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Search results in category Straighty Says by Jennifer Stokes

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A Straight-Forward Farewell

by Gayborhood on 09/14/2012 - 09:47 am

Dear Readers,


They say that a reporter’s work is never done, and I agree. This will be my last Straighty Says blog post, and I wanted to thank you all for coming along. What an amazing journey. My job has been to report the facts and analyze them, and I have been lucky enough to observe the gay community specifically. It has been a wonderful learning experience.



As a reporter, there is always a story that you feel you must cover. This was my story. One from an outsider’s point of view, yes, but from the stance of an ally. Where would I have been over the last year if I hadn’t been snooping around into the lives of the LGBTQs? There have been ground-breaking events that have happened and I have been on the front lines. It was more exciting than I could have ever imagined.



Now it is time to continue my research into other areas. I am looking forward to my next journalistic exploration. I have been very eager to travel, so I’ve decided to take that geographic plunge and see what other stories I can find. The snooping continues!



I hope that the straight community has learned something from my blog. Maybe the gays have gotten a kick out of my banter as well. I know I have gained a new respect for this community that caused a movement. My life has changed for the better and I hope yours has too.


Once again, thank you for reading and for sharing your thoughts. I’m sure I’ll see you again somewhere over the rainbow! This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight!

Be A Better Straight Friend

by Gayborhood on 09/07/2012 - 01:50 pm

Gays and Straights have more in common than you might think. I’ve learned so much about the gay community since I started working at Gayborhood, now I see what all the fuss is about. How to tell the gays that I adore and respect them? A few ideas have sprung up as I searched for ways to connect with the “other side”. 


  • Send them an “I’m glad you’re Gay” card. 
  • Get them a tshirt that says “I’m with Straighty” and an arrow pointing to the left/right.
  • Go on a gay-straight date and let them choose where to go.
  • Be straight and sassy. Keep your attitude if you’ve got one. 
  • Learn the lingo. 


Want to be a better straight friend? Don’t be afraid to speak up. Talk about straight/gay subjects when it works. In my experience, it is better to speak your mind! 


In closing, I’ll say that it is easy to become a better straight friend with a little practice. Learn about gay topics in the news and give a gay friend your opinion. You never know what you might learn about yourself and others. 


This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight!

Charities, Galas and Fun Fundraisers

by Gayborhood on 09/02/2012 - 07:42 pm

(image by

For those of you who don’t know, my boss is the most amazing and giving woman around. She has moved the hearts of many gays and straights, and her generosity seems never-ending. Marci motivates me to be a better citizen. Countless hours she has devoted to equal rights for all human beings, and she’s damn good at it. She is always brightening a room at gay events, charities and fundraisers, and she brings awareness to them by walking-the-walk. 


So who doesn’t love a good party? An event with glamour and pizazz?  Personally, I say let’s get it started by throwing more gay-straight events. As a straighty who has to educate a small Tennessee town that being gay is ok, I know that exposure to both cultures is mandatory in raising awareness. Get together and see what happens!


With the holidays coming up, there will be an influx of charity events, galas and parties. Let’s start with the charities that are making a difference.


The 5 Best Gay Charities fron

5. Human Rights Campaign Foundation - One of the largest gay charities, this group is efficient at raising money for the community. They have a significant revenue increase each year and are prepared with a positive asset columns.

4. L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center - With a staff of more than 3,000 volunteers, the center services thousands of LGBTQ people monthly. Each donation is used to the fullest.            

3. The Point Foundation - Students can advance with this scholarship fund and mentoring program. Financial aid supports at-risk gay and lesbian students.

2. Gay & Lesbian Leadership Institute - Also known as The Victory Fund, the institute grooms the gay leaders of tomorrow. 

1. Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice -  An award granted to women, specifically women of color and lesbians. The foundation favors the world of the arts.         



Being a huge Cyndy Lauper fan, I get a great amount of joy out of the “It Gets Better” campaign. It rocks. The movement supports those who want to come out, letting them know that no matter how hard it is, It Gets Better. I’ve covered the It Gets Better campaign in the past, but girls just want to have fun and I love sharing it with you!


Celebrity Campaigners and Charities: Gay and straight, these celebs back the gay pack...

- Anne Hathaway

Hillary Clinton

Cyndi Lauper

Elton John

Alan Cumming

Colin Farrell

Ellen DeGeneres




Movies, events and jubilees. One example? Building Bridges through Cinema by ACCESS. Partnering with the Rainbow Center, the documentary “Gay Days” was played and food was served. 



