Interview: The Nubian-Ikigai!

Rohan, Nubian-Ikigai!

A General Introduction:

On the behalf of ReNude Pride, it is a distinct honour that I introduce to all of you, Rohan, the Nubian-Ikigai! He informs me that the Nubian-Ikigai is colourful nickname of sorts that references his spirit. Any more detailed explanation will have to come directly from him! Rohan is his given name.

He is from the priceless jewel of the Caribbean Sea, Jamaica! He openly identified himself to me as a proud bare practitioner – a man after my own heart! That is precisely how he introduced himself!

I first noticed Rohan, the Nubian-Ikigai in September of this year when he posted a comment on my announcement of the death of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. He wrote that she was also the Queen of Jamaica as part of the Commonwealth. We have since become blood brothers! As a fellow subject of the Commonwealth, my Canadian spouse, Aaron, has a fondness for him!

Rohan currently lives in France with his partner. He is employed as an English language coach/tutor. His ambition is to compose his autobiography!

Rohan from Jamaica!

Rohan, the Nubian-Ikigai on being gay:

Growing up, what were you taught about being gay?

This is a tough and tricky question to answer. I don’t know what angle to take on this, so I’ll take a human approach…What was I taught about being gay? Nothing…It’s funny, some boys can say that they learned about being a man, shooting a rifle or hunting and some girls learned about being a good wife. I picked up stuff along the way. I observed human behaviour and I listened attentively to what was said.

I understood early on that being gay was a disgrace, punishable by death, hell and damnation. I learned you’d be better off having Stage 4 cancer than being gay. I was taught that I’d better hide and stay hidden otherwise there’s gonna be gunshots and a lynching for my “batty-boy” (Jamaican derogatory term for gay man) head! Besides, who would want to be guilty of teaching anyone about being gay? I took the burden upon myself.

To your knowledge, were any members of your family gay?

My first gay experience was with a close cousin who happened to be a year younger than me. This happened during my formative years, I was about 8 or 9 years old. It went on for 2 years during the summer holidays when he’d come to visit from the USA. Let’s call him Kevin. Irony of this is I don’t know if he’s gay as we’ve lost contact. Who knows, it may have been his fault why I am gay today. I think there’s another distant cousin who could be gay.

Did you have any friends who were bisexual or gay?

Yes and not only. As an adult, my friends were gay and bisexual and also female. As a matter of fact, I’ve been in love with quite a few females. I do fantasize and have wet dreams about women (laughs).

At what age did you begin to realize that you are gay?

Another tricky question (laughs)! If I refer go back to question #2. I’d say, I was born this way (laughs). My relationship with my cousin was a natural progression. We were cousins, by blood; we met then became friends and ended up being lovers. It was beautiful. I wasn’t raped, traumatized nor shocked at what happened or at what was happening to me. I didn’t fight him off, I didn’t push him away. I didn’t look at him any differently. Nothing changed between us. I never put a label on it. I was too young.

Growing up, I categorically refused to label myself. Even to this day. The adults around me made me realize that I was gay.

When I was a teenager I had erections whenever I saw men in swimsuits. I remember my reaction the first time I saw a TV commercial and there was a guy wearing a red speedo, but prior to that, I remember always being fascinated by male nudity. I would sneak around to peek at naked men whenever I could. The male anatomy is the most beautiful thing in creation. I still believe so today. I remember being teased in school for being effeminate. So to this question there is no fixed answer as I have always been “gay.”

When exploring your sexuality, did you have anyone (family or friend) that you could ask or use as a resource?

No…I’m a self-taught, self-made individual (laughs). I was a resource for my friends. They came to me for advice especially when it came to sex and sexuality.

Does the gay social life in Jamaica help or hinder your involvement in the gay community?

No. I was determined to live. I especially loved cruising, despite the many risks and dangers. I couldn’t help it. At the time, I was a predator, I loved to hunt, I like to collect trophies (laughs). I took guys out on dates, I hung out with my friends and I went to parties. We learned that we had to be discrete about it. Keep it on the DL (down low) or under cover. It’s strange but I like being “out there.” I felt alive, I felt excited. In a way it was my form of passive resistance and rebellion.

When socializing with gay friends, what activities are especially enjoyable?

For me, nothing beats having great sex. Second, it’s the being together, sharing stories and laughing. The good times don’t last very long. I really enjoyed having my friends over to my house despite my mom’s strong disapproval. If not, I’d go to my friend’s houses. I miss having my friends.

Any special advice or thoughts to share with anyone who is thinking about “coming out” as gay?

