Friday, April 18, 2014

Gay Easter Parade; Obama Picks Gay Bishop; White House Easter Egg Roll

Gay Easter Parade



This is one of the reasons why when Tony and I "discuss" moving to a warmer climate I'm usually all for the west coast or New Orleans. He's usually for Florida, and that's never going to happen. I like being near a large city with a little culture. I'm very close to New York here. On the west coast I would have LA or San Francisco, depending. New Orleans is filled with culture and I'd love it.

In any event, this is about the Gay Easter Parade in New Orleans.

The final fundraiser for this year's 15th Gay Easter Parade is up next. The parade minus expenses benefits the reason for the Easter Season, Food For Friends program of the NO/AIDS Task Force. Sponsored by Ambush Mag, the parade has raised over $171,101 for charity the past 12 years.

You can read more here. There's a lot to go over.

 Obama Picks Gay Bishop

This year President Obama chose a gay Episcopal bishop to close the Easter Prayer Breakfast at the White House. Openly gay Bishop Gene Robinson was just as surprised as everyone else when he found out.

The bishop, 66, retired from his New Hampshire diocese in 2013. He now spends time helping out the Washington Center for American Progress on gay rights issues, Newsmax reported.

Even though he’s gay, Mr. Robinson once thought marriage should be defined as between a man and a woman, Newsmax said. But he later changed his mind and began an open gay relationship with Peace Corps worker, Mark Andrew. The two made it legal in a civil union ceremony in 2008, Newsmax reported.

You can read more here.

White House Easter Egg Roll

In keeping with all things Easter related, this next article talks about a gay Florida couple with a child who were invited to this year's Easter Egg Roll at the White House. They are also plaintiffs in a lawsuit seeking to overturn Florida's ban on gay marriage. 

“Melanie and I have worked so hard to build and protect our family, but nothing can come close to matching the protections that marriage provides," Vanessa Alenier said in a statement distributed by Equality Florida. "Our family is in need of those protections just like other families. We want our son to understand that his family is secure and just as respected as any other family part of our community here in Florida.”

More here.

Photo of Gay Easter Parade is here.



FREE Gay Excerpt; Bestseller Fakes; "Dogging;" Priest Tweets Porn; Faggot T-Shirts in Soccer

Best Seller Fakes

I think by now no one should be surprised by this. Certain authors have been gaming bestseller lists from Amazon to the New York Times, getting away with it, and there's nothing anyone can do to stop them. This article I'm linking to now talks about a Pastor who allegedly bought his way to several bestseller lists by using a marketing firm that specializes in this type of unethical behavior. I'm not sure it's criminal, but I would like to see the FTC get involved just once. I would imagine it is a form of consumer fraud, but don't quote me on that.

That’s according to new reports outlining how Mark Driscoll, an evangelical pastor, paid $210,000 to ResultSource Inc., a professional firm in the business of making bestsellers. The result? Driscoll’s book, “Real Marriage: The Truth About Sex, Friendship, and Life Together,” which he wrote with his wife Grace, skyrocketed onto the New York Times bestseller list before dropping abruptly off.

You can read more here.

If you're feeling industrious today, here's another link to Forbes on authors buying their way to bestseller lists.

This web site gets slammed a lot because they don't reveal anything about themselves and they make some very strong, serious allegations, but they also have a few interesting posts on the topic. As far as I know, none of the authors they've named with these strong allegations have become the slightest bit litigious. But don't quote me on that either.

And if you just do a simple search for "authors buying their way to bestseller lists" you'll find so many articles you won't know where to start.


"Dogging"

 There's no need for me to go in-depth with this link to Urban Dictionary. The term dogging came up the other night at a dinner party and I was surprised so many didn't know what it was.

Basically, it's having sex in a car, in a public place, with people watching or joining in.

ooooo, i went dogging lst night at the local car park. it was jolly good fun!

You can read more here. Side note: when I quote anyone I don't edit mistakes, I quote verbatim.

Priest Tweets Porn

And not just any old porn, it was allegedly gay porn.

Reverend Richard Coles Twitter followers were sent to a porn website instead of a picture of Jesus, in an unfortunate Twitter mistake this morning (18 April).

Gay British priest Richard Coles had an embarrassing Twitter mishap this morning when he was tweeting a series of Easter related images for Good Friday

Now there's an Easter message you don't see all the time.

You can read more here.

Faggot T-Shirts in Soccer

The FIFA World Cup is being hosted in Brazil this year, and there are places where T-shirts that call soccer players "faggots" are being sold.

The simple T-shirt designs call Portuguese player Cristiano Ronaldo ‘gay’ and retired Argentine footballer Diego Maradona a ‘maric√≥n’ (a faggot).

The designer defends the T-shirts, which are being sold for around €62 ($85), as ‘irreverent’ and not offensive.
He is also claiming they are selling out in stores across the country.

