Monthly Archives: September 2016

Those Kinky Romans

When we think of Ancient Rome, we immediately think of excess. The kind of excess that means balls to the wall, non-stop drinking and orgy-fueled ridiculousness, leading to their eventual fall from grace. And in this excess was a shameless, extravagant community of homosexuals. Though there was no Latin word for ‘gay’ per se, men were getting down with each other in Ancient Rome like it was their damn job, often in ways that, by today’s standards, are highly disturbing. Here are a few of the more bizarre activities and habits that the boys got up to in their spare time:

1. Bestiality Role Play

Emperor Nero, who reigned from 54 to 68 AD, was a frisky guy. And by frisky, we mean psychotic pervert. The infamous fire of Rome that took place during his reign is often thought to be intentionally sparked to make way for his Golden Pleasure Palace, paid for with the taxes of Roman citizens. One of the gayest activities that took place in said palace was what he called ‘The Animal Game’. It began by tying and binding naked men to various posts set up around the room. Nero would then don himself in animal skins and be put in a cage. When released from the cage, he would wildly begin to ravage each of his victims however he chose. Whatever you say of the man, you can’t deny that he was imaginative.

2. Freaky Gay Marriages

Considering the great lengths to which the modern world has fought for gay marriage, it seems odd that it would have been a perfectly legal practice in the ancient world. But the practice of gay marriage was a bit more fetishized and falsified than the union we know today. Everyone’s favorite emperor Nero was a frequenter of this practice, as was the emperor Elagabalus. These two would proudly display their male lover du jour in a full, official ceremony, complete with bridal veil and a dowry. Nero even bent genders, participating in two ceremonies where he ‘played bride’. But this is all fine compared to the men he castrated to be his true ‘bride’.  

3. Tiberius’ ‘Tiddlers’ also known as ‘Minnows’

Swimming pools are a perfectly understandable breeding ground for the erotic. You’re having a good time, you’re half or completely naked, and usually with one or more persons feeling your carefree vibe. So who could blame Emperor Tiberius for being a prolific swimmer, especially when his empire had such decadent bathhouses and pools so readily available? However, Tiberius’ underwater excursions were accompanied by a league of helpers he referred to as his ‘tiddlers’. These tiddlers were young men (and often even younger boys) who were trained to swim beneath him and provide pleasure through light nibbling and coddling. In other words, actual humans were trained to act as sexual minnows in the emperor’s private pond. No word on how long these tiddlers had to hold their breath, but assume it was on the longer side.

4. Road-Side Sex Stops

Everybody has those urges that seem so desperate, they must be filled immediately – it’s a normal part of being a horny human. But for those in Ancient Rome with money and power to spare, these urges could be fed however they pleased. The most creative outlet was surely the road-side sex stops, set up along whichever street or riverbank the lucky member of aristocracy happened to pass through. These were quite literally tents that would be prepared ahead of the wealthy man’s journey where a male prostitute would lay in waiting to be ravaged before their lord would continue about his stroll. Think of it like a McDonald’s stop, but even more satisfying.

5. Learning by Pictures

Another innovation made handy by the randy Emperor Tiberius, entire rooms in his palaces were devoted to paintings depicting every sex act imaginable in vivid detail. These were not just for decor; Tiberius had these works created for learning purposes. He would reportedly bring in scores of his new male prostitutes to these chambers to learn the finite details of how to please an emperor; that way there could be no question about one’s duty in the bedroom. It was a practice rarely seen before in ancient times, yet oddly one that mirrors the way young gays today learn from their elders via pornography on screen. Guess Tiberius’ gross libido did some good. Many bathhouses had these depictions as well. Pompeii is known to have had many such depictions of sexual acts in their bathhouses.
From: https://dandydicks.com/blog-entry/a-brief-history-of-all-the-gay-shit-that-went-down-in-ancient-rome


Song of the Open Road, I

Song of the Open Road, I
By Walt Whitman

Afoot and light-hearted I take to the open road,
Healthy, free, the world before me,
The long brown path before me leading wherever I choose.

Henceforth I ask not good-fortune, I myself am good-fortune,
Henceforth I whimper no more, postpone no more, need nothing,
Done with indoor complaints, libraries, querulous criticisms,
Strong and content I travel the open road.

The earth, that is sufficient,
I do not want the constellations any nearer,
I know they are very well where they are,
I know they suffice for those who belong to them.

(Still here I carry my old delicious burdens,
I carry them, men and women, I carry them with me wherever I go,
I swear it is impossible for me to get rid of them,
I am fill’d with them, and I will fill them in return.)


No Post Today

I fell asleep before I could write one.


Let Him In

There’s a Stranger at the door,
Let Him in;
He has been there oft before,
Let Him in;
Let Him in, ere He is gone,
Let Him in, the Holy One,
Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son,
Let Him in.

Open now to Him your heart,
Let Him in;
If you wait He will depart,
Let Him in;
Let Him in, He is your Friend,
He your soul will sure defend,
He will keep you to the end,
Let Him in.

