Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Weekend Review: Excitement in the Kiss-n-Tweet!

Johnny Weir at the podium
at the GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles
April 17, 2010
Love the crinkly nose!

So Johnny Weir was very busy this past weekend in Los Angeles lending his name and his perfectly gorgeous self to two great causes: The GLAAD Media Awards on Saturday, and an event hosted by Equality California on Sunday.

This, of course, caused the usual frenzy on Facebook, with all of us wallflowers who were unable to attend these events sighing over our boy like we had just sent him off to his first prom--so proud and yet wistful all at the same time--and then frantically trolling the Internet for any glimpse or mention of him: livestreams, photos, videos, twitpics, and, of course, tweets.

And that led us early Sunday morning after the GLAAD gala to these two tweets:

from @JohnnyGWeir: I'm now following @adamlambert because he yelled at me for not following! You rocked tonight darling.

Which everyone loved and hundreds of people reTweeted, which in turn provoked quite a response on Twitter mostly along these lines:

YES!!! My life is complete! @JohnnyGWeir and @adamlambert are FOLLOWING EACH OTHER!!! .

The other interesting tweet was this:

from @GoCheeksGo: Lesson learned from tonight's misadventures: Johnny Weir is not my future ex husband ...though he's great kisser. Everything else? Blurry.

Which created a little bit of an Internet stir, just briefly, and sort of mini-microcosmically like if we all lived on my tiny desk globe and then that volcano erupted in miniature Iceland and led to a couple of flight delays over teensy Europe.

I just thought it was funny. Hello. It's the GLAAD Awards. And there was a party. And Johnny wore what he described as "finger condoms." What kind of tweets were we expecting? "The after-party quilting circle was just lovely. And I so appreciated the beauty of the purity rings that everyone was wearing."

I also wondered, hey, who is this person and how come they got to kiss Johnny? And were there snuffles involved? And possibly alcohol?

So I checked it out and found that GoCheeksGo is a guy whose real name is Brad Bell, and who is kind of a YouTube star who posts videos of himself doing commentary on celebrities and current events, all of which lots of people knew way before I showed up. He's got a pretty good fan base and even an Internet world inspired by him called "Cheektopia" (kind of like Weirlandia). You can read more about him here.

I also found that he's brilliantly, hysterically funny. My two favorite videos: "The People vs. Jamie Oliver" and "Lady Gaga Brain Damage." His impersonation of Kristen Stewart from the Twilight series also is not to be missed.

And I learned that he used to date Adam Lambert, that they have since broken up but did some kind of presentation together that night at the GLAAD Awards, and that some say he's possibly been publicly crushing for a while now on our Johnny, of whom he is a fan.

So I like all that. Cheeks may not be everyone's cup of ... vodka, with a snort of coke?--and neither is Johnny. But ultimately, Cheeks seems to be about openness, acceptance, compassion, creativity, and humor, and that's all good.

So what's the problem?

Well, my guess is that Cheeks' tweet came off to some as a snarky way of "outing" Johnny. And that did NOT go over well.

I understand the concern. Johnny has repeatedly said that people should be seen for who they are, not what they are--a sentiment he echoed at both events this past weekend. He's also said,
"[T]here’s not one thing in my life that defines me except myself."

And he has steadfastly refused to be labeled as gay, despite the best efforts of many, including Chelsea Handler ("What do you like about Russia? Russian men? Or Russian women?" Johnny: "Russian culture") and Outsports ("[C]an’t we at least discern whether Barnes and Noble would put [your] book in the gay and lesbian section?" Johnny: "My hope is that Barnes and Noble will put it in the best-seller section") to super-glue that label firmly to his forehead.

At the Equality California event, Johnny said, "If I wanted to get married tomorrow, to a woman or to a man ... whatever makes me happy, I'm going to try to do it, and I want to have the freedom to do it. Everyone should have the freedom for that."

So since Johnny remains opaque on the subject, did Cheeks step out of bounds?

I think the more interesting question is: Would people have reacted differently if a woman had tweeted this?

Which, in my very humble opinion, exactly illustrates Johnny's point.

It shouldn't matter.

(Although it could be seen as bad manners to "kiss and tweet," whether you're a man or a woman.)

But I really think Cheeks didn't mean this little tweet to be anything other than flattering to Johnny. And possibly just a joke.

And I also think--just my opinion, for what it's worth, I could be wrong, and all other softly offered disclaimers--that having a strongly negative reaction to this tweet might, may I ever so gently suggest, with the greatest care and respect, possibly reveal a very, very tiny and deeply buried discomfort with gayness--so deeply hidden that it might even be unknown to a person.

And I'm not saying that this MUST BE the ONLY reason for a negative reaction nor am I directing this at anyone in particular. No offense to anyone, all opinions are just that--opinions--and again, I could be wrong. And I understand the ferocious protective response that Johnny inspires in so many of us.

But if a woman had tweeted this, would people have angrily interpreted it as Johnny being "outed" as a heterosexual?

