Complicated Feelings about Pride

Hello Friends, Family, and Fans,

I was raised by my mom. I saw my dad occasionally, and although he had an influence on my upbringing, he wasn’t a big one. My mom raised me and she was very much a hippy. One thing that she did, and I’m not sure it was intentional, was to instill a deep mistrust of those that have pride.

I’m sure the ADHD didn’t help. I was always asking people why, and they usually just got angry. Especially when I would question national, cultural, school, language, or sports pride. Screaming “We’re Number 1!” has always seemed silly to me. I have respect for those that came before me and for the fact that me and my country are more privileged than others, but I’d never classify that as pride.

I’m not completely sure what the feeling of pride in that sense is like. I feel proud of my accomplishments, I’m proud of my family, and I’m proud of my friends. I’m also oddly proud of people I’ve barely met but who I like. But that feeling is a warm feeling of joy and satisfaction at their success, not an all consuming emotion the way I’ve seen it in others. If someone I’m proud of does something bad, I’m disappointed, and if they turn to hate, I grieve for losing them.

The concept of pride as I’ve seen it around me and portrayed in fiction seems more like blind faith or fanatical devotion. Something that deeply disturbs me.

2021 Intersex-inclusive redesign of the Progress Pride Flag by Valentino Vecchietti

This month is Pride Month, and that is a completely different type of pride. One i can understand much better than the one that people will be showing July 1st.

As you might know, I’m bisexual, and I haven’t had the greatest interactions about it. Both straight and gay people have told me I was “confused”, that I should just admit to being gay, jumping on the bandwagon, or just trying to get attention. It took a long time for me to find friends I was comfortable around and I still don’t feel comfortable in 2SLGBTQIA+ spaces.

All that being said, the pride in Pride Month is a feeling of grim determination and joy that we as a community have survived despite the ever-present hate. The first pride parade was a riot and a demand for basic human rights. Despite all the advancements we’ve made, we still have a lot of work to do.

This month, filled with rainbow capitalism, remember that it’s still illegal to be gay in 64 countries and same sex marriages are recognized in only 32 countries. In Canada, the US, and England, laws have recently passed that prioritize the rights of parents over those of queer and trans youth. In the past year, Ottawa has had multiple protests, some in front of schools, demanding that same sex and trans not be mentioned in the classroom.

We have a long way to go, and as you watch the community celebrate, remember the Pride Month isn’t about an irrational love and devotion, it’s about survival.

Stay safe and be kind,


Hate, Wrath, and Pride

Hello friends, family, and fans,

I truly think that people are fundamentally good but there are those who are consumed by hate. They justify their hate with religion, pseudo-science, anecdotes, or false-morality; but underneath it’s fear turned sour. They create an “other” that is wrong in some way and fixate on them to a terrifying level, dehumanizing entire groups of people and attacking them.

Over the past 15 years of blogging, I have tried to be honest, passionate, and open. Events in my life from the past year have made me rethink my online presence and advocacy. The anonymity of the internet can embolden those who hate to commit terrible acts.

Because of the current backlash against the 2slgbtqia+ community, it is important for those of us who can, to share our pride in our identities. I’ve mentioned before that I’m bisexual and this month is Pride month. So here I am, a queer-bisexual cis-man, who uses he/him pronouns.

I’m happy with who I am and proud of what I went through to get to here. If my pride and visibility can help others, then I have a responsibility to speak up.

If you only know a little about Pride, here are a few places to get some more information:

Stay safe and be kind,


“Political Correctness has Gone MAD!”

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

“Political Correctness has Gone MAD!” is a phrase I’ve heard in various ways a lot in the past ten years. I might have heard it before, but I hadn’t noticed. It’s a nice easy way to identify someone who feels slighted by diversity and angry about not being able to mock certain groups of people.

I’m bisexual, I’m attracted to people no matter what their gender. I don’t talk a lot about this question because I’m married to a woman and that means I have a certain level of privilege.

However, you’ll notice that a large portion of my protagonists are bisexual. I also try to include other sexualities, genders, races, etc. It’s harder to get it right when writing something that isn’t me. I’ve gotten some criticism for one of my protagonists who was trans, while getting praise from others about the same character.

So I sat down to write this post and wracked my brain for bisexual representation in movies, TV, and books from when I was young. The bisexuals I remember are in 2 categories, villains/monsters and exceptions.

I grew up with Sarah Michelle Gellar in Cruel Intentions, the alien from Species, Frankenfurter from Rocky Horror, and countless “alternate universe” evil doppelgangers in Star Trek DS9, Buffy, Stargate etc. I’m sure there were more, but it was mostly the trope of the Sexy Seductress evil girl that was bi. Men were gay or straight.

