I was stunned to see your report ‘Fair Day a sizzling success’ (SSO #1061).

New Mardi Gras may think it was a success but from a punter perspective it was a disaster.

The entertainment on the stage was woeful whereas in previous years it was beyond excellent.

What happened to the Broadway stage? No entertainment in the food area except for the screams from the carnival ride.

Whose decision was it to abolish Doggywood and the obstacle course and have it replaced by Dulcie’s Dog Show from Melbourne?

The dog show was a disaster. No arena. Barely a stage — from the back you could not even see what was happening.

The big question was why bring a dog show from Melbourne when Fair Day has had a successful Doggywood and events for years?

There seemed to be far fewer food stalls than in previous years.

The stall placement seemed to be haphazard with no rhyme or reason.

There were gaps where you thought stalls should be.

One thing missing that stood out like a sore thumb was decorations. Not a single decoration in the park. In previous years the entire park has been decorated but this year I could not see any decoration unless a stall had done something.

Whoever was on the Fair Day organising committee needs to take a long hard look at what they did and never do it again. Go back to the Fair Day we have come to know and love.

— William


Dear Mr Blumen,

Sorry your website isn’t working. But I hope this gets to you.

I’m really perplexed by your positions as stated on your flier.

You state you are a new voice with a new vision. Does that mean you reject the positions of the Keneally Government?

You say you will “reduce alcohol-related violence and anti-social behaviour — targeting specific solutions to problem areas and premises”.

What does this mean? It says nothing. Can you please let us in Surry Hills know? Do you support the Last Drinks campaign? Or do you mean more police on the beat who are bashed at night?

I’m a gay man who has been bashed on Oxford St by drunken straight men who have no respect for anyone, especially gays.

Please be upfront and honest — don’t treat us like the Labor Government has for years.

— David


Re the article in the Star Observer this week on ‘Not so much a culture, more a pathology’ (SSO #1061). How true this is. We have all been suffering for years with these issues. Now we finally have someone speaking up.

Gay life is not liveable. We have lost our dignity and self-respect as a community. We have become nothing more than a commodity, not people — a markting tool for mainstream society.

We have become so disillusioned, disfranchised with ourselves, society, gay community and there seems no end to the dilemma we are in. Let alone our worthlessness.

We all have suffered rejection, invisibility  and emotional and mental abuse within our own community, especially if you don’t fit the stereotype — muscles, good looks, etc. The gay community has thrived on narcissism, conceitedness, superficialness and self-importance.

The gay community today has all its loyalties, priorities and allegiances to straights, and not to your own members of your community, which is sad. That acceptance and equality has a price tag on it and the gay community is paying. Mardi Gras highlights this.

The gay community itself makes you feel cold and empty. It is an unfulfilling and meaningless existence. It needs some deep soul-searching.

We need to get over our rampant consumerism, self-indulgence, etc. Start acting and behaving normally, because that is what you want to be.

— John


Last Wednesday my boyfriend and I arrived from Holland to celebrate Mardi Gras. Last night (Friday, February 25) we went to Phoenix Underground for the Club eXile party and we were wearing leather jeans.

The party was nice, but during the evening we left for a while so I could show my boyfriend the bars around Oxford St — it’s his first visit to Oz.

To our great surprise we were refused entry into the SameSame Mardi Bar Nevermind because of our leather pants (in all other places we visited they were not an issue at all).

We thought Mardi Gras was about celebrating diversity — that it’s a great thing that there are as many kinds of people as there are people. Apparently not for SameSame.

Really disappointing and upsetting, and I don’t blame my boyfriend for wondering now why I’ve always been such a fan of the relaxed Sydney lifestyle.

— Paul

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