Jul 27, 2013

Looking for a Hula Girl: Erasing Gay People from Ebay

If you want to see just how thoroughly gay people are erased from the world, do some online shopping:

Allposters.com suggests that "men" will like posters of female breasts (labeled “Goals”), and women lowering their panties and asking us to “Lend a hand.”

A total of 25% of the 274 posters for men and 36% of the 131 posters for women assert that only heterosexuals exist.

Calendars.com offers The Boyfriend of the Month, featuring “that perfect guy that anyone would consider a great catch!"  So far so good.

But there's also a a Chippendales Calendar, “a must have for every female!”
The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Calendar is “a favorite with men around the world!”

At Gifts.com, the category For Him offered lots of gifts for straight weddings and anniversaries, personalized His N Her Pillow Cases, a “Weekend of Love Kit” with an image of a man and woman from the Kama Sutra, and “Life Lesson Figurines,” about men getting into humorous scrapes that assume hetero-coupling: “Just because you like it, doesn’t mean she will”; “When she asks for a backrub, sometimes she just means a backrub.”

 Amazon.com, the mega book and everything else site, wins the award for the most egregious insistence that gay people do not exist.

The introduction to the Boyfriends/Husbands Gift category amply references the “white knight” who has “swept her off her feet.”
The introduction to the Girlfriends/Wives category rhapsodizes about the “woman in his life,” with never a same-sex partner acknowledged or implied.

Ebay, the online auction giant, displays the least erasure of any of the websites I observed, perhaps because the item descriptions are not written by homophobic advertising agencies.

Orlando Bloom, star of The Lord of the Rings and The Pirates of the Caribbean series (left), appears on 728 items up for auction, but less than 10 asserted that no gay men exist: a photo “for the ladies”; a Pirates of the Caribbean t-shirt that is “perfect for guys -- no picture of Orlando Bloom on the front!”; a poster of a shirt-less Bloom reclining on a large white pillow (“Great poster, ladies!).

192 auctions offer items emblazoned with the likeness of Zac Efron, the star of Hairspray and the popular High School Musical franchise (top photo). There are posters, photos, articles of clothing, school supplies, pillowcases, and even light switch covers. But only four of item descriptions specify that all potential bidders, and all potential recipients, must be girls. The others exclaimed: “Everybody’s favorite teen hunk!”, or “A great addition to any fan’s collection!"

Still, it wasn’t hard to find erasure:
A dart board emblazoned with a picture of a male model, advertised as “Ladies, here is your dart board!"
A mug showing ladies in a state of undress “for the men!”
Euphoria Cologne, to “attract the opposite sex!”
A photo of Taylor Lautner  “for the ladies.”

A T-shirt emblazoned with “Got boys?” in a parody of the popular “Got milk?” ads, “tailored for the ladies!”
A fishing lure in the form of a mermaid, “Guaranteed to catch all fishermen!”
A Hawaiian hula boy bobbler for a car’s dashboard, “looking for a hula girl.”
A "dainty" pink tool set, "for women only"

And my favorite: a selection of action-adventure DVDs for men to watch "while your wife is out shopping."  You could also get a chick-flick set for women to watch "while your husband is out hunting."

Me kill saber-toothed tiger, you cook!