Thursday, September 29, 2005

"Boi", Oh Boy!

How and when did the term “boi” generate? Who thought this word up? Is there a secret society of homosexuals someplace who sit around and create new identities within the gay culture to ever further segregate the population? I don’t remember getting a memo that said anything like, “From here on out, we will be dropping the ‘y’ from ‘boy’ and be replacing it with an ‘i’ because it’s just more fabulous this way.”

I can only assume (since I am still looking for that memo) that the term “boi” refers to a boyish gay guy and that the word “boy” is now solely to be used as a possessive term, as in “Here comes Master Bulldog and his Boy.” So I guess, chronologically speaking, that it is possible for someone to be a boy, and then become a “boi”, and then grow into being a Boy. Can one be a “boi” and a Boy at the same time? Can one be a “boi” and a Master at the same time? Could a “boi” be his own “Boy”?

To exacerbate this problem, the term “boi” also, apparently, describes a biological female with a male presentation. So now there are also girl “bois” living among us too. Are there also female Masters? Or are these women, or should I say WOMYN, called something else? Sweet Agnes, people, this gets confusing! Even Thom Lynch, the director of the San Francisco Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center, says, "The language thing is tricky. I feel sorry for straight people."

People and labels – it’s a love/hate relationship. People hate being categorized as something they don’t identify with, so they end up creating a whole new class for themselves. For example, in the lesbian community some women of color prefer the word "stud" to "butch," meaning a masculine-identified lesbian. Which makes a woman who falls between a stud and a femme -- a more "feminine" lesbian -- a "stem." “Yo, I’m taking my stem camping this weekend.” In Lesbo speak, that means something (but to me it sounds more like a euphemism for wanking).

I guess it all just boils down to respect. People are just going to self-identify. With the universe of gender and sexual identities expanding, a gay youth culture emerging, acceptance of gays rising and label loyalty falling, the gay lexicon has exploded with scores of new words and blended phrases that delineate every conceivable stop on the identity spectrum -- at least for this week.

But to whomever is sending out the memos, I have recently moved and I need a “Change of Address” form.


  1. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    For all of you so infatuated by this somewhat droll subject matter, you can always plug in the following site in for additional reading:


  2. I will thank you very much not to call my choices of subject matter "droll".

  3. I think that that person is not the same Tony that usually comments.

  4. >>>>>>>>>>>>>People, People, People........

    Geez, don't bite my head off. Have we no sense of humor here?!?!?
    Merriam Webster Dictionary:
    Main Entry: 1droll
    Pronunciation: 'drOl
    Function: adjective
    Etymology: French drôle, from drôle scamp, from Middle French drolle, from Middle Dutch, imp
    : having a humorous, whimsical, or odd quality

    I was focusing on the humorous quality.

    Yes Siryn it's me, the shame!


  5. lol, i thought it was like a butch-lesbian play on boy- like, i'm boi because clearly i'm not really a boy. i have so much to learn about the world. :-)