I’m sure most of you just read the title and said, “Who?”, so let’s try this alternate headline:
Danny Pintauro Came Out AND Came Out as HIV+?
Maybe you know one name because you’re a big CW fan.
Maybe you know the other because you’re a child of the 80s.
Or a fan of Nick at Nite.
Maybe you don’t know either.
Regardless, if you don’t know the names, this isn’t about you.
If you do know the names…it’s not about you, either.
And that’s what this is about.
I spend a lot of time in my own head. I like it there. Some of the frequent topics tend to be things like, “What the hell is wrong with America?”, “Why do people act the way they do?”, “Am I the only person that doesn’t lose their shit over Orange is the New Black?”, “Situationally, am I part of the problem or part of the solution?”
So, let’s dive into my old headspace, shall we?
I surely hope so.
Maybe get a glass of water.
I’m never sure if these things are going to go 1200 words or 3500 words…and I’ve been surprising myself lately. The surprise is that a lot of this is just stream of consciousness writing and that’s a long stream, particularly with the aforementioned wine.
Not the best way to build in structure and deliver a complete document or article…whatever you want to call this.
Not a bad way to lose time, though.
Speaking of the classic lost time phenomenon, why is there no countdown to the X-Files mini series that airs on Netflix this month?
But, I digress.
Colton Haynes, for those of you not in the know, is an actor. He’s on Arrow and plays…checking IMDb…a character named Arsenal. He was also in Teen Wolf, which I didn’t watch because a gay man watching a TV show just because there are hot teenage characters seemed a little lacking in decorum, so…no, that’s as inappropriate as my shopping at Abercrombie & Fitch. I don’t watch Arrow simply because the show – um – sucks.
Given the above, if you didn’t know the name Colton Haynes, I wouldn’t be surprised. Personally, I tend to mistake him for Brent Corrigan, who is a former gay porn actor turned legitimate actor. I’m sure he’ll find his CW success eventually. He’s that good. He’s always an interesting internal dialogue for me, since I also tend to associate Brent Corrigan with half of the gay porn couple that infamously – and allegedly – murdered one of their producers or some nonsense like that. I could be wrong. Get all googly over it, I’m not interested in falling down that particular rabbit hole today.
Which is kind of an interesting statement, remember that when we get to DP…ok, not short-handing his name by using his initials…Danny Pintauro. Hopefully, I remember to get into the inaccurate information used to surprise him and his husband during their interview segment on The View.
Are you done fact checking? I hope I recalled correctly, but my memory is an exercise in herding kittens. No guarantees on performance and/or results.
So, short version:
A fan of Colton’s tweeted on Saturday that he was excited to learn about Colton’s “…secret gay past…even though I know it makes absolutely no difference in my life” to which Colton replied, “Was it a secret?”
Ok, first, I love that the original twit knew enough to footnote his excitement over Colton’s possible sexuality as irrelevant. Part of the problem our country currently suffers is that we are too easily distracted from what matters in a better world by what doesn’t matter.
Second, the twittersphere kind of melted down over this and the dubious news has now been picked up by more mainstream reporting outlets as, I don’t know…news? Newsworthy? Part of the problem?
That one, yes.
Third, the comment included the words “secret gay past” and the response used the past tense “was”. This actually confirms nothing about a present life and essentially establishes that Colton has had same-sex dalliances.
It’s basically the same as any girl’s past that ever went to college. Or the heterosexual men that have that fantasy.
What it may suggest is that I over thought this.
It may also suggest that Colton knows how to make a statement that neither confirms nor denies anything. What a tease. That’s so gay.
But it effectively distracts people from focusing on things that do matter, which is becoming a greater American pastime than baseball. Because these online news outlets need to sell ad space. Just like networks need to sell ad time to the slightly more legitimate pastime: sportsball. Now, if they could sell ad space online and on TV by telling stories about the past and history like Colton seems to have managed, that would be something.
“This halftime show is brought to you by the Magna Carta. We promised all sorts of things like religious rights and taxation limitations and then reneged…let’s find out what happened” Maybe they could get an irrelevantly vital pop culture figure to do the lead-in. Maybe Sweet Brown or whatever Kardashian is having a slow week.
Nah, pesky facts might become more of an issue if we were promoting actual history versus this trivial nonsense.
Now, that cute kid Danny Pintauro from Who’s the Boss back in the 80s has grown up. He’s pushing 40 now.
I’m so old. My back just began to hurt for no apparent reason.
Anyway, as most people do as they grow up, Danny made some missteps. Surprising absolutely no one, one of the things Danny discovered about himself was that he is gay.
One of the other things he discovered about himself is that he – if I read this correctly – doesn’t care for BDSM or leather.
Nor does he care for meth.
That BDSM and leather thing makes sense to me, others would disagree with me. I had a conversation last week with a very good friend and damned fine human – whose alt-name I have been struggling with because my personal nickname for him is too obvious to obscure any identity. As is his suggestion of Lurch, in my opinion, but it’s fun, so let’s go with that for now…so, Lurch and I had been having a conversation about the leather culture in particular and what I liked about it was that he’s articulate enough and can effectively string together a few thoughts about his interest in the leather community to give me some insight into its allure for him.
