Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Marketing 101 for Sapphires

I’ve often heard lesbians wonder why we don’t seem able to raise as much money for our causes as gay guys. So I thought I’d check it out for myself. And here’s what I found: Gay guys have waaay better writers. Consider the following:

In the early days of our political struggle, gay men had the Mattachine Society. Mattachine. Bold. Snappy. In your face. Even better, it was named after a French medieval form of festive courtly entertainment. I mean, how gay is that?

What did lesbians have? The Daughters of Bilitis. The Daughters of Bilitis?? Are you kidding? Isn’t that a disease of the digestive tract? I’m pretty sure there’s a pill for that now.

And then there’s the word “lesbian” itself. Lesbian. Lesbian. God, how I hated that word when I was coming out. Sounds like I have some kind of incurable skin condition. Couldn’t they have come up with something a little more, you know, pretty?

Yeah, yeah, I know that we’re called lesbians because Sappho, the Greek poet, was queer and she was from Lesbos. A fact, by the way, that has been a source of great consternation for current-day residents of that island. But geez. I mean, why not “sapphy” or “sapphron” or -- I've got it! -- “sapphire”!

“Hi, I’m Judy and I’m a sapphire. Shall we reserve a U-Haul?” Now, isn’t that nice? But no, they had to pick "lesbian." I still like “gay” much, much better.

I mean, the guys even have a better epithet:

Faggot [fag-uh t] n. A bundle of sticks, twigs, or branches bound together and used as fuel, a fascine, a torch, etc.

I saw Martha Stewart use one of those to add a special festive touch to her Christmas wrapping.

Our epithet, on the other hand:

Dyke [dahyk] n. A really large and intimidating immovable object.

Oh, all right, so I made that one up. But honestly, don’t you think it's time for a new and more appealing lexicon?

Hey. Just sayin'.

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