Must-See LGBT TV: Sunday 11/23 – Saturday 11/29

Grab the remote, set your DVR or queue up your streaming service of choice! GLAAD is bringing you the highlights in LGBT on TV this week. Check back every Sunday for up-to-date coverage in LGBT-inclusive programming on TV.

This Sunday night, catch the 2014 American Music Awards live on ABC. Out musician Sam Smith will be performing and is nominated in several categories. The 42nd Annual American Music Awards: Sunday, 8pm on ABC.

Major Crimes returns this Monday and the team investigates a murder that's part of a complicated surrogate adoption. Meanwhile, Sharon pushes forward on trying to officially make Rusty part of her family. Major Crimes: Monday, 9pm on TNT.

Out anchor Robin Roberts is hosting the Thank You, America! With Robin Roberts holiday special this Thursday on ABC honoring those who have done extraordinary work to help others. The special will also have an appearanced by Taylor Swift and a salute to our troops. Thank You, America! With Robin Roberts: Thursday, 8pm on ABC.

For a breakdown of LGBT-inclusive shows airing every week, check out our nightly listings below:

Sunday November 23: Mulaney (7:30pm, FOX); American Music Awards (8pm, ABC); Brooklyn Nine-Nine (8:30pm, FOX); The Good Wife (9pm, CBS)

Monday: Gotham (8pm, FOX); Jane the Virgin (9pm, CW); Major Crimes (9pm, TNT)

Tuesday: The Flash (8pm, CW); Marry Me (9pm, NBC); Awkward. (10pm, MTV); Faking It (10:30pm, MTV)

Wednesday: Survivor (8pm, CBS); Red Band Society (9pm, FOX)

Thursday: Thank You, America! With Robin Roberts (8pm, ABC); The McCarthys (9:30pm, CBS)

Saturday: The Graham Norton Show (10pm, BBC America)

On daytime, check your local listings for information about EllenThe Talk (CBS), The Gossip Table (VH1), The View (ABC) and The Chew (ABC). Soap operas Days of Our Lives on NBC and General Hospital on ABC (check local listings) both feature out characters.


GLAAD amplifies the voice of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community by empowering real people to share their stories, holding the media accountable for the words and images they present, and helping grassroots organizations communicate effectively. By ensuring that the stories of LGBT people are heard through the media, GLAAD promotes understanding, increases acceptance, and advances equality. For more information, see www.glaad.org, www.facebook.com/glaad, www.twitter.com/glaad and www.glaad.tumblr.com.

November 23, 2014

Why Should You Know About C. P. Cavafy?


Why Should You Know About C. P. Cavafy?

I have a tattoo stretched across my collarbone that reads "So Much I Gazed Upon Beauty - My Vision Is Alive With It." Now, this may seem a bit extreme in support of a dead poet but maybe you are not familiar with Constantine P. Cavafy. The translations of his words, which I have only understood in translation so therefore can also be described as modern day gossip, are timeless. It is rare that I run into someone that reads my script and identifies the author but more often they have a look of surprise or discomfort when I say "and I am looking at you." This poet deserves more than a permanent advertisement on skin and reading through his archive with a consideration to the timeframe will make the most current trailblazer feel adequate.

Constantine's work echoed a life bouncing around Europe as a gay man in the late 1800's and early 1900's. Growing up from Egypt to England but maintaining his Greek heritage, Cavafy was selective if not secretive in his publications. His political phrases have been considered the greatest musings of the early 20th century but his poems of love have also resonated. I was given his words by my Italian professor in college. Gianfranco knew something that I did not; these phrases would guide me in my adult life ... especially in the romance department.

"I never had you, nor will I ever have you
I suppose. A few words, an approach
as in the bar yesterday, and nothing more.
It is undeniably, a pity. But we who serve Art
sometimes with intensity of mind, and of course only
for a short while, we create pleasure
which almost seems real."

"I never found them again - the things so quickly lost...
the poetic eyes, the pale
face...in the dusk of the street...

I never found them again - the things acquired quite by chance,
that I gave up so lightly;
and that later in agony I wanted.
The poetic eyes, the pale face,
those lips, I never found them again."

Now, if you are going through a break up...those might not be the best choices for taping on your bathroom mirror. Keep flipping through or clicking through the choices for some inspired pieces that reflect new love or even an acceptance of self love; the kind that makes you love your life just the way it is.

"And if you can't shape your life the way you want,
at least try as much as you can
not to degrade it
by too much contact with the world,
by too much activity and talk."

