Australian Pub Bars Heterosexuals

Who's tired of going out to a supposedly gay venue, only to find it full of heterosexual women - and heterosexual men sniffing around them? Who's suddenly felt self-concisous in their favourite gay venue because there's a giggling straight couple staring? Ever felt like an animal in a zoo?

The clientele of a gay bar in Melbourne, Australia clearly do: the bar won the right to ban heterosexuals from its premises. The Victorian state civil and administrative tribunal ruled the Peel Hotel could ban patrons based on their sexual orientation, and the legislation - the first of its kind in Australia - has been supported by civil liberties groups, who say that gays should be able to relax without fear of bullying and intimidation. Managers of the bar complained raucous hen nights and stag parties created a poisonous atmosphere for its gay clientele.

It's no secret that straight women find homosexual men entertaining - particularly effeminate men - but the tribunal found this attention to be dehumanising. No doubt heterosexuals will cry foul over the decision - "how would they like it if gays were banned" - but I'm not aware of any shortage of heterosexual bars and pubs: they have no place in a gay environment.

Part of the problem is the number of gay men encouraging their straight friends to frequent gay venues - not just fag hags but increasingly their supposedly open-minded straight male friends. But the majority of gay men are against the straight invasion. Are you?

The Mixed Race Superrace

An American academic believes that people born of a mixed race relationship are stronger, healthier, smarter, more attractive and better in bed. Alon Ziv's book Breeding Between The Lines claims to support this claim with evidence from history, academic journals, and pop culture.

In the UK, the term "mixed race" replaced "other" on the 2001 census; currently around 10% of the UK population is thought to be mixed race, and their numbers surged by 75% in the 1990s. There are more mixed race couples in Britain than anywhere else in the world.

So, is Tyson Beckford genetically superior to Travis Fimmel? Is Beyonce a better woman than Oprah? The theory has been dismissed by one of the world's top geneticists, who says that although such mixed race breeding is good socially, there's no evidence to suggest any genetic benefit.

The term mixed race is certainly one that's beloved of many gay men, who bandy it about as an ideal. Those who are mixed race wax lyrical about their ethnic credentials, each boy trying to top the next - "I'm one fifth Egyptian, one fifth Swedish, one fifth Spanish, one fifth Nigerian, one fifth Eskimo." There's certainly plenty of people out there who think that their racial mix makes them more exciting and exotic than those whose parents look the same. When website BGCLive.com was known as blkgaychat.com it had a top 20 sexiest profiles, virtually all of whom were light-skinned men, or exotic Tyson Beckfordesque creations - and these men were voted as sexiest by the majority black membership of that site. Subsequently, blkgaychat realised there was more revenue to be had from the gay community as a whole - not just its original target audience of black gay men - and changed its name to BGCLive. There's a whole range of top 20 polls now: Sexy And White, Sexiest Latino - and, of course, Sexiest Mixed. The special ones now have a category all to themselves.

There's an element of hero worship amongst gay men too, black boys and white boys whispering in hushed tones about their mixed race crushes (the light skin boys with green eyes seems to be a big favourite). Look at the profiles on any website, be it myspace or Gaydar, and men who are clearly either black or white claim that they're "mixed" - it's considered a feather in the cap. Black guys who are curious about white guys, but can't bring themselves to play in the snow (because of peer pressure or upbringing) see mixed race men as a socially acceptable route. The same is true of white guys who are curious about sex with black men. In these circumstances, being with a black guy or a white guy is a step too far - but a mixed race boy is the perfect compromise.

Porn outfit Falcon, famous for its all-American, all-white hunkfests, has in Matthew Rush the ideal mixed race model for its fans - most of whom wouldn't even consider sex with anyone other than a Caucasian, or show interest in anyone 'ethnic'. One of Flava's most popular models is the light skinned Castro.

So amongst gay men at least there's a general perception that mixed race people are top of the range - but are they really stronger, healthier, smarter, or better in bed? And in this day and age, who can really claim to be 100% pedigree?

A Gay Summer... Coming

Channel 4 has announced its summer schedule, and The Gays feature heavily in it.

