BEHIND the gate at Alapine, about five miles from the nearest town in the southern Appalachian mountains near Georgia, the women live in simple houses or double-wide trailers on roads they have named after goddesses, like Diana Drive. They meet for potluck dinners, movie and game nights and "community full moon circles" during which they sing, read poems and share thoughts on topics like "Mercury in retrograde — how is it affecting our communication?"I would sooner kill myself than live in a community like that (the first time someone asked me how Mercury in retrograde was affecting our communication, I'd snap "Are you fucking kidding me?"), but I guess it takes all kinds.
Saturday, January 31, 2009
P.S. You know the only thing "Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains" was missing? Some "Times Square"-esque lesbian overtones. That the screenplay made that impossible by having all the band mates be related was kind of lame. Aren't girl bands always better when one or two members give off the vibe that they could go either way? That's the only reason I ever watched a Spice Girls music video: to determine which Spices would be the most likely to hook up with each other. It's been a long time, but I think my conclusion was that Ginger and Scary were skanky and up for anything, that Sporty was so eager for approval that she'd do whatever they told her to do, that Baby was a boring heterosexual, and that Posh's lesbian experience was probably limited to making out with her own reflection in the mirror while lost in a starvation-induced haze. If any of you disagree with that assessment, feel free to let me know where I went wrong.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
The Katie Holmes thing is troubling because she's probably already being drugged by Tom Cruise or someone on his payroll, and if the pills mix and they're not supposed to she could break out in hives or grow a second head or something. (On the upside, having a second head might expand her dramatic range.) The key party possibility is especially disconcerting because, c'mon, they're my parents, and just thinking about that makes me want to throw up more than anyone has ever thrown up in the history of the world. I'm not sure where I'm going with this; I think the moral is to never watch "The Ice Storm" if you live anywhere that might experience severe winter weather.
* When driving conditions are difficult everyone becomes anxious, and when people are anxious they're more likely to be terse than chatty. Since I hate when people say things like "Good morning!" and "How are you?", I wish everyone was terse all the time.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Mind you, I watched "Big Love" last week instead of the season premiere of "The L Word," so I can't comment on the particulars of this "Oh my God, they killed Jenny! You bastards!" plot development yet. It just seems obvious that the viewers who have faithfully watched (and almost as faithfully complained about -- not that that ever stopped them from watching) this train wreck for the last five seasons aren't tuning in for the storytelling.
Grouse as they might at the prospect of Jenny's death spurring a season-long game of Clue, these viewers come from hardy stock, having suffered through missteps including but not limited to voyeuristic roommate guy; drag king Ivan; the Max debacle; the Betty invasion, which happened over and over again; Jenny turning into a self-harming stripper/Talmudic scholar when repressed memories of childhood sexual abuse came to the surface (she wasn't really a Talmudic scholar, but I still laugh when I think of her breaking out the Hebrew); Dana's death; Alice fucking a vampire; Tina's ill-fated return to man-cock; Kit getting pregnant at the age of 87; Shane having sex with every woman she meets (and not seeming to care when it's hinted that one of them might be an arsonist); and freaking Papi.
In other words, the people who watch this show -- and I know because I'm one of them -- have no respect for their own intelligence, don't care about decent writing or acting (if the fans cared about decent acting, they wouldn't have spent so much time complaining about Mia Kirshner and Marlee Matlin on assorted message boards over the years; and they wouldn't have been so invested in the Tina/Bette pairing), and only watch "The L Word" because lesbian characters are almost impossible to find anywhere else. Hell, the writers could probably kill off several more characters and while the viewers would complain, they'd likely keep tuning in as long as every now and then a hot actress appeared and (to borrow a phrase from an SNL sketch) hugged another woman with her legs in friendship.
The real crime in all of this (if the character is actually dead) might be that Jenny wasn't killed off years ago, which would have served the dual purpose of pleasing viewers and freeing Mia Kirshner to pursue more work with directors like Brian De Palma and Atom Egoyan and less with visionless goofballs like Ilene Chaiken.
(Yes, this was a paltry post, but I'm still too jittery to write anything else. Give me a few hours to calm down and sleep a little, and then I'll try to scrounge up something to complain about.)
Friday, January 23, 2009
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Let me tell you a story about Jane Addams. When I was in fifth grade, my history class learned about child labor legislation and settlement houses and female involvement in social and political activism and all of that. Jane Addams was a big part of the unit. At the time I was an oblivious kid who'd yet to pick up on the fact that my aunt and her female roommate were more than roommates, but after reading a few paragraphs about Addams my gaydar started going off like Fannie Flagg -- "Match Game" era Fannie Flagg, the queerest of them all -- had entered the room.