This may sound harsh or blunt, but your sexuality is your own business. You don’t owe it to anyone to come out. Come out only if it frees you from pain and suffering. I’ve only officially come out to my mom: it became necessary. I didn’t come out to my brothers and sisters, they already knew or they simply figured it out. I haven’t come out to my dad, I don’t see the need. He left when I was ten years old, now I’m almost 45 and I don’t see how it matters.

Gay men deserve as much respect as anyone else on this planet. We shouldn’t be apologizing or giving thanks or getting down on our knees to any other human being. We all have the right to live our lives the way we choose. Coming out should never be forced or felt like a rite of passage. That’s nonsense! Being gay is neither a mistake nor a punishment that can be erased or prayed away.

Rohan’s gravatar here at ReNude Pride!

Rohan the Nubian-Ikigai on nudity:

Growing up, what were you taught about nudity and being seen naked around other people?

Well, to answer this question in all honesty it might be necessary for me to point out that in my country “social nudity” does not exist. People don’t just get naked and go walking around outside in nature or hang out together for the fun of it. This concept is reserved for the North Americans and the Europeans; as such those foreign notions are usually seen with an evil eye.

On the other hand, nudity wasn’t a subject. Nudity is or let me say baring skin was not a taboo. We live on a hot tropical island, my city was built on a beach, Dance Hall and Carnival are a mainstay of our culture. Being poor meant you bathed outdoors or in a river and if you like the rain, it’s a great time to take a rain shower.

But ironically though, we are also very religious, so modesty and clothing meant you were closer to God. So a constant clash between Christian and non-Christian, all in good fun of course.

Once youth reach adolescence, they become very body-conscious and modest. Was this ever the case for you?

Absolutely! Even to this day, I am still very body conscious. But I am taking it in stride. I work out regularly to gain a bit more confidence and overcome that shyness.

Have you ever skinny-dipped (swim naked) with others?

No, which is sad because I lived near a river and a beach…and I’ve seen so many men skinny-dipping in the nearby river as a child growing up (laughter). I think I may be hydrophobic. I don’t really take to water that much. I never really liked swimming, and to make things worse, with my extreme shyness and body-consciousness, skinny-dipping was a definite nono!

Any awkward or interesting experience being socially nude (naked in the company of others) that you’re comfortable to share with us?

I have a few experiences with being nude in public; the most hilarious was when my best friend – who is also straight (opposite gender loving) took me to a topless bar. It was so shocking for me to see a woman topless in public. I remember being so nervous that my hands kept trembling like a leaf. My friend ordered us some sodas. I couldn’t take my eyes off her breasts though (laughs). She served us our sodas, but I was too mesmerized to see that she had put the bottle right in front of me. As I reached for my drink, I ended up spilling it all over the bar counter. She was very sweet; she simply smiled while my friend laughed his head off!

Any advice for anyone considering social nudity for the first time?

Go ahead. There is a lot to gain. Remove the shackles that enslave and the chains that bind. If it feels weird or awkward at first, it’s normal. Living in a society where covering up is the mainstream; we rarely ever get to see ourselves and others for who we really are. Before joining a crowd, though, make sure you’re comfortable being naked with yourself first. Social nudity may be like jumping off the deep end of the pool.

Compare your body type to that of others; this allows you to see that all body types are natural and there isn’t one unique body type. My personal technique is to watch a lot of porn. I also enjoy watching porn. Porn allows me to see lots of naked people without running the risk of being called a pervert. Plus, porn shows men, of so many varying body types and what’s more they are so comfortable. And that’s the key. Being comfortable and being around other people who are also naked and comfortable. You want to be around as much positive energy as possible.

And finally don’t be too critical. Avoid judging others: you may be surprised at how quickly you stop judging yourself in the process!

Rohan, the Nubian-Ikigai!

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One of the many amazing aspects of Rohan, the Nubian-Ikigai is his candor and honesty – not to forget his willingness – in sharing his true self with others! Alex, my identical twin brother, and I had one another to rely on when we began to openly acknowledge our same gender love (gay) and our nudity. His solo acceptance of both who and what he really is isn’t just just brace and courageous but is also exemplary and inspiring!

In the words of Aaron, my spouse, “Fantastic job, Rohan! Congratulations on being you and proud of it! Welcome to our natural world!”

Taking into account the laughs that Rohan, the Nubian-Ikigai shared with is in his interview, we’re all pleased to have him as an optimistic fellow bare practitioner! You’ve earned our admiration and respect, my friend! I am grateful for your participation in this interview on ReNude Pride!

