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Friday Fun: Shirt Says It All

Friday Fun: Shirt Says It All

You know exactly who he is and/or what he wants.  He’s upfront about it.  Gets to the point - his point.  It’s all right there, proudly displayed on his chest or backside.  It’s there for all the world to see. 

And he’s good at it.  He caught your attention, didn’t he?

You are the driver in a car cruising the open road and he is a billboard trying to entice you to pay a visit or try his wares. 

Will you succumb?

Yep… shirt says it all.

Have a great weekend.  Enjoy!

Wishing you the very best...

- Uptonking from Wonderland Burlesque



Bob Eschliman: A Matter Of The Separation of Church and State

Bob Eschliman: 
A Matter Of The Separation of Church and State

This could get interesting…

From Newton, Iowa: another great reason to leave Iowa!

On the surface, it would seem very simple: company fires raging homophobe.  But if you dig just a bit deeper, you will see that this is something of a precedent setter.

Bob Eschliman the, now, former editor of the Newton Daily News, has filed a lawsuit claiming he is the victim of religious discrimination on the part of his former employers, Shaw Media, Inc.   The company fired Mr. Eschliman after he posted an editorial to his blog that was critical of what he referred to as “the Gaystopo” and “the LGBTQXYZ crowd” who are trying “to reword the Bible to make their sinful nature ‘right with God.’”

Bob got canned and then filed his lawsuit.  And it raises a lot of questions.

Was Bob being a hateful bigot, which I am sure, is against his employment agreement, or was he exercising his right to free speech?

You see, in the bulk of this country, gender-identity/sexual preference discrimination is still not held in the same light as the issues of race or gender.  People still think it’s okay to say nasty things and condemn people for being anything other than straight, just as some people still think it’s okay to say hateful things about women.  But throw the issue of race into the arena, and, with the exception of a limited amount of people identifying as white supremacists, the majority of people would agree that it is not cool to denigrate people because of the color of their skin.  If that were the issue in this case, I don’t think anyone would feel Mr. Eschliman termination was anything but just.

However, he’s using that book, ‘The Bible’, as a means of justifying his speech, claiming it to be religious in nature – which brings us to the crux of the problem.

This country was not founded on Christian values, as so many conservatives would like us all to believe. In fact, the exact opposite would seem to be true.  The founding fathers made it explicit that they wanted to avoid all this confusion

The lines separating church from state in this country became incredibly blurred back in the 1950’s during McCarthy’s ‘Red Scare’ period. The de facto motto of the United States back in 1782 was ‘E. Pluribus Unum’ (Out of man, one).  That was change in 1956 to “In God We Trust”, which was then added to our currency a year later.  The pledge of allegiance was re-written to include a reference to this same ‘God’ that same year.  All of this was done in reaction to the supposed threat of communism. 

The original constitution contained only one reference to religion, that being: “No religious test shall ever be required as qualification to any office or public trust under the United States”.

Which brings to mind the all those states with statutes stipulating that in order to run for public office, one must acknowledge the existence of a Supreme Being. (Would Satan qualify?)  But that is another issue…

Will Mr. Eschliman prevail?

It would seem with the Supreme Court’s recent ‘Hobby Lobby’ decision that he might.

Which would be sad for those of us who are members of ‘the Gaystopo’, as we tend to resent being characterized as having a “sinful nature”. 

In this case, I hope that his homophobic blog posting is not the only reason Bob was fired.  People who hold a high profile job and don’t possess the common sense to keep their bigotry under wraps have a habit of bringing other less than enlightened issues to the office; let’s hope that’s the case with Bob.  Let’s also hope that Shaw Media, Inc. had enough savvy to place some kind of ‘anti-hate rant’ clause in Bob’s contract, because, you know, having a homophobe as the editor of one of their newspapers could very well reflect negatively on them and hurt their place in the market.

Which also brings to the surface a question journalistic in nature: should editors of media be held to higher standards?  Answer: well, obviously, of course not. 

Otherwise Fox News would not exist. 

Of course, if it wasn’t for the ‘Red Scare’ back in the fifties, Fox News probably wouldn’t exist anyway and people like Mr. Eschliman wouldn’t have a chance in hell (you know, that place where those people who believe in ‘The Bible’ believe Satan is the Supreme Being?). 

No, this is not the argument it would appear.  This is not a matter of a bigot vs. the gays. Or a matter of the right to employment.  Or the right to free speech.

Will the separation of church and state, as intended by our founding forefathers ever, truly be restored?


TMI Questions - Classic Edition: What Makes You Feel Better When…

TMI Questions - Classic Edition:
What Makes You Feel Better When…

Nothing makes me feel better than a nice, ice-cold gin martini.  However, I can’t possibly drink 24/7, so I have had to develop other, healthier means of coping with my emotions. 

I have come a long way. 

There was a time when I starved myself and over-committed my time, in order to not have to deal with my emotions (and being gay). That lasted eight years.  

There was a time when I smoked countless cigarettes, each puff a means of stuffing my emotions.  That lasted ten years. 

I had a lot (A LOT) of anonymous, casual sex in order to not have to deal with my feelings.  That lasted a year, only to be reprised four years later, for a period of twelve years.

There were times when I hid out in less than wonderful relationships, using the other person as a sort of shield, in order to fend off reality and the rest of the world. One lasted seventeen years!

Recognizing my issues, owing my shit, letting go of the past, and developing a sense of humor about myself were all key to my learning how to ‘feel better’.   I have also developed healthier habits and hobbies. 