The people who think Addams wasn't gay, the ones who can somehow keep a straight face while trying to sell us that "romantic friendship" line, they'll say that a ping (or twelve) on the gaydar is meaningless. Sometimes they'd even be right. But aren't they also being kind of deliberately obtuse?
The fifth-grade teacher who taught me about Jane Addams was a mild-mannered man in his mid-thirties who had never been married to a woman, professed not to have a girlfriend, but wore a wedding band anyway. He shared a house with, and routinely traveled with, his long-term male roommate. What would the historians who are reluctant to concede that Addams was likely gay (after all, they've never seen Paris Hilton-style video footage of her having sex with Mary Rozet Smith) make of my teacher and his "roommate," a man who was still in the picture years later when a friend's sibling took the same class and had the same teacher. Would they try to act like the two men were just very close pals, or would they do a collective spit-take and shout "Bitch, please!" if asked to believe they weren't a couple? I'm not a historian myself, but you can mark me down in the "Bitch, please!" camp when it comes to both Addams and my teacher.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Randy Thomas, 39, is the executive vice president of Exodus and an ex-gay himself. "I became a Christian at 24, but I didn't come to Christ to not be gay," he said. "It was only after a few months, I realized I didn't have to be gay, so I decided to live according to my faith. That was 16 years ago."
In the ex-gay movement there is spectrum of success. On one end are those who purport a full conversion to heterosexuality. On the other end are those plagued by guilt, unable to cleanse themselves of their urges. Thomas stands somewhere in the middle. "I have not experienced a full orientation shift," said Thomas. "But I went from 100 percent exclusively homosexual, to where I would feel OK being a husband and having a wife."
Isn't that romantic? Imagine you're the lucky woman who reels in this catch, and he proposes to you by saying that he, uh, really likes you and thinks he'd be OK with being your husband. The tears of
anger and resentment happiness would never stop flowing!
And ladies, he's single. His relationship with an ex-lesbian girlfriend went bust last year because, in his words, "we weren't meant to be husband and wife." (According to my handy Ex-Gay to Gay-Gay dictionary, that means: "She didn't have a penis.") And, as he told Kennard, "She was particularly ex-gay." (Translation: "I vomited every time she tried to touch me.") If you guessed the pair never had sex, you're correct. But Thomas swears they had definite chemistry, which is easy enough to believe -- I'm sure they were the Edmund Lowe and Lilyan Tashman of the ex-gay set.
Monday, January 19, 2009
BTW, for anyone who finds this while searching the internet for information about a "There's Always Tomorrow" DVD release, the film is currently available as part of Sirk collections that can be purchased from stores in France or Germany. But before you go looking either of them up on Amazon.fr or Amazon.de, make sure the discs are compatible with your viewing equipment. And note that neither comes with attractive artwork, which is just a slap in the face when you consider the cost of each set in U.S. dollars.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Kicking off the debate on Tintin's orientation, actor Shaam confesses to be quite astounded on hearing this news. "Never in my dreams would I have thought Tintin would be gay. Just because his best friend is a male sailor, it does not mean that he shares any romantic feelings for Haddock. I simply cannot digest this theory," he says.The male fans arguing in defense of Tintin's alleged heterosexuality are the comic geek versions of Claymates. What will they say when Tintin announces that he's expecting an in vitro baby with Bianca Castafiore?
Friday, January 16, 2009
(and one irritable teenage lesbian)
On second thought, let's nix the cake idea altogether. Cake is overrated, in addition to being the name of a sucky band. The only thing it really has going for it, at least in my book, is its importance to the excellent lyric "I want to be the girl with the most cake." So let's let Courtney have her cake, and we can have cookies and toast my parents for not aborting me or putting me up for adoption. That was very generous of them, and it's something I'll take into consideration when the time comes for them to be put into nursing homes.
