aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Monday, May 22, 2006
Czech pols duke it out
After clawing and squeezing my way through a medieval silver mine whose slimy walls were both reminiscent of the inside of Sigourney Weaver’s Alien AND poisonous (I can’t imagine that such a tour would be legal in the U.S.) I sat in a hillside restaurant eating something akin to Czech BBQ (don’t ask) when the bartender changed the channel and those gathered turned their attention to the television screen to watch this:
Czech Health Minister David Rath has been in a punch-up with his right-wing rival, Miroslav Macek, during a meeting of disgruntled dentists in Prague.
Mr Macek, a presidential adviser and former deputy PM who is also a dentist, broke off an address to slap Mr Rath hard on the back of the head.
Mr Rath responded by calling him a coward and the two men traded blows.
This rare case of violence in Czech politics comes two weeks before highly anticipated parliamentary elections.
As you might imagine I’m very interested in the political situation here. But the focus of our trip is music and theater so I have learned little so far. I do find that the people have a deep antipathy to George Bush without even realizing their apparent fondness for all of his policies except the war. We go to Prague at the end of the week, maybe I’ll learn more there.
The iPod of its time
On our way from Hradec KrÃƒÂ¡lovÃƒÂ© to Olomouc we stopped at a castle in Litomysl. There we saw one of the Czech Republic’s two Music Boxes from Vienna, this one from 1826. It stands over six feet tall and comes with sixteen thirty-inch cylinders that can play a whopping eighteen melodies.
Confused is welcomed in GA
A friend sent this from home:
I have never written to you before, but after reading the letter from “Confused in Georgia,” the 23-year-old young man saying that he is gay, I felt compelled to respond. Your advice to him was great, but I would like to offer some of my own.
Like “Confused,” I am also a homosexual in south Georgia. Because he is having a difficult time with the church in which he was raised, my advice would be to run - don’t walk - from this “house of worship.” If attending church is important to him, then I suggest he visit the Episcopal Church, where I found solace and a warm and comforting family.
VALDOSTA, GA., reader
After that letter was published, I was inundated with mail from readers - gay and straight - from all over the country encouraging the writer to stop being afraid of rejection and to come out already. Read on for a sample from Georgia alone.