As far as I'm concerned, straight guys like having sex with other men just as much as gay guys do. They just won't admit it. Otherwise, for all intents and purposes, I'm convinced that there's little to separate the two types of men.
Take my cousin, Josh, for example. He's a pretty typical straight guy coming from a middle-class background. Captain of his university rugby team, boyfriend to a thick and fast succession of girls, before meeting and moving in with one of them and then, at twenty five, marrying her. Totally straight, reassuringly conventional. Kids planned, no doubt, for when Rachel is ready to put her career on hold. You know the routine.
But even Josh, with his rugby songs about tits and jokes about him being able to convert lesbians at fifty paces, had a liking for something a bit alternative. And I found that out the night before he got married.
I was seventeen and he'd come to stay at our house. He was living with his fiancÈe in a flat in North London, but his parents insisted that, for the sake of tradition, he should be away from her for the night before the wedding. Since our house was just ten miles or so from their flat, he asked if he could bunk up with us for the night. No problems at all.
His parents, my uncle and aunt, had travelled down to London for the wedding and were sleeping in the spare room, so Josh had to take the sofa.
The day before the wedding, he turned up with his satchel and his mate from university who was going to act as his best man. They came to our house in the middle of the afternoon to drop off their stuff before heading off for a last night of drunkenness together. Josh introduced his mate, Masey, to my mum and dad with a comment about Masey being sensible and staying single while Josh was going to become, as he put it, "supposedly respectable".
My mother laughed but my dad seemed quite flustered by the surprise of Josh having a friend with him to stay. He asked where Masey was going to sleep.
Josh waved the question aside dismissively. "He's brought a sleeping . . . . .