Monday, 28 June 2010

Big Gay Monday: Stonewall Riots and Gay Pride.


"This shit has got to stop"- anonymous participant in the Stonewall riots.

You might not realise this, but on 28th June 1970, 40 years ago to this day, brave gay and trans-gendered people got together and organised the first ever gay pride event in New York City, exactly one year after the iconic Stonewall riots took place. I don't really have a lot to say on the matter, it's all been said before by writers far more capable of summing the thing up by myself, but I will give it a go because this is something that I feel very passionately about.

In the 1960s there were no "gay districts". Any bars that happened to be populated by gay people were not to be advertised as "gay bars", this was a time when the issue was very much swept under the rug and not talked about, and most of these bars were owned by the Maffia who would take advantage of their customers by over-charging and watering down the drinks. The resident gays had to put up with this, they had nowhere else to go and just be themselves. Police riots on these bars were fairly common, and most places had an emergency stash of liquor hidden in wall panels for when the police confiscated their alcohol. Often the bartenders would have some sort of light signal so that the customers would know police were on their way and to stop kissing and touching each other, and for any present drag queens to discard their women's clothing, given that drag was illegal at that time (an idea I find frankly bewildering since my gay nightlife experience is undeniably enhanced by the scene's resident drag queens).

These police raids were no regular raids, however, with the gay men inside often assaulted, lesbians violated and transvestites ridiculed by the police all because of the way these people were choosing to live their lives. The protocol of these raids was that, once lined up, patrons would be asked to present their ID so that any men dressed as women, or vice versa, could be arrested and detained. On 28th June 1969, a raid took place at the Stonewall Inn that would arguably change everything. The gays were in low spirits anyway, their guardian angel Judy Garland had been buried the same day and suddenly their sanctuary from the judgement of the outside world was being raided by the police. The police were pushing people around, humiliating the people who were only there to have a drink and a good time. A lesbian being detained by the police shouted at the dumbfounded gays looking on, "why don't you guys do something?" They did. For the first time, the gays were fighting back.

"Why don't you guys do something?"

Eventually the police were forced to lock themselves inside of the Stonewall Inn along with the trans-gendered people they were detaining. As crowds of gay people flocked outside, the riots escalated with bottles and bricks and basically anything they could get their big gay hands on were flung at the door. Of course, this was no ordinary riot this was a gay riot so they did things in style. Drag queens were hitting the police with their handbags, chants were directed towards the police standing guard and when reinforcements showed up to try and control the crowd, the angry homosexuals (allegedly) joined arms and formed a kick line in their direction. For those of you who don't know what a kick line is, think of your dad when New York, New York comes on at a wedding. Now think of rows of homosexuals, arm-in-arm, using this as a violent protest against the police. It was chaos.

And in the light of day the following day, that was that. The gays of Christopher Street (where the Stonewall Inn could be found and, indeed, where the Stonewall riots happened) had made their point and what was next? They were out of their closets, and there was no way they were going back in. So they didn't. Overnight, everything was different. People were holding hands with their same-sex companions on the streets, flyers were being posted around encouraging gay people to open and operate their own bars rather than relying on the mob for protection (the real birth of gay bars) and within a year the annual New York pride event had been born.

Pride.

I know that a lot of modern gay people often say that the idea of gay pride is dated and irrelevant in the 21st century. They might be right, we've come a long way since the Stonewall riots and in my life I feel like I can be a proud enough gay man on a daily basis to not really need one day a year where I can be extra gay. But, in my opinion, gay pride isn't really for us anymore. It's not to show that we're here and we're queer and that people can bloody well get used to it (famously, Lisa Simpson once shouted at a gay pride parade in an episode of The Simpsons "we are used to it, you do this every year!"). Gay pride for me is to remind us how far we've come, and to commemorate the brave actions of those first Stonewall rioters. For me, not going to gay pride would be like letting their actions go in vain.

We live in a world of civil ceremonies and gay bars, Scissor Sisters and Pet Shop Boys, Will & Grace and Queer As Folk, Alan Carr and Paul O'Grady. A world where Sean Penn can play Harvey Milk and Ian McKellen can play Gandalf the Grey. This might be a bold statement to make, but if it hadn't been for those brave drinkers at the Stonewall Inn in 1969, we might still be restricted to the closet- separating from our partners when the police arrive and drag queens stashing their clothes under a bar so they aren't arrested for indecency. It might seem like a lifetime ago that this sort of thing was going on, but the scary thing is that it wasn't. It was less than half a century ago. Things might be more or less peachy for us 21st century guys and gals (we still have a long way to go, of course, but it might also be fair to say that the worst, for the most part, is over) but it wouldn't be if it weren't for those first brave gay people who decided to challenge the system. I'm not on the scene tonight but I will nonetheless be having a drink in their honour because without them who knows what kind of closeted state I'd be living my big gay adventures in...