It is a true honour for ReNude Pride and for myself to feature Rohan, the Nubian-Ikigai here today. He’s a remarkable man and an awesome bare practitioner extraordinaire! We have to all make our distinct beginning in our own way and it is refreshing to see Rohan’s initiation into our community and culture in progress! Great job!

Rohan will visit here as a guest co-author on December 1, 2022, for World AIDS Day! Plan to join with us then!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Wednesday, November 30, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Bottoms-Up! November, 2022!”

Felipe: Tattoo Costume!

Felipe Ferreira and his tattoo!

Brazilian-born fashion and bare practitioner model Felipe Ferreira is very proud of his pride tattoo and has no qualms about his same gender loving sexuality nor his preference for nudity. As his career has progressed, he is increasingly comfortable about both of those aspects of his private life.

Felipe Ferreira

Unfortunately, sometimes the photography captures the tattoo in reverse but that doesn’t stop our model from continuing to flaunt his pride in being himself! edirP (Pride spelled backwards) is not a recognizable word (spoken or text) in any human language that I am aware.

Felipe adjusting his purple underwear briefs!

Felipe initially attracted my attention in 2017, when his employment as a model for men’s underwear launched. At the time, he garnered celebrity status as a bold and honest openly bisexual man with his pride tattoo proclaiming his sexuality.

Two years later, in 2019, Felipe publicly announced himself as an exclusively same gender loving (gay) man. In his interview, he credited his bisexual “cover” as the work of a modeling agency’s public relations expert intent on advancement in his career.

Underwear and GLBTQ+ Rainbow flag!

At that time, the publicity person’s deception was labelled a falsehood with the goal of keeping Felipe as appealing to both men and women. He readily admitted to his discomfort and regret with the duplicity regarding his sexual nature. In his interview he stated:

“The reason for my having the pride tattoo is my confidence in being a same gender loving man! We all know that pride in who we are is not just limited to the month of June. A tattoo is one way to show our pride to all 365 days every year.” ~ Felipe Ferreira ~ gay model, 2019

Of course, we all know that the wearing of a pride tattoo is no guarantee that we automatically experience the confidence we desire. The tattoo itself doesn’t bestow pride – it is merely symbolic of what we achieve through self-acceptance, effort and hard work. Ferreira understands this and by his example – the pride tattoo and being the man he truly is – is showing others his self-acceptance and reminding us all of his pride!

Modeling his jock-strap (athletic supporter)!

Aside from his modelling men’s underwear, his professional engagements have expanded into music as well. He is a professional DJ promoting popular and progressive house, hip-hop and reggae. In this industrial field, being clothes free and same gender loving is not a concern or a problem.

Felipe’s pride isn’t restricted to just his sexuality. Some of his more recent photography assignments openly depict his confidence and self-acceptance of his nakedness. He’s never personally felt any conflict or discomfort whenever he privately engaged in a social nudity situation although with his modelling career he has been “encouraged” by industry publicists to pursue – at the very least – appearing underwear.

Felipe Ferreira (buttocks) with openly gay Raphael Horst!

Clarification:

Felipe Ferreira does not publicly self-identify with the label: bare practitioner. Probably because many people misunderstand the distinction. He does openly acknowledge himself as a gay nudist – which qualifies himself for that identity.

Now, as his celebrity and professionalism has increased and soared, his recognition and his same gender loving status is no longer considered a major issue. He now appears in male only scenes on camera and video with other openly gay and bare entertainers (soft pornography). In the image directly above with Raphael Horst and below with Shabazz, he promotes his bare practitioner comfort and pride!

Felipe kissing Shabazz with pride!

“Gay and naked is who and what I am as a man. It is not a problem or a reason for shame. It is me and my tattoo!” ~ Felipe Ferreira ~ gay model, 2021

Obviously, he needs no more for a Halloween costume than his pride tattoo! As a bare practitioner, do we require any better endorsement? In my humble opinion, Felipe Ferreira’s company is enough example and recommendation!

Happy Halloween!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry for here is planned for Monday, October 31, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Bottoms-Up! Happy Halloween!”

Purpose?

Heartfelt!

There have been times in our lives when we have looked upon a picture and wondered: What is the meaning of this? Either the subject or the actual photographer (or perhaps both) are communicating but…what is the message?

Is he bidding farewell?

Is he expressing sorrow?

Gratitude?

Remorse?

Humility?

Sometimes, communicating using body language (expressions, body positioning) is very similar to using sign language (the communication language for us Deaf persons). Body language may not have the grammar and syntax that sign language does but both are visual instead of hearing.

