380 posts categorized "ME"

Jan 01 2021
Wasn't 2020 Supposed To Be Better?! Comments (0)

 
Nov 08 2020
Boy Culture Turns 15: My 100 Favorite Posts Comments (0)

 Boy-Culture-blog-logo-underwear-Matthew-RettenmundYou need a little (Boy) Culture! (Image © BoyCulture.com)

It's time, once again, for my annual state-of-the-site essay, adapted to suit the occasion of my blogiversary. This time, I must say it is unfathomable to me that Boy Culture is now 15 years old.

That means I have spent well over a third of my life making time for this hobby. My dog Sash, who died last month, was born, lived, changed my existence and left me during the time this blog has been happening.

Matthew-rettenmund-italy-boycultureThe first blog I remember seeing was Page666 by Perez Hilton. I did not get it, meaning I had no idea how to even read it — top to bottom? — and I was repulsed by the mistakes and illiteracy. But still, I found it exciting. I think Pink Is the New Blog, Towleroad, Joe.My.God. and Kenneth in the (212) followed, and years later, I enjoyed (and was lapped by) Wicked Gay Blog, OMG. Blog! and many others, all influential.

I can still remember the joy I felt when I first figured out how to post, how to upload an image, and how to embed a video. I remember every time an early post blew up, bringing in hits and new viewers, and sometimes longtime readers. I remember the names of many of my most reliable commenters (there was a time when commenting was easier, and people actually took the time to chime in), the trolls, the stalkers, the haters looking to take me down a peg from the safety of their anonymity, the spam and the never-ending (and validating!) pitches and free tickets and photographers' snaps of half- or all-naked male models. 

I also remember being an influencer, and seeing my posts get linked by various gay sites, including corporate, funded ones, which was exciting — until they stopped crediting me. Hm.

Gay-pride-nycTwo of a kind! (Image by Matthew Rettenmund)

Over time, I've used Boy Culture to express myself, to help others express themselves, to endorse messaging, to denounce terrible human beings and trends, to connect with likeminded people internationally, and to promote my photography OnlyFans, my side project Gr8erDays, my oral history of Playgirl for Esquire.com, my interview with late gay director James Sheldon, and my books Encyclopedia Madonnica 20, MLVC60, Boy Culture and Blind Items: A Love Story.

OtHldU8Do we want people to kiss our ass? Yeah, we do. (GIF via GIPHY)

I've also used it to show off my humor (both high and low), to flaunt my obsessions, to reality-test my sexual diversions and perversions, to laud the art I love, to broadcast my admiration for Madonna, and — probably — to procrastinate.

For many years, I have been grumbling about ending Boy Culture. I have resisted just focusing on social media, resenting the fact that my own entity was being shut out by Google and Facebook for being too gay, too risqué. I wanted, since I had started it, to maintain some independence. But then friends routinely send me images and stories asking if I've seen them, only to have them turn out to be items I already posted or even posted first, a sure sign they never check my site.

And it is an incredible amount of work to craft original posts, or even just to put together worthwhile aggregated ones, usurping time I could be spending writing novels and screenplays; I have finished a first draft of a screenplay, largely due to COVID-19 down time, and no thanks to this blog.

“Blog” — the word itself is so dated, I wonder if deciding to stop blogging is even a consideration anymore. Hasn't blogging already stopped, even if I have persisted?

There is also the Rupaul-boyculture-matthew-rettenmund problem of the title. I used to get away with interviewing women at events by saying, “I'm with Boy Culture — but we love girls, too!” The original purpose of the title was to denote a universe where it is okay to prioritize “gay,” which was radical 30 years ago (when I first wrote the short story, and eventually the novel, of the same title), but which I think sounds a bit antiquated in an increasingly nonbinary, inclusion-conscious world. It also doesn't much represent the content of my blog, which is not exclusively gay or male.

Coronavirus-covid19-boycultureWhat would I have made of this had I seen it in a crystal ball 15 years ago? (Image by Matthew Rettenmund)

I want to thank you all for having read Boy Culture over the years. I'm still here (one fantasizes about a blogging-centric version of the Sondheim song, working in names like Ted Haggard and Kim Davis), and each time I get some positive or merely substantive feedback, each time my posts are shared on social media, each time something I've written elicits a response, it keeps me going a li'l longer, and it cancels out an attack or exasperating attention-grab by a gay right-winger. (If you know any, dump them. To have become a Republican under Trump, you have to start out as a truly terrible human being.)

Boyculture-matthew-rettenmund-shirtless-beefcake-physiqueThanks for having my back. This, for the record, is not my back. (Image by Matthew Rettenmund)

Thank you!

Please enjoy my 100 or so favorite posts, please let me know if you're reading any old ones for the first time and are liking them, please let me know if any of the posts' photos or other components are out of whack and they're not very easy to enjoy anymore, and, most of all, please share this entire post far and wide to help get my work out there.

**2008 first one 6a00d8341c2ca253ef00e54fdddbfd8833-800wiMy first “Guydar” post (remember those???) from 2008. (Image by Matthew Rettenmund)

As always, you can find me on Facebook (personal and blog), Twitter, Instagram (plus Encyclopedia Madonnica and Gr8erDays), and YouTube (here are my YouTube greatest hits).

