Word of the Gay

*Straight talk on Gay language, one word at-a-time.

Archive for Catch-Phrases

#38 “hide the candy”

Drag Queens are possibly the most notorious illusionists that have ever walked this Great Green Earth.  For centuries, men have delighted audiences appearing as women, wearing all types of “female” clothing, wigs, make-up and offering many types of entertainment.  These range from singing, dancing and lip-syncing to even fire-eating, acrobatics and so on.  Quite obviously, the most important way in which to maintain the illusion is to make sure their male genitalia is hidden from view.  So in lies the secret to their crotch maintenance… to “hide the candy,” as “candy” referring to their “cock n’ balls” or penis and testicles for those academic types.

As a guest judge on “RuPaul’s Drag Race“, actor and singer Vanessa Williams was amazed at this remarkable method, and remarked on “Lopez Tonight” at just how amazing these Queens maintain their crotches.  The program pits 12 (or 13 as was the case in its 3rd Season) drag queens against one another in the battle to become the “Next Drag Superstar,” and has been an instant hit and will be in its fourth season in 2012.  The drag queens make reference to tucking and hiding their candy quite often, and it has been a subject of many highlighted conversations throughout the series’ run.


1. the act of a drag queen to conceal the bulge in the crotch before a performance with a durable tape, usually gaff or ducked tape.

Related: tucking, tucknology

Ex: “I can’t go on stage until I hide the candy.”

Ex: “She needs to learn how to hide her candy properly, I can see everything she’s packin’.”

[Origin: Most likely American, and used by drag queens all over the world.]


#32 “trade”

It goes without saying that there are a great many words and phrases that relate to casual sexual encounters.  “Trade” is one such word.  The word originates from Polari (post #22), the now almost entirely defunct gay “slanguage” from The United Kingdom.

“Trade” originally referred to a straight male who was the sexual partner of another man, either gay or bisexual, and quickly came to describe any pair of male sexual partners.  Over time, the term has also been commonly attributed to younger or economically-disadvataged man who becomes the sexual partner of another older, or considerably more affluent, man.

Some specific examples of its use relate to men who seek out overtly masculine sexual partners.  For instance, some men will seek out service members of the armed forces, who exemplify for them a very masculine example of manhood.  These men are referred to as “military trade“, and may or may not be gay.

Currently, and in most cases, the word is used casually to refer to any male sexual partner of another man.

Ex: “I was at my favorite bar again last night, trying to pick up some trade.”, or “Did you see Chris and his trade come out of the club when it closed last night!”


1. the male sexual partner of another man; depending upon the circumstance may identify as straight, bisexual, or gay; individual may also receive payment after sexual acts are performed

[Related: “hook up”, “MSM” (men who have sex with men), “one night stand”, “rough trade”, “trick”]

#14 “dykin’ out”

Similar in many ways to “queening out,” “dykin’ out” refers to women exhibiting stereotypical gay traits or mannerisms. Commonly used to describe an instance when a straight woman experiments with lesbian sex, or when two straight women share intimate moments together.

This term is used primarily by gay men or straight women in a flippant manner, and is most often uttered to solicit a laugh.

#13 “queening out”

You’ve seen it all before… a gay man gets upset or super excited – and suddenly it’s the end of the World. “Queening out” is a popular phrase in the gay community that describes one of two things:

1. a gay male tantrum, or fit of rage

2. an individual exhibiting stereotypical gay tendencies; usually manifest in the form of speech patterns, mimicry of pop culture icons or outlandish dance & movement

The phrase is related to “queen” being a term used to describe an effeminate gay man. “Queening out” is not only used to describe men, but can be used for women, as seen in one of these two videos scenes from YouTube.com: Some Kid Queening Out & Child Abuser Queening Out

Ex: “Oh Gurl, you should have seen her, she was queening out on the dance floor big-time!”

[Related catch-phrases: “Slow Your Roll,” “Don’t have a cow, man” “Take it Easy,” and the less-accepted “Fagging Out”]

#5 “Mnh-hnhmmm”

Gay men say some pretty outrageous things. So it’s only natural that you might not believe what comes out of their mouths. Likewise, gay people have a lot of attitude, and might not believe everything that comes out of yours.

If you are in need of a sassy retort to your homo-amigo’s unbelievable ramblings, why not try the following: “Mnh-hnhmmm!”

“Mnh-hnhmmm” most likely derived from the affirmative response, “Uh-huh” and is most often used with sarcasm to denote an air of disbelief.  The phrase has been popularized by teenagers, and may also be accredited to African-American slang popularized by women and gay men for many decades.

Nowadays, you will find that you hear more sassy young white gay men and older Afircan-American woman using this phrase.

– interjection

1. used to indicate disbelief or disapproval

2. sarcastic remark used in a mocking or sarcastic manner

Example 1
Person 1: “Seriously, I’m not really that into him.”
Person 2: “Mnh-hnhmmm…”

Synonyms: yeah right, whatever, oh p’shaw, okay, uh-huh

#4 “fierce”

Catch-phrases come and go in the gay community, but some truly stand the test of time. They’re “fierce!” The term “fierce” came into wide popularity among gay men in the ball culture scene of New York City during the late 1980s, and has since crossed-over into mainstream culture to become one of the widest-used adjectives we queens utter today.

In fact, you might have seen a recent episode of Project Runway Season 4, where one of the show’s finalists, Christian Siriano, said “fierce” at least twenty times in the course of one 42-minute episode. But the term is no longer used explicitly by gay men. Yours truly has heard more than a few straight women, and even straight men and lesbians, describe something as “fierce” on the streets of New York City.

– adjective
1. A term that gay men use to describe absolutely everything that is of “exceptional quality.”
2. A term used to describe objects, people, or instances that are outlandish and cannot be handled with subtlety; often with great or animated emphasis.
3. A term coined by African-American gay men to describe things are extraordinary, in either a positive or negative way.

1. The act of being bold, displaying confidence, creativity or self-reliance. Relates directly to fashion, clothes, hair or makeup.

Example 1
Person 1: “How was the party girl?” / Person 2: “Girl, it was FIERCE!”

Example 2
Person 1: “Did you see Wanda’s shoes girl?!” / Person 2: “Yeah girl, those platforms were FIERCE!”