Are me and my kind lovable?

“When’s the last time you read a book, saw a movie, heard a love song, passed a billboard, seen a commercial on television, seen any image anywhere where the hot, sexy, funny, cuddly, warm, romantic, all-American object of anyone’s affection was … someone like me?

“Which me? Black male? Same gender loving? Athlete-looking on the outside, lovable goofball slash brainiac on the inside?

“Start with any of those atoms and build yourself a whole universe of me’s. You still ain’t gonna find me being the object of anyone’s affection in the media.

“If you see me in the media, I’ll be the black man, but I won’t be a black man dreaming of being a spirit leader or a rocket scientist, or a black man dreaming of having one true buddy and feeling special, the kind of special that makes you feel worthy of romance and love, the kind we all dream about, as seen on TV and in the movies.

“Our roles are always played by the Julia Robertses of the world, even if they don’t fit the part.

“We live in an age where we are inundated with countless images from countless sources, from TV to movies to pop-up ads. A huge percentage of those images deal with love, sex and romance.

“Still, rare or nonexistent is the occasion where I encounter an image that reflects who I am and what I dream of. Even rarer and more nonexistent is the occasion where I encounter an image that might encourage another soul to dream of loving someone just like me.”

—from Walt Loves the Bearcat
by Randy Boyd
A Lambda Literary Finalist for Best Romance