Godless Perverts Story Hour on YouTube!

The Godless Perverts Story Hour that was livestreamed as part of the Freethought Blogs Con online conference was also recorded, and is available on YouTube!

You can watch and hear readings and performances from Greta Christina (“To Give Itself Pleasure”), Virgie Tovar (“Brother David”), Simon Sheppard (“The Tibetan Book of the Fag”), Juba Kalamka (“Jubilee Showcase (for Aaron Muhammad)”), David Fitzgerald (“There’s Something About Paul”), Dana Fredsti (excerpt from “Champagne!”), and Kate Sirls (“One of Those Girls”). We also had Q&A after the performances, and that’s on the video as well.

The video quality isn’t super-mega-awesome, what with it being a recording of a livestream and all. But it’s not bad, and you get a good sense of the flavor and energy of the show.

We hope to be posting all the individual performances as their own short YouTube videos soon, in case there’s one particular one you want to link to (or want to watch over and over and over again…) In the meantime — enjoy!

If you want to be notified about all our Godless Perverts events, sign up for our email mailing list, or follow us on Twitter at @GodlessPerverts. You can also sign up for the Bay Area Atheists/ Agnostics/ Humanists/ Freethinkers/ Skeptics Meetup page, and be notified of all sorts of godless Bay Area events — including the Godless Perverts. Our next Godless Perverts Social Club will be on Tuesday, March 4 at 7:00 pm at Wicked Grounds, 289 8th Street in San Francisco (near Civic Center BART). Hope to see you there!

“Is He Gay or Straight?” Bisexual Eradication in “Modern Family”

modern family posterIn the last few weeks, I’ve started intermittently watching the TV show “Modern Family.” There’s a certain amount that I like about it, as well as a certain amount that I don’t. (Often the case with fluffy mainstream-ish pop-culture entertainment. I want it to divert and distract me, but it often winds up annoying me and tying my brain into knots. Fluffy mainstream-ish pop-culture entertainment largely exists to reinforce cultural norms — that’s what makes it fluffy and comforting and mainstream — and I generally don’t find cultural norms comforting, they generally annoy me and tie my brain into knots.)

So I was watching the “Yard Sale” episode (I’m watching the show out of order in syndicated re-runs) — and I wanted to throw my drink at the screen. And I’m not even drinking these days. I wanted to mix myself a drink, just so I could throw it at the screen.

The plot line that was making me mad: Teenage daughter Alex has a new boyfriend, Michael, who she brings to the extended family’s yard sale. Her mom Claire is worried that Michael is gay, and she calls in the gay uncles Cam and Mitchell for a consultation on the matter: the three of them observe Michael’s stereotypically gay behavior, and agree that he’s gay. We see a scene in which Michael is alone with Alex, continuing to act stereotypically gay, but getting very defensive when she asks him point-blank if he’s gay or not.

And for the 787,266,456th time in my pop-culture viewing life, I wanted to scream, “Did anyone consider the possibility that he might be bisexual?”

Why are “gay” and “straight” the only options here? When the grownups decided that Michael was probably queer, why did that automatically rule out the possibility that he might be genuinely into their daughter/niece? Why did nobody consider the possibility that he might be a queeny queer guy who likes girls?

I have known some very queeny bisexual men. I have known some very dykey bisexual women. I know some very queeny bisexual men in serious or primary relationships with women, and some very dykey bisexual women in serious or primary relationships with men. (I’ve also known some queeny straight men and some dykey straight women, but that’s a post for a different day.) Why does tagging someone as “probably queer” automatically mean that if they’re dating someone of the opposite gender, they’re deceiving themselves or flat-out lying?

For the record, I do think gaydar is a thing. It’s not a magical thing, it’s not like some psychic connection queers have with each other: it’s more of an unconscious adding-up of lots of personal and cultural signifiers, it’s very culturally determined and it does go wrong. But yes, I think queers probably are, in general, better at figuring out who is and isn’t queer. (Although I’d be very interested to see research testing this theory.)

But queer guys can like girls. Queer girls can like guys. Even very classically queer girls and guys can like girls and guys. And we’re not even getting into people who are gender-queer, gender-fluid, or don’t identify on a gender binary… and who have all sorts of orientations in terms of what genders or lack thereof they’re attracted to. Not to mention people who are traditionally gendered, but who can be attracted to people who aren’t. Queerness comes in lots of different flavors: simple homosexuality is only one of many.

