Things that don't seem gay, but are

With the greater acceptance of gay culture in recent years has come much discussion about things men do that might seem “gay,” but are not necessarily indicative of gayness. (Here’s a blog post about some of them, eg: tea-drinking, bow ties, yoga.)

Despite such openness, what is still mostly unmentionable are things that are not essentially “gay,” but are actually “gay by association.” Many of these seem to fall into the category of open secrets. Such as the high proportion of gay men among professional organists. Or that the military ran up against a shortage of Arabic translators because linguistics turned out to be a “gay specialty.”

As a straight guy who has issues with traditional masculinity, I have been on the receiving end of some surprises of this nature. I had been interested in early jazz since I started playing saxophone and clarinet at 12, but as I branched out from jazz into 1920s-40s pop music, I noticed that all of a sudden I encountered more gay enthusiasts. Since then, I’ve observed that being interested in any obsolete popular culture - something no one is around to remember - is, as often as not, a culturally gay activity. The reasons still elude me, but it’s worth speculating about.

What are some other things that people have found that you wouldn’t think were gay, but that turned out to be more or less gay? And why do you think it is?

I was really surprised to learn that if I took a dick up the asshole, that would be considered a “gay” activity. It just seemed so weird and arbitrary, you know?

Not sure where you’re going with that thought.

Actually, even calling it a “thought” is being kind.

I must be well Gay, I drink tea and appreciate fine art.

Do you think that this might get a few more women to shag me ?

Exactly! Who are we to assign labels to these things? When you’re swept up in the emotion and passion of it all, thoughts just seem to go out the window, you know?

Dammit, can’t we just let the thread hang around awhile until someone answers who knows that the fuck I’m talking about? Y’all are hacking it up.

This thread seems pretty gay. But it probably is, so nevermind I guess.

Apparently, there was a time when you could call your rock band “Queen”, dress like this and no one thought you were gay.

Women often comment to me that I have a lot of interests and behaviors they always thought of as gay. I am as manly as they come but I don’t ebjoy sports unless I am actually playing. I ejoy sitting and talking with women in a group. I like decorating and designing womens outfits but am a total levi-t-shirt guy for myself and have no interest in my own fashion. I like to sew, cook etc. I also like wood working, mechanical, gardening and all the traditional man stuff. Bottom line I don’t see things as gay or not gay.

Yeah, but you like badgers!
That’s like totally gay.

heh heh heh

Sorry, dude, I couldn’t resist it.

The day ater I retired I got a badger tattoo on my left forearm.

OK, but what if badger got into, say, driftwood carving, or fixing up brass cash registers, or making his own venetian blinds, and it turned out that 3/4 of the people he came into contact with in connection with those activities were, for no apparent reason, gay men?

Now forget I said “what if.” There really are things that are not stereotypically gay, but turn out to be gay. What you guys (assuming you’re guys) are talking about is mostly stuff that is stereotypically gay. What’s the matter? Are you scared of this topic?

Ok, here’s a real answer: Jeeps.

When I think Jeep, I think rugged redneck super-lifted mud-tire Jeep.

Nope. I learned that Jeeps are gay.

When did tea-drinking become ‘gay’?

50-odd million people would really like to know.

You know, after I posted that I thought, “Gah, I do hope he knows I was just poking fun at him because of another thread.”

Did you really get a tattoo? Wow.

Badgers are actually really cool which is why it was safe to make fun of your interest in them. I always loved the badger character in Wind in the Willows. Which is, by the way, not gay at all even though it apparently has only one female characters, the gaoler’s daughter.

I used to play pickup volleyball at a local (silicon valley) community center one evening a week. I met WAY more effeminate men there than in any other context I’ve ever encountered. No idea why… (and of course, as a full disclaimer, I don’t actually know any of them were gay…)

In an era when masculinity is performative, Jeeps are gay because they’re not performative enough. F-250s and Silverados, ten feet tall and half a block long, covered in gleaming chrome - those are manly vehicles.

I have many friends of various sexual orientations and none of them are in careers that are stereotyped for their orientations.

But, what makes something ‘gay’? If the thing is assumed ahead of time to be gay, like being a hairdresser, then that doesn’t qualify for an answer to the OP. If it isn’t, then how can you tell that it IS gay. In this case, the word ‘gay’ means the stereotype, not the sexual orientation of the practitioner thereof. So, it seems like a null set kind of question.

Are you asking, what activities are usually assumed to be those of a straight man in the USA and are, in fact, more commonly found to be that of a homosexual man in the USA?

Maybe I’m being particularly dense here, but if you are into some particular hobby or pastime, how is it that you just happen to find out how many of the other people who also enjoy it are gay?

There was also the washerwoman on the barge…