About Articles Poetry Video Images Services Events
Edited Words: 152,263
Articles: 180
Poems: 52
Videos: 25
Images: 10

March 18, 2006

A Real Man

Mukunda, a good friend of mine, was walking along a street in New York City when a man stopped him by holding a gun to his face. "Give me your wallet!" the man demanded.

My friend looked into the mugger's eyes and said, "I can give you my wallet, but I have something infinitely more valuable," he paused. "But you can't take it from me; I have to want to give it to you."

The man looked confused and then asked, "What are you doing to me?" and then said, "I can't do it!" He then turned and ran away as fast as he could.

I came out of a restaurant recently with a female friend. As we walked back to my car, a small group of youths approached us. The group consisted of a short, non-caucasian boy with a blackberry, and a gaggle of three tall, skinny, and very pasty white boys. They clustered around him, glassy-eyed; they went where he went.

The non-caucasian boy was behaving as if he was of African descent, but his parents were from somewhere like India or the Middle East. He was not acting like an adult; it was more like a cross between a child and mental patient. He was saying, "I'm goin' a fuck you up. Ya mutha fucker. Blam! Yo is ma ass. I'll slice ya, dice ya! Fuck-a-fuck-a-boom!" He had an American accent but I suspect that he has never been outside of London. He was about eighteen years old and his congregation was younger.

As they approached us, I looked at the leader; I was trying to make eye contact with him. But he looked down and was sort of hunched over. His hands were contorted as he spoke the abusive words. It seemed as if he was speaking to himself; abusing himself. He continued to avoid my eye contact so I looked at his friends and they kept their eyes on him. I could see in him a sweet little boy. I could see a boy with no healthy model of how to be a man. I could see him desperately trying to assert his identity in the only way that he had been shown.

They walked directly in front of us. I unlocked my car and as I stood in the road opening the door I looked over at the group of young men and I noticed that tears were running down my cheeks.

Many men put on a front; they hide behind an image. There's the hard-man, tough-guy front. There's the hero, macho, capable front. There's the executive, aloof, professional front. Though these behaviors can come naturally and spontaneously, most of the time they are fixed, rigid, and unnatural; they are a way to hide. No one ever sees who they really are. Often they don't know who they really are themselves. This is such a waste. And these men have sons, who copy them.

A real man is simply a man with an open heart and an open mind. A real man is an authentic man, a man who knows who he is and knows how he feels. A real man lives in the moment and does what is right in a given situation. A real man can give love fully and can accept love fully. A real man is a gift to the world. He heals and he teaches.

When I was a teenager there were some boys who I suspect were confused by me. I can be very strong but also very sensitive. I can run for six hours with a sixty-pound pack on my back but I can also cry. There was one group who decided that they were going to give me the nickname "Dunkiron". Iron is cockney rhyming slang for poof: iron hoof; poof. Poof means gay. So they were calling me gay.

I had quite a low sense of self-esteem by the time I was a teenager, so I would take every insult for real. And this was kind of confusing to me because I looked inside myself and tried to find gayness, and I just couldn't find it. I remember feeling quite stuck. It seemed like the world thought that I was gay but I wasn't interested in the gay lifestyle. And I was feeling really sad because I wanted to be intimate with girls and that wouldn't be possible if I was gay. At one point, my future looked so bleak that I gathered together a lethal dose of acetominophen (paracetamol).

Around that time, I had a friend who was the most "macho" boy at school. He had a girlfriend and they were having sexual intercourse. One day I was at his house when he called my attention to the erection in his sweat-pants. I told him that I wasn't interested and just carried on like it didn't happen. I didn't tell anyone; I didn't want him to experience the social stigma that I was feeling. The next time I saw him, he was with another friend and they were going into town. I asked if I could come with them. That's when he said, "Only if you suck my cock." So I said, "Okay, I won't come with you then." I suspect that to cover himself, he told lies about me.

I have a reasonably strong sense of my own sexual identity now. It's taken a lot of time to develop that through experiencing various things. I'm not gay, I'm not straight, and I'm not bisexual. I'm not any of those things. I'm Duncan. Or even more truthfully: I am bliss. If you wanted to label me, you might call me straight but then I'm not like a lot of "straight" men. There are "straight" men who have sex with other men or who have other "perversions". I could put it like this: I seem to have a very natural sexuality with any kinkiness extending as far as wanting my female lover to sometimes wear attractive and tasteful provocative clothing.

I have several gay friends, who I love dearly. I am also very comfortable hanging out in The Castro district in San Francisco. When I think about how homophobic I used to be, it's liberating to not have to worry about that anymore. I don't have to worry that someone is going to tell me that I'm gay and that I have to do something that I don't want to.

Recently, I was at a party in my home town. I saw a group of those men who had been boys when I was a teenager and I heard this guy say the word, "Dunkiron", and the group laughed. I thought, not that old chestnut again; it's still on that guy's mind.

I wondered if he was aware of something called projection. I have found that as I have developed a clearer sense of my own sweetness, the whole world is looking sweeter. I'm finding that it's all a projection of my own inner state. It might be that this guy is not gay, it's more likely that he is just really homophobic, that he's really scared of all that. And perhaps his fear is making that show up for him when he looks around. When we're scared of things, they seem to be everywhere. So when I think of him saying, "Dunkiron", I now feel compassionate for him and I wish him the freedom that I feel in knowing so securely who and what I am.

I didn't have a good male role-model when I was a child. At twelve, I chose consciously not to follow the negative paths of my father or my step-father. And then I remember feeling lost and without guidance. As an adult, particularly in the last few years, I have sought male role-models. I have searched for and found people who I want to be like. I have found real men to learn from so that I can one day be a real man. And I will be a real man. And then, by my example, I will teach others how to be real men.

And when I am a real man, a real woman will come to me. We will live together in harmony and peace. We will worship each other as manifestations of bliss, and we will share the fun and the joy of life.

"Very emotional, and I have had similar experiences where I can really see things for what they are." — Basi


Font: S M L
Receive by email:
Designed by Duncan Riach RSS Feed Icon   Site Map Copyright © 2006 Duncan Riach. All rights reserved.