Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Growing Up Gay and Amish in America


Last night I was sent a book entitled “The Literary Party:  Growing up Gay and Amish in America” by the author James Schwartz.  It is a collection of poetry and essays that deals with growing up as a gay boy in the very conservative Amish community.  A community in which homosexuality is strictly forbidden, as quoted from the Bible, and coming out means being excommunicated and shunned from your family and community.

In his book James deals with issues ranging from growing up in the Amish community, realizing he was gay, sex, gay clubs, politics and love to mention but a few.  Also, perhaps more amusingly, what it takes to take a horse and buggy to a gay club.  He deals with these issues in the form of beautifully constructed poetry and poignant essays.  I have been sent many books since I started my blog and must admit that I rarely read them, but this book was different:  I literally finished reading the book before my 9am meeting this morning and plan on reading it again.

Do yourself a favor and get your hands on a copy.  It gives you a unique insight into a person breaking free from a suffocating and restrictive environment to discover who he is and provides a sense of optimism that maybe one day the Amish community will become more enlightened and accepting of LGBT people in their community.


You can purchase a copy from Amazon.com by clicking HERE

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

My Cat from Hell.


Let me tell you a secret.  Some days I am terrified of my cats.  They are vengeful little fucks who always find new innovative ways to take years of my overall life expectancy.  Don’t be fooled by their fury cute exterior, inside they hold grudges and plot evil little plans for payback.  And with payback I mean creating situations that could be lethal for you.  But the vengeful little pussies are bright bastards too.  You see, they know exactly what plausible deniability means.  Hence, they create potential deadly scenarios for us that could never be directly traced back to them.  So if your neighbors find you dead and decomposing on the floor it will always look like you had an "accident".  A few weeks ago Killer Pussy and her clowder coordinated just such a plot and it caused us 14 hours of unadulterated terror.
That Sunday night started out like any other.  The weekend was winding down and hubby and I were relaxing on the couch watching movies.  The fortress was locked and armed and we felt pretty safe and secure.  The bunnies were merely hopping around doing their best to be cute and all felt fine and right in the world.  At around 9pm I realized that none of the five cats were around and there was some commotion going on at our front door.  On closer inspection I saw what the upheaval was about and that was when our nice and relaxing Sunday evening took a turn for the worst.

All five cats were sitting outside the glass front door playing, or so it seemed, with something.  And that something was a fucking snake!  In this world there are only two living things that I have no problem having killed, and those two things are snakes and spiders.  I am utterly terrified of both!  Living in the suburbs a snake in our yard was the absolute last thing I ever would have expected to find. Especially not a Rinkhals Spitting Cobra!  But that was exactly what Killer Pussy and her minions found and now were throwing around in front of my front door.  The fact that they were playing with a venomous snake that could kill us all was mortifying.  But at least there was a barrier between me and the snake, I thought, and that caused me some comfort.  But that comfort would soon be vaporized!
My cats know my worst fears and unfortunately for me they like to exploit it and scare the living shit out of me.  So naturally they brought the snake inside the house.  This involved some screaming.  Well, actually it involved  A LOT of screaming! The cobra was lying on the floor in our living room and we were standing on the couch screaming our lungs out “Take that fucking thing outside.  For fuck sake KILL IT!  KILL IT NOW!”  I swear that I could hear Killer Pussy laughing over our screaming.  After a few minutes, that felt like an eternity I might add, the snake finally appeared to be dead.  I mustered up all the courage I had to go and pick the ungodly creature up with my bare hands because I was suffering from PTSD and wasn't thinking clearly.  In retrospect I could have died but clearly didn't because I am writing this.  By now the snake was limp and seemed to have died.  I took a plastic bag, put Satan’s serpent in it and then tied it closed and placed the abomination into the kitchen dustbin.  I then went to the bathroom to compose myself seeing as I looked and sounded like an insane asylum escapee. I mean really you guys, I picked up a snake with my bare hands.  Sane people don't do things like that and they also don't whisper "oh god have mercy" ten billion times while doing so.