"My life's joy and incense: recollection of those hours
when I found and captured sensual pleasure as I wanted
My life's joy and incense: that I refused
all indulgence in routine love affairs."

But if you want to spark up a fire in an old relationship or cement a new one; there are so many pieces filled with lust that in a group of modest words, he creates the story and captures the emotion of strong desire. Holiday season is coming up so you may want to stop by a bookstore (do not order online lazy, defeats the purpose) and get a copy of his works or if this is really a new thing then just grab a screen shot and text it.

"Come back often and take hold of me,
sensation that I love come back and take hold of me--
when the body's memory awakens
and an old longing again moves into the blood,
when lips and skin remember
and hands feel as though they touch again.

Come back often, take hold of me in the night
when lips and skin remember..."

This one kills me:

"So much I gazed upon beauty,
my vision is alive with it.

Contours of the body. Red lips. Voluptuous limbs.
Hair as if taken from greek statues;
always beautiful, even when uncombed,
and it falls, slightly, over foreheads.
Faces of love, as my poetry
wanted them...in the nights of my youth,
in my nights, secretly, met..."

If the holidays are too soon then you have a grace period to Valentine's Day to explore C P Cavay's romantic side. Pass up those obvious choices of Whitman and Dickinson for someone who really captured a rich life. You will find some easy reading that has profound meaning. Maybe a tattoo is in your future so FYI I have already called another one that's slapped on my back:

"I went -
I did not hold myself back.
I gave in completely and went."


Translations by Edmund Keeley, Philip Sherrard, and John Cavafy. A little flavor from me.

LGBT Workers Facing Less Discrimination, Study Finds

Walmart improved its treatment of LGBT employees over the past year, nudging the retail giant closer to companies such as Apple and Goldman Sachs Group, the Human Rights Campaign said.

LGBT Wellness Roundup: Nov. 21

Each week HuffPost Gay Voices, in a partnership with blogger Scout, LGBT HealthLink and researcher Michael G. Bare, brings you a round up of some of the biggest LGBT wellness stories from the past seven days. For more LGBT Wellness visit our page dedicated to the topic here.


After Dark: Meet Amanda Lepore, Fashion Icon And Nightlife Legend

This is the twenty-eighth installment in HuffPost Gay Voices Associate Editor James Nichols' ongoing series "After Dark: NYC Nightlife Today And Days Past" that examines the state of New York nightlife in the modern day, as well as the development and production of nightlife over the past several decades. Each featured individual in this series currently serves as a prominent person in the New York nightlife community or has made important contributions in the past that have sustained long-lasting impacts.

HuffPost Gay Voices believes that it is important and valuable to elevate the work, both today and in the past, of those engaged in the New York nightlife community, especially in an age where queer history seems to be increasingly forgotten. Nightlife not only creates spaces for queers and other marginalized groups to be artistically and authentically celebrated, but the work of those involved in nightlife creates and shapes the future of our culture as a whole. Visit Gay Voices regularly to learn not only about individuals currently making an impact in nightlife, but those whose legacy has previously contributed to the ways we understand queerness, art, identity and human experience today.

The Huffington Post: You're a legend in the NYC nightlife scene -- what did your journey to becoming such a fixture entail?
Amanda Lepore: It all started out as a job –- I love dressing up and I did have a make-up job in the late '90s after Limelight closed but I was still dancing at Twilo. People would want to take pictures with me and I would dressed up anyways so it seemed better to be in a nightclub.

My first night out my roommate took me, on my birthday, to Disco 2000. It was there that Michael Alig hired me to start working on a Wednesday. Immediately after that I was hired the following Saturday at a club called Building, and then the following week I was on "The Joan Rivers Show" with Leigh Bowery, James St. James and Michael.

At that time you were likely one of the first mainstream representations of transgender people in the media. Were you thinking about it in those terms when it was happening?
I don’t think so –- I was just really scared. I was really shy when I started so I didn’t really think about making an impact, it was more just about getting through it [laughs].

I think educating people came more later, with Facebook and that sort of thing. A lot of really young transgender people who don’t necessarily go out would message me looking for advice and tell me that I was a role model. It became more like that as time went on –- nightlife is kind of a weird environment for that sort of thing.


In retrospect, what are your feelings surrounding that time period? How significant was it to defining who Amanda Lepore is today?
Well it really got a lot of attention -– there wasn’t any Internet or Facebook back then so you would get known more through the talk shows. I didn’t really set out to do that and I didn’t really have any ambitions –- it was more just the cards I was given. But it did make a really big impact. When I look back on "The Joan Rivers Show" I think I was more natural -- in terms of personality [laughs]. People could relate to me, whereas I think the other people involved were more over the top and trying to be outrageous. I think that made me stand out.