Hear you now His loving voice?
Let Him in;
Now, oh, now make Him your choice,
Let Him in;
He is standing at your door,
Joy to you He will restore,
And His name you will adore,
Let Him in.

Now admit the heav’nly Guest,
Let Him in;
He will make for you a feast,
Let Him in;
He will speak your sins forgiv’n.
And when earth ties all are riv’n,
Comfort, rest, you will be giv’n,
Let Him in.


Moment of Zen: Tans


Something to Think About


Jesus never said a word about homosexuality. In all of his teachings about multiple things – He never said that gay people should be condemned. 

Jimmy Carter


Headache


For the first time in quite some time I had a headache last night bad enough that I didn’t feel like blogging.


Southern Baptist Sissies 

On Amazon Video Monday night I watched Southern Baptist Sissies, a Del Shores film production of his acclaimed stage play about four young Southern men grappling with their sexuality. It explores the conflict between the caustic rhetoric of dogmatic religion and the fragile development of adolescent homosexuality while challenging hypocrisy, exposing damage and offering hope. The intimate experience of theatre on the film screen reveals the complicated emotions from all sides–the confused child, the struggling adolescent and the angry and damaged adult.

The powerful message of Del Shores’ Southern Baptist Sissies has unfortunately not diminished in importance since the play received its premiere in 2000. Having been produced extensively in regional theaters throughout the country, the work about the crises of faith suffered by four gay young Baptist men has now been given a cinematic treatment, albeit of a limited kind. Shore filmed a recent Los Angeles stage production, incorporating footage shot both in front of live audiences and without. The results are technically proficient even while displaying the inherent limits of filmed theater.

Set in Texas, the story follows four boys from childhood to their early twenties as they struggle with their sexuality in varying ways. Mark (Emerson Collins), who serves as narrator, questions the Baptist church that preaches love and forgiveness while decrying homosexuality; Benny (Willam Belli) fully embraces his gayness, growing up to become a flamboyant drag queen entertainer; TJ (Luke Stratte- McClure) desperately tries to deny who he is, eventually getting married to a woman; and Andrew (Matthew Scott Montgomery), the most troubled of the group, wrestles with the conflicting demands of his faith and his sexuality with ultimately tragic results.

Serving as a Greek chorus of sorts are the barflies Peanut (Leslie Jordan), an older gay man, and his best friend, the hard-drinking Odette (Dale Dickey), who humorously discuss their lives and comment on the proceedings during numerous sessions at a gay bar. 

There are also many amusing moments, including a series of confessional monologues by the young men about their burgeoning sexuality. One, describing how he used to masturbate to pictures of the boy band ‘N Sync, comments, “I tried switching from Justin to Britney once, but I lost focus.” But the chief fun comes from the veteran scene stealers Jordan and Dickey, who beautifully blend humor and pathos in their many scenes together.

I laughed so much throughout most of the film. Also, the music is wonderful as they sing old standard hymns, to which I found myself singing along. It’s an incredibly emotional film, and if you grew up in a southern church, you will see yourself in these boys. You might also even see your mama in their mamas. While I laughed through most of the film, I cried at the end. The most emotion comes at the end of the movie, but it won’t be a surprise, you’ll see what’s coming a mile away. While the final scenes are predictable, the emotions are still there.

 


Song of Myself, XI

Song of Myself, XI
Walt Whitman, 1819 – 1892

Twenty-eight young men bathe by the shore,
Twenty-eight young men and all so friendly;
Twenty-eight years of womanly life and all so lonesome.

She owns the fine house by the rise of the bank,
She hides handsome and richly drest aft the blinds of the window.

Which of the young men does she like the best?
Ah the homeliest of them is beautiful to her.

Where are you off to, lady? for I see you,
You splash in the water there, yet stay stock still in your room.

Dancing and laughing along the beach came the twenty-ninth bather,
The rest did not see her, but she saw them and loved them.

The beards of the young men glisten’d with wet, it ran from their long hair,
Little streams pass’d over their bodies.

An unseen hand also pass’d over their bodies,
It descended trembling from their temples and ribs.

The young men float on their backs, their white bellies bulge to the sun, they do not ask who seizes fast to them,
They do not know who puffs and declines with the pendant and bending arch,
They do not think whom they souse with spray.


Vermont Pride

Yesterday, I went to Vermont Pride in Burlington. There wasn’t much to it. The parade itself lasted about 20 minutes. There were a fair number of booths at the festival but not much to them either. “Northern Decadence,” which was $5 to get into, was merely a few breweries and cideries giving tastes of their wares and then Ben & Jerry’s was giving away ice cream. I had expected food to be part of it as well. I did get carded though to get in, but then these two much older ladies behind me got carded too, so I’m guessing they carded everyone to get in to Northern Decadence.

It was nice that a lot of the political candidates were in the parade, not something that anyone would dream of doing in Alabama. I had a good time overall, even if it seemed to be mostly lesbians and dogs at the parade and festival. There were a few cute guys, just a small percent of the people there. I think kids outnumbered the gay guys there.


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