1. jason says

    Who does Normand Paquin think he is? And how patently obnoxious of him to reportedly suggest that gays will be deterred from going to Maine. I’m sorry, Normand, but we gays don’t go to bars to see shirtless men with sweat pouring down their bodies into people’s drinks or all over the bar.

    Perhaps the gay bar owners’ anger is more motivated by the fact that a competitive advantage has been taken away from them by this ban on shirtless bartenders. Memo to bar owners: just because you’re a gay bar, it doesn’t mean anything goes nor does it give you special privileges.

    I don’t see female bar owners with their tits hanging out in non-gay bars in Maine.

  2. Disgusted American says

    won’t go to Maine anyways..not since last yrs election..NO Thank u- I know where Im not wanted….they don’t want Equality- then they don’t want my tourism money. We’re heading to Vermont Aug 2nd, getting married Aug 4th…and spending outr $2000 vakay budget in Vermont. Maine can go pound sand.

  3. MikeMick says

    @ ME and JASON
    What parallel universe do you two Puritans live in? You’ve never heard of topless straight bars? Or wet t-shirt contests? Some of us go to clubs to have fun and cut loose and like to see a little skin. If that’s a special privilege, then I guess Hooters is shit out of luck, right Jason?

  4. me says

    I’m not puritanical Mikey, FAR FROM IT…but what’s the big fucking deal about throwing on a wifebeater or something? Seriously…choose your battles….this battle is petty.

    Plus Mr. Paquin looks like he’s been up for 3 days straight and tweaking….blink those eyes, get some sleep.

  5. Tom A. says

    I don’t think a topless straight bar with female bartenders outside on a patio seen by everyone walking by would be welcome anywhere! If the bartenders were women in bikinis, I’m sure the town would be equally upset. It’s a very gay friendly town, with a large gay population during the summer.

  6. says

    I personally don’t have a problem with being served a cocktail by a shirtless male. I might feel different about someone preparing a meal for me though. I actually do have a problem with go-go boys walking over my drink. I was at a bar once and he stepped over my drink and one of his hairs escaped his jock and made it’s way into my gin and tonic. A $10.00 drink ruined.

  7. says

    Wrote a short post on this last week and was surprised at the reaction; seemed like a pretty small thing to get worked up about. But, it would seem that we’re all a bit sensitive about perceived discrimination.

    Maine gays suffered a set back last year and I think the wound is still raw. It apparently doesn’t take much to add salt to it.

  8. Bobo says

    @ Matt….IMO a drink is never ruined by an odd stray pubic hair! Alcohol is far to precious…besides! I’m sure the gin would have killed whatever may have or may not have been creaping up and down the go-go pubes.
    Bottoms up, darling! 😉

  9. says

    Shirts vs. no shirts is not the whole issue here, Puritans. The issue is busy-body Harriets (and their ilk) meddling in the lives of others because they have nothing better to do with their small-town minds. Such people are irrationally terrified of gay male skin and that Ogunquit will magically turn into P-town. The same meddling minds claimed that marriage equality in VT would lead to naked men parading down our town streets. (No Joke.) It’s a BEACH town. Children are not going to be freaked out by a few “topless” men.

    And, congrats, Disgusted American! VTers welcome you. :-)

  10. NewEng says

    This is such a stupid story to keep alive, put a damn shirt on and go on with life. I, for one, do not want to be served by a shirtless bartender for amy reason.. the gay world wants respect but yet allows this to be a talking point…wake up.. What’s next? a 400lb extremely hairy bear applies for the job and gets turned down.. lawsuits, discrimination talk and another whole can of worms to talk about..

  11. DavyG says

    This is not homophobia! How ridiculous! It’s about health and safety and about public standards and all that. Ogunquit should be allowed decide what’s best for Ogunquit, and that town has decided that topless bartenders just doesn’t gel with the place. It’s completely fair enough. Calling that homophobia is like calling anti-cruising ordinances homophobic. They absolutely are not – public sex is illegal … that means it’s illegal for gay men also. Get over it.

  12. MikeMick says

    Health and safety my ass. Ernie nailed it; this is about getting pushed around when we’re not doing anything wrong. Which is why I was at MaineStreet with my boyfriend and two buddies with our shirts off this past Saturday. Not that I think the world needs to see more of my decaying middle-aged body, but to say fuck you to the Harriet Yaffes of the world. And to the “put your shirt on” gayboys on the blog, I’m sure there are plenty of places where the staff stays safely clad. Find one.

