Monthly Archives: May 2012

Beauty and Sarcasm

Taking the Day Off

I would love to say that I was working so hard last night grading papers that I just didn’t have time to write a post today; however, I was actually hanging out with a friend of mine.  It was a she, we were drinking beer, and not naked like the picture above, but we still had a good time, even if we were at it longer than we should have been considering we still have to be at school to teach today.  It was a much needed break to a busy week, and it was fun had by all, so I am taking the day off from a “real” blog post. FYI: A slight addition to this post.

President Obama has confirmed that Vice President Biden’s comments forced him to move up his timetable on announcing support of gay marriage.

Obama told ABC’s Good Morning America that he had planned to discuss the issue just before the Democratic convention in early September, but things changed over the weekend when the vice president announced he was “very comfortable” with same-sex marriage.
Biden “probably got out a little bit over his skis, but out of generosity of spirit,” Obama told Robin Roberts shortly after making his own announcement on ABC.
While the president seemed somewhat irritated with his veep, Obama added: “All’s well that ends well.”
Obama also told Good Morning America that actual decisions to legalize gay marriage should remain with the states, which are “arriving at different conclusions at different times.”
“I think that’s a healthy process and a healthy debate,” Obama said.
Also: “This debate is taking place at a local level. And I think the whole country is evolving and changing. And, you know, one of the things that I’d like to see is that a conversation continue in a respectful way.”
Thanks Sean for bringing this to my attention.  I had not even checked the news today

Video from Trick

I realized that my post today was missing the video from the movie Trick.  I will try and fix it later and embed the video.  In the meantime, check out this link to the video.

Check out this video on YouTube:

Sent from my iPad

Steve Hayes: Not Just Any Tired Old Queen

When I was first coming to terms with my sexuality, I discovered gay cinema at a local video store which had a wonderful selection of foreign and independent movies. The first video I picked up was the 1994 French movie “Wild Reeds.”. I will have to do a post soon about my gay cinema journey to coming out, but that is not what this post is about. This post is about the delightful actor Steve Hayes. The other night I came across a YouTube clip on Joe.My.God of Steve Hayes, an actor who I had first saw in the movie “Trick,” one of the first Fay movies I saw. If you have not seen it, it is a delightful movie and I have included a synopsis below and a clip of Hayes in it.


Gabriel, an aspiring writer of Broadway musicals, meets Mark, a muscled stripper, who picks him up on the subway. They spend the night trying to find somewhere to be alone… forced to contend with Gabriel’s selfish roommate, his irritating best friend, and a vicious, jealous drag queen in a gay dance club. The sun rises on a promising new relationship. Steve Hayes sings a memorable and catchy little tune in the movie, and I have to admit, I have loved him since I first saw it. There is a clip below.

Now on to Steve Hayes. As already mentioned, Hayes starred as Perry in the Fine Line Features motion picture “Trick” directed by Jim Fall and starring Tori Spelling and Christian Campbell. “Trick” was nominated for Best Picture at the Sundance Film Festival. He recently completed the film; “The Big Gay Musical,” in which he sings three songs and plays GOD. He won Oustanding Actor at the International New York Fringe Theatre Festival. As a comedian, Steve is a nine time nominee and three time winner of the Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs MAC Award for Outstanding Comedian and Characterization. He is also the recipient of the Backstage Bistro Award for Comedy Performer of the Year. He is a six time recipient of the ASCAP.

