Sacred feminine

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Ok, this is one of the oft mentioned themes in this blog, the trouble with accepting one's own sexuality, particularly if that sexuality happens to be non-heterosexual.

On one of the forums I post on, I recently came across someone who referred to a man as "Miss". It was meant to be quite humorous, and it in fact was (at least to me). Anyways, the reaction to this little "joke" was quite heated. Many people regarded the reference as completely disrespectful and quite vulgar even. I was a bit surprised.

I've always had friends (all gay, of course) who have always referred to themselves in the feminine form. "Her", "us girls", "Ms.", "Mrs.", "woman", etc, etc, etc. (In Spanish, gender us much more proliferated into the grammar, so this allows for even more "fun"). . I have to admit that at first I was a little uneasy with my flaming queen buddies. I had always been taught that it was wrong to change the fact that guys were guys and girls were girls, especially turning the masculine to the feminine; this was off limits completely. But when I became better acquainted with my gay pals, well, I realized that they were really great people and that, when you really thought about it, there was really nothing wrong with playing around with gender a bit, it was actually quite fun.

Why do people get so worked up about having fun with gender and gender roles? Why did the guys on the forum freak when the saw that "Miss" post? I think it was fueled by nothing more than Chauvinism. I think that most people are taught (like me) to not associate feminine traits with males, because that's "bad". It's only used for insults and derogatory terms ("sissy", "pansy") and that's about it. Homosexuals are quite Chauvinistic and even use the term "flaming queen" as derogatory. I feel this is a projection of their inability to accept their own sexuality and to embrace the feminine traits that come with it (gimmie a fucking brake, you like DICK!). It's incredibly ironic that some gay people are discriminated inside their own community for being "overly" feminine.

But this attitude actually goes beyond the GLBT community (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered, for you ignorant web surfers). This is something that has been proliferated throughout Western society. Hell, it's even mentioned in the damn "DaVinci Code" book (how feminine traits were once considered sacred, and how now, well, they're most definitely not). With this behavior, being feminine, or anything like a woman, is considered "bad", disrespectful, inferior, vulgar. This is a sad fact, I hope that at least in the GLBT world this will someday cease to exist and we will embrace all kinds of traits in our members, be them masculine or feminine.

A stranger among us

Monday, December 20, 2004

This is a topic I really don't like talking about (yes, another one). It's my father. I feel like I just don't know him, at all. I feel he puts on this routine for us everyday meanwhile there is someone underneath, somewhere inside, hiding. Hiding from what? I don't know, I've never known and sometimes I just don't want to know. And who is this person? I don’t know that either, just that I don't know him, he's a foreigner, a dark, shadowy figure that hardly ever appears.

The point is that my father's a stranger to me. And it's terrible having a stranger in your own home, living with you, eating with you, acting like everything is aright, when you know it's all quite wrong. He's betrayed us and lied to us, on several occasions. Today I found out he had done it again. You know, this time I wasn't even that upset. When my mother confronted him at the dinner table, it was surprisingly uneventful. He denied it, changed the subject and we kept on eating.

I recently told a friend (whose dad passed away when he was still very young) that there were worse things than not having a father. For instance, having one. At least I know I'm not the same and I'm sure I never will be the same to my children. I want them to know me and know who I am (and who I was, if pertinent). I don't want them to have to live with a stranger in their own homes.

My favorite mistake

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Well, it happened. I did it. I broke up with my bf, with The Guy. Oh boy. It was actually a little less painful than I expected. It was at the same time kind of surreal ("I can't believe this is happening!") and at the same time sobering ("I just don't like what we've turned into").

And he was actually going to brake up with me too (the nerve! haha), albeit for very different reasons. When he insisted on seeing me on the phone, I definitely realized the intention of our meeting. Since he got his work permit in the UK for 3 yrs, he's going back in January. And I'm not. So, as we usually have always done, it was time for him to breakup with me in order to not have a long distance relationship. Sigh. This meant that he would leave the opportunity open for us to get back together again in the future. As we usually did. Little did he know this time it would be different...

He began telling a lot of reflections he had been having since he had, ever so abruptly, left the UK; some family revelations and some observations on our relationship that were probably meant to serve as maybe a sort of points-to-work, maybe for when we inevitably got back together. Anyways, when he sort of lost his thread of reasoning he asked me to please intervene. So I did. And thus began the official breakup.

