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Glee Club: Happy Hour

Glee1 It's a peculiar thing when someone you have known becomes famous. They move from their modest lodgings to the hills, high above the crowd in post-modern fabulousness. You begin to see them less as they have a multitude of meetings and events to attend...

When Glee premiered on television it was noted that one of its creators was Ryan Murphy.  Glee, for the uninitiated is rousing musical television show that manages to be fresh despite its well-worn plot devices of pitting teachers against teachers, discreet crushes on one another, football versus musicals and the usual hostilities to be encountered in todays high school. Glee is a musical television fantasy, something that Aaron Sorkin might have created, but a little less smart, which is a good thing.

Ryan Murphy never seemed all that musical. Having worked with Ryan at a magazine a few decades back, he is remembered as somewhat serious, proud of his Pulitzer and very fond of Hollywood. Fame is interesting because it doesn't usually portend unless it’s a prodigy or child star. There was never any indication that Ryan would create an extremely successful television show about a high school glee club—then again, he didn't seem all that interested in plastic surgery and he created Nip/Tuck. Glee has to be the happiest hour on television. With a penchant for reinventing old songs, mashing up musical genres at odds with one another and a cast that includes a brilliant Jane Lynch and sexy, sexy Mark Salling, Glee has the ability to dismiss today's horrible economics and current foul politics and make being an individual something to sing about.

Glee works best when in ensemble mode. Choreographed by Zach Woodlee, the musical numbers are extravaganza's of sound and movement with each episode reported to cost $3 million. It looks it. Glee stumbles when it attempts to be too current with homages to some other high school musicals, rap music and focusing too much on one character. Like any real glee club, the success of Glee comes from its numbers, its chorus of great talent and some fine prickly characters.

Beating the Tom Tom

Tom_cruise_-10717 Actor Tom Cruise was boring and homophobic on the set of a 1983 film, a co-star claims.

Bronson Pinchot, who starred in Perfect Strangers, worked with Cruise on Risky Business.

In an interview with The Onion's AV Club, a satirical website, Pinochet said: "[Cruise] was the biggest bore on the face of the Earth. He had spent some formative time with Sean Penn – we were all very young at the time.

"Tom had picked up this knack of calling everyone by their character names, because that would probably make your performance better, and I don't agree with that. I think that acting is acting, and the rest of the time, you should be you, but he called us all by our character names.

"He was tense and made constant, constant unrelated homophobic comments, like, 'You want some ice cream, in case there are no gay people there?' I mean, his lingo was larded with the most … There was no basis for it. It was like, 'It's a nice day, I'm glad there are no gay people standing here.' Very, very strange.

"Years and years later when people started to torment him with that, I used to think 'God, that's really fitting, because he tormented a lot of people as a 20-year-old'. It is what it is; there’s nothing I can add to it. If someone’s 20 years old and every third line out of their mouth is anti-something specific, then draw your own conclusion."

Pinchot added: "He always talked about himself like he was a mega-superstar; that was weird, too."

Cruise's publicist Cheryl Maisel said: "Obviously this is so far removed from who Tom Cruise is as a person, this must have been said in jest."

Which is most likely true, the Onion is known for its absurd stories.



In an economic slump who would have imagined that the sale of men's watches has actually risen by a healthy 20%? Distinctly old school, the wrist watch alludes to a time before cellphones and has always had a hint of status. Some famous watch brands are Cartier, Rolex, Piguet, and of course Rolex.

It is said that it was a nanny who invented wrist watches at around the end of the 19th century, who fixed a clock around her wrist by using a silk band. The first watches to be made were in fact smaller models of pocket clocks that were fitted with a leather strap. Once this product hit the market newer designs started to be produced based around this same concept.

The M&Co. watch (shown here) was designed by the late Tibor Kalman. Kalman began his legendary relationship with time by producing M&Co.’s first watches in 1983, and went on to become a major influence for emerging watch designers. A perfect blend of timeless form and function, Kalman’s philosophy, “Waste Not a Moment” is also imprinted on the back of each M&Co. watch, reflecting his witty approach, modernist views and serious engineering in this hand-crafted timepiece.

