Monday, August 21, 2006

The "G" stands for Gentlemen's: What "Gentlemen" stands for is up for grabs

Well the kids and I listened to Appetite for Destruction this morning, the Guns 'n' Roses album, the epitome of rock n roll circa 1987. Perhaps the epitome of rock n roll period. Ok perhaps not. But it hit the kids like a dozen cupcakes with sprinkles. They literally bounced off the walls and furniture. Seriously, it was like Nell getting a Snickers bar for the first time.

I was prompted to delve deep into the iPod and find this sweet-sixteen-year-old album by a very weird article on Axl Rose in GQ ("GQ?" you ask... "Clive Owen," I reply, and you nod sagely).

GQ is very weird overall. There was a spread (and I do mean spread) on men's underwear featuring a mostly naked woman reaching into the male model's shorts. There were also many many many photographs of rippling abs. Bob, seeing the word "football" on the cover, picked the thing up looking for the football article, and instead found a half-dozen pictures of an expressionless Reggie Bush putting on and taking off sweaters so that each shot exposed his torso. He leafed past the beefcake looking for the article and there was none. There was an actual interview with Troy Polamalu, but the writer was so distracted by Polamalu's hair and lifestyle that he all but failed to mention that Polamalu is apparently an athletic polymath.

The guy writing about Axl Rose seems as conflicted as the entire magazine. He admires Axl's virtuoso voice; he reminds us that Axl looked like a sexy girl when he was 20 years old; he says that Axl's "package is huge. Only reporting."; and he says that the way Axl dances, especially in the video for "Patience," which I thought was just a blown kiss short of nauseating, is "lovely, I'm sorry."

It seems like, at GQ, it's all about "not gay! oh no, not gay!" If you want to report that Axl has a big penis, that's fine by me; if your visual taste allows you to admire that snaky dance thing that Axl used to do, I don't give a powdered-milk fuck. But all the disclaimers and apologies - who exactly is he apologizing to? His editor? "Sorry I'm sounding a little GAY here, but no homosexual on earth would admit to liking Guns N Roses so I'm ok right?"

The style columnist however doesn't remotely get a pass, especially once he's admitted that he uses an anti-aging night cream. We are assured that he didn't BUY it or anything, his wife gives him her surplus - "some Patricia Wexler pink goop". Mentioning the brand means he gets a crate of the stuff as a thank-you, but if he'd called it by its name, "Skin Regenerating Serum," which he can certainly read, it's on the jar right under "patricia wexler, M.D." well then he would have been a fag.

There's even a sidebar in the etiquette column: "How to deal with gay people." WE'RE NOT GAY, DAMMIT!!!

UPDATE: I CANNOT get "Sweet Child of Mine" out of my head now. That album is fucking genius.