Tom, DJ and Community Activist, San Francisco

photo by Kevin Truong
photo by Kevin Truong

Tom, in his own words: “(Being gay has) been a gift for me! My worldview and creative output are so shaped by my being queer and i’m pretty proud of both. The people i’ve met, the places i’ve gone, the things i’ve accomplished, so many of those things wouldn’t have happened if I weren’t queer and I wouldn’t trade them for anything.

(With regards to challenges) Aside from occasionally having ‘faggot’ shouted at me on the street and a few tumultuous teenage years (I haven’t had) too many to speak of. I’m sure that there have been more subtle challenges but my life as a gay men has been largely without incident and I’m very thankful and lucky to be able to say that.

(The gay scene in San Francisco is) pretty spectacular. When I first moved here I felt like looking at the queer scene was like standing on the edge of the ocean — It was so vast and had far too much depth to ever understand. Having been here for eight years now it certainly doesn’t appear as vast as it once does but its still very impressive. It’s amazing living in a city where there’s such a diversity of experiences and interests that there isn’t a ‘gay scene’ to speak of but rather communities within that that congregate around other interests and just happen to be queer.

(With regards to coming out) I’ve been out for 11 years now, and it’s been mostly uphill since that moment. I met my first other gay boy my age when I was a sophomore in High School, fell in love with him, had my heart ripped out, told everyone it was happening because I didn’t want to be alone in love/despair and that was pretty much that. My friends were all mostly supportive and my parents ultimately were too. Now they come to my queer parties, ask about how my boyfriends are doing and all that.”

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