By Diane Ako
I'm addicted to Netflix. About once or twice a week, we have time/energy at night to watch a movie before bedtime. My in laws, visiting us for six weeks from Denmark, join us for movie nights since they're living in our house.
The other night, it was my turn to choose, and I was feeling mischevous. With Claus, we only watch action thrillers or foreign films. Musicals, sci fi, serial soaps (like Once Upon A Time), and romantic comedies are usually met with an eye roll. Therefore, as a prank, I picked The Big Gay Musical.
He came upstairs and I hit play. I snuck a sideways glance at his face in the first minutes of the film because I wanted to laugh at his reaction. I was not disappointed.
Actually, my mother in law, whose English doesn't come easily, was trying to read the title and was like, "The Big Guy Musical?" And then when it started to play, I later learned, my father in law - who pretty much only speaks Danish - complained under his breath.
Unfortunately for Claus and his stepdad, the movie ended up being interesting enough for me to want to stick with it past the first few minutes of the prank. It has a really great opening scene full of funny jokes and nice singing and dancing. The pretty men twirling around in tight or scant clothing entertained me, too.
The movie cuts back and forth between the musical, which is hilarious, and the lives of the two main characters. The musical is used as a tool to let the viewer reflect on what's happening in the characters' lives.
Unfortunately for Claus and his stepdad again, there's a lot of gay sex in the characters' off-stage lives. The movie kind of ratchets up the nudity levels so by the time it reaches its most graphic, you see two nude guys in bed with everything shown except the front. At this point, I think my father in law had had enough, so midway through, they excused themselves to go to sleep.
After the movie ended, Claus and I were lying in bed, winding down with our respective reading material. I had a women's magazine. There was an article about how it's nice to be grateful. There was a little sidebar giving you tips on how to count your blessings.
"Let's play this game," I said to Claus. "Name one thing you're grateful for today."
"I'm grateful that movie is over," he said dryly.
"No, really," I said.
"No, really," he said.
"The magazine says to list in detail why you're grateful," I pressed on.
"I'm grateful I'm done watching a gay musical. That veered into soft porn. With my parents, who I think you traumatized," he elaborated with a stare.
I still thought he was being cynically humorous. I tried to make him keep playing this game. I read another tip from the magazine. "Fine. You can list something you're grateful for, and explain how the absence of it would impact your life," I said.
"I am grateful The Big Gay Musical is over, and I would have been better off if you had not made me watch it," he insisted.
"Be serious," I implored.
"I am serious," he answered. "Your turn."
This husband makes me laugh all the time. I was laughing so hard I was crying. OMG. Did I just watch gay porn with my in laws?
"Well, I have two gratitudes. I'm grateful for you, because you constantly bring humor into my life," I smiled. "And that there's a sequel to The Big Gay Musical. I hear it'll be on Netflix next month."