Remembering Laramie

Loyola-university-new-orleans-laramie-project Last night across the country, The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later was performed in commemoration of the death of Matthew Shepard, which was eleven years to the day of his murder. One of those performances was held at the Broad Stage Theatre in Santa Monica. A production mounted by the Gay Men’s Chorus and the Speak Theater Arts, this show featured some Hollywood talent with special guests Mary McCormack, Mary McDonnell, Sharon Lawrence, Charlotte Rae, Randi Driscoll and Bradley Whitford. The distinction of this production was the Gay Men’s Choir acting as a Greek Chorus of sorts. The production began with a swaying version of Wind, by the Sons of the Pioneers. What evolved in a three hour production was a hybrid musical and play, textured by great acting and punctuated by emotional moments from the Chorus. In reviewing the consequences of Matthew Shepards’ death, eleven years later, this epilogue addresses the question raised by 2004’s 20/20 newscast, which angled that the real reason behind the brutal murder was not homophobia but drugs and money; what role does a community have to remember and be responsible and where are we, as nation, eleven years later.

There is an awkward moment in life when the revelation that there is no truth is revealed: There is only interpretation, generally conceived within the will of one’s agenda. So imagine, a young Anne Frank becomes a spy for the Nazi army, the Holocaust simply never happened. The past is easy to rewrite because there a few living challenges, but not so in the case of Matthew Shepard.  In 2004, 20/20 turned a blind eye to the truth and suggested that the Matthew Shepard murders were prompted by drugs and money rather than sexual orientation. This is called negationism. The 20/20 revisionist theory is based on statements made by the girlfriend of convicted killer Aaron McKinney, who claimed that the attack was a result of heavy drug use, a robbery and a beating gone awry.  But in 1998 she told 20/20: "They just wanted to beat him bad enough to teach him a lesson, not to come on to straight people, and don’t be aggressive about it anymore.” The question then boils down to was McKinney homophobic and did it play a role in the brutal murder of Matthew Shepard? In a 2008 interview McKinney stated: “The night I did it, I did have hatred for homosexuals,' He goes on, according to the interview, to say that he still dislikes gays and that his perceptions about Shepard's sex life bolstered his belief that the killing was justified.

It should be noted that over the weekend, a gay man in Queens, NY was attacked by two men and yelled anti-gay slurs while he was in the store early Friday,” the AP reported. That man is currently in a coma.

The Diminishing Gay Return

Gaiety A recent trip to Washington D.C. and New York City revealed some interesting aspects to gay life: gay life has diminished. Gay life simply isn’t what it used to be and that may not be a bad thing…or is it?  Today’s march on Washington will make a little dent in the politics of gay equality or as Rep. Barney Frank said “The only thing they're going to be putting pressure on is the grass.”  It does give outlet for some people who are emotionally tied up in the politics, but to what degree it influences—we will have to wait and see.

My own belief is that culture and politics are mostly changed by art. Movies and television in particular have an enormous influence on young people. To that degree we have certainly been engaged in mainstream culture, though one wishes the stereotypes would someday end (Chris Colfer’s Kurt in Glee is a lovable but extremely stereotypical character). Movies and television reach millions and send out messages about the degree to which our American culture is willing to invite and accept being different. So while Kevin Walker’s relationship (in Brothers and Sisters) with the slightly annoying Scotty Wandell is a great step forward, their physical relationship has always seemed awkward and without flame.

But back to the tale of two cities.

On a tour to Arlington cemetery we met an older gentleman by the name of Bobby.  He was 69 years old, wore a toupee and the blackest eyeliner against his pale pink skin. He was alone. He sat down next to us and began a conversation. He seemed to know a lot about Arlington and invited us to watch the changing of the guard with him and he knew the exact place to stand for the best view. The changing of the guard is almost a tribute to Michael Jackson for surely they are doing the moonwalk with Bob Fosse like movements. It’s extremely serious and the young men in a tight face-off check each out each other, fixing their ties and fondling their guns. Bobby took us backstage so to speak afterwards and told us that they always have two men of equal height as to not create a distraction. That Bobby knew so much and was alone there in the great cemetery made one wonder: did he have a lover who was in the service or was he simply in love with the rugged good looks of the young men in the changing of the guard?

Back in DC at DuPont Circle was there another kind of changing of the guard. Using the iphone application Gay Cities we located a gay bar in an alley where four muscular boys in underwear were standing atop the bar, gently moving their hips and lowering their crotches into the faces of the people sitting at the bar. On a television screen located above the entrance, porn was looping, a soundless reminder of sex. The music was loud of course, so conversation was reduced to nods and occasional wonderment as a young dancer lowered his underwear to descry a perfect orb of muscular flesh. Not exactly relaxing.

New York City, just like I imagined it…tall buildings and everything. I used to live in New York City. It was the 80s and the decade began with Ronnie Reagan as president and the occasional report of a “gay cancer” showing up in gay men. This was a different NYC. There were the piers, still being haunted by men in shadows and Central Park was notorious for a lot of public sex.

