Showing posts with label Homo for the Holidays. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Homo for the Holidays. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Get in A Festive Frame of Mind With WET!

If you are searching for a gift that's a bit sexy or a bit naughty you'll find some fun suggestions on how you can spice up your love life. These options are not your typical gifts. Use some of the tips below to give your loved one a gift that will be just as much fun to give as it is to receive.

• If you haven't surprised your partner with holiday sex, it's time to bring new meaning to the season of giving. Make this holiday memorable by waking your partner up with a gift they'd never consider exchanging.

• Get the dice rolling with this not-so-traditional game. Kiss, squeeze, massage... let the dice decide what you're going to do that night!

• Make your significant other a coupon book full of various prizes that can be cashed in at any time. You can make coupons redeemable for anything from a hot massage to a sexy cleaning session. This is a present that's quick, easy and keeps on giving long after the holidays are over.

• Create a journal together and record your history. Buy a journal that both of you can write in, noting important occasions, feelings for one another, and what you hope the future will bring.

• Make your partner's dreams come true by agreeing to act out one of his sexual fantasies. Buy the two of you outfits to complete the fantasy and wrap them and put them under the tree for a holiday to remember.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Everybody Loves Balls ... the Holiday Spectacular!

An annual tradition for merry-makers of all creed, "BALLS! A Holiday Spectacular" is a rollicking variety show with flashy guest stars, audience sock puppet sing-alongs, spontaneous haikus and a white elephant.

The show began in 2009 as a sort of potluck-meets-variety-show, with Mare Trevathan, Melanie Owen “and all their friends” dishing out stories and songs in both homage and parody to the fervor of the holiday season. After ditching the crockpot and adding GerRee Hinshaw and Jim Ruberto in 2010, the show has become a holiday tradition for Denverites that has found its home downtown at the cushy Lannie’s Clocktower Cabaret.

Guest stars include musicians John Common and Jess DeNicola, Lannie’s emcee Naughty Pierre, comedian Matt Monroe, comedienne/songstress Shayna Ferm and juggler Reid, Belstock.

“The real stars, though, are the sock puppets,” says Owen. “We’ve made one for every member of the audience to adopt during the show. It’s amazing how willing people are to belt out ‘Mele Kalikimaka’ with us if they can do it via their sock puppet!”

Proceeds from “BALLS!” go to a different non profit every year. Past recipients include Project Angel Heart, Concert for Cash, Fresh City Life, Platte Forum, Slow Food Denver and Dani’s Foundation. The 2013 beneficiary is the Colorado Coalition Against Sexual Assault, a non profit promoting safety, justice, and healing for survivors while working toward the elimination of sexual violence.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Nice To See StevieB: The Down Comfort

By StevieB

On my Christmas list I had several things, the first thing I added was, “a high-end and high-quality down comforter.” This was not because I thought that my lifetime companion-partner would cheap out and buy an inexpensive down comforter, it was that after seven years, I know how he would feel walking into the bedding department of the local Bed, Bath, and Beyond store. Scratching his head through his Hemi engine themed ball cap he would like to just point to my scribble of “high end” and the salesperson would get the hint.

I desired a new down comforter because the one on the bed was fourteen years old. It had traveled in my move to Dallas, then back again. It saw every life event in the last fourteen years and was now just a shadow of its former self. In the last year, if you moved it just the wrong way a cannon of feathers would shoot out. A cascade or tickertape parade of down that would cover the dog an anything else the multiple holes were aimed towards. Parts of the ghost comforter where completely empty of down, just sad yellowing cotton held together by my determination.

I was odd how easily the request topped my Christmas list, as the ghost comforter did; at one point; mean the world to me.

In the fall of 1996 I was planning to set up house for my first, real relationship. We had decided to move in together and were scurrying like happy, gay crabs to collect things for our first home. Both his and my leases happened to end at the same time, until then we would shop for what we would need. Growing up with out the simple knowledge that bedding wasn’t all animal themed acrylic blankets, I loved that our first purchase together was “a high-end and high-quality down comforter.” The future seemed so bright snuggling warmly under that down comforter.

As life sometimes happens, he became ill. We, and life abandoned our plans to live together. Soon his family stepped in to help.