‘The collection has a irreverent theme and the T-shirts are made for those who want to cheer for Brazil but do not want to wear the official kit,’ Sergio K said, as translated by Gay Star News. 

‘It’s not homophobic to me. Homophobia is something else. The T-shirts do not incite violence.’

I'm not too sure about that...the violence part. If you call the wrong gay guy a faggot you might find yourself picking up your teeth with twisted fingers. We're not all skipping around in pink fairy wings.

You can read more here.

FREE Gay Excerpt

Here's the conclusion of yesterday's free excerpt, from Chapter One of my latest unpubbed novel in the Chase of a Lifetime series, Chase of a Rainbow. Once again, this is the raw unedited version. In order to get what's happening you should check out the link to the first excerpt. Because this is part of a series I like to sneak in some back story for people who prefer to read the books in random order. All are stand alones.

 
Len shook his head. “Why is that disgusting? It’s the truth. You are a power bottom.” He looked at Arturo. “Isn’t he?”
            Arturo nodded. “Oh yeah.”

            Jim couldn’t deny he liked his sex, and he knew they were only joking around with him. So he lifted his head and said, “You’re both disgusting.”

            The truth was things hadn’t always been this carefree and casual with Len and Jim. Len was about twenty years older than Jim and they had a long history. Len and his first wife, Janet, had been best friends with Jim’s mom and dad, Radcliff and Helen Darling, back when they’d all lived in Dallas. To make things even more complicated, Jim had been best friends with Len’s son, Cain Mayfield. Jim had grown up around Len and he’d always called him Mr. Mayfield because Len had been living in the closet most of his adult life. When Jim returned to Dallas as an adult after he graduated from Princeton, one thing led to another and Len and Jim wound up falling in love with each other in spite of trying to do the exact opposite. And when their families discovered what was happening, it nearly destroyed everyone. It set off a chain of horrible, dramatic events that led Jim and Len to leave Dallas and move to Los Angeles. But not after a great deal of tears had been shed.

            Len set his card down and declared victory. They were playing gin rummy and everyone knew he was unbeatable. “I’ll show you how disgusting I am if you want.”

            Arturo’s head went up and he didn’t seem to mind that he’d just lost a hand. “I’ll help.”

            “You grab him and I’ll pull down his pants,” Len said.

            “Seriously, guys,” Jim said. “I really have to work on this campaign so I can get this guy to buy the dispensaries. I don’t have time for that tonight.” He glanced at Arturo. “And you have to deal with the dude ranch manager job tomorrow.” Along with Arturo’s responsibilities as Jim’s marketing assistant, they’d also promoted Arturo to ranch manager of COAL Ranch and he was interviewing new ranch managers for the gay dude ranch next door.

            Len ignored Jim and picked up the cards. He started to shuffle, and he looked at Arturo and said, “One more hand, and then we go after him.”

            Arturo said, “Loser gets sloppy seconds.”

            They fist-bumped and Len said, “Deal.”

            “Oh, you two should take that act on the road,” Jim said. “But don’t get too excited because I have a lot of work to finish tonight. I’m meeting this guy tomorrow and if he likes my ideas to promote the dispensaries online, we sign the papers later this week and I’ll never have to deal with medical marijuana again in this lifetime.”

            Arturo cut the cards and spoke in more serious tone. “Aren’t you going to miss it a little?” He knew how emotionally attached Jim was to Cain and Carol Greene.

            Jim couldn’t deny he had emotional ties to the business. Carol Greene had been the most flamboyant transgender male to female he’d ever known. On a conservative day she’d resembled a cross between Marilyn Monroe, Bette Midler, and Dolly Parton. But his ties to her didn’t just stop with Carol saving Culum’s life. Carol had also been deeply in love with Cain Mayfield, and she’d mourned Cain’s death almost as much as Len and Jim had. Cain had been dating her and that’s how he’d gotten involved with the medical marijuana dispensaries. Although Cain used to flirt with Jim and tease him a lot, Cain was straight and there had never been anything sexual between them. Jim had loved Cain like his own brother and there wasn’t a day that went by when Jim didn’t miss him. Cain was also Culum’s biological father, but Jim and Len had legally adopted Culum when Cain’s college girlfriend wanted to abort him. Len had been having serious father and son issues with Cain at the time, but Len refused to let anyone abort his grandson and he literally begged the girlfriend to let him adopt and raise Culum. So much in Jim’s life seemed to lead back to his friendship with Cain he often wondered how it had all happened. And part of him felt sad about selling the dispensaries because he knew that would be his final legal tie with Cain.

            But he also had Cain’s biological son, Culum. And he saw traces of Cain in Culum as each day passed. So he smiled at Arturo and said, “It’s time to move on. I have no real interest in selling marijuana and I’d like our lives to move forward.” Then he smiled at Len. “I want things to be simple someday. Just us and the ranch.”

            Len glanced over at him and said, “I agree. It’s time to sell.”

            Jim wanted to get up and hug him, but Hal Robertson answered another question on the computer and he started talking about how bottoms should prepare to have anal sex.

