Wednesday, April 13, 2011

When Fiction Comes To Life


While reading If on a Winter’s Night by Touchstone67,   I get so caught up in the touching story of the human heart, of courage, friendship, dedication, and love, that I almost forget I am even reading slash.  (Though the red hot lemons soon remind me!)  If you haven’t been reading that story, I recommend you start, now!   Edward is a star basketball player who is paralyzed in a very unfortunate accident. His boyfriend, Jasper, is also a star athlete in Track & Field. He stays by Edward’s side through horrendously difficult times.  The story will have an impact on you!

So why do we not see many openly gay athletes in real life?  Does being gay mean someone can’t be an athlete?  I sure do hate stereotypes.  Most athletes choose to stay closeted, only coming out after they've retired, if then.  However, sports has nothing to do with sexual orientation, it has to do with skill and agility!

According to the highly interesting article on the history of basketball:
Basketball, Football (American), and Baseball are the top three most homophobic sports.  In my opinion, Soccer (called football outside the US) has its issues as well
Recent events, and extreme homophobic reactions  in basketball may explain an athletes  reluctance to come out:

The following stories feature some of our favorite slash characters as very athletic and involved in water sports:  At the Deep End by Naelany, and Man Up! by LoveComesLast.
In real life, Olympics diver Matthew Mitcham won Gold and Silver Medals in Beijing, and continues to deliver outstanding results.   Matthew is also openly gay.  Here is a video of him after he won the Gold in Beijing:

For your viewing pleasure, enjoy some photos of other gay water sports athletes:
In addition to Jasper in If on a Winter’s Night, there are other stories about Track and Field slash characters.    In Potential by Rosmarina Emmet stars in the decathlon.  He comes out, and he also begins mentoring other gay athletes as well.  From the story:
“Emmett McCarty hopes to bring that support to UW athletes by facilitating a new student group – the Queer Athletes Alliance. The group will be open to LGBTQ athletes and allies for discussion and socializing.”
In another story, Your Biggest Fan by OfTheDamned Edward is a runner.   Here is a story about a real life runner who discusses his coming out story
Enjoy some pictures of gay Track and Field athletes:

When Strikers Collide by rmhale is a slash story featuring Soccer (aka football) players.   And yes there is a real  life openly gay professional Soccer player!  Here is the very recent story
Here is a wonderful video of Gareth Thomas, openly gay rugby player.  He has set the stage and provides a magnificent example for others:
The top rated quote on that YouTube video says it all:  “Gareth Thomas is one of the best rugby players Wales has ever had, it doesn't matter if he's gay or not, he's a hell of a rugby player.”

For all kinds of gay athletes, visit the Gay Games website:

For the most recent gay athletic news follow OutSports:
This is a blog set up by young gay athletes:

From their page:
“We are three young adults wanting to change the way teenage gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning athletes are viewed in the sports world. All of us are varsity athletes in high school who are on our own paths to being who we truly are. Brad is a runner, while Ben and Robert play soccer. We met online, became fast friends and realized there was no website out there specifically for people like us, so figured why not us? We invite you to take the stand with us and begin walking the road to equality.
We’ve created this blog to help others out in the world who also have had trouble accepting, questioning, or becoming comfortable with their sexuality because of sports or other activities that they feel force them to stay hidden from the world.
While this blog is written by teens for other teens, we welcome all readers, regardless of age or sexual orientation, and invite everyone to comment; but please be respectful since we want this to be a welcoming and fun place.”

How has your view of gay athletes changed since reading slash?  Ready to throw stereotypes out the window?  Do you have any favorite slash athletic stories you would like to recommend?  Please comment!!

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