Sunday, 23 June 2019

Pride month 🌈


Pride Month is coming to an end with all of the panache of a quality drag queen with too much sass
I am sorry to have never attended a Pride march as yet
Next year will be my year.
I don't really blog about what it is like to be gay.
I just am gay…….the fact is incidental and probably the least interesting thing about me

Am I proud to be gay?
hummmmmmm…….I am proud of being associated with all those men and woman that battled for equal rights at the 1969 Stonewall Riots.
I am proud to be living in a country that is enlightened enough to pass a law stating gay men and women can marry legally
and I am proud enough, tough enough and ugly enough to be able to hold my head up high and say I am a gay man in company that may not accept the fact with alacrity

Having said this, apart from some low level homophobic remarks thrown out by two Neanderthal British Gas workers at a Christmas do many years ago, I have never really been on the receiving end of any bigoted behaviour.
This fact, I know, is a rarity.

Once many years ago now I found out that I was subject to some gossip at work where the staff of an adjacent ward were over heard discussing my "sexual" life by a patient. The patient, as it turned out was a bit of a psychopath and promptly wheeled his wheelchair to my office in order to "taunt me" with the information he had just heard.
Buoyed up with indignation and supported by my sister's uniform I cornered all of the staff as they were giving handover and asked them to their faces if there was anything they wanted to know about me.
Of course heads were hung and denials given but the following warning shot of the prospect of official disciplinary action had its effect.
No one ever troubled me again where the subject of my sexuality was concerned.

I will leave you with the story of my very first meeting with Auntie Gladys.
She was in her mid eighties back then and was selling her Flower Show raffle tickets around the village and its surrounds.
The Jungle telegraph had alerted to most that there was a new Gay couple in the village

I bought a strip off her
" Does your friend want any tickets too?" she asked , her eyes twinkling and I was half amused by the term "friend" a word which was often bandied around by people too shy or too uncomfortable to call a spade a spade
Only Gladys was not uncomfortable, she was just searching for the right word to use
"He is my partner and not a friend and yes he will have some tickets from you" I told her kindly
Gladys laughed
"I was going to call him your boyfriend " she said "but you are both far too old to be called that!!!"

At 96, on the day of our marriage, the old girl walked all the way down from her house on High Street to present me with a wedding gift over the kitchen wall and when I remarked that I never thought I would see the day that two men would be allowed to Marry each other
she clapped her frail hands together and laughed her  musical Welsh laugh
"How marvellous" she cried

yes....how bloody marvellous!


98 comments:

  1. It definitely is Bloody Marvelous!!
    Here is my story...
    my husband owned beauty salons in NYC and his 2 good friends were "drag queens "/hairdressers...my daughter heard my husband refer to them as "queens" and we ended up with a very excited little girl telling Everyone ,that the the Queen was coming to our house.
    Thanks to the Time and Place and. Good people, we all have good memories of growing up with Queens❤️

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    1. And I'm sure a few queens did come round

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  2. Having owned a home in Brighton for the past 40 years, I never think of people as gay or straight. They are simply fellow residents of a very diverse and liberal thinking town (city).

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  3. We are Proud of who we are, who you are, of the balls it takes to speak up. It can be so reaffirming to be in a crowd of people who accept you without question.

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  4. I have been thinking about Aunty Glad a lot. No idea why.
    She's not a bad woman to be thinking about though as the thought of her makes me smile and also, inspires me.
    You are inspiring too, John. Just by living your life exactly as you are you have done much to open people's minds and hearts.

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  5. Hopefully, the day will come when nobody has to justify who or what they are ..... the world is getting there but I’m afraid it’s not there yet. The day should come when there is no need for Pride month as we don’t have a straight month .... hopefully we will see it in our lifetime. XXXX

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  6. John your post today was so beautiful..it brought tears to my eyes. Carry on! You are Bloody Marvelous!
    Cheers,
    Carol

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  7. Living our lives openly and unapologetically as exactly who we are is what Pride is all about.

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  8. To live in a country where people can be who they are is truly a wonderful thing.

