Ever since halfway the twentieth century Fire Island has been the holiday playground for gays from New York, boys on the verge of overheating in summer and therefore melting with lust. Therefore it’s not such a big surprise that the first large-scale porn production that was made after a 1970 senate committee had decided that all regulations on the availability of sexually tinted material for adults should be lifted, turned out to be a tribute to “the boys of Fire Island”: “Boys in the Sand” (1971; now available on “The Wakefield Poole Collection, 1971-86" from Mercury Releasing).
To The Point - True stories from Pink Point, the gay and lesbian info kiosk at the Homomonument. See www.pinkpoint.org
As toilet breaks are always an issue at Pink Point and most of my colleagues could use one halfway their shift, I make a point in going for a short visit on my days off whenever I’m in the neighborhood. I also use the opportunity to have a nice cup of coffee there, or even a cappuccino, which is a real treat, especially when made with experience and knowledge.
During one of these visits, my colleague and I were surprised by a hunk dropping in quickly, just to pick up the latest issue of “Gay News.”
So That Their Stories Will Not Be Forgotten: ‘El Olvido’
This month Heddy Honigmann’s documentary “El Olvido” will be released on DVD. This documentary is about the lost stories / history of Peru; they are brought back to life when Honigmann asks ordinary Peruvians about the history of their country or their city.
Stories about corruption, poverty, and sadness come to the surface. The scenes are connected with images of children trying to make some money on the street by entertaining people in cars waiting for the lights to change.
Whoever likes to be guillotined? The royalist painter Élisabeth Vigée Lebrun didn’t relish the prospect which is why she precipitately left Paris after the outbreak of the French Revolution in 1789. She remained abroad for a long time, where she was received with open arms. In her memoirs she described a summery boat trip she made with some friends near Saint Petersburgh shortly before the turn of the century.
Two years ago we reported that Matt Damon and Sean Penn were going to star in the new Gus van Sant movie. As Matt Damon had other obligations Josh Brolin took his place playing Dan White. Both Brolin and Penn give a superb performance, and many reviewers agree that Sean Penn has reached unrivaled quality in this role and should be nominated for an Oscar (he has indeed won a Oscar as Best Actor).
It seems that the Jewish society in our tiny country has lost every sense of humor. A couple of weeks ago everyone who means something in that community was on the front page of newspapers claiming this caricature or that clip about Jews was unacceptable.
Dianne Feinstein (Senior Senator of California) hosted the inauguration ceremony of Barack Obama on the 20th of January and seeing her brought me back to the documentary “The Times of Harvey Milk.” Because this movie also starts with Dianne Feinstein speaking to the press: “As president of the board of supervisors, it’s my duty to make this announcement: both Mayor Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk have been shot and killed.” (She took Mayor Moscone’s position and was mayor of San Francisco from 1978 till 1988.)
President Barack Obama has asked the combined U.S. Army to thoroughly review the consequences of abolishing the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) policy. This is the first step of the new American president to allow gays in the army to come out of the closet. President Obama hopes to create support by moving very carefully on the subject. He tries to avoid the mistake his democratic predecessor Clinton made in the late nineties.
The fashion world is also affected by the worldwide economic downturn. Last January fashion labels Valentino and Marni cancelled the expensive catwalk presentations for their men’s collections 2009/2010. Last year the Valentino Fashion Group was taken over for 2.6 billion euros but was appraised recently for only 1.27 billion as a result of the crisis. Consumers are pessimistic about the future and therefore much more careful when it comes to spending on fashion.
Wolfgang Erichson, mayor of the German Heidelberg, has taken his own municipality to court for sexual discrimination. He says it’s unfair that he doesn’t receive spouse allowance just because he’s married to a man and not to a woman. The municipality of Heidelberg is paying married civil servants a partner allowance of 108,14 euro per month... but only if it is a union between a man and a woman. The 53-year old Erichson, who got married this summer, thinks it’s ridiculous he doesn’t get the allowance just because he’s married to a man.
The Mormon Church has spent almost 190.000 dollar on the campaign against gay marriage in California in November 2008. During the last elections Californians could also vote on Proposition 8 recalling the state’s new regulation for gay marriages. The enormous contribution of the Church has been revealed now that the state of California is researching the campaign funds for the acceptance of Proposition 8. The poor transparency of the Church is especially criticized and put under scrutiny.
Fourteen victims of the hiv drama in Groningen claim a million euros in damages from the three men convicted for willfully infecting them during sex parties with the hiv-virus. Their lawyer Fred Kappelhof has made this public last Tuesday. The victims are starting a civil court case next Wednesday. The three were found guilty last November and sentenced to respectively nine, five and one and a half year of imprisonment. The judges were convinced two of them had injected several others with contaminated blood, even though it could not be proven that that is exactly how the victims contracted the virus.
The COC building on the Rozenstraat in Amsterdam has been sold to housing corporation Ymere. The Albrecht foundation (owner of the COC buildings) and the corporation have reached an agreement this week. The monumental building fetches 3.5 million euros. Halfway through 2008 COC Nederland announced its plans to sell their building on the Rozenstraat. For many years the large building, partly from 1892, partly from 1912, had an important function for the Amsterdam gay community, but it had been mostly vacant in recent years.