I think the thing that bothered me the most over the past week was the fact that someone has enough time to worry about what me and my "blog friends" are doing...and then to target us because we support each other and we are somewhat close. This along with a few other behind the scenes drama, my now infamous "Shut Up Bitch" post caused more drama than I expected.
With that said, I wanted to dispel some rumors, talk to someone who was outside the "circle" and get some opinions on a few things. I had a chat with: The Black Gay Blogger!
Trent: So...I have so many things that I want to talk to you about. First I think that you are so iconic, especially since you are thee "Black Gay Blogger." How did you come up with that name and do you find it difficult living up to that name?
Black Gay Blogger: An icon? Geez, lol. That's rather lofty. Umm...doing the BGB thing came to me about two and a half years ago shortly after I graduated from college. I was like "I have an idea...and if I make the jump to do this, it could be something big...or something ugly." And at first, it was very ugly. But it's beginning to even out. I don't find it difficult to live up to it; I'm only the Black Gay Blogger when I'm online. Offline, I'm just a regular gay guy.
Trent: okay...a few things..."Something Ugly" what has that been, and what is it now? And "I'm the only black gay blogger, when I'm online?' Explain that. You know they like to twist things around. What does that mean. I am gay and black and a blogger. I am online now...
Black Gay Blogger: Offline, I'm actually a straight white housewife. 2.5 kids and minivan. Tuna casserole on Thursdays. Friday's are pork chop night. When I first started out, a lot of my posts were very...angry. The typical "niggas ain't shit" diatribe, you know? And folks who comment would be like "Damn, get a man already and stop bitchin'" or "you're too young to feel like that" And then there was the Black Gay Male Blogger List debacle...lawdamercy
Trent: You are too funny!!! Not a straight white housewife!!!?? Now lets backtrack a little bit...June 03, your debut blog, first post. You are blogging, releasing your anger talking about things that affect us all...why did you start blogging?
Black Gay Blogger: BGB is actually my fourth blog - I'm an old head; I've been writing about my experiences online since '98 back when I had a Geocities page in HS. I guess I started BGB because I felt I had something bigger to say other than my daily bread. And I've been trackin' crumbs ever since.
Trent: oh okay, well shit you are The Marquee Gay Black Blogger! Alright now...So did you ever think that blogging would ever catch on the way that it has? And what is your readership like?
Black Gay Blogger: LOL, You know...I kinda had an inkling this could be something big. I think about how the CB radio was big in the 70s...this was right along the same lines. Maybe not to the point where bloggers were making headlines and stuff, but I definitely felt like it would catch on. Everyone wants a soapbox from time to time to have their voice heard. My readership now is...hmm...it's varied. All different colors, straight and gay, male and female...there's no particular demographic.
Trent: numbers wise, like how many readers a day.
Black Gay Blogger: 5,051 unique hits today
Trent: yes! Do those numbers at all faze you?
Black Gay Blogger: It varies though - some months are better than others - the numbers have never been a big deal - I just love to write.
Trent: okay...you have to admit that it is a bit shocking or humbling? or something though. I know for me when I see like 900 or 1000 unique visitors or 300 returning visitors I am like, wow what have I done?
Black Gay Blogger: I've been doin' this for a while though, I think the thrill is gone
Trent: I guess after a while it would...you know what’s next right?
Black Gay Blogger: Umm...no. What?
Trent: word on the street is that you have beef with me and you have some things that you want to say?
Black Gay Blogger: What Street did you hear this word on? Assumption Avenue?
Black Gay Blogger: I don't even know you to not like you, you know?
Trent: CAN I BORROW THAT?
Black Gay Blogger: LOL - you can have that one
Trent: so. What do you make of this blog war, seasoned vs. new? That I have seemed to have take part in, if not "create"
Black Gay Blogger: LOL @ blog war - now how honest can I be?
Trent: very, brutal if you have to be
Black Gay Blogger: I don't think any one blogger created the so-called "blog war” I think was a gang of mufukkas.
Trent: name them
Black Gay Blogger: You trynna get me shot?
Trent: off record
Black Gay Blogger: Naw, let it be on the record
Trent: no…off record
Black Gay Blogger: Now this is just from my observation...You know how they say the road to hell is paved with good intentions?