Friday, 25 June 2010

The Silly Old Daniel Celebrity Roundup.


I'm single again. Here is the Silly Old Daniel Celebrity Roundup...

1. A ginger does a rap. (Digital Spy)

Gingers don't rap.

There is nothing so awkward as when someone thinks they can rap and they just can not. We've all sat through an awkward rap at some point or another, and if you haven't then I promise it is just around the corner. The only thing that could make a shite rap even worse would be if the person performing it was ginger. Because ginger people simply aren't made to be rap, or even be involved in rap music.

The Harry Potter theme park opened this week and Rupert Grint got up and entertained the crowd with a Beastie Boys number alongside his co-stars whose names I neither know nor care about. Reports say that- presumably because the performer onstage was ginger- the rap was awkward and uncomfortable, with members of the crowd left covering their ears with their hands.

Let this be a lesson to you, ginger readers of my blog. We downtrodden members of society need to stick together. But you are not meant to rap.
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2. El Biebero wants a woman with a brain in her head. (Perez Hilton)

Idiots need not apply.

Good news for teenage girls and sexually confused teenage boys, Justin Bieber is still single! In an interview this week he dished the dirt on what kind of girl he's looking for, and Bieber ain't after no stick insect with no brain.

"What's the point of having a nice looking girlfriend if you can't talk to her?" asks Bieber. And he's right. Of course similarly who wants a girl who's going to start chatting on about quantum physics or the rainforest when all you're trying to do is finger her? No one, that's who.

As well as girls with no brains, El Biebero prefers his women with "no make up", insisting that some women look much better without makeup. We'll see how much he's eating his words this time in 5 years when he's fucking Paris Hilton.
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3. Helen Mirren gets her tits out. (Holy Moly)

From Helen with her Oscar...

No, unfortunately you did not misread that; Dame Helen Mirren was photographed this week with her tits out. The photoshoot for New York magazine sees the 64-year-old lying in a bath with her bare nipples clearly on show.

Now I don't want to be hypocritical here after defending Madonna as much as I have in the past, but surely there should come a point in every woman's life where she takes off her top, looks in the mirror and says "it's time to stop posing with my clothes off". Unfortunately for Helen Mirren, that day is yet to arrive. And, because I want to gross you out, here is the photo:

...to Helen with her not so Golden Globes (uncensored picture here, if you dare).

I didn't think it was possible, but looking at that picture has actually made me more gay. I'm all for her comedically getting them out in Calendar Girls but come on now. You're 64 now, Dame Helen. Time to cover them up.
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4. Kylie Minogue is gonna do Glastonbury. (NME)

Pretty.

Even I thought there was something wrong when I heard the news that Kylie Minogue is reportedly gracing the stage at Glastonbury this weekend. Surely she has a mediocre music video she could be filming, a toxin she could be pumping her face full of or an idea she could be stealing from Madonna somewhere?

However, it's not as it seems. Kylie's mate Jake Shears has invited her to join he and his band Scissor Sisters during their set at the festival for a performance of her not-number-1 single All The Lovers. I hope she wears her rain mac as she will no doubt be bombarded by bottles of warm piss. How unfortunate for her.

Speaking of Scissor/Kylie crossovers, Scissor Sisters performed All The Lovers on the Radio One Live Lounge this week and I thought it was an absolute load of bollocks. What do you think?:



What an absolute shower of shite.
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5. And finally... (Mirror)

HELLO? HELLO? I'M IN JAIL! HELLO???

Lady GaGa fell over in an airport this week. How funny. If only there had been a photographer nearby :(

OH WAIT THERE BLOODY WAS!!!!:

That was your Silly Old Daniel Cheap Laugh Of The Day.

And so ends another Celebrity Roundup!
Yee-haw, bitches!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Heidi Hi.

Not quite the Living Doll Cliff had in mind...

In Swiss folklore, Heidi is the little orphan girl with a big heart. In real life, however, Heidi is the plastic surgery addict with the big tits. As a UK resident I don't have a lot to say about Heidi Montag. The Hills never really picked up over here like it did in America, and I didn't truthfully know anything about her until those post-surgery pictures of her were released to the public. The poor girl is only 23 and she's already a member of what Will & Grace's Karen Walker calls "the wax museum; where nothing every moves and people are always amazed at how lifelike you look". Sad sad sad she felt the need to do all this when she was perfectly fine before all the surgery. And, of course, anyone with a brain in their head can work out the one reason she did this: a man. While she's never outright admitted this, it's pretty much an established Hollywood fact she had all of her surgery to please her husband Spencer Pratt, who was essentially the Peter Andre to Montag's Katie Price.

