Tara Scott 0:19
Hey everyone, welcome to Queerly Recommended. I’m Tara Scott and I am back as always with Kris Bryant.
Hello, welcome to Episode 18 where we are now legal in both Canada and the United States. Well legal to vote.
Tara Scott 0:33
I know, like…legal for?
You can gamble at 18 can’t you? Is gambling legal at 18. It’s 21 here.
Tara Scott 0:43
I don’t know.
It’s 21 here. But like 20 or like 18 in the Virgin Islands or something?
Tara Scott 0:48
Well, let’s go. Oh, wait. I can go wherever I want. If I feel like gambling. In Alberta, where I live, you can drink.
Okay, so it’s the drinking age.
Tara Scott 0:59
Only here though. The rest of Canada is 19 as far as I know.
Yeah, and we’re 21 here.
Tara Scott 1:05
I know. So yeah, 21 there. I grew up right on one of the border cities. I think we might have talked about that before. I grew up in the Windsor/Detroit, like in the Windor side of the Windsor/Detroit border area. And the bars were so obnoxious with all the American kids that would come over to get hammered. I was like, “Go away? What are you doing?”
Well, I grew up in Europe, when there wasn’t a drinking age really, so. They didn’t give beers to babies but you could-
Tara Scott 1:37
It was weird to go to like a street carnival. A lot of towns had, you know, the early little carnival, street carnival type thing. And you’d see these like, 10,12 year old kids drinking beer and Fanta, which is a big drink over there. They mix it. It’s weird.
Tara Scott 1:52
It sounds gross but it’s like the only way I’ll drink beer. Isn’t that weird?
Tara Scott 1:57
Yeah, that sounds really gross. I think I’d rather just not have beer.
But also it’s the European Fanta. Not like the US fully sugared Fanta.
Tara Scott 2:07
Oh, yeah. Okay.
It’s another type of Fanta.
Tara Scott 2:10
So you’re basically just like sweetening it and carbonating it a little bit?
Yeah a little bit, you’re sweetening it with a little bit of orange. It’s like Blue Moon, the beer, Blue Moon. You put an orange slice in it, you know, and make it yummy.
Tara Scott 2:20
Yeah, I mean, I think also part of the attraction of Windsor is what was lovingly referred to as the Windsor Ballet, which is actually just like, all the strip clubs.
Tara Scott 2:36
Yeah, and it would also attract, it would attract- What am I trying to say? Bachelor parties. It would attract that from Ohio, because the stripping there is just different, I guess than insome of the states.
Yeah so they were part of the Stampede then. Right?
Tara Scott 3:00
Right. So I mean, Stampede moving here wasn’t actually that jarring. I never actually went to the strippers, though. And I still don’t regret that choice. Yeah, I don’t know. They’re always they’re there. For whatever reason, I desperately felt like it. But you can also just go to Pride every year.
Can I tell you the story about when I went on a date with a stripper?
Tara Scott 3:25
Yes. I in fact,I insist that you tell this story.
I was probably, I was maybe 28. And it was somebody I met online. And I remember-
Tara Scott 3:37
So it was two years ago?
Right, two years ago. So two years ago I met the stripper online.
Tara Scott 3:42
And it you know, it was, it was a really weird experience. Because- did I know? I can’t remember if I knew that she was a stripper or not. I don’t think I did, though. And I think- it was really interesting because there was somebody I was somewhere I was at a bar maybe. And there was somebody else that I dated, that they were there. And she was like, “Let’s make them jealous”. I mean, it’s like any TV show you’ve ever seen in your life, you know? “Oh, let’s make them jealous. And we’ll just kind of make out and stuff.” So that kind of happened. And then she was like, “So can I get you to cosign on some furniture?” And-
Tara Scott 4:19
Oh, no, no.
Tara Scott 4:23
You know what that means? The stripping is the absolute least interesting part.
The shitty part I was like, for like a second. I was like, “That’s not such a bad idea. What are you thinking? No!” So that was the end of that. I don’t think we went out after that. I pretty sure we didn’t.
Tara Scott 4:42
That’s fair. I mean, that’s, that’s a red flag, right? That’s right up there with like, “Hey, we’ve been dating a month, what if we got married?” Although my parents did that after less than a month, so what am I saying? As I was saying it out loud, I was like, yeah, and then there’s my parents who got engaged 21 days after they met. They’re still together though. And they’re still really happy. But they- Yeah, they met- and when they met my dad was hung over. So this like, hung over man.
Was like the best thing for your mom.
Tara Scott 5:16
Yeah, goes to have a meal at this restaurant that my mom is waitressing at. And she was like, 18 at the time, and he’s a few years older than her. And he asked her, she was like, “What the hell?” And then I guess, you know, they say they just knew, but this was like, it would have been May or June. And they wanted to get married the following December. And my grandma said, “But does the wedding have to be then?” Basically saying, “Are you pregnant?”
Tara Scott 5:43
Because they’ve been down that path before with both aunts and uncles. And they were like, “No, it’s fine”. So they got married the following May, basically just proving that mom wasn’t getting married because she was pregnant. But yeah, they’re, you know, 40- how many years have they been married now? More than 42 because that’s my age. 44, they’ve been married for 44 years. And they’re very, very happy. It’s very cute. So we’re gonna give a real quick shout out since the last episode, a couple of people have supported us through Kofi. Again, for anybody who doesn’t know what it is. It’s a site where you can send some money to financially support content creators like us. And when Krystina sent through Kofi, she shared this note, “Thanks for the great content. I’ve been working my way through your backlist today while working on very dull quarterly reports and it’s been much more fun than normal. Thanks for the great content and distraction”. Krystina, we’re so glad you enjoyed it. My condolences about quarterly reports, those are always brutal.
