Saturday, 28 February 2015

RIP .... Leonard Nimoy ...

My heart is heavy writing this. 

Leonard / Spock was such a part of my life being a big fan of Trek. 

My heart is heavy and I am sad.  This man/character had a profound effect on popular culture and myself. 

So I ask you ... please be upstanding, an actor has exited the stage. 

May your spirit continue to Live Long And Prosper Sir. It was agreeable to have you with us for so long. 



Sunday, 22 February 2015

RIP... Charlotte Dawson ... 1 Year On...

Charlotte Dawson was an Australian model and celebrity who suffered dreadful depression, and yet still took time out on Twitter to talk to me and chat about life, love and mental health.  She was a classy lady who did not back down from bullies.  And yet those bullies sent her to her death.

She is missed.



The 47-year-old beauty battled through years of mental health issues and was vocal about her struggle with depression.
A year on from her death, a contingent of her celebrity friends have taken to social media to pay tribute to the Australia's Next Top Model panellist - including designer and colleague, Alex Perry and former contestants Simone Hotznagel and Madeline Huett.  
 
Tributes flow: Sunday marks a year since loved model and TV personality, Charlotte Dawson, took her own life at her Sydney home
Tributes flow: Sunday marks a year since loved model and TV personality, Charlotte Dawson, took her own life at her Sydney home
 
The vivacious star's dear friend, Perry kept his social media message simple with an accompanying photograph of the dynamic TV and fashion duo: 'A YEAR AGO TODAY WE LOST THIS BEAUTIFUL GIRL #charlotte.'
Charlotte's close friend and writer, Jo Thornely, posted a sentimental message via her Instagram account, alongside a picture of a Monopoly board- a game the duo shared
She wrote: 'One year ago we lost the funniest, smartest, fiercest Monopoly opponent the world has ever seen. 
 
Best friends: The vivacious star's dear friend, Alex Perry kept his social media message simple with an accompanying photograph of the dynamic TV and fashion duo: 'A YEAR AGO TODAY WE LOST THIS BEAUTIFUL GIRL #charlotte'
Best friends: The vivacious star's dear friend, Alex Perry kept his social media message simple with an accompanying photograph of the dynamic TV and fashion duo: 'A YEAR AGO TODAY WE LOST THIS BEAUTIFUL GIRL #charlotte'
Friendship endures: Didier Cohen posted this shot in memory of Charlotte, writing 'I'll never forget that smile'
Friendship endures: Didier Cohen posted this shot in memory of Charlotte, writing 'I'll never forget that smile'
 
'But, as we shouted so often over the sound of couch-cushion tambourines: you can't always get what you want. I hope you landed on Mayfair, Missus. X' 
Australia's Next Top Model contestant, Simone Hotlznagel also took to Instagram to pen an emotional message early on Sunday, writing: 'One year ago today I lost someone who was a mentor, mother figure and one of my best friends. 
'Harlot I think about you every day and I try to think of all the happy things but a few sadder things slip in sometimes... And the dreams where you call me and tell Madge and I to stop looking for you and you are watching us and we are gonna be fine. Its nice for me to still feel you around.' 
 
Sisterhood: Radio host Jackie 'O' Henderson posted a snap of the women's hands, writing 'Miss you Charlotte'
Sisterhood: Radio host Jackie 'O' Henderson posted a snap of the women's hands, writing 'Miss you Charlotte'
 
'I hope you landed on Mayfair': Charlotte's close friend, Jo Thornely posted a sentimental message via her Instagram account, alongside a picture of a Monopoly board
'I hope you landed on Mayfair': Charlotte's close friend, Jo Thornely posted a sentimental message via her Instagram account, alongside a picture of a Monopoly board
She also highlighted the seriousness of mental health issues by adding: 'But today I cannot stop thinking about how you should be here and I know everyone says you're at peace now and thats great, but how f****** unfair is it that one of the most beautiful, generous, smart, kind women I was lucky enough to have in my life, had to kill herself to be at peace. Harlot I love you, I miss you and I f****** wish you were here. XXXX'
 
Another ANTM graduate and Simone's best friend, Madeline Huett posted a beautiful photograph of the pair with Charlotte, who they called 'mum'.
'A whole year already.. Words can't even begin to describe how much I miss you,' she wrote.
 
