Category Archives: Pop Culture

Lady Gaga’s Google Interview

Lady Gaga’s Interviews 

I freak out everytime I see an interview of her online for any reason. Admittedly, I am sort of obsessed with how amazing she is, even though she does crazy shit, like show up randomly to drag queen shows of “I Was Born This Way”. Either way though, her interview with Google was great and I am going to talk about it.

Also! Her new album is coming out in May! Who is excited? I am.

In one of her interviews she talks about how her cheeks bones jut out on the album cover and the interviewer asks her about when she got the prosthetic put on her skin and Gaga says that they naturally come out when she has creative energy. That everyone has them. WHAT?! Even though I love her, she’s sort of crazy.

Anyway, to the interview!

Google Interview

The first place where I watched the interview was on autostraddle (http://www.autostraddle.com/lady-gagas-epic-73-minute-interview-with-google-82407/), which is where they also provide a recap, telling what their favorite quotes are and providing pictures. You can also watch the interview on youtube.

In this interview, Lady Gaga is incredibly articulate and I love Google even more for being the one who provided this interview. The interviewer herself is a bit awkward, but whatever, they have Gaga on the screen. In the beginning of the interview, Google presents a video that they put together of how many hits Lady Gaga has gotten through Google’s search engine set to the beat of her songs “Poker Face”, “Just Dance” , “Bad Romance” , and “Paparazzi”. After seeing the video compilation, Gaga comes onstage and begins answering questions from fans via video and her youtube channel.

Her first interaction with the crowd starts off with loud applause and replying to calls of “I love you!” by saying “I love you too!” In the background is a screen lit up with the phrase “Google Goes Gaga”.

One of the audience members is dressed like her from her video “Telephone” and Gaga asks “Did you just get out of jail?” and the audience members says something that we can barely hear and Gaga says “Me too”.

Of course at the beginning of her interview she compliments Google and the interviewer tells her how she has been the most searched person in the world in 2009 and in 2010.

For the interview Gaga has received 54,000 questions via her youtube channel, only some of which could be answered.

In most of the videos, the fans put up the monster hand. The cutest video is the first one, where one fan asks her “How she is” because she is never asked that question during her interviews.

Most of the interview she is very calm, composed, and articulate. She thinks about all of her answers very carefully and connects well with the audience. Despite her worldwide fame, Gaga is very aware and connects very well to individuals, never seeming like she is above anyone. She also remains positive through out the interview, never once criticizing her fellow stars or herself. I really admire her for that.

Some of my favorite moments that she has during the interview are:

Commenting on her Single “Born This Way” :

“What’s so funny when I put that song up is everybody was like oh, the lyrics are so literal, and I’m like, yeah. When you get bullied you kind of try to, its almost like there is this emotional poetry that you go through in highschool. Oh, well someday, and you just kind of try to hide from it and be the bigger person, but “Born This Way” is about saying “This is who I am. This is who the fuck I am.”

On Creativity:

“If God calls you, pick up the damn phone” Pauses “Hello? I’m listening”

What her favorite Youtube video is:

It’s so embarrassing, but I love it so much. I love the boy that when he comes home from the dentist. I can’t…because I always sit, whenever I’m really tired before a show I say ‘Is this real life?’. Because I’ll have been up for 30 hours straight doing interviews and then I’ll hear the duh duh duh brrrr and the show starts and I’ll say ‘Is this real life?’ and everybody goes ‘It is, you have to go on stage’. I love that video, that poor boy”

The greatest piece of advice she has ever received:

“If you don’t have any shadows you aren’t standing in the light.  I say that to myself everyday. Every single day I say that because I am not a squeaky clean person, you know. So, there is nothing about my music, or the Monster Ball, or my fans, we’re not squeaky clean. People always say to me ‘Who is the real you?’ when in reality, I’m pretty much an open book about my life and what you are asking me about is magic. If you’re magical, you always have shadows. If you’re in the light, you must cast a shadow”

The best part though is at the end when she has a bunch of people in the audience step up to podiums to ask her questions and they all have costumes on. A lot of them get hugs from her, which is just adorable. She also talks about faith, which I really like.

She’s so funny and this interview makes me want to be her friend. Also her new GagaVision videos, which she mentions during the interview, make me want to hang out with her. She’s so real, all of her answers to her questions, I have experienced. Even though she does crazy shit, I still feel like she can be a role model and I think this interview does that statement justice.

Conclusion

No matter the criticisms about her, I am still in love with the things she does. I admit, she does crazy things, but she does great things for the queer community and no one can complain about that.