Then there were the confused women like Willow, who wasn’t bi according to the show but always a lesbian, or Dax from Star Trek DS9 that had a lesbian kiss, but only because the woman was the lover of a previous host. She breaks Dax’s heart and we never see anything outside the mirror universe to show that she’s bi.

The first positive character I remember seeing or reading about that was openly bi was Angela Montenegro from Bones. It wasn’t a big thing, except to have her love interest be a little awkward about it. She was shown as flaky, but that was pretty normal for all the characters in Bones.

The next character was Jack Harkness from Doctor Who. I’m not happy with the fact that they made him into a joke in the early seasons with Tennant and I’m still pissed with the way he interacts with Donna, but overall he was pretty awesome. It was the first time I saw a male character who wasn’t mocked, killed, or turned out to be a closeted gay. (Yeah, like it’s any easier to be bi)

Now we have a lot more representation and I think it still doesn’t come close to reflecting real life. Statscan says 1.7% of people say they’re Gay or Lesbian and 1.3% say they are Bi. Considering this doesn’t take into account the rest of the rainbow, that means that 3% will admit on a census that they are LGB. I’m sure it’s higher considering there are still quite a few negative reactions to being out and if you add it the rest of the Queer rainbow you’ll find, I’m sure, that we represent a quarter or more of the population.

If you think that representation has gone mad and there are too many Queer people on television and in books keep this in mind; In 2020-21 scripted TV had 9.1% openly Queer people. That means that despite being nearly a quarter of the population there are only a tenth that are shown on TV.

Some genres are better both in film/TV and books, but it’s still not a big difference from when I was a confused kid who thought his attraction was unnatural and monstrous.

Be kind and be safe,


I can’t remember if I’ve done this

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

I’m Bisexual… I have no idea if I’ve ever officially come out. It’s not something I talk about a lot unless I see Jason Momoa…

I’ve been attracted to all genders for as long as I can remember. The few same sex relationships I saw I could never understand why people made a big deal about. It wasn’t until I got older and people started to use Gay as a slur that I realized I wasn’t the norm. I didn’t have a word for what I was until university when I met other people in the LGBTQ+ community.

It wasn’t a positive interaction. I was told I was just confused and couldn’t choose a side. That I should come back if I decided to be gay. (Yep, a gay man actually told me that.) It wasn’t until I met some really good friends in my mid twenties that I realized I wasn’t just confused. Then I saw Jack Harkness on Doctor Who and it was great to see a character like me.

All that to say, if I hadn’t told you… I’m bisexual and to me that means I can be attracted to anyone, regardless of their gender.

For pride month, the wonderful Cait Gordon wrote an awesome tweet about me:

For #PrideMonth, I want to shout out some awesome books and authors. @EricDesmarais‘ YA series is based in a town called Baker’s City with Elizabeth Coderre solving paranormal mysteries in a Sherlock-esque sort of way! Book 2, Sign of Faust is an Aurora Award nominee! #AmReading— Cait Gordon 👽🍰♿️ (@CaitGAuthor) June 11, 2019

Thanks Cait!

And to everyone out there still trying to understand themselves, you’ll get there and there are people like you out there. Be brave and find friends who support you.

Later Days,


Blush: Invisible Pride

June is Pride Month, and rainbow flags are everywhere. That’s awesome, and a good first step. But I’d like to talk about the people who are invisible in pride.

Image by Laura Williams.

The bisexuals, whether they are single or in hetero relationships. You are welcome.

The trans individuals in hetero relationships. You are welcome.

The intersex people. You are welcome.

The ace- and aro-spec. You are welcome.

If you count yourself under the +, you are welcome.

We shouldn’t be policing who can celebrate pride. Everyone LGBTQQIPP2SAAADG+ has the right to celebrate, and it’s none of our business which box they fit into.

If you’re enjoying the Blush blogs, consider learning more with Blush: The Card Game from Renaissance Press.

Love in Lost Places – Proof-of-Concept

People told me that weird things happen in Baker City, Ontario, but I never really believed them until my second year at Baker City University.

“Just text her already,” Simon said, pushing the scrap of paper towards me over our hand me down IKEA dining room table. He tilted his head and smirked mischievously before passing his hands through his short cropped reddish brown hair. His dark skin was speckled with the most adorable freckles that mirrored the colour of his eyes.

“That’s impersonal. Shouldn’t I call?” I was stalling and we both knew it; nobody just called.

“Dude? Seriously. I go through all this trouble to get you the number of the only girl you’ve had a crush on since first semester and you won’t text her?”

