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Friday, February 04, 2011

Kochalka Kerfuffle

UPDATE (2/8/11, 2:45pm): James Kochalka published a mea culpa comic on his website yesterday. To be clear, I don't know the woman in question and didn't know of any existing letter-writing campaigns regarding Kochalka's Laureate status. I never called Kochalka out for violence against women (in fact, I said I'd like to see what Ashley's friends would do to a portrait of Cooley if given the chance). Further, I never called for him to be stripped of his Laureate status. Over the years, I have often written about the perils of dating in small-town Vermont. When I saw the post on Kochalka's website, I found it worthy of discussion. And, I stand by that -- the comic was provocative and stunning, even for American Elf.

UPDATE (2/4/11, 3:15pm): James Kochalka has removed the comic from his website. See his comment below.

Ask me what section of Seven Days I turn to first, and I say, "American Elf" -- the comic strip by James Kochalka (Vermont's Cartoonist Laureate), seemingly about his everyday life with his wife, kids, friends and cat, Spandy. It's a great strip, always good for a chuckle and sometimes a good life lesson. On a recent trip to Midtown Comics in New York City, I marveled at all of Kochalka's titles and thought, "Man, that guy really is famous!"

However, I just heard about a comic he posted on his website that, I believe, puts a little chink in his armor of awesomeness. In a comic entitled "Ashley Forever" published on Kochalka's website on January 26, the artist explains that he "did a portrait of Jason Cooley's girlfriend but now they're broken up, so he's selling it on Ebay." Cooley is a local rocker, performer and one of Kochalka's buddies. Kochalka goes on to say that he promised Cooley he'd repaint the portrait so that Ashley's head was severed. After writing, "Oh, fuck her. She probably hated me anyhow and she dumped Jason. Off with her head," he does just that, and draws Ashley's disembodied head with blood dripping out of her neck.

Word on the street is that Ashley isn't happy about her recent comic fame. Can you blame her? Going through a breakup is difficult enough without pseudo-celebrities smearing you on their blogs. Hey, it's great to have friends who want to sever the heads of those who do us wrong, but c'mon -- did Kochalka really need to post that publicly?

I don't know the first thing about these people or their breakup, but I'm willing to bet some of Ashley's friends would like a public forum in which to post drawings of what they'd like to do to Cooley. It takes two to tango -- and two to breakup.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

It Bears Repeating

As some of you may recall, I've long lusted after gay bears — you know, gay men of the big, brawny and hairy variety. Unfortunately for me, I am not a gay male, so I've had a relatively low success rate getting burly homos to bed me. Thus, I've had to go after straight men of the same ilk (think Zach Galifianakis, Seth Rogan, Jerry Ferrara and Kevin Gillespie from season six of Top Chef).

Being that most of my friends are gay, we've never referred to my type as "teddy bear" like some mainstream media (check out this slideshow of "Hot Teddy Bears" at We've always referred to my type as "straight bear," because that's precisely what I want. So, imagine my delight when I stumbled upon this article from the Village Voice entitled Move Over, Metrosexuals: Meet the Straight Bears.


The article discusses how straight bears are embracing the gay community, in particular celebrities such as Kevin Smith who was scheduled to attend the 16th annual International Bear Rendezvous in San Francisco before Southwest Airlines booted him off the plane for being too fat — err, I mean "bear-like."

If nothing else, click over to the Village Voice to see the illustration by Edwin Huang. Can I get that life-size to hang over my bed? Better yet, can I get that bear-size?


Monday, September 07, 2009

From Politics to Playgirl

According to, Levi Johnston (Sarah Pallin's former future son-in-law and Bristol Pallin's baby daddy) is in final negotiations to pose for Playgirl. Speculation about the photo shoot began after Vanity Fair released this promo video for its upcoming October issue featuring the Alaskan lad. At the end of the video, Johnston is heard discussing the Playgirl photo shoot with his manager, Tank Jones. (I can't believe this guy has a manager.)

In the video, Jones warns Johnston that he "can't come in there lacking in the johnson area." As it turns out, Gawker is reporting that Johnston will not be fully nude for the shoot — I guess not all Alaskan men are hung like moose. Bummer.

From the video, two things are evident: Firstly, Johnston and Jones do not know that Playgirl is no longer a printed publication (it's online only). Secondly, they clearly don't realize that only gay men look at Playgirl.

