“Oh my God, you are such a slut.”
Has someone ever said that to you? And what were you doing when they did? I’ve heard it plenty of times, and usually for no valid reason.
“Slut” is one of those words that are continuously overused, like “diva” or “extreme;” the actual definition gets lost in the perception.
So I guess the real question here is: What constitutes sluttiness? Is it how you act, or is it what people think of how you acted? And where do we draw the line between what is and isn’t slutty?
In the dictionary, a slut is defined as a slovenly or promiscuous woman. I hate to break it to you, but I know a lot of well-dressed, fantastic people who are pretty damn slutty, and not all of them are women.
I figure since the term is supposed to apply to women, then gay men can definitely be sluts, because I hear them call each other “girrrrrl” every five minutes. And since these test subjects are where most of my research lies, I guess that’s the realm we’ll stay in. But that doesn’t exclude the rest of you who are out there sleeping around. You know who you are.
It’s a slippery slide to slutdom, and it usually begins at the dawn of your sexuality. You realize what you want and what kind of general package it comes in, but when you venture out into the world, that’s when you discover that there are a lot of flavors out there. And just like at Baskin-Robbins, you can dip your spoon into them and taste every single one. And why not? You need to explore your options now that you own your bright and shiny new sex life.
When I was a young gay pup in the ancient dark times before the Internet, it was, quite honestly, a bit of a chore: No online profiles to let me know exactly what a guy was into without a little trial and error – okay, a lot of trial and error.
Sure, it was a mystery what lay beneath the white-hot smile or the surfer’s body, but there wasn’t that much difference between then and now, when you have to unravel the mystery of why the guy you met online has totally misrepresented himself. The difference back then was that he was already standing in front of you, so at least you knew what he really looked like.
So here you are, a teenager or a twenty-something, experimenting with your sexuality as you stumble and fumble in the dark towards adulthood. Now, is that considered slutty? I wouldn’t say so, but if the argument is about the constant quest for the one who’s right for you or the certain type that gets you off, where is the cutoff date?
Aren’t we all experimenting throughout our lives until we find that mythical one who will prevent us from chasing after every piece of ass that passes us by?
For many people, the definition of slutty is the number of people you’ve been with. Now, as I was saying a moment ago, how does that apply to all of us searching, searching, searching for love or something like it, trying to connect with someone tangled in our sheets or kissing us across the console? We believe in our hearts, or whatever facsimile that holds our base emotions, that there is someone out there for all of us.
Whether or not we admit it, even the most jaded soul has fleeting moments of wonder: Is this it? Is this the one? Sometimes our hearts trick us by allowing us to believe that the V-shaped lifeguard we just met who is giving us a raging hard-on is the person we were meant to meet. But that’s not always your heart talking, kids.
As a man, I can say that more often than not, my dick is doing the driving. Wait – that was a poor choice of words. What I mean is, that sometimes my dick trumps my brain when it comes to making decisions. But the more I think about it, it seems that maybe they are working hand-in-hand. The animal part of our psyche tells us to hunt, to pounce, to seal the deal with someone we are drawn to before they escape.
Maybe it’s because our brain might decide at the last minute to bolt for the underbrush and the prey will disappear along with the opportunity to connect with someone physically and maybe, just maybe, emotionally. And even though it seems like the signals are coming from behind your button fly, the truth of the matter is, it’s still the brain that’s giving the orders, just like the Wizard hiding behind the curtain.
Let’s look at another touchstone that is often considered slutty: having sex with someone on the first date. Is that slutty? Or is it the norm? Because quite honestly, I can’t decide.
Maybe it’s the timing – they say it’s everything, you know. There’s sex on the first date, and then there’s doing it in the alley behind the bar a half hour after your first introductions. So I guess this could also apply to the location for your behavior. Some people say making out in a club is slutty. Some people say getting a blowjob in the bathroom at a club is slutty. So which is it? All of it? There has to be a line somewhere, and it seems to me that it’s pretty amorphous.
I have a feeling that it depends on who you ask. The answer I get from Johnny Skandros is going to be different from the one I get from Mike Huckabee. At least, I think it would be different. Your actions might make you seem slutty, but what about how you dress? Or what you do?
I have logged quite a few hours on a stripper pole, so believe me when I tell you I know whether or not it’s slutty to be shaking your jock in people’s faces. The truth is, the answer is “yes” and “no.” Because, just like certain people who condemn certain actions as slutty, certain people can elevate what I considered to be just another job to a full-blown, sky-high slut-o-rama.
Perception is not always reality. After all, it’s just using what you’ve got to make a living. Some people use their brains or their talent, and some people use their face or their body. You get what you get, so you might as well make it work in your favor.
