April 30, 1997.

Happy Anniversary, Ellen DeGeneres.

Ten years ago today she officially came out on her sitcom. And, like the 19 women crammed into my one-bedroom apartment to watch along with millions of others that night, I was profoundly affected by her monumental decision to do so.

It pains me to think what life in the television industry would be like today if Ellen had not pried open that door; one that had only been slightly ajar with the weight and hesitation of many actors who cowered behind it, fearful for their careers.  

There is a very strong chance that many of my favorite television shows from the last ten years would not have been created, aired, or even possible had Ellen not taken the brave steps that she did in 1997.

I cannot imagine the very first Amazing Race without Team Guido. Arrested Development without the ambiguous and never-nude Tobias Funke. The Office without Oscar the accountant. Project Runway without Tim Gunn. Six Feet Under without David & Keith. Survivor without the naked tax evader, Richard Hatch. [That there have been so very few gay women on reality shows and lesbian characters on television since Ellen is a topic for another blog altogether].

Shows like Will & Grace, the American adaptation of Queer as Folk and The L Word were given the green light only after and because of Ellen’s landmark “Puppy Episode.”   
I love that gay and lesbian characters are almost ubiquitous on mainstream and cable television nowadays, to the point where they are almost passé. Even the soap opera All My Children recently featured a transgender character!    

As I watched Ellen host the Oscars earlier this year, I was struck by the magnitude of what she was doing, what it represented and how it indicated the current social climate. Granted, it is the entertainment industry. But I was thrilled by how much of a non-issue her sexuality has become.  The success of her daily talk show speaks volumes. And I applaud her every step of the way. Ellen is a pioneer and a true role model.

My friend Matt always says that he’s proud of my pride. After April of 1997, when Ellen preceded the coming out episode by declaring “Yep, I’m Gay” on the cover of Time magazine, I was just that much more comfortable. In the community, at work, with family, in my own skin.

Which is why I was finally able to write this article.

It was time to stop hiding behind my blog. From the beginning, I’ve made a concerted effort to keep my identity separate from my online persona and taken great lengths to avoid revealing any details about my personal life on this site. But as I tackle and contemplate writing about controversial topics like the Isaiah Washington debacle on Grey’s Anatomy or the very disconcerting pattern of celebrities who are forced to come out in the media, I realized that my perspective as an out lesbian is important to the entries that I write and publish.

Whew. Publishing this kind of personal information, even if only on my small hobby of a blog with very few readers, is far scarier than coming out to my own family. It is now out there for the eyes of the world.

As Ellen did ten years ago tonight, I suppose this is me, coming out on my blog.

Were you one of the 34 million who watched that episode? Have any significant pop culture moments touched your lives? Believe me, I’d love some feedback on this one.

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I couldn’t get a ticket to see it at Sundance in January, so when Year of the Dog was finally released locally, I made sure to see it.

Molly Shannon is quite good in a very unglamorous and emotional role, but outside of a few cute dog moments, it’s actually quite dark. The film is similar in spirit to two other movies that Year of the Dog  writer/director Mike White wrote,The Good Girl and Chuck & Buck. But he also wrote School of Rock and Nacho Libre, so I suppose I was hoping for a bit more in the broad comedy department.

As for the supporting cast of Year of the Dog, Peter Sarsgaard and John C. Reilly are both miscast, but Laura Dern and Regina King provide much-needed comic relief.

A rental. End of story.

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Do I think that Penny Widmore sent Naomi to find Desmond? Yes. Is she aware that Desmond is now hanging on the island with the real survivors of Flight 815? No. I believe that Penny sent Naomi (the parachutist) to find him after her team at the listening station (see photo above) discovered the electromagnetic anomaly. I believe that she knew where to look and funded that listening station after finding out that Daddy Widmore was a major financial contributor to Dharma…and probably had something to do with Desmond’s disappearance three years ago.

Naomi said “I am not alone,” which Mikhail translated as “thank you.” Did someone else parachute in with her? Were there others in the (alleged) helicopter that crashed? OR…is Penny actually there somewhere as well? Why else would Desmond have seen her in his last future flash?

Of course, this is Lost. So Naomi is probably a liar and an Other. She might have told Hurley about the real Flight 815 just to add to the collection of psychological games tormenting the Losties in this crazy experiment.

Mikhail obviously saw the flare that Hurley accidentally shot up in the air. He literally ran to find where it came from and looked quite surprised to come upon Desmond and the Losties…because he was looking for Naomi.

How did Mikhail survive the sonic barrier? Kate checked his pulse and said his heart had stopped. Was Mikhail prepared for just such a situation…did he carry an emergency Dharma pill to pop so that he could pretend to play dead when necessary (you know, the foam-at-the-mouth-heartbeat-stopper kind)? OR, as Mikhail indicated when referring to Naomi’s wounds…did the island heal his injuries rather quickly? And if so, does that mean we’ll be seeing dead Others again (Ethan, Goodwin, Ms. Klugh, Pickett, Colleen, etc.)?

Did Jack tell Juliet about Sun’s pregnancy? Does he really trust her that much? He probably thought it was very convenient and helpful to bring a fertility doctor to the beach where one of his friends was pregnant. Dumbass.

But if the Others had information about each passenger, their info would have shown that Jin and Sun were unable to conceive. Juliet should have been surprised to hear that she was pregnant, but I don’t think she was. She also wasn’t surprised to hear that Sun had an affair with another man; I’m sure that the Others knew that already.

