Case 008: Quear-ringsfiled October 9, 2019
Thanks to social media and those pesky “identity politics,” it seems there’s no shortage of scenes, subsects and milieus for the American queer to cling to. But no matter which queen he stans, the type of sex party she patronizes, or how they wear their fanny pack, the contemporary queer can always be identified by one thing: a single (preferably dangly) ear piercing. Once savaged in straight summer camp discourse as a sure marker of homosexuality, the single earring has become a contemporary badge of pride. To get a sense of today’s essential ear ornamentation, The InQueery surveyed members of the community waiting in line at a venue in Bushwick to see a Swedish pop diva perform. We culled our evidence and then narrowed it down to the three earrings every stylish queer must don.
The Feather – Sport this at your next moonbirth circle, or while swapping fluids among members of the 3SP Camp at Burning Man. “The dangling of the feather feels sort of performative in its movement,” one heavily tatted concert goer remarked. Sporting an avian shedding implies a sort of out-West, open-road Americana, a limited awareness of the Native American genocide, and a vague love of all birds. Are you a child of Gaia? What is your ancestry? Who cares?
The Cross – For the gay who saw Madonna mount herself on a crucifix during the 2006 Confessions tour and thought: I want to be that. “I don’t really, like, believe in God though,” many of the cross-sporting queers informed us. Dangling from the right ear in matte black or silver, the cross earring suggests a dungeon-based art practice, a working knowledge of George Michael, a warning of a childhood steeped in Catholicism—and an adulthood sorely devoid of therapy. Goes well with a late 90s, Trainspotting Caesar haircut.
The Hoop – How many raves have you attended this week? For those who bought their Charli XCX tickets pre-release, for those who take MDMA on a Sunday night, there’s no accessory more chic than the small hoop. Who has time to switch out their earpiece for every party when every day is a party? We say: Keep it clean, keep it polished, and enjoy grad school!
The Bottom Line: If the fruit dangles, you know it’s ripe!
Good to Know: If you have all three quear-rings, you’ve collected the Queer Deathly Hallows. Siempre Viva! They’ll think you’re 23 when they see you at Carly Rae’s underwater residency in post-Vegas in the year 2087.
Extra Credit: A dangling novelty piece custom ordered from Etsy; A neon plexi rain cloud and lightning bolt; A teardrop jewel that looks like it was stolen from a witch’s diadem; A muppet-furry die worthy of a trucker’s dashboard.
Rating: Grimes x Claire’s collaboration