Welcome to COOL GAY STUFF ! It's a pin-board of brief Net snippets highlighting recent gay-friendly media. This sampler also offers online links to purchase a copy of the recently-published, richly-entertaining, 498-page paperback copy (or alternatively, its low-cost Kindle e-book copy) via Amazon-USA or Amazon-UK of your host - - - author George Gardiner's - - - highly-regarded sensual tale of Ancient Rome titled THE HADRIAN ENIGMA: A Forbidden History. Also visit the book's sales site at Amazon via direct link (below), to explore 25 readers' opinions & select purchase-&-post details.

Cool Gay Stuff prioritizes readers & reading. It's a pointer to today's literary culture via brief excerpts from recommended press articles, literary crits, movie crits or trailers, & current news sources. It also directs you to sites of unique gay appeal or relevance. They've been assembled by your host, George Gardiner, author of "THE HADRIAN ENIGMA".

Being a recently-published historical novel, THE HADRIAN ENIGMA is a highly-praised, erotically-charged, Roman Era "good read" crime-thriller and sensual romance. It is based on the real-life relationship of ancient Rome's dynamic emperor Hadrian ("... one of the five good emperors ...") with his handsome beau, Antinous of Bithynia, whose over-120 surviving ancient sculptures attest to his muscular good-looks and classic attributes. Nevertheless, during an imperial tour of Rome's Mediterranean provinces in 130CE, Antinous drowned in Egypt's River Nile under questionable circumstances. This tragedy prompted an Imperial whodunit investigation whose (fictive) details have encouraged many readers of the paperback or Kindle e-book to endow this work with a very favorable topmost 5-Star rating by more than half of its 25 Amazon online reviewers (56%, to be precise). To this rating is added a further 24% of Amazon reviewers who awarded the novel a 4-Star rating. Combined, these figures deliver an Amazon purchasers' appreciation score of 4.1 points out of a limit of 5.

Cool Gay Stuff also provides direct links to the relevant Amazon-USA or Amazon-UK's book-sales sites for you to acquire a copy of the 500-page paperback (adding a modest fee for delivery to your chosen mail address). Alternatively, you may prefer to promptly download the thrifty Kindle e-book copy of the same text? If so, click on your preferred version of the choices offered below. Please note :- the paperback edition of THE HADRIAN ENIGMA is NOT available at other public book-stores ... its sole purchase option is online via Amazon-USA or Amazon-UK (links displayed below). A 500-page paperback copy will be mailed to your preferred address following credit-card payment via Amazon.

Then follows this month's regularly-updated Cool Gay Stuff sampler of notable GLBTQ articles, essays, news, videos, movie trailers & reviews, plus direct links to the original Net sources. Please note :- this site avoids displaying NSFW images or overt porn so as "not to frighten the horses" (Oscar Wilde's cheery 1890's advice). The site's formal Fair Dealing/Non-Profit copyright criteria are posted at its conclusion, plus a complete catalog of The Hadrian Enigma's research resources. So, welcome everyone whoever & wherever you are!


.... and now for something subtle ...

Plot : Summer of 1983, Northern Italy. An American-Italian (Timothee Chalamet) is enamored by an American student (Arnie Hammer) who comes to study and live with his family. Together they share an unforgettable summer full of music, food, and romance that will forever change them.

Watch the official trailer for this Italian (English-language) romantic drama "Call Me by Your Name," starring Armie Hammer, Timothée Chalamet, Michael Stuhlbarg, Amira Casar, Esther Garrel, Victoire Du Bois, Vanda Capriolo, and Antonio Rimoldi. Directed by Luca Guadagnino.

The movie had its debut at the Sundance Film Festival (USA) in January, where it received rave reviews. It will play the Toronto Film Festival in August before it's release in the USA on November 24. The 2'10" trailer (above) tells it all in a very compact way ... (See too the related promotional story at : http://www.ontopmag.com/article/32702/Armie_Hammer_Timothee_Chalamet_On_Important_Gay_Drama_Call_Me_By_Your_Name

(Video trailers courtesy of YouTube, with many thanks.)


ONE OF THE EARLIEST RECORDED SAME-SEX ROMANCES OF HISTORY : Hadrian Caesar and his very-fit paramour Antinous of Bithynia, set amid the Roman Empire (circa 125-130CE) two centuries before Rome legalized Christian beliefs.

The two-line blue web-address (below) is an invitation from your host, author George Gardiner, to explore his 498-page romance/crime/historical erotica/m-m romance "THE HADRIAN ENIGMA: A Forbidden History" at Amazon USA.

Alternatively, a click on the actual book cover-pics (below) will also deliver you to Amazon (USA) to explore purchase details via its Amazon Online link :-

HADRIAN & ANTINOUS - purchase recorded history's first real-life 'out' lovers ...

HADRIAN & ANTINOUS - purchase recorded history's first real-life 'out' lovers ...
... back & front covers of THE HADRIAN ENIGMA. To reach Amazon book sales: CLICK ON THE PICS for direct link to its Amazon USA page to check reviews, prices, & airmail-purchase of a paperback or instant Kindle ebook download.

OPINIONS OF "THE HADRIAN ENIGMA" - genuine online quotes from 25 Amazon purchasers ...