I only just heard today that Speidi (Spencer and Heidi, gettit?) are getting divorced (I pride myself on being in the know with regards to celebrity gossip but, like I said before, Spencer and Heidi always manage to slip under my radar because I'm just not that interested in them) and for the first time since The Hills began, Heidi is keeping her personal life private. There's only one reason someone as fame-hungry as Heidi would do that, and that would be if she was genuinely heartbroken. And why shouldn't she be? She has changed her entire appearance for someone else, even her mother was "horrified" by Heidi's decision to alter the way she looks so drastically with Heidi claiming her mother barely recognised her anymore, and it was all for nothing.

The same thing happened to me, without the plastic surgery, when I was 17. I've gone on record several times as saying the one thing that pisses me off the most is when people underestimate me, or more specifically underestimate my intelligence. I'm not knocking down Mensa's door, of course, but there is a brain in my head and I'm not afraid to defend myself if people say otherwise (seriously; call me a faggot, call me two-faced, call me strange-looking but don't dare call me an idiot). This is why I made the decision to do an AS Level in Mathematics, I knew that years down the line when people were rolling their eyes when I brought Britney Spears or boys with nice bodies into the conversation I could follow it up with "so, let's talk calculus" and shut everyone up, their monocles falling into their Martini glasses.

However, once I'd finished my AS Level I knew in my heart that I'd had enough Maths and wanted to drop it in favour of English Literature. The boy I was dating at the time talked me out of it, as he had studied Maths, and said he'd be able to help me out as the year went on because he'd just finished it himself. Literally, a week later we were through and all I had left was a rebound gay and a schedule full of Maths revision. The lesson? Do what you want to do because at the end of the day when all is said and done, we're all on our own which is potentially quite a depressing notion, but you have to look for the positive in this idea and think "I am going to put myself first because at the end of the day nobody else is going to".

I mentioned in my last entry that I ran away to Leeds at the weekend. I was tired of thinking about everything going on around me and needed some time away from myself. Russell Brand has pointed out in his stand-up, and I am agreeing with him now, that this is a ridiculous idea because no matter who you try and escape from you're always going to be with yourself. Even in your must drug-riddled moments where you feel wrapped up in cotton wool and cut off from your surroundings (I do not speak from experience, just in case you're wondering I have never touched drugs because I'm off my fucking head enough as it is) you're always yourself no matter what. We can ignore our parents, ignore our friends, ignore our partners but the one voice we cannot ignore is our own.

So let's all learn something from Heidi Montag. We can try and live our lives for other people. We can try and change ourselves to make other people happy. We can go against what we believe in and compromise ourselves. But next time you find yourself doing all of this, take a step back, look around and ask yourself: "Why am I doing this?" Ask yourself: "What is it that I am gaining from all of this?" Next time you're doing something that makes you unhappy, shake your head and say "fuck it". And next time you're depriving yourself of something that will make you happy, knowing full well you deserve it, then just close your eyes, take a deep breath and go for it. Life is too fucking short to live it for other people, too many people in life make other people happy before themselves knowing full well there is no way the other person would do this for them.

I don't know Heidi Montag personally (obviously), and I know next to nothing about her. But I do know that her public mistakes are providing us all with an important lesson: don't let it get to the point where you look in the mirror and don't recognise yourself.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

The Slightly Belated Silly Old Daniel Celebrity Roundup.


Folks I am a bit all over the place at the minute. I haven't been blogging because being anywhere near a computer means I'll inevitably be on some form of social networking site which I'm trying to pry myself away from at the moment for fear of sending myself insane wondering what people are doing and comparing it to what I, myself, am doing. We all have those weeks where we float out of ourselves, look around our lives and think "oh my goodness" and don't quite know what to do next so the only logical thing to do is run off to Leeds for a weekend to hide from our problems? Yes? So I apologise to all those who have missed my blogging and if you're reading this and thinking "pfffft" then fuck you because I know you're out there :p Anyway. Famous people. Doing activities. Here are some of them in this week's Silly Old Daniel Celebrity Roundup...

1. Zac Efron is really fit. (Just Jared)

Delish.

I've got no quarms in telling you that I bloody love Zac Efron. He has a beautiful smile and beautiful eyes and beautiful arms and a beautiful body. He seems very charming and like someone your mam would go "you know what, I didn't initially agree with you being gay, bringing home transvestites and men with pierced urethras for Sunday dinner, but ever since I met your boyfriend Zac I've really warmed to you and your community."

So anyway, Zac Efron went to the beach this week, and had a splash about in the sea. What fun. You're probably thinking "fuck off Daniel, that's barely news". And you'd be right. But let's just have a look at something shall we?:

Famine? War? Political unrest? WHO CARES-- LOOK AT THAT BODY!!! Well done all concerned. God, if you're reading, you've really screwed up in the last few years but I am willing to overlook that since you did give us Zac and his, frankly, awe-inspiring body to gaze lustfully at.
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2. Katie Price has had more hen nights than I've had hot dinners. (Metro)

Nice crotch.