Flash forward to 2009 and the village is essentially a straight haven of expensive cafes and endless gyms. The Greenwich Theatre, a landmark movie house on Greenwich Avenue is now an Eclipse Gym and Spa. Times Square, once home to The Gaiety, a midtown strip bar is gone. Closed in 2005, it opened in 1976 and for thirty years provided a fun outlet for the voyeur in all of us. Times Square now resembles a Main Street theme park only massively populated.

It is of little help for pine for the past. Change is inevitable and written into the DNA of life itself. As one grows older there is an expectation of elegance, a kind of Noel Cowardish desire to be surrounded by beauty, flowers and quaint music. Using that little iphone application once again, after a chic little dinner in the lower east side, we decided to visit at least one gay bar. The closest bar was something called The Cock. We were given free drink tickets and entered into a dark room with about four people. Signs everywhere screamed: sexual activity is not allowed. A DJ played music fit for a party of 40, a loud thumping mixture of grating sounds that allowed no interaction with the four other people, even if we wanted to. Fleeing into the balmy New York night one remembered Uncle Charlie’s on Greenwich, but that too is gone.

As someone who used to write travel articles for gay publications it should be noted that at some point and I think it was San Diego I gave up. SD had some great straight bars, chic, elegant, perfectly modern and sleek, and while we hunted for the legendary Hillcrest, all we found was a few bars that felt like the 80s, wooden, old and not particularly attractive.

This was true of Puerto Vallarta and Mexico City. Along the seashore in PV, there were magnificent bars with 50 foot Buddha’s and shimmering curtains. Maybe our gay radar is broken, but we went to Blue Chairs Hotel rooftop, and indeed it was it offseason, but it was tired.

In Mexico City, there was an enormous amount of public handholding by young gay people. But the bars, all packed into one street resembled fish aquariums with steamed windows and people literally being pushed to the edge of the windows.

Maybe these places are for the young with better tolerance for sound and surrounding. Visiting gay bars is a kind of nostalgia regardless. Most people interested in sex are at home retouching their photos and sending endless emails to strangers.

When Bloggers Bitch

 Picture 6

We have no idea what it's all about, but we know a bitch fight when we see one. In this case, two websites that have shamefully imitated are upset with one another because "exclusivity" of some images seems to be in question. In one corner we have the famous ohlala boys, Steph and Alex, who recently migrated to America to be closer to man flesh and Hollywood swimming pools and of course, celebrity. The OLLB people are nothing short of prodigious in producing websites. So they created Bello magazine, a fairly weak attempt to imitate fantasticsmag, but with such enough testosterone to garner an audience. They have little ability to create interesting graphics so they tend to let the images do the talking. On the other hand, you have Marcello and Enrico with their website yvymagazine, which is slightly better designed but its editorial mission is about the same as Bello. If any screenwriters are getting an idea, I'm with you. So the pictures in question are from Paul Reitz, who ultimately is the one responsible because it is he who apparently sent out the images to everyone—while each blogger claimed the images were exclusive. Yes, it is silly, but when Europeans fight amongst themselves, it has to be taken seriously.

But enough editorial, lets see what they have to say:

"Yesterday 04/10 I posted a exclusive images from the photographer Paul Reitz who sent them directly to us, Immediately after I sent an email to share these photos with all of you. 

24h after my post I received an email from the guys at OHLALA (below the copy) And then I learned that this model was featured in BelloMag in 27/09

They are saying that we are copying, but this is not true, we have post some pictures of the editorial that were not even shown in BelloMag and I have the emails proving that I have been contacted by the photographer before the BelloMag came out, Paul Reitz was already been featured in YVY, but not in OHLALA.

This is not the first time we receive insults from those guys.

For the people who believe we have copied their layout at this point we must clarify that they have copied ours. In the start YVY had an other name and was a small website, and OHLALA copied our layout (boysandboysmag). OHALALA always used their power and their high traffic (that in this period is nothing but high) on others blogs and as understood by the email below and from what they posted today in their blog, They make themselves custodians of all unique authenticity and then in some way superiors."

Ohlala: "Exclusive usually means when it is not published anywhere else unlike your post on Chris McNally. I mean I am not sure how things work in the world of prostitution
but on blogs it's different! If only people could do what they want to do in life and not go after other people success it would make things so much better. I guess it depends on the level of intelligence of the people you have in front of you.
Keep your copycat job because I hope this is at least useful for something
I totally understand that being pay for sex is not that rewarding."

One wonders if the real prostitutes of the world will take objection to the notion that being pay for sex is not that rewarding? And the beat goes on....