'Mother figure': Australia's Next Top Model contestant, Simone Hotlznagel also took to Instagram to pen an emotional message early on Sunday
'Mother figure': Australia's Next Top Model contestant, Simone Hotlznagel also took to Instagram to pen an emotional message early on Sunday
 
'Not a single day has gone by since you decided it was your time to go that I haven't thought about you. There have been moments where I've laughed absolutely hysterically and there have been times where I have cried more tears than I thought possible when I think about you and all of our memories together'
The 27-year-old continued, adding: 'I am happier and more proud than I can say to have not only had you in my life, but to have been able to call you a best friend & mentor. Even though from the moment we met it felt like I'd known you a lifetime, I wish it was longer.
'I hope with all of me that you are resting peacefully, but I also hope you're causing some mischief and cackling with that cheeky grin of yours.. But most of all, selfishly, I just f****** wish you were here...'
Designer to the stars and Charlotte's close pal, Camilla Franks honoured the beauty with a precious snap from Australia Fashion Week in 2008.
 
Memories: Designer to the stars and Charlotte's close pal, Camilla Franks honoured the beauty with a precious snap from Australia Fashion Week in 2008
Memories: Designer to the stars and Charlotte's close pal, Camilla Franks honoured the beauty with a precious snap from Australia Fashion Week in 2008
 
The pair wore vibrant kaftans from Camilla's collection, embracing with hugs and warms smiles.
She too accompanied the photograph with a heart-warming message: 'A year ago today my heart cried. Not a day goes past that I don't think of Charlotte. We lost a beautiful woman that encouraged us to surrender our seriousness. Bravely shone a light on depression and encouraged us to stand strong and tall and speak our truth. Charlotte I will always miss your light xx C.' 
Model, Laura Dundovic celebrated Charlotte's life with a simple nod to the star's infectious personality alongside a sweet photograph.
She wrote: 'One year ago today.. All of us still missing your beautiful smile, cheeky sense of humour and warm heart xx.'
Nathan Jolliffe and Charlotte became fast friends after they both competed on Celebrity Apprentice in 2012. 
 
'I miss you Miss D': Nathan Jolliffe and Charlotte became fast friends after they both competed on Celebrity Apprentice in 2012
'I miss you Miss D': Nathan Jolliffe and Charlotte became fast friends after they both competed on Celebrity Apprentice in 2012
 
Like so many, the Sydney-based model used his Instagram account to pay tribute to his friend, writing: 'I can't believe it's been a year. I miss you Miss D.' 

Before her death, the much loved TV host was outspoken in her support of many different charities, and her legacy continues with sales from the homewares range she created before her death giving 80 per cent of its profits to her preferred charities including Lifeline, Community Brave, ACON, Angels Goals and The Smile Foundation.
The Australia's Next Top Model mentor was all too familiar with bullying and was hospitalised in 2012 after she was bombarded with hateful messages by Twitter trolls because of her involvement in an anti-bullying operation.
 
A TV favourite: The 47-year-old battled through years of mental health issues and was vocal about her struggle with depression
A TV favourite: The 47-year-old battled through years of mental health issues and was vocal about her struggle with depression
 
It was reported at the time she had attempted to take her own life.
Following her stay in hospital she appeared on A Current Affair and The Project in an attempt to expose the malice behind Twitter bullying.
In an interview with Channel 9’s 60 Minutes at the time, Charlotte said: ‘It just triggered that feeling of helplessness when the trolls got to me. They got the better of me and they won.’'
She also touched on the topic in her book, Kiss And Tell, which was released in October 2012. 
Shortly before her death, Charlotte signed on as an ambassador for a film project, Drown.
Set for release early next month in conjunction with the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, the movie deals with homophobia, bullying and suicide.
 
A-team: Charlotte was a longtime judge and mentor on Australia's Next Top Model alongside good friend, Perry, host Jennifer Hawkins and Didier Cohen
A-team: Charlotte was a longtime judge and mentor on Australia's Next Top Model alongside good friend, Perry, host Jennifer Hawkins and Didier Cohen
 
 
Drown stars A Place To Call Home star Matt Levett, Jack Matthews and Harry Cook and revolves around Len (Levett) a competitive surf-lifesaver who is out shined by a younger, gay competitor called Phil (Matthews).
Len begins to bully Phil after finding out he is gay, though he himself begins to develop confusing feelings for his victim.
Len and his friend Meat (Cook) take Phil out on a night on the town which ends in tragedy.
 
The film has already sold out of its first screening at the Mardi Gras Film Festival on March 4 with another screening on March 12 still available to purchase.
 
