Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Banana Splits on New Year’s Eve (1976)


New Year’s Eve: a raucous celebration with drinks and delights for everyone—except me. I, forever the baby, old enough to want for the midnight merriment; young enough to be excluded from what ‘the big kids’ and my parents enjoyed.

But 1976 changed Everything. Jimmy Carter, 52, poised to pull The White House out of Republican scandal; I, 10, finally allowed to stay up and greet the new year.

Still a month away from the Blizzard of ‘77 that would incapacitate Western NY, the gray, frigid Eve perpetuated a gray, frigid December. The twelve-degree outdoor temperature coaxed me into my new Christmas snowsuit, a down-stuffed, full-body outfit, to hike with my older brother and sister to our neighborhood supermarket. I didn’t care about the cold. Midnight loomed large—and we had a rare $5 bill from our unemployed dad. “Treat yourselves,” he invited, handing my brother the money as he and Mom left to play a piano-and-vocalist gig they’d been lucky enough to book.

Five dollars! In the Freezer aisle, we negotiated with the fervor of a United Nations debate; my tiny vote for Spanish peanuts nearly lost amidst my older siblings’ insistent selections: the cubed carton of Sealtest Neapolitan; the jet-black can of Hershey’s syrup; the tall canister of spray crème; the brown ooze of Smucker’s caramel; the stemmed cherries suspended in red fluid; the sticky jar of wet walnuts; the blonde trio of bananas.

Back home, we pulled out the cut-glass, canoe-shaped bowls and began scooping, doling, slicing, dribbling. Transporting our creamy treasure to the family room, we fought over TV trays and couch space.

Finally settled in front of Dick Clark, I spooned in mouthful after mouthful of the banana-laced bounty, waiting for the glittery ball to drop, marveling at the privilege of grown-ups.


Gregory Gerard is author of In Jupiter’s Shadow and The Martini Chronicles, and serves as editor for the
net’s newest narrative nonfiction journal, The Big Brick Review. For more, visit

The Big Pencil Awards 2013

Posted: November 16, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

I am very honored to be one of the recipients of this year’s Big Pencil Award this evening from Writers & Books.

Enjoyed meeting lots of literary folks, including fellow McQuaidian David Schickler!

Writers & Books November 16, 2013

Writers & Books November 16, 2013

Gregory Gerard is honored to receive the Golden Goose award from The Grimm Report today. A fantastically clever and humorous blog. The Brothers Grimm got nothin’ on Eric Wilder! 

Monday, October 08, 2007

MY ART: Annual Glove Notice —
Current mood: Other Other
Category: Other Other Writing and Poetry

Toss down TV Guide!

Peel yourself away from People!
Nix the National Enquirer!


There’s something much more important you need to know: The Annual Glove Notice has gone “e”. 

(And we hope you’ll go “eeee” with glee when you read this year’s Annual Glove Notice online at


This year’s installment includes:

  • Glove testimony from repeat columnist, Elizabeth      Hughes Boice
  • Glove archives, so you can review your favorite      notices from the past
  • Glove friends, links, and contact info for use      in all your glove inquiries 


Without delay, visit!  Your fingers will thank you.


Currently   listening :
  Despite Our   Differences
  By Indigo Girls
  Release date: 19 September, 2006     

Every gay man needs a married woman to talk to. And visa versa.

The video version:  

The book version: 

The Solid Limb

Posted: August 17, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

November 9th, 2011

Many of you know I recorded a video last year for the It Gets Better project (Gay Catholic Author Says It Gets Better). The video received notice in a news article by the Religious News Service (Gays tell teens It Gets Better despite religion) and continues to receive hits — and comments.

Recently, I received the following comment:

‘what is the matter with you? your story was beautiful up until you mentioned your boy friend and marriage. that’s terrible and completely wrong according to Catholic Tradition.Grgory58′

I prepared a response to Grgory58…but was not able to fit it all in given the 500 character limit on YouTube. Here’s my full reply:


There is nothing wrong with me – or you either. We are both God’s perfect creation. You say that my having a boyfriend or being married to a man as ‘terrible and completely wrong according to Catholic Tradition.’

