A Gaydar with Slightly Homophobic Undertones

I requested the informant to recount some pieces of folklore, some being ones that they have told me before.


The informant recalled hearing in middle school that if someone’s ring finger was longer than their index finger, it meant that they were gay.


They admit that they feel it was ignorant of them, both in believing it, and using it to avoid a stranger on one occasion. As kids, it seems that people have not yet developed a healthy sense of skepticism, but have easily picked up antagonistic thoughts and ideas. As the informant talked about it, I thought the homophobia within the piece took on an odd form, how it was created to mark something that has a faceless identity. Unlike how race and gender still has a formal set of arbitrary and subjective characteristics, there is no “official” identifier for one’s sexuality besides stereotypes. To almost supplement this lack it seems, this speculation was formed.

This also reminds of how children are immediately born into a social fabric, one that they’ll have to learn how to navigate. If one is to speculate on this specific case, it seems that the informant was born into a society that has since changed to be a more understanding towards the LGBTQ community.