"Five stars .. A wonderful insight into Roman life ... fantastic, well-researched ..."
Amazon Customer, USA (March 2017)

"Five stars ... a good read."
Viola Noll at Amazon USA

"Nobody will ever know what, exactly, happened to Antinoos. But this is IMHO the best yet story about what might have been. ...."
David Woodworth (USA) at Amazon's USA sales site

"Five stars ... This is a good & fast read."
Fr Mike Mangoian (USA) at Amazon USA

"Five Stars ... I loved this book ... If you like mysteries, try this book. ... Lots of fun ... "
Eric Sootin, Asheville, NC (USA) at Amazon USA

"Five Stars ... Excellent ... couldn't put the book down ... one of the most enjoyable novels I've ever read ..."
Lloyd F Adams (USA), at Amazon USA

"Five Stars ... The best book I've read on Hadrian and Antinous."
JANE (Canada), at Amazon USA

"I recommend it to any historical fiction fan, especially any fan of the redoubtable Mary Renault. ..."
J.R. Tomlin, author of historical fiction, at :- http://jeannetomlin.blogspot.com/

"Five stars ... a tour de force ..."
Elisa Rolle, Amazon Top 1000 Reviewer, USA & UK, & at : http://elisa-rolle.livejournal.com/1092070.html

" ... an absorbing new book ... compelling writing ... action sequences that are brilliantly staged & paced ... on a higher plane than mere homoerotic titillation ... courageous & convincing ..."
Reader Down Under (Australia), at Amazon USA

"... extensively researched picture of life in the Roman Empire ... a mix of mystery, comedy, gay & straight romance - is an entertaining read ..."
Laura Staley, Historical Novels Review, USA, at :-

"... an age-old love story with a twist ... an unexpected delight ... his storyline hooked me immediately ..."
Olivera Baumgartner-Jackson of READER VIEWS, Austin TX, USA

"... You will feel engaged and challenged ..."
Nan Hawthorne, author Beloved Pilgrim, at Amazon USA

"... extremely readable ... it's a page turner ... Gardiner has written an interesting & gripping story ..."
Kim at http://www.desicritics.org/ India

"... Five Stars ... a compelling crime mystery ... a hard book to put down ..."
Terence Charters, Hobart, Australia, at Amazon USA

"... An adventure through Hadrian's world. The story is easy to read and full of the homoeroticism that we love about this era. ..."
P. Novotny, London, at Amazon UK

"... a definitive Five Star read for me ..."
Aleksandr Voinov, UK, reviewer at Speak Its Name

"Five Stars ... A masterful recreation of Ancient Rome ... the historical details are a delight ... characters are outlined in a vivid way which is like meeting old friends ... "
Ernest Gill, Hamburg, at Amazon USA & UK

"Five Stars ... as a reimagining of the Hadrian-Antinous relationship in the context of the age it is fascinating."
Muriel Perkins, Texas, at Amazon USA

" ... this is a novel about the nature of love ... but this is far from just being a gay romance. ..." Kit Moss, historical author, at :- http://kitmossreviews.blogspot.com.au/2013/02/the-hadrian-enigma-forbidden-history-by.html

"A truly exceptional book on 'What Greek Love" is all about ..."
John R. Shelton at Amazon USA

"Five Stars. I so enjoyed this book. Highly recommend it ... "
Stephen Forte, Birmingham, Alabama at Amazon USA

" ... I would recommend the book to anyone interested in the Hadrian/Antinous relationship"
Harrison Sheppard at Amazon USA

NOTE: Amazon USA's &
UK's online book & ebook purchase sites with their 25 independent reader's reviews (fourteen awarding Five Stars for excellence!) can be read in full by clicking on :- http://www.amazon.com/Hadrian-Enigma-Forbidden-History/product-reviews/0980746906/ref=sr_1_1_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1


LUST, LOVE, INTRIGUE, & MURDEROUS REVENGE: challenging suspense fiction suggested by real events in history's most unusual true love story ...

THE HADRIAN ENIGMA: A Forbidden History
A novel
(C) George Gardiner
ISBN13: 978-0-9807469-1-4 (at Amazon USA, UK, Europe, Australia etc) in 498-page paperback or Kindle ebook.
Also iBookstore, iPad, Nook & ePub ebook formats available via online sources. (Not available in street stores.)

The scene: ancient Rome, 130 years after Christ yet two centuries prior to Christianity being legal. Caesar Hadrian is the popular ruler of a vast pagan empire at the height of its power & wealth.

Hadrian, one of Rome's "five good emperors" searches for & eventually locates the love of his life .. Antinous, an elite Greek athlete, huntsman, & cavalry cadet. They become 'companions' under the ancient Greco-Roman mentoring tradition of an erastes (mentor) & his eromenos (student).

During an imperial pleasure tour of Egypt Antinous is discovered dead in the River Nile. Hadrian is distraught. Is the death a drunken prank gone wrong, suicide, murder, or something far more sinister? Hadrian assigns historian playboy Suetonius Tranquillus to investigate.

THE HADRIAN ENIGMA is the outlawed record of Caesar's investigation into one of history's most suspicious fatalities. It reveals more than Hadrian may want to know, or wants others to know. Set in a society increasingly reflecting facets of our own times, it portrays an era of torrid relationships, raging ambition, wealth inequalities, & uninhibited morals within a severely macho culture of honor, shame, pride & prejudice.

BUY ONLINE ONLY (not available in street stores). CLICK NOW ON A LINK BELOW to select or compare your preferred purchase & delivery options ...

For an Amazon-USA delivered (or air-freighted overseas) paperback :

for Amazon's Kindle ebook or Kindle-For-PC's download :

[If you buy a new print edition of THE HADRIAN ENIGMA, or have purchased one in the past, you can buy a Kindle ebook edition for only $1.99 - saving 80%. Print edition must have been sold by Amazon.]

for Amazon UK :

COOL GAY STUFF now introduces current news & opinion in both columns ...