Clapham Junction is about a group of gay friends living in London - I'm sure it'll be more interesting than it sounds. It isn't on ITV, after all. Starring is Paul Nicholls (right), formerly a sexy schizophrenic on EastEnders, and Rupert Graves. It's been written by a playwright called Kevin Elyot.

British television has been noticeably bereft of gay drama, since the initial breakthrough of Queer As Folk and This Life in the nineties, whereas America is awash with them (Noah's Arc, Dante's Cove, The DL Chronicles, The Closet et cetera), and although these shows are of variable quality, at least they're visible. The best Britain can manage is an endless dirge of leaden cop shows and medical soap.

But I stray from the point. Also in Channel 4's summer line-up is a look at what life was like for gays in the grim 1950s, in the docu-drama The Last Gay Trial, and How Gay Sex Changed The World. This documentary will go out on the 40th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality, in July. The broadcaster has also imported Brothers & Sisters from the US; this series made it onto AfterElton.com's list of "Most Influential Gay Male Sex Scenes" earlier this month. Apparently Calista Flockhart (Ally McBeal) is in it, but I won't hold that against it...

Regulator Says Showing Racism Is Wrong

Media regulator Ofcom has rapped Channel 4 across the knuckles for its handling of the racism row that engulfed Celebrity Big Brother earlier this year.
Ofcom says that Channel 4 made "serious editorial misjudgements" in its handling of specific incidents involving Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty, pig woman Jade Goody, brain void Danielle Lloyd, and the human equivalent of a toilet, Jo O'Meara .
Naughty Channel 4 broadcasting the behaviour of the people locked up in the house. Big Brother is reality TV trash, how could it let all that nasty racism and xenophobia spill over into our vacuous lives!
It's the old "PC gone mad" argument again - God forbid that television actually reflect what's going on the real world. Why is Ofcom reprimanding Channel 4, exactly? For allowing the racist bullying to go on? For broadcasting it? Surely this is exactly what it should do. Goody et al actively persecuted Shetty, mirroring the conduct of their ilk in the real world, so why shouldn't they show it? In fact, had they edited the footage, only for it to leak out later on, the media would be screaming "cover-up" from the rooftops - or redtops. Had they not screened the footage, or warned the instigators earlier, would that not make them complicit in a cover-up. Wouldn't they then be protecting the cheap reputations of these z-list celebs?
Genuine racism exists, and here in Britain there's an unhealthy denial about it. Props to Channel 4 and Big Brother for airing the dirty laundry - even if the real motivation was publicity and ratings...

Nigeria Ain't Got Game

The intelligent and progressive folk of America might think they have it tough there, that country being blighted as it is by rampant religious fervour. However, it's mostly the Jesus worshippers who seek to drag the stars and stripes back to the middle ages. Spare a thought for Nigeria, where the country is divided equally between bible-nuts and blood-thirsty Koran crazies.

Nigeria is a country of two halves - the 'Christian' south, and the Muslim north (forgive the pun, but God help us).

The African country, famed for its sterling human rights record (chuckle chuckle) is seeking to host the Commonwealth Games in 2014, but human rights activists are petitioning the Commonwealth Games Federation to consider Nigeria's bid. Small wonder: man who layeth with man faces execution at the hands of the Muslims, but luckily in the tolerant Christian south they just go to jail. Not to worry then.

The Commonwealth Games Federation constitution states: "there shall be no discrimination against any country or person on any grounds whatsoever including race, colour, gender, religion or politics" in Article 7. In Nigeria, law dictates that anyone who has "carnal knowledge of any person against order of nature or permits a male to have carnal knowledge of him" can be imprisoned for 14 years.

Will these apparent conflicts of interest stop the games being held in Nigeria? Or will Nigeria change its collective mind and treat gays equally? Tune in to the nest exciting episode of Common Sense vs. Religion!

Read more about this story here.

CocoDorm - The Siege!

Hold the front page! In a cutting edge piece of journalist investigation, NBC has uncovered and exposed the location of the CocoDorm - and (sharp intake of breath here) it's in an ordinary suburban neighbourhood, complete with brats on bikes and a Catholic church (pretty apt, really, when you think about it - Breion Diamond et al can rush over and confess their sins after savouring a nut).

