the down low

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Related to Down-low: on the DL

the down low

1. slang A state of secrecy or minimal public knowledge. Keep this on the down low, but Janet is planning to break up with Kevin next week. My parents know about the pregnancy, but I'd like it to stay on the down low otherwise.
2. slang A state of secrecy or minimal public knowledge pertaining to the activities of a man who has sex with other men but considers himself to be heterosexual. I never thought he was gay, but then I started to hear rumors that he's on the down low.
See also: down, low

the down low

and the DL
the information or explanation; the lowdown. (Streets.) Give me the haps. What the down low?
See also: down, low
References in periodicals archive ?
This supposed tell-all by the former MTV producer promises a juicy tour of the secret society of down-low black men (and women) in the film, music and TV industries.
Of 140 articles written about this movie in mainstream newspapers, none referred to the Jack and Ennis characters as bisexuals, let alone as men living on the down-low. Without exception, reviewers and culture pundits saw it as a movie about "two gay cowboys" in spite of the fact that both characters state, categorically, that they're not gay and appear quite capable of carrying on enthusiastic physical relationships with their wives.
"[The blog] helps other [gay minorities] relate and not be so afraid to come out and be open--to not hide on the down-low."
I read with interest the Sisterspeak article, "The Low-Down on the Down-Low" (Aug.
The recently disclosed James Keich Hubba reunion is currently proceeding, as is the purposefully deep down-low H-Cartel tour.
"In DC, everything is on the down-low," the New York Post quoted Michaele as saying.
With respect to the HIV advocates and leaders in the prevention community who contributed to the article, I think it is a gross oversimplification to state that the practice of engaging in unprotected sex (anal or otherwise) is due to a need to seroconvert and get it over with, due to being part of a "down-low" mentality, or due to discomfort with condoms.
The down-low Brother is yet another reason so many good and worthy Sisters can't find suitable mates.
Other films presented homoeroticism in a more favorable light, but it was still on the down-low. Mancini continues, "I like the Hellraiser movies a lot.
KELLY, on his ever-growing song cycle about the down-low, "Trapped in the Closet," as quoted on VH1.com, August 15
They are blanketing bars, clubs, and bathhouses with prevention information and starting support groups in an effort to curb rising HIV rates, which are disproportionately high among straight black women, in part due to the down-low culture.
Oprah's down-low shows, which feature Oprah with mouth agape (a pose you won't see on the cover of her magazine), go into all the seamy details of this new twist on the old double life.
Because being gay is considered such a taboo in so many black communities, many black men who have sex with men chose to live their lives in the closet or "on the down-low." Consequently, AIDS is still not a front-burner topic in most black households, churches, or bars, despite the toll it's taking in all these establishments.
Rough Amusements: The True Story of A'Lelia Walker, Patroness of the Harlem Renaissance's Down-Low Culture * Ben Neihart * Bloomsbury * $21.95