With many thanks to the originating sources, this left-side column offers "
Mobile First" news excerpts ... a 'text-only' stream for mobile devices to identify & promote teaser-snippets of LGBTQ-news, relevant text selections, plus trailer details of likely gay-interest .... culminating in independent readers' reviews of

... meanwhile, the right-hand column (viewable only via full-frame PC's, laptops, & notebooks etc), displays pics, graphics, cinema trailers, or short videos relevant to the main column's subject .....


Thursday, October 19, 2017


BRUSSELS is cool for lesbians
----  the introductory pars from a press release published at EXPATICA (Belgium) on 19th October 2017 :-

      'Brussels is a world famous destination for gay men. Its buzzing gay club scene attracts thousands of international visitors every year.  Brussels’ lesbian scene is less well known, but exists. Thanks to Girls Heart Brussels people abroad are now being given a unique opportunity to discover the Belgian and Flemish capital from a female, feminist and lesbian perspective.

      Since 2014 the not-for-profit organisation Girls Heart Brussels has been organising special weekends for foreign visitors eager to learn more about the Belgian capital, its feminist and lesbian history and the numerous cultural initiatives that it has to offer feminists and lesbians. Girls Heart Brussels' Jessica Gysel: 

      "The Brussels tourist agency VisitBrussels does a lot to promote Brussels as a destination for gay visitors. Given the vibrant male gay club scene initiatives originally focused mainly on gay men, but then there was a realisation that more should be done to encourage women from the LGBTQI community to visit Brussels and discover the wealth it has to offer lesbian women. Bianca Debaets, the Brussels secretary of state for equal opportunities, is a keen supporter of our initiative and was instrumental is providing a grant from the Brussels government. ...."

----  see more of this EXPATICA article at its website at :- 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Psychotherapists unite against 'gay conversion therapy' ....

Psychotherapists, including Christian counsellors group, unite against gay and 'trans' conversion therapy
----  the opening lines from a British medical news report by Benjamin Butterworth at (the always-pertinent) PINKNEWS (UK), 17th October 2017 :-

 'Leaders in the world of psychotherapy have united to call for an end to so-called ‘conversion therapy’ for LGBT people.
 In a new document, 13 major professional bodies state that conversion therapy for gender identity and sexual orientation is “unethical, potentially harmful and is not supported by evidence”.
The memorandum goes further than a document published in 2015 by the Department for Health, which focused exclusively on sexual orientation.
The professional bodies now want to make clear that gender can also not be affected by so-called conversion therapy.  ....'

----  see more of Benjamin Butterworth's substantial report at

Sunday, October 15, 2017

LONDON'S SECRET HISTORY .... a new book by Peter Ackroyd

Peter Ackroyd: A secret history - 2,000 years of gay life in London
----  brief introductory excerpts from an extended review of  "QUEER CITY - Gay London from the Romans to the present day" by author Peter Ackroyd,  as reviewed by Andrew Dickson at THE GUARDIAN (UK), 20th May 2017  (with thanks) :-

      'The prolific biographer, historian and novelist Peter Ackroyd returns to familiar territory with a gay history of the city.
      As far as I can calculate, there are now 18 works of fiction and more than 30 biographies and histories. Ackroyd does nothing by half measures, as the legendary tales of his drinking testify. ....
....  The new book, a history of gay London entitled Queer City, returns to familiar territory, so much so that it’s surprising Ackroyd hasn’t already written it ....
....   Yet the new work goes far deeper, travelling from the barely visible remains of Celtic London and the arrival of Christianity in the AD300s to the great sex scandals of the 19th century – Wilde included – and on to recent fights for gay rights. As ever, the book is rambunctiously inclusive, practically Rabelaisian. One sentence quotes Julius Caesar on the flamboyantly long-haired, moustachioed Celts, who honoured what Aristotle called “passionate friendship between men”. In the next sentence, Ackroyd drily remarks: “You can still see them walking in the streets of London.” .... '
----  see more of Andrew Dickson's stimulating appraisal of Peter Ackroyd's new book at :-

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

TROYE SIVAN ON QUEERNESS and other things ...

----  here is the inviting, brief introduction and web-link to an extended biographical interview by Phillip Picardi with the young talented musical artist Troye Sivan posted at TEENVOGUE (Conde Nast USA, with thanks), February 2017  :-

      'The star sits down with friend and actor Hari Nef for an intimate conversation.
      Last year we lost three men of the '80's who redefined what it meant to be a rock star: David Bowie, Prince, and George Michael. Through their music, videos, and fashion choices, each man bucked conventional norms of masculinity, transcending gender norms and sexuality to create not just singles but art.
      In 2017 we have Troye Sivan, and openly (and unapologetically) gay pop star, living proof to the entire industry that, yes, the world is finally ready. Here, Troye shares an intimate conversation with his dear friend Hari Nef, the transgender model and actor who's creating a new normal  in her own right.  .... '
---- see more of this interesting extended multi-page interview by Phillip Picardi, accompanied by striking full-frame pics of Troye, at TeenVogue earlier this year (with thanks) at :-

Tuesday, October 10, 2017


 ARMISTEAD MAUPIN's New Memoir Explains How He Found His "Logical Family"
----  the opening phrases from a substantial recollection by Karen Iris Tucker at SLATE magazine (USA), 3 October, 2017 :-

