilst we journey to our chosen destination they would usually ask extremely vague questions such as:
Generic Dublin Taxi Man: 'Did ya watch the match lads?'
Yes taxi driver the two men in the back of your car holding hands of course saw the match. Well I guess it was nice that he assumed. I took a stab in the dark
GBM: 'Yeah United played really well?!?'
GDTM: 'No lads, 'dee Arelund'* match'
I think then it clicked in for him that Husband and I where of the Homo Sexualus genus. Swing and a miss. Why do I still even bother, I have my get out of jail free card with being a gay. I don't need to pretend anymore. Gone are they days where I'd have to sit with my newly made male buddies to watch a bunch of men faf about on a stretch of grass for almost and an hour and a half. Longer still if the tortuous bastards I had aligned myself with wanted to watch the pre and post game analysis. At times it felt like I was being water boarded. Worse still when a no score game would result in the boyos making statements such as.
Male Friend 1: 'Great game, tonight.'
Male Friend 2: 'Yeah, great defence.'
I'm sorry, really? Really? You actually thought the last ninety minutes of time I will never get back was entertaining? Really?!? Because I'm pretty sure I just had a boredom aneurism.
I do know who I am, I'm a guy who does not enjoy watching Football. I don't think it has anything to do with my sexuality in the end because when I went to University in Galway I had a group of straight male friends and you would be hard pushed to find one that had a clue about soccer. So knowing this why do I still do the football fakery. I always fail at it anyways. I don't seem to know enough players names which clearly seems to be important.
Male Friend 1: 'What did you think of Cisse?'
Male Friend 2: 'He was good. Bout Gerard?'
Male Friend 1: 'Ah yeah, Lampard?'
And it goes on like this! It would actually get to a point where they are just saying names back and forth and nodding. Seriously boys this does not an interesting conversation make (well for me at least).
I don't know, as I make this move to a new country I'm hoping my Football fakery days are behind me but if I'm being honest I can't guarantee I won't slip back into old habits in the hopes of fitting in. I really can be that lame at times.
* The Ireland for those of you who don't speak North County Dublin
(First attempt at photoshop guys, bare with me whilst I get the hang of it)