I told him how the last semester had been hard for myself and for our relationship especially. He had mentioned how we had both been growing as people and how our relationship had grown also, but I pointed out that when I arrived in London it took a nosedive. We both had our brushes with infidelity (for the first time ever), he didn't even call me for my birthday and how he had treated me after he left. I told him that if all that shit had occurred separately, well, I guess that I would have dealt with it and moved on. But taking it in all at once had been too much. Being his bf didn't appeal to me anymore, I had had enough.

The real problem as it turns out is that were incompatible. Of course, we had always had our problems because of this, we each saw the world through different eyes. It had never posed too big a problem before. But as I was explaining my reasons, he confirmed how he still saw things differently from me, and sadly offered absolutely no apologies. I wasn't expecting any, this was the reason I was breaking it off.

Afterwards we talked a lot, about his return to London, about what I'd be doing. It was a nice talk, he's still without a doubt my best friend. I love him very much. And I always will. Now it’s sad for me to remember our good times together or to remember him at all. I feel he forced me to this decision, I didn’t want to break It off. I could have loved him forever, I would have had no problem doing that. But life happened and I realized that maybe he wasn’t THAT much an ideal partner for me… and that I could do better. Granted, you can always do better. But there comes a time when you have to cash in your chips and cut your losses. I simply decided it wasn’t my time yet. Here’s to you, Pooks…

Well maybe nothin' lasts forever
Even when you stay together
I don't need forever after
It's your laughter won't let me go
So I'm holding on this way

Did you know, could you tell
You were the only one
That I ever loved
Now everything's so wrong

Did you know when you go
It's the perfect ending
To the bad day I been used to spending
When you go all I know is
You're my favorite mistake

(Sheryl Crow)


I'm here, finally. I periodically come back, drawn maybe more by memories of peace and happiness than by reality, looking for a strange sort of redemption. This time there has been less aggression (on all sides)

Each time, I return a little older and a little wiser, a little more taught in the ways (and perils) of the world, a little more mature (or at least I'd like to think so). I always find my parents a little older, still bickering endlessly, and always happy to see me. At least at the beginning, haha.

I'm much calmer than I was a year ago; I've grown more patient, less anxious, a little more confident. I'm not so much preparing to take on the world anymore. I'm more concretely devising my plan to change it. Welcome home.

When I think of home
I think of a place where there's love overflowing
I wish I was home
I wish I was back there with the things I been knowing

Wind that makes the tall trees bend into leaning
Suddenly the snowflakes that fall have a meaning
Sprinklin' the scene, makes it all clean

Maybe there's a chance for me to go back there
Now that I have some direction
It would sure be nice to be back home
Where there's love and affection
And just maybe I can convince time to slow up
Giving me enough time in my life to grow up
Time be my friend, let me start again

Suddenly my world has changed it's face
But I still know where I'm going
I have had my mind spun around in space
And yet I've watched it growing

If you're list'ning God
Please don't make it hard to know
If we should believe in the things that we see
Tell us, should we run away
Should we try and stay
Or would it be better just to let things be?

Living here, in this brand new world
Might be a fantasy
But it taught me to love
So it's real, real to me

And I've learned
That we must look inside our hearts
To find a world full of love
Like yours
Like me

Like home...

(Charlie Smalls)

What am I afraid of?

Monday, December 13, 2004

-Losing a loved one.
-The fact that I might have HIV.
To make a decision based on emotion and not on reason... and to regret it for the rest of my life.
-The dark (sometimes).
-Ghosts (the angry vengeful ones, the ugly ones... I wish they were all like the Garcia Marquez books, friendly and just an everyday occurrence, like any other person).
-Dying from an AIDS related illness.
-Cockroaches, the nasty flying ones especially.
-Never writing anything that will be appreciated.
-Never getting myself to write anything.
-Being discriminated and harased because I'm gay.
-Flying bugs, in general.
-Being embarrassed in front of people I admire and respect.
-People finding out how lazy I really am.
-Sexually transmitted infections.
-Never finding someone with whom I want to spend my life.
-Not being able to have children of my own.
-Making my mother sad.
-Death, without heaven or hell (can it all just really end? And then, nothing? Terrifying...).
-The world, without God (is it all just a big coincidence? is there really no purpose? Terrifying...).
-Giving my heart and having it not be appreciated.
-Bugs, in general.