He wasn’t wrong. She was in most of my classes and was one of those people who attracted the eye. She wore lots of colour, especially in her hair, and everything she did or said was the most important thing imaginable.

He also wasn’t right. She wasn’t the only crush I’ve had, but I don’t think he’d figured out that I liked him.

Taking my phone, he typed in the number and sent a text. “Hi Zoey”

We both sat staring at my phone waiting for a reply. It came faster than I expected. “I DON’T HAVE ANY FERRETS!”

Simon and I looked at each other confused and I picked up the phone to say, “It’s Harry… We have Can-Lit together.” I pressed send and then quickly added, “Just wanted to say hi… and I think I’m allergic to ferrets.”

“Oh Harry… Blond guy who wears a lot of plaid?”

“That’s me”

“Sorry about that. Someone keeps texting me about ferrets. It’s bloody annoying.”

I wasn’t sure what to say to that. My first instinct was to apologize for bothering her. While I hesitated, Simon grabbed my phone and wrote, “I was wondering if you’d like to go out for coffee sometime?”

“Sure, Meet at Café Nation on Bank at 4?”

“Great. See you there.” I shoved my phone into the pocket of my jeans to avoid Simon adding anything.

It was already three fifteen so after a high five from Simon I rushed to take a shower. As I got out of the shower I put on a fresh pair of jeans and my favourite red and gray plaid shirt. I ran out of the apartment convinced I’d be late.

I was a block away from Café Nation when I realized I’d left my phone in my other pants. I walked into the Café and saw the big coffee bean shaped clock read five to four. I wasn’t late, I was actually early. I took a few deep breaths to calm myself. The smell combination of chocolate cake and brewing coffee helped soothe me a little and I sat down to wait.

Five minutes after four she came in, her hair was fuchsia this week, and walked right by me. She was wearing a dark blue skirt with constellations on it and a white sweater. I stood up and walked behind her and said, “Hey Zoey. Can I buy you a coffee?”

Looking back at me startled, her brow furrowed, she opened her mouth to say something and paused. Finally her posture relaxed and she smiled. “Harry right? Sorry, I didn’t recognize you right away. I’ve been just so frazzled by this ferret thing. I’m so glad Simon gave you my number.”

We spent the next half hour chatting and having a great time. Around fifteen to five Zoey looked at her phone and said, “I have to call my mom. Something’s going on.” She stood up and walked to the front of the café. I took the opportunity to go to the washroom.

As I came out of the washroom Zoey was nowhere to be seen. I chatted with the barista as I waited. When she finally came back she’d tied her pink hair into a pony tail and changed her sweater.

“How’s your mom?” I asked.

“She’s okay. She just needed to talk it out. Sorry about flaking out on you. How about we go to dinner? I’ve had enough coffee today.”

That night when I finally got back to my phone I had an email from Zoey saying, “I had a nice time. Sorry I disappeared but my mom needed my help urgently. We should do this again sometime. Next time’s my treat.”

I also had a text from her earlier that day saying, “My mom’s freaking out be there soon.”

This all seems perfectly normal right? Boy crushes on roommate, oblivious roommate hooks boy up with girl; a typical twenty something romantic comedy.

Well, here’s where it get’s weird…

Simon typed in the wrong number, putting a one instead of a seven at the end. What are the chances of two women, going to the same university, were both called Zoey with a penchant for bright colours? I don’t know, but this is how I accidentally dated two women who had never met and were almost identical.

Blush: Pride

Blush’s kickstarter is doing well, but we still have a long way to go, and about two weeks left! Please keep harassing your friends and family, and add neighbours into the mix! Let’s make this game a reality!

Pride flag. Image from
Pride flag. Image from

Algonquin College, my school, has their Pride Week this week. I had the opportunity to attend a workshop yesterday afternoon, given by the fantastic people at Venus Envy Ottawa (Facebook, Twitter), on Bi/Pan/Poly relationships. The speakers were very well educated and gave thoughtful and insightful answers to all our questions. I thoroughly enjoyed myself and learned a lot.

This is what Pride means to me. As an Ally, I sometimes feel adjacent to what the Pride movement stands for. I loved the inclusiveness that taking part in something as minor as a workshop gave to me. On top of feeling as though I belonged, I was able to learn more about how to respect people in those relationships previously mentioned, and how to break through the myths surrounding the stereotypes.

Pride Week, to an Ally like me, is about education on different types of relationships and sexualities. It is about showing support and respect to everyone. It is about welcoming other human beings and accepting them for who they are.

Thank you for such a great workshop. I definitely won’t forget it!

Algonquin’s Pride Week will continue today and tomorrow, and has various workshops free to the public. Check out their calendar of events here.