Queer Families in Kindergarten and the Multiverse
S1: Hello and welcome to.
S2: Your word for an April 2000, 2010. I’m Christina Ricci, a senior writer at Slate. And the other day I was served an ad for a coffee mug that said white, straight, Republican male. I don’t know. What else can I do to piss you off today? So I’m either proud that I’ve deceived my algorithm or abjectly ashamed that my browsing patterns apparently, you know, are like Tucker Carlson’s like a white, straight Republican male who also believes that his very existence triggers people and is excited by that.
S3: Yeah, that has to be from like reporting stuff, right, Christine?
S2: I feel like I mean, it has to. Yeah. Like the person who’s constantly searching like pro-life legislation.
S3: Right, right, right. Oh, now, I’m sorry. That’s distressing. I’m Bryan Lauter, editor of Outward. And I just wanted to shout out this past week, weekend holiday weekend supermoon. I don’t know if you all saw that, but it was a beautiful full moon and it was called The Pink Moon, which is just in reference to the spring, but in general. But this weekend, at least in New York, it was actually extremely pink. So I want to just like props to the moon for like color coordinating with the season and giving us that like Passover survival, you know, like the Gotham. Yeah. Pink Moon.
S2: That’s very.
S4: Sweet. I’m jealous, Gail Peters said at a I beer resident, has story editor and chatty girl. And if you think, gosh, does her voice sound like an octave lower than normal and are you feeling uncomfortable because like, is that transphobic to even think that, well, that’s not an issue that I can fight. The truth is, I’m getting over the flu, which came with a fun little, you know, many, many quarts of laryngitis. So if I’m sounding like a husky mid century transsexual who smokes a pack of Virginia Slims the day, well, that’s actually just my affectation. But if I also sound like I recently had the flu. Now you know.
S2: Why I’m so happy that you’re feeling well enough to record with us, Jules?
S4: Oh, me too. I wouldn’t. I wouldn’t miss it. This is a boon to my spirits.
S2: I know a lot of you listeners like us have been tracking the mounting assaults on queer and trans youth in the doctor’s office, in athletics and in the classroom. In our last two shows, we talked about the governor’s order in Texas that will force trans kids to detransition against their will and a law in Florida that’s a racing LGBT life from schools. Also, you might have noticed earlier this month, Alabama criminalized, gender affirming care for trans kids. And about a dozen state legislatures are considering these so-called don’t say gay bills that, like Florida’s, would ban teachings about sexual orientation and gender identity in schools. But this month, instead of focusing on what queer and trans people are fighting against, we want to talk about what we could be fighting for, what it looks like when teachers are free to speak about LGBTQ lives in the classroom and what happens when they do it? Well, we have a wonderful special guest, a kindergarten teacher for that segment. Then we’ll discuss the queer family drama at the heart of the new genre bending, multiverse hopping film. Everything everywhere, all at once. I don’t know about you guys, but I laughed. I cried. That film did a number on me. But first, let’s share our pride and provocations. Jules, what’s new with you?
S4: Well, I have a kind of ambivalent, a true P and P, if you will. On the one hand, I want to give a little bit a sort of wistful pride for bitch media. You know, that beautiful, independent feminist voice that’s been around since 1996 and announced much to the pain of everyone that that that, you know, in June, they’re going to be closing down. And, you know, I’m not a journalist. I just play one on television. And so I am not privy to, you know, the full story of what went down. But it sounds like part of, you know, what it has to do with is just the deteriorating financial situation in this day and age for independent media. And, you know, I think like as our last several episodes, but as so much work that folks are doing out there testifies to every day. Maintaining independence is a really difficult thing to do, particularly for for feminist voices. And so, you know, I’m so, so proud. I remember being a young, burgeoning feminist flowering in the late 1990s, in all of the Lilith Fair of it all in my world and picking up, you know, bitch media the magazine at the time and feeling very transgressive as as a little family and and also learning a lot and feeling excited about the idea that there were feminists doing kind of, you know, really important and independent journalistic and media work out there. So proud of them, but provoked that, you know, we have to to mourn the loss of a real giant in this space. So that’s me. Brian, what about. Yea.
S3: I’m feeling proud this month. I am proud of Robbie Pierce, his husband, Neil Braverman and their two kids. We learned about this family from a Twitter thread that went viral earlier in April and there was some media coverage after that about this family. The story is that they were recently taking a vacation trip for spring break on Amtrak, and they were subject during that trip to a really terrifying instance of harassment from another passenger calling the men pedophiles and saying that the children that their two children were stole. And now I know that doesn’t sound like something we should be proud of, but I am proud of the way this family reacted to this and sort of handled it in the aftermath. So I’ll tell a little bit of the story. I’ll read a little bit of Robbie’s Twitter thread and then explain exactly what I’m proud of. Well, that didn’t take long. We decided to take a trip on Amtrak with the kids for spring break. 9 hours into a pleasant ride, a man was suddenly standing next to me, shouting across me at my six year old son. Remember what I told you? They stole you. They’re pedophiles. I stood between the stranger and my son, whose life has already been so hard, who carries traumas larger than his small, fierce frame. I was immovable. Get away from my family. Family? That’s not a family. Your rapists. You still black and Asian kids? My son and my five year old daughter were now both openly crying, petrified. He yelled right at them, unmoved. These guys aren’t natural. Homosexuals are an abomination. They steal and rape kids. It was suddenly no longer an absurd abstract attack in an online comment section or a dissent legislative session. These horrors are being screamed at my sweet, bewildered son.
S2: I saw this on Twitter the other day, and it’s a nightmare from state legislatures and from the right wing blogosphere and Fox News becoming real and and bringing itself presenting itself in people’s everyday lives. It’s horrifying.
S3: It’s super horrifying. And, you know, Robbie in his thread goes on to talk about the the fallout this encounter had for the whole family. He reveals that the this attacker actually approached the son in the bathroom to tell when the kid had gone just downstairs.
S2: And really normal being.