On an equally superficial level, it goes without saying that how you dress doesn’t necessarily make you a slut either. Have we learned nothing from “The Accused?” I mean, besides the fact that Jodie Foster doesn’t have a lick of rhythm? People can be equally attracted to skintight t-shirts or shirts and ties, so transforming clothes into a barometer of someone’s promiscuity is ridiculous.
There is also the stigma of being labeled as a slut when it’s merely a rumor. These rumors are usually spread for a few different reasons. More often than not this scarlet letter is applied by people who want to keep the masses away from someone they can’t have or someone they have lost, and they figure if they tell the world how skanky this person is, then no one will go near them.
Unfortunately, this can backfire. We are always curious about the people of ill repute, aren’t we? And sometimes it just draws more people to this person, because everybody loves a sure thing, whether or not it’s the truth.
So, how do we decide what makes someone a slut? Is it going that extra mile? What I mean by that is, maybe it’s not how many partners you have, but how many you’ve had at one time? And how many is too many? Maybe it’s not who you are sleeping with but the selectiveness in which you do it.
Maybe it’s not remembering who you slept with in the first place. With enough whiskey it is possible to not be too rational in your decision-making process, but when the alcohol wears off, it might be more than a hangover you wake up to.
Could it be where you are when your dick does the talking? Having sex in the bedroom of someone on your first date is different than having sex in the Nordstrom fitting room, right?
When I started writing this, I thought surely I would come to a decision on what is or isn’t the mark of someone who acts like the proverbial slut. Now I realize that just like beauty, it’s truly in the eye of the beholder.
One of my favorite quotes from that crazy queen Oscar Wilde says: “Wickedness is a myth invented by good people to account for the curious attractiveness of others.” Now if that isn’t the truth, I don’t know what is.
Don’t we all secretly long to be wanton, unfettered beasts prowling in the night, searching for the narcotic contact of skin on skin? Sure, the dream is to have someone to come home to and someone to grow old with, but just like the animals we share this planet with, some of us are built to mate for life and some of us are not. Does that make you a slut? Or merely a wild animal?
And when and if you do meet that special someone, can you look past the people – no matter how many – that are in their past? And will they be able to return the favor?
I think that we should redefine what it means to be a slut, especially since no one seems to be able to decide on the rules. We all take different roads to get where we think we should be, whether that means you do the old school I-can’t-sleep-with-you-until-we’re-in-love route, or you sleep with every person you date until you find the right one, the journey is your own.
Every person that you encounter, sexually or otherwise, will teach you something about yourself, whether you realize it or not. As long as you are being safe, what’s the difference? It doesn’t mean someone that has a lot of sexual partners or engages in wild, erotic adventures with no remorse is a slut.
When it comes down to it, a slut is merely someone who is having more sex than you.
Article republished with permission from The Gay Word.
One of the most prominent stains on the reputation of the much-mythologized Reagan administration was its response, or lack of response, to the AIDS crisis as it began to ravage American cities in the early and mid-1980s. President Reagan famously (though, not famously enough) didn’t himself publicly mention AIDS until 1985, when more than 5,000 people, most of them gay men, had already been killed by the disease.
Join us on World AIDS Day, Tuesday, December 1st for the AIDS March & Rally in the Tower District. As we did last year, we'll start at the Fresno LGBT Community Center and march through the Tower District, in solidarity for World AIDS Day. We'll end up in front of the Tower Theater for a brief rally with local speakers and finally, a reading of names of those who we have lost to this terrible disease.
Meet up at the Fresno LGBT Community Center between 6 & 6:30PM on December 1st. The Center is located at 1067 N Fulton, in the Tower District, just down the street from the Tower Theater. The march will begin promptly at 6:30PM.
Candles will be provided to those in attendance. We will also be offering large AIDS ribbon replicas to be carried, as well red scarfs, while they last.
Once at the Tower Theater we will hear a few local speakers speak briefly, followed by the traditional reading of the names, recognizing those who have been lost.
I used to have an action figure – okay, it was a doll – of the Six-Million-Dollar Man.
What’s that? You say you don’t know who that is? Um, he’s kinda like a cyborg, I guess. Like the Terminator or a Cylon. Sort of. But a good guy. Anyway, he was a dude who had parts of his body replaced with robotics called ‘bionics” and he was a total player with his newscaster hairstyle, red tracksuit and matching sneakers.
He had fake skin on his arm that rolled up so you could remove his bionic parts and you could also look through the back of his head and see the world through his bionic eye. Sure, it made his face look strange, but it was super dope, especially to a nine-year-old kid.
