Driftwood, Texas -- Not A Gay Mecca, But Maybe An Inspiration

Imfromdriftwood.com, a blog devoted to posting true stories about gay people, by gay people, caught our eye when Patrick from Galveston posted an entertaining story last week. Apparently, high school teachers in Galveston can't tell the difference between homosexuality and African-American heritage.

The blog is a little more than two weeks old, launched by Nathan Manske who was born and raised in the tiny Hill Country town of Driftwood.

"When I was doing research for the site, I found a lot of gay porn fiction or gay true porn nonfiction. I don't want any of that," Manske tells Hair Balls. "I just want stories. I don't want commentaries or opinions or rants."

He got the idea from seeing Milk, he writes on the site.

But funny enough, what inspired me was Milk more so than Milk. An image I recalled wasn't even in the film. It was a photo of Supervisor Harvey Milk, one of the first openly gay elected officials in the U.S., riding on the hood of a car in a San Francisco Gay Pride march, holding a sign that reads, "I'm From Woodmere, N.Y." The sign was intended to show how far people came to attend the San Francisco rally, but it meant something more to me. It meant that there are gay people in every small town and every big city across America and the world.

Manske, a copywriter who now lives in New York, had the time to develop the site after being laid off.

Stories come from all over the world, but Texas leads the way in location.

There's the "hidden in the closet" soldier from Spring who feels like a coward, even after receiving the Army Commendation Medal with Valor and a Bronze Star Medal for his service in Iraq. Or the man from Dallas who realized he was gay at 12 years old after having a dream about John Goodman in a steam room.

"The main goal of the site is to help gay teenagers not feel so alone, and that's where the inspiration from growing up in Driftwood came from," Manske says.

Or, as he writes on the site:

To the gay teens struggling to come out and deal with their sexuality, who to this day still attempt suicide 4 times more than straight kids, it says "you are not alone." Other people have dealt with similar situations, families, communities and churches, and have overcome and are now living happy lives. It can happen for you, too. It gets soooo much better, I promise.

With a little help, it does.

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