Eyes on the Prize

4.24.2005

By Justin Ravitz

My own partner and I were able to relate to you in ways we weren't able to relate to, say, Chip and Reichen, who won season 4. They were so intense and took themselves so seriously.

Lynn: We don't break the mold of the stereotypical gay man, but'only one team was going to win that million dollars, and we wanted to have a good time. Alex hates it when I say this, but it was just a prize to be on that damn show. Seeing the world, waking up every day and realizing you're going to another country was so awesome.

Alex: That's really sweet that you say that, because that's all I wanted'for gay guys to either relate to us or think, 'That's the kind of relationship that I want.'

Lynn: We want young gay guys to know that they can have this. It's very fulfilling and we work well together. We're proud of that.

Alex: And our home life is total old-married couple. We stay at home all the time, rent movies, eat, play with our dog.

Did you ever feel self-conscious or threatened as a gay couple on foreign soil?

Alex: The interesting thing about traveling around the world is that you get to see how other cultures deal with gay people. For instance, we were in South Africa, where gays can get married now. My dad's from Egypt. They don't even have the word gay in Egyptian, but men are allowed to be very affectionate'hold each other's hand, kiss each other. They walk that fine line of 'Are they gay or are they being affectionate?' We actually are pitching a reality documentary about that, where we go into other countries and investigate what gay life is like for a gay person in their culture through their eyes.

How did you meet?

Lynn: At a nightclub in Bakersfield, California'

[Alex shudders.]

Lynn: Two weeks later, we were basically living together, and here we are, happily married, four years later.

Congratulations! Alex, you hadn't yet come out to your father when you began The Amazing Race. Has that situation changed?

Alex: My dad, again, is from a different culture, and grew up with a different set of morals. I knew it wouldn't be easy on him, and my family and I protected him from that information. It's not like he didn't have suspicions'he would visit Lynn and I and see that we had one bed. If he knew, we never talked about it. I think a lot of families do that. But by being on the show, I knew I'd have to tell him. He actually went to Egypt for the whole duration of the show, so I had to tell him over the phone. Not everyone has an ideal coming-out story'he was very upset. We plan on working through it. It's getting better each day. I knew it would happen someday, and the race was the catalyst. It's a huge relief. What was so shocking was the outpouring of support from other family members. People we've never talked to have called and sent cards, saying they were so excited to 'meet' my boyfriend and what a great relationship we have. Lynn's grandmother didn't know either.

Lynn: She says that Alex is so cute, that he looks like Ponch from CHiPS.

Alex: Even some of our uncles, who had been homophobic, all of a sudden changed when they saw us on TV as a couple. Because they got it.

Lynn: And that is what we were about. Love is love, you know?

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