Sports and gay ladies go together like the peanut butter and jelly of lesbianism. Sure, not all lesbians and bisexual women play softball – or any sport for that matter. I include myself in the decidedly “non-sporty” category. It’s all I can do to walk and breathe at the same time some days. But if you don’t know at least one sporty dyke then you should go hang out by a grassy sports field any given Sunday. They are there. Trust me. So the fact that we still have little more than a handful of high-profile out ladies in professional sports is, to put it mildly, perplexing. Sure, there is Martina. And Billy Jean. Also France’s Amélie Mauresmo, Norway’s Gro Hammerseng, Australia’s Natalie Cook, Sweden’s Jessica Landström. And others, of course. But we always want more because we know they’re out there – playing their big gay hearts out.
So that’s why a Megan Rapinoe is so special. Well, really, she’s special for a lot of reasons – the hair, the personality, the ass-kicking soccer skills. But she’s also an athlete who came out at the height of her success, right before she stepped on the grandest stage of all – the Olympics. Not late in her career, not after her career was over. So then we could celebrate with her as an out and proud gay athlete as they put that gold medal around her neck. It was as close to winning a gold medal as I’ll ever come, that’s for sure.
Megan credits coming out with helping her play her best at the Olympics. She said of coming out: “I think it was the best decision I ever made. To be able to go into such an important event like that being a wide open book and just saying this is who I am, I’m damn proud of it and hopefully you are too.”
So over the weekend Megan was deservedly awarded the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center's Board of Directors Award.
And if that doesn’t convince you to become a Pinoe superfan, maybe Tom Hanks screaming “Megan Rapinoe! Megan Rapinoe!” will. And, of course, if all else fails there’s always The Hair.
Thanks, Megan. And, as always, love The Hair.