Task:

With the popularity of today’s “selfie” photography, think of a message that you would like to convey to others. Consider your options for posing and then capture your pose in a photo. Share your images with friends – fellow bare practitioners if you posed naked – and ask if they understand your meaning or purpose.

Have fun engaging in your body language assignment!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Friday, October 28, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Felipe: Tattoo Costume!”

Spirit Day, 2022!

Purple is the colour for Spirit Day!

Clarification/Definition:

The significance of this date and designation is based on the design of the original Rainbow Flag for the entire gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer + (GLBTQ+) communities and our shared culture! It is also a feature of our history!

Original GLBTQ+ Rainbow flag and colour representations!

Spirit may be described as a very strong loyalty and/or dedication. Basically it is a vital principle or animating force traditionally believed to be within living beings (humans). It also is considered the aspect of a human being associated with the mind and feelings as distinguished from the physical body – a particular mood or emotional state characterized by animation and vigor.

Rainbow/peace design framed in purple!

Observation and Background:

Spirit Day is an annual GLBTQ+ awareness day of recent development. It is currently held on the third Thursday in October in conjunction with GLBTQ+ History Month and in synchronization with Unity Day for younger children. The occasion began in 2010 by Canadian teenager Brittany McMillan in response to a significant number of bullying-related suicides of same gender loving students – the most notorious being Tyler Clementi: a student at Rutgers University in New Jersey, USA, who jumped to his death from the George Washington Bridge – at the age of 18 – on September 22, 2010. On September 19, of that year, Tyler’s collegiate roommate, Dharun Ravi, had posted on Twitter a clip showing Clementi kissing another man in their dormitory room. Neither Tyler nor his partner had knowledge or given permission for the Twitter posting. Ravi and another student were both convicted in court.

Purple Spirit Day Awareness Ribbon!

Promoted by the Gay Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) from the inaugural Spirit Day, participants wear the colour purple as a visible sign of awareness and support for the campaign. This program is now pursued by many as a move against all bullying in general during what is now determined to be National Bullying Prevention Month (October).

The very first Spirit Day was held on Wednesday, October 20, 2010. It was followed by a Thursday observance on Thursday, October 20, 2011, and then on Friday, October 19, 2012. In 2013, GLAAD made the decision to move the occasion from the actual date to the third Thursday of the month. Since then, it has adhered to the Thursday designation.

Purple “outsider!”

The above graphic demonstrates the popularity of the Spirit Day awareness among those of the population (especially teenagers) who strive for conformity. Hopefully, the ideals of freedom from bullying will progress forward from now and into the future.

Wrapped in purple for Spirit Day!

Personal experience:

I remember my very first Spirit Day. Aaron, my spouse, and I had just moved in together – marriage equality in 2010 was just a hope at that time – and when we learned of the event, we together made almost 500 purple awareness ribbons in honour of the occasion. The plan was to evenly divide the ribbons for distribution at his worksite (hospital) and my workplace (university).

We were both uncertain as to the response from our coworkers. Using our home computers, we created an information invitation announcing the free purple ribbon availability for Spirit Day (to combat bullying against GLBTQ+ people – real or suspected). That morning, October, 20, 2010, while we were getting ready to leave for work, before we dressed we both body-painted a purple awareness ribbon on one another’s chests. (This suggestion can be used by bare practitioners everywhere to comply and participate!)

We were both impressed with the reactions at our jobs! Every single ribbon that we had created was taken! This despite the fact that a large number of students at my university and staff at Aaron’s hospital were already wearing the colour purple!

An awesome revolution against sexual orientation bullying!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry for here is planned for Monday, October 24, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Purpose?”

Breaking Bare-iers! Part 3!

Interracial posing and touching!

GLBTQ+ Bare History Month: Breaking Bare-iers! Part 3!

Reference:

To view the previous two postings referred to with this being number three, please click onto the titles listed below:

Breaking Bare-iers! Part 1!

Breaking Bare-iers! Part 2!

Explanation:

In everyday vernacular “barrier” is often interpreted as a blockage, an impediment and/or a challenge that must be overcome. In today’s title, bare-ier, is intended to imply that we are breaking (destroying, eliminating, eradicating, removing) the perceived challenge to being bare (clothes free, naked, nude). ReNude Pride is truly one “safe space” for body and clothes freedom!

In the early days of photography, especially here in the USA, the segregation (legal separation) of the population by racial identity was not only widely practiced but in many states (especially in the south) was mandated (required) by law. This was based on the philosophy that prevailed throughout the southern states of “separate but equal.” In reality, the separation was strictly enforced and the equality was nonexistent.

