I do fancy myself a creative blogger and word choreographer featuring fierce and fabulous dish and dirt happening in pop culture today. From celebrity news to reality jewels, I tackle topics not seen just anywhere. If it catches my eye, I love sharing my findings. If you’re still reading, then you’ve taken the bait. But wait, there’s more!
Coming May 20 to the ACE Hotel and Swim Club in Palm Springs is celebrity photographer (and dearest confidant) Tim Courtney’s annual charity event Splash into Summer Bash for Picture Me Happy benefiting terminally ill children in California. Monthly, Tim takes a group of selfless giving people to hospitals and offers the wonderful children a photography lesson with cameras and parents involved. This year’s main event has grown leaps and bounds from last year and promises to be the talk of Palm Springs in the next few weeks.
Persian stud muffin Reza Farahan from Shahs of Sunset on Bravo TV will be playing host with the most, along with gorgeous cast member Asa Soltan Rahmati and our very own reality wonder from Project Runway: All Stars Michael Costello. Music will be delivered by famed British DJ Eur-O-Steve with pulsating beats and handwaving by dance floor fillers without bright fabric fans occupying their hands. There’s an open bar, a fun photo booth and outrageous raffle items up for grabs. Bring your swim gear and splash in the pool to cool off from the man heat! Shirtless hunks and bikini-wearing girls unite for one great cause!
Unfortunately, due to scheduling conflicts with a trip home to Nashville to see Mom, my media pass will stay pristine and virgin for I’ll be unable to attend the benefit. Sad faces all around. I was shattered when I realized the event and trip were colliding. I’m excited about going home but I was also excited about tugging on Reza’s mustache in person. I find him super sexy and his this-is-me-deal-with-it-love-me attitude very attractive. I really do. Maybe we’ll connect in Los Angeles soon for a cocktail. But not this time. Again, frowns and pouts from my end. But I digress…
Luckily with the power of immediacy on the social network giant Twitter, I got in contact with Reza and bing-bam-boom he agreed to do an interview with me via the Internet before he arrived for hosting duties at ACE on the 20th. I was surprised and thrilled at the quick timeliness of Mr. Farahan’s responses. We stayed in contact and he replied within the week. I know he is busy running Sunset Boulevard and am gracious for his time. I quoted Reza verbatim with only slight changes for continuity. Here’s what we discussed!
Steven Michael – Your mustache is everything! It’s taken on a celebrity of its own. How is fame feeling with Shahs of Sunset getting such great attention?
Reza Farahan - My mustache is on ‘fire’ (wink,wink) and he couldn’t be happier with the attention he’s been getting lately. He and I are both thrilled that we have this platform and that we’re able to use it to bring awareness to homosexuality/homophobia in the Persian community.
How has the Persian community been in response to the show? Do they feel it’s an appropriate impression of the brotherhood and lifestyles and clear representation?
We’ve gotten mixed reviews from the Persian community. But I have to tell you that I could care less what the Persian community thinks. There are truly no 6 people of any community that can represent the entire community at large. I represent myself, period. The only people that I care about are the Persian/Middle Eastern youth that are struggling with their sexuality. I wanted to give them a voice and show them that you can exist, be strong, successful and accepted by your friends, family and the community. The Persians that make up my community are entitled to their opinions. The beauty is that I can count the number of people who’s opinion matter to me on 2 hands.
I really find your answers so honest and refreshing, Reza. Thank you! What do you find inviting about Palm Springs? You’ve been here recently for a few events and will be hosting the benefit for Picture Me Happy. Do you enjoy your visits here?
I absolutely adore everything about Palm Springs. It’s not just a place, it’s more like a lifestyle. I find that as soon as I get on the 111, I relax. The people, the mountains, the architecture, the weather, the restaurants, the hotels and especially the pool at the ACE Hotel (Not to mention their peanut butter pie), I LOVE IT ALL!!!!! I could see myself living there full-time at some point.
We’ll have to stay in touch for when you come back next time! What’s the biggest misconception about filming reality television? Do you feel the show’s editing represents you and your friends according to truth or is it sensationalized any? And when the cameras and bright lights are off, how different are you than when you are actually being filmed?
I can honestly say that the Reza you see on TV, is the same Reza that exists in his everyday life 24/7. The thing about reality TV is that they shoot for a certain number of months and edit out the mundane or boring. But everything you see on our show organically happened in real life. I am as opinionated and loud in my everyday life, as I am on ‘Shahs Of Sunset.’
How does the Iranian community view homosexuality?
The Iranian community thus far has ignored homosexuality. They act like it doesn’t exist and if it ‘pops up,’ they try to make it go away. I thought that by being my authentic self on this show, and knowing that the entire community would watch, that I would force people to talk about homosexuality in our Iranian community. ‘Here I am people, I exist, now deal with it.’
Finally, what kind of man would you want to spend your long life with? Will he have a mustache, too?
Great question. For some reason, I am drawn to tall, lean white guys, with or without facial hair. I think it’s because that is the exact opposite of me? But that’s just the physical component. My soul mate would need to be confident, kind, smart and he’d need to challenge me and keep me stimulated!
(that’s one lucky girl…!)
My appreciation to my buddy Reza Farahan for giving us a glimpse of the reality he calls life. I encourage everyone to attend the Splash into Summer Bash for Picture Me Happy event and meet Reza in person. And give his mustache a good tug for me! You know, for the kids…