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What Would You Do When a ’10’ Walks in the Room?

by Vince Pellegrino
Wednesday Nov 13, 2013

Last night at the David Barton Gym in Chelsea, an infamous place for having very attractive gay men, I was in the locker room putting on my coat when a "10" walked into the room.

What I found most fascinating at the time, was not the man himself, but the collective reaction of a number of gay men, including myself, who were almost "tripping over themselves" to get a look at the guy naked.

Okay, so the first thought in my head when "checking out" this guy was whether or not he was gay? A thought that was quickly answered when he started putting on the tightest jeans possible to cover those sexy buttocks; an activity that required quite a bit of effort to say the least. Clearly he knew what his best assets were.

The following are the varied behaviors of several men I witnessed including my own while "checking out" the hot man.

Gay Man #1 - A very handsome mustachioed man who was engaged in conversation with the "10." He was clearly enjoying the conversation as the "10" was putting on his jeans, still shirtless. As the mustachioed man was talking to him, he couldn't stop smiling and didn't seem too aware or caring of the fact that he was still wearing his coat and scarf! Apparently, the temperature of the warm locker room meant little to nothing to him as his attention was on the "10" and nothing else!

Gay Man # 2- A smaller and older man, who was a little rude to me in the neighboring locker as he maneuvered his way toward finding any possible opportunity to glance in the direction of the "10, without being viewed as a stalker. As I was leaving the room, I saw that Gay Man #2 did find the opportune moment to get close to the object of his attention by primping in front of a wall mirror in very close proximity to the "10."

Gay Man #3- Was fortunate enough to find that his locker was in very close proximity to the "10" and was pleased at having to excuse himself to the "10" as he tried to get to his locker. Having met Gay Man #3 earlier in the gym, I vividly recall his irritation finding several workout machines in the gym not working, but now, he was magically transformed to behaving like a "kid in a candy store" when he interacted with the "10." I left the room noticing Gay Man #3 checking out the "hottie" from behind (who wouldn't?) as the "10" continued to converse with Gay Man #1.

As for myself, I couldn't help but to glance frequently at the beautiful man even to the point where I was standing outside the locker room acting as if I was waiting for a friend. Having noticed this beautiful man on the gym floor, I knew that even in gym attire, that he would have an amazing physique to match his overall beauty, and was happy to get the opportunity to view him in full regalia.

I guess we do have something in common with all the "straight boys" and their cruising behavior while "checking out" the ladies.

Now, let's get to the "crux" of this article, and that is, just how many of us gay men love "checking out" the hot man, even when we say that "beauty is just skin deep!" Come on, you know that whoever is saying that is only kidding himself! Beauty is pretty damn wonderful if you have it, and what makes someone really attractive, is when the one with the beauty doesn't act as if he or she is the "king or queen of the world!"

This gentleman, by my estimation, seemed to be very sweet and engaging to Gay Man #1 as they conversed, and was kind and polite to Gay Man #3 as he excused himself on the way to his locker. Whether this "10" was truly a nice guy or someone that would be easy to talk to, was not as easily apparent.

Having just completed my book, "Talk it OUT: No More Gay Shame," it is highly likely that this man has found himself the focus of much attention for quite some time. Similar to a beautiful woman, this guy would most likely be bothered by all the attention unless he or she wanted it. As a result, I would predict that Mr. "10" would most likely be unresponsive to someone he was not attracted to, and, very engaging of someone he was; after all, isn't that the way the game is played?

In the web post "Fessing Up: Gay Men and Ideals of Beauty" by Devon Hunter (May 21, 2009), the author details how gay man have clear ideals for beauty and what the consequence could possibly be pursuing the desire of their attention. "Beauty, and the pursuit of it, can be inspirational, but is also the fuel for many destructive fires. Beauty can be dangerous. We gay men very often burn with the desire to pursue beauty, both our own and that of others. The desire-rejection cycle is powerful: We all desire, we all reject, we all complain about not getting the ones we want." The author even further touches on the subject of this article and our (the gay boys) fascination with male beauty: "Everyone is a 10 looking for a 12, and we've forgotten that 5 is average (and that most of us are 5 or 6, and that expecting an 8, much less a 10, is a recipe for disaster).

Okay, so Mr. Hunter (an interesting name in itself) is basically telling us to be realistic and not to fool ourselves by "reaching for the sky" and maybe try to limit our choices to more practical expectations. As for me, I say, "go for it, what do you have to lose?" If the guy ignores you, it's more of a reflection on him and not you, and if he responds favorably, you have earned "bragging rights" for years. A similar situation as memorialized in the very popular 70s film "10" with Dudley Moore, who romantically connected with the object of his infatuation, Bo Derek, only to end up choosing Julie Andrews (of "Mary Poppins" fame) in the end, after the "10" ended up acting like a slut!

Of course we gays all know that a "10" acting like a slut is a dream come true. Case closed and happy cruising boys!

Dr. Vince Pellegrino has PhDs in educational theater and drama therapy from New York University and is a board-certified psychotherapist in New York City and Connecticut. He teaches communications at Hofstra University. He is currently working on a book, "Gay Communication Game," about "Gayspeak"; an interactive TV program featuring real-time therapy sessions in development. Go to Dr. Vince TV for more information.


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