Straight Truth: Cosmo is Clueless

Pardon the interruption, Gay Guy. But I have an important message for some of our readers...

Hello, Straight Gals,

So, the October Cosmopolitan magazine includes a feature on "Fun Little Tricks Guys Love." These include helpful hints on shuffling cards, etc. But as you can see from the scan above, the headlinder tip is to "Use Your Thong as a Hair Tie."

You read that correctly. Cosmo is now advising that you wear your unfresh skivvies on your head. Their thinking is that when "things get hot and heavy" you might not have time to grab a hair clip or whatever, so why not just MacGyver a solution based on the materials at hand?

Ummm. No.

Look, there might be some woman, somewhere, with beautiful hair, great taste in undergarments, and just the right amount of sass to get away with this... once. But why risk it? Why start down the path that can only lead to some poor woman thinking she's superfine because she's twisted her granny panties into a sweatband? Not hot. Not heavy.

There's a time and a place for ingenuity, but if your panties look good while doing their intended job, that's all we can ask of them. You don't want men to start experimenting with their unwashed BVDs and boxers now, do you?

--Straight Guy

Straight(?) Guy Hall of Shame: 80s Video Dating Edition


For anyone who feels that facebook-style social networking is cold and detached, and longs for a more personal connection... Let me remind you of how god-awful the good old pre-web days actually were.

Is there anything more hopeless than a desperate straight guy? And, hoo boy, is it possible that a few of them are simply, ummm, not straight?

Special thanks to the Found Footage film festival (coming soon to a town near you) for unearthing these gems. The only thing missing is a quick update, just to let us know which one of these guys actually found love, and an update on the criminal record and parole status of all the others.

Any of our readers make a late love connection, or have a flashback panic attack?

--Straight Guy

No Gays in Fame?

Straight Guy,

You were right. "Fame" is NOT going to live forever.

I don't know that I expected or even wanted the remake of "Fame" to be good, but I thought it would be at least fun. It was born to be fun. Basically, "Fame" is a musical soap opera about, well, a musical soap opera -- four years in high school for the performing arts.

It's not that the movie's bad, it's just that there's very little performing -- nor sex, tension, guilty secrets or gut-wrenching anything-- going on at performing arts high these days. Something else is missing -- gays.

No gays? In New York's performing arts high? For real? What movie about a high school for the performing arts doesn't have gay boys in it? We own that space! Are we moving backwards?

I hate to think of the 1980, when the original "Fame" was on screen, as a watershed moment in edgy pop film, but Fame pulled off a story line about a gay student's coming out. That and story lines about inter-racial dating, unwanted pregnancy, drugs, bad life choices . . all the good yeast of high school drama. This "Fame" doesn't have enough sexual tension to inspire/require any bad life choices. This is all the fault of "High School Musical."

Back to no gays in "Fame." Maybe I should applaud a screen play doesn't play the easiest gay stereotype card in the deck. We're supposed to infer that the voted-off-the-island, wanna-be ballet dancer is gay. Poor sad lad. Maybe if he trimmed his bangs and laid off the blond highlights he could see well enough to dance, and not have to pack his leg warmers for another long Iowa winter.

Fame or no Fame, my friend Bee and I had a great time. We got mimosa'd up and sang ourselves to and from the movie: "Fame, I'm gonna live forever. I wanna learn how to fly ... high!" Fame still has dancing in the streets. You just have it bring it yourself.

--Gay Guy

Gay/Straight Ad Watch: Objectification Saves the Day

Gay Guy and Readers,

Standard straight guy etiquette dictates that I say as little as possible here. But I'd love to hear your comments. A few things...

(1) This is all in the name of breast cancer research, so hooray for that. Seriously.

(2) There's definitely a powerful gay vibe to this pool party, right? Why do you think they made that choice? Some of the ogling seems a little overdone in that context, no? Or are gay guys just as shallow as straight guys supposedly are on this topic?

(3) The "star" of this video is also the writer/director as well as the chair of the Boobyball fundraiser. Check out the making of here.

--Straight Guy

Nice Moves: The Tired Dance/Football Mashup

Gay Guy,

Last Sunday, the Washington Post Style section explored the connection between dance and football (
Leaps and Bounds by dance critic Sarah Kauffman). DC is a major NFL market, so on opening weekend the Post spreads its coverage to all conceivable sections (food, business, religion, you name it).
Few sports have more in common with the formality and artistry of a dance performance. ... In the most artful finish... our hero connects with a wide receiver, sending a whistling pass to a fleet Mercury who will rocket high with a half-spin and full extension, making the catch and keeping it inbounds by the tips of his exquisitely pointed toes.