If you're anything like me then you're sick to fucking death of hearing about Katie Price getting married. I'm glad she's not my friend on Facebook, her frequently changing relationship statuses would be constantly clogging up my News Feed and there's nothing worse than that (MY FRIENDS ON FACEBOOK WILL UNDERSTAND THIS JOKE IS IRONIC BECAUSE I UPDATE MY STATUS ABOUT 100 TIMES A DAY, YOU SEE, HAR HAR HAR WHAT A LAUGH YOU ARE DANIEL). It seems like if Katie Price isn't getting divorced she's getting married, and if she isn't getting married then she's renewing her wedding vows. And that's exactly her plans for she and her new(ish) husband Alex Reid.

In preparation for her upcoming nuptuals, Katie Price had another hen night this week. Can you imagine just how many hen nights this woman has had? I bet at the end she makes a lovely speech where she cries some emotional botox-laiden tears and then says "right girls I'll see you all in six months for my next hen night". For this particular hen night she took all of the women in her life she claims are important, which includes her daughter Princess Tiami but apparently does not include that bender who follows her around, out for a spa day. But this was not just a regular spa day. Because the spa day took place at a botox clinic.

It doesn't stop there, though, as apparently Katie Price is set to perform her upcoming debut single at the ceremony. Thankfully, her guests' faces will be so frozen by the botox that their expressions of horror and disgust will be totally undecipherable.
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3. What the fuck has Kelly Rowland come dressed as? (Popjustice)

Two people obviously perfectly comfortable in each others' company.

Pop music is a funny old thing, isn't it? It goes through strange phases where one minute you can have a number one just wearing jeans and a t-shirt, the next minute you need to lob a telephone on your head. At this moment in time we are in one of the latter phases, where popstars who were once considered "tame" and "middle of the road" need to pull out the big guns in order to get themselves noticed.

This is exactly what Kelly Rowland did on her appearance on Graham Norton's chat show this week, as she sat around in what appeared to be little more than her brassiere and some form of military chapeau. One cannot deny that this style of clothing shows off her wonderful figure as best it can, but one also cannot deny that she looks a fucking state. She looks like bloody Slash which, oddly, is a look Rihanna pulled off quite successfully in the video for her American single Rockstar 101:

Anyway, she might have looked like she just rolled out of bed with a sergeant major-type, but she then went on to perform her new single Commander for the crowd at The Graham Norton Show. And let me tell you, it was something very special:



Could Beyoncé pull off something as unselfconsciously fun and carefree as that pop nugget in the video above? Think about it. She might not have worn something quite as unforgivably hideous, but she couldn't do it justice. Saying that, could Kelly Rowland perform a song as deliciously cocky as Why Don't You Love Me? and not look simply desperate or unjustifiably arrogant? The answer, of course, is no which proves further that Kelly Rowland and Beyoncé are two very different types of popstars and people should just stop comparing them now. That is enough of that.
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4. Woopsie, it could be jail for Perez Hilton. (Popeater)

Prison For Bitches?

Like all good bloggers, Perez Hilton likes to take the piss out of Miley Cyrus. However, his taunting of the teen star could soon be landing him in a spot of hot water after he took things ever-so-slightly too far and posted a doctored photo to his Twitter of Miley Cyrus seemingly not wearing any undies.

As it turns out, the picture was a fake, but if speculation is to be believed Perez could be in a spot of legal trouble for posting a nude photo of a minor, fake or otherwise. Let's not forget that despite my hatred of her, Miley is really only 17 and who here can honestly say that they agree with everything they did when they were 17. I can't, I was a fucking mess when I was 17. I watched 17 Again with Katie the other night and can't believe how happy Matthew Perry was to be, as the title suggests, 17 again-- personally I can't think of anything worse.

If worst comes worst Perez's unfortunate blunder could end up landing him up to 15 years in prison and a lifetime on the sex offender's register (one Hollywood list he's not dying to get his name on). Sitting in his cell and swapping coke at Lindsay's house to being poked in the "big house", I bet Perez would probably prefer being 17 again too-- even if he did used to be fat and shiny.
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5. Katy Perry has a new video that she hopes will make your pants grow tighter. (Daily Mail. I'd also like to acknowledge the fact that if you follow that link you can see a headline containing the word "saucy". Amazing.)

Tasteful.

Now before I begin this rant about the brand new Katy Perry video let me tell you that I love Katy Perry's music, I saw her live last Summer and she absolutely blew me away because she is a very talented woman without feeling the need to resort to performances like this to prove she is a serious "artiste". This, however, is where my defence of Katy Perry ceases because her new video is absolutely inexcusable. California Gurls is a perfectly adequate piece of post-Ke$ha pop about nothing in particular which features a rap from the increasingly irrelevant Snoop Dogg.