To the first part of that comment (the ‘terrible’ part), I strongly disagree. Love, self-acceptance, and the need for human companionship are not ‘terrible.’There are lots of things in this world that are terrible…like the fact that over 120,000 lives have been lost in the Iraq war. Or that gay teens are between two and three times more likely to commit suicide than their heterosexual peers. Or just plain old everyday bigotry or hatred. Those things are TERRIBLE. Think about it. Pray about it.

To the second part (the ‘Catholic’ part), I do agree that sexual relations between two people of the same gender are ‘completely wrong according to Catholic Tradition’ – although I would add ‘as we know it today’ (read John Boswell’s Christianity, Social Tolerance and Homosexuality to learn more about what that was like in the past). What I have learned in my head and heart throughout my thirties and now into my forties, is that God and love are much, much larger than Catholic Tradition. And that Catholic Tradition has not always ‘gotten it right.’ As a result, Catholic Tradition no longer drives my decisions.

I do recognize that, per the Catholic Church, I’m considered ‘out on a limb’ in my belief that same-gender love and commitment are blessed. But I’m filled with peace out here on this solid limb, swaying gently in the summer breeze. Because now, 45 years down the road of this life, I recognize that God is out here with me. Along with lots of other faithful, good people, all trying to make their way home.

Just like you and me.


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For serious, I post my stuff at

I invite you to visit my stuff.

Vitamin Dee-licious

Posted: August 17, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: ,


February 27th, 2011


Okay, so I blogged last winter about SAD (Everybody Needs a Husky) but this year I’ve discovered something that those darned Eskimoes already knew.


Vitamin D.


As my younger friend, Kate, would say, ‘It’s the bomb!’


When I was feeling so low last winter, I went to the doctor and considered anitdepressants…anything to take away the dull, grey sludgey feeling of Februrary hanging over my mood. He actually suggested that I get my Vitamin D3 levels checked. I did — I was at 13! (Normal is 30-80).


Now for those citizens of the Arctic circle (or Rochester and Seattle) where the sun doesn’t shine as much as we’d like, I’ve heard in the past that they know to keep a steady diet of salmon. Guess what? It’s a natural source of Vitamin D3. Also cod liver oil, fortified milk, yogurt, etc. etc. etc. Guess what else? When I got the list of all the Vitamin D3 rich foods, I discovered I don’t eat ANY of them. (With the exception of cheese on my pizza…but that was WAY low on the Vita D-rich list). I also realized I was wearing 50 sunblock starting in May and June…so I wasn’t getting my Vitamin D3 that way, either. No wonder my low mood carried on through the spring the last couple of years. Who knew?


The doctor put me on a prescription Vitamin D supplement (50,000 IUs per week!) for 8 weeks. Finally, by August, my levels got up in normal range (32). Guess what else else? I started feeling like ME again. Not the drudge who inhabits my body during winter. ME.


Flash forward to this winter. I’m taking a daily dose of over-the-counter Vitamin D3 (I’m taking 2000 IUs a day (twice the daily recommended amount), but my bloodword says I’m still only at 27, so I’m not in danger of hypervitaminosis D!) And guess what else else else? I haven’t been feeling SAD this winter.






For fun, I post my stuff at
For serious, I post my stuff at
I invite you to visit my stuff.


A Really Nice Gift

Posted: August 17, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: ,

December 9th, 2010

Okay, I was in my car the other day scanning for Christmas music (it was snowing; traffic was slow; I had just done some shopping).

I landed on Delilah on our local channel that plays some pretty good Christmas music this time of year. Amy Grant, WHAM, Nat King Cole…you get the idea. I’m not an overly big fan of Delilah, the semi-saccharin (IMHO) radio-show host…but sometimes she does draw me in with some story or dedication. THAT HAVING BEEN SAID, during this particular evening Christmas-song scan, I landed on Delilah.

A young woman had called into the program and shared how, in these economic times, she and her husband had been struggling. That she wanted to purchase some ‘really nice gifts’ for her family, but that they couldn’t afford it. That she had been baking cookies and the like to share with her family for the past couple of years as gifts, but that she wanted to get them something ‘really nice.’

Now, I’ll say right now, I am not opposed to Christmas gifts. I do my own share of shopping, although I’ve chosen, like other things in my life, to simplify this holiday. I bake some (kick-ass) chocolate chip cookies in the form of Christmas trees and distribute them to my siblings and their children during this holiday. It takes a lot of time, but I make a day of it…putting some Christmas shows on the TV and feeling the heat of the oven as it makes frosty patterns on the kitchen windows. It’s something that I think is pretty special. For me and for the recipients. A gift of love and toil.

