Month: December 2012

2012: 50 Gays Who Came Out This Year

It seems that 2012 was a big year for gays coming out, at least for the following 50 people. Some didn’t surprise me too much. I’d either already figured or heard through the proverbial grapevine. Others did make me stop and think.

As a rule, I’m not fond of this huge pressure we tend to put on gay people to come out. I think that’s a personal thing, and no one should be forced or intimidated to come out. Privacy is also a huge concern nowadays with social media, even if you’re not a celeb. I never actually had the big “coming out” speech. I always knew who I was, I never lied about who I was, and I minded my own business.

“The fact is, I’m gay.” Anderson Cooper’s long-awaited announcement sums what it meant to come out in 2012. Again and again we heard the same sentiment — from pop singer Mika’s equally anticipated confirmation, “If you ask me am I gay, I say yeah,” to actor Andrew Rannells casually remarking about relating to a gay character, “I am gay in real life, so I definitely get it.” — proving that coming out today is in many cases a non-event, and certainly secondary to other achievements.

This one didn’t surprise me. In the same respect it never mattered to me one way or the other what his sexual preference was. It still doesn’t; I think he’s the best at what he does. And it’s nice to see that this is actually a “non-event” in many cases.

Although sometimes it is surprising when you had no idea someone was gay. I didn’t know this until I read the article.

Sherman Hemsley, the actor famous for his role as George Jefferson on All in the Family and The Jeffersons, never came out in life.

Hemsley didn’t actually come out, so this article is a little misleading. If you want to get technical, he was “outed” posthumously against his wishes. All I know is I feel a little guilty. I never thought of him as a good actor. In light of this information I now have a new level of respect for his acting abilities and what he did with his life…cuz it can’t be easy playing straight. It couldn’t have been easy keeping his sexuality a secret either. I can’t even imagine.

This one just leaves me speechless and makes me wonder how dumb they think we are.

“I am gay in real life, so I definitely get it,” actor Andrew Rannells said about his newly out character Elisha on HBO’s Girls.

It was the first time Rannells, who was nominated for a Tony for his Broadway turn in The Book of Mormon and also plays gay on NBC’s The New Normal.

It doesn’t always work this way. And I’m glad it doesn’t. But in this case was there ever any doubt?

Now this one below surprised me as much as George Jefferson. I’m actually a fan of Honey-boo-boo, and I wouldn’t have guessed Uncle Poodle was gay if I’d seen him on the street. At least not until we made eye contact anyway. The eyes are always the dead give-away for me. As a side note, I would never be attracted to Andrew Rannells if I met him on the street or in a club. I’m sure he’s a great guy, but not my type by any means. But if I met Uncle Poodle I’d be so attracted I might be rendered speechless, which doesn’t happen often.

 Alana’s Uncle Lee, affectionately called “Uncle Poodle,” became a breakout star after appearing, open, out and proud, alongside his supportive family. And like Rosie Pierri, Thompson keeps his sexual philosophy real: “I’m gay, but I’m as redneck as I can get. If you want people to accept you, you have to show you don’t have a problem with yourself and just be up front about who you are. If you do, you earn people’s respect.”

For those who don’t know, I have another blog on Word Press that’s basically everything I import from this blog. I keep it for specific reasons, and I might move there one day permanently. I recently had a comment from a young gay man who seemed slightly upset that I’d criticized “The New Normal” and other network TV shows for always portraying the stereotypical gays…men and women…for the sake of ratings and entertainment. And I tried to explain to him I’m not knocking the stereotypes at all. I’m not knocking effeminate gay men. I’d just like to see more gay men of all kinds represented in the mainstream. Because yes, there are “redneck” gay men. And all kinds of other gay men. Just as all groups or minorities have different types, so to speak. But if you watch reruns of “Sex In The City,” all you’re going to see is a very small segment of the gay community. And it’s not a segment with which I can identify as a man just as I’m sure someone like Bill Cosby couldn’t identify with the African-American stereotypes we used to see all the time in the mainstream. Thankfully, that’s ended for African Americans (for the most part). I think we’ll see the end of gay stereotypes as well. I just hope it’s in my lifetime.

