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Beauty Books: Boy George. Straight

February 5, 2010

Sydney is a magical city at any time of the year but come February and it really does start to show off its colours! I’m talking Mardi Gras people.

The Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras  is now in its 32nd year and has grown into  a world-wide spectacle attracting some 10,000 parade participants from all over the world. The popularity of this  and other Mardi Gras event in both the gay and straight community certainly gives me hope that Sydney is full of people ready to embrace and celebrate the awesomeness of being human. 

          Vive la difference!

Boy George Straight

In celebration of this colourful month I have been reading a beautiful book by the fascinating and boundary-pushing  (apparently boundaries are lighter than drugs) Boy George.  His book straight is a highly personal and retrospective look at his life post Culture Club (The Culture Club years  are the subject of an earlier book “Take it like a man”.   When reading the book it doesn’t take long for George’s voice to penetrate into your head making you feel that you have stepped into one of his private conversations. 

Now, not being a gay man (obviously, duh)  I am not sure if  his experiences and feelings are common place or unique to his personal  circumstances but  the way he describes the rejection, infatuation, love, beauty  and venom that have embraced (or strangled) his life makes for a compelling and relatable read.  

My favourite part of the book was the Taboo years – oh how I wish I had gone to see that when I was in London!   Fancy having a mate who’s whole essence could be summed up with the phrase “Ich bin Kunst”   (I am art – Leigh Bowery)?  Or being able to perform “ode to attention seekers”  or “Guttersnipe” with so much passion, feeling and insight?   The costumes, the glam, the beauty of it all, thrilling and exciting as it must have been didn’t even try to cover up the tempestuous reality that was the 1980’s gay club scene and for that we salute it.

So what has this book got to do with Realizing Beauty?

The what, where, how, when and why of beauty have always been philosophical questions to me and as always with philosophy there are many routes to travel when seeking the answer. Who knows, there are probably many answers!  One thing that this book has heightened my awareness of is the tight-rope that we all walk on at times between acceptance and resistance.   Some of Georges most personal dialogues are when he’s wrestling with this concept both on an internal level (“Why do I always fancy the straight man?”) and externally with all that making-up and making-out!   It’s all part of being human and as such is a journey that we have all taken.  I believe that it  is through us rationally apprasing what it is to be  ‘us’, what brings us that ‘sparkle’ that we can finally come to accept our individual beauty. Nobody can reach that place without embracing their true selves.

Why not get yourself into the festival mood with a little bit of Boy George this February? I am sure that like me, you will want to pour yourself a bit of disco therapy and a nice cup of tea afterwards.

PS: If you are in Sydney and want to join in the festival why not hook up with the Hoop Star Troup?  It doesn’t matter if your a pro or a beginner, get on your glad rags and come join the march. You can sign up via the link.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 6, 2010 8:17 am

    george comes across as so honest and raw. It’s so rare to find such honesty in the entertainment world.

    • RealizeBeautyEd permalink
      February 6, 2010 1:50 pm

      So true! He actually reminds me of my mother which I find quite delightful.

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