All that aside, the YouTube clip I came across was a series he hosts. Hayes is the host of the information/comedy show “STEVE HAYES: Tired Old Queen at the Movies,” which is seen weekly around the world on YouTube. “Tired Old Queen At The Movies” offers the dish on the classic movies we thought we knew and most likely didn’t. How they were made, why they’re classic, and what happens when they become the fixation of a man from upstate New York who was “raised by Warner Brothers.”. From Film Noir to Screw Ball Comedies, Social Dramas to Camp Classics, nothing escapes his scrutiny. Using his vast knowledge of film and Hollywood history, he not only describes the various films, but provides the inside scoops on who got who to do what to whom in order to get what was made, made. With a new segment every week, each two to four minute segment is shot on location in Thornfield Manor, Steve’s overly-opulent , nostalgia filled, sumptuously cluttered, Studio apartment and hosted by fellow actor John Bixler, Steve recommends what classics to see, what to avoid, what to take seriously, what not to and what to run out and rent as soon as the show is over. He also has a sharp, sexy wit that you just don’t find in the many gay men today, the kind where he can be giving you an explanation about why a movie is wonderfully horrible, take a tangent on why one of the actors is so sexy that your boxers will quiver, and then get right back onto the topic at hand without missing a beat.

In short, he really is an old queen, the delightful kind we don’t see often enough any longer. And I love, Love, LOVE that he’s out there making these great little pieces.

I started watching the clips, and before I knew it, two hours had passed and it was well past my bedtime. I couldn’t help myself. He reviewed movies such as “All About Eve,” “Auntie Mame,” “Key Largo,” “Roman Holiday,” “The Lion in Winter,” and so many more of my favorite classic Hollywood movies. It is obvious that his favorite Hollywood icons are Katherine Hepburn and Audrey Hepburn and director and producer Joseph Mankiewicz. Then again, they may just be part of my favorite movies, so it seems that they are his favorites. So, if you have ever wished that TCM’s Robert Osbourne was a bit funnier and camper, then you will love Steve Hayes.

P.S. Don’t get me wrong, I love Robert Osbourne and wish I had his job, but Steve is a lot more fun.  TCM really needs to hire him.

Romance Sonambulo

Photograph by Gregorio Prieto Muñoz (1897-1992), born in Valdepeñas, Spain, he was one of the lovers of Federico Garcia Lorca. I love how the man is superimposed with the tree trunks.

Romance Sonambulo
by Federico García Lorca
translated by William Logan
(Original poem in Spanish after the jump)

Green, how I want you green.
Green wind. Green branches.
The ship out on the sea
and the horse on the mountain.
With the shade around her waist
she dreams on her balcony,
green flesh, her hair green,
with eyes of cold silver.
Green, how I want you green.
Under the gypsy moon,
all things are watching her
and she cannot see them.

Green, how I want you green.
Big hoarfrost stars
come with the fish of shadow
that opens the road of dawn.
The fig tree rubs its wind
with the sandpaper of its branches,
and the forest, cunning cat,
bristles its brittle fibers.
But who will come? And from where?
She is still on her balcony
green flesh, her hair green,
dreaming in the bitter sea.

--My friend, I want to trade
my horse for her house,
my saddle for her mirror,
my knife for her blanket.
My friend, I come bleeding
from the gates of Cabra.
--If it were possible, my boy,
I'd help you fix that trade.
But now I am not I,
nor is my house now my house.
--My friend, I want to die
decently in my bed.
Of iron, if that's possible,
with blankets of fine chambray.
Don't you see the wound I have
from my chest up to my throat?
--Your white shirt has grown
thirsy dark brown roses.
Your blood oozes and flees a
round the corners of your sash.
But now I am not I,
nor is my house now my house.
--Let me climb up, at least,
up to the high balconies;
Let me climb up! Let me,
up to the green balconies.
Railings of the moon
through which the water rumbles.

Now the two friends climb up,
up to the high balconies.
Leaving a trail of blood.
Leaving a trail of teardrops.
Tin bell vines
were trembling on the roofs.
A thousand crystal tambourines
struck at the dawn light.

Green, how I want you green,
green wind, green branches.
The two friends climbed up.
The stiff wind left
in their mouths, a strange taste
of bile, of mint, and of basil
My friend, where is she--tell me--
where is your bitter girl?
How many times she waited for you!
How many times would she wait for you,
cool face, black hair,
on this green balcony!
Over the mouth of the cistern
the gypsy girl was swinging,
green flesh, her hair green,
with eyes of cold silver.
An icicle of moon
holds her up above the water.
The night became intimate
like a little plaza.
Drunken "Guardias Civiles"
were pounding on the door.
Green, how I want you green.
Green wind. Green branches.
The ship out on the sea.
And the horse on the mountain.