The House Next Door news item features plenty of footage of Righteous Everyday Straight People being shocked when told that their neighbours are young black gay men having rampant sex. Presumably they'd prefer a good old-fashioned serial killer, or a wife beater, or maybe Daddy and his special little girl, probably caked in make-up to look three times her 7 years and paraded in a twisted beauty pageant... But I detract - this isn't a blog about Straight People And Their Ways.

Later, we see our beloved Breion Diamond door stopped by our intrepid newshound, and the dorm surrounded by cops who stick a sign on the front door listing all infringements incurred by the dorm (oddly, Scorpio's rumoured hygiene issue isn't one of them).

Poor old Flava Works - the company behind CocoDorm - have been beset by problems of late. Blog Bejata.com eagerly unveiled the report by the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) into the "additional cases of syphilis, gonorrhoea, and HIV were identified among employees and residents of the Northside dormitory." Other bloggers, such as Keith Boykin (there's a surprise) have weighed in condemning CocoDorm. I wonder why we never hear of attacks on other black porn outfits - Tyson Cane, Pitbull, Big City et cetera. Is it because Flava is headed by someone who is white?

There's plenty of companies out there churning out bareback videos by the truckload, yet condoms are ever-present in CocoDorm (with the exception of the a few bareback DVDs, out of around forty in total). And the models certainly don't seem to be there under duress. If anything, there's more laughing and joking around than actual sex. And Breion Diamond seems to me the last person anyone could take advantage of.

Still, it'll be interesting to see where this goes. Make up your own mind - check out the NBC video and read the response from FlavaWorks.

My question is this - who sent the pictures and DVDs exposing CocoDorm to all the nice, sweet straight people in the street, and why? Seems like our intrepid reporter wasn't interested in that aspect of the story...

Oral Sex Linked To Throat Cancer


Here's a scary newsflash - NewScientist.com reports that those of us who have had more than five (just five!) oral sex partners are 250% more likely to contract throat cancer than those who don't have oral sex. I guess that means nuns and straight men are going to be okay, then.

The research team that uncovered this happy news discovered that this was due to human papillomavirus (HPV) - a virus implicated in cervical cancer - being transmitted through oral sex. The team hopes that their findings will encourage us all to use condoms - and whatever it is the Lesbians use - during oral sex, something I think is highly unlikely, given the wildfire spread of barebacking.

Still, the mention of cervical cancer should give all us battymen hope - I'm no boffin, but isn't it the female of the species who has the cervix? Maybe this HPV malarkey only effects the straights.

Here's hoping...

TV's Most Influential Gay Male Sex Scenes

Website AfterElton.com has come up with a list of the best man-on-man action to steam up our screens over the years. These sort of things are always a cause for debate, but the list is refreshingly diverse - one would have thought that every scene on list would be lifted from Queer As Folk or Dante's Cove. But no...

Noah's Arc makes it to number three with that juicy coupling of Darryl Stephens and Jensen Atwood, and number five with the even juicier bootytastic hunkfest linking Christian Vincent and Nate Adams. As writer Christie Keith says on AfterElton, the scene "just busted onto TV screens without apology or angst." Anyone who's seen the original version of that scene in the pilot episode (included on the Season One boxset) will know just how steamy things got - before the demands of network television diluted things somewhat.

At number six is one of my personal favourites, that of Michael K. Williams (Omar) and Ernest Waddell (Dante) on The Wire. It isn't explicit or overplayed; there isn't any fuss. The character of Omar in The Wire is truly unique and groundbreaking, and unlike any depiction of a gay men anywhere else. Producer and writer Rod McCullom says their spine-tingling kiss was "debated across black pop culture, even discussed by rappers and basketball players." And what fag doesn't get a kick out of seeing Straight People running in fear as Omar strides down the street in his trench coat? Or is it just me?

