Commentary

High school on Kirkwood

POSTED AT 10:45 PM ON Apr. 16, 2013  (UPDATED AT 10:45 PM ON Apr. 16, 2013)

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Last Saturday I was doing what’s quickly becoming the usual bar circuit with friends: Kilroy’s on Kirkwood, Upstairs Pub, over to Dunnkirk, Big Cheeze.

If you know me and if you know Kilroy’s, you’re cracking up right now.

I’m not exactly frat-tastic, and Kilroy’s ... is. So going there is always an experience for me.

Normally that’s part of the fun — I get to see a lot of bros in tank tops and girls in heels trying to impress them, and I get to pretend I’m one of them for a moment.

But this time the bros backfired.

We were walking back from Dunnkirk when a drunk mom approached me. I love moms, and I love drunk moms even more, so we were hitting it off as she was telling me about a proposal that was happening across the street.

Apparently seeing me as a threat, the Kilroy’s bouncer walked over and separated the mother from me as he told me to leave the area.

This was weird, but I obliged and started to leave.

But the bouncer wasn’t done. As I was leaving he told his audience that I was a “fucking faggot.”

While my outfit that night was described as very “Brokeback Mountain,” I don’t think that earned me a double f drop.

I’ve been called names all my life — I’ve grown a pretty thick skin. So I’m not offended as much as I’m disappointed.

Bloomington and the IU community are really quite good at being liberal and accepting. But then we have hotspots like Kilroy’s that are still ruled by this overwhelmingly high school macho-man stereotype.

While it’s fine to still have a sense of the hyper-masculine, this doesn’t mean you have to be crude and resort to the name-calling tactics picked up in the fourth grade.

What’s worse is the fact that in my tipsy state I thought it’d be best to tweet “And here’s to @KilroysKOK, where the bouncers call me ‘faggot’ to my face. Goooo bigots!” Nice and passive-aggressive, right?

But to go along with their already immature selves, I never heard any response from the bar. No tweet back, direct message or anything.

It’s like when your best friend tweeted about you in high school, but neither of you ever said anything about it in the morning because you didn’t want any more conflict to arise.

A lot about the bars is incredibly immature. That’s fun and why we go to them, but it doesn’t mean we have to go back to stereotypes and call people faggots.

While this is a little bit about homophobia, it’s really more about the fact that while the greater Bloomington community can hold itself to a higher standard, the most popular places still can’t seem to get it together.

I guess Bowling For Soup really got it right with their opus “High School Never Ends.”
KOK, I’m not attacking you — just everything you perpetuate and stand for.

­— sjostrow@indiana.edu

 

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