Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Celebs gone wild again. Yawn

Word has reached me that Lindsay Lohan – she of Mean Girls, Freaky Friday, that film with the stock car Beetle, and other items of crap - has been spotted at Cannes canoodling with her “best friend” Samantha Ronson. See here, here and here for sundry nonsense, confirming and denying that they are and aren’t in a relationship.

Of course, I don’t really know whether or not their relationship is genuine (it seems that it might be; in any case, Samantha Ronson is apparently a lesbian) as distinct from the publicity-seeking, girl-on-girl-action type of bisexuality that I detest. So what might be behind all this? Has Lohan got a film out or anything? Or is her problem that she hasn’t got a film out?
Then again, it seems she fits in to another celebrity stereotype: “they said that I should go to rehab, I said No No No.” Stealing fur coats? Unwise sex videos? General out of control behaviour?

Why not try snogging some girls? That’s really naughty! That’ll get you in the tabloids. People will be talking about you, noticing you, again. Cue three types of reaction: 1) that’s hot (or, for some reason, hott). 2) that’s disgusting. 3) that’s sweet, you leave her alone.

Hmm, I haven’t blogged about bi-girl celebs for a while and it makes me feel a bit… dirty. This post isn’t very edifying, is it? Then again, because of this rather sweet pic some people who wouldn’t see this blog otherwise will hit on it and might find something to make them think about bisex a little bit differently. It has happened.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Girls [sic] on film

I know it’s not being released for another 10 days or so, but – in the opposite of my usual procrastination - why not get in early? Yes, it’s my very own Sex and the City post. While I fully realise that not everyone has to have one, urban women all over the world (probably) will be writing about it because they related to the TV series and, now, the film. It certainly speaks to me and, yes, there’s even a bi angle!

I wasn’t an “early adopter”. When I first saw an episode of SATC, I felt completely alienated by the fact that all they did was talk about men. But soon (very soon) I began to appreciate their escapades and their relationships. There was something actually believable about the characters… and although they seem to have preposterous amounts of money (I have met the owner of a PR agency, a media lawyer, and many journalists, none of whom were anything like SATC wealthy) I could relate to them.

Yes, I did like looking at the clothes. Even when the SATC gang were wearing preposterous nonsense, it was still interesting. And yes, why I ended up liking it after all was the reason that other female commentators have said: it foregrounded female characters (still unusual); talked about sexuality in an unprecedently open and truthful way; and presented friendship between women as the most important and stable thing in their lives (although where such busy women got the time to meet so often, God knows).

Bisex in the city
In SATC – the TV series - bisexuality in some shape or form appeared quite a lot, if ambivalently. As an aide-memoire to anyone else who watched it:
In one episode Samantha is asked by a gay male couple if she will have sex with them and she agrees. However, half-way through sex they chicken out, disgusted.
Across another few episodes, Samantha - the most sexually adventurous character - actually has a relationship with a woman, but it ends after she puts her back out using an inadequately harnessed dildo. (I mean really, anyone looking at that dildo could tell it wouldn’t work properly!)
Carrie meets some younger people - including a character played by Alanis Morissette - who actually identify as bi, but backs off from dating a bi man.
Then there is the very ambivalent - in many senses - episode where camp cabaret singer Bobby Fine marries Betsy von Mufling. The SATC quartet presume he’s totally gay, so why are the two marrying each other? At the end of the episode, Bobby tells Carrie that he really does love Betsy while the melancholic song “Is that all there is” plays in the background. But in a subsequent episode, a heavily pregnant, extremely happy Betsy turns up, her husband seemingly as camp as ever as he wants to name their daughter Barbra or Judy.
Who knows whether there is any bisex in this film (I would hazard a guess as to not), or indeed whether it will be terrific or a pile of poo.

Cynthia Nixon

Then of course there’s a real-life bisexual storyline, the I’d-count-as-bisexual Cynthia Nixon (Miranda Hobbs in SATC) who is now several years into a relationship with a woman she plans to marry.

This is the first, and I fully expect the last, time I have ever used that right-wing rag The Daily Mail on this blog, but credit where it’s due I suppose. There’s a long article about her and her gf Christine Marinoni here, and even the comments are nice!
They quote her as saying:

“In terms of my sexual orientation, I don't really feel that I changed," she says. "I don't feel any different than I did before. I don't feel like there was some hidden part of myself that I wasn't aware of.
"I had been with men all my life and I had never met a woman I had fallen in love with before. But when I did it didn't seem so strange.
"I don't define myself. I'm just a woman in love with another woman."


Friday, May 09, 2008

Women not-loving women

Someone commented somewhere on this blog that one of the things they liked about it was that I wasn’t a “cheerleader” for bisexuality. True. I’m not really a cheerleadery type of person – sceptic, I think is about right, although common sense, or down to earth probably covers it. Some people, including me, are bi. Here are a few things we might find important / interesting / relevant, and here are some other ways in which people aren't giving us our due. And that's about it.

However, I wish, I wish, I wish, that so much of the writing on bisex I am sent through my Google Alerts wasn’t from young bi women getting a tough deal from lesbians. It makes me wonder what has changed since the 80s. Well, obviously, a lot has changed but it seems not enough.

These days I get no personal flack at all from lesbians, but then I am 51 and very much out. I have been bi for so long that no one is going to tell me I can’t be, or that I’m really a lesbian, or that anything I do is for the benefit of men. I'd probably burst out laughing. Any argument they throw at me, I can throw back at them. But anyway, any new lesbians I meet are usually interested, rather than hostile. Of course, that wasn't always the case, and I have had my fair share of blanking / looks of disgust / losing friends / not getting lovers / horrible comments as I hear about now.

(Just to make things clear, I know that lesbians do get a raw deal in society at large. What's more, if I were (and when I have been) after a committed relationship with a woman I would be really unhappy if she were to treat it as something trivial. But what about taking people as you find them? Not judging them before you even meet? Imagining that it might be possible for lesbians to treat bi women badly as well as the other way round?)

For myself, I would go along with a woman I interviewed once who said: "Why on earth would I be interested in them, if they aren't interested in me?" Dr Sue says best leave anti-bi lesbians to their own devices when it comes to being friends/lovers, and find some nice bi women instead.

These days if I get any bad responses they are from heterosexuals (although not a lot of them really – most I meet are nice!). And it is those respectable, polite, middle-class people whose look of disgust and response of silence gives away their real feelings.

It's heterosexual society, not individual lesbians, who have power over bi women. Individual lesbians can make your life miserable, sure, but they can't take away your kids.