Friday
January 12, 2007
SGN.org
Volume 35
Issue 02
 
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General Gayety by Leslie Robinson
Clearly Queerly here
by Leslie Robinson - SGN Contributing Writer

It's just an average Thursday in America. A day chock-full of celebrity homos.

I got the message today, as I went about my usual business, that it's simply impossible for any American not in a coma to deny the existence of LGBT people. In our media- and celebrity-driven culture, out Gays are now front and center. Depending on your point of view, they're either an appropriate reminder that Gays are everywhere, or a terrifying reminder that Gays are everywhere.

Around 9:00 this morning I turned on my computer, and the first tidbit I beheld on my homepage was the news that the verbal sparring between openly Gay Rosie O'Donnell and openly ridiculous Donald Trump had expanded to include Barbara Walters.

I can't tell you whether Barbara and Rosie charbroiled Donald on their show The View, or Donald fricasseed the gals for a reporter. I didn't read the story. Yup, I shirked my duty as a know-it-all. Call it a weakness, but I can take only small doses of celebrity spatting.

My point here is Rosie is an out Lesbian. Whether she's an enjoyable entertainer or a loose cannon doesn't matter. She is Gay, and no longer cares who knows it. Millions watch her on TV, and millions more read about her in print or on their computers. She's an omnipresent reminder that, in America's daily life, openly Queer is here.

Later in the morning, I dragged my carcass to the gym. One truth applicable to such places nationwide is that during the month of January hordes of resolution-makers crowd them in a frenzy of fitness. So I go to my gym when it's quieter, in the late morning.

Another truth is that fitness centers stick televisions in front of treadmills and similar machines that take you nowhere, so going in the morning means viewing morning TV. That means you either watch some egotist of a judge berate missing links, or you watch Ellen.

Everyone, Gay or straight, knows Ellen DeGeneres' story of coming out in Time magazine and on her sit-com, the subsequent tanking of her show and relationship, and her rebirth in Hollywood as a daytime talk show queen. After all that drama and publicity, even if Ellen should never again utter the word "Lebanese," nobody could forget that she is a Lesbian.

I don't know if that thought scares her, but it thrills me. There she is on the tube, entertaining people from Billings to Boca Raton, a fixture on the middlebrow American scene. A female homophobe might vow to turn her off on principle-but then she sees Ellen's guest is that hunky guy from Lost. Well, maybe this once . . .

Lost's Matthew Fox was on when I began my sweaty jaunt to nowhere, and when I ended it Ellen had started to chat up a new guest, a woman by the name of Martina Navratilova. I'm sure I'm not the only person in America who noticed an out Lesbian was interviewing an out Lesbian. Never mind the Emmy-this was grounds for a Sapphy.

Later at home, as I ate lunch and flipped channels to find my kind of TV-a cartoon-I stopped dead at the sight of a man in a dress. Then I remembered that the soap All My Children had announced a Transgender storyline. In the bit I saw, it became clear that the Transgender character had angered the resident Lesbian. This is so not your mother's soap opera.

By 1:00 in the afternoon I'd stumbled across a batch of real and fictional LGBT people occupying America's time. Boy, these days folks can hate us, but ignoring us requires one heck of an effort.

Leslie Robinson watches too much TV. E-mail her at LesRobinsn@aol.com, and read more at www.GeneralGayety.com.

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