... whoa, long list.


My boyfriend's work permit application was accepted (in record time, mind you). That means he'll most likely be able to come back to London and stay here for at least 3 more years. Wow. I called him to tell him the good news, he was quite happy. I've also decided, not too long ago, that I myself will not be returning to London come the New Year.

I'm going back to Mexico on Wednesday, and I'm quite glad. I've announced it here at work and told most of my buds here also. But now a terrible melancholy has invaded me. I'm not exactly sure why. Part of it has to do with the state of my relationship, part with the fact that I'll be back to where I was a year ago, part of it has to do with today's announcement, part of it with the fact that I don't feel like I've really done a good job here at the company (or as good as I would have liked). All these parts make the whole.

You know, I'm a little jealous of my bf. He now pretty much has the next 3 yrs of his life planned, secure, done with. I'm jealous of that feeling, the sense of security and comfort. I haven't felt that in a long time. And I miss it. And of course I know that any sense of security in life is an illusion. Of course I know that your life can be turned upside down in an instant. Of course I know all of this. But still, I'm envious of that illusion and yearn for it.


I finally saw the film version of The Phantom of the Opera. It came out last week here in the UK and I even got to see it for free! (Special promotion).

How was it??? Well, even though it pains me to say it, I was a little underwhelmed. Ok, I mean it's actually a well made movie, good production values and good performances, it just was not as good as I had hoped. Where my expectation too high? Probably. But still, they were pretty high for the movie version of "Chicago", and that was more satisfying than this one, by far.

Ok, sure, this show was hard to reconceive like "Chicago", they do add some scenes in which they give you some background info on the Phantom, Christine and Mme. Giry. Still, the movie made the flaws of show's slightly mediocre book much more evident.

My bf asked me how would I improve the story? (Me being a wannabe dramatist and all). Well, first of all I would give the Phantom a little more dialog or something. I mean he never really gets to speak a lot. It's true that you understand him a lot more from the anguish and sadness in the actor's singing voice than anything he actually says. At the end of the movie you never really understand most of the characters that well and it's a little emotionally distant.

**Ok, here are the movie's weak points:
-The chandelier going up and "Think of me" are all a bit too cartoony for my taste, the effects used just don't make it look very real. And it's quite a realist show. And what the hell is up with Christine not moving a muscle during "Think of me"??? Is she a statue or something?
-For the "Masquerade" number, they all wear neat costumes, but they're basically black and white. Come on! This was the moment for a tsunami of color! And a lot of the people seem to be wearing the same mask. Geez. The ending is pretty good tho, see "strong points" below...
-The choreography for "Point of no return". What was with those male dancers? A little too feminine, even for ME, haha. It just didn't go well with the moment.
-The end of the show just isn't very emotionally involving. Sorry. If they could only produce the emotion that you get when hearing the Phantom's "All I ask of you" reprise, wow, what a show this could be.

**Ok, here are the movie's strong points:
-The Phantom (Gerard Butler) is HOT! Oh my God! He's SOOOOO handsome! I mean finally you understand how Christine would follow a complete stranger down a dark hallway. The whole "Phantom of the opera" sequence is quite exquisite... because the guy is so damn HOT! hahaha.
-Emmy Rossum as Christine. She sings very well and is a good actress. She doesn't revolutionize the part, but is very touching and makes a beautiful opera diva.
-The end of Masquerade. Pretty cool. The Phantom owns the screen when he appears. A highlight of the film.
-Two words... MINNIE DRIVER! Even though she sounded terribly miscast, this girls is WONDERFUL as Carlotta, the bitchy primma donna. She is SOOOO funny, it's a shame she's only on screen for like 15 min. Since her voice is dubbed (Good move!) she rises to the occasion perfectly. Kudos!
-When the chandelier crashes down. It was moved toward the end of the movie, which makes a lot of sense since it makes everything much more spectacular. It looks COOL! Hahaha.
-The costumes for "Ill Mutto" and "Think of me" were absolutely beautiful. Wow. Now THAT's imagination.
-The music is enthralling. Every single damn song. A truly beautiful score. Even the new song is ok (sung by Minnie Driver during the end credits). Not as good as the old stuff, but still ok.