A few notable mentioned

L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center Anniversary Gala & Auction

2nd Annual Violet Crown Cotillion of Austin

Bobby Cook's Big Gay Brunch White Party


A few more links for Fundraising Facts:

GSA Fundraising Made Easy:


Obama raises $3M at NYC Gay Fundraisers:’


More on the events of the summer to come. Send PRIDE stories to This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight!

Gay-friendly Industry

by Gayborhood on 08/26/2012 - 12:07 pm

Who-the-heck first cared if my gay friends shopped more? Well, actually, I did because they reminded me to buy new clothes at least once a decade. I hated to shop. My gay friends, however - girls and guys - did a great job of telling me what was cute in every store. I trusted their judgement. Did I say that I hate to shop?


So when did the buying power begin to be noticed? What drove the industries to focus on strictly the gay community? Or is it the LGBTQ community that caused the sway? 


There was a sudden shift towards making businesses more gay-friendly in the last part of the 20th century. Was it to boost sales? Or support a movement? It has been an example of supply and demand at work.





There is such a thing today known as the “pink dollar” or “pink pound”. Tourism entities are aware of the financial increase and have aligned with the gay community. Gay-friendly travel packages, cruises, travel agents, destinations and  vacays are everywhere to be found on the net. 



Real Estate


The industry has produced associations for LGBTQ realtors. Gay-friendly housing developments, apartments and condos are sold by gay or gay-friendly agents. Condos are promoted in Florida and other travel worthy destinations. 


The National Association of Gay & Lesbian Real Estate Professionals is just one resource for realtors. Pegasus Residential is the most noted residential provider of gay-friendly condos and apartments in the South-east. With names such as Evergreen At Lofton Place, Pegasus provides the echelon of service that the gay community demands.




To the wedding industry. Everyone was curious to see if the increase of same-sex unions would increase revenue as much as the media reported it would. Fact is, the marriage-based businesses have been booming, up 50% in the year last year.


Paul E. Singer, founder of the $20 billion Elliott Management fund, has a gay son and devoted nearly $10 million toward gay marriage legalization efforts. 




6 Great Companies For The Gay Dollar? Try these - Apple, Google, Campbell Soup Co. Eastman Kodak, Levi-Strauss, Co. and Nike 

It should be noted that the gay community often has more to spend because of the increased buying power and decreased family expenses, which is definitely not missed by the retail sector.


Financial - Which other industries are affected? What businesses have been specifically motivated by the gay community? Mortgage and Insurance Services, for starters. In 2000, UK’s first gay finance magazine began.  They cover discrimination issues for the gay community


These are just a few of the economic trends and business ventures that have been influenced by the gay community. Want more? Check out for gay-friendly businesses everywhere! This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight!


(image from

The "I Do" of Hairdos

by Gayborhood on 08/17/2012 - 09:09 pm

We all know what a straight haircut looks like. It's, um straight, right? ;) So what happens when the hairstyles get a little gay? Let's take a look...


A Cut Above: The 4 Best Men's Haircuts from


The New Rocker - Extremely close on the sides/back and much longer on the top. Adam Levine is a prime example, wearing this neat and tidy look. 

Retro Chic - A “good ol’ boy” look that has come back in style with the popularity of shows such as Mad Men. It is sexier than you remember but still a classic. 

Bed Head - We know you don’t really wake up looking like that, but with a little work you can look messy and super sexy. As if you just rolled out of bed, you can look like a natural beauty who makes no fuss. It has been a popular style for a number of years. 

The Warhawk - This look is one of my favorites. It reminds me of the Roman warriors and I love for my fella to wear this style. It takes a certain type of person to wear it. It’s roots are in the military warkawk, keeping this simple and easy. My favorite is when they let the strip of hair continue down the back of the head. Super hot.


A couple of tips. Think about your facial hair. It’s cool to be fuzzy, just make it look kept up. Eyebrows need shaping too. The unibrow is very Ernie. And last, try not to let your hair be too femme.  More tips at How to Be Beautiful (for Gay Men)


How do the celebs wear their hair? Check out this gallery of the "31 Greatest Tom Brady Haircuts & Hairstyles That Drive Gay Men Nuts."


Lesbian hairstylesStylist Chanel Cameo of Merle Norman Day Spa only had a few comments about gay hair. "Gay men," she says, "always come in with tons of goop on their hair. Admittedly, however, they always look close to perfect." She also wants to spruce up the lesbians who come in with a severe "butch" look. "I like to soften their style," she reports. "They leave my chair looking great and feeling strong and feminine.

So many stars have been rocking the lesbian do’s lately. Lesbian hair makes a comeback, according to


Get some super cute lesbian hairstyles on Tumblr...


