Gert is a 20 year old boy from Tallinn, Estonia. He is a high school student, eventually he wants to do something related with fashion. “I love fashion, it’s my life.” I believe him, he’s a very stylish guy. Even though Gert knew he liked guys when he was 13-14 years old, he just recently came out as gay back in January when he posted the following on his Facebook wall: “Well. Yeah, I’m gay. Who cares? I’m still a person? I have the exact same rights as you.” He told me that his sister came out of the closet first, then he did… When he was young he “was very much like a girl, I loved to play with Barbies, I was in the company of girls during school…and my sister was like a boy and she loved playing with cars…” We think that’s just adorable!
As I was chatting with Gert, he pointed out that he was a “special person” because he was born deaf. “My family are all deaf too. He adds, “I can’t hear music or when people talk to each other, I can only hear noise, I can feel vibrations and I can read lips slowly.” So, when Gert goes out to dance “I feel the rhythm of the music, but I do not understand the words…” I found this fascinating and surprising, I couldn’t stop asking him questions about being deaf.
The first thing that he does when he wakes up is make “the best coffee,” he usually grinds the beans, then he uses a coffee press. His prefect date would be “going to the beach or to an outdoor cafe.” He likes guys who are more mature than him, sweet, considerate, smart and stylish — this boy has standards, as he should. When it’s time for Gert to go to bed he wears shorts or just underwear. “I’d love to be naked, though, somehow I dont have a private room…” Gert’s future plans are to go abroad and to travel to the ‘fashion capitals,’ Estonia is such a small country and will always be home, but there’s not many activities to do.”
He used his Samsung phone to take some selfies for us, he took most of them in his high school, in the classroom and in the bathroom, then he got home and into bed where he got even more comfortable. He looks very sweet wearing a GAYLETTER t-shirt — he insisted he wanted the fit to be oversized, I have to agree with him, it suits him very well.
Devin Wallace illustrates the night's best moments.
What can we say about the Oscars that hasn’t been said by every other two-bit blog and website in the last 18 hours? We enjoyed the show, it was probably the funniest Oscars since Chris Rock hosted 5 years ago. Ellen DeGeneres was a great host. I know some people think differently, but they’re stoopid. This is one of the hardest gigs on TV and Ellen pulled it off brilliantly. She was quick on her feet, silly, and many times hilarious. The pizza delivery guy was by far the highlight of the night. Seeing all those A-listers chowing down on a slice of greasy pepperoni pizza was just great (although Leonardo DiCaprio did himself no favors by refusing a slice: you too good for pizza hey Romeo!?)
We asked our friend Devin Wallace to illustrate some of the highlights of the night. He did a wonderful job, as always.
Check ‘em out.
Ellen in her Wizard of Oz outfit.
Liza with a ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ…(someone poke her, she seems to have nodded off again).
Brad and Angie making out. Ewww, pizza breath.
Leo looking old as fuck.
Jared Leto may have won an Academy Award for his role in The Dallas Buyers Club, but his hair was the real night’s winner.
So pretty, oh so pretty.
Lupita Nyong’o. Pretty in Prada blue.
By far the best speech of the night. She is so adorable.
Cate Blanchett tells us the world is round.
Matthew McCounghey thanks god and hardly anyone claps. Guess this ain’t the Grammy’s.
Our official guide to NYC's Oscars viewing events
A few fun facts about the Academy: of the 6000 members 94% are white, 77% are male, only 14% are under the age of 50 and the average age is 62. So there are a few things I’m not into about this crowd, and somehow they decide who wins the film industry’s biggest awards. But who cares — it’s Oscar night: the perfect excuse to get drunk with strangers and yell at the television. (At least until the following night when Rupaul’s Drag Race is on).
The Oscars are usually pretty gay, but they’ve really outdone themselves in 2014. Bette Midler, Karen O and Idina Menzel are performing, Judy Garland’s daughters are singing a tribute to The Wizard of Oz and Ellen Degeneres is hosting. Without further ado, here are our nominees for New York’s finest Oscars viewing parties.
NYC nightlife legend and self-proclaimed “hardest working middle-aged man in show business” Murray Hill is back to host his annual Oscar night extravaganza. Prepare for Hollywood’s night of nights to be completely destroyed by Murray’s caustic wit, hilarious commentary and spot-on celebrity impressions. There’ll also be trivia, fake red carpets, guest stars and competitions for best dressed, worst dressed and most drunk. We’ll be pissed if we don’t win at least one of those.
$25 (plus $12 drink minimum), 7:30PM, Joe’s Pub, 425 Lafayette St. NY, NY.
“Whose careers will be made? Whose dreams will be dashed? Who cares! It’s the Oscars and you love it!” Get comfortable in Chelsea Cinemas as the oddly green-obsessed drag queen Hedda Lettuce hosts this commercial-free broadcast of the Academy Awards. All proceeds go to support future Riedel Dance Theater productions, plus you get unlimited popcorn and soda. Not sure what the alcohol situation is, so sneak in a hip flask just in case.