On a sunny day in June, 1998 I wandered through a garage sale. It was on a well-manicured driveway of the sister who stepped in to help six months earlier. The items were nothing exciting, just your average garage sale stuff. The kind owned by single man who had succumb to a non-disclosed disease. Maybe cancer. As I walked through the discarded household items, I could feel the weight of the entire family burn into me. When the sister had organized the clean out of his house, my cries that some of the items belonged to me and somewhere jointly purchased, had fallen on deaf ears. After filling a bag with my own clothes I picked up a down comforter lying on the cement. I quietly shelled out $50 borrowed dollars and walked down the drive to my truck. Even though it was June, I wrapped my newly acquired blanked around me and hopped into the cab and drove away.

For the next fourteen years that cotton bag of goose down was my remembrance of what had been and what could have been. It was a memory filled and my prized possession. As life sometimes
happens, the cotton turned yellow as it aged, and holes tore in the fabric and my memory.  Holding on like a gay Miss Havisham I clung to the comforter as if it actually held the memories of my long dead relationship. 

Material items cannot possess another’s memory. If you fall prey to this fallacy you create your own Great Expectations. I will always have my first love whether I cling onto an old blanket, or have the possibility to make new memories cuddled up in bed with my new down comforter, with someone I love.   

This post originally appeared on Steven Bennet's website Nice to See StevieB. Republished with permission.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Nice to See StevieB: Xmas Recap

By StevieB

How was all y’alls Christmas/Feastiveness?

Despite not having vacation time at the new job, mine was pretty damn good.

Christmas Eve looked like this ...

You’ll notice the gentle ubiquitous and ironic snow falling like a Thomas Kinkade painting. Just less icky. Most importantly Christmas Eve brought this…

... an anglophile Christmas pudding. I can still taste the delicious treat with its massive amounts of tasty liquor. Christmas morning brought this….

Incase you are not schooled in the art of identifying Dyson vacuums in the wild, that is a Dyson in the middle of the Xmas explosion. I also got this…

In case you’re not a raging nerd, this season I’m sporting a Doctor Who scarf. Nerd.

This post originally appeared on Steven Bennet's website Nice to See StevieB. Republished with permission.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Homo for the Holidays: The Gift of the Diva Gay

By Todd Craig

My husband likes to believe that he’s easy to shop for. After all, there is nothing he doesn’t want.
After this Christmas, I beg to differ.

You see, I’m from the school of thought that believes that a present is a gesture that represents how you feel towards someone while at the same time giving them something to remember you, the giver, as well. I listen intently as the months approach for clues as to wants and desires of friends and family. I labor at nights thinking of ways to personalize gifts and give them in a heartfelt way. The challenge of Christmas to me is finding each and every person on my list something that they’ll treasure and love for years.

My husband, on the other hand, is a Diva Gay. What is a Diva Gay, you ask? Diva Gays are known for their love of fashion and style. They worship their goddess, Mariah Carey. They love labels. They sing bling. There’s no such thing as too flashy or too gaudy when a diva is involved. When it comes to buying a diva gay a present, you merely go to any designer store - whether it be fashion, jewelry, or whatnot - and purchase something outrageously expensive. Never mind the fact that the said item that you’re purchasing has little or no perceived value to the other 99.9% of the humanity. Never mind that the Visa bank who backs your card is burning up your cell phone with disapproving voice messages that say, “Are you REALLY sure you want to do that?”  

True Story #1: After dating and talking about marriage, the future, and the possibility of having kids, my husband once proclaimed that he’d be more OK with having kids if he didn’t have to put any macaroni and glitter homemade crap on his refrigerator door. For our first Valentine’s Day, I made him a four-foot heart out of red construction paper trimmed in – you guessed it – macaroni and glitter. Of course, I was no fool. I coupled that shit with some 1000 thread count sheets, too. (Heh, heh… see what I did there? Pitched to the diva’s expectations and worked in a little heartfelt, cornball romance. Smooth, huh?) The sheets are long gone now, but that first Valentine remains. Even a Diva Gay’s heart can be touched, as it turns out.

True Story #2: For Christmas this year, our kindergarten son made us at school a hand-painted snowman magnet out of popsicle sticks, cut-out pieces of felt, and googly eyes. It hangs proudly on our fridge. Even a Diva’s Gay heart is vulnerable, it turns out, to the handiwork constructions of a six year old boy.

Anyway, getting back to my Christmas shopping woes, back in October we were walking through the mall, running a few errands, when what should catch my husband’s eye? A shiny new red Coach bag complete with yellow metal hardware and a heart-attack inducing price tag. His gasp was audible from its beauty as was mine upon seeing the cost of that thing. You see, I’ve been to this rodeo before. Those f**kers at Coach don’t play around. So you get your man the purse of his dreams, right? But you’re not done there. Then you have to get the coordinating wallet, the mini-skinny, the key-chain, the scarf, the LoJack security system, and the rustproofing before realizing that you just spent enough money to purchase a small island or a year’s tuition at DU.

