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Jason Collins Is the Envy of Straight Men Everywhere

Jason Collins (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jason Collins (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Sherman Alexie of The Stranger presents a self-deprecating explanation for envy of the NBA player.

Once, in a private box at a Mariners game, a dude (married to a woman, who was five feet away) stealthily pushed his crotch against my blue-jeaned butt. That guy wore his closet like it was a pair of khaki pants with an open fly.

How do I react to these sexual advances? My first thought is "Men are boundaryless animals." My second thought is "Women have to deal with this [s—t] all the time." My third thought is "How flattering." My fourth thought is "I wish this dude hitting on me was cuter."

So who are the best-looking men in the USA? The answer, obviously, is professional athletes. I mean, Jesus, Google-Image Adrian Peterson. Study how cut, shredded, and jacked he is.

Cut. Shredded. Jacked. Those are violent straight-boy adjectives that mean "beautiful." But we straight boys aren't supposed to think of other men as beautiful. We're supposed to think of the most physically gifted men as warrior soldiers, as dangerous demigods.

And there's the rub: When we're talking about professional athletes, we are mostly talking about males passionately admiring the physical attributes and abilities of other males. It might not be homosexual, but it certainly is homoerotic.


Read Sherman Alexie's entire piece at The Stranger.

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.


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