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Mixing Sexuality and Music With Pride


DesDownunder

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Should I use my blog to tell you of something I am proud?

(inner Voice:) No, no, that would seem like bragging.

(other inner voice:) Do it, do it, yes tell everyone what you did.

Perhaps it would be wrong of me, but damn it, it's my blog and I'll brag if I want to.

(inner voice:) don't say 'brag.'

What should I say then?

(other inner voice:) tell them you want to ....pst, pst whisper whisper

Okay so I want to share the following little story with you all.

In effort to be in the face of all who need me to be out and in their faces, :hug: I recently made a post on YouTube in the comments section of a posting of Rachmaninoff's 2nd piano concerto. Here is the finale.

I have chosen a different version (from the one I commented on,) for this post, but the experience is the same except for the pianist's hair. Following are the comments between myself and two people who replied. All was well until I wanted to let people know I was gay in an open YouTube comment section.

Should I have done that? Well I consulted the inner voices and they actually agreed I should do it, so I did.

Here are the comments:

Desdownunda
:

I was 16 when I first heard this concerto. I still love it today at 66. It is one of those pieces of music that makes you realise that life without music would be intolerable, that death is suspended whenever it is played. How can such beauty be so fleeting? Just like life itself.

As long as someone plays it, and someone hears it, adores it, then our love, lives forever.

missiheartballet
:

@Desdownunda - beautifully said.

MrAkihiros
:

@Desdownunda That's beautifully said. Are you by any chance a poet? Your prose sings, just like rachmaninoff.

Desdownunda
:

@MrAkihiros Thanks, I am flattered by your words. I am gay, so yes, I write poetry. My poetry and short stories are at CodeysWorld, please Google for it.

Look for DesDownunder's stories under Authors.

So far I have not received any further comments. Maybe the shock that they wrote to a gay man was too much for them.

I'll keep y'all advised.

(inner voice:) should I ring 911?

(other inner voice:) no, call a defence lawyer.

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'I'm gay so yes I write poetry'? Stereotyping, here, Mr Downunder? Next we'll be reading 'I'm gay so yes I adore musical theatre' or 'I'm gay so naturally have better dress sense than you', 'I'm gay so I'm clearly the best person to design your interior decor for you'.Bad Des!I'm gay so naturally I hate shopping, can't write poetry for toffee, didn't much care for Mamma Mia, and have the worst dress sense this side of Ugly Betty. And as for interior decorating - I just don't do it. So there!Anyway kudos to you for outing yourself on Youtube. The more vulnerable people experience gay people being comfortable in their skins, the fewer young suicides there are likely to be.

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LOL. What a great comment. Now I don't feel so bad about the bragging. After all it seems I have nothing but my stereotypical attitude in my favour. Yes I am gay, so I do like musicals, but not Abba so much. Yes I am gay but have to really try hard to lithp and my attempts at interior decoration are more like interior demolition. It's not the toffee that worries me, it's the sticky fingers after I have eaten it, and as for poetry...well, I'm sure there are those who claim I have yet to write any. :hug:

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James, it seems from some survey which I hasten to add I can't find again, or really gave much credence, that some 24% of poets are in fact gay, making poetry the art form with the highest percentage of gay people. Obviously they've never heard of that most famous art form, "gay sex," which I believe attracts 100% of gay people and around 50% of the human race on alternate Saturdays after 10.31pm, unless they feel an insatiable urge to indulge at any time in the poetry of gay love-making. Hooray for the arts! :hug:

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I had exactly the same reaction as Bruin did. I am gay, so yes, I write poetry. Say what?!Ridiculous! The one has nothing to do with the other, and then quoting statistics to prove it is just as shockingly absurd!And the problem is, Des, you know better!You were just a little lazy, because it was easier to write what your point was in that way, took less space, and much less thought.There are many things that define us universally, and poetry isn't one of them.But I did like what you wrote that elicited the comment, and I also love Rachy's 2nd piano concerto. His 2nd symphony is also gorgeous and moving, effulgent and sublime, and I would hope to God you don't have to be gay to enjoy it fully.I'll cut you a break. I think you were trying, with that comment, to elevate gay men in the eyes of the world. No one can fault you for that. I'll even say, good show!C