S3: Super normal. Right. Like just just downstairs in the train. If you’ve been on these trains, there’s not far have gone to the restroom. And this this person and the stranger approached him and said, you know, I started taking this stuff earlier. And then he also pointed out that while Amtrak did eventually get this guy off the train, no one around the family intervened in any way. Everyone kind of put their heads down. So really horrible, terrifying story. And as you say, very much the result of this sort of legislative attack on LGBT people that we’re seeing and certainly this grimmer rhetoric. Right. And so that’s the thing I’m proud of, actually, is that, you know, in that context, in the context that our country is on right now, Robbie and his husband really decided to share this story. It is so important that we understand the impact that these legislative attacks and this groomer rhetoric in particular are having and real lives. It would have been totally valid if they had felt like retreating home and hiding and comforting their kids and not wanting to talk about this in public. I can imagine myself having a reaction like that, honestly. But as Robbie said to BuzzFeed News and a story about this, he said, I know a large goal is just to drive us into our homes and make us not come out. And we’re not going to do that. We’re going to go out and continue to be brave. So proud of that. That’s just incredible. I’m also proud of the fact that these guys are just such awesome parents. If you read about how they not only stood up to this guy in the moment, which I think any parent would do, but how thoughtful and just gentle and sweet and intelligent they are about processing the trauma that these kids went through with them and the aftermath. It makes that the libel that is happening against queer people and queer parents in particular right now just all the more obscene because you just see how amazing. I’m getting choked up about it, like how amazing these parents are and how lucky these kids are to to be in this family and how everyone’s lucky to have each other. I’m proud of them for their reaction to this really horrifying thing. And I just think it’s important that we all recognize where this shit is going, if it if it remains on uncounted.
S2: Yeah. You know, I have many queer parents in my life and just knowing how hard they all had to work to get to become parents. You know, I just think about how lucky these kids are and how I mean, I’m really excited that we’re talking to a teacher on this episode because when I think about what these kids experience at school and the messages that they receive from other people about whether their family is okay or not, you know, and how to think about their parents is it’s so important.
S3: Christina, what do you have for us?
S2: Well, I’m provoked again, so my provocations started with a radio spot. Pride radio is a radio station. I think it’s one of these digital things. It’s like not D.C. local, it’s gay music. It’s like dance music, pop. It’s literally an LGBTQ radio station. Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, there was an ad on this dumb radio station that was so tasteless. I was fully provoked in my Prius. It was an ad for an event called One Magical Weekend, which is a gay party weekend at Disney World in the beginning of June. You know, one of these deejays, pool party is there. I went on the website after hearing this ad and there’s things advertised as wet and wild. There’s parties with euphoric visuals. You get.
S3: Euphoric visuals.
S2: So here’s the ad copy. Join us as we drop into the Sunshine State for. Of love and acceptance. Don’t say gay. No way. We say gay. Loud and proud. Let’s be visible. Yes. On the one hand, are you trying to make money off of this campaign to like shame and shun LGBTQ people in Florida? Of course. Obviously, gay men deserve to party and have fun and like, please do that.
S3: I’m not sure.
S2: I’m not sure if we just hate, but I.
S5: But this it.
S2: Sounded to me like. Oh, are you worried people are going to, like, pull out of the weekend and not show up? And so you’re saying like, no, don’t cancel your plans. Please still come. And are you trying to make your Disney Circuit Party, like, somehow political? Yeah.
S2: I don’t think that your visibility at the Sheraton in Lake Buena Vista being a party is going to help us turn things around in Florida. No, it really felt like like you’re trying to make money off of something bad that’s happening to queer people.
S3: That’s really atrocious. It is part, though, of a thing I have seen in the sort of wake of this law where people have made also like some like T-shirts and sort of merchandise. It’s like say yes against yes, yes. That is like doing anything or is even the point. Like, that’s like there’s something there’s such a disconnect between like, well, I in New York or whatever I’m going to say gay like. Like that doesn’t nothing to like fight that law and and it’s sort of.
S2: It’s also not even about saying gay rights. It’s just like a clever way that queer adds.
S3: That frame.
S2: To framing these laws. Yeah, like, everyone can still say gay. It’s not about.
S3: The word, it’s they can say it, and then they’ll get sued out of having a job and whatever. But I always talked about it, but like, it is such a weird, empty kind of capitalist activism, right? And this, this, this, this party that you’re talking about, it sounds like really the epitome of it. I mean, it’s just it’s just so gross. And no, we shouldn’t be. We should be. Certainly. I mean, I would say probably Disney, you know, promised to do something about this law. I don’t even know what that means exactly, because it’s a corporation. But like I would say, let’s boycott them until they do it, I guess. Like. Like. Yeah, that’s.
S3: What a strange idea, actually.
S2: Yeah. Probably be really powerful. One magical weekend cancelled until you make some sort of a, like, legitimate commitment to fighting this.
S3: Given that they said they would. Yeah. So that’s grass perfect as well.
S2: And what you said about merchandise, I mean, I hate to blaspheme here, but Megan Rapinoe and Sue Bird have been selling a $120 hoodie with a trans flag on the back that says something like it says, love is compassion, love is bold, love is unique, love is loud, love is freedom, blah, blah, blah. $10 supposedly goes to some organizations, but also it’s 125, $120.
S3: Oh, my God.
S2: Right. And like, it’s it’s clearly doing more to promote their brand than it’s doing for trans kids in Texas. And like, really, is that your role in this moment with your millions of followers and your extraordinary cultural clout as a leader of LGBTQ people is selling a hoodie, I guess, tweeting and posting some some other messages. But primarily, if you look at her grid right now, it’s mostly advertisements for this hoodie. It’s just really disappointing to realize that we don’t have the kind of grassroots infrastructure that extends to that, that the cultural tastemakers that we are lucky to now have in our community are kind of dropping the ball in this moment, at least some of them. So I’m provoked.
S3: Consider me absolutely same product as well.
S2: Here in the U.S., right wing lawmakers are waging a war on the classroom across the country. They’re cracking down on the teaching of race and history and they’re restricting the ways teachers can talk about sexual orientation and gender identity. So we wanted to find out what exactly are they trying to take away? How do teachers actually cover those topics and how does it affect the kids in their care? So it’s easy to imagine how older youths might talk about sexual orientation and gender. But what about the littlest ones? To help us answer those questions, we’ve invited kindergarten teacher Elissa Cutler to join us today. Hi, Eliza. Thanks for coming.
S5: Hi. Thanks for having me.
S2: Eliza teaches at a charter school in Brooklyn and her Brooklyn neighbor. Our producer, June Thomas, is also going to join us for this conversation. Hi, June.
S2: So, Eliza, why don’t you start by telling us a little bit about the kids you teach and how you broach LGBT issues in your classroom?
