Saturday, 30 November 2013

Kinky boots on parade

Technically I should be editing my novel Leaving Hope and working on my query letter for Second Chances. Instead I'm writing here. Hey, at least I'm writing.

I was on Facebook earlier (yes, I know, such a huge shock... everyone who knows me can stop laughing hysterically now) and a friend of mine had posted a video from the US Thanksgiving Parade. I'm including a link here...

I'm giving everyone a chance to watch it.
*taps foot and looks impatiently at computer clock*
... okay, that should be long enough.

Comments are posted in the article about how horrible it was for this song to be played at the parade. One even claimed to make the poster have a little less hope for humanity. Because, you know, people singing about love and being there for each other is such a message of despair. But my favourite comment (which was echoed in the resulting comments on Facebook) was the one that said "Let parents decide when to discuss certain topics with their kids instead of springing it on them in Macy's Parade."

What parent really believes life waits for them to decide when to have these conversations? Really? C'mon, you'd think that ship would have sailed when your toddler wanted to know why Daddy has a penis. At the dinner table. With guests over.

Or am I the only lucky one to have conversations like this?

Let me tell you about how the topic of drag queens came up in my family.

It all started on a lovely summer's trip to the park. I got the kids dressed, slathered them in sunscreen, collected a handful of toys, and set out for the local park. We were almost there when a man approached us. He was tall, at least 6ft, and he looked even taller in his stilettos. Despite it being barely after lunch, he was all dressed up for a night on the town. Make up, styled hair, evening gown... he was ready to go. And, just to make the experience even more interesting, he wanted directions to the local jail so he could visit his boyfriend. I've found that when life hands us an experience, it goes all out.

I assured him that he was on the right road to get to the local jail and it probably wouldn't take him more than ten minutes to get there, then agreed that it must stink to have his boyfriend behind bars. Then we said goodbye and he headed off. The whole time both kids stared up at him wide eyed.

The kids watched him walk away (a lot more gracefully than I would in heels) then daughter turned to me and said, "Mommy, why is that man wearing a dress?" And I looked at her and said, "Because he wants to." Then we went to the park.

That was it. No huge explanation. No confusion. It's honestly not that hard a question.

My son came home this evening right after I watched the video so I dragged him to the computer and made him watch it too, just to get his reaction (he's what's known as a captive audience).

His first reaction was sheer bafflement that the song would be played at a parade. Because floats move a lot faster than that and no one would get the whole message, they'd just hear little bits and pieces. Obviously the Macy parade isn't a tradition in our house. I promptly explained this song was performed at the beginning and had been stationary. Everyone there heard the whole thing.

Oh... well in that case he figured they should play it twice. Once at the beginning and again at the end, because that was something everyone should hear.

Then, just to round out the conversation, I googled drag queens and we looked at faces of men with half their head made up. What else do you do on a Saturday evening? I guess we could play cards (if I knew where the deck was and remembered any games) but the pictures were more interesting.

Now I'm going back to editing Leaving Hope. I'm not going to bother posting the first chapter of Second Chances (like I did with my other novels). All it does is end in a badly formatted wall of text. But I like the first chapter and hopefully some agent out there will too.

Friday, 22 November 2013

Words from my son

I love this kid. Every once in a while we'll have a conversation and he'll say something that gets me thinking. We just had an out of the blue conversation and it went like this...

Mom, there are people out there that think being gay is unnatural. Running around naked is natural, *looks over at the cats* I don't see our cats wearing clothes, and being gay is natural too.

I'd have a little bit of respect for those people, not much but a little, if they actually tried to live a natural life. You know, if they ran around naked in the woods, eating what they found and building a tent with their bare hands. Fending off bears with sticks. And if a tree fell on them, they just lay there because going to the hospital's unnatural.

If they want to claim they're for what's natural, they shouldn't be online or driving cars or wearing glasses or watching TV. *looks at me seriously* You know what's unnatural? It's unnatural to hate gays.

Obligatory kid photo...

 And he's right. How can someone sit in a climate controlled house that's wired with electricity, wearing clothes made with man-made fibers, heating their food in a microwave, while whining about what's "natural"? There are a lot of unnatural things in our lives, who someone loves isn't one of them.