Ugh. Calm down, lady. Yeah, it's factually correct that "fast and fancy footwork" is essential to success in either endeavor. Sure, you can improve your capabilities by broadening your skill set. It's called cross training, folks, and it ain't new. The Cleveland Browns famously pioneered this stuff in the 80s.
Is it any wonder that a few well-coordinated football players have done so well on "Dancing With the Stars"? That tap-dance quickness they practice, the control and balance they need for their game, can translate into sensational displays on the dance floor. Emmitt Smith waltzed off with the mirror-ball trophy in Season 3; Jerry Rice, Jason Taylor and even 300-pounder Warren Sapp have also swapped shoulder pads for sparkly tuxes and ballroom steps. Sapp, a retired defensive tackle, was as silky and light on his feet as Jackie Gleason.

Agreed. Professional athletes have already proven that they have above average strength, coordination, and timing. Plus, they get a boost in fan support for supposedly stepping out of their comfort zone. "Isn't he brave!" We'll, yeah. I've never denied that it takes major cojones to dance live for (and be judged by) millions of folks who may or may not be forgiving fans. And don't forget, DWTS is heavy with a gay/straight crossover vibe (anyone catch Tom DeLay shoot a smoldering glance and bootyshake in the direction of flame-o-riffic judge, Bruno?).

I'm sure they get ridiculed by a few, but I'd always rank pro jocks as favorites above actors in that format. Just common sense. But I guess my point is that there's no special connection between dance and football. So why do I detect a certain defensiveness coming from the dance side of this partnership? A dancer's perspective is no more essential or insightful than any other athlete's. Can't a quarterback learn valuable lessons in the physics of trajectory from a pro archer, for instance? Lineman from sumo wrestlers? There's no mystical, magical connection between the Bolshoi Ballet and the Buffalo Bills.

So, playfully emasculating professional football players will always work as pop culture theatrics. Tight end + tutu = comedy, right?

It's unexpected and incongruous. But it's not serious. Most of all, it's a worn out sit-com gag. If the cross training helps, keep up with it. But, in the end, dancing football players are a novelty... a distraction. And even gay-friendly Glee knows it.

Check out the clip below, where the football team's choreography training doesn't improve their skills, it only hypnotizes their opponents... and apparently the referees. Delay of game! (Skip to 2:15 if you only want to see the dance.)

--Straight Guy

Summer Lovin': Party in the Fire Island Pines

Straight Guy,

I don't know how I missed this vid last month! Maybe because not I'm totally sure who Miley Cyrus is. She's the Hannah Montana merchandising dynamo, right?

Anyhoo, here's a video with seven gay guys doing it up to Cyrus' "Party in the USA," a song I had never heard before. I guess I need to be in better touch with my pre-teen nieces. The guys look like they had a blast making the video out on Fire Island. (SG, it's a longstanding gay vacation mecca.) It looks really fun.

Give it a view. Once you've seen 30 seconds of the video, you've seen it all.

I've been trying to see myself in this video. No luck so far. Is it that I'm just not free enough to camp it up for public consumption? Am I yet another victim of internalized homophobia? That a share on Fire Island is out of my financial reach (unless guaranteed sex comes with the lease, that is). Is it my aversion to bubble gum music. My "over the rainbow" impatience with the gay rainbow flag plastered on everything? Most likely it's the public ordinance prohibiting me from being seen wearing a small swimsuit.

Thumbs up to Walt Disney Company, who owns the right to the tune, for letting it stay alive and thrive on You Tube in its new gay version.

SG, once you look at this video, tell me what you think.

--Gay Guy

The Gay/Straight Spare Time Debate: An Hour to Kill


Looks like Gay Guy and I will never truly find common ground until Playstation releases God of War: The Swiffer Chronicles. Then, my friends, It. Is. On.

[And Mom(s), if you're reading this, don't be dismayed. You are more important to us than our crossword puzzles and iTunes accounts. We'll have to recheck our logarithms or whatever.
But please, no questions about or online poker unless you want the honest truth.]

Readers, leave a comment and let us know what we should graph next. You can check out all of our previous gay/straight quadrant graphs here.

--Straight Guy

The Referendum on Difference

Straight Guy,

I loved this Happy Times essay from yesterday's New York Times (thanks for the assist, DK). Give it a read.

Nothing particularly gay or straight about it, but it's all about difference, and that's what our site is about. The curiosity, longing, or relief to be found in difference.