Portrait de Federico Garcia Lorca by Gregorio Prieto Muñoz.

Courtesy of Homodesiribus

Verde que te quiero verde. 
Verde viento. Verdes ramas.
El barco sobre la mar
y el caballo en la montaña.
Con la sombra en la cintura
ella sueña en su baranda,
verde carne, pelo verde,
con ojos de fría plata.
Verde que te quiero verde.
Bajo la luna gitana,
las cosas la están mirando
y ella no puede mirarlas.
Verde que te quiero verde.
Grandes estrellas de escarcha
vienen con el pez de sombra
que abre el camino del alba.
La higuera frota su viento
con la lija de sus ramas,
y el monte, gato garduño,
eriza sus pitas agrias.
¿Pero quién vendra? ¿Y por dónde...?
Ella sigue en su baranda,
Verde came, pelo verde,
soñando en la mar amarga.
--Compadre, quiero cambiar
mi caballo por su casa,
mi montura por su espejo,
mi cuchillo per su manta.
Compadre, vengo sangrando,
desde los puertos de Cabra.
--Si yo pudiera, mocito,
este trato se cerraba.
Pero yo ya no soy yo,
ni mi casa es ya mi casa.
--Compadre, quiero morir
decentemente en mi cama.
De acero, si puede ser,
con las sábanas de holanda.
¿No ves la herida que tengo
desde el pecho a la garganta?
--Trescientas rosas morenas
lleva tu pechera blanca.
Tu sangre rezuma y huele
alrededor de tu faja.
Pero yo ya no soy yo,
ni mi casa es ya mi casa.
--Dejadme subir al menos
hasta las altas barandas;
¡dejadme subir!, dejadme,
hasta las verdes barandas.
Barandales de la luna
por donde retumba el agua.
Ya suben los dos compadres
hacia las altas barandas.
Dejando un rastro de sangre.
Dejando un rastro de lágrimas.
Temblaban en los tejados
farolillos de hojalata.
Mil panderos de cristal
herían la madrugada.
Verde que te quiero verde,
verde viento, verdes ramas.
Los dos compadres subieron.
El largo viento dejaba
en la boca un raro gusto
de hiel, de menta y de albahaca.
¡Compadre! ¿Donde está, díme?
¿Donde está tu niña amarga?
¡Cuántas veces te esperó!
¡Cuántas veces te esperara,
cara fresca, negro pelo,
en esta verde baranda!
Sobre el rostro del aljibe
se mecía la gitana.
Verde carne, pelo verde,
con ojos de fría plata.
Un carámbano de luna
la sostiene sobre el agua.
La noche se puso íntima
como una pequeña plaza.
Guardias civiles borrachos
en la puerta golpeaban.
Verde que te qinero verde.
Verde viento. Verdes ramas.
El barco sobre la mar.
Y el caballo en la montaña.

Sean Harris Is No Christian

He may be the pastor of a Baptist Church, but he is no Christian.  As usual he is a pastor who picks and chooses what parts of the Bible he wants to take literally and which ones he wants to claim are allegorical.

Sean Harris, senior pastor of Berean Baptist Church in Fayetteville, spoke at length in support of North Carolina’s proposed Amendment 1, which would define marriage in the state constitution as between one man and one woman and would outlaw civil unions and domestic partnerships, during an hour-long sermon on Sunday. In this clip, provided by Jeremy Hooper of the blog Good as You, a man identified as Harris is heard urging his congregation to attack their children if they appear to be exhibiting behavior outside of gender norms.

