Many of us are familiar with common gay slang like “kiki” or “trade,” but have you ever heard of a “Lucky Pierre” a “Ring Snatcher?” If you haven’t, you might be one — and you don’t even know.
Compiled from dictionaries and glossaries featuring centuries of queer slang from around the globe, here are 50 uncommon or out-of-use phrases that you should commit to memory. “Over the bridge to Pimpleton” we go.
1. Angel food (n.) – homosexual male pilot currently serving in the Air Force.
2. Basket shopping (v.) – when cruising or checking someone out, British term refers to examining the object of your affection’s private areas through their clothing.
3. Beat (adj.) – extremely wonderful or great, “fabulous.” Example: “Did you see her at the club tonight? That look was beat.”
4. Bulldagger (n.) – a masculine woman, closely related to “butch lesbian.” Also see: “Diesel lesbian,” term referring to queer women who look like truck drivers.
5. Chapstick lesbian (n.) – queer identified woman who is sporty and athletic. The word denotes that she’s the not the type to wear makeup (ala a “lipstick lesbian”) and goes for a more natural look.
6. Chicken (n.) – a young homosexual male seeking older men; see also: Chicken hawk, referring to an older gay male looking for younger partners.
7. Cottaging (v.) – British slang for hooking up in public restrooms.
8. Donald Duck (n.) – a homosexual male who is dishonorably discharged from the Navy for their sexuality; see also: “Dishonorable Discharge,” or masturbating solo after trying to pick someone up and failing.
9. Doris Day (n.) – 90s South African slang for Gay Pride. Example: “The gays will march on Doris Day.”
10. Eyeball queen (n.) – person who derives pleasure from watching others engage in intercourse.
11. Fanny bellhop (n.) – gay male employed by the hospitality industry, such as a concierge or a bellhop at a hotel.
12. Fish and chips (n.) – pejorative 90s British slang for the spouse and children of a married “heterosexual” lover.
13. Full house (n.) – term used to denote having more than one Sexually Transmitted Infection at once.
14. Girl scout (n.) – military man on leave, currently seeking sex.
15. Grimm’s fairy (n.) – often used to describe an aging gay male, similar to “auntie”
16. Hetty (n.) – shortened version of the word “heterosexual,” similar to “hetero” or “het.”
17. Horatian (n.) – from the late 19th century, term used at Oxford amongst Lord Byron and his compatriots to refer to a bisexual person; see also: “Gillette blade,” referring to a bisexual female.
18. Hoyden (n.) – slang from Britain in the 16th century to refer to an untameable, wild woman or a tomboy.
19. Ice cream (n.) – someone so sweet that you have the desire to lick them.
20. In sisters (n.) – two effeminate gay men who have an intimate but non-sexual relationship, usually best friends.
22. Iron closet (n.) – individual in deep denial about their own sexuality, one who might never come out.
24. Lacy (adj.) – used to refer to an very effeminate homosexual male.
25. Lounge lizard (n.) – someone who frequents bars, trying to pick up other peoples’ mates.
26. Lucky Pierre (n.) – the middleman in an Eiffel Tower.
27. Miss Congeniality (n.) – extremely negative term referring to an unlikable or “bitchy” homosexual male.
28. Mother Superior (n.) – older and wiser gay male who has been around the block a few times; similar to “auntie,” but more favorable.
29. Nine-dollar bill (n.) – extremely outward homosexual, one three-times more flaming than someone who is “queerer than a three-dollar bill.”
30. On the make (adj.) – single person eligible for dating or casual sex. See also: “In circulation.”
31. Orphan (n.) – someone who has recently been broken up with.
32. Over the bridge to Pimpleton (n.) – cumbersome term for homosexual sex.
33. Passion fruit (n.) – old Hollywood term referring to an extremely straight-acting and traditionally masculine male.
34. Ring snatcher (n.) – during sex, the person who performs the bottom role. Also see: “Pratt.”
35. Rumpy-Rumpy (n.) – homosexual intercourse; see also: “Bumper to Bumper,” referring to lesbian vaginal sex.
36. Sappho Daddy-o (n.) – gay male who enjoys the company of lesbians, similar to “Fruit Fly” for straight women.
37. Saturday Night Lesbian (n.) – term for lesbians who present themselves as heterosexual on their normal weekdays and may be in the closet to friends and co-workers.
38. Slacks (n.) – no-longer-in-use term to refer to a lesbian; see also: “Muffer” or “Kissing Fish.”
39. Smurf (n.) – another term for twink, usually more pejorative, as it implies a “bitchy” demeanor.
40. Tinkerbelle (n.) – queer man who enjoys being urinated upon.
41. Ursula (n.) – queer woman who hangs out with “bears;” also called a “Goldilocks.”
42. Vampire (n.) – gay men who go out looking for hookups late at night.
43. Vegetarian (n.) – homosexual male who will not give oral.
44. Warm bruder (n.) – German phrase used to identify a gay male; “warm” is German slang for “homosexual.”
Note: If you live in Germany, you’ve definitely heard this one. English and American German-speakers have a bad habit of saying “Ich bin warm” on hot days, not knowing what they are actually saying.
45. Wendy (n.) – a Caucasian person.
46. Wolf (n.) – gay male who is neither a twink nor a bear, but falls somewhere in between the two poles; similar to a cub.
47. Wrinkle room (n.) – pejorative term for a bar whose clientele primarily consists of older gays.
48. Yard boy (n.) – gay male who enjoys having sex in public, particularly in outdoor venues.
49. Yestergay (n.) – former homosexual who now identifies as straight, also referred to as “ex-gays.”
50. Zanie (n.) – archaic 19th century phrase referring to a male homosexual
51. Zipper club (n.) – a sex party or orgy that takes place in a public area, like a bathhouse or a bar.
Note: Autostraddle has a great list of lady-centric queer phrases, some of which were included here. Check out the rest on their site. Madison Moore also has a list explaining all the best gay black slang.