Playing~"Happy Being Me"-Angie Stone
I had the pleasure of attending Darian's Discussion on Saturday. Before I talk about the discussion and how enjoyable it was I want to talk about Darian. I'm no authority on anything Darian, but I do know a genuine person when I meet one. I've only spoke with him twice via e-mail and all of one minute in person, but in those few interactions I could tell two things. One, he will get you together if you come incorrectly. Two, he is very passionate about the community and what his ideals, thoughts, voice can do for it. Nowadays with everyone claiming to be an activist the line of activist and someone who wants to be famous is blurred. There is no reconditeness when it comes to Darian. He is an activist. I think he understands to be heard by the masses you need popularity, but popularity is not what he is looking for. I appreciate that!
Once again, I've experienced a first. This was my first time gathering with SGL Men outside of a club setting (I've only been to two clubs), which was exciting, but I was anxious. Slick was suppose to be at my house, but he over slept and I refused to sacrifice this event for him. He was waking up as I was heading to my house to change out of my work clothes. I was in a dilemma. Should I wait for Slick and get there like 8:30-8:45 or get there without a buffer and enjoy the whole event. I decided to go alone and let him join me later (he never made it). I completely missed the social part of the event ( I figured that), but I made it with time to spare for the screening and the discussion, which was the important part. The irony of this event was my attendance to an event about men on the DL and a mini-series surrounding the topic. I was surrounded by individuals who appeared to be so open about their sexuality and I'm just getting started on my journey. For the pass year, I've been an enigma of sorts. My lack of confirmation or denial keeps my workplace whispering. However, I've never been on the DL. I've never had anything to be on the low about. I really don't have much of a story when it comes to male on male interaction. Okay, back to the discussion. After watching two episodes the panel took over. j. brotherlove was the moderator (there is something about him that makes him fly) and the panel consisted of James Earl Hardy (B Boy Blues), Tim’m West (rapper, activist, spoken word artist), Eric Ware (The Down Low Diaries), Anthony McWilliams (Atlanta Activist), and Anare Holmes (In The Life Atlanta, Clik Magazine). They touched on several things that were noteworthy, but two things left me with something to think about (I'm going to paraphrase to the best of my ability):
As gay men we have learned to lie so much we have to learn how to tell the truth. Anthony McWilliams (he spoke volumes with that one)
So many people are talking about how hard it is to find a man in Atlanta, because everyone sleeps around, but the ones who are complaining aren't even out. Tim'm West (He turned the mirror on me with that one)
Another big part of the discussion was how we don't support artist who represent us and are great at what they do. Also, how we need to define ourselves and stop looking for heterosexual people to define who and what we are. I was having the discussion with a friend almost a year ago. He was like I don't want people to know because of stereotypes. I was like they exist because people like you and I aren't visible. They also talked about the fearing of losing something when it comes to coming out, which is another thing I talked about indirectly here. It was affirming to attend this event. The DL Chronicles is a great DVD and Darian did a great job by getting a diverse group of individuals together.
Playing~"She's not you"-Raheem Davaughn