Friday, December 27, 2013

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Candis Cayne in this week's episode of Elementary

GIFs from rebloggy

Elementary has taken the current lead in the race of favorite between Sherlock and Elementary with the introduction of Ms. Hudson played by the trans performer Candis Cayne!

LOVE HER! Because of her in the 90s - back when she was still just a drag performer - I bought my first dresses and a pair of pumps. Granted this lasted a week before I returned everything and never donned a frock every again.

Here's a post from Jezebel

Alan Turing does not need forgiveness...

...the government does.

Via The Atlantic

The “royal prerogative of mercy,” the formal title for a King or Queen’s pardon, is one of the central affordances of English royalty. Its language is old and pleonastic, comfortable in its somber power.

That makes it all the more stomach-turning to read. “Now Know Ye,” it reads, “that We, in consideration of circumstances humbly represented unto Us, are Graciously pleased to extend Our Grace and Mercy unto the said Alan Mathison Turing and to grant him Our Free Pardon posthumously in respect of the said convictions.”

Perhaps this is standard language, but being “pleased to extend Our Grace and Mercy” feels inadequate in any register. Turing should be forgiven for nothing; he did nothing we’d consider criminal. If any entity requires pardoning, it’s the government. And yet the same government, in the body of its messenger, is pleased to excuse itself.

The pardon continues, becoming more and more magically legal. There is that recursion again: “And to pardon and remit unto him the sentence imposed upon him as aforesaid; And for so doing this shall be a sufficient Warrant.” The document only has to say the pardon exists, and it becomes real.

While I am happy that Turing was pardoned, I'm still saddened that so much damage can't be undone.

Gore Vidal Fucked Jack Kerouac

So...one of my main goals in inventing a time machine would be to go back in time to sleep with Gore Vidal, Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsburg, Bosie, Sam Steward, etc. etc. I'm not happy unless I can be a ho throughout time and space. :)

Gore Vidal met and flirted with Jack Kerouac in 1949 at, surprisingly, the Metropolitan Opera where Kerouac was with his publisher. They met again in 1953. In his memoir, Palimpest, Vidal describes discussing what happened with Kerouac during his final meeting with Allen Ginsberg in 1994.

“Jack bought (William S.) Burroughs and me together at the San Remo, on the edge of Greenwich Village. Hot night. Jack was manic. Sea captain’s hat. T-shirt. Like Marlon Brando in A Streetcar Named Desire. Drinking beer. Burroughs looked like a traveling salesman who had traveled too far in a wrinkled gray suit. He had published a good novel, Junkie under the name William Lee… Bill was quiet. Jack was loud. I suppose he was drunk.”

Kerouac started flirting with Vidal. The three were supposed to go bar-hopping together, but Burroughs dropped out. Then Jack suggested the two of them get a room. They went to the Chelsea Hotel, where they signed their own names. Vidal wrote, “Grandly, I told the bemused clerk that this register would become famous… I’ve often wondered what did happen to it… Lust aside, we both thought, even then (this was before On the Road), that we owed it to literary history to couple.”

Although everyone agrees Kerouac was drunk, the real story of what happened next varies depending on who tells it, and when. Ginsburg’s biographer Bill Morgan says Kerouac spent the night sleeping in the bathtub. In a 1994 interview, Vidal said, “As everybody knows, I fucked Kerouac.” Vidal writes that Ginsberg told him, “Jack was rather proud of the fact that he blew you… Allen sounded a bit sad as we assembled our common memories over tea in the Hollywood Hills.”

Read more: 22 sordid tales from the sex lives of some of your favorite gay authors and artists

Currently Reading

If anything, so far, reading this is somewhat akin to helping someone less fortunate than yourself: you suddenly see that you have a lot in your life to be grateful for, though with Brosh you feel less guilty about laughing your ass off too.

Via The Rumpus by a former coworker and friend Stacie Williams:

I was first introduced to blogger Allie Brosh’s “Hyperbole and a Half” when I started library school. The illustrations, rendered in a throwback Mac application, were wry and occasionally burst-out-laughing funny. She seemed to have a following among the Dewey Decimal-literate (or anyone in graduate school) because her concept of “doing all the things” as a mantle of adult responsibility was painfully familiar. In her blog-based book, Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things that Happened, Brosh creates a diagram by which her attempts to increase the level of responsibility in her life ultimately end in a “system failure.” Despite some amusingly re-created anecdotes, this book tries to do “all the things” with uneven results.