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Cole, the remark about being gay and writing poetry was 'Monty Python' style silliness and was deliberately absurd. The statistics and other comments of mine were more of the same. I'm sorry you didn't get the intended humour. :sad: At least we can agree about Rachy's 2nd, and no you don't have to be gay to appreciate it.

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Yeah, I missed it. I admit to not being the sharpest tack in the chadelier.I just know you too well, and was shocked. I guess the shock should have told me you were being funny.I often include humor in my forum comments and constantly worry people will think I'm being serious. Maybe this is a universal problem.Anyway, sorry.Last night I heard a concert that included Ravel's piano concerto. I'd never heard it before. Very odd piece. Can't say I was all that impressed. Didn't seem very conhesive to me, and the piano didn't seem the focus of the piece, at least not in the outside movements. Do you know the piece?C

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I think I have heard the Ravel sometime last century. (I have been waiting for a chance to say "last century" so thank you.I can't remember it at all. On the matter of my attempt to be funny and yet informative to my correspondent at YouTube, Cole, it may make you feel better to know that he too missed the intended humour. MrAkihiros replied to me: "I fail to see the correlation between being gay and poetry but yes I'll check out your works. Cheers! "Maybe the humour is more obvious to ditzy Aussies than to others.I felt that it was wiser to warn the guy that if he wamted to read my poetry, then I owed him to let him know that yes I had written some, and that it contained gay references. So I thought it better to be funny (or try to be funny) than issue a surgeon general type (censorship) warning. It also allowed me to make a declaration which as Bruin said, could assist young people in despair to know that there are people who are comfortable with there sexuality.The 24% of poets reference actually came from an often quoted study: Ludwig, 1995.

One study of the biographies of 1004 eminent people found homosexual and bisexual people overrepresented (11 percent of the sample), especially among poets (24 percent), fiction writers (21 percent), and artists and musicians (15 percent) (Ludwig, 1995).
The above quote was taken from this lengthy article has some interestin points.I must say I never expected what I intended to be a throw away joke to lead to a resource on the representation of gays in the arts, but maybe it is a good thing too. Those of us who are comfortable and feel safe in being out, need to let the dark side of the force know, we will not be silenced.
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This is one of the many reasons why I love AD and the denizens thereof. Splendid organic discussions like this one. Des' original post grew wings and flew as people contributed their comments and the thread 'just growed, like Topsy'.I often wondered where I got that phrase from so I just googled it. It turns out it's from Uncle Tom's Cabin. Here's Wikipedia on the subject: 'Topsy: A "ragamuffin" young slave girl. When asked if she knows who made her, she professes ignorance of both God and a mother, saying "I s'pect I growed. Don't think nobody never made me." 'Now, what does 'Dilettante' mean, I wonder?!

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Now, what does 'Dilettante' mean, I wonder?!
A dilettante is a large dill pickle with orange spots. Generally, they have good dress sense. Though I've never dated one, so I can't comment personally.What this has to do with Rachmaninoff's 2nd piano concerto I have not the vaguest.
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A dilettante is a large dill pickle with orange spots. Generally, they have good dress sense. Though I've never dated one, so I can't comment personally.What this has to do with Rachmaninoff's 2nd piano concerto I have not the vaguest.
Camy I don't know either, but your reply has everything to do with the outrageous behaviour in this blog. :sad:
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OK, very late to the thread, sorry. I had pressing engagements. (I wish.)

Well, I saw the blog post title, and I was all ready for a discussion of big hair or weird hairstyles, or perhaps the ecstatic reactions to music by the performers and audience, or well, I'm not sure, but that didn't happen in the topic. I was all geared up to babble a reply though. Anyhoo.