These haircuts are fabulous. I love the sharp angles, the twisted locks, the sleek looks. "Guy hair" has crossed over into "girl hair" and vice/versa. It pays to have a great stylist, then you can don the do that describes you. This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight!

Chick-fil-A, meet Gayborhood

by Gayborhood on 08/04/2012 - 11:23 am

When I first heard that Dan Cathy had spoken out against gay marriage I thought, “Wow, what a GOOF head.”  I mean, come on. I may be a straight girl from Kentucky, but even I know that this type of rhetoric is going to cause a stir in 2012. This seemingly simple statement, however, caused more of an uproar. 


The public showed up in droves at the chicken chain on the day that was declared "Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day" by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who happens to be a Baptist minister and Fox News talk-show host. It was also a record-setting day for the restaurant financially, which many speculate was a result of intentional marketing directed against the gay community for profit. 



Cathy’s statement has driven people to take action, and Atlanta is just the place for such a heated debate. For better or for worse, Chick-fil-A’s headquarters is 15 minutes from the home office of Gayborhood, the advertising company that brought us the Gay Community Yellow Pages. Gayborhood spearheaded the National Same-Sex Kiss Day that took place in front of Chick-fil-A stores, and the CEO of Gayborhood, Marci Alt, has made papers across the country with her petition for Dan Cathy to have dinner with her and her family. 


Protesters are not only boycotting the food chain, but actively passing out coupons for chicken from other restaurants. The family-oriented children’s characters, the Berenstain Bears, have decided to end their promotional ties with Chick-fil-A. There has been a lot of banter on the topics of free speech, equal rights and whether people like Chick-fil-A waffle fries. Family values have been been brought directly into the spotlight. The gay youth has been encouraged to come out and embrace their right to protest inequality. It is an incredible time, and I have to wonder if anyone would have guessed that Chick-fil-A would be at the forefront. No pressure, Dairy Queen, but you better have something pretty big up your sleeve.


This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight!

GLEE me, Please!

by Gayborhood on 07/27/2012 - 11:38 pm

GLEE leaves nothing to the imagination, and many parents couldn’t be happier. “They’re going to talk about it anyway,” my conservative sister remarks, “So I guess I’m glad that GLEE brings it up while we’re all sitting together. It helps us break the ice about sexuality, issues my teens are facing at school and where they stand on things.”


What does the show mean for the LGBTQ community? Let’s just say that it is leading the gay-teen revolution on TV. “Kurt” is the openly gay character, paving the way for  acceptance across the masses. He says that he can relate to the ridicule that he faces on the set. His high voice and his tendencies towards the effeminate made him an open target for the jocks. Always loving to perform, he admits "I've gone from a theater geek in high school to a theater geek on national television!" For Chris Colfer who plays Kurt, GLEE is a welcome relief. He was never encouraged to express himself, he says, and now he gets the chance to shine like only a true diva can.


A Golden Globe and Peabody Award winner, GLEE has become a worldwide smash. While singlehandedly resurrecting glee clubs everywhere, the musical extravaganza has detailed the experience going through high school gay and chronicled the hardships. The show encourages us to break out and be loud. The shinier the better. Showing little restraint, it is all about being happy with your craziness and celebrating your extraordinary self. 


I personally find the show fascinating. it gives a whole new meaning to free expression and showmanship. There is a urge to serve the viewers, gay and straight, with a healthy dose of openness that is sorely needed. If synergy and conflict are the backbones, love is the heart of the show. Hopefully they will never stop pushing the limits of theatrical passion and the right to live out loud!


This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight!   

Spotlight on London - Gay Olympics, W...

by Gayborhood on 07/20/2012 - 08:41 pm

The brilliant sparkle of London’s summer lights are even brighter this year with the arrival of the Olympics, World Pride and an influx of global travelers. The city is positively buzzing, bending over backwards then springing forward as the events carry on into the heat. How is the gay community represented across the pond? Pretty in pink, faster than lightening and ready for a holiday.


Of the 10,500 athletes that will be competing at the summer games, there are a number of “out” competitors. Seimone Augustus of the U.S. basketball team and Matthew Mitcham of the Australian diving team are just a few of the gay players. Megan Rapinoe represents the U.S. soccer team and Marilyn Agliotti plays field hockey for the Netherlands.This year brings something new with Jordan Pisey Windle, the youngest person to qualify for the U.S. Olympic diving trials. Windle has two dads and is serving as grand marshal of central Indiana’s pride festival. 


Veterans of the UK’s first LGBT Pride in filled the streets of London for this year’s World Pride event. A crowd of nearly 25,000 marched as they celebrated the 40th anniversary of Britain’s first Gay Pride parade in 1972. The event was slightly low-key with no cars or floats in the procession, but the atmosphere was still vibrant.