All men, vintage and together!

Photographs from the early days to the latter third of the 20th Century rarely depicted interracial individuals in contact and congeniality with one another. The laws and traditions of the American society were observed and strictly followed. Few photographers and/or models had the courage to ignore the constraints and restrictions imposed by the mainstream population. The capture of these few people all together was extremely rare, and especially if they were completely clothes free and visibly engaged as legitimate equals!

However, after the end of World War II, the executive order of then-President Harry Truman, decreed the end of enforced segregation of the entire U.S.A. military, naval and air forces. Times were changing and a few photographers and their subjects came forward to celebrate this bold progressive measure. A significant number of those brave souls were from our “closeted” (secretive) community of same gender loving men.

Bare and unashamed!

The post-war world delivered everyone into a changing life situation. Allies during the war became enemies. Enemies during the war became comrades and the regimented structure of society began to lose some of the class-consciousness that held different people apart. Gradually, familiarity replaced judgment in personal interactions. The military abandoning the racial segregation – long considered a stalwart among the majority – opened the eyes of some with foresight into a glimmer of new possibilities.

The ideal of “it is our tradition” began to weaken as the notion of “let’s see what else we can do” grew in importance. Custom and habit no longer kept individuals tied to a repressive and restricted environment.

Bare boxing!

As the walls that divided different classes (socio-economic groups) of people began to slowly disperse, the eradication of separation between persons of differing ethnic, cultural and racial backgrounds began to decline also. This change didn’t occur suddenly – it was an eventual shifting of bias, distrust and prejudices as the general society embarked on the slow, incremental process of enlightenment and evolution in a changing world order.

The late 1940’s soon became the 1950’s and economic, political and social change lost the incredibility and novelty it once generated. Colonial states moved towards independence and traditional authority concepts began to recede into obscurity. The long accepted practice of unquestioned following to the “status quo” declined.

Interracial embrace!

While these opinion and outlook shifts happened in the broader society, subtle opportunities appeared in the same gender loving world as well. Still largely illegal and isolated, small groups of “homosexual” (bisexual, gay and lesbian) persons carefully and cautiously emerged into the larger urban areas – still discreet and secretive but no longer totally isolated.

The 1960’s introduced public protests and general boycotts into the social change movement. African-Americans, women, immigrant farm workers and other minorities usually overlooked by the powered-few (white males) started their own campaigns for social acceptance and equality. The momentum for change gained strength and attention. In 1961, the state of Illinois repealed the illegality of the “homosexuals” – the first political jurisdiction in the country to outlaw the banishment and shame normally and universally thrown against the “social deviants.”

The seeds of change and progress were planted. By the end of the decade, on June 28, 1969, the lion started to roar and the march for equality and freedom for all same gender loving peoples launched itself!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

The next post entry here is planned for Monday, October 17, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Autumn Arrival!”

Coming Out Day!

Artwork: Keith Haring

National Coming Out Day is a gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer+ (GLBTQ+) awareness day that is observed annually on October 11. Since the inception in 1988, it encourages all GLBTQ+ to take steps on this occasion to “come out” of the closet and not to be ashamed of who and what you are. The original concept was to make the personal acknowledgement into a political statement in support of GLBTQ+ civil rights.

The emphasis of this day is on the basic form of activism which is being openly and proudly who you are and sharing this reality with family, friends and colleagues. The goal is to live your life as a confident bisexual, gay or lesbian person without any guilt or retribution. Those of us who are bare practitioners have supplemented this qualification with being an “out” naturist/nudist.

The term “in the closet” refers to the custom or habit of life before the Stonewall Inn riots of 1969, when practically all GLBTQ+ people lived “in the closet” (secretive) lives in order to keep their jobs, the love of their family and their social place in general society.

Brock Bradley: openly “out” – gay and naked!

What inspired the first observation of Coming Out Day is the fact that homophobia thrives in an atmosphere of bigotry, ignorance and silence. Once people realize that they have a loved one or an acquaintance who is bisexual, gay or lesbian, they are less willing to remain with homophobic or repressive inclinations. That’s reason for encouraging people to “come out of the closet” and let the world know your true identity. There is simply “no shame” in being who we are!

The October 11, date was selected because it was the anniversary of the 1987 National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights. This was the first national gathering in support of GLBTQ+ equality observed in the USA.

National Coming Out Day!

