BY Jim Edminster
It is perhaps just a coincidence that many gay men would be more familiar with the milieu that Jack Ryan, the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate seat from Illinois, took his former wife to.
The NY Times (6/23) describes it as a place with '... mattresses and cubicles' and 'a bizarre club with cages, whips and other apparatus hanging from the ceiling.' What is not coincidental, as a letter to the Chicago Tribune (6/23) that points out, is that Ryan's Web site condemns gay marriage—to protect American marriages. The letter asserts that '... politicians like Ryan [need to] look at their own indiscretions, their own divorces and their own behavior before denying privileges to individuals who won't take marriage for granted.'
Another local politician, Rep. Danny K. Davis, who to this column's knowledge has never had any anti-gay tendencies, has stepped into a Moonie mess according to Salon.com (6/21) and the Washington Post (6/23). Davis recently participated in a public ceremony—held in one of the U.S. Senate office buildings—of the allegedly Christian sect run by the Korean Rev. Sun Myung Moon. Moon has preached that gays are 'dung-eating dogs.' Gays are in good company: Moon is also anti-Semitic and anti-U.S. Constitution. One last parting Moon shot: as part of his final vision for a 'peace kingdom', 'gays will be eliminated in a purge like Stalin's.'
The NY Times Book Review (6/20) is mightily impressed by Colm Tóibín's novel, The Master, based on Henry James. It devotes three full pages to a book imagining the life of the almost totally repressed gay author by a not-so-repressed gay biographer. The review calls the book an '... artful, moving and very beautiful novel.'
The same issue of the Book Review re: David Sedaris' new work Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim calls the gay Sedaris 'America's pre-eminent humorist' but wonders if diarist David might be on the cusp of mining out his personal and family history for material and starting to work on deeper material: his conscience.
Nuala O'Faolain, the bisexual Irish writer, has a hilarious piece on sexual education on Salon.com (6/21). 'I was lucky enough to be with a woman for many years in between being with men, and I don't think the libido is all that discriminating. ... We'd make groundhogs into sex objects if they were all there were.' She speaks of the dances held [in the '50s?] in Irish villages as 'the most exquisite, prolonged foreplay the world has ever known, even though all they led to was more foreplay.'
A cartoon from The NY Times (6/6) missed the first time around: In a story about why Mr. Bush won't be at the Tonys—way too gay —there's a drawing of the Village People in full regalia and right in the middle in flight suit drag is Dubya—and he fit right in.