The World's New Gay State

Nellie’s and “The Land Of Confusion.”

Posted in FIGS Party, Gay independence, Gay State Promotions, GLIFAA, LGBT Politics, The Gay State by thegaystateblog on June 25, 2010

The other night, upon settling into my Washington DC quarters,  I went for a stroll around the neighborhood.  It was a hot, balmy night and Foggy Bottom was at its best.  I walked all the way up to DuPont Circle where I bumped into an old friend at the Starbucks.  We caught up on the current of each other’s lives and before long, jumped into a cab together and went over to Nellie’s Sports Bar.

I’m not giving away any secrets here, so there’s no need to worry.  Once or twice a month GLIFAA meets at Nellie’s.  GLIFAA stands for Gay and Lesbian In Foreign Affairs Agencies.  GLIFAA members are usually with the State Department but they do attract many admirers.  And over the years many other groups within the LGBT community have made Nellie’s their “third place.”  Anyone and everyone who is Gay and with the CIA, NSA, embassies and intelligence communities and even Capitol Hill types also gather at Nellie’s for something more that your run-of-the-mill mixing, mingling and camaraderie.  I’ve been a regular for longer than I can remember, but I’ve been away from Washington more often than I’ve been in town as of late, so it was wonderful to be back.  I urge you to check it out, if only for fun.  You might just meet a man who could kill you with his thumb.  You might meet a secret agent, a double agent or a real life Bond.  If you’re a Jock, you’ll definitely find yourself feeling right at home.

If you’ve never been to Nellie’s don’t judge it by this.  The music is a perfect mix of new and old.  And as I was getting ready to leave, on the screen was one of those classic music videos from the 80’s.  Probably half of the customers in Nellie’s on this night probably weren’t yet born when Phil Collins and Genesis performed “The Land of Confusion.”  The video featured these creepy puppets resembling all of the international players in politics and pop culture  during the Reagan years.  Hugh Hefner and the Pope.  Reagan and Thatcher.  Michael Jackson and a cast of a hundred others.  It certainly captured the mood of the culture at the time.  And in many ways, for all of the scrambling and diversions, little has changed and only in small ways has the world improved.  We should be entitled to expect so much more for the state of humankind in the world. 

Here is the link to see the Genesis version of “The Land Of Confusion.”   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZtWABLuWHo&feature=related

In the 80’s just as all throughout the history of military science, troops are trained to be fearless, to persevere and to be willing to march off a cliff if doing so benefits a greater good.  Troops in the early 80’s sang cadence proclaiming they would be dead by the summer of ’85.  It probably steeled them to the potential inevitable.  Anyway, some of the older agents watch this video and reminisce.  Fast forward to 2010 when a heavy metal band (debatable – if my 10-year-old niece likes them) named Disturbance does a remake of “The Land Of Confusion.”  Watch this and compare it to the original.  It seems much darker and menacing, with one rag-tag superhero.   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6KXgjLqSTg&feature=related

The lyrics go something like this:

I must have dreamed a thousand dreams and haunted by a million screams.

But I can hear the marching feet, of moving into the street.

Now did you read the news today, they say that danger’s on our way,

But I can see the fires still alight, and burning into the night.

Well there’s too many men, there’s too many people, making too many problems and not much love to go ‘round.

Can’t you see this is the land of confusion?

This is the world we live in and these are the hands we’re given,

You’ll never let us stop trying to make this a place worth fighting for.

Now Superman, where are you now?  It seems everything’s gone wrong somehow.  The “Men of Steel,” “The Men of Power” are losing control by the hour.

This is the time.  This is the place.  So we look to the future and there’s not much love to go around.  Tell me why this is the land of confusion?

This is the world we live in and these are the hands we’re given.  You’ll never let us stop trying, to make this a place worth living in!

Remember so long ago when the sun was shining.  And the skies were bright all through the night and the sound of your laughter as I held you tight.

So long ago…

I won’t be coming home tonight.  My generation will put it right.  We’re not just making promises – you know – we’ll never keep.

There’s too many men, there’s too many people, making too many problems and there’s not much love to go around.  Can’t you see this is the land of confusion!

This is the world we live in and these are the hands we’re given.  You’ll never let us stop trying to make this a place worth fighting for.

This is the world we live in and these are the hands we’re given.  STAND UP and let’s start SHOWING just where our lives are going to!

Music certainly has the power to move us and jar loose some long forgotten memories.  Tonight has been a wonderful indulgence for me between the meetings of the ALA Conference.  It’s very late, the sun will be up in a few hours and I’ll be due back at the convention center.  I hope you are well.  Goodnight and remember, make it a world worth living in.