The early events of Coming Out Day often coincided with celebrities and/or other persons of note openly and publicly acknowledging their GLBTQ+ identity. Later, the practice of the tabloid media disclosing a person as being bisexual, gay or lesbian – often without their permission. This publicly “outing” someone was very controversial and usually accompanied by negative attacks on the disclosing media.

The involuntary coming out process was short-lived as the rapidly expanding HIV/AIDS crisis soon replaced the newsworthiness of sexual orientation exposure. For many, an AIDS diagnosis was synonymous with the the coming out announcement.

Today, the observance is another day of proudly reminding others of both what and who we essentially are. There is no longer the absolute necessity to remain “closeted” throughout much of the world.

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Friday, October 14, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Breaking Bare-iers #3!”

Unfurled Above Us!

Flying bold and bravely!

The headline photograph is the current Progress version of the GLBTQ+ pride flag that represents our community and our culture. Despite our novelty among the numerous movements in the civil rights world, we do have a history of different banners and what they symbolize waving above us. This “first Friday” of the 2022 GLBTQ+ History Month will examine and share images of these and briefly offer a story of the respective flag.

The Pink Triangle Flag:

The Pink Triangle flag!

The downward-pointing pink triangle was used by Nazi Germany as a badge of shame. It was sewn onto the shirts of homosexual (gay) men in concentration camps to identify and dehumanize them.

Homosexuality was made illegal in Germany in 1871, but it was rarely enforced. When the Nazi Party assumed control in 1933, it was made a priority in order to culturally and racially “purify” Germany. The Nazis arrested tens of thousands of GLBTQ+ individuals, the majority whom were homosexual men, whom they viewed as degenerate.

The early 1970s was when the gay rights movement began to emerge worldwide (after the 1969 Stonewall Inn riots) and various organizations reclaimed the pink triangle as an empowering symbol. It also serves as a reminder to remember the past – and to recognize the persecution GLBTQ+ people continue to suffer around the world.

The Lambda Flag:

Greek letter Lambda flag!

The Greek letter, lambda, was first chosen as a gay symbol when, in 1970, for the first anniversary of the Stonewall Inn Riots (SIR), it was adopted by New York City’s local chapter of Gay Activist Alliance as the emblem of their growing movement of gay liberation. Some identified the Greek letter with the representation of the word “liberation.”

In 1974, lambda was subsequently adopted by the International Gay Rights Congress meeting in Edinburgh, Scotland, UK, as their official symbol designating gay, bisexual and lesbian civil rights. Following this selection, lambda became internationally popular and recognized as representing the growing movement for civil rights for all people, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation.

Lambda was first designated in December, 1969, as representative of the new gay liberation movement by the graphic artist and one of the Gay Activist Alliance’s founding members, Tom Doerr. Doerr chose the letter because in chemistry it was a sign for catalyst. Others argue that lambda denoted the synergy of the growing gay movement: the idea of the whole being greater than the sum of all its parts.

Some view the lambda as being synonymous with males exclusively.

The Rainbow Flag:

The Rainbow flag!

First publicly raised on June 25, 1978, in San Francisco, California, USA, the flag flew over the United Nations Plaza in honour of then-gay pride at the 1978 San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade. The original flag consisted of eight coloured stripes and was designed by Gilbert Baker and hand-stitched and dyed with the help of friends and volunteers Lynn Segerblom, James McNamara, Glenne McElhinney, Joe Duran, and Paul Langlotz.

The eight-stripe original rainbow flag was soon revised to six stripes with pink (symbolizing “sex”) and turquoise (symbolizing “art and magic”) eliminated as the colours and dyes were unavailable in flag fabric. Baker conceived the flag would empower his “tribe” and a “rainbow of humanity” motif would represent the movement’s diversity.

The six stripes and what the colours represent:

Rainbow flag and symbolic colours!

The six stripes on the revised rainbow flag symbolize values held dear and not the various people comprising the community and culture.

The Progress Pride Flag:

The Progress Pride flag!

The Progress Pride flag was developed by non-binary artist and designer Daniel Quasar in 2018. Based on Gilbert Baker’s 1978 Rainbow flag, Quasar’s redesign celebrates the diversity of the GLBTQ+ community and culture worldwide and encourages a more inclusive general society. The redesigned banner has increased the representation of discriminated minority identities covered by the GLBTQ+ umbrella.

Quasar’s creation placed black and brown stripes (emblems representing peoples of colour) and light blue, pink and white stripes (representing transgender, non-binary and intersex persons) in the shape of an arrow on the left of the Progress Pride flag. In Daniel Quasar’s words “…the arrow points to the right to show forward movement and illustrates that progress towards inclusivity still needs to be made.”