Monday, April 20, 2009

I left my lesbian relationship for this?

Kanya Check out the latest Louis Vuitton ad campaign for shoes (yes, you're supposed to be looking at the shoes). The photo features Kanye West and his current flame, model Amber-Rose — who reportedly left a long-term relationship with a woman for West.

The cheeky writers over at Fleshbot (not work friendly) had this to say about the ad's message: "These sneakers are so fresh that they have the power to convert lesbians who will subsequently be so impressed by your incredible style that they will faint dead away, naked, in your lap."


Is it just me, or does Kanye look horribly uncomfortable? Maybe it's the shoes.

Monday, February 16, 2009

WCAX Nominated for GLAAD Award

Congratulations to Darren Perron and the rest of the team at WCAX television on their GLAAD media award nomination. GLAAD, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, hands out annual awards to those members of the media and entertainment worlds who demonstrate "fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and issues that affect their lives."

Perron and crew are nominated in the Outstanding TV Journalism category for Becoming — a 3-part series discussing Vermont's transgender community. Perhaps the coolest thing about the nomination is that WCAX is the only local station nominated — they'll be up against the likes of PBS, CNN and Oprah. Not bad, eh?

The awards will be handed out on March 28 in New York City. You can read more about the nomination and check out Becoming here.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Bettie Page (April 22, 1923 – December 11, 2008)

Legendary pin-up and fetish model, Bettie Page, has died at the age of 85 in Los Angeles. You can read more about Page's life on Wikipedia. For info about her passing, check out the coverage on CNN.

RIP, Ms. Page.


Monday, November 17, 2008

Oh, no he Diddy!

According to the New York Daily News, Sean Combs (Puff Daddy, P. Diddy, Diddy, etc) told Allure magazine that he has strict grooming policies for the women he dates, including manicures/pedicures, leg waxing, brow-threading and Brazilian waxes (which, if you don't know, is the whole kit and caboodle). He also tells Allure:  "I shave and groom my private areas. It's a better presentation for me. If men require women to go through the pain, we should return the favor."

Okay, let's try to forget for just one moment that he says "men require women" (gross! awful! despicable!) and move to the more interesting bit — it's a better "presentation" for him? I know a lot of dudes who trim and shave their pubes to make their average- to small-sized members look larger — perhaps that's what Combs is hinting at? I mean, it would make sense — only men with some serious hang ups about their "imperfect" parts would "require" their women to be so scrubbed, sterilized, polished and perfect.

Blah. It just pisses me off.


PS... Can someone tell me what the hell brow-threading is??

Monday, November 10, 2008

Palin's next gig? is reporting that Sarah Palin received her first public job offer after last week's failure to snag the vice presidential seat — 2 million dollars to star in an upcoming Cezar Capone porno.

You may know Capone from his other directorial works, "M.I.L.F School" and "Big Dicks, Petite Chicks." In an open letter to Palin on his website, Capone outlines the premise of the film, saying it would be about a "beautiful mother recognized by all of America as well as the rest of the world - the most desirable woman over 40."

And what about Todd? Capone promises Mr. Palin a co-starring role in the film to the tune of $100,000 — and a new Arctic Cat snowmobile. Sweet!

No word from Palin's camp yet, but I figure if she doesn't land a talk show host gig, she might be Capone's new starlet.

Happy Monday,

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Voting Is Sexy

I thought I'd take a minute to encourage you to vote. I probably don't need to tell you that this is one of the most important elections of our time, and I hope you plan to cast your vote this Tuesday (or before, if you can vote early).

As election day draws closer, I've been taking some time to learn more about key issues being voted on in other states, particularly surrounding marriage laws and reproductive rights. As Elizabeth says over at Sex In the Public Square, "there is sex on the ballot all over the place." Check out Elizabeth's roundup of key propositions and amendments voters will be encountering this Tuesday. I'm particularly interested to see the outcome of Proposition K in San Francisco that would instruct cops to stop enforcing prostitution laws — a very important vote for sex workers rights. Check out for more info.

Choose or lose,

Friday, October 10, 2008

Fanning the Flames

As reported on Blurt: The Seven Days Staff Blog, Chanel designer Karl Lagerfeld has purchased a house in Vermont. I don't know much about Karl Lagerfeld, except what I learned from Margaret Cho's "I'm the One That I Want." If Lagerfeld is anything like Cho's impression, I hope I run into him around Burlington — a lot.