In honor of Ethel Merman's birthday -- she'd have turned 101 today -- here's a clip of her singing "There's No Business Like Show Business," from the film of the same name. When I was a kid I used to torture my dad by watching it every time it was on AMC, and in retrospect I probably owe him an apology for that. It's a horrible movie, and 55 years later it's still impossible to imagine why anyone ever thought it was a good idea to cast Mitzi Gaynor in anything, but I was fascinated by Ethel -- and by Marilyn Monroe's "Heat Wave" performance. Two early signs that I was a giant lesbian, but it would take a while longer for me to realize that.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
As it turned out, the fifth season of "The L Word" was so execrable that it wasn't worth watching, much less commenting on, and so I found other things to complain about instead -- everything from the religious right to Rivers Cuomo's awful mustache. Now, as I look back on a year of posts (something like 30% of them had to do with my thinking Thandie Newton is hot, so I'll try to mix things up a little in '09 and drool over a wider array of actresses), it occurs to me that as far as personal blogs go, this one hasn't been very personal at all. With that in mind -- and because there's been nothing going on in the news to talk about here, STDs aside, and I don't want this page gathering dust in the meantime -- I'm going to reveal ten things about myself that most of you don't know.
You might want to prepare yourself before reading these. They're the kind of explosive, emotionally devastating revelations normally found in a Tennessee Williams or Edward Albee play. You've been warned.
1.) Marie was my favorite Lubbock sister on the late, lamented "Just the Ten of Us," which seems an unlikely choice until you consider the fact that I've always been partial to nerdy characters. That's why Elizabeth was my favorite Wakefield twin (though I've never understood what she saw in Todd, who was a massive tool), and Mary Anne my favorite member of the Baby-Sitters Club. (Speaking of the BSC, was anyone else annoyed when Kristy dated Bart? That character was so dykey that her last name might as well have been McNichol. Pairing her with a guy made no sense. Same with Stacey having that boyfriend who was always on Fire Island. Why didn't Claudia ever pull her aside and tell her she was dating a queen?)
2.) Sometimes, just to keep myself amused, I like to pretend I'm a character from an old film noir whose every move is accompanied by preposterously hard-boiled voice-over narration. You know, something like: "I never saw her in the daytime. We seemed to live by night. What was left of the day went away like a pack of cigarettes you smoked. I didn't know where she lived. I never followed her. All I ever had to go on was a place and time to see her again. I don't know what we were waiting for. Maybe we thought the world would end." (That's from "Out of the Past," which also has the classic line: "Build my gallows high, baby." Everyone should say that at least once in his or her life. Next time you're at the grocery store and the bagger asks paper or plastic, just ignore the question and put on a Robert Mitchum voice and say "Build my gallows high, baby.")
3.) I hate the words "snark" and "dawg," and love the words "kerfuffle" and "obstreperous."
4.) For some reason, I don't know why, I'm fucked up about my pillowcases. I want to sleep on a freshly laundered pillowcase every night, and by now my pillowcases are so sick of being washed that they start sobbing like Meryl Streep in "Silkwood" (or Amy Poehler in "Baby Mama") every time I throw them in the washing machine.
5.) If I were a member of the Deadly Viper Assassination Squad, I would want to be Black Mamba. Not because she's the last one standing, but because she has the coolest name.
6.) The single biggest regret of my life is that I wasn't alive and working as a Hollywood screenwriter in the 1930s, because back then I would've maybe, just maybe, had a shot with Greta Garbo. It sounds crazy, I know, but if she was up for a little Mercedes de Acosta and Salka Viertel action, then who's to say there wouldn't have been hope for the rest of us as well?
7.) I'm alarmingly uncoordinated and frequently spill, drop, and walk into things; I also have enough difficulty walking in a straight line that my dad has been known to warn me, "You'd better hope you're never pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving..."
8.) It is my fervent belief that blue M&Ms are hideously ugly and should never have been introduced into the M&M family.
9.) The most listened to song on my iPod is Otis Redding's "Try a Little Tenderness," but the song I spend the most time trying not to break into in public is the Fifth Dimension's cover of "Wedding Bell Blues."
10.) I've had an irrational fear of being buried alive ever since it happened to Carly on "Days of Our Lives" in the early '90s. My mom would watch that and "Another World" every afternoon (Linda Dano's shoulder pads and dramatic rouge-streaked cheekbones still haunt me), and while Marlena's demonic possession story line never freaked me out, I was so shaken by Carly's plight that I left a note marked "Read This If I Die" in my top desk drawer instructing my parents to have me cremated. I was ten at the time, and my plans haven't changed in the intervening years; I still shudder at the thought of Carly being trapped in that coffin every time I hear the word "burial."