Set for release: Before her death, Charlotte signed on as an ambassador for a film project, Drown, which stars A Place To Call Home actor, Matt Levett
Set for release: Before her death, Charlotte signed on as an ambassador for a film project, Drown, which stars A Place To Call Home actor, Matt Levett
 
Her legacy: The film has already sold out of its first screening at the Mardi Gras Film Festival on March 4 with another screening on March 12 still available to purchase
Her legacy: The film has already sold out of its first screening at the Mardi Gras Film Festival on March 4 with another screening on March 12 still available to purchase


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2963293/Tributes-flow-Charlotte-Dawson-Sunday-marks-year-took-life.html#ixzz3SSnPanOu

The Duke of Anjou of Bourbon ...

So I was watching the West Wing this morning.  And its the season where Zoey (the Presidents daughter) is now dating Jean-Paul - the Viscomte de Bourbon.  So I googled to see if it was a real thing

And the Prince de Bourbon is a real thing.  And here he is......

I introduce you to Louis Alphonse of Bourbon, Duke of Anjou[1][2] (Spanish: Luis Alfonso Jaime Marcelino Manuel Víctor María de Borbón y Martínez-Bordiú, French: Louis Alphonse Gonzalve Victor Emmanuel Marc de Bourbon;[3][4][5] born 25 April 1974, in Madrid) is a member of the Royal House of Bourbon, and one of the current pretenders to the defunct French throne as Louis XX.
He is recognized as the "Head of the House of Bourbon" and rightful claimant to the French crown by the Legitimist faction of French royalists, who also considered him as the senior male heir of Hugh Capet, being the senior descendant of King Louis XIV of France (ruled 1643–1715) through his grandson King Philip V of Spain.[6]

Louis Alphonse is a great-grandson of King Alfonso XIII of Spain and second cousin of King Philip VI of Spain. Through his mother, he is also a great-grandson of Spain's former dictator Francisco Franco.[3]

 
 
And yes ... I'd take a bite of that if it was served up to me.  A Royal Bite.
 
Take care all.
 
D
xox
 


Saturday, 21 February 2015

So Hot Saturday ... Jesse Spencer ....

Aussie Aussie Aussie ....... OI OI OI!!!!







Friday, 20 February 2015

Furry Friday ... Turkish Men ....

I love Turkish Men.  If you are unsure.  Read on........

Shabbat Shalom and Salaam.

D
xox










Thursday, 19 February 2015

10 Things Transmen Want You To Know...

article reprinted from the online version of FTM Magazine.

I found this particularly eye opening - even though upon reflection it all seems like common sense.
I am in awe of people who make such a difficult journey and come out the other side whole in their "true" persona. 

Enjoy.

D
xox


by Jason Robert Ballard
Photo credit: @undaunated_reality on IG


Over my life as a transgender man I have had moments I wish I could have said something to someone close to me but failed to.  Until going back in time is an option, lets move forward with better understanding on things we wish we could tell our close friends and potential partners.  If you've received this article from a friend, are they trying to tell you you're guilty of one of these points? Potentially, or they just think it was a good read and you might enjoy it.

You’re guilty by association
You will receive more questions about me than I will. People who are confused or curious will typically ask a person they believe can relate to them or think share similar experiences.  Talk to me about what I’m comfortable with you sharing when you field these questions. If I prefer not to be outed, you could respond with a simple, yet firm “It’s not my place to answer these questions for you, I’m sorry.” If I’m open about my transition, find out how to appropriately answer or divert harsh questions. This will make you a better ally and allow conversations to flow toward critical discussions instead of focusing on sexualizing the experience. As the topic of transgender lives emerges in mainstream media, questions often fall into one of two categories “genuine curiosity” or “superficial curiosity”. The question, “What are some reasons a transman might not have bottom surgery” is different from the question “Do you have a penis?“ Knowing whether the questioner is coming from a place of good will or being malicious may help you decide how to handle these moments.


“But you’ll always be _____ to me” hurts
Transition in life is inevitable. While seeing your little cousin for the first time in years and enjoying the fact that they were once in diapers, one may say “Aw, but you’ll always be little tommy to me!” and be perfectly acceptable. However, in my case I may have struggled with who I was and how I felt about myself before coming out as the authentic me. This is a time in my life of positive growth and happiness and if I’ve chosen to share it with you, telling me that you’d rather remain seeing me as someone I have taken great risks to leave behind is hurtful and damaging to our friendship. Telling me I’ll always be my birth name or birth sex in your eyes can be like telling someone who struggled with depression that you’ll always see them as ‘that pathetic emo kid’ or someone who fought with self image and weight lose that they’ll always be ‘fat’ to you. See what I’m saying? Yes, we may have a long history of knowing each other before I came out and that might be hard for you to let go of or see differently. Let me know you’re trying by not using this statement.