            Jim cringed when he mentioned plastic bottles filled with warm soapy water.

            Len’s eyes opened wide and he laughed. “Here we go. Now we’re getting personal anal sex hygiene habits from good old Hal. I’m not sure I want this guy to buy the dispensaries. He’s a fucking wing nut.”

            Arturo shrugged. “At least we know he’s a bottom. No top knows about things like that.”

            Then Hal said, “Before you even think about being a good bottom, you have to make sure everything is impeccable and clean down there, so to speak. It’s the classy thing to do for the man you’re about to pleasure.”

            Jim groaned. “Dear God.”

            Arturo stared at the computer and said, “He’s serious. He’s actually going to give a detailed demonstration now.”

            Jim felt his face getting warm. Even though he knew what Hal was saying was true, he didn’t want to listen to it in front of Len and Arturo. “I think I’ve heard enough now.”

            But as he reached to switch off the computer, he heard an odd noise. There was a bang and then a screech. It sounded as if someone had knocked over a chair. He heard a small dog barking in the background. He looked at the screen and noticed Hal had left his mark and the chair had been knocked over, and Jim could only hear voices somewhere else in the room.

            Len and Arturo looked up from the cards.

            “What happening now?” Len asked. “Is he actually demonstrating the art of anal douchery.”

            “I’m not sure,” Jim said. “I don’t think it was planned. I think he’s on the other side of the room.”

            Jim turned the volume up higher and they all heard Hal’s wrecked voice in the background. “Get out of here,” he said, with a strong hint of fear in his voice. “Get out of here and leave me alone.” The dog had stopped barking.

            After moment of silence, Jim pressed his palm to his throat when he heard Hal begging. “No. Please, no. Leave me alone.”

            “What’s happening?” Len asked. He stood up and walked over to the desk where Jim was sitting.

            Arturo got up and joined them, too. “Where did he go?”
            “I’m not sure,” Jim said. He had a bad feeling about this.

            “Maybe he went to get a double-headed dildo,” Len said.

            “Stop joking,” said Jim. “I think something’s seriously wrong.”

            Less than a second after Jim said this, there were three loud gunshots and the window on which they’d been watching Hal’s show went black. Jim grabbed his chest and said, “Holy shit. What was that?”

            Len blinked and said, “If this isn’t a joke this guy needs some serious help.” He looked down at Jim and asked, “How do you always seem to get involved with people like this?”

            Jim ignored that comment and reached for the phone. He did tend to attract the most unusual people into his life. “I have no idea what just happened, but I’m calling the police to make sure everything is all right.”

            “Do we have to get involved in this?” Len asked. He’d always been more detached to this type of event. One of his favorite sayings was, “Don’t make your problem mine.” He’d learned how to put up the proverbial invisible wall to keep from dealing with too many unimportant demands. He’d always claimed it was his own brand of self-preservation.

            But Jim couldn’t be that nonchalant about what he’d just seen and heard. “Yes, we have to get involved. We can’t just ignore it.”

            Len frowned. “Maybe someone else who was watching called the cops.”

            “What if we were the only people watching?”

            Len made a face. “You have a point there.”  

            As Jim dialed the emergency number he took a deep breath. His heart had begun to race and he had so many thoughts crossing his mind he wasn’t sure where to focus. He didn’t really know Hal well. They’d met once and spoken on the phone a few times. But he did know Hal had a slightly questionable reputation and he hung out with some of the same criminal types Carol Greene had known. Hal had also mentioned that he’d been an investor in a porn web site Cain had once worked for called straightdudehouse.com. At the time, Jim just brushed it all off as being part of the territory with medical marijuana dispensaries. He’d learned they weren’t always as legal as everyone thought they were and the complications ran deeper than what most people realized. This was also why he wanted to sell. He didn’t want to be involved with anything that questionable.

            And now there he was, on a quiet night when he should have been in bed with his husband, phoning the police for a shifty guy he barely knew who did webisodes about double-headed didoes.  But worst of all, he grew overwhelmed with guilt when it occurred to him that his chances of selling the business would be ruined if anything had happened to Hal Robertson.







Thursday, April 17, 2014

Gay on Daytime TV; Fashion Supports Russian Gays; Pat Robertson Likes Gay Friends; Obama's Birth Certificate

Gay on Daytime TV

Guy Wilson played a gay part on Days of Our Lives and he's saying that he felt privileged to do it. He also says the gay storyline was true, true love.

'When we filmed that episode and the days leading up to that, with each day it became increasingly powerful for us,' Wilson told Gay Star News at the recent GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles where the show was named outstanding daytime drama.

'The actual day of filming it, there was no acting. We didn't have to act,' he said. 'It was simultaneously one of the most powerful moments I've had as a performer or otherwise and also one of the most fluid moments I've had as an actor.'