As you can see, I have a lot more positives than negatives. So go see the flick, even if you haven't seen the show. It's a beautiful score and one hell of a production. And if your opinion differs from mine, well, any feedback is welcome, haha.

I bitch-slapped the TOEFL

Thursday, December 09, 2004

...or when the English is enuf

Ok, some background info. The TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is a standardized English test that many universities around the world use as proof that non-native English speakers who apply to their universities know enough English to take courses and not completely fail (at least not because they don't know English).

Yes, it's true, I confess that in spite of my dazzling language ability I am not a native English speaker. Mi primera lengua es el español. So.... since I'm going to apply to graduate school next year, I had to take this damn test. Fuck.

The test started at 8:30am (FUCK!) and for some wicked reason I only got one hour's sleep. Double FUCK! I was in almost a zombie like trance when I went into a coffee shop and bout a croissant sandwich and a double shot mocha. "Watch out TOEFL, here I come".

As I was on the bus (No. 43) heading to the financial district of London, I suddenly panicked because I realized the bus was heading the wrong way! It had taken some weird-ass turn! OH NOOOOO! (I was gonna be right on time.... before this unexpected development that is). SO I rush off the bus at the next exit... only to realize that the bus was going the right way and I've gotten off WAY to early... and of course i did this realizing when the bus was no longer there for me to board again. Triple FUCK!

Due to some miracle, another No. 43 suddenly appeared and presto! I was on again. Albeit 10min later... Of course the financial district is CROWDED AS HELL at fucking 8 in the morning, so as you can imagine I almost lost my mind with the traffic (and the test center was not really to far off). The frustration was torturous. Anyways, I finally got off and decided to RUN. Of course the test center was only a block from the bus stop, but there I was, running all around the damn block, having no idea where I was.... and I had a map, btw. Quadruple FUCK!

I finally got to the damn building, and after briefly inquiring at the reception, I made it to the second floor without a second to lose. Unfortunately, the retard at the reception told me to take a right on the second floor... so there I am, seeing the test center through a looked glass door... and I'm knocking on it and nobody seems to listen. And I know harder, and still complete indifference. Right before I knock even HARDER, it suddenly occurs to me that the woman at the reception was indeed retard-looking and that maybe, just maybe, I should check the left side door. To my surprise, of course, this was the entrance to the damn center.... quintuple FUCK!

So, in I go. I do all the check-in procedures and finally I'm at my cubicle ready to start my test. I feel the effects of the damn double shot of caffeine in the nervousness that begins to invade me. AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!! Now, mind you, the test is actually quite easy.... but after having slept a fucking hour and having a quite stressful bus ride and a huge coffee, my concentration was a bit hindered.

So I finished the damn test, not after first forcing myself to think straight for nearly 3 hrs! Shit. And also not before my time ran out on the written essay section and I didn't get to do the very last final last last last proof read... Sextuple FUCK!

To top things off, I put the wrong address for mailing the test scores to me and the damn school I want to apply to didn't show up on the list of schools to which my test scores could be mailed to (and I didn't remember the school's TOEFL code). FUCK, FUCK, FUCK.

All in all, the test was EE-ZEEEEEE. I ended up calling the test center later and gave them the correct code for the damn school, whew. At least the preliminary scores have me WAY over the minimum I need for the school I'm applying to, so HURRA! HURRA!

So? In conclusion.... FUCK ENGLISH!

C y'all laterz....

Decisions, decisions...

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Well, while I was "gone", I fell into a deep depression. Sure, the "incident" had a lot to do with it. But also my bf came into the equation.

In spite of initially being quite supportive of me, there came a moment early on when he seemed suddenly not as supportive as I would have wanted (i.e. being judgmental and cold, after me having explicitly asked him not to be). I was in an extremely vulnerable situation and I felt like his attitude was not only jerk/asshole territory, but that he was being extremely insensitive, falling into cruelty. This is when I figured my relationship was beginning to fall apart. And it made me feel very sad. Up until that point I had felt that this guy was THE GUY. I mean I honestly believed that he was it and there would be no other person in my life.

