Archive for American
Exhibiting “realness” in the drag world commonly refers to the ability to “blend” or “pass” as the opposite sex, or as heterosexual. Because for some, it’s got to be real.
“To be able to blend, that’s what realness is… the idea of realness is to look as much like your straight counter-part as possible.” – Dorian Corey, “Paris Is Burning”.
Others have, of course, used this particular phrase over the years, but none as fabulous as Dorian. What her quote, and interview in this documentary, focuses on is the theme of emulating specific traits or qualities of the opposite sex, gender, or sexual identity. Gay men exhibiting ultra-masculinity and toughness to “pass” as straight; or, men wearing the latest couture-inspired fashion to seem as feminine and glamorous as possible.
1. verb: to perform or exhibit the quality of being either of the opposite sex, or gender, or heterosexual – if one is homosexual.
2. noun: the quality one might possess if he, or she, can successfully convince others that they are off the opposite sex, or gender; or to be heterosexual if they are homosexual.
Ex: “She was giving us some fierce realness tonight! She could’ve convinced anyone he was a girl.”
[Origin: United States, probably ca. 1970s. Related words: “passing”, “blending”, ]
The best part about writing a blog that unearths popular, obscure, and interesting words and phrases is the constant bombardment with creative and useful language. Now when it comes to discussing sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs), there is definitely no exception to the number of nicknames and euphemisms that have been created to refer to, and talk “around”, the subject.
I find the phrase “full house” to be as charming as is it practical. Now if only we could get more people to wear condoms more of the time…
1. noun: having more than one sexually-transmitted disease (STD) at the same time.
Ex: “Oh Gurl, Michael’s so nasty, did you hear she got a full house? Yeah, gonorrhea and syphilis at the same time!”
1. noun: a short period of rest and/or rest, which is carried out in preparation for a night of clubbing, dancing, and perhaps, drinking.
Ex: “I had a really long day at work today, so I am going to have to take a disco nap tonight before we go out!” or “Gurl, I am fading from that last party, can we take a disco nap before we go back out?!”
[See also: “beauty rest”]
The term “cruise” refers to the act of seeking a sexual partner – either the act of moving from one place to another, or the interaction between two individuals. More recently, “eye-fucking” has also been introduced into the vernacular as a more vulgar, colloquial term to use.
Gay men recognize “cruising” as more than just eye contact, but as a sort of sport – to see who can get eyed, or “checked-out” more times while walking through a gay district. Some popular areas for cruising include, but are certainly not limited to: parks, beaches, supermarkets, shopping centers, gyms, bars an restaurants.
1. to move around in order to look for a possible sexual partner
2. provocative, direct eye contact with possible sexual partners; meant to casually attract a person as you are walking down the street, or are driving in secluded areas
Related: cruised, cruising, cruisy
One movie is tentatively related to this term: The 1980 cult film, “Cruising” featured Al Pacino as an undercover police officer sent into the beat of the “sleazy” underworld of gay S&M and leather culture in New York City during a rash of serial killings. Pacino is sent into the scene as a decoy for the murderer, and the film chronicles his encounters with leather daddies, johns, and ultimately the killer. This film didn’t win any Oscars, and it certainly wouldn’t win any glaad Media Awards either.
[Origin: The terms was coined in the 16th – 17th Centuries when referring to ships at sea, then given to individuals. The gay meaning is most likely derived from mid-Twentieth century North America, when the popularity of the automobile, the full development of the highway system and gay culture combined – resulting in “cruising” spots from Mexico to Canada.]
While there may be no documented proof, the existence of a group of gay individuals who run an underground control system of fashion, design, popular culture, art and media has been widely acknowledged. The term “gay mafia” is used to describe this group of individuals who work to keep a handle on all things fabulous.
The term is a turn on the standard definition of “mafia,” which described a system of organized crime, ruled by a “mob boss” and his subordinate cells of henchmen and criminals. The “gay mafia” is said to control areas of particular gay interest and has a certain tongue-and-cheek appeal to both gay and straight people who are interested in popular culture.
Many pop icons have been accredited with being associated with the “gay mafia,” including Cher, Tom Ford, Gianni Versace, Halston, Kenneth Cole and Sir Elton John. Sir Elton John’s 2002 appearance on NBC’s “Will & Grace” paid homage to this concept when he was cast as himself, the “eyeshadowy Don” of the gay mafia.
There is also a professional, Los Angeles-based comedy troupe that goes by the name: “The Gay Mafia”
[Related: pink posse, pink panthers]
“Tricks” are treats for some gay men. The term “trick” is most commonly used by gay men when referring to an anonymous sex partner, or “one-night stand.” This word is popular among young gay men, and in particular, in large metropolitan areas like New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
The term was popularized in 1999 with the cult gay film, “Trick” starring Christian Campbell and John Paul (“J.P.”) Pitoc. The film follows an aspiring playwright (Campbell) and a hunky go-go dancer (Pitoc) as they make their way through Manhattan in an attempt to follow-through with a one-night stand.
1. an anonymous sex partner; usually a gay male.
1. the act of an anonymous sexual encounter; sometimes resulting in the transfer of money.
Related: one-night stand, tricking, tricks
[Origin: Relating to prostitution, the act of picking up a “john” or being a “trick” looking for a possible sexual partner or “date.”]
The term “rice queen” refers to a gay man (non-Asian, and most commonly Caucasian), who is explicitly attracted to Asian men. Rice queen originates from “rice” being the staple of most Asian dishes, and “queen” being a popular name used to describe a gay man. This term is used primarily in jest, and can also be considered derogatory. If you live in a large metropolitan area, or have many gay male friends, you probably know at least one rice queen. There may not be scientific data to support it; but rice queens can commonly be found in the following fields: architecture, interior design, graphic design and advertising.
1. a man who has a particular interest in, or sexual attraction to, Asian men.
2. derogatory or familiar name given to men (non-Asian) that are interested in Asian men.
: “Did you see his new boyfriend? He only dates Asian guys, what a rice queen!”
Related: bean queen, potato queen, refried beans, sticky rice
[Origin: based on rice being a staple of many Asian dishes.]