S5: I obviously I’m in a charter school, so people choose to come to our school. You know, they have to apply. And so in that, like, I think families do some research. There’s a lot of reasons why people choose our school, right? Like one is that we have a huge focus on issues of social justice. We’re a very inclusive school kind of in every way possible. All of our classrooms are both general and special education integrated. We have a really broad mix of kids from different socioeconomic backgrounds, different races and cultures. And families know that when they apply to our school. So our classroom looks very different than other classrooms in New York City. And also, you know, around our country, it’s very natural. Like we talk about kids and context. They understand which is about themselves because little children are egomaniacs and they know the most about themselves and they know the most about their families. So like we talk about these things and ways that they can relate to, which is talking about themselves and their families in Brooklyn. It feels like a like a non issue because it’s not we’re just talking about people and that all families are special and important and that they can look many, many different ways. And there’s nothing like strange or different about anybody’s family. It’s just that all families are different.
S2: Is this the kind of thing where you have, like a unit about families or you just sort of wait for kids to talk about their own families?
S5: Currently, we have two like major social studies units. The first one is the ME study and me, and that’s really like talking about themselves. Again, it’s a good place to start for kids who, you know, they’re experts in themselves, but it’s a good place for them to see similarities and differences between themselves and other kids in their community. And then later in the year, we do a family study which, you know, again, we’re broadening their like the horizon of what they are experts in. We do in our school have some more direct instruction surrounding gender as well as race and culture. These are things that we like are very explicit in teaching. Like we have definitions for those things that we provide children with. And, you know, we talk about like the way things were when I was a kid versus like how things are now. And like, you know, we talk about like what we think we know about boys and what we think we know about girls. And we really break that down to like, well, anybody can wear a dress, anybody can play soccer, anyone can like Legos. And we do it in a way that’s like very kindergarten appropriate and that like we make a list and like, what do you think you know about boys? And they look around the classroom and they’re like, boys, you know, short hair. Boys can have long hair. What do you know about girls? Girls can paint their nails, girls can wear pants. And then we, like, break those things down. And then they talk about like, Oh, what do I like? And they see that those things really cross paths and that disproving this idea that there is girls things and boys things.
S2: So do you find that kids, even at that young age, come with preconceived notions of what boys and girls do?
S5: Yeah, some kids based on what they’re exposed to, right. Like what movies they watch, what they see on the street and what they see in their communities. They come with some preconceived notions, but they also like come, especially in Brooklyn with some like broken down ideas about that. Like, no, like anyone can wear nail polish, anyone can play in the dramatic play area, which is what we call dress up now. And that’s okay.
S6: Eliza, you mentioned that you sometimes will address how things are different from when you were a kid or when the. Adults in their lives were their age. Can you give some specific examples of the things that you talk about in that segment?
S5: For me, as a kid that liked to get really dirty and like play sports and like that would be called like a tomboy. And how that’s not like a word that we use anymore because we’ve decided that people are people and they can make decisions for themselves in terms of things. We also have like thought about within our own like teaching and how we talk about the spaces in our school. When I was a kid, there was boys room and girls room. Those things still exist, but we like as teachers, have changed the way that we present them to kids. And we, instead of saying like, girls go to the bathroom, boys go to the bathroom, we’ll say like friends who use the girls room or friends who use the boys room so that there’s no like those spaces are still labeled. But that like if you’re feeling like a girl, if you feel like a boy, you’re welcome to use the space that feels right for you.
S3: You mentioned earlier that that you actually sort of have terminology, lessons that engender, I think you said was one gender was one of those words. What is what is the vocabulary lesson for? For the word gender? Like look like in kindergarten.
S5: So gender is one that we added this year because we’ve always done that gender spectrum project by.
S2: Gender spectrum project. What’s that?
S5: We have them put their like picture along a line of like things that we thought we knew about boys. We thought we knew about girls. It’ll be like have long hair as an example or play Legos and like they’ll be like, Oh, I like that. And we’ll say like, Oh, some boys like that. Some boys don’t like that. Some girls like that, some. So like, again, opening it up to like people can choose their own interests.
S2: So instead of on a spectrum from girl to boy, it’s like I’m here on the Lego spectrum and here on the hair spectrum.
S5: Exactly. Yeah. So the way that we define it is gender is whether you feel like a boy or a girl. Neither in between, people express their genders in different ways. We also have, like a lot of, you know, children’s literature has come really, really far. There’s some great children’s literature. There’s a book that we started reading this year. There was actually introduced to us by a family who have a transgender child. It’s called They She, He, Me Free to be. And it’s basically just like a picture book that’s like pictures of people and they’re all labeled like he, she, they, them. You can look any of these different ways and you can choose whatever pronoun you feel like fits you. And so for kindergarteners, it’s just like super repetitive, which is great because then they can read it, which helps them like to solidify this idea that like that you get to choose your pronoun.
S2: So one thing I’ve been thinking about, it feels like a lot of these concepts can even be hard for adults to internalize, like, for example, the difference between gender identity and gender expression. So I’m curious how you think about teaching kids that, for example, a boy can paint his nails and still be a boy, but also if a child, a signed boy at birth, feels like a girl, like, that’s also fun.
S5: I mean, I think, again, it just comes down to like, we don’t tell people who they are and they get to decide who they are. And that our role as educators and as kindergarteners is to, like, be an ally and to really stick up for those around us and let them have the ability to make their own choices. Because, again, like that kind of kindness, the idea of being an ally is something that’s like really, really easy for kindergartners because they’re so obsessed with things being fair. And like, if you tell them that, like, you’re not being fair to somebody else, they, like, know what that means and what it feels like and like to teach empathy is like such. It’s so explicit to them. So it’s not. It becomes, again, like a non-issue because again, like taking care of their community and their friends is like something that they really hold near and dear.
S2: I love this because I think one of the sort of right wing lies about this kind of education, inclusive education, is that you’re like teaching kids to be gay or to be trans, but actually what you’re teaching them is to just be kind to people and let people do their own thing.
S5: There’s so much value in teaching it at a young age because it teaches kids to take care of each other. It expands their horizons of the types of people that they can and. Wracked with. I’m like, why not teach a child to be kind to everybody?
S6: I’m still curious if there’s ever pushback.
S5: I personally have never had any parent like contact me and say, like, this is like too much. I’m not comfortable with you teaching my child this. I spoke to the other teachers on my team and they told me that there was we do a family study later in the year where we all of the families come in and we interview them and we get to learn about them, which again, like teaches us about many different family structures. And again, we have a lot of like really great children’s literature around that. And there was one family who had said like, I’m not I don’t like my child, like seeing like two moms or two dads. And I think the response to that is like, well, we’re going to honor every family in our community, and this is a family in our community that’s important. And I think from there, like, the family could see like, yes, like this is an opportunity for my child to learn. And it’s not like they chose to keep their child home on that day. It’s just like them expressing some discomfort.
