Saturday, January 17, 2009

Ryan Conklin Comes Out

In episode two of The Real World Brooklyn, Ryan Conklin showed his interest in socializing with some of the other 2% of the population. He was eager to take a walk on the wild side, by making his first visit to a gay bar.

Some of the housemates had agreed to go out one night, and JD Ordonez suggested that they leave Brooklyn and go into the city to a bar in Chelsea. Ryan learned from a friend that the district is known for containing concentrated gayness. He let his roommate Chet Cannon know, but in the process showed his lack of knowledge of the gay social scene and the Chelsea area in particular. Ryan said that the men at the bar would eat Chet up the way Chet was dressed, and that people in the area were all into S/M and wearing assless chaps.

Ryan ConklinMaybe the patrons at a gay retiree bar might consider eating up Chet the way he looks and dresses, but I have to believe anywhere else they would just spit him out. I did find it adorable that Ryan, after having just stated his belief that there would be assless chaps, said excitedly, "I'm going! I'm down for different things!" That's good to know. Some guys might be wishing he were down with being in a bromance with them - you know, with benefits.

Ryan is straight, so I won't claim that he was making Freudian comments when he said why he was going. "Dude, that's why I'm coming! Because I've never been around that kind of stuff, so I'm trying to expose myself!" Dude, wait on the exposing until you're on the dance platform, and then only if you think the tip will be worth it.

Ryan Real World BrooklynEntering the bar, Ryan said to Chet what most guys in that situation do. "I'm nervous. Pretend you're my boyfriend." Interestingly, it didn't seem to be a stretch for Chet to pretend that.

Like Alice, having then fallen down the rabbit hole, Ryan Conklin needed something to drink to carry on. After lubricating himself with alcohol, he looked around in wonderment. Seeing a drag queen perform and lots of men making out, he regarded it all as curiouser and curiouser.

To have some fun, JD then told Ryan he would give him $100 if Ryan would dance with the drag diva, Peppermint. Ryan was well intoxicated and agreed to the bargain. Under the spotlight, and being the center of attention at the bar, Ryan felt understandably awkward and embarrassed, but tried to be a good sport about it. Peppermint then changed the deal to be Ryan giving her a kiss on the cheek instead. Good-natured Ryan went along with the revision. As Ryan prepped himself to plant the kiss, Peppermint counted to three. Suddenly Peppermint turned and gave Ryan a big ol' surprise kiss on the lips. Apparently, the shocked and soused Ryan took a dislike to the taste of the gloss and/or the thick layers of lipstick and immediately and repeatedly wiped his lips. Whatever it was he came in contact with, Ryan frantically wanted to wash it off with a lot of soap and water.

Ryan Real World BrooklynLeaving the bar, Ryan was so drunk that he could barely walk. Understandably, when he got back to the house he had to throw up. Afterward he walked in on JD, Sarah Rice and Devyn Simone, and wearing a t-shirt and boxers, laid backward on Sarah. JD copped a good feel of Ryan's chest, while asking him the odd question of whether Ryan believed that he would have thrown up after coming home (seeing double) from a straight bar rather than a gay one. Bewildered, Ryan replied no. Devyn then correctly pointed out that he wouldn't have drunk so much in a straight bar because the girls there wouldn't have bought as many drinks for him as his discerning admirers at the gay bar would.

By the way, some smart (and necessarily good-looking) straight boys have already discovered that starting their evening at a gay bar is a good way to score some free drinks and some entertaining conversations. Give it a try.

Anyway, it was a cool bonding moment between JD and Ryan. JD in confessional stated he felt that, contrary to first impression, Ryan seemed more "open-minded" (i.e. a good guy).

Ryan ConklinThere could have been friction between the two, in asserting a dominant role in the male social hierarchy in the house. JD had a natural advantage for the top spot as Chet found out when he discovered that JD had possession of Magnum condoms, which indicated by association that JD had an extra large penis. Chet was rightfully in awe of the physical manifestation of JD's manhood and told JD in front of Ryan, "Make us proud," as JD sashayed across the room. JD was literally the c@ck of the walk, projecting his preeminence.

To keep all of the guys on the same level, Ryan sounded the alarm (as in an alarm clock). He made it seem like it was a phone ringer or door buzzer and had JD running through the house and out of it looking for the cause. Apparently all the blood and nutrients required by that extra large penis didn't leave much for the brain cells. JD was let in on the joke and with the gaiety of the prank was gently brought back down into the peer group.

There wasn't such a nice set of stories regarding Ryan's best friend in the house, Chet.

Ryan ConklinFirst, Scott Herman and JD noticed that there was a banana wrapped in a condom in the fish tank. Ryan, a believer in cleanliness and tasteful decor, ruefully said, "Way to make everything look trashy here." JD, due to the size of the condom, immediately wondered if the condom was his.

JD noticed that his backpack and drawers had been opened, and he complained to Devyn that he suspected that Chet had done it. The house meet to discuss Chet rummaging through JD's things and they elected Sarah to discuss it with Chet. Sarah bravely agreed to do it, considering that Chet creates the appearance of someone who is substantially mentally disturbed under his somewhat creepy outward eccentricity. She talked to Chet, who wasn't happy about it. He denied the charge, but probably lied to her and then again to JD, saying he didn't do it.

Later, Chet's family came for a visit. The blond brood appeared to the product of a Mormon eugenics and large scale breeding program. Unfortunately, mixing genes can cause some unintended consequences, like maybe turning on a gene for sociopathic behavior. During the visit it was said that Chet was thrown out of his fraternity for setting someone's hair on fire. Let me mention the definition of antisocial personality disorder from the APA's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual and leave it at that: "The essential feature for the diagnosis is a pervasive pattern of disregard for, and violation of, the rights of others that begins in childhood or early adolescence and continues into adulthood."

At the end of the episode, JD went out by himself and came back home wasted. He told a tale of going into a store to purchase Chapstick where the clerk could not understand what he was requesting. The way he told the story was rather humorous. I like JD so much better when he has been drinking. The moment was ruined however when Chet came upon the scene and tried to take advantage of JD's state by trying to pick a fight. Chet's soulless and glassy-eyed stare as he confronted JD was pretty scary but the argument was broken up by the roommates and JD was taken off to bed. Fortunately, with the cameramen present the roommates didn't have to sleep behind locked doors or with one of them staying awake as guard while Chet was in the house. Their hair and lives were safe.