We don’t know what the other person was because again, didn’t leave a name or message. But you know what, thank you all the same as well, we so appreciate anyone who supports us, and no matter how you support us. Maybe it’s even just sending an email saying you’re enjoying the show, leaving a review on Apple podcasts, telling a friend to check out the show. No matter how you support us we truly appreciate it because it helps us grow it and it means more people get to get queer media recommendations.
And we get to talk about it. And we do talk about it.
Tara Scott 7:14
No, not even on the show. But like behind the scenes. Oh my gosh, you know, this person said this. And so we get really excited when it comes to reviews and donations. It’s nice.
Tara Scott 7:24
Yeah, so thank you all. We did not get any listener questions this time. So we’re not going to answer them.
We gave 24 hour notice.
Tara Scott 7:34
That’s right. So we will just say though, if you do have any questions that are burning that you’ve been meaning to ask, hit us up on all of our socials or you can email firstname.lastname@example.org. We are always happy to answer them on our episodes. So Kris.
Tara Scott 7:51
It’s that time. What have you been reading or watching lately?
Okay, so much has happened, because of course, I have a deadline coming up so I am glued to the television.
Tara Scott 8:01
Yes, that’s right. That is your way.
Glow Up Season Three came out last night, and I binged five episodes last night alone.
Tara Scott 8:12
I’m so jealous.
Ding fucking Dong.
Tara Scott 8:14
I would have watched it with you. If I knew that that was what you were doing, I would like- we could have hopped on zoom, we could watch together.
Oh my gosh, it was fabulous. I loved it. I was like, you know, and it was so- I’m an expert, of course. Yeah, and I’m like, “Oh, the blend is off”. And I know what they’re talking about, are you kidding me. Like I haven’t put mascara on in like 10 years or so.
Tara Scott 8:38
Doesn’t matter. You watch enough episodes of Glow Up and you’re just gonna know.
You learn the lingo and everything, and you know what’s good, and what’s bad and what’s gonna work. So that was fun. So I did five episodes of that, because I can do that. I can literally be on my couch for five hours and not move. It works.
Tara Scott 8:54
Good for you.
Oh, and then The L Word Generation Q Season Two started up again. So I watched the first episode of that.
Tara Scott 9:02
Is that show good?
You know, it’s-here’s why I like it, because there’s so much representation. You know, back in the day The L Word- I don’t even know when it first came out. But I was younger, and it was the only rep, lesbian rep that we had, you know, and it was there was Bette, there was Alice, Tina, and nipple competent Shane. It was just that those were my people. And so they are also in the next generation, they have stories too, but then you also have a lot of new queer people, and the stories focused mainly on them, but you still have the backstories of, you know, the women that I you know, admired and saw on television and it was great. So it was a little nostalgic for me, but I was like what the fuck? I don’t remember any of this because the first season was however many years ago because COVID
Tara Scott 9:58
So like the recap, I’m like, okay, I remember her. I remember him. I remember them but what the hell what, but I don’t remember this part. So there was a lot of like, I had to wrack my brain, like what was happening? I should have watched. I was just too excited. I had to jump right in like jump in. Of course. That was fun. So that started, so I’m excited about that.
Tara Scott 10:19
Tara Scott 10:22
How’s that going? How many people are left?
So, um, four? I keep saying four. But I think that’s true.
Tara Scott 10:30
Wasn’t there five last time and that was two weeks ago?
No, I think there was. Well, I don’t know. I really don’t know. But I think there might be four now. Because, like, so what happens is after 45 days, the contestants can use a net, some type of net and I’m like completely drawing a blank on what it’s called. But they they can make a net to go fish, but they can’t do it prior to that. They can do fish baskets. They can like try to fish you know, rod and reel type thing, but not really to have to make it themselves they just have fishing line.
So they can find gill nets. That’s what they’re called, gill nets, because the catch the fish by the gill, because the fish are swimming along and then and it’s just like, you know, it looks like a chain link fence but it’s net. And so they’re swimming along, they’re happy.
Tara Scott 11:17
And then they’re fucked.
Yeah, so that’s why it’s a gill net. Oh, I knew it would come to me. So I, maybe three, we’re getting close, right close to the end. But-
Tara Scott 11:29
I respect- like I respect that these people are doing this and I respect that like long term camping is a thing that some people like to do. But also as you’re describing it, I was like, “Oh, I’d die very quickly.”
It’s horrible. This woman is living off of berries and omething else, like she’s had- There was a fish that washed up on shore. And so that was like her only protein or whatever in 45 days.
Tara Scott 11:53
And I’m like, again, I’m out after-
Tara Scott 11:58
How much weight has she lost?
Surprisingly, because the berries have a lot of calories and other things that she’s finding to eat like roots, and maybe some mushrooms. So she’s eating all this stuff. So she’s getting like 1500 calories a day. So she’s only lost 18% of her body weight.
Tara Scott 12:14
Most people there’s this one guy who gained 25 or no, he gained 45 pounds to be on the show. And he’s already lost 70 pounds of it. He’s lost the 45 he gained plus an additional 25.
Tara Scott 12:30
Oh, it’s a good thing he gained that extra weight then.
Yeah, but a lot of times the contestants will still- they’re like totally fit, thin. And you’re just like, you’re not gonna last.
Tara Scott 12:40
You will not last and they don’t so, but it’s all fun. I enjoy watching it.
Tara Scott 12:45
So and then the last thing I watched this week was Disney’s Jungle Cruise with the Rock and Emily Blunt.
Tara Scott 12:56
Oh I like her. Was it any good? I mean, I like him too. He’s very charistmatic.
You know, I really liked the storyline a lot. I fell asleep for like a little bit of it. I missed some of it. But there’s also a gay character in it. Disney, bravo bravo.
Tara Scott 13:09
Way to go.
I know. So it was entertaining. It was busy. It kept your interest other than you know, the time I fell asleep, but I just had a really long day. I don’t know.
Tara Scott 13:21
That’s fair. We’ve been talking about watching it with the kids. It’s good to hear those good.
