Straight Ledes, Gay WIns

Quick question from Straight in Upstate...

Time for some equal rights mocking: why do Tyson Gay articles keep popping up on your news links? Are you using an automatic filter - the polar opposite of the "Tyson Homosexual" people but nonetheless mindless? (What, you have day jobs that hinder your creating links manually?) Are you obsessed with track and field (which makes both of you oddities in America)? Or does he have a great ass?

It's simple, really. I instructed the blog "widget" to pull stories from the major news outlets. In keeping with our theme, it looks for any stories that contain the words "gay" AND "straight." For the most part, it does a pretty good job of staying on topic... marriage rights, don't-ask-don't-tell, etc. But "Tyson GAY took the lead in the final STRAIGHT" also matches the criteria. Sadly, the quality of newsmakers' posteriors does not influence our results... yet.

Technology has it's limits, though. Gay Guy asked me if I could screen the newswires to instantly alert him if either of the Fiennes brothers lands stateside. Sorry. No can do.

--Straight Guy

I'll Have the Chateau Latrobe

Hey, Gay Guy,

We've covered the straight beer vs. gay wine debate in some our first posts (here and here). But new data from Gallup shows that beer is back to a double-digit lead over wine as America's favorite drink. (
Back in '05, wine surged past beer in a one-year anomaly, probably based on the influence of the movie "Sideways.")

But, for the over-50 crowd, wine has long been the top pick.
(Here's the link to the full story.)

So, here's the tough question Gay Guy. Do you drink wine because you are gay, or because you are old?

Oops, gotta run.

[Door slams. The sound of quick steps fading away.]

--Straight Guy

Brideshead Revisited... Revisited..... Revisited

Straight Guy,

I took in Brideshead Revisited on Friday. No surprise there. I am a sucker for those Masterpiece Theatre-type flicks. Or, as I call them, "hat movies."

For the review: It's okay. Definitely moves the story along. Lots of eye candy, too: Boys, girls, delicate features, Fair Isle sweaters, location shots. Just like the 1982 Brideshead BBC miniseries on PBS. But this time, I realized the story is about religion, dogmatism, and time. In 1982, my brain never got past the story of the intimacy between Charles and Sebastian. Heck, the series could have ended at part 2 (out of 11), when Charles's affections moved on to Sebastian's sister, Julia.

I don't think I can begin to make you understand how seductive and spellbinding the miniseries was in 1982, especially to a young gay man. It had everything: The dreamy spires of Oxford, history, class, and every kind of beauty -- words, looks, architecture, music, misty fields, tuxedos worn at dinner. It was probably the first time I saw intimacy between men -- whether it was romantic, sexual, or intense friendship -- on screen. I know it was the first bare male ass shot I ever saw on TV. Plus, Jeremy Irons (whose career took off because of Brideshead) and his languid, dripping, world weary voice.

The film has a really limited view of how to play gay on film, but go see it. But, it's not the miniseries. Just like Revisited tells you, even if you can, you shouldn't go home again.

--Gay Guy

Keeping Crack Legal

Clearly our readers thought this was no big deal. I also know the single voter who supports pantslessness, and am not surprised. See original post.

Quick update: The ACLU has threatened to file suit if the Flint, Michigan police chief does not cease enforcing the new policies. Details here.
We'll see what happens.

--Straight Guy

Gay Guy Heel Thyself? Horn of Plenty?

Straight Guy,

Sorry to be a bit out of touch. Was on vacation here. San Francisco. Go figure.

I am sooooo gay. Today I clean out a drawer in my desk at work. Not one, not two, but three shoe horns. I guess it relates to the three pair of shoes and one pair of gym sneaks under my desk.

Any Metrosexuals out there want to weigh in here?

--Gay Guy

Defending the Batman

Pop-culture quiz, Gay Guy. Batman: gay or straight?

He's an easy target, obviously, what with the fashion fetish, double-identities, sycophantic boy wonders, etc. Is that a cave or a closet, Bruce Wayne?