Notes Harris:

“So your little son starts to act a little girlish when he is four years old and instead of squashing that like a cockroach and saying, ‘Man up, son, get that dress off you and get outside and dig a ditch, because that is what boys do,’ you get out the camera and you start taking pictures of Johnny acting like a female and then you upload it to YouTube and everybody laughs about it and the next thing you know, this dude, this kid is acting out childhood fantasies that should have been squashed.

Dads, the second you see your son dropping the limp wrist, you walk over there and crack that wrist. Man up. Give him a good punch. Ok? You are not going to act like that. You were made by God to be a male and you are going to be a male. And when your daughter starts acting too butch, you reign [sic] her in. And you say, ‘Oh, no, sweetheart. You can play sports. Play them to the glory of God. But sometimes you are going to act like a girl and walk like a girl and talk like a girl and smell like a girl and that means you are going to be beautiful. You are going to be attractive. You are going to dress yourself up.'”

The Fayetteville Observer reported that Harris now says he was joking during the sermon. Though he noted he “would never ever advocate” hitting a child, Harris nonetheless defended his belief in the need to reinforce traditional gender roles in children:

“If I had to say it again, I would say it differently, no doubt,” Harris is quoted as saying. “Those weren’t planned words, but what I do stand by is that the word of God makes it clear that effeminate behavior is ungodly. I’m not going to compromise on that.”

Harris retracted the statements of violence but continued to defend his comments about the “importance of gender distinctions that God created,” as well his condemnation of homosexuality, citing the Bible. But he was not able to explain other passages in the Bible, such as those condoning slavery, saying he didn’t realize the interview would “slant and redirect the conversation.”

“I had no idea that the video would be chopped and posted in the blogosphere in a such a manner in which the entirety isn’t understood,” Harris said in an interview on Michelangelo Signorile’s radio program on SiriusXM OutQ. “Those were not the best choice of words. If I had to do it over again again I would not choose those words. I was using hyperbole in an effort to communicate the importance of the gender distinctions that God created. I would offer an apology to anyone I have offended. I don’t make an apology for those gender distinctions that are the word of God.”

In trying to explain why he used violence to convey his message even though he is now retracting the statements, Harris said: “In the context of the scripture, Mark, chapter 9, Jesus conjures up violent images as well, when he says, ‘If your hand is causing you to sin, cut it off.’ He’s not speaking literally. He’s speaking figuratively, using hyperbole to convey the importance of the offense.”

Harris said the comments were taken out of context because in the rest of the video of his sermon, “I get ready to tell the church, ‘We are not to be homophobic. We are to love the gay person.'”

Nonetheless, Harris defended his condemnation of homosexuality by quoting the New Testament and the Old Testament. When asked about passages in the both the Old Testament and the New Testament condoning slavery, however, he said those passages are taken “out of context.”

“I didn’t realize this was going to be an interview on slavery,” he added, when asked why he selectively used the Bible. “It’s unfortunate that [I was not told] you were going to slant and redirect the conversation. It’s unfortunate that I accepted this phone call.”

North Carolina residents will go to the polls on May 8 to vote on both the same-sex marriage measure and to pick a Republican presidential candidate.

Last week, however, Public Policy Polling reportedly released a new poll showing that support among North Carolinians for the proposed anti-gay amendment has dropped to a record low.

