Good stuff: Keith Olbermann’s “Special Comment” on CA’s Prop 8 (video).
Archive for the 'Team Pink' Category
All of our efforts in Iraq, military and civilian, are handicapped by Americans’ lack of language and cultural understanding. Our [Baghdad] embassy of 1,000 has 33 Arabic speakers, just six of whom are at the level of fluency. In a conflict that demands effective and efficient communication with Iraqis, we are often at a disadvantage. There are still far too few Arab language–proficient military and civilian officers in Iraq, to the detriment of the U.S. mission.
— Iraq Study Group Report, p92 (emphasis added)
Six people in the embassy can speak the language. Six. I sure hope they’re all straight…
But the GAO also noted that nearly 800 dismissed gay or lesbian service members had critical abilities, including 300 with important language skills. Fifty-five were proficient in Arabic, including Copas, a graduate of the Defense Language Institute in California.
— Army dismisses gay Arabic linguist, AP (via MSNBC, emphasis added)
I was strolling down the street a few days ago and noticed this sign for MidAmerica Bank:
Look at that slogan: “Paying a higher rate of attention.” That made me scoff. Oh sure, I thought. How like marketing: to promise some intangible/immeasurable quality, some perceived difference. Rather than paying a higher rate of interest, which costs money, they just give empty slogans.
Except then I remembered why I like my (Chicago) bank:
(Also available in lesbian!)
Sometimes I suppose it’s just a matter of using the right slogan:
Oh, by the way, about that address:
I’m sure it won’t come as a surprise that there is no “Elaine Place” in New York City. But I wonder if there was an Elaine involved in the production of the ad… I remember a time when I was putting together some ads for a magazine, and the sample address I used was “Perkins Lane”.
You gotta leave your mark somehow…
Two years ago, when Bush made noise about banning gay marriage, the subject made me quite emotional. Today, the same actions are barely on my radar.
Fortunately, my friends have stepped into the breech, and I’ve been getting some good e-mail on the subject. I hope they don’t mind if I quote them here.
First is Pech, who makes the following observation:
So, on more than one occasion I’ve seen the equation shown in the pic [above]. And I have to say I just love it, it’s too perfect. It simultaneously points out the stupidity and ignorance of the religious right, but undermines their point as well.
In this society we hold to the idea that men and women are equal, applying rules of simple math, if man + woman = marriage, AND man = woman therefore man + man = marriage, and also woman + woman = marriage.
Joel then sent me this positively Swiftian forward:
Right now there is an issue that is ripping our country apart. It is an issue where one side derides the status quo as nothing more than institutionalized discrimination, while the other side considers it essential to their way of life. If action is not taken on this issue, it is clear that a court will eventually make a decision that will overturn the status quo. When such a decision is handed down it is possible that the rift caused by this issue will threaten the very fabric of our Union. For this reason, action – Constitutional action – is the only option.
In times like these, I turn to our most precious of documents and ask, “What would our Founding Fathers do?” I believe that the answer is clear. When faced with an issue this powerful, this disruptive, this important, they would craft a compromise. This is why, after carefully reading through the Constitution, I am proposing an Amendment that allows gays to 3/5ths marry.
The 3/5ths marriage would give gays 3/5ths of the rights of a straight couple. When a gay person dies, their partner will only be able to inherit 3/5ths of the estate (the extra 2/5ths can go to the government to make up some for some of the tax money lost due to the abolition of the estate tax). Gay couples will only be able to file taxes 60% jointly. If a gay person is in the hospital, their gay partner can be with them for 36 minutes of each hour. And so on.
Both sides will be able to accept this compromise. It will allow gays to marry, but it will clearly establish that the United States considers straight marriage to be superior. Since straight marriage will be 166% as beneficial as gay marriage, it may even cause some gay people to reconsider and opt for traditional straight marriage.
Please, forward this message to your friends and your local media and insist that they contact their Senators and Representatives and let them know that: “3/5ths unions will save our Union!”
Nicely done, guys.
Went to my first gay bar in aaaaaages last night, and was suitably impressed by all the revelry.
Based on the experience, I do have a little tip for some of the gay boys out there:
- If you feel confident enough to jump up on the stage and dance in front of the crowd, you go on with your bad self.
- However, if you feel the need to jump on stage, turn your back to the room, and use the mirror to watch yourself dance in front of the crowd, maybe it’s time to rein it in a bit.
And by “a bit”, I mean “a lot.”
You know, there are those who point to Brokeback Mountain losing out for Best Picture as proof of Hollywood’s underlying homophobia. That may be — we’ll never know — but at least Brokeback fared better than the movie I saw last night, Making Love.
That picture, a 1982 release, actually began with a warning:
(These stills are from The Celluloid Closet a documentary in which Making Love screenwriter reveals an incoming studio head at Fox referred to the film as “a goddamned faggot picture.” What was that about “proud to present” and “applaud its courage” again?)
…that’s how many of the films listed in 101 Must-See Movies for Gay Men I’ve actually seen. But before you decide I’m a poor excuse for both a ‘mo and a movie buff, I’d like to point out that I’ve deliberately avoided some of the author’s choices.
For example, who would have guessed that Jackass: The Movie would have ever appeared in any book with “Must-See” in its name?
So I was sitting down to lunch, looking forward to completing Newsweek’s interview with Bode Miller (fawning post pending — and yay underclothed athlete covers!) when out of the corner of my eye, a face beckoned from a piece of mail.