George Clooney, who played the dark knight in the most-ridiculed of the installments "Batman and Robin" jokingly admitted as much:

On Barbara Walter's Oscar TV special, Academy Award nominated George Clooney was asked if he would ever consider playing a gay role.

Clooney replies, "I already have, in 'Batman and Robin' (1997).

"Think about it," he explains. "I was in a rubber suit. I had rubber nipples. I could have played him straight but I didn't. I made him gay."

I could argue that the dude is also seriously into custom cars, bladed gadgets, and home electronics. None of which is a guarantee of straightness, but broadens the context a bit.

I grew up on reruns of the 1960s TV series, and Julie Newmar's Catwoman provided a hetero-hormonal jumpstart, for sure. Recently, his girlfriends have been played by Kim Bassinger, Michelle Pfeiffer, Nicole Kidman, Katie Holmes. All failed relationships, of course, but they all keep his secret. Hey, wait a minute!

Batman's primary obsession has always been himself, though. The isolation, the body sculpting, the self-made costumes, the absolute diva-ness of it all. He vengefully stomps anyone who attempts to match him in freakishness or notoriety.

The problem with the Batman myth is that each vision progresses through 3 distinct stages: Batman as Vigilante, Institution, and Camp. [Excellent essay by Lundegaard here.] Perhaps the straightness or gayness of Batman is best determined by where and when you find him.

Full disclosure: Gay Guy saw "The Dark Knight" with all the fanboys on opening weekend, while Straight Guy went berry picking and made cobbler. Absolutely true. What is happening here!

--Straight Guy

Less Filling, Tastes Like Shoe

Loyal reader Straight Shooter follows-up on the question of whether flip-flop sandals are gay or straight:
I submit the following sandal that is probably safely in the straight has a beer bottle opener in the sole [see above].

I imagine myself rafting down a river of brown gravy deep in the canyons of beef tenderloin from your most recent post, cracking open a bottle of Warsteiner with my MacGyver-like sandal. Mmm mmm good!

First of all, Straight Shooter, thank you for creating a new, nasty metaphor in "rafting the tenderloin canyon." Well done.

Second, this is quite a discovery you've made. I will readily admit that any item suitable for footwear AND food prep probably originated with a straight guy. Any way to get a TV remote embedded in the other sole?

One caveat though: Are we sure it's a great idea to force those who drink many beers (face it, these shoes are not for casual drinkers) to stand on one leg between each round? I predict many dangerous/hilarious scenarios as the evenings grow long.

Flip flops themselves are not gay. They are low-maintenance footwear for low-maintenance people. But straight guys should think twice before wearing them, for two reasons.

(1) Of any gender/orientation, straight guys have the foulest, funkiest feet. (It's a known fact. Do not attempt to disprove this through independent research! You have been warned.) Closed-toe sandals do a much better job of keeping our monster piggies breathing, but safely behind bars.

(2) Flip flops change the way you walk. My normal gait causes these flimsy toe thongs to fly off my feet. When I counter correct, I end up in a shuffly sashay that is... questionable.

I predict that Gay Guy will propose a sandal with a Purell dispenser in the sole, neat freak and germaphobe that he is, giving him the ability to disinfect this city, one step at a time. What say you, GG?

--Straight Guy

I think this is a GREAT product. Just include a corkscrew.

I was away last weekend, hiking in the woods. My friend and I were enjoying our tired legs, feeling of accomplishment, and the thought of a nice bottle of wine waiting for us. Then, the sinking feeling caused by the question: Do we have a corkscrew?

Even on a good day, I'm not that talented with a corkscrew, so I probably would had shelled out real bucks for some ergonomically correct keeper, but we were lucky to find a $1.50 plastic cheapy at the mountain-side pullover store that sells gas, beer, and cigarettes. The pressure was on ... but I twisted the metal spiral into the cork, pulled gently but assertively, and 'pop' out it came.

It felt so manly to save the day, get it right, do the impressive thing.

--Gay Guy

To the Summit of Mt. Mignon!

