My journey with AIDS…and more!: Meanderings of a mental health client in good company

Originally posted on My journey with AIDS…and more!: Would it be much of a surprise, even to the casual reader, that I am a mental health client? I have been since soon after my conclusive HIV diagnosis in 1990, although I wish now that I had sought such accompaniment long before then. It started…

Cowichan Conversations: NDP’s equity mandate backfires as mayor forced out of the closet.

Political columnist and pundit Michael Smyth has kicked the BC NDP’s ‘Equity Mandate’ into play, as we enter the period of nominations across BC. Normally the party members decide and nominate based on who Read more…

My journey with AIDS…and more!: I am reminded

I am reminded of December 6, 1989 at Montreal’s Ecole Polytechnique. I am reminded of February 5, 1981 – Toronto’s bath house raids, the catalyst for my coming out. I am reminded of stolen innocence as a child at the hands of a stranger. I am reminded of the “flu” I couldn’t shake in May ...

My journey with AIDS…and more!: Out for 35 years

Reading something which noted that 1981 was 35 years ago jarred me into realizing that it was three-and-a-half decades ago this very month that I officially came out of the closet, by which I mean letting my family know that I was gay. It was in the context of the uproar over the bathhouse raids ...

Alberta Diary: Welcome to Alberta, where, baby, these are the days of miracles and wonders…

Conservative political leaders distribute loaves and fishes, part of the school lunch program planned for the hundreds of new schools that will be popping up overnight out here in Alberta. Actual Alberta politicians may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The real Premier Jim Prentice, Opposition Leader Danielle Smith and Education Minister Gordon Dirks, all ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: I’m Thinking, “This is Going to Hurt!”: On ‘How Not to Deal with Grief’

From my friend Betty Ann on her Facebook page: “This article deeply moved me…as I suspect it will for any of you who have been impacted by the kind of grief associated with multiple loss, deaths due to overdose and or HIV/AIDS. Rather than just clicking on “like”, can you write a few sentences in ...

Politics and its Discontents: To Be Young, Gifted, And Gay – Part Two

While I wholeheartedly agree that no one has the right to pry into a person’s sexual orientation (except in cases of arrant hypocrisy), I still feel such admiration for and encouragement about the human spirit when people choose to reveal it. Following Michael Sam’s recent revelation that he is gay, Canadian actress Ellen Page has ...

calgaryliberal.com: Being gay is not offensive, Alison Redford.

Homosexuality is not an offensive concept, Alison Redford. When you amended the Human Rights Act as Minister for Justice your government told Albertans that homosexuality, sexual orientation, and human sexuality are things that parents could ‘opt out’ of in our schools. By doing so you’ve promoted the anti-LGBT beliefs and social constructs that have plagued ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: Review (and a personal retrospective) – Behind the Candelabra

With only the most scant help from Google I have been trying to remember more about my personal, professional meeting with Liberace (“Please, call me Lee.”) It was some time in the mid-1980s, while I was working at a St. Catharines, Ontario radio station, when the subject of last night’s premiere of Behind the Candelabra ...

Politics and its Discontents: Another Face Of Integrity

This kind of sterling courage and integrity is what keeps me from abandoning hope: H/t Salon.com Recommend this Post

My journey with AIDS...and more!: Lunch with Vito Russo

Disclaimer:  My memories have been assisted by Google and a piece of paper, 8-1/2″ x 11″ divided in half, on which is written the following: After signing up for The Movie Network again recently, I came upon the film “Vito: A Man For All Seasons”.  I was immediately transported back to the early summer day in ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: Early morning, April 25, 2007

A prompt this week to write about something in a health-care context brought out this story which, despite having been told over and over in my head, had heretofore not made it down in writing. It wasn’t quite 5:30 am and Janice was already waiting for me on the main floor of Union Station. Her ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: Shaun Fryday, whose faith community emulates his personal hospitality, to be this year’s recipient of the Craig Chaplin Memorial Award

Rev Shaun Fryday has been selected by Montreal’s United Theological College to receive the award, established by my late brother, at the UTC Convocation on May 8th, 2013. Fittingly, the ceremonies will take place in Shaun’s congregation of Beaconsfield United Church. When he received the news, Shaun is said to have been deeply moved, recalling ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: Coming out as the end of a beginning

This morning on CTV’s Canada AM Kevin Newman, of Question Period fame, was promoting a very important segment on this weekend’s W5 program (Saturday at 7 p.m. ET) and, in the accompanying online article he wrote, “Coming out is toward the end of the process for our gay children” – when learning to accept it ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: There are at least a few, if not many, important people with whom I need to have my own conversation about…

…this! It’s certainly not too early to think about Mental Illness Awareness Week When I read the Ottawa Citizen article (linked above) I immediately thought, “Mom will have read that yesterday,” and what an opening it would give me to discuss my own mental health history with her. Not long after sobering up five+ years ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: My 1,000th post! (with help from The Equality Mantra’s “A Letter to My Sons”)

What I really like about this is that it could just as easily have been said by my Mom or Dad. (They said and wrote almost exactly similar sentiments when Craig and I came out 31 and 35 years ago, respectively.) So there you have it, according to WordPress and Price-Waterhouse accountants, my one-thousandth post!

CANADIAN PROGRESSIVE WORLD: Anderson Cooper: “The Fact Is, I’m Gay”

A couple of years ago, a friend swore to me that the CNN’s Anderson Cooper was gay. And that it was a matter of time before he came out. I argued that Cooper would be gay only after he’d publicly confirmed that he was gay. The essence of the conversation is that my friend I ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: Wherefore art thou, Cardinals – Oh!

This was a landmark day in the lives of Ontario high school students who have been exercising their democratic rights, without the vote even, for the passage of Bill 13, the Ontario provincial government’s gay-straight alliance (GSA) initiative. It passed in the Ontario Legislative Assembly with 65 votes in support, from the combined efforts of Liberal ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: Two names to be added to Craig Chaplin Memorial Award

This spring’s presentation of the award in my brother’s memory will include a couple of firsts – two individuals are being cited and they’re from across the Canada-U.S. border in neighbouring Vermont. To be more accurate, one-half of the couple of Dr. Delores Barbeau and Carol Olstad, R.N. will be honoured posthumously as Carol, who ...

My journey with AIDS...and more!: So three lawyers walk into the Ontario Legislature…

…but this is no joke! There’s a friendly exercise each morning that the Ontario Legislature sits when Members have the opportunity to introduce guests seated in the gallery – family members of one of the high school student pages, perhaps a visiting township reeve, or dignitaries representing other governments, be they in Canada or elsewhere. ...