Here's a favorite bit. It's about parents and their children, but substitute whatever you like.
"They claim to be much happier and more fulfilled than ever before, even though they live in conditions of appalling filth and degradation, deprived of the most basic freedoms and dignity, and owe unquestioning obedience to a capricious and demented master."

--Gay Guy

Straight Guy Gift Guide: Bottle Opener Tie

Actually a beer ad for Peroni, so I don't think this is available for purchase just yet.

Last year, one of our readers pointed us to a bottle opener embedded in the sole of a flip-flop sandal. Link here. That one you can buy.

As for the tiny panties in the background, I thought Peroni was classier than that. (Or do any readers have an alternate take?)

--Straight Guy

One of These Days, These Boots

Hey, Gay Guy,

I am at critical status for some wardrobe upgrades. Yes, again. My plans to change the HR rules from a "casual friday" system to "maybe dressy on wednesday," are gaining traction, but it's an uphill battle. So I need new threads, pronto.

Not my top priority, but I almost bought these boots over the weekend when I rushed through Johnston and Murphy. I get grumpy when I can't decide, so I rushed right back out (typical shopping pattern for me -- be decisive or leave!)

I trust your opinion on many issues, and perhaps on the black boots question most of all. I know you've been trying to find your perfect fit for a while now. I rate these as snappy, but not fussy. Mostly for work -- clubbing not a priority (not now or ever), but you know this.

--Straight Guy

Gay Guy a Gym Going

Straight Guy,

Thanks for taking the lead on recent posts. My life has been overly busy of late. One of my best friends was in town, adding to the fun.

Another place where my time has gone of late is my recommitment to the gym and to restarting working with a trainer. (Do we every get out of the back-to-school mode?) The trainer part is such an indulgence of money, especially in precarious financial times, so I am trying to cut back in other areas. Apparently, not trying very hard, according to my most recent Visa statement.

Back to the gym: I've worked out -- if you can call it that --on and off for years. Seems like just as soon as I am making visible progress, I fall off my routine. Another example of my mildly self-destructive behavior?

Working with a trainer is great: No excuses, just working out until I'm ready to throw up. I am doing things that I never thought I'd be able to do, so the pain and nausea are worth it. It's very good for the self esteem. Especially for this gym-phobic gay. Do childhood anxieties every really end?

My trainer has encouraged me to "visualize success." I think she means my body on my terms on my schedule. My style of "visualizing" is pretty basic: I point out guys at the gym with nice bodies (ones that seem achievable, not god-like). I've only done this three times, it's not like I'm in a gay bar; it's a predominately straight gym and I am there to perform business, but I'm not blind.

The first guy I pointed at and said, "I wouldn't mind looking like that. Could I get like that?" It got a response from my trainer of, "Okay, maybe with more a lot more cardio and a lot more protein." Strike one. The second guy I pointed out got, "I bet he works out really hard and watches his food intake scrupulously." Strike two. Strike three: "Uhmmm . . . he's, like 24, and hops around this place like it's a gymboree class. You'd have to work out like two or three hours a day every . . . . " It stopped listening.

'Nuf said.

Reminds me of an ancient gay joke about the gym: Gay guy 1, looking at some hunk working out with massive weights: "That guys needs someone to spot him." Guy gay 2: "Don't worry. I spotted him the second he got here."

--Gay Guy

Gay/Straight Comic Update: Bromance Denied

Gay Guy,

In a last-minute decision, Marvel Comics decided to change the title of it's long-promoted "Bromance" collection to, simply, "Super Hero Team-Up." The collection of crossover stories is due next month, and is now officially boring.

I guess, the term has run it's course through pop culture over the last year and is already starting to seem cliche and dated. But, the superhero genre is genuinely bromantic, no? And second only to professional wrestling in latent homo eroticism (see photo above).

To fill the gap, Comics Alliance has published a tongue-in-cheek listing of the greatest bromances in super hero history. Who knew that Booster Gold and Blue Beetle opened a tropical resort together?

What do you think, GG? Time to let the bromance phenomenon fade away? Ours will be the final word, I'm sure.

--Straight Guy

Straight Guy Hall of Shame: Eye Candy Caddies

Gay Guy,

Newsflash: The British golf establishment has recently banished the Eye Candy Caddies from several prominent golf clubs, because they are "damaging the reputation of the sport."

