‘Are You Top Or Bottom?’ And Other Two-Way Stereotypes People Play

‘Are You Top Or Bottom?’ And Other Two-Way Stereotypes People Play

lebronvcurryThe world sees in binary. Everything is in twos. Good and evil. Rich and poor. Strong and weak. Gay and straight. Black and white. Male and female. Even the animals in the ark came in twos.

Binary stereotypes in mainstream public perceptions of gender can often be felt in popular culture, through movies, music and the media as well as in sports.

For instance, it is largely assumed that preference for hip hop and rap music is indicative of tough guys while jazz and R&B are somewhat emasculating and therefore associated with the fairer sex. The fairer sex itself is a condescending term, but it denotes the fact that whenever binary logic is applied, the first option must necessarily be superior or better, while the second is by default inferior or wrong.

Machismo and generalizations of gender apply commonly in sports, as seen in last week’s NBA finals.

Commenting on the game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors, an article in the online newspaper, Quartz mentioned that it was one of the most watched NBA finals in memory. At the center of it were LeBron James and Stephen Curry.

LeBron, arguably the greatest player of his generation, was described as “dunking, driving hard to the basket and at times just bullying his way to the score”. If that aggressive imagery is not suggestive in a sexually dominant way, I don’t know what is. To finish it off, the writer described LeBron, two-time champion and four-time most valuable player, as being about “relentless power”.

Meanwhile Curry, the other MVP, has been the best player while playing for the best team in the league this year. The paper describes him as a “sweet-shooting point guard, all elegance and polish”. This possession here, one of the few times that he has come face-to-face with LeBron in the series, is just “exquisite balance and panache.” If I didn’t know any better, I would think the writer was pulling a double-entendre with all that talk about “face-to-face”, followed by “exquisite… panache”. Is that French for “kiss”?

It doesn’t help that Stephen Curry is light-skinned and somewhat soft-looking in a flowery, cuddly, feminesque, sugar-spice-and-all-things-nice kind of way, while LeBron looks like an ugly grizzly bear roaring on an overdose of testosterone. If you doubt that not just the writer but the public is obsessed with LeBron’s masculinity, check out the GIFs of his exposed peewee that have been floating around the internet all week. That squeamish knob is hardly what you’d expect of a bullish MVP. I’ll pass.

The Quartz ends its orgasmic outpouring of literary lava by stating that the encounter between these two great players, with such contrasting styles, has been a “riveting battle thus far”.

I agree. Even if the writer seems like a thirsty ho with a crush on both men, who says watching them play together has been “one of the more rewarding elements of these finals”. Yeah, I can see her brain now and it’s a sordid porn channel. She’s probably receiving the ball from LeBron and passing it to Curry in bed.

Written by Lanre Swagg

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  1. Queen Blue Fox
    June 20, 06:09 Reply

    “It doesn’t help that Stephen Curry is light-skinned and somewhat soft-looking in a flowery, cuddly, feminesque, sugar-spice-and-all-things-nice kind of way”

    I died and came back! tihihihi that description gave me several lives.

  2. trystham
    June 20, 06:39 Reply

    That last sentence “recieving from LeBron and passing to Curry” tho. Looool.

  3. JamesJemima
    June 20, 07:23 Reply

    The title in relation to the article left me kind of confused..

    Then I really can’t grasp what the writer is trying to talk about.

    Is it the apparent thirst of the commentator for the two guys or is he pissed that they are comparing two men and referring to one as relentless power and the other one as poise and elegance?

    Someone should please enlighten me

  4. ruby
    June 20, 07:44 Reply

    Apparently, the writer of the article has a huge crush on both men buh is trying not to come across as a ho buh who cares?????
    Whether LeBron, Curry or Thyme… All Join

  5. alpha papi
    June 20, 08:48 Reply

    I don’t think I understand dis article but am proudly TOP Sha…

    • pinkpanthertb
      June 20, 08:54 Reply

      In case we wouldn’t see it, why not just put it in caps. TOP. There. I’m a complete man.

      • Tiercel de Claron
        June 20, 09:11 Reply

        C’mon,pinkpanther.He’s proud to be whatever he is,same way you’re proud to be you when the pants drop.Let’s not let it develop into something else

        • pinkpanthertb
          June 20, 09:13 Reply

          Did I say he shouldn’t be proud? I was being sarcastic, darling. Not maligning him for his pride. There’s a difference. Please back off.

      • Max
        June 20, 19:10 Reply

        @Alpha, we gerrit, you’re An alpha male like gorillas in the animal kingdom.

  6. Mitch
    June 20, 09:42 Reply

    Honestly, I see no relation between the title of the article and the article itself. Conceding that the article was kinda hilarious at the end, this Article had neither root nor bearing

  7. pinkpanthertb
    June 20, 09:54 Reply

    Oh but I’m not in the ‘labels don’t matter’ camp, keredim. My comment has nothing to do with that argument.

  8. sinnex
    June 20, 11:46 Reply


    The article is nice, but I think it is not complete. The main message was not passed. The title even makes it worse and is misleading. What was the author thinking sef?

  9. Tristam Shandy
    June 20, 15:32 Reply

    Didn’t really get the articles point, googling Panache takes less than a minute and in what world is jazz emasculating?

  10. SimonAndal
    June 20, 19:40 Reply

    I swear there’s nothing I hate more than “are you top or bottom?” or “what role do you play?” I normally answer (grudgingly if the guy is cute (but points off for being dick-brained. Sorry)) that I am as the spirit directs, or I plain ignore the question.
    But the one that gets me the most is “so when where you introduced to the game?” Like this is a COD multilayer deathmatch or what? Mtchewwww!

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