Jun 13, 2018

Summertime Beefcake at the County Fair

If you wanted to insult a Nazarene, you accused them of being "worldly," engaging in behavior that wasn't sinful, but veered a little too close to the behaviors of "the wicked old world."

For example, women were merely required to avoid wearing men's clothing or jewelry, to keep their hair long, and to dress "modestly."  After that, they were on their own.  So a skirt that came above your knees?  Not a sin, but sure to get you glares and whispers of "worldly!"

It was a sin to go to the theater, but what if the theater came to you?  If you went to an amateur drama production at the high school, you weren't technically backsliding, but your Sunday school teacher would certainly admonish you for being worldly!

The Nazarene Manual had a long list of "entertainments" that were forbidden by God: carnivals, circuses, festivals, theaters, moving picture shows, dance recitals, vaudeville shows.  But it didn't mention fairs.  An oversight, certainly, but one that made fairs worldly instead of sinful.

So I never went as a child, and of course when you live in a gay neighborhood, the thought of going to a county or state fair never crosses your mind.

I didn't start going to them until I met Troy, who was a fan.

Ok, they're very crowded, with redneck stuff like farm exhibits and tractor pulls.
Glittering, gaudy rides and games of skill hawked by scary people with cigarettes and big baskets.

Crazy food like deep fried Twinkies.

And the people who eat deep fried Twinkies every day.

Heterosexuals as far as the eye can see.

There's something fascinating about heterosexuals in the wild, certain that there are no gay people for a hundred miles around.

Married heterosexuals wander around with their kids in tow.  But unmarried heterosexuals come in single-sex packs, hanging all over each other, grabbing each other's butts, engaging in all sorts of homoerotic hijinks.

Not to mention the ample beefcake, muscular men with their shirts off and their jeans packed.

If their shirts aren't off, ask.  They may be persuaded to strip for a photo.

See also: Celtic Festivals; Physique-Watching at the County Fair


  1. Manichaeans, then.

    Not sure how movies and television are a sin. Is this like Saudi Arabia's (recently repealed) ban on women driving? Now they can drive...with a male escort.

    1. TV was ok, because you were watching it at home, but you had to go out to a movie theater. Even if it was a G-rated movie, other people would see you and think you were a sinner, so your attempt to win them for Christ would be compromised. At least that's how my Sunday school teacher explained it. Except if other people didn't think going to a movie was a sin, the theory doesn't work.

    2. It's very different. Like, I know guys my age who are religious, but generally not homophobic. Also not as nationalistic as the fundamentalists of your time: Far from Israel, most of them see America as Babylon or Sodom.


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