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Lesbians should pay particular attention to the no-fire edict; between the Celestia debacle and 40 years' worth of negative portrayals in film and television, enough people already think we're bonkers without yahoos like this tabloid-courting heiress broad -- whose name I won't mention because I like security guards not knowing who she is -- fanning the flames. So to speak.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Saturday, January 10, 2009
"The homosexuals and lesbians want equal rights. They don't deserve equality," passerby Tony Sottile said.Good job, Tony. I'm sure you'll be very proud when, many years from now, your grandchildren or great-grandchildren Google you and see this.
Friday, January 9, 2009
And what constitutes a homosexual act? If you're a guy in Senegal and you try to watch "Funny Girl," is that enough to land you in the joint? (Watching "Funny Lady" would naturally carry a lengthier sentence.) Or what if a gay guy ties his shoes. Is that a gay act? I was gay this morning when I made the bed and fed the cat. I was gay a few minutes ago when I signed for a UPS package. How many years in a Senegalese prison is that good for?
And another reminder: Stay away from Nigeria and Gambia while you're at it. From the New York Times:
Antigay sentiment has been on the rise across Africa in recent years. Nigeria's Parliament tried to pass a law last year that would restrict the rights of homosexuals to even meet to discuss their rights. Gambia's president threatened to behead any homosexuals found in his country. And even in Senegal, one of the most liberal and tolerant countries in Islamic Africa, tensions over homosexuality have been on the rise.Makes our homophobic Republican politicians seem Kathy Griffin league gay-friendly in comparison, doesn't it? At least they'll sit down and chat with known homosexuals without decapitating them or having them arrested.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
* During the course of my previously mentioned vacation, which is now drawing to a close, I saw "Muriel's Wedding," and I've been waiting for an opportunity to say "You're terrible, Muriel" ever since. So far nothing has presented itself, but I remain optimistic about what the coming week might have in store.
Saturday, January 3, 2009
Friday, January 2, 2009
and we all know how that turned out.
I kept waiting for this article to take an Onion-esque turn, but ... no. I mean, WTF? Is it really considered newsworthy when a "religious gay man" promotes celibacy in an article that was posted to his personal blog after it was rejected for publication elsewhere? I don't know what made my head hurt more, Ed Pacht's blog post or Kilian Melloy's regurgitation of it.
Here is a sampling of Pacht:
I have been strongly urged to forget my inhibitions and live the ‘gay’ lifestyle, and I have felt the rejection that arises when I admit what temptations it is that I experience, especially when I admit that, though I have never had improper dealing with a minor, my attraction is far stronger toward boys than toward men.That's major "oy vey" material right there, is it not?
And then with Melloy it's all "Pacht describes," "added Pacht," "Pacht writes," "Pacht wrote," "wrote Pacht," "declared the writer," "continued Pacht," blah, blah, blah. We get it! It's all Pacht, all the time. (There's also "Pacht went on to suggest," "for his own part, Pacht wrote," "Pacht went on to write," "Pacht stated" and "summarized the writer.") Except the guy's not freakin' Tolstoy, and he wrote nothing to merit all of that space.
There wasn't even an attempt by Melloy to analyze any of the things Pacht wrote, described, declared, continued, suggested, stated, etc. No pithy asides or anything. You can't let a guy tell gay Anglicans to stop sucking cock without at least attempting a pithy aside! I'd give it a go myself (the pithy aside thing, that is; the oral-sex-with-guys shebang is something I'll leave to my gay male brethren just as God intended), but my own background is more of the Reform Judaism variety, which leaves me ill-equipped to deal with this sort of thing. Our religious leaders, despite their lingering obsession with foreskin, tend not to be so hung up on what we do with our genitals.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
Or has the new year changed me already? My neighbors added a twist to their boisterous New Year's Eve revelry last night when a family across the street spent much of the evening encouraging their children to play brass instruments outdoors, for all of us to hear. The results, which it would be generous to say were something less than musical, frequently sounded like the ignoble, pleading moans of an elephant in the throes of death. But rather than take to the porch, megaphone in hand, and bellow something like, "Hey, kid, take that trombone and shove it up your ass," I chose instead to remain quiet.
This decision was partly influenced by the regrettable fact that I do not own a megaphone, and mostly by my belief that the kids weren't really at fault; their parents were the ones who, without any regard for the eardrums of the rest of us, allowed this weirdly avant-garde concert to go on (and on, like Celine Dion's heart or the Energizer Bunny) like that. I suppose I could have changed my message to, "Hey, kid, take that trombone and shove it up your parents' asses," but that didn't have quite the same ring to it and so I didn't see the point.