Black Gay Blogger: Those good intentions are probably what inadvertently sparked this
Black Gay Blogger: Because there was (and still is) a lot of tight-knit support among some of the newer bloggers: you, Smiley, no4real and some others come to mind And then Frank came with his post about HIV, which was a veritable powder keg
Trent: okay...now let me ask you this. One with logic could easily see that there was a little tension between you and he, even in the comment box. But even before all of that you made a comment about "The BlogWorld," You said, "How can you have a faux black gay blogger reality show without the gay black blogger..." Which was directly pointed at me, Frank and Larry...people could have misinterpreted that as taking a shot at the three of us...what did that comment mean…
Black Gay Blogger: LOL…that was just a little rib
Trent: okay...were you mad about it?
Black Gay Blogger: LOL - It was just a joke when I made mention of it on my blog, then all of a sudden there was this "tension" and I'm like...where is this coming from?
Trent: yes...fags are messy. Just like when I made my "Shut Up Bitch" post...if you've heard the song you'd understand what I was talking about.
Black Gay Blogger: Yeah, but when you start cursing other folks, it's hard not to take it out of context, you know? It's a fault of the medium. That's why further dialogue is important to clear up anything.
Trent: I actually made fun of things that were said about me-in places of public opinion. People will have their opinions about me and other bloggers, but I know who I am. But the funny part is that I was talking about, exactly what they did-run their mouths. And they just showed me how much I an evoke a reaction...I already told you about your line-there was no pun intended...it got a little heated, but I didn't mean to hurt anyone...so who are your blog friends? Oh I'm sorry blog and friend should never go in the same sentence, since the "Pussy Posse" is a target and we're so "seemingly tight" with one another.
Black Gay Blogger: Oh lord...
Trent: Well, I am just stating fact not opinion. What bloggers are you associated with, like your version of the black gay bloggers?
Black Gay Blogger: My version? Aren't we all black gay bloggers? Well...all of us who are black and gay...and blog…
Trent: well Karsh, there is a clear division between our "groups.” My intention of this chat was to squash this invisible, yet visible line of division between the old and the new. I mean I am "friends" with No4real, Stone, Frank, Larry, and Valentino, people like that.
Black Gay Blogger: So in other words, who are the bloggers I associate with, right?
Black Gay Blogger: There we go
Trent: where are we going?
Black Gay Blogger: Well, I talk with Tony of Phillybred a lot
Trent: yes, I think he's a cute guy...who else or did they tell you not to talk to me?
Black Gay Blogger: Shhh...I have to follow my directives
Trent: I know, I can tell I mean am well aware that the members in your Klan don't like me so it is what it is...
Black Gay Blogger: Perhaps, but that's their business
Trent: but see it's not, because it's public. Now everyone is involved...
Black Gay Blogger: Everyone?
Trent: well, you know what I mean, it's public knowledge. My question is your "clique" isn't really different from mine-so to speak, so why do they have to target us, but it's okay for you guys to support each other, but when we (Stone, Frank, No4real...etc) we have to be a Pussy Posse. It was cute, but it was burnt the fuck out.
Black Gay Blogger: Oh dear...I'm gonna have to pray on that one because I don't have the answer, age, maybe?
Trent: but you and I are the same age, I am in your age group
Black Gay Blogger: Yeah, but we don't have beef now, do we?
Trent: so it's really no different. No you and I don’t
Black Gay Blogger: See! Problem solved.
Trent: you and I don't but your posse does and that could be a problem-lol
Black Gay Blogger: My gang...my clique...my entourage...so long as I get to be Ari Gold...
Trent: except you're the gay black blogger. The Marquee of the whole dip set...So let me ask you this. Because it has become an issue, it has gotten out of hand. We have all played a part-how can we all of us, the gay black bloggers, not really call a truce, but respect each other for what we have to brink to the table?
Black Gay Blogger: Maybe by checking our egos at the door.
Trent: and how do we go about doing that? I mean I know I come across as having one of the biggest egos, but I've always known that it's not about me. I think that we really recognize that we all bring something different to the table and we should really respect each other for our difference and experience. We are all black, we're all gay, we're all damaged, we all have baggage-we're no better than anyone. If anything we have so much in fuckin' common we should really be bound. But being black and gay encompasses so much shit...I truly believe there is a way to all "get along" and respect one another. And the only way to truly do that is through dialogue and discussion. I am guilty of being messy, and starting shit with other people, but as you said about the good intentions thing...I do it to provoke thought, not really to start shit.
