Our Google overlords bless us with a fickle blogger interface that frequently leaves me cursing. Typically, I think, the frustration is almost entirely on my side of the computer screen. Occasionally, however, it seems to impact neverland readers. One reader has repeatedly pointed out that the automatic program for verifying that people who attempt to comment are, indeed, human beings, can sometimes present such blurry and obscure text to try to decipher that it’s nearly impossible. Sorry for that. I wish I had some control over those things. I also recently discovered that someone attempted twice to post a comment on a recent session of gushing of mine over reigning (for one more day) homoerotic wrestler of the month, Austin Wolf.
|Austin Wolf not masculine?|
I approved the comment, after some pause, however I don’t see it anywhere on the blog itself. It’s in my “approved comments” list, but doesn’t show up in any post I can find. The pause came because I’ve been rejecting comments lately that seem to me to be bitchy criticisms of wrestlers’ bodies or personalities. Too fat. Too skinny. Not butch enough. I know that a lot of the homoerotic wrestlers I write about also read this blog, and I don’t want them reading that crap. But I went ahead and approved this comment that referred to Austin as “sexy enough, if only he weren’t so femme in person…. He is not nearly as masculine as the image he is trying to portray,” the commenter reported. There’s just so much there to think about. Setting aside my first question, “when have you seen him in person?” and my second question, “isn’t every expression of masculinity (or femininity) an image, a mere portrayal, or as Judith Butler has called it, a “performance?” Whatever. So Austin isn’t as masculine in person as he seems to appear on camera. I guess my real question is, so what?
|Rusty Stevens: masculine enough for you?|
Now I’m not trying to take this commenter to task. At all, really. I approved the post because it provoked me to think deeper about masculinity in homoerotic wrestling. I mean, sure, hypermasculinity is a pretty well-worn trope on our scene, so I would be entirely unsurprised to discover that any number of the meanest, baddest, most dominatingly butch heels in homoerotic wrestling history are, in their personal lives, light in the loafers and sassy as blown glass. I don’t care what they may get up to on their own time, I might say. Just tell me that powerful story of domination and submission, power and suffering, agony and arousal that I love so much, and what do I care how far from the mark that wrestling persona is to how they act when their sipping apple martinis at the piano bar?
|Xavier: Does body hair make the man? Big muscles? Facial hair?|
But even that isn’t really where I settled with this comment about the purported incongruity between Austin’s presentation of masculinity on and off camera. No, I found myself challenged by the idea of masculinity itself. We’re clearly not in a post-gender age, of course, but as for me (and I’ll speak solely for myself here), I’m not sure I’ve got the clearest hold on what comprises the polar opposites of masculinity and femininity as far as homoerotic wrestling goes. I know of big, burly muscle bear-looking bruisers who snarl and spit and I think, hot damn, that’s one hot bit of masculine hunkiness! But if the same burly bear wears a pink cardi and giggles like a girl when Glee comes on, I’m still fully prepared to objectify him as a no-holds-barred object of my lust.
|Lon Dumont: Smooth as a baby’s bottom and over-the-top masculine in the ring.|
And there are relatively petite, smooth, boyishly beautiful wrestlers who wink and grin, and when slam an opponent into the turnbuckle or bash him across his knee in an over the knee backbreaker, I think, hot damn, that’s one hot bit of masculine hunkiness! Deep bass Boston voices. High pitched Southern accents. Pretty in pink. Dangerous in black. Go-go-boy. Construction worker. Limp wrist. Football fan. Facial hair. Man-scaped. Do they have a cock and tell me a hot, hot wrestling story? I’m in.
|Damien Rush was quoted recently as saying, “Let me smother you with all my masculine hair!”|
So if Austin Wolf cracks an opponent’s spine over his knee, claws his crotch mercilessly, then schoolboy pins the punk with his big, gorgeous cock slapping the loser’s cheeks back and forth, and then gets up, showers off with 5 different skin care products and quotes Bette Davis movies over cosmos with all the rest of the girls… well, fuck. It just occurred to me that I think that’s even HOTTER!
|Tell me again how I’m not masculine enough for you, bitch!|
Homoerotic wrestling likely reifies stereotypes of masculinity (and, by default, femininity) in many, many ways. But I think, and I hope, that it blurs some of the old standby stereotypes as well. I like the idea that the same mass of 6’4″ sculpted muscle can threaten to rip an opponent’s head off in a camel clutch and the next day sing along with show tunes in the car as he goes antiquing with his gurl-friends. I harbor a deep seated and not at all sublimated sexual fantasy of the rise of the muscle sculpted sissies who may be as pretty as a prima donna, but will fuck you up in a heartbeat in the ring. Maybe I’m too old. Or too young. Or just don’t have the good taste to want to cling to the sharp, clean lines of gender stereotypes any longer. But even if Austin Wolf were a flaming queen, he’d drain me dry time and time again as long as he racks another wasted loser across those mile wide shoulders of his. Hell, I’d pay a premium, in fact!
|Ask Hoop right about now if Austin is masculine enough for him.|