The popularity of the memoir format combined with a cultural insistence on elevating the banal into the sublime often leaves the reader unfulfilled and only mildly interested, as though they just skimmed a series of lunchtime Google chats. WYD? Tuna salad for lunch. The day is going by so fast. I can’t believe I’m so busy. Guess what funny thing just happened? LOL! Brosh isn’t always so banal. In two blog entries written in May and October 2011, respectively, she addressed her book deal and gave a sobering explanation of her ongoing experiences with depression.

Half of the book is composed of the most popular blog posts, such as “The God of Cake”—still hilarious after numerous readings—in which Brosh acts a stone-cold fool while scheming to eat her grandmother’s birthday cake, and “Dogs Don’t Understand Basic Concepts Like Moving,” where her anxious canines vomit, cry, and crawl their way into a new house. The other half is made up of new pieces that come off like a co-worker retelling jokes heard the night before at a comedy show. Maybe it was funny, but you probably had to be there to really appreciate it. “Dinosaur (the Goose Story)” is a prime example. In the heat of the moment, a goose walking into the house, running and chasing the inhabitants, probably makes for a bit some excitement. On the page, even with the adorably sad-faced shark that she uses as her alter ego, it is less so. This is despite photographs documenting the event, which she included because she says “While all of this was happening, I knew that it was probably going to be a story I’d write down someday. I also knew that the people reading it would probably feel some doubt to its veracity.”

Also via NPR where you can also read an excerpt

Allie Brosh's humorous, autobiographical blog, Hyperbole and a Half, has a huge following. In 2011, an editor of PC World included it in a list of the funniest sites on the Internet, and this year, Advertising Age included Brosh in its annual list of the year's most influential and creative thinkers and doers.

That's pretty amazing considering that, as Brosh describes it, she lives like a recluse in her Bend, Ore., bedroom, where she writes stories about her life and illustrates them with brightly colored, intentionally crude drawings.

Most of the stories are funny, whether they're about her dog's behavior problems or her favorite grammatical pet peeve — "a lot" written as "alot." But her most popular posts have also been the most upsetting, about her crippling depression. In fact, when Brosh stopped blogging for about a year and a half, her readers were worried about her. Now, not only is she blogging again, she has a new book, also called Hyperbole and a Half, that collects her blog posts as well as new illustrated stories.

And here is the blog: Hyperbole and a Half

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Merry Christmas, Alan Turing

Via The Independent

He was the father of modern computing whose work on the Enigma code at Bletchley Park is said to have shortened the Second World War.

But he was also gay and in those less enlightened times was chemically castrated by an ungrateful nation after being convicted of “gross indecency” with a man in 1952.

Now, nearly 60 years after his suicide from cyanide poisoning at the age of 41, Alan Turing has been officially pardoned by the Queen under the little-known Royal Prerogative of Mercy.

The pardon comes after a change of heart by ministers who had previously insisted that Turing was properly convicted of what at the time was a criminal offence.

A pardon is usually granted only when the person is innocent of the offence and where a request has been made by someone with a vested interest, such as a family member. But Turing’s pardon has been issued without either requirement being met.

It follows a sustained campaign by scientists, including Stephen Hawking, and a petition to Government signed by more 37,000.

Announcing the change of heart, the Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said Turing deserved to be “remembered and recognised for his fantastic contribution to the war effort” and not for his later [erroneous, barbaric, wrong, idiotic, etc.etc.] criminal conviction.

“His later life was overshadowed by his conviction for homosexual activity, a sentence we would now consider unjust and discriminatory and which has now been repealed,” he said. “A pardon from the Queen is a fitting tribute to an exceptional man.”

The pardon under the Royal Prerogative of Mercy will come into effect today.

Since 1945, only three high-profile pardons have been granted in England and Wales under the Royal Prerogative: to Timothy Evans, Derek Bentley and Michael Shields.

Adjectives in the brackets are mine. :)

Pentatonix: I Need Your Love

Monday, December 23, 2013

In Case You Need Some Last Minute Gift Ideas

Via io9: Amazon is making it harder to sell Bigfoot porn ebooks

However, after a media storm surrounding the availability of ebooks featuring rape, incest, and bestiality through major retailers like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Waterstones, things started to change. Authors of fantasy erotica found their books taken off the virtual shelf with little or no explanation. Although Amazon has been vague on what literature it deems offensive, even when talking to Business Insider, many of the writers and folks tracking this issue suspect that these ebooks got caught in Amazon's net because they involve sex with non-human entities and are therefore taboo.