So, yeah … a new purse again, huh? I winced in pain as the thought took hold of me. But as Christmas grew closer, well, we had some fortune come our way. My husband started a new full-time job after Thanksgiving as the lead administrator for a high-end jewelry store. Then my teaching job unexpectedly gave me a December bonus. Those two facts, when mixed with a moment of holiday weakness, convinced me that maybe my diva did indeed deserve some indulgence this year. I figured that I’d wait until the weekend before Christmas, make my mall journey, and buy the perfect gift for the holiday.

But divas are nothing if not a bit demanding when it comes to their presents. And indeed my husband’s idea of gift giving and receiving goes a bit like this: I’ll give you a list, and you go buy it for me. 

To that end, a few weeks before Christmas I received a list of add-ons for his china pattern. Yes, the boy loves him some fancy dishes, and to that end, when we married, he of course picked out a wildly popular and expensive pattern that has roughly 5,000 different overpriced pieces that you only get to use on Christmas and Easter. Over the years, I have bought him enough gravy boats here and soup tureens there to the point where we really need a second china hutch to display it all.

And that’s what he wanted now? More dishes? Obviously the whole purse idea had been forgotten as the weeks had passed. As I perused his list, it did occur to me that the overall cost for his dishes was well under the cost of the purse, its accessories, and the obligatory Coach undercoating and extended warranty plan.

Yet the temptation to go big for my diva was too much. I ignored the list, despite my Mariah’s expressed interest in the china and its lower price tag, and stuck with my original plan, the purse.

Lying in bed two nights before I planned on purchasing the purse, my husband began his annual game of Twenty Questions with me about my Christmas plans for his present. This is an annual event which means two things: 1. He knows I hate shopping off of gift lists and was nervous that I was getting him something not-listed, and 2. The whole house had been turned upside-down in a quest to find his Christmas present only to find nothing.

True Story #3: For his birthday one year, I put notes throughout the house in all of the various and assorted possible present hiding places. He wasn’t nearly as amused as I thought he would be when he opened up our cooler on a present quest and found a note informing him of my superior present-hiding skills. (His present was in my closet at work that year. Divas are thorough, after all…)

Anyway, my husband and I were in bed when the questions started. "What are you getting me? What kind of store are you buying it at? How much are you planning on spending?"

I artfully dodged question after question, only giving him enough information to conclude that I was going to buy him a vacuum cleaner – because, well, you do have to tease a diva a little bit.

“Don’t you dare!” he exclaimed.

“But a Dyson is like the designer label of vacuums,” I argued in return, giggling to myself.

“Do NOT get me a f**king vacuum! That’s NOT funny! I don’t want anything practical! Don’t get me a vacuum. Don’t get me new pots and pans. Don’t get me a new purse either.”

No purse? Did I hear that correctly? Oh, shit! There went Plan A.

The next day, two days before Christmas, I pulled up his list on my computer. There was no way any of the china would ship on time and arrive before Christmas now. Two of the items on the list had even been sold out.

I felt defeated.

I went ahead and ordered what I could. I purchased a couple of movies so that he’d have something to unwrap. During Christmas I told him of the china, and he seemed very excited for what was on its way.

Lying in bed that night, I told him the whole story of my trials with his present this year. I told him that I was sorry that he didn’t have his present here to open on Christmas.

“You always take good care of me,” he told me before rolling over and kissing me. “I totally forgot about that purse until now, and it would have been a good gift. But I’ll like my china when it gets here, and it was a very good Christmas either way.

“Besides,” he added with a grin, “the purse will still be there for Valentine’s Day, right?”

Monday, December 24, 2012

Make the Yuletide Gay: LGBT Christmas Music for Your Holiday Season

By John Hill

Okay … so maybe they don’t mean “gay” the way that you and I mean “GAY,” but still, why not? 

Here is some original music from LGBT artists that will set the mood for your holiday season.

George Michael – “December Song (I Dreamed of Christmas)”

In the midst of George Michael’s Live 25 tour in 2008, he decided to make a Christmas song called “December Song (I Dreamed of Christmas)” available for free for two days. That song, which alludes to the focus on television during the holidays as well as a former love, became an instant classic, prompting the song’s proper release in 2009, 2010 and 2011 in the UK, where the song peaked at number 14 in 2009. While there are several new Christmas songs each year, you will be hard-pressed to find one as beautiful and understated as “December Song.”

