Date: Fri, 22 Dec 1995 09:14:03 -0500 From: Jesse T Sheidlower Subject: Re: WOTY from David Barnhart Ron Butters wrote: > On Thu, 21 Dec 1995, Beth Lee Simon wrote: > > > Is the WOTY one that's hit it big, or one that's new and hit it big. > > Because I know gaydar from, hmm, fourteen years ago. > > > Me too. AT least 14 years ago. But maybe it has been a cult term until > now? Though I thought Algeo had it in ANW several years ago (maybe I'm > misremembering). It iSn't in Bruce Rodgers' THE QUEENS' VERNACULAR (1972). I don't believe it's ever been in ANW. The earliest concrete example we have in the Random House Dictionary of American Slang files is 1994, and we've read a moderate amount of gay sources. We do have several attestations of earlier use, such as Beth's and Ron's above. However, I've also asked a number of people who have been active in the New York gay community for years who've said that they just learned it six months ago. I'd suggest, therefore, that while probably dating back to the 1970s, its wide dispersal--even within some gay communities--is very recent. Jesse Sheidlower Random House Reference