Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Masked Drinker's Guide to Gay Bars (For Straight Dudes)

So I was at Fashion Week last, uh, week, surrounded by bizarre examples of genetic perfection, free wine, and toilets whose seats never stand. I spent some time trying to get the designers of Original Penguin to release a nice line of comfortable-yet-stylish masks, but they just don’t yet see the market for it. Anyway, this is all just to say that it made me feel now was a good time to write up why gay bars are basic places of superfun.

My first experience with a gay bar wasn’t really my best. However, it was a bar in West Virginia, and that state and the word “best” never go hand-in-hand. See, my high school buddies and I found out that there was a gay bar in the town near where we grew up and we were overcome with curiosity. It was what you’d expect in an Appalachian gay bar: dudes whose only idea of gay culture is what they’ve seen in bad comedies and ladies who could kill every one of us without even loosening their large-custom-buckled belts. The music was loud and bad, and we were too young to get served. The best part was a redneck football player we had grown up with running up to my friend and proclaiming, “I always knew you were, too!”

Anyway, that’s not the usual scene from what I can tell. Gay bars, maybe especially if you’re straight, are just fun, relaxing places to be. Even some fairly open-minded guys are a little freaked out by the idea that “OH SHIT I AM GOING TO BE HIT ON!” Listen, in New York, at least, gay dudes are hell of picky. If you DO get hit on (which probably won’t happen), then consider it a pretty awesome compliment. If you can make it in the NYC gay scene, you are one hot fellow. (Unless you’re at a chubby chaser bar, but whatever, you probably aren’t.)

Gay bars—and I stress bars here, not clubs—usually have decent selections, prices, and specials. The happy hour at my favorite gay bar, Nowhere, is two for one domestics and well drinks for, like, four or five hours. That’s fucking crazy! A man can get much loaded on Yuenglings and whiskeys while hardly spending anything.

Gay bars are actually pretty amazing for dates, too. Bring a girl to a gay bar and you know no asshole’s gonna try to hit on her while you’re peeing. And, at gay bars I’ve patronized at least, straight couples are almost as cute and exotic as puppies playing with tiger cubs. That’s pretty fucking exotic and cute. Also, there’s usually a juke or DJ with danceable music, and after a few cheap rounds you are so on that, admit it.

Lesbian bars are a bit trickier. First off, if it’s a really anti-male lesbian bar, don’t be an idiot; just don’t go. But most lesbian bars are just bars that happen to be run for and by lesbians. Whenever I’ve found myself in one, I act like I always act in a bar not really meant for me. Just stay friendly, and don’t hit on anyone. And don’t hit on anyone by not hitting on them, either. Girls are totally onto that trick, guys. It’s just that straight girls sometimes pretend it works because it’s easier that way.

I don’t know if I have any gay readers yet, but I just realized that if I do, this is probably the lamest article they’ve ever read. So here’s a picture of Clive Owen as a measure of apology to you, my theoretical gay reader.

Anyway, not all gay bars are alike, obviously. But I’ve never been to one that wasn’t a fun time. I’ve never been forced to dance ala Police Academy. The bartenders are sometimes happy to hear about girl-dating problems to remind them of some of the reasons it’s awesome to be gay. This is, at least, what I’m telling myself whilst I bemoan my latest girltragedy.

So try it out. I recommend, as I said, Nowhere on 14th between 2nd and 1st Avenues. Good juke, pool table, nice seating, fun environment. But please don’t go all at once. Then you’ll ruin it. I know my audience is comprised of ruiners. RUINERS.

pictures stolen from the internet, as he so often does, by the Masked Drinker

dude how hot is Clive Owen? It's ridiculous.


  1. First of all I don't see Clive Owen:Forbidden

    You don't have permission to access /images/photos/clive_owen_10.jpg on this server.

    Additionally, a 404 Not Found error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.

    And second: where's my picture of Kate Winslet.

    And finally: why must you ruin my favourite bars by encouraging the riff-raff to go there, Ruiner!

  2. I think I fixed it!

    I'll try to throw in a Winslet another post.

  3. You so have to tell me who the redneck football player was...


  4. Gay reader here. First off, thanks for Clive Owen. Second, I think it was a fairly nice article, and it certainly doesn't need an apology. In fact, it reminds me why being gay is so awesome: our bars are cheaper, have better music, and higher standards. Oh, and I've had my share of "OMG I knew you were!" moments. They are just as awkward (if not more so) when both people are, in fact, gay. It's like, where do you go from there? "OMG, I knew you were, too! Let's screw like wild animals!"

  5. Ha, awesome. And thanks, Anonymous Gay Reader (AGR) for checking out the back catalog. There's some good stuff back here, I think.