Sunday, 29 April 2012

The Observer: Not Totally Straight

'...a much-discussed headline in the Sun last week. "Jessie Gay," it said, "Simon NOT Gay". Please update your sexuality Google doc: Jessie "gay" J is a "secret lesbian" and Simon "not gay, actually, no" Cowell is "totally straight". This month the Sun also ran stories on Prince Harry telling Alan Carr: "I'm not gay!", George Clooney saying he doesn't mind if people think he's gay, Emmerdale's Danny Miller saying: "I'm so glad I won't be kissing any more blokes" now he's leaving the soap, Liam from One Direction denying gay rumours, and an interesting piece on the sexuality of male dolphins (FYI: bi). It must be exhausting, mustn't it, keeping on top of who everyone wants to lie down with? I picture a But Is He Gay editor, sweating on his swivel chair, a well-worn MDF gayometer swinging doomily on his desk, the sweet smell of Lynx hazing above him like steam. Is Cowell "totally straight"?
'Dear the Sun – let me clarify…'

Eva Wiseman writing in The Observer.
So far, so fine.
She then goes on to compile one of those "You know you're not totally straight when" lists;
"If you have ever used disposable facial wipes or dry shampoo; if you have ever carried hand cream. If you have ever tried a speciality coffee. If you have ever cuddled someone platonically..."
It just seemed like a cliched exercise in space filling to me.
If I was forwarded a link to this - and it's just the kind of sickly/jokey drivel that gets passed on like viral pox - I'd be reaching for the Unfollow button.
And many of her markers of being "not totally straight" read more like markers of being middle class;
"If you have ever gone to a Westfield or similar mega-mall, one with a food court, and absolutely utterly hated it. If you have ever said "Hiya!" If you have ever added a garnish to your food..."
Westfield? Yuk!
Is it meant to be funny?
Maybe it's ironic?
Maybe I'm just in a mood?
Who can say?


  1. I think what she's getting, rather than a sincere attempt at separating gay from straight, is the absurdity of it all; that such lists and media obsession with categorisation are inherently pointless, especially in this day and age. Or might be reading it totally wrong ;)

  2. Okay - just read it again and I'm pretty sure the main thrust of the piece isn't ironic.
    How depressing.

  3. Well if that is the case it just renders the article a pointless exercise in trotting out trite gay cliché. Oh dear

  4. I hope its a joke, if it isn't its just junk.

  5. Dear Fagburn,

    I don't use facial wipes, I don't carry hand cream, I don't drink speciality coffees, though I only fuck with other guys. Does this mean "I'm not totally gay"?