      'Growing up in the 1950s and ’60s in North Carolina, the novelist Armistead Maupin was a gentle, fanciful child who feared the mandatory dodgeball game at recess and convinced his parents to outfit his bedroom with a stained-glass window.
      His father, a lawyer who romanced racism and was prone to bouts of unexplained rage, assumed his son would grow out of his delicate constitution. Sensing early on that keeping up appearances was vital to survival, and longing unrequitedly for his father’s love across much of his life, Maupin initially tried to fit in: He embraced conservative politics, worked at a television station then managed by future U.S. senator and rabid social conservative Jesse Helms, and served in the Navy during the Vietnam War.
      Lucky for his readers, Maupin ultimately made his way to San Francisco as a newspaper reporter. .... '
----  see more of Karen Iris Tucker's reflections on Maupin's biog by scrolling down to the relevant entry within :-  http://www.slate.com/blogs/outward.html

Wednesday, October 4, 2017


Is Being Gay Just About Sex?
----  selected pars from an extended post written by Jim Downs & re-published here from the HuffPost (USA), of February 2017 (with thanks) :-

      '....  Today, more gay men overemphasize the sexual part of being gay at the expense of developing social and cultural connections. To that end, they put more time into their body—weightlifting at the gym, leading the trend in CrossFit, and negotiating the most effective diets.
      Their appearance has become the leading marker of their gay identity. Many gay men, in turn, are hostile to those that do not fit their ideal body type and refuse to engage those who do sexually appeal to them, which has led to a breakdown of community among gay men and a disintegration of gay culture.
      The striking thing is that many gay leaders in the 1970's predicted that the sexual revolution spurred by the Stonewall uprising might lead to a world where gay men interacted solely based on their sexual interest and thus forfeit any opportunity for meaningful connections..... '

----  see Jim Downs' entire questioning opinion-piece at the HuffPost online edition of February 22nd 2017 at :-

[Jim Downs is the author of Stand By Me: The Forgotten History of Gay Liberation (Basic, 2006). He is currently an Andrew W. Mellon New Directions Fellow at Harvard University and an Associate Professor of History at Connecticut College.]

Saturday, September 30, 2017

BLADE RUNNER 2049 .... the return of game-changing cinema?

      'Blade Runner 2049 director Denis Villeneuve has called on anyone who has seen his film in advance of its release next week to follow the strict code of omertà and not to reveal any of its secrets. What can safely be said is that this is awe-inspiring filmmaking, beautiful but so enigmatic that you would be hard pressed to give away all its secrets even if you were minded to do so.
      On a technical level, it is an absolute tour de force.
      Like Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk, this is a film you should try to see on the very biggest screen possible (the trailers on You Tube or on TV don’t even begin to do justice to its visual power or to the extraordinary electronic score).  ....'
      ....  Ryan Gosling gives a soulful performance in a film that is always able to find the human dimension amid all the special effects and spectacle .... '
      BLADE RUNNER 2049 -- Dir: Denis Villeneuve, 163 mins, starring: Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford, Ana de Armas, Sylvia Hoeks, Jared Leto 
----  see more of Geoffrey Macnab's The Independent (UK) review (with thanks) at :-

Thursday, September 28, 2017


POLL: One-Third of 16-to-22 Year-Olds Identify as Gay or Bi
----  introducing new eye-opening statistics from a Youth-seg post by Ariel Sobel at ADVOCATE.com (USA), 27th September 2017 (with thanks) :-

      '.... The figure is in contrast to a poll of baby boomers, of whom 88 percent identify as straight.
      A poll conducted by the BBC found that a third of 16 to 22-year-olds identify as being attracted to someone of the same sex at least some of the time. Of that group, nine percent identified as bisexual, while fourteen percent stated they are "mostly heterosexual" but not fully so.
      The study, conducted by Ipsos Mori, surveyed 3,000 people divided into four generations — Z, Y, X, and baby boomers.
      As the generations got younger, fewer members identified as heterosexual. In Generation X, it was 85 percent; with Generation Y, otherwise known as millennials, it was 71. The poll found that 88 percent of baby boomers identified as fully heterosexual, with just 9 percent identifying as "mostly" and one percent as bisexual.
      Many survey respondents felt that younger generations are simply more comfortable with an LGBT label.  ....'
----   see more of Ariel Sobel's revealing ADVOCATE report at the US magazine's online site of :-


Tyler, The Creator: the wrong type of queer
----  the opening lines of an extended musician review by columnist Christian Butler at SPIKED (USA), August 2017 :-

      'Apparently, using the word ‘faggot’ disqualifies you from being gay. There are few openly gay rappers. ....
....  Since bursting on to the scene as the leader of the scatological skater-brat crew Odd Future, Tyler has sparked controversy. In 2013, he was banned from the UK for five years by then home secretary Theresa May. But for the purpose of selective outrage, his other early lyrics about rape and torture have been ignored for the time being.
      Meanwhile, his fans, labelled by many as bigots for enjoying his ‘homophobic’ material, have proved themselves entirely accepting of Tyler’s sexuality. His OF crewmates probably don’t mind either, seeing as two of their most prominent members, Frank Ocean and Syd Tha Kyd, are openly bisexual and gay respectively. .... '
---- see more of this challenging article by Christian Butler at this provocative site at :-

Monday, September 25, 2017


----  selected quotes from a news post placed by Priest Hernestus of the always-interesting website Antinous The Gay God (USA, UK & Europe), 25th September 2017 (see web address below) :-

      'A "lost" portrait of the male lover of England's King James I by Flemish artist Peter Paul Rubens has been rediscovered after almost 400 years. ....
....  Few people realise James 1st (also as James IV of Scotland) was gay. He was the King who succeeded Elizabeth 1st thus creating the 'United Kingdom'. This lost portrait of his lover is a remarkable find.
      The restored portrait of George Villiers, the 1st Duke of Buckingham, was authenticated as a Rubens by Ben van Beneden, director of the Rubenshuis in Antwerp.
      He said it was a "rare addition to Rubens's portrait oeuvre, showing how he approached the genre".
      Dr Grosvenor said: "The chance to discover a portrait of such a pivotal figure in British history by one of the greatest artists who ever lived has been thrillingly exciting."

