It’s been interesting to read some of the e-mails and reactions to today’s comic. I must say, I don’t think there’s anything I’ve ever done that’s generated as much response as the "Not Gay" seat.

I’m not complaining, mind you. The fact that people are talking about it and e-mailing me shows that you care!

A lot of people have written in to tell me that I am only exposing one side of the story. "There is another reason men aren’t sitting next to each other!" they say. Over the course of the day, these arguments have formed into what I like to call "The Double Armrest Theory."

Some people say that if they go to a movie with their buddies and the theater is packed, they have no problem pulling up a chair next to them. But if there is room to spread out, why not take advantage of it? You get two armrests and you’re not squished together.

I can understand this line of logic. I certainly wouldn’t begrudge anyone their personal space. But, like everything in life, it’s all about context. Through m y particular filter – and based partially off the experience I shared earlier – if one was to go to the effort of going to a movie with a friend and then sitting away from that person during said activity… Well, it just seems kind of rude to me. Sort of like going to lunch with somone, but sitting at another table. In the "Not Gay" movie theater example, I think the fact that it’s only one chair that separates people who clearly arrived together only further emphasises the situation. If you REALLY valued your personal space, you’d sit two or three rows back. Or, more resourcefully, not arrived with anyone at all.

Some of the feedback I’ve gotten has been somewhat defensive. I should probably mention that all of it has come from guys. Look, fellas. I didn’t mean to put any of you on the spot. I certainly didn’t mean to suggest that because you appreciate a little elbow room that you might be a homophobe. So if it makes you feel any better, look at my explaination as a critique on manners and not on the paranoia of sexual orientation. Tossing in the whole "Not Gay" moniker was just a clever spin on what seems to be an otherwise everyday occurance in movie theaters around the globe. Maybe if you framed it within the context of Dave Barry’s essay about the Every Other Urinal Rule will the concept come into clearer focus.

Whatever your opinion, it’s clear that I’ve touched a nerve with today’s comic and of that I’m proud. If I can find universal themes within the context of the movie-going experience for you guys to enjoy, then I feel I’ve really done my job. Thanks for your letters and keep sending them in!