Thursday, August 14, 2014

FUGUES (225/365 DAYS, 4.0)

Has it been 30 years already? 
a local gay [free] magazine has been around for a few decades, 

"Fugues [Montreal]" 

Over the years, 
it has evolved in its format and the quality of its editing and production 
and can rival with any similar publications found elsewhere. 
it deals with fluff with a lot of advertisement throughout, 
but being a free publication, 
it's got to make money somehow to function. 
I have no issue with that. 
Beyond that, 
it also presented articles on events and issues pertaining to the LGBT community, 
offering information that was not necessarily widespread in the 1980s when it began. 
Homosexuality was still very much taboo back then 
and coming out was frowned upon [to say the least]. 
I remember being harassed by cops on a few occasions, 
so when I was attacked one evening after a long day at work by half-a-dozen faggotbashers
you can bet I did not report the event to the authorities, 
only fearing more insults... 
I've since learned to stand my ground and face those who would humiliate me/us.
The gay scene was in mutation. 
If much was happening in clubs in the western part of downtown, 
the Gay Village slowly crept out of the shadows in the South Central district of Montreal, 
establishing clubs and restaurants, 
and community services became readily available. 
And Fugues was there to report on all of these things.
It also highlighted issues about health 
when AIDS took us by storm. 
Human rights were always a concern and still are, 
but I must say we've come a long way since then. 
Back in the '70s when I was a teenager, 
I would have never imagine things would change so dramatically within my own lifetime. 
And that's because there were people who defended this community 
and who fought long and hard against prejudice. 
The laws may have change over time, 
and mentalities as well, 
but we still have to deal with homophobes, 
more often than we'd like... 
The magazine also discussed other kinds of violence, 
be it conjugal violence, 
or misogyny, ageism, racism. 
The only common denominator is our sexual preference, 
but we come from all walks of life, 
all ethnic groups and religions, etc... 
So this leaves room for differences, 
and while we decry [some] people's attitude toward the gay community, 
some of us are not above discriminating against others within the community itself. 
The community is not as united as one would like, 
but that is something we need to work on by ourselves. 
If you think our lives are just about partying and sex, 
you'd be wrong!! 
we like that whenever the occasion presents itself, 
but we also have to contend with the same issues as anybody else, 
(rent, taxes, love and heartbreaks, bills, and taking the dog to the vet...),  
and more... 
I have grown as a gay man and have no regrets. 
some things I could have done better, 
but on the whole, 
I can't complain. 
The community has grown as well, 
becoming over time more visible and vocal about its rights. 
It has now become a force to be reckoned with, 
and we now benefit from the efforts of those militants. 
And Fugues has grown too!! 
A neat magazine, 
with a glossy cover and plenty of opinions expressed there 
to show the diversity that exists in our midst. 
I may be critical of certain organizations... 
but Fugues isn't one of them!! 
Congrats on your 30th 
and many more to come!! 

I was familiar with Lanier's work on the south wall of the building, 
but I only recently noticed the north wall with its new mural to celebrate the magazine. 
I do like it as it is very festive. 
But there's a side effect: 
it makes me hungry!!! 
Cake anyone!?! 
Happy Gay Pride!! 


  1. That wall art has me salivating. Maybe I need to go eat a rice cake!

    It does amaze me to see the anniversaries of some of the publications I remember as being so rare all those years ago. I remember trying to get my "gay news" from the Village Voice in the '70s. Times really changed. Nice to see some of the community papers survive!

    1. Indeed, especially those free ones,
      since they rely on the commitment of their advertisers.


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