Friday, December 20, 2013

The Guy Who Created Duck Dynasty...

...also starred in the gay movie about the porn industry, The Fluffer.

Via BuzzFeed

With the relevant question, "Has Phil Robertson seen The Fluffer?"

Also, here is a good piece via Think Progress:

Robertson is a free man. He has not been arrested for his beliefs. He could continue to say whatever he’d like and, given the current media frenzy, it would probably be quickly published in many other places. Robertson could even take to his own website and publish whatever he wants to say, and individuals could share it through social media the world over. His freedom of speech has been in no way encumbered.

A&E, as a company, enjoys constitutional protections as well, and is under no obligation to provide a platform for messages it disagrees with. The network’s statement suspending Robertson from filming was telling in this regard: “His personal views in no way reflect those of A&E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community.” A&E is not Robertson’s employer, lest it be forgotten that the show Duck Dynasty is about his actual business, Duck Commander, which produces duck calls and other related (and not-so-related) products.

What actually is taking place is that conservatives are taking umbrage because a fellow conservative’s beliefs are being publicly criticized. This happens all the time. When Chick-fil-A head Dan Cathy, whose company gives millions of dollars annually to anti-gay groups, said that homosexuality is “twisted up kind of stuff” that is “inviting God’s judgment,” LGBT groups called for awareness-raising and boycotts while conservatives rushed to show their “appreciation.” The exact opposite happened when companies like Starbucks and General Mills announced their support for marriage equality: LGBT groups offered praise, while anti-gay groups vowed to dump their products.

Via BuzzFeed

17 Books We Loved in 2013

Thursday, December 19, 2013

As Though...

...the end of the year was the only time for lists.

Image via Brain Pickings

Of course, it is that time of year...where everyone and anyone is presenting their different and somewhat similar best of lists for yet-to-be previous year.

I've been looking at a lot of these lists, and since I'm still a little lax in posting, I'm going to post links to each list as I see them.

So from Brain Pickings, the above image is from The Best Books on Writing and Creativity of 2013

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

I'm putting this here...

...to remember for later.

This is from someone's Etsy page, so it may be a copy of the original.

The original is by illustrator Kay Nielsen. And this is from the story The Three Princesses in the Blue Mountain (also known as The Three Princesses of Whiteland.

I at some point owned this book. I can't remember if it was during childhood or in the 90s when I lived with my then-boyfriend, but I spent a good 30 minutes today searching for this one image. At first I thought it was a Hans Christian Andersen story, but all I remember is the Erte-esque crowns. Then I found an image in which the person in the foreground was very small while the background just flew up into the sky in long straight lines.

The image was by Kay Nielsen, and upon doing an image search for him, I found the above.

At first, I thought the image was potentially from (specifically from) Andersen's story The Snow Queen...which I also found the Art Linkletter version of this tale on YouTube...and here it is (the Snow Queen has a similar crown)...

I'm rather disturbed that one of the songs is called "Do It While You're Young." Do what, pray tell.

This Week in Books

Over the past decade, the controversial issue of gay marriage has emerged as a primary battle in the culture wars and a definitive social issue of our time. The subject moved to the forefront of mainstream public debate in 2004, when San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom began authorizing same-sex marriage licenses, and it has remained in the forefront through three presidential campaigns and numerous state ballot initiatives. In this thorough analysis, Leigh Moscowitz examines how prominent news outlets presented this issue from 2003 to 2012, a time when intense news coverage focused unprecedented attention on gay and lesbian life.

During this time, LGBT rights leaders sought to harness the power of media to advocate for marriage equality and to reform their community's public image. Building on in-depth interviews with activists and a comprehensive, longitudinal study of news stories, Moscowitz investigates these leaders' aims and how their frames, tactics, and messages evolved over time. In the end, media coverage of the gay marriage debate both aided and undermined the cause. Media exposure gave activists a platform to discuss gay and lesbian families. But it also triggered an upsurge in opposing responses and pressured activists to depict gay life in a way calculated to appeal to heterosexual audiences. Ultimately, The Battle over Marriage reveals both the promises and the limitations of commercial media as a route to social change.

I'm actually currently reading this one...and it kinds makes my panties melt.