Matt Morris – “My First Snow”

Local boy Matt Morris made some noise on national charts in 2010 with his album When Everything Breaks Open, and in the wake of that success, Morris released his first Christmas song “My First Snow” at the end of 2010. In Morris’ words, he hoped that “My First Snow” “inspires people to think about what they like the best about the holiday season. When it starts to get cold, I find myself getting really nostalgic and introspective.” Matt succeeds on that front with a song that is mellow and reflective without being somber.

And while we’re talking about Matt, big props to him for co-writing Cher’s new buzz track “Woman’s World” with none other than Paul Oakenfold and Anthony Crawford. In the past he’s written hits for artists like Kelly Clarkson and Christina Aguilera, so here’s hoping he continues his successful streak.

Indigo Girls – “Mistletoe”

In 2010, I was fortunate enough to interview Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls and talk about their first holiday album Holly Happy Days. When asked about “Mistletoe,” Amy said “I was thinking about writing something that was tied to the season in a way that was less Christmas oriented, but had that emotional feeling around the holiday time, whether you’re Jewish or Christian or Buddhist or whatever. The passing of the season, that moment of hibernation where you should be pulling back in, and I wanted it to do with the heart and love and relationships.” “Mistletoe” invokes that holiday spirit in a gentle, peaceful way that will remind you of a quiet walk through the woods after a light snow, with the wind blowing through the trees as the only sound you hear, and Amy’s vocal is perfectly matched with the loping tempo of the song.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Nice to See StevieB: Cookies

By StevieB

Today [Ed. Note: This post originally appeared on Saturday, December 15 so do not go around bothering StevieB for cookies. They are certainly all eaten by now] truly is the most wonderful day in the year. AlthoughI am not necessarily saying that Andy Williams should suck my pink steel, forthis reason anyway, I do prefer today over the day that the silver-backed daddybear with the velvet fetish comes down my chimney.*

Today is Christmas cookie baking day!

Picture it. Denver. 1998. A tradition begins when a smallgroup of lifelong friends decide to get together in Frank’s recently remodeled kitchen to bake cookies.  One move across country, one kid, husbands, countless hairstyles, and jean sizes we’re still gathering to bake cookies.

During the passing of time I have gone from swimming in 34 size jeans, to squeezing into 38, then back to 34’s I still look forward to today every year. 

*So much for this blog post being a warm holiday greeting.

This post originally appeared on Steven Bennet's website Nice to See StevieB. Republished with permission.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

We Need a Lot of Christmas: New Christmas CDs

By John Hill

Here we are in the middle of the holiday season, glad that the temps are cooler and that visits with family and friends are just around the corner. However, once the onslaught of overcrowded stores, endless parties and too much eggnog gets to be a bit too much, there’s nothing like the sounds of the season to get you back in the holiday spirit. Here are two unexpected new releases to consider as you update your holiday library collection.

Cee Lo Green – Cee Lo’s Magic Moment
From the way that Cee Lo is EVERYWHERE on your TV these days, you would swear that he’s been a huge success musically. However, Cee Lo has only had two actual hits here in the US: one as the vocal half of Gnarls Barkley on the ubiquitous “Crazy,” and then one solo hit telling an ex “F*&k You.” So it may be surprising to many that he has released a holiday album, but one listen to Cee Lo’s Magic Moment will make it clear that this guy was born to sing upbeat Christmas songs. From classic R&B songs like “That’s What Christmas Means to Me” and “This Christmas” to more traditional fare like “White Christmas” and “Silent Night,” Cee Lo brings the fun with arrangements that work with his playful personality and soulful delivery style. Highlights include a lighter-than-usual rendition of “The Christmas Song,” a suitably understated rendition of Joni Mitchell’s “River,” and a campy take on “You’re a Mean One, Mister Grinch,” which features a capella labelmates Straight No Chaser on harmonies.

Speaking of guests, the guests Cee Lo brings aboard run the gamut, from the above mentioned (and spot-on) Straight No Chaser to the well-beyond-his-prime Rod Stewart, who should have just stayed on his own album instead of mucking up an otherwise fun and festive Cee Lo record. Christina Aguilera brings the sultry to “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” but perhaps the most polarizing duet is the one with the Muppets. Utilizing the classic “Mahna Mahna,” Cee Lo creates a crazy yet enjoyable new song called “All I Need Is Love” that features the Muppets singing backup. It may not be your idea of a Christmas song, but give the guy credit for trying.
All in all, Cee Lo’s Magic Moment is a solid effort, with only a couple of rough patches. If you’re looking for something non-traditional, this would be an excellent choice.
Tracey Thorn – Tinsel and Light
Full disclosure: I have been a massive fan of Tracey Thorn and her husband Ben Watt since the mid-80s when they were active as Everything but the Girl, best known in the United States for the ubiquitous ‘90s club hit “Missing.” If I were given the choice of one band I would want to reform and record again, I wouldn’t hesitate to say Everything but the Girl. Thorn has been recording solo material over the past decade, but something I never pictured we would get would be a holiday album. Fortunately, Tracey did picture it, and the result is a left-of-center instant classic called Tinsel and Lights.