S3: When we were preparing for this, I was trying to reflect back on it. To the extent that I can go back that far to what my experience of like kindergarten and early early education was like and how it differed from what I was hearing about, about the way that you teach. And one of the things that it’s very clear is that, you know, you all focus on letting the kids name things, understand things for themselves. I feel like in my experience, the way I remember it anyway was being told what things were and being told this is the way the world works. And like, you know, here is the name for that thing and here is what those types of people do. Is that like a pedagogy change? It’s just so interesting to hear that because it just sounds so different from from the way I think about kindergarten in the way that I experienced.
S5: I think to some degree it is a pedagogy change. I think it’s also a cultural change in our society. I also have only taught and learned how to be a teacher in Brooklyn and very progressive schools. But I think that one thing that we know pedagogically is that representation matters, right? Like we say that about kids who come from different races and different cultures. So why wouldn’t we say that about kids who come from different family structures or who kids who who have who identify differently than like what we consider normative, what our you know, maybe people outside of New York consider normative.
S2: We’ve talked about our ambivalence around the efficacy of representation in in terms of like adult media and how representation is starting to feel like good and bad. And now where like increased visibility is leading to increase the attacks on LGBTQ people. On the other hand, maybe representation can feel like not enough, but it strikes me that for kids that’s really all they have is what they see around them, you know, when their brains are just sort of these sponges soaking up what’s possible, they don’t know anything beyond what they see. So I wonder how, you know, your job might be different in a community that was accepting but didn’t have all manner of families to show a kid where, you know, how do you teach them about sort of like hypothetically queer family or like what, what, how and what it is to be trans, you know?
S5: Yeah. I mean, I think I think that that does present challenges for sure. But I think, again, if you are very careful with curating your library and the way that you speak about families or about children, and you just make it part of your normal teaching and not like, okay, today we’re going to focus on, you know, like if it’s just like consistent exposure, kids are going to internalize that as like something that’s part of our world. You know.
S6: You’ve mentioned children’s literature a few times, and for people like me, maybe some listeners who really don’t have kids in their life right now and are just kind of wondering just to get a sense of what what these new kinds of books are. Or again, maybe not new, but different from when we were kids. Can you name a few of these books so that people could check them out if they’re interested?
S5: Sure. Some of the ones that we do around the like, what do we think we know about boys and girls? We read a book called Maurice Micklewhite in the Tangerine Dress. It is a little bit easier to find books about like boys wearing dresses than it is, you know, about girls doing things that may be perceived as boy things. There’s like quite a few. There’s one called like Jacob’s New Dress. There’s one called Introducing Teddy. That’s about a transgender teddy bear. And then there’s another one called Pugdog that I think is the one that we could find. It’s about a dog, but it is about a dog, a female dog who, like, does things that are. Perceived as like boy dog things.
S2: In reading too, my niece and nephew are watching TV shows and movies with them. It feels like animals are always coded as boy unless they’re wearing a pink bow in their like hides or something like that. Yeah. I found your character. Totally.
S5: Yeah, yeah, yeah. No. You know, to be honest, like a book about a teddy bear or a dog is, like, super engaging to a kid. And so it’s a really good, like.
S3: Entry point. I was curious if you’ve thought about in the in the context of these these don’t say gay bills, the one in Florida and elsewhere across the country law now, I should say. How would it impact your day to day life as a teacher in the classroom if something like that was introduced here in New York, what how would it really materially change and limit what you’re able to do?
S5: It would have a huge effect on on our school. It would break my heart, honestly, just because especially the work we do around families to feel like threatened by the government, by or by private citizens, to like have to like not honor certain families. I just can’t imagine. And as well as like, you know, staff and coworkers in our in our school community to not be able to, like, share about their own lives like that, that hearing that is so important to young children. Like they want to hear stories from our lives all the time and they want to know about our families and like having to feel like you’re hiding in your workplace doesn’t. I can’t imagine that that would feel good.
S2: Yeah, I think that’s all the time we have, unfortunately. Thank you so much for joining us.
S5: Yeah, of course. Thanks for having me.
S3: All right. Now we are going to talk about the new movie Everything Everywhere All at Once. It is out now from A24 and writer directors Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheiner. And it stars Michelle Yeoh as Evelyn, a frustrated mother and first generation Chinese immigrant who starts out a bit lost in her humdrum life as a dutiful owner of a struggling laundromat, but who ends up in a somewhat more intense predicament of being a wash among her infinite selves across the multiverse. Oh, and to make things a little more complicated, her daughter Joy, played by Stephanie Shu, is both queer and, depending on the reality, were an ennui fueled supervillain who’s trying to destroy literally everything.
S6: Hey, everyone. Producer June here. If you haven’t seen everything everywhere all at once yet and you don’t want to be spoiled, you can skip ahead to around the 59 minute mark. Do come back and listen. After you’ve seen it, though, you do not want to miss this conversation.
S3: There’s obviously a lot going on in this movie, which I will go ahead and say I think is a masterpiece. I don’t use that word a lot, but I think it is a masterpiece on the level of and maybe even past the first matrix, which it is partially an homage to, I think. But I’m going to stop summarizing there mainly because I really want you all listeners to go see this if you haven’t already, but also because describing it fully would just be like not possible. Well, we’re going to focus on today is the Queer story at the heart of all the craziness, which is actually an extremely familiar story in our universe. Joy wants her family to fully accept her queerness and to introduce her girlfriend, Becky, to her grandfather at a party. Evelyn, her mother, who is fine but not really fine with the gay thing, does not think he’s going to understand that and insists on misgendering Becky and Cantonese and calls her a very good friend at a pivotal moment. From there, let’s just say things spiral out a lot. It seems like there’s already a discourse going among the LGBT is about this movie. And given that my screening was absolutely 90% family like for sure, I am guessing that that’s only going to grow as more people get out to get out to see it. So super excited to talk about this with you all. I think maybe let’s just start with kind of a vibe check because I want to know like, you know, how did you just feel about the movie but also how did you sort of react to this mother daughter? Complicated by queerness relationship being at the heart of it, because I didn’t really expect that when I went on.
