Gefilte Fish Out of Water


Back Hair & Butt Cleavage: Tel Aviv Gay Pride 2009
June 13, 2009, 9:00 pm
Filed under: Cool Things, Cultural Differences, Yum

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Yesterday was the Gay Pride parade in Tel Aviv.  I had a tremendous time participating.

I had previously signed up to volunteer at the Tel Aviv LGBT Community Center, so I had to be there at 8:00 a.m. to help set up for the “Happening” before the parade.  This is not the first Gay Pride parade in Tel Aviv; that was in 1999.  But as Dudu, the guy in charge of putting together the “Happening,” explained to us at a preparatory meeting on Thursday, this year is the first year that all 30 of Israel’s LGBT groups (e.g. P-FLAG, The Aguda, TLV Fest, Israeli Gay Youth organization) planned the event together.  At the “Happening,” each group would have a booth to promote their organization.  There was also going to be a stage with live music and other performances.

I carried stacks of chairs from the Center to the stage, and then I taped sticks to the back of signs for P-FLAG, so their members could hold up the signs during the parade.  The rest of the time was down-time to enjoy the “Happening.”  Lots of people enjoying themselves.  Not just hot guys, but families, older people, teens, lotsa lesbians, probably straight people, too.  Good vibes.  I bumped into Yoni & Yoni, a couple I met two weeks ago, and also my new friend Anthony, who is visiting from NYC.

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Then it was time for the Parade to start.  My job was to be part of a 2-person team to carry a 50-foot string of rainbow colored helium balloons.  Not so easy!  There was wind to deal with, low power lines to avoid, etc.  Any my partner was totally not paying attention, so I did the bulk of the work.  But halfway through the parade, even that much must have been too much for him, b/c he turned over the reins to Ronnie, a very capable partner, who was fun to work with, too.  I had a lot of fun!  I saw my friends Marisa and Jerami on the route.

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The parade ended at Gordon Beach.  I had a sensational time dancing and boy-watching.  The performance acts were so spectacular!

The parade throngs emptying out onto Gordon Beach.

The parade throngs emptying out onto Gordon Beach.

My favorite act was the guys on the left.  Sort of a Marilyn-Manson-but-very-gay thing.  The dancers were phenomenal.

I bumped into my friends from Ulpan, Lisa & Trevor in the dancing tent.  Later, I saw another Ulpan friend, Fabio, on the beach.  And after that, my Ulpan friends Caitin and Leonardo found me.  Plus, there was Valerie from Milan, who made a cameo in our Ulpan class for a day, and Vladi, whom I had a nice date with back in April.  It felt very nice to be connected here enough to bump into someone I knew every half hour or so.  Here’s Fabio, plus Marisa and Jerami from the parade.

L-to-R, Fabio, Marisa, Jerami

L-to-R, Fabio, Marisa, Jerami

There was this cute doggie with a woman dancing near me.  Suddenly her dog went on a mission – digging sand and more sand.  Everybody was cracking up; he was so into it!  I wanted to say to him, Doggie, give it up!  It’s a beach.  You’ll NEVER get to the bottom of all this sand.  But the joke was on me; this doggie had a specific goal in mind: to make himself a comfy bed!

A dog who knows what he wants.  (Have you EVER seen a happier pooch smile?)

A dog who knows what he wants. (Have you EVER seen a happier pooch smile?)

The butt cleavage thing?  Honestly, I have been meaning to do a post on this for a long time.  There is a crack epidemic in Israel.  Maybe it’s overreliance on low-riders, maybe it’s weight issues, I dunno – all I know is from grannies to toddlers, I’ve seen more ass crack since I got to this country than I know what to do with.  But on the beach yesterday, I noticed something different: gay guys who roll their shorts down, purposefully to expose the tops of their butt cheeks, putting them on display the same way a woman would wear something low cut to expose a nice rack.  Hey, more power to ’em, and c’mon – what gay guy wouldn’t like looking at that?  It’s just kinda funny, that’s all.  And that back hair thing?  Well, I’ll just say that’s one plus about living here: much less pressure to manscape.  It’s not that the community is a bunch of wolf-men roaming the streets.  But there certainly are a lot of furry necks and shoulders.

However, this is Israel.  There is no shortage of stunningly hot men.

Yum Yum Yum

Yum Yum Yum

There are many more pics I want to show you, but goddamn – all this custom sizing and image collage making is taking 4evah!  I totally don’t have time to do the post about our first Ulpan party at David’s apartment last Thursday, and probably more importantly, I did not do my Ulpan homework yet.  And I totally had plans for a “system upgrade” of my notes.  Oh well, next weekend!

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