----  view the recovered portrait of the gay king's acknowledged boyfriend in the sidebar (at right), or visit the original report-&-displayed portrait via :-  
----  see too another report at:- http://www.newnownext.com/rubens-painting-duke-of-buckingham-james-i/09/2017/ 

Saturday, September 23, 2017

REAGAN MENTIONS AIDS ... an historical reminiscence

Gay History, September 1985: Ronald Reagan mentions AIDS for the first time
----  the opening phrases of a striking historical news report by Will Kohler (USA), published 17th September 2017 at his challenging website Back2Stonewall  (& partially re-published here 24th Sept 2017) :-

      'Although AIDS was first identified in 1981, and victims, mostly gay men, were succumbing to the disease, Ronald Reagan did not mention it publicly for over four years notably during a press conference in 1985 and several speeches in 1987.
      When Reagan finally mentioned AIDS, briefly,  he was asked about the budget allocation for research:
      "Would you support a massive government research program against AIDS like the one that President Nixon launched against cancer?"
President Reagan: "I have been supporting it for more than 4 years now. It’s been one of the top priorities with us, and over the last 4 years, and including what we have in the budget for ’86, it will amount to over a half a billion dollars that we have provided for research on AIDS in addition to what I’m sure other medical groups are doing. And we have $100 million in the budget this year; it’ll be 126 million next year. So, this is a top priority with us. Yes, there’s no question about the seriousness of this and the need to find an answer."
During the disease's early years between June 1981 and May 1982 the CDC spent less than $1 million on AIDS and $9 million on Legionnaire’s Disease. At that point more than 1,000 of the 2,000 reported AIDS cases resulted in death;  .... '
----  see more of Will Kohler's provocative recollection at his striking website Back2Stonewall at :-
http://www.back2stonewall.com/2017/09/gay-history-september-18-1985-reagan-mentions-AIDS for the first-time.html 

Friday, September 22, 2017


Body Image in Gay Men: When and How to Intervene
----  two selected introductory pars from an extended report by Bianca Palmisano at PsychiatryAdvisor (USA), first published on 5th April 2017 (& reprinted here with thanks) :-

      'The occurrence of eating disorders is 3 times higher in gay men than in straight men, and nearly 15% of all gay men report dealing with anorexia or bulimia during their lifetime.1 ....
....  Gay men and straight women experience similar pressure through media portrayals of unattainable standards of beauty. Photographs of women are airbrushed to glamorize unhealthy thinness, while gay men are compared with muscular Adonises with 6-pack abs and no body fat.
      Michael Everett, MHS, an HIV educator and chief executive officer of Intimacy and Colour in Riverside, Georgia, explains: “Even within public health, the ads geared toward gay men present images of muscled men with small waistlines, which is impossible for every gay man to live up to and is not the only representation of good health.”
     These societal standards bleed over into a sexualized subculture that places a premium on muscularity and masculinity. .... '
----  see more of Bianca Palmisano's challenging observations at their original publishing site at :-

Monday, September 18, 2017


How to Politely Find Out Someone's Sexuality
----  a reprint of the introduction to an extended report on (very) sensitive social manners published by OHLALAmag (USA) earlier this year ...

      'Obviously if you’re chatting with the gay singles or in a gay bar, that problem goes away, but what about when a cute co-worker catches your eye? No one wants to risk an embarrassing rejection when all you wanted was a date, and heaven forbids you insult them by accident when asking if they swing your way. Is there some code of conduct or instruction manual on how to get that important – and potentially awkward – detail out of the way?
Here is your checklist for politely getting your answer.
  1. Don’t Make it Your Opening Line - If the first thing anyone asked you was “What’s your orientation?” you wouldn’t find them very charming, interesting, or unique, would you? Off that first impression, do you want to spend more time with them? No. So don’t be that person. If you’re interested in someone, make your opening intriguing as a standalone, and then shift into the question. This gives them a reason to be interested if they share your orientation, and breaks the ice so the question isn’t so sudden. (Continue with the four extra recommendations, below, at the OHLALA site ...)
2. Just Be Honest
3. Ask Them When You’re Alone
4  Do NOT Ask Someone Else
5. Accept the Answer – No Excuses.

See OHLALA magazine's full five recommendations at :- 

Sunday, September 17, 2017


Hillary's clue about 'What Happened' to gay culture
----  the opening lines from a challenging post by Mark Lee at WASHINGTON BLADE (USA)**, 14 September 2017 :-

      "I know that for a lot of people, including a lot of women, the movement for women’s equality exists largely in the past.

