Responding to some great feedback
I understand there’s a certain amount of summer drop-off, and colleges that have summer classes don’t have full enrollment. So I am proposing two alternative dates:
# June 10-17th;
# Sept 9-16th.
This summer I will complete my sixth decade on earth. Living to 60 is not that surprising for most North American middle-income white cis-men. It is a bigger deal for me- see my recent blog post for some background on why that is. To celebrate the event I am planning a week-long trip around south-western Ontario and Metro Toronto. I have family and friends in London and Toronto; they will be the anchors for my trip. The time-frame for the trip is estimated to be from July 21st to 28th. (See revised proposed dates above)
I want to meet and talk with queer folk (young and old) across the area. In addition to the stories in this blog, I’ve published my chapbook In Pursuit Of A Dream. If any central or southwest Ontario #LGBTQ groups offer to host an evening of poetry/ storytelling/ taking questions, I’m all in. Sister Flirt would welcome invitations to speak as well.
I am not looking to become rich, nor famous, from this tour. Rather, it is my birthday gift to queer communities across Ontario. That said, any contribution of meals, accommodations or funds for travel expenses are appreciated. Net proceeds from the sale of the TeeSpring T-shirt shown here support my travel expenses.
I have a Press Release for potential Host Groups as well as an updated 2 page .pdf about the Tour available to share.
I offer tales of sex, drugs, activism, addiction, abuse, survival (see the short bio below).
Looking for groups in and around:
<> Chatham-Kent (former resident);
<> West Elgin (former resident);
<> Toronto (former resident);
<> Owen Sound;
Brian was born in Toronto in 1958. He and his family moved to North Bay before he started school, and then to a village that became part of Mississauga, before settling in West Elgin in 1968. After graduating high school Brian moved to Chatham, working at James Photo and K-Mart and joining Theatre Kent for the group’s initial season. He returned to Toronto in the Spring of 1978, after he came out as Gay to the readership of the Chatham Daily News in response to a Letter To The Editor. He has not stopped stating his opinion since.
He missed the Stonewall Riots but began exploring political and sexual activism in his home town. Fighting for basic civil rights and non-discrimination protection quickly pivoted to protesting repeated police raids on gay bath houses in Toronto and elsewhere. ‘Operation Soap’ in February 1981 had long-term impacts on police/community relations as well as shining light on issues of censorship and police over reach.
Just a few years later what we now know as hiv/aids exploded in gay communities across North America. Rather than building a career Brian worked various retail jobs (and one summer as a bath house attendant) and kept his energies for community work. That work ranged from volunteering with the Aids Committee of Toronto, Casey House Hospice, and the Mr Leatherman Toronto committee to membership in Trident Metro Toronto and the Toronto Order of Perpetual Indulgence. He was also a volunteer peer counselor on the GYT Gay Youth Toronto single-line phone service.
He moved to Columbus, Ohio early in 1996. He presently works various part-time jobs to supplement his self-employment at The Digital Gryphon LLC. He is a photographer, graphic designer and publisher as well as an Ordained Celebrant and Spiritual Card Reader. He continues to support and promote the music of groundbreaking ’80s and ’90s gay folk duo Romanovsky & Phillips.
See also a longer, far more detailed account of my queer connexions.
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