Thank you Tin for being a bona-fide queer identifying female, and broaching the topic of fake lez blogs, writing as you were into a story with more immediate consequences. The clear and present danger Hong Kong is engineering for its non hetero- and-gender-normative inhabitants is a reason to “tsk-tsk” big-time. However, I felt that a little more riffing on the topic of faking it, with some additional cultural associations to the “crime” of disingenuously fictionalizing suffering while providing hope was apropos to Queerious. Hence, on http://damascusgaygirl.blogspot.com…
A blossoming 4 month-old blog with thousands of followers, generous accolades for reporting with guts and glory and a world of trust won from the vivacious and tough crowd of Middle Eastern queer women, has recently revealed itself to be a complete and well, disgusting hoax.
You may think of other words to evoke the betrayal, when slowly, the layers of Ameena Al-Araf, author of “A Gay Girl in Damascus”, peeled back and viola- revealed itself to be – a human being, (thankfully Watson the IBM supercomputer doesn’t have such an itch for fame or treachery… yet) but one that’s a yuppie white male on the edge of middle-agedom, misguidedly using his pursuit of higher education “in Europe” to shine a light on the plight of the every gay woman in the hotbed of an Arab spring Middle East. Continue reading
This year, artist and “visual top” (a variation of the word curator Caitlin reserves for her own managerial style) Caitlin Sweet is part of a collective called Dirtstar. As the June’s Pride happenings are appearing on the horizon Dirtstar is putting on a showcase of brave and brilliant queer artists for the 2011 National Queer Arts Festival. NQAF now in its 14th year, is a month-long festival of music, dance, visual art, literature, performance, comedy, theater, and film featuring hundreds of queer artists. As always, NQAF is happening on the shores of the legitimately famed gay city of them all- San Francisco!
The visual art show is opening June 2 and lasts through June 19. You can BUY TICKETS to the Closing Performance Event scheduled for Sunday June 19, 5-7pm, however no one will be turned away for lack of funds. The visual component of the showcase, the Take Root exhibition, is flanked by a breathtaking array of performances and workshops along with other happenings. All I can say is folks, keep your ears close to the ground.
I need to do little talking in presenting Caitlin Sweet. She does such a fantastic and powerful job herself. That is why the feature of this post is a brand spankin’ new interview I did with this queer Jane-of-all-trades. It’s been my honor to know this woman from my days in SF. She is fiercely intelligent, outspoken and sexy- a welcome fixture to any LGBT community. But most of all, she had done a fine job curating this trailblazing show for us queers. Please enjoy!
Dirtstar Photo by Arrow (Ami Puri); Clockwise from 12 o'clock: mab, Amar/a, Lex Non-scripta, Caitlin Sweet.
M: This is your first year participating- is that right?
C: I did an installation in Dirtstar last year, which led one of the organizers to ask me to help for this year.
M: Who and what is Dirtstar? Continue reading
Was k. d. lang’s newest album, Sing it Loud, released this April on your radar?
Perhaps I am not the singers’ target audience, because I learned of the album by complete chance rather than fandom. When I was picking up my Pike’s Place coffee at the Starbucks counter about a week ago, one of those free iTunes cards at was staring up at me. As a kid who heard “Constant Craving” on the airwaves during the era of candy-coated (and delicious!) soft rock and early hip-hop, I could not come to appreciate her. The lyrics were serious, the
music video black and white and tone frankly tragic!
Tatu has followed me around for 10 years: from nearly arriving just in time for my first same-gender pangs to keeping me company in my car rides filled with nostalgia for youth’s reckless-heart days, Lena and Yulia and I have been through it all. I first heard about Tatu from my friend Asya, who immigrated to the U.S. aged 12, but whose heart never left the motherland. She had returned from her annual summer stay in Moscow in time to start our first year in college, and in the few days beforehand we were making the most of the concrete floor of her outdoor patio, pretending we were sunning on a more supple beachfront. Although the summers of my late teens were filled with enough angst, lust and SAT prep to satisfy Ivanka Trump, the atmosphere around Asya’s yearly culture updates was intoxicating with possibility and held an onus of importance in the course of our meetings.
She sticks one of her new acquisitions into the stereo and in Russian I hear, “Nas degonyat”…. “Not gonna get us” and the song instantly cuts to my quick.
Posted in Sight and Sound
Tagged All the Things She Said, bi-curious, Ivan Shapovalov, lesbians, Moscow, most successful Russian, MTV, MTV music awards, Nas degonyat, Not gonna get us, Tatu