Carla and I were trying to put into words exactly why we didn't like Katy Perry, and I think she summed it up best by saying "it's the way she acts as if she doesn't know what she's doing" and I could not agree more. If Katy Perry was being aggressively sexual in this video then I'd say "good for her" and that would be it. But she's not. She's lying naked on a cloud of candy floss and pulling facial expressions like this...

...almost as if to say "oh my goodness where have my clothes on what a silly girl I am tee-hee how very silly you can see my boobies." Other annoying moments of Katy Perry Coyness (KPC for short) occur at this point in the video...

...where Katy seems to be fanning herself while her breasts are covered in some form of cream cake (a costume choice which, to me, just screams "we're going to need considerably bigger buns") and at this point in the video...

...where Katy completely non-suggestively licks an ice cream cone. I stress this shot of the video comes before the video has even been going 20 seconds. Such is the bombardment of sexual imagery in this actually load-of-bollocks video.

It's times like this it's hard not to look fifteen years into the future and see Katy and Lady GaGa as Cyndi Lauper and Madonna respectively, isn't it?

And so ends the slightly belated Silly Old Daniel Celebrity Roundup.
Yee-haw!

Friday, 11 June 2010

The Silly Old Daniel Celebrity Roundup.


It was gay night on Tuesday night, so I hit Diva with my spangly new boyfriend, where a lovely lassie at the bar told me that every Friday she looked forward to a good dose of celebrity gossip from yours truly. Unfortunately I was so drunk that night I accidentally kicked a pint glass over someone dancing to Ke$ha's Your Love Is My Drug on a staircase, so the rest of the conversation is difficult for me to recollect. Nonetheless, it was nice to know that somebody out there is reading this shite, so let's all sit back and enjoy this week's Silly Old Daniel Celebrity Roundup...

1. Miley Cyrus wants to shut her mouth. (Digital Spy)

Slut.

Right, if you've spoken to me at all over the past week and a half I've probably mentioned Miley Cyrus and her faked lesbian kiss on Britain's Got Talent. It really pissed me off. Then I posted that bloody long blog where I called her a shameless "boner dyke" with no respect for homosexuality. This week she apologised to everybody. Except it wasn't a proper apology, because she didn't actually apologise for the right thing. So rather than an apology it was actually more a series of words that were strung together in an order that made sense semantically while in fact not expressing anything at all.

I know what you're thinking, that I hate Miley Cyrus so much these days that anything she said would only end up twisted to make her look like an ignorant bint. And to these people, I invite you to read a section of Miley's apology which she posted on her official blog:

"I promise you I did not kiss her and it is ridiculous that two entertainers cant even rock out with each other without the media making it some type of story. I really hope my fans are not disappointed in me because the truth is I did nothing wrong."

Right, there's quite a few things wrong with that, aren't there? The overall message of the apology is clearly that because Miley didn't actually kiss the girl, she didn't do anything wrong. This sort of argument would imply that Miley would have done something wrong by kissing the girl, which really sees Miley digging herself a hole even bigger and deeper than that overused crevice between her legs. Another thing, Miley doesn't hope her fans aren't disappointed because she believes that kissing girls is an acceptable way to go on, and she wouldn't want prejudice to fester within her fan community-- she just does hopes they aren't disappointed because she only faked the kiss.

Seriously Miley get a fucking clue.
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2. Chris Brown?? Not in my country. (Heatworld)

Chris Brown: disgusting human being, good body.

Remember a while ago when Chris Brown smacked Rihanna about? Disgusting behaviour, I'm sure you agree. Thankfully, the story had a happy ending because Rihanna bounced back stronger than ever with a much hotter boyfriend and much better hair, meanwhile the world now rightly thinks Chris Brown is an utter bell-end. I mean really. Hitting Rihanna. In what world is that OK? No world.

So anyway, Chris Brown was meant to be doing a UK tour this week. Apparently, some people are more than happy to put money in his pocket knowing fine well that when he gets angry he grabs women by their hair and smashes their face against a car window. Fortunately for the conscience-baring members of Great Britain, the gigs have been cancelled indefinitely due to Chris Brown being denied a visa for this country.

It hasn't been confirmed that it's because of the way he abused and humiliated the best popstar in the entire world (that's Rihanna for any Little Monsters reading this), the Home Office has the right to deny access to the country to anyone "guilty of a serious criminal offence". I propose that a new law, perhaps to be named "Chris's Law", be imposed stating "no bell-ends allowed in the UK, please".
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3. Katy Perry doesn't like the new Lady GaGa video, and neither do I. (Twitter)

Nice hair, Harold.

