Posts Tagged With: sports

Days of Our Lives witnessed a first for the show as they watched two men pucker up under a stone archway.

Days of Our Lives 

Fans of Days of Our Lives witnessed a first for the show as they watched two men pucker up under a stone archway at the 10:00 minute mark on this video:

Categories: Gay Teens, Young Adult | Tags: , , , , , ,

Scott Heggart, who became the only openly gay athlete on any of his sports teams, is now a featured speaker in the No More Bullies campaign

Scott Heggart, who became the only openly gay athlete on any of his sports teams, is now a featured speaker in the No More Bullies campaign at Ottawa-area schools.

Scott Heggart was a big, strapping teenager, who topped out at six foot four. He played football, basketball, softball and hockey.

And he had a secret. It was hard enough to share it with his mom and dad.

But as a young athlete, steeped in the machismo of sport, where “about the worst thing” is to be a “fag” or a “homo,” there was one conversation that was even harder.

Telling his teammates he was gay. Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke and his son, Patrick, a scout for the Philadelphia Flyers, have just launched the You Can Play Project to tackle the “casual homophobia” of professional hockey, where there is still no openly gay athlete. The initiative is in honour of Brendan Burke, their son and brother, who came out shortly before being killed in a car accident in 2010.

Public-service announcements, with 36 NHL players so far signing on, deliver a simple, powerful message that an athlete’s sexual orientation does not matter. “If you can play, you can play” is a sevenword mantra taken from a piece written by Brendan.

The campaign is a small sign of change in the elite level of sport. One day this attitude may trickle down to places like the locker-rooms of the Lanark-Carleton Minor Hockey League, where Scott Heggart risked ostracization and ridicule to do what few athletes before him, professional or amateur, dared to.

His truth telling didn’t play out as he’d expected.

From the time Scott Heggart could walk, he’d wander around like a pintsized warrior swinging some sort of sporting implement, whether it was a hockey stick, baseball bat or golf club. And as soon as he could read, he was memorizing stats.

He loved sports, especially hockey. But by the time he was in Grade 7, he’d come to realize, he didn’t love girls, at least not in that way.

Sure, he had gal pals, but when his buddies were snatching first kisses and going on dates, Scott hung back. He wasn’t interested.

Did he think he was gay? “I’d started to understand who I was, what it meant. And if I was being true to myself, I probably would have come out in Grade 6, but I didn’t want to be that person,” he recalls.

At the time he played basketball at Bridlewood Community Elementary School, and minor league hockey in Kanata. If he owned up to his sexuality, he feared he would have to stop playing.

“The worst thing, from my teammates’ perspective, was to be gay.” If there was the slightest hint you possessed a feminine side, or if you whimpered after slamming into the boards, or if you dared wear a pink shirt, you were ridiculed.

‘Faggot’ this. ‘Homo’ that. But interestingly, never directed at Scott. No one thought the lanky athlete could be gay. And he planned to never tell them.

But the situation ate at him. “I thought there was no way they would accept me.”

So he withdrew. He’d practise and play, then he’d hide at home.

His parents, Julie Wilson and Randy Heggart, wondered what had happened to their “happy boy.”

“We knew he was wrestling with something but we just couldn’t imagine what,” recalls Julie.

They asked, he shrugged. He had every reason to believe his parents would be supportive. But even if he told them he was gay, how could he admit that he was gripped by selfloathing and suicidal thoughts?

“I started looking around me at all the hate that is directed at gay people and that really threw me off the deep end.”

So he tried to think himself straight.

“I really mentally punished myself for my thoughts. It wasn’t a psychologically healthy thing to be doing.” And when he realized he couldn’t alter his identity, he thought of killing himself.

“I spiralled downward. And it became this constant mental pain that I was dealing with.”

After a year of intense suffering and loneliness, he knew he had to seek help, or he might harm himself.

He emailed his sister, Sonya, 12 years his senior, asking to meet.

“Is this about a girl?” she asked when they were face-to-face. Of all the questions.

When he said no, she replied, only joking: “Is this about a boy?”

“I looked her in the eyes, and I said, ‘Yeah, I’m gay.’ ”

He’d finally shared the secret he’d held close for so long. They talked, cried, hugged. Sonya, like the rest of her family, would later say she never suspected Scott was gay. In retrospect it “made sense,” in part because he hadn’t been girl crazy like his older brother.

Telling Russell was harder. He was nine years older, another jock who loved the sporting arena.

But Russell listened quietly, then asked if it was a phase. “I still love you, I still consider you my best friend,” he said. He jokingly offered a protective brotherly warning if Scott brought home a partner, and he didn’t like him. “I will let you know you have a ‘dick’ of a boyfriend. The same as if you brought home a girl who was a ‘bitch.’ I would tell you straight up.”