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Filed under glbtq, Music, News, Pop Culture

Autostraddle

The other day I discovered a blog about “girl-on-girl culture” which made me laugh and also incredibly excited. This blog is definitely one of the most comprehensive lesbian blogs that covers pop culture, politics, contemporary news, and also has video.

Definitely check it out if you haven’t heard of it before: http://www.autostraddle.com/

The writers also include round-tables where they took about up-to-date feminist topics and also about self-identity (current round table is on intersectionality)

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Filed under Education, Feminism, gender, glbtq, politics, Pop Culture, Queer, Sexuality

Curve Magazine

If you don’t know about it, you should. If you are just coming out and scared to check it out I suggest looking at the website online, it has articles, interviews, advice, etc.They even have a section of the website for a forum and a hook up blog! which I didn’t know about until a minute ago. I think since its new, the relationship advice section is sort of limited unless you want to check out their regular monthly advice section (which is sort of witty and sort of helpful and sort of essentialist).

The magazine has a variety of representation and does not have an abundance of ads. During the L Word, they had interviews with most of the cast and the most recent magazine had an interview with a surfer (pretty sweet, huh?).

I suggest taking a look. Something my boss at Sappho (a lesbian bar in Amsterdam) told me rings true right now. She said it in reference to movies, media, etc: “I don’t need them when I’m in a couple because I know I’m a lesbian, I know I like girls. When you’re single you have this need to be near it, to know that they are out there, you know?” After I thought about this I realized how true it is. Since straight people see other straight people all the time they don’t need something to validate their existence, glbtq do and this magazine helps. It helps you feel like you are not alone and in the magazine, there is someone for everyone to relate to.

(http://www.curvemag.com/)

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Vogue (dance)

Introduction

While I was in Philadelphia for the summer, I went to a Ball with my friend. At first, I had no idea what Ballroom was until I heard of the movie Paris is Burning. After I watched Paris is Burning, I wanted to learn more about voguing, which is what they do at a Ball. You might never have heard of Balls or voguing, but now you will know about the history if you haven’t heard of Willi Ninja.

History of Voguing

Since I don’t know that much about voguing, I’m going to refer to my favorite site wikipedia and give you some background information:

Vogue is a form of modern dance characterized by photo model like poses integrated with angular, linear and rigid arm, leg and body movements. The style of dance arose from the Harlem ballrooms back in the early 1930s, which was then called “performance” and evolved into the more intricate and illusory form that is now called “vogue”.

There are two distinct styles of vogue: Old Way (pre-1990) and New Way. Old Way is characterized by formation of lines, symmetry, precision in the execution of such formations and graceful, fluid like action. New Way is characterized by a more rigid, geometric pattern movement coupled with “clicks” (limb contortions at the joints) and “arms control” (sleight of hand and wrist illusions). Vogue also encompasses other forms of dance and movement, namely modern jazz, ballet, gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, martial arts, breakdance, yoga, etc. Some dance historians even point out that breakdance and vogue evolved out of each other, with artists from both sides interacting with each other in New York City’s Central Park, West Side Piers, Harlem and Washington Square Park during the 70s and early 80s.

Voguing has evolved since its beginning and continues to be developed further as an established dance form that is practiced in gay dance clubs in New York, and other big cities throughout the United States–mainly Atlanta, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Miami and Chicago.

Though voguing usually takes place in gay clubs frequented by African Americans and Latin American males, it is also practiced by a small number of non-gay individuals and outside of the club scene. Formal competitions occur in the form of balls held by houses or collectives of dancers and performers.

Some influential houses include the House of Xtravaganza, the House of Revlon, the House of Ninja, the House of Infiniti, the House of Aviance and the House of Milan” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vogue_(dance)).

Paris is Burning

To learn more about voguing, you should definitely watch the movie Paris is Burning. Its a documentary (I know, boring) and in the end you want to try the dance moves yourself or check out a ball late at night.

Here is a synopsis: “Paris Is Burning is a 1990 documentary film directed by Jennie Livingston. Filmed in the mid-to-late 1980s, it chronicles the ball culture of New York City and the poor, African American and Latino gay and transgendered community involved in it. Many consider Paris Is Burning to be an invaluable documentary of the end of the “Golden Age” of New York City drag balls, as well as a thoughtful exploration of race, class, and gender in America”

Conclusion

While I was in Philadelphia, I went to a glbtq youth center and saw kids practicing for a ball. It made me happy because I knew what it meant. A Ball was created and has survived as an outlet, a dance outlet, for people to survive through homophobia, racism, and poverty. I knew how it felt because dancing is when I can forget, feel like I am above, in ecstacy. Voguing is both a legacy and a party.