  13. db says

    The idea that somehow a bartender with a shirt on is more hygenic than one without is stupid. It’s all a sex-panic and in reality has nothing to do with health.

  14. terry says

    It does make me wonder why their bar is being called out on it. Come on guys, show me a gay guy that doesn’t want to see a hot shirtless guy and I’ll show you a closet hetero!

  15. jamal49 says

    Amazed at some of the comments here. Apparently, some of the Prudish Poofs here have never been to a bar where the bartenders are shirtless. That, or their really Church Ladies in disguise. Must be all this marriage-equality stuff.

    Sorry, Aunties, but I like a shirtless man with a nice torso serving me a drink. Hey, it’s part of the culture! I suppose a case could be made that women aren’t allowed to go, um, shirtless. But, I have been to a few bars where the bartendress is wearing a halter-top and it was, um, pretty hot!

    I guess what goes in New York, LA, Chi, or SF doesn’t go in Maine. Too bad, all those hot, bear lumberjacks have to cover up their furryness.

  16. ANDY IN INDY says

    I think it’s sad that we define our culture by taking our shirts off. I think it’s demeaning to all of us for people to literally fight to be shirtless while serving drinks. Furthermore, i think it’s awful that people can only have a good time at a bar if they can objectify the wait staff, i believe that kind of mentality to be creepy no matter if its a gay or a straight bar. In the end, this kind of thing is totally petty and inconsequential to gaining our equality and acceptance by the society around us.

  17. TonyJazz says

    Bartenders here in local bars are shirtless all the time with no fuss and no damage. Why are ‘me’ and ‘jason’ so foolishly puritanical? What’s your problem with this? You can always go elsewhere if you can’t stand the heat…..

  18. TANK says

    the angry trolls who take issue with topless bartenders are relying on a justification about rights that is unfounded and false. They aren’t gonna like you any less if you act the way they want you to: invisible and asexual.

    I personally don’t care for strippers, go go dancers, etc, but I don’t care if a bartender goes shirtless to increase tips…nor do I care if there are strippers and go go dancers…so long as they leave me alone, other people enjoy it and they’re making money…so get over yourselves.

  19. hank says

    didn’t watch the clip, but..

    It’s dismaying to me that so many of us on here seem to feel we need to gain “acceptance” by hiding or erasing any hint of our actual sexuality . Cause, newsflash, that’s the part they don’t accept! And umm, that’s the part that defines us as gay. And by hiding it we never confront the root of the prejudice, within or without, but choose instead to live in culturally imposed shame. And thus can never in fact gain real acceptance of who we actually are.
    I’m not interested in a “gay” movement that leaves out sexuality – it’s sad and mind-boggling to me that that even has to be said.
    And by the way, shirtless male bartenders at a bar in a beach town is soooo tame and even normative in the wider culture, (though maybe not in Maine)….I am really surprised that some presumably gay men on here seem to find it risque or embarrassing. I hope that you will come to love and accept yourselves more fully.

  20. says

    “In the end, this kind of thing is totally petty and inconsequential to gaining our equality and acceptance by the society around us.”

    I hate to break it to you, Andy in Indy, but the Harriets of Maine voted against our equality even when everyone kept their shirts on. If you and Harriet don’t like bars with shirtless men, don’t go to them! Simple solution. Otherwise, there are many presumptions within your comment. It wasn’t gay people who made this an issue, it was the petty prude squad. If you truly believe keeping your shirt on will make bigoted, meddling straight people love and accept you, you’re bound to be profoundly disappointed. They won’t like you any better in a turtleneck.

    The larger point of this story is not the right to bare chests, much as I enjoy a nice bare chest, preferably fur-covered, but I digress . . . The point is whether we let the narrow-minded, fun-hating Harriets of the world control what we can and cannot do in our own businesses. No one is harmed by shirtless bartenders in a BEACH town! (Trust me, there are worse sights in Ogunquit than fit bare chests–I went there every summer as a kid.) Anyone who is claiming to be harmed by this is lying, and then going to the trouble to turn those lies into public policy. We are harmed any time we send the message to controlling busybodies that we’ll do what they want because their oh-so-delicate sensibilities are offended, or simply because they said so.

    To Mikemick: Cheers, with shirts off!

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