I normally would get a little irritated by something like this. It almost sounds as if it's shocking to think that gay men can share that kind of love. But I'm glad he gets it. And I'm even happier because of the stigma that's always been attached to being gay I actually think this is a step in the right direction, and I hope moving toward a time when we'll never feel the need to single out things like this again because they are gay related.

You can read more here. So far, no one has bothered to comment on this.

Fashion Supports Russian Gays

This is probably one of the most important pieces I've read all week. Fashion icons and celebrities are banning together to support the injustices that have been happening to LGBTI people in Russia.

The Proud To Protest project was the brainchild of English fashion designer Gareth Pugh and SHOWstudio photographer Nick Knight.

The Olympics are over, Johnny Weir got his paycheck, and the mainstream media has moved on to other topics that will increase readership and ratings. But the fight for equality is still ongoing in Russia, and LGBTI people there are dealing with things those of us here in the US can't even imagine on our worst day.

You can read more here.

Pat Robertson Likes Gay Friends

It's often difficult to parse things like this, so I'm not even going to try. Anti-gay US televangelist, Pat Robertson, who has clearly stated being gay is a sin also thinks it's okay to keep gay friends.

‘You don't turn the light out just because you disagree with somebody,’ Robertson said on Wednesday during a broadcast of his show The 700 Club.

 ‘The Lord's not going to punish you for having homosexuals as your friends. But I do think that when you read the Bible very carefully, homosexuality is condemned.’

Actually, I think we all should thank Pat for being so kind. And tell him we feel the same way. I would encourage all of my gay friends to embrace as many ill-informed Christians that think being gay is a sin as they can. Pat is right. You don't turn the light out just because you disagree with somebody. And, no one is going to stop inviting you to cool dinner parties for having right wing Christian friends. But I do think that when you read the Bible very carefully you'll find that there are so many different ways you can interpret it the possibilities are endless.

But that's not all Pat said.

‘There are some very, very creative homosexual people,’ Robertson said. ‘They're in the fashion industry, they're in design, they're in various types of creative arts.

And you would almost need to leave the world not to associate with folks like that.’

I guess no one told him about Michael Sam, you know, the professional football player. Or the guys I posted about last weekend who belong to a gym in New York that focuses only on boxing.

You can read more here.

Obama's Birth Certificate

I thought all this had died down after it was discovered that the President's biography on one of his books stated that he was born in Africa. I really did think that was the end of it. After some debate, literary agent Miriam Goderich of Dystel & Goderich who still represent the President stated that she screwed up big time and she was the one who actually wrote the President's bio for him back then. Aside from the fact that this was a HUGE mistake on her part even if she was young and painfully dumb, she admitted this openly and everything simmered down again. Or at least I thought it had.

According to a report issued by the Associate Press, an Alabama Supreme Court judge stated that Barack Obama should have to prove that he was born in the United States, and that he was eligible to be on the state ballot in 2012.

You can read more here. I really don't know how accurate this is, so don't take it to heart completely. I couldn't find anything else with a simple search and I'm too lazy to go to snopes right now. I just thought it was interesting that it's still being discussed after all this time, and interesting only in a general sense.

I find it all just too unbelievable, especially in this day an age when privacy is almost impossible and no one can seem to hide anything. One of the reasons why some really great people don't run for President is because they don't want this kind of scrutiny in their lives. You really do have to be above reproach, and even then they'll make things up about you.

Famous Rejection Letters; Gay Fairy Homophobia; FREE Excerpt Chase of a Lifetime

Famous Rejection Letters

I don't know why, but I can't help finding the old rejection letters of people who went on to find huge success in life amusing. It shows that the gatekeepers don't know as much as they tell you they know, and so much in the arts is subjective. The following link will take you to a site where there are a handful of these old rejection letters that people like Andy Warhol and yes, even Gertrude Stein received.


I think this shows unpublished writers so many things, but mostly that you can't take any one person's word too much to heart. I also think that nowadays with all the information we have it's just as important for writers to vet agents as much as it used to be important for agents to vet writers. I came across an agent web site the other day where she disclosed she doesn't own a TV. I don't watch much TV myself, and I do think it's dying out as a medium. However, the fact remains that TV is still a huge part of our culture, and whether you like it or not that's not going to change any time soon. And if an agent isn't interested in a HUGE part of our culture just for professional reasons, I would be very careful when querying her.

In any event, you can read more here.

The best advice I ever read actually came from a well known literary agent's blog. She said something basically to the effect of this: "I've never had a big book through the query process. All the big books I've had came from finding the writer and nurturing him or her over a period of time."

Gay Homophobia

A British camp comic, Alan Carr, claims the most homophobia he gets is from other gays. He's now the face of a new PETA campaign in which he wears pink fairy wings. The slogan is: "Be a Little Fairy For Animals."

Several people on social media spoke out against the advert, describing it as ‘homophobic’.

In response, Carr said on Twitter: ‘The “fairy” in the @Peta campaign refers to my Tooth Fairy DVD that's all. Take my advice if you act like a victim you get treated like 1.