And, now, I do.  I ‘feel’ better.

  • I trust myself a lot more.
  • I look at the big picture while living in the moment.
  • I am more reasonable. 
  • I reason things out. 
  • I pause before reacting. 
  • I think of how my behavior affects others.
  • I know and respect my limits.
  • I try to not be careless with people.  
  • I honor my commitments.
I do my best to live my life with integrity.

That is what I do these days to ‘feel better’.

Questions designed to reveal Too Much Information

TMI Questions - Classic Edition: What Makes You Feel Better When…

…you are sick with the flu?

Sleeping.  Or working.  Or sitting with my dogs. 

When I get the flu, it is rarely the kind where one vomits.  Instead, I am usually cursed with the body pains type.  Two years ago, for the Xmas holidays, I was stuck on the couch for my entire, planned vacation.  All my plans had to be canceled and I wasn’t able to receive visitors or leave the house. 

I was miserable.

My dogs rallied around me and shared my pain.  They are always a great source of comfort and can sense any time I am not feeling well.

When things got too bad, I would go lie on my bed.  Usually, sleep would come quickly.  If not, I have a way of putting my mind in ‘skim’ mode and sort of free associate my way into different stories.

The rest of the time, I find working on something / anything can take my mind off my body and make me much less conscious of my discomfort.    

…you are in a bad mood?

Being left alone.

And if you know me at all, you know this and would be wise to do just that.  If you’re smart, you will simply walk away and let me stew in my own evil juices.

I am horrible when I am crabby, lashing out, overly critical, with a sharp tongue, and no sense of what is appropriate.  This is one of the occasions where I truly understand why people dislike me. 

I wouldn’t wish me on anyone.

If left to my own devices, I will eventually distract myself with something and my mood will change. 

A shiny object will do. 

Or a hand puppet.

…you are alone?

Bad rom-com movies.

I find great comfort in them, as I end up feeling better off alone than dealing with the likes of dull Ken dolls such as Ryan Gosling, Ryan Reynolds,  Bradley, Cooper, Hugh Grant, Josh Duhamel, Nick Cannon, Patrick Dempsey, Josh Lucas, Matthew Goode, Ashton Kutcher, Aaron Eckhart, Morris Chestnut, Josh Hartnett, Dermot Mulroney, Jesse Bradford, Chris Pine… ugh.

Most of these actors are interchangeable and personality deficient, but possess a certain charm, as do the women they court, cheat on, pursue, stalk, conspire with, befriend, rob banks with, impregnate, divorce, marry,  etc.

The stories are predictable, the actors the flavor of the month variety.  You can count on Sandra Bullock.  Jennifer Anniston.  Kathrine Heigl, Vivica Fox, Reese Witherspoon, Kate Hudson, Jennifer Lopez, Emma Stone, Vanessa Williams, Mandy Moore… et al.  They always hit their marks, cry on cue, and leave you feeling wistful.

I don’t own these movies; rather, I enjoy happening upon them on local television stations.  The commercials actually help fuel the scenario, by cheapening its overwrought sentimentality.

That said, I rarely feel alone, as I actually prefer to be alone. I like my own company.

I understand when others do not. 

I’m sort of a prickly puss.

…you are sad?


Sad is like being feeling lonely… there is nothing wrong with it.

I like ‘sad’.  Wallowing in it for an extended period of time is not recommended, since it leads to wearing clothing with food stains, over-eating, and a lack of hygiene.

But allowing it to run its course feels rather healthy.    

I listen to a lot of music when I am sad.  Or sing to myself.

Mashed potatoes also help.

…you are mad?

Going for a run.  Working out.  Doing the dishes.  Vacuuming.  Mowing lawn.

Do something.  Push something.  Get away from people. 

Focus on a physical task.  Then my head has a chance to sort itself out, identify the issue, and come up with possible approaches and/or solutions.

I find it is best not to react too quickly, or I will regret what comes out of my mouth.

Been there, done that. Didn’t like it, won’t do it again.

…you are frustrated?

Stopping whatever I am doing, taking a couple of deep breaths and either refocusing or moving on to something else for a bit.  If frustrated with a person; I politely excuse myself and go sit somewhere all by myself so I can gather my thoughts and devise an approach that will get me the results I want.

Frustrated with an object – walk away immediately, or said object stands a good chance of flying across the room.  I haven’t thrown anything in a long time, and that’s because throwing things (such as scientific calculators) can be very expensive. 

…you are angry?

When I am outraged?  

Talking about it.  Venting.  By doing that I am able to give voice to reasoning for my rage. If someone happens to be around who agrees with me, that helps.

Otherwise, see my answers for frustrated or mad.

When I was doing a lot of theatre?  I used to hit walls.  A lot.  And kick things.  Lots of folding chairs.  Lots of flats. 

Never actors.   Though… many of them would have had it coming.

Yeah, I was a nut bag. 

I didn’t want to work with me, either.

So, now I don’t.

…you are horny?

Kissing the boyfriend and suggesting we ‘take a nap’.

Thankfully he likes to ‘nap’.

We take lots of naps.

If the boyfriend is not around…

…I visit many of my favorite blogs.  See the list to the right of this post.  So many of them offer so much: from the titillating to the comic to the wonderfully salacious.

And, then I like to play with my chrome cock rings and some baby lotion.

Yeah, well… I’m human.