Outing me can be extremely dangerous.
As positive as some of the media and support for trans people are, there is still an overwhelming amount of hatred and ignorance. Hundreds of transgender people are murdered every single year and most of these times the killer walks due to failed/no protection laws in place for me. You may think that having a trans friend and talking about it in a public setting is fine, but if the wrong person over hears you or tells their friend who tells their friend, I could be in serious danger. It being a novelty to have a trans friend isn’t worth my life. If you want to talk about it, just don’t use my name and say you’ve ‘got a friend’.


My dysphoria isn’t your fault
It can be tough to be emotionally involved with someone who has a hard time with self image. You yourself may feel like you’re solely responsible for their happiness but sometimes their sadness comes from a place you simply can’t touch. It is not your fault that I have places and things about my body that I don’t like paid attention to. Talk to me and find out what is okay with me and what you can do to ease any triggering of my dysphoria, but don’t take the dysphoria personally. Some relationships, trans or cis don’t end up being ‘text book’. If I’m uncomfortable with my breasts and talk about wanting surgeries in the future, being sad about that and saying things like “But I love your boobs!” or “No don’t, I love you just the way you are” isn’t supportive. In fact, it’s proof that you’ve created an image of me in your head that doesn’t match up with who I really am and that’s not a positive basis for a relationship.


"It isn’t the T"
Beginning hormone replacement therapy can be a HUGE moment in my life. However, following that achievement I may lash out at you or be a jerk. If I say things like “It’s the testosterone”, you have my permission to not believe it. I am well aware of the emotional changes that I’ve decided to undertake and there are countless support systems and advice articles for dealing with extra tension and shorter tempers all over Google. My mood swings and hormonal imbalance are mine to control, not yours to tolerate. I have no right to be rude to you or push you away and blame a substance.


How do those egg shells feel?
Don’t get so hung up on words that the conversations never happen. You know me, if we’ve been close for any period of time you know what and how to phrase questions and statements to not be offensive. Though I may not want to be an educator all day every day to strangers at the grocery store, you’re my friend and it shows me you care when you're excited about my transition with me. Many transgender people don’t have or lose their entire support systems when they come out so I’m lucky to have you. If you’ve been around the web a time or two you’ll notice our community gets hung up on terms and words. Don’t let this frighten you into bailing on me.


Don’t date me despite me
If you’re interested in dating me, make sure you’re interested because of who I am, not despite my trans status. You’re not doing me a favor by being interested in me ‘even though’ I’m trans, you’re making it seem like to you it’s something that makes me hard to handle or below you and THANK GOODNESS you’re here now to be interested in me because who else would? Rude.


What you say behind my back is what you really think of me
When I first come out, some people might say things like “It’s about time” or “I always knew”, some may say they had no clue and some people might not believe me due to the rise of something called “trans-trending”. Whether you think I’m doing this for attention or because my friend is doing it too isn’t for you to decide. The locals don’t get to get together and vote to approve my trans status. There is no way for you to tell what has been going on in my mind for years and what I’ve struggled with personally. There are many ways to transition and no one way is perfect or the way it has to be done. Talk to me about it, find out my story if you feel so inclined. If not, just leave it alone because it doesn’t affect your life at all.


My pronouns mean a lot to me
Chances are I’ve chosen a new name and have preferred gender pronouns, you using them is a big deal to me and when you do it shows me that you support me in bettering my life for myself. Which should be qualities of all friends! At the beginning, you may slip or mess up but I promise I’ll be able to tell if someone is genuinely trying or if someone is making a point to use the wrong ones.


Thank you
If you’ve taken the time to read or share this article with someone close to you, you’ve sought out advice on being a better Trans Ally and that to me is admirable. Wanting to educate yourself to make me and any other transgender person in your life more comfortable in this time of great community and media change is worth a big thank you. There is a lot of anger and hatred in the world and in our small community and sometimes Allies can be pushed to their limits or be afraid to use the wrong words or do the wrong thing. Every single person behind us and in support of us is valuable. Thank you for your patience, your friendship and your love.

And then there is AMAZING model.  What a hot guy!

Trans Man Aydian Dowling posing naked for FTM Magazine photo recreation.

Jason Robert Ballard / Via ftmmagazine.com
We’ve all seen the iconic photo of Adam Levine with his wife’s hands over his respective ‘junk’… FTM Magazine publisher, Jason Robert Ballard saw similarities in model Aydian Dowling’s physique and Levine’s and set to making a recreation of the image.
“Some areas of my body used to remind me of everything I’m not. Now they represent everything I am” - Dowling
You can find more about Aydian and FTM Magazine at www.ftmmagazine.com where Aydian is the cover model April 2015. (And a nice big pull out poster!)