S2: Yeah, it surprised me too. I had kind of a two sided reaction to this. One was in the theater. I absolutely loved it. I mean, there were so many things to love about the film, the special effects, the costumes, the like, totally batshit humor. Yeah, the vindication for old people and, you know, beta males. But there were some parts of the gay ness of it that I sort of thought again about later and felt a little weirder about. So the part that really touched me the most was at the end where in sort of the moment where Evelyn accepts joy, she demonstrates that by showing how much she loves Becky, her girlfriend. And for me, that’s actually kind of my personal experience of my family’s acceptance that I didn’t fully internalize it until they showed so much love for my partner. And also, she’s just so amazing that it was sort of like, of course they love her and she really brought my parents around to the whole thing. And so when Evelyn says, you know, just how happy she is that like Joy found somebody that was so patient and brings out the best in our daughter, blah, blah, blah. Then she comes around in a following scene and insults Becky’s hair in a way that, yeah, she’s like, Oh, and by the way, Becky, you need to grow your hair because Becky has a side shave. And my reaction to that was like, talk, like, kind of show she cares and she’s like needling her, you know, daughter in law or whatever. But then I thought about it later and I was like, Actually, no, that’s that’s that shouldn’t be something that we accept. And it’s actually not a way of showing love. It’s a way of nitpicking and kind of making people feel like they’ll never actually belong. And so I felt like it was part of this really heartwarming ending that I really wanted to believe and did believe and then later felt a little bit sour about and the same goes for that, like the physical comedy around the butt plugs.
S3: Yeah. I want to talk about we’ll talk about the backlog first.
S2: Yeah. So I’ll just I’ll leave it there and, and I want to hear what you guys thought.
S4: That’s a really beautiful meditation on that ending. And you know, I think interestingly enough, for me, that’s you know, it’s it’s a very true to my character, I think my my queer conduit, in fact, largely bypassed. And that’s sort of like, you know, problem of the child, you know, of of of immigrants who is queer representing this sort of, you know, ostensible clash of culture, which, of course, the film, you know, plays with that trope in really, you know, impressive ways. But for me, my queerness harkened back to a relationship I’ve had. You know, my queer reading of the film, I should say, harkened back to a relationship I’ve had with Michelle Yeoh for a long time. Yeah, sure, I. I’m not East Asian, I’m South Asian, but I grew up in a big diasporic family and, you know, grew up in a really diverse part of the west coast of Canada where there were, you know, lots of, you know, immigrants, not just from from India and the same part of India that I was from, but also from. Southern China and Hong Kong and Taiwan. And, you know, so. Michelle Yeoh is but a sort of beloved, like interesting figure of identification for me because in the nineties until the early 2000, she was often playing, you know, strong willed, powerful women and really challenging that trope of sort of Asian women as frail and, you know, objects of consumption on screen for white audiences. And so in some ways, I felt like, you know, part of what got me, I just got so emotional watching this. I mean, of course, I was like, yeah, laugh, crying. You know, the Congress is like you’re like, somehow snot is coming out of your mouth. This is, like, really embarrassing. Under an N95 mask in the theater. And, like, but I really felt, you know, that for me, part of what was so stunning about this film and why I kind of want to watch it a couple more times is because also I felt like the queer drama was also absolute zero. It was this story about like what happens to the strong willed women who make immigration stories possible and who do all of just the damn hard work and cultural bridgework, right? The intermediary work and the kind of cultural labor that’s so gendered of making home. And then and then it’s in that context where, like, having a gay daughter is sort of like one facet of all of the different things that are coming up for this character, you know, and her sense of kind of like being used up by her life rather than having actualized her dreams, at least in her universe. And that just really like, I guess it’s not because, like, that’s my life in any way whatsoever, but it just like rocked me as a very kind of different. Yeah. Diasporic or immigrant kind of queer story that, that I thought almost like interfaced with what you were just talking about. Christina in really interesting ways. So, but, but part of, you know, maybe like could hear my voice too or what I’m saying, it’s like I still like I’m deep in the vibe versus I’m still sorting out like how to parse out all of the different layers of this, like, thousand layer cake. That was this film.
S2: A meal for a meal.
S4: And then flat.
S3: Christine, I love I love what you said about sort of having a few days between seeing it and, you know, my initial reaction also was just kind of like all emotions all at once. I completely bowled over by how beautiful this thing is and so many ways. But certain things have sort of faded in the time since then and other things stuck out. I actually think that the hot dog finger lesbian relationship between and is an alternate universe relationship between Michelle Yeoh and Jamie Lee Curtis, who plays someone else in the main universe that I want. I don’t think I have to get into here, but there’s this beautiful sort of side story that’s about and I don’t even think they speak to me.
S2: They don’t?
S3: Yeah. It’s there’s just a kind of a kind of choreographed.
S2: It’s a fully like montage. Really? Yeah.
S3: It’s this beautiful little, little detail that’s about what if what if Michelle Yeoh’s character was queer, like, you know, was like a lesbian at least. And it’s maybe that is the most beautiful queer thing in the whole movie that’s like, sort of stuck with me. So that’s just interesting cause it’s not the main by any stretch like the central part. But Christina, to your point about that little needling at the end, I thought that the the actor who played Becky did such a good job showing that she just, like, didn’t give a fuck about any of that stuff. And so it did like because there was a few of those moments before as well. And so I felt like I felt like this two characters were like equally matched on that because she immediately turned away. I was like, okay, whatever. And like, you know, continued on. So I don’t know, I just that was that was something I thought about around that.
S2: No, you’re right. And I think this is something that is completely context specific. I think I was projecting the way that I think a lot of people, queer people in my life have found that, you know, no matter how old they get and no matter how much their parents seem to accept them, there’s always one little thing about their appearance, like why it’s always up to wear pants or like, you know, your hair looks better when it’s longer or, you know, something like that. That just it’s like your family can get 99% of the way there. And then the last 1% of them still has this idea of you that’s stuck in, like the old gender mode.
S2: And I think it’s also true that probably some people don’t care. And, and, and, you know, it’s very possible that Becky might take it the way that I initially did, which is like, well, I’m kind of like her daughter now. She is critiquing my appearance. Um, yeah, I guess there’s multiple universes of.
S2: Way. Is this. This little mini insult could play out.
S3: I wanted to ask as a sort of another maybe starting question, do we think this is a queer movie or a movie that happens to have a queer subplot? I. And see it in all universes both ways. But I’m curious if that’s if that distinction is interesting to all or not.
