My Tattoo Story

Tattoo story time! I realized I’ve never shared my ink all in one place, so here goes!

Tattoo #5: The Dark Mark. Slytherin here. Stay off my bad side 

tat 5

 

Tattoo #4: A portrait piece of a grizzly bear; my spirit animal. He represents strength, confidence, and bravery.

tat 4

 

 

Tattoo #3: The tribal Alaskan salmon. This one I got after I graduated from IU. It represents persistence, instinct, and determination. My closest friends know that story.

 

tat 3

 

 

Tattoo #2: a trumpet with lyrics from “bittersweet symphony;” my theme song. I played trumpet middle school through college, so that makes sense. I got this one on my 24th bday.

 

tat 2

 

 

Tattoo #1: I got this one with a friend summer of 2008 in Bloomington. I’m a Scorpio. A double Scorpio, actually. It was an easy first tat.

 

tat 1

 

I was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska so I like my ink to reflect that. I love fun “just because” tats, but I prefer mine to have a direct connection to me. What to get next? Hmmm…

Advertisements

Welcome Home, Lil Nas X!

Lil Nas X surprised the world by coming out on the last day of Pride Month, and to that, I say “hell yeah!” 

Being completely transparent with all of you, readers, I had no idea who Lil Nas X was until about the second week of June. I’m not one to turn on the radio, EVER, so I tend to miss the Top 40 trends unless they’re being discussed on one of the many podcasts I enjoy. 

Old Town Road began to haunt my earbuds and speakers after I stumbled across a clip on my Instagram feed; probably some trade twerking to the song, I’m sure. From that moment on I’ve been listening to the track on repeat and have added it to my overall music rotation. Also – I finally got a chance to sit with his latest project, 7, and have been digging it more and more with each listen. 

Here are the tweets Nas X shared:

nasx tweet 1

nasx tweet 2

(X highlights Pride colors on the cover of his EP, 7.)

 

I connect with his first tweet so deeply. I vividly remember the night I decided to come out to my closest friends and family. I was away at my first semester of college in Indiana and they were four hours behind in Alaska; MySpace was the main social girl back then, Facebook was still blooming, so I wasn’t creating any epic posts back in 2005. 

The email I sent to my inner circle had a similar tone as Lil Nax X’s tweet: “Hey, this is me. We can be cool, or y’all can have a nice life without me.” I won’t get too much into comparing my coming out to Lil Nas X’s because this is his moment; and what a moment it is! You’ll hear more about my coming out story on a future episode of my podcast, Thanks for Coming

Nax X also encouraged us all to listen to the lyrics of the track, C7osure (You Like) closely:

“True say

I want and I need

To let go

Use my time to be free

It’s like it’s always what you like

It’s always what you like

Why it’s always what you like?

It’s always what you like, huh

Ain’t no more actin’, man that forecast say I should just let me grow

No more red light for me, baby, only green, I gotta go

Pack my past up in the back, oh, let my future take a hold

This is what I gotta do, can’t be regretting when I’m old

Brand new places I’ll choose and I’ll go, I know

Embracing this news I behold unfolding

I know, I know, I know it don’t feel like it’s time

But I look back at this moment, I’ll see that I’m fine

I know, I know, I know it don’t feel like it’s time

I set boundaries for myself, it’s time to cross the line

True say

I want and I need

To let go

Use my time to be free

It’s like it’s always what you like

It’s always what you like

Why it’s always what you like?

It’s always what you like, huh

Ain’t no more actin’, man that forecast say I should just let me grow

No more red light for me, baby, only green, I gotta go

Pack my past up in the back, oh, let my future take a hold

This is what I gotta do, can’t be regretting when I’m old”

Source: LyricFind

In the end, Lil Nas X was ready to live his truth, out and proud. Not only is he making waves on the country charts – after all that controversy and ignorance he faced – as a black man, but now he’s facing the hip-hop/rap part of the industry. We’ve seen queer artists break the mold in other areas of music, but hip-hop and rap historically have been tougher audiences for queer performers to capture. While toxic masculinity is definitely a thing, and we won’t dive into that today, there has been an outpouring of support and love shown by peers of X online. This makes me very happy.

One last note for all you readers as more comes out about Lil Nas X, queerness in hip-hop/rap, sexuality and representation:

Continue to love and support the artists and music you love. If somehow you’re reading this blog and don’t fully support LGBTQIA+ rights, I charge you to be open and move in a more positive direction. Now that the rapper has come out as gay doesn’t make the song any less of a hit, or him any less of a human being. 