Here's the deal: You pay the caddy service somewhere near $400 for a professional hostess (trained in golf rules, strategy, and etiquette) to manage your clubs while you play. Yes, they are probably MUCH more attractive than the sullen teenagers and unwashed alcoholics who make up the standard caddy pool. Yes, that rate also includes their company for a drink at the clubhouse after the game. But anything else is officially discouraged.

I know. I know.

Anyway, the spokesman for the organization enforcing the ban says "Anyone who seriously cares about the development of the game should work to ensure that it is as professional, inclusive, and culturally inoffensive as any other major sport."

Oh, you mean as refined and culturally inoffensive as the two dominant sports in the modern world, soccer and football? Please. Sports are not always politically correct. There were bikini'd cheerleaders at the Olympic volleyball matches last time, for goodness sake.

I'm not saying the guys who pay for this aren't lonely losers. But, if the Eye Candy Caddies stick to their advertised skill set, then this is just dudes playing sports while pretty girls cheer them on. Then everyone has a beer. Not very liberated, I agree, but certainly not outside the "major sport" status quo.

Here's what IS offensive about the arrangement.

(1) The rate: A full day of caddying could include three rounds of golf. If one of the Eye Candy Caddies can hoof it that far, they'd be pulling in well over $1,000 a day. Yowza. Where can I find a pink golf blazer, 42 long?

(2) They aren't hoofing it at all! In three of the four pictures above, they have golf carts. Caddy = carry, people. No wheels allowed. What, you can't look good AND carry a heavy bag for three or four hours?

--Straight Guy

Beach Bods: Pleading the Fifth

Happy End-of-Summer, Gay Guy.

My warm weather wind-down included a week at the beach. Peaceful and free of drama, except for one small moment.

Mrs. Straight Guy and I were setting up our umbrella on a not-too-crowded stretch of sand. Out of nowhere, she commented on the "perfect body" of a woman strolling up the beach. It wasn't a direct question, but her phrasing had a slightly raised tone that led me to believe that I should respond with my review.

Classic relationship catch-22. Yeah, it's similar to the how-do-I-look-in-this-outfit scenario. But I find that one easily solved: just say "I think you look great," and, preferably, mean it. I always do.

When it comes to rating third parties, though, options are very limited. There's got to be something between a drooling "hubba hubba" and a lie ("Charlize Theron is a troll"), right? If she asks, I need something diplomatic that respects both my honest assessment as well as her feelings.

Mrs. SG and I don't have too much tension in this regard, neither of us is the jealous type. I'm sure she didn't mean to put me in gotcha mode. So, this was an odd moment, and I was caught unprepared. My response was minimal, barely verbal. "Huh? Wha? Mm. Eh." Translation: "What are you talking about? You mean over there? Oh, I see. Yeah, but honestly nothing to worry about."

The moment passed. Any lingering tension was quickly softened by the fact that the woman in question had a VERY annoying voice (vocal lovechild of The Nanny and Sling Blade).

Readers, how'd I do? How do you navigate this stuff?

--Straight Guy

More on Gay/Straight Clothing Brand Divide

Straight Guy,

More on our gay/straight clothing brand divide.

As you alluded to, I am not a fan of Dockers. Especially their trousers. There is something about their design or fit -- does not show off the ass well -- that's sure to kill off the projection of sexiness in a man. When men start wearing Dockers, it's a sure sign that they given up on having sex. Even with their mates. Don't let their Web site trick you; the pants don't look that good on real men.

Over the weekend, I went on a long hike. One of the guys on the hike (the hottest guy there, BTW) was wearing Dockers underwear. Two points: 1) Who knew Dockers made underwear? 2) I only saw the underwear because he pulled up his T-shirt to wipe the sweat off his face; I saw the band of his underwear peeking up over his shorts.

Conclusion: This guy and his flat stomach had not given up on having sex. Nor had sex given up on having him.

--Gay Guy

Gay/Straight Clothing Debate: "Clothes Make The Man...

click to enlarge

... Naked people have little or no influence on society." -- Mark Twain, 1894

"But slightly more than anyone wearing Dockers." -- Gay Guy, 2009

Readers, any surprises? Omissions?

Pretty much as I would have predicted on the Levis and Calvin Klein, but I was surprised by our shared, passionate hatred of A&F.

--Straight Guy

Straight Guy Surrenders. Internet Wins.


I'm not much for the "OMG Adorbz!" genre of captioned kitten photos and other cuddly web crap. But I'll let this tidbit from Japan sneak in under my radar. No point really. Just impossible cuteness and helplessness all captured on video.

Can you resist? Or better yet, if this was your dog, could you PUT DOWN THE EFFING CAMERA and help? Jiminy Christmas!