S4: Like Brian pulling, making us pull out our PhDs and LG for this. It’s such a good question. I mean, I guess I feel like I want to say stick with me here. People, like. Both. Yeah, like it’s a film where there are characters, right, who are queer and that causes like some, you know, narrative conflict. But then like, to me, the queerness of the film isn’t about identity, it’s not about sexuality as in sexual orientation, and it’s not about an antagonism between like heterosexuality and queer ways of life. It’s about like, you know, sort of what I was gesturing to the sort of, you know, queer as in not necessarily redemptive or happy, but the sort of, you know, having your life essentially made into a series of fragmented or dispersed things because of immigration, because of choices made, right? Like, do I stay or do I leave? Right. Which is that, you know, choice that a young Evelyn makes. Do I stay and, you know, or do I marry this man and go to America? Right. And that aren’t, you know, necessarily that dissimilar, right, from some of the choices probably, you know, that her daughter and that joy ends up having to make. And I guess, like, you know, that that that remains sort of really poignant to me, I suppose. And I think that like I think that also, you know, sometimes, like, I don’t know. I mean, there’s something really powerful, I guess, about like this larger wave of work being made right now that, you know, takes points of view that in theory have been read as like minority. It’s so important to have Asian voices on screen. Right. But actually calls out American or Western or white people’s like sense of universality that like when we tell a generic white story, it’s universal. But when we tell an Asian story, it’s just for Asian people and it says, No, I’m going to actually expand that out all the way to the fucking level of every universe ever existed. Right. And I think that that’s really clever and it means a lot, I think, too, in thinking about like what it means to use an immigrant woman’s experience in a particular diaspora to tell like philosophically driven story about like the meaning of life, among other things, right? And so in that sense, like to me it does a little bit of that with Queer, right, where it’s like or like with what is gay, right? Because I think there is a kind of interesting question that the film isn’t really about per say, right? Which, you know, I feel like I’m actually stealing this from you, Bryan, because you said it sometime off air. But like, you know, are we always gay? Like, would we be gay? Yeah, right. And like, you know, cards on the table, this is sort of a different podcast episode. But like, you know, I fundamentally think one of the interesting things about sexuality is like, yeah, like it has no inherent, like, driver purpose and like, we could all do whatever with any kinds of people, but like the way we live in the world is what makes us queer. It’s a queer way of life, not the literal sex acts that we do or don’t have. Whereas like I have this kind of like running gag that I’m kind of attached to and very sentimental, you know, about with my, with my, with my boyfriend, where we’re like we strongly believe that we would be trans, both of us, in every single universe because like the experience of being, you know, turned inside out, that is, being trans in the world is a fundamentally different kind of like a journey to walk in life. And we kind of, you know, use the metaphor of, like, our trans souls are something to understand that those could sort of take any particular form. But, you know, if I had been born a woman, then I would have to become a trans that or something, right? Just to like maintain my chances. I don’t know. You know, there’s something that I’d really. It’s poetic, right? It’s like it’s like leaving behind the ways we’ve been sort of like ask to slice and dice these questions. I think that just serves us to them on this like a reverent, monumental moving platter that at one point includes and everything bagel. So like, mean like how could I possibly do justice to.
S2: Okay, so I the reason why I think this is a queer movie through and through is because of that question, you know, who are you in different universes? Do you remain consistent? And in what way is also the what’s presented to Evelyn as you are the one to save the universe because you are like fulfilling your potential the least?
S2: I think that, like all of the disappointments and rejections have left you here to this moment, I feel like that’s a very queer way of looking at power, that actually it’s the ways in which we’ve experienced trials and tribulations, having to have the extra self-knowledge to find our queer and trans selves in a world that doesn’t present that as a very attractive or available possibility. Yeah, and that’s where we get our strength from. I love that. And what you’re talking about, Jules, this would have been too much for the film to go into, but I thought it was interesting that they suggest that Evelyn is not st in every universe, you know, obviously. Right, right, right. Dog thing. She is in a relationship with Jamie Lee Curtis. But Joy, even in her most universe hopping form, suggests that she’s always gay because she tells Evelyn, you know, oh, you’re still.
S2: Up, stuck on the fact that I like girls. Yeah. Yeah. And so I thought there was I am positive the filmmakers did not think twice about this, but it seems like they’re advancing kind of both, that you can do both, that some people might be gay in every universe and some people might have, you know, different sexualities or gender identities no matter what happens. And I want to know, are you guys watching Severance, the show on Apple Tv+? No, I’m.
S3: Yeah, I’ve heard about it.
S2: I find this is a very good companion. Watch, because that show, everyone who works at this, you know, maybe evil, definitely evil company has to have a brain surgery where their work self has no idea what’s going on in their home life. In their home. Oh, my God. No idea what’s going on at work. So basically when you enter this company, you your work self becomes its own standalone person who is only aware of the universe within the office. And there’s a little gay romance on that show between two older men, one of whom is Christopher Walken. And I I’m wondering I don’t know if they addressed this in the show. I’m not done with it yet. But I wonder if those men are gay on the outside or not. Because when you create a whole new person based on, you know, the same physical material, but without the awareness of, you know, any life experiences that come before what happens to your sexuality. I just. I love thinking about that kind of stuff.
S3: Yeah. Yeah. I think I have come around to thinking that it is a queer movie through and through. And I was happy to read. I was doing a little research on just the discourse around this, and I found a quote from one of the writer directors, Dan Kwan, about how the queer aspect sort of got made it into the into the script. So I just I just want to read that and then I’ll explain what I mean. He says, this is in the USA Today. He said it started out as a story about the generation gap between a mother who is an immigrant and a daughter who grew up on the Internet in America. As we were exploring that, I was doing a lot of self-reflection on how I was raised, the types of people I was around, and how the Asian-American community has a very particular way to deal with the tension that comes from a queer child coming out to their parents. He discovered that many of them had to come out multiple times, and he says each time it’s almost brushed over or ignored or the parents are waiting for the face. And Quan recalls, there’s no big screaming match. They just end up having to come out every couple of years, every time they introduce their partner and have to basically fight for the chance to be seen. It’s this slow motion erasure of who they are. What I love about the movie is that, you know, one way for a reading you could do, I guess, of of encountering a mother and daughter encountering each other in all of these universes is exactly that kind of encounter. Like like this this having to present yourself anew over and over again. And we get we get all these multiple versions of joy and we get insight into also Michelle’s character across universes. And I think even even in that kind of structure, there feels like there’s something queer about it. There is the family story. But then I think there’s a lot of like sort of aesthetic philosophical things that are also, yeah, actually quite queer.
S2: Let’s go back to the butt plugs for a second. So it’s putatively a trophy in the IRS office, but it’s actually shaped like a butt plug. And then yeah.