In 1815 a manuscript containing one of the long-lost treasures of antiquity was discovered—the letters of Marcus Cornelius Fronto, reputed to have been one of the greatest Roman orators. But this find disappointed many nineteenth-century readers, who had hoped for the letters to convey all of the political drama of Cicero’s. That the collection included passionate love letters between Fronto and the future emperor Marcus Aurelius was politely ignored—or concealed. And for almost two hundred years these letters have lain hidden in plain sight.

Marcus Aurelius in Love rescues these letters from obscurity and returns them to the public eye. The story of Marcus and Fronto began in 139 CE when Fronto was selected to instruct Marcus in rhetoric. Marcus was eighteen then and by all appearances the pupil and teacher fell in love. Spanning the years in which the relationship flowered and died, these are the only love letters to survive from antiquity—homoerotic or otherwise. With a translation that reproduces the effusive, slangy style of the young prince and the rhetorical flourishes of his master, the letters between Marcus and Fronto will rightfully be reconsidered as key documents in the study of the history of sexuality and classics.

Winner of the 2013 Man Booker Prize and Canada's Governor General's Literary Award, a breathtaking feat of storytelling where everything is connected, but nothing is as it seems...

It is 1866, and young Walter Moody has come to make his fortune upon the New Zealand goldfields. On the stormy night of his arrival, he stumbles across a tense gathering of twelve local men who have men in secret to discuss a series of unexplained events: A wealthy man has vanished, a prostitute has tried to end her life, and an enormous fortune has been discovered in the home of a luckless drunk. Moody is soon drawn into the mystery: a network of fates and fortunes that is as complex and exquisitely ornate as the night sky.

Richly evoking a mid-nineteenth-century world of shipping, banking, and gold rush boom and bus, The Luminaries is a brilliantly constructed, fiendishly clever ghost story and a gripping page-turner. It is a thrilling achievement for someone still in her midtwenties, and will confirm for critics and readers that Eleanor Catton is one of the brightest stars in the international writing firmament.

This richly entertaining biography chronicles the eventful life of Queen Victoria’s firstborn son, the quintessential black sheep of Buckingham Palace, who matured into as wise and effective a monarch as Britain has ever seen. Granted unprecedented access to the royal archives, noted scholar Jane Ridley draws on numerous primary sources to paint a vivid portrait of the man and the age to which he gave his name.

Born Prince Albert Edward, and known to familiars as “Bertie,” the future King Edward VII had a well-earned reputation for debauchery. A notorious gambler, glutton, and womanizer, he preferred the company of wastrels and courtesans to the dreary life of the Victorian court. His own mother considered him a lazy halfwit, temperamentally unfit to succeed her. When he ascended to the throne in 1901, at age fifty-nine, expectations were low. Yet by the time he died nine years later, he had proven himself a deft diplomat, hardworking head of state, and the architect of Britain’s modern constitutional monarchy.

Jane Ridley’s colorful biography rescues the man once derided as “Edward the Caresser” from the clutches of his historical detractors. Excerpts from letters and diaries shed new light on Bertie’s long power struggle with Queen Victoria, illuminating one of the most emotionally fraught mother-son relationships in history. Considerable attention is paid to King Edward’s campaign of personal diplomacy abroad and his valiant efforts to reform the political system at home. Separating truth from legend, Ridley also explores Bertie’s relationships with the women in his life. Their ranks comprised his wife, the stunning Danish princess Alexandra, along with some of the great beauties of the era: the actress Lillie Langtry, longtime “royal mistress” Alice Keppel (the great-grandmother of Camilla Parker Bowles), and Lady Randolph Churchill, mother of Winston.

Edward VII waited nearly six decades for his chance to rule, then did so with considerable panache and aplomb. A magnificent life of an unexpectedly impressive king, The Heir Apparent documents the remarkable transformation of a man—and a monarchy—at the dawn of a new century.

Musicals adapted to the big screen—from West Side Story to The Phantom of the Opera—have enjoyed a staggering amount of success since the 1940s, and this guide is especially tailored to library patrons looking for help selecting the right flick to watch. The book is organized by decade, allowing readers to learn about the nuances of each era of musical movie production, and a description is paired with each film along with an explanation of why it is worth viewing. Watching musicals and learning their history by way of libraries and archives where such films are preserved and made available is heavily emphasized.