Needless to say, now is the time for a trip to London if you haven’t been or if you are simply looking for a fabulous vacay. Virgin Atlantic is offering cheap flights if you book them before July 25th. Want to get away and support your favorite Olympian? Go to Virgin’s website for cool prices on hot tickets -


If you make it there, be sure to send us pictures and give us your spin on a “Gay Vacay in London!” This is Straighty Says, and I’ll shoot it to you straight!



Queer, Quirky and Cool - Trends of 2012

by Gayborhood on 07/14/2012 - 09:23 am

It makes sense that Facebook would be on board. They may not be the trend setters of the 21st Century, but you can bet that the Internet giant isn’t far behind when it comes to social trends. If you want to update your “relationship status” these days, you now have the option of having a gay marriage icon for your page. This is not their first journey into the gay waters, however. In 2011, Facebook added “In a Civil Union” and “In a Domestic Partnership” options to user profiles. New icons with two brides or two grooms are the latest way to show you’re gay. The site has also taken a stand towards anti-LGBT bullying, proving that they do care about their gay followers. 


What else is new? After the legalization of same-sex marriage in California, the buzz began with a slew of new and fun ways to celebrate. Trend Hunter ( points out sixty nine different ways that people are jumping for joy after the overhaul. Some of our favorites included Feminine Accessories for Men, LGBTQ Pride Alcohol - ABSOLUT Colors, Cross-dressing Fashion Ads by Marc Jacobs and the Iconic Underwear Tribute by Calvin Klein. These fads are among the fabulous new ways that gay marriage is taking the world by storm and really making an impact. 


Gay gifts are on the rise with a little something for everyone. “Thank You” Wedding Cards with two grooms are finally here. Lesbian In Training t-shirts come in many colors and iPad users can represent with rainbow print skins. 


Brokeback Mountain has become an Opera, which sets the stage literally and figuratively for the rest of the population. This is just the beginning, the winds of change are always bringing something new. We just hope that the band keeps playing as gay-friendly trends keep us coming back for more. Know of any other cute and quirky trends? Let us know! We’d love to hear from you and we always want to learn about the latest and greatest for the gay community. 


This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight! Thanks for reading! 

Flamboyant Freddie and the Legend of ...

by Gayborhood on 06/30/2012 - 02:54 pm

For an artist with no vocal training, legendary performer Freddie Mercury was a natural on the stage. His costumes were flamboyant and his songs epic. Mercury was the lead singer for the rock band, Queen, which turned out hits such as Bohemian Rhapsody, We Are The Champions and Crazy Little Thing Called Love. He was known for having a four-octave vocal range and he used them to the fullest with his powerful singing style. Born in Zanzibar (which has been popularized by the words of Tenacious D) where he started piano lessons at the age of eight, the budding talent moved to England at 17.  


Freddie’s life was nothing short of stormy and dramatic. Mentioned in singer Kurt Cobain’s suicide note, Mercury was a heavy influence on many artists throughout the years. On stage he was known as an entertainer out to “shock and charm the crowd” with various wild portrayals of himself. Queen frequently crossed boundaries and broke rules by being outwardly resistant to the norms. After a show in apartheid Africa, the band was criticized for breaking the UN boycott and placed on a United Nations list of “rebel” artists. 


The LGBT community always embraced Freddie as an icon and an inspiration. He paved the way for others, living out loud and showing his true colors. “I'm not afraid to speak out and say the things that I want to do, or do the things I want to do,” Mercury says. “So I think in the end being natural and being actually genuine is what wins, and I hope that comes out in my songs.” Mercury had a true knack for connecting with the crowd, especially his gay following. As the frontman for a flamboyant crew, he proclaims “Glamour is part of us and we want to be dandy.”


The legend lives on. Everything from Freddie albums to action figures, earrings to autographed tshirts don the pages of eBay. Mercury was voted 2nd in MTV's 22 greatest singers of the past 25 years. According to sources, Katy Perry is being considered for an upcoming film to play the part of Mercury’s long time girlfriend, Mary Austin. He came out as bisexual later in life and lived out his remaining days with partner Jim Hutton. 


Despite Freddie’s flamboyant personality on stage, he was a very shy person when out of the spotlight (who would have guessed?) As a tribute to the rock legend, Google even launched a Freddie Google Doodle on September 5, 2011 to celebrate what would've been Mercury's 65th birthday. There may never be another performer like him, with concerts bringing in 300,000 attendants plus. That is one act that’s hard to follow. 


This is Straighty Says and I’ll shoot it to you straight!

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