S3: We didn’t we didn’t mention that the the laundromat is being audited by the IRS. So there’s.
S2: Right, right, right.
S3: Quite a bit that happens there in the IRS office.
S2: So these but plug shaped trophies are used by two of the, you know, henchmen, I guess, um, to do the, the weirdest thing possible, which is how you gain more powers by integrating different versions of yourself from across universes. And so for them, the weirdest thing possible they could do in this one moment is violently jump onto the is but plugs right. And then fight with the butt plugs still in their anuses. Mm hmm. And when it was happening, I felt like everyone in the theater was laughing around me. And I kind of didn’t find it funny. It felt like I was watching Borat or something, you know, just like the very easy little bit of, like, this is funny just because it’s gay, I guess, humor. And then I read a piece actually in W by Kyle Turner it gives a couple thousand more words to my reaction, which was that it’s not exactly clear what the joke is supposed to be. And when you look at a joke like that, alongside the ways that Asian male sexuality has been traditionally depicted, it just becomes a little bit. More of a cheap joke without that doesn’t quite fit in to my mind with the rest of the film’s pretty sophisticated approach to, you know, queerness and identity across worlds.
S3: I actually saw that piece as well, Christine. And I want to just read a quick quote from because I think this really gets at what you’re saying. Kyle Turner writes, It’s understandable if a joke, you know, this subject doesn’t work, but that it doesn’t tacitly reveals how its writers conceptualize queerness and gratification. As the film compartmentalizes, queer love is having a girlfriend being depressed and nihilistic and not being accepted by your mother. It shies away from, for whatever reason, from the pleasure of it all, or at least a universe where that might exist. As you were sort of saying, I think it is a bit afraid of that scene, feels afraid of like queer sex and like in some way that’s like a little out of tune with the rest of it. And I’ll say that in in this theater I was in where I mentioned, you know, it was like 90% gay people, at least by my, you know, my my visual visual idiom. That that was the one moment where everyone was super awkward and silent. So, like, you know, the rest of the time, we were all laughing and crying and all the things we’ve been saying, but that that did not land like in the room that I was on. And I and I noticed it, I was like, Wow, because I feel uncomfortable about this. I feel like it’s like some kind of humor that just doesn’t quite fit with, like, the beauty of the rest of this. And and, you know, it didn’t land there. So I think I think it’s it’s maybe the one big note I kind of had about the whole about the movie at all was that that scene just felt somehow strange.
S2: Yeah, I will say that I interpreted one line as nodding to queer pleasure, which was when Evelyn says, I’m paraphrasing here, even in a universe where we have hot dog fingers, we just get really good at using our feet. It’s possible that I cleared that line. Yeah. Maybe mean it in the way that I took it, but I thought that was really beautiful.
S4: Now, my stupid Ph.D. is like, you know, doing stuff in my brain, you know, like, yeah, I think the pleasure for me is about the instability of the meaning of the joke, right? Like, my theater was very empty. I was taking up half of it by myself. So I was laughing at that moment. But, you know, I like to laugh at the things that seemed the most inappropriate and not necessarily because I find them funny. I like laughing at kind of way, but. But just for part of the trespass there, I’m like, if I work, I’m not saying this is like I’m not committed to this medium, but I guess if I were going to offer a sort of intentionally charitable reading of that moment, it would be that it’s sort of, you know, ask it a couple of things, right? Like the reason that the dildos come upright and have to be used is that in order to sort of access another universe version of yourself, you have to do something extremely out of character in the universe in which you are. Yeah, right. And so in that, in that sense, I read that sort of gratuity of plugs, right? As a really a really strong sort of socially surprising and and socially sanctioned choice. Right. Like we don’t actually, you know, as far as I know use about plugs in an IRS building although someone who just filed her taxes. I’m like I mean, I hope you are you know.
S2: They save that for after tax day.
S4: Yeah, right. Like don’t buy any more bunker bombs with my tax dollars. Like just actually buy plugs for IRS officers. That’s like part of it I think is sort of interesting to think about this kind of like reclamation of a sexual taboo, right. Or a kind of shamed, you know, sense of being penetrated, especially because it’s like Asian, you know, different kinds of Asian men in particular, you know, and just sort of taking that on in a in an irreverent way that’s not necessarily opposing, right? Like good and bad sexuality or queer and straight, but is just sort of like, I don’t know. I mean, you know, I guess I’m not totally like at one point, you know, Joy, as as the sort of, you know, multi universe demonic joy is also holding giant long dildos that kind of flop around. Yeah. And there’s a way for me, right, that, like, I was just thinking about the contrast between those two. I can’t believe I love out it because I’m like, about to give a close comparative freedom of dildo aesthetics. Right? But I think there’s a way that shorter, smaller. And I think they’re almost all, you know, black or flesh tone dildos that are going up, you know, men’s butts reads in one particular way as like really intense. Right. And it has to do with cultural aversion to being penetrated anally, especially for men versus like I feel like there are often bits where lesbians are holding large dildos that we’re like the dicks are too big and they start to flop over where that’s played as like nonthreatening, right? And like, yeah, I think, like, I think those can play other ways like in and, you know, I. Really committed to them playing other ways. I think like I’m one of those like irreverent queers. That’s like when dicks get too big, they actually become less masculine because they’re just like too unwieldy. And especially like on Twinks, it’s like, they’re like going to fall over like sunflowers in August or something. And like, I, I don’t, you know, I get I don’t feel like any of that is going into this film intentionally. But, you know, I found it playful enough, the film playful enough to run with those ideas whether or not that’s really right. Like I agree that probably that’s not how almost anyone reacted to edit so I’m not tried to like you know, say that the film therefore is good or something. I think, you know, it’s just too interested to play out that way either. But so very sympathetic of that, both of you said. But yeah, just because the film gave me the opportunity, I couldn’t help but offer that that little that little thought.
S3: Oh, I love your recuperation of the black scene. We’ve all the discourse is moving moving quickly.
S4: We keep it real here.
S3: Yeah. Yeah. So I think that is actually an excellent place to end. There is so much more to see and so many more pleasures to to gain from this movie. I really hope everyone makes it out to see it. It’s called Everything Everywhere All at Once. It’s out from A24 and it is and wide release now, so you should be able to go see it. I will be seeing it again and maybe again after that because I love it that much. So please, please check it out.
S4: Well, listeners, that’s about it for this month. But before we go, we’ve got your monthly updates to our glorious gay agenda.
