Thursday, June 30, 2005

Gay Thursday 6/30

Gay* Thursday 6/30

In Toronto, Canada, a statue has caused quite a stir. It depicts a man wearing a trench coat, feeling the genitals of a man who has droped trou. Now, this isn't some sort of medical procedure, mind you. It was a criminal investigation. The statue isn't offensive either, says the residents of this "irreverent" gay neighborhood.
But denizens of Toronto's centrally located and often irreverent gay neighborhood -- the home of the city's hugely popular annual gay pride celebrations -- say the sculpture is not offensive, and fits with the spirit of the community.

See, it fits within the spirit of the community. "We regularly have men drop trou and get felt up by other men," no doubt offers a community resident.

But first, who is this trench coated man?

Wood emigrated from Scotland in the 1790s, becoming a merchant, militiaman and a well-respected magistrate, before running into trouble in 1810. A woman reported a rape, noting she had scratched the attacker on his genitals. Wood took matters into his own hands, lining up the suspects and demanding that they drop their pants so he could "inspect" them.

After word of the incident got around, Wood was widely branded a "molly," a derogatory term for homosexuals, and he agreed to leave town in exchange for not being prosecuted for abusing his position.

The incident is commemorated on the statue's granite base, with a bronze plaque depicting a man's rear-end with his pants around his knees, and Wood's outstretched hand in mid-examination.

Despite this heroic act, there are some that do not like the statue and its bronze plaque.
"I think it's misleading. The sensationalistic side of homosexuality is not the norm."
Not the norm, you say?
However, backers of the monument say Wood is an important link to the area's colorful history and the plaque is unlikely to offend many in an area where public displays of affection between same-sex partners are commonplace.
Do those public displays of affection include dropping trou and rubbing . . . oh, never mind.

It sits just at the south end of the main gay village on Church St., a street lined with coffee shops, bars, and emblematic rainbow flags.

"It adds a bit of distinction to the corner," said Mike Calnan, who lives in the neighborhood. "It has become a sort of equal to the Blarney Stone," he added, referring to the prominent buttocks on the bronze illustration.

"People have been rubbing it for luck."

Well, as long as it brings luck. But the most important thing is that it makes people very, very gay.

* Gay: 1 a : happily excited : MERRY b : keenly alive and exuberant : having or inducing high spirits 2 a : BRIGHT, LIVELY b : brilliant in color

MORE GAY* THURSDAY: A Guide To Mid-Western Culture.


At 7:01 PM, Blogger Pile OnĀ® said...

Oh, this is that kind of gay.


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