Gay Guy,

The Cattlemen's Beef Board, better known by it's slogan "Beef, It's What's for Dinner," has an ongoing campaign featuring "Beefscapes." Click on the photo to enlarge the fleshy panoramas of beach, canyon, and mountain. [More ads and corresponding recipes here.]

The new slogan is "Discover the Power of Protein in the Land of Lean Beef."

Look, I fall into the straight guy stereotype on red meat. I like it. I cook it. I eat it. I don't ask too many questions. I'm not a vocal advocate one way or the other. But presenting meat at this epic scale is slightly... confrontational. That might be the point.

So I pity the vegetarian who wanders upon these ads unsuspectingly, especially in oversized publications like Rolling Stone.

--Straight Guy

My Casual Fridays Are Officially Ruined!

A new law in Michigan makes it a crime to wear droopy pants. Here's the full story from the Detroit Free Press. Based on the illustration, Blue Man Group is now public enemy number one.

I've never gotten the fad myself, but this always seemed pretty harmless to me. Ridiculous does not always equal dangerous, especially when the suspects have such a hard time running away.

Seriously, the police can't win this war. It's a slippery slope, and it might be sexually or racially biased depending on how it's enforced. "Thong Patrol," anyone? If any of these cases make it to trial, I predict a deadlocked jury, unable to formally agree on the definition and demarcations of "buttocks."

Important: If anyone is interested in creating a special enforcement unit for crimes against couture, please note that Gay Guy graduated at the top of his class from the Fashion Police Academy and is now reporting for duty. I once saw him leap from a moving vehicle to make a "citizen's arrest" having something to do with a plaid gaberdine. Very impressive.

--Straight Guy

Gay Guy / Straight Guy / Mummer Guy

Gay Guy,

Just can't stop making fun of the Mummers. If you don't know, this is a Philadelphia New Year's tradition. Neighborhood social clubs spend all year assembling sparkled, spangled outfits for a big musical parade... but it's not gay. They have all-male "fancy brigades" and "wench brigades"... but it's not gay. They will not perform in bad weather "
as the expensive and fancy costumes are easily harmed by precipitation"... but it's not gay.

But it's not exactly straight, either.

I grew up in a small town halfway between Philadelphia and Lancaster Pennsylvania. I've seen both sides, so how 'bout a "West Side Story" rewrite? Mummer boy swoons for Amish girl, but there are gangs that will kill to keep them apart.

I kid the Mummers, but who am I to judge? It's a proud, centuries-old tradition. This is exactly how male peacocks attract all the ladies, after all.

Last year, I spent New Year's playing Scrabble with my in-laws. So, rock on with 'dem Golden Slippers, dudes!

--Straight Guy

"16... 16.... Do I Hear 17?.... Going once.....

Straight Guy,

I had a nice holiday weekend with my family. One of the things I really enjoy about being on vacation is having the time to really read the newspaper. As you know, I enjoy the obituaries; as awful as it sounds, someone really interesting dies every time I am on vacation. It's an obituary readers jackpot.

This weekend was no exception, with the death of Jesse Helms. A great day with the New York Times obit section. I will save you my screed of just how awful a person he was. Stupid, mean spirited, God-less. I'm never happy when people die, but, well, you know...

Watching news coverage on TV led to a bad moment with my dad, who does not tolerate foul language of any sort from anyone. There was Helms in file footage, speaking in Congress
in 1995, proclaiming, "Reliable surveys.. show that many homosexuals average 16 different sex partners every month... " I could only scream, "In my fucking dreams 16 partners" at the TV. It just sort of happened. My dad had the courtesy or discomfort to pretend he didn't hear, though he was sitting on the other end of the sofa.

--Gay Guy

Twitter Twister

Not sure what's up with Twitter these days... our Twitter pages look fine, but our Twitter Widgets on the blog are getting scrambled and cross-posted. We're fine, really. But we're looking into it.

Here are the direct links, here and here.

FYI: Twitter Widgets would be a great name for a new, low-grade, social disease. Just offering in case it's ever needed.

