Martin D. Goodkin

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Gay, Poor Old Man

Life & Events > Happy Halloween October 31, 2021
 

Happy Halloween October 31, 2021



As far as I can remember I only got 'dressed' once for Halloween and that was when I worked for Wags in 1986--yes, I'm the 'cat' guy! And with me are two of the waitresses that I worked with.

In the upper right hand picture were taken at a bar that used to be on Davie Boulevard that was on the north side just west of I-95. It was a piano bar/nightclub and restaurant where I had my 1980 Leap Year birthday. The pictures were taken there during Halloween 1981.

The picture on the left is our local channel weather forecaster Bette Davis--yes, that's her name--she is really a delight and very accurate. This is her official weather report for Halloween this year!

I post this every year--read and enjoy--I edited it a bit.


Gay Holiday

IRENE SAYS IT BETTER THAN I DO! HALLOWEEN THE LGBTQ HOLIDAY!

Halloween: Our American LGBTQ Holiday

by Irene Monroe on October 26, 2016

Halloween is America’s gay holiday.

In the words of the lesbian poet and scholar Judy Grahn, Halloween is “the great gay holiday.”

And this weekend of lavish costumed theatricality will attract everyone, but especially lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) revelers.

Back in the day Halloween, the night before All Hallows Day (All Saints Day), was linked to the ancient Celtic festival “Samhain” in the British Isles, meaning “summer’s end.” And because the celebration is associated with mystery, magic, superstition, witches and ghost, the festivity, not surprisingly, was limited in colonial New England because of its Puritanical belief system.

But today it’s an LGBTQ extravaganza that rivals — if not out-showcases — Pride festivals.

Long before June officially became Gay Pride Month, Halloween was unofficially our yearly celebrated “holiday,” dating as far back at the 1970s when it was a massive annual street party in San Francisco’s Castro district.

By the 1980s, gay enclaves like Key West, West Hollywood, and Greenwich Village were holding their annual Halloween street parties. And the parades the night of Halloween did and still do draw straights and gay spectators out to watch. (WATCHING THE PARADE IN KEY WEST RIGHT NOW ON THE NEWS!)

Gay cultural influence on Halloween has become such an unstoppable phenomenon here and abroad that anthropologist Jerry Kugelmass of University of Florida published a book in 1994 on the new trend, titled “Masked Culture,” describing Halloween as an emerging gay “high holiday.”

Nicholas Rogers, author of “Halloween: From Pagan Ritual to Party Night,” points out that while Halloween is enjoyed by everyone, “it has been the Gay community that has most flamboyantly exploited Halloween’s potential as a transgressive festival, as one that operates outside or on the margins of orthodox time, space, and hierarchy. Indeed, it is the Gay community that has been arguably most responsible for Halloween’s adult rejuvenation.”

As Halloween flourishes as a gay cultural phenomenon, so too flourished a backlash by the fundamentalist Christians with their “Hell Houses.”

And these Christians targeted our children.

(Believing Hell Houses are no longer up and running in 2016, I’ll speak of them in the past tense.)

Hell Houses were a contemporary form of both anti-gay bullying and witch-hunting. Created in the late 1970s by deceased fundamentalist pastor, the Reverend Jerry Farwell, Hell Houses were religious alternatives to traditional haunted houses. They were tours given by evangelical churches across the country design to scare and bully people away from myriad sins. And one of those sins is homosexuality.

In 2006 the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) put out a report titled “Homophobia at ’Hell House’: Literally Demonizing Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth” explaining how hell houses specifically targeted youth.

“Instead of spooking youth with ghosts and monsters, Hell House tour guides direct them through rooms where violent scenes of damnation for a variety of ’sins’ are performed, including scenes where a teenage lesbian is brought to hell after committing suicide and a gay man dying of AIDS is taunted by a demon who screams that the man will be separated from God forever in hell,” the NGLTF stated.

A study published in the “Journal of Psychology “stated that a strong belief in Satan is directly related to intolerance of LGBTQ people.

Religious leaders who supported Hell Houses believed that by scaring LGBTQ youth into “heterosexual” behavior they are saving their souls.

However, the message that “homosexuals” are going to hell can have a deleterious impact on our youth. But with Halloween flourishing as a gay cultural phenomenon our children, too, can joyfully go door-to-door trick-or-treating.

Our influence on culture is being acknowledged and celebrated more as we come out.

As Kwanzaa is a black holiday, and St. Patrick’s Day is an Irish holiday, maybe someday soon Halloween will be officially acknowledged as a gay holiday.

Happy Halloween!



posted on Oct 30, 2021 8:37 PM ()

Comments:

Here in Colorado it is often cold and possibly snowy on Halloween so kids' costumes have to be designed to accommodate a parka. This year we've had such nice weather up until now, and then just for the 31st here came a cold front.
comment by traveltales on Oct 31, 2021 7:38 PM ()
It is crazy here--we are having beautiful weather!! But, so far, no 'trick or treaters'---guess the old folks went to bed early!
reply by greatmartin on Oct 31, 2021 7:50 PM ()
I loved Halloween all these years and enjoyed the dressing up in a witch
ensemble but this year, I took a pass. I have candy for the little ones which I will give them tomorrow. I am glad that you have enjoyed the costumes. did you dress up this year?
comment by elderjane on Oct 31, 2021 3:08 AM ()
I'm going around as an old man!!!
reply by greatmartin on Oct 31, 2021 9:14 AM ()

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