Thursday, December 6, 2007

Straight In Your Face

When there are suggestions that a male celebrity has something other than straight tendencies, the object of suspicion usually states as adamantly as possible how straight he is while lamely trying not to appear homophobic in any way. The problem is that no matter how much they may insist that they are cool with the gay thing and how some of their best friends are gay, the fact that they are so desperate to convince people of their straightness is proof positive that they think there is something terribly wrong about being considered potentially gay. A recent example of such a reaction came after some fanciful editing on VH1's America's Most Smartest Model made it look like two of the male stars of the show might want to be more than changing room buddies. While one of the models went out of his way to set the record straight in a routine way, the other made a statement that I think should be the gold standard for responding to such innuendo.

Ironically, it was the comic in the pair that insisted on playing the straight man. On the show Jeff Pickel was portrayed as insatiable hugger who used any excuse to give fellow contestant Brett Novek a full body embrace. After the show aired, Pickel in one interview repetitively and strenuously expressed his aversion to boy basters in general and specifically the Hebrew National belonging to his now roommate Brett. I don't think there was anything unusually bad about Pickel's attitude or words; they were just disappointingly normal for the situation. To repeat as many times as he did that he only has straight feelings can only stress how awful he would feel to be thought of otherwise.

On the other hand, Brett, in his post-show interview for VH1, only said what needed to be said to clarify the matter. He said that he and Pickel were just friends. It was the kind of response that a celebrity might say about a friendship that they have with someone of the opposite gender, where they don't go further into detail about why their friend would be so unappealing to them as more than that. It is clear that Brett is both smart and a gentleman and other celebrities could learn a lesson from his honest and considerate ways.

More Jeff Pickel. More Brett Novek.

Brett NovekBrett Novek perplexed by Pickel


SG said...

That is so cool! However childish that may sound. But wow, here I was on hiatus taking exams and you were mingling with reality tv celebrities.

Is this jealousy or envy I feel? hehehe, no matter, big welcome back to blogging.