Thursday, 15 January 2009

Remembering Ivor, Alexander and Hephaestion

Born today 1893: Ivor Novello, Welsh actor and composer. Hits include Keep the Home Fires Burning. Sex symbol of the 1920s with a huge number of female fans -- and male lovers. The Ivor Novello Appreciation Bureau has much more information

Alexander the Great was born on this day (January 15) in 356BC. The King of Macedon conquered most of Asia to become the most powerful man of the world. He was also legendary lover to one of his generals, Hephaestion. Google them both to find out more. It's a fascinating story.

Thursday, 8 January 2009

And one more on the birthday front: Gracie Fields who penned the following lyrics would have been 111 years old today (January 9th) . Have a listen by clicking here to discover how they sound

Wish me luck as you wave me goodbye
Cheerio, here I go, on my way
Wish me luck as you wave me goodbye
Not a tear, but a cheer, make it gay
Give me a smile I can keep all the while
In my heart while I'm away
Till we meet once again, you and I
Wish me luck as you wave me goodbye

Come to Mamma

And another birthday for today (January 9th). This time it's Sharon Osbourne, fantastic wife of rocker Ozzey and a talented music producer and reality show tv star in her own right. She's 57 today. She told the 2004 GLADD Awards: "My only regret in life is that none of my children are gay."

Happy Birthday David Bowie

So David Bowie is 62 today (January 8th). The pioneer of 'gay vague', rumours about his alternative sexuality date back to a 1972 interview with Melody Maker in which he declared: “Yes, of course I'm gay, and always have been.” In 1976, he told Playboy that he was bisexual. Certainly his androgenous stage creations and wonderful music kept us entertained through the seventies and for many decades since.

Getting it

"The gay community is usually first to jump onto what's smart and new; they're usually the first to be ahead of the avant-garde. Because the show is satirical and quite sort of catty and biting, it amuses them enormously. And the characters are quite easy to imitate." Joanna Lumley of "Absolutely Fabulous" to The Advocate.

"Gay people ... were the first to find me, and they get everything, they're so sharp. I'll look out in the audience and I see three or four gay guys right in the front row, or a couple of lesbians, I know it's gonna be a good show. I know they're gonna get it, whatever 'it' is they're gonna get the joke. And that's wonderful and I relax." Joan Rivers to Denver's Out Front.

Both quoted by the wonderful Rex Wockner

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

A word from the wise

"A boy can learn a lot from the back seat of a car". John Barrowman in his autobiography Anything Goes

"It is discouraging how many people are shocked by honesty and how few by deceit" Noel Coward -- quoted by John, above

"We are all
in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars"
Oscar Wilde

"For Christ's sake, open your mouths.
Don't you people get tired of being stepped on?
Bette Midler

Friday, 2 January 2009

Origin of words: Coming out and cruising

"Like much of campy gay terminology, 'coming out' was an arch play on the language of women's culture -- in this case the expression used to refer to the ritual of a debutante's being formally introduced to, or 'coming out' into the society of her cultural peers. ... An article published in the Baltimore Afro-American in the spring of 1931 under the headline
'1931 Debutantes bow at local 'pansy ball' drew the parallel explicitly and unselfconsciously." George Chauncey in Gay New York, the Making of the gay male world, 1890-1940

Dutch gay men in the early 18th century coined the word "kruisen", and their favourite cruising grounds were the quays along the waterfront. In Amsterdam in the 1760s many sodomites were arrested in the public toilets built next to the city’s numerous bridges; favourite toilets were given nicknames, such as The Old Lady and The Long Lady. In 18th-century London, gay men were regularly arrested in the Lincoln’s Inn bog house, on the east side of New Square, Lincoln’s Inn Fields. The Savoy bog house was used so regularly by gay men that members of the Society for the Reformation of Manners often posted themselves outside and could be sure of making an arrest there. And in the Temple bog house in 1707 a hole had been deliberately cut in the partition wall between two stalls – making it the first recorded glory hole. Rictor Norton A History of Gay Sex