Nelson Mandela's Coffin Lies in State in Pretoria

I missed posting about Mandela's death the day it happened, so I wanted to post something today.

Via BuzzFeed: Thousands to visit Nelson Mandela's viewing in Pretoria

Monday, December 9, 2013

Repeal HIV Discrimination Act to be introduced

Image and quote via BuzzFeed

The “Repeal HIV Discrimination Act,” to be introduced by Delaware Sen. Chris Coons, calls for an inter-agency wide review of state laws and policies targeting people living with HIV and AIDS, and resembles a bill introduced last May in the House by California Rep. Barbara Lee. Thirty-two states currently have laws on the books that use HIV status to criminally convict people.

“There are places in this country where state and local laws make it similar to assault with a deadly weapon for somebody with HIV/AIDS to spit on someone, for example. That’s based on an outdated unscientific fear that fed lots of discrimination,” Coons said in an interview with BuzzFeed. “There’s no scientific proof any people are at risk from that kind of an incident and these are exactly the sort of thing this interagency study should look at to try and bring attention to.”

Sunday, December 8, 2013

A for Effort...but where are the hot guys who say that ARE actually HIV+?

Image and quote from Queerty: Underwear Models and Former Child Stars Post for HIV Awareness Campaign

The time for ending any lingering stigma attached to HIV/AIDS and HIV testing is now, and HIV Equal, a social media anti-stigma campaign, is taking unique, fashionable steps to achieve this goal.

Many fabulous faces have been filing into the L.A. studio over the last couple of days. After photographing celebs such as Broadway stars Nick Adams and Billy Porter and professional boy toy Nick Gruber earlier this fall, the HIV Equal team was particularly excited to be supported by NOH8 founder Adam Bouska (right), who has effectively illustrated what a social media campaign like this can do to change public opinion. Child star-turned-go go dancer-turned singer Blake McIver and model/activist duo (and Queerty faves) Colby Melvin and Brandon Brown clearly appeal to the younger generation that HIV Equal needs to reach.

I applaud the effort, but where are the actual HIV+ men and women in this campaign? It is easy to say your status is anything other than positive: activist, strong, artistic, accepting, forgiveness. That just puts a pretty face and concept onto HIV while hiding its true face...which is the face of everyone, but doesn't seem to be a face or image presented here. But still...

And "forgiveness"? Who exactly needs forgiveness? The HIV+ person? The stigmatizing ass? Who?

I think what would really work would be artful NOH8-esque photographs of actual HIV+ people...though this campaign seems to be suggesting that most HIV- people still aren't ready to see them.

Just Finished

Image via Thorn Books where you can buy the 1902 edition of this title for...ahem...$1000.00. GOL! (Guffaw Out Loud!)

I'm assuming it was probably one of the last Rankin-Bass stopmotion Christmas specials made, and I assume from the lack of it being played on TV, it is not considered a classic, but The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus has always stood out to me. It was my favorite growing up though I can't remember seeing it more than a time or two on TV.

And I guess I wasn't paying attention because it was until the late 90s that I learned it was based on a book by L. Frank Baum of all people...well, why not by L. Frank Baum?

So...I just finished it. And highly recommend it: especially to anyone who has a shelf of books you tend to read each year around this time - such as A Christmas Carol and/or How the Grinch Stole Christmas. The story of how a little foundling raised by immortals to become the "patron saint of children" will fill your heart and/or your soul with a warmth that is nice to have during the cold parts of the year - akin to Camus's finding an eternal spring in the midst of winter.

"In all this world there is nothing so beautiful as a happy child," says good old Santa Claus; and if he had his way the children would all be beautiful, for all would be happy.

OK. So watching this clip...well, the Rankin Bass is a bit heavy-handed - for Santa's sake - the song featured in it is more akin to a Dwarf song about the Lonely Mountain rather than a story that ends in the Laughing Valley.

So, I mentioned this on my Goodreads account. Throughout reading the book this time, I kept thinking of who I'd want to do the voices of a audiobooks version of the story and I came up with this list:

  • Christopher Lee as the Great Ak
  • Patrick Stewart as the narrator
  • Kate Winslet as Zurline the Queen of the Wood Nymphs
  • Jenna Louise Coleman as Necile
  • Josh Huddleston as the young Santa
  • Ian McKellan as the old Santa
  • Benedict Cumberbatch as the King of the Awgwas

That's really as far as I got...though there are more voices definitely. IDK

Friday, December 6, 2013

Creepier, Fan-Edited The Dark Crystal

Via io9

The Dark Crystal has always been Jim Henson's creepiest movie, but when it was finally released it was considerably toned down from his and Frank Oz's original vision. YouTube user scoodidabop has spent years re-editing the film, using Henson's original notes and various deleted scenes to create a far, far creepier movie than what you remember.

