This past Sunday, I was driving to meet a potential new BFF (I have a good feeling about this one!) and was listening to Ryan Seacrest interview Lady Gaga on his Casey Casem-esque radio countdown. I’m a little late to the Lady Gaga train, but now I’m fully on board. For a woman whose outfits are so out of this world, she seems surprisingly down to earth in interviews. I was particularly struck when she told Ryan that she attributes her fearlessness to her gay friends.
“My friendships with my gay friends, they are so pure because gay men, they don’t want anything from you except your love and friendship. I’ve had that my whole life and I really value it so much.”
I’ve actually been thinking about this quite a bit. I need a gay best friend. Or, as one woman I know says, a best gay. Gaga’s point is a good one: Friendships with gay men are unique. They don’t involve the competition or jealousy that can turn a true female friendship into a toxic one, and there’s not the sexual tension that makes supposedly platonic straight-male-female friendships anything but.
Will & Grace is perhaps my favorite sitcom (tied only with Friends, appropriately enough). I’ve always wanted what they had, or, really, what Jack and Karen had. I know plenty of gay men, of course. One of the most memorable nights of my life involved me, a gay guy, dancing my heart out in the middle of a sports bar, and a late-night/early-morning race to IHOP (thanks Jed!). But I’ve never had an intimate friendship with a gay man—not the kind Lady Gaga was referring to, and certainly not the stuff of Will and Grace. Gaga told Ryan she almost deleted a scene from a music video because she wasn’t happy with the way she looked. She kept it in, she says, because her gay friends told her she looked fearless. It takes a lot of trust in another person’s opinion, and an iron-clad belief that they have your best interests at heart, to release a video to the world in which you’re unhappy with your looks.
That’s not to say female friendships can’t have the same level of intimacy, but the gay BFF seems a special breed. And I want one. So the question is, what to do now? A co-worker friend offered to take me to showtunes night at a nearby gay bar. This is a win-win situation, as even if I don’t meet the gay man of my dreams, I might get to sing a ditty from A Chorus Line or The Sound of Music.
Do you agree that the female/gay-male relationship is a vital one? Does a gay man bring something to a friendship that a woman-to-woman BFFship lacks? Or is Lady Gaga just a looney toon who wears outfits made of Kermit puppets? Discuss.