UPDATE: Widgets removed, 7/3

--Straight Guy

Hadji and Bandit Know, But They Won't Tell

Regular reader Straight in Upstate posts a question about the classic cartoon "Johnny Quest."
Dr. Quest and "Race" Bannon - your average genius and macho go-to sidekick, or America's first action hero gay couple? As a five year old I wondered where the mommies were, as a 46 year old I'm picking up a definite vibe. Or maybe it was just a bromance.

I guess they live on on the Cartoon Network; I remember them the first time around, Saturdays at noon. The art and dialogue are incredibly cheesy now, but the big band score is still great - cue the trumpets for the big chase scenes.

I'll take this one, Gay Guy.

When I was young, I never questioned the relationship. If there had been a "mom" around, she probably would have put the kibosh on more than a few of the adventures. That show was violent, and I know that my mother was not big on murder and mayhem. So I assumed, given the "adventurer's" lifestyle, that Johnny was better off with his father and Race, who only cared that the kids came out of each scrape alive. That they were held hostage, witnessed cannibalism, or chased by the walking dead was not such a big deal.

The fact that Dr. Quest and Race may have been a couple is hardly the most controversial aspect of their parenting style. "What's that? Deadly crisis in a remote region? Let me get my guns and my kids and we'll be right there!"

"Child Protective Services on line 2, Dr. Quest."

I love that there was an episode entitled "Pursuit of the Poho." I have no idea what it means, but will find a way to work it into casual conversations ASAP.

Also love that, in the photo above, the Quest team might be rushing to danger in their secret science jet... or returning from an IKEA run in the minivan... not much difference. That's what you get from a man who wears a double-breasted short-sleeved shirt, and pulls it off. You go, Race!

--Straight Guy

Gay is Good, So Filter it Out

Straight Guy,

I just love this story. It's for anyone who's ever laughed at spell check.

OneNewsNow, the web site for the uber-awful American Family Association, covered the Olympic trials stats of champion sprinter Tyson Gay.

Short story: uses an auto filter to search and destroy words they don't like. (The American Family Association is dying for technology that would allow them to search and destroy people they don't like.) One of those words is "gay," because gay makes homosexuality sound good and positive. Sort of like how "cupcake" makes "fat-laden sugar bomb" sound irresistable. The site's auto search and replace tool changes "gay" to "homosexual."

From the Washington Post....

Worked fine until Sunday, when the AP reported that "Tyson Homosexual easily won his semifinal for the 100 meters at the U.S. Olympic track and field trials." The story was headlined "Homosexual eases into 100 final at Olympic trials."

"On Saturday," the story said, "Homosexual misjudged the finish in his opening heat . . ."

That's world champion sprinter Tyson Gay, of course.

I did not get the gay vibe about Tyson Gay..... I was so focused on his sheer grace and athleticism at the Olympic trials I forgot to ask him for a date.

It just makes the American Family Association look as dumb and hateful as they are. And that's a great start to my day.

--Gay Guy

What Not to Admit


Okay, I don't know why I am admitting this, but I am bored enough to be watching a "What Not to Wear" marathon on TLC. Worse, I may have seen these episodes before....

Stacy London is so wrong, so so wrong. She's such a wreck --bitter, loud, mean, racist, sizest, lookist--that's she's appealing. Like a magnet.

I would be better at this than Clint and Stacy. I'd be nice. I'd be helpful and encouraging. Not good TV probably.

--Gay Guy

No Woman, Yes Cry

click photo to enlarge

Limited edition photo book by British photographer Sam Taylor-Wood features famous men crying. At only 56 pages, it's already out of print and selling for almost $500. Yikes.

Many of the reviews struggle to find a deeper meaning in the collection, but the subjects are all professional actors, right? Whether they are truly sad, method acting, or flat-out faking, these are photos of men at work.

I'm trying to think of something insightful, funny, or mean-spirited to say here, but, oh heck, I think I'll just give Ed Harris a hug.

Any thoughts or favorites, GG?

--Straight Guy

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