homophobia and small towns

New Release: The Rainbow Detective Agency; The Wedding; Bus Driver Slams Kids with Gay Dads; "Divine" Had a Chainsaw; Do Gay Men Worry Too Much About Aging?

Bus Driver Slams Kids with Gay Dads

This is why Tony and I choose to live in New Hope, PA, because it is, and has been for years, a gay enclave on the East Coast. It’s like Provincetown, or WeHo, with a huge concentration of LGBT people and very progressive mainstream people.

Not everyone makes the same choices, and I give those people credit for being brave enough to endure small town mainstream USA. Unfortunately, they have to deal with some serious discrimination. Some school bus driver wielding a bible thought it was her duty to let the child of two gays dads know how she feels about that.

From the dad’s POV…

Just this week our 15-year-old son’s bus driver was listening to her “Christian” radio station while driving the school bus, giving him religious propaganda — in the form of a comic book — with Jesus as Superman and the rest of us poor citizens of Gotham living a dark dreary life until we accept the Man of Steel as our Lord and savior.  Why has she taken it upon herself to volunteer this information? He already subscribes to all the teenage angst: attempting to fit in, questioning his parents’ beliefs and doubting his self confidence. As my son listened to the religious Sermon on the Mount…or rather the Sermon on the Bus, he discussed with the driver that he had two fathers. She imparted her wisdom unto him; she doesn’t have a problem with homosexuals, but “they are not blessed, and they will go to hell.”

And there you have it. 

You can read the rest here. It’s a painful story, but filled with insight, about what it’s like to be living in the heart of the mainstream if you’re considered a “gay” family. And, this happened in New Jersey, not somewhere in the deep south. It can happen anywhere.  

“Divine” Had a Chainsaw

I remember the first time I learned about “Divine.” I was in high school and didn’t know much about the gay community or culture. At the time, I had no idea how important Divine was to gay culture or the impact she would continue to have so many years later.

Here’s John Waters on Divine…

I think he changed drag queens forever. RuPaul’s show wouldn’t be there. RuPaul started a long time ago, I’ve got to give him some credit, and RuPaul also has a great look out of drag, something that Divine struggled with. Except towards the end, when he wore men’s suits and looked like a very handsome, distinguished man…His legacy was that he made all drag queens cool. They were square then, they wanted to be Miss America and be their mothers. Divine frightened drag queens because he would show up with a chainsaw and [makeup artist] Van Smith would put fake scars on his face, wearing mini skirts when you’re 300 pounds. He broke every rule. And now every drag queen, every one that’s successful today is cutting edge.”

You can check this out here. 

Do Gay Men Worry Too Much About Aging?

Hell yes. I do. I haven’t had a carb since last May. I eat salad at least two nights a week. I haven’t had pizza, donuts, or ice cream in over a year. I run four miles every morning, plus work out. I will, indeed, have cosmetic surgery when the time comes. (I’ve already had one thing done.) And I’m not too fond of celebrating birthdays anymore. 

Evidently, I’m not the only gay man who feels this way. Here’s a quote by John Grant…

This aging thing is quite strange. I don’t want to generalize too much, but gay men worry about aging a lot more than other men, from what I can tell.

Youth is prized above all things — the beauty of youth — and I know a lot of gay men who are very, very obsessed with keeping young.

I don’t understand it in most of their cases. I think older men are super sexy. The ‘beauty of youth’ thing, I totally get that. But by God! I would not want to be where I was in my 20s. I was clueless!”

I had a friend who used to say, “You’re young for a short time and old for a very long time.” And he was a gay man, too. When he died, he had them make him ten years younger on his tombstone. I swear that’s the absolute truth. I never knew his real age until he died. And I once went to a birthday party for a gay friend that his straight sister threw for him. It was a surprise party. But the surprise was on him. He told everyone he was 55, when the huge happy birthday banner hanging at the party read, “Happy 65th Birthday.” It was NOT a happy moment for him, but very amusing for the rest of us.

You can read the rest here. 

Side note: I do, however, have a little Dove Chocolate every now and then. It compensates for everything else 🙂

Rainbow Detective Agency: The Wedding

Here’s a link to my new release in the Rainbow Detective Agency. It’s a full length novel. I think it runs 62,000 words. The link will lead you to Smashwords. I’ll post more links to web sites as I get them. It takes a while.