$21, 7:00PM, Chelsea Cinemas, 260 West 23rd St. NY, NY.
Don’t diss Stonewall — you wouldn’t be publicly holding hands with your boyfriend or teeing up Grindr orgies if it weren’t for this West Village institution. If you haven’t been before, and even if you have, Oscars night is your perfect excuse. The action kicks off at 6.30PM with the Red Carpet broadcast, performances by Chocolatina and Lavinia Draper, and our two favorite words: drink specials. After the award show there’ll be trivia, prizes and more performances. Did we mention best dressed wins a bar tab? You better turn it out.
FREE, 6:30PM, Stonewall Inn, 53 Christopher St. NY, NY.
Are you one of those annoying people that knows everything about movies? Here’s your chance to show off — Le Poisson Rouge have made Oscar night into a competition for their guests, with a multimedia trivia show throughout the broadcast. Drink up and nerd out!
$10 advance/$15 on the day, 5:30PM, Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleeker St. NY, NY.
We love wine and we love Brooklyn, so it figures this is one of our favorite NYC spots for dinner. Pop in on Oscar night where, for the fourth year running, Brooklyn Winery will be hosting their screening party in the Atrium and Parlor rooms. There’ll be delicious share platters and a special Oscars cocktail — but you’ll need to get in early if you want a seat.
FREE, 7:00PM, Brooklyn Winery, 213 North 8th St. BK, NY.
Think of yourself as a classy lady? This is where you’ll want to be: lording it high over all the Midtown plebs in New York’s “most glamorous” rooftop bar (don’t worry, there’ll be heating). Your $25 buys you panoramic city views, a big screen broadcast, food throughout the night and a goddam open bar. Get into it — but only wear your fanciest clothes. This is Midtown, bitch.
$25, 7:00PM, 230 Fifth, 230 Fifth Ave. NY, NY.
One of our favorite cinemas for a midnight movie is celebrating the Oscars on their big screen. You’ll get to yell at the screen in the comfort of Nitehawk’s lounges, while being served tableside food and beverages. But you better hurry up and put down your $25, these tickets will go fast.
$25, 6:30PM, Nitehawk Cinemas, 136 Metropolitan Ave. BK, NY.
They say eating is cheating, and while those red carpet bitches haven’t eaten in weeks to slip into their couture, we know you’ve spent winter sitting on your ass in a snuggie eating constantly just to get through the polar vortex. Continue that theme with KTCHN’s five course prix fixe menu! They’re paying tribute to the first ever Oscars in 1929, with the menu inspired by what was served on that very night, 86 years ago.
$75, 7:00PM, KTCHN, 508 West 42nd St. NY, NY.
Got buzzed at Sunday brunch and just want to keep rolling? Posh Bar in Hell’s Kitchen will keep you liquored up until their Oscars broadcast, with happy hour starting at the civilized hour of 3:00PM. They’ll have DJs, $3 beers and then at 11:00PM they’ll serve free pizza, that should help you get it together before work on Monday. How considerate.
FREE, 7:00PM, Posh Bar, 405 West 51st St. NY, NY.
Diane Von Furstenberg is a funny lady. I don't really consider her a great designer, but she's an entertaining, even inspiring personality. She has lived a seemingly blessed life: married to a prince, a star of Studio 54, and now a billionaire who's built an international business around a god damn clingy dress. I recently visited the exhibition 'Wrap 40: Celebrating the dress that started it all,' at LACMA in Los Angeles and took a few pics. I was impressed by the show, it's real splashy. They pulled no punches displaying over 100 dresses, along with Warhol's prints of Diane and photos of her by Chuck Close and many other artists.
With Navaridas+Deutinger, Ferenc Fehér, Niv Sheinfeld & Oren Laor.
There’s a lot of information to disseminate so I’ll get to the point. There’s a FREE night of Israeli and European dance at the Abrons Arts Center on February 28th and March 1st at 8:00PM — you just have to reserve tickets. We’re told one piece by two hot Israeli men, Niv Sheinfeld and Oren Laor, “brings it with a hot duet that involves nude partnering.” I saw a clip — it was hot! In addition there’s a lecture/performance piece titled Your Majesties by Austria’s Navaridas+Deutinger whereby Obama‘s acceptance speech at the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize ceremony is recited to “revive a piece of World History and reveal the underlying absurd vagaries of the text.” Saw a clip — I agree. The last piece is by Ferenc Fehér titled Stix 66, an “ultimatum to simplicity.” I absolutely love that. Ferenc is a Hungarian dance artist who claims “it is not movement but rather the state of the dancer that influences the viewer.” I didn’t see a clip but strongly agree. Sounds like a riveting night of performance. Act fast to reserve your free tickets, and see you at the Abrons.
The show runs from February 28 through March 1 at 8:00PM, Abrons Arts Center, 466 Grand St. NY, NY. For free ticket reservations click here.