To her credit, Thorn chose an eclectic list of songs that mix traditional fare like “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and the now must-cover “River” with more obscure tracks like the White Stripes’ “In the Cold, Cold Night” and “Sister Winter” by Sufjan Stevens. Highlights include a brass section-backed “River,” an even more melancholy version of Dolly Parton’s “Hard Candy Christmas,” and “Taking Down the Tree,” which features vocals from Scritti Politti frontman Green Gartside. “Like a Snowman” sounds like a song that Everything but the Girl would have recorded were they still together, but the revelation here is how a song Everything but the Girl DID record still sounds relevant 15 years later. On “25th December,” Thorn and Watt remind us that holidays not only bring families together but they remind of us holidays past and the regrets that we may still retain no matter how hard we try. Now, how about that reunion?
All in all, Thorn takes a motley collection of songs and makes them holiday-appropriate without getting too caught up in clichés. If you’re looking for something that doesn’t sound like traditional holiday music, it won’t get much better than Tinsel and Lights.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Denver Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Holiday Party Photos

The Denver Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce held their Holiday Party last night at bulthaup Denver.

Denver's GLBT captains of industry mixed and mingled as tasty vittles were provided by The Gourmet Kitchen and served with a smile by boyish bartender Brendan. 

As a side note, when did Bannock Street become such a hotbed of activity? 

I knew the retail and residential opportunities have been expanding in the area over the past few years but I had no idea there would be so many people out and about on the street and checking out everything from cute the little bars to gyms and pole-dancing studios and even something called the Global DJ Academy. 

You go, Bannock Street!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Colorado Crooner Eugene Ebner Makes the Yuletide Gay

By Drew Wilson

Colorado crooner Eugene Ebner gorgeously gay, remarkably retro-styled new holiday video for 'Let It Snow' is a Christmas card to the gay community. 

But this energetic entertainer is also known as the host of internet radio show DiversityNow, and for his former, larger than life, drag queen superhero persona.

Drew: So tell me about the new video. Its got the look and feel of a classic Christmas movie, but with gay guys.

Eugene: Thank you. Well, you know, the song is a remake of the classic Let It Snow and it’s not only a tribute to the holidays, but a message of holiday cheer, love and equality. I wanted a platform to show everyone that the gay community has the right to love, not only during the holidays, but throughout the entire year and that we’re not any different from anybody else.

Spoken like a man in love. Is that your significant other in the video?
I am actually a single man. The gentleman in the video with me is a good friend of mine and a member of the Denver Gay Mens Chorus. Actually, I hate to say it, but we're like sisters. But we definitely have a connection and I’ve had a lot of people ask how long we’ve been together. Even people who know us thought we were really an item after watching the video. 

I see. So is music your full-time gig these days?
It’s a mixture of things. I perform and do other things but I'm really focused on my music at the moment. In addition to 'Let It Snow', I've got a couple of other songs out as well. I’ve got 'Let The Girl Out' which was remixed by Denny Tate and 'Always Meant to Be' and I've also got a ballad called 'You Are My Angel' which is actually in honor of my mother who transitioned from cancer about 16 years ago. I find that a lot of the music I write is inspired by love. 

When I first saw the 'Let It Snow' video, your name and face seemed very familiar to me. It took me a minute but then I realized that we know each other from years and years ago when I was the editor of Out Front Colorado and we had you on the cover ...
(Laughs) Yes, as Wonder Woman.

Do you still perform as Wonder Woman?
No, not in a long time, although I did recently put the video back up on YouTube. It’s 10 years old – actually 10 years ago in November. We filmed it at Foxhole. 

She'll probably kill me for saying this but Aurora Sexton is in it and it's just amazing to me to see how she has transformed over the years. She is so fabulous and beautiful. It's just so many memories. 