      That line, previewed from Hillary Clinton’s maligned-in-advance blame-everybody-else book-of-electoral-excuses “What Happened” published this week, provides an insight relevant to the current state of LGBT politics and culture.
      Given the rapid and dramatic pace of broad gains in LGBT civil equality and cultural acceptance, the prevalent proclivity within our ranks for grievance collection and victim portrayal may wear as thin as Clinton’s lingering lament over losing.
      Whether we will become chronic complainers like Clinton who simply won’t stop whining is the question.
      We run the same risk as she, suffering political allies reported by media to be expressing in exasperation, “I wish she’d just shut the f— up and go away.” ... '

----  see more of Mark Lee's opinion-piece at :-

[** WASHINGTON BLADE: Covering the LGBT community since 1969]

Thursday, September 14, 2017

LIVING INSIDE A COMPUTER ... a wake-up call

You Are Already Living Inside a Computer
----  brief introductory lines from a fascinating post written by Ian Bogost & published at The ATLANTIC.com magazine (USA) (reprinted here with thanks, September 2017) :-

      'Futurists predict a rapture of machines, but reality beat them to it by turning computing into a way of life.
      Suddenly, everything is a computer. Phones, of course, and televisions. Also toasters and door locks, baby monitors and juicers, doorbells and gas grills. Even faucets. Even garden hoses. Even fidget spinners. Supposedly “smart” gadgets are everywhere, spreading the gospel of computation to everyday objects.
      It’s enough to make the mundane seem new—for a time anyway. But quickly, doubts arise. Nobody really needs smartphone-operated bike locks or propane tanks. And they certainly don’t need gadgets that are less trustworthy than the “dumb” ones they replace, a sin many smart devices commit. But people do seem to want them—and in increasing numbers. There are now billions of connected devices, representing a market that might reach $250 billion in value by 2020.
      Why? .... '

----  see more of Ian Bogost"s insights into the computer era at The Atlantic (USA), at :-


Hundreds of Love Letters Between Two Gay WWII Soldiers Were Found and Are Being Made Into a Book
----  a few pars from a "Gay Issues" post at Sambag's Blog (UK), 5 September 2017 :-

      'While on military training during World War Two, Gilbert Bradley was in love. He exchanged hundreds of letters with his sweetheart – who merely signed with the initial “G”. But more than 70 years later, it was discovered that G stood for Gordon, and Gilbert had been in love with a man.
      At the time, not only was homosexuality illegal, but those in the armed forces could be shot for having gay sex.
      The letters, which emerged after Mr Bradley’s death in 2008, are therefore unusual and shed an important light on homosexual relationships during the war.  ....
....  But life as a homosexual in the 1940s was incredibly difficult. Gay activity was a court-martial offence, jail sentences for so-called “gross indecency” were common, and much of society strongly disapproved of same-sex relationships. .... '
----  see more of this fascinating post, complete with quotations from the couple's touching correspondence, at Sambag's Blog (with thanks) at :-

Wednesday, September 13, 2017


52 Queer Gods Who Ruled Ancient History
----  the introductory pars from an historical post researched by Jacob Ogles, followed by descriptive thumbnail visual-&-literary sketches of 52 ancient religious personae possessing a recorded 'gay character', complete with their historical visualization, published at PRIDE.com (USA), 12 September 2017 :-

      'You didn't know we were so divine. People have worshiped queer gods and deities for millennia. Mortals throughout history looked to the gods for guidance, love, and acceptance regardless of sexuality. In this dive through history, we explore 52 immortals who enjoyed same-sex relationships. .... "
----  see all eight pages of this well-informed survey of "the 52 immortals" who possess distinctive gay characteristics, complete with their traditional portrayal in both European and Asian art formats, posted at :-

Monday, September 11, 2017


Armie Hammer Talks About "CALL ME BY YOUR NAME"
----   brief excerpts from an entertainments post by Curtis M. Wong at the HUFFINGTON POST (USA), 11th September, 2017 :-

      '.... The queer-themed coming-of-age drama “Call Me By Your Name” drew critical raves after its Sundance Film Festival premiere in January, garnering early Oscar buzz for stars Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet. ....
.... “Call Me By Your Name,” which hits theaters nationwide Nov. 24, wowed audiences at the 2017 Toronto Film Festival over the weekend, and currently boasts a 98 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The Los Angeles Times praised the film, which is based on André Aciman’s novel, as “a powerfully erotic and affecting love story.” The Daily Beast described an early screening as “tantamount to group gay catharsis for the audience in attendance.” .... '
----  see more of Curtis Wong's  report on "Call Me By Your Name" at the HUFFINGTON POST (USA) at :-
----  and visit the YouTube trailer in the side column at right for a taste of the forthcoming movie.

Thursday, September 7, 2017


What Men and Women Really Desire In Their Sex Lives
----  a few lines from a surprising post by Dana Dovey of Medical Daily (USA), re-published at ALTERNET (USA), 6th September 2017 :-

      'Men often get a reputation for having NSFW sex fantasies, but a new survey found they have a bit of a different desire: most men prefer more sensual and romantic forms of sexual behavior. The research found that both men and women of all ages prefer affectionate sexual behaviors such as kissing and cuddling above all else, suggesting that at the end of the day, we all just really want to be held.
      Despite the fact that humans have been having sex since, well, forever, our partners' true desires in the bedroom have remained a mystery for most people. Thankfully, a group of scientists from the Indiana University School of Public Health have peeled back some of the mystery to reveal what men and women want more of in the bedroom. A number of sex acts made the list, such as masturbation and oral sex, but the majority of respondents admitted that they’d like a bit more romance and affection in their relationship. ....'
----  see more of Dana Dovey's surprisingly-touching (?) post, reprinted from Medical Daily (USA), and accessible from Alternet at :-


(REPRINT from 2016): Straight version of a gay thing
----  selected lines from an insightful social-comment essay by Casey Dalager at The Berkeley Beacon (USA), originally posted in April 2016 :-