After the snake was out of sight and dead we finished watching the movie and then went to bed.  The next morning hubby asked me where I had thrown away the snake.  I told him in the kitchen dustbin.  He looked at me like I just raped the Virgin Mary.  The snake was dead and I failed to understand why he seemed mad at me.  Then it happened and I understood exactly what he meant.  Hubby came running screaming out of the kitchen “Oh. Dear. God.  IT”S NOT DEAD!”  He screamed.  I screamed.  Everybody screamed!  For a brief moment I considered leaving the house with only my PJ’s on my back and never returning.  Then I realized how crazy that would be and then my life flashed in front of my eyes.  In that moment I also realized that my life is pretty boring and made a mental note to be a more interesting person from 2014 onward.  Then the adrenalin kicked in and I rushed into fight-or-flight mode.
The rational side of my brain started working at light speed.  I ran outside grabbed the BBQ thongs yelled at hubby to get a spade and then I had a standoff with the spitting cobra.  There was no time to grab my diving mask to protect my eye and I decided that should that asshole spit at me I will make it suffer.  A very delicate and intricate dance between me and the cobra followed.  After several failed attempts to grab it with the tongs I finally got it.  It was the most disgusting experience of my life!  Also, I peed myself a little.  As the fucker was squirming and curling around the tongs it felt like my skin was literally crawling and I had to concentrate very hard not to throw the thong as far away from me as I could.  I managed to take it outside and I fucking Quentin Tarantino’d its ass with a spade.  This time I made damn sure it was indeed dead!  Like in four pieces dead!

I hacked the snake into four pieces in a primal and very violent cathartic manner.  All the while the cats were watching me kill it and Killer Pussy gave me that look that says “Don’t fuck with me again.”  Till today I am not sure what I did to piss her off.  More concerning, however, is the fact that I have no idea where she got the snake.  And you know what they say, if there is one there probably are more.  This has caused me to be very cautious when walking in our garden.  Also seeing that we are not going away for the holiday in December and staying home, I view Killer Pussy’s action as cruel and unusually harsh punishment.  I mean summer just started and most of the snakes will now have come out of hibernation.  Cats really are assholes and I really don't like being threatened with snakes.  My bladder can't stand it!

(You can Like Killer Pussy's Facebook Fan Page by clicking HERE).

Till next time.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Adoption Screening: The Penultimate Phase.

In the next couple of weeks hubby and I will be completing the final phase of our adoption screening process.  We are super excited to get it done and dusted and for the waiting game to begin.  Well, not really.  I hate waiting and I have been known to lack the virtue that is patience.  But I am working on that.  And with working on that I mean I am trying not to interfere with processes in an effort to speed them up and I am trying to let things happen naturally.

However, to let go and let God is not something that is in my nature and being a bit of a control freak burdened with optimism and a sense of purpose, I tend to be proactive to the point of extreme annoyance.  Just ask my husband; he has had to put up with my shit for fifteen years.  He gets me and understands many of my eccentricities and has the patience of a guy called Job from the Bible.  I had to Google the last bit and the search term was “who was that patient guy from the Bible”.  I am embarrassed to say that I never paid much attention in Bible class.  But I digress…
Last week hubby and I went in to our adoption agency to write our psychometric tests.  We were scheduled to take these tests for two hours.  We ended up completing them in less time.  There were only two tests and the first one focused mainly on our emotional states, how we deal with stress, dependency issues, socialization, self-image and possible pathology among others.

The second test dealt solely with our marriage covering everything from our sex life, finances, perceived roles, children, religion, conflict and family.  I think one of the reasons we finished the second test so fast is because we did not really have to sit and ponder over the questions or the answers.  We know each other well enough by now not to have to speculate over what the other would do.  Our marriage is solid and, for the most part, I believe that we are able to deal with issues, if and when they arise, in a mature and constructive manner.  After all we have honest and open conversations about issues and trust and respect each other enough so that we don’t have any secrets from one another.
Don’t get me wrong.  We do not have the perfect marriage by any means, as I don’t think one exists.  Being human we are all flawed and make mistakes.  It’s normal.  But having been a spectator to some other people’s marriages I am truly lucky to be in one that is in such a good place.  Sure there are things that we can work on but there always will be – it’s called growth.

