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Nico Lang
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Nico Lang is a contributor to the Los Angeles Times, Rolling Stone, The Advocate, Salon and The Huffington Post, as well as a film critic for HEAVEMedia. Lang is also the co-editor of the "BOYS" anthology series and the author of "The Young People Who Traverse Dimensions While Wearing Sunglasses."

Entries by Nico Lang

Dear RuPaul: Tell Transphobia to 'Sashay Away'

(7) Comments | Posted April 1, 2014 | 2:37 PM

Dear RuPaul,

To say I'm a fan of your show is putting it lightly.

I think, at it's best, RuPaul's Drag Race isn't just the best gay-themed show on TV. It's a place where I feel at home, nestled amongst your queens and effeminate gays. On television, sissy boys are usually the butt of the joke, but on RuPaul's Drag Race, they're skilled comedians and performers. They can give face while being hurled through the air or make a glam jumpsuit of dental floss and tampons. They're divas but more importantly they're icons and role models to those of us who feel that RuPaul's Drag Race is a space for gays like us.

I've long held the belief that what you enjoy can be problematic, but I can't continue to ignore the fact that my joy comes at the expense of others.

Read the rest at The Daily...

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An Open Letter to Straight Guys: Gay Men Just Aren't That Into You

(174) Comments | Posted February 18, 2014 | 3:00 PM

Dear Straight Men,

Unless you're living under a rock or into that John Muir thing, you've probably heard that the NFL is on the verge of having its first openly gay football player in Michael Sam, the Mizzou lineman whose coming out made headlines last week. Some straight dudes were...

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12 Dating Behaviors I'm Done With

(6) Comments | Posted February 12, 2014 | 3:59 PM

1. Pretending like that fart wasn't me. Yes, I did it, and I meant it. Did you think that Chipotle burrito was going to digest itself? Besides, if you can't deal with my farts, growing old together is pretty much out of the question. Did you see Amour? You might...

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'Fake Boyfriends': Why Our Friends Are Our Most Meaningful Relationships

(0) Comments | Posted February 11, 2014 | 8:00 AM

After getting out of a short-term relationship last year, I made a decision that changed my life: I got a fake boyfriend. He isn't a figment of the George Glass variety or a surprisingly realistic-looking blow-up doll I cart around in a wheelchair; he's a flesh-and-blood person I call upon...

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If You Spend Your Entire Date Texting, You Deserve to Die Alone

(16) Comments | Posted January 30, 2014 | 12:22 PM

Some months ago, I sat across from two gay men who were on their first date. The great thing about a first date is that almost anything the other person says is the most fascinating thing you've ever heard -- because you want to have sex with him. Should you...

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I Don't Want to See a Picture of Your Penis

(81) Comments | Posted January 24, 2014 | 1:52 PM

I have a friend who likes to show people his penis upon meeting them, as if this was how they learned how to shake hands in his house. (I assume it was a Flowers in the Attic thing.) The reveal will be apropos of nothing, as if he were socially...

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Chicago Queer Rock Band BAATHHAUS Celebrates NYE with a Sneak Preview of New Music Video

(0) Comments | Posted December 31, 2013 | 9:20 AM

For queer Chicagoans, Bottom Lounge has a New Years' treat. On New Years Eve, the bar will be kicking off 2014 with a sneak peek of "Cave Song," the first-ever video from BAATHHAUS, the Chicago art rock group fronted by Dan Foley. For Foley and his bandmates (Patrick Andrews, Jesse...

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A Lesbian Movie Without Lesbians: The Problem With Blue Is the Warmest Color

(9) Comments | Posted October 31, 2013 | 3:08 PM

Blue Is the Warmest Color, this year's Palme d'Or winner at Cannes, has now faced so many controversies that you could make a drinking game out of them. The stars, Lea Seydoux and Adele Exarchopoulos, criticize their director, Abdel Kechiche, in the press? Shot. Kechiche pens an open...

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What Hating Gwyneth Paltrow Says About Us

(95) Comments | Posted May 21, 2013 | 4:34 PM

This month, Gwyneth Paltrow pulled one hell of a pop culture hat trick. In addition to breaking international box office records with her newest film, a little movie called Iron Man 3, People named her as the world's "Most Beautiful Person." The world, however, proved itself not so fond of...

