Page 267 - Gay San Francisco_Eyewitness Drummer
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Gay San Francisco: Eyewitness Drummer                247
                •   the prefix man (eg. mansex)  — for which I rather apologize
                    because its adaptation by others has made what was once
                    fresh into something of a cliche;
                •   the suffix stream (e.g. gaystream, leatherstream, bearstream);
                •   recreational sex, man2man, straight queens (e.g., TV’s Fra-
                    sier); and
                •   the first use of the eponymous bear which like leather no one
                    person invented per se;
                •   a gazillion new synonyms for  penis, sperm, and  orgasm
                    because all neologisms had to be interactively surprising
                    enough to keep the magazine reader cuming, and coming
                •   a new 1972 definition of S&M as “sensuality and mutual-
                    ity” which led to mutualist;
                •   plus attempts at a gay style guide to standardize, according
                    to the Anglo-Saxon rather than the French-Norman, the
                    slippery erotic spellings of hardon, cum/cuming, etc.

                When the once bright young thing Norman Mailer, who had spelled
             fuck as fug in his huge best-seller The Naked and the Dead (1948), was
             being lionized at a New York party, he was introduced to the diva Tal-
             lullah Bankhead who hissed, “Oh, darling! You’re the young man who
             can’t spell fuck.”
                The act of “Naming the Neologism,” homomasculinity, an ennobling
             (rather than enabling) word born out of my re-conception of courtly love
             as found in Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur, was carefully designed to deflect
             from the word sex in the center of homosexuality, because that “neon cen-
             trality” reduced gays to sexual acts, so much so that straights (always
             uncomfortable with the word sex buried in any word) rather immediately
             preferred the alternative gay which scared neither the horses nor their
             children, because gay does not imply sex. In addition, gay is three letters
             brief — a keyword perfectly sized for headlines. Nevertheless, homosexu-
             ality as a construct suggested a classic utility worth building on, even if
             homo was often a pop epithet equal to fag and queer. (It is a gay linguistic
             theorem that epithets can be unhorsed and co-opted.) Homo is a root to
             cling to. After the fashion of Raymond Williams’ Key Words, homomascu-
             linity might be analyzed in the following genesis.
                During my eleven years at the Pontifical College Josephinum where
             I was a schoolmate of Cardinal Bernard Law who became a media scan-
             dal in Boston for covering up molestation of minors by his priests, my
             eight years of Greek and Latin studies caused my lifting of homo as a

           ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 05-05-2017
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