Notes towards the rehabilitation of the seventh grade definition of the word GAY.
And trust me, the dam has bursting. If Hollywood’s cannibalistic recent past is any indication, Tales of Sailors who can fold sweaters and hairless Bikers trading in their hogs for Miatas will be flooding the Cineplexes soon, MARK MY WORDS.
Surveys show that healthy majorities of emerging young voters support universal marriage rights, adding an interesting dimension to a debate that was unimaginable even 24 months ago.
As our GLBT claim their places at the Republic’s all you can eat pancake feed, it may be soon that us, their allies in the straight community, will be able to reclaim something that we have put aside in the interest of human dignity. I mean of course the 7th grade definition of the word GAY.
In those moist, glistening pre-Britney days of sexual innocence, when a young lad seeing Phoebe Cates emerging from a pool had enough fodder to get him you through the year, the emergence of Gay culture was confusing.
We were pretty sure Gay simply meant being so depraved as wanting to have sex with anything: shoes, Chryslers, hedgehogs and the concept of Pi were all fair game for these denizens of the twilight world, these GAYS. John Ritter was not pretending to be to be seeking emotional succor from another man, he was pretending to be a twisted pervert so far past what was normal that he would fully ignore Chrissi’s jiggling as he pined for a grapefruit or a crack at one of Burt Convey’s bleeding hair plugs.
So out of this confusion and our sheltered lives we hobbled our own definition of the word that was all over the media that our parents were unwilling to define for us.
Gay, as used on the playground and biketrail, meant a misplaced aesthetic moment, an enthusiasm for something clearly shoddy and self-reverential. It’s pretty close to Clement Greenburg’s definition of kitsch, that is "the debased ... simulacrum of genuine culture", although something GAY isn’t necessarily as cynical as inferred by Greenburg’s kitsch. It can entirely merely be misguided, or overblown. 7th graders can give two shits about intent. Tough little buggers.
Catch them is an introspective, vulnerable moment however, and 7th graders can admit to occasionally losing them to gayness. In this sense gayness is Dionysian.
Case in point: Disneyland.
Super freaking gay. But get past them past their instinctual queasiness and the 7th grader will be wearing those gay ass goofy ears and eating cotton candy like a goddamn Little Lord Fountlegay.
(Curious lexigraphical note: under certain conditions, Disney can meet the three definitions of the word GAY. There is one weekend a year where the GLBT community informally descends en masse on Disneyland. So it’s gay, gay, AND gay, all at once.)
Things that are gay:
Middle Age men playing golf
Unconcealed nose picking
Foods that are “Extreme”
BMX bikes with fake gas tanks
Skateboards bought at Grocery Stores
Inordinately enthusiastic hair care
Clothes that match
Clothes that don’t match
Fake 80s Hair Metal Fandom
(Note: Chaps are not gay. They are Homo. )
I hope this has helped. I also hope that, you know, it wasn’t too….Gay. (That was gay. I’m sorry.)