A meme challenging masculinity that was first introduced to Twitter in 2009 has been resurrected and is taking off like a new catchphrase.
"Fellas, is it gay," is in reference to a series of parody tweets meant to challenge the fragility of masculinity.
Users ask if any seemingly normal activity is considered homoerotic or threatening to their manliness.
fellas is it gay if i really like this meme https://t.co/KIAdgFyW6X— Cooper (@Cooper) 1503549891.0
According to the Daily Dot, the queer query went viral after an August 10, 2017, tweet in which user ilooklikelilbil tweeted, "FELLAS: Is It Gay To Pray ? You're Getting On Your Knees For Another N***a ?"
The irreverent meme pokes fun at the insecurities men have, whether it's their proclivity for wearing boxers or briefs, or engaging in a daily regimen that might make them seem gay.
One of the extreme and absurd examples is whether it's considered "gay" or "straight" to shower.
fellas is it gay to shower? U basically puttin yr hands on a mans body 🤢😤🙅🏾♂️— Ryan 🏳️🌈 (@Ryan 🏳️🌈) 1533174107.0
Personal hygiene and grooming are typical subjects that irrationally make men uncomfortable to talk about.
Fellas tell me is it gay to brush your teeth? You're literally thrusting something around in your MOUTH— ned (@ned) 1503265429.0
Other examples circulated. No topic was immune from being potentially "gay."
is it gay to know? You be understanding (a subject). 😔— Fellas Bot (@Fellas Bot) 1538941862.0
Fellas: is it gay to jack? It's literally hitting (the ball) hard 😳🤔— Fellas Bot (@Fellas Bot) 1539539463.0
is it gay to omit? It's literally failing to perform.— Fellas Bot (@Fellas Bot) 1539219062.0
Do you prance to entrance? Then this tweet implies you must be gay.
is it gay to prance? You're pretty much just springing forward on the hind legs. ☕️☕️— Fellas Bot (@Fellas Bot) 1539823862.0
fellas... is it gay to take out the trash? i mean men are trash so you basically taking out another man— jk (@jk) 1503248994.0
Does this even have a case?
is it gay to litigate? You're literally going to law. ☕️— Fellas Bot (@Fellas Bot) 1539766262.0
This lacks appeal.
fellas, is it gay to peel? You be removing the skin or outer covering of. 🤔— Fellas Bot (@Fellas Bot) 1539737462.0
Religion and fatherhood are also referenced.
Guys... is it gay to pray? I mean you're literally communicating with God for any reason.— Fellas Bot (@Fellas Bot) 1539629462.0
Fellas is it gay to place your trust in Christ, a MAN?— Monte Spliffin (@Monte Spliffin) 1539623111.0
Twitter even roasted British journalist Piers Morgan, who mocked Daniel Craig as a father, saying, "Oh 007.. not you as well?!!! #emasculatedBond."
Twitter user @mtchysuch turned the tables on Morgan.
Fellas, is it gay to have a child with your wife https://t.co/ZXiTfyK547— Krispy Scream (@Krispy Scream) 1539638688.0
fellas, is it gay to be a father https://t.co/Iza4TNMp3f— alb (@alb) 1539687974.0
The intent behind the meme-ing of the meme was further explored.
Polo Cutty is a 27-year-old "meme legend," according to Mel magazine. He explained that the butt of the joke is no longer based on determining the "gayness" of anything, but the meme skewers insecure men who constantly have to assert their masculinity.
"I got into memes at the end of 2014. Before that, I was into photoshopping photos into jokes and making videos criticizing different aspects of graffiti culture, including masculinity."
"I feel like memes definitely make people feel more comfortable when discussing both toxic and fragile masculinity."
Cutty added that men began responding to the topic of masculinity after he gave the meme a visual format.
"I was already into those topics, but I realized that when I put them into a meme format, more guys were willing to be like 'Yeah, that's true' or 'Yeah, that's relatable.'"
"The fellas meme reinforces the idea that, these days, dudes are worrying less about seeming effeminate."
Fellas, is it gay to end an article with a question?