Never Wipe Tears Without Gloves

I highly recommend the recent Swedish miniseries "Torka Aldrig Tårar Utan Handskar (Never Wipe Tears Without Gloves)." I watched it last night with my sister-in-law Tess Whitty and brother Kevin. A three-hour epic about a circle of gay friends in Stockholm in the 1980's, it shows that while homophobia is universal across our cultures, so are gay wit, resilience, and the importance of one's "logical family" (h/t Armistead). Its depiction of the AIDS crisis opened many eyes in Sweden, where the series was a massive hit. Follow the YouTube links for an English-subtitled version -- while the subtitles aren't quite professional they're perfectly clear (though note: in part three, when they say "40 miles" they mean "400 kilometers.") It's simply excellent television, foreign or no. I'm adding this miniseries to my Required Media Immersion For Fledgling Gays. Do check it out.

Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:

Before watching the series, Tess and Kevin took me to Stockholm's Grand Central Station and showed me the "gay circle," a cruising area that existed well before Stockholm had an above-ground gay culture. 


"Is it still active?" Tess asked.

"Let me see," I said. I did a slow solo circle around it -- after first having to shake off the nephew nipping at my heels (chatty 14-year-olds are anathema to a successful cruise). Halfway around the circle, a man eating an ice cream gave me The Glance.

Yes, I reported back, the Gay Circle was still active after all these years.

Note: in the photo, if one looks carefully, said nephew is attempting a photo-bomb in the background.