How has your career taken off since then?
I definitely did a more underground scene before David LaChapelle photographed me in the last '90s. But David made me world famous in a way. Those photos could have been disastrous but people loved it and the pictures for years. It was kind of an alternative look to what was going on –- I didn’t really think about modeling or anything because I was tiny with breast implants, lips and all of that stuff. It was kind of like an anti-model thing. Regardless, it was successful.

At first it felt like I was more just unusual and then it started getting more accepted by the fashion world and art community. People started to think about me as an art piece. There was some backlash where people didn’t like me –- but the right people did. I started thinking differently when respectful articles were being written about me.

What role do you think the Internet played within you becoming recognizable worldwide?
There were a lot of blogs and articles at the time. I still think that the success would've happened because a lot of people were writing respectful articles about me, but I think the Internet allowed for there to actually be more bad stuff. The literary stuff you would see in The New York Times or big magazines would be different. The Internet gave people the ability to write more narrow-minded, tabloid-style articles.


Throughout your time in the NYC nightlife community how have you seen the Internet reshape and change the structure of things in nightlife?
Definitely at Disco 2000 and everything before the Internet the crowds were a lot more mixed -- it became more segregated. Gay people were a big thing because there wasn’t Grindr or the Internet to hook up with so you would go out. Everybody would meet people when they went out. Now there has to be some sort of entertainment in clubs for people to come out, which is very different. Things also used to be more crowded; after the Internet big clubs would open and promoters couldn’t fill them up. With the exception Brooklyn and the big raves there everything successful seems to be pretty small and segregated.

How did you start making music? Are you working on anything right now?
Music kind of went together with everything else. I initially dabbled in a little bit but it wasn’t until I met Cazwell, since he was in the electroclash scene and rapping, that it became a thing. He saw me partying one day with Pamela Anderson, Jocelyn Wildenstein and David LaChapelle and decided that he was going to help me. At first it seemed kind of impossible to learn the lyrics but he helped me a lot. Then he started making more stuff and actually helped me with a lot of my album. I definitely wouldn’t have been able to do that when I first started; I just didn’t have the confidence.

When I started singing going out became a lot more fun for me. I got to make outfits and I would be on a proper stage and I felt like I was giving more -– I was actually doing something. It went over really well and I still do it now.

I just think it’s much better to do something than just sit there with a bottle. Taking pictures with people is definitely a big thing for me but I think it’s better to perform as well.

Right now I have all of the material for a new album but I haven’t been in the studio yet. I’m also working on a book with a ghost writer who has been interviewing me and people who’ve been in my life. It’s sort of like a memoir and focuses on how to succeed when the odds are against you.

When you were first starting out in the New York Nightlife scene did you ever think that you’d get to the point that you’re at today?
No. My initial thoughts were, “Oh wow, this is a really great advertisement to get a husband.” I really thought that I would just get married –- I had my sex change by the time I was seventeen and I got married right after that.

I never knew it would get as big as it is now – but I also think that’s part of my success, because I didn’t really care. It sort of just came to me and I wasn’t in a hurry to do anything. I kind of always did my own thing; sometimes I would be in and other times out. I’d be busy at times and not busy other times. I’ve always been very go with the flow [laughs].

What do you see as the value of nightlife for queer artists and performers?
Nightlife is definitely good for people that are different. There are a lot of people that self-destruct in it because liquor and drugs are around, but there are people who are really disciplined and artistic and express themselves, going on to be really successful. A lot of people who are outcasts in some way come together in nightlife. Whether it’s good for you or not depends on what you’re like. If you’re respecting yourself, dressing up and paying your rent then it’s obviously good for you. But if you’re not working or messing up your real job then it could be the opposite. But I do think that a lot of valuable creativity definitely comes out of nightlife.

When you first entered nightlife did you feel like one of those outcast people that you referenced?
Definitely. I was a dominatrix at first and when I was married my husband didn’t want me to work and didn’t want people to know that I had a sex change. So when I did the dominatrix stuff I would have to make up stories, like that I had a daughter or I was going to college -– extremely elaborate stuff. When I first started working there I came across a lot of kids with similar experiences as me, like bullying. Being an outcast is definitely related to that, I just had a different experience. There weren’t really any people with sex changes on the scene at that time either.


What is next for Amanda Lepore?
I definitely want to keep on performing and doing what I’m doing now, and I’d like it all to be bigger at some point –- more elaborate shows. I recently did a Spanish movie that’s going to be on Netflix that I did with Joey Arias and Sophia Lamar. I’d really like to do more film, video and that sort of thing.