Yeah, it was good. It is PG 13. And there are some dark moments. So and there’s like some stabbings and so you don’t really see blood. I don’t think.
Tara Scott 13:35
My six year old might actually take it better than my nine year old. My six year old isn’t a creepy things and my nine year old has a really tender heart.
There’s snakes that come jumping out at you.
Tara Scott 13:43
Oh no, they won’t like that. Neither of them will like that.
Okay, yeah, there’s a lot of snakes. I’m not talking like one or two. We’re talking like this is part of the the curse.
Tara Scott 13:54
Are there spiders?
There is a spider and it’s in a fight with a scorpion. And they’re betting on it. It’s like in a bar.
Tara Scott 14:05
Okay, so it’s not like a spider attacking or jumping at the screen.
No, nothing like that.
Tara Scott 14:10
The s-word, spider, is the ultimate enemy of the Scott girls. They don’t like them.
Let me tell you. Exactly. I can handle anything. Well, that’s not true. I can handle mice, snakes. Anything higher up on the food chain, but the lower the worse off I- Spiders, bugs. I’m out.
Tara Scott 14:33
No. Yeah, they’re very very against them. I’ve gotten better. With gardening. You kind of have to.
Tara Scott 14:42
Yeah, like I don’t freak out every time I see a worm anymore or even Daddy Long Legs like it’s- that’s all okay, there are still there are certain bugs that I’m like, “Nope. No, fuck you, I’m out. I hate you.”
Roaches, roaches, roaches and spiders.
Tara Scott 14:59
Yeah, roaches are disgusting.
Yeah, there’s no yeah. And flies, roaches and flies. I you know, why? Why? I don’t understand.
Tara Scott 15:10
They probably have a purpose. We just don’t know what it is.
Right. I know. Okay, So enough about that. What about you? What have you been reading and watching?
Tara Scott 15:19
Alright, so I’ve been reading a romance. So I can’t remember if we’ve talked before, about, like I think I’ve mentioned before that I’ve wanted to start reading a little bit of gay male romance, but that’s actually written by men. And I was followed on Twitter recently by one of your fellow BSB authors, Frederick Smith. And then I followed him back.
Tara Scott 15:45
And I was like, “Oh, you have a new book coming out? All right, well, let’s check that out”. And so it’s called Busy Ain’t The Half of It by Frederick Smith and his writing partner, Chaz Lamar Cruz. So there’s actually two main characters who like you’re kind of following their love story, and they’re nephew and uncle. And so Elijah is the nephew. He’s an actor, and he actually is already in a relationship. He has a really loving boyfriend named Zaire. And they got together in a previous book called In Case You Forgot. For anybody who’s wondering, rest assured this book fully stands alone, it doesn’t matter that they got together in another book. I didn’t know. I haven’t read it. It’s very easy to jump in at this point.
And then Elijah’s uncle, Justin is this like, really famous news anchor in LA, he’s basically like, reigned the airwaves at four and five for the last 16 years. He’s known for a while that he’s queer, he and his wife split up, kind of for each of them to go find their own queer joy a few years prior. But given what a public figure he has, he hasn’t felt like he can be out comfortably. He loses his job, though. And he’s like, “Okay, now I can date”. And it’s just- I’m enjoying the dual perspectives, and seeing kind of the shift back and forth between the two. And seeing like, in Elijah’s case, his boyfriend wants him to move in with him and he has a lot of angst over this, because he’s just kind of nervous about this idea. And then seeing Justin really like, “Okay, well, first of all, I’m out of work for the first time in 16 years, what do I do with that?” He financially supports a lot of his extended family as well, like, what’s that going to mean? But it’s really kind of lovely seeing him embrace like, “Oh, maybe this is the time for me to see if there are men that I want to date”. He seems to be bi or pan, which is also I mean, I’m always happy to see bi and pan representation. So I’m really enjoying it. And so far, I do recommend it. I’m probably about 30 or 40% of the way in. I had a really hard time putting it down last night. I may have stayed up a little bit later than I should have. But it’s quite good.
The other book that I just finished and if you can get it in audio, absolutely get it in audio is Just Kids by Patti Smith, and it’s read by Patti Smith.
Tara Scott 18:02
It’s so freakin good. I think it came out in 2010. And it won like a massive literary award and rightly so. Cuz she famously was in this like really kind of passionate relationship with Robert Mapplethorpe before he came out as gay. He died of AIDS, I think in like 1989, or something like that. But before he died, he said to her, like, you need to write our story. And that’s what this is. It’s how did she- like a bit about how she grew up, and then how she moved to New York City and how, like they met because they had met once in the store she was working in, but then she saw him when there was this creepy author dude that wanted her to go up to his apartment. And she sees Robert from afar, and she’s like, “Can you pretend to be my boyfriend?” And he’s like, “Yeah, absolutely”. And then he became her actual boyfriend. And it was just this, like, really passionate, but often tempestuous, because, you know, he’s trying to figure out his sexuality.
They each have different partners. And I found it really beautiful, especially seeing how important they were to each other’s lives, even when they weren’t romantically involved anymore. And so I think for anybody who’s interested in like, again, that up and coming punk scene in the 1970s, if you haven’t read this, you absolutely have to. If you’re interested in, you know, queer artists, this is a fabulous one because again, Robert Mapplethorpe. If you like autobiographies, like, it’s just it’s so good. It’s really beautiful. Yeah, it’s one of the best books that I’ve read this year, for sure.
And then I watched a film last night.
We did a lot last night. I watched five hours of Glow Up and then did and read and like everything last night.