I don’t hold anything against this young woman who called into Delilah. But my FIRST THOUGHT was, ‘gee, I think the fact that she took the time and effort to make some baked goods for her family IS a really nice gift. And I expected Delilah to chime in and point this out.’

INSTEAD, Delilah and her program did some kind of gift-award intervention, to rescue her from this unwarranted Christmas crisis. They made this young woman’s Christmas wish come true (by giving her some money and/or gift cards so that she could buy something ‘really nice’ for her family).

I don’t hold anything against the Delilah program. They, too, are giving, and that’s wonderful. This is the season of giving. What rankles me is the apparent misperception that giving of our time, our talents, our love, and our presence seems to rank lower on the ‘really nice gift scale’ than something purchased from a store. When did our American consumer culture get so skewed in its thinking that we don’t see the true meaning of Christmas giving?

Charles Schultz got it right. Just watch “The Charlie Brown Christmas Special.”

Dr. Seuss got it right. Just watch “The Grinch.”

Even an old, first season episode (and I’m going to lose some credibility on this one) of “Little House on the Prairie” got it right, when Half-Pint (aka Melissa Gilbert) was so grateful to receive one piece of candy and a homemade doll from her mother (Caroline, aka Karen Grassle), while she sold her beloved pony to Mr. Oleson (for Nellie) so she could replace her mother’s broken wood stove. A wonderful, loving sacrifice. The part that always brings me to tears is when Caroline tries to run to Laura, and Charles (aka Michael Landon) holds her back. Caroline tells him ‘But she loves that pony.’ And Charles says, ‘Let her do this for you.’

<Insert lump in throat.>

When did we lose the balance of what constitutes a ‘really nice gift?’ Somewhere between the prairie and Sex and the City, I think.

I challenge you to think about your own gift giving and receiving…and decide what you believe this Christmas season…to be a really nice gift.


For fun, I post my stuff at
For serious, I post my stuff at
I invite you to visit my stuff.

Slumlord Hero

Posted: August 17, 2013 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

November 10th, 2010

Things you need to know, in no particular order:

It was 1984.

I was 18.

I lived with my oldest sister, Molly.

The two girls who moved into the top floor of our building had never thrown a party before.

I was new to Cincinnati, having migrated from Western New York to attend Xavier Jesuit


I had a desperate crush on my best friend, Bob, from our all-boys high school back home.

He didn’t know.

Neither did anybody else.


Our landlord lived in the apartment next to ours.

Our landlord was friendly in a way that made you wonder if he had ever sold used cars.

Our landlord’s name was ‘Larry.’

He reminded me of Larry Tate from Bewitched, in name, looks, and personality.

Larry’s wife was Ann, a gentle woman who smiled at us each morning as she left for a professional office job.

Larry stayed at home to landlord.

Molly and I tried to figure out how Larry ever managed to entice somebody as sweet and (apparently) saavy as Ann.

We failed.


Our apartment had a glamour that only turn-of-the-century apartment high rises can provide.

The two of us shared three bedrooms, two living rooms, a kitchen and bath.

Most of the rooms had grand, marble-mantled fireplaces and soaring, twelve-foot ceilings.

The apartment was affordable because of the neighborhood.

People who looked like they might earn most of their income from drug deals hung around our front steps.

A sign ‘PARK AT YOUR OWN RISK’ hung over the back steps.

We lived on the fourth floor.

The elevator didn’t work.

When we asked Larry about this, he laughed and said, ‘Oh, it’s an old dog like me, haha!’

I made frequent trips down the four flights to see if any letters from Bob had arrived in our gold-gilded mailbox.

It was a long walk back up.


As I mentioned, two girls moved onto the sixth floor.

They were college-age like me.

One looked like Mary Lou Retton; the other, Blair from The Facts of Life.

I helped them carry their stuff up.


Larry wouldn’t fire up the building’s boiler until well into October.

Molly and I were chilly.

‘Ann and I like it crisp – haha!’ he said cheerfully, when we asked for heat.


The whole building was invited to the sixth-floor apartment-warming.

Molly had to work, so I went alone.

Forty people with beer cups crowded around a keg.

The spacious apartment did not feel crowded.