S2: I want to recommend that everyone read an essay in Esquire called Sex, Love and Art in the Suburbs. It’s by the writer Garth Greenwell and. Yeah, I know, right? Yeah. Yeah. You’ll love this, too, I think. Or actually, I’ll be curious to hear what you think, but it’s. It’s about queer aging, basically, and domesticity and cruising and mostly about how things that felt essential to his identity as a queer person and as an artist in his younger years, surprisingly, don’t feel that way anymore. So he writes about the life he imagined for himself and lived for, you know, the first decade or so of his adulthood, transient, kind of unmoored, constantly changing places and, you know, having many lovers and the life that he thought an artist needed to have. And then he ended up finding happiness in a committed relationship in a small town in Iowa. And I found it a really touching meditation on what it means to build a life for yourself outside of the bounds of what you imagined for yourself, and how things that you once thought would stifle. You don’t feel that way when you remake them on your own terms. And part of this is about how, for all the worries that, you know, gay marriage will like bleach, all the subversion from the queer lifestyle. It’s also true that some queers have remade marriage to suit ourselves. He writes about non-monogamy. That’s sort of the obvious change here, that, like a lot of gays have adapted marriage to include that in ways that straight people largely haven’t. But it also made me think about parenthood, which is sort of the ultimate irony, I think, for a lot of radical queers like these, like nuclear family units. But I think we can undersell, especially when it comes to caregiving roles in domestic work, the radical potential of a family unit that, like by its very existence, complicates the gender norms that for all of history have prevented people from achieving their full potential and following their true desires. You know, whether that’s like men not being able to embrace caregiving work or women not being able to have careers, like even if you’re looking at binary monogamous like gay or lesbian relationship, we can’t fill those same roles as straight have. You know, and and I think that’s very clear when it comes to parenting. So his essay really provoked, you know, a lot of thoughts in me about how we we always have the potential to expand what certain institutions mean for ourselves. And it’s just he’s a beautiful writer and and I highly recommend it. I think he’ll enjoy it.
S3: Oh, I’m so excited to read that. Yeah, he’s he’s fantastic.
S2: What are you recommending this month?
S3: So I have an an article as well. It is the headline. First, it’s in the New York Times. The speech in Mexico is an LGBTQ haven but cannot last. And it’s by Oscar Lopez and Lisette Poole, I should say. Just full disclosure. Oscar is a friend and also sometime our contributor. But I would have recommended this anyway because it’s a really beautiful piece and very complicated article about the beach town of Suppository in Mexico. That is has been a long time local LGBT haven for for people who live around there, but also for queer travelers. It’s become kind of the more countercultural answer to somewhere like Puerto Vallarta. I became aware of it over the winter when at one point literally every ferry and kind of like nightlife queen, I know, was suddenly posting from there because there was this music festival that I wasn’t invited to, whatever. But.
S2: So you’re bitter about it?
S3: I’m a little bitter about it. But now, after this gorgeous article, I understand both why everyone’s attracted to it, but also, as happens in these cases, when you get so much tourism, it can really change the place and cause a lot of problems for for the, you know, the environment, the locals who live there, the lifestyle that had existed for decades and is sort of changing. So I just read a tiny little thing from the top because it’s a pretty they write, when the sun starts to slip toward the ocean and psychedelic beach town on Mexico’s Pacific coast, a quiet migration begins. Groups of people, most of them gay men, many of them make it amble down the beach toward a soaring rocky outcrop. They climb a winding staircase over the ragged cliffs and down to a hidden cove known as Playa del Amore or Beach of love. As the sun becomes an orange or of the sky turns. Lilac and the many naked bodies, black and bronze, curvy and chiseled are brushed and gold when it finally dips into the water. The crowd erupted in applause. Playa del Mar at sunset. The first time I saw it, I truly felt like crying, said Roberta Hair, who has been visiting the poetry for five years. It’s a space where you can be very free, so that’s just the top. It’s a gorgeous piece and goes into a lot of detail about what’s happening in this beach town. So in the New York Times, I highly recommend it.
S2: Wow, that sounds so good. I actually went to Zeppelin last year. I wasn’t one of the people who was invited to that music festival that year, but I was in Puerto Escondido and we went, you know, just to check it out for the day. And I actually had no idea that it was a hub for queer people or for gay men. It was just it felt very just like Surf Town Hippy is blah, blah, blah. But maybe I was I was not at Playa del Amor, so.
S3: Yeah, maybe. Maybe you missed the sunset. Well, next time we will go together. Maybe. Or maybe not. Or maybe not. Maybe it’s bad for us to go and we shouldn’t go. But you will. You will puzzle all that. All these things out as you read as you read this article. All right. And, Jules, what’s yours for this month?
S4: Well, I’ve got a sort of, if you dare, spook tastic ghosts second coming of October recommendation for you all, which is to go out and read a novel if you like. It didn’t just come out, but it’s a wonderful novel by Gretchen Felker. Martin called Manhunt. That came out, you know, a little bit well, actually, a couple of months ago. But the reason that I’m recommending it now is it’s this like very spooky graphic, kind of intense dystopian sort of novel about, you know, trans trans folks at the end of the world who have to do a whole bunch of kind of just really very revolting and beautifully written, revolting kinds of things to survive after the end of the world. And, you know, like all good works of literature these days, it offended, you know, the good ladies over at Terf Industries who are running around saying this is truly obscene, you know, forgetting what literature is, etc., showing how big their imaginations are. And so, you know, whenever that happens, I think like, well, you know what? When when folks are writing really great books that are coming out and, you know, sometimes there’s not as much PR behind them as there should be. Always good to give a shout out. So. So I say if you dare, go and read it. Because, you know, I haven’t actually gotten through the whole thing because it is like very graphic in a way that I’m in awe of in a positive sense. But like that may not be everybody’s cup of tea. Like, I still can’t watch horror films when I’m alone. Like, I have to have a partner there to reassure me. So, you know, maybe, like, grab a partner and a copy of Manhattan. Sounds like a great weekend. Yeah. So there you go. I’ll double gay.
S2: All right. That’s it for this month. Please send us your feedback and your topic ideas. You can reach us at outward podcast at Slate.com or on Facebook and Twitter at Slate outward. June Thomas is our producer, and she would be our producer in every iteration of the universe, all of the zillions of iterations, if you like outward, please subscribe in your podcast app, tell your friends and fam about it and rate and reviews so other people. I will be back at your feet. By Jules.
S4: By Christina, by Freya, by everybody.
S2: I stay gay.