Let's be honest: We have all had moments in the past that, if frozen in time, would make us the seventh man to land on this list. We all struggle with highlighting the good and minimizing the bad, and there is nothing wrong with having a few traits that you might want to downplay on your resume. But if you are a gay man who's been dating long enough, chances are you have had the displeasure of running into a few men who exhibit more than just a couple personal flaws. These men are true character monsters, and they are the people dating nightmares are made of.
These are the six gay men you never want to meet: the sequel. (Here is Part I, if you need a refresher.)
The Fire Starter
This man's spark may draw you in at first. He is magnetic and kinetic, and the sex is probably the best you've ever had. But the more you get to know him, the more you start to realize the heat that attracted you has burned so many in the past. To him, everyone else is "crazy," and you realize he only has new friends and no old ones. He flares up easily, and what you construed as passion might just be a severe anger problem. Step slowly away ... because the only consistent crazy part of his life is himself, and you could be left covered in ashes. (Illustrated by Clarione Gutierrez)
The Leading Man
He flashes his smile and you are immediately hooked, and so is the rest of the room. Still, he is on a date with you, and you can't help but feel a little bit simultaneously intimidated and excited. He is sweet, well-known, and impossibly handsome. Over dinner he intoxicates you with his dreams of settling down, his ideal wedding and when he wants to start adopting kids. But you start to wonder: How is this guy still single? But for this type of dastardly character, it's about the show of it all. You may date for a couple weeks or even a couple months. Inevitably, he will get the itch to go out for another round of applause from the crowd once you get tired of clapping. (Illustrated by Clarione Gutierrez)
The Sob Story
You learned about his terrible childhood and his series of awful relationships before you even had a chance to tell him where you are from. But his puppy-dog eyes gleamed just so, playing all the right heartstrings. You think, "Maybe I can be the 'happy' that this guy finally deserves?" So you give it a shot. Six months in, you start to realize that his sad tales aren't a thing of the past; they are his present. And worse, he secretly thrives off of the "woe is me" mentality. It's only a matter of time until you become a dreary little character yourself. So let those violin strings play one last time ... while you make your exit. (Illustrated by Clarione Gutierrez)
Walking into this homosexual's life is like walking into a museum of what the modern gay man's house and closet should be. At first, his perfect aesthetic may be appealing. But while you are admiring his wardrobe coordinated by season, cut, and color, he is trying not to notice how you just so nonchalantly threw your keys on his counter. This suspect is a dangerous one, for he covets his possessions so much so that he has no problem sweeping you out with the dirt when things get a little messy. And with love, things always get a little messy. (Illustrated by Clarione Gutierrez)
This bright and bubbly character might seem like just the breath of fresh air that you needed. He is fun and charismatic, and has his finger on the pulse of everything you don't. He may be fun to listen to, but as the relationship progresses you realize that everyone in his life is fair game for poking fun. Sure, we all like a bit of gossip. But when brunch runs three hours long because he and his friends haven't finished going through their Facebook pages and bashing each and every person they know in common, it's time to get the check and never come back. Yes, you will be up for sacrifice among his group of cackling gays soon, but that was inevitable. (Illustrated by Clarione Gutierrez)
Mr. Power Trip
At first, this gay man seems like he is just as romantic as he can be. He opens doors, he pays for every dinner, and he has no problem making plans for the both of you. You may be a little uncomfortable with how take-charge he is, but you appreciate the effort. Who doesn't need a Prince Charming every now and then, right? But once this power-hungry maniac has you on lockdown, he won't only be picking up the check and choosing the reservations, he will begin to control the parts of your life that don't even involve him. Or at least ... they didn't until now. Mr. Power Trip may come off as a regular prince, but you might find yourself locked in the tower after a few months with this one. (Illustrated by Clarione Gutierrez)
The perils of dating will always be present, but learning how to identify those who truly embody these undercover goons makes it a whole hell of a lot easier to not waste a perfectly good Friday night.
TYLER CURRY created the Needle Prick Project as an editorial and visual campaign to elicit a candid and open conversation on what it means to be HIV-positive today. To learn more about the Needle Prick Project, visit Facebook.com/getpricked or follow Tyler Curry on Facebook or Twitter at @iamtylercurry.