Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Oy! What A Year We Had ...

Lots on my mind as we wind down another year …

I keep thinking about Leelah Alcorn, the transgender girl who killed herself because her parents told her she was wrong, and a sin, and an abomination … and that since God doesn’t make mistakes, she must have been mentally ill to think she as transgender.

Too bad they couldn’t have thought, “God doesn’t makes mistakes so She sent us a transgender child to open our eyes and the eyes of the world.” Maybe then Leelah wouldn’t have walked in front of that truck.

I think about all those LGBTQ kids who felt they could no longer go on this year because of being bullied by friend, fellow students, teachers and their own parents. Think of what any of those kids might have accomplished if we all just learned to accept people for who they are, and not what we think they should be.

My sister died this year … I remember one of the last times I talked with her, about a month or so before she passed. She didn’t seem to know who I was, didn’t even ask about Carlos — which she always did — and just talked about what was on the TV screen she was watching. I realized then that the sister I’d loved my whole life was leaving me. I realized then that things would never be the same.

I still called and still talked and made sure that, even if she didn’t quite understand, the last words she heard from me were, “I love you.”

I also realized then that when she did go, on February 15, she was in a much better place, and didn’t hurt, and had her hair, and was laughing with my Mom. It’s not a God thing, it’s a universe thing.


I’m a happily married man, to another happily married man. 

When I met Carlos I never thought this was a possibility … even after Massachusetts and Iowa … even after California. Then the tide started turning and we started talking about it; we both wanted to be married, we both wanted to have a husband. We wanted that. And then to have my Dad ask to be there, well, that was the icing on the wedding cake, with the added cherry of having marriage equality come to South Carolina … South FREAKING Carolina … after we got back from Washington.

Amazeballs.

We used to shop at Kroger until we learned that Kroger has a ‘Meh’ attitude about Open Carry in their stores; I’d always said that if the day came when I had to ask someone to move their assault weapon so I could get a loaf of bread, it was time to shop elsewhere.

So we did; we went back to Publix — where we shopped when we lived in Miami — and now Publix is in the news. But for a good reason: starting tomorrow, Publix stores will offer full benefits packages to their employees’ same-sex spouses.

Guns. Equality. I choose equality.

Of course, when you factor in that kid who shot his mother with her own gun in a Wal-Mart, Kroger should be prepared for that to happen in one of their stores.


Lotsa coming out parties this year, too, and lots of Coming Out Toaster Ovens and copies of The Gay Agenda—a one page pamphlet, actually, featuring one word: “equability”—being sent out from HOMO HQ.

Michael Martin took his boyfriend to prom and came out at the same time. Daniel Franzese, who played the  'almost to gay to function' in Mean Girls is now openly gay; as is Derrick Gordon, a sophomore starter for the University of Massachusetts men's basketball team; Ty Herndon and Billy Gilman, two country music stars … yes, country music … decided to live their lives as gay men out and proud. 

Nate Alfson, a high school, baseball and volleyball coach for a Catholic high school came out as gay and kept his job!
Chip Sarafin, an offensive lineman for the Arizona State football, came out, as did John Fennell, who represented Canada in the luge at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. 

British singer Sam Smith came out with the release of his debut album, In the Lonely Hour, saying the album “is about a guy that I fell in love with last year, and he didn’t love me back.” Tyler Glenn, the lead singer of Neon Trees and a Mormon, also came out; Mitch Eby, a Junior and defensive end for the Chapman University Football team, too.

Federico Díaz, Uruguayan actor and telenovela heartthrob, is now openly gay, along with high school swimming star, Jack Thorne, and Pete Cahall, principal of Washington DC’s Wilson High School who chose the school’s annual Pride Day event to finally tell his students that he is gay. Adam Joseph, Philadelphia meteorologist for 6ABC, announced the birth of his first child, publicly, acknowledged his partner of five years, Karl, and came out as gay.

Brad Thorson, a former college football player and former player for the Arizona Cardinals and Neal Baer, the executive producer and showrunner for CBS' 'Under the Dome' are out and proud; and after years of speculation, rumor, questions, guesses, dreams, Olympic swimmer Ian Thorpe came out as gay.

Kristian Nairn, an actor from Game of Thrones, came out, and so did Democratic Arizona State Senator Steve Gallardo, after listening to the arguments for that Arizona anti-LGBT, so-called religious freedom bill;  Matt Kaplon, student and baseball player for Drew University, came out to his team and the world last weekend after being inspired by the coming out story of NCAA basketball player Derek Schell; Brazilian diver, and Olympic hopeful, Ian Matos came out as gay, saying he was inspired by fellow diver Tom Daley’s coming out.

