Golden Girls

What Do Gay Boys and Little Old Ladies Have in Common?

Betty White knows which side of her bread is buttered. The 89-year-old actress–who seems to be everywhere at once these days–told WNYC in New York (duh) that, “…the gay community seems to like old ladies,” when asked about her popularity with the queer set.

Many of us certainly loved Golden Girls, but maybe no one more than the GayPimp himself, podcaster and comedian Jonny McGovern, who is dedicating an entire album and set of music videos to the television show.

But why? Is it because we forged a stronger connection to the female role models in our lives growing up? Is it because they winked at us when the taboo subject of homosexuality arose at the dinner table, a private little shared conspiracy that only the two of us knew and appreciated?

Or is it because our grandmothers gave us quarters and candy found in the bottom of their purses? Maybe Nanna’s purse was a hell of a lot cooler than Pop-Pop’s stinky old (closed) wallet? Is it because we were really the only ones that appreciated the witty remarks of crazy old spinster Aunt Helen?

Or maybe it’s just because we think we’re going to be a hell of a lot like the old ladies we idolize when we’re old, rather than those fat old men with their pants cinched up over their bellies covered by mustard stained T-shirts. The ladies get away with much more interesting outfits–and flirting with younger men.

Other elder ladies we’ve loved…

  • Elizabeth Taylor
  • Olympia Dukakis
  • Debbie Reynolds
  • Angela Lansbury
  • Elaine Stritch
  • Rita Moreno
  • Carol Channing
  • Carol Burnett
  • Chita Rivera
  • Joan Collins
  • Dame Edna
  • Bette Davis
  • Julie Andrews
  • Judy Garland (and her daughter, too)
  • Audrey Hepburn
  • Lauren Bacall
  • Janet Leigh
  • Shirley MacLaine

And the mother of them all… Joan Crawford.

Now that Mother’s Day is behind us, what other old ladies do you love?

Scott Wallis is co-host of the weekly GayCities-sponsored Swish Edition comedy & interview talk show. His favorite mature woman is Clara Peller, the “Where’s The Beef?” lady.

Photo from Pink’s, Universal CityWalk