Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Make the Yuletide Gay

We're going to whoop it up tonight on Park Avenue downtown with a couple of parties to get you in the Christmas spirit!  That's right, whoop.

First of all, my pop-up shop Hugh for the Holidays will be hosting an Apr├Ęs-ski party to provide for a little relaxed socializing and last-minute shopping (for the holidays and for Hugh, since it pops-down on Thursday).  Come enjoy an adult beverage and relax by the fake fire as we warm up from that last run.  It starts about 6:30 and goes to about 9:30.

Then the activity moves down the street to the Park Bar for a Merry Christmas Doggy Style!  Enjoy more adult beverages and more relaxed socializing!

And to get you in the mood, here is one of the funniest Christmas YouTube videos ever. See you tonight!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Being Counted

A friend posted a link on Facebook to the very handy New York Times "Mapping America" tool and made the observation that Boston-Edison is the gayest neighborhood in Detroit (at 7%), followed by Indian Village (5%)  and Woodbridge (5%).  Not necessarily a shock, but interesting nevertheless.  If only because it prompts a little digging on the map to see where else rates.

It was no surprise to see that East English Village has a higher-than-zero number of "same-sex households" (3%) but seriously, who expected the area around the Detroit Medical Center (3%) to show up higher than Lafayette Park? I mean really, there are like six places to live there!  And the neighborhoods just next to City Airport (4%!)? Random!  Or Highland Park (3%).  For real?

The map is full of surprises like that in the city, little pockets where same-sex couples are just going about their business and not making a big stink about gayborhoods (but probably leading their block clubs).

Just as notable are the areas that don't appear to have a significant gay population, like the Palmer Woods/Sherwood Forest/Green Acres area (0%?  Really?).  Or in Oakland County - Ferndale is only 1-2%!  The winner in the OC is Royal Oak at a whopping 4%.

Remember, of course, that this only tracks households identifying as same-sex, which means couples.  So if there weren't enough reasons for society to make you feel shitty about being single, there's one more.  And the data is based on sampling - the real updated story from the 2010 census will be revealed in February 2011.  I am trying my darnedest to figure out how to find the sampled population of each census tract so I can do a little math with these percentages, but for the son of two Ph.D.'s in statistics I'm not managing to find the right data very well.

And to wrap things up - if you are looking for the ultimate in gay living in Michigan, apparently you need to move to Ecorse, which rates 14%!  If downriver is not your speed, there's always Pinckney (7%).  Really.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

My new store will give you wood

Teak, specifically.

As some of you know, I have dabbled in retail in the past.  My modern design store Mezzanine and retail happening Hugh were the major projects of my 30s, but I wrapped them up this spring - a victim of my wanderlust, not to mention my wandering attention.

Apparently I was not completely free of the retail bug, because I kept buying vintage (which at varying points was a large part of what I'd sold) with the intention of hoarding, or maybe selling on etsy, and when my friend and former landlord called me up to say the space that Hugh had occupied next to Centaur on Park Avenue was still available I figured "why not?" and opened up Hugh for the Holidays.

Hugh for the Holidays is a specially-themed version of Hugh - the idea is that Hugh goes on a swank ski holiday and classic bachelor pad style crosses paths with Scandinavian chic.  The store is all about affordable cool gifts, drinking well and entertaining with style.  It's a lot of vintage with a healthy dose of new merch - so think Mad Men glasses on teak serving trays, or stainless steel bar accessories from Denmark, or vintage metal Thermoses for sneaking hot toddies into the movie theater (right Stephan?)

If you live in the area and are moderately inclined, stop in for a little dose of hip shopping on Park Avenue, right behind the Fox Theater.  Open weekday evenings and weekend days until Christmas Eve.  Fan Hugh on Facebook, why don't you, to get all the details?  Or check out the website at lovehughlongtime.com!

Monday, December 6, 2010

We need a little Christmas, right this very minute

And we got it!  Did you read about the Smithsonian pulling the video installation "Fire In My Belly" from the LGBT exhibit "Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture" at the Smithsonian?

And then did you read how two activists got banned because they showed up and showed the video on their iPads at the entrance to the exhibit?

Man this makes me feel good.  It reminds me of the old Queer Nation days. I remember being in college walking past the Boston MCA while the Mappelthorpe exhibit was there (back when it was small and on Boylston Street downtown) and a bunch of QN protesters were outside chanting "We're here, we're queer, we're FABulous get used to it!"

If there is a return to the old style of community activism in the works, then I am all for it.  Detroit could use a lot of that.

There is help.

A very useful service for those of you with little ones around the house! 

And by little ones I mean either gaybies OR inappropriately young boyfriends.

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