Is Victoria Davey Spelling, better known as Tori Spelling, a gay icon? Even the actress/best-selling author herself is somewhat humbled at that honor. In her newest book, “Uncharted Terri-TORI”, the 37-year old multi-tasking gal opens with the anecdote of her friend’s flight from New York to L.A: “The cute and obviously gay lead flight attendant made an announcement to the cabin. He said, ‘Welcome to Los Angeles, birthplace and residence of Tori Spelling.’” Tori’s reaction: “I thought it was hilarious, but I didn’t know exactly what to make of it… Of all the famous people, of all the actors, of all the tabloid darlings, of all the gay icons (if I can call myself that), why me?” In her third venture as authoress, our Tori tells some very funny stories about her unique life: being a brand name, dealing with motherhood and marriage, her fear of flying, her relationship with her mother, that nearly naked voodoo ritual filmed for her TV show… and much more. Some of the stories are quite revealing. (Sneaking husband Dean into the hospital for sex while being treated for swine flu? Tori, oh my!) Throughout the book, Ms. Spelling indeed pays ample homage to the gays in her life– from her best friend and “gay husband” Mehran, to her oft-mentioned and oft-photographed children‘s gay uncles (“Guncles“), Scout and Bill. A particularly cute anecdote comes with Tori meeting Sean Hayes, just before he came out, at her mother’s Christmas party: “I basically consider myself a gay man inside. I wanted to be loud and proud with him– that’s what I do best with my gays– except I couldn’t be gay with Sean Hayes because he wasn’t out. Whichever.” As someone who did watch “Beverly Hills, 90210” religiously back in the day (I have no shame! I have no shame!), I also vividly remember all the shit that Tori took. She was criticized for her acting, her looks, and for being on her father‘s show. Indeed, she was probably the favorite girl on “90210” for a lot of the gay guys just for that reason, given our tendency to root for (or at least relate to) the outsiders. At Ms. Spelling’s official book release party in June, I asked Tori, “Where does your affinity for gay community come from? What does being a gay icon mean to you?“ She enthusiastically responded, “Oh my God! It means EVERYTHING to me. First of all, all my friends are gay. They’re my family. I have the ‘Guncles’, I have Mehran…I have everyone in my life who’s surrounding my kids… they’re all gay and they‘re so amazing. They’ve been such a great support system. All of my gays that I encounter everywhere in the community, I love them just as much as they love me. I often wonder, ‘Why me? Why have they chosen ME?!’ I am so grateful. I think it’s because they like the fact that I reinvent myself. My whole life has been about reinvention, and kind of poking fun of myself, and I think they appreciate that. And, they like the fact that I grew up in a really big house with a lot of glamour…just like ‘Dynasty‘!”

It takes far less time to read “Uncharted Terri-TORI” than to watch the entire first season of “Beverly Hills, 90210`“ on DVD. It’s worth the price of the book alone just to read such precious quips like, “When I had co-hosted (“The View”) a year or two earlier, I felt like I’d been handpicked, that I was being groomed to be a talk show host. Now I watched the show for two days in a row and first saw Hiedi Montag, then Khloe Kardashian co-hosting. Apparently the bar for guest hosts wasn’t fantastically high.“ Meow! So, is Tori Spelling a gay icon? For this gay guy at least, yes!!!


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