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The Goodman's Happiest Song Plays Out Elliot Trilogy

(0) Comments | Posted April 30, 2013 | 3:50 PM

In their work, Chicago's Goodman Theatre doesn't aim small. Recent productions like Teddy Ferrara and The Happiest Song Plays Last have tackled issues of LGBT suicide, poverty, racism, immigration and intergenerational debts, as we work to cleanse the sins of both the past and the present. Happiest Song, currently showing...

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Gay Christian Battles Tensions in Faith Community

(48) Comments | Posted April 24, 2013 | 9:40 PM

When most people come out, they roll out their big news slowly. First you tell a few people, dip your toes into the water of public opinion and use loved ones as an emotional litmus test. But when Brad Allen came out, he went big. He was already out to...

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Waiting for Westboro

(7) Comments | Posted April 16, 2013 | 8:42 AM

I wasn't initially planning on going to Roger Ebert's funeral. Like many Chicagoans, I mourned his death and memorialized him in private, sharing my sorrows about his loss amongst friends who counted themselves fellow "Ebert superfans." My colleague, Leah Pickett, broke the news to me and at first, I was...

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We Need to Give Up Transphobia

(19) Comments | Posted April 10, 2013 | 2:04 PM

Trigger warning: Transphobia. A lot of transphobia.

A month ago my friend Todd Clayton came out as a recovering transphobe in an incisive Huffington Post blog post, "The Queer Community Has to Stop Being Transphobic." In the piece Clayton details his personal journey toward transgender acceptance, explaining how...

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'The Drop' All-Ages Dance Party to Raise Funds for What's the T? Remount

(0) Comments | Posted April 4, 2013 | 1:15 PM

Last summer's What's the T? was an event. It's rare in the Chicago queer community that everyone is talking about one thing (if so, it's often in a bad way), but the play was that kind of phenomenon. It brought us together, for a brief yet beatific moment. It was...

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You Can Support Equality Without Being Into Marriage

(7) Comments | Posted April 2, 2013 | 9:00 AM

F. Scott Fitzgerald once wrote that intelligence is the "ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function."

I thought of Fitzgerald last week as the U.S. Supreme Court deliberated on Prop 8 and God was flooded with prayers...

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We Need to Talk About Steubenville

(13) Comments | Posted March 25, 2013 | 5:00 PM

Trigger Warning: This blog post and the article linked in it will contain graphic details of the Steubenville rape case and may be triggering to victims of sexual assault.

Six years ago, I was raped.

I've never been able to call it that or say the word out loud, not...

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What's the Hold Up on Marriage Equality in Illinois?

(6) Comments | Posted March 19, 2013 | 5:52 PM

Five years from now, Illinois' campaign for marriage equality is going to make for a great docudrama on HBO -- or a soap opera.

Last week, queer and allied Illinoisans flocked to Springfield, awaiting a full House vote on equality legislation. As of March 15, the Windy City Times stated...

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The Good, Bigoted People

(21) Comments | Posted March 15, 2013 | 1:18 PM

When you're a kid, you don't see difference. You're trained to see difference by a society that tells you that other people are not like you. You are told to hate that.

My parents taught me what gay people were. Before he divorced my mother, I remember watching a Richard...

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T.G.I.F. 2013 Launches Indiegogo Fundraising Campaign

(1) Comments | Posted March 12, 2013 | 10:42 AM

Last year, hundreds of attendees gathered together at Pilsen's Union Park for the first-ever T.G.I.F. rally, battling a surprise summer rain to be there. Standing for "Transgender, Gender Non-Conforming, Intersex Freedom," the event sought to bring together these three groups for their own pride event. The event often got the...

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Misery Loves Company: What the Forbes Survey of Chicago Ignores

(8) Comments | Posted March 6, 2013 | 10:02 AM

Forbes recently listed Chicago as their fourth most miserable city, behind Detroit, Flint and Rockford -- meaning that the states of Illinois and Michigan were having bad days overall. In part of their clearly objective calculus, they listed our high crime rate and weather as signs of our happiness deficit...

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