But I love Wonder Woman and she's one of my heroes. I love her message but I haven't done her in a while. I did do her in front of the Capitol building at Gay Pride in Washington, D.C. in front of like 10,000 people though, it was great

I know you like to keep busy and you're always doing something new, so what's next for Mr. Eugene Ebner?
Oh, I have a lot planned for 2013. It’s so exciting. I have a lot of momentum around this video and I'm going to make the most of it. It really presents who I am as an entertainer - the energy, the dancing and the style, and showing myself in that kind of classy, classic way. There are going to be two more videos coming out in the new year and two new CDs. Because the response to 'Let It Snow' has been so great, one of them will be a holiday CD.  

Overall, my intention is just to make a difference and embrace difference and diversity. I’ve done a lot of internet radio, along with the gentleman who co-produced and directed the video, Pat Bowler, and we have our own website, DiversityNow. We did the show for an entire year and had Chris Parente, Olivia Newton John, openly gay artist Matt Zarley and all of these different individuals on. Now we're looking to expand that and maybe do some internet TV. There's just really a lot going on and it all goes to the message of just embracing who you are.

Tell me more about that message.
It's something I feel very strongly about as part of the LGBT community. I believe very strongly in our civil rights and having the right to marry just like everyone else. I’m very strongly into advocating that and spreading that message

I don’t necessarily come from a place of, like, I’m not a picketer and I don’t march or hold up signs. But I see myself as accomplishing the same thing with what I do. Like, the video for 'Let It Snow'. 

People might think "Oh, that’s cute" but what my intention was with the video was to show how gay people love and interact with each other the same way everybody else does. Some straight people don't understand it and I wanted to show it to them in kind of a subtle way, in the format of a movie or TV show they might have seen growing up.  

I’m very invested in doing whatever I can to make sure we have equality and our rights. And I'm very proud of Denver and Colorado and I love our gay community here because we have worked so hard and come so far and there’s no other place I’d rather live.

That's awesome. Is there anything else you'd like to talk about?

Just that I appreciate you and everything you do as MileHighGayGuy. We’re all in this together, you know. We just have to keep believing in ourselves and keep being the incredible people that we are. Embrace each other and spread that message of love and equality.

Denver Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Holiday Party Tomorrow!

The Denver Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is having their Holiday Party tomorrow, December 13, at 1038 Bannock Street in Denver beginning at 5:30pm.

You don't have to be a member to come have fun, enjoy free food and drink, and mix and mingle with Denver's gay captains of industry!

Nice To See StevieB: Christmas Adjacent

By StevieB

Wreath by Bonnie Brae Flowers
I attempted to build up some Christmas spirit yesterday by heading to the local Town 'n Country garden center turned tree lot. The place personified Christmas, the hot husbands in their best Carhart buzzed away on chain saws, whilst the sister wives supervised the older children. All were adorned in themed sweatshirts smeared with felt Santas and reindeer made in church crafting circle. I was there not to buy a tree, but to smell the evergreen (which alway makes me hum Barbara Streisand) mountainy scent in an attempt to spark the pilot light of spirit down in my dark cold soul. I'm completely lacking in spirit this season. Completely.

I did, however; get a handmade evergreen wreath for the front door. I decided that commitment to the whole decorating thing was too much, yet a gourmet wreath would be Christmas adjacent. Nothing like a 40 buck circle of tree limbs to mark the season.

As the sixteen year old girl rang up my over priced ring of forest scented loveliness, she asked if I needed my receipt. My response was that I did because I may want to exercise my right of the thirty day return policy and bring back my wreath in January. The stunned silence on the girls face was just enough to launch my weary soul into the feastavice season.


This post originally appeared on Steven Bennet's website Nice to See StevieB. Republished with permission.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas In Colorado: Making the Yuletide Gay

By Todd Craig

My husband loves Christmas. No, seriously, you don’t understand. He. Loves. Christmas. If our six year old son’s birthday wasn’t on Halloween, he’d probably start putting up the tree before Walmart and Target even clearanced out their back-to-school stuff.

Christmas to him represents the ultimate gay holiday. First and foremost: Christmas offers unabashed amounts of decorating. His decorating itch gets underway when I’m asked to drag out our nearly ten foot tree and three six-foot long plastic totes filled with ornaments. Over the course of the next week or two, the ornaments are sorted and hung, with the memories of each causing him to get all misty and emotional. Mariah Carey sings, “All I Want For Christmas,” and our house transforms into the holiday-version of Thunderdome.