I think this bugged me even more than it might have because “Modern Family” is supposedly all about breaking down standard gender and family expectations. It’s supposedly all about how modern American families aren’t Ozzie and Harriet any more (not that they ever were): they’re commonly blended, multi-racial, mixed-generational, adoptive, and/or same-sex. And yet here it is, reinforcing the tired old notion that everyone is neatly divided into two groups, gay and straight, and never the twain shall meet. Eradicating even the possibility of bisexuality along the way.

One of the things that sucks most about being bisexual is not being recognized by either straight or gay people. It sucks having it assumed that having sex with both women and men means, at best, that you’re confused or experimenting or trying to find yourself. It sucks having it assumed that if you’re in an opposite-sex relationship, you’ve sown your wild oats (and have renounced any right to be part of the queer community; that if you’re in a same-sex relationship, you’ve finally found your true gay self. It sucks having past relationships seen as false, depending on whether they were with the same gender you’re with right now.

It sucks to be treated as invisible. It sucks worse to have even the possibility of who you are be eradicated.

(And yes, I know. This is fluffy mainstream-ish pop-culture entertainment. It’s just replacing an old set of cultural norms with a new one. It still bugged me.)

Atheists at the LGBT Pride Parade 2013 – Pictures! — UPDATED!

UPDATE: There are now pictures of me and Ingrid! They’re appended at the end of the post.

This was definitely the most fun I’ve ever had sitting around in the sun for hours waiting to walk down the street.

Last Sunday’s LGBT Pride Parade in San Francisco was the largest ever, by a considerable margin — estimated at about 1.5 million people. I’m not surprised — I’ve been to a lot pf Pride Parades in my time, and I’ve never been to one this ginormous. Clearly, the whole same-sex marriage thing had everyone who cared even remotely about LGBT rights and pride and stuff turning out to celebrate.

I was marching with the atheist contingent — and I would not have missed it for the world. Even with the whole “waiting for the entire San Francisco Bay Area queer and queer-supportive community to march down Market Street until it was our turn” thing. Here are some pictures of the fun. Hope to see you there next year!

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So happy to see Heina from Skepchick at the parade, sporting a “Happy Heathen” sign! And she looked mega-awesome. This picture does not do her justice. (There are better pictures of her in the Meetup page photo gallery, along with some other great shots.)

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David Byars, with his ever-popular “Leviticus Says… Crazy Shit” sign. Always a crowd-pleaser.

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Amanda, with her “Make Love Not Bibles” sign, sporting a T-shirt with a Godzilla-like dinosaur breathing rainbow-colored fire. Because, why not?

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“Gay and Good Without God.” Yup, that pretty much sums it up. [Read more...]

Fashion Friday on Saturday: Deena and Gunner’s Wedding

It’s been a while since I’ve done a Fashion Friday post, and this one seemed especially pertinent right now, what with it being LGBT Pride Weekend and the same-sex marriage and all.

Ingrid and I went to a wedding a few weeks ago that was a fashion extravaganza. Our friend and hairdresser Deena married her sweetie Gunner at Lake Merritt in Oakland… and the guests turned out in splendid form. The fashion struck this note that resonates strongly with me: a blend/ balance of dressiness and formality with joyous, giddy, non-conformist exuberance. It’s a hard balance to strike — dressiness and formality pretty much by definition mean “conformity to certain social norms.” But they managed it… and then some. These are theater people, and hairdressing people, and long-time participants in the queer community, and they totally get it about using fashion and style to celebrate, to communicate, and to express both yourself and your awareness of the occasion. I think the guests wanted to recognize the specialness of the occasion with the dressiness… and also wanted to recognize the specialness and uniqueness of this couple and their vivid, vibrant, outrageous styles and lives.

So without further ado — Deena and Gunner’s wedding!

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Jordan and his husband. Lots of amazing menswear at this wedding. As I’ve written before, menswear is really hard to be exuberant and joyful in. It’s especially hard to be be exuberant and joyful and at the same time dressy and formal in. But lots of guys at this wedding hit it out of the park. I think the whole “being openly queer, and therefore not being worried about people thinking you’re queer” thing helps.