The black stripe has a double meaning as it is also intended for “those living with HIV/AIDS and the stigma and prejudice surrounding them and those who have died from the disease.”

Progress Pride body painted design!

The Progress Pride flag has been immediately an international success. On the evening of June 6, 2018, Quasar posted the design on social media and woke up the next morning to find that it had gone viral. It has been enthusiastically received by the GLBTQ+ community and culture all around the globe!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Monday, October 10, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Coming Out Day!”

Bare Icon!

Naked painting nude!

Openly gay artist, Ainor Bagner, of Denmark – himself plainly nude – paints a fellow naked subject reading a book. The sexuality of the reader is unknown. Bagner was an admitted same gender loving man in an age that was hostile to those types of attractions and relationships. The clothing status and sexuality of the photographer is also unknown.

In the lower right-hand corner of the picture image is etched “1910.” More than a century ago. The photograph was made on the North Sea coast of Denmark.

A photographer from our past!

The artistic painter, Ainor Bagner, featured in the iconic photograph, was openly a gay man, then it is within reason to anticipate the same from both the subject model and the photographer. In the very early days of the 20th century, the tolerance for gay people was very restricted, even in a fairly progressive society such as Denmark (Scandinavia). The fact that this image survived all this time contributes to it’s historical significance.

Somewhat ironic is the fact that in the iconic photograph, a bare model is painted by a bare artist and that they are both posing on a barren (rocky) landscape. Bare – as opposed to barren – comfort and freedom for everyone!

The secondary image, above, is a vintage picture of a photographer posing with his camera on a ladder. This has no relationship to the Bagner photo except to represent the possible source of the image. This is not the actual photographer!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Friday, October 7, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Waving Above Us!”

October: GLBTQ+ History Month!

Celebrate all October!

Background:

In the USA, the month of October, annually, is designated gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer+ (GLBTQ+) history month. A time to focus attention on the accomplishments, achievements and actions of members of the GLBTQ+ communities and culture that have made a constructive and positive difference not only in the USA but also in the world around us.

The concept of GLBTQ+ history month is a recent phenomenon that is both conflicting and controversial. It is opposed by many as being a recruiting tool for a lifestyle that is objectionable based on moral, philosophical and religious reasonings. Centuries of oppression and oversight have resulted in a mainstream general society that continues to ignore a specific segment of the population that it supposedly serves.

The purpose of this post entry for ReNude Pride is to introduce and examine this topic, explain the reasoning for endorsing a GLBTQ+ history month observance and offer resources and references. Hopefully, an unknown aspect of GLBTQ+ history is acquired by all reading/visiting here.

A skinny-dipping pool party, circa mid-1950’s!

Development:

In theory, at least, GLBTQ+ history is as old as the human race and has existed in parallel to society in general. Due to religious and social prejudices, this particular community was regularly oppressed and outlawed (illegal). On a regular basis, this population was ignored and intentionally forgotten. This predicament created a serious paucity of documentation of historical accomplishments and achievements regarding this culture.

Stonewall riots memorabilia!

The enthusiasm and excitement following the Stonewall Inn riots (SIR) on June 28, 1969, convinced some that documentation of events needed to happen. Too often, communities were denied essential elements of their heritage because the society in which they existed made no acknowledgment of any accomplishments of note. Of the emerging gay and lesbian populations, there came individuals who were dedicated to creating archives of what was now happening. Fledgling movements towards historical accumulation began among those witnessing firsthand the growing gay and lesbian freedom and honesty.

Protest power to the people!

In order to have complete equality within our broader society, appreciation and understanding of others must be created. Knowledge must be instilled so future generations can acknowledge and comprehend diversity. This creates an environment of awareness and encourages cultural acceptance and tolerance for all groups.

This is crucial because it celebrates and honours self-affirmation and self-actualization. It strengthens individualism as it increases nonconformity and uniqueness. It promotes social progress through educating people regarding negative social conditions which existed in the past but have since improved. It also directs it is currently necessary to empower equality and development. History is basically the story of the evolution and progress of a community or a culture.

1969 gay rights protest photo!

The USA observance was founded in 1994, by a Missouri high-school (secondary) history teacher named Rodney Wilson. His intent was to provide role models, build community and provide a civil rights statement of the efforts and accomplishments of the GLBTQ+ community and culture. In addition, he sought to establish a space where other educators could use as a resource for instructing youth concerning GLBTQ+ culture, history and community. He realized from his own, experience the serious lack of any available information on the historical accomplishments and contributions of this segment of the population.