There were lots of nice-looking guys my age.

Larry was there.

Hostess #1 made a point to introduce me to her single girlfriend.

I started drinking right away.

On my fourth trip to the keg, I overheard Hostess #2 telling a story to several All-American college guys.

And Larry.

In fact, they were talking about Larry.

I joined them.

It seems, earlier in the evening, one of the hostesses’ guests had poured a beer out of the sixth-floor window.

It landed on one of the Potential-Drug-Dealers’ heads.

Despite the six-floor climb, he showed up almost immediately and banged on the door.

He screamed at Hostess #2, who answered.

Larry intervened, beer in hand, and diffused the situation.

‘Here,’ he said, putting his arm around the P-D-D and leading him to the keg, ‘one for your head and one for your belly – haha!’

I groaned, sensing where this was heading.

Hadn’t the girls figured Larry out yet?

Didn’t his clammy handshake tell it all?

Wasn’t the broken elevator the first of many clues?

‘Larry is our hero,’ Hostess #2 added.

I burst out laughing.

Which garnered her attention.

‘I don’t understand why you’re laughing,’ she said.

‘I was really scared,’ she said more loudly.

‘I think you’re an asshole,’ she said even more loudly.

I slunk away, reaching exponential levels of longing for Bob and home and high school and all the people who didn’t think I was an asshole, as I returned to conversation with Hostess #1’s single girlfriend.

Larry continued to baste in praise from the keg crowd.


For fun, I post my stuff at
For serious, I post my stuff at
I invite you to visit my stuff.

October 19th, 2010

I was recently interviewed by a reporter for the Religion News Service (Gays tell teens ‘it gets better’ despite religion) about my video for the It Gets Better project (Gay Catholic Author says It Gets Better). What always surprises me is that, despite how much information might be communicated in an interview, how little often makes it to the finished product. I appreciate that attention spans are short — and that news must be consise, but to that I say, ‘Thank God for blogs!’

I’ve decided to post my extended responses to the interview questions below. To share the rest of the (gay) story.

Q: What do you think of the IT GETS BETTER project, both generally and in terms of the contributions that have come from faith leaders and people from Mormon/Catholic/Muslim evangelical, etc. backgrounds?

A: I couldn’t be more pleased. You know, this YouTube technology has existed for awhile – but it always takes someone with an idea and conviction to get something started. And it’s so simple! The GLBT community as a whole – present and future – owes a debt of gratitude to Dan Savage for having the courage and the conscience to initiate it.

When I was in grammar school in rural Western NY in the 1970s, homosexuality as a topic really didn’t come up in conversation at the dinner table, or at St. Michael’s School, or among my friends. At the time, I had the vague sense that the word had to do with something dirty or shameful…and certainly sinful.

When I began to recognize feelings within myself of attraction – not to girls, but to other boys – I almost immediately went into secrecy mode. There was NO WAY I was going to be a homosexual. And THAT’s when I started the investigation – all in secret. Back then, I had to rely on the library for human sexuality books, or my parent’s encyclopedia, or my bible from religion class at Catholic school – that’s where I was getting my information.

In my childhood, there were no positive gay role models that I recall. On the contrary, I remember a TV movie of the week with Joan Collins (The Making of a Male Model) and there was a gay side character that was tragically sarcastic – he ended up in a suicide attempt. That was my only image of gay people – being carried away on a gurney.


The messages that I found in my secret investigation – they were so mixed. The encyclopedia talked about theories of angry fathers and overbearing mothers. The human sexuality books said that adolescent feelings of attraction between boys were pretty normal – that it was just a phase; that it would pass. The Bible used words like abomination. So the conclusion from my research was that I WAS NOT GOING TO BE A HOMOSEXUAL. Period. And that I’d just have to wait for the feelings to pass.

If I could have had access to information like the IT GETS BETTER project – holy cow. What that positive and thoughtful, everyday dialogue might have meant to me. Hearing that other people LIKE me had struggled like I was struggling – wow. I know I would have felt less alone. More like I belonged.

Again, the messaging I received from church was very minimal. I recall an article from the newspaper that a boy read in a public speaking class in 6th grade “Church Says No to Gays.” That stuck with me – even now, 30 years later.