Tara Scott 19:52
Right? So it’s a documentary called Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood with the subtitle The Secret Lives of Classic Hollywood Stars. And it’s by a guy. And I’m saying this slowly because I forget his last name. So it’s about a guy named Scotty Bowers. And he was this, like, you know, grew up in the Midwest, farm boy type thing. I think his family moved to a city at some point. Yeah, right. When off to World War Two. When he came back from World War Two, he went to LA, where he worked at a gas station, and very quickly, started engaging in sex work with really famous celebrities, but not only himself, people kind of realized that, like, “Oh, he’s good at fixing people up”. And so he would connect men and women who were not just in Hollywood, there were also like, politicians, and whatever. But mainly Hollywood in this book is really focused on- well there’s a book as well, which I’ll get to that in a minute.
But he was hooking up these really famous people who couldn’t be out, because you know, the 19- They explained that I think it came about in the 1930s, that they started having morality clauses in contracts for like directors and film actors and actresses. And so they couldn’t- anybody who is queer, couldn’t be out anymore in a way that they previously had been able to. They showed this side of Hollywood that had been actually like quite hedonistic, prior to that point, which I never knew and found really interesting and surprising. And he referred to, he referred to the acts themselves as tricks. But then he referred to some of the sex workers as tricks. And so it’s a little hard to kind of it’s like, how do I use the language he was using in a way that’s gonna make sense? I don’t know that I actually can.
So yeah, he would connect, you know, really famous actors and actresses, typically, for the most part he was talking about with same-sex sex-workers, so that they could actually continue to experience the kind of sexual encounters that they wanted to in a way that was safe, that they couldn’t do publicly and out in the open. And I thought it was, I was kind of of two minds about it, because on the one hand, I mean, I appreciate that he was able to give them that sort of freedom and safety and ability to have the types of sexual encounters that they needed or wanted to have, even if they couldn’t have open relationships. But I also wonder, “Is it okay that he’s outing all of these people?” Cuz he was talking very, very frankly, about like, Charles Laughton and Cary Grant and Cary Grant’s boyfriend whose name I can’t remember. Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn. Katharine Hepburn was the one. I mean, I had heard about, the reason I heard about this film was I heard it referenced in relation to her being lesbian, which I only learned about a few years ago. And for me, she was my favorite, favorite, favorite actress. From when I was 14. Like, I saw The Philadelphia Story, and I was just fucking sunk, like I had to see as much of her stuff as I possibly could. And of course, now as an adult who understands my queerness I’m like, “Is there a part of me that saw something?”
Probably, for sure.
Tara Scott 23:25
Like, but what do you think about the idea? Of like, “Is it okay, for him to do a tell all like this?”
I think that is a tough question. Because I think the temperature of just queerness in Hollywood and queerness in life now, obviously, is a lot better, to where you can. I don’t… Maybe yes, maybe yes, I am okay with it. I feel like when you’re in Hollywood, you’re in the spotlight. That’s what you want in life, you know, you want to be famous, you want to whatever, and you kind of give up privacy, that’s just a thing that happens. You don’t want to but it does happen. I think that maybe once you’re gone from this world, like I don’t care if the world, you know, knows that I’m gay, but you know, it’s not going to hurt anybody, or is it? Is it going to hurt somebody? Is it hurting people?
Tara Scott 24:21
I don’t, I don’t know. And he actually responds to- so I said there was a book and I haven’t read the book yet. I’ve just started listening to it. My library has a copy of it. And he’s at a book signing, though and somebody comes up and basically says, “How dare you share this”. And it’s not somebody who’s connected to any of them. It’s just like a concerned member of the public. And so Scotty says, “Well, I wanted to do it so that people could understand that, you know, Hollywood was actually a lot more queer than people realize.” And I’m paraphrasing here. But he basically said, “So that people don’t feel alone.” Because this book was also published in 2012. And I also get that, like, 2012 is very different from 2021 when I’m watching it now, although I still feel generally kind of strongly that you don’t out people. I mean, there’s one person I would love, love, love, love to out, and it’s somebody in politics, and I’m not gonna say who it is.
You’ll have to tell me later because you know-
Tara Scott 25:28
I don’t want to get a letter is the thing, right? Like I do not want to get I will tell you later. So he was telling the guy this, right, and the guy said, “Well, what if? What about their families? What if they don’t want them to know that they were gay?” And he just shot back immediately, “Well, what’s wrong with being gay?”
Right? That’s what I’m saying. Why why I don’t- (microphone falls over) (Kris laughs)
Tara Scott 25:56
My microphone was like, “Fuck, yes”. And it decided to drop at that moment.
You did drop the mic.
Tara Scott 26:02
I did a literal mic drop. I didn’t even touch it. The mic dropped itself. What’s wrong with being gay? Boom, oh, let’s catch it and put it back up. We’re recording a podcast.
So I mean, I kind of see that too. I mean, I understand the rights of a family. Like if somebody said, like my grandmother or grandfather was gay, how would that feel? You know, this is exactly what’s happening in the show called The White Lotus on HBO. This, the character who happens to be the main character, and my big recommendation this week, he’s in this movie in the series, and he finds out that his father died of AIDS back in like, 1989, maybe 90 something. And he this whole time, we thought his dad had cancer, they told him that his dad had cancer. And so then his uncle calls him and their two kids to wish him happy birthday or something. And or, he had a cancer scare. So he called his uncle to find out what kind of cancer his father had. It’s like, “What are you talking about your dad had AIDS?” And so he’s on vacation with his family, and he’s trying to deal with the fact that he might have cancer plus that find out that your dad is gay? You know-
Tara Scott 27:10
That is brutal.
Yeah. So. So there’s that whole thing. I guess I’m being heartless by saying that it’s okay. But at the same time, would I be okay, if somebody in my family was gay, or there’s something controversial about them, if that came out, like how would I feel about it? But I agree with him. I mean, it’s not wrong to be gay. It’s not bad to be gay. So I- that’s a good retort. I support that, that response.
Tara Scott 27:33
I think so too. Now, the one thing I walked away from it really wanting to know, though, was like, how did Scotty identify himself? He never placed a label on himself the whole film, and it’s clear that he had slept with hundreds of men. But he’s married, like, we meet his wife. And she didn’t know anything until the book.