Moment of Zen: Chantilly Lace and a Pretty Face

Chantilly Lace” is the name of a rock and roll song written by Jerry Foster, Bill Rice, andThe Big Bopper, who released the song in 1958. The single was produced by Jerry Kennedy.
Originally cut for Pappy Daily’s D label, the recording was purchased by Mercury Records and released in the summer of 1958. The song reached #6 on the pop charts and spent 22 weeks on the national Top 40. It was the third most played song of 1958.
A 1972 version by Jerry Lee Lewis was for three weeks a #1 hit on the Billboard magazine Hot Country Singles chart and a top fifty pop hit in the US and a top forty pop hit in the UK. 
The song depicts one side of a flirting telephone conversation, with a young man talking about what he likes about his girlfriend, including:
Chantilly lace and a pretty face
And a pony tail hangin’ down
A wiggle in the walk and a giggle in the talk
Make the world go ’round.
“Chantilly Lace” inspired an answer song by Jayne Mansfield titled “That Makes It” based on what the girl may have been saying at the other end of the line.
The phrase “Oh Baby That’s What I Like,” said in falsetto by Richardson in “Chantilly Lace,” was sampled by DJs project Jive Bunny and the Mastermixers with the music collage track “That’s What I Like“, which included samples from Jerry Lee LewisChubby CheckerThe SurfarisThe Ventures and other rock and roll singers and bands from late 50’s to early 60’s scene.
Van Halen’s song “Good Enough” from the 1986 album “5150” begins with singer Sammy Hagar calling out “Hello Baby,” imitating Big Bopper’s hook in “Chantilly Lace.”

Time Is On Your Side

Unless you were raised in a liberal, open, and accepting environment, then you have probably contemplated that your life is so bad that it will only get worse. If you have ever reached that point in your life and you are reading this then you either got past it and came to the realization that I am about yo present, or you are currently at that point in your life now.  Either way, let me be the one to tell you that time is on your side and you have so much to live for. It may be becoming cliche, but know that it is incredibly true: IT GETS BETTER!

Furthermore, karma is a bitch.  Those who bully others will get their due.  Of those who bullied me in school one of two things have happened to them. Either they have come to the realization that what they did was so incredibly wrong that they have sought out those they bullied and apologized (this is the rarer of the two things), or they are now living a miserable existence, which is most often the case. Time is on your side and things will only improve.

I have been teaching about the life of Jesus this week since my students are learning about the foundations of Christianity.  Though I doubt that all of them are getting what they should out of these lessons, I hope it does strike a chord with some of them.  If we all followed the basic tenants of the teachings of Jesus or most other religious founders and ethical philosophers, then the world would be an infinitely better place for us all.  Some of the lessons that I have shared with my students are listed below.  I hope that you will check them out.

Huffington Post: A Letter to Any Teen Who’s Thinking About Suicide

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A Letter to Any Teen Who’s Thinking About Suicide
I want to give you a big hug and tell you that it gets better, because it actually does. Hang on. There are people you may not even know yet who are waiting for you with open arms, and they will love you unconditionally. Trust me.

The Dandy

Quite honestly, I really had no idea what to write about today; however, I came across this picture and the fist thought in my mind was “dandy.”  A dandy is a man who places particular importance upon physical appearance, refined language, and leisurely hobbies, pursued with the appearance of nonchalance in a cult of Self.  Historically, especially in late 18th- and early 19th-century Britain, a dandy, who was self-made, often strove to imitate an aristocratic lifestyle despite coming from a middle-class background.  Though the definition of a dandy may sound like a bad stereotype of a gay man, many of the dandies in history were homosexual.

The dandy creates his own unity by aesthetic means. But it is an aesthetic of negation. “To live and die before a mirror”: that according to Baudelaire, was the dandy’s slogan. It is indeed a coherent slogan. The dandy is, by occupation, always in opposition. He can only exist by defiance. Up to now, man derived his coherence from the Creator. But from the moment that he consecrates his rupture from Him, he finds himself delivered over to the fleeting moment, to the passing days, and to wasted sensibility. Therefore he must take himself in hand. The dandy rallies his forces and creates a unity for himself by the very violence of his refusal. Profligate, like all people without a rule of life, he is only coherent as an actor. But an actor implies a public; the dandy can only play a part by setting himself up in opposition. He can only be sure of his own existence by finding it in the expression of others’ faces. Other people are his mirror. A mirror that quickly becomes clouded, it’s true, since human capacity for attention is limited. It must be ceaselessly stimulated, spurred on by provocation. The dandy, therefore, is always compelled to astonish. Singularity is his vocation, excess his way to perfection. Perpetually incomplete, always on the fringe of things, he compels others to create him, while denying their values. He plays at life because he is unable to live it.