The removal of the narration and inner monologues is always a welcome change to any movie, but apparently the Skeksis were also not going to speak English (except rarely). You think the Skeksis were disturbing before? Check out what they're like when you don't understand what they're saying. Shudder.

THIS WAS AMAZING

Last night I attending the world premiere of the documentary The Lost Gospel of the Pagan Babies, a film by Jean Donohue about gay underground culture here in Lexington from Sue Mundy, Belle Brezing, Sweet Evening Breeze, Henry Faulkner, Peggy Fury, Bradley Picklesimer to the present...over a 150 years of gay culture here in the Bluegrass!

It was amazing!

Here is the LexGo write up on it:

It was nearly three decades after she left Lexington that filmmaker Jean Donohue realized she lived through an extraordinary time with some extraordinary people.

The epiphany came while she was back in town to see an exhibit of work by Lexington artist and her old friend Bob Morgan.

"We had a really long, rambling conversation, because I hadn't seen him in like 30 years," said Donohue, who now lives in Portland, Ore. "He kind of told me what had happened between 1982 and 2007, and I found it to be kind of an extraordinary story."

It was the story of growing up in a flamboyant and openly gay community in a Southern city where few thought that sort of thing could happen.

It was the story of transitions from a genteel, closeted culture to the liberation of the 1970s to the grip of fear in the AIDS epidemic of the 1980s and '90s.

It was the story of characters including writer Tennessee Williams, artist Henry Faulkner, drag queen Sweet Evening Breeze, bon vivant Bradley Picklesimer and Morgan.

Donohue has turned that story into a documentary, The Last Gospel of the Pagan Babies, which premieres Thursday night at the Kentucky Theatre.

The film's title riffs on a name Morgan gave the group of artists and drag queens that created a gay culture in Lexington that has roots back to the Civil War.

"It turned out to be more than Bob's story, but using Bob as the focal point to tell the story of gay culture in Lexington," Donohue says.

At one moment in the film, Morgan recalls being at a club with James "Sweet Evening Breeze" Herndon, a well-known 20th-century Lexington cross-dresser, watching performances by Faulkner's blues band and Picklesimer's punk rock band, The Thrusters.

"I didn't think about it at the time, but we were talking about spanning 100 years of underground history in Lexington," Morgan says in the film.

It is a culture that many people in and out of Central Kentucky have found difficult to believe existed in a time when homosexuality was taboo and fairness ordinances and same-sex marriage were unimaginable. That is in part why Donohue wanted to make the documentary.

"Talking to friends in New York or California, they would say, we don't believe that happened in Lexington, we don't believe there was a gay culture like that in Kentucky, much less Lexington," Donohue says, echoing comments from several people featured in the film. "So it became obvious this had been a special moment and maybe there was a milieu that was grounded in something older than any of us."

Fortunately for Donohue, it was also a well-documented time, particularly in photographs by John Ashley, with whom Donohue had worked. With Ashley behind the lens, Morgan, Picklesimer and others created wild images of themselves in elaborate drag. At one point, the images were aimed for a Pagan Babies book that never got published; they were eventually lost until just a couple years ago.

Donohue says the film project ended up taking much longer than the two years that was expected when she started in 2007, but that also allowed for developments including Ashley's photos to be rediscovered and additional contacts to be made. Part of her challenge was that while there was a lot of footage available, it was on almost every format from Super 8 film to digital files, and getting it all transferred consumed time and money. On top of that, she was shooting new footage.

A key figure in the film is Picklesimer, now a Los Angeles-based event designer whom Donohue interviewed for a day and a half in his West Hollywood home, decked out in full drag. Between interviews with him and Morgan and other local notables, Donohue had many hard decisions to make about what made the final cut.

"Structuring it has been extraordinary," Donohue said. "We completely restructured it two weeks ago."

Donohue says that with Pagan Babies she tried to create a film that would have appeal beyond Lexington. She says she hopes to get it into gay film festivals across the country and find national distribution.

