My buddy “Gus” wears a gold bracelet on his wrist, studded with diamonds.
It looks so fabulous you would think it is fake, but it’s not. It costs a cool $10,000.
Gus is an educated, professional, brown-skinned black Washingtonian around 40 years old but I know he is not making enough bank to drop that much on an accessory.
But over drinks Wednesday night Gus explained that it is a gift from his Saudi Arabian friend “Fadi.”
Gus met Fadi in an innocuous way — they started following each other on Instagram. And soon they started chatting and video calling. And it became clear that Fadi, although he is married with three kids, wanted to find an unclockable gay man to share some time.
That is because Saudi Arabia is fiercely homophobic and follows the ultra-conservative Wahhabi Islam faith. Being gay or a person who is transgender is punishable by death.
Fadi invited Gus over to Saudi, explaining that he would pay for the hotel and all expenses. Gus was nervous — was he going into a set-up? But he decided to go anyway, although he told his sister where he was going and why so she would at least know what became of him if things went sour.
Fadi was the consummate gentlemen. He flew Gus over first-class, took him on shopping sprees for designer gear and presented him with a cashier’s check for $10,000 for visiting him. His only requirement was that Gus wear traditional Arab attire and have raw sex with him because he didn’t like condoms.
On the second night Fadi came to Gus’s hotel room to consummate the sexual part of his arrangement.
“The sex was hot,” Gus said. “He ate me out for a long time and his dick was huge.”
On other nights they went socializing and Gus discovered Arab society is a lot more homoerotic than you would believe by reading the headlines. Women are second-class citizens and men do not associate with woman they are not related to.
So men mostly hang around each other. Eating together. Dancing together. Holding hands. And gay life is there but deeply underground. Men meet each other for private parties that sometimes turn into sex parties.
“Fadi took me to one of them but it made me uncomfortable,” Gus said. “I thought maybe the men there thought they were going to gangbang me. But when I told Fadi I wanted to leave he was fine with that and we left.”
Three years later they stay in contact and Fadi has even visited the United States to see his African American boo.
“I’m only telling you this because you don’t judge Immanuel,” he said.
Nope, I’m not mad at him. I’ve heard stranger things in life.
Readers here is an article that ran in The Atlantic back in 2007 about gay life in Saudi Arabia. I was still married to my ex-wife and I can remember buying it and reading it clandestinely and throwing it away as soon as I could. It was really informative and reminded me that the DL lifestyle just does not exist among some Americans. They take it to a whole new level in Saudi Arabia.