‘Don't worry twitter they'll be another bandwagon you can jump on in a minute zzzzzzzzzzzzzz ‘Hey and before all you oh so worthy gays get back on your high horse the most homophobia I get is from gays. #selfloathing

Posting a little later, he added: ‘Well that last tweet shut them up!! Ha!

I'm not sure you can be gay and homophobic at the same time. That thought lacks reasoning, and rings a little of sour grapes. But I do actually think that sometimes we all need a better sense of humor. And whether or not you're laughing at Carr or with him, it's funny.

More here.

FREE Excerpt Chase of a Lifetime Series

Because we're approaching a holiday weekend for many, I thought I'd post a free excerpt today and tomorrow from a work in progress. This is from a new book in the Chase of a Lifetime series, tentatively titled, "Chase of a Rainbow." Trust me, this is a very raw version. I'm only about 40,000 words into the novel and haven't really taken much time to edit it. But I find that when I'm writing something from a series, the characters return to me faster than when I'm not.

No links. It's not out yet. I'm shooting for a May release.

Chapter One

After Jim Darling-Mayfield inherited all of Carol Greene’s medical marijuana dispensaries, he decided the legal marijuana business wasn’t for him and he actively set out to sell them to someone who could appreciate that sort of business the same way Carol Greene had loved it.

            Jim and his husband, Len Mayfield, had inherited the dispensaries together, but Len had given Jim permission to do whatever he wanted because Len was now actively working again at the family business, Branson Communications, and he didn’t have the time or the inclination to deal with cannabis. Although Jim had a full time career in marketing, he worked from home most of the time and he didn’t have as much pressure as Len so he usually handled the smaller things.

            On a warm quiet night a few months after Carol Greene’s death, they were sitting in the family room of COAL Ranch…COAL was an acronym for Chase of a Lifetime…in Chatsworth, California and Jim was wondering if he’d ever get to bed that night. He’d put in a full day’s work in his home office on the third floor near the bell tower, he’d picked up their son, Culum, from school, he’d cooked dinner, helped Culum with his homework, and then put him to bed. And now he was working on a marketing project so he could sell the medical marijuana dispensaries to a guy who was the first serious buyer he’d found.

            Len and Jim’s assistant, Arturo, were sitting on the other side of the family room playing cards and half listening to Jim’s computer in the background. They were listening to the computer because Jim was working on a marketing campaign for the guy who wanted to buy the marijuana dispensaries. Jim specialized in high end online marketing and his clients involved people from all walks of online commerce. One of the stipulations in the medical marijuana dispensary sale was that Jim had to agree to continue marketing the dispensaries online for the next two years. He’d been marketing them for Carol Greene and he’d had excellent results. The new buyer wanted this to continue and he’d insisted on having Jim stick around after the sale.

            “Did Culum get off to bed okay?” Len asked, without looking up from the cards Arturo had just dealt him.

            “I read him the Berenstain Bears, tucked him in, and Clinger is next to his bed snoring,” Jim said, without looking up from his desk. Clinger was a large, beige Labrador who would growl at any stranger who came near Culum’s bedroom at night.

            “I’ll go in and check on him before I go to bed,” Len said.

            A voice from the computer made an unusual comment about gay sex and Jim glanced at the screen and frowned.  

            Len stared at the cards in his hands and asked, “And why are we listening to this crap on the computer tonight?”

            Jim sighed. “I told you. The guy who wants to buy the dispensaries has an online advice show about love and relationships for gay men. It’s his fourth webisode. I have to watch it. I really want him to buy the dispensaries and I want to impress him by showing him I watched. We don’t have time for anything as it is now and I want a simpler life, which means selling that business.” Since they’d moved to Chatsworth, they’d turned the ranch into a working ranch, they’d bought the ranch next door and turned it into a touristy gay dude ranch, and Len took over full time responsibilities for Branson Communications. They hadn’t planned any of this. The goal had been to move to Chatsworth and start a working ranch so Len could retire from investment banking and they could live simpler, quieter lives. Len’s ultimate dream had always been owning a working ranch. But then Len’s father passed away and he left Len a billion dollar communications corporation and Len couldn’t refuse. There was no one else to do it. Doris Branson, Len’s mother, knew nothing about business. And Len’s much younger brother, Caleb Branson, was now an ex Catholic priest who had come out of the closet and he was off somewhere in the world trying to find himself. Len had been estranged from his family for many years and Len’s mother and brother, Caleb, were willing to reconcile. Fate seemed to take control and Jim and Len found themselves in positions they couldn’t refuse even if they tried. Even the medical marijuana dispensaries happened by accident. Carol Greene had died saving their son’s life, and Jim felt a posthumous obligation to her heroic actions.

            Len reached for a card and said, “This guy on the computer sucks. I don’t even know what he’s talking about now. Put on some music.”

