Archives for posts with tag: Judy Garland

At night.  On my own.  One more time.  By myself.

I am lip-syncing Judy Garland torch songs around my drawing-room.   After Judy I shall perform for the little dog a medley of miserable break up songs.  But actually I am not unhappy.

I am having rather a good time.  Listen, it’s all OK.  I am pretending that I have long hair that I can twist into a chignon.  I am pretending that I have long smooth legs and perfect breasts.

I got a bit irritable today.  Christ what was I thinking?  Trying to hold on..that’s what I was doing.  At least as one gets older and the break ups happen the fall out is less toxic.  I am trying hard not to be mean-after all he was totally out of his depth.  I might try to con myself into thinking that I did all the work but that simply isn’t true.  He fell into a snake pit-unwittingly.  Poor lamb.  Falling in love with me is like biting into something that smells wonderful but is actually totally rotten.   Like an old pineapple.

His life was really just how it was meant to be before he met me.  An ordinary gay man in an ordinary closet just about to have a cast of extraordinary characters unleashed upon him.  It must have felt like he was walking around a movie studio.  The freaks and the clowns and the whores.  And me, the most freakish, clownish whore of them all.

I only told him one lie whilst I was with him.  Just one.  When whoever wrote to me chastising him for leaving her.  I didn’t tell him how vicious they had been.   I didn’t tell him because he was being so brave.  He was already in such torment.  I know what it is to live a lie.  To live in the dark.  I know what it is like to be scared of who you are.

And as I unravel the short time we spent together I have to ignore that he hates me writing this-but that’s how we met.  The blog.

Sad note from a friend of Kristian’s today.   There’s no getting over some people.  Kristian, Dione and Justin will live on in my heart forever.

What a fucking palava!  If I died right now (and I think about that all the time) if I died right now I have had a fucking blast!  Actually, I hope that there is one great passionate love affair before I die.  Some one with as much flair and enthusiasm as I have. As brave as I am.  As magnificent!  Someone who is as anarchic and as manly and womanly and I am.

What a surprise, who could forsee? I come to feel about you what you felt about me.  Why only now when I see that you have drifted away, what a surprise what a cliché.

I am not wearing a black velvet jewel encrusted gown.  I am not wearing a wig.  I am not wearing makeup.  But I wish I was.   When I think of my totally uptight male film industry friends (like the fat pig agent) I take time to wonder how many of them could express themselves like that?  With verve?

You know what?  Every person I have ever fallen out of love with has come crawling back to me.  Every one.  They never somehow forgot what they were first attracted to.   Arrogant huh?  I don’t care.  Not tonight.  Look, my first boy friend was Fred Hughes.  One can’t get more glam than that dear.  He had his chance dear.  He had a moment in the fucking sun.

Maybe just one never came back to me and that was Matty but he was oddly like the last one.  A kind of blank canvas.   An ordinary boy hankering after a bigger life but not brave enough to take what was on offer.  The fact is-I am not a civilian.  Never was and never will be.  The ups and downs are all part of the deal.  Emotional Boom and Bust.  And fuck it I would rather have that than the parsimonious, mediocre life on offer to most.

Nobody expected anything from me and look what they got!

I’ve been to paradise but I’ve never been to me..

Ranting on a Friday night before I go out to dinner.   Perhaps I might take other risks tonight.  Perhaps I might take the truck and cruise the streets.  I have a parking place now.  A Hollywood parking place.  I can go where I want and a have a place to park when I come home.

Take my hand, let me take you love to love land..float on..

Now I am smiling and jigging about to the Doobie Brothers.

No Joni tonight.  It’s toooo depressing darlings.  Not Joni nor the Brokeback Mountain theme.  Not tonight.  Now, it’s time to flush this toilet and go out for dinner.

Thanks everyone, thanks for being there.  I don’t know what I would do without you.

London, during this year 2009, four queer men are murdered. All of them are middle aged or elderly. Greenwich, Bromley, Woolwich, Trafalgar Square. One of them hounded till death in his own home. Beaten to death in his sittingroom by ‘youths’.

When I am old, how will I defend myself against homophobic attack? I have done a valiant job so far. But if I am old how will I defend myself? Skinny wrists. Unable to call out for help. My glasses kicked to the curb. Paper skin torn from my old face.

Being old and Queer. There must be a different strategy for survival. One that does not include hiding or suicide. I have always been a big man. People have said on many occasions that I scared them. And so be it. Whilst other, slighter, more effeminate friends have had to deal more regularly with homophobia-I have not. Indeed, if I get a whiff of anything resembling homophobia I will rip your fucking balls off. I am that kind of guy.

I grew up in a working class fishing town on the North Kent coast. When I first acknowledged my desire for men; I told them straight. I told them what I wanted and refused to be shamed. I was genuinely astonished that they found my love of men so distasteful. The very same men who scorned me were the first to show me the way. At night, I kissed them on the lips. A little bit drunk, men shouting above the music inside the pub. The Two Brewers. Boys kissing in the misty guinnels between the red brick terraced houses. Smell the coal burning. Christmas tree lights glittering amongst the tinsel. My cold fingers warmed under his heavy coat.

Of course the locals let me know how much they disapproved of me but I didn’t care. I wasn’t going to let a bunch of thugs get under my skin. I was fucking fearless. Billy Stankovich tried to hit me. Paul Stromberg shielded me. I was less lucky at boarding school with nowhere to run.

Growing up being true to who you are means growing up with violence. Growing up desiring men and flaunting my ‘perversion’ meant learning how to avoid hate in peoples’ eyes or an unsuspected blow. I became adept at the evil bon mot. Words. Watch them shrivel. Words: more violent than a good kicking.

My friend and lover Justin, beaten by men in Camberwell commits suicide. They crushed his soul! He was 23 years old. Most young gay men who kill themselves do it before others can. It is too overwhelming for them. Simple boys who want to be with other boys. I was that simple boy but I chose to live! I wanted to live and faced their sneering, their snickering. Men and women. Women can be worse than men. Why? They have more to lose.

We queers are not alone. Tonight an asian man, a black woman, an aboriginal, a transgender will all die for the same reason. Because they are devalued in the eyes of the murderer.

This weekend there will be vigil in the heart of London for one of the murdered gay men. His name was Ian (56) and he made a critical mistake. He thought he could reason with fools. He was kicked to death amongst the bronze lions of Trafalgar Square.

Tell me what to do next? How do I save myself?

You must be fearless! Shameless!

Try holding your lovers hand in the street. Look into their faces. Kiss him on the cheek. I think, ‘I wish we were invisible now’. My darling, I wish I was not ready at all times to defend us from them. I hold my lovers hand. I hold his hand. I hold another mans hand. Why is that so repulsive to you? Why do you want to kill us?

I give it no thought until I hear that a man is dead. Another man struck down by their hand or his own. And I say:

I will not be shamed by you or your government or your church. I will not be shamed for wearing colour, a splash of make up, a bright smile, a predisposition for Judy Garland, Lady Ga Ga or holding my lovers hand on the street where I live.