Before we had our son, he would always do two trees: a “formal” tree and a “fun” tree. The formal tree looked like something from Martha Stewart’s wet dream. (I don’t know if women even have wet dreams, but I’m guessing that Marty probably has a penis anyway.) In any case, the “formal” tree glowed in beautiful gold and glittered ornaments. Ribbons draped the tree, and ornaments by Waterford, Lenox, and Wedgewood added the perfect classy touch as quickly as their purchase added the perfect empty touch to my wallet.

The “fun” tree was where a lot of the ornaments I liked ended up. There were my Broncos ornaments commemorating their back-to-back Super Bowl victories. My Captain Kirk and Spock collectible ornaments from Hallmark also ended up there, usually placed somewhere on the back, oddly enough. It turns out that gay geek chic takes a backseat to good taste when Christmas rolls around.

But when we adopted our son, our trees merged. Next to the Waterford crystal ornaments hangs Broncos Santa. A bell made out of tin foil crinkled by our son’s pre-school hands over a Styrofoam coffee cup resides next to the Millenium edition Wedgewood ornament. And even though my husband’s inner Martha might not admit it, I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t have it any other way.

After the tree, comes the china and display cabinets. There he displays his Avon nativity scene, one of a few artifacts passed down from his side of the family. The Christmas pattern plates of his Noritake china are culled from storage and make their way to the front. Candlesticks take on red and green hues.

The dining room table gets covered in a red plaid tablecloth. In the center, you’ll find a handcrafted centerpiece made of pine, holly, and ribbon while gold chargers at each seat display both the season’s and my husband’s more “festive” qualities.

And we haven’t even gotten to the outside of the house yet.

My husband is a gay man whose flame burns brightly all year, but when Christmas rolls around, his flame is bright enough to attract wise men to our doorstep – too bad his tastes run more towards the thick-builds and think-skulls.

After all, when you stop and think about it, if I told you I was writing an article about decorating, sweaters, shopping, formal dinners, drinks made with healthy doses of peppermint schnapps, and reunions with even healthier doses of familial dysfunction, would you be able to tell if I was writing about gay life or the holiday season?

Imagine living both at the same time.

Now that our yuletide is sufficiently gay, it occurs to me that our ultra-gay Christmas isn’t all that different from everyone else’s. Both the lights and my husband are high-strung for the entire month. Our son dotes over toy ads in the newspaper and is rapt with all that is wrapped. We’re planning for in-laws, readying our guest bedroom, and preparing vast quantities of nog, a phrase that sounds dirty, but really isn’t.

So what is the most wonderfully gay time of the year? Go ahead with your Pride rallies in the summer, your Aspen Gay Ski Week, and the White Party. While they all have a number of packages on display, none of them quite brings out the gay like Christmas. At least at our house.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The 12 Days of Christmas With Chloe and Drew Droege

It has recently come to my attention that Drew Droege is back as Chloe Sevigny with an early Christmas gift for all of us in the form of 'The 12 Days of Christmas'.

 On the 7th day of Christmas, her true love gave to her ... a crisp slap!

Homo for the Holidays: Krewe of Chaos Presents 1st Annual Christmas Tree and Decoration Auction Fundraiser

Krewe of Chaos will be holding their first annual Christmas Tree and Decoration Auction this Thursday, December 6 at Bug Theatre and will be a fundraiser for Rainbow Alley, a drop-in center designed to support Denver's LGBT youth.

And just who are the Krewe of Chaos? "We are an organization that exists to fund-raise for other groups that maybe don’t have the manpower or resources to fund-raise for themselves," Krewe member Justin Hatcher. "We focus primarily on the LGBT community and we're mainly known for our annual event Boots and Boxers. This was our sixth year for Boots and Boxers and it was very successful. We ended up bring in over $12,000 that night."

Although the primary beneficiary of Thursday night's fundraising efforts will be Rainbow Alley, there will be one specially decorated tree that will be auctioned off to benefit Children's Hospital Colorado.

But don't plan on seeing anybody in boots and/or boxers this time around. "Not this time," says Hatcher. "This event will be a very family-friendly affair for the holidays. And I really have to give a shout out to Equinox Theatre Company. They are really helping us with this event and are going to be providing the evening’s entertainment – singing and a variety show. It should be a great time."

And what does Krewe of Chaos have planned for the new year? "2012 was a rebuilding year for us," explains Hatcher. "We scaled back a little bit but now we are ready to expand for 2013 with a couple of fun events planned for spring. We’re looking forward to continuing to help the community and t to put on fun events that people will enjoy and be happy to support. Everybody knows Boots and Boxers and now we’re ready to put some new events on the map."