Lady GaGa released her brand new video unto the world this week, for her upcoming single Alejandro. I'm not going to waste your time going through it frame by frame like I did with the Telephone video, I'll just let you judge it for yourself:



Of course, when I say "I'll just let you judge it for yourself" what I mean is "here's the video, and here's why I don't like it and if you don't agree with me you're either wrong or just wearing GaGa-brand horse blinders and need to get a life". So here it goes:

1. It's too long. Again. I've got a life to be getting on with, you know.
2. There's a good minute of silence at the beginning.
3. The video doesn't go with the song. I used to listen to Alejandro and assume the video would be light-hearted and summery. I thought GaGa would have a sombrero on. I imagined maracas would play a large role in the video. Any video is greatly improved by the inclusion of maracas. This video features no maracas.
4. Christina Aguilera got torn a new one for copying off Madonna in the Not Myself Tonight video. I fear that Lady GaGa will just be called avant-garde and imaginative for this video, even though Madonna probably thought up most of it ten years ago before deciding the idea was tired and moved onto something else.

It's not just me who doesn't like the video, though. Katy Perry took to her Twitter this week to slag Lady GaGa off a little bit. What does she think of GaGa putting on a nun's habit and pretending to swallow a rosary?:

Goodness me, could it be Katy Perry has a religious conscience? Let's not forget, both of her parents are ministers, underneath all her girl-kissing and junkie-marrying she's bound to have strong views about blasphemy and the like. It's funny she should mention the word "cheap" in conjunction with a music video, as stills for the upcoming video of her new single California Gurls were released this week:


Oh dear me. That is...well that's a bra that shoots out cream isn't it?
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4. Lindsay Lohan is still a piss-head. (Holy Moly)

Shabby off Big Brother was up for the lead in The Parent Trap, you know? THIS COULD BE HER.

When I was 16 I was sitting an English Literature exam and my phone went off in the middle. I never told anybody it was my phone, and everybody in the hall was kept behind for 20 minutes and threatened with having their exam cancelled. I was too scared to say anything about it until this very moment because I was too embarrassed. It was my phone causing all that disruption, for Christ's sake. Something like this is bound to have happened to you to some point; phones going off in the cinema, digital watches beeping in lectures, a dose of the sneezes on public transport that just won't go away. My point is, we all endure similar embarrassment at one time or another.

Just ask Lindsay Lohan, for example. She was attending the MTV Movie Awards this week (exactly why she was there is a bit of a mystery as she is seemingly famous for being off her face on coke and not much else these days) in a hideous spangly number. When I first saw her sparkly jumpsuit my immediate response was that it would have worked much better as a dress. Then I realised that Lindsay wasn't trying to channel Dame Shirley Bassey or the finale number of Mamma Mia!, she just can't wear dresses at the moment. She has to keep her legs covered. Because the court is ordering her to wear an ankle bracelet to detect alcohol content in her blood. An ankle bracelet which doesn't go with anything at all.

Unfortunately for Lindsay, the bracelet kept going off at the ceremony. It seemed like, despite being on ice thinner than Mary-Kate Olsen during Lent, Lindsay decided to have a drink anyway. Then she decided to deny it. Then her representative said that, in fact, the bracelet had detected alcohol in her blood after all.

Oh. Dear. Me.

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5. Could it be Britney Spears is actually a massive perv? (The Sun)

Marry me, BritBrit

Ever since Papa Spears took over the reigns of her life, we haven't been seeing quite as much of Britney Spears's foof, so it's easy to forget that underneath it all she really enjoys having sex. Anyone who needs a reminder of this need look no further than the Gimme More video. It seems like her horny nature could be landing LaSpears in trouble, however, as an ex-bodyguard revealed this week that he is considering suing her for sexual harassment.

According to sources (as a journalism student I can tell you this is never a good way to start a sentence as this phrase is usually followed by a stream of utter bollocks) Britney made the bodyguard in question nervous by repeatedly calling him into her room where she would be walking around naked. Apparently this behaviour finally pushed him to quit his job this week, and he is now considering taking legal action against Britney.

Hilariously (if, like me, you have no conscience), a friend of Fernando Flores (the bodyguard in question) told reporters: "Working for Britney is tough. She runs around the house naked, yelling at her staff". Surely I can't be the only person who finds the image of a naked Britney Spears running around her house in the nude barking orders at people deliciously funny? Her overworked breasts jiggling about the place as she does a spring around her mansion hollering "Make me a sandwich, make me a sandwich" in her stunning accent. Admit it, you smirked. I'll see you in Hell.

And that's the end of that for another week, y'all.
Yee-haw!

Monday, 7 June 2010

Big Gay Monday: Big Brother.



The last ever series of Big Brother makes its UK television debut on Wednesday night on Channel 4, and a host of homosexuals across the country lay down their heads and mourn. In all the excitement and celebrations associated with Big Brother, I personally- as an enormous fan of the show- can't shake off the sadness surrounding the fact this series is to be the last. Practically everyone you meet has some sort of opinion on Big Brother, it has arguably revolutionised TV. And so, this Big Gay Monday, let's look back over my personal Top 10 housemates of the last ten years...