The priests and nuns really didn’t mention gays. There were little innuendoes here and there – like the reading of the Sodom and Gomorrah story in 9th grade religion class. But the thing is, I had so successfully convinced myself that I wasn’t gay – I was so successfully hiding my secret, even from MYSELF, that I played along with the subtle homophobia – when kids would use ‘fag’ or ‘queer’ as a derogatory adjective. I’m sure I did some of it myself. Or, on the surface, I didn’t worry about Father Jamison’s raised eyebrows during the Sodom and

Gomorrah story. Because I was banking on the fact that my affection for other boys would pass as I grew older.

Of course, I would have watched IT GETS BETTER videos in total secrecy – but I could have discovered the one thing that I wasn’t finding elsewhere – HOPE.

I’ve observed that there’s a general perception of fear around this subject when the GLBT community proposes talking with grammar or high school kids. My own high school won’t even acknowledge on the alumni achievements’ site that I wrote a gay Catholic memoir. (I requested; they politely refused). They’ve celebrated other books by other alumni…but not mine.

What many adults don’t seem to be able to acknowledge is that kids ARE dealing with these things in grammar school. I experienced my first erection around 5th grade. I looked at my first “dirty magazine” when I was in 7th grade. I had my first masturbation experience and subsequent first sexual encounter in 8th grade.

And through all those early experiences with sexuality – I was so sickened and ashamed – because through all of them, I wasn’t thinking about Farrah Fawcett or Wonder Woman. I was thinking about Superman. And I mistakenly believed that such feelings were NOT OKAY with God.

The IT GETS BETTER project can reach kids who need to hear these messages in a private, powerful way. I know my next example is cliché, but that doesn’t make it any less true. Consider that an African-American adolescent who has been bullied for being black can come home to their African-American parents and potentially receive sympathy and solidarity. A gay kid who has been bullied and can come home and receive sympathy from straight parents – but not the solidarity. In my opinion, IT GETS BETTER can supply that sense of ‘I’ve been there.’

Q: In what way do you think religion has contributed to gay bullying/suicides?

A: In my opinion, the messages from many organized religions – although I’m most familiar with Catholic – ultimately empower the culture of bullying. They don’t condone it, but they do empower it. Don’t get me wrong – my faith has offered a lot of comfort when grappling with difficult subjects throughout my whole life. But the fantastic struggle I had as an adolescent was that God seemed to be sending me two opposing messages: condemning the behavior of two men loving each other – then consoling me in my grief and loneliness. I mean, when I got into high school and did even MORE secret research on gay sexuality, the messages I received at that point were more clear: Catholic gays who were sexually active were not welcome at the altar of Christ; homosexuals were called to live chaste lives (supposedly like all the other single Catholics out there – but nobody EVER seemed to want to point out the simple logic that straight single Catholics had the option to love and to marry. They had HOPE). I learned that, if I was truly gay, I was to link my sacrifice to the sacrifice of Christ on the cross, and endure a solitary life of chaste endurance. Which seemed like a pretty bleak message to a healthy boy of 17.

When you classify someone as “less than” for any reason, you empower others to feel – and act – “better than.” To me, that’s what the negative messages about homosexuality and homosexual behavior from many organized religions ultimately achieve.

Q: What is the responsibility of faith leaders and people of faith here?

A: I think that faith leaders and people of faith need to continue to educate themselves – even more than they are today. Talk to gay people. Watch 100 videos on IT GETS BETTER. Read the bible stories about David and Jonathan or Ruth and Naomi. Pray. Be willing to stretch their faith. Pray some more.

If, after all that, they still hold a belief that a loving, generous God does not celebrate the committed love of man for man or woman for woman, I ask them to consider how they act on that belief. ESPECIALLY if they work with children. Because the next adolescent they encounter might be like I was. A kid grappling with an overwhelming problem in secret. A secret big enough to encourage suicide as a more ‘holy’ solution.

Most of all, they should consider that ‘towing a Catechismal line’ that condemns homosexual behavior – all in the name of faith – can rob devout gay kids of something as equally as important as faith: HOPE.

Gregory Gerard is a gay Catholic author who resides in Rochester NY with his partner of thirteen years. His memoir, In Jupiter’s Shadow, explores the importance of emerging from the ‘shadow’ of others’ expectations and how people can often work to hide important truths from the most important person in their lives: themselves.

For fun, I post my stuff at
For serious, I post my stuff at
I invite you to visit my stuff.