As for our individual tests that is a whole other ball game.  There were questions like “Have you ever felt like you wanted to kill yourself? Do you think people are watching you?  Do you sometimes need to take something to cope?”  Going through the test hubby at one point said “Paranoid much?” and we both had a giggle.  But, then there were the other questions that caused me to feel rather confused.  For instance “Are you sometimes scared of your own thoughts or ideas?” and I had to sit there and think about it.  Sure sometimes when I am driving and a taxi cuts me off I imagine it veering off the road and bursting into flames.  But does that qualify?
Also, I have been in boring meetings before and imagined how cool it would be if we could reenact a scene from the Hitchcock film The Birds.  But then I would think about all the poor birds and how they would die a cruel senseless death all because some asshole in the meeting was laboring a point to death.  Then I would think that I should really focus on the problem.  I would then imagine the guy who is still laboring the same point but this time with subtitles explaining how he is an idiot and how he loves his own voice.

Finally, I would get bored and eat some breath mints.  Sure, my thoughts can be scary and super judgmental at times but that is called being imaginative.  Having a lively imagination is what enables me to get through some rather dreary shit and helps me take a break from analytic thinking and keeps me creative.  Without creativity my soul would wither and die.  You don’t want my soul to die?  Do you? If you do then you are an asshole! And this was basically my train of thought throughout answering most of the questions on my first psychometric test.
Next week we have our personal interviews with our Social Worker where the results of our first psychometric tests will be discussed.  I am really looking forward to that.  You know, so that I can be told how completely normal or completely abnormal I am.  It should be fun.  Then after that we have our home visit where our Social Worker will make sure that our home is child safe.

Child safe is like animal safe just cleaner, more restricted with pool nets, child safe drawer locks and making sure there are no sharp knives lying around or razor blades or crack pipes on the carpets.  Personally, I believe that if we could bunny proof our house then child proofing will be a breeze.  Then after what I believe will be a thorough inspection, our marriage psychometric tests will be discussed with us.  This too should be interesting.  Mostly for our social worker I presume.

To be honest, it feels like we have been busy with the adoption process now for ages but in reality it has only been three months.  We are also not sure how long it will be before our placement will be made.  I firmly believe that as adoptive parents we don’t choose our child but that the child finds and chooses us.  It is weird to explain, but I feel in my heart that the right child will find us.  It might be weeks, it might be months or, god forbid, it might even take years but when it happens we will be a perfect fit.  We will then be a family of three.  (Well technically we will be a family of eleven but I was told that I should not count our animals because “normal” people don’t do things like that).

To follow our adoption journey just click on #adoption to read all about it.


Till next time.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

A Gay Teen and Homeless

The L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center released an emotional new video this week that documents the first week of a gay teen's life after his parents discovered that he was gay and threw him out of their home.  It is emotional and heartbreaking.  The film is titled "Any Given Tuesday".  Have a look.
Written & Directed by Trent Kendrick,  Produced by Michael Fossat, Cinematography by Gaul Porat, Music by Fernando Arroyo Garcia-Lascurain

Monday, October 14, 2013

Gay Confessions

There is nothing more venomous than a bitter old queen with an axe to grind.  They say hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, but a rancorous queen with a vendetta and the morals and ethics of a crack whore who has run out of smack can be far more hazardous.  Now throw Social Media into the mix and you have the perfect storm of bitchiness, slander, malicious gossip, debauchery and character assassination.

There are some seriously fucked up people out there.  And yes y’all, there are also some really pissed off queens out there too who like nothing better than pissing on other people’s parades.  Perhaps it is out of jealousy or maybe it is born from insecurity, who knows.  Either way, some disgruntled self-hating queen recently decided to create a Facebook page called Gay Confessions SA and this caused some major unhappiness in the gay community mostly because it was utter smut, tried to create some controversy in the community, slandered some people (including myself) and was mostly based on anonymous lies.  I know the LGBT community don’t always get a long, but seriously you guys?  What the fuck is wrong with some people?

We all know that Social Media, apart from being an easy way to connect, also has its dark crevices where sinister motives lurk.  Not everyone on Social Media is all rainbows and butterflies.  Some people are callous and vindictive bullies.  Now don’t fool yourself.  It’s not only children who fall prey to cyber bullying, adults do as well.  Only when it comes to adults the bullying is slightly more sophisticated and many times much more vicious.  Not all cyber bullies have the guts to belittle, taunt and slander their victims in person.  Some create fake profiles and recently a whole page was created solely for this purpose.  Gay Confessions SA was conceived from a demented mind and was clearly aimed at discrediting and embarrassing certain members of the South African gay community.  Its aim was to slander them disguised as “anonymous confessions” which was the perfect recipe to bring out the absolute worst in our community.