Djuan Trent, Miss Kentucky 2010, came out as lesbian on the heels of that federal judge ruling that Kentucky must recognize same-sex marriages from other states. Marcus Juhlin, a Swedish football player, is gay; so is actress Ellen Page and retired Premier League footballer Thomas Hitzlsperger.

Callan Chythlook-Sifsof, a U.S. snowboarder who missed the cut for Team USA, has come out as lesbian, and Michael Sam said he was gay, making him the first openly gay professional football player in this country.

We’ll be restocking the shelves with kitchen appliances and pamphlets as soon as possibly, because after last year we made need even more!

Politics. 

You cannot keep Obama down; even after that ridiculous 2104 mid-term election fiasco, he is not gonna  sit idly by and let the Republicans run roughshod over this country and try to turn back the clocks to the 1950s, when The Gays were in closets, and women couldn’t chose and racism was fun.

Gossip. I do so loves me some gossip. Paltrow? Loathe you, but you keep me in stitches with your shenanigans. 

Lohan actually made her stage debut and, while the reviews weren’t great, she wasn’t a major screw up … onstage. Off-stage she’s still Party Hardy Lohan. 

And Justin Bieber … I’ve made fun of your size … I’ve called you a talentless hack and a spoiled brat … I giggled when you wet yourself after getting arrested …, I found you obnoxious and ridiculous and just plain sad … That’s all.

Police shootings. And most of the victims are Black. Please try to tell me there isn’t a double standard when Michael Brown, a Black man, gets gunned down in the streets for allegedly stealing some cigars and Eric Garner, a Black man, gets choked to death for selling loose cigarettes, but Julia Shield, a White woman, strapped on armor and drove around a Chattanooga neighborhood shooting at people and police, and was just arrested. 

Explain to me the difference between John Crawford III, a Black man, holding a BB gun in a Wal-Mart and is shot to death by police, but two white men who go into a Wal-Mart, take BB guns off the shelves, load them and then start shooting are simply arrested.

There should be no difference, yet because there seems to be one, we have a lot to talk about in 2015.

It’s been a year of ups and downs, and highs and lows, but, for me, the ups and the highs outweigh the rest. I’m still here, still loved and in love, still Dad to some weird wild wacky pets. Still living in Small-town South Carolina. Okay … that might be a down.
I kid.

Tomorrow, we are off to the Round-The-Way-Gays, Neal and David’s, New Years Day, Newlyweds — three couples in our little group got married last year — and Not-So-Newly-Born Party. It’ll start 2015 just right!

11 comments:

Raybeard said...

You provide a most heartening and balanced summary of the year, Bob. A shame that the negativities seem to impress and last longer than the ups - largely because while the latter are 'positive strokes', the former often feel like deep cuts which take a long time to heal - if they heal at all, that is.

I send you and Carlos every best wish for the New Year and look forward to your continuing to keep our spirits up through your blog with further high quality 'entertainment' and juicy gossip (the bitchier the better!).

anne marie in philly said...

happy new year 2015 to all at casa bob y carlos! smooches!

BloggerJoe said...

Thanks, Bob, for the unique retrospective. Tim and I hope you and Carlos and the rest of your party have a great time!

S'A said...

Bob, thank you for sharing with us all year. Happy New Year to you and Carlos-- I really am looking forward to 2015 and hopefully more good news than bad!

the dogs' mother said...

Happy 2015! (almost, still morning here)
We will, officially, have one more kid in May, a daughter-in-law. All kids will be out of college. All kids have jobs! Abby and Tar plan to catch a squirrel in 2015...

Susan said...

Thank you, Bob, for this always wonderful site. Your thoughts are some of the best around. Have a special Happy New Year with hubby Carlos and all the kids. See you in 2015! :)

mistress maddie said...

Yeah, that's alot of stuff. My little ole mind is twirling..... HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU TWO BOYS!

Princess said...

I'm raising a glass to a Newlywed New Year... I look forward to more of your insightful and entertaining musings Bob in the year ahead. Like I've said before I don't always comment but I do read regularly...

Professor Chaos said...

Publix is an employee-owned company. That's why they are closed on Christmas day and Kroger is open. Publix is great, Kroger is kinda gross. At least the one by our house is.

MAC said...

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Ron said...

What a year huh Bob? Fasten your seat belts (see, I told you I liked Bette Davis), we're in for another "bumpy ride" this year.
Ron