The Queer Issue

Homo History

Queer Issue 2006

Pride Events

Divorced From Reality

Pride 2006 Events Calendar

The Queer Issue

Queer Issue 2013

The Queer Issue

Ban Heterosexual Complacency

Gay Bathhouse

100,000 BC-1968

Gay Bars

Young

What I know About...

The Delicate Art of Not Giving a Fuck

Having My Cake and Eating It Too

Envy

Amend It to End It

Lesbian Bathhouse

1969

Public Sex

In a 'Star Trek' Outfit

Learning the Ropes

Anger

The Fag-Hag Emancipation Act of 2006

2008

You Go, Gays

1970

Diva Worship

On a Deadline

Those horrible nightmares? Where you're running, through some antique mall on Fire Island, from the horrible coughing zombie corpses with huge purple lesions and upturned Izod collars that are trying to hump you in the butt, but you trip over your boat shoes (damn those rigid leather laces!) and fall face first into a giant pool of poppers and Cyndi Lauper? 1985. I'm telling you. All gays have nasty dreams about 1985—whether they were there or not. The terror, the paranoia, the Molly Ringwald: 1985 is hardwired into the gay superconscious.

1985 was when things really got AIDSy. Gay public relations were in the shitter. Everybody was afraid of getting peculiar canary diseases from a handshake, and way too many folks held the staunch opinion that gays were a plague race sent by the devil. Then Rock Hudson tongue-fucked Linda Evans's skull on ABC... and, well. Allow me to explain.

There once was a show called Dynasty. Dynasty was a melodramatic nighttime soap that featured the first serious gay character on television ("Steven," played by two actors who never worked again) and set the standard of bitchiness for generations. In 1985 Rock Hudson joined the cast. Hudson was an old "sex-symbol"-type movie actor from the '50s, and he was secretly quite gay. He was also secretly quite AIDSy—unbeknownst to even himself. As a plot point, he shared a fairly sloppy face-tonguing with Dynasty's resident sweetheart, Linda Evans (Krystal Carrington), and then became one of the first big stars to drop dead of the Disease. The tabloids panicked. Did poor Linda contract AIDS from that sloppy kiss? And what other manly (and AIDSy) queers hide undetected amongst us? Thus was the dubious practice of "outing" sort of born, and AIDS-related paranoia was slammed into the puny brain of even the most apathetic TV-addicted American rube. 1985. You'll never escape it. Never!