With the increasing flow of news media today there’s many places you can find a wide range of statistically speaking official charts of top stories of 2014. I love that reflection we take of the year past and hopeful optimism of the one to come. Here at my domain I chose to remember those moments in my own gay pop culture lexicon and personal life to chart as the top moments that gave me life in 2014. And away we went…
In a year where using the word “tranny” became taboo, it truly became the era of a strong transsexual presence in our public eye and keen awareness in our daily dialogue. Emmy-nominated actress and welcomed face of the trans community breakout star Laverne Cox became a role model for many while opening the minds of even more as she continually displays grace, intelligence and elegance wherever she is. And she is everywhere from Project Runway to The View to Watch What Happens Live to the new season of Orange is the New Black on Netflix. Laverne Cox has shown that when the conversation focuses on the mind and spirit instead of the punchline, things change in a respectful and positive direction instead of feeding the stereotypes that plague the obvious.
Gay marriage has taken momentum in 2014 and states many thought would never legalize the union of same-sex couples have opened doors for more couples to either live in wedded bliss or jump into something way too fast only to sit in the aftermath wondering how to get out of it. Yep, that’s marriage. It works for some and not for others.
Sound the trumpets please because here and now I will announce that Jacques and I will be getting married in 2015! We’ve always known how we’ve felt for every day of the 15 years together we’ve shared. We exchanged rings a year or so into our relationship and never took them off. The community fight was always for the legality of equality for us. When others rushed to get married and now are not, we sat back and knew their finality. It wasn’t in our plans then but now it is. It’s time. We knew that we would one day and that day is soon. When? Discussions are in play and exciting to plan. I love my man and have never seen myself anywhere else.
Oh, what a wicked web Sony Studios has spun within their highest ranks. I soon tuned into the story of the hacking scandal that erupted from backlash of intention to release a movie called “The Interview” where real life besties Seth Rogan and James Franco play tabloid interviewers sent to North Korea by the CIA to assassinate dictator Kim Jung-un. People have not been pleased on both sides. Cyberattackers reeked havoc on Sony’s “secure” files exposing intimate childish email exchanges from big-wigs at Sony about dislike for Angelina Jolie, racist comments about presumptions of Obama’s favorite flicks and other embarrassing Tea.
Also, spillage of details of the new James Bond astronomical budget, Channing Tatum’s elementary school grammar-like quips about box office and private email handles for the likes of Jennifer Lawrence and George Clooney, account access to monetary funds, etc. Mess! Sony finally cancelled the Christmas release because they had no choice. Theaters felt threatened as did some movie goers considering this an act of terrorism. Other formats have been tossed around for possible distribution but again the hackers promise there would be more damage to come. This story is far from over.
I gave in. I love Taylor Swift. It took me a minute or two. Can she do no wrong? She came around and I saw her thinking alright I get her. Sure. But didn’t stray into her crisp Laura Ashley drop waisted dress territory any further until last year’s Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show where she sang her attitude-fueled stomper “I Knew You Were Trouble” while ki-ki’ing with scantily-clad Angels on the runway holding her own. Fast-forward a year upon return to the same runway and again she steals the show with the I’M-OBSESSED “Blank Space.” It’s been the year of Taylor Swift. The release of her smashing new album 1989, the legion of diehard fans and Swift’s genuine connection with them and her perfection at every turn determines this lady isn’t going anywhere anytime soon! I live.
In July I competed for a second time at EOY and placed third runner-up for Mr. Entertainer of the Year. Quite a leap from the previous year. The experience was incredible and again I was very proud of what I brought to the stage as I often am. I’ve judged and competed in pageants and always try to give what I as a judge would enjoy seeing and as a contestant can stand by. Each journey to the stage I ask myself if that particular time would become my last time onstage would I be proud of it as my swan song. Again, I was. I have mixed emotions about going back another year to EOY so I’ve decided to sit this round out and see how I feel next year about it. I always genuinely wish everyone involved with the system good luck and can’t wait to see what happens next!
My personal foray back into the competitive world of gay male entertainment took me back to where it all began for me this past year as I competed for Mr. Gay USofA in San Antonio, Texas. I made the Top 12 dancing alone my very first try at nationals! With every experience I gain more of myself and each step on stage I’m able to get me a piece. A piece, you ask?! A piece is some of that good feeling a spotlight provides or a round of applause gives a performer. It’s wen you feel your very best, almost untouchable. I missed it while I was away and can’t wait for the next one! If the pageant Gods are on my side I’ll see you all again in Texas next November!
This summer we spent the most surprising good time poolside at The Cosmopolitan camped by their Boulevard Pool atop a cherished daybed drinking blended bliss and eating culinary gems until we could no more. Clearly the clientele stretched out on lounge chairs and sacred daybeds across the spacious pool waters were predominately straight but these two gay men felt very comfortable and at home chatting up others and enjoying the exciting scene of pumping dance music and glowing tanned skin. I got my life! The service was spectacular and the energy was off the chain. The boys were in full force giving Quicksilver board short realness with flip-flop fabulosity hanging on one another and letting it all go. Damn, I love Vegas! There’s no judgement only people living life and getting them a piece.
“She works hard for the money.” (Do-doot, Do-doot) Yeah, me. This year marked my 10-year anniversary at the premiere LGBT fitness facility in the world, World Gym in Palm Springs. And yes, we’re very straight-friendly! That’s the longest I’ve ever worked anywhere other than considering myself a freelance choreographer and writer. I’m proud of the home we’ve created at World Gym Palm Springs and am glad there’s a place for others to go and feel part of something bigger than maybe they are alone. I’ve seen a lot and giggled about most of it. We have a good time and it’s rare when someone can say that about their job.
Unfortunately we lost our little furry one Britney in March. It’s hard to believe it’s already been that long. It makes me sad to think about her but I couldn’t do this list without mentioning the joy she brought Jacques and I. We loved her so much. Her last week here was a rough one for us all. She’s out of pain now. Our boy Barney still looks out for her in the house, we believe. He had a stroke late summer and blessedly had a miraculous recovery still very active for his age of 15. He’s our life and can really do no wrong at this point. Britney was 13 years and 3 days. Woof.
Kleenex, please. On an up note… I saw Fleetwood Mac in Los Angeles, err, Inglewood at The Forum with the original lineup including Christine McVie. I drove in for the night and had a cute room at the quick and easy Holiday Inn Express. The group sounded absolutely amazing. I’ve seen the group a few times and Stevie Nicks solo a few times more. This was by far the best they have been in my days with Fleetwood Mac. I went with fellow Mac maniac Brian and we swayed, shouted and sang along to all the hits from “The Chain” to “Gypsy” to the delicious finale of “Songbird.” On With The Show is the tour. Catch Fleetwood Mac if you can!
Two words. Conchita Wurst. She won the Eurovision song competition with her “Rise Like a Phoenix” power anthem and has taken the world by bearded storm. Yes, honey. She is a bearded drag queen with the vocal pipes like few others. She’s quite phenomenal, actually. I just clocked on her Twitter page that she will be presenting at the Golden Globes. I can’t wait to see what the children will say about that. Chirp, chirp. My husband loves her and I think she is quite smashing. Next up… She is on the season premiere of The Graham Norton Show on BBC America in January.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS to You and Yours! xoSTEVEN M, JAQ and MR.B ♥