Straight people sometimes get asked, “What’s the gayest thing you’ve ever done?” (There’s even a reddit thread and a Thought Catalog listicle with numerous answers to the question.) But gay people rarely get asked the opposite question…. until now.
Last night on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Kimmel aired a segment in which his team conducted on-the-street interviews asking gay men (and one lesbian) about the straightest thing they’d ever done.
It’s a short segment, so we won’t ruin it by sharing any of their answers, but let’s just put it this way: Straight people sure do have a funny way of peeing.
Honestly, we were surprised the answers weren’t bit meaner. Here’s the straightest things we can think of doing:
— Voting Republican
— Conceiving children by accident
— Wrecking the world economy
— Staying at a Howard Johnson’s
— Trying to get And Tango Makes Three banned from the local library
Of course, LGBTQ people are capable of anything, so we wouldn’t put it past them to do any of those things.
The real genius of Kimmel’s question is how it challenges conventional thinking. It’s easy to think of the “gayest thing you’ve ever done” because gay people are in the minority and their behavior stands out against the mainstream. It’s a lot harder to point out “the straightest thing you’ve ever done” because heterosexuality is seen as the default.
That is, society is so saturated by presumed heterosexuality (and, gay people have existed invisibly for so long) that many gay people have done so-called “straight things” for their entire lives.
If anything, Kimmel’s question shows just how silly such binary thinking is. Lots of gay guys have dated girls and lots of straight men have had sex with men. Asking such questions overlooks the existence of bisexuality and assumes that all actions are either/or when humans (queer or straight) are much more nuanced and subtle.