‘Twas none other than the J.C.Penney Big & Tall catalog:
Does that guy’s face look familiar? I swear it’s Josh Wald, previously
leered at featured in these pages.
Well, I’m here to tell you, folks, I can think of few things more depressing than seeing this achingly hot, tattooed skater boy transformed into proud papa of the Faux family.
OK, that’s not true. Of course I can think of things more depressing. For example, at least it’s not “The Lean Team”:
Every once in awhile, when I’m on a site that has those little “personals” headshots, I play a little game that may indelicately be called “Spot the Homo,” in which I’ll click through to see if a particular smiling boy is a member of the Team.
Such was the case today, when I was on Londonist and encountered this fellow on their home page:
I guessed wrong with him, as you can tell by the “With a: Woman” line (not to be confused with the charming Britishism further down: “Fags: Never”.)
So why do I even mention this? Because if you take a look at this bloke’s profession, you’ll find it’s “Fashion Photo Retoucher.” Fair enough; someone needs to make sure that Lindsay Lohan looks less like, as B puts it, “an emaciated monkey.”
But with that in mind, take a look at this photo again. Is it not terrible? He seems like a good looking guy, yet here there’s one red eye and one blown out by the flash, an uncomfortable shine to the forehead, greasy hair, and let’s not forget the random chick down in the corner (seems to me there’s nothing but downside to including another woman in a personals photo.)
Why would a professional retoucher choose this photo to represent himself? It’s like saying this woman‘s a cosmetologist…
Last night I returned from a bit of a road trip to find an interesting envelope awaiting me. It bore a return address of “IP, Inc.” in North Hollywood, CA and was simply addressed to “J,” with no middle initial, no surname. I’d never seen such a thing.
The contents were equally surprising. Turns out the “IP” is Instinct Publishing, and the pitch was for “Instinct” magazine, a rag for those of the Pink persuasion. (“HELLO!” the letter begins. “You’ve been missing out on the world’s funniest, hottest and most hip gay men’s magazine out there!”)
Ever since I opened the envelope, I’ve been trying to figure out what tipped them off. I’ve racked my brain, and can’t come up with an action that would put me on an exclusively gay mailing list. I’ve never subscribed to a gay magazine (I tend to be unimpressed by them) so the few copies I’ve bought are for cash at the newstand (and I always decline the phone number routine.) I buy gay-themed DVDs the same place I buy almost all my DVDs: Amazon. So yes, Amazon surely knows I’m gay, but they also know my last name.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t particularly care that I’m in somebody’s database somewhere. I’d just like to find out whose… and what I did to get there.
Over the weekend I had a chance to see the trailer for Brokeback Mountain, the upcoming Ang Lee movie about two cowboys (played by Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal) who fall in love.
It actually looked pretty good, which means I’m now nurturing a fragile hope that maybe, just maybe, we’ll get a nice little gay-themed movie that doesn’t involve AIDS, coming out, gay bashing, or circuit parties.
Hey, a guy can dream, can’t he?
From Spain’s lawmakers legalize gay marriage comes this photo and cutline:
A man dances celebrating on the day the Spanish parliament legalized gay marriage during a gay street party in Chueca, the gay area of Madrid, Thursday, June 30, 2005. (Jasper Juinen / AP)
Shirtless guy, check. Guy with questionable shoulder bag, check. Guy with questionable, skirt-like leg covering, check. Rainbow flag, check. Gay marriage, street (?), area, check, check, check.
¿Cómo se dice stereotype en Español?
Here, from that same issue, is a perfect example of what annoys me about the magazines targeted at a gay audience:
The scan/masking job isn’t so great, and I apologize, but I ask you instead to focus on the ad itself: what do you reckon they’re selling?
I’ll update later with the answer.
Update [17:01]: Renamed image file so as not to run afoul of adblockers.
Can you believe that the shirtless, slightly hairy man that promised to have what you want, baby, was selling mortgages? Me neither.
By the way, sorry that took longer than I expected. I was in transit today and actually tried to post from a newly wireless-enabled Iowa rest stop, but I would have had to fill out a registration form and the Sister was ill-pleased as it was.
For a variety of reasons, I very rarely go for magazines targeted at a gay audience. Despite this longstanding policy, I found myself unable to resist a recent issue of the Brit mag “Attitude”, for who should be on the cover but Prime Minister Tony Blair.
I bought the issue, and imagine my surprise when I found inside that not only was Tony featured, but so too were the leaders of the other major parties (that would be the LibDems and Tories, or if you’re the formal type, the Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives.) All were stumping for votes and eager to prove that their parties had important and productive gay members.
I try to imagine Bush on the cover of “The Advocate” with Kerry and Nader inside, all trying to make themselves look like they’re the most gay-friendly, and my brain just shuts down: does not compute, it seems to be saying.
Instead we have things like this recent Houston Chronicle article:
TRENTON, N.J. – A millionaire businessman won New Jersey’s Republican primary Tuesday and will face Democratic Sen. Jon Corzine in November — the state’s first gubernatorial race since James McGreevey resigned in a gay-sex scandal.
Umm, a gay sex scandal? Howzat? Now McGreevey had an extramarital affair (with a man), yes. He may have improperly given his (male) lover a job and/or benefits, true. Yet had he done the same with a woman, would they even call it a sex scandal? No — because the scandal was corruption, not sex.
Clearly, we’ve got some catch-up to do.