Sunday, March 19, 2006

Botellones in Spain

Spain has been on my mind lately since it was exactly a year ago that I was there last for Spring Break. I was pleasantly surprised when Yahoo! News posted this article on Friday about 25,000 people at a botellon in Granada to protest a new law aimed at stopping these drinking binges. I knew the date was around when I had my first botellon in Granada, but it wasn't until I looked at my journal that I saw that it was the exact same date, just one year later, so I thought that was an odd coincidence. The one I went to probably had less than 200 people at it, but it was a lot of fun to be hanging out in a mall parking lot drinking Tinto de Verano with a whole bunch of Spaniards. I was hoping to do one again the next time I go, so I hope this law doesn't put an end to them.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

The likes of him ain't welcome in these here parts

My little sister is getting married in May. She's my last sibling to get married. We were always close growing up and were often referred to as "The Twins." The only negative thing about our relationship was that I couldn't tell her what was going on in my personal life since I wasn't out to her. I hoped that our relationship would be made stronger when I came out to her last year. But as you can read here, she didn't take it well at all and our relationship has deteriorated to the point that I've only spoken to her once since Christmas.

When I found out she had chosen the date of her wedding I called her to ask if I could bring Kip. She didn't really think about it before saying yes. She just wanted to make sure that I really cared about him and that I wasn't bringing him to try to make my parents upset. I told of course I cared about him. I asked Kip if he would come with me and he agreed. I was so excited that Kip was going to meet my family and Dave and see where I grew up.

Fast forward a couple of weeks to last Friday. I was calling my dad back after he left me a message to call him. My mom answered and we chatted for a minute before she blurts out, "We don't want Kip to come to the wedding." I should have seen it coming, but I wasn't even sure they knew I wanted to bring him yet, so I was caught by surprise. Over the next twenty minutes she proceeded to explain why:because they weren't ready for it yet, because Katie changed her mind and I can't take attention away from her on her special day, because my mom doesn't want Kip to come and she not be able to be nice to him. She says she's trying to understand the decisions I made but hasn't been able to deal yet. Keep in mind I came out to them eight months ago. I think a normal family would have been able to deal by now. I don't see how she's ever going to be ok with it because she believes I won't be happy in the long run and that I'm ruining my life. I'm reminded of why I hate the fact that my family is Mormon.

So Kip's not coming with me to the wedding anymore and I have to face my extended family all alone. I'm sure he's relieved and I guess I am too a little just because I don't think my family could have treated him the way he deserves to be treated just because they don't approve of our relationship. I thought about not going at all but I know I'd regret it. It just won't be very special if I don't get to be there with Kip. After the wedding I don't know if I'll ever want to go back.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Who I'm rooting for at the Oscars

I'm attending an Oscar party at Chris' and I have to say I'm excited for this year's show because of all the gay movies up for awards and the opportunity to see Dolly Parton perform "Travelin' Thru," her nominated song from Transamerica. It will be fun to watch the show with a lot of my friends and Kip.

Here's who I want to win for some of the awards tonight:

Best Picture-Of the nominated films, I've seen Brokeback Mountain and Crash. I thought Crash was an amazing film. But I think and, of course, hope that Brokeback Mountain will win for getting the nation to talk about homosexuality.

Best Actor-I hope Heath Ledger wins just because he portrayed a gay cowboy, but I didn't think he did an amazing job, and his accent really annoyed me. I saw Walk the Line and I thought Joaquin did a great job of portraying the "Man in Black."

Best Actress-This will be a tough race between Reese and Felicity. I loved Reese's bubbly personality, vocals and the way she helped Johnny Cash through rough times. But I hope the Oscar will go to Felicity Huffman for playing a man transitioning into a woman. Transamerica was an amazing movie that impacted me even more than Brokeback Mountain did and Felicity deserves to be awarded for the way she made me appreciate the difficulties of being transgendered.

Best Supporting Actor-I liked Jake's character much better than I did Heath's, so if only one of them gets the Oscar I hope it's Jake.

Best Supporting Actress-I love my Jen Lindley from Dawson's Creek and I'm so happy she has a hot man and had an amazing role in this movie. I hope she wins. Of the others nominated, I also saw Rachel in The Constant Gardener. It was a good movie and she was certainly beautiful, but I don't think she should beat out Michelle.

Animated Feature-I'm not that big a fan of animated movies, but I saw Corpse Bride and enjoyed it.

Original Score-Brokeback Mountain

Original Song-"Travelin' Thru"

We'll see what happens tonight!

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Another update on Utah bill to ban Gay-Straight Alliances

The Utah legislative session ended at midnight last night. According to the Deseret News, "lawmakers, by not voting, killed a bill that would have allowed school districts to ban student clubs that deal in some way with sexuality — the goal to get rid of the current gay-straight-alliance clubs."

So it looks like this bill will have to wait until next year unless it is brought up again in a special legislative session that may be convened at a later date.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Leaving the church

Thanks to all the people who leave comments on my blog. Elbow left this comment on my blog: "I think that leaving the Church is just as huge as coming out to your parents." It made me think about my reasons for leaving the Mormon Church and I decided to create a post about it since I've already talked about coming out to my parents.

It's kind of hard for me to explain just how big a deal it is to leave the church. I was raised Mormon until I left home at 23, so it's all I knew growing up. My parents and seven siblings are all still in the church and believe that I will not be able to live with them forever if I don't follow the teachings of the church. It is a huge disappointment to them that I no longer attend church or have a testimony(belief that the Mormon Church is true). When I go home I feel like an outsider with my family members.

At the same time for me it was not a big issue at all. I never developed a testimony like so many other gay Mormons out there, so I didn't have to ever reconcile my testimony with my feelings for guys. Not that I didn't go through a period of self-doubt and wishing I could be straight and normal, but that didn't take too long to resolve. It just didn't make sense to me that the church could teach that acting on gay feelings could be wrong since I didn't choose to be gay.

Eventually I came up with the plan that as soon as I came home from my mission and moved away from home that I would stop going to church. When I moved to Ohio in 2004 I went to church here for about two months and then I found gay friends to hang out with so I stopped going to church because I didn't need the instant friends that I gained by going to church. I also had to stop caring about what my Mormon classmates thought about me, which wasn't that hard since I had just met them a couple of months prior. As soon as I was ready to not care about what my family thought of me, I came out to them and told them what I thought of the church. I knew I had to do it because making them happy was not worth lying to them anymore. I am really happy with my decision to come out to them. I am so happy now that I don't have to waste my time going to church. I still believe in God and will always try to be a good person, but I don't need to go to church to do that.