Swardspeak is the new Polari!

Jon Shadel writes about the secret gay language spoken by gay men in the Phillipines:

A coded lexicon mostly spoken by gay men, Swardspeak draws from English and Tagalog, as well as Spanish and, to a lesser extent, Japanese. It’s what might be referred to as an “anti-language,” the lingua franca of an “anti-society”—in this case, the Philippines’ gay subculture.
To Filipino speakers, Swardspeak sounds witty and twangy, and it immediately identifies the speaker as homosexual. “At first, I couldn’t tell the difference between gay lingo and ‘normal talk,'” Dasovich admits. “To me, everything seemed Filipino—just another foreign language.”

Swardspeak is both playful and mind-bogglingly complex. Many terms come from the names of celebrities, brands and a cornucopia of other colorful sources. “Walang Julanis Morisette,” for instance, translates to “there’s no rain,” a play on a lyric from Alanis Morissette’s single “Ironic”—”it’s like rain on your wedding day.” It is language as pun, as inside joke, as subversion—and it is as metaphorical as it is ephemeral.

Thanks for the prevarda.