My grandfather told me something a long time ago that never left me. I was sitting with him in the pub, him drinking his pint of bitter and I, at the tender age of 7, was eating my small packet of crisps and drinking a strong shandy due to the bartender owning a pub in the countryside where people give much less of a shit. We had been in silence for a lot of the time, when suddenly a stranger entered the pub and received a lot of unsubtle glances from the patrons of the pub, including my own grandad. The man, who was not remarkable in any memorable way walked through the bar area and sat down with his male companion in the corner of the pub away from our own table.
My grandfather stared at me from across the table, leaned in and told me that the man who had just entered was a queer and was a blight on the village. He went on to inform me that being in love with another man was a thing that only dirty bastards did and that if I ever thought of doing anything like it then I should be expected to be disowned by the family faster than I'd known what had hit me.
In the years that followed I came to the conclusion that my grandfather might not have been the wise sage that he had appeared back in those days, and in some ways was in fact quite an intellectually stagnant and irrational old and bitter fool. But even though our opinions on the gays have changed since that day, there is one element of his words that I can never disagree with.