What do I think now that some time has passed? Well, I feel better with myself and I'm no longer angry at him. Before, the mere thought of breaking up with him just killed me . Now, I'm no longer afraid, and I think that makes me a stronger more objective person. I'm still very afraid of making a decision out of sentiment and not using my reason... and that I'll regret it. But that's what life's about, making choices. What do I want? What do I have? What do I need?.... decisions, decisions, decisions...

I think that regret is an inherent part of life. The only way to avoid it is to not do anything at all (my brother reminded me of this). Which is certainly not a good idea. I think you have to make hard choices (as opposed to shying away from them). And I feel prepared to make my own...

Mary Poppins!

I saw the very first preview of Mary Poppins! COOL!

Ok, the show is not the same as he movie, there are quite a few differences. After having read the playbill, I see how most of the differences between the stage show and the movie come from the original Mary Poppins books. It's mentioned how Travers (the author) and Cameron Mackintosh (show's producer) met and how he's sort of granting her wish with this production of seeing a more faithful adaptation of her work presented to massive audiences. Saldy, she passed away, but the show is here!

On the other hand, I was a little disappointed because it wasn't a carbon copy of the film. Sue me. Still, all in all, it's a fun show. I mean it eventually grows on you. I definitely think it will be a huge hit, no matter what, haha.

Here are my detailed opinions, along with those of some other people (my screen name in this BBR is "darien":


Saturday, December 04, 2004

It was fun at Charlie's birthday celebration. She works with my best bud Hector at the pub and she has this really hot South African bf, haha. I drank quite a lot but really wasn't too drunk towards the end. That's teh great thing about London, since the pubs close early (11pm, Geez!) everybody starts drinking at like 7pm and by the time you're shit-faced, it's only like 10 or 11, hahaha. But this time I was not, and I was heading home anyways. Btw, I absolutely LOVE Bloody Marrys, they ROCK! Hahaha.

Since I had bought a travelcard (a pass that lets you go on the Tube [London subway] and buses all you want for one day), I decided to take de Tube home for a change. Waiting for the damn bus to pass is sometiems a tad tedious. So I go into Covent Garden station (which is so deep undergound, taking the stairs is the equivalent of going down a 15 story building! Yikes!). Thankfully my train comes by quickly and as I'm lookign for an empty car I spot someone. It's quite peculiar how your instintcs react so quickly and they spot something you're interested in. It's funny. I guess my friend was right, in a way you're always looking for someone. Odd.

Anyways, I saw him, just sitting there, reading a book of all thing. He had these extremely cute little round glasses and he looked so innocent in this almost abandoned underground train car. I decided, almost on impulse, to rush over and get into that car. The one were HE was sitting in and reading his book at 11:30pm at night.

As I went in I decided to go for the kill, and even though almost the entire car was empty I sat exactly in front of him (I don't like to beat aroudn the bush too much... well, sort of, but since I was a little tipsy I felt brave, haha). So as I sat down I saw how he immediatly perceived my presence. I saw his eyes looking around and seeing all the empty tube seats around me (English people seem to try to sit as far away from eachother as possible, btw). I saw him lift his head and very discretely glance aournd, trying to catch a glipmse of who had decided to sit directly opposite his seat. I was looking around and doing the same, and our eyes met for a split second. This was exactly what I wanted and he worked with me perfectly, it was like we were waltzing. He quickly looked back at his book.

This was a critical part of the dance. I began to look straight at him. For two reasons. First, I wanted to finish cehcking him out. And what I saw, I liked. As the train began moving I saw he had on this beatiful long dark grey coat, a very nice long light gray knit scarf and a beige sweater. His hair was nice and black, his skin white and it looked like he had blue yes (but his little glasses made it hard to see). Secondly, I was staring because I know that even when you're turned away from someone, you can always feel the deep penetration of a direct glance. It's like an instinct we have, to know when we're being observed. It must be a vestigial sixth sense from the days when we were commonly hunted. As this guy was being.

I actually began to feel my heart beat faster. The thrill of the hunt always gets my blood racing. I feel scared and anxious and scared and nervous and scared. But outside, fortunatley, poker face. Or so I like to think. Anyways, the train began to stop as we were approaching the next station. I wondered where he was going to get off (hee, hee, no pun intended). The, suddenly, to my horror, I see him prepare to get off, I see him close his book and begin to hold the arms of his seat in order to propel himself upward. DAMN. It's too soon darling, this is our chance, this is our moment, don'tleave! What about "us"? Don't you believe in "us"???? AAAAHHHHHHH!!!