10. Lisa (BB9)

Lisa entered as part of a couple in the ninth series of Big Brother with her boyfriend Mario (real name Shaun). Immediately she was thrown in the deep end as her boyfriend was made to participate in a task pretending to be engaged to another housemate who he would then have to marry in what the housemates, including Lisa, were made to believe was a real wedding. Lisa stayed calm throughout this whole task, watching what she believed was her boyfriend marrying another woman despite admitting she was desperate for him to pop the question to her.

When she was allowed to reveal herself as Mario's (Shaun's) true girlfriend, that's when Lisa unveiled herself as a game lass up for anything. Her laugh was infectious and she even had a bit of a Britney-esque breakdown when she smashed open a fire escape because she was so sick of life in the house. Lisa's craic was amazing with or without Mario, she really was a tip-top housemate and it's no co-incidence she received the best reception from the crowd that series after her eviction. Moreover, she also had one of the most fantastic pairs of breasts that have ever graced the Big Brother house. Get a look:

What a cracking pair.

9. Dale/Anthony/Stuart (BB9/BB6/BB9)

special mention also goes to Stuart (BB5) and Mikey (BB7)

Let's pause for a minute and reflect upon the summer's worth of wank-fodder we'll be missing out on when Big Brother leaves our screens as we raise a toast to the really fit housemates who added nothing to the Big Brother experience but were nice to look at for a while. We all know I'm a bit of a sucker for a pretty boy, and Dale Howard was the epitome of pretty boys in Big Brother 2008, along with love rival Stuart Pilkington. And then there was Anthony Hutton who I once met in Tup-Tup Palace on my prom night thanks to my friend Brogan. "That stupid Makosi bitch..." I drunkenly started telling him, before realising I had no way of finishing that sentence. I tell you something, though, he must be a nice lad because he put his arm around me even though I stank of sick that night.

These fit, but essentially pointless, housemates can always be counted on to whip their kit off in the name of their 15 minutes of fame, which it would be criminal to ignore, so let's have a gander shall we:

Excuse me I just have to...yeah...

8. Alison (BB3)

Big Brother 3 was largely dominated by the antics of a then unknown Jade Goody (who, unfortunately, would meet a sad end just seven years later), but my favourite moment of the entire series came when eventual winner Kate Lawler and Alison were seen jumping on a table to try and see out into the outside world, only for Alison to break the table and the two to fall about laughing.

This clip basically summed up Alison's short time in the house, she made the most out of shitty situations and brought a fun side to the series. Of all the housemates of the last ten years, I would say it was Alison who didn't get to shine to her full potential due to being evicted too early. Thankfully for her, though not surprisingly, she has made a successful career for herself post-Big Brother presenting on This Morning. So it worked out alright really, didn't it?

7. Brian (BB2)

I was only 10 in the summer of 2001 when the second series of Big Brother aired, and I did not know any gay people. My parents didn't have any gay friends, and there was nobody gay in my family. Brian Dowling was the first gay man that I spent any real time with, as he entered my living room every night via the TV and captured the hearts of my sister and I (I mean this in a metaphorical sense, rather than like something from The Ring.)

Brian brought homosexuality into the mainstream in a non-threatening way. He didn't do it with parades or leather clubs or glitter or anything like that; he did it just by being himself. By the second series Big Brother really was captivating the nation and Brian played a big part in the introduction of homosexuality to "normal" British 21st century society. And, of course, he did it completely unknowingly. He was a young lad just being his own person in a time when Big Brother was more than just a quick way of getting into Heat magazine and less than a phenomenon it was to become. And it's obvious that, in the days when Big Brother wasn't full of fake hair, fake tan and fake tits, winning really meant a lot to Brian:



Lovely.

6. Glyn (BB7)

I had an enormous crush on Glyn when Big Brother 7 was airing; looking at that photo I have absolutely no idea why. He was, undoubtedly, a fantastic housemate and the real winner of the seventh series because if there's one thing the public loves its contestants who genuinely go on a journey. When he started the series he was a young lad from the Welsh valleys who'd never really seen the world before, he famously didn't even know how to boil an egg. Suddenly he was shacked up with Lea Walker and three different gay men, something he'd never experienced before. I thought he was a genuinely sweet lad, and will always look fondly on his "cooking an egg for the very first time" song. He also got out of the house and did this:

Which was lovely when I was 16, but looking back is actually quite cringey. Dear me.

5. Helen (BB2)

Another Welsh wonder was Big Brother 2's Helen Adams. Helen was loveable for a number of reasons. For one thing, she wasn't a larger-than-life, eccentric, out of this world character. You could go to Tiger Tiger on a Friday night and see one hundred Helens. They'd be the ones apologising if they stepped on your toes, or giggling after one two many gin and tonics. There was nothing not typical about Helen, but that didn't stop her being a totally likeable character.