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Milk and No on Prop 8

Sean Penn is amazing. After seeing Milk, I felt inspired, renewed, and empowered. Harvey Milk , played by Sean Penn in Milk, was amazing and is definitely my new hero. He reminded me of myself in many ways. Half way or more through the movie, Harvey’s lover, Scottie, talks to him about a soap box speech Harvey just made. Scott, played by James Franco, confronts him about wanting people to be out, where Harvey referred to Scott as “his roommate” or acted as if he wasn’t there. Most of Harvey’s lovers had committed suicide because he wasn’t out. This reminded me of myself, not because my lovers have committed suicide or because I had hidden them, but because I tell people to out and I didn’t come out or feel comfortable with it until college. The movie made me become more aware of the division between personal and political, theory and practice. The movie also made me feel more passionate about what I want to promote, what I want to do, and how I want to go about doing it.

Harvey Milk was the first openly gay man to be put into public office in California. California is now known as one of the most open-minded states in the United States. It is known for voting democrat, for San Francisco, for Los Angeles (to much dismay from some), the Gold Rush, and one of the birth places of the Gay Liberation Front. Then, the castro district in SF was just about to be born, there were police riots, and there were a man and a singer who were trying to get homosexual teachers out of schools because they would convert the children to their way of life.

Sean Penn renewed the legacy of helping the minority, of bringing human rights into focus, and hate based on ignorance. The history of Harvey is not irrelevant, but is a lesson that is timeless. He is someone to look up to because he fought for what he believed in even though his way of having sex and openness about it was being openly targeted by authority. His courage and political will was not based on power, but more on love and the desire to help others like him.

After many attempts at gaining office in San Francisco, Harvey did not stop though he was discouraged. Prop 8 is something Harvey would be fighting against because it is blatant discrimination. There are many criticisms of the issue that the Prop is backing, such as it backs a white gay issue and is backed by the HRC, a human rights corporation. The Prop though, is not about gay marriage if you look at the wording. The Prop is about equality and rights. The Prop should not be about corporations backing it such as Google or car companies, which it was. The campaign needs to change to progress.

The thing that needs to be kept in mind is that the Proposition even got on to the ballot. That is the first step and it is a major step because it was in the spotlight. Harvey Milk was finally in the spotlight in 2008 and the film was a part of pop culture. Even straight people cried when Harvey died.  That is a step. Gay rights is having steps, small ones, but steps nonetheless.

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Filed under history, News, politics, Pop Culture

I Kissed a Girl

Introduction

Who doesn’t want to kiss Katy Perry? She’s hot, she may have cherry chapstick on, but! she has a boyfriend. For anyone who is queer, you know, this is dangerous ground. Someone who is experimenting wants to kiss you? Ok, cool, she’s hot, but…I mean…no hesitation right? For a few casual hook ups its fine to go around kissing straight girls, but when it comes down to it, if you are the relationship hunting type, who wants love…hell no.

In this entry, I will show the video, will display the lyrics of the song, and discuss what I think about the song as well as the response from FOX News.

Photo

(http://www.rollingstone.com/artists/katyperry)

The video

Watch it on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_W_M34VVU08

The lyrics

“This was never the way I planned
Not my intention
I got so brave, drink in hand
Lost my discretion
It’s not what, I’m used to
Just wanna try you on
I’m curious for you
Caught my attention

I kissed a girl and I liked it
The taste of her cherry chap stick
I kissed a girl just to try it
I hope my boyfriend don’t mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don’t mean I’m in love tonight
I kissed a girl and I liked it
I liked it

No, I don’t even know your name
It doesn’t matter,
You’re my experimental game
Just human nature,
It’s not what,
Good girls do
Not how they should behave
My head gets so confused
Hard to obey

I kissed a girl and I liked it
The taste of her cherry chap stick
I kissed a girl just to try it
I hope my boyfriend don’t mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don’t mean I’m in love tonight
I kissed a girl and I liked it
I liked it,

Us girls we are so magical
Soft skin, red lips, so kissable
Hard to resist so touchable
Too good to deny it
Ain’t no big deal, it’s innocent

I kissed a girl and I liked it
The taste of her cherry chap stick
I kissed a girl just to try it
I hope my boyfriend don’t mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don’t mean I’m in love tonight
I kissed a girl and I liked it
I liked it”

(http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/k/katy_perry/i_kissed_a_girl.html)