Along with Rodney Wilson, the first coordinating committee for the 1994 GLBTQ+ History Month observance included Kevin Jennings of the Gay, Lesbian and Student Educators Network (GLSEN), Kevin Bayer of the Gerber/Hart of the Gay and Lesbian Archives in Chicago, Illinois, Paul Varnell, a journalist with the Windy Times also in Chicago, Torey Wilson, a Chicago area teacher, Johnda Boyce, a women’s studies major at Columbus University in Ohio, and Jessea Greenman of the University of California – Berkeley.

In the USA, GLBTQ+ History Month is endorsed/supported by GLAAD (Gay Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation), the Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the National Education Association (NEA), GLSEN (Gay Lesbian Student and Educators Network) and other national organizations.

A GLBTQ+ website was launched in 2006 and is maintained by Equality Forum. Equality Forum is a national GLBTQ+ civil rights organization with a strong educational focus. In addition to GLBTQ+ History Month, it also produces documentary films, sponsors high impact social initiatives and hosts an annual GLBTQ+ civil rights conference.

Logo: 2022 GLBTQ+ History Month!

The website created by the Equality Forum is linked GLBTQ+ History Month. This site features 31 honoured recipients for every year since 2006. Some of the 2022 selected ones are pictured above and all 31 are listed below on the date that they are featured. The website offers a page of information for each one. The site also contains information on ideas for discussion and activities concerning GLBTQ+ culture and history and serves as an excellent resource for educators and others seeking to inform the public about the significance of the GLBTQ+ community.

2022 Featured Recipients:

Hans Christian Anderson, Danish fairy tales author

Robina Asti, transgender rights plaintiff

Richard Avedon, prominent photographer

Ninia Baehr and Genora Dancel, marriage equality pioneers

Sue Bird, WNBA superstar

Victor Blackwell, CNN news anchor

Matt Bomer, actor

Raphael Bostic, Federal Reserve Bank CEO

Jennifer Finney Boylan, author and transgender activist

Kate Brown, Governor of State of Oregon

Nancy Carderas, Mexican writer and activist

Kitty Cone, disability rights activist

Robert Cutler, national security advisor

Andre` de Shields, actor and singer

Lea DeLaria, actor and comedian

Anna Elizabeth Dickinson, 19th century orator

Masha Gessen, Russian-American journalist

Ron Gold, gay pioneer

Radclyffe Hall, British author

Bell Hooks, author and feminist

Jazz Jennings, transgender youth activist

Mondaire Jones, first openly gay African-American congressman

Stephen Lachs, world’s first openly gay judge

Lawrence of Arabia, British military officer

Lance Loud, first openly gay reality TV star

James Merrill, Pulitzer Prize winner poet

Rudolf Nureyev, international ballet star

J. Paul Oetken, openly gay Federal judge

Amy Schneider, Jeopardy game show champion

Amy Walter, political analyst

Alice Wu, film director

Congratulations to all those above for their contributions to our community and culture. Keep with the good work!

Boxer freedom = gay and nude!

Bare Practitioner Encouragement:

It is vitally important for all of us to remember that we are a part of our community and culture’s history. Without our experiences and memories, there would be very little of our shared lives to recount to others coming after us. Whenever possible, let others know of your chapters in our story! Bare practitioners matter!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry here is planned for Monday, October 3, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “Bare Icon!”

Bottoms-Up! September, 2022

September’s bottoms-up! trio!

September is here and in the Southern Hemisphere the Spring season has finally arrived! Here’s to all of our bottoms-up! enthusiasts “down there” who have several seasons to enjoy all the outdoor exposure. Have fun!

Those who live in the Northern Hemisphere, take advantage of the opportunities to view buttocks outdoors now. Colder weather is definitely not too far away!

A bottoms-up! splash!

As both hemispheres are transitioning changes this month, skinny-dipping is an activity that the majority of us enjoy and exposed buttocks are the attraction that keeps us coming back!

Sandy saturated buttocks!

The beach shoreline is almost always coated with a fine collection of sand. As the above image reminds us, sand and buttocks are equally inseparable!

Beach buttocks!

It doesn’t matter if we’re on the beach or inland. Climbing mountains or diving into pools, the attraction to buttocks knows no limitations or restrictions!

Togetherness!

Let’s all join in together and embrace one another and our bottoms-up! anatomy!

Naked hugs!

Roger Poladopoulos/ReNude Pride

Author’s Note: The next post entry for here is planned for tomorrow, Saturday, October 1, 2022, and the proposed topic is: “October: GLBTQ+ History Month!”

Clothes freedom!