This self-described ‘big hairy homo’ and his story about how he got his dream job is going viral and it’s so incredibly powerful.
Boon Cotter, 39, was working late one night in his Brisbane, Australia home when his friend sent him a job ad.
The position was for a lighting artist at Naughty Dog, an American video game developer based in Santa Monica, California. They’re the makers of games like Crash Bandicoot, Uncharted and The Last of Us.
Cotter told Gay Star News: ‘I had this convoluted 10 year plan to end up at Naughty Dog, and I didn’t think I was even remotely qualified enough for the position, but I had a kind of “fuck it” moment and sent off a letter with a link to my underwhelming portfolio.
‘When they contacted me back, I shit my pants.
‘Not literally, I swear,’ he joked.
It all took off from there for Cotter and he began preparing for his job interview. Naughty Dog paid for his flights to the California office and he left Australia for the first time ever.
He took to Twitter to explain the interview process: ‘I went in [to the interview] not overthinking anything.
‘[I was] just determined to be myself and meet these fucken rad people I adored,’ he tweeted.
Then game director of Naughty Dog Bruce Straley walked into the room during the interview and Cotter was starstruck.
The big hairy homo tweeted: ‘He asked me some Q’s I had horrible A’s for.’
‘Then he asks “Why do you want to work at Naughty Dog?” I began to answer a true, but rote, response: “You’re the best,” blah blah,’ he wrote.
But then he stopped and opened up to the real reason. He explained it was the character Bill from The Last of Us that inspired him to apply.
Cotter tweeted: ‘Everyone looked at me with this kind of bemused curiosity.
‘I told them it was the first time I’d seen a gay man portrayed as this gruff, masculine, tragically heroic type of character.
‘He wasn’t a punchline to a joke. He wasn’t overtly stereotypical. A lot of players didn’t even pick up that he was gay.
‘I told them that I saw myself represented for the first time. A burly, hairy, daddy bear character, a guy I respected and understood,’ he confessed.
And then Cotter started crying in the job interview.
He tweeted: ‘WHO THE FUCK CRIES IN A JOB INTERVIEW?’
Cotter thought he had blown it by opening up to the interviewers in such a raw way.
But fast forward to three hours later and he is ‘shitface drunk on margaritas’ when he gets the news.
The big hairy homo told Gay Star News: ‘I actually got the offer in my meeting with the company’s co-president (at the time) Christophe Balestra.
‘Everything he was saying sounded to me like a really polite “Thanks, good luck on your next adventure” farewell, but then he stopped mid sentence and said “Oh, you can relax, I’m making you an offer!”
‘I thought I responded but I may have just sat there with my jaw soundlessly flapping,’ he said.
‘The only thing you can give the world that no one else can, is you’
This all actually happened three years ago, but he thought it was important to tell his story for its remarkable message.
He wants to inspire people to strive for their goals, even if they seem impossible.
He told Gay Star News: ‘When I came out, I made a decision that I was going to try not to hide anything ever again, just be 100% me.
‘I have a lot of young gay kids following me who wanna work in games, and I just think the best asset they have to offer is themselves, not who they think the world wants to see.
‘Being vulnerable makes you a soft target, and yep, some people are bullies and look for easy targets.
‘But I don’t think the bruises are worth hiding yourself from the world.
‘The only thing you can give the world that no one else can, is you,’ he said.