What parties and gigs are you currently engaged in?
I’ve been away recently but it’s all changing a bit right now. I’m going to start a new party with Brandon Voss and Kenny Kenny at The Crystal Palace – we’re celebrating my birthday there Dec. 6. Hopefully I’ll be there often since I’ve been away so much [laughs]. I’ve also started doing Frankie Sharp’s Westgay on Tuesdays.

What do you hope to see as the future of nightlife in NYC?
I hope that it goes back to being more mixed and not quite so segregated. I think it’s so much more interesting and fun to have different scenes together -– people play off each other. I'd really love to see that.

For more from Darrell Thorne head here visit the icon's website. Missed the previous installments in this series? Check out the slideshow below.

Finlayson Releases Line Of Tom Of Finland Home Goods

A Finnish textile manufacturer is here to make your dreams come true by finally getting Tom of Finland into your bedroom.

Well... kind of.

Fans of the iconic gay illustrator and his hunks can now order a line of home goods that feature your favorite queer sex symbols. Finlayson, the textile manufacturer, is teaming up with the Tom of Finland foundation in order to pay homage to these beautiful men and the artist that created them, Touko Laaksonen. This collection includes satin sheets in king, queen and twin sizes, duvet covers, hand and bath towels and a textile tote bag and there are plans to expand the line in 2015.

tom of finland

“I am confident that Touko Laaksonen would be proud of the respect that he as an artist has gained during recent years thanks to the Tom of Finland Foundation and Finnish trendsetter companies such as Itella Posti Oy, the Finnish national post office, and now Finlayson," Berndt Arell, co-writer and researcher of the book Tom of Finland -- Unforeseen and Director General of National Museum of Sweden said in a statement. "Becoming a world-known artist has required determination and courageous work in a world that was not that respectful and permissive at the time."


Tom of Finland and Laaksonen's work was previously honored through a series of stamps released earlier this year depicting the queer icon.

Want to check out the collection by Finlayson for yourself? Head here.

10 Worst Cities For LGBT Rights

Across the United States, cities are increasingly embracing equal treatment and access for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Americans. In a foreword to this year’s Municipal Equality Index, Chad Griffin, President of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), said that “cities continue to demonstrate that all corners of America are ready for equality.”

Best Tweets: What Women Said On Twitter This Week

With the list of women coming forward with rape allegations against Bill Cosby growing and Uber threatening to investigate the private lives of female journalists, we'd say this was a pretty heavy week for women on Twitter.

But levity found its way in to a few moments amid the chaos. Alexandra Svokos braced herself for winter's big reveal, tweeting "We're getting dangerously close to the point at which I reveal to my coworkers that I wear Uggs." Jenni Konner also had some seasonal sartorial concerns: "Who will love me enough to tell me if I can pull off a hat?"

Harvard Lampoon editor Alexis Wilkinson captured our precise outlook on social interaction after this week: "A fun thing to do is say 'new phone who's this' to people in person." Yep, it's happening.

For more great tweets from women, scroll through the list below. Then visit our Funniest Tweets From Women page for our past collections.


Conchita Wurst Releases ‘Heroes’ Video

Your favorite bearded drag queen and international superstar is back with a new video, and it's absolutely breathtaking.

Conchita Wurst, winner of the 2014 Eurovision song contest, released "Heroes" this week, the first single since her victory. The song is slow but powerful and showcases Wurst's impressive range of vocals.

Earlier this month, Wurst traveled to the United Nations to join U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon where the pair delivered a message about tolerance. They advocated an end to homophobia and transphobia, with Wurst claiming that he dreams of "a future where we don't have to talk about sexual orientation or the color of your skin."

Check out the video for "Heroes" above.

An Evening With Kate Bornstein Caps Yearlong Project On Queer Theory And Trans Representation

As part of a yearlong exploration of queer theory and the representation of transgender identity, Kristen Schilt and Chase Joynt hosted a symposium on Saturday, Nov. 8 at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts and at the Gray Center Lab. Joynt, a multimedia artist, and Schilt, assistant professor of sociology, have been working together on Tell Me The Truth, their Mellon Fellowship for Arts Practice and Scholarship supported by the Richard and Mary L. Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry.
The symposium brought together a bevy of scholars and artists for “Representing Trans*,” which featured myriad scholarly research, artistic practice, a film screening and a keynote talk by Kate Bornstein, an American author, playwright, performance artist and gender theorist.