Dreamscapes

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Window on Time

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Walk with the Eternal.

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Wishes over water.

All pictures: Pont du Gard, France.

Aimer at Amazon

 

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Boys in the Band

Way back when I was in high school, the movie Boys in the Band sparked by an Off Broadway play, was one of my first introductions into what life in the LGBT community was like. Not that we used or even knew the term LGBT etc. etc. back then.

To the fifteen-year-old I was at the time, the movie seemed dark and depressing, the characters miserable.

Fast forward almost fifty years and we have Boys in the Band on Broadway. The characters are still deeply troubled men but — I’m not fifteen anymore.

I know no one is happy with themselves 24/7, that we all deal with voices from our past that make us cringe, and that this snapshot of gay life isn’t the only picture possible.

This isn’t 1970 and things have changed — which I think is the point of this revival.

Plus, and this is what made me pull out my credit card, have you seen the cast?

Jim Parsons would be enough to get me in a seat at the Booth Theatre on his own, but he’s not on his own. Sharing the stage we have, the new and improved Mr. Spock, Zachary Quinto, the original Elder Price from the Book of Mormon, Andrew Rannells, and my personal favourite since he played a not-so-recovered thief in White Collar, Matt Bomer. The only reason there isn’t a string of exclamation marks behind Matt’s name is because I’m restraining myself 🙂

Boys

If you’re anywhere near New York in the near future, plunk yourself down in the Booth Theatre. Each and every one of these actors gives a stellar performance and there are a lot more laughs than I remembered 🙂

Aimer at Amazon

 

 

Upstairs Downstairs

The behemoth of a doorman nodded his recognition of Ethan and stepped back, allowing Ethan to enter the foyer.  Before him, two staircases, one spiralling down, the other spiralling up.

Ethan took the one that went down. He always took the one that went down.

On the lower level, Ethan bypassed the cloakroom. Most of the men here would be naked or close to it, reason enough to keep his clothes on. Ethan wasn’t one to follow the herd. Also, of course, he preferred a partner with a little imagination. Made for more interesting play.

In another incarnation, the room Ethan let himself into had been a library. The books were long gone, but the room itself remained unchanged. Built on two levels, the circular space supported a gallery that ran the circumference of the room.

Most of them mostly naked, men chatted in pairs and small groups. An X-rated cocktail party minus the cocktails…and the clothes. None of the men looked up. Each and everyone of them pretended the gallery above them didn’t exist.

“Fucker,” Daniel said, joining Ethan. “You don’t even try.”
“Hey,” Ethan said, tapping his chest. “New shirt.”
Daniel grinned, spread his arms open. “No shirt.”
No pants either, Daniel liked to put the goods on show.

Dressed or not, they were all on show. This was a goldfish bowl and they were the fish.
The fishermen stood on the gallery above them…watching, choosing their catch of the night.

A staff member, easily identified as such by his grey vest and black tie, spoke at Ethan’s ear. “Fourteen.”
No name, no description of the fisherman who had reeled him in, just a room number. All the information Ethan needed.

“Jesus,” Daniel said. “You just got here.”
“Must be the shirt,” Ethan said, with a smirk. “We still on for Saturday?”
“Tee off at 9:15.”

Barefoot and bare-chested, legs encased in faded denim, Ethan’s fisherman sat with his arms stretched out along the back of the couch. He stared at Ethan and his thin lips quirked into a half smile.

Ethan tracked a dark treasure trail down to a black belt, betting with himself as to which command would come first…strip or kneel.

“How do you feel about champagne?” Treasure Trail asked.
What?
“Sorry?”
Treasure Trail leaned to the side, plucked a glass off a side table and proceeded to drip champagne down his chest. “Thirsty?” He spread his legs, inviting Ethan to stand between them.

Game on.

Aimer at Amazon

Sign of the Times

I came across this sculpture today and I had to smile …

I remember a time when people talked about peace as if it would really happen. When both sexes wore their hair to their shoulders, the girls stopped wearing bras, and the boys all pretended they could play guitar.

The world was going to be a better place. We would make it better.

Yeah …

Created for the Toronto Light Festival last winter by Studio Rosenblatt, Symbolic Peace is a “laser cut steel sculpture meant to signify the strength of diversity within our community”.