Now, is it just me who thinks that the person(s) behind that page and the participants thereof were cowards?  I use the past tense because Facebook has shut down that page twice already for violating their terms of service, yet it resurfaces every time like a stubborn yeast infection.  It is very easy to write insults, accusations and blatant lies in an “anonymous confession” without taking any responsibility for what you’re saying and/or not caring who you are hurting in the process.  It’s easy to slander people and to assassinate their characters on line while hiding behind the anonymity of a faceless Facebook page that is devoid of any accountability.  But what is in it for the perpetrators of these devious, baseless and malicious “confessions”?  And what is in it for the creator of that page?  What do they get out of it and what do they want to achieve?

Well, perhaps the answer is simple.  I guess it makes them feel better about themselves and their mediocre lives.  How sad and unfulfilling their lives must be that they feel compelled to live vicariously through others albeit in a very pitiable way.  If you have to break others down to make yourself feel better, perhaps therapy might be in order or a dose of self-esteem.  I know we in the LGBT community don’t always get along and that is fine.  I mean you can’t like everyone you meet, right?  But if there is someone that gets your tits in twist why not just ignore them?  I mean really, I don’t like drinking banana milkshakes but I don’t force myself to drink one just so that I can tell everybody how bad it tastes.  So why do it with people you dislike.  Sure some people are assholes and that is why I avoid them.  Why can’t other people do the same?

I must be honest; I also do like the odd bit of gossip every now and again.  I most certainly am not above that.  I do listen to it and I also sometimes participate in it.  But there is a line that should not be crossed and Gay Confessions clearly crossed that line.  For one, I not only blame the creator(s) of that page for the damage they are doing to our community I also blame the people who liked and participated in that page:  The people who submit their anonymous confessions and the people who consume and enable the loathsomeness which was that page.  You are part of the problem.  Do you even realize that?  Maybe you should ask yourself this: if some of those posts were about you would you still be happily supporting that page?  If you read shit about yourself that is not true, would you be fine with it?  If you answered NO to any of these questions, why should other people be?

As for whoever’s brainchild this Gay Confession Page is/was , you are a pathetic asshole.  And I mean that with all the contempt it deserves.  If you find joy in slandering people and doing it either for the fun of it or to settle some scores you should take a long hard look at your own life.  Are you proud of who and what you are?  Are you proud of what you have become?  Do you find delight in breaking people down?  You are putting out so much negativity into the world all of which will eventually come back to you.  Perhaps it is time that you stop fucking with other people’s lives and start focusing on having one of your own.  You know, like in the real world and not on your fucking computer.  Some fresh air might just do you some good.

Yes, hell hath no fury like a woman scorned but a disgruntled old queen can be far more dangerous.  Unfortunately, the gay community is full of jealous people and we so do like to fight amongst ourselves, don’t we?  It is pathetic really.  This Facebook page embodied everything in the LGBT community that I dislike and even though I cannot be sure that it will not resurface again but if it does and you reading this are one of the people who participated in it, I only hope you realize what it says about you.  I know that we in the LGBT community cannot all get a long but can’t we just stop being such bitches and mind our own fucking business for once?  How can we expect the rest of the world to respect us if we cannot even respect each other?  Maybe next time when we have a Gay Pride we should stop and really think for a moment about what that means.  Are we really “proud” to be a member of the LGBT community when we treat one another like this?


Till next time.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Monday, October 7, 2013

Famous Gays in History

Some people believe the world would be a better place without gay people.  But can you imagine the world without the most famous gay people in history.  It doesn't matter with whom you sleep - It matters what you DO!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

I Don’t Have Gay Pride

Pride season upon is in South Africa and with four Prides to choose from this year one would say that we are spoiled for choice.  But are we really?  Last weekend there was Soweto Pride.  Pretoria Pride and The People’s Pride are taking place this weekend and Joburg Pride the end of the month.  This year we have four Pride events that are supposed to bring the LGBT community together, events that should show our community’s solidarity and events that are supposed to bring awareness to LGBT issues.  But instead of doing this, this year’s Pride season has done more to divide our LGBT community than ever before.  There has been infighting, scandals, alleged death threats, social media campaigns that have done more harm than good, all of which caused many queer folk to wonder whether Pride is still relevant and causing many others to consider boycotting Pride altogether.  I am one of those queers who decided that I will not attend any of the Pride events this year, and this is why.

