By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
I am now going to prove my noble sense of ethics; my deep, resounding integrity; and my openness to write the most horrifying truths in the name of equal time. I am going to report information that suggests a major star might actually be straight! Just the thought of this sort of thing kills me (and worse, nauseates me), but fair is fairif not fairyso get out your barf bags, peel off your knee pads, and here goes:
VIN DIESEL has a hetero past! JAMES ST. JAMESthe Disco Bloodbath author who knew Vin when he was a mere doorman at the Tunnelfeels the action star doesn't take it up the butt after all. "I hear the gay rumors too," James tells me. "And he does look the part. But Mark, er, Vin, was always straight. And believably so. He would sing show tunes and flirt outrageously with me and the other drag queens, but he wasn't overcompensatinghe was totally comfortable with his heterosexuality. I remember the girls he fucked! Every queen at the Tunnel was always after him, and I would have heard it if one of them finally had him. Of course he was only 19and maybe he's come out. But I really think he's straight!" Blecccccch!
Pride and Prejudice
As the star of The Chronicles of Limp Dickcalm down, Michaellet me regroup and go back to my insular world of out queens playing fast and furious with each other's Lubriderm. In fact, it's so insular I'm the only one I know who went to the Gay Pride parade (though it drew swarms of other eye-popping, rhinestone-wearing DUBYA snappers, if not Ms. Diesel). The press, of course, once again greeted the event with either horror or indifference. Last year, Pride perversely prompted overeager coverage of "bug-chasers"the supposedly vast legion of guys who actually want facial wasting for Christmas. This year, there was an equally inspiring spate of talk about how things were better when everyone was deep in the closet and full of shame and signifiers! But I'm sticking to the out-and-proud shit, only because I've been doing it so long I just know it'll come back again soon. (The same reasoning has led to my closet full of '80s appliquéd blouses.)
Highlights from the foofy festivities included a procession of "flaggots" (gay men twirling flags to BRITNEY SPEARS's "Toxic"), a studly queen wearing a "Queer Pole for the Straight Hole" T-shirt, and another sophisticate hawking a memoir and screaming, "I used to be a homo basher, but I went to prison and now I'm a homo lover!" For most people, it's the opposite trajectory.
The bars that weekend brought homo lovers to all the homo bashes, and I turned into a giant flaggot at each entrance. The Pyramid's mixed Friday-night 1984 event had a Madonnathon, which got us plastered on cone bras and kabbalah water (though, as Esther danced on the video screens, TONI BASIL intriguingly blared out of the sound system). The amazing Area 10009 party at Opaline starred three wonderfully disaffected go-go boys wiggling their exposed heinies while looking like they were thinking about the next day's vacuum-cleaner-bag shopping. And over at the Park's Rambles party, one of the place's former dancers, Avenue Q writer JEFF WHITTY, came back as a patron (and a Tony winner) on Gay Pride night. Was that old man they showed on the Tonys telecast as Whitty gushed about his boyfriend really his special one? "No, that was my dad!" Whitty told me, clarifyingnot his sugar dad.
At the Maritime, the Cabanas party was unspeakably festive, and a level below at La Bottega, NICOLE KIDMAN looked ultra-glam and animated dining with two female friends. Happy Pride!
Panic in the Year Queero
In the movies, especially dimwit comedies, straight male characters have been overengaging in lesbian fantasies (i.e., watching the sapphics exchange tongue and then miraculously getting to nail one of them) and gay panic (you know, having paroxysms of terror that every queer pole out there desires their straight holewhich generally happens to be grotesque and misshapen, by the way). Another backlash against gay visibility? You got it, sister. (At least cool-hetero Vin seems above all that. Blecccccch.)
As for the straightest story ever told, is The Notebook still running? Yeahand so is my nose, but not from the anticipated empathy sob. They gave out Kleenex at the screening, but I cried mainly because, after an intriguing beginning, the flick falls into such shameless pulp-novel plotting, it makes a Diesel drama look like Beckett. (Uptight rich girl meets guy from wrong side of the tracks and Mom disapproves, ugh.) This flick is so low it even uses Alzheimer's as a plot device! Let's just forget it!
But back, as all things must go, to the queers and the fourth annual Miss L.E.S. pageant at Fez, which I helped judge in order to give the dykey delight some femininity. (There were diesels here, but no Vin; he must have been elsewhere, singing show tunes.) Last year, as host MURRAY HILL mistily remembers, one runner-up was so tanked she ripped the curtain on her way to the floor. This year, Murray had the crowd on the floor with suave singing, foot-synched soft-shoe routines, and remarks like "Feel free to heckle and objectify the guests. We're in a safe place tonight!"