Man, times are changing. And I do mean man. It appears that the harder sex is kicking up their dusty heels and dropping their cargo pants to man up for the camera the way only a pin-up girl ever has. (Thanks Buzzfeed!)
"Men-ups" may sound like air fresheners for your car or soft drink for the testosterone challenged, but they're not. Men-ups are pin-ups featuring manly men in gender-defying poses, part of the vision of University of South Florida student Rion Sabean. He's been playing with gender and modern society's associations, slowly building his men-up empire to take over the world. [Insert diabolical laugh here.]
Can you hear the screams of glee from gay boys and women all over the world? No, neither can I, but still, you won't ever need "Sassy" and "Teen Beat" - if you can still find those glorious girly mags from back in the day, may they rest in peace. But today you can own a calendar of men posing in ways that neither of the two Cory's or Kirk ever did. (Don't get the references? Try a quick Google search.)
EDITOR'S NOTE: Ah, what we'd give to see one of our 90s heartthrob sweethearts (Luke Perry anyone?) pose in Carhart hot pants holding an axe.
It's hot to look at manly men lift, tuck and work it, really it is. There's something sexy about an effeminate man performing manly tasks (definitions of both can be blurry, I know).
He's got to have the testosterone jolt to keep me intrigued, but a guy who can get it on while still appreciate his dual nature is a hot-looking man indeed.
Here are five men-ups I'd like to tape to my locker:
1. David Beckham.
Since exploring gender and playing with balls are two of my favorite things, I'd choose Beckham to explore them both. We already know he likes to play soccer, so I'd like to see Beckham standing with his booty bent back and holding two soccer balls in front of his nipples just like black-and-white breasts. He could be wearing cleats - or not - and maybe a pair of black and white striped booty shorts worthy of the kinkiest referee.
2. Robert Pattinson.
Vampires are sexy, no doubt, but a photo of one in a classic pin-up pose would sell like pumpkins around Halloween. So how about a vampire clad only in an apron. Standing over a white stove. He's cooking something in a big black pot with a red cloud of steam curling around his chiseled jawline. There could even be a little blood dripping down the side of his mouth, or down the side of the stove, as he coyly covers his lips with his hand as if we can't already guess what he's about to have for dinner.
3. Prince Harry.
A prince in a princess dress, with a fairy wand may not be traditional pin up fodder, but these are men-ups so traditional has already been thrown to the wind. If the princess idea doesn't work, Harry could always don a sword Prince Charming-style, strap it around his otherwise naked body (loin cloth is acceptable) and strike a sexy pose on horseback.
4. Anderson Cooper.
OK, fine, he's a serious journalist with cred and all that, but even serious reporters need to have fun. I see this men-up happening on a beach, with Cooper wearing a Speedo and large sun hat, his sunglasses sitting just on the tip of his nose. He can be reading the latest political biography with his feet white and the rest of him is slightly sunburnt. Or lose the glasses, stand him up, and find a cute little dog to nip at his bathing suit à la Coppertone. We get to glimpse a tiny sliver of ass crack and tan line while giggling at the adorable puppy. Can you imagine Cooper donning a precious "Oopsie!" face?
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5. James Franco.
The man has a little bit of a lot going on, so why not add professional men-up to his eclectic resume? He's got a sense of humor and no trouble getting in touch with any of his gender sides, so he could do anything - and probably would. It might be fitting to see Franco posing next to one of his own men-up photographs in a magazine that has fallen open on the floor. I'd like him to lie on his back, feet in the air, toes pointed, lips pursed. Yeah, that's it.