This clip starts with Lagerfeld and continues with Cho's famous "fag hag" bit. It's Friday — put in your ear buds and take well-deserved laugh break. (For a visual of Lagerfeld, check out Blurt.)

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Political Power Play

The New York Post reported yesterday that a group of Dominatrixes is putting together a political action committee (DomPAC) to lobby lawmakers to rewrite prostitution laws to protect BDSM practices. Since BDSM for cash doesn't include "sex" per se, DomPAC is hoping to have the laws written more clearly, thereby saving them from raids and prosecution. The Post says the Dommes involved hope this step leads to eventual unionization, benefits and 401(k)s.

I'm willing to bet these ladies can make a pretty convincing argument...

Monday, September 08, 2008

Pondering "Party Lesbians"

There's an interesting debate at Jezebel over whether opportunistic "bisexuals" are good or bad for the GLBT movement. The opportunists in question are people like Tila Tequila, the object of everyone's desires on MTV's bisexual-themed dating show, A Shot At Love With Tila Tequila, and Katy Perry, the singer who's responsible for the 2008 pop hit "I Kissed A Girl." (Lyrics: I kissed a girl and I liked it / The taste of her cherry Chapstick / I kissed a girl just to try it / Hope my boyfriend don't mind it.)

The idea is that these "party lesbians" have used their bisexuality (or, at least their healthy curiosity of the opposite sex) to further their careers — and make more men like them. The same could be said for Britney's and Christina's on-stage kissing with Madonna at the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards.

Jezebel asks, does "the presence of someone like Tila Tequila create more awareness of the sexuality spectrum and as a result, more understanding? Or is it just a spectacle that ultimately belittles what real lesbians and bisexuals go through?"

First of all, I take offense to how the question is phrased. Who's to say Tila Tequila isn't a "real" bisexual? If we have to live in a world with labels, the least we can do is trust people to pick their own.

As for the real meat of the issue, as nauseating as these pop culture phenomena are, I think they do serve some positive purpose in the GLBT movement — mainly, visibility and acceptance from the younger generation who will hopefully grow up to be more tolerant.

For those right-wing conservatives who would use these bits of alternative pop culture against the GLBT movement, I would remind them that people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. Just turn on the television and you'll see countless depictions of "straight hedonism" — and they wouldn't want all heterosexual people to judged upon those depictions, right? Plus, television and other media are also depicting a more ho-hum view of queer culture with story lines about loving gay families, etc.

Do I like Tila Tequila? No. Do I think she should be able to show her sexuality in any way she pleases? Yes. It makes me very nervous when a person or movement tries to tell a group of people how to — or how not to — behave.

I had the pleasure of seeing Leslie Feinberg speak at UVM some years ago, and he said something that I'll never forget. He reminded the crowd that when you're going to bat for civil rights, you're "only as strong as the people on your picket lines." Meaning, your movement includes e-v-e-r-y-b-o-d-y who is representing it — whether that be a gay family with 2.5 kids, a Volvo and white picket fence or Tila Tequila. Than again, has Tila done any kind of activism? Is her television show "activism"?

What do you think?


Friday, August 29, 2008

McCain Taps VP Pick. Really?

If you hadn't heard yet, McCain has chosen Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to be his running mate. As the reports poured in all over the Internet, my favorite take was on Yahoo — they reported that McCain "tapped" Palin to be his vice presidential running mate.

Hmm, let's check "tap" in the Urban Dictionary:

Having sex with a woman.

1. If I could just tap that ass once...
2. I tapped that ass and it was great.

I wasn't aware that McCain could "tap" anything anymore...

Monday, August 11, 2008

I love The Onion

The Onion takes a crack at Cosmopolitan and its neverending quest to teach women how to please their men. (Video is mostly work friendly, except for a couple "s"-bombs.)

'Cosmopolitan' Institute Completes Decades-Long Study On How To Please Your Man

Thanks, Boinkology.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

R.I.P Playgirl

The recent news of Playgirl ditching its print product and going all web has had the sex/media interwebs in a frenzy since last week — with most cheeky bloggers making jokes about how the gay community has kept the magazine afloat.