I've been pondering that.

Anyway: My daughter found this T-shirt on Cafe Press that she really likes:

I like it too.

I'd also like a T-shirt that says:

Love is love.

Kisses are kisses.

People are people.

Labels are for file folders.

Please remember to keep voting for Johnny
as "Most Addictive Reality Star" in the NewNowNext Awards!
Vote here or on Twitter by constantly tweeting #realityWEIR.
Voting ends June 4, which gives us plenty of time
to get Johnny oh, say, ONE MILLION votes!

copyright 2010 / Binky and the Misfit Mimes / Lynn V. Ingogly / all rights reserved


stefanie said...

I would LOVE for johnny to find LOVE! Imagine how great of a story it would be. He deserves only the best no matter man or woman.

PumaJ said...

Hmm... I didn't even think of the internalized homophobia aspects of anyone's comments regarding "tweetgate", though I get your point.

You know I've never heard of or known of anyone loosing a job, loosing their kids, getting cut off from their family, beat up, etc. because they've been outed as heterosexual. But, I do know a great number of gay men, lesbians, and trans folks who have experienced such calamities because someone outed them.

To me, the question you ask: "if a woman had tweeted this, would people have angrily interpreted it as Johnny being "outed" as a heterosexual?" is so not like comparing apples. Though, there might be many in the world of Johnny's gay male fans who would be outraged, there would be no potential "societal" or career risk to Johnny as a figure skater. Therefore, at least to my way of thinking, comparing the two situations is rather more like comparing apples and carrots.

Aside from that, in general, I do think it rude and inappropriate to tweet about sexual kissing or other intimacies one might share with another. Tweets can become so public, after all. Maybe I'm a bit "old fashioned" in that regard, but that is my view.

Other than that, I do agree that "it shouldn't matter" about anyone's sexuality/sexual preferences as long as all is between consenting adults. I do sincerely hope that we shall see such enlightenment occur in our lifetimes. Love is love.

I like your little poem for a T-Shirt :-)

Shelley Catina said...

Loved Cheeks. It was a party! People kiss everyone.

Anonymous said...

I see your points, I do. I still have issue with that tweet. This is from the same guy that outed Adam Lambert during AI. Kissing and telling is just poor form.

Anonymous said...

Ah Mimesey we think with one brain. It's still early for me so my clever switch hasn't been flipped yet, but I wanted to say that if the tweet were true then both men have fanTAStic taste! Cheeks is a doll and we know how amazing Mr. Weir is. I think it's a good thing for people to look deeply into themselves and figure out why they had the reaction, positive or negative, that they did. Loving Johnny is loving him completely, warts and all. Not that he has any as his skin is annoyingly flawless, but if there were a big hairy one, I'd accept it completely.

-- Very sleepy Jessica Lane

Anonymous said...

If snuffles were involved, I'm definitely jealous! ^^.

I think it would have been worse if the tweet came from a woman. People would have said "Hey wait a minute, Johnny Weir's not supposed to date women! (Note to myself: Really? Who said that? Your right finger?) He's fooling us! (Note again: Then what?)" kind of stuffs.

Again, that is not our problem. Who knows why this guy tweeted that? For fun? To make a joke? Was he serious? Did he want to create a buzz? Personnaly, I DON'T CARE. What I care about is that Johnny gave some of his free time to do great things. He was sincere and opened, he took the time to speak to every people he crossed the path at those events. THAT is what I will remember. Johnny is an amazing human being. That's why we love him.

Mimsie said...

This is your best quote ever:

Love is love.
Kisses are kisses.
People are people.
Labels are for file folders.

Thanks so much!!!! Awesome!

auntyamyj said...

Well, hmmm. I didn't realize that there had even been much ado about the "kiss and tweet". Probably because I was trying really hard to spend a gorgeous sunny Sunday at my computer. Which is of course my main link to Weirlandia and all of it's inhabitants. So, my personal take on the "kiss and tweet" first of all is who cares....? I think that these are young people (I'm assuming that GoCheeksGo is a twenty-something) just out having fun, supporting a cause that means a lot to them. One of the reasons I admire Johnny so much IS his steadfast refusal to be defined or labeled by his sexuality. Unfortunately it seems most everyone on both sides of the fence really really want to put him in one pasture or the other. (Sorry for the barnyard analogy, but its working for me at the moment-says gal raised on a farm)It never fails to amaze me that we still as a culture, or even as human nature have to put people in boxes or compartments, or pastures for that matter. My sincerest hope for Johnny as he moves through his life and continues to make his impact on the world through whatever medium that ends up being, is that he is honored and respected for just being HIMSELF first and foremost.
I do hope that he is able to find love and happiness with someone at some point in his life. Regardless of who that is. I mean really, isn't that what we all really want?

Maggie St. said...

I didn't perceive Cheeks' tweet as 'outing' or anything negative at all. I just took it as one person at an event having a great time and tweeting whatever came to mind - whether it happened or not.

