China’s first gay TV show launches.
The programme is being broadcast online and will feature gay presenters discussing gay issues. The makers hope it will increase tolerance in a society where homosexuality remains a major taboo. Until 2001, Chinese authorities still classed homosexuality as a mental illness. How the programme fares within China’s notoriously censorious online environment remains to be seen.
The weekly 12 episode show has been produced by Hong Kong listed broadcaster Phoenix Satellite Television. The show’s producer Gang Gang told Reuters, that the show will be a forum “to get in touch with each other and communicate.” He added:
In a lot of major Chinese cities, gay people are playing sports, swimming, working out, singing karaoke — they are getting together for all types of activities.
Such coyness about what gay people actually do when they get together is to be expected. Whilst this is definitely progress, don’t expect Gaydar China to launch anytime soon.
One in ten gay men in London is now HIV positive, with one in 25 across the country carrying the virus.
New figures, released this week, are expected to show that almost 8,000 people were diagnosed with HIV last year, increasing the number of people living with the virus in the UK to around 70,000. Around a third of people with HIV are unaware that they are carrying the virus and there is fresh concern that people may now be carrying a cocktail of STDs, including HIV, chlamydia, syphilis and gonorrhoea. The annual report of the Health Protection Agency is expected to also highlight the rise in infection amongst heterosexuals. Around two-thirds of heterosexuals with HIV acquired the infection abroad, primarily in Africa.
The Terrence Higgins Trust said too many people in the West were taking risks because they felt HIV was a treatable disease and that this lessened the chances of contracting it. The UK government have just launched a TV campaign warning young people of the risks of unprotected sex. One in five under-24s say they do not take condoms with them on a night out.
Source: The Independent via Towleroad.
The Cult of Large and Hairy hits the mainstream.
Once upon a time bears — those gay guys who celebrate their size and hirsuteness — were ghetto-ised to niche clubs like XXL (where a skinny friend of ours once said he felt ‘like an xray’ — god knows how he got in). Not anymore. The bears are coming out of the woods and hitting fashion and clubbing mainstays like i-D Magazine and ‘trendy’ Hoxton. We sadly missed the last Bear Beauty Contest at Bistrotheque but that wasn’t for lack of trying to persuade the boyfriend to take part.
And now i-D, shortly after its ‘Birth of a Bearcub’ fashion shoot, is featuring the work of Mike Thorn. A bear himself, Thorn produces lovely watercolours of his furry muses. Or as he describes the type, “MEN OF THE BIG, BEEFY AND HAIRY KIND!”
Dating site Gaydar has set up an online travel company. So far, so ghetto – there are loads of gay holiday companies, right?
Until you realise that Gaydar has 2.1 million subcribers in the UK alone, it’s a global site and that Gaydarers already hook up with fellow gaydarers on their travels. Suddenly, it’s an inspired idea. Brandrepublic (subscription required) reports that the company behind Gaydar Radio and Gaydar.co.uk is launching Gaydartravel.com with a £1m marketing budget. QSoft Consulting, owner of the group, said research conducted by Gaydar Radio showed that a quarter of Gaydar’s audience were interested in purchasing global travel packages online.
The survey’s respondents took an average of 2.5 holidays a year, with city breaks and beach holidays topping the list. Gaydartravel.com will offer tailored packages to destinations including the UK, South Africa, Europe, the US and Australia.
Darren Cooper, Gaydartravel travel manager, said: “With many of the mainstream travel companies now actively chasing the gay and lesbian market, we are in a great position to negotiate better deals for our customers.”
Photo taken by me on Broadwick Street
For a global collection of walls with stuff written/drawn on see pictures of walls
The return of ‘pretend’ languages
The other day a colleague overheard some teenagers on his bus talking some kind of secret language -one that just didn’t seem to make any sense but which involved a lot of repeated sounds.
During my childhood, the secret language was eggy peggy which disguised words by putting ‘eggy’ before each vowel -there’s a nice little guide to it and other secret languages here.
Cockney rhyming slang is probably the most famous example but the archaic gay language polari is also making a comeback.
See also: the very wonderful Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence have done a translation of the whole of the King James bible as part of their longstanding campaign to resurrect polari.
1 In the beginning Gloria created the heaven and the earth.
2 And the earth was nanti form, and void; and munge was upon the eke of the deep. And the nanti lucoddy of Gloria trolled upon the eke of the aquas.
3 And Gloria cackled, Let there be sparkle: and there was sparkle.
4 And Gloria vardad the sparkle, that it was bona: and Gloria divided the sparkle from the munge.
5 And Gloria screeched the sparkle Day, and the munge he screeched nochy. And the bijou nochy and the morning were the una day.
Morrissey is also very fond of the language – for example the album title ‘Bona Drag’ (nice clothes) and of course ‘Piccadilly Polari’