Monday, January 28, 2008

The Closet

Yesterday, couldn’t go to the party. Drag queen show. Apparently it was fabulous.

Many attended, despite the chilly, rainy day. And they did have fun.

We are growing up. And I feel a sense of pride in it.

And yesterday, I met another Kuchu. One who reminded me of all the bad things of the closet. The Gay Closet in Uganda.

Young man, presentable, personable. Acknowledging his sexuality. And deathly scared about it being found out by any other person.

A painful reminder of what it used to be like for me, in the closet. Oppressed, more by the sense of a secret that I know of myself, that the world cannot tolerate, and for that matter I was in a cage made by my own mind. Till freedom tore it apart, knowledge giving me more maturity and happiness than I would have expected.

The guy was scared of us. Me and my friend. Had heard of us, from a friend of a friend. Wanted to meet us, see who these curious guys are.

So, we meet, but not in a usual ‘kuchu’ bar, because he was scared of those. And when we were feeling lazy and tired and in need of a change, I suggested the kuchu bar. He recoiled. Impossible. We, (he), could not go there.

Realised at that time that he was actually recoiling from the word kuchu!

And when one of us mentioned gay and lesbian, he almost ran away from us. ‘How could we so openly mention the G and L words, he demanded.

Why not? we asked in turn.

He turned to look around the bar. The nearest people were a couple of meters away.

Nevertheless, he went out a couple of minutes later. Thought that he had gone to the loo. We paid up, and after some time went outside, thinking he would meet us there.

He was seated at the doorway. Outside, waiting for us. Reason, we asked. We were talking too loudly of forbidden subjects.

Well, it was time to try and tease him out of his closet. Once the crack is opened, the smell of freedom will tempt him.

The closet. We do still live in the closet. I will be very happy, the day I proudly put my name on this blog. But I cannot, at least not yet.

But the closet is something that is tangible, and made more of our thoughts and imagination, than the hostile world around us.

By the end of the evening, the guy was a little relaxed, though regrettably that may not have benefited him much.

And I was very thoughtful. When I was deep in my closet, I was very fearful of being outed. Well, of now, I am not really out of it. Still cautiously peering out. But at least I have less oppression from my own very self.

Freedom is of the mind, and, curiously, we must give it to ourselves, before we demand it for ourselves and others.



Anonymous said...

At least you know where he's coming from, and can relate to his fear. A little at a time, then. I think it's encouraging he wanted to meet you!

gayuganda said...


Do know where he's coming from.

Unfortunately, events kind of denied him the time. But that is another story.

There are many like that, many of us.


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