“It’s great being gay.” Neil Meron, Storyline Entertainment
The Mirror is designed to be a reflection of our lives. This issue illuminates the breadth and diversity of our spectacular gay community.
The magazine begins with a cross section of LGBT pride events across the planet. These are more than parades and festivals and floats. They are communal affirmations that we are normal people leading normal lives, and very much comfortable with our identities and our passions.
We particularly celebrate in this issue the compelling art of the late Steve Walker, whose paintings captured the drama and dimension of homosexual life, sex and partnership. His vision was more than revealing. It demonstrated on canvas that intimacy is universal.
One of our features is also of the remarkable producing tandem of Neil Meron and Craig Zadan, the ever so creative producers of Hollywood’s amazing Storyline Entertainment. They were the recipients of the Vito Russo Award from GLAAD this past March in New York City, appropriately recognizing their achievements for bringing gender awareness to mainstream entertainment.
Brooklyn-born Meron stated it best: “I love being gay. It’s great being gay.” For me, it was a special story to write. The talented and visionary Craig Zadan was an acquaintance, classmate and fellow writer at our Hofstra University student newspaper 40 years ago. Time and distance separated us, but now our histories and occupations briefly pull us together.
In fact, I realize that so much of the story that this magazine tells is our history. Peter Jackson is not just a ‘fitness columnist.’ He is a gentleman who spent 28 years in the newspaper industry as a journalist, editor ad director and newspaper owner. He moved to Fort Lauderdale to simplify his life and pursue another passion of his, health and nutrition full time.
The collage of guesthouses features a slew of accommodations but digs deeper, and you realize many of these businesses were started by a wealth of LGBT businessmen who left careers in a variety of industries to start their lives over again and begin anew in the hospitality field.
Our special section on ‘Faith and Pride’ might also be testimony to the truth that we homosexuals are not quite as God-less a group as some still foolishly argue. In fact, the feature on ‘Truth Wins Out’ points out, once again, we need no Evangelical cures. We have no apologies for being who we are. We are proud and professional, just and caring and a part of our community, not apart from it.
All our lives bring so much diversity to the table, and this magazine has attempted to shine a light on that breadth we sometimes, in our haste, overlook. We forget to stop for the sunshine.
While there is a coffee book feature titled Luminosity on our pages, you can also find in this issue stories on the National Center for Lesbian Rights and a profile of CNN anchor Jane Velez Mitchell’s book.
In this issue of The Mirror, there is a little bit of a lot. Enjoy it at your leisure, whether you are reading it in South Florida, on South Beach or on Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood. We are doing our part to get it out there. When you come to South Florida though, as you certainly should, as we are an epicenter of gay life, we would be so grateful if you could support those businesses that have sponsored us with their advertisements.
In the 1950’s there was a police drama on television, where the narrator’s epilogue ended the show with the words “There are 8 million stories in the ‘Naked City.’ This has been one of them.” The stories don’t have to have sad endings, though.
Mom used to say, “as long as you can open your eyes, there is beauty to see in this world.” There are more than 8 million gay stories in our lives to still tell; our small magazine captures just a few of them. But you, today or tomorrow, as long as you have a breath in your body, can find one of them to make your own.
It’s great being gay.
I think Meron has something there.