      'As a bisexual man, I was thrilled when the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage across the country in 2013. Not only did I consider that day a win for “my people,” but I also reveled in the idea of LGBT culture not only being accepted, but celebrated. ....  I had grown up feeling unnatural, sinful, and ostracized like so many others, and on that day we were all free from cultural oppression. Or so I thought. The closer I look at our society, the less I see acceptance, and more a trend of assimilation. The LGBT movement is not being celebrated, but instead absorbed into the dominant white culture of America.
      While the queer community spans across all races, genders and ethnicities, society’s LGBT narrative prefers to see only those who are like me: white, cis, and male. The American mainstream now welcomes the gays, but minorities both in and out of the LGBT community remain simply as punchlines: mere stereotypes or the butt of jokes. This assimilation has happened before, and if history does repeat itself, it is doing so at the expense of people of color. .... "
----  see more of Casey Dalager's challenge at the Berkeley Beacon early last year at :- 

Monday, September 4, 2017


IBIZA is chilling out as 24-hour party people get older, Thomas Cook says
----  a few lines from the northern hemisphere's summer-seasonal tourism observations by reporters from The Telegraph (UK), 4th September 2017 :-

      'Ibiza's reputation as Europe's top destination for the UK's 24-hour party people is at risk as visitors are getting older, new figures show.
      Travel agents Thomas Cook report that millennials are moving away from the Spanish island in favour of more affordable clubbing experiences in Greece.
Over the past five years, one in six bookings have shifted from those under 30 to those aged 30-39, the firm said.
      The happy hardcore of the 90s and early 2000s is giving way to chillout beats to suit a growing band of thirty-somethings and their young families. .... '
----  see more of The Telegraph's report about shifting summertime tourism priorities, including within gay community choices, at :- 

Sunday, September 3, 2017


Over 48 New HIV Medications and Vaccines Are in the Pipeline
----  some opening lines from a news report by David Artavia at www.HIVPlusMag.com on August 31st, re-published by The Advocate's "Plus" section (USA), 4th September 2017 (with thanks) :-

      'Dozens of new medications are in development for the treatment or prevention of HIV.
      In the three decades since HIV was first identified in the United States, activists, providers, researchers, government agencies, and the pharmaceutical industry have all played a part in the quest to expand prevention and treatment options.
      New scientific breakthroughs have reignited the hope of stopping not only transmission of the virus, but also its impact on the quality of life for HIV-positive people across the nation. In fact, 2017 is proving to be a springboard towards innovation, progress, and optimism. Over 52 medicines and vaccines for HIV are currently in development, according to 2017 HIV/AIDS Medicines in Development, and The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, an industry public relations and lobbying organization.
      Overall, 32 medications on the list are antiretrovirals and antivirals, 16 are vaccines, and four are cell therapies, including a “potential first-in-class medicine intended to prevent HIV from attaching to new cells and breaking through the cell membrane.” All are either in clinical trials or awaiting review by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.  .... '
----  see more of David Artavia's report at The Advocate, with thanks, at :-

Saturday, September 2, 2017


The New Yorker Radio Hour: Why Men Should Read Romance Novels
----  the introductory phrases to a 26-minute radio program at www.wbez.org (USA), August 2017 :-

      ' The New Yorker’s Josh Rothman finds it hard to get a conversation going about romance novels with male friends or acquaintances. He talked with Curtis Sittenfeld—whose fiction often contains a romantic story, though her books aren’t romance novels, per se—about why that is. Sittenfeld’s most recent book, “Eligible,” is a retelling of the ur-romance novel, Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice.”       It’s been many years since she devoured a trove of bodice rippers, but there’s one—featuring a sex scene on horseback—that Sittenfeld hasn’t let go of. Plus: Sherman Alexie reads from his story       “Clean, Cleaner, Cleanest,” in which a motel maid struggles to reconcile her faith with everything her jobs shows her about human nature. ....
---- read and - or - hear more at :-

Saturday, August 26, 2017


"WILL AND GRACE RETURNS": Jack Discovers Grindr
---- the opening lines from a lively promotional post (plus a 30-sec video) at Out'n Proud (USA),  26th August 2017 :-

      '"I feel like I could get finger herpes just from scrolling."

       The 9th Season of Will & Grace officially kicks off September 28 on NBC  [USA]. Originally planned for a one-season revival of the hit gay-comedy, Season 10 of the series has already been ordered, so we’re getting at least two more seasons.
      If you’re biting at the bit like we are, don’t worry. There’s been some fantastic teasers for the new season, hopefully they can tide you over one more month until it finally airs at the end of September.
      You have to remember that the last full Will & Grace episode aired almost 12 years ago. The copious amount of gay dating apps we’re so used to weren’t around back then. But of course Jack would be the first to get with the times. In the trailer [in the right-hand column, here] he discovers Grindr. Like most of us, Jack is concerned about being safe while browsing the multitude of men.  .... '
----  see more of this Out'n Proud post about the return of Will & Grace at :-
---- with thanks to NBC (USA) for the supportive YouTube-excerpt video.


Thursday, August 10, 2017

TOM OF FINLAND / Celebrating an outrageous gay icon ...