No, he never told her?
Tara Scott 28:09
No, he never told her. They got married in 1984. And he had had another partner before that, who was a woman who they were like, all married and they had a child together and everything like that. But it sounds like he either. It’s not super clear. He either got out of the business, or he changed up how he was involved in it when the AIDS crisis hit.
Tara Scott 28:32
And then yeah, he got married to her in 1984. But she was like, I kind of at one point, she said something about how she kind of wished she knew before they got together. Because she doesn’t know how she would have handled that information.
That’s true. That’s tough one.
Tara Scott 28:50
Yeah. Like, I thought it was really interesting.
But don’t you think that if you’re like really in love with somebody, you would kind of know, like, if they had a past that hundreds of people slept with them, or you would just know random people would come up. “Hey, thanks for hooking me up with Bob. I really appreciate it”. Or, you know, phone calls, like phone calls in the middle of the night. “Who was that? Oh, it was, you know, Regina, it’s okay”. You know-
Tara Scott 29:19
I don’t know. I mean, this guy was- he was a vault. Until he wrote this book he was a total vault. Unless they lived like largely separate lives. There are some partners that do that.
Right. Or maybe he was a wealthy. Is he wealthy-wealthy wealthy?
Tara Scott 29:36
He has two houses in LA. Now there’s one that he bought with all of the money that he made doing, well, celebrities, mostly. No judging, I mean, good for him. And he was very clear. That is where he got the money from, because he talked about how he would charge $20 a trick and he’s like, “I bought this house with all those $20s”. And then the other one was gifted to him. This is the other part that I’ve been left wondering since last night, because he talks about this guy. He was an actor in like, they’re not even B-movies. They’re like whatever’s under that. And he basically described him as being like his top customer. And then somebody else talks about how that guy described him as being his lover. And this guy left him two houses.
Tara Scott 30:33
Yeah. One, which I think he sold and the other when he dies, reverts to this guy’s nephew, who’s a Corbin Bernsen. Yeah. And then left him like a bunch of other stuff. And I’m like, you don’t just leave somebody that much unless there’s something.
Tara Scott 30:53
So I’m sure this guy’s dead. But like, I’m just- I have questions, and I’m hoping the book is going to answer my questions. I will report back. I do need to give some absolutely massive, massive, massive content warnings, or trigger warnings for this documentary. There’s two particularly difficult things that it talks about. The first he talks about how his daughter died because of a botched abortion. Yeah, so he doesn’t go into extreme detail or anything like that. But if that’s likely to be a trigger for you, you might want to avoid, and he also talks about being molested as a child. And also that he kind of goes on from there to charge priests for sex when he’s a fairly young boy, probably around 10 or 11.
Oh, my God.
Tara Scott 31:41
Yeah. It’s so- it was very, very jarring. Because you spend the first half of it. There’s, I mean, this was my experience anyway. I spent the first half of it going, “Oh, yeah. Okay, he fucked all these people. He fucked all these men in Hollywood. Okay. No big deal. Oh, okay and he also arranged all of these liaisons. Okay, that’s fine”. And then you get to like, he talks about how his childhood is very happy. And he describes those sexual experiences as positive. And the interviewer even says, “Do you realize that what you’re describing, most people would describe as abuse?” And it’s just this clear dissonance between him and then how everybody else perceives it. And oh, the other cool thing about him, I feel like I’m giving everything away. But the other cool thing about him is that he was interviewed by Dr. Kinsey a bunch of times.
Tara Scott 32:35
And so talks about how he helped contribute to Kinsey’s research. Fascinating.
So but here’s another thing too. So like, if you write a book, and you add a bunch of people and stuff, I mean, how do you know what’s real? Like, is it true?
Tara Scott 32:48
I wonder if that’s part of why they did the documentary because he brought back some of the old tricks or rent boys or whatever you want to call them, I guess. And a few of them were like, “Yeah, I read it. It’s all true”. Like, I kind of-
That would be my fear, or my “Oh, that’s not true. How do we know this?” You know, type thing.
Tara Scott 33:09
Right. Well, although, I mean, in some cases, I think some are not going to be a surprise. Like everybody knows that Rock Hudson was gay. And then I think it’s a fairly open thing about Cary Grant and even Katharine Hepburn, it makes me kind of want to go back and reread the autobiography that she wrote through this different lens, because I know she talked about like growing up wearing pants and telling her family to call her Jimmy. And I think it was a different book that I believe I even have in my basement because like I said, massive, massive, fan came out shortly after she died. But I saw somebody reference it in an article I read recently where she’s being interviewed, and she’s talking about her personal secretary and she said, “She’s the Alice B. Toklas to my Gertrude Stein.” Which I think is one of those, like, if you know, you know.
Tara Scott 33:54
So I think he was probably telling the truth there.
Yeah. Well, I mean, yeah, so I think there’s an interest. We put so much into Hollywood. And we’re so interested in actors and actresses and their stories and how they got to where they are. And I mean, top 10. How many of your top 10 list i is either an actor or an actress? I have a lot of singers. I have a lot of musicians I have-
Tara Scott 34:25
Do you? Okay, which ones?
We can’t, you know it’s obviously gonna change after every time I watch something new. It rotates. People rotate in and out.
Tara Scott 34:36
Who’s your most recent?
Who’s my most recent musician?
Tara Scott 34:41
Or most recent musician? Well, one person who is always on my list and has been ever since I was a wee little tiny teenager, as a teenager, Natalie Merchant.
Tara Scott 34:54
I think it’s the voice. It’s for sure the voice, just the words and the beauty. And I’m just I, I love- I love when a musician has a song and you think it’s a beautiful song and then you listen to the words and you’re, “Fuck”, it’s about something totally different. And you don’t realize it until you’re older and you’re singing it and you put the words together, you know. Dar Williams is like that as well.
Tara Scott 35:21
Oh, I love her.