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Color-coordinated butch-femme realness!

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Pink hair and leopard print jacket. Always appropriate. [Read more...]

SCOTUS, Same-Sex Marriage, and Admitting When I’m Wrong

Since I’m a big proponent of admitting when you’re wrong, I feel that I should say this today:

I was one of the people objecting to bringing same-sex marriage to SCOTUS. I was one of the people saying, “It’s too soon, this court sucks, we have to wait until we have a better court, this will set a bad precedent that we’ll have to live with for years.”

I was wrong.

And I have rarely been more happy to be wrong.

What the SCOTUS Ruling on DOMA and Prop 8 Means

Such good news to wake up to! DOMA has been (basically) overturned, Prop 8 has been (effectively) overturned! Same-sex marriage now recognized by the United States Federal government, and legal in California!

So what does this mean? It’s a somewhat legally complicated decision in some ways, and the “standing” issue is particularly tricky to parse. So here is my complex, nuanced, detailed analysis of the Supreme Court’s decisions today.

Here’s how this translates:

“Fuck you, religious right.

“Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you.

“Other people’s love lives are none of your business. Other people’s sex lives are none of your business. You have your collective head entirely up your collective ass. The fact that you think other people’s loves lives and sex lives are any of your business, the fact that you think they hurt you in any way, is just pathetic and sad. It has nothing to do with you. And it’s a sign of just how twisted and small your lives are that you want to squelch other people’s lives and loves in order to preserve your own rigid, backwards ideas about gender. It’s a sign of just how twisted and small your lives are that you want to force your ideas of a petty, vengeful god obsessed with the details of people’s sex lives onto everyone around you. So try minding your own beeswax for a change. History is going to look back and see you for the short-sighted, cold-hearted, narrow-minded bigots that you are. This country is moving forward — this world is moving forward — and you are being left in the sad, sad dust. To choke.

And queer people — go party! Have an awesome Pride Day!”

Atheists In SF Pride Parade, Sunday June 30!

Join the Atheist/Humanist Contingent in Gay Pride Parade on Sunday, June 30th! I’ll be there, and I hope you can be there, too! This is open to folks of all sexual orientations, and straight supporters are welcomed and encouraged to participate.

Again this year, local atheist groups from around the Bay Area will be forming an Atheist/Humanist Contingent in the Pride Parade. Last year we had over 60 people, and it was oodles of fun. Lots of love from the crowd. And it’s a great opportunity to show that we can be good without God… and to show how much this community cares about homophobia. Remember that the arguments against LGBT rights are rooted in religion, just like the attacks on women’s rights. Let’s support our natural allies.

We’re expected to assemble at 11:30 on Beale between Howard & Folsom in downtown SF. Although we know we will wait quite awhile, please be there by 12:00. Our lineup number is 235. If you have trouble finding us, ask for our lineup number and name.

Here are some pictures from previous years. If you think you’re going to come, RSVP on the Meetup event.

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Hope to see you there!

Please Sign Petition Against Nigeria’s “Jail the Gays” Law

In case you haven’t heard: Nigeria has just passed a hideously draconian anti-gay law. it makes it illegal to register gay clubs or organizations. It makes it illegal to even speak in favor of gay rights — anyone who abets a gay person, witnesses a same sex marriage, or advocates for LGBT rights is in violation of the law. It bans gay marriage, obviously. And it sets prison terms of up to 10 years for offenders — 14 years for people violating the law against same-sex marriage.

There’s a petition up, petitioning Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan to not sign this bill. Please sign it. I just did.

(Hat tip to Yemisi Ilesanmi at Yemmynisting for getting the word out about this.)

Godless Perverts Social Meetup Now A Regular Thing! Next One This Tuesday 5/21!

Reminder: The Godless Perverts Social Meetup is now a regular thing! And the next one is this Tuesday!

Wicked Grounds iconJoin us every third Tuesday of the month at Wicked Grounds, San Francisco’s renowned BDSM-themed coffee house, for an evening of conversation and socializing. Community is one of the reasons we started Godless Perverts. There are few enough places to land when you decide that you’re an atheist; far fewer if you’re also LGBT, queer, kinky, poly, trans, or are just interested in sexuality. All orientations, genders, and kinks (or lack thereof) welcome. There’s no admission, but we ask that you buy food and drink at the counter, or make a donation to the venue.