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  9. Barbara Anne2:49 pm

    I've had many gay friends over the years, and you're right, it's a part of who they are but no where near all - like having blue eyes or brown eyes.

    God bless us every one.

    Hugs!

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  10. Try being disabled John (hopefully temporarily) My eyes have been opened to how many shops and pubs have steps that a wheelchair couldn't hope to get over. Glance around many small shops and realise that they are impossible to manoeuvre around. I never gave it a thought before but shall be looking into it far more in the future.

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    1. Slightly off piste but I understand

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  11. Yesterday there was a drag queen reading a Dr. Seuss book to the children at our library story time. There were 3-5 protesters with signs objecting to the ruination of the innocence of children and a number of people there with rainbow signs. It was quite peaceful and there was no shouting.
    If the reader was any good would the children even know it was someone in drag? And if they did why would they care if the story was read well.
    We’re all doing our best to live our lives as best we can as who we are. Why make it harder for someone else?

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    1. Chesters storyhouse has several eclectic kiddie readers. A drag queen and policewoman amongst them

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  12. quite marvelous, very.

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  13. I'm like you, gay but many other things as well. So, am I proud to be gay? Am I proud to be tall? Ti have blue eyes?

    My pride comes in living openly and honestly and out.

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  14. Love is love in whatever shape or form it reveals itself x

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  15. i miss aunt glady. what our sexual orientation happens to be is really no ones business other than our own.

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  16. Such a long way we've come since those dour, grey marches of the 70s when I started going to London to take part - deadly serious with no humour at all, overtly political (though you could argue that they had to be in those days) and we all thought it would need a miracle for things to improve in our lifetimes. But the miracle happened, even if public opinion is, at least in certain quarters, determined to drag its feet or even reverse some of the gains - which is a further reason why some of the attitudes coming out regarding Brexit and its most high-profile advocates causes me more than a little concern. The struggle is far from over and could well need re-energising.

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    1. Raymondo
      How things have changed...we are lucky to live in the age we do

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  17. Mrs Moon and Carol are both right. May the day come when people are just allowed to be and perhaps fundamentalists who make others' lives a misery will be surprised to discover who hell is reserved for...

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  18. The only part of me that is gay is the act of sucking knob which I have done with passion. I have friends (straight) that have said they can't believe that I am gay, yet I always considered myself "as bent as a 9 bob note. Perhaps I still see myself as that teen struggling to find acceptance but unable to voice the inner feeling and subsequently putting on a mask of my 70s role models (Danny la Rue, Mr Humphreys, Larry Grayson et al). Thankfully as I learned that acceptance comes from within I lost my mask. At 49 I I am hard as nails and really couldn't give a flying fuck what any bigoted imbecile thinks.

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  19. I do care if people dont like me because of the fact of who i fancy. Im conceited enough to think that the other facets of my personality are much more interesting lol

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    1. Why waste your time caring? Some people will like you and others will not. You will never change the mindset of most of those that do not because their bigoted nature prevents thought. They're blocked toilets.

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  20. I was raised by Quakers. In the UK the first publication on their view of sexuality was 46 years ago. It included "gender or sexual orientation are unimportant in a judgement of an intimate relationship and that the true criterion is the presence of "selfless love". I'm not a Quaker but I follow a lot of their teachings and I think this is a good one.

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  21. Jaqueline, I agree. If there ever was a straight pride march, it would be met with anger and (likely) violence. Anyone participating would be condemned. Some might see that as "turn about it fair play", yet I believe when we finally stop making it an issue, it will cease to be one.

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  22. You are John Gray. Personally, I don't care about your sexuality.

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    1. Even though i find you strangely attractive

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  23. I like you just the way you are.

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  24. I worked in a gay night club 35 years ago when it was not something anyone would broadcast,it was enlightening and gave me an opportunity to be friends with people from all walks of life, all sexual persuasions... these days I work in a call centre with a wide ange of personalities,all of whom can be themselves and don't have to explain their sexuality or justify it - gays/bisexual/trans. It's so healthy and happy to have such a variety of people, to be able to discuss our very different weekends and to join together also at Pride in Brighton to celebrate our diversity .... hope you get to a Pride event it is such a fabulous atmosphere - me and hubby have been going often over the years for a great day out and took our kids too to join in the fun. Just people being real, I'm glad you can be too.