Someone told me “The New Normal” was not renewed, and if this is true I’m not surprised. I tried to watch and I tried to give it a chance. But it just didn’t work for me.

A huge bravo for JoCasta Zamarripa for coming out as bisexual. The B in LGBT is probably the most unrecognized group in the world, and also the most underestimated. They tend to take a lot more unfair criticism as well, from both the straight and gay communities.

Wisconsin State Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa also helped elevate the B in LGBT this year when she came out as bisexual. And it was all in the name of full transparency, said the Democrat “It has always been my goal in office to be transparent and honest with my constituents. But before the primary in 2010, I didn’t have the valor and courage to come out. I feel remiss that I didn’t come out then.”

It’s also interesting to see someone in politics come out. As I stated earlier, I don’t think we should pressure anyone into coming out. But if you are living a public life this is one of the prices you pay sometimes. And Washington is probably the second most closeted town outside Hollywood when it comes to people guarding their public images.

In any event, it’s an interesting article and there were a few more surprises for me. You can get there from the link I provided above and read them all in detail at Towerload.

  

Top Ten LGBT Stories of 2012; Don’t Call Me Queer

Here’s a list of some top ten LGBT news worthy items from 2012.

You can read the article here.

I posted about a few myself, like the Frank Ocean story, which focused on gay rappers breaking stereotypes. As a huge fan of rap music, I follow this sort of thing with interest all the time.

R&B artist Frank Ocean, best known as part of the hip-hop collective Odd Future, made waves in the music world when he used a Tumblr post to reveal that his first love was another man. While the critically acclaimed Channel Orange artist hasn’t elaborated on his specific orientation, the revelation rocked the hip-hop world, drawing largely supportive responses from fans and insiders (including Jay-Z and 50 Cent). 

I think I posted about this one with Kirk Cameron, too, but I could be wrong. All I know is I used to like him when I was a kid; not so much anymore.

Kirk Cameron’s “Unnatural” Bigotry Lest he fade into obscurity, former Growing Pains star Kirk Cameron reaffirmed his antigay opinions, calling homosexuality “unnatural” in a CNN interview. While Stephen Baldwin thought Cameron was on point, other celebrities, including Debra Messing and Cameron’s Growing Pains costars Tracey Gold and Alan Thicke, heartily disagreed. At an October speech at conservative Liberty University, Cameron played the victim card, saying that he seemed “to have blasphemed the god of political correctness, and [my critics] tried to drag me out into the public square and crucify me.”

In any event, it’s an interesting article that covers some of the most publicized LGBT news items this year. Not all, but it’s worth checking out.

Don’t Call Me Queer

One of the things I spoke about this year that I didn’t like was how I started seeing LGBTQ turn up everywhere instead of LGBT. At first I didn’t even know what the “Q” stood for. This happened a lot in publishing, especially in blog posts. It also happened a lot on the fringe. And I never considered myself on the fringe in a social sense. In publishing, yes. My fiction is on the fringe. But not in my daily life. And I don’t intend to start doing that now.

And while I never said I was against it and I believe anyone who wants to be referred to as “Queer” has every right to be referred to as “Queer,” if you call me a “Queer” you’d better start running. As a writer I believe in the power of words. And I do get why people believe that if we all start using the word “Queer” it will remove the stigma. (They say the same things about the “N” word, but I didn’t embrace that either.) However, words are powerful and can affect us in ways we don’t even know…subconsciously. And for anyone who has ever been called a “Queer” in a negative way…most of us…it conjures up all kinds of fresh hells they don’t like to revisit.

