He’s did it! He finally did it! Eleven years after “Livin’ La Vida Loca” and ten years after “She Bangs,” Ricky Martin has told the world he’s one of us. Of course we’ll always claim we knew the truth, way back then: “He might be Latin, but no straight guy moves his hips like that,” you thought. Certainly helping things: Ricky is a hottie. From his cuteness as part of Menudo to his sex appeal as a solo artist, and even his hot daddy good looks today, we all wanted Ricky on our team because he was an attractive international pop star. Well now, he’s officially here. But just because he’s out doesn’t mean we know all the secrets of his life. And until he spills all in his upcoming memoir, a few lingering questions …
First, let’s get this out of the way: We should all be happy for Ricky Martin. Coming out is a reason to celebrate, not to criticize. Each of us (hopefully) gets there eventually, on our own time. Some are fortune enough to share their sexuality with family and friends without the entire world watching. Not Ricky. So while this isn’t an act of heroism, it is an act of courageousness.
A day out, Ricky tweets: “Whats going on gang?I’m doing great!Stronger than ever!I’m here relaxing @ home enjoying ur messages!I feel the love!Thanx for all!peace”
Still, we’ve got some unknowns.
How much did having kids play a role in coming out?
We know they played some role. Probably a big one, if not the biggest. “To keep living as I did up until today would be to indirectly diminish the glow that my kids where born with,” he says. “Enough is enough. This has to change. This was not supposed to happen 5 or 10 years ago, it is supposed to happen now. Today is my day, this is my time, and this is my moment.” Ricky has spent years outside the public spotlight, and his priorities are now larger than making music and money. He says in his statement that “from the moment I wrote the first phrase [of my memories] I was sure the book was the tool that was going to help me free myself from things I was carrying within me for a long time.” Memoirs are about being honest, and authoring your own legacy. The one his children will read.
Is that cute guy that was with him on the beach in Speedos really his “cousin”?
Was this mystery ever solved? We heard the cutie was either his cousin or his trainer, but something about those yoga poses suggested otherwise. And if the relationship was platonic, well, what has Ricky’s dating life been life? Did he date men during the 2000s as his international celebrity exploded? Is he dating anyone now?
Will he become a gay rights activist?
No stranger to activism and using his celebrity for good, Ricky has been working with Habitat for Hummanity with his Ricky Martin Foundation. From the sound of things — and our own personal experience — the issue of being known as a gay man has been a struggle for him. But, even he says the time was right for him to come out. Does this mean he’ll reconcile this part of his identity with his activism and become a new face in the LGBT equality fight? Just by coming out, he’s already become somebody little gay boys can look up to as a role model, but whether it’s gay marriage or gay adoption, there’s plenty of room for him to upgrade his role.
How will coming out affect book sales?
Ricky’s got a new memoir coming out. So, uh, hello, this is going to generate huge levels of interest. We predict copies will sell like bananas, unless are the juicy parts are published in teasers before publication.
And concert ticket sales?
A return to performing would be hugely lucrative for Ricky — whether he had come out or not. His target demo has always been gay men and straight women (okay, gal girls loved him too!), and not all of those hetero chicks are going to ditch Ricky just because their dreams of bedding him just imploded.
Has he ever seriously considered coming out before?
He’s had plenty of opportunities, from Barbara Walters pushing him about the rumors to that magazine interview where he raised the possibility that his heart could belong to a man or a woman. And he’s seen what happened to Lance Bass (namely, nothin’ much), which is as close a case study you can get in pop singers coming out. And we’ve all considered coming out before we actually do it. But whether there was actually an all-hands meeting to discuss the possibility — publicists, agents, managers in the room — is uknown.
Will there be backlash?
There always is when somebody comes out — from people who are small minded and choose not to understand how the world works. But the most vicious backlash is what we’ve already seen from The Gays, saying Ricky should’ve come out years ago, that his celebrity is a fraction of what it used to be, and how coming out now doesn’t make as much of an impact. But ya know what? Tough shit. He’s always been one of us; it’s just that he’s only receiving his membership card. Let’s embrace him, the way we would want anyone to embrace us.
Is Barbara Walters vindicated?
No. She shoved. All any gay needs to come out is a gentle nudging, in the form of letting him know you’ll be accepting either way.
Top or bottom?
Hmmm, too personal?
And what lingering questions do you have?