Help raise money for the future of Haitian children's education
Let’s get serious for a moment, guys. Sometimes it’s hard to keep up with everything that’s going on in the world — Russia, Uganda, the Ukraine… and that’s just the first two months of 2014. It reminds you how stupidly lucky we all are: not only do most of us have enough money to eat and pay rent, we have so much of it that we stuff it down go-go boys’ jockstraps on the reg.
That’s why it’s important to share the love sometimes. Things still aren’t so great in Haiti — even before the 2010 earthquake there wasn’t enough food or access to education. To help change that, Brooklyn’s Jungle Designs have teamed up with Friends of Haiti NY to launch their Planting For Hope 2014 project. They’re travelling to the Haitian village of Bois-Tombe where they’ll spend a week with school-aged children developing a Learning Garden for their community.
But they need your assistance for plants, tools, landscaping and all the gardening things you forgot existed because you live in New York. Any Paypal donations are totally tax deductible and giving $100 or more will score you a drawing from the Haitian children you are helping. Now that’s one of a kind. Make sure you include the number of the drawing you desire, it’s located at the bottom left of the artwork on their site. Below are some examples of the children’s drawings.
A provocative follow-up to Queer Zines 1.
Printed Matter just released Queer Zines 2, a follow-up to the first volume (Queer Zines, Vol. 1). This second edition features a brand new selection of self-published work and over a dozen new essays, “with comprehensive bibliographies of more than 120 titles…,” containing writing by Bruce LaBruce, Edie Fake, K8 Hardy, Scott Treleaven, and many more. The graphic, fresh and provocative publication includes “both an expanded focus on overlooked ‘historical’ publications dating from the early 70s onward, as well as extensive entries charting a new generation of queer zinesters…” After closer inspection I was happy to find the publication easy to navigate and filled with striking and inspiring images with a common thread of rebellion.
To coincide with the launch of Queer Zines 2, they have created an elegant cardboard two volume boxed set with a screen printed slipcase. So, basically you get the first and second volume together in one box. These two publications have been “published in relation to the exhibition Queer Zines, presented in ‘The Temptation of AA Bronson’ at Witte de With Centre for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, 2013, and then at Printed Matter’s LA Art Book Fair in January 2014.”
If the smell of paper excites you as much as it does me, you’ll be excited to have a copy in your hands. Lets keep print alive. To purchase, click here.
Scenes from the second annual event at Radio Bushwick
'Brother's Sisters Sons & Daughters' is part of Barneys S/S '14 Campaign
I have been a fan of Bruce Weber‘s work for more than thirty years. From his portfolio of Olympic athletes shot for Interview Magazine in 1984 to his remarkable film Let’s Get Lost and on to his countless fashion editorials and ad campaigns for Ralph Lauren and the like. He can do no wrong by me. Bruce is legendary. He pulled out all the stops, using his diverse palette of talents to produce his latest campaign: Brother’s Sisters, Sons & Daughters for Barneys‘ Spring 2014 campaign shot with 17 disarming transgendered individuals. In addition to a classic print strategy the campaign also entails 4 short films directed by Weber that speaks to, and about, the beautiful lives of these brave individuals.
Weber shot the campaign in New York City with the “models” surrounded by family friends and loved ones. “By depicting these human connections Weber was able to represent both the struggle and triumphs a trans person may face in relation to their gender identity”
The campaign is in support of the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) and the The Center in NYC. Hats off to Barney’s for using this opportunity to raise awareness and funds for the trans community by donating 10% of all sales from its 11 flagship stores and barneys.com on Feb. 11th to the two aforementioned organizations. The executive director of the NCTE says it best: “Brother’s Sisters Sons & Daughters is a powerful statement about how much closer transgendered people are to full social acceptance and will push us that much closer.” The four shorts left me speechless, but in a good way. Have a watch below, I love love loved them.
“I Never Thought This Could Happen”
“Katie + Arin”
“Not Your Usual Bedtime Story”
The men’s underwear line YUASA's latest campaign
The New York City based men’s underwear and loungewear line YUASA started a new social media campaign a couple weeks ago called #hangloose. YUASA sent boxers out to a few of the top mens modeling agencies in NYC, including Wilhelmina, Red, Fusion and Re:Quest. They requested the agencies to take photos of some of their boys in the boxers. Then later YUASA posted the pics on their instagram (@yuasastudios).
Michael Yuasa, the founder of the company explained to me that “the hashtag is hangloose because your balls hang loose in boxers as opposed to briefs which they are held tight.” That’s a true statement, it’s also freeing to wear boxers, especially if they are as short and modern as these. The boxers are also perfect to wear as shorts, when it’s really hot out, I wore a black pair out last summer and I felt very comfortable.
Check out some of the models below wearing YUASA undergarments, they look very sexy wearing them (I dare you to try and look at the pics and not imagine their balls hanging loose). The boxers are available in a few different colors and you can purchase a pair at yuasastudios.com and at International Playground.