I love Dar.
Tara Scott 35:23
Oh my god, The Ocean. That’s one of the best songs ever.
Tara Scott 35:29
Gosh, we need to get Dar Williams on the show, because I have been a Darling since the 90s. Like I was two and I was a Darling.
Tara Scott 35:38
Uh huh. I’m trying to think when I started, you know, I probably was since the very, very end of the 90s.
For me, I think I almost want to say was 1993 and I want to say it was.-I can see this CD had the CD, I can see the CD cover of her. Her. Like, I was like a Big Song.
Tara Scott 35:57
And oh, yeah, also gorgeous, right?
Like, I mean, name a song that’s horrible by Dar. You can’t. It’s impossible.
Tara Scott 36:05
No, there’s just like, my favorites or the rest of them.
Tara Scott 36:10
Oh the Christians and the Pagans?
That is a brilliant song. I like I love that song so much. Because it makes me laugh every time I hearit. Every single time I love it. Absolutely love it. So Dar’s on my list. And it was so funny because I went to our concerts in Lawrence. Lawrence, Kansas, believe it or not. It’s a big kind of Mecca of up and coming musicians or musicians that come through, especially folk music. And I was having a nice dinner, one of my friends and I went and had dinner before the Dar concert. And she’s like, sitting in the next table over and we’re just like, “Is that Dar Williams? Is that Dar?” You know,I’m the kind of person who-
Tara Scott 36:47
Did you go meet her?
Oh, yeah, I’ve met her several times. But it was funny because we’re like, “Hey, do you want to come join us?” Because she was all by herself. And I’m like, “Do you want to come join us?” Because I didn’t get up and go over there and like, “Hey Dar,” you know, “Do you want to come join us?” I mean, in a nice way, not a disrespectful, like, “Whooooo Dar?”. It wasn’t like that.
Tara Scott 37:05
No, she didn’t but she thanked us and it’s so sweet. She’s very, very nice person. And, like, and that was like, the time when in college, you know, you’re trying to find out, “Am I queer? Am I not queer.” And Dar Williams kind of flipped it on you and then it’s so funny because her concert, she goes, “Cat’s out of the bag. I’m straight”.
Tara Scott 37:26
Yeah, didn’t everybody think she was gay?
Everybody thought she was gay. She goes to the concert. We’re laughing. There’s no like, if by that time, you know, you kind of grew with her and you knew and found out more about her. And of course, the internet is, you know, vast vacuum of information. So you found out more about her. You know, this was a time before you could find out a lot of stuff on people, you know. So I think there’s just a curiosity. We want to know who’s gay, we want to know, like, “Who can I put on my list?” You know, this is important stuff. Like if I could meet them, you know, that kind of stuff. So. So I do have a lot of musicians. I think. I think Dar would probably be on my list.
Tara Scott 38:08
Tara Scott 38:11
I mean, her voice.
Tara Scott 38:14
It deserves a spot.
She’s just a fun person. You could tell she loves her job. She loves doing what she does and I love that people are like that. Who don’t take it so seriously, have a good time. And I just yeah, I’m a Darling for sure.
Tara Scott 38:27
So Kris, what is your official recommendations?
Okay, my official recommendation this week is a movie called Cowboys. And you can rent it on Amazon Prime. I think it’s like $3.99 maybe. Director and writer is Anna Kerrigan. And I’m gonna read you the little blurb. Somebody needs to tell me what this thing’s called. It’s not a movie blurb. Synopsis? What does it called?
Tara Scott 38:51
I don’t know what it’s called for movies.
I’m gonna call it a blurb.
Tara Scott 38:54
You do that.
Okay. A troubled but well intentioned father who has recently separated from his wife, runs off with his trans son into the Montana wilderness after his ex-wife’s refusal to let their son live as his authentic self. Okay.
Tara Scott 39:12
That sounds pretty-
I know. So this is um, I don’t know how to pronounce his last name because you and I are really bad at like, “Yeah, we’re just gonna wing it” and his name is Steve Zahn, maybe. Z H. .
Tara Scott 39:25
Oh, yeah. I think that I think that is his name.
He’s also- he’s the one I was talking about in the White Lotus, the HBO series, like this is a person who is- he was in like a bajillion different shows and you recognize his face.
Tara Scott 39:40
Yeah one of those Hey-It’s-That-Guys.
Yeah, yeah, exactly. He’s never like really been like up front center and you know, a movie that stands out. He plays Troy who has a big hearted a guy with a drinking problem. He’s bipolar, and he has a record, a prison record. So you would think you know, just by saying all that you’re like, “Ah, he’s a little sketchy”. But you love him. You absolutely learn to love him because even through all of his problems, he has a- his heart is true. Like you see the love he has for his son, and he’ll do anything he can to keep that relationship going. Like he’s just a good dad. And Sally, he was once married to Sally who’s played by Jillian Bell, do you know who Jillian Bell is?
Tara Scott 40:25
Oh, I feel like I do.
Okay. Again, just like Steve has been in a bajillion different movies. Usually, it’s kind of a funny character, but plays a really serious roll in this movie. So on the weekends, despite any court order, she allows Troy to see his, okay, now this is where it gets tricky. Child. She allows him to see his child, 10 years old, their child is 10 years old. And so Sally knows that it’s important to the child that they maintain their relationship. So she allows it, even though he’s just kind of unpredictable, because you never know if he’s on his meds. You never know. Like, if he’s done something wrong, she’s just kind of trusting him to, you know, because she trusts him with the kid.