--Straight Guy

Targetting Gays

Straight Guy,

I am the last person in the United States to become a regular Target shopper. Where I live, they are in strip malls in out the suburbs. Being an urban guy with no car, I don't suburban strip mall.

Now there's a Target in the city, about a 15-minute walk from my apartment, so I am getting to know my way around the store.

When I was there Saturday afternoon it was gay guy central. Lots of male couples. It a gay Noah's Ark: two by two. They were mostly in their 20s or early 30s. It was really sweet and heartwarming.

The Target is across from a new Bed, Bath, and Beyond. My city has several colleges and it looks like it was move in weekend for all of them. BBB and Target were jammed with kids, parents, overflowing carts, and long lines.

One dad had a video cam and was filming every aspect of the family's shopping trip. He took pictures, too. I don't blame the daughter for having a melt down on him, but she was so obnoxious that it reminded me why some animals eat their young.

--Gay Guy

Gay/Straight Adwatch: No Go, Girlfriend

A step beyond the GBF...

Ever happen to you, GG? Readers?

Interesting product tie-in. Jim Beam is pretty straight, right?

FYI: This is Jenny Slate, who looks likely to be joining SNL this fall.

--Straight Guy

Give Me a Ring Sometime

Straight Guy,

Enthusiastic commenter and fellow blogger Kathryn posted a great comment about rings on men.

Kathryn, I'm really surprised that you'd guess that only 20 percent of married men wear wedding rings. Really, that low? I am trying to think of any straight married men who don't wear wedding rings; there's a few at work, but I think that's a cultural thing.

Wedding/commitment rings are important as code, not just as bijou. I see a guy who's attractive, first piece of evidence I search for is the ring. Ring check. Ring on the wedding finger -- deal killer. Ring on the right hand -- "Are you gay . . . or European?" Either way, I respect the ring. It's a game stopper.

About half of the committed gay men I know wear some kind of ring. I like the rings for their symbolic value and their beauty. I also like that they are a neon sign blinking, "No Vacancy, no vacancy." I get pissed off when unavailable men don't wear some kind of ring. I just think that taken men should wear some kind of badge or tattoo that says "off the market." Look guys, take pity on your single brothers and remember how much work dating is.

A couple of years ago, a female friend said, in a fit of anger, that married men who don't wear wedding rings should be shot. I used to think her comment was harsh; several single years later, I get it.

If you get a ring, I think that people should get to choose or at least approve the ring. Several years ago, a good friend moved in with his boyfriend. It wasn't just a living arrangement, it was a symbol of their commitment. Then the BF surprised my friend with another symbol of commitment: a ring. A big fat, bright, chunky ring. Oh, it was not lovely. Gold, wide, big setting around a flat emerald bigger than my thumb nail. Like a green large signet ring. My friend just didn't know what to say or do. It wasn't his style, he wasn't sure if he wanted a ring at all -- and certainly not that ring. But, how do you say, "Honey, how kind. But could I pick another?" Last I saw, he was still wearing it. It was just easier -- and more loving -- to keep wearing it, comfortable or not.

--Gay Guy

No Jokes About Extra Nuts...

Gay Guy,

Did you know? In celebration of legal same-sex marriage in Vermont, Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream has announced the renaming of it's Chubby Hubby flavor to Hubby Hubby. They are working with Here's a quote from the corporate press release:

“At the core of Ben & Jerry’s values, we believe that social justice can and should be something that every human being is entitled to,” said Walt Freese, Chief Executive Officer of Ben & Jerry’s. “From the very beginning of our 30 year history, we have supported equal rights for all people. The legalization of marriage for gay and lesbian couples in Vermont is certainly a step in the right direction and something worth celebrating with peace, love and plenty of ice cream.”

Looks like the party will only last a month, and it's too complicated to change ALL of their retail packaging, but if you're headed to Vermont, enjoy.

I can speak from experience that Chubby Hubby is an excellent flavor (pretzels and peanut butter) and this is a great idea as a conversation starter. But, not sure if I'm interested in the sexualization of all my snack foods (that means you, Twinkies).

I can also speak from experience that Ben and Jerry are great guys, having spent a long morning in a van with both of them. Don't let your imagination run wild, GG. This was a long time ago when I was slave labor for a TV network, and had to get them (and a bazillion ice cream samples) to a remote location for a morning TV show. They were friendly and fun, which is more than I can say for most of the people I had to transport at 5:00 a.m.

--Straight Guy

Gay Guy / Straight Guy Archive