Steve Austin had an arch enemy named Maskatron, who was an android with a removable face, much like the Fembots that plagued Steve’s bionic girlfriend, Jaime Sommers. (I’ll save her story for another day.) The opposing intricacy and simplicity of Maskatron would stick in my head into adulthood when I realized that maybe, just maybe, all the men I had been involved with were just like the evil Maskatron – different faces, but the same underneath.
Is that what happens in relationships? Do we get involved with the same people over and over again?
They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing repetitively and expecting different results. So why do we search out the same people and expect anything to be different? I’m not talking about how you prefer a man who looks like your track coach, or the blonde and bronzed boy-next-door, or even the rough, muscular kid that bullied you in high school. That is merely an imprinted sexual attraction that may or may not hold a veritable hornet’s nest of psychoses underneath. All of that falls under the physicality that you desire and the eternal mystery of sexual attraction. What I’m talking about is what lies beneath.
So, how do you know if you are one of the people who are constantly recycling the same person? Well, the first thing you need to do is look inward. If you want to know what’s missing in you or what you are lacking, or even what your inner struggles are, all you have to do is look at who you are involved with.
The facts about our childhood affecting our relationships ring true. For example, there are people who search for a strong, silent type that mimics the emotional distance of their father. Or, someone who has abandonment issues will constantly rediscover people who will eventually abandon them or they themselves will do the abandoning. But why?
The answer is that we recreate our biggest struggles so we can finally succeed in overcoming them. If you can just reach the heart of someone who’s emotionally detached, it will be as if your father finally showed how much he loved you. If you can get the wayward rebel to stay with you, then your feelings that everyone will leave you will finally be assuaged. The truth is, you can only solve the problems you hold inside by dealing with them on your own.
Then there are those that seek out people with problems of any sort because it makes them feel needed as they struggle to help the one with the issues. This leads to a feeling of importance and satisfaction as they try to “fix” the lost or damaged individual. Unfortunately, people who are riddled with the most baggage usually seek out this kind of person so they can take advantage of the hero complex that will inevitably be thrust upon them. We seek out someone who plays our games because it gives comfort and familiarity, but it ultimately leads to a dissatisfying end.
The solution to this Sisyphus-style torture is to recognize your own role in this unending cycle and change your behavior to create a new path. And to do this, you must first ask yourself a simple question about your relationship that you may have already heard from a friend or colleague: “How’s that workin’ out for ya?”
If the answer is, “It’s not,” it might be a good time to switch gears and cut your losses without the myriad of excuses that come with the acknowledgment that your romance is dead in the water.
A step that you could take even before this one is to listen to your intuition. People will always tell you who they truly are if you choose to listen with more than just your ears. For example, a man that gives you all the signs that he’s not into relationships is more than likely not into relationships. It ain’t rocket science, kids.
Sure, people change, but are you the one that always seems to tell yourself that you’ll be the one to change them? That is asking for trouble from the get-go. If you want new and unexpected results, you have to try something or someone new and unexpected.
There are two things you have to know to remove yourself from the cycle you’re trapped in. First, you have to know your type. If something is familiar in the beginning of the relationship, maybe you should steer clear altogether, or change your approach entirely towards this person.
This goes hand-in-hand with the second step. Know your anxieties. Are you shy and quiet? That usually means you search out the opposite, which may be someone outgoing and confident, but it may also mean that they will be controlling as well. All you have to do is overcome your anxiety or hang-up and you won’t draw the wrong person by what you avoid.
We all have comfort zones, but if you step outside of them and stick to the new you, your world will change dramatically. Sure, there is the fear that you will shut a relationship down in the beginning by taking charge and becoming the person you want to be. But if your new flame rejects you for wanting more, isn’t that the kind of relationship you want to leave behind?
Casting off the shackles of the past is never easy; we look for familiarity in people because it brings us comfort and makes us believe we can conquer what we did wrong with our relationships in the past. But the past is gone, and the world is waiting for you to start anew.
Forget that this new guy looks like the boy you had an ill-fated crush on in junior high. Forget that this ice-cold heartbreaker might finally thaw in your hands. Step outside the infinity loop you’ve been trapped in and find freedom.
You will end up feeling like a million bucks – or maybe six million of them.
Article republished with permission from The Gay Word.
Suddenly, in my morning fugue I hear a loud knock at the front door.
Several more loud knocks jolt me from my half-sleep to half-coffee-awake morning ritual in front of the desktop in the “Goose office.” This is 10 a.m., which makes no sense on a weekday morning with a working bell door.
I drag myself to the front door to be greeted by a policeman, with three police cars parked out front. Wow.
Goose, ever friendly, extended his hand to the office and asked, “How may I help you?” Okay, probably not the best idea to extend that hand, since the officer pulled away.