            Jim looked at the computer screen and frowned. Hal Robertson was a middle aged man with a paunch and no hair who had always wanted to be an A-list celebrity. In order to make a living until he became a star, he’d fallen into real estate and he’d done very well. His client list included major Hollywood celebrities and some of the most influential people in the world. But that wasn’t enough for Hal. He still wanted to be a star many years later and like so many others without talent he’d discovered the Internet as a viable resource. This series of webisodes he was doing concentrated on romantic advice to gay men who couldn’t seem to find the right person. While he sat in a chair in his home office in front of a webcam, viewers would chat with him and ask him questions on anything that ranged from gay sex to love. On that particular night he was answering a question about whether or not two bottoms can make a lasting relationship, Jim had a feeling no one else was actually watching Hal and he made the questions up himself.

            Even Arturo seemed to be having a problem listening to Hal that night. “I can’t believe he just said that. There’s something wrong with this dude.” Hal had just told someone two bottoms can make it work, but sometimes they need to invest in a double-headed dildo.

            Jim smiled. “Well, he’s not totally wrong. I don’t see why two bottoms can’t last if they have a double-headed dildo.” He was only joking around to see how Len and Arturo would react. He knew they both had strong opinions on this topic.

            Len sent Jim a look and asked, “How would you like it if I got a nice big double-headed dildo for us?” He didn’t mind the fact that Arturo was in the room. Jim and Len had been experimenting with three-way sex for a while now, and they’d recently invited Arturo into their bedroom. Arturo had been seeing Len’s brother, Caleb, for a short time, but after years of being a priest Caleb wasn’t ready for a relationship and he’d left the US for a while to figure out his life. It was ironic because Jim had always thought Caleb would be the one to get hurt by Arturo. When this happened, Arturo had been devastated and Jim and Len had consoled him. One thing led to another and they wound up in bed one night. But it was always clear there was no emotional romantic attachment other than friendship; just a physical act of sex between two grown, adult men.

            When Arturo heard Len’s comment about the dildo, he laughed so hard he lost a card in his hand.

            As Arturo bent down to pick up his card, Jim sent Len a glance and said, “You know that’s not going to happen. If you ever decide you don’t want to top anymore I’ll be more than happy, if you want, to become the top in this marriage.” He had to hold back a smile. He knew how Len would react. “I’ve been dying to top you for years, husband.”

            Len squared his back and said, “Well, you know that’s not going to happen any time soon, husband. Besides, you couldn’t go a week without getting tagged. You’d be climbing the bell tower.”

            Arturo dropped another card and laughed harder.

            Jim looked at the computer screen again and smiled. He couldn’t argue the point and he knew it. Although Jim could be versatile when he wanted to be, he’d always been honest with himself about sex. He liked being the bottom, he liked being more submissive in bed, and he even preferred being around aggressive top men like Len and Arturo when he wasn’t having sex. The thought of going longer than a week without having a man that way made his hands shaky just thinking about it.  

            On the computer, Hal started talking about how two bottoms in a relationship could use the double-headed dildo and Jim turned the volume up higher. Hal said, “The best way is for both guys to get on all fours and back into each other.”

            Len groaned aloud and said, “I think that’s the only way to go in that kind of situation.”

            Arturo laughed and said, “I’ve actually always wondered about this myself, to be honest. I once dated a guy who would only top and we didn’t even know what to do with each other. He kept trying to turn me around in bed, and I kept trying to turn him around. It was very frustrating.”

            Jim looked at Arturo and smiled. Although he hadn’t expected anything sexual to happen with Arturo when he’d first hired him fresh out of college, he wasn’t disappointed that it had happened. Arturo had that longish, messy dark hair, and always the scruffy dark beard. His torso was smooth and muscular but his legs were dark and fuzzy. There were times when Jim just loved rubbing his face up and down Arturo’s legs.

            Len looked at Arturo and said, “That happened to me once, too. I was like what the fuck, man? Turn over. Lift those legs up, baby.” Len tended to get overly aggressive and macho for show at times. Jim always thought it was his need to overcompensate for spending the majority of his life in the closet. He couldn’t help himself; it was the least of Jim’s worries.  

            “What did you do?” Arturo asked.

            Jim rolled his eyes. “Yes, what did you do, husband? Did he lift up his legs?” He didn't show it, but tended to get a little jealous when Len boasted about past lovers.

            Len shrugged and picked up another card. “I gave up and found myself a hot little power bottom named Jim Darling who won’t put his pretty legs down.”

            Jim smiled and said, “You’re disgusting.” They had the same unusual sense of humor and it always kept them laughing about stupid things, especially stupid things regarding sex.
To be continued tomorrow...
 



Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Steve Kornacki Out; New Harry Potter Fiction; Sisssyboy Insult

Steve Kornacki Out

I rarely watch anything on MSNBC, but I do think it's important to post about things like this in a general sense. We often take for granted that it's simple for gay men to come out, and when they don't I sometimes hear people slam them. There's even a day set aside each year called National Coming Out Day that I've never fully supported because I've heard from some gay men it puts even more pressure on them. I personally can't even imagine setting aside a day like that to come out. The concept just passes me by. I think this story about MSNBC's Steve Kornacki is a good example of how difficult it can be to come out.

