Hardcore Emoticon User Claims He's Straight

By Dodie Fingerton

Published November 15th, 2015

ALBANY — A middle-aged city man with a fondness for emoticons insists he's not attracted to other men.

Jefferson Giddy, 42, of Broner Avenue, maintains his heterosexuality despite a strong tendency to end all digital communications with at least one pictorial of his mood and/or intended facial expression.

“I don't know why people assume I'm gay just because I use emoticons in my emails and texts,” said Giddy. “That's a pretty big leap to make, don't you think?”

Friends of Giddy's, however, contend extreme emoticon usage by men can be directly linked to their sexual preference — especially if the man in question is recently divorced and known to walk his Teacup Poodle up and down New Scotland Avenue.

“I was really surprised when I got back in touch with Jeff,” said Doug Hoeknot, a friend of Giddy's from college. “I never once suspected he was gay. But then when I started getting emails and texts laden with frowny faces, I knew something was up. But it’s all good. No judgment here. I have plenty of gay friends and, boy, do they love their emoticons.”

Michelle Vagghey, an ex-girlfriend who reconnected with Giddy on Facebook a few years back, was equally surprised.

“Jeff and I had an intensely sexual relationship back in the ‘90s,” Vagghey said. “That's why I was so shocked when one of his Facebook comments included a smiley guy wearing Ray-Ban sunglasses. Good for him for finally coming out of the closet. I'm proud of him.”

Despite the assumptions, the pellet stove salesman remains adamant he prefers the company of women.

“Right now, if I was writing this, I'd be able to punctuate my intended tenor with, say, a little yellow-faced fella scratching his head in confusion or maybe crying out in exasperation. Emoticons are the most efficient way to summarize my feelings. Plus, they add flare. What's so gay about that?

“Oh wait,” he added. “Wow. Yeah, that does sound pretty gay when I say it out loud. Damn!”

Still, friends say that even if Giddy manages to tone back on the emoticons it probably won't make much of a difference.

“The cat's already out of the bag,” said Hoeknot. “And, let's face it, there's still the whole Teacup Poodle thing.”

“Hey,” responded Giddy, “you leave Francis out of this.”


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