TOM OF FINLAND review - intriguing biopic of a gay liberation hero

---- selected pars from the introduction to a news-&-review movie report by Peter Bradshaw at The Guardian (UK), 10 August 2017 :-

      'Pekka Strang stars as the Finnish wartime artist Touko Laaksonen, whose homoerotic illustrations helped create the iconography of gay culture.
      Finnish artist Touko Laaksonen, known by his nom de plume Tom of Finland, is brought above the radar of cultural history in this well-acted biopic.
      In postwar Helsinki, in conditions of the gravest illegality, Laaksonen produced thousands on thousands of homoerotic fetish illustrations, showing bulgingly endowed leather-clad guys having an unapologetic good time.
      Tom of Finland’s work reached the liberated US in the 1960s via mail order, and he became a counterculture hero of gay liberation, virtually inventing a whole language of hedonism that influenced Queen, the Village People and the club scene.  .... '
----  see more of Peter Bradshaw's review of this new intriguing biog of Tom of Finland at The Guardian at :-
----  & visit the 37-sec trailer for TOM OF FINLAND in the side column here (at right) ....  with thanks to The Guardian (UK).


.... here are twenty movie trailers from recent international sources (click on center-frame arrows, below, to activate). They are updated regularly ... with thanks to
YouTube & the movies' international distributors ...

ARGENTINA'S 'ESTEROS" / A new movie .... click on the center arrow ...

When someone becomes the CENTER OF MY WORLD (Germany) 2016 ...



ASIAN GAY ROMANCE fights stigma in Hollywood ...

"THE PASS" ... its 2017 movie trailer

"BEING 17" / Young love finds a way ...

Twenty-two year old David has it all – he’s young, hot, and he’s just got into the prestigious dance school of his dreams. But he has a secret: for two years he’s been sleeping with his sister’s husband, Jules.

SOFT LAD is the directorial debut from Leon Lopez, an examination of lust, jealousy and their consequences in contemporary Liverpool. Starring UK artists Daniel Brocklebank (Coronation Street) and Jonny Labey (EastEnders).

Passions ignite and hidden secrets are revealed when a graphic designer in Los Angeles reconnects with an ex-boyfriend he hasn’t seen or heard from in 15 years. LAZY EYE is a story about roads not taken, unfinished business, and the struggle to adjust to progressive lenses. Written and directed by Tim Kirkman (LOGGERHEADS, DEAR JESSE, THE NIGHT LARRY KRAMER KISSED ME), LAZY EYE stars Lucas Near-Verbrugghe, Aaron Costa Ganis and Michaela Watkins.


"LILTING' - British actor Ben Wishaw tests his range again ...


"What is like to live in a world where you have no grasp of its language, and your only lifeline to that is lost." In "LILTING" Ben Wishaw, wide ranging UK character actor from Shakespeare to James Bond movies, tests his range even further.

"Best gay-themed movie ever!" ... ?

STONEWALL | The birth of a Movement ...

FREEHELD - A subtle gay rights challenge ...

VENICE FESTIVAL ENTRY: "From Afar" (Venezuela 2015)

Peter Greenaway's EISENSTEIN, Stalin's eccentric filmmaker ...


BISEXUAL WOMEN | How to be oneself? ...



A fair-haired young man, dressed in rich ceremonial armor, is found dead in the Nile River. When he is identified, everyone realizes the dangerous political implications of this death, because Antinous was the eromenos—the lover and protégé—of the Roman Emperor Hadrian.

A grief-stricken Hadrian appoints two members of the court, Suetonius and his patron Clarus, to find out how and why Antinous died. They have two days to find the answer, permission to interrogate anyone except the Emperor and Empress, and the promise that they may forfeit their lives if they fail to satisfy Hadrian.

Failure is a distinct possibility. While Antinous was well-liked and respected, the circle of suspects is wide, as it often will be when the victim is the confidant of an absolute ruler. The two sleuths quickly draft unlikely but able assistants to help them, including a scribe and an observant, multilingual prostitute.

The book offers an extensively researched picture of life in the Roman Empire of 130 AD. Gardiner is equally convincing when writing about imperial politics and succession laws, marriage and sexual customs, philosophy and the theater.

But The Hadrian Enigma—a mix of mystery, comedy, gay and straight romance—is an entertaining read.

(See more at :-http://historicalnovelsociety.org/reviews/the-hadrian-enigma-a-forbidden-history/

THE HADRIAN ENIGMA | A review by historical fiction author J.R. Tomlin ...

An excerpt from a review of August 15, 2011

" .... In 130 AD, while accompanying the Emperor Hadrian on a tour up the Nile, the beautiful youth Antinous plunges into the Nile and drowns. Hadrian, near maddened with grief, declares Antinous a god. However, Suetonius just happens to be along on this imperial tour. Already the author of juicy books on contemporary Roman life, he is perfectly placed to investigate this mysterious death, so Emperor Hadrian commands him to investigate and find the murderer within 48 hours or suffer the consequences.

In the imperial compound on the Nile, Suetonius searches for clues. Here, semi-isolated, the bubbling cauldron of the Roman court has been transplanted to a fabulous tent city. Yet, the mystery of Egypt is an ever present backdrop to this baffling death. .... Why was Antinous clad in heavy ceremonial parade armor and weapons when he died? How did he come by a slit on his left wrist and strange marks on his throat? And how can Suetonius unravel all this when the Emperor refuses to let Suetonius even touch the body to examine it? The characterization is vivid and the historicity meticulous in this novel. I enjoyed savoring the characters and setting as Suetonius unraveled the imperial goings on. .... "

See more of J.R. Tomlin's review at her author's blogsite "Writing & More" at : http://jeannetomlin.blogspot.com/


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Bye-bye for now from George Gardiner's THE HADRIAN ENIGMA rainbow-community site ...

Thank you for visiting my book's information site COOL GAY STUFF.

Please come back soon to note new posts, movie trailers, or publications & reviews.

Immediately below this bye-bye lies the complete bibliography consulted to research THE HADRIAN ENIGMA, its era, its historical personalities, & its cultural forms.