He had spent 15 years surpressing this core part of his personality before writing  a deeply personal column for Salon in the fall of 2011 that took readers into the compartmentalized world that a lot of men feel they must live in in order to have the life they want.

He told his family only the weekend before the piece was published by passing copies of the column around at lunch.
Their first words after reading it: 'We're proud of you.'

You can read more here. Kornacki gave an interview where he talks about what it was like to be in the closet, and then what it was like to come out.

Many of you may find this next quote unusual. I don't. I still think many gay men are living lives they chose to live instead of the lives they were meant to live.

'I’m not sure I would have reached adulthood with a willingness to even start exploring this side of me, and I can imagine ending up getting married to a woman, having kids, and settling down just because that was the only thing to do.'
 

New Harry Potter Fiction

Even though I don't follow anything Harry Potter because I've never actually read the books...it's not my genre...I think it's interesting that JK Rowling will be writing new installments from what's called a fictional Quidditch World Cup. I have no idea what this means. The only cup I'm interested in is the extra large one Daniel Radcliff wears when he plays sports. But I'm sure many will find this worthy of checking out.

Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling will be filing regular dispatches from the fictional 2014 Quidditch World Cup, which is “taking place” this month in the Patagonian desert. The initial updates, penned by Daily Prophet Quidditch correspondent and Harry Potter spouse Ginny Potter nee Weasley, make the faux South America-based World Cup sound far more exciting than the real one that will take place later this summer, though, depending on your opinion of soccer, that may be damning the Quidditch tournament with faint praise.

You can read the rest here. I do love Rowling's other fiction, especially The Casual Vacancy, so one of these days I'm going to force myself to read the Potter series.

Sissyboy Insult

The fascinating thing about this link is that it happened to a straight male with a wife and kids. Phone company, Sprint, allegedly called the man a "gay sissyboy" in an e-mail.

‘I expressed my concerns to them and how serious this is to me and my wife,’ he said, as reported by NBC News.

 ‘I don’t live a homosexual life, I never gave Sprint anything to go on and think that, and even if I did I don’t think it would be fair to say this on my account.’

From what I can tell, the man did not get defensive or embarrassed about being called gay. Instead, he believes what the company did was degrading in a general sense to anyone because of the language used.

You can read more here. The company has since apologized.

For those who might be interested, there's a web site, NSFW, dedicated to gay sissyboys.






Warning Label: Rape; Davey Wavey: The Worst Part of Gay; NYT Paid Content

Warning Label: Rape

In the 1950's television shows were subjected to some of the worst kinds of censorship in the history of the arts. Censors forced producers like Desi Arnaz to use twin beds at all times on I Love Lucy because the thought of two married people sleeping (not actually having sex) in the same bed was found to be offensive and harmful to some people. Today television shows like American Horror are still being censored, and obviously the kinds of censorship Arnaz had to deal with in the 1950's has changed drastically. But American Horror (and other shows like it) is still forced to put up warnings before each show if there's anything considered questionable or harmful content.

There's a blog post, written by an author I don't know, about warning labels on books that's created more than a few in-depth discussions in the past week. The post begins with a comment about how there's an interesting trend now, especially with small niche presses.

 No, this disturbing trend is far more insidious. It’s the infantilization of the reader.

The riff goes something like this: “Oooh, that content is objectionable! It might upset someone! We better warn people away! Quick, tag it! Oh, how dare that author not include warnings! What a terrible, insensitive person! I bet they wrote it because .”

You can read more here.

As I stated, this post has created interesting discussions, to the point where one person left a comment on a thread at another blog posting on the same topic that went like this, in part:

She said she wished she could stop reading it but she couldn’t because she had to see if the rape victim (heroine) was going to survive but it was a horrible experience for her.

I felt terrible for that reader and frankly if a warning prevents someone like her from going through that experience I’m all for it. There is far more harm that can be done without warnings than with warnings.

I hate to see anyone harmed, but I'm not so sure more harm can be done without warnings. Should we start adding warning labels to classics? In Toni Morrison's, The Bluest Eye, one of the most important pieces of literature of the twentieth century, there's rape and incest portrayed as it applies to both the story and the culture of the main characters. As far as I know, I've never seen The Bluest Eye come with a warning label. The Bluest Eye, however, has always created a certain amount of controversy, especially in schools, and many want it banned in spite of its literary qualities because they claim it is harmful.

There's always going to be something that offends or is considered harmful to someone, in books, films, music, and visual arts. I've heard there are people harmed because of gay content. Does that mean all books with any gay content should have warning labels? I've even heard where people are offended by certain dances. Unfortunately, the less sophisticated reader is usually the one who will be the most offended and harmed.

