James A. Landau JJJRLandau at AOL.COM
Sun Nov 10 16:20:23 UTC 2002

In a message dated 11/10/2002 6:22:42 AM Eastern Standard Time,
slang at BLUEYONDER.CO.UK writes:

> >I've still  never quite understood why a woman who performs this service
> > for a gay man is called his beard, but that's another issue.  [from
>  A 'false' beard, and thus a 'disguise', perhaps? The obvious answer, I
>  acknowledge, but possibly true.

I have seen this meaning of beard in a heterosexual and therefore probably
more plausible context.  According to a newspaper story a few years ago when
some Congressman got a lot of bad publicity for hiring his girlfriend, the
normal way for a prominent man to take his secret girlfriend to public events
is to have a second man, known as a "beard" presumably because of the
false-beard analogy.  The beard and the girlfriend pose as a couple with the
prominent man posing as the couple's guest.

      - Jim Landau

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