Life / Sex & relationships

Spring Striptease: How 70s Shorts Made Me Gay

Winter. Cold, covered, dark, sexless winter. An entire season defined by fleece and flannel and filthy slush. A season bound in mittens and scarves and coats and hats and boots. A season that ensures that no flesh is available to Mother Nature.

We are the huddled masses yearning to be free. Free from winter’s luggage and its confusing overabundance of pockets. Free from the time consuming preparation needed to go outside.

But then, just off in the distance, like a lightly held breath ~ spring! With all its antici…pation. With its promise. With its energy and spirit of renewal. A compressed coil waiting…wanting…desperate to burst, to spring! Spring tells us to peel away our layers. Spring begs us to shed our protective winter rinds and invites skin and sun to become reacquainted.

So begins the yearly pilgrimage from puffy coat to tank top. A religious and worthy pilgrimage if ever there was one. Ahhhh, the slow, sexy strip of spring, when the men of New York City begin unveiling body parts that have been shrouded in secrecy for months. A thick forearm here. A peek of armpit hair there. Suddenly nipples begin making accidental appearances from behind careless shirts. The chests! Out, loud, furry, and proud! And legs! New York City becomes a parade of legs! Thick, sturdy thighs, striding around, solid and secure with all the showy arrogance of a new car.

shortsNow, I’d like to publicly voice my profound joy that the droopy, overly-long, body/booty concealing shorts that have been a blight on the landscape of men’s fashion are on…their…way…out! And not a minute too soon. For those who spend their finite resources attempting to discover the cause of homosexuality, let me save you some time: it was the shorts. It was those sweet, sweet 70s shorts. Shorts that celebrated their in-your-face shortness. Shorts that clung to every curve and outline, every speed bump and protuberance of a man’s body. It was the shorts. Shorts that seemed barely able to contain certain mysteries. Mysteries kept mysterious only by the thinnest layer of cotton and that left me to wonder what would happen if something were to escape! Yeah, it was the shorts. It wasn’t an overbearing and domineering mother or an emotionally distant, absent father. It was the shorts. It wasn’t a coterie of Eldergays dedicated to abduction and seduction to compensate for a lack of same-sex reproduction. It was the shorts; nearly obscene in retrospect. It was not the gay gene. It was never the genes. It was the shorts. It was those tight, taut, brilliantly colored shorts with the contrasting piping and the divot on the outside of the thighs, showing off almost an inch more of skin, like an arrow pointing towards Nirvana. My mind was not perverted by positive images of gay people. My mind was perverted by the myriad promises those shorts made to me in my childhood. Promises they made good on in my adolescence and promises that continue to ring my bell even now as I wrestle with each and every indignity inflicted upon me in middle age. And to this very day, every time I see those shorts nervously stretched across a man, my adherence to all things homosexual is refreshed, revived, renewed, and most importantly, rewarded. Please let Pat Robertson know. Tweet it to Fox News. Tell it to everyone at the Family Research Council and at Liberty University. If you want to ban homosexuality, you must first ban those shorts. And to the dictators of fashion, I beg of you, for the love of all that is good and holy, bring back those shorts.

Wait…what was I…where…I seem to have lost my…oh, yes. spring.

When the men of New York City start getting naked, I know that spring has arrived, and I am grateful. Grateful for the weather. Grateful for the sights. Tourists may think New York is about the skyline, but New Yorkers know the city is really about the view from the street.

We welcome you back, spring! We welcome you back with beautiful, bare, open arms.

Tags: ,


  1. Vikki Reich says:

    I think I can speak for my people when I say that maybe it’s time we lesbians gave up our cargo shorts because you make short shorts sound fantastic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.