Black Gay Blogger: But I'm sure the provoking thought only comes after the shit's been started. Then it's kind of useless.
Trent: I think you should look at it again Karsh, especially if or when people call me out first...
Black Gay Blogger: The "it" being...how to come together as one? Well respect is earned- it's not an automatic thing, you know?
Trent: true...very true. But there are so many dynamics...I think we stop feeling so threatened by each other then we can start.
Black Gay Blogger: Threatened...how? Elaborate on that.
Trent: well there is this competing thing going on. Like one is better than someone.
Black Gay Blogger: I sense that too.
Trent: and it's not really like that. And "frankly speaking," just because I have a book out, or Frank and Larry are working on PhDs doesn't mean we are better than anyone
Black Gay Blogger: I agree.
Trent: and people are threatened by that even jealous
Black Gay Blogger: Hmm.
Trent: and that’s stupid-because just using those examples I know that Frank and Larry both are getting that education to recycle back within the gay black community-I write because I know the pain that I felt growing up and other things that I've experienced. I write to let other people know that they aren't the only ones and how they can get over shit...and for some reason people like to use that against us...I even understand that you have a lot of great things going on about you...
Black Gay Blogger: Me?
Trent: that a few of us don't know about...like I heard that you were a child prodigy of the sort.
Black Gay Blogger: One in English with a minor in French and one in Math with a concentration in statistics and a minor in Comp Sci/Telecommunications
Trent: Polished...see what I mean. And they don't feel threatened by you. You can tell me what X+2 is
Black Gay Blogger: I don't see why anyone should feel threatened by me - I'm a pretty easy-going fellow
Trent: YES YOU ARE - but then there’s me
Black Gay Blogger: And we're both Pisces
Trent: and that says a lot, but my point to saying that people should stop making themselves feel inferior or less than because of what someone else is doing and then starting shit with them because of their insecurity. I mean that’s why they make a billion of everything, whatever happened to believing they could do whatever they put their minds to?
Black Gay Blogger: That notion still exists. Humility, on the other hand, seems to be in short supply.
Trent: so how do we go about replenishing the supply?
Black Gay Blogger: Checking the ego at the door. If you're an accomplished person, that stuff shows through regardless - making mention of it a lot just seems...well, it seems silly. And it comes off as pompous. I used to run in a lot of circles of folks like that coming up through school, and in the long run, they were only impressing themselves, not anyone else, you know?
Trent: yes...okay...taking notes. So you mentioned the whole HIV post that we really didn't discuss. It made a lot of people feel uncomfortable, and it was a catalyst to some of the negativity that was already lingering-how did you feel about the post? Why do you think Frank takes so much heat? And why we, ask black gay men, so divisive on issues that affect all of us?
Black Gay Blogger: LOL - and here I thought I'd get the easy questions
Trent: what are you trying to say?
Black Gay Blogger: I'm just joshing' you. I think Frank's post was necessary; the tone was just wrong and a lot of people took it as accusatory. Some of the people he called out may already do lots of HIV prevention and don't feel a need to mention it at every turn. Some live with the disease. Is it really appropriate to point the finger and demand why they haven't made a blog post about it? It's kind of crass. I think Frank took a lot of heat for it because he dished it out, you know? You can't fire off something on a hot topic like that and not expect some negative backlash. ESPECIALLY when statistics are concerned.
Trent: Very true..and it turned into something ugly. I think he was just asking why he hadn't brought it up-we can bring up everything else, but I think a lot of people are scared to talk about it because they don't want to offend anyone. But I think I was one of the first to say I didn't buy the numbers that were being presented. I believed it was a bit far fetched...But he had every reason to post what he did…and I’ll say it again, he called no one out. He simply posed a question to us and you know the kids don’t like being put on the spot…
Black Gay Blogger: And the numbers aren't really farfetched...that's the reality of the situation. It just depends on how they are interpreted...and a lot of people didn't interpret them correctly. (And that's speaking with a background in statistics - lol)
Trent: okay-well help me, us understand the correct interpretation
Black Gay Blogger: Let me find the study - It was passed around that 46% of black gay men in NYC were considered HIV+
Black Gay Blogger: I'm looking at the study - if not considered, then 46% were diagnosed as HIV+ But that 46% comes from a much larger sample - 1767 people in five big cities - and those people were surveyed from bars, clubs, street locations, etc. So while we know overall that HIV is an epidemic, the study does little to support what we already know. It's nothing to really put your finger on.