The inclusion of Dante's Cove on the list is one I do take issue with, since it's nothing more than softcore porn - why not simply fill the list with Bel Ami or CocoDorm moments. Oz scrapes in at the bottom of the list, Keith commenting: "It's because somehow on this show, even though there's kissing and nudity and violence and suffering and even true love, there don't seem to be any actual sex scenes." I don't know about this - I can think of plenty of instances of graphic depictions of gay sex (often rape), and mostly involving Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Simon Adebisi. Oh, happy memories...

The list is also all-American, and so neglects series like Rikki Beadle-Blair's groundbreaking Metrosexuality and even the original British Queer As Folk (a series I hold no love for).
Still, the article makes for interesting reading, and signposts some joyous eye candy - and important moments for Us - in television.

Blame Women For Bad TV

Eccentric astronomer Sir Patrick Moore - fresh from celebrating the 650th edition of The Sky At Night - has thrown caution to the wind and denounced the female of the species for the decline in the quality of television:
"The trouble is that the BBC now is run by women and it shows: soap operas, cooking, quizzes, kitchen-sink plays. You wouldn't have had that in the golden days," he said. "I would like to see two independent wavelengths - one controlled by women, and one for us, controlled by men. I think it may eventually happen."
The TV veteran also said he would "rather be dead in a ditch" than appear on Celebrity Big Brother, and likened EastEnders to diarrhoea. "I used to watch Doctor Who and Star Trek, but they went PC - making women commanders, that kind of thing. I stopped watching."
No doubt he'll be crucified as a chauvinist - but he has a point. Television drama in particular has suffered over the last ten or fifteen years. Series like The Bill and Casualty were once sturdy, realistic and plot-driven, but ten years ago started degenerating into lowbrow soap. The cast, once real actors who actually looked like real people, have been replaced by young, attractive models-turned-actors, who bring no depth or realism to their roles.
The problem is one that effects British television in particular, where television is shaped by soulless focus groups - and the women in high places who want more "human interest" (i.e. soap) and for long-running series to appeal to women. There isn't a single drama series on British television that isn't blighted by "love schmuck." Romance, feelings and endless soul-searching is the order of the day.
US television seems to have largely escaped the scourge of needy women - uncompromising meaty drama flourishes there. Series like The Wire, The Sopranos, The Shield, and Law & Order are all well-crafted, gritty shows that don't dwell on tedious girls-night-in issues. But there are exceptions - Grey's Anatomy has had me reaching for a vomit-bag (the female-angst soundtrack doesn't help) but such shows are aimed at a female audience. The grown-ups amongst us can watch The Wire instead.
Sir Patrick's comments won't be well-received, because in today's beige politically correct environment, no one will have the balls to admit the truth: women are bad for television.

End of the Reel

Currys has pressed the eject button on an iconic audio product and one of the last remnants of twentieth century analogue technology, the cassette tape. Existing stocks of cassette tapes will be sold, but will not be replenished. Currys anticipates that cassette decks, which are today installed in less than 5 percent of audio equipment stocked by the retailer, will disappear from the range entirely within 18 months. The cassette tape dates back to 1963 when the portability and versatility of the format liberated a generation of music fans to make soundtracks to their lives. Combined with the massive success of the Sony Walkman in the 1980s, sales of pre-recorded tapes in the UK peaked in 1989 when 83 million were sold. 95 million blank tapes were sold in 1990 in the UK (that's a whole lot of home-made "best-of" compilation tapes), but this year total UK sales of blank tapes are expected to be below 1 million, with negligible sales of pre-recorded tapes. "In a sense this decision reflects the beginning of the end for mechanical audio products", states Peter Keenan, managing director of Currys. "Digital technology has fewer moving parts, is considerably smaller and has the huge advantage of using a format that is compatible with many devices. It is also much more portable. A top of the range iPod can hold the same number of albums as 1500 cassettes, which would have required some pretty sizeable pockets." Currys' sister company Dixons (now the online shop brand) hit the headlines previously when the forward-thinking retailers made announcements that they were to stop the sales of VCR players and 35mm film cameras. We never thought we'd see the day when we were nostalgic for cassette tapes, but there's nothing like a disappearing technology to make you feel old… (Story from Yahoo! By Amy-Mae Elliott; photo by ka-os)
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