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    1. Exposure to other cultures is vital for anyone to become a rounded individual ...

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  25. Be who you are.We all love and respect you x

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  26. 45 years ago my best friend at Secondary School was the only Gay Guy in the school. He put up with so much aggravation from the other boys in school. It was heart breaking at times. But he survived as did I.
    My daughter asked me 'Mom, would you mind if I said I was Gay and setting up home'
    My reply 'I don't care if you set up home with a giraffe as long as you look after each other'. (A whole new illegality, but you get the drift.)
    Do it really matter as long as you look after each other, who you settle down with in life.

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  27. I am so glad that my country has finally come to the party and allowed gay marriage.
    Bloody marvellous and about bloody time.

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  28. I grew up in the 60s and 70s around gay men and never knew it. They worked for the same company as my Dad. They were just the guys who did the window dressing (as it was called in those days). He introduced them all to my Mum at a Shirley Bassey concert (she admired the dress on a tall redhead), Dad just marched over and introduced them. I don't know who had the biggest surprize, that Dad recognized them and didn't give a hoot.

    He was particularly upset when he noticed one of his friends hadn't been at work for a few days and was subdued when he came back. Dad got it out of him eventually, his love had died and he hadn't felt comfortable telling people at work of the death. Dad was furious, made him go onto bereavement leave and treated the death as that of a married couple (this was in the early 1970s).

    He always told me those that are without sin can cast the first stone. As long as people are good to each other that's all that matters.

    If I dislike someone it's because of how they have treated me or others, not who they bunk up with.

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    1. I love your dad! Wasn't he a trouper

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  29. Just as a wee counter to the photo - my church (presbyterian) has mounted a rainbow over our outdoor sign, our session passed a motion to the effect that we are an inclusive congregation, our bulletin says that "God loves everyone" and we sent a team of marchers to today's Gay Pride parade here in Toronto, led by our openly gay associate minister. And - we have had a gay association social group here at this church for about 30 years now. Times have changed and long may it continue.

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  30. The reason I never mention my partner's gender on my blog is because I don't really understand why who I get jiggy with, or not, matters to anyone else. Being trans as well complicates things, so people will jump to the wrong conclusions, it's better to just leave it to people's imaginations.

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    1. Yes trans is another subject that now seems to be embraced more and more positively me thinks

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  31. If only the world was seen out of more Auntie Gladys' eyes. x

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  32. I'm straight but I can never understand why people should be judged by their sexual orientation. My beautiful nephew is gay and god knows we love him to bits. Gay/straight makes no difference to me.

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    1. You should teach in some Muslim schools in England

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  33. Anne V9:21 pm

    I am very bothered by anti-gay comments and have no problem speaking up. Knowing this, my husband used to say things just to annoy me. This was resolved by me telling him that at least someone is having sex. Never another comment.

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    1. Anne drops the microphone and walks away!

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  34. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  35. Pride is the opposite of Shame. I think that's why that particular word was chosen. Is there a better word out there to represent the LGBTQ movement? Love, maybe, as it's the opposite of Hate, but that might be a bit too generic. So Pride is it.

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  36. Anonymous9:39 pm

    I've always lived by the 'if people are talking/gossiping about me then they are leavibg some other poor fucker alone '. I hate snide wispering and always try to stop it in a group, by quoting the above.
    My mum always said ' empty vessels make the loudest noise '
    Ain't that the truth!
    Tess x

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    1. I like gossip as long as it is positive
      ...I do it all the time

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  37. My gay friends (who have a Civil Partnership) say they have never really been subject to any prejudice - maybe as they lived in Brighton for years that had something to do with it. They live in the Lakes now and I see them often - they are very happy living there and again no prejudice they say.

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  38. I love your post and photo today good on that little girl proudly holding up her flag, we are all more than our sexual orientation.
    Sadly there are still counties who are lagging behind in that regard board.



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  39. I don't think you have to worry about whether you went to a pride parade or not, you already were your own pride parade by how you lived your life.

