How Marriage Ruined the Gay Bar Scene. Or Not


There’s probably a few studies out there showing how cruising the Internet impacted socialization between strangers outside the home — namely, limiting it. Everyone’s all hopped up on Manhunt and Craigslist to worry about $10 cocktails and a hope to find someone to take home from the bar. In Massachusetts, though, gay nightlife knowitalls aren’t just blaming the Information Superhighway for revenue woes and venue closures. They’re also pointing the finger at all you gays who wanted your silly marriage rights!

“Once gay marriage became legal, people were more comfortable mixing (in straight environments),” Boston radio host Jim Clerkin tells the Herald.

We’re not aware of any scientific data that says this is true, so we’ll just have to rely on anecdotal evidence (our favorite, since it let’s us claim anything!). And based on that, it’s silly to think legalizing same-sex marriage had much of an impact at all on gay nightlife, which the Herald reports is suffering in Boston.

Blame the economy. Blame police raids. But don’t blame married folks. Why? Because those gays who tied the knot — we’ll call them “domestics” — probably weren’t out hitting the bars that much even before they were allowed to marry; they were still browsing Pottery Barn catalogs and meeting other couples for dinner dates and cab savs just like they are now. They just weren’t raising their wine glasses wearing wedding bands.

And it’s not like single gays were impacted much by marriage here, either. Just because gays can get hitched doesn’t mean unattached dude-loving-dudes and lady-loving-ladies suddenly think a straight bar is going to be HQ for finding a mate. It’s not. And despite your naysaying (especially from those of you in relationships!), we all go to the bars for the off-chance of meeting someone who finds us pretty. Even if it is just to flirt. So we’re not abandoning gay bars en masse for the chance to pull up a bar stool next to someone of the same-sex who’d never sleep with us.

Besides, after ten thousand of you got married in Massachussets in the rush after 2004’s legalization, you’re barely getting married at all anymore.

(Photo: NYT Magazine)