The Godless Perverts Social Meetup will be every third Tuesday at Wicked Grounds, 289 – 8th Street at Folsom (near Civic Center BART). The next one: May 21st, 7-9 pm. Hope to see you there!

“She loved being bent over”: Excerpt from “Bending: Dirty Kinky Stories About Pain, Power, Religion, Unicorns, & More”

Bending coverExcerpt from “Bending,” the erotic novella that’s the foundation of “Bending: Dirty Kinky Stories About Pain, Power, Religion, Unicorns, & More.” Now for sale on Kindle, Nook, and Smashwords! Content note: Kinky sex.

*****

She loved being bent over. More than any fiddling that might precede it, more than any fumbling sex act that might follow. The moment of being bent over was like a sex act to Dallas, like foreplay and climax blended into one swooning, too-short moment. A hand on her neck, pressing gently but firmly downward, felt like a tongue on her clit; a voice in her ear, telling her calmly and reasonably to bend over and pull down her pants, felt like a cock in her cunt.

She always masturbated in that position. She sometimes masturbated by getting in that position and then doing nothing else. She would stand by the arm of her sofa, by the side of the bed, at the edge of the kitchen table; and she would bare her ass, slowly, and slowly bend herself over… and then she would stand there, bent over, hands on her hips or behind the small of her back, thinking. Thinking about what she looked like, thinking about what she felt like. Thinking about the feel of the air on the skin of her exposed ass. Thinking about hands on her thighs, paddles on her bottom, dicks and dildos in her asshole and her cunt. Thinking about what a dirty hungry girl she was. Thinking, until she came.

The furnishings that crowded Dallas’s apartment would be a dead giveaway to anyone who knew what to look for. Sofas and armchairs with wide, firm backs and arms; tables and dressers that were all waist height; a small but varied collection of hairbrushes, vintage and modern. A padded table she had had made for her, its height easily adjustable so her head and torso could be raised or lowered as the mood required. It could pass for a sewing or card table. She called it the bending table. She tried not to use it too often, for fear of using up all the magic.

It was hard sometimes. She saw a video once, where a man bent a woman over a toilet and shoved her head in it while he fucked her in the ass. She thought she would pass out. She watched the scene ten times, pale, wet between her legs, a shaking hand on the remote. She watched it ten times, and then took the video back to the rental place and never watched it again. It made her stomach hurt, the thought that this act had happened — literally, physically, factually happened — to someone who wasn’t her.

She did have lovers. Many of them over the years. Dozens if you counted them all, more if you counted very carefully. More than one of these lovers had accused Dallas of being a black hole, an accusation she felt was deeply unfair, not to mention inaccurate. It wasn’t that she didn’t want to give anything. She simply felt that what she did have to give was sufficient. Her pain, her submission, her ass in the air presented like a jewel on a satin pillow, her willingness to do almost anything a person could do in that position… Dallas felt that all of this was a tremendous gift. It wasn’t that she didn’t want to give anything. It was that she had yet to find a lover who wanted what she had to give. She found this tremendously annoying. Hurtful, too, for sure, and frustrating at times to the point of despair, but mostly just annoying as hell.

And the accusation — “You only like to do one thing” — completely baffled her. It wasn’t one thing, she argued to herself on her way home from a particularly frustrating squabble. It wasn’t one thing, any more than so-called regular sex was one thing. Being bent over was a whole field of things, an entire genus, with a zillion details that could vary. Wriggling and weeping versus serene submission; being gently guided to the edge of the bed versus being shoved onto the floor; jeans and cotton panties yanked down to her knees versus a flimsy skirt slowly pulled up to reveal her sluttily un-pantied bottom… these were distinct sex acts, obviously and self-evidently, as different as, say, intercourse and oral sex seemed to be for the rest of the world. The portion of the world that she’d been fucking, anyway.

Certain details about her lovers didn’t much matter to her. Male, female, neither or both, any of these were fine. Age, race, height, weight, occupation or lack thereof, smoking habits, voting habits, all those things that kept showing up in the personal ads; none of them made much difference to Dallas. Lately, it was beginning to make less and less difference whether she even found them attractive. It was beginning to matter only whether they were willing.

For example.


[Read more...]