Thebod saidThis is emabarrasing, but I can't tell who's gay and who's' not. That is unless their obviously tenting in their pants over a guy, or are very obvious in their actions.
I consider myself very masculine and discrete, and find I never get hit on. Whatz up? I spend most days at the gym. I'm a personal trainer and work there, and sometimes work out at other gyms. So you'd think that there would be ample opportunity for someone to approach me. In addition, I'm no Brad Pit, but I'm no Pee Wee Herman either. Unfortunately, I'm so shy about this whole dealio I could never approach someone else. I wish they made gym shorts with back pockets; then I could stuff a handkerchief in it. Yeah I know; no one does that anymore.
Not sure what you want... to be approached at the gym so you can accept the offer, or do you just want the flattery of being asked? Even if you did have good gaydar, you also say you're shy and "could never approach someone else," plus I gather you're in a monogamous relationship, so what would you do with gaydar anyway? And frankly, if you're a personal trainer there, I'm not sure that's where you should be doing your cruising, even if it's just to keep in practice, bad for your career.
To put a more positive spin on this, perhaps this gaydar thing (and nobody knows what it really is, likely just an enhanced awareness) is like having hunger, driven by need. You only feel hunger and begin to look for food when your stomach is empty. When it's full you tend to overlook food.
If your gay life is emotionally full then perhaps your gaydar doesn't kick in. Not so oddly, then, I've found that oft times even single gays who say they have little gaydar have been raised in a fairly gay-friendly urban environment, where gays are publicly out and you could go to known gay establishments. There's no mystery involved regarding who's gay.
Having a partner I'm no longer "hungry" and hunting, and I can feel my own gaydar slipping a little, from lack of use. And I already know that 90% of the men around here are gay, in all the places I regularly go, so my gaydar isn't being called upon. Use it or lose it.
You mention the hanky thing, and gay men have for generations used various private signs to identify themselves to each other. If you really want to be recognized by other gays, try something like some discreet pride jewelry (though again, maybe not in the gyms), a ring or bracelet, perhaps.
If you're closeted you might wanna avoid the rainbow and triangles, since the straight public has finally learned what those mean. Lately I've been sporting the HRC equality symbol, the yellow equals sign on a blue background. Not too many straights know what that means, but many gays do, and it's more subtle.