Of course there is no "us", other than in my lightly inhebriated mind. I realize I've been kind of silly and decide to give him permission to leave. Then I laugh at this last thought and just stay silent. As he is lifting himself from his seat he shoots a glance straight at me. Just like that. Oh boy. Ok, darlings... maybe this doesn't sound like much if you're a hetero, but in the gay world, a single glance like that, precisely when you're leaving, means A LOT. But I doubt. I'm not sure, he looks so decent and proper, so nice. So un-cruising like. He exist the car to my right. Did I misinterpret? The image of his eyes looking at me is burned into my mind and that's all I can see. I only have a few more seconds to move before the train doors close. What should I do? I mean, technically I have a boyfriend (who I HATE right now, mind you), technically I'm thorugh with men for a while and want to remain uninvolved for the time being, technically I'm against casual sex. It's amazing all the things that go through your head when you have so little time left to make an important decision. So I decide. And the doors close. And I sigh. With fear. I'm outside of the car as it begins to move. Now, where did he go?

I take the nearest exit (marked "Way Out" here in England), an I manage to see the back of his coat as he's going up the escalator. Damn. He's not waiting for me. Shit! I misread the signs. Shit. I'm a lousy gay guy. Now I have to wait for the next train. Shit, shit, shit. I almost look at him in disdain. Damn you, cute guy. Damn you. He stops and looks behind. He sees me. He does a double take (this is actually priceless, darlings). This is when I recall the wonderful little moments that make life worth living, small delicious little moments like this one, small and precious, like violet petals, so small you want to collect them in a jar and keep them forever (Cruz).

His name is David.

Time heals everything

Friday, December 03, 2004

Ok, I'm feeling political today. Not to mention pissed off, haha. So, sue me.

I'm truly very saddened by the religious and "moral" backlash that there was to the same-sex marriage movement in the USA. Every single measure to prevent same-sex marriage that went to the polls on Nov. 2 won, and by a lot. Was I particularly surprised? Well, not really. Sure I felt optimistic when the Supreme Court ruled last year that gay people in the USA could do whatever they wanted in their bedrooms without being taken to jail for it. Did this offer false hope? Of course it was wonderful to see gay people getting married all over the country (if only to have those marriages annulled). Did this scare everyday Americans into voting for Bush? Maybe. Maybe not.

I'm just fed up with it. I hate the fact that people seem to find security and "moral" fortitude in discriminating a minority and scapegotting them for the fall of western civilization. Jesus Christ, we're just people. Is that so hard to understand? Gay people are just fucking PEOPLE! Get it? Is it logical to label all gays promiscuous, paedophilic and drug addicted party boys? Well, it's about as logical as labelling all heterosexuals as "moral", honest, church going and law abiding citizens. It's BULLSHIT! And everybody knows it.

I'm just tired of having the Bible used against me. The Bible says A LOT of thing, people! Fucking right wing idiots are VERY VERY VERY selective as to what they quote and follow from that book. They forget to mention the slavery, adultery, misogyny and polygamy that are also in there. It's being used as a weapon of HATE, knowing that God's message was always LOVE. I'd like to compare the figures of voters who were in favor of the same-sex marriage ban to the figures of people who actually go to fucking church every Sunday. Now THAT would be interesting. It would prove how disgustingly hypocritical and dishonest they all are. They're afraid. Plain and simple. And it's us they're afraid of. They don't understand. FUCK!!!!!!



ok, ok.... I'm calming down now...

Listen, for all it's worth, sometimes we gay people don't understand either. It's hard enough accepting your own homosexuality. I mean some people never do. Ever. It's just an ocean of contradicting feelings and conventional perceptions that one has to deal with. You have to overcome this seemingly ever present feeling that what you're down is wrong. Guys holding hands? Wrong. Guys kissing? Wrong. Guys marrying? Oh, please, that's just stupid. And embarrassing. And flamboyant. And ridiculous... get my point?

Accepting homosexuality is tough. It's a long process. I think we were all naive to believe that all of America could accept it overnight. We sure as hell didn't.

