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LAist Interview: 'Regretrosexual' Creator on Going Gay and Turning Back

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Actor-comic Dan Rothenberg met the girl of his dreams in actress-comic Colleen Crabtree, but he had a little secret to tell her: For two years while living in San Francisco, he kinda sorta was gay. That little secret could either make or break lots of relationships, but at least in Dan and Colleen’s story has a happy ending.


The now husband-and-wife team have joined together to write and star in the comical autobiographical play Regretosexual – A Love Story that chronicles the night Dan revealed his gay past to Colleen. It continues on Saturdays through May 10 at the Hudson Theatre before leaving for the Edinburgh Festival later this summer.

LAist asked the Culver City-based duo to tell us more about the play, love and labels, and Dan's living the gay life in San Francisco. Here's the first part of our interview -- and Dan's side of the story.

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Like many relationships, Regretrosexual focuses on telling the woman of your dreams the details of your "sordid" past – mainly that you "went gay" while living in SF for two years. How does one decide to "go gay"?
I followed my best friend out of the closet because it seemed exciting and cool. Plus, there was a part of me that believed that the almighty label, “gay,” would explain my anxious childhood and guarantee a happy and meaningful adulthood. The only detail I overlooked is that I’m not attracted to men. I guess I thought that would grow with time.

Was there one particular guy?
No. But there was a guy who we call Jason in the play. He was my best friend who I followed into being gay. Although I was not attracted to him. That’s probably why “Regretrosexual” is a comedy before it is a drama. Jason was my best friend in college who I looked up to and identified with. He came out of the closet when we moved to SF and a part of me felt like I had to as well. Otherwise, I thought, I would lose him as a friend.