Fox News Response to Video

“Never one to be shy about tackling the so called “homosexual agenda,” conservative news channel Fox News discussed the controversial song “I kissed a Girl” by Katy Perry. They title the segment “Unholy Melody” and talk about how Katy Perry formerly a Christian singer, can no longer be considered a Christian. “It shows girls you got to do something really naughty to get noticed”. I didn’t know that a girl on girl kiss was considered “unholy” anti-christian, and “naughty”. The anchor goes on to say “What kind of message of confusion does this send to kids?”” (http://www.queersunited.blogspot.com/)

Rolling Stone Interview with Katy Perry

Katy Perry vows she’s never actually kissed a girl. If she had, it would probably have been a certain ballerina. “When I was growing up, I was enamored with this one friend,” says Perry, 23, of a teenage crush. “She had the most beautiful complexion and skin, and strawberrylike lips.” Those lips would eventually inspire “I Kissed a Girl,” the infectious, bi-curious pop nugget that has earned her props from Madonna and the top slot on the Billboard singles chart for six straight weeks. On her debut, One of the Boys, Perry sings about her metrosexual-hipster exes (“Ur So Gay”), and on “Thinking of You” she channels the confessional pop rock of her idol, Alanis Morissette. Perry is currently on the Warped Tour and proudly wears the diamond promise ring from her boyfriend and tourmate, Gym Class Heroes’ Travis McCoy. Says Perry, “I suffer from lead-singer syndrome.”

Who came up with the lines “I kissed a girl, and I liked it/The taste of her cherry ChapStick”?
I did, actually. One morning, I woke up with the chorus and was like, “[Gasp] I love this! This is so taboo, though!” For a year and a half, I did nothing with it. When I was finishing up the song “Hot N Cold” with producer Dr. Luke, we were going to start a new song, and I said, “Y’know what? I should just finish ‘I Kissed a Girl.’ ” And I’m happy I did.

Fox News has denounced you for the “I Kissed a Girl” lyrics. Well done!
I grew up with Fox News at home every day, listening to the lovely Bill O’Reilly — and I say that with sarcasm. Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion, and I welcome it. But I’m more of a CNN girl, anyway.

Your parents are ministers. Have they disowned you yet?
I’m sure they opt out of singing “Ur So Gay” and “I Kissed a Girl,” but they’re singing along to every other song on the record. I tried to change them for so long, and finally, I’m like, “You know what? I ain’t gonna try to change my parents.” They’re happy and they love what they do. They’re just glad I’m not strung out, doing centerfolds and shit like that.” (http://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/22212329/qa_katy_perry/2)

Other News Reports

“Katy Perry is Tired of Girls Wanting to Kiss Her” (http://thebosh.com/archives/2008/08/katy_perry_is_tired_of_girls_wanting_to_kiss_her.php)

“Why Protest Katy Perry’s ‘I kissed a Girl’?” (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article4517733.ece)

Outrage from the Singer’s Parents (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1046018/Shameful-disgusting-The-No1-song-sparked-outrage–singers-parents.html)

Is “I kissed a Girl homophobic?” (http://blogs.guardian.co.uk/music/2008/08/are_katy_perrys_lyrics_homopho.html)

My Response

Personally, I have been having a problem with Katy Perry’s song, “I Kissed a Girl”, just reinforcing
heterosexuality and the whole kissing girls a just an “experimental game”.

“You’re my experimental game
Just human nature”

I have a hunch this song would be popular among sorority girls who drunkenly stumble upon one of their sisters and kiss them, or who are egged on by men, boys whatever, to make out and as the girls do, the men cheer it on as just another turn on, fetish.

She also goes on to say its not what good girls do, and it makes my head so
confused (the confused part I like bc of the questioning sexuality), and the “don’t mean
I’m in love”. It’s become a hit among a bunch of straight people who “accidently” kiss
girls on a drunken night and go back to their boyfriends. I think it is popular because,
if it went the alternate direction, it would be “controversial”. Straight girls
kissing is not taboo, but this borders on the edge, because she likes it, because its
catchy, and its good/bad. She acknowledges that its bad, but I think because it still has
stigma around it. Its ok to like the kissing, but not ok to ditch your boyfriend and go
date her. Realize this isnt even questioned as cheating because she is kissing someone of
the same gender. Why is that? I still have mixed feelings about the song because I feel as if
it can go both ways in terms of good and bad. It can start conversations and it can
reinforce kissing bisexual, lesbian, queer girls for just an “experiment”. Who
knows, maybe its just a catchy song.

Conclusion

There are many opinions on this song, positive, negative, neutral. Whenever it comes on the radio, my face brightens, my sister and I sing along, and sometimes my mom even remarks that it’s “cute”. At times, I want to wish it off the radio, off of the top 20 list, but in the end, I love hearing it because “I kissed a girl” is music to my ears.

What do you think?

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