Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A dark in the lightness

Thoughts from last week.

Watching Being Human, a series about a household composed of a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost, trying for a "normal" life. Former people acting badly under stress.  Josh the werewolf is endlessly apologetic and intermittently selfrighteous. Sally the ghost is needily self-absorbed and mommily invasive and controlling (and intermittently self-righteous). Aidan the vampire. Here I confess my bias. Sam Witwer is very watchable.

He is handsome in a really unusual way. George Maharis, with a bit of James Dean, Harrison Ford.  A strong masculine hero, expressive, ethical, conflicted and soulful, but without losing his balls…ok, I admit it. Hot.
Made in Canada, the series credits are full of French names, with the appropriate accents, gráve, ègu and circûmflex. A flashback. Years ago in the Toronto gay community, there was a tempest in the newspaper about the racist cultural imperialism and hegemony of English-speaking reporters writing about Montreal and Quebec without maintaining the proper French accents…Really. Montréal, Québec. And when we pronounced those cities' names in the English style (Muhntree-all , Kwebbeck) did we obliterate the people's culture and assert our dominance? Along with issues of whether it was ok to advertize for sex partners and excluding Blacks, or fat or effeminate guys, etc. I will never forget the dark, obsessive, cramped, soulless moralism.

(These people would have nothing but contempt for the dark, obsessive, cramped moralism of the Scots Presbyterians who dominated Ontario, but they are their secular children.)

In a deeply conservative world, my problem would be my sexuality. In a deeply liberal world, my problem is my sex, my race, my nationality and my opinions. As the angry dyke I worked with on the AIDS front in Toronto once told me: You’re white, you’re male, you’re educated, you’re Catholic. If you weren’t queer I wouldn’t give you the time of day. The Progressive Heart revealed.

As jpnill put it so well, “Has there ever been another civilization that marched itself off a cliff based solely on the question, ‘Well, who’s to say?’ ”

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