I had become bored of the speculation and news even before I had a chance to blog about it. But, my trusty tipsters — The House of LeMay — emailed me this link from yesterday. Queerty's news of the print magazine folding actually took an interesting approach and asked former editor Colleen Kane to respond to the claim that "Only gay men like Playgirl."  She says:

"I disagree that only gay men would ever want to look at pictures of naked men. This was a half-baked conjecture I heard over and over when I met new people and the subject of my job came up. To me it came off as a careless denial of women’s sexuality; it was equivalent to saying that women don’t fantasize.

I’ve also wondered if there weren’t some parallels between Playgirl’s struggle to find its identity and readership and the developing lack of cohesiveness among feminists, as the ranks divided into second and third waves, and the waves subdivided with different opinions about sex, porn, and, well, fun, and perhaps a greater proportion of women don’t identify as feminist."

Indeed. Although I never picked up a copy of Playgirl, I'm sad to see it go — after reading Kane's argument, I would have bought it just to prove her point (then given it to my gay friends).


Thursday, July 31, 2008

These make me happy.

Today I bring you two videos, both suggested by Lumpesse.

First, check out Jon Stewart's commentary on the House Armed Services Personnel Subcommittee's hearing on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."  I love his crack about Elaine Donnelly's pink triangle blouse — genius. This vid is work friendly (unless you work for a bunch of conservatives).



And, secondly, here's a rap about sexuality by Athens Boys Choir. ABC isn't an entire choir, but a transsexual man living in the deep south with a sense of humor and a message. This vid doesn't have any nudity, but it does have some language not suited for the work zone.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Have We Learned Nothing?

I was reading one of my favorite smart-ass, salacious blogs yesterday (, and I was surprised to find info about a new gender study conducted right here in Vermont! Jennifer Sellers, an assistant professor of psychology at Green Mountain College, was the lead author of the study.

Sellers and her team asked 95 students to watch videos of four married couples talking. Some students watched videos where the woman was verbally assertive in various situations and some students watched men be more verbally assertive in the same scenarios. To my horror, the students looked more favorably upon relationships where the woman was the verbally submissive partner (for example, in one of the videos, the verbally submissive female throws a dish towel down and leaves the kitchen when angry, rather than communicating with her partner). Further horrifying, the students saw the less verbal men as inferior. So, I guess we still think men should wear the pants?

I'm so happy to live in my cozy, liberal Burlington bubble, and this shit is a little too close to home. Like Jezebel says, "If students in Vermont are stuck thinking that women can be seen but not heard and that a real man is always dominant over his wife, what hope is there for the rest of the country?"

You can read more about the study at

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

New York State of Mind

Timeouttotal_2 A friend called me from New York City yesterday and told me to check out Time Out New York's latest sex issue online, particularly the "Who Just Had Sex?" quiz.

Brilliant! Time Out collected twelve photos of hipsters people who either just had sex or just went for a run — and you have to decide who's who.

I did horribly — I only got 50% correct.

Take the quiz here and report back on your score.

Bon chance,

Monday, September 17, 2007

I Concur

Sethrogan Earlier this month MSNBC named the top seven unlikely sex symbols for 2007. Happily, my summer crush, Seth Rogan, made the list. I was a fan of Freaks and Geeks, but when I saw him in The Forty-Year-Old Virgin and this summer in Knocked Up —  I realized what a hottie he had become.

Also making the list were Peter Dinklage, the little person from The Station Agent, Wanda Sykes, Tilda Swinton, Dame Judi Dench, Paul Giamatti and Tina Fey. (Is she really "unlikely?")

What do you think of the list? Any unlikely sex symbols you'd like to add? What about Vincent D'Onofrio? Purrrr.....

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Introducing Rick & Steve

Logo (MTV's gay stepchild) launched a new animated series in July called "Rick & Steve: The Happiest Gay Couple in All the World." Critics are calling "Rick & Steve" a gay "South Park" — an apt comparison, indeed. In the same way that "South Park" twists cultural stereotypes into shocking comedic genius, "Rick & Steve" derives its humor from the perceptions and labels found within the queer community (and, the animation is about as "good").

The most jolting joke so far occurs when the surly vegetarian butch lesbian announces, "Hey, Rolaids" when an HIV-positive man in a wheelchair comes through the door. Get it? "Roll Aids?"

Funny? You be the judge:

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