Sunday, 2 November 2008

Hello, Sailor

Trawling the website of Homotopia, a highlight of the Liverpool City of Culture [sic] celebrations, I came across this fascinating piece about an exhibition based on the lives and experiences of gay seamen (fnaar fnaar), particularly in the Merchant Navy.

Contrary to the opinions of some militant gays out there, who only want to see gay men portrayed as "straight acting" and attack camp as a sign of "weakness", these are the stories of real men, real heroes - serving their country in the face of war by day, and donning feathers and spangles by night!

I especially loved the maps the boys painstakingly drew up for each port they visited - charting the clubs, bars and cottages worth visiting across the world. And the fact that they gave their quarters nicknames such as "Balmoral" (where the queen lives) made me hoot!

I really hope that the lovely Jo Stanley realises her ambition, and this exhibition does go on tour. I would be fascinated to see it make an appearance in Greenwich Maritime Museum...

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