So instead, I see Des got himself in trouble on the tube again. Hmm, I think possibly it's not the first time he's had trouble after dealing with a tube of some sort, yes? Though perhaps the experience (and fun) was worth the trouble. Yes, I'm being intentionally a bit sassy with the innuendo there. It's not my usual written voice, but what the heck, why not try something new? I'd like to think I'm growing too.

But about comments dropping off or negative comments? Well, I have sometimes wondered if I'm Blue the Topic-Killer, much like whoever it was, the Giant-Killer. (Joe or David, either one.) I don't know why some topics stop getting comments, when it seems like there's still plenty to discuss. :shrug:

Negative comments or lack of response, when you've just said you're gay? Eh, it happens. Des is likely more experienced dealing with that than I am, so he probably doesn't need my reply there. We can expect a few negatives or lack of response. We won't get into what my phobic aunt would say. (I think I may do a send up of her, at some point.) Let's just say, you've heard before, all the things she'd say.

YouTube is marvelous about many things, and less than marvelous about a few others. I could say a lot about that. A recent video from two very nice kids doing a "Don't say that word, it's offensive!" skit? Sadly, most of the "related/recommended" videos were...pretty creepy, given the titles and screenshots. That had nothing at all to do with the nice kids' video, which was wonderful. There was a similar supposed "relation" when a friend sent me a link to a video by two teens doing a "banana phone" skit. Nothing whatsoever was "gay" about the two boys joking about a banana phone; not even the banana. Yet the "recommended/related" videos were, again, not so wholesome entertainment value. As a gay man, that offends and saddens me. If I were still a gay boy, school age, I would still be somewhat freaked by that. Sometimes, it's quite innocent and funny or just plain silly, the nonsense of daily life. Other times, you would wonder what's going through the minds of whoever recorded and posted it, to put it online. (Nothing particularly wrong with some of that, but do you really need to show your buddies or kids or whoever, doing whatever, if it's going to make a viewer twitch because someone sent a link?) And the stuff that's more adult content? Well, OK, but does it need to be where the whole world, including young kids, can see it? Why not have some way so people can filter or grant or limit access as appropriate? That's my main beef about how YouTube does things.

On the other hand, YouTube is great in letting gay folks post all sorts of things. Their everyday concerns. Humor. Satire. Rants. Art. Hey, I think it's awesome (I heard that word somewhere) that young gay folks or older gay folks or allies or some talking vegetable or critter, can get on YouTube and post discussion, music and art, all sorts of cool things. I sure wish I could've seen that when I was a schoolboy. (Um, and hey, I might not have minded some of the other, when I was in the mood to see that too. And yes, I would've been, sometimes. I'm human, alright. I got urges, same as anybody. Mine just happen to be gay urges. Well, y'know, makes sense, right? Yeah, so.) Quite aside from that, though, is the next item.

I deeply appreciate that things like Jonah's video, or the It Gets Better Project or the Trevor Project can be on YouTube. Or a ton of supportive videos rallying behind those. Awesome again. (Look, I use that word, OK, chill.)

OK, what about all those people commenting on YouTube videos? The vast majority are fine. Everything from enthusiasm to fanboy/fangirl to me-too's to mundane comments. Yes, many are kids just having a good time chatting about this or that video. Cool. Good.

Yeah, I see the commenters trying to save and convert people, because they think it's a sin or unnatural or some such. Thanks, but I happen to be Christian. I also have various friends who are not Christian, and I am not an oaf. I like my friends. I value that they may believe differently. Yes, I had to struggle to reconcile my religious beliefs with being a gay guy, but there is food for thought out there about that. The folks trying to save/convert people because they think it's wrong to be gay? Well, they may be obnoxious at times (often) and wrong, in my opinion, but so far, God Himself has not spoken to me directly in divine revelation, to say what he thinks *exactly* on the matter. However, I'd like to think that finding the translations and discussions I did, and that he hasn't ever bothered to wipe every gay person on the planet off the face of the Earth, might perhaps give some clue as to what the Big Guy really thinks. I choose to go with the "Morgan Freeman as the Arab Moor in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves" argument there. God *likes* variety, he painted us, everybody.