He announces, “There had been a report of a domestic argument at this address with breaking glass.”
I chuckled, after all, my front storm door is peppered with GLSEN, PFLAG, rainbow and equality stickers – and for an extra dose of queerness, a “Have A Gay Day” sticker. Goose quickly announced I was gay, vaguely flapping a wing in the direction of the storm door, and offering I “had no husband to get domestic with.”
The officer made a small, almost detectable grimace, but maintained his composure, and asked “to check inside.” I knew I should not have “technically” let him in – but I had nothing to hide, the house was clean. When was the last time a man was in my house? He came and went quickly, never got more than two feet inside the door and left. I waved goodbye to the other police waiting for him. It was over.
I’m sure it was a wrong address.
But, the incident got me to thinking – imagine if this same incident played out in 1969, the very year of the Stonewall riots? Isn’t there a movie out now called “Stonewall?”
This movie’s title immediately made me think “oh, another historic retelling of the facts of Stonewall.” Evoke the name Stonewall, and you’ve touched the third rail of queer sensibilities. Maybe I should have paid more attention, but all the reviewers seemed to loathe it. When dealing with reviewers, let alone the experts in our own communities, I have learned to be pretty suspicious of opinions until I take a look-see. Besides, taking a historic event and trying any retelling, while people and history are still easily able to be confirmed, is usually begging for trouble.
Trouble there was. Once I started watching it, I got it was not much of an attempt to be true to the past, but rather a tale told through a fictionalized Midwestern piece of boy trade who finds himself on Christopher Street after a Midwest blow job goes horribly wrong.
Now, I was never as pretty as this child. I am much too old to play that role today. Yet, let the record show my park blow job of a boy in high school also went horrible wrong and yes, everyone knew.
The online world collectively lost its mind this week over the fact that a little boy was starring in a Barbie commercial for the first time ever.
"SO fierce!" he says to the camera as he hands the doll her tiny designer purse.
James Pittman faced discrimination because he was gay—that, nobody denies. As an employee at Cook Paper Recycling Corp. in Missouri, Pittman was subject to vile homophobic harassment: Employees called him a “cocksucker,” asked whether he had AIDS, mocked him for being gay and having a boyfriend, and ridiculed him when they broke up. Then Cook Paper fired him.
Pittman sued, alleging he was subject to illegal workplace discrimination. The court promptly dismissed his suit, ruling that Pittman’s harassment was perfectly legal. Neither Missouri nor federal law explicitly bars discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, the court reasoned, so Cook Paper’s employees were free to torment, mock, and fire Pittman for being gay. On Tuesday, the Western District Missouri Court of Appeals affirmed the lower court’s ruling.
The best use of three minutes... Sasheer Zamata explains just how problematic privilege is:
I have said this a time or three previously, but it bears repeating: The longer I work with computers and electronics, the more e-mail looks like the old “snail mail” stuff. In other words, the more it seems that e-mail I send out to people (or they send to me) “bounces” for this or that reason or the more it’s delayed “somewhere out there” or never goes or lands anywhere.
The sad part of all of the above is that we (that’s all of us) have this badly mistaken idea that if we use e-mail there is a 100% chance what we send will arrive …and arrive “immediately.” In truth, that’s not always the case and if we go through life believing in the impossibility of e-mail and e-commerce failure then we are going to eventually end up sad (not to mention broke if we are counting upon e-mail to pay a bill or send a job to the boss, etc.) and I got a bridge I wanna sell you, too!
The issue has been driven home with our recent move and sale of the company we owned, necessitating a new domain name and new e-mail addresses at our end. The setting up has been a nightmare and meanwhile those wanting to write us have often called frustrated when e-mails bounced back to them as undeliverable.
Add to that we have, for way too many years, used an e-mail programme called Microsoft Entourage to get our mail. To quote Wikipedia, “Microsoft Entourage was an e-mail client and personal information manager developed by Microsoft for Mac OS 8.5 and higher. Microsoft first released Entourage in October 2000 as part of the Microsoft Office 2001 office suite; Office 98, the previous version of Microsoft Office for Mac OS included Outlook Express 5. The last version was Entourage: Mac 2008, part of Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac, released on 15 January 2008. Entourage was replaced by Outlook for Macintosh in Microsoft Office for Mac 2011, released on 26th October 2010…”
In honor of National Coming Out Day (October 11) and #SpiritDay (October 15), this post examines how some highly-public moments for the LGBT community affected support for this movement and the rate at which people came out on Facebook. Examining aggregated, de-identified information about people in the U.S. on Facebook, we look at the total number of people who came out on each day. We define “coming out” as (1) updating one’s profile to express a same-gender attraction or (2) specifying a custom gender.