Trent: okay...what is your take on Trent Jackson?
Black Gay Blogger: Well I definitely see Trent as an act. A shock jock persona covering up a thoughtful person.
Trent: oh how dare you!
Black Gay Blogger: Well you said that yourself, n'est-ce pas?
Trent: I don't think I am covering him. I think people actually know he's there, I think they talk to him all the time, they just stupid shit that makes me act retarded...
Black Gay Blogger: They got pills for that now, you know.
Trent: are you administering them?
Black Gay Blogger: I ain't sharin'!
Trent: oh whatever...blogging is my therapy
Black Gay Blogger: The blog has been all "fuck you" and "kiss my ass" and stuff - but we all go through that
Trent: I am allowed my moments, fuck them!
Black Gay Blogger: LOL
Trent: anyway-me saying that is just like whatever, I am gonna be me. It's always the people who don’t have their shit together 1/10 as much as you do that want to try to tell you about you. And I am on some miss me with that type bullshit!
Black Gay Blogger: Do ya thang
Trent: so what else do you want to add?
Black Gay Blogger: Umm...I know there's gotta be something else you want to ask me. Don't hold back - this is supposed to be TRENT JACKSON. The Black Gay Wendy Williams, baby
Trent: LOL - see he started all of that. I'm not really like that. I just really wanted to do this interview to clear some things up. And to really make a statement that there was no beef, and to try to really set an example that people can follow. I think that there is nothing wrong with bloggers supporting each other, and so what if were friends, big deal.
Black Gay Blogger: There's no beef between me or any bloggers. The rest of y'all work that on out now, ya hear?
Trent: I think that a lot of people read what we have to say and it helps them in a lot of ways...and if we can bring more good vibes to the arena, then lets do that.
Black Gay Blogger: Hell, I'd invite anyone that had beef with me to just talk to me, and we'll straighten it out. And that's more of what needs to happen - dialogue
Trent: I think I say a lot of things that people take the wrong way-and they think that I mean that...when's not always true. I'm to blame for that. But there are only a few that can read between the lines, you're one of them
Black Gay Blogger: Hey, when you've been writing online for as long as I have and have lost friends, lovers and jobs over it, you learn to start taking things with a grain of salt.
Trent: I appreciate you. Thank you.
Black Gay Blogger: Thank you man
Trent: Alright Karsh, I thank you. I enjoyed the chat...and I am glad that we had this talk! And tell Bernard Bradshaw I said hello!
Black Gay Blogger: LOL - I will send him your regards
Trent: Have your answering machine call mine
Black Gay Blogger: Will do
Trent: although we need to talk in person...then I can get in your business without all of the mics and cameras.
Black Gay Blogger: LOL - I'm sure we can arrange that
Trent: Wait! How could have I forgotten....The Black Weblog Awards-what’s the update, why did you start them...and what can we expect on September 3rd?
Black Gay Blogger: Well, I started the BWAs because I got tired of seeing awards like the Bloggies and others pass by Black blogs and Black bloggers all the time. And I also wanted to help promote some Black blogs out there that others should know about, sort of bring everyone together for one common goal...it's been about a week and we have over 125 Black blogs and over 1000 ballots! On September 3rd, I'll announce the winners and if we have some sponsored prizes, I will announce those prizes per category before the winners are announced at the end of the awards, and all of the nominees will be posted in a huge Black Blogroll for others to see.
Trent: yes I love the idea! So who's in the lead? Or who’s been getting a lot of votes?
Black Gay Blogger: Can't give out that information - you'll have to wait until September 3rd
Trent: okay...thank you for that...I thank you for that! Don't be cheating either
Black Gay Blogger: I'm not - everything's on the up and up
Trent: I want a recount already!
Black Gay Blogger: I have three vote-checkers