So she’s okay to let him see the child. So this, I’m gonna tell this, this whole recommendation in a series of quotes, because I think the writing on this was really, really good. So, okay, their son’s name is Joe, which is short for Josie. And he’s depressed, and he wants to wear jeans and play with toy guns and slingshots. But he’s not allowed to. He’s not even allowed out of the house unless he’s wearing a dress. And Sally’s very adamant about it. So when Joe and Troy are sitting in his pickup truck, Joe says, “I’m not a tomboy. a tomboy is just another kind of girl. I’m not a girl. I’m a boy. Sometimes I think aliens put me in a girl body as a joke. I’m not confused. I’ve known my entire life, and it’s not my fault”. And it’s just beautiful. And at first you see Troy going “Ah you know, I’ll talk to your mom, you won’t have to wear dresses”. And he’s like, “No, I’m serious”. And I love that this 10 year old child has that much trust, that much trust in her dad and their relationship that she can come out like he can come out like that. It’s beautiful. It was just a beautiful moment.
So Troy goes in and talks to Sally and says, “Look, we really need to talk about this” and Sally’s like, “It’s just a phase. Everybody goes through phases, and she’ll be fine”. Like she’s adamant about calling her son she. Her name is Josie.
Tara Scott 42:44
Oh, just constantly gendering and dead naming.
Completely. Dead naming. And when they’re having this conversation, it gets heated, of course. And he Troy the dad, he’s just like, you know, we have to do this. We have to let Joe be, who he wants to be, who he is, who he really is. And Sally’s like, “Look, you don’t get to be the good parent here. You know, Josie sees you, and you’re off having a good time with your friends. And you go and you party and you drink and you camp and you shoot guns and you’re just A cowboy and that’s what Josie sees.” So Troy says, “This is not about you. Like it is not about you. This is about our son”. I love that line. So Sally, like kicks him out says “It’s best that you don’t spend time here for a while. That’s just like, No you don’t. You don’t get to see Joe”. She goes into Joe’s bedroom who of course, you know, heard this whole thing and says “God has a plan for you, follow God’s plan”.
Tara Scott 43:53
Of course, she brings in religion to this. So anyway, so one of the fights, Joe grabs a scissor, a pair of scissors, you know the parents are fighting. So he grabs a pair of scissors, runs into the bathroom, locks the door and cuts off his hair. Real short. Cute. Absolutely adorable cute. But still.
So when Troy goes back to try to visit, Sally says, “I’m just starting to get Joe back to normal”. And he gets mad. He’s like “Joe isn’t a lump of clay you just pound into something. Joe’s Joe and we can either accept that or we can fuck him up”. And the mom’s like, “You messed her up”. So this is all going down. And so he’s just like Troy’s like, “I’m out”. So he gets in his car and another fight and Joe comes running out and he’s like, “Dad, I want to go with you, take me with you”. So he gets on the car locks it. And he’s really thinking about it. And the mom. Sally’s like, “Look, if you leave I’m calling the cops, because you know, you’re kidnapping our child”.
Tara Scott 44:59
They have a custody arrangement.
Right. And it’s not even court ordered because of his record and as you know, unstable- Yeah, she just like let’s him see him just because she knows that they love each other so much. So that’s like the one redeeming thing about Sally. Troy decides to go ahead and run away with Joe to Canada. There’s no plan. Yeah. So something happens and he gets off meds, his meds, because he’s bipolar. I think he’s bipolar. And so it gets off his meds. And it’s real obvious to Joe. Joe’s, like “What’s going on Dad, you know, you’re different”. And you know, he’s trying to look, let’s just get to Canada, we’ll work it out. Everything’s fine. So their truck breaks down and he sees a friend and a friend in the, I don’t know, neighboring area and steals his horse and they go off to Canada. They try to, okay, they’re on their way to Canada.
Tara Scott 45:50
On a horse.
On a horse. And get this, fuck me, Aunt Lydia from Handmaid’s Tale is cop slash FBI slash ranger who chases them. And the whole time I’m like, “That’s an Lydia from Handmaid’s Tale”. Anyway, there’s three ways that this movie could end. Three ways, only three ways that this movie could end and it ended better than I expected. So I recommend it.
Tara Scott 46:17
Does Joe get to be Joe?
Well, I think everybody has to watch the movie to find that out.
Tara Scott 46:27
She’s nodding people.
Why are you giving it away?
Tara Scott 46:30
Because I want to make sure that it’s actually going to be safe for tras people who want to watch.
It’s great. I would not recommend a movie that wasn’t safe, or had a good ending. But truly, the best possible ending came out of this.
Tara Scott 46:45
The whole time I’m like, “Something bad’s gonna happen. Something bad’s gonna happen”. Something bad does happen. But it’s best bad case scenario. Best worst case, worst best case scenario, whatever. It’s one of those. But anyway, that’s my recommendation. What about yours? What is your big recommendation this week?
Tara Scott 47:04
Okay, so I was thinking about it. And I had not finished anything recently, like since the last episode that I was like, “Oh, yeah, that’s gonna be the one”. So then I thought, “Okay, what have I loved that I haven’t recommended yet”. And I was like, “Oh, shit”.
Tara Scott 47:21
I had a brilliant idea that I think would tie nicely with talking about the documentary that we talked about. And it is a lesbian pulp novel called Beebo Brinker by Ann Bannon. And for people who have heard the name and are like, “But I thought that was the name of a character?” It is both the name of the character that shows up in a bunch of her books and it is also the name of the prequel to all of the other books, and I am recommending the prequel. In this one we see who Beebo is when she shows up in New York City. She kind of comes from that farm life. I think her name was actually Betty or something like that when she was growing up. But she gets to New York City and starts to kind of figure out “Oh, no, maybe I’m queer”. And it’s like, “Oh, yeah, no, you’re absolutely a lesbian, and you’re going to become like, the butch that millions of women dream about for decades”. And in this particular book, just as she sort of figuring out, “Yes, I’m a lesbian”, she just happens to meet this actress who’s in town. And her name is Venus Bogardus, and she’s bisexual and they take up this really passionate affair. Beebo goes with Venus out to California and it’s kind of like, what happens from there.
