Please Stop Calling Aussie Swimmer Ian Thorpe 'Gay'
Do you remember when handsome Aussie swimmer Ian Thorpe swam in the 2004 Summer Games and all anybody talked about was whether he'd beat Michael Phelps in the 200 freestyle?
... at least, that's what he said while promoting his new autobiography, This is Me.
The gay rumors have mostly stemmed from stereotypical assumptions about his past: he once lived with Brazilian swimmer Daniel Mendes as roommates for three years; he's rarely captured in photos with a girl around his arm; gay blogs have kept a constant eye on him; he's had his own underwear and jewelry line and he's also modeled for Armani.
Well, and there's also that time when Thorpe said that he "ticks all the boxes" when it comes to his sexuality; though in context, he could have meant several things other than "I like boys."
The only problem that the nine-time Olympic medalist has with the constant gay rumors is that they imply that he's lying when he says he's straight.
During a recent interview, Thorpe said, "The thing that I find hurtful about it is that people are questioning kind of my integrity and what I say. That's the only part that I find hurtful," "Like is that, you know, this is something that I would be embarrassed about, that I would hide or whatever else."
He continued, "I don't want to offend anyone that, you know, whether they're people [who] have friends that are gay or whatever else, I don't want to offend them by...getting angry about it, getting frustrated about it. The only part that I'm frustrated with is that people think that I'm lying."
But his memoir isn't just about irritation with annoying gay rumors. It also discusses his struggles with depression, alcoholism and the Olympic victories that made deciding whether or not to continue competing even more difficult.
And apart from his tough personal journey, he also set up Ian Thorpe's Fountain for Youth which raises funds to research childhood diseases.
So the next time someone pipes up about the Thorpedo's sexuality, remind them that he's also done a lot of other cool things too.