Tag Archives: Jon-Jon Goulian

My new friend Jon-Jon Goulian

3 Dec

Over at Killings, the blog of the wonderful Kill Your Darlings journal, I wrote about a day I spent with my brilliant and delightful new pal Jon-Jon Goulian, author of The Man in the Gray Flannel Skirt

‘A strange kind of intimacy’: a day with Jon-Jon Goulian

The first time I heard of Jon-Jon Goulian, I was flipping through US Vogue, and a personal essay called Fish Out of Water caught my eye. I’d already become fascinated by androgyny in men’s fashion – from the ethereal beauty of Andrej Pejic to Marc Jacobs in his trademark kilt – so this nostalgic story of an anxious and insecure teenager finding solace by dressing in sarongs and high heels naturally caught my attention.

Set against the romantically retro backdrop of California in the 1980s, the essay centres around the writer’s unlikely friendship with a gorgeous and popular girl called Courtney. Jon-Jon – a nickname I already felt entitled to use – remembers afternoons they spent at the beach after school in matching seashell necklaces, giggling in a shared changing room as they tried on leggings and halter-tops. With my love for the dramatic and people with more courage than me to be themselves, the story made my little heart leap. How could I not be entranced by a guy who would show up to his high school prom in a skirt, tights, high heels and red lipstick – with the hottest girl at school on his arm?

Read the full post on Killings here!

Review: The Man in the Gray Flannel Skirt

5 Nov

In the first of my ’3008 Bookshelf’ columns for 3008 Docklands magazine, I reviewed The Man in the Gray Flannel Skirt by Jon-Jon Goulian.

Jon-Jon Goulian is one of the strangest people I’ve ever met. He’s also one of the sweetest, and his utterly lovable memoir is both heartbreaking and heart-warming, leaving you with an intense desire to give him a big hug – and maybe go out shopping with him.

For anyone who has ever felt like a fish out of water, Goulian’s story strikes a familiar chord. On the surface, there was no real reason why he should have felt out of place. Growing up in the sunny beachside town of La Jolla, San Diego, surrounded by a family of doctors and lawyers and political philosophers, and blessed with a sharp intelligence and talent for soccer, he was all set on a very conventional path towards success. (more…)

Boys in skirts

10 Oct

Excitement! My article on Andrej Pejic, androgyny and androcentrism appears in Issue Seven of the always-wonderful Kill Your Darlings journal.

Read the full text of my piece here!

[Update: Linked page seems to be doing something odd. If you'd like to read my essay let me know - I'll happily pass it on.]