But this is changing. People are coming out at younger ages now, they feel it's ok to do so. Not everybody is going through all the homophobic brainwashing that was so much a part of our Western culture. The damage is less severe as time goes on. And what about all of those people who still need convincing? Well, frankly my darlings, I don't give a fuck. Time heals everything, and time will also be in charge of making all of those older homophobic generations die of old age as the coming years arrive, one by one. The lucky one's will pass on quietly, the not-so-lucky ones will fall into dementia and/or become senile, and therefore no longer a threat. They're time is ending, we just have to be patient. Wait, my darlings. Wait.

While I was gone...

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

The fucking world fell apart!.... i.e. Bush won. Fuck.

Ok, ok, I had kind of seen it coming but it was still a mild shock (my brother took it REALLY bad, btw, awwww). I mean can Americans be any stupider? (Ok, they can, but lets not go into that right now). Probably the worst thing about the whole US election was the aftermath, stupid Democrats pointing fingers at everyone. Since one damn poll said "Moral values" was the main reason people chose their candidate everyone immediately blamed those damn immoral gays. Well, FUCK YOU right back.

First of all, as reported by Frank Rich in his editorial in the New York Times, "Moral values" has steadily gone down in voters minds (from around 40% in 1996). What we can see from this is that as time goes by, people care less and less about the "Moral values" of their candidates. Mind you, this is obviously important when judging someone's character... but it's MORE important to judge them by what they have done (or not done). Like invade a fucking Arab country for no real reason at all and say it will help "end terrorism". Anybody ever realize that if they're own country was invaded for no reason, that they would kind of HATE the invaders and want to crash airplanes into their buildings??? Oh well...

Second, 82-fucking-percent chose something ELSE other than "Moral values"!!!

The real reason Bush got re-elected was because of two very important things: ignorance and fear. Most people that voted for him thought that they had actually found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and that there was actually a link between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. This, of course, is absolutely NOT FUCKING TRUE. You've been lied to, you morons!

So much for the land of the free and the home of the brave. I really do love American culture, ever since I was very young. But lately I've been disgusted by it and I feel very sad that for another four years we're going to get more of the same from the US government. And you know what REALLY bothers me about them? It's not the fact that they brushed off the international community, it's because they invaded Iraq, it's not the constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage... it's the hypocrisy. The fact that they still say they act with honor and honesty and "moral" rectitude. FUCK YOU!

"Sometimes I think what's good and proper is responsible for all the evil in the world" (Ibsen).

Male Sexual Assault

Ok, this is the only time I'm going to mention this, so here goes. I was a victim of sexual assault not too long ago. I got incredibly drunk, went to the wrong place with the wrong kind of crowd and I paid the price. I just want people to know that this DOES happen and it's something gay guys should be careful about. Here in the UK everyone who helped me afterwards was 100% supportive and absolutely zero judgmental about the whole thing. This was particularly helpful since I felt VERY guilty and stupid about what happened. I won't fool myself, I put myself in a very inconvenient situation while I was in a very inconvenient state, so I know it was mostly my fault (as my boyfriend went out of his way to point out). Still, for victims of rape (I HATE that word), I advise to hold judgements and I-told-you-so's for a later time, they really need some support and just someone to talk to and confide in.

Fortunately the "incident" didn't involve any physical violence of any sort for me (yes, I was THAT drunk... and I have no idea who it was). But it still put me at risk for Sexually Transmitted Diseases, including HIV/AIDS. In the Greater London area, it is believed that 15% of homosexual men are carrying HIV and almost a quarter of them doesn’t even know it. This was quite unsettling to find out... I might have been infected with HIV. Fortunately there is a preventive treatment called PEP (Post exposure prophylaxis) and it's designed for healthcare professionals who tend AIDS patients and accidentally come into contact with infected blood. It's a 4-week course of anti-retroviral drugs that should be begun as soon as possible after exposure and within a maximum of 72hrs after it. This treatment is somewhat experimental still, but has been seen to be highly effective in eliminating the HIV virus from one's body (the success rate is somewhere near 80% according to some studies). But a warning, these drugs (at least in the UK) are not licensed for this use and the long-term effects and not yet known and they also can cause some uncomfortable side effects like nausea, depression and diarrhoea (these are chemotherapy drugs). Still, they use the PEP because it's proven very effective in trials and is the best solution available. For anyone in my situation (unprotected anal intercourse with a gay man), it's a no brainer to take it. The truth is that HIV is rather hard to get (relatively). Via a blood transfusion it's between 90% and 100% you'll get it. But the second riskiest activity (anal sex) drops to a maximum of 3%. In teh UK they only recommend PEP for cases in which you know you've been in contact with an HIV positive person... or for gay people, like myself. They don't really deny anyone the treatment, but they want you to be informed of the actual risks of catching HIV for you to weigh them against the side effects of the treatment. I have to be tested 3 months after the "incident" to see if the treatment was successful I didn't get HIV, then another 3 months after that to see if the drugs didn't just slow the appearance fo the virus. Oh well... life goes on.