What Donohue ended up with that she didn't expect was the story of a culture that continues to renew itself and grow, sometimes despite itself.

"It's the journey of these two guys who lived this exuberant, artistic, creative life and it's wonderful and everything, but it also became over-the-top," Donohue says. "They both fell into alcoholism and drug addiction and what I've admired most about them is they figured it out and they survived and they lived to tell pretty enlightening stories about that journey."

Thursday, December 5, 2013

I Have One Request...


...could you release the original movie on DVD, please? (Or, possibly, any skill I have at finding things on the Internet inexplicably escape me when it comes to this movie.)

Via BuzzFeed:

Cult Film "But I'm a Cheerleader" to Get a Musical Makeover

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Not a particularly Bookish week

Just four titles this week...which is more than you've been getting in previous, I know...but it's kind sparse for the pre-Xmas season...enjoy!

Fifty leading writers retell myths from around the world in this dazzling follow-up to the bestselling My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me. Icarus flies once more. Aztec jaguar gods again stalk the earth. An American soldier designs a new kind of Trojan horse—his cremains in a bullet. Here, in beguiling guise, are your favorite mythological figures alongside characters from Indian, Punjabi, Inuit, and other traditions.

Aimee Bender retells the myth of the Titans. Madeline Miller retells the myth of Galatea. Kevin Wilson retells the myth of Phaeton, from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Emma Straub and Peter Straub retell the myth of Persephone. Heidi Julavits retells the myth of Orpheus and Euridice. Ron Currie, Jr. retells the myth of Dedalus. Maile Meloy retells the myth of Demeter. Zachary Mason retells the myth of Narcissus. Joy Williams retells the myth of Argos, Odysseus’ dog.

If “xo” signals a goodbye, then xo Orpheus is a goodbye to an old way of mythmaking. Featuring talkative goats, a cat lady, a bird woman, a beer-drinking ogre, a squid who falls in love with the sun, and a girl who gives birth to cubs, here are extravagantly imagined, bracingly contemporary stories, heralding a new beginning for one of the world’s oldest literary traditions.

In this action-packed sequel to City of Dark Magic, we find musicologist Sarah Weston in Vienna in search of a cure for her friend Pollina, who is now gravely ill and who may not have much time left. Meanwhile, Nicolas Pertusato, in London in search of an ancient alchemical cure for the girl, discovers an old enemy is one step ahead of him. In Prague, Prince Max tries to unravel the strange reappearance of a long dead saint while being pursued by a seductive red-headed historian with dark motives of her own.

In the city of Beethoven, Mozart, and Freud, Sarah becomes the target in a deadly web of intrigue that involves a scientist on the run, stolen art, seductive pastries, a few surprises from long-dead alchemists, a distractingly attractive horseman who’s more than a little bloodthirsty, and a trail of secrets and lies. But nothing will be more dangerous than the brilliant and vindictive villain who seeks to bend time itself. Sarah must travel deep into an ancient mystery to save the people she loves.

This is the story of a hen named Sprout. No longer content to lay eggs on command, only to have them carted off to the market, she glimpses her future every morning through the barn doors, where the other animals roam free, and comes up with a plan to escape into the wild—and to hatch an egg of her own.

An anthem for freedom, individuality and motherhood featuring a plucky, spirited heroine who rebels against the tradition-bound world of the barnyard, The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly is a novel of universal resonance that also opens a window on Korea, where it has captivated millions of readers. And with its array of animal characters—the hen, the duck, the rooster, the dog, the weasel—it calls to mind such classics in English as Animal Farm and Charlotte’s Web.

Featuring specially-commissioned illustrations, this first English-language edition of Sun-mi Hwang’s fable for our times beautifully captures the journey of an unforgettable character in world literature.

This title is proof that I may be ready for the retirement home and a tight perm... Thankfully, neither Louis L'amour nor Zane Gray have started calling to me.

Horses and mules served during the Civil War in greater numbers and suffered more casualties than the men of the Union and Confederate armies combined. Using firsthand accounts, the many uses of equines during the war, the methods by which they were obtained, their costs, their suffering on the battlefields and roads, their consumption by soldiers, and racing, mounted music and other themes are all addressed. The book is supplemented by accounts of the "Lightning Mule Brigade," the "Charge of the Mule Brigade," five appendices and 37 illustrations. More than 700 Civil War equines are identified and described with incidental information and identification of their masters.