So if you want to be called “Queer,” I think that’s great. More power to you. But don’t expect me to embrace it. And, so far I haven’t seen it catching on all that much. In fact, I haven’t seen it used in a while. 

Nicest Blogger I Met This Year: Anthony Romero

I met a lot of nice bloggers this year, both gay and straight, male and female. But one guy really stands out as being the nicest, the sweetest, and the most genuine…and that’s because I didn’t expect him to be so nice.

His name is Anthony Romero. And he also writes great stories, too.

A lot of bloggers, especially gay bloggers, can have attitude that goes on for days. Oh yes, I know of what I speak. Nasty little queens with too much attitude and not enough money or talent.

That sweet little Davey Wavey wasn’t so sweet when I found a malware virus from a link to his blog and it took me all morning to get rid of it. And when I was nice enough to e-mail good old Davey Wavey about the malware virus to warn him, I never even received so much as a thank you. I get that. I’m used to that with the Davey Wavey types. They know how to work a crowd but deep down they aren’t the sweetest people on earth.

But this guy, Anthony Romero, truly is just as nice as a blogger can get. And as good looking as he is smart!!

Worst Food Photo of 2012

The worst food photo of 2012…if not of all time…can be found at this link.

I posted about it here.

Can’t post the actual photo now because I don’t take chances with things I’m not sure are public domain.

But it looks a lot like this,

If you eat it I would imagine you’ll need a lot of this stuff,

And the best thing to do would be to put it here,

So you don’t wind up here,

2012 Favorite KDP Self-Published Book: "No More Harvard Debt"

I didn’t have to think too hard to figure out my favorite Kindle Direct Publishing self-published book of 2012. Hands down, it was “No More Harvard Debt,” by Joe Mihalic.

I then read another book he’d written, and loved it just as much.

If all self-published authors were this articulate, this bright, and this *humble* the big six would shut down for good, agents would be querying authors, and we’d all be reading self-published books.

He’s also a consummate blogger.

I actually hesitated before I wrote this post because the author is so humble…and he doesn’t take nearly enough credit for his talent.

In fact, I have seen cheese-dick authors with small start-up e-publishers brag and boast about dreadful books that should have been in the slush pile and they could not even compare to Joe just in writing style alone.

And it was all done by one writer. It didn’t cost him much to do. And all it took was time, talent, and dedication.

Knowing Joe, he’s going to hate this post because he is that humble. And I swear I won’t do it again. But I couldn’t help writing this follow up and letting people know there’s help out there for dealing with student debt, and it’s done very well.

2012 Favorite Book Review for "Fifty Shades of Grey"

When I say this is my favorite book review of 2012 for “Fifty Shades of Grey,” I should probably add it might be my favorite book review of all time. I joke not about this. I’ve mentioned this review before but never actually linked to it until now. If you do a blog search above, you’ll find a few posts.

Brief back story: At first I didn’t like the review. I posted about all that here.

But all that changed fast.

I now I love this book review because it is such a cutting, scathing, head-bashing book review…not to mention looooonnnngggg…it helped me find FSoG before it actually went mainstream, before millions of people started reading FS and talking about it, and before FS turned into one of the biggest books of 2012…if not this decade.

This review not only turned me on to FSoG, it helped me fall in love with it.

It’s also extremely entertaining, as far as reviews go in a general sense.

And that deserves a huge round of applause, a big old gold dart trophy, and all the recognition we can give it.

So let’s hear it for:

REVIEW: Fifty Shades of Grey by E L James

Photo of dart trophy from morguefile.com

2012 Fav Christmas Card From Elisa Rolle…

I’m posting this because it really was my favorite Christmas card this year, and because I sent Elisa a card the week before Christmas and I’m not sure it arrived on time. I’m bad that way. I can get books to publishers weeks before deadlines. If you ask me to do an interview or blog post, I’ll deliver early. I even pay bills ten days in advance.

But ask me to write a Christmas card…or any kind of card…and I become completely kerfuffled.