Main | Friday, January 11, 2013

The Origin Of "Woof"

In a long Washington City Paper piece about the advent of bear culture, much of which will likely be familiar to many of you here, the author drops an interesting theory about the origin of "woof."
When I run into Tyler and Witzkoske, who are partners, I bring up their standard greeting among friends: the kiss, belly rub, and occasional “woof.” Some bears say it stems from the actress Madeline Kahn—perhaps not a gay icon, but close enough—in her role as Elizabeth in Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein. When the monster wordlessly propositions her, and after an initial shock, she notes the impressive bulge in his pants and exclaims, “Woof!” The same humor and insinuation underlie the term today, which is an apt fit for a bear gathering: an atypical but exciting sexual situation that doesn’t take itself too seriously.
I've never heard that explanation, but I kind of love it.

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