Chris Turner and Armistead Maupin (right)

Tales of the City author Armistead Maupin and his husband were on the receiving end of homophobia in the town of Alice Springs while on a book tour of Australia last week.

Maupin (66) and his husband Chris Turner went to the Bojangles Saloon for lunch. At some point, Turner went to the bar and asked a staff member where he could use the bathroom.

“The guy said, sorry, we don’t have one in here but you can go across the street to the public facility,” Maupin told ABC News Australia.

Maupin, who had used the restroom in the bar the day before, then pointed in the direction of the bar’s toilet and asked the barman:”what’s that over there?”

The staff member responded, according to Maupin, by saying that the Bojangles toilet was reserved for “real men”.

“When Chris asked where the toilet was, the bartender told us to go across the street because their toilet was reserved for ‘real men,'” wrote Maupin on Facebook.

“So we did what real men do and crossed the street to the visitor’s center where we filed a complaint. Impressively we received an email apology from the bartender that afternoon. Fair dinkum, mate. Next time don’t f**k with the poofters,” he said.

The couple later also received an apology from Tourism Central Australia, which claimed that this was an “isolated incident”.

“Just to be clear,” commented Maupin, “There are no apologies necessary from either Alice Springs or Australia. I’ve never felt more welcomed by a country. This was a lone gunman, and we just handed him his balls on a platter. It’s over.”

Maupin’s Tales of the City books, concerning a group of gay and straight characters in San Francisco, have sold millions of copies around the world.

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