‘Saro on Who He Is’ by Danny Harris

Danny Harris is a DC-based photographer, DJ, and collector of stories. In September, he launched People’s District, a blog that tells a people’s history of DC by sharing the stories and images of its residents. Every day, People’s District presents a different Washingtonian sharing his or her insights on everything from Go Go music to homelessness to fashion to politics. You can read his previous columns here.

“I’m 17. Throughout my life, I have lived in the whole D.C. metropolitan area. Now, I live in Arlington. I came out when I was 15. I always knew that I was gay. As a kid, I played dress up with the girls and loved Barbies. I really wanted to tell people before, but I couldn’t. I finally decided to tell everyone how I really was in the 8th grade because I wanted to start high school as a new me. Telling my Mom was easier than I thought because she always knew. It was hard on my father, though. He took it worse than my Mom did. My friends already knew too, they were just waiting for me to say it.

Continues after the jump.

“Now, it is fun being a young, gay teen. I have a lot of friends and do the normal stuff that teenagers do. I have a lot of straight friends, too. A lot of my friends don’t care that I am gay. They know that even though I am gay, there are barriers that we won’t cross as friends. Other people can be all fake towards me because they don’t want to be perceived as gay because they are around me. So, we can be friends in private, but not in public. I tell you, I am not really one who is pressed to have a lot of friends, though. If you are close to me, you are close to me. If you are not, you’re not. That is the way I carry it. I’m a fun, good person and like to party like everyone else. That’s all that should matter.

“When I grow up, I want to work in fashion. I love fashion. I only read Vogue and W magazine. I grew up with style. My Mom is Vietnamese and black. My grandmother is German and my grandfather is Polish, so I grew up around a lot of different cultures and styles. They have all defined my own personal style. Now, I like to dress the way I like to dress and wear my hair the way that I like to wear my hair. This is just who I am.”

15 Comment

  • Wonder why he moved to Arlington? Personal safety fears?

    • It says he’s lived all over the D.C. metropolitan area. I’m not sure why it matters so much, but as far as you know, he’s never even lived inside the District.

    • saf

      Based on his age, I’m guessing his parents moved and he went with.

  • He always knew he was gay because he played dress up with the girls and played with Barbies.

    I thought I was gay but now I have to wonder.
    I have been laboring under the impression that it was because I am sexually attracted to men, rather than women.

    • SouthwestDC

      I had an ex who always engaged me in the same ridiculous argument that I wasn’t really a lesbian because I have all the markings of a straight woman– I wear skirts, makeup, and heels, I cook and knit and sew, and I loved playing with dolls as a child. She always overlooked the “minor” detail that I obviously like women and have no interest in men.

      I know this guy is still just a kid, but he should realize that comments such as the one about the Barbies really can be harmful to those of us who don’t fit the stereotypes. It makes it harder for others to believe us or take our sexuality seriously.

  • briefly, do you know young black youth? east o the river large percentages of high schoolers are out, popular, happy, and unthreatened. it’s wise not to speak of which you do not know.

    • Was just curious why he moved, not seeking to pass any judgment, apologies. Also, given some of the anti-gay press and violence of late, and the vitriol over gay marriage, I’d say homophobia is alive and well in DC. Just my opinion…

      • are you suggesting that homophobia is alive and well in DC but not in Virginia?

        • SouthwestDC

          It’s usually the poor and uneducated that are the most homophobic. Arlington is one of the richest and most educated towns in the country, so it’s not entirely out of line to assume you’d see fewer instances of homophobia in Arlington than you would in most DC neighborhoods. The rest if Virginia is, of course, another story.

          • “It’s usually the poor and uneducated that are the most homophobic. ”

            can you um, prove that for me? Cause otherwise, I think I’m gonna go out on a limb and say it’s usually the wealthy who have the lowest expectations of the poor and uneducated.

  • Geez, I’m on a roll. Lemme just shut up for the day before I earn any more pointed comments.

  • damn, why dont you all get off of ‘briefly’s balls? cant anyone be curious about anything these days without the bleeding hearts geting all up in arms?

  • Saro, I admire your courage. It took me until I was 21 until I had the balls you had at 15.

    Keep this website posted on when you have your first fashion line; we’ll be the first in line!

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