Friday, October 25, 2013

Repost: LGBT History Month: Bob Smith*

* originally posted October 25, 2009

We're going to go light today, as we continue our trip through LGBT history, because it's a well-known fact that The Gays are a funny people. How else do we get through the Days Of Sally Kern and The Year Of Pat Robertson? How else can we abide Fred Phelps? We kid, because we can.

So, in the spirit of good gay humor, today I'll feature one of my personal favorite comedians and authors, Bob Smith.

Quick notes: he's gay, go figure, and he has the distinction of being the first openly gay comedian to appear on The Tonight Show, which he did in 1994. Not that the 'mo's hadn't been on before him, but they hadn't been so open — and, yes, I'm including Rip Taylor in that group. Funny? Yes. Out? Not so much at the time. Ellen? Still keeping the secret.

But Smith is more than funny. He's also an accomplished author, first of Openly Bob, which I thought was about me because I have a big head and I roll like that, and then Way To Go, SmithOpenly Bob received a Lambda Literary Award for humor.

His first novel, Selfish and Perverse, was published in 2007.

That's Bob Smith, and so is this:

…I’ve found that in the limbo dance of pettiness, I’m always able to go a little bit lower.
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Over the course of ten years we had made the natural transition that every couple makes from fucking like bunnies to fucking like Easter Bunnies. Every time we had sex, it felt like a holiday.
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Cosmopolitans: The bright red candy-colored martinis made with cranberry juice are the perfect drinks for adults unwilling to relinquish their youth. A Cosmopolitan looks like a kiddie drink all grown up—a Shirley Temple that has become Ambassador Shirley Temple-Black.
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What really seems to tick off Fundamentalist Christians is that gay people and Jews don’t seem to care that we might not get into their Heaven. As I get older I realize that having a halo isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Direct overhead lighting is always unflattering and it would only accentuate the dark circles under my eyes.
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At night we no longer snuggled in bed like spoons—in our mutual hostility, we were two knives stuck in the headboard…. Our bed was a beautiful mahogany sleigh bed…possibly the noisiest piece of furniture ever built. The mattress and box spring are supported by large, thick, hand-hewn wooden slats, and every time one of us sat on the bed the protesting groans gave the impression that tonight, even if we were willing, the bed had a headache.
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A former marine who served in Vietnam, Gordon was the most macho cater-waiter in New York. He was a catering commando in the social jungle of Manhattan. The major difference between ‘Nam and Gotham being that in the social jungle the most effective form of camouflage is a pair of oversized sunglasses and an Hermes scarf…. Gordon was the hardest working man in catering, but the gleam in his eye wasn’t from the Baccarat crystal. Sometimes I felt that the only thing holding him together was his cummerbund and bow tie. There were nights when I was afraid that the sound of champagne corks popping might trigger a flashback—causing him to smear his face with guacamole and try to fight his way out of the foyer with a fish knife.
We don't need to be in your face as we fight the struggle for equality. We can simply stand back and make you laugh, because laughter really is the great unifier. If you haven't heard of Bob Smith, or read his books, you're missing something....it's called laughter.

The march goes on....even if we slip on a banana peel.

On This Day In LGBT History

October 25, 51 AD – Titus Flavius Domitianus was born in Rome. The Emperor is the first recorded case of a married man ditching his wife for his boyfriend. The young man was the mime, Paris. After a public outcry he killed off Paris and went back to wife. It didn’t last long though. Domitian kept up his affairs with young men, and the wife had him assassinated.

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