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  40. I was raised with quite a few gay relatives and family friends. That persuasion just seemed as normal as me and my parents. All the conflict and hoopla seems like a new thing to me.

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  41. I have never met anyone who was openly gay and it's beginning to feel more and more weird. Well, when i say I have never met....not anyone who I knew for any length of time.
    I have gay blogging friends who I haven't met in person and I'm sure i've met those who are closeted or avoid saying anything but nobody out & proud.
    I hope it's not a reflection of how people think I'll treat them....

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  42. grandson 10 goes to a church school, he has come home with some very odd and vile comments from time to time on many things particularly gay marriage. He was speechless on been told that his great aunty was a lesbian ..."but i thought she was a lorry driver"

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  43. You are what you are, or should I say, WHO you are. Why do people have to be labelled. It's what's inside a person that really counts. Even if you were purple with green spots on you, I could still feel the warmth and compassion you have as a person.

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  44. It's good that gay couples are now so widely accepted to the point of people saying, well who cares anyway? But there are still a few diehards who will never accept people's sexuality. What does it take to shake their obstinacy?

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  45. Oh how marvelous to have a world filled with Aunty Glads. Like you, I’ve never experienced the hell that so many lgbtq people experience on a daily basis, but I’ve had more than my fair share I think of ignorant comments, less than kind treatment, and discrimination as a result t of being open in my public and professional life. But I’ll just focus today on the Aunty Glad moments.

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  46. My brother went thru 4 wives and 7 children before he finally came out to himself....finally happy with his partner.

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  47. That was a perfect post for this month. Sometimes one word can say so much. The very young and the very old always speak the truth. Marvelous!

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  48. How marvelous, indeed. It’s always a joy to find an ally in the least expected places.
    I have not encountered outright bigotry and homophobia too many times, either, even though I’m as gay as a goose. Maybe that’s my armor?

    XoXo

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  49. Anonymous3:42 pm

    I wonder why you have to state that you don't speak about being gay on your blog very often, I'm heterosexual and don't speak about that very often! By pointing out your sexuality you're making it different, do you think you're different to other human beings? Being gay isn't something special it's just another form of sexuality. You are how you are as I am who I am, no need to make an issue of it.

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    1. But you are wrong .for sometimes for some, it isvery different. As a presumably straight person you know nothing what it is like to be often hated, and despised.
      Your relationships were not seen to be illegal as recently as 40 years ago your relationships are still not frowned upon in many countries. You would not be stoned to death or thrown from a tall building in the middle east for loving another human being.
      We are both human but in many ways we hsve never been treated the same

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    2. Excellent comeback, John.

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  50. Absolutely marvelous. I never thought I'd see it either. We've come a long way very fast.

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  51. Replies
    1. HOW VERY DARE YOU!!!!

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    2. Oh! A perfidious faggot!

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    3. Like my mum used to say, you can never trust a faggot.

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    4. How many did she know? .....

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    5. Fucking hell. Having made this arrangement with you as a set-up, you are milking it for all it is worth. My mum was right.

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    6. Are you running for PM by any chance?

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    7. I wouldn't shag you if you were the last man on earth.

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    8. Ah! You say that now! (spoken in a nasal Kenneth Williams voice).

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    9. P.S. That reminds me. You need not send me my over-sized string of anal beads back, You keep them. I am sure they are of more use to you than me.

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  52. I just Love your Auntie Gladys, she sounds like my Mum!

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  53. One of my sons colleagues, a Police call handler, took a 999 call from a man complaining that he was being treated in a 'homophobic way' and was not being allowed entry into a Blackpool bar. The duty officer asked for anyone with local knowledge of the bar and as it is on the street where my son lives he spoke up. The place was momentarily brought to a standstill with call handlers laughing as yes, you've guessed it ... it's a gay bar!!

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  54. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  55. When my sister's son in Denmark came out as gay my family debated whether to tell my elderly mom. But since she knew all about my sister and my marriage problems they decided to tell her that yep Jan is gay. My old mom just looked up and said "oh, I thought it was Thomas"! God love her!

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I love all comments Except abusive ones from arseholes