This time every year, since I was 8 years old, I stand in front of a mirror and make a resolution to lose 20…or more pounds, exercise and finally, keep it up. Always feeling slightly puffier from a few extra glasses of seasonal eggnog, shortbread and mince tarts, I am determined to pull it all together and take revenge on those fat cells.
Yes, every year I delve into what has been my ‘program of torture’ only to find myself daily sneaking the Almond Roca and Purdy’s Pecan Rolls I found in my stocking.“Stop yourself…you are so awful!” Oh yeah, I’ve got self-talk that would have Louise Hay settling into a 3 month depression.
So today I sat down and considered what 2011 would be like if I just stopped.
About 2 months ago, I was wandering through our local music store debating the possibility of purchasing a cube amp. For you non-musicians, it is a very small amplifier with a built in speaker to use mostly with an electric guitar or any non-acoustic instrument…so you can hear it. It wasn’t a necessity but I kept fantasizing about how nice it would be to practise in our living room, with it’s large windows and uplifting sunlight instead of our dark music studio which was the only place I could plug in my guitar.
I was convinced the brighter room with it’s view of the forest and the river would inspire me to run scales for unending hours and thereby soaring my guitar skills to monstrous levels.
I needed something light and tiny and thought that a cube amp at about 8”x10” would easily fit under the couch in-between practises.
It’s glorious Gay Pride Season and as hundreds of thousands of gay and straight people fill the streets to view our highly entertaining community decked out in all its’ glory, we occasionally find ourselves being asked, “what is the purpose of all of this?”
We understand how it started…after years of harassment by society and the authorities, gay and lesbians who frequented the dark and secluded Stonewall Inn Pub in New York had finally had enough and turned on the police refusing yet another unprovoked raid, throwing rocks, bottles and stilettos, causing a revolution that filtered through the world, bringing with it the message that ‘we are not going to take this anymore!’
When my brother and sister were children, life was quite different. There’s a large age gap between us (something I rarely let them forget) so they were raised in a totally different environment from myself.
In their time, it wasn’t uncommon for my parents and their friends to load their kids into the back of their gas guzzling V8, (without seat belts) and park at the local beer parlor leaving the kids in the car while they drank and socialized for hours on end, intermittently chucking bags of pig skins through the back window to keep them from starving. Then driving home if not drunk, certainly halfway there.
Believe it or not this was acceptable behavior 60 years ago.
The Red Queen exclaimed, “it is better to be feared than loved!” Although I’m not sure if I share that sentiment, I do think we gays must be damn scary!
It seems that 18 year old openly lesbian, Constance McMillen just wanted to go to her prom with her girlfriend as her date and the school cancelled the whole damn shindig rather than let her do just that. (They lost that battle by the way- A judge in Mississippi ruled that that the school violated her rights but didn’t make them reinstate the prom.)
Then I hear some woman named Sandy Rios who is the president of the Culture Campaign (what is that exactly?) calling the new Lady Gaga videos' lesbian scenes “disgusting” and the whole video “just poison for the minds of our kids.” Now call me madcap but this all sounds like fear to me. Ms. Rios’ criticism surrounds artists continuing to push the envelope and crossing boundaries.
Newsflash: that is our job. Its called art and evolution and its been going on since the beginning of time.
For those of you who haven’t heard, allow me give you a quick summary of what is currently going on over there. The world is waiting to see what Uganda is going to do with the present proposed bill on the table from a strong Christian and a member of parliament, David Bahati who has decided that having homosexuality illegal in Uganda with up to a 14 year prison sentence attached, just wasn’t enough and that it was essential to try and put the following laws into place:
• Gays and lesbians convicted of having gay sex would be sentenced, at minimum, to life in prison (I’m not quite sure what other kind of sex my wife and I can have…perhaps they could be more specific)
“Give us something to read about” she said to me with her 80 year old twinkling eyes excited by the prospect that Tully and I would accomplish something article worthy.
It moved me, inspiring me not to let Molly down.
I discussed this concept years ago (long before “Yes Man” came out) with a friend who was longing to be in a relationship after spending way too many years alone. Only months after we talked she was invited to a dinner party, a type of event she wasn’t fond of and always instantly said no to, but this time she hesitated and then accepted.
It’s a shame about your weight…. you have such a pretty face!
Translation: you would be gorgeous if you were just a head.
It’s no wonder I found myself detaching from my body at an early age. I’d spend every cent I made on expensive hair products and skin care, to primp, fluff, fuss, pluck and take care of …the head.
In fact I don’t actually remember having a full-length mirror growing up…I didn’t need one.
It got to a point where I would actually look into the corner of the room when getting out of the shower to avoid any possibility that I might catch a glimpse of anything below… the head.
Did Canada’s moral fiber completely snap when the queer’s said “I do?” Did the economy collapse in Sweden when same sexes strolled down the isle? Did God cast Spain into the Mediterranean Sea upon hearing of the legal lezzy hitchings?