Cool is one of those elusive notions, and just because I can, I am bypassing the social commentary about cool as well as its historical roots to quote a William Gibson character who operates on the principle that secrets “are the very root of cool” and if we agree that secrets are the things that people don’t generally know or are hidden from view and can therefore be considered invisible — like most lesbians — then I have my answer to why all the cool girls are lesbians.
Not that I needed an answer, or had a question, since I take lesbian cool for granted. Which is a very uncool thing to do now that I think about it.
It wouldn’t matter if every single lesbian in the world came out: the majority would still look like every other woman and be indistinguishable from straight women, except for our cool factor, which is a thing that is sensed more than seen, felt more than known. Our cool, unlike the memetic hip-hop gangsta fashion uncool that anyone can buy, is acquired by a different route.
Our cool is shared only amongst the true lesbian tribes and is SO secret you need to be a credentialed, professional lesbian for a while before you get to grok what it really is all about. Sorry college-time only lesbians: you won’t qualify.
But moving gayly forward, acknowledging the female mystique, the power of the second sex, (by birth order only!) and the whole woman’s guide to the lack of hair on our backs, and to advocate for a clear view of the curve and direction of lesbian life, I hereby posit this: women are unknowable, ineffable, and oh, so sing-me-some-sappy-I’m-in-love-songable. When you add to the mix an interest in women, you get BOOM! Lesbian Cool.
It is very uncool to have to explain cool so I won’t. But I felt badly for the poor boy who asked the question, when the answer is simple: we just are, Blanche, we just are.