What can I say to others? Well, not getting drunk is not completely the answer (tho it would definitely help, hehe). Just be careful about what you do when you've had too much to drink. Know your limits and don't go over them. Always try to be accompanied by close friend who you trust and try to always be in view of each other. These are similar precautions women take when going out, so it shouldn't be too different for gay guys. Be careful and look out for yourself and your friends.

I'm very thankful to the people at UCH, Mortimer Market and The Heaven for being so supportive in such a dark and terrible time for me. I think this is one of the best-prepared cities for these types of cases and I'm very grateful for being here. Thank God for the NHS (UK's health care system) for helping me (and all free of charge). If you want more information, look any of these places up in the Internet or email me with any questions.


Here are some quick reviews of notable shows I've managed to see in London's West End with my good buddy Hector (thanks to him, all these shows were thoroughly analized with great fun and laughter... what a delight going to the "theatre" is with him!)...

*Sweeny Todd
Oh boy! This is truly one of the greatest musicals I've ever seen (and I've seen quite a few, hehe). The music and lyrics and story line blend beautifully and bring to life the dark and tragic tale of Sweeny Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. The production was somewhat abstract, making the storytelling a bit confusing at times, but this minor distraction could not hide what a masterpiece of modern musical theatre this show is. The actors played most of the instruments in this production so it was quite fun to see, hehe. It was well sung (nothing too extraordinary) and all in all a great time. Highly recommendable.

*Grand Hotel
The Donmar Warehouse put on this revival and they do have a knack for producing good musicals (Sam Mendes' AMAZING revival of "Cabaret" premiered here). I had never heard the score or seen the show, but it was quite a treat to see the beautiful and decadent German society of the twenties brought to life in this show. The story is serviceable and the score is quite fun... and the leading man was SOOOOO handsome it was hard concentrating on the show when he was onstage, hahaha. Another one to recommend. Also, a good performance by Mary Elisabeth Mastrontonio (of "Robin Hood: Prince of thieves" fame).

*The Producers
I saw the original cast of this show in NYC and I was originally put off by going to see Richard Dreyfuss in the lead, but when I found out Nathan Lane was taking over I immediately told my friend Hector to buy me a ticket when he went. Lane was superb as always, even though the rest of the cast could not compete with my very fond memories of the Broadway cast. STILL... this is an absolutely fabulous night at the theatre, it's wildly funny and the tunes are ok. It's definitely a Master Class in old-fashioned musical theatre comedy. Don't miss it!

This is a stage adaptation (non-musical) of a Danish film I regretted missing back when I was in Uni. I was intrigued by the "family reunion that brings out old secrets" premise, so I went. It's actually a good show, the staging is quite interesting (there's this part when three scenes are going on at once! and you get all the information! wow!) even if you never really become too involved in the drama and never really care too much about the characters (I guess Danes are as cold and as distant as they say, even in theatrical adaptation, hehe). It's "OK". Not brilliant or particularly memorable, but "OK". Definitely one to get at TKTS. Not worth full price.

*Buried Child
I was even MORE intrigued by this Pulitzer Prize winning Sam Shepard tragicomedy about a particularly nasty Midwestern American family. To be completely honest, I really didn't like this show. I can't really say it was the performances, they seemed pretty good (it featured the redheaded girl from "Six feet under") it's just really not my kind of show. It's extremely dark (I'm talking pitch-black) comedy mixed in with neo-absurdist touches. Many things go unexplained and are just there... probably for your contemplation. I was sort of expecting a more traditional comedy so I was somewhat put off by such abstract and avant-garde playwriting. The ending is quite shocking and memorable, but as a whole it just didn't do it for me. It's not for everyone, so be warned...