With his sister by his side, Scott told his parents in a few quick sentences.

It went something like this, according to all who were there: “I’m going through a really rough time. I want some more freedom in my life to express myself. I need to feel at home in my own house. I can’t go on like this – I’m gay.”

His parents were somewhat relieved.

“When you said you had something important to tell us, I was thinking it was obviously something very grave and I wasn’t sure what we were facing,” his dad Randy would later say.

Mom Julie says that if she’d really thought about it, she might have “put it together.” They had attributed the past months of moodiness to a “rocky adolescence.” And when their friends asked why Scott didn’t have a girlfriend, they’d invariably say that he was too busy with sports. And they believed this.

This had been the easy conversation. But Scott, then 15, couldn’t imagine taking the next step and telling his teammates. He would also be moving to a new school for Grade 9, Sacred Heart Catholic High School in Stittsville, where he’d have to make new friends. So he chose another, very teenage way, to continue the conversation.

During the first week of Grade 10, Scott recorded a video of himself telling his coming out story. He posted it to YouTube, then showed his parents.

This video would eventually receive more than 52,000 views from people who had no idea he was a gay teen living in Stittsville.

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen

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Categories: Bullying, Gay Teens, Teen Suicide, Young Adult | Tags: , , , ,

Madonna Truth or Dare Documentary DVD released April 3, 2012

MADONNA Truth or Dare DVD available after April 3, 2012.

The documentary came out in the early 90’s and is still the #1 most successful documentary of all time.  When it hit theaters no one had ever seen anything like it before. It was a back stage glimpse at what celebrity life is really like. Some believe this was at the height of Madonna’s success when she was beyond big.  Today no one has come close to the caliber she reached at that point. There was only her out there, whereas today there are so many and most are just marketed, packaged clones of what was already done.

Madonna is brazen, bold and maybe even loud mouthed.  Is she playing it for the camera?  In some sequences there is a definite heightened version shown on screen of what she wanted people to see.  Other times she is completely oblivious to the camera’s being there like for example when she’s angry with her sound crew for not making sure that the sound and microphones were top notch.

This isn’t just about celebrity, this also showed Madonna’s ferocious work ethic and attention to detail.  It displayed the business side of her that most are or were unaware of.  Siskel & Ebert had commented that this was someone who could run a business empire if she wanted to just quit music for good.

At this point Madonna had rarely done interviews and she was way beyond powerful.  No one was quite sure what she was like.  This gave viewers an up close and personal view.  What was also great about this was it also showed her generous side by allowing her back up singers and dancers adequate screen time.

The documentary is in black and white, but it cuts into color for the many on stage concert performances of the tour she was on while this was being filmed.  The Blonde Ambition Tour in 1990.  This was a technically staged concert that was so elaborate it had also never been done before and set the bar really high for performers and musicians to really put on a great show.  We later saw other artists like Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson, Britney Spears and Lady Gaga do the same – just to name a few.

This film was so well done and so well received that even the Madonna haters went to see it as well, coming out of the theaters saying things like, “Well I never liked her, but after seeing this I have to say I do admire how hard she works.  I have a new found respect for her.”

If you can turn a life long hater to folding and admitting they have appreciation for her even if they don’t care for her music then you know the film did its job.

Madonna is much calmer and more spiritual now so I should warn that this documentary features strong language and sexual innuendo that might be deemed offensive to some.  However, most know what Madonna is like and can be, so no warning should be necessary.

Long before there was Lady Gaga, there was Madonna.  Truth or Dare was the first time the world had really had gays shoved in their faces.  Madonna was the first entertainer to brutally push them out into public view.  This was also the beginning of the shift where others began to follow in Madonna’s footsteps in bringing out support for gays.  I find it amusing when I see some of these gays stating that Madonna is a has been and other derogatory words.  Not only are using the same hate speech that the world uses on them, but they would not have some of the luxuries of having half the world accept them if it were not for Madonna’s massive and fearless support for gays back in the late 80’s and 90’s.  She made the world see how cool or great it was to be gay.

It’s unfortunate that the full tour concert has yet to be released on DVD, but in this film you do get an edited glimpse of some performances that include, “Express Yourself”, “Oh Father”, “Like A Virgin”, “Live to Tell”, “Holiday”, “Vogue” and “Keep it Together”.

Madonna talks to The Advocate in February 2012 here

Kevin Stea, one of Madonna’s former back up dancers recalls how his life was forever changed when he traveled the world with Madonna during her Blond Ambition Tour, which was captured in the documentary Truth or Dare.  Click here for his full story.

The DVD is scheduled for a major re-release on April 3, 2012.


Categories: Gay Teens | Tags: , , , , , ,

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