The last couple of years I have seen Joburg Pride on a gradual downward slide.  The event became more of a money making scheme exploiting gay folk rather than the Pride event it should have been.  All of this led to some serious questions being asked in the gay community as to how the Pride event’s finances were being managed, whether the event still had any importance in our community and why the event seemed to have been getting more poorly organized each year.  Many people, including myself, became unhappy and started not attending the event.  Then earlier this year Joburg Pride’s board resigned and all hell broke loose.

A group of well meaning LGBT people decided to organize a new Joburg Pride and with their first public meeting it was clear that they faced a rocky road ahead.  Since that disastrous initial meeting many of the initial organizers have dropped out and the activist group 1 in 9 decided to form The People’s Pride and distance themselves from Joburg Pride.  There was also the incident regarding a certain sponsor, of which we dare not speak, which caused a huge uproar in the gay community leading to certain gay websites publishing contradictory articles about the debacle, threats of lawsuits ensued and some not so friendly mudslinging occurred on social media.

In the end Joburg Pride, that was supposed to take place last weekend, was postponed/ cancelled at the eleventh hour.  One of the senior organizers claimed that, amongst other things, she received death threats, was the victim of intimidation and safety concerns of the Pride participants on the marching route and location as the reasons why the event was “postponed”.  Whether Joburg Pride was indeed just “postponed” and not actually cancelled we will have to wait and see.  I am not holding my breath and due to the obvious unprofessionalism and lack of proper organization I will not be attending it, even if it does indeed take place.  Besides who cancels an event, only two days before it was suppose to take place, without even informing the talent they had hired to preform at the event anyway?  Some of these people only learned about this through Facebook and NOT from the organizers.  So instead of spending my money on shitty overpriced food and booze to fatten the new Joburg Pride's coffers, I will spend my hard earned gay money somewhere else.

As for The People’s Pride, it is more of a political demonstration than a Pride event.  It was organized by a group of activists who caused a major incident at last year’s Joburg Pride in which people were injured.  Their tactics last year seemed militant and disruptive and even though I do believe their intention was to create awareness and was not malicious, the manner in which they went about it was questionable.  Personally, I do believe there is place for the politicization of LGBT issues that we believe are not being addressed by government but there is a huge difference between a Gay Pride March and a Political Demonstration.  Sure they are not mutually exclusive but their intentions are quite different.  Also not being clear on exactly what The People’s Pride short term and long term objectives are, I don’t feel comfortable attending their Pride either.

As for Pretoria Pride I believe that it was incorrectly named.  It should have been called Babylon Pride, because that is exactly what it is.  It is a “Pride” event that was organized by the owners of Babylon nightclub and much of the event centers more around the nightclub than the city the Pride event is suppose to represent.  Even the location of the Pride march is conveniently located within a stone’s throw from Babylon nightclub.  They also do not even have an original theme for the event.  The closest they came was “Gay by birth.  Proud by choice”.  Honestly guys, did you steal that off a gay bumper sticker.  Really?

Seeing as “Pretoria Pride” does not appear to me to be a legitimate Pride event but is, in my opinion, nothing more than a cleverly architected Public Relations and Marketing ploy by Babylon I do not plan to participate in it either.  I mean honestly, doesn't Babylon make enough money off the gay community already?  Do they really need a bogus Gay Pride to line their pockets any further?  Besides, I don’t even consider Centurion to be part of Pretoria anyway.  If I wanted to participate in a marketing event I would go to one of VW family days.  But this is just my opinion.

So this year we have four Pride events none of which I attended or plan to attend.  I know I did not say anything about Soweto Pride and the reason is simple - I don’t live in Soweto!   Besides my husband and I were hosting my father-in-law’s 60th birthday party, so we wouldn’t have been able to attend it even if we wanted to.  Whether I will attend any Pride events in future, I just don’t know.  If things keep on going the way it is now, I don’t think I will and that will be a crying shame.  At the moment I don’t have gay pride, and it is a pity because I am proud of who we are, how far we have come and I know how far we still need to go.  Let’s hope that one of these days Gay Pride will be restored to an event we can all be proud of – an event we will be proud to be a part of.


Till next time.

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