It’s Saturday night. Soho is bustling with crowds, all jostling down the cobbles, flashes of colour and lots more besides.
I’m sitting with Vernon Kay and wondering what his wife is like is in bed.
No, not another of my warped dreams, it is in fact, a reality. The Bolton Wanderer is on the TV and the images of Soho are a distant memory in the back of my mind.
It’s Saturday night, and I am sitting in, playing along with a gameshow that used to be on when I was 12. It’s like one elongated menstrual cycle with lots of pain.
Flicking through the TV guide (the printed one, I am rejecting digital until they force it on me in 2012), I see Graham Norton, people jumping over a giant totem pole in lycra, John fucking Barrowman, Graham Norton, Little Britain, more lycra, and did I mention Graham Norton?… I mean, no wonder I am thinking about Tess Daly in a gimp suit (joke, honestly).
But seriously, what the hell am I supposed to do? If I want to see another lesbian, it’s either hop in a cab, watch Bad Girls for some pretend ones, or that increasingly all-too-familiar friend, the internet.
Now, maybe if I did have cable, then I could watch The Ellen Show on repeat or catch a glimpse of a lesbian in Gray’s Anatomy, but I don’t. And I won’t for that matter – it’s a completely baseless point of principle, so don’t ask me to explain, I just like to feel outraged from time to time.
Am I asking too much? In a word, no. Lesbians aren’t an endangered species, but I am more likely to spy one up a mountain, right behind the snow leopard on the BBC’s Planet Earth. So where the hell are we on the small screen?
I’m not talking about the fake ones either – in Hollyoaks, Eastenders etc. I mean, I don’t turn up my nose at these, but it’s a bit like booking a magician for your birthday and ending up with Derren Brown.
What about good old Rhona Cameron I hear you cry? She’s been holding up the entire UK lesbian quota for the past decade it seems, and even she has disappeared down a big L-shaped hole of late. Christ, the poor woman is probably in The Priory for exhaustion.
So who else does that leave representing Britain? Like UHU, I’m stuck. Answers written on the back of a postcard, or maybe a stamp, please.
This really is a national disgrace.
Gay men get on TV more easily than dust. They present primetime TV shows and although they are usually made to come across like crotchless Action Men – gay in spirit, humour and manner, just not in bed – at least they get a look in.
Children growing up, exploring their feelings, look up to people on television as role models. So who are our young lesbians looking up to? Pat Butcher? Now I’m not saying life wouldn’t be easier if all lesbians didn’t wear pink earrings and bitch slap Babs Windsor for a laugh – it would certainly make them easier to spot – but this is a serious issue and one that broadcasters should be taking head on.
It is great when big TV dramas include lesbian storylines, but why not use some gay actors for once? Why are they always straight and pretending? It shouldn’t make a huge difference, and if we were represented substantially, I wouldn’t even be making this point, but we’re not, and it sucks.
Maybe we like to hide our lights under our (ahem) bushells, but why are we not doing something on our television screens regularly, and why when it is, is it always sexual? I mean Christ, there must be a few cat lovers willing to go on Pet Rescue or something.
By sitting back and watching on in silence, we are driving our lesbian youngsters underground; forcing them to seek their only solace in YouTube clips, blush in front of an Emmerdale liplock with their Mum watching on, steal copies of Diva off the top shelf, and have to laugh at silly films by silly boys about vampires.
So unless Tess Daly is about to come out live on the lottery, which is about as likely as my numbers coming in (or Derren Brown predicting his own demise), things aren’t looking promising for my night in. As some bloke called Simon Cowell said recently, Britain has got talent – let us remember, that some of it is, in fact, lesbian.
So a round of applause to that Cowell bloke for taking on America’s most recognised gay woman, Ellen DeGeneres, and giving her a judging role on the biggest TV show in the land, American Idol. Sexuality aside, I am sure she will be a great judge and make a very humorous contribution.
Shit, is American actually becoming the land of the free? Black presidents and gay women on American Idol? With Cameron waiting in the UK government’s wings like Fagan with a hard on, ready to steal our money and our morality, Britain runs the risk of going back to the Stone Ages. As much as it pains me to say it, we should follow America’s example and promote minorities (especially good looking ones – joke) as beacons of hope for the rest of us, who are sat at home in their pyjamas, plotting to kill Graham Norton in despair of it all.