I came away from that conversation still pretty convinced that it’s not my particular thing, but I’ve been on a few dates with someone (you know who you are) recently that has said he’s interested in it, and so I thought that it was wise to begin gathering information. Plus, Lurch bought coffee, so who am I to say no? And while knowing what is and isn’t one’s bag sexually is important to an individual, some folks – like our young Danny – may need a more tactile learning experience to determine whether that bag is theirs or not.
Personally, I think the same cannot and should not be said for meth, but that was not Danny’s path. It seems he was bewarlocked – see what I did there? – by one of the more famous NYC leather daddies and offered meth during one of their explorations.
Now you have HIV, Danny.
Not that I should oversimplify. It sounds unsympathetic. And, I am quite sympathetic…but in my experience all too often gay men + sex + meth = HIV. Even removing the variable of “gay men” from that equation probably pretty consistently delivers a number that leaves an integer behind that it less than whole. Ouch. That felt better in my head than it sounds as I re-read it.
Drugs. Definitely part of the problem, wouldn’t you say? Even though Danny’s description of the absolute loss of inhibition and lack of insecurity is certainly appealing…it’s just not a solution that leads to anything other than more problems.
Now, neither his being gay nor his being HIV-positive is actually the issue.
Some media outlets have made the issue when he decided to come out as either gay or positive. Missed the point again.
Others have made an issue out of his belief of how he became infected with the virus.
The case for “who cares?” is so tenuous that I really can’t see making it without sounding anything other than base or salacious.
But why would that stop anyone who has ad space to sell?
The worst incident that I have heard – and certainly one that probably made a lot of potential ad money for its show and network – was on The View. It’s certainly being reported on heavily.
So, Danny was interviewed on The View by two other former child stars. How precious, right? Raven Simone and Candace Cameron Bure sat down with Danny and his husband (dang it!) and began asking questions that were just…not appropriate. Knowing Cameron’s brother and his path in life, it’s not so surprising to see her asking questions that are gratuitously off-topic, but my memory is trying to vomit out some knowledge of Raven Simone’s sexuality and I think the clicks and whirrs its choosing to communicate in today translate to “she’s lesbian” so for her to be off-gay-agenda messaging during this interview is fairly egregious. What a turncoat. Looks like she knows who signs her checks.
Instead of asking questions about their relationship in general and the sero-discordance in particular in an effort to educate and normalize both situations, The View put on a slightly offensive show by asking questions about how Danny became infected and pointedly <ahem> drilling his partner on whether they use condoms every time they have sex.
And we allow this. It’s selling ad space and driving ratings, regardless of whether it’s a behavior that is praised or condemned. What happened to damned if you do, damned if you don’t? Why are they able to win either way? The worst thing that happens to them is that they don’t win a Pulitzer for their reporting and interviewing – they give those out for network news, right?
On the other hand, somehow I have no problem seeing this increasing their odds of winning a Daytime Emmy. For essentially fear-mongering. I’m sure there’s a category for that.
And at what cost?
A failure to utilize their platform for the greater good and normalize gay relationship realities?
Who does that really hurt?
Danny and his husband? Sure, but they kind of signed up for that. There I go, sounding unsympathetic again.
Everyone who watched the episode? Most assuredly.
If you know the realities – or some of them, anyway – surrounding gay relationships and the more esoteric knowledge of HIV and how it works, let alone the intricacies involved in folding HIV into any relationship…this interview was a shit show. And, no, I’m not forgetting about the awesomely frosted shit-cake NBC and the Today Show served up with their Charlie Sheen interview, but that’s a rant for another time.
The View was a shit show because it failed to elevate itself to the appropriate levels for this subject matter. It played the role of the teacher that just wants to be liked by the students. It pandered to its audience by essentially letting peers interview this couple on this topic.
Ok, I should check and see how old Candy and Raven are…BRB.
Raven Simone is 30. In my day, that was plenty old enough to handle difficult subject matter, today’s kids…maybe not so much. Factor in her formative years as a child actor and maybe she sticks to cooking or fashion segments. The softball shit. CBB is the same age as Danny, 39. But again, between being a child actor and the potential exposure to the stank of her brother’s overly judgmental sub-sect of Christianity, she probably should have recused herself from this interview. But, what story does a more seasoned interviewer like Whoopi Goldberg (right show?) promote?
Did I just call Whoopi Goldberg a seasoned interviewer?
They treated this like entertainment at worst, human interest at best – and I think the best case potential is a stretch. The truth is, it’s news. Important news and they disguised their entertainment segment as news by going off of the scripted questions Danny and his husband had been provided and asking ambush questions that had no business being asked.
At least not as voiced.
Man. Why do I love Netflix? No commercials. No ad space to sell. No surprise propaganda.
I’m semi-incensed over The View’s behavior, but it does at least reinforce my decision to not have cable, thereby eliminating my exposure to this Fox News-ish behavior. I can at least say that I’m not a part of that particular problem.
And, to be honest, if my suspicions about Colton’s response being highly crafted are accurate, I’m kind of happy about that. Because, honestly, who he fucks or gets fucked by is no one’s business but the people who are attached to the parts doing the deeds. The original twit had that part right, at least. I’m just sorry it got the attention it did.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go hashtag the hell out of this post so that it gets a lot of views…