Straight/gay/bi - not matter what I am, if Johnny Weir and Megan Mullally both agreed to kiss me, I'd go for it! And I'd be telling everybody!!!

I just wish people would drop the whole sexual orientation question already. This doesn't define who Johnny is at all. He isn't a fantastic skater with a wonderful fashion sense, who is honest, outspoken, entertaining, tantalizingly teasing, etc., etc., etc., because he may be gay.

He's all these things - and so much more - because he's JOHNNY.

P.S. - #realityWEIR!!

Anonymous said...

nicely said, as usual, dear Binky!

i think the reason that the tweet stirred everyone up is that it was done by someone else, not Johnny. if he's choosing not to say, then shouldn't everyone else respect that? i don't care if he's lounging naked in a hot tub filled with pink champagne and beautiful men . . . if he still says it's none of our business, then, well, i'll just sit here quietly and admire him.

that said, he was very flirty onstage at GLAAD and it was super cute! he looked lovely and happy. :-)

- Princess Johnny-Love

Anonymous said...

Oh, MM! I so want JohnG to find true love with respect and humor and compassion and generousity and all the things that loving someone else brings out.

Anonymous said...

It should be mentioned that Cheeks did not "out" Adam Lambert at any point in time. Adam Lambert "outed" himself, when and how he saw fit to do so. The fact that they remain close is evidence enough of that.

Misfit Mimes said...

Thank you all for commenting--I really appreciate hearing different perspectives. Puma, I do see your point about "apples and carrots," particularly throughout history leading up to now. And the fact that there could be repercussions from one and not the other points out much that is very wrong about our society. I think maybe Johnny and some others, though, see it all as apples and apples. My hope and prayer is that that forward-looking view will become more universally embedded in our society as more of us question old, longheld assumptions and choose to see things in a new way, unfettered by prejudices of the past. Although I realise that sort of change seems to move with glacial rather than volcanic speed...

Anonymous said...

Did I mention that I love your blogs.
It´s because your voice perfectly says what I´m thinking and what I´m not able to say so eloquently as you do it.

I´ve already told you that you are a wizzard with words which always gets me hooked and while I think Johnny also is a wizzard with words...very outspoken, honest and eloquent...
you put his message into words to be understand
by everyone. Not that Johnny isn´t able to do that on his own, but I´m german and I still have trouble to comprehend everything that´s being said in a video (imagine you trying to understand and comprehend anything German)...but it helps me, being German, to understand it even better. It always happens to me that I listen to an interview dozens of times and I still find something I have not understood the very first time in its entirety.

Great log as always and as I expect from you. You write about things that have got me thinking lately...especially because Johnny has pointed them out.

Thanks for writing so much and also for getting people thinking.

Anyway, I´m grateful when someone helps me to understand a woman or a man (language-wise) who comes from a totally different background than I do.

Oh...and @auntamy: Dito. Kindred spirits, I see.

ETA: I can´t post with my LJ-name. I guess LJ acts up again.


Anonymous said...

Great blog Misfit! My two cents on the matter. I have no idea what happened that led to the tweet so I really can't comment nor speculate on the circumstances behind the events, since I wasn't there. I do think that that Cheeks meant no harm when he posted it given his friendly nature.

~Lauren A (Facebook)

Anonymous said...

Binky does it again! You should hold a seminar on how to tame the written word so well, really. I thought Johnny looked happy this weekend, and that's all I want for him-happiness and success. The fact that he's just fabulous in every way doesn't hurt either ;) -Suzanne

Nico said...

I just love him, no matter what. And I'm happy to see him happy, kissed (or not), beloved and given tons of airtime. He's both a completely regular person and clearly otherworldly in the best possible way.

I can't quit: I'm contractually obligated.

Anonymous said...

Yes Binky! I do not know why it was so clear to some that the tweet meant that Johnny was being outed. From what I have read here and there, Cheeks is a comedian...and it is Twitter = random comments.Just like Johnny winking at Chelsea H.

But the most significant reaction I have from your blog is my thoughts on how some fans reacted to JGW saying he wanted a daughter vs. wanting a child. For whatever reason(s) I thought to myself: would his fans be as happy to hear him say that he wanted a son?


Anonymous said...

For the record, Cheeks didn't "out" anybody on American Idol. Pictures were leaked by Vote for the Worst and he happened to be the ex in the pics. He and Adam seem to have a good relationship still, remaining friends.

Also, everything Cheeks says should be taken with a grain of salt. He made a youtube video about laying Trak Palin (which he says he made up,) another vid in which he describes being nicknamed by everyone from Paris Hilton to Keith Richards, and has tweeted things about Britney Spears and Gaga. He has said himself in chats on Cheektopia that all the things he says have at least a grain of truth to them, but exactly how much he elaborates shall remain a mystery.

"Cheeks" himself is a character. You can't take a character's words too seriously, no matter how hilarious, enlightening, and sparkly they are. ;-)

He's brilliant if you ask me.