KEEP READING FOR MY 100 FAVE POSTS — OR CLICK HERE ...

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Nov 01 2020
Red-Hot Men + Speedo Loses Battle With Butt + Madison Cawthorn Might Lose + Trump Might Lose And Still Go To Court + MORE! — 12-PACK Comments (0)

ABOVE: Okay, so I need to give up croissants.

BELOW: Keep reading for a red-hot calendar boy, a Speedo model proud of his caboose, why Trump will not win and more ...

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Sep 08 2020
Kamala & Barack Talk Joe + Aaron Carter Does Porn + Duterte Pardons Murderer Of Trans Woman + Cohen's Book Calls Trump Racist + DeJoy DeJustice? + MORE! — 12-PACK Comments (0)

ABOVE: It's a look. And if you like him, you'll like this thicc one, too.

BELOW: Keep reading for Kamala & Barack talk Joe, Aaron Carter does porn, Trump's campaign going broke, Duterte pardons murderer of trans woman and more ...

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Jun 29 2020
Foreign Correspondent Pops Question + SCOTUS Tosses Louisiana Anti-Abortion Law + Yummy Chick-Feel-Gay + Nikki Blonsky Comes Out + MORE! — 12-PACK Comments (0)

ABOVE: GARÇON® Underwear in action.

BELOW: Keep reading for a gay marriage proposal, a surprise pro-abortion rights decision from SCOTUS, tasty Chick-Feel-Gay and more ...

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Jun 01 2020
Out Today: My 2nd Novel BLIND ITEMS: A (LOVE) STORY Comments (0)

Blind-Items-gay-Rettenmund-boyculture(Design by Anthony Coombs, image via Boy Culture LLC)

Today, my second novel — Blind Items: A (Love) Story — is published in a new edition, available for the first time in 20 years!

Please check it out if you haven't.

It's a pop culture explosion and a '90s period piece, a gay romance with (I hope) brains and plenty of nostalgia. 

Let me know if you buy and read it!

 
May 04 2020
I Wish It Would Never End: Why Saying Goodbye To Books Puts Me In A Bind Comments (0)

Flesh-and-fantasy-book-boyculutureDo judge this book by its cover. (Image via St. Martin's Press)

I have a hard time turning the page on things.

The hardest for me is ephemera, various types of which I collect religiously — beefcake photography and clippings, advertising, Madonna magazines and ... books.

I'm a writer, and most of my career has involved some form of publishing, first book publishing (I worked for a rare female literary agent, who was equal parts bohemian and John Bircher; and for St. Martin's Press as an editorial assistant), then news (Reuters, ever so briefly), then porn (when the owner of Mavety Media scoffed at my suggestion he digitize his millions of slides because men would never adapt to jerking off at a computer), then teen entertainment (I founded a pinup mag), then blogging. Through it all, I've published and self-published my own books, too.

In spite of that, I have found less and less time to read over the years, have perhaps even developed — against my will — an aversion to reading anything too long, like a kid seeing a fascinating-looking YouTube video then clicking away upon realizing the length is 8 minutes-plus. In the past few years, I've read scandalously few books, even though I've tried. Does leaving them, half-read, displayed prominently on the little table by my bed count as reading them?

I tried Andrew Sean Greer's orgiastically praised Less, but wanted more.

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May 03 2020
Madonna & I Celebrate Important New York Anniversaries: SPEED-THE-PLOW Turns 32 Comments (0)
Madonna-speed-the-plow-mamet-boycultureI didn't get to see Madonna on the street, but I do now own that signage, inset. I guess this is a good example of why collecting ephemera has so much power — it's a substitute for, or reinforcement of, memories.
 
Thirty-two years ago today, on May 3, 1988, Madonna made her Broadway debut as David Mamet's Speed-the-Plow officially opened. Jennifer Grey, Billy Joel, Jennifer Beals and others showed up that night, and such luminaries as Jackie Onassis watched during the run.
 
 
The play received solid reviews (it was Tony-nominated for Best Play and Best Direction of a Play, and the late Ron Silver won the Tony for Best Actor), but Madonna was mostly panned. Frank Rich, in an outlier New York Times, review, controversially wrote:
 
Although her role is the smallest, Madonna is the axis on which the play turns —  an enigma within an enigma, in the manner of the Lindsay Crouse heroine in House of Games. It's a relief to report that this rock star's performance is safely removed from her own Hollywood persona. Madonna serves Mr. Mamet's play much as she did the Susan Seidelman film Desperately Seeking Susan, with intelligent, scrupulously disciplined comic acting. She delivers the shocking transitions essential to the action and needs only more confidence to relax a bit and fully command her speaking voice.
 
I made my first trip to NYC in order to see my idol late in the run of Speed-the-Plow, even though money was hard to come by. With $110 in my pocket, I landed in a thunderstorm on August 25, 1988, and told my cab driver, “Take me to the — “ well, to my friend's apartment building. Cost $18.
 
 
I saw Madonna & Co. on the day before the original cast ended its run. Imagine having so much invested in the belief that Madonna, who had loudly proclaimed she was over the play by then, would show up for her second to last matinee! But she did.

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