Does Sun believe Juliet? Her lingering pose outside of the Staff Hatch after her ultrasound was telling. Did Sun follow her back into the Hatch and hear what she recorded for Ben? We’ve certainly learned that Sun is much smarter and more conniving than she appeared to be in the first season…

I am convinced that when Ben told Kate she was going to have a very difficult two weeks right after they were captured (see photo above) at the beginning of this season, he told her she would have to sleep with either Jack or Sawyer. That’s why they made her shower and put on a pretty dress. The Others were forcing her to get pregnant under the threat of death (either her, Jack or Sawyer). Last night we learned that Juliet was going to get Austen’s sample next (Kate’s last name is Austen). This theory might explain why Kate was acting elusive and uncomfortable when talking to Sun about Juliet’s island baby bad news.


If women who conceive on the island die, would they live if they terminated the pregnancy?

Why would the Others drag dying pregnant women all the way over to the Staff Hatch from their safe village inside the barracks?

If pregnant women and their babies die on the island, how is it that Ben was born there? Oh yeah…he wasn’t. Liar pants.

Who, besides Kate, are the other women that Juliet referred to for getting samples? There aren’t many viable candidates among the Losties that we’ve been introduced to. Watch out Naomi, you might be next!

Why does Naomi speak so many languages? Is it a coincidence that Mikhail and Ms. Klugh also seem(ed) to be multilingual?

How did Sun find Jin’s father, and so quickly?

Why would Jin’s mom ask for blackmail money in American dollars?


From the beginning, I have theorized that the Losties were never actually on Flight 815. There was a real Flight 815, which was purposefully crashed…probably by Dharma. But the Losties boarded a simulated flight. They were specifically chosen. The flight and turbulence were fabricated, and they were all drugged by the oxygen masks. Before being removed from the plane, each passenger was injected with some type of memory chip or implant, causing what we see as flashbacks. And yes, some of them died; they had to in order to make it seem real. The deceased are the ones that didn’t fit the Dharma criteria for the island experiment. The “survivors” were placed in very specific locations on the beach, in the jungle and in the water with the wreckage.

Obviously, it would have taken a tremendous financial and logistical effort to organize and pull off this kind of scheme. But we’ve been introduced to several very wealthy flashback characters that are less than thrilled with or have been abandoned by the people who are on that island: Mr. Paik, who is disappointed that she married a fisherman’s son. Charles Widmore, who disapproved of Desmond dating his daughter. Sabrina Carlyle, Shannon’s stepmom who cut her off from the family inheritance. David Reyes, who Hurley refused to give lottery money to.  One or all of these people has more than likely contributed generously to the funding of the Dharma Initiative. And the heretofore unseen Jacob is the puppet master overseeing this entire experiment.

Major Hole in My Theory: How/why were the Others able to see the plane break apart above them if it was a pseudo crash?

Is this theory absolutely implausible? Yes. Do I need to sleep more and blog/obsess about Lost less? Perhaps. Will I? Doubtful.

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I very rarely delve into celebrity gossip and speculation, but…

File under: Oh no.

I hope the rumor that John Krasinski (The Office) and Renee Zellweger are dating is another instance of the ‘working together on a film, spotted having coffee’ variety. Right now they’re filming Leatherheads, which is written, directed by and co-starring George Clooney. I am happy to see Krasinski hit the big time, with this film and the upcoming License to Wed with Mandy Moore and Robin Williams. AND yes, I realize that Zellweger is an Oscar-winning actress. But I am looking at her famous ex-boyfriend track record (see: Kenny Chesney, Jack White, Jim Carrey), and I have the right to be protective of my favorite Office man.

File under: Oh no, part 2.

Apparently, Edward Norton has signed on to play Bruce Banner in the new Incredible Hulk (which, thankfully, will be entirely unrelated to Ang Lee’s aberration adaptation in 2003). It’s not that I can’t picture Norton in the role; after all, he certainly proved his physical adaptability in the incredible American History X.

I’m just hoping that as talented as he is, he’ll reinvigorate the big screen adpatation of the comic; more of Christian Bale’s Bruce Wayne in Batman Begins than Tobey Maguire’s lifeless Peter Parker in Spider-Man.

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Even if it is just a paragraph or two, you are going to see more entries from me. Right now I’m writing and posting about two times per week, including a weekly blog dedicated just to Lost. I have a day job, so daily blog entries would be challenging. After all, I’m not this guy, who posts on weekends and even while on vacation!

My regular readers have been shy thus far; I’ve asked for feedback but only received a handful of comments from friends and family. So I’ll put it out there again:

What do you want to read about when you visit this site?
Which pop culture topics are you interested in?
What are your favorite shows, and do you have any to recommend?
What criteria would make this site one you’d bookmark and visit daily?

A few people have inquired why I rarely address baseball, which is my favorite sport to watch and attend. Honestly, I am not sure how many readers would be interested in that topic. Also, I feel like I jinx my team when I write about them.

That being said, I have a letter…

Dear Baseball Fans Who Aren’t From the West Coast:

As of tonight, the starting pitchers of the Oakland A’s have the lowest ERA of any team in baseball. I know the season is only 20 games in and none of these guys are named Zito, but you should fear them. Oh, and all of them have held opponents to less than 3 runs in each of their starts. Again, that leads both leagues. And yet, can you name the A’s starting rotation?

There are teams besides the Yankees and Red Sox, despite what the nice scheduling folks from MLB and ESPN might lead you to believe. The A’s may not be as dramatic (on and off the field), but you really should keep your eyes on the boys in green and gold. Especially a quiet second baseman named Mark Ellis, who led the American League last year with .997 fielding percentage and yet lost the Gold Glove…to a guy on the Royals with less impressive numbers. Am I bitter? Yes. Why? Because I am outraged that A’s third baseman Eric Chavez has won a Gold Glove SIX years in a row, and has yet to make the All Star team. Perhaps this will finally be his year, especially given that the All Star Game is just one Bay Bridge away in July.


Your friend and future season ticket holder for the Oakland A’s of Fremont,

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