In the same respect, I don't have as strong of an opinion on this topic as I probably should. Part of that is because I've become jaded with the abuse of search engines and censorship and I've had to learn how to avoid simple words in order to keep perfectly innocent books from being targeted for the wrong reasons. So if all books everywhere, in every single genre, including The Bluest Eye, were required to come with warning labels I wouldn't complain. But I want them ALL to have labels, not just certain books with certain small publishers, in certain genres. ALL of them. I want them rated for content like films with labels...even Debbie Macomber books would have labels that read: No. Sex. At. All. Ever. And until that happens, or I'm forced otherwise, you won't be seeing any warning labels on my books.

Davey Wavey: The Worst Part of Gay

I think what I find most interesting about Davey Wavey is that he comes up with things no one else would ever consider. In this case, he's come up with the theory that the worst part about being gay is that a gay guy can have two ex-boyfriends start dating each other. And he's right. Women can't relate to that...unless they've been dating two men who turned gay. I'm sure that's happened somewhere, at some point, but it's not common. At least I hope not anyway.

In any event, here's how Davey Wavey puts it. You can check it out here on his web site, too.



New York Times Paid Content

A lot of newspapers are now charging for online content. And when I saw this ad for The New York Times I thought I'd share.

http://www.nytimes.com/subscriptions/Multiproduct/lp5558.html?campaignId=3F3FU

It's not something I would do at this point, but I hate to say never. I can get all the free info I want on the web from other sources that are just as good, if not better than the NYT. I find the NYT to be highly slanted, filled with spin, and patronizing to gays at times.  But I also think this paid content thing is going to be a trend that continues and it will be interesting to see what's next.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Pistorious' Defense; Gay Retirement Home Spain; Chaz Bono

Pistorious' Defense



One of the most publicized trials since OJ Simpson is about to begin its defense. Nothing about this case has ever been simple, not from the start. And, it varies significantly from the OJ Simpson trial because Pistorius admittedly shot because he thought his life was in danger. It's also a bench trial, which means no jury.

For five days, Oscar Pistorius endured a withering cross-examination at his murder trial from a prosecutor who pounced on apparent inconsistencies in his testimony. Yet, legal analysts said Tuesday, expert witnesses who will testify for the defense could undermine the prosecution's efforts to prove Pistorius killed girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on purpose after an argument.

The demeanor of the Olympian, often fumbling for answers and occasionally breaking into sobs, contrasted with that of prosecutor Gerrie Nel, who called Pistorius a liar and unleashed volleys of barbed questions. Social media buzzed that Pistorius is in deep trouble - a South African talk show host wryly observed that the double-amputee runner had not "covered himself with glory" when his cross-examination ended Tuesday - but experts said the trial has a long way to go.
 
You can read more here.
 
I also think this is one of the saddest trials in history because of the life lost and the lives ruined. It's actually very hard to listen to Pistorius being questioned because the sobs are so gutting.
 
Gay Retirement Home Spain
 
In an effort to help gays from returning to the closet as they grow old, Spain has come up with a gay retirement home. (I've never actually heard of that...returning to the closet.)
 
The project is an attempt at stopping Spain’s elderly LGBT population from returning to the ‘closet’ in old age. 
 
‘They don’t have children and grandchildren they can talk about and often they conceal their sexual orientation to avoid rejection,’ Federico Armenteros, president of 26 December Foundation, said.

They are making it clear that the home is open to everyone, not just gays. We have several things like this here in the US and it's important to make this distinction because to call a place an all gay...or gay only...retirement home is discriminatory.

I don't plan to retire, not ever. There will be no condo in Wilton Manors for me, or small house in Palm Springs. I'm a writer, and I'm not fond of the concept of "gay ghetto." I just plan to expire quietly.

You can read more here.

Chaz Bono

I have to admit this up front. I don't know what it is that fascinates me so much about female to male transgenders, but I can't get enough of Chaz Bono...or anything on the topic. I think that's probably because as a gay man I'm more familiar with male to female transgender people. I've known them personally most of my life. But I actually don't know any female to male transgendered people at all personally. At least I don't think so.

 Transgender activist and actor Chaz Bono dropped by RuPaul's Drag Race to help contestants learn to conduct a celebrity interview and in the process, opened up a bit about himself.

'You know, there was a number of years where I knew I was transgender but was afraid to do anything about it,' Bono told one of the contestants.

I think (hope) we'll be hearing more about female to male transgenders in the future. If Chaz felt that way I can't even imagine what it's like for someone living in less sophisticated circumstances.

In any event, Chaz was on RuPaul's Drag race. And I wonder if that has anything to do with the recent kerfuffle they've had over transgender terms and phrases. I'm starting to wish someone would come up with a good solid web site where I can go to make sure I'm not saying or writing anything politically incorrect that would offend anyone. The other day someone asked me if the term "Drag Queen" was appropriate and I just shrugged and said I never use it because I believe in playing it safe. I stick to female impersonator at all times.

You can read more here.