By Gus Moody, Northwestern '22, 06/15/2021
One of my favorite parts of being gay is realizing that other people you interact with on a daily basis are also LGBTQ+. A few months into my time at Brewbike Northwestern on the operations team, my supervisor and I made the “rainbow connection” and realized that we are both queer. It was a thrilling realization. Ultimately, it didn’t change much about how I worked, and it’s not like every single time my supervisor and I talked after that was focused on LGBTQ+ topics and issues, but it made me more comfortable.
Whenever a queer person enters a new space, I find that we put up a facade of who we are around new people as a way of protecting ourselves. There is so much in the world that teaches queer people that they may not always be welcome: From the harrowing amount of trans people, particularly transgender women of color, that are targeted in violent attacks each year, to the sheer fact that some are unable to come out of the closet because the people around them wouldn’t support them. Finding other queer people in the same spaces you occupy isn’t only fun because you get to bond with someone over a common trait, but it’s a way of knowing that you will be safe.
As a white, cisgender, gay man at Northwestern University, it’s not that I’ve ever felt unsafe because of my sexual identity during college. However, discovering that my supervisor, and later that many of my co-workers, are also LGBTQ+ made Brewbike a safe space for me to be myself. It let me be loud and proud while at work. It let working at Brewbike become a fun experience because I knew that I could truly bond with my co-workers as myself while serving customers or while replenishing the inventory.
This pride, I’m thankful for how lucky I am to live as openly and proudly as I am able, and I’m thankful for all of the people that have allowed me to do so. And in thinking about those people, I can’t help but think about all of the queer friends I have at Brewbike.