And I think it actually does kind of pair nicely if you do want to watch that documentary. Because you sort of see like, what does this closeted actress have to do? She’s married, her husband knows about all this happening, and it’s like, what are the rules for making it work in Hollywood at that point. So I read that one last because you can actually pick up all of her books minus one that’s gone way out of print and is never coming back cuz it’s about a brother and sister been together for some reason. Pulps were weird. Pulps were wild. Anything can happen in pulps. But the rest of her books you can get actually I got an ebook omnibus of all five of them. And I think it’s about $20 which is not bad, like for five books. And I actually recommend getting the whole Omnibus I loved most of it.
I’ll explain what I didn’t love in a minute. But it starts with Odd Girl Out, which is where we first meet Laura, and Laura and Beebo and up together like in the later books. But this is where Laura and her roommate Beth kind of fall for each other and they have this affair in college and it goes on from there. Like they’re all. They’re all lesbian pulps but actually written by a woman. Very, very raw, which is I was shocked at how they didn’t feel incredibly dated. I mean, in some ways, they are obviously very dated because they are the products of their time.
Odd Girl Out I think came out in 1957 or 1958. It was the second best selling paperback of its year. Not of the pulps, just like of all the paperbacks and I had the opportunity to interview Ann Bannon for my old podcast, Les Do Books. And I think it’s the- it’s probably the interview that I’m still proudest and most excited of that I did. I did a lot that I’m tremendously proud of over there. But it was so incredible to talk to her for an hour. And she talked about all the letters she got from lesbians saying, “I thought I was alone. I didn’t know that I wasn’t the only person that was like this.” Like she saved so many lives. And even another interview tha tI was quite proud of doing, Katherine V. Forrest, talked about how Odd Girl Out saved her life. Like that was the book like she, she had thought about jumping off the bridge in Detroit. And like I said, I grew up Winsor/ Detroit. I know the bridge she’s talking about. But she read that book, and it helped her see that she wasn’t alone. And she then went on to write like, the coming out book for an entire generation of lesbians with Curious Wine. So like, the footprint that Ann Bannon has, is mighty.
Tara Scott 51:45
It’s incredible. And absolutely well worth reading. The one thing that I’ll say is there’s one book in there that is fucking dark. And it is real, real rough. It’s called Women in the Shadows. I’ve read interviews where she talks about how she took all of the angst that she had being in a deeply unhappy marriage to a man and like shoved it in that book, and put all of it on to Beebo. And so I think before you go on to read, if you do go to pick it up, you need to understand that themes include and like I said, massive, massive trigger warnings for alcoholism, domestic violence in a lesbian relationship, corrective rape gets brought up. Two dogs get murdered and like we get full ass details about one of them. It’s horrifying. But I mean, it does also show- and it’s not just that book, it shows an interracial relationship, which I think is pretty progressive for them. Especially we see, I don’t think it’s just in that one. But like, we actually see a lavender marriage, which is like a marriage between a gay man and a lesbian, so that they can kind of move safely and have the dalliances but have that security and protection of a marriage there.
Sofeel free to skip that one. Unless you are an absolute completionist. I am sometimes a completionist and I was here. I didn’t enjoy the book, but I found it impossible to put down. So I don’t know if that’s- that’s not really an endorsement as much as I’m just sharing information. But the other books were all- I love them, and especially Odd Girl Out and the one called Beebo Brinker. I think both both of them were just so incredible. Just like really great kind of records of what it could have been like to be a lesbian in the 1950s and 60s.
None of them are romances is the other thing that I’ll say.
Tara Scott 53:45
Yeah, it’s Yeah, absolutely. It’s fiction. But I would say that they they’re not romances, nor can you actually expect romance out of pulps at that time anyway, because it- I’m trying to remember. Rachel Spangler talks about it, because she talked about Vin Packer’s book, what was it called- Spring Fire, or something like that. But Vin Packer also wrote pulp that came out not too long before Odd Girl Out, but it was definitely before, and about how they couldn’t have happy endings. Like that was why like, there were legal reasons to do with like, you couldn’t ship the books out of state if there was a happy ending in a same sex couple.
And so that’s why there’s all these books where there’s some kind of a punishment, whether it’s, well, there’s definitely going to be some kind of a breakup. But they’re either going to be institutionalized, one of them’s going to be killed, one of them’s going to kill themselves, like something like that, and that doesn’t happen here. Odd Girl Out. No, Laura and Beth are not able to be together and I don’t feel like that’s really a spoiler given the historical context of happy endings are not allowed, but to me, I found the ending to that book so hopeful, and inspiring.
Tara Scott 55:04
Yeah, absolutely hope.
That’s my thing, that’s my thing.
Tara Scott 55:07
That’s our theme. So yeah, definitely go get yourself the Beebo Brinker Omnibus. And if you even if you only read the first and last books in that collection, you’re going to have a good time. They’re just beautiful. They’re beautiful. They’re so good. That is all for this episode. Thank you. Thank you so much to everyone for joining us. If you have enjoyed the show and you have not subscribed yet, please hit that subscribe button wherever you listen to your podcast so you can get a notification every time we release an episode. If you do have a friend that you think would like the show, please go ahead and tell them all about it. We would love to come at their ears as well. I don’t know why I said it like that.
That’s all right. And if you want to connect with us on your favorite social media sites look for @queerlyrecommend on Instagram Twitter and Facebook and follow us or email us at podcast@queerlyrecommended. com. Goodbye, everybody.
Tara Scott 56:06
Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s the- I’m pretty sure that’s the voting age. The podcast- you know what, by the end of the year, it’s gonna be ready to rent a car in the United States.
It’s gonna be ready to run for president.
Tara Scott 56:59
How old do you have to be?
Tara Scott 57:02
That’ll be next year.
Oh, next year. Right.
Tara Scott 57:05
Because we’re doing them every other week.
Yes.What is it already? Oh, it’s almost it is August. Where has the time gone? Yes, I’m sure we’ll be able to run for president.