Some of you have children, and I KNOW the kids absolutely go crazy for Old Town Road. Don’t let your ignorance steal that joy from your kids or yourselves! Let the damned song play, keep YOUR mind out of the gutter, and don’t form narratives that aren’t present because you may view the artist a little differently. 

Allies! Continue to share the love with Lil Nas X, support his art, and help people understand how big a deal this is. We are in a time where discussion on topics of race, inclusion, and equal human rights is of the utmost importance – especially for queer people of color. The work will never be done, so let’s continue to lift Nas X up on this new adventure. 

Thanks for stopping by everyone! I’m going to listen to “7” again 🙂

More on the Country removing “Old Town Road” from the Billboard charts.

 

3 Things I’m Obsessing Over

Hello! It’s been a minute huh? We’ve been pretty busy here at Gays in the Life headquarters, but I had to pop in and share 3 things I’m currently obsessing over:

 

 

marie kondo

First. Marie Kondo and her Netflix show Tidying Up flew into our lives and completely turned it upside down. I’ve always been great at going through my closet and donating items I no longer needed, but the Marie and her KonMari method helped us take this process to the next level. S and I quickly dove into every closet, cabinet, and drawer and ended up completely reorganizing our condo. We feel light these days! And it’s all thanks to Marie Kondo.

 

Becoming MO

Second. Michelle Obama’s November 2018 release, Becoming, absolutely stole my heart. I enjoyed the book via Audible and loved every second of every hour of Michelle’s voice in my ears. Getting to learn about the little girl who became the social and political force that is Michelle Obama lifted my spirit and felt like a giant hug. She shared wisdom, love, and an honest perspective of what it’s like in her shoes. Being an African-American male, it didn’t take much for me to connect to this book. Michelle shared struggles and triumphs that all black people experience. The better part of this point, however, is that the stories shared can resonate with any reader with a heart and an open mind.

 

Troye Sivan

Last. Troye Sivan’s Bloom is contagious. The Australian singer’s second studio album was released August 2018, but have only just now hit my earbuds. I can’t share how many times I’ve let this album play on repeat on commutes, during gym sessions, or cleaning sprees, but the number is pretty damned high. My favorite song is the title track, Bloom, and my second favorite is What A Heavenly Way to Die – so beautiful and moody, that one. Give Bloom a spin if you haven’t already! You won’t be disappointed.

Flight Prep

fullsizerender

Only a couple more days until we’re headed to Los Angeles and Seattle! “Vacation. All I ever wanted. Vacation. Had to get away.” Shouts to The Go-Go’s. Here are a handful of my must have travel items for any flight:

  • Reading material. Part of my airport ritual is grabbing a men’s magazine of some sort – GQ, Details, Esquire, etc – to read on the plane. This time I’ll also have my kindle in tow. I’ve started a couple books recently and want to make sure I finish them.
  • Kick-ass earbuds and your phone/iPod. I love my Marshall Mode earbuds that I got for Christmas. I’m excited to try these babies out on a flight out west. I definitely started a California playlist, but never got around to finishing it. There’s still time, I suppose, but I’m generally down for any mellow vibe, curated playlist on Spotify.
  • Oil-absorbing sheets. Even on a flight, you won’t catch me slippin’. Packing my oil cleansing supplies in my cabin baggage would obviously be too much. On longer flights, before landing, I’ll go to the restroom and use these sheets to quickly get rid of any excess shine without stealing away all the moisture from my skin. Target brand is just fine.
  • A pair of casual shades to hide tired eyes. My shades are prescription, but if you go light on the shade, you also can use this excuse without looking too shady in between connections. Or maybe you just don’t give a %&#$. That’s more than cool, too.
  • ChapStick. DUH. Don’t have chapped lips on a flight. You’ll hate yourself.
  • Shooters. Yes. You can pack shooters in your carry-on luggage. They’re under the three ounce liquid limit and you save about $7 on overpriced airline booze.

What will I be wearing? Well, this flight is at 6 o’clock in the morning. A hoodie, a couple bracelets – I’ve noticed I always have on a bracelet – Nike sneakers, some trendy joggers, and a neutral messenger bag to tie it all together and hold my light jacket.

 

 

 

We’re Vinyl Queens Now.

 

 

(We opened a present to ourselves a little early. A record player and a mini stack of vinyl!)

This will be amazing in the loft once we have that space back. We always have music playing  around the condo. Our loft area upstairs is used as our office and chill area. Having music filling the high ceilings will be a great addition to the vibes up there.

We’ve got Solange’s A Seat At The Table spinning tonight.

This is My Song — BayArt

“Without music, life would be a mistake.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols “Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent” ― Victor Hugo Now, how about photography? Images are much more than a simple record. Photography speaks to the best and most generous part of our…

via This is My Song — BayArt