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Krewe of Chaos presents First-Ever Christmas Tree and Decoration Auction

Krewe of Chaos, the organizers behind the ever popular Boots N’ Boxers auction, debuts their first-ever Christmas Tree and Decoration Auction on Thursday, December 6 at The Bug Theatre from 7-10pm.

Featuring custom and uniquely decorated trees and wreaths, the auction will be a great kick-off to holiday festivities. Proceeds from the event will benefit Rainbow Alley and Equinox Theatre Company. Additionally - one very special tree will benefit Children’s Hospital - and the cast of Equinox Theatre Company’s “Shenanigans!” will be on hand providing the evening’s entertainment.

Monday, November 26, 2012

‘Tis the Season for Musical Divas: Kelly Clarkson, Christina Aguilera, & Rihanna

By John Hill

The holiday shopping season is in full swing, and that means sales galore. Among those bargains are a lot of new releases begging to be wrapped up and given to the ones you love (including yourself). Here are a few of the more high-profile releases to either consider or think twice about.
Kelly Clarkson – Greatest Hits
How is it even possible that Kelly Clarkson won American Idol over ten years ago? Time flies when you are releasing hit after hit. This Greatest Hits collection spans the entire timeframe, from her coronation song “A Moment Like This” to her current single “Catch My Breath.” Besides “Catch,” there are two other new songs: “People Like Us,” a danceable track that speaks to the outsiders (and is screaming for an epic remix); and “Don’t Rush,” a lush 80s-style country-pop ballad with the legendary Vince Gill playing guitar and singing harmonies. If you have any Kelly Clarkson gaps in your musical collection, this set is a must-buy.

Christina Aguilera – Lotus
Christina Aguilera recently said in an interview that her last album Bionic was a disc only appreciated by those who really love music. While I will be glad to argue that point with her, it was clear either way that she needed to come back a little closer to the masses if she wanted to sell more copies. If that was Christina’s goal for her new release, then it is mission accomplished. Lotus couldn’t be more of-the-moment unless PSY started rapping on a track. From the autotuned first single “Your Body” to the Cobra Starship-sounding “Let There Be Love,” Aguilera brings her potent pipes into the mainstream, making a case for her continued viability. Standout tracks include both of her duets with fellow coaches on The Voice: Cee-Lo Green on the bangin’ “Make the World Move;” and Blake Shelton on the power ballad “Just a Fool.” After a couple of listens, you (and the recipient of your gift) will have multiple songs lodged in your heads.

Rihanna – Unapologetic
Reviewing Unapologetic is a difficult task for me, as I have multiple issues with it before I even listen to it. Besides the fact that Rihanna should just take a vacation and let the public miss her for a minute, there is the inevitable discussion about why on Earth she recorded a duet with former boyfriend/pugilist Chris Brown. This fact is complicated by the simple truth that the duet “Nobody’s Business” is one of the best songs on a mostly decent album.  If you can make it through a few throwaway tracks, including the abysmal “Numb” with Eminem, as well as your disgust with Chris Brown, there are several songs that will justify the purchase. “Stay” is a stripped-down ballad that lets Rihanna’s vocals shine through, “Right Now” hops on the David Guetta Express for a future floor-filler, and “No Love Allowed” is a genuine reggae-flavored track that goes to show that Rih can take on just about any sound with the right production and make it work. Whether that’s enough to justify buying the album is a judgment call.

Spark Theater Presents Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker

Visions of sugar plums and memories of lives past.

This retelling of the Nutcracker fairy tale from Spark Theater runs December 1-23 and weaves in the story of the ballet’s famous composer, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, as he struggles to find his identity and take on the role of Russia’s most celebrated composer.

Set to the music that reminds everyone of the holidays, this family tale reminds us that even something stiff and wooden can be full of life!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Things to do in Denver when you're gay (Colorado Springs edition): Broadmoor Chocolate Fest

The Broadmoor's annual Chocolate Festival takes place next Sunday, December 4 from 11am - 6pm in the Broadmoor's beautiful Colorado Hall in Colorado Springs.

The Broadmoor will be decked out in its holiday finery, and for friends and fans of chocolate, this is one experience not to miss. There are discounted room rates available, too - so plan on staying overnight for a really special weekend at one of the nation's leading historical resorts.

Admission is free to the public and fun for all with entertainment and tasty treats galore.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Homo for the Holidays: What transgender people need to know about TSA

For those of you traveling over the holidays, Colorado Anti-Violence Program wanted to share a helpful resource from the National Center for Transgender Equality- What transgender people need to know about TSA procedures.