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Maybe it’s time to bring back the 60’s  🙂

Aimer at Amazon

 

#Thursday Doors

I drove out to Niagara-on-the-Lake recently, a small town in Southern Ontario with a big history. Founded in 1782 by Empire Loyalists fleeing the newly created United States of America, Niagara-on-the-Lake became a battle ground between the Americans and the British during the War of 1812.

Today, Niagara-on-the-Lake is home to the Shaw Festival (summer theatre) and wine, wine tours, and wineries.

I stopped by McFarland House for tea and a tour.

20180527_151124 (2)Built in 1800, McFarland House was unusual in its day in that it was constructed from brick instead of wood. It served as a hospital for both American and British troops during the War of 1812 and thus became one of the few houses to survive the period.

The front door was, and still is, painted red — a sign of welcome.

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As you can see, the door could use some work. Probably because no one uses it anymore, all guests entering through a side door that opens onto the tea room.

Unfortunately, while I can’t claim Norm’s camera skills, I did find myself reaching for my phone on a wander through the Old Town.

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Fun fact: Niagara-on-the-Lake boasts the oldest surviving golf course in North America, Niagara Golf Club circa 1875.

Funnier fact: The town is home to the oldest operating inn in Ontario, The Olde Angel Inn established in 1789. If you’re ever in the women’s washroom, think twice before you lift the privacy leaf on the Statue of David — a bell will ring in the main dining room 🙂

Aimer at Amazon

 

Pride

For Pride this year, we have our first ever LGBTQ2 themed Heritage Minute.

For all you non-Canadians, Heritage Minutes are sixty second films that document significant people and events in Canadian history.  Often, moments and viewpoints are explored in these mini-movies that our high school history books failed to mention.

Case in point: Gay activist, Jim Egan.

Never heard of him? Neither had I.

Today, James Egan would be called a gay activist. Back in 1951, when he first sat down at his typewriter and pounded out an article entitled, I Am a Homosexual he was just a young man who was pissed.

Jim battled rampant homophobia with letters and op-ed pieces in the press, eventually taking the Government of Canada to court demanding spousal benefits for his life partner.

In 1995, Jim and his partner Jack Nesbit cruised down Yonge Street, the same street they could have once been arrested on for simply holding hands, as honorary grand marshals in the Toronto Pride parade.

Happy Pride 🙂

Aimer at Amazon

Scary Stuff

Think It was scary?

It

Or It Comes at Night?

It Comes

Maybe something from the Friday the 13th franchise?

Want to know what has me hiding in a corner with my hands over my eyes?  The scariest thing on the screen today?

The Handmaid’s Tale

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No ghosts, no zombies, nothing coming out of the floorboards to grab you in the night, but The Handmaid’s Tale doesn’t need CGI special effects to be truly terrifying. The monsters here are human and very real.

The scary thing? The loss of liberty depicted in the show has happened in other countries and could happen in any country … if we take our freedom for granted and stop paying attention.

 

As in any dictatorship, no one is free in this story. Women are cattle and men are tools. Being attracted to your own sex is a death sentence.

Religious platitudes justify atrocious actions … hmmmm … where have I heard that before?

It’s only fiction, right?

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Aimer at Amazon

Conversion Therapy

It was a mistake.

I knew any book set in an abandoned mental asylum was going to be too dark for me. I knew it, and I read the damn thing anyway.

Tin Box

Not that The Tin Box by Kim Fielding isn’t a good book. It is.

Fielding tells a story of two Williams — One arrested and consigned to a mental hospital in the 40’s for homosexual activity, the other trying to recover from religious parents and conversion therapy circa 2012.

I finished the book and thought I was okay … until I tried to sleep that night. Impossible. I kept thinking of that poor 1940’s William. I told myself it was fiction, fiction!

Fiction? Well … Yes, and no.

True, Fielding’s Williams are fictional characters, but what happens to them in the book has happened — and is still happening to LGBTQ people today.

In one of those freaky, maybe-there-is-a-Master-of-the-Universe coincidences, I opened my phone the next morning to find an email asking me to sign a petition to End Gay Conversion Therapy in Canada.

?????

Disgusting, but true. 2018 and Conversion Therapy isn’t banned nation wide. So far, only two provinces have declared CT illegal. Thank God, I live in one of them.

Really? What is wrong with this world?

How hard is it to say you be you and I’ll be me?

Aimer at Amazon