Official MISTER
January 16, 2014
Category: Gay Culture
Gay Founding Fathers: Alan Turing

From email to Amazon to XTube to reading the blog you're on right now, computers have become so essential to our day-to-day that it’s rather mind-boggling to imagine life without them. So, who exactly do we have to thank for this game-changing gadget? Bill Gates? Good guess. Steve Jobs? Think again. The actual man credited with inventing this game-changing gadget is the original tech titan of the 20th century (and this week’s Gay Founding Father), British mathematician Alan Turing.

Born in London in 1912, Turing’s early years appeared to follow the standard narrative of the classic overachiever—academically driven, introverted (a chronic stuttering condition often left him feeling self-conscious), head constantly buried in a book. But by the time he became a teenager, it was clear this smartypants was something special. His remarkable ability for picking up and deciphering advanced mathematical and scientific concepts (even without ever having formally studied them) attracted attention, and upon graduation, he enrolled at the prestigious King’s College at Cambridge University, where he gained first-class honors in mathematics.

His intellectual acuity in top form, Turin’s reputation for being an original thinker soon solidified with the release of a number of high-profile papers, including a 1935 dissertation on the central limit theorem that earned him a fellowship at King’s (practically unheard of for...

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February 24, 2009
Category: Gay Culture

Men all over the world sooner or later confront notions of what it means to be a ”real man” and inevitably compare themselves to some ideal(s) constructed by the societies in which they live. Although different societies sometimes hold up seemingly contradictory ideals of manhood, Mahatma Gandhi in India versus Rambo in the United States, to cite extreme examples, we tend to accept our own society's ideal as normal unless our understanding gets broadened by exposure to other ideals that seem to resonate better with our inner experience.

Gay men everywhere tend to find ourselves excluded to one degree or another from inclusion in the category of “real men” because of our same-sex attraction and because many societies view gay men as effeminate (like a woman).  For a man to be like a woman means he is not, in some sense, fully a real man.

The late Harry Hay, arguably the father of gay liberation, inspired by examples of “third-gender” or “two-spirit” concepts he encountered in some Native American cultures, developed a theory of gay identity apart from the prevailing notions of male versus female prevalent in non-gay society. Hay believed that most gay men learn to imitate gender-polarized, heterosexual norms of male/female as a way to survive in homophobic societies and that this imitation distorts their authentic gay identities. He theorized that if gay men could get away from heterosexuals completely, preferably in natural settings, their...

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Chris Turner
December 7, 2008
Category: Gay Culture

I was about 13 when I asked my parents if they could get me a subscription to Sports Illustrated. They were more than a little eager to accomodate, as they thought there might be some hope that their sensitive, shy, awkward teenager might actually turn out to be a sports-lovin', beer-drinkin' and (most importantly) pussy chasin' young man. Well I do drink beer sometimes (not exactly like a frat boy), and I do actually like sports, but I never got around to the other thing.  The reason I really wanted that subscription was not to keep up with sports, but to jerk off to those Jockey ads with Jim Palmer. His furry chest and well-formed basket certainly helped to ease the tension of my teenage years.

When I was 15 and flipping through the pages of SI, I stumbled upon the most unthinkable thing -- a tribute to the life of an openly gay man. This sports magazine, to my knowlege, had never shown gay men in a positive light, and here it was doing a feature on... someone like me.  For years I had used the magazine as a way to work out my teenage sexual angst, but I never imagined it would be the place that I'd find a role model who ultimately helped me accept my sexuality.

The July 27, 1987 issue had an article entitled "The Death of an Athlete". It was a tribute to Tom Waddell who had died of AIDS on July 11-- just 16...

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Chris Turner
November 28, 2008
Category: Gay Culture

The movie "MILK" uses the framing device of Harvey Milk making a tape to be played in the event of his death by assassination. The following short film is called "575 Castro St" directed by Jenni Olson. It has a series of static video shots of Harvey's old camera shop (as it was recreated for  "MILK") with an edited down version of the original 13 minute tape. I had heard of this tape on a few occasions, so I was intrigued when a friend sent me the link to this. You can see the director's notes here.

Chris Turner
November 26, 2008
Category: Gay Culture

In celebration of the opening of the new movie "MILK", we are excited to share this amazing piece by Steve Beery. Steve was a writer and gay activist who died of AIDS in '93. He met Harvey Milk when he was 25 years old and Harvey was 48. Harvey was a daddy who definitely appreciated younger men. This piece was provided to us by Armistead Maupin (my wonderful husband), who met Steve at Harvey's memorial service and remained his closest friend until his death.

My Month with Harvey

by Steve Beery

I was suffering from a typical San Francisco ailment – costume claustrophobia. My tights were riding up, my fake-satin cape was itchy, and beads of sweat were rolling down behind my eye mask. I was dressed as Robin the Boy Wonder at the 1978 Beaux Arts Ball, and I was being unmistakably cruised by a man I knew but had never met.  The man was Harvey Milk, the first openly gay city supervisor – a man I respected and admired.

We’d smiled and nodded on Castro Street several times that year.  I like Harvey’s wide-open grin, and I’d wondered whether the attraction was mutual.  Now it looked like maybe it was. Nervously I straightened my cape, checked my trunks, adjusted my gloves. The supervisor, at ease in his rumpled grey suit, extended his hand and uttered the corniest pick-up line imaginable. “Hop on my back, Boy Wonder, and I...

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Chris Turner
November 23, 2008
Category: Gay Culture

Just think, if you had been Antinous (pronounced an-tin-oh-us), you could have said, "my gay daddy is the most powerful man in the world"... and it would have been true. Many don't realize that one of the Roman Empire's greatest rulers was an openly gay man. The first time I heard about Hadrian and Antinous I was daydreaming in my Roman and Hellenistic Sculpture course in college. Professor Connelly brought up the bust of a Roman Emperor on the slide projector and I thought to myself, "hmm... he looks like a sexy bearded daddy".

Truth is, that's one of the reasons I took the course. I love all those sexy sculptures of the hot daddies. I used to drool over the Farnese Hercules and the Laocoon, and a host of other sculptures of gods, philosophers and emperors. Unlike our culture, the Greeks and Romans really celebrated an older ideal, not just youth.

The professor brought me out of my daze as she said, "Hadrian was gay and had a young lover named Antinous". Wow, a gay Roman Emperor. I knew that the Greeks and Romans were a little less uptight about gay sex, but I didn't know it was possible to have that much power as an openly gay man.

Hadrian was born on January 24 in 76 AD. After his parents died he was put under the care of Trajan who was a cousin...

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