Helen was known more than anything for her ditziness (which eventually paved the way for super housemate Jade Goody) which made her a really endearing housemate to watch every night. There was nothing forced about her docile nature (unlike later housemates such as Sophie Reade or Emma Greenwood who were both accused of exploiting their naivety and lack of common sense to appear vulnerable and get attention) which made her a really charming contestant.

She was also involved in the first ever Big Brother romance with fellow housemate Paul Clarke. Keep in mind this came long before the disasters of Maxwell and Saskia, Chanelle and Ziggy or even Nikki and Pete, theirs was a gorgeous love story which lasted long after the series ended and while it ended up not working out, this always makes for a pleasant viewing:



AWWW!

4. Marco (BB5)

I am a flamboyant young man, it cannot be denied, and flamboyant young men are born and not made. What I mean by this is that I did not get to be this way overnight. I have been the tornado of glitter and colour and noise that I am tonight for a long time, and while it has helped me establish likeminded friends in my later years, it didn't make me quite so popular when I was younger.

Marco Sabba entered the Big Brother house when I was 13, and I was being picked on quite badly. Suffice to say I was really unhappy at the time. I absolutely did not fit in and there was not a thing I could do about it. I wasn't being picked on because of my hair or my clothes or the music I listened to or anything like that I could hide or change to make my life easier, I was being picked on because of who I was. I honestly thought there was nothing I could do about it all, and this was going to be my life for the rest of my days. I feared that as a flamboyant, gay man (I wasn't technically "out" at this point but was almost certain in myself that I was gay) I was never going to be taken seriously and my lot in life was forever going to be taking abuse from people who didn't know anything about me other than that I was different to them.

I have to be honest with you, as ridiculous as it sounds it gave me so much more confidence to see Marco running around on TV enjoying himself. He and his fellow "lip gloss bitches" were completely shallow, utterly childish and totally bitchy. But they were happy. And I was comforted by this. I knew in my heart that I was one of them, I wanted to be a "lip gloss bitch". And so rather than going on about what a fun housemate Marco was (which he was) and how as a law student and an ex-Samaritan he was so more much more than just a mincer on the telly (which, again, he was), I'd rather tell you about how Marco helped me feel better about myself. His smiling face on the TV helped me believe that one day I could be happy in myself too. And I'm thankful for that, because I did get through it a stronger person and while I'm not going to put it all on a reality TV show, I'd just like to say my piece in favour of having positive gay role models on TV for young teens to see.

3. Nikki (BB7)

Of course, what Big Brother countdown would be complete without Nikki Grahame? Infuriating, hilarious, annoying, charming, immature, endearing Nikki. I hate hate hate this cliché but the thing with Nikki was that you literally either did love her or hate her. And I absolutely loved her. Her legendary rants are now the stuff of priceless Big Brother history and even if she entered the house dressed as a Playboy bunny and claimed all she wanted was to marry a footballer so she could spend his money, there was still a certain child-like naivety to Nikki that was totally endearing to watch.

Either way I could talk and talk about her forever but why bother when you can watch her here (unfortunately her most popular Diary Room rants such as her ulcer, mp3 player and "who is she??" speech are not on YouTube):



2. Shabnam (BB8)

Shabbalicious.


1. Nadia (BB5)

I love Nadia. When Nadia entered the Big Brother house in 2004, nobody thought she'd go on to win. It seemed she was something of a gimmick, she'd been chosen for the house because she was actually born a man and that was all there was to her. Nadia went against that, though. All she'd ever wanted out of her life was to be taken seriously as a woman, so she decided not to tell her fellow housemates about her past, and let them believe she was born a woman. A smart move, because the public slowly began to see Nadia as more than just a transsexual, they started to see her as a human being and, indeed, as a woman. This is why shows like Big Brother, and contestants like Nadia and the previously mentioned Brian and Marco, are so important for the LGBT community. They were helping us be taken seriously as human beings, helping people to see through labels to the people underneath, helping people who'd never have got the chance to see both sides of the story with issues like homosexuality and transsexualism grow comfortable with us as a community.

All politics aside, Nadia was just an amazing housemate. She showered in her heels, and demanded extra rations of cigarettes. When she smoked her emergency rations she demanded more. Big Brother 5 eventually became The Nadia Show, and rightly so because the woman was a scream. I will never forget watching the moment she found out she was the winner; the sheer delight and excitement and disbelief on her face was just gorgeous to watch:

Beautiful stuff.

And so, as the final series of Big Brother rears its head we can look back and say it was trashy, it gave false ideas of fame to undeserving people, it preyed upon the emotionally weak or vulnerable. But look at Nadia's face in that picture above and tell me that it wasn't all worth it. Go on. I dare you.