Tuesday, June 14, 2011

I am a Real Lesbian Blogger

I want to set the record straight--yes, pun intended--that I am

a). real, in the sense that my first name starts with a J, I have a female partner, called here Mama Hungry, and twin children known here as Bud and Sis, that we live in Connecticut, that all the descriptors of me--the Ph.D., Unitarian Universalism, vegetarian, museum educator, stay-at-home-mom--on the sidebars are true, and that everything I blog about has happened. There is some poetic or literary license with descriptions and hyperbole, sometimes with skewed timelines (I get this indifferent relationship to time and numbers from my mom), mainly because I'm a Texan and we always exaggerate and embellish our stories.

b). a lesbian. Yep, a real female lesbian. I've been a lesbian since I was born, no doubt, but didn't quite realize it until my mid-20s, despite several girl crushes and kissing my lesbian best friend in high school. Call me slow. But it was the 1980s--we didn't have Ellen, just Jo on the "Facts of Life." I had a few very platonic, probably gay boyfriends, that didn't amount to much. And I've been in a monogamous lesbian relationship with another lesbian since 1997, having met and started dating her, after a fashion, in 1994.

c.) a blogger. I write this blog. Unless I quote or attribute the words, ideas, or recipes to others, they are my own to the best of my knowledge (recognizing that I might not realize influences I've absorbed). I've been blogging since August 2007--almost four years now--practically every day, sometimes several times a day. I do it for fun, for posterity, for keeping in touch with friends and family, for working out my ideas, but not much else like fame, money, or a book contract.

I mention this because in the last few days not one but two lesbian bloggers have revealed themselves to be straight men. And get this: unbeknownst to them, they corresponded and even flirted with each other! Tom McMasters took the pen name Amina Arraf and lied about being a lesbian Syrian-American in Damascus being persecuted by the government but protected by her father. And Bill Graber lied about being a lesbian and edited Lez Get Real under the name Paula Brooks, which is his wife's name--and she apparently knew nothing about it! I suppose I can appreciate that these two straight men cared enough about lesbian (and Syrian) issues to fully appropriate a fake identity to get the story out. Except now the story is about straight white male entitlement--and not lesbians and/or Syrians--and, really, don't we hear enough about straight white men in the news everyday already?


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