In fact, I know Des happens to believe differently in matters of religion, and it's one of the things I like about him. He makes me think, he challenges me. And oddly enough, we have a good bit in common. I think he's a cool dude. I actually find some things about Buddhism and various other religions to be useful and true, even similar. :shrug: And yes, having struggled with my own beliefs, I certainly have some questions I'd like answered, so I can even understand those doubts or deciding someone doesn't believe, thanks very much. That's up to that person.

Yeah, I see all too often, the opinionated commenters or the jerks or the cyber-bully types, saying negative and usually uninformed and illiterate and expletive-laced things about gay people. I think most of those are from schoolboys or overgrown men who can't type beyond four-letter words, and who are woefully insecure about their manhoods and sexual feelings, and so think they have to prove it to total strangers. You want to go bash some nice kid because he's gay, or because you *think* he's gay for daring to post himself singing or dancing or goofing around acting like a spaz, a dork, a doofus? Well, what on Earth is wrong with him doing any of that? And if he's gay, what on Earth is wrong with that either? And if you're that upset, why exactly is it you're watching a boy you think is gay, and then you feel compelled to tell everybody just how straight you are, or how big a man you are? (How big was that? Hmm, I kinda doubt it, but thanks for telling the planet, big boy!)

I think that's merely a matter of, consider the source. Those are the same kinds of boys and men who like to pound guys in real life, the bullies gone cyber-bullies. (Wait, they like to pound guys? Really! Wow!) -- Ahem, yes, I'm being ridiculous and a bit rude, but it *does* make you wonder, sometimes, just why those guys feel such a need to prove they are not gay and don't like gays. -- They need to grow up and get a life, instead of cyber-bullying. Their comments are hurtful, mean, ugly, stupid, and beneath contempt. I usually don't bother to reply to them. The cyber-bully type, or the forum troll / flame-war types, only want to stir up trouble and seek attention. Bleh.

Kids like Jonah deserve positive comments. That's worth a lot.

And hey, I like Rachmaninoff. I like classical, but don't listen to it as much as other things. Uh, I also think the piano player in that video is kinda cute. I'm glad he was enjoying playing the music so much. Good for him.

I haven't run across Desdownunda on YouTube before, but hey, I do check out YouTube every so often. (And a lot, the past couple of weeks.) See BlueCatShip. -- No videos posted, but I might at some point get brave and try taking a video, if I can figure out how. LOL.

I guess I had more to say than I thought. Uh, gee. :blush:

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Thanks Ben for your posts on my blog thingy.

Your insight into acceptance of obviously different views on religion is wonderful to read. You and I both shared our thoughts and attitudes being expanded by young Codey, who I think understood what it meant to love diversity of opinion. And he was beyond his years in his ability to inspire, forgive, love and let live those around him. Codey showed us it is possible to never stop adapting and evolving ourselves by learning about life.

The difficulty in addressing the bullies and the bigots is that whilst it is not difficult to show them up for what they are, it is virtually impossible for their critics to hold a rational discussion with them without being accused of being a force for evil, or violating their rights of free speech and religious belief. That of course is a Constitutional discussion in itself.

Still, I dare to point at the pending attempts to reinstate the Inquisition with condemnation, and sometimes that means being a lot sadder for them than they so often deserve. I'll probably write something on that one day, and hope I don't upset too many peaceful believers. After all things are what they are, or as a friend of mine once wrote, "It rains, it does not rain, and still the flowers grow."

Thanks again for your comments Ben.

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