Yesterday, Saturday, April 18, 2015, I had the opportunity, honor and pleasure of attending the 7th Annual New York Rainbow Fair, which is touted as “The Premier LGBT Book Event in the U. S.”
I was in sheer heaven! Remember, I AM a certified bibliophile, and when I look at some of these photographs on the Internet showcasing some of the most GORGEOUS Libraries on the Planet, I experience something quite akin to an orgasm!
As most of you know, I book up very fast. In previous years, I would find out about this event either a few weeks after it took place, and in one case, a few months.
Fortunately for me, I found out about this event back in March, a full month or so before the Fair took place. I was excited, and I was ready.
The Rainbow Book Fair was from 12-6PM, however, I was Divinely Guided to wait until after my local postal carrier did his or her rounds for the day. After I retrieved my regular mail (or, to use the phrase of the day,”surface mail”) for the day, I was off to Manhattan.
I wanted to walk up from Port Authority, and I was feeling good, listening to Chaka Khan on my smartphone (thank you, Spotify!), and feeling good. I was wearing a new outfit and showing off a bit of tummy!
But you do not want to hear about that (or, maybe you do!). Regardless, I was on my way to the Holiday Inn Midtown where the Rainbow Book Fair was held.
Now, as I have mentioned in previous posts, as well as offline, I happen to love books, and were it not for time and money, I have no doubt I would have needed to purchase some luggage, or even hired a personal assistant to assist me with my purchases!
I had arrived at approximately 2:30PM, and was delightfully shocked that the admission price was $3.00. That is how much I pay to go from where I live into Manhattan. In my Mind I thought, “That’s it?!” Indeed, I shall happily pay $3.00 to walk in the door and buy books!
I was pleasantly surprised to see that the volunteer behind the table was someone with whom I have engaged in social activities at both the Gay Community Center of Manhattan, as well as the Queens Pride House in the Jackson Heights section of Queens, NYC.
I received a program, a sticker (which fell off not too long after my arrival; next time I shall put it on my face and see if it stays there!), and a copy of the Gotham Cafe menu (no, I did not eat there, but I have a great reason to return).
Then, I walked around, and found a table for the Bureau of General Services-Queer Division (and yes, I still need to write that blog post about them!).
From there, I walked to the table for Lethe Press. Now, as many of you know, I AM a big fan of the Marco Fontana Mystery Series written by THE Joseph R. G. DeMarco, whose books are published by Lethe Press, so you know I had to go to that table.
I do not recall the names on the sign, but neither author was there. However, Mr. Jonathan Harper was, whose Energy is lovely, and who is quite easy on the eyes!
I must confess, when I first walked up to him, I thought he worked for Lethe Press, as in, he was an employee, but I was happy to learn that he was selling copies of his debut collection of short stories, Daydreamers. It has been a while since I have read a collection of short stories, so I AM looking forward to this.
After this, I met Chris who was representing La Casa Azul (which is Spanish for “The Blue House”), which is East Harlem, NYC’s, local, independent bookstore. You know I love my Independent Booksellers! And yes, I AM already planning a trip, and soon!
From there, I walked over to the table featuring the works of Rhys Ethan, “Author-Actor-Crazy Person.” Mr. Ethan is yet another lovely man with lovely Energy and quite easy on the eyes! We had a great conversation about Spirituality, and although I did not purchase any of his books, I did purchase this pin he made. It consists of a big safety-pin, pink and green ribbons (you know I love my Heart Chakra colors!), and two dangling spheres, ocean blue on one side, rich pink on the other, and above each sphere, angel wings. And for a dollar each, how could I not?!
Then, I made my way to the table featuring Stephen Morris, author of the Come Hell or High Water Trilogy of novels. Clearly, my Witch Powers were directing me to this table, because this series is too good not to read!
The first novel, subtitled “Wellspring,” begins in Prague in 1356, and then flashes forward to Prague, Spring, 2002.
If I went any further, this post would be about this trilogy of novels, as opposed to the 7th Annual New York Rainbow Book Fair.
And then, my last stop (at the time, anyway) was to the table manned by THE Perry Brass. I had the honor and pleasure of meeting him previously, during an in-person meeting of Gay Men of Wisdom, founded the wonderful Ray Rigoglioso, author of Gay Men and the New Way Forward. And yes, I surprised Ray, once more, and the manner in which I surprised him surprised me, too!!
Perry Brass is just as lovely as ever. Friendly, eloquent, and engaging. I happily discovered that he had written a sequel to his book The Manly Art of Seduction: How to Meet, Talk to, and Become Intimate with Anyone. The sequel is entitled The Manly Pursuit of Desire and Love: Your Guide to Life, Happiness, and Emotional and Sexual Fulfillment in a Closed-Down World. As soon as I heard that, it was an instant purchase!
And then, I discovered that he was also selling back copies of his previous works at what I would call a Divine Discount. I was Divinely Guided (appropriately enough) to purchase his novel The Substance of God.
Well, after all that, I wanted to see if I could meet a particular published author. No, I shall not state his name, but I had a lovely surprise waiting for me.
Going into the room where I thought I would meet this author, I arrived a few minutes before the start of a panel discussion: “In the Beginning,” LGBT Jewish Writers on Culture, Heritage, and Queer Family Ties.
Now, I have always felt drawn to Jewish Culture, and there was a time, when I was younger, that I seriously considered converting to Judaism. Indeed, had I done so, I would have gone from being a Jew to being a Jewitch, but I digress.
The Panel was moderated by THE Perry Brass, and featured Michael Broder, his husband, Jason Schneiderman, Donna Minkowitz, Ms. D. L. King, and Martha Shelley, whose Energy I loved with each subsequent eloquent word.
It was a lively, fun and mentally stimulating discussion, and my ears certainly perked up when there was the topic of Paganism and Judaism!
And yes, afterward, my friend and I stopped in a cafe, where I had a coffee and a hamantaschen,also known as hamantashen or hamentaschen, and before taking my first bite, I gave Gratitude and Praise to the Queen of Heaven!
I highly recommend you visit the following Websites:
(WordPress Blog. YES!)
(the Website of Mr. Jonathan Harper)
(The official Website of La Casa Azul, East Harlem’s local, independent bookstore)
(the official Website of the “Author-Actor-Crazy Person” Mr. Rhys Ethan)
(The Website for Mr. Stephen Morris, author of this Trilogy of novels)
(The official Website of THE Perry Brass)
And there you have it!
Lesbians, my fellow Gay Men, Bisexuals, Transgenders, and our straight allies, as well as my blog followers and blog readers. Thank you for honoring who you are and what you do, and for honoring who I AM and what I do, too.