01/09/2012 12:48 pm ET Updated Feb 02, 2016

10 Glamorous Eccentrics Every Gay and Straight Person Needs to Know

Gay people are cultivated and nuanced, with a fabulous and indisputable grasp of aesthetics, style, and design. Whether you are gay or straight, a familiarity with the miraculous gay canon is the key to creativity, joie de vivre, and not being a giant bore. The gay canon is not simply full of gay things. The gay canon is a broad cultural smorgasbord that provides a quirky, thought-provoking aesthetic linchpin or reference point for every creative moment. It is a beyond-useful source of inspiration, especially for those overachieving, annoying little straight brats who think they know it all.

In my new book, Gay Men Don't Get Fat, I lay out the essential categories of the gay canon: film, literature, fashion, aesthetic movements, and, perhaps most importantly of all, strange people. The gays have a nose for creative, rule-breaking, taboo-busting eccentrics. If there is an Isabella Blow or a Daphne Guinness in the house, we will find her, pick her up by her Verdura earrings, and put her up where she belongs, which might be on a throne or on the kitchen counter. New names are added to this list of lovely lunatics every day. Boiling this down to 10 names was torture. Et voilà! The Lady Gagas and